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By Adam Curry. Posted Thursday, August 02, 2012 at 12:10 PM.

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By Adam Curry. Posted Thursday, August 02, 2012 at 12:11 PM.

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Power Is Restored Across India After Worst Blackout in History

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Wed, 01 Aug 2012 13:10

Adnan Abidi/Reuters

Passengers waited Tuesday for train service to be restored in New Delhi. More Photos >>

NEW DELHI '-- As electric power was restored across India on Wednesday, the nation's new power minister sought to tamp down a growing argument between state and federal ministers over who was to blame for Tuesday's unprecedented blackout.

''I don't think one can have a blame game between the state and the center,'' said the minister, Veerappa Moily.

More than half of India's population lost electricity on Tuesday after a cascading series of problems in three of the nation's power grids shut down power from Imphal in the east to Jaisalmer in the west, and from Leh in the north to Bhubaneswar in the middle of the country.

The blackout affected an area encompassing about 670 million people, or roughly 10 percent of the world's population. It trapped coal miners, stranded train passengers and caused huge traffic jams in the nation's capital.

Mr. Moily said at a news conference on Wednesday that the power supply was restored by 3 p.m. for emergency services like railways and airports, and that by the evening the power situation was ''normal.''

''I can reassure the entire nation'' Mr. Moily said. ''That kind of situation will never repeat in the national scene.''

Federal officials initially blamed the northern states of Haryana, Punjab and Uttar Pradesh for taking from the grid far more than their electricity allotments. Part of the reason may be that low rainfall totals have restricted the amount of power delivered by hydroelectric dams, which India relies on for much of its power needs. Another cause may be that drought-stricken farmers are using more power than expected to run water pumps to irrigate their crops.

But Ajit Sharan, the power secretary for Haryana, said that the central government is supposed to warn states if they are drawing excessive power from the system, and that did not happen on Tuesday or Monday, when another blackout affected a quarter of the nation's population.

''This hype that states are overdrawing is the reason for the collapse is not right,'' said Mr. Sharan. It is too early to say what exactly happened, he said.

When the grid collapsed, the frequency was 50.2 hertz, he said, which is normal. Had states been overdrawing, the frequency would have dropped well below that level, he added.

Whatever the cause, the scale of the blackout '-- the largest in human history '-- caused India acute embarrassment on the international stage. Indians track world opinion of them closely, not only for reasons of national pride but because foreign investments and remittances are crucial parts of the economy.

''The image of it looks very bad,'' said Naresh Chandra, a former ambassador to the United States and former electricity regulator in New Delhi.

But Mr. Chandra said the problems were fixable and that international investors should not lose heart. ''India is on a learning curve and hasn't managed its technology as it should. But it will,'' he said.

Power experts in the United States speculated that inattention by those manning crucial circuit breakers on India's electrical grid may have led to the blackout.

India's basic power problem is that the country's rapid development has led demand to far outstrip supply. That means power officials must manage the grid by shutting down power to small sections of the country on a rotating basis. But doing so requires quick action from government officials who are often loath to shut off power to important constituencies.

Mr. Moily promised that he would ensure that the nation's power grid had round-the-clock monitoring.

Some 300 million people in India have no access to power at all, and 300 million more have only sporadic access. Another of the nation's basic problems is that supplies of coal, largely controlled by the government, have not been enough to meet demand even among power plants that have the capacity to generate more electricity.

Shailendra Tshwant, an environmental activist and energy consultant, said that relying on more coal and further centralizing the nation's energy infrastructure would be a mistake.

''Decentralized renewable energy sources like wind, solar and microhydropower plants are the answers here,'' Mr. Tshwant said.

Reporting was contributed by Heather Timmons, Sruthi Gottipati, Niharika Mandhana and Hari Kumar from New Delhi; Vikas Bajaj from Mumbai, India; Raksha Kumar from Patna, India; Pamposh Raina from Gurgaon, India; James Glanz from New York; and Matthew Wald from Washington.

Full Power Back On In India

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Wed, 01 Aug 2012 13:10

Turkmenistan takes TAPI on the road - UPI.com

Turkmenistan will present the economic prospects of a planned natural gas pipeline to India in a road show through October, the government said.

Turkmen President Gurbanguly Berdimuhamedov said the planned Turkmenistan-Afghanistan-Pakistan-India natural gas pipeline would ensure the safe delivery of more than 1 trillion cubic feet of Turkmen natural gas to downstream consumers.

"This will help the economic growth of the TAPI participant states and, more importantly, will contribute to regional peace, stability and security," he was quoted by Pakistani newspaper The News International as saying.

Ashgabat aims to expand its natural gas export capacity under the terms of a developmental program governing the energy sector through 2030. Pakistan and India signed gas sales and purchase agreements with Turkmenistan in May. Security concerns in Afghanistan, however, are lingering TAPI concerns.

The road show begins in September and will see Turkmen officials travel to Singapore, New York and London.

The U.S. Energy Department's Energy Information Administration estimates Turkmenistan has proven natural gas reserves of roughly 265 trillion cubic feet, placing it among the world leaders.

Turkmenistan to Hold Road Shows for TAPI | Business

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Mon, 30 Jul 2012 16:54

ASHGABAT, Turkmenistan '-- Turkmenistan, holder of the world's fourth-largest natural gas reserves, said Saturday it would hold road shows in September-October for investors willing to take part in the TAPI project aimed to ship Turkmen gas to India via a trans-Afghan pipeline.

Turkmenistan agreed in May to supply natural gas to Pakistan and India via Afghanistan by signing gas sales and purchase agreements with Pakistan's Inter State Gas Systems and Indian state-run utility GAIL.

The U.S.-backed, 1,735-kilometer TAPI, named after the initial letters of the participant nations, is a major boon for Turkmenistan, which is seeking to diversify its energy exports from its traditional market, Russia.

The project also promises major benefits to energy-hungry regional rivals India and Pakistan.

"The TAPI project will ensure long-term [annual] shipments of over 30 billion cubic meters of Turkmen natural gas to the countries of Southeast Asia," state television showed Turkmen President Gurbanguly Berdymukhammedov as telling a government meeting late Friday.

Souring official optimism, many analysts point to TAPI's 735-kilometer leg that would run through the Afghan provinces of Herat and Kandahar, adding that the project would face significant security problems after a planned pullout of U.S.-led NATO troops from Afghanistan in 2014.

Berdymukhammedov, whose Central Asian nation of 5.5 million people is listed by human rights bodies among the most reclusive and repressive in the world, made no mention of the security challenges facing the long-touted TAPI.

"This will help the economic growth of the TAPI participant states and, more importantly, will contribute to regional peace, stability and security," said Berdymukhammedov, who enjoys vast powers and a rising personality cult in his ex-Soviet country.

Yagshygeldy Kakayev, head of the state agency for hydrocarbon resources '-- the body responsible for distributing licenses '-- told the same government meeting that road shows for potential investors would be held in Singapore, New York and London and would last for 18-20 days in September and October.

The Asian Development Bank had said the TAPI pipeline was estimated to cost at least $7.6 billion in 2008. Analysts and officials now say it could cost between $10 billion and $12 billion to construct.

According to estimates by industry experts and government officials, Turkmen gas supplies to Pakistan could begin in 2016 and to India in 2018.

Turkmenistan is promoting TAPI as a key element in plans to boost its annual gas exports to 180 billion cubic meters by 2030.

Turkmenistan does not disclose data for its current gas exports. BP estimates show that last year the country produced 59.5 billion cubic meters of natural gas and consumed internally 25 bcm.

BP data show Turkmenistan's natural gas reserves are behind only Russia, Iran and Qatar.

The country aims to supply gas from its Galkynysh field, better known by its previous name, South Iolotan. Auditor Gaffney, Cline & Associates has ranked the field the world's second largest, with gas reserves of between 13.1 trillion and 21.2 trillion cubic meters.

Cyber War$

NSA director shows up at hacker conference to recruit talent

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Mon, 30 Jul 2012 17:12

Source: Raw Story

US spy master Keith Alexander courted hackers at an infamous Def Con gathering rife with software tricksters wary of police and ferociously protective of privacy.

National Security Agency (NSA) director Alexander was the latest, and perhaps the most controversial, federal official to attend the annual hacker conference in Las Vegas to recruit warriors for battles being fought on the Internet.

''I am absolutely impressed with some of the stuff going on here,'' Alexander said during a keynote presentation to a packed auditorium.

''In this room is the talent our nation needs to secure cyber space.''

His Def Con visit came after he was quoted by the New York Times as saying that between 2009 and 2011 there was a 17-fold increase in cyber attacks on critical US infrastructure such as power grids and mobile phone networks.

Along with being boss of the NSA, Alexander is an Army general and head of US Cyber Command created to defend against Internet-based attacks.

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"The Question Is Not Whether To Act But Whether We Will Act In Time!" DUN! DUN! DUN!

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Thu, 02 Aug 2012 12:38

RIAA's Leaked Letter Admits SOPA was "Ineffective", Plots Six-Strikes

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Thu, 02 Aug 2012 12:44

Google is also admonished for promoting accountability"Legislation not likely to have been effective tool for music."

I. RIAA Realized SOPA was Ineffective

That's the Recording Industry Association of America's take on the fortunately deceased "Stop Online Piracy Act" (SOPA) (H.R. 3261) and the U.S. Senate's Protect Intellectual Property Act (PIPA) (S.968). In other words, even one of the world's most notoriously belligerent and aggressive copyright wachdogs thought that SOPA was ineffective.

That's an important admission to consider as similar legislation is spewed up once more.

Of course the RIAA never intended for the public to glimpse that statement or others in a letter from RIAA Deputy General Counsel Victoria Sheckler to the International Federation of the Phonographic Industry (IFPI). But thanks to TorrentFreak and its associates, the letter -- dated April 2012 -- has leaked onto the web for all to see.

Much of the letter chronicles the slow death of SOPA due to "viral" grassroots campaign. The letter expresses concerns regarding "anti-SOPA sentiment in ''netizens'' being used by opponents to oppose other copyright protection measures."

The RIAA makes it clear in the letter that it's still at odds with some of SOPA's key corporate opponents -- including Google, Inc. (GOOG). It vows to "keep pushing" Google to change policy, such as offering an unlimited number of link takedown requests, remarking, "Google has resisted voluntary best practices."

Of course the "best practices" as the RIAA sees them would essentially mean Google handing it a blank check for internet censorship. The RIAA is upset that Google wishes to independently review requests for integrity, viewing such accountability as "resistance" to its anti-piracy edicts.II. Six-Strikes Plan Sneaks in Internet Disconnections

As previously stated, the RIAA appears to have viewed SOPA as an ineffective instrument -- well, behind closed doors, at least. But it did offer praise to SOPA for elevating the "important principle regarding intermediary responsibility."

"Intermediary responsibility" is the term the RIAA uses to describe policing by internet service providers, either by warning file-sharing users or by blocking pro-infringement sites, such as The Pirate Bay.

Following the death of SOPA, the RIAA is pushing for a "six strikes" plan voluntarily adopted by ISPs.

Thus far Time Warner Cable (TWC), Comcast Corp. (CMCSA), and Verizon Wireless -- a joint venture between Verizon Communications Inc. (VZ) and Vodafone Group Plc. (LON:VOD) -- have all agreed to implement the plan.

Under the scheme, the ISP partners would send warnings to users caught file-sharing. As users received progressively more warnings they would face consequences, including:throttling (temporary)service tier downgrade (temporary)redirection to landing page until subscriber contacts ISPrestriction of Internet access (temporary)redirection until subscriber completes meaningful education on copyrightBooting file-sharing users off the internet -- a controversial provision of many "strikes" plans -- is not listed as a current pillar of the plan, but it is included in a sneaky manner.While the Memorandum of Understanding does not call for terminations, the letter mentions that ISPs in the U.S. must have a "termination policy for repeat infringers" in order to receive Safe Harbor protections under the Digital Millennium Copyright Act (DMCA) [PDF], which modified Title 17 of the U.S. Code.

In other words the RIAA says that it's not asking to disconnect users, though it casually mentions that the law requires that. Likewise the ISPs can say they aren't bowing to RIAA request, but rather to U.S. Code. Of course the RIAA was a key lobbying force in passing that change to the U.S. Code, so at the end of the day the RIAA rhetoric is nothing more than a clever public relations ploy.

Under the six-strikes plan the RIAA would graciously allow users to pay $35 to receive a review that would look at whether the infringing file could have been protected due to "fair use" rules, "pre-1923" (public domain) status, or account misidentification/hijacking incidents.Sources: Bay Files, TorrentFreak

"People Don't Respect Confidentiality in This Industry" -- Sony Computer Entertainment of America President and CEO Jack Tretton

Senate Cybersecurity Bill - C-SPAN Video Library

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Tue, 31 Jul 2012 14:28

C-SPAN | Washington Journal

Gregory Nojeim talked about the cybersecurity bill being debated in the Senate, and he responded to telephone calls and electronic communications. Mr. Nojeim explained some of the privacy concerns that businesses and civil .. Read MoreGregory Nojeim talked about the cybersecurity bill being debated in the Senate, and he responded to telephone calls and electronic communications. Mr. Nojeim explained some of the privacy concerns that businesses and civil liberties groups have with the legislation. C-SPAN Radio's Nancy Calo read news headlines at the end of the program.

42 minutes |

View Event Timeline (5 Programs)

EUobserver.com / Justice & Home Affairs / Hackers stole Van Rompuy's emails

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Mon, 30 Jul 2012 16:57

BRUSSELS - Hackers last summer raided the emails of EU Council chief Herman Van Rompuy and 10 other senior officials.

The breach was exposed last week by a team of US academics and cyber-security firms which has been tracking a hackers group known by two names - Comment and Byzantine Candor.

The US investigators, who asked to remain anonymous, showed computer logs detailing the hackers' behaviour to the Bloomberg news agency.

According to the logs, the group accessed the EU Council's computer network at around 9am Brussels time on four occasions - 8 July, 11 July, 13 July and 18 July last year.

It hacked 17 email accounts, grabbing around seven days' of correspondence and any attached files from each account.

Apart from Van Rompuy himself, the group stole information from three former and one current Van Rompuy cabinet staff - Sem Fabrizi, Jose Leandro, Zoltan Martinusz and Odile Renaud-Basso.

It also scalped Giles de Kerchove (the EU's counter-terrorism tsar), Leonardo Schiavio (a senior EU foreign policy official) and four officials dealing with trade and development - Boguslaw Majewski, Massimo Parnisari, Alda Silveira Reis and Jan Van Elst.

The EU was at the time involved in sensitive talks on the second Greek bailout.

Speculation among the US investigators is that the hackers are linked to the Chinese government. But China has repeatedly denied that it conducts cyber-espionage.

"The confirmation on the specific victims comes from the computer logs gathered by the researchers, which show the hackers' activities in the EU Council networks via monitoring of the hackers' own command and control system, including the specific users whose accounts were accessed. We were provided with the logs and interviewed some of the researchers," Bloomberg's Michael Riley told EUobserver.

An EU official said the EU Council does not comment on individual cases.

He noted that highly sensitive or classified information could not be so easily compromised because it is stored on a seprate computer network which is not connected to the Internet.

"Many of these attacks show a high degree of sophistication. Some are based on techniques used by government agencies," he added.

