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 veryhotthread  Author  Topic: Stuff & Nonsense  (Read 45227 times)
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« Reply #10635 on: May 8th, 2014, 7:25pm »

Thanks Sys.

Crystal

~



The Hill

May 08, 2014, 06:34 pm

House approves select committee to investigate Benghazi attack

By Cristina Marcos and Russell Berman

The House on Thursday voted 232-186 to create a select committee to investigate the 2012 attack that killed four Americans at a diplomatic facility in Benghazi, Libya.

The move to create the panel was supported by only 7 Democrats, setting the stage for what will likely be a contentious investigation this summer. Democrats are debating whether to boycott the panel altogether.

Republicans said creating a special panel was necessary to determine whether the administration painted a false narrative about the Benghazi attack to protect President Obama’s foreign policy record as he ran for a second term.

The seven Democrats who voted in favor of the Benghazi probe were Reps. Ron Barber (Ariz.), John Barrow (Ga.), Mike McIntyre (N.C.), Patrick Murphy (Fla.), Collin Peterson (Minn.), Nick Rahall (W.Va.) and Kyrsten Sinema (Ariz.). All of them serve in districts that lean Republican, and six are facing tough reelection races.

Conservatives had pressed Speaker John Boehner (R-Ohio) for months to create a select committee to look at the Benghazi attack, as was done for the Watergate and Iran-Contra scandals. Boehner had resisted until last week, when emails obtained by Judicial Watch under a Freedom of Information Act request reopened the controversy about the Benghazi “talking points” drafted by the administration.
One of the emails showed White House official Ben Rhodes discussing "goals" for the Sunday talk show appearances of then-United Nations ambassador Susan Rice. Rhodes said Rice should "underscore that these protests are rooted in an Internet video, and not a broader failure of policy."

Republicans charge that the administration falsely attributed the Benghazi assault to a spontaneous protest to obscure evidence that groups linked to al Qaeda had attacked the facility.

"In my view, these discoveries compel the House to respond as one institution and establish one select committee. A committee with robust authority. A committee that will do its work while the House continues to focus on the people's priorities," Boehner said.

"This doesn't need to be, shouldn't be, and will not be, a partisan process," Boehner added.

Democrats accused the GOP of politicizing the attacks to rile the conservative base ahead of the midterm elections.

"I'm appalled by this posturing to use the tragedy of those four deaths for political and financial gain. It's shameful and contemptible," said Rep. Louise Slaughter (D-N.Y.).

Rep. Elijah Cummings (D-Md.) said that establishing another panel would be unnecessary and ultimately fruitless. He said four House committees have already conducted investigations into the Benghazi attack.

"With all due respect, if the Republicans want to fix the problems with their partisan investigation, they need more than just a new chairman," said Cummings, the top Democrat on the House Oversight Committee.

Republicans said establishing a select panel to issue subpoenas was necessary to obtain full answers from the Obama administration.

"This administration is playing games," said House Rules Committee Chairman Pete Sessions (R-Texas).

Rep. Darrell Issa (R-Calif.), who heads the House Oversight Committee, said the special panel will build off of the earlier investigations while focusing more intently on the role of the White House.

"It's not about, 'What can somebody accomplish that previously wasn't accomplished,'" Issa said. "Five committees brought together information from throughout various parts of government, but now the investigation primarily, I believe, will move to the cover-up, which included direct White House involvement."

Republicans' decision to create a select panel is not without political risks. The National Republican Campaign Committee came under fire for blasting out emails for a fundraising campaign called "Benghazi Watchdogs" ahead of the vote.

Boehner deflected three questions at a Thursday press conference asking whether he thought the NRCC should stop its Benghazi-related fundraising efforts.

"Our focus is on getting the answers to those families who lost their loved ones, period," Boehner said in response to each question.

Rep. Steve Israel (D-N.Y.), the chairman of the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee, denounced the NRCC’s fundraising pitch.

"Fundraising off the Benghazi tragedy is despicable and insulting and has no place in the national conversation," Israel said in a statement.

Rep. Trey Gowdy (R-S.C.), a former federal prosecutor known for his aggressive questioning in committee hearings, will led the select Benghazi panel as chairman.

The House GOP leadership is expected to announce the other six Republican members on Friday.

House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) would have the option of appointing five Democrats, but the party remains undecided about participating. While some Democrats are concerned that their participation would appear to legitimize the panel, others say they should still be present to counter GOP arguments and defend witnesses.

House Democrats will meet Friday morning to discuss their path forward.

Aides to Boehner and Pelosi are in talks on a compromise in which Democrats would participate in the panel with the understanding that they would have a say in decisions about issuing subpoenas and other matters that would otherwise be controlled by the majority, according to lawmakers and aides in both parties.

The agreement would not involve changing