The Comment or Byzantine Candor group also targeted US oil firm Halliburton, a Canadian magistrate involved in a Chinese extradition case and the International Republican Institute in the US.

Center for Democracy & Technology | Keeping the Internet Open, Innovative and Free

Cybersecurity Amendments Would Modernize 25-Year-Old Privacy Law | Center for Democracy & Technology

Cybersecurity Amendments Would Modernize 25-Year-Old Privacy Law

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by Greg Nojeim, Jon Miller

August 1, 2012

Filed under Security & Surveillance, Cybersecurity

Tags: ECPA, gps, location data, privacy

[Editors Note: This is one in a of series of blog posts from CDT on the Cybersecurity Act, S. 3414, a bill co-sponsored by Senators Lieberman and Collins that is slated to be considered on the Senate floor soon.]

Two amendments to the Senate cybersecurity bill now being debated would require government agents to get a warrant before reading a person's email or secretly tracking someone through their mobile phone.- The amendments, if adopted, would be a huge privacy gain and address a long-standing civil liberties goal of modernizing the Electronic Communications Privacy Act, the 25-year old law setting rules for when government agents can access our electronic communications and other private data.

The amendments, one from Senator Leahy and another from Senator Wyden, would implement reforms sought by a diverse coalition from across the political spectrum. -

Supporters include AT&T, Google, the ACLU, Americans for Tax Reform, EFF, and IBM, among others.

-

Including these reforms in the Cybersecurity Act is appropriate:- the information sharing, monitoring and countermeasures provisions of the bill all effectively amend ECPA and the Wiretap Act, permitting companies to share user information notwithstanding privacy protections in those laws.- Congress should strengthen the underlying laws to counterbalance these changes.

ECPA Reform Is Long Overdue

The amendments respond to the dramatic technological changes in the 25 years since ECPA became law. Digital communications services are now ubiquitous in modern life. The government has a huge appetite for the data generated when we use the Internet and our mobile phones.- Last year, government agencies made over 1.3 million demands for text messages, location data and other information about mobile subscribers alone.

ECPA was forward-looking when adopted.- Court decisions of this outdated law now create a crazy patchwork of rules for government collection of communications and location data. This lack of clarity serves no one. It confuses users and law enforcement, as well as the companies in the middle that have to respond to government demands while protecting users. One federal appeals court has held part of the statute unconstitutional. -

Leahy Amendment

The Leahy amendment requires government agents to get a search warrant, based on probable cause, before they are allowed access to the content of users' private communications or documents stored "in the cloud," except in some circumstances.

Americans today routinely use some sort of electronic communication for confidential correspondence ranging from business deals to personal letters. Most people save their emails indefinitely, with much of the data stored on the computers of communications service providers.- Tens if not hundreds of millions of people store calendars, draft documents, private photos and videos online.- Senator Leahy's amendment would eliminate the outdated rule in ECPA that permits the government read someone's stored documents and email without a warrant.

The Leahy amendment also would cure a constitutional defect in ECPA.- In December 2010, the Sixth Circuit ruled in U.S. v. Warshak that the provision of ECPA allowing the government to access email over 180 days old with a subpoena is unconstitutional.- In response, many providers -- including providers in other court circuits -- now require a warrant before granting law enforcement access to communications content. By requiring warrants for content, Senator Leahy's amendment would make the law clearly constitutional and put companies and prosecutors back on firm legal footing.

The amendment also modifies the Video Privacy Protection Act to make it easier for online video services to get consent from consumers to share data about movie rentals. A similar tweak was adopted last year in the House of Representatives.

A diverse coalition of groups and companies supports the Leahy amendment.

Wyden Amendment

The cell phones that we carry with us all the time are tracking devices. Even when no call is being made, mobile devices placed in pockets, purses and on night stands constantly signal their location to service providers. The government is increasingly collecting location data from service providers in order to track citizens. GPS is only a part of this invasive surveillance:- data indicating which cell towers a device is near at any given time can be readily available to the government.

Senator Wyden's amendment would require a warrant if the government wants to track someone using that person's mobile phone, except in emergencies or when a person calls 911. The amendment mirrors the GPS Act introduced in both the House and the Senate by a bipartisan group of lawmakers, introduced last year. Under Wyden's amendment, the government would need a court-approved warrant, based on probable cause, to obtain information about a person's location that is generated by use of a mobile device such as a cell phone. Similar to Senator Leahy's amendment, Wyden's location amendment would replace complex and constitutionally-suspect rules with a clear warrant requirement.

Senator Wyden's location tracking amendment would also implement a reform supported by companies, trade associations, and groups from across the political spectrum.-

Congressional Debate On Penalties For Possessing Child Pornography (CHECK THE PENTAGON FIRST!)

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Thu, 02 Aug 2012 12:41

"Congress Cannot Afford To Wait For A 9/11 Size Attack To Act!" Senator Udall

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Thu, 02 Aug 2012 12:37

"Rushing Something Through That Will Impact The Country In Such A MASSIVE WAY!" Sen Grassley

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Thu, 02 Aug 2012 12:36

Syria

Exclusive: Obama authorizes secret U.S. support for Syrian rebels

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Wed, 01 Aug 2012 23:08

Wed Aug 1, 2012 5:58pm EDTBy Mark Hosenball

WASHINGTON (Reuters) - President Barack Obama has signed a secret order authorizing U.S. support for rebels seeking to depose Syrian President Bashar al-Assad and his government, U.S. sources familiar with the matter said.

Obama's order, approved earlier this year and known as an intelligence "finding," broadly permits the CIA and other U.S. agencies to provide support that could help the rebels oust Assad.

This and other developments signal a shift toward growing, albeit still circumscribed, support for Assad's armed opponents - a shift that intensified following last month's failure of the U.N. Security Council to agree on tougher sanctions against the Damascus government.

The White House is for now apparently stopping short of giving the rebels lethal weapons, even as some U.S. allies do just that.

But U.S. and European officials have said that there have been noticeable improvements in the coherence and effectiveness of Syrian rebel groups in the past few weeks. That represents a significant change in assessments of the rebels by Western officials, who previously characterized Assad's opponents as a disorganized, almost chaotic, rabble.

Precisely when Obama signed the secret intelligence authorization, an action not previously reported, could not be determined.

The full extent of clandestine support that agencies like the CIA might be providing also is unclear.

White House spokesman Tommy Vietor declined comment.

'NERVE CENTER'

A U.S. government source acknowledged that under provisions of the presidential finding, the United States was collaborating with a secret command center operated by Turkey and its allies.

Last week, Reuters reported that, along with Saudi Arabia and Qatar, Turkey had established a secret base near the Syrian border to help direct vital military and communications support to Assad's opponents.

This "nerve center" is in Adana, a city in southern Turkey about 60 miles from the Syrian border, which is also home to Incirlik, a U.S. air base where U.S. military and intelligence agencies maintain a substantial presence.

Turkey's moderate Islamist government has been demanding Assad's departure with growing vehemence. Turkish authorities are said by current and former U.S. government officials to be increasingly involved in providing Syrian rebels with training and possibly equipment.

European government sources said wealthy families in Saudi Arabia and Qatar were providing significant financing to the rebels. Senior officials of the Saudi and Qatari governments have publicly called for Assad's departure.

On Tuesday, NBC News reported that the Free Syrian Army had obtained nearly two dozen surface-to-air missiles, weapons that could be used against Assad's helicopters and fixed-wing aircraft. Syrian government armed forces have employed such air power more extensively in recent days.

NBC said the shoulder-fired missiles, also known as MANPADs, had been delivered to the rebels via Turkey.

On Wednesday, however, Bassam al-Dada, a political adviser to the Free Syrian Army, denied the NBC report, telling the Arabic-language TV network Al-Arabiya that the group had "not obtained any such weapons at all." U.S. government sources said they could not confirm the MANPADs deliveries, but could not rule them out either.

Current and former U.S. and European officials previously said that weapons supplies, which were being organized and financed by Qatar and Saudi Arabia, were largely limited to guns and a limited number of anti-tank weapons, such as bazookas.

Indications are that U.S. agencies have not been involved in providing weapons to Assad's opponents. In order to do so, Obama would have to approve a supplement, known as a "memorandum of notification, to his initial broad intelligence finding.

Further such memoranda would have to be signed by Obama to authorize other specific clandestine operations to support Syrian rebels.

Reuters first reported last week that the White House had crafted a directive authorizing greater U.S. covert assistance to Syrian rebels. It was unclear at that time whether Obama had signed it.

OVERT SUPPORT

Separately from the president's secret order, the Obama administration has stated publicly that it is providing some backing for Assad's opponents.

The State Department said on Wednesday the U.S. government had set aside a total of $25 million for "non-lethal" assistance to the Syrian opposition. A U.S. official said that was mostly for communications equipment, including encrypted radios.

The State Department also says the United States has set aside $64 million in humanitarian assistance for the Syrian people, including contributions to the World Food Program, the International Committee of the Red Cross and other aid agencies.

Also on Wednesday, the U.S. Treasury confirmed it had granted authorization to the Syrian Support Group, Washington representative of one of the most active rebel factions, the Free Syrian Army, to conduct financial transactions on the rebel group's behalf. The authorization was first reported on Friday by Al-Monitor, a Middle East news and commentary website.

Last year, when rebels began organizing themselves to challenge the rule of Libyan leader Muammar Gaddafi, Obama also signed an initial "finding" broadly authorizing secret U.S. backing for them. But the president moved cautiously in authorizing specific measures to support them.

Some U.S. lawmakers, such as Republican Senators John McCain and Lindsey Graham, have criticized Obama for moving too slowly to assist the rebels and have suggested the U.S. government become directly involved in arming Assad's opponents.

Other lawmakers have suggested caution, saying too little is known about the many rebel groups.

Recent news reports from the region have suggested that the influence and numbers of Islamist militants, some of them connected to al Qaeda or its affiliates, have been growing among Assad's opponents.

U.S. and European officials say that, so far, intelligence agencies do not believe the militants' role in the anti-Assad opposition is dominant.

While U.S. and allied government experts believe that the Syrian rebels have been making some progress against Assad's forces lately, most believe the conflict is nowhere near resolution, and could go on for years.

(Additional reporting by Tabassum Zakaria and Arshad Mohammed; Editing by Warren Strobel and Peter Cooney)

Email Article>> Next Article: Syria's Assad praises troops, keeps out of public eye

Pres Obama Authorizes COVERT Support To Syrian Rebels "Could Have Been Going On For Months

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Thu, 02 Aug 2012 00:54

Media Caught Again Publishing Faked Syria War Imagery

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Wed, 01 Aug 2012 13:47

(AaronDykes) '' The media has been caught once again publishing faked war propaganda imagery to play up sympathy for an all out invasion of Syria.

In a page out of Orwell's 1984 the corporate media is now hailing the virtues of the alliance between al Qaeda, the Syrian Free Army and the West and is now declaring that Al-Qaeda is now our ally in fighting the terror.

At the same time, to drum up public support to overthrow President Assad in Syria thy have repeatedly been caught faking news stories.

Now they have been caught once again ''faking the war'' to play up sympathy for an all out invasion.

Austria's largest daily paper, Kronen Zeitung, with some 3 million readers daily, published this sympathetic photo, seemingly portraying a man carrying a baby and a woman in burka fleeing from some war-torn corner of Aleppo.

It didn't take long for the story to be used by corporate news outlets around the globe to push the false narrative of civilian executions being conducted by the Syrian Army, while at the same time ignoring videos showing NATO backed terrorists rounding up and executing families in Aleppo which is part of an apparent plan to stage a false flag massacre in Aleppo.

However, it was later exposed to be a Photoshop forgery, juxtaposing the people walking on a normal looking corner with that of a blown out city block ravaged by heavy damage.

The subjects were apparently taken from the previously-published file photo credited to the European Pressphoto Agency, as the publishing notes next to the image indicate. The revealing side by side comparison was first posted to Reddit.com.

Click for larger image:

Media Caught Again Publishing Fake Syria News

Gizmodo points out:

Just to be clear, the family in the photograph is, in fact, in Syria; the original photo (on the right) came from the European Pressphoto Agency. But merely fleeing a city ravaged by guns and mortars apparently isn't quite dramatic enough on its own. The editors of the Krone'--as it's commonly called'--needed this baby to sing.

A nearly identical example of war propaganda is depicted in the 1997 film Wag the Dog, where green screen technology was used to place an actor in a studio with a kitten in a war torn zone in Bosnia:

To be sure, the entire perception of the conflict in Syria has been (purposely) distorted in the media, including many blatant lies.

Remember the Syrian Danny hoax?

Advocating intervention, ''Syrian Danny'' was caught faking gun fire on CNN in order to portray heavy fighting that wasn't really going on in the background while he literally begged for Western-backed forces to enter Syria and overthrow Assad. Paul Joseph Watson described the hoax: While waiting to be connected, Danny says, ''Well, let the gunfire sound then,'' before subsequently asking someone off camera, ''Did you tell him to get the gunfire ready?'' An explosion is heard soon after, but Danny doesn't even flinch. The following video demonstrates this amazing stunt, which correlated with numerous other exaggerated reports issued by propaganda-activist Danny.

Watch: Caught: Staged CNN Syria Interviews Faked By Activist Danny

Another hoax was revealed after the BBC falsely portrayed an Assad-led massacre of children in Houla, using a photo from dead children in Iraq to play up the scale of the atrocity, which was later found to be the work of the al Qaeda-led Free Syrian Army.

A reported massacre in Homs was likewise a deception:

Obviously, these incredible lies and deceptions are not limited to the Syrian conflict, but have become a mainstay in this age of modern media. From the phony babies in incubators testimony to demonize Saddam Hussein in the first Gulf war, to the lies about WMDs in Iraq the next time around, false flag events to start most 20th Century wars, and so much more: these lies are not crafted to fool fact checkers, critics, historians or true investigative reporters, but to goad the general public into a wave of hysteria ensuring enough support to start a war and profit from the destruction.

Modern warfare is no longer limited to the physical assault. The age of modern media has long made propaganda an indispensable force to wage war by other means. Syria, like Libya, have been classic proxy wars, with the hidden hand of the United States and its western allies only partial obscured. That is, in the most general sectors of public knowledge, opinion and discussion about the Syrian conflict is saturated with the deliberately crafted lie demonizing the target and producing mass levels of knee-jerk support for the action.

But the truth is plainly laid as well, for anyone willing to face it.

IN YOUR FACE: AL QAEDA IS RUN FROM WASHINGTON D.C.

Take a look at some of the videos analyzed in this story. The Syrian rebels have been a killing spree. After all, they are al Qaeda forces, pursuing the radical goals of the jihadists in an even more radical partnership with the West. We've been lied to about who the good guys are in Syria (nobody in power wears a white hat in those parts). While the Assad regime is authoritarian and hardly supportable, the entire action is timed around policy based in Washington, D.C.

There is no avoiding the fact that while TSA expands across the public sector to catch imaginary terrorists and harass the public, the nation's military forces are NOT fighting al Qaeda overseas; we are currently giving them aid, comfort, and new claims to mideast power, as in Libya.

Even the casual reader of news is made plainly aware that the U.S. ranal Qaeda forces in Libya, and were openly allies, and then al Qaeda ''rebel'' forces were literally airlifted to Syria, and again allied openly with the west to topple Assad next, despite the double think mental power necessary to reconcile the contradiction of intentionally fueling America's enemy no. 1 in the enduring War on Terror. needed by the helped them establish a new stronghold, and Assad's Syria itself just another domino on what has been termed in official war/policy plans as the Path to Persia.

LONDON TELEGRAPH: Libya: the West and al-Qaeda on the same side

NY TIMES: In Libya, Former Enemy Is Recast in Role of Ally

RT: Al-Qaeda and West in cahoots in Syria?

REUTERS: Local wars blur al Qaeda's threat to West

LONDON TELEGRAPH: Syria's crisis is leading us to unlikely bedfellows

TONY CARTALUCCI: Al Qaeda Backs US Regime Change in Syria

TONY CARTALUCCI: Brookings' ''Which Path to Persia?''

ALEXANDER HIGGINS: Russia Today Runs Damage Control For CNN

ALEXANDER HIGGINS: US Treasury Admits Al-Qaeda Runs Syria 'Rebellion'

ALEXANDER HIGGINS: UN / Arab League ''Peaceful Syria Protestor'' Exposed As A Terrorist

ALEXANDER HIGGINS: Syria Activists In Photos: Peaceful Protestors or Armed Terrorists?

Source: Higgins Blog

Related posts:

Syrian Girl: NATO's Secret Agenda In SyriaAl Jazeera Faked Syria, Libya News Reports Says ProducerNATO Using Al-Qaeda to Destabilize SyriaNATO Invasion Of Syria Set For This Month?Syria Update: What The Corporate Media Isn't ReportingObama speeds up limited air strike, no-fly zones preparations for SyriaObama, NATO To Blame For Murder Of 1000s Of Civilians In SyriaAl-Qaeda Rebel Pictured With UN Observers In Syria

Internet afgesloten in Aleppo - Buitenland

Link to Article

Thu, 02 Aug 2012 12:51

02/08/12, 12:59 '' bron: anp

(C) afp. Strijders van het Vrije Syrische Leger slepen een politieagent over straat in Aleppo.

In Aleppo, de grootste stad van Syri, zijn het internet en het mobiele telefoonverkeer afgesloten. Dit heeft het Syrische Observatorium voor Mensenrechten donderdag gezegd.

Volgens een bron bij de veiligheidsdiensten in Damascus gaat zo'n maatregel vaak vooraf aan een groot militair offensief. Al dagen wordt gevreesd voor een beslissende slag om de stad. De rebellen van het Vrije Syrische Leger controleren zo'n 50 procent van Aleppo.

Journalist Kidnapped By Syrian Rebels Say They Acted Like Al Qaeda Or Islamic Extremist

Link to Article

Tue, 31 Jul 2012 13:00

The War in Ammo

Da Bruddahood

Where is Huma Abedin's Security Clearance Form? Set You Free News

Link to Article

Wed, 01 Aug 2012 22:01

By Cliff Kincaid | Gulag Bound

The head of the Soros-funded Center for American Progress (CAP) is defending controversial State Department official Huma Abedin, a top aide to Secretary of State Hillary Clinton who is suspected of playing a role in Obama Administration ''engagement'' with the anti-American Muslim Brotherhood.

Neera Tanden, president and CEO of CAP and Counselor for CAP's Action Fund, has sent out an email defending Abedin and asking that Rep. Michele Bachmann be thrown off the House Intelligence Committee for asking questions about the vetting process that Abedin was supposed to go through.

''Michele Bachmann has gone from outrageous to dangerous,'' Tanden said in her email to CAP supporters.

Tanden is a former Obama Administration official whose previous claim to fame was working for the Obama White House to pass Obamacare. Her work at CAP apparently includes supporting the Obama Administration's policy to ''engage'' with the Muslim Brotherhood. It is believed Abedin is right in the middle of that, by virtue of her position as State Department deputy chief of staff.

CAP is the organization that hired Van Jones before he took his job as White House ''Green Jobs Czar'' and then re-hired him after his communist background came to light and he lost his job in the administration.

Tanden said in her email to CAP supporters that the problem was not Abedin's access to classified information but Bachmann's. She urged House Speaker John Boehner to remove Bachmann from the Intelligence Committee. ''Rep. Bachmann's antics have proven that she can't be trusted to act in our best interests,'' said Tanden.

Boehner, as well as Senator John McCain, had criticized Bachmann for merely asking questions about Abedin's fitness for her position. But they didn't indicate familiarity with or knowledge of Abedin's security clearance form, known as Standard Form 86, or the ''Questionnaire for National Security Positions.''

Despite the claims of ''witch hunt'' and ''McCarthyism'' that are echoed in the liberal media, especially by Anderson Cooper of CNN, Bachmann and other members of Congress simply want to know whether Abedin's Muslim Brotherhood connections were disclosed and/or examined when she gained access to national security information.

Their letter to the Inspector General of the State Department points out that Abedin ''has three family members'--her late father, her mother and her brother'--connected to Muslim Brotherhood operatives and/or organizations,'' and that ''Her position affords her routine access to the Secretary and to policy-making.''

The matter can be resolved, if the media are truly interested in getting to the bottom of the controversy, by demanding access to Abedin's Standard Form 86, which she was supposed to fill out before getting her State Department job. House Speaker Boehner could also demand a copy.

Did she disclose her family connections to the Muslim Brotherhood, as well as to Saudi Arabia, where she once lived and was raised?

''It is required that job candidates complete the questionnaire and other required forms thoroughly, honestly, and with candor,'' the State Department says.

For its part, the White House says it is committed to transparency and open government. Releasing Abedin's form is a test case and a way to start resolving the controversy.

The questionnaire for national security positions is a 127-page document which asks for such information as relatives and associates, foreign activities, foreign countries visited, the use of illegal drugs, and involvement in groups dedicated to terrorism or the overthrow of the U.S. government.

The State Department says, ''Eligibility for access to classified information, commonly known as a security clearance, is granted only to those for whom an appropriate personnel security background investigation has been completed. It must be determined that the individual's personal and professional history indicates loyalty to the United States, strength of character, trustworthiness, honesty, reliability, discretion, and sound judgment, as well as freedom from conflicting allegiances and potential for coercion, and a willingness and ability to abide by regulations governing the use, handling, and protection of classified information.''

It is not surprising that CAP would spring to the defense of Abedin. Matt Duss, a policy analyst at the Center for American Progress Action Fund, wrote an article, ''Talking to the Muslim Brotherhood (finally),'' in which he defended the administration ''reaching out to parties and Islamic movements'' but at the same time raised concern about ''the group's most prominent affiliated cleric, Yusuf al-Qaradawi, [who] regularly issues the grossest anti-American and anti-Semitic slanders on his Al- Jazeera show.''

AIM has called on Rep. Peter King, chairman of the House Homeland Security Committee, to investigate Al-Jazeera, on the grounds that it functions as a mouthpiece for terrorist groups. He has not undertaken such an investigation.

CAP, however, works openly with Al-Jazeera. When CAP released a report that purported to examine a conservative network of people and groups described as ''Fear Inc.'' and said to be guilty of ''Islamophobia'' toward Muslims, one of the authors, Wajahat Ali, went on Al-Jazeera to promote the claims.

Wajahat Ali and Matt Duss collaborated on another article that attempted to explain why Sharia, or Islamic religious law, ''is not the threat conservatives claim it is.'' The authors expressed particular concern that the Center for Security Policy had authored a major report advocating that supporters of Islamic law be barred from holding positions of trust in federal, state, or local governments or the armed forces of the United States.

Last August, CAP sponsored an event designed to counteract the movement to prohibit the adoption of Sharia in the U.S. The group also opposed Rep. Peter King's hearings on how Muslims in the U.S. are being radicalized to carry out terrorism.

Conservative writer Daniel Greenfield says, ''A more accurate name for CAP would be the Center for Islamist Progress.''

'--'--'--'--'--'--'--'--'--'--'--'--'--'--'--'--'--'--'---

Cliff Kincaid is the Director of the AIM Center for Investigative Journalism and can be contacted at cliff.kincaid@aim.org.

Hillary Clinton So The Message Is Clear, If Your Beliefs Don't Have Government Approval BEWARE

Link to Article

Tue, 31 Jul 2012 12:57

BBC News - Mali unwed couple stoned to death by Islamists

Link to Article

Mon, 30 Jul 2012 17:08

30 July 2012Last updated at 11:32 ET A couple who had sex outside marriage has been stoned to death at the weekend by Islamists in the town of Aguelhok in northern Mali, officials say.

The man and woman were buried up to their necks, then pelted with stones until they died.

The northern half of Mali has been overrun by rebels - Tuareg and Islamist - following a coup in Mali's capital.

Aguelhok in the region of Kidal was one of the first to be captured by Tuareg separatist rebels.

The Islamists in Aguelhok stoned the couple to death in front of about 200 people, officials said.

"I was there. The Islamists took the unmarried couple to the centre of Aguelhok. The couple was placed in two holes and the Islamists stoned them to death," a local government official told the AFP news agency.

"The woman fainted after the first few blows," he said, adding that the man had shouted out once and then fallen silent.

'Invaders'

A Tuareg rebellion in northern Mali triggered a military coup in March and in the ensuing chaos Islamist groups seized control of several towns in the north.

There has been international condemnation of the Islamists for destroying centuries-old shrines to saints revered by Sufi Muslims in the ancient city of Timbuktu.

Mali's interim President Dioncounda Traore on Sunday evening called for talks with the militants.

He made the call in his first national address two days after returning from two months in France, where he was treated for injuries sustained when he was beaten by supporters of March's coup.

Mr Traore said he would lead talks to form a unity government in Mali and would spearhead efforts to open dialogue with Islamists.

Malians should unite against "invaders", he said, referring to foreign jihadis who are allegedly operating in the north.

"Given the complexity of this crisis and the extent of the distress of our people from the north... we must together, I say together, clear the path ahead to free our country from these invaders, who only leave desolation, deprivation and pain in their wake," Mr Traore said.

Ron Paul

EUROLand

BBC News - Greece agrees new spending cuts to keep bailout

Link to Article

Wed, 01 Aug 2012 21:56

1 August 2012Last updated at 17:25 ET Leaders of Greece's fragile coalition government have agreed 11.5bn euros (£9bn) in new spending cuts needed to keep its EU/IMF bailout.

The cuts were required for Greece to qualify for the next 31.5bn euro instalment of the 130bn euro loan.

Without the funds, Greece would face bankruptcy and probably leave the euro.

The deal came after the two junior coalition parties shelved demands for an immediate renegotiation of the bailout terms to delay the cuts.

Conservative Prime Minister Antonis Samaras has argued that Greece must regain credibility before it can ask its international creditors for an extension to its 2013-4 austerity deadline.

"The prime minister said that it must be accepted - as a necessary condition for our country to remain in the eurozone and to be able to negotiate further - to cut public spending by another 11.5bn [euros]," Finance Minister Yannis Stournaras said after the meeting.

"That position was accepted."

He said the government would finalise the cuts by the end of August and would seek to "minimise the social effects".

The austerity measures are expected to include new reductions in state benefits and pensions.

FairnessThe leader of the socialist Pasok, the second-largest party backing the government, said he had temporarily set aside demands for an immediate renegotiation in order to avoid early elections.

Continue reading the main storyAAA-rating

The best credit rating that can be given to a borrower's debts, indicating that the risk of borrowing defaulting is minuscule.

"If the prime minister feels that immediately adopting the measures worth 11.5bn euros will safeguard future loan releases and the country's place in the euro, I am forced to accept his view," Evangalos Venizelos said.

Both he and Fotis Kouvelis, leader of the the third coalition party, the Democratic Left, said they would continue to fight for a renegotiation, and insisted that the burden of the cuts should be fair.

Greece's "troika" of international creditors - the EU, International Monetary Fund (IMF) and European Central Bank (ECB) - have said they will not release the next bailout payment if they are not satisfied by next month that Greece has made sufficient progress in implementing spending cuts and economic reform.

The country has received two massive bailouts - one for 130bn euro this March and one for 100bn euro in May 2010 - to allow it to continue payments on its vast public debt and stay in the eurozone.

Cuts in public spending, benefits, pensions and public sector salaries imposed as as result of both loans have led to severe economic hardship.

Last week, Mr Samaras said Greece would suffer a much deeper recession than thought this year, with the economy shrinking by 7%, rather than the 5% originally forecast.

Thanks to the Bailouts, Germany Now Has a Debt to GDP of 300%... Bye Bye Eurozone!

Link to Article

Tue, 31 Jul 2012 14:21

The European Crisis is accelerating with every day. Indeed, at this point there's a new major development (if not more than one) on a daily basis.

Rather than detailing every single news item, I'd rather address the larger concerns. This will better help you understand the larger systemic issues and how this is all likely to play out.

Greece, which we've been told was ''saved'' more than a dozen times, is back on the ropes and on the verge of needing a third bailout:

Greece will need more debt restructuring'...EU officials

Greece is unlikely to be able to pay what it owes and further debt restructuring is likely to be necessary, three EU officials said on Tuesday, a cost that would have to fall on the European Central Bank and euro zone governments.

The officials said that twice bailed-out Greece would be found to be way off track by EU and International Monetary Fund officials who have been assessing the country.

Inspectors from the European Commission, the ECB and the IMF -- together known as the troika -- returned to Athens on Tuesday and will complete their debt-sustainability analysis next month, but the sources said the conclusions were already becoming clear.

It means Greece's official-sector creditors -- the ECB and euro zone governments -- will have to restructure some of the estimated 200 billion euros of Greek government debt they own if Athens is to be put back on a sustainable footing.

http://www.reuters.com/article/2012/07/24/us-eurozone-greece-idUSBRE86N11D20120724

How this can be a surprise to anyone is beyond me. Greece was already asking for repayment extensions after its first bailout. Put another way Greece was already showing that it couldn't meet its easier/ more lax debt repayment schedule back in 2010.

As a standalone item, Greece is now at the point of either leaving the Euro or defaulting. Both items are receiving coverage in the mainstream financial media, which tells us that high-level officials have plans in place for either eventuality (things don't get out into the media in Europe until political ''sources'' plant them).

Greece's Far-Left Leader Says Country Will Default

Greek's leftist leader said his country would default, and has forecast that the ruling coalition government would look into returning to using the country's old currency.

Syriza party head Alexis Tsipras said in an interview Saturday with Greek weekly Real News that the government will ''soon present'' the idea for Greece to stop using the euro and use the drachma, reported the Athens-Macedonian News Agency.

Tsipras said that any extension of the deal with the International Monetary Fund and the European Union is ''essentially a longer rope with which to hang ourselves.''

http://www.theepochtimes.com/n2/world/greece-s-far-left-leader-says-country-will-default-268844.html?popular

Tsipras is the head of Greece's anti-Euro Syriza party, which has grown rapidly in popularity over the last few elections:

October 2009

May 2012

June 2012

SYRIZA's % of Vote

4%

16.8%

26.9%

Indeed, in the most recent election, Syriza lost by less than 3%. With Greece now showing a GDP contraction of 20% (this is on par with Argentina in 2001 which was accompanied by systemic collapse and full-scale defaults), it is highly likely that should Greece hold another election, Syriza would take is Parliament. The man who says Greece should just default would then be in charge of things in Greece.

On the other side of this debate is Germany whose political leaders are increasingly calling for Greece to leave:

Angela Merkel's coalition partners are lining up to demand a Greek exit from the euro, mounting pressure on the German chancellor and fanning market fears that Greece could shortly leave the single

currency bloc.

Patrick D¶ring, general-secretary of Angela Merkel's junior coalition partners the Free Democrats (FDP), told the regional Passauer Neue Presse newspaper that Greece could recover and regain competitiveness more quickly outside the eurozone.

"If Greece was no longer a part of the eurozone it could create trust on markets", he said in remarks published Tuesday (24 July).

He is the latest of a number of top-ranking members of the two smaller parties in Merkel's coalition to call for an exit for the benefit of Greece and to prevent contagion, mindful of the rising cost to Germany of bailing out weaker eurozone states.

Rating agency Moody's acknowledged that burden on Monday, dropping its outlook on German debt from stable to negative.

http://drugi.euractiv.com/euro-finance/merkel-partners-call-greek-euro-news-514099

The Moody's outlook change on Germany lets us know that this time around the debate is more than political posturing. If Germany loses its AAA status, then it's GAME OVER for the EU: the German population, already outraged by the EU bailouts, and now facing a recession will NOT tolerate a credit rating downgrade.

As I've stated many times, Germany is THE REAL backstop of the EU. And it's comprised its own solvency as a result: the country is only '‚¬328 billion away from reaching an official Debt to GDP of 90%, the level at which national solvency is called into question.

Moreover, that '‚¬328 billion has already been spent via various EU props. Indeed, when we account for all the backdoor schemes Germany has engaged in to prop up the EU, Germany's REAL Debt to GDP is closer to 300%.

Folks, Germany is tapped out. It's now only a matter of time before the EU is broken up.

On that note, we've recently published a report showing investors how to prepare for this. It's called What Europe's Collapse Means For You and it explains exactly how the coming Crisis will unfold as well as which investment (both direct and backdoor) you can make to profit from it.

This report is 100% FREE. You can pick up a copy today at: http://www.gainspainscapital.com

Good Investing!

Graham Summers

PS. We also feature numerous other reports ALL devoted to helping you protect yourself, your portfolio, and your loved ones from the Second Round of the Great Crisis. Whether it's a US Debt Default, runaway inflation, or even food shortages and bank holidays, our reports cover how to get through these situations safely and profitably.

And ALL of this is available for FREE under the OUR FREE REPORTS tab at: http://www.gainspainscapital.com

Greek political leaders to continue austerity talks| Reuters

Link to Article

Mon, 30 Jul 2012 18:41

ATHENS | Mon Jul 30, 2012 1:22pm EDT

ATHENS (Reuters) - Greek political leaders taking part in the coalition government said after a two-hour meeting on Monday that they would continue talks on austerity measures needed to bring the country's bailout program back on track.

"There is agreement on the strategic plan. Discussions will continue, there will be another meeting in the next few days," Democratic Left leader Fotis Kouvelis told reporters after the meeting.

(Reporting by Lefteris Papadimas)

Squirrel!

Fighter Jets Scrambled To Escort United Airlines Passenger Jet After Lost Camera Is Found

Link to Article

Wed, 01 Aug 2012 13:09

Downtown Oslo evacuated after fake bomb triggers alert| Reuters

Link to Article

Tue, 31 Jul 2012 14:22

OSLO | Tue Jul 31, 2012 9:45am EDT

OSLO (Reuters) - A wide section of the Norwegian capital's downtown area was evacuated on Tuesday and special forces were deployed after a suspected bomb - later found to be a training device - was found attached to a U.S. Embassy vehicle.

The fake bomb was inadvertently left on the car and triggered a security alert when it tried to go through a routine check, Oslo police said in a statement.

Police, who had been criticized for reacting too slowly when gunman Anders Behring Breivik detonated a bomb in July last year before going on a killing rampage, cordoned off an area 500 meters (550 yards) around the embassy.

They also evacuated buildings, shut underground rail lines and brought in heavily armed special forces.

"Our bomb squad removed the object and found that it was a practice bomb which was previously used for an internal exercise at the embassy," the police statement said.

The U.S. Embassy declined to comment.

The embassy is planning to relocate due to security reasons to the outskirts of Oslo from its current location adjacent to the royal palace and near the foreign ministry.

(Reporting by Terje Solsvik and Balazs Koranyi; Editing by Angus MacSwan)

Joker

Ministry of Truth

Obama leak 'scandal' is wildly overblown - CNN.com

Obama Press Secretary Marries ABC Reporter

Link to Article

Mon, 30 Jul 2012 19:02

A deputy press secretary for Barack Obama's reelection campaign married an ABC reporter over the weekend. The ABC reporter, Matthew Jaffe, "covering the 2012 presidential campaign," according to his biography on the website of ABC News. "For the past year he traveled around the country covering the Republican primary, from the Iowa Straw Poll to the various debates to this year's primaries and caucuses."

The deputy press secretary Jaffe married is Katie Hogan. Many members of Obama's reelection team and the press celebrated the wedding together Saturday.

Mike Allen of Politico reports on the wedding:

MARRIED SATURDAY EVENING at Lake Geneva, Wis.: Katie Hogan, an Obama campaign deputy press secretary, and Matt Jaffe, a former Spanish teacher covering '12 campaigns from Chicago, jointly for ABC News and Univision. ObamaWorld attendees included Grant Campbell, Ben Finkenbinder, Caroline Hughes, Kate Kochman, Ben LaBolt, Katie Lillie, Katie McCormick Lelyveld and Tim Skoczek. Media types included ABC's Jon D. Garcia, Rick Klein, Ben Krolowitz, John Parkinson, Emily Stanitz and Karen Travers, plus Mike Memoli of the L.A. Times/Chicago Tribune.

Here's Jaffe's ABC biography:

Matthew Jaffe is a reporter for ABC News and Univision covering the 2012 presidential campaign. For the past year he traveled around the country covering the Republican primary, from the Iowa Straw Poll to the various debates to this year's primaries and caucuses. As part of his work for ABC and Univision, Jaffe, based in Chicago, has focused primarily on the importance of the Latino vote in November's election, including spending 10 days reporting from Miami on Florida's GOP primary in January and interviewing Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa in Los Angeles in April. He regularly files stories for Univision's morning show "Despierta America," Univision's English and Spanish websites, ABC News Radio and ABCNews.com.

UPDATE: Jaffe and Hogan appear to have registered for wedding gifts at Bloomingdales and Crate & Barrel. A search of BarackObama.com reveals that the newlyweds have not registered with the Obama campaign, which would have allowed well-wishers to send cash donations to the campaign instead of getting wedding gifts.

Jonah Lehrer Resigns From The New Yorker After Making Up Dylan Quotes for His Book

Link to Article

Mon, 30 Jul 2012 18:54

2:12 p.m. | Updated Jonah Lehrer, the staff writer for The New Yorker who apologized in June for recycling his previous work in articles, blogs and his best-selling book ''Imagine,'' resigned from the magazine, he said in a statement.

Mr. Lehrer faced new questions about his work on Monday in an article in the online magazine Tablet that reported that he had admitted to fabricating quotes attributed to Bob Dylan in ''Imagine,'' a nonfiction book published in March by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt.

''Three weeks ago, I received an email from journalist Michael Moynihan asking about Bob Dylan quotes in my book 'Imagine,' '' Mr. Lehrer said in a statement. ''The quotes in question either did not exist, were unintentional misquotations, or represented improper combinations of previously existing quotes. But I told Mr. Moynihan that they were from archival interview footage provided to me by Dylan's representatives. This was a lie spoken in a moment of panic. When Mr. Moynihan followed up, I continued to lie, and say things I should not have said.''

''The lies are over now. I understand the gravity of my position. I want to apologize to everyone I have let down, especially my editors and readers. I also owe a sincere apology to Mr. Moynihan. I will do my best to correct the record and ensure that my misquotations and mistakes are fixed. I have resigned my position as staff writer at The New Yorker.''

Michael C. Moynihan, the author of the Tablet article, wrote that he had questioned Mr. Lehrer about quotes that appeared in ''Imagine'' that Mr. Moynihan could not verify.

In a statement, the editor of The New Yorker, David Remnick, said: ''This is a terrifically sad situation, but, in the end, what is most important is the integrity of what we publish and what we stand for.''

Lori Glazer, a spokeswoman for Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, said the publisher is ''exploring all options'' regarding the book. For now, the publisher will halt shipment of physical copies of the book and is taking the e-book off the market.

Since its publication in March, ''Imagine'' has sold more than 200,000 copies in hardcover and e-book, according to the publisher.

Faking and enhancing the sounds of the Olympics | Fourth-Place Medal

Link to Article

Mon, 30 Jul 2012 12:47

Ah, there's nothing quite like the serene "swoosh-swooshing" of oars in the water, as Olympic rowers glide along the water. There really isn't, because those sounds spectators are hearing on their TVs are not live from the event, The Atlantic reported.

In order to keep sight of the boats, broadcasters must follow them with chase boats and a helicopter. The result is that the sound of the rowing is drowned out by that noise. So, NBC elected to replace the live audio with a recorded soundtrack of rowing practices to deliver more accurate depiction of what the sport sounds like in its pure form.

Check out the difference between the sounds of live events as opposed to their TV equivalents.

[Related: NBC blasted for not showing Opening Ceremony live]

Audio engineer Dennis Baxter has employed 350 mixers, 600 sound technicians and 4,000 microphones to create a viewing experience that is better than seeing the events in person.

Rowing is not the only sport in which the sound is enhanced for TV viewers. Archery is another sport in which TV audiences hear more than the folks in the stands. Microphones are placed on the ground between the archers and their targets, capturing the "whoosh" of arrows in flight, not just the thud of when it strikes the target.

Another event that takes TV viewers deeper into the experience is diving. "We have microphones on the handrails as the divers walk up. You can hear their hands. You can hear their feet. You can hear them breathing," Baxter told The Atlantic.

An underwater hydrophone is able to capture the sounds of bubbles as divers enter the pool, and give viewers a glimpse into the isolation divers encounter at the bottom of the pool.

[Photos: London Games Opening Ceremony]

Gymnastics is another event in which microphones are able to add a new dimension to the sport. When Nadia Comaneci scored a perfect 10 on the uneven bars at the 1976 Games, all that TV viewers could hear was the announcer and the crowd. Today, with mics on every corner of the bars, we're able to hear every sound of the action, right down to the breathing of the gymnasts.

The result of all this audio technology is an experience that draws us closer into the world of Olympic athletes, making our living rooms even better than a front-row seat.

More London Olympics content on Yahoo! Sports:' Why do swimmers spit water all the time?' Funny Lochte-Phelps video might be best of the 'Call Me Maybe' parody genre' Kimberly Rhode: 1st American to medal in 5 straight Olympics

The War on Mail

PedoBear

DroneNation

I Don't Think You Can Call A President Who Has A KILL LIST As Someone Who Looks Away On Security

Link to Article - dronelogo.curry.com

Mon, 30 Jul 2012 13:02

This Is The Awesomely Bad Logo For The Navy's Drone Department

Link to Article

Wed, 01 Aug 2012 21:56

This logo (below) is being used by the Navy's Program Executive Office for Unmanned Aviation and Strike Weapons. It was photographed by Wired's Spencer Ackerman and shared on his Instagram account.

Logos, of course, are an organization's officially branded way of communicating with external audiences. They're supposed to stand for something, and to tell observers what business you're in. The drone program is in the killing people business, apparently (as opposed to the surveillance or intelligence business).

Tell us what you think. Here's Ackerman's photo, followed by a clean "official" version we found on a bio of rear admiral Tim Heely, the program officer for the office:

Here's the official logo:

Related:

Drone Pilots Are Changing, and Changed by, Remote Warfare

Link to Article

Wed, 01 Aug 2012 13:47

Elisabeth Bumiller (@BumillerNYT) visits Hancock Field Air National Guard Base, near Syracuse, to talk to drone pilots remotely flying sorties in Afghanistan about the not-so-disconnected duty of taking targets out. The high-resolution surveillance equipment attached to drones allow the observation of suspected militants not only in the moments before the strike, but also in the weeks of watching that can come before it.

She writes:

Col. D. Scott Brenton remotely flies a Reaper drone that beams back hundreds of hours of live video of insurgents, his intended targets, going about their daily lives 7,000 miles away in Afghanistan. Sometimes he and his team watch the same family compound for weeks.

''I see mothers with children, I see fathers with children, I see fathers with mothers, I see kids playing soccer,'' Colonel Brenton said.

And after the strike comes the emotional coping. Pilots compartmentalize '-- separating the virtual reality of the killing from accomplishing the mission at hand. But Ms. Bumiller also reports that after interviews with a dozen pilots, sensor operators and supporting intelligence analysts, all experienced ''a certain intimacy with Afghan family life that traditional pilots never see from 20,000 feet, and that even ground troops seldom experience.''

Read the full article here.

Transgenders take to the streets against drones '' The Express Tribune

Link to Article

Wed, 01 Aug 2012 13:46

The protes­tors were led by Sanam Fakir, who heads a welfar­e trust.

Dozens of people held a rally and demonstrated at the Minara road to protest against Nato supply routes being reopened and drone strikes. PHOTO: EXPRESS/NAEEM AHMED GHOURI

SUKKUR: Drone strikes have inspired protests by political parties and religious groups, and on Monday the transgender community in Sukkur joined them in their outrage.

Dozens of people held a rally and demonstrated at the Minara road to protest against Nato supply routes being reopened and drone strikes. According to the protestors, drone strikes are counterproductive and result into collateral damage, which is intolerable.

The protestors were led by Sanam Fakir, who heads a welfare trust. The protestors made their way from the clock tower through the main roads of the city to Minara Road.

Sanam Fakir condemned drone strikes in Pakistan's tribal areas. Fakir said that thousands of innocent men, women and children have been targeted in the 'merciless' drone strikes, but the government was not taking concrete efforts to stop them.

Fakir said that the US claims that it is targeting terrorists by the drones but asked who was responsible for the deaths of innocents. According to Fakir, drone strikes are greater acts of terrorisms. To further elaborate, Fakir asked that if terrorists were to enter a school in the US and take students hostage, the US would not send drones to fire missile on the school but would find the safest way to kill or arrest the terrorists without harming the children.

Published in The Express Tribune, July 31st, 2012.

Drone Strike In Pakistan Kills 4

ISLAMABAD -- Pakistani intelligence officials say a suspected U.S. missile strike has killed four people near the Afghan border.

The officials say the missiles hit a car in Khushali village near Mir Ali in North Waziristan.

They spoke on condition of anonymity Sunday because they were not authorized to talk to reporters.

They say the identity of the four dead is not yet clear.

North Waziristan is home to several Afghan and Pakistani militant groups, as well as foreign al-Qaida fighters.

Pakistan says the strikes help militants attract new recruits and hit civilians, and demands that the U.S. halt them. In the past, there has been evidence suggesting Pakistan has given tacit approval to the strikes.

The U.S. uses unmanned drones to hit militants in the absence of Pakistani moves against them.

ISI chief lands in Washington, talks on drone attacks expected '' The Express Tribune

Link to Article

Wed, 01 Aug 2012 13:00

ISI chief Lt. Gen. Zaheer­ul Islam will meet with his CIA counte­rpart Gen. David Petrae­us.

ISI chief Zaheer-ul-Islam has traveled to the US for talks with CIA Director Gen David Petraeus. PHOTO: FILE

HOUSTON: Inter-services Intelligence chief Lt. Gen. Zaheerul Islam arrived in the US capital on Tuesday on his first official trip to Washington DC since assuming office.

A source privy to the matter told The Express Tribune that Lt. Gen Zaheerul Islam had arrived in the US Capital where he is expected to meet with CIA Director General David Petraeus. The two are due to discuss matters pertaining to counter-terrorism and intelligence.

Earlier, ISPR had announced that Lt. Gen Islam, who had replaced Lt. Gen Shuja Pasha in March, would embark on an official visit from August 1-3.

The visit comes less than 24 hours after the US and Pakistan signed an MoU to formally reopen the NATO supply routes.

New mechanism for drone attacks

One of the topics which will come under discussion are the drone strikes. Pakistan has repeated called for an end to the strikes, calling them counterproductive.

At Langley, the ISI chief is expected to push on with a new mechanism for drone attacks which would involve the US sharing actionable intelligence on targets with Pakistan.

A senior Pakistani security official had earlier told AFP that the pair would discuss counter-terror cooperation and intelligence sharing.

Talks on 'veritable arms'?

With the clamour in Washington rising on action against the Haqqani Network, who many on Capitol Hill believe still have ties with the ISI, talks are expected to cover sterner action against the network.

The US Senate approved a bill last week by voice vote which requires the US State Department to submit a report within 30 days of it being signed by President Obama, certifying whether the Haqqani Network fits the criteria to be labelled a 'Foreign Terrorist Organisation'.

Former US Joint Chiefs of Staff Admiral Mike Mullen in a famous quote days before he left office had termed the Miranshah based group a 'veritable arm of the ISI'. The group is also believed to be responsible for deadly attacks in Kabul earlier this year, and the Salerno base suicide bombing in June among a host of other attacks in Afghanistan.

EU plans drone network to nab illegal immigrants '-- RT

Link to Article

Mon, 30 Jul 2012 17:00

Reuters/Jean-Paul Pelissier

The European Commission had released a proposal to deploy drones across the Mediterranean Sea to catch illegal immigrants. The surveillance effort is part of a $410 million package to bolster EU border security.

Dubbed EUROSUR, the project proposes the use of drones, high-resolution cameras, satellites and spy planes to detect migrant vessels at sea.

EUROSUR's stated aim is to reduce the number of migrants reaching the Schengen area undetected, preventing cross-border crime and reducing immigrant fatalities. The project has yet to be officially debated in the European Parliament and Council, but some proponents of the project are pushing for it to be implemented as early as next year.

One to three million people immigrate to EU annually, and last year's uprisings in North Africa increased the flow of immigrants to EU, with thousands attempting to cross the region's borders. The Mediterranean is one of the central hubs for illegal immigration: Europa Press reported that 1,037 migrants on board 44 boats have been detected arriving on the Andalusian coast from 1 January 2012 to 9 July 2012 alone. With this influx in immigration, death rates have also spiked.

The UN Refugee Agency recently reported that 1500 people ''drowned or went missing last year [2011] while attempting crossings of the Mediterranean Sea.'' This year's death toll has already reached 170. Earlier this month, an inflatable boat miles off the Italian coast sunk killing 54 Eritreans fleeing their country. In May, 20 were presumed dead when a small boat sank after striking a coral reef just off the French island of Mayotte.

The proposal assures that it will save migrants' lives by detecting them at sea. ''EUROSUR will help detect and fight criminal networks' activities and be a crucial tool for saving migrants who put their lives at risk trying to reach EU shores,'' said Cecilia Malmstr¶m, the EU's Commissioner for Home Affairs.

However, many academics and thinktanks fear this unprecedented increase in surveillance and collection of personal data, and the murky potential uses of the gathered intel.

The Heinrich B¶ll Foundation, a green thinktank in Germany, expressed concern in its assessment of the costs and civil rights implications of EUROSUR. The thinktank argues that the project ''is likely to entail the creation of at least one centralized EU database containing biometric data, to which currently unknown number of actors could have access.''

The European Commission assures that there is no chance for abuse with EUROSUR. ''The situational pictures will, as a general rule, not involve personal data but rather the exchange of information on incidents and depersonalized objects, such as the detection and tracking of vessels,'' the Commission's proposal states.

Nevertheless, it remains unclear whether this data will be stored indefinitely or deleted after a set period of time. Another concern with EUROSUR is that it will enable authorities to spot immigrants' preparatory activities on the ground, such as a gathering of vehicles or boats on African beaches.

Critics of the plan argue that EUROSUR is a preemptive measure designed to solve the problem of illegal immigration before it reaches EU shores, rather than lowering death rates and providing humanitarian assistance.

''Drones are very expensive and they don't help,'' German member of the European Parliament Ska Keller told Global Post. ''Even if a drone detects a vessel, it can't do anything for them. You need to have actual people there, and having a drone doesn't guarantee that.''

One possible unintended consequence of EUROSUR is that some refugees seeking asylum from their native countries could be prevented from reaching the EU.

''It's horrendously expensive and the benefits aren't clear,'' said Keller. In her opinion, the money would be better spent on search and rescue teams: ''We should save money in an economic crisis, not spend it on something with no clear benefit apart from to the defense industry.''

Gitmo Nation

Paramilitary Police vs Civilians in Anaheim -- Puppet Masters -- Sott.net

Link to Article

Wed, 01 Aug 2012 13:43

War on ErrorDaily KosSun, 29 Jul 2012 16:24 CDT

First look at the pictures of what look like soldiers patrolling Iraq lined up to stop the small, 300 person march against police violence in Anaheim. In case you missed it, there's been protests for days in Anaheim after another young man of color was shot and killed by the police.Hundreds decrying police violence march in Anaheim

Who the heck are these guys? Police, really? If so, why the military gear? If not, are they private contractors? That's allowed now, btw.

Read the warning I posted December 5th, 2011

SCARY: Department of Defense DIRECTIVE NUMBER 3025.18 December 29, 2010

If I have interpreted the DoD Directive correctly, Private contractors like Blackwater (Xe) and Dycorp, both now owned by Private Equity firms, or any of the thousands now working for the DoD could be used to corral us. So, who are these guys in the photos? Police, military, or mercenaries? Who's paying them? Disneyland or Anaheim?Anaheim needs to know.

This video of police shooting rubber bullets into crowd of women and children as well as unleashing a dog that attacked a women holding her baby was uploaded on July 22, 2012

We must be vigilant.

Police In Southern California Appear On The Streets In FULL MILITARY GEAR

Link to Article

Tue, 31 Jul 2012 13:00

London 2012 Olympics: Police score own goal as they lose Wembley keys

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Mon, 30 Jul 2012 16:58

The stadium in north west London is hosting nine Olympic football matches, including the finals, with up to 90,000 spectators expected to attend each match.

A London 2012 spokesman said: ''Keys being used by police officers on searches at Wembley Stadium were reported missing on July 24.

These were internal keys. Locks have been changed and the security of the venue has not been compromised in any way.''

The slip-up follows a security fiasco in the lead-up to the Olympics, with the firm G4S failing to hire enough guards.

G4S announced yesterday that it has barred its staff from corporate hospitaliy events and its chief executive, Nick Buckles, will not be attending the Games.

F-Russia

The War on Baby Formula

The War on Weed

How the National Institute for Drug Abuse Helped Create the Dangerous Marijuana Alternative Known As "Spice"

Link to Article

Thu, 02 Aug 2012 12:49

A top priority for the NationalInstitute for Drug Abuse has always been to find a way to makeillicit drugs chemically unenjoyable. As recently as this year,NIDA Chief Natalia Volkow told 60Minutes that her agency was looking for "a cure" forgetting high.

But it appears NIDA's quest to cure Americans of their enjoymentof marijuana has backfired. According to a report in The New Orleans Times-Picayune, funds fromNIDA helped create the dangerous marijuana alternative known as"Spice" and "K2."

The funds were disbursed in the mid-1990s to a ClemsonUniversity researcher named Dr. John W. Huffman. It was whilesearching for a cure to marijuana "addiction" thatHuffman developed the formula for Spice:

Former Clemson University chemistry professor Dr. John W.Huffman is the namesake of JWH-018, JWH-073 and JWH-200, three ofthe synthetic cannabinoids banned by the U.S. Drug EnforcementAdministration in 2011.

"The National Institute of Drug Abuse wanted to researchmarijuana," said Dr. Victor Tuckler, the emergency roomtoxicologist at Interim LSU Public Hospital in New Orleans. "Theywere looking at different receptors of the brain to see if theycould come up with a way that people wouldn't get addicted to thisstuff."

Huffman and his colleagues created more than 400 syntheticcannabinoid compounds during the 1990s.

"Who knows how this got out," Tuckler said. "Pretty soon, it'son the Internet and people are making it over in China."

Recently, the circle completed itself. More than a decade afterNIDA spent an unreported amount creating Spice, the DrugEnforcement Administration spent millions raiding gas stations andheadshops across the county reported to be selling it. Here's theDEA press release about "Operation Log Jam":

As of today, more than 4.8 million packets of syntheticcannabinoids (ex. K2, Spice) and the products to produce nearly13.6 million more, as well as 167,000 packets of syntheticcathinones (ex. bath salts), and the products to produce anadditional 392,000 were seized.

Operation Log Jam was conducted jointly by the U.S. DrugEnforcement Administration and U.S. Immigration and CustomsEnforcement (ICE), with assistance from the Internal RevenueService Criminal Investigations, U.S. Postal Inspection Service,U.S. Customs and Border Protection, FBI, Food and DrugAdministration's Office of Criminal Investigations, as well ascountless state and local law enforcement members in more than 109U.S. cities and targeted every level of the synthetic designer drugindustry, including retailers, wholesalers, and manufacturers.

''Although tremendous progress has been made in legislating andscheduling these dangerous substances, this enforcement action hasdisrupted the entire illegal industry, from manufacturers toretailers,'' said DEA Administrator Michele M. Leonhart. ''Togetherwith our federal, state and local law enforcement partners, we arecommitted to targeting these new and emerging drugs with everyscientific, legislative, and investigative tool at ourdisposal.''

You can read thefull press release here, but you won't find any mention ofHuffman, Clemson, or NIDA.

Why Does Obama's DRUG CZAR Always Sound Like The Least Informed Person In The Room?

Link to Article

Tue, 31 Jul 2012 14:20

Agenda 21

Humans Are Almost Entirely The Cause Of Climate Change -Richard Muller Former Climate Change Denier

Link to Article

Tue, 31 Jul 2012 13:01

"The Greatest Hoax Ever Perpetrated On The American People" Senator Inhofe On Climate Change

Link to Article

Thu, 02 Aug 2012 12:18

New study shows half of the global warming in the USA is artificial

Link to Article

Mon, 30 Jul 2012 12:46

(From WUWT by Anthony Watts)

PRESS RELEASE '' U.S. Temperature trends show a spurious doubling due to NOAA station siting problems and post measurement adjustments.

Chico, CA July 29th, 2012 '' 12 PM PDT '' FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

A comparison and summary of trends is shown from the paper. Acceptably placed thermometers away from common urban influences read much cooler nationwide:

Read the rest

The Fix is In

Badminton match-fixing scandal: how and why the four pairs were disqualified from the London 2012 Olympics - Telegraph

Link to Article

Wed, 01 Aug 2012 16:05

Not half. Speak to players and officials and they will tell you of a spate of incidents each year on the world tour. As far as the Olympics go, the highest-profile case remains Athens 2004 when Li Yongbo, China's head coach, admitted to ordering a player to throw a tie, improving chances of gold. It occurred during the women's singles semi-final when Li decided that Zhang Ning would have a better shot at winning the final against a non-Chinese opponent rather than her opponent Zhou Mi.

Statistics '' compiled by the online magazine Badzine '' for all major tournaments in 2011 revealed that walkovers and uncompleted matches were commonplace. Chinese shuttlers, favourites to sweep all five golds at these Games, met each other 99 times on the circuit in 2011. Of those, 20 matches were either not played (11 walkovers) or partially completed before one of the opponents retired. When Chinese met other nations, the percentage of withdrawals dropped to 0.21 per cent.

Can we call it match-fixing?

China will tell you differently, but four years after the Athens debacle, Li said it "showed our patriotism and in fact I am proud of it''. In the Olympics, only two entries from each nation can compete. China's dominance outside of the Olympics means that the latter stages of Super Series events are filled with their players and more of a chance of manipulating matches. The problem with group-stage matches is that the teams believe they are exploiting a loophole in the system of keeping players fresh, rather than fixing matches for betting purposes.

What do the players think about the debacle?

Chris Adcock, Britain's doubles' specialist, told Telegraph Sport in February that it was ''frustrating'' to see so many games ''clearly thrown''. Adcock alluded to one particular match at last year's World Championship semi-final involving two Chinese pairs, which failed to go the distance. Adcock and his partner Imogen Bankier reached the final but looked tired. Not surprisingly their 'fresher' Chinese rivals won gold.

What is being done about the whole issue?

Before the Wembley furore, world badminton chiefs said they were continuing to monitor same-country matches after a number of complaints from federations. The crux was that no official explanations were given as to particular withdrawals, while there was no independent doctor to assess injuries. The Badminton World Federation said in August that it would impose ''severe penalties'', but up until now none had been imposed.

Scampaign

Unbelievable election rumor

Link to Article

Thu, 02 Aug 2012 02:25

QMI AgencyToday at 5:08 PMU.S. President Barack Obama. (REUTERS)

A conservative lawmaker in Tennessee has apologized for reportedly passing along a fringe Canadian media rumour that U.S. President Barack Obama is planning to fake an assassination attempt to keep the November election from happening.

Kelly Keisling, a Republican in the state legislature, reportedly forwarded the e-mail from his official state legislature account Tuesday morning with the heading, "FW: Unbelievable election rumor."

The rumour in question -- which first appeared on canadafreepress.com -- states that Obama and the Department of Homeland Security are planning "a series of events" that may lead to "martial law" being imposed and delay the election.

While the original article appears to be removed from Canada Free Press, The Constitution Party of Canada quotes it liberally on their website, noting it "has potential" and "is worth spreading."

It alleges a Homeland Security "whistleblower" says the government is planning to stage a fake assassination attempt on Obama and blame it on white supremacists in order to cause mass riots and justify restricting civil liberties in urban areas.

"The whole purpose is to keep Obama in office for another term, no matter how unpopular he is, as he is not finished changing our country from a Constitutional Republic," the source said.

According to the Nashville newspaper, The Tennessean, Keisling released a statement Wednesday apologizing for forwarding the e-mail to constituents.

"Earlier this week, I forwarded an e-mail from my legislative office that should not have been sent out. The message was inappropriate for distribution," his statement reportedly reads. "I regret the error and pledge to be more cautious regarding the information distributed from my office in the future."

Barack Obama Reaches Into Same Tired Bag Of Old Tricks Again And Again'...

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Wed, 01 Aug 2012 21:50

Home -> News -> Barack Obama Reaches Into Same Tired Bag Of Old Tricks Again And Again'...

by Ulsterman on August 1, 2012 with 2 Comments in News

Hoping to recapture those long ago days of 2008, Barack Obama once again plays God to a crowd of bussed in stooges as one among them feints on cue'...

14 mins ago by Ulsterman in News | You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS feed. You can leave a response, or trackback from your own site. About the UlstermanBe courteous to all, but intimate with few, and let those few be well tried before you give them your confidence. -G. Washington

2 Comments to Barack Obama Reaches Into Same Tired Bag Of Old Tricks Again And Again'... Obeline Mr. Personality: Zero's hankering for a late night TV gig after he loses this election . . . and Mooch can do a jane Fonda/fitness video thing.

WHITE HOUSE INSIDER: How Mitt Romney Mentally Castrated The Obama Campaign

Link to Article

Wed, 01 Aug 2012 13:25

The timing of this interview comes just days after a soon to be published book authored by Richard Miniter details how it is Valerie Jarrett and not President Barack Obama who makes the final decision in so many of the most critical calls from within the White House '' even those involving the United States military. This knowledge is nothing new to readers of this blog, for that very information first originated from our own longtime D.C. political operative some two years ago. We talk to that figure again now, in person '' White House Insider.

PART ONE:

UM: Let's cut right to it then '' the Romney campaign. How are they doing against the Obama team?

WHI: Doin' fine. Fine. Money coming in'...they ain't spending it much just yet. Which is smart. July is not the month to do that. Get it goin' in August. Kick ass at that convention of theirs. Then pour it on right up to the finish.

UM: And the Obama campaign? How would you compare them to the Romney camp at this point?

WHI: They are running against everything and running for nothin'. That is tough to pull off for an extended period. The American people'...once they start really focusing'...they don't want to hear negative-negative-negative all the time and that's all we are getting' from Obama these days. They are a long way off from the Hope and Change days.

UM: Specifically on that '' the Obama team'...you think they can still win this though? That Obama can be re-elected?

WHI: Oh hell yeah '' absolutely. They are dragging his sorry ass all over the country, putting the words in his mouth'...thinking the First Lady'...that image they have been trying to create around her'...the racism stuff'...that campaign isn't even close to be started on that yet'...they are worried about money a bit'...but they got about 90% of the media in their pockets'...they got tens of millions still coming in'...and they got the stupidity of a whole lot of voters who ain't been paying attention to what this group has been doing to the country.

UM: What do the internal polls say? You look confident '' that doesn't happen when you are worried. So I assume you have information that is favorable to the Romney team?

WHI: (BIG SMILE) Guess I gotta work a bit on my'...uh'... poker face! Yes-yes-yes'...that polling data the public rarely ever gets to see. The lifeblood of a campaign. The god-amn internals!

UM: Well?

WHI: Those Romney boys'...they got a good pile of money and I said they ain't been spending much just yet. But they have been doin' their homework on gathering up a sh-tload of polling data '' especially in those swing states.

'...And it's looking good for them. I'll tell you that. Not a slam dunk no worried scenario '' but they got a real chance here to win this thing. Their campaign'...it's been rock solid so far. Forget the bullsh-t media spin trying to drive home every little supposed mistake they're makin' '' so far the Romney team is winning this thing. But the real race hasn't quite started yet so they gotta be ready for the real show. That's coming up next month. That's when the real punches start. And Romney better be ready to take a punch, cause they are gonna come at him hard.

'Course, they did something that got my attention '' earned my respect. These boys can crack a lip open themselves. All suit and ties on the outside, but tough bastards behind the scenes. Reminds me a lot of the Reagan team. Smile to your face while they are kicking the sh-t out of you.

UM: Tell me what that was '' what did the Romney team do to earn your respect?

WHI: It ain't just this one thing '' like I said. They are running a solid campaign. But I do like a team that can twist the knife a bit and do it with some style '' and that's what they did recently.

UM: So what was it?

WHI: All that internal polling '' the swing states. What I was just telling you about'...there was one in particular that came out very strong for Romney. Huge numbers. Had to have shocked the Romney team a bit '' maybe an outlier. A glitch. We are talking in the neighborhood of a ten point walk over Obama. Ten points in a so-called swing state? Independents were like 60-40 favoring Romney. Women came out just ahead for Romney. Hispanics split almost 50-50. And even the Blacks polled were just under 80 for Obama '' which we have not seen in any poll since 2007. Ever.

So this kind of data comes into the campaign, right? They give it a look-over'...decide it has to be'....somethin' off. A mistake in the poll. Those numbers are just too favorable to Romney. He's doing well but these internals are saying he is OWNING Obama in this state '' a state that went for Obama back in '08. Now normally you take that kind of poll with a big grain a salt'...and you'...you move on. Come back to it later. Got sh-t to do, right?

Not these Romney boys. They order up a new poll. Like'...it's within 48 hours. Do it again they say. Do it right. Increase the group. Poll more voters. Cross check the data and cross check it again. Be god-amn thorough this time.

Now that costs money '' but that's the kind of money'...that's how they are doin' their spending. Smart. Focused. No waste. They want facts. They want real results'....like a business'...like a well run business. That has been the Romney campaign so far. When mistakes are made they quickly react'...they refocus'...they move on. Just like a business.

UM: The second poll '' so they ran another poll? From a larger sample group?

WHI: Right '' exactly. Spent a bit more money '' they want to know EXACTLY where they are in this state. If they take this state early on Election Night '' that could be it for Obama. One and done. It's a swing state you see'...but Romney ain't supposed to win it. So yeah '' they order up a second poll. Get the group to do it fast '' that takes more money. But they spend it '' willing to spend it to be certain of getting real information. That's how it's done '' I respect that. Love a team that works like that. Let me know where we are at '' where we really sit with these people'...then let me take it from there. Get the f-ck outta my way and let me take it from there.

UM: And what did that second poll show?

WHI: (Both hands slap down onto their knees and WHI leans well forward in their seat. Their eyes widened and that BIG smile broke out across their face again)

'...Pure gold man. That second poll'...sh-t'...it came out even better for Romney. It bumped him another two points overall'...picked up among women'...more Independents'...even a percentage among Democrats as a whole. And that poll was done right '' it was the real deal. We ain't talking some CNN/ABC/CBS/NBC/Gallup bullsh-t here. It was boots on the ground, diggin' in the dirt'...the real deal data that is the lifeblood of a campaign. And it came back aces for Mitt Romney. In a state he ain't supposed to be winning!

Now maybe the gravity of this story'...what I'm telling you here'...maybe it ain't hittin' you quite as hard as somebody like me. For me'...for a campaign'...you get numbers come back like this in a state that a few months back you are giving yourself maybe a far less than 50/50 shot of winnin''...that kind of poll '' DONE TWICE remember '' TWICE '' that kind of poll'...it's a holy sh-t moment. In a good way. The Romney boys had to have been goin' into a full on happy dance seeing those numbers. And when they shared them with the candidate himself'...even Mitt Romney had to have cracked a real smile.

UM: But what did they do that earned your respect '' or was it just ordering up the second poll?

WHI: Oh hell no'...the second poll was just'...that's just money well spent. What they did next'...and it's my understanding it was approved by the candidate himself'...what they did from there is what took this polling data and turned it into a weapon against the Obama team. They'...I'll say it like I say it'...not their words but mine. The Romney boys'...they took that poll '' both polls'...they purposely leaked it over to the Obama team. They slapped the sh-t outta them with it. HARD.

UM: I don't understand '' what do you mean by leaked the poll to Obama?

WHI: Just like I said it'...normally, you keep a lid on these internals. That's YOUR polling data'...you don't share it. You keep it'...maybe leak it here and there to somebody friendly to you in the media'...but for the most part, the internals stay hidden from view, right? And you sure as f-ck don't share it with the opposition. You let that happen'...you don't protect that data'...that gets your ass fired. Those polls cost money '' don't waste that money letting the other side know that information for free.

'...But this time'...this time the Romney team'...they purposely leaked the internals. Both of them. And the beauty of it is'...the Obama guy'...the one who first came across it'...that poor bastard thought he had pulled it off himself. Thought he had made a deal'...got the goods. Right? You follow what I'm sayin'?

UM: I do '' keep it going.

WHI: So'...so this Obama kid'...he's junior level but he thinks he really got something here. A brand new poll'...two of them back to back'... paid for by the Romney team '' and he's got them for nothing. That kid had to have been really thinkin' highly of himself.

Then he reads the data. Then he sh-ts himself. Then he passes it on to the higher ups. They sh-t themselves. Then it goes to the big boys themselves'...and Obama. And Jarrett. This poll has got them on full tilt. We're talking major freak out session here. But you see'...they can't pass it off as just an anomaly, right? They got BOTH polls'...all the cross tabs'...they got everything. And the data is solid. ROCK F-CKING SOLID.

It's got the main office in Chicago in a fit. It's got phone calls back to DC'...back to Chicago'...on the campaign trail'...Plouffe is taking incoming big time'...Jarrett is like a damn T-Rex for a full day on this. The woman is pissed off. Axelrod hits the road for 48 solid '' unavailable. He's avoiding Jarrett. Jarrett calls in that kid'...the poor kid who thought he had made a score against the Romney team'...she wants to know EXACTLY how he came to obtain those materials, right? She starts to smell the set up.

Now by the time it's explained to their candidate '' Obama'...Jarrett doesn't hold back. She lays into HIM. She rattles the president. If they lose that state'...and the numbers don't look good for them'...if they lose that state then winning the election becomes extremely tough for them.

UM: And what was Obama's reaction to this data?

WHI: Hold up'...I'm getting' there. Now Jarrett'...she ain't'...she don't understand a campaign. That ain't her thing. But she sure as hell understands a set up. She knows'...by then she is realizing the Romney team has just initiated a major mind-f-ck onto the Obama campaign. And THAT is what has got her so pissed. The woman does not like to be messed with '' by ANYONE.

So she is laying into Obama'...basically that he better bring his A game to this'...that it's all bets are off now and they got a real race on their hands. She's screaming at him. At everyone. It's a one on one conversation'...but everyone on board can hear it. Even over the engines. At least in the back. Maybe not up front with the press corp'...but everyone in the back can hear it. She is blasting him '' the campaign'...she insults the voters'...she goes on and on about the economy. How they should have done something about the economy by now. And then she rips into the Chamber of Commerce. For a good ten minutes. How they have always been out to get them. How they are run by one of ''THEM''.

UM: Them?

WHI: She said they'...the Chamber'...it was ''just like Chicago''. The f-cking Irish. Just like Chicago. There's a back story to all that'...the Daley's'...her and them go way back. And it didn't end well'....you know all of that. When Bill Daley left'...that war they had between them.

'...Look, the woman'....Jarrett'...she's an outright racist. She really is. And it's a racism that is found all through the Obama administration. That's nothing new there'...anyone who takes the time to look and add it all up'...the DOJ'...Holder'...that's all there. But I want to just focus on those internals and how they messed with the entire Obama campaign. How they are STILL messing with that campaign.

UM: Go ahead then '' this is fascinating stuff.

WHI: It gets so much better'...we are getting to the point where I really gotta tip my hat to Romney on this. Like I said'...reminds me a lot of the Reagan team. Somethin' they would have done.

'...So we got Jarrett going crazy. We got Obama digesting what she is screaming at him. We got campaign staff overhearing all that. We got Plouffe scrambling to initiate his own internal in that state to corroborate the numbers that they THINK they stole from Romney. We got Axelrod playing dumb'...the whole operation is getting' its ass kicked by that polling data from that one swing state.

But all of this gets better'...the real payoff is coming. You see, this all goes down early July'...just after the holiday, right? That's the timeline of all of this. Hits the fan over the course of about a week'...week and a half.

And then what?

UM: You're asking me?

WHI: Yeah '' and then what? What happens to the Obama campaign right after? Think about it'...a couple weeks after the 4th of July holiday'...what does Obama say?

UM: '...Bloody hell.

WHI: (BIG SMILE) Now you're seein' it. Romney got inside his head '' Obama is rattled. The entire campaign is rattled. And Obama goes out and says what? You go ahead and tell me for a change. What does Obama say not two weeks after the Romney team slips that internal polling data over to them?

UM: ''You didn't build that.''

WHI: And that's how you play smashmouth politics son. A mental castration of a sitting president. And the Romney team just did it as good as I've EVER seen it done right there. And the decision to make sure that polling data made its way back to Obama'...that had to come from Mitt Romney himself. And when he did that'...he balled up his fist and smacked Obama right up in his face. Right into that fake ass toothy fool grin of his. He let him know this ain't gonna be 2008. This is gonna be a war. Barack Obama'...Valerie Jarrett'...Plouffe'...Axelrod'...they all got their asses kicked on this one.

Romney done good'...

_____________________

MUCH MORE COMING SOON IN PART TWO OF THIS INTERVIEW INCLUDING DISCUSSIONS ON ERIC HOLDER AND THE ONGOING CONGRESSIONAL INVESTIGATIONS, AS WELL AS WHI's COMMENTS ON THE LAST INTERVIEW CONDUCTED WITH WSI.

Bill Clinton to deliver key speech at Democratic National Convention

Link to Article

Mon, 30 Jul 2012 12:48

News broke last night that former president Bill Clinton is set to have a prominent speaking role in a prime time-slot at the Democratic National Convention. Meanwhile, Vice President Joe Biden has been reduced to giving a speech on the final night of the four-day event with his chaperone President Barack Obama on standby.

Vice President Joseph R. Biden Jr. will appear on the final night of the convention, making the case for Mr. Obama before the largest audience of the week during an outdoor speech at the Bank of America Stadium. The vice president and Mr. Obama will appear together on stage before they accept the party's nomination for a second term in the White House.

It is unusual in recent election cycles, although not without precedent, for the vice president not to get the stage to himself during a night at the convention. But in his speech, aides said, Mr. Biden is expected to remind Americans about the last four years and the administration's accomplishments in a difficult economic climate..

[New York Times]

Bill Clinton is Dying? - The GLOBE

BILL Clinton has allegedly been begging wife Hillary to call off their divorce before he dies.

The former President is said to be ailing fast and devastated that he won't live to see his first grandchild, Globe magazine reports.

"Bill has lost a shocking amount of weight and insiders say he has just six months to live," dished a mole.

The War on Sandwiches

Haiti

President Bill Clinton Announces New Funding for HaitiÕs Hospital Bernard Mevs

Link to Article

Thu, 02 Aug 2012 02:27

August 1, 2012 | 4:04 pm | Print

Above: former US President Bill Clinton on a recent trip to Haiti (Photo: Clinton Foundation)

By the Caribbean Journal staff

Former United States President Bill Clinton has announced a new grant to support the Hospital Bernard Mevs in Haiti.

The Clinton Bush Haiti Fund grant, which totals $442,100, will help US-based non-profit Project Medishare and Bernard Mevis to implement a medical training and education programme for medical professionals in Haiti.

The 16-month initiative will train 47 radiologists, lab technicians and pathologists from Bernard Mevs and other hospitals in Haiti in the use of state-of-the-art medical equipment.

While the equipment was recently donated to the Bernard Mevs, few staff are trained to use it.

The announcement followed a visit by Clinton and former US Senator (and surgeon) Bill Frist to Bernard Mevs to evaluate the programme.

''The Clinton Bush Haiti Fund's investment in Haiti's healthcare workforce is an investment in the long-term vitality of the whole country,'' Frist said in a statement.

Last year, Hospital Bernard Mevs treated over 60,000 patients and performed 150 surgeries per month. It is one of the only trauma, critical care and rehabilitation centres in Haiti.

More than 140 Haitian doctors, nurses and staff work at Bernard Mevs; they have all received training from Project Medishare.

HaitiNewsbill clinton, clinton bush haiti fund, haiti, hospital bernard mevs

Bank$ters

Stunning Crimes of the Big Banks: Worse than Your Wildest Imagination

Link to Article

Thu, 02 Aug 2012 12:43

Source: Washington's BlogPreface: Not all banks are criminal enterprises. The wrongdoing of a particular bank cannot be attributed to other banks without proof. But '' as documented below '' many of the biggest banks have engaged in unimaginably bad behavior.

You Won't Believe What They've Done '...

Here are just some of the improprieties by big banks:

Engaging in mafia-style big-rigging fraud against local governments. See this, this and thisShaving money off of virtually every pension transaction they handled over the course of decades, stealing collectively billions of dollars from pensions worldwide. Details here, here, here, here, here,here, here, here, here, here, here and herePledging the same mortgage multiple times to different buyers. See this, this, this, this and this. This would be like selling your car, and collecting money from 10 different buyers for the same carCommitting massive fraud in an $800 trillion dollar market which effects everything from mortgages, student loans, small business loans and city financingPushing investments which they knew were terrible, and then betting against the same investments to make money for themselves. See this, this, this, this and thisEngaging in unlawful ''Wash Trades'' to manipulate asset prices. See this, this and thisParticipating in various Ponzi schemes. See this, this and thisBribing and bullying ratings agencies to inflate ratings on their risky investmentsThe executives of the big banks invariably pretend that the hanky-panky was only committed by a couple of low-level rogue employees. But studies show that most of the fraud is committed by management.

Indeed, one of the world's top fraud experts '' professor of law and economics, and former senior S&L regulator Bill Black '' says that most financial fraud is ''control fraud'', where the people who own the banks are the ones who implement systemic fraud. See this, this and this.

But at least the big banks do good things for society, like loaning money to Main Street, right?

Actually:

The big banks have slashed lending since they were bailed out by taxpayers '... while smaller banks have increased lending. See this, this and thisWe can almost understand why Thomas Jefferson warned:

And I sincerely believe, with you, that banking establishments are more dangerous than standing armies '....

John Adams said:

Banks have done more injury to religion, morality, tranquillity, prosperity, and even wealth of the nation than they have done or ever will do good.

And Lord Acton argued:

The issue which has swept down the centuries and which will have to be fought sooner or later is the people versus the banks.

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Major Facebook investor dumps nearly 2 million shares, which sink to $20, a new low

Link to Article

Thu, 02 Aug 2012 02:26

Fidelity Investments, an early and major purchaser of Facebook stock, let go of 1.9 million shares during June alone, when the social network's value on the public market sank as low as $25 per share.

Currently, the shares sit at $20.85 in after-hours trading. Facebook stock hit a new low today: $20.84, down $25 from where it sat just moments before its initial public offering started back in May.

Watching Facebook's stock ticker over the past couple of months has been a grueling exercise for casual onlookers and a major disappointment for early investors. Fidelity, which includes a multitude of separate funds, bought large amounts of pre-IPO Facebook stock; as a result, we can't really say whether or not any of the funds turned a profit.

Before May, it was not uncommon to see Facebook shares trading in the high thirties and mid-forties on sites such as SharesPost and SecondMarket. If Fidelity funds paid anywhere near those amounts, it's highly likely they lost out when selling shares over the summer. Prices wavered in the low thirties at the end of May, sinking into the twenties in June.

The Wall Street Journal reports that Fidelity funds originally bought $200 million in Facebook stock early in 2011. In June alone, 21 Fidelity funds divested, dumping nearly 2 million shares onto the public market.

Fidelity wasn't alone in its optimistic expectations of Facebook stock performance, however. Other analysts and investors predicted the stock price would wind up selling for between $50 and $60 per share.

Nasdaq has been at least somewhat to blame for the botched debut of Facebook shares. The stock exchange is refunding early investors to the tune of $40 million or more in cash.

And of course, many others are still hanging on to their Facebook stock. After all, just a few months after the company's IPO, we're all still very much at the beginning.

''This is an eight-year-old company,'' pointed out Rebecca Lieb, an Altimeter Group analyst, in a recent interview. ''When Google went public, they had only recently developed ad products. Facebook is at the beginning of mobile products, advertising products '-- and it hasn't even started with commerce products.''

Fidelity is the third-largest mutual fund company in the United States. It's privately held and counts more than 20 million individual and institutional investors among its clientele.

Here's a sad little chart we made to show you Facebook's performance over the past three months with a few other tech stocks thrown in for comparison:

Final Berserk Algo Bill To Knight - $440 Million; Stock Implodes

Link to Article

Thu, 02 Aug 2012 13:07

While JPMorgan thought it was $170mm, we said last night the number was notably higher - and sure enough, via Bloomberg:

*KNIGHT SAYS TRADING OUT OF POSITION YIELDED $440M PRETAX LOSS*KNIGHT SEEKS OPTIONS TO BOOST 'SEVERELY' HURT CAPITAL POSITION*KNIGHT CAPITAL PURSUING STRATEGIC, FINANCING ALTERNATIVESKCG is down another 50% this morning to $3.45! And here is what we explicitly warned yesterday: "In other words, with Knight losing about $300 million in market cap today, investors are speculating that the net loss to the firm will be just that as it has to foot the bill. Considering the volume and breadth of the impaired universe, this will likely be very big underestimation of just what the final bill will be to Knight." Sure enough...

Knight Capital Group Provides Update Regarding August 1st Disruption To Routing In NYSE-listed Securities

PR Newswire

JERSEY CITY, N.J., Aug. 2, 2012

JERSEY CITY, N.J., Aug. 2, 2012 /PRNewswire/ -- Knight Capital Group, Inc. (NYSE Euronext: KCG) today provided an update on the August 1, 2012 disruption to routing in NYSE-listed securities.

As previously disclosed, Knight experienced a technology issue at the open of trading at the NYSE yesterday, August 1st. This issue was related to Knight's installation of trading software and resulted in Knight sending numerous erroneous orders in NYSE-listed securities into the market. This software has been removed from the company's systems.

Clients were not negatively affected by the erroneous orders, and the software issue was limited to the routing of certain listed stocks to NYSE.

Knight has traded out of its entire erroneous trade position, which has resulted in a realized pre-tax loss of approximately $440 million. Although the company's capital base has been severely impacted, the company's broker/dealer subsidiaries are in full compliance with their net capital requirements. Knight will continue its trading and market making activities at the commencement of trading today. The company is actively pursuing its strategic and financing alternatives to strengthen its capital base.

Average: Your rating: NoneAverage: 5(7 votes)

'Knight'mare on Wall Street: Trading Firm and CEO Now Face Scrutiny

Link to Article

Thu, 02 Aug 2012 13:09

BY JACOB BUNGE The role of Knight Capital Group Inc. in Wednesday's trading glitch thrust a spotlight on a lesser-known firm whose CEO has blasted Nasdaq for technology problems in its competitor's botched Facebook Inc. offering.

Regulators already were scrutinizing the plumbing of the U.S. financial system, and the latest episode is an embarrassment for Knight Chief Executive Thomas Joyce. On television and in the press, Mr. Joyce has been a leading critic of missteps by Nasdaq OMX Group Inc. in the Facebook offering in mid-May. He saw his own company's shares lose a third of their ...

BY JACOB BUNGE The role of Knight Capital Group Inc. in Wednesday's trading glitch thrust a spotlight on a lesser-known firm whose CEO has blasted Nasdaq for technology problems in its competitor's botched Facebook Inc. offering.

Regulators already were scrutinizing the plumbing of the U.S. financial system, and the latest episode is an embarrassment for Knight Chief Executive Thomas Joyce. On television and in the press, Mr. Joyce has been a leading critic of missteps by Nasdaq OMX Group Inc. in the Facebook offering in mid-May. He saw his own company's shares lose a third of their ...

Berkshire Bank Sues Barclays, Citigroup Over Alleged Libor Fraud

Link to Article

Mon, 30 Jul 2012 16:54

By Joe Schneider - 2012-07-30T03:55:15Z

The Berkshire Bank, a New Yorklender with 11 branches, sued 21 banks including Bank of AmericaCorp., Barclays Plc (BARC) and Citigroup Inc. (C) for damages over thealleged manipulation of the London interbank offered rate.

Berkshire sought undisclosed compensation and punitivedamages and the right to represent other lenders in a grouplawsuit, or a class action, in a July 25 filing in federal courtin Manhattan. The lender claims in the suit that Libor fraudlowered interest payments it received.

Libor is the most widely used benchmark for setting valueson about $360 trillion in financial products, with the ratebeing fixed each morning by the British Bankers' Association.Confidence in Libor has been shaken by Barclays's admission thatit submitted false rates. Robert Diamond, who resigned asLondon-based Barclays's chief executive officer after the bankwas fined 290 million pounds ($456 million), told Britishlawmakers this month that other banks also lowballed Liborsubmissions.

''Tens, if not hundreds, of billions of dollars of loansare originated or sold within this state each year with ratestied to USD Libor,'' New York-based Berkshire Bank said in itscomplaint. The New York banks ''were unable to collect the fullmeasure of interest income to which they were entitled,''Berkshire said.

Berkshire seeks to represent all banks, savings & loaninstitutions and credit unions headquartered in New York, orwith most of their operations in the state. There are severalhundred such institutions, the bank said.

U.S. prosecutors are preparing to file charges later thisyear against traders from several banks involved in a bid-rigging scheme to manipulate Libor rates, according to a personfamiliar with the case, who asked not to be identified becausethe matter is confidential.

The Justice Department investigation of criminal activityrelated to Libor is moving on a parallel course with civilprobes of the banks being conducted by the U.S. CommodityFutures Trading Commission, the Securities and ExchangeCommission and U.K. regulators, including the Serious FraudOffice.

So far, almost 20 traders have been identified inregulatory filings, media reports or by the banks as having beenunder investigation. Another 14 traders were mentioned, but notidentified by name, in the Barclays settlement.

The European Union promised stricter supervision ofinterbank lending rates and said on July 25 that it may expandantitrust probes of the manipulation.

The case is The Berkshire Bank v. Bank of America Corp. (BAC) 12-cv-5723. U.S. District Court for the Southern District of NewYork (Manhattan).

To contact the reporter on this story:Joe Schneider in Sydney at jschneider5@bloomberg.net

To contact the editor responsible for this story:Douglas Wong at dwong19@bloomberg.net

Enlarge imageBerkshire Bank Sues Barclays, Citigroup Over Alleged Libor Fraud Chris Ratcliffe/Bloomberg

Confidence in Libor has been shaken by Barclays's admission that it submitted false rates.

Confidence in Libor has been shaken by Barclays's admission that it submitted false rates. Photographer: Chris Ratcliffe/Bloomberg

Vaccine$

Newly Emerged H3N8 Seal Flu Virus Touted as Next 'Pandemic' Set You Free News

Link to Article

Wed, 01 Aug 2012 16:08

By Anthony Gucciardi | Natural Society

A number of reports within the mainstream news arena have begun surfacing surrounding the newly emerging H3N8 'seal flu virus', labeling it as the 'next pandemic' and hammering on the possibility for the virus to spread among humans.

It seems that the media ultimately likes to hype up all pandemic 'threats' whether it be the notoriously-mild swine flu 'pandemic' or the looming bird flu explosion. With the surfacing of so many touted pandemics and alarming viruses always comes a push for rushed vaccinations, later followed by haunting reports of severe side effects (and years later confirmed by medical journals.)

But what about the seal flu virus? Is it a real threat, or a phony pandemic scare? The strain was first examined in New England among harbor seals by scientific researchers, killing over 162 of the seals over a four-month period. After launching an investigation headed by virologist W. Ian Lipkin, MD, of Columbia University, it was found that the mutated virus had actually transmitted from sea birds to the seals themselves.

The virus had mutated in a number of ways after affecting the seals, such as being able to spread among mammals '-- or at least from seal to seal as of right now. The virus infected the seals lung tissue and airways, and eventually became even more virulent.

Will the Seal Flu Virus be Combined with Bird Flu H5N1 to Make a 'Super Virus'? Of course the largest concern with this virus is the possibility that it will spread to humans from animals. Considering that it has already mutated somewhat substantially, mainstream media organizations are already sounding the alarm for pandemic mode. Experts say, however, that it's highly unlikely that the H3N8 seal flu virus will even spread to humans. That is unless, of course, the mammal-adapted H3N8 were to combine with the H5N1 bird flu virus. Such a combination and subsequent mutations would provide a recipe for a potentially deadly 'super' virus.

What's most concerning is the fact that this could most easily be expedited in a laboratory setting, making the virus highly weaponized.

It may sound outlandish to some, but bioterrorism experts have previously confirmed that such a concern does exist '-- even with the bird flu virus itself. When scientists recently published research on how to develop a highly-weaponized version of the H5N1 bird flu that could easily spread among humans, experts on bioterrorism began to speak out.

One such foremost expert on the subject is Paul Keim, chair of the National Science Advisory Board for Biosecurity. In a statement on just how serious of an impact just weaponized bird flu could have on the world, Keim stated:

''This is such a dangerous biological weapon, it would not be controllable. Whoever used it would doubtlessly decimate their own people as well,'' Keim said

It is quite easy, then, to see how a weaponized version of the human-adapted seal virus '-- a merger of two deadly strains '-- is particularly concerning. In the event that such a bioterrorism act were committed by a group or individual, it could be severely problematic. Whether or not this scenario will unfold is yet to be seen, however, it seems to be the most significant manner in which a real pandemic could develop through artificial means.

My Recommended 'Pandemic' Kit to Keep Year Round Regardless of Media ScareIt is essential to begin bolstering up your immune system regardless of whether or not a new 'pandemic' is on the horizon. In addition to switching to high quality organic foods, drinking pure water, and performing sweat-inducing activities on a daily basis, here are my recommended 'pandemic' substances list to keep in your home at all times:

Oil of oreganoLiquid turmericHigh quality colloidal silver purchased from a reputable provider (Supernatural Silver is a great provider and is even approved by the FDA, believe it or not)5,000 IU doses of Vitamin D3Nascent atomic iodineProbiotics or fermented foods like kefir

OBA - About NSABB

They Really Do Want To Implant Microchips Into Your Brain

Unfortunately, this technology is not as far off as you might think, and most people are not even talking about what the negative consequences might be.

According to a recent article in-the Financial Times, the pharmaceutical company of the future will include a "bioelectronics" business that "treats disease through electrical signalling in the brain and elsewhere."

Diseases such as diabetes and epilepsy and conditions such as obesity and depression will be will be treated "through electronic implants into the brain rather than pills or injections."

These implants will send electrical signals to cells and organs that are "malfunctioning".- People will be totally "cured" without ever having to pop a pill or go under the knife.

It sounds too good to be true, right?

Well,-the Financial Times says that British pharmaceutical giant GlaxoSmithKline is working very hard to develop these kinds of technologies.- Moncef Slaoui, the head of research and development at GlaxoSmithKline, says that the "challenge is to integrate the work -- in brain-computer interfaces, materials science, nanotechnology, micro-power generation -- to provide therapeutic benefit."

an ingestible microchip that monitors your medications Set You Free News

Link to Article

Wed, 01 Aug 2012 16:08

By Robert T. Gonzale | io9

Can't be bothered to remember if you took your meds this morning? Soon you won't have to. The US FDA has approved a line of ingestible microchips which, when embedded in a pill, tell you and your doctor whether you're taking your medications as prescribed. Is it futuristic? Yes. Useful? Tremendously. Creepy? Kind of, yeah.

People lie. They also misremember and forget. So when a doctor asks a patient if they've been taking their medications, it's with the understanding that the answer they receive might not be totally accurate.

From the standpoint of a practitioner, this sucks. Diagnoses, treatments, and yes, even other prescriptions, are based on weighing patient feedback against their apparent progress (or lack thereof) over time; inaccurate or incomplete accounts of a patient's medical history complicate things, sometimes with nasty and otherwise avoidable outcomes.

But what if doctors could know exactly what medications their patients were taking? Even better, what if they could monitor their doses, and administration times? Enter Proteus Biomedical, the company behind what's likely to become the world's first smart pill. By embedding Proteus' digestible microchips in a variety of drugs, pharmaceutical companies could soon provide doctors with a remarkably useful medical screening tool: the ability to monitor their patients' drug intake.

''About half of all people don't take medications like they're supposed to,'' says Eric Topol, director of the Scripps Translational Science Institute, in an interview with Nature News' Amy Maxmen. ''This device could be a solution to that problem, so that doctors can know when to rev up a patient's medication adherence.''

Maxmen explains the tech behind the microchips:

The sand-particle sized sensor consists of a minute silicon chip containing trace amounts of magnesium and copper. When swallowed, it generates a slight voltage in response to digestive juices, which conveys a signal to the surface of a person's skin where a patch then relays the information to a mobile phone belonging to a healthcare-provider. Digitized patient information could also be automatically integrated into electronic medical records, or stored on the patient's own mobile device.

Of course, such a level of surveillance doesn't come without a certain degree of creepiness. Topol, for example, likens the system to ''big brother watching you take your medicine.'' Does this constitute an invasion of privacy? Probably not, since anybody using smart pills to monitor their prescription use would have to do so voluntarily. After all, you still need to wear a monitoring patch to relay information from your body to whatever digital devices you're sending information to.

CNN: Ebola Spreading In Uganda

Link to Article

Tue, 31 Jul 2012 13:01

Twitter flu gets tracked, predicts you falling sick in advance

Link to Article

Mon, 30 Jul 2012 18:05

";document.write(gstring); } } If you were to call your boss and let him know that you are not going to clock in to the office in a week's time because of the flu, chances are he will do a double take on the calendar and make sure it is April 1, or figure out that you have taken over the mantle of being the practical joker in the office. Unfortunately for your boss, you are dead serious, as you subscribe to this speculation by a researcher who believes that Twitter could be used as a tool to track disease. Right now, researchers have started to use the site to track how flu spreads through New York, relying on a 'heatmap' of users who complain of falling sick.

In the image above, low outbreak levels are indicated by the color blue, while yellow and red will denote large numbers of people tweeting that they are ill. This is not some random data pulled from a pie in the sky, but Adam Sadilek from the University of Rochester and his team actually took the time and trouble to analyze 4.4 million GPS-tagged Tweets from over 600,000 users in New York City, taking a whole month's data in 2010 and crunching it.

Related articles:Apple reportedly planning to invest hundreds of millions on TwitterPaul Chambers acquitted of charges in Twitter joke trialInstagram drops 'Find Twitter Friends' feature

Seen at: dailymail twitter

Out There

The Truth Is Out There: Crop circles appear in Wilbur wheat field | Spokane/E. WA - KXLY.com

Link to Article

Thu, 02 Aug 2012 12:13

WILBUR, Wash. - Paging Fox Mulder and Dana Scully: Mysterious crop circles have appeared in a wheat field near Wilbur, Wash.

Greg Geib comes from a long generation of farmers. His family has lived on the property he owns for more than 100 years. The road is even named after him. And in that time they've never seen their wheat crop mysteriously carved out with crop circles.

Until now.

"I was kind of like, hmm, I wonder what this is all about," Geib said.

"My reaction was like, 'Why me?'" he laughed.

Last week a neighbor called, telling Greg about the crop circles in the land they farm near Highway 174. The Geibs say it's the third instance of crop circles in the Wilbur area in the past five years.

"I guess its our turn," Cindy Geib said.

Some think it is wind damage, or kids trying to pull a prank. Greg and Cindy Geib think otherwise."I can't really rule out aliens but you have to wonder in the back of your mind you know," Greg Geib said.

"I'll leave that up to whoever's imagination," Cindy added.

Walking through the circles you'll find everything is very precise, each straw smashed to the side in a unified angle.

The one piece of evidence out of place was a long strand of toilet paper that looked fresh -- an odd place for it and a sign of a prankster -- but inconclusive evidence at best.

There are many theories on how it happened and who did it; perhaps Cindy Geib's is the most interesting involving aliens.

"When they fly over all the houses, they just put everybody to sleep and then they go do their job and then when they leave they wake everybody up," she said.

There are many reasons why you may not believe these are not actual crop circles from aliens, but the Geibs say if it is a hoax, it sure is a long way to walk just to pull a prank.

(C) 2012 KXLY.com. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed without prior permission.

Daring NASA Mars Mission Broadcast Lands In Times Square

Link to Article

Wed, 01 Aug 2012 13:18

RELEASE : 12-257

Daring NASA Mars Mission Broadcast Lands In Times Square

WASHINGTON -- The Toshiba Vision screen in New York City's Times Square will become the largest East Coast location for the public to see live mission coverage of Curiosity, NASA's most advanced planetary rover, as it lands on the Martian surface at 1:31 a.m. EDT August 6. The Toshiba Vision screen will broadcast NASA TV coverage beginning at 11:30 p.m. EDT August 5 and continuing through 4 a.m. EDT the next day. Programming will originate from Mission Control at NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory's (JPL) in Pasadena, Calif. The rover is on a precise course for a landing beside a Martian mountain to begin 2 years of unprecedented scientific detective work.

"In the city that never sleeps, the historic Times Square will be the place for New Yorkers to participate in this historic landing," said John Grunsfeld, associate administrator for NASA's Science Mission Directorate. "When you think of all the big news events in history, you think of Times Square, and I can think of no better venue to celebrate this news-making event on Mars."

Getting Curiosity to the surface of Mars will not be easy. During a critical period lasting only about 7 minutes, the MSL spacecraft carrying Curiosity must slow down from about 13,200 mph (about 5,900 meters per second) to allow the rover to land on the surface at about 1.7 mph (three-fourths of a meter per second). For the landing to succeed, hundreds of events will need to go right, many with split-second timing. All are controlled autonomously by the spacecraft.

Prominently positioned below the world-famous New Year's Eve ball in Times Square, the Toshiba Vision dual LED screens will allow viewers to see the action from Mission Control, including receipt of the first signal from Mars following a successful landing. "We're pleased the Toshiba Vision screens will offer a unique view of this great scientific achievement, the landing of the rover Curiosity on Mars," says Eddie Temistokle, senior manager of corporate communications and corporate social responsibility for Toshiba America Inc.

Visitors to Times Square can hear the audio portion of NASA's coverage along with other listeners around the world by tuning in to the online radio station Third Rock Radio. This is the first time Third Rock Radio will provide live coverage of a NASA event. Third Rock Radio can be streamed from the NASA homepage at and on smart phones and tablets through the Tuneln mobile app.

In the first several weeks after landing, JPL mission controllers will put the rover through a series of checkouts and activities to characterize its performance on Mars while gradually ramping up scientific investigations. Curiosity then will begin investigating whether an area with a wet history inside Mars' Gale Crater ever has offered an environment favorable for microbial life.

The mission is managed by JPL for NASA's Science Mission Directorate in Washington. Curiosity was designed, developed and assembled at JPL.

NASA centers around the country, including NASA Headquarters in Washington, will be open for landing events. Many science centers also are opening for events focused on the Curiosity landing. To find events near you, visit:

http://go.nasa.gov/QtmuY7

Third Rock Radio, produced under a NASA Space Act Agreement with RFC Media of Houston, was created to inspire young Americans with an interest in science/technology and the benefits of space flight and exploration. Listeners can find the audio broadcast at: http://www.thirdrockradio.net

Information to watch and participate in Curiosity's landing is available at: http://www.nasa.gov/mars

Follow the mission on Facebook and on Twitter at: http://www.facebook.com/marscuriosity

and

http://www.twitter.com/marscuriosity

Toshiba's massive dual LED signboards, known collectively as "TOSHIBA VISION," serve a variety of promotional and public-service functions. For more information on the TOSHIBA VISION LED signboards please visit:

http://www.facebook.com/ToshibaInnovation

- end -

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U.S. Flags Still Standing Tall On The Moon

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Mon, 30 Jul 2012 12:42

VIDEO

Pres Obama Authorizes COVERT Support To Syrian Rebels Could Have Been Going On For Months

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Thu, 02 Aug 2012 00:54

Airline Passenger Finds Sewing Needle In Sandwich On Air Canada Flight

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Thu, 02 Aug 2012 00:49

Daily Press Briefing - July 30, 2012

Fighter Jets Scrambled To Escort United Airlines Passenger Jet After Lost Camera Is Found

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Wed, 01 Aug 2012 13:09

Senate Cybersecurity Bill - C-SPAN Video Library

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Tue, 31 Jul 2012 14:28

C-SPAN | Washington Journal

Gregory Nojeim talked about the cybersecurity bill being debated in the Senate, and he responded to telephone calls and electronic communications. Mr. Nojeim explained some of the privacy concerns that businesses and civil .. Read MoreGregory Nojeim talked about the cybersecurity bill being debated in the Senate, and he responded to telephone calls and electronic communications. Mr. Nojeim explained some of the privacy concerns that businesses and civil liberties groups have with the legislation. C-SPAN Radio's Nancy Calo read news headlines at the end of the program.

42 minutes |

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Why Does Obama's DRUG CZAR Always Sound Like The Least Informed Person In The Room?

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Tue, 31 Jul 2012 14:20

Humans Are Almost Entirely The Cause Of Climate Change -Richard Muller Former Climate Change Denier

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Tue, 31 Jul 2012 13:01

Hillary Clinton So The Message Is Clear, If Your Beliefs Don't Have Government Approval BEWARE

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Tue, 31 Jul 2012 12:57

POLISH CHOICE RON PAUL! Mitt Romney Greeted By Hundreds Of Ron Paul Supporters In Poland

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Tue, 31 Jul 2012 03:11

Mayor Bloomberg Who First Banned Large Sugary Drinks Now Wants To Ban Baby Formula

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Tue, 31 Jul 2012 03:10

I Don't Think You Can Call A President Who Has A KILL LIST As Someone Who Looks Away On Security

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Mon, 30 Jul 2012 13:02

Congressional Debate On Penalties For Possessing Child Pornography (CHECK THE PENTAGON FIRST!)

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Thu, 02 Aug 2012 12:41

CNN "ANOTHER PANIC IN A MOVE THEATER" "WOW!"

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Thu, 02 Aug 2012 12:39

"The Question Is Not Whether To Act But Whether We Will Act In Time!" DUN! DUN! DUN!

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Thu, 02 Aug 2012 12:38

"Rushing Something Through That Will Impact The Country In Such A MASSIVE WAY!" Sen Grassley

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Thu, 02 Aug 2012 12:36

"The Greatest Hoax Ever Perpetrated On The American People" Senator Inhofe On Climate Change

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Thu, 02 Aug 2012 12:18

The Truth Is Out There: Crop circles appear in Wilbur wheat field | Spokane/E. WA - KXLY.com

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Thu, 02 Aug 2012 12:13

WILBUR, Wash. - Paging Fox Mulder and Dana Scully: Mysterious crop circles have appeared in a wheat field near Wilbur, Wash.

Greg Geib comes from a long generation of farmers. His family has lived on the property he owns for more than 100 years. The road is even named after him. And in that time they've never seen their wheat crop mysteriously carved out with crop circles.

Until now.

"I was kind of like, hmm, I wonder what this is all about," Geib said.

"My reaction was like, 'Why me?'" he laughed.

Last week a neighbor called, telling Greg about the crop circles in the land they farm near Highway 174. The Geibs say it's the third instance of crop circles in the Wilbur area in the past five years.

"I guess its our turn," Cindy Geib said.

Some think it is wind damage, or kids trying to pull a prank. Greg and Cindy Geib think otherwise."I can't really rule out aliens but you have to wonder in the back of your mind you know," Greg Geib said.

"I'll leave that up to whoever's imagination," Cindy added.

Walking through the circles you'll find everything is very precise, each straw smashed to the side in a unified angle.

The one piece of evidence out of place was a long strand of toilet paper that looked fresh -- an odd place for it and a sign of a prankster -- but inconclusive evidence at best.

There are many theories on how it happened and who did it; perhaps Cindy Geib's is the most interesting involving aliens.

"When they fly over all the houses, they just put everybody to sleep and then they go do their job and then when they leave they wake everybody up," she said.

There are many reasons why you may not believe these are not actual crop circles from aliens, but the Geibs say if it is a hoax, it sure is a long way to walk just to pull a prank.

(C) 2012 KXLY.com. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed without prior permission.

"Wake Up America And Stand Up For The Constitution!" Dennis Kucinich - [VIDEO]

Paramilitary Police vs Civilians in Anaheim -- Puppet Masters -- Sott.net

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Wed, 01 Aug 2012 13:43

War on ErrorDaily KosSun, 29 Jul 2012 16:24 CDT

First look at the pictures of what look like soldiers patrolling Iraq lined up to stop the small, 300 person march against police violence in Anaheim. In case you missed it, there's been protests for days in Anaheim after another young man of color was shot and killed by the police.Hundreds decrying police violence march in Anaheim

Who the heck are these guys? Police, really? If so, why the military gear? If not, are they private contractors? That's allowed now, btw.

Read the warning I posted December 5th, 2011

SCARY: Department of Defense DIRECTIVE NUMBER 3025.18 December 29, 2010

If I have interpreted the DoD Directive correctly, Private contractors like Blackwater (Xe) and Dycorp, both now owned by Private Equity firms, or any of the thousands now working for the DoD could be used to corral us. So, who are these guys in the photos? Police, military, or mercenaries? Who's paying them? Disneyland or Anaheim?Anaheim needs to know.

This video of police shooting rubber bullets into crowd of women and children as well as unleashing a dog that attacked a women holding her baby was uploaded on July 22, 2012

We must be vigilant.

Why Would A Judge Order A Blackout On Photos & Videos Of Accused Shooter James Holmes?

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Tue, 31 Jul 2012 13:01

Russian Punk Band PUSSY RIOT On Trial For Speaking Out Against President Putin & The Church

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Tue, 31 Jul 2012 13:00

Journalist Kidnapped By Syrian Rebels Say They Acted Like Al Qaeda Or Islamic Extremist

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Tue, 31 Jul 2012 13:00

MSM Making James Holmes Into Hannibal Lecter! He's Also Being BLACK BAGGED In Jail

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Mon, 30 Jul 2012 12:41

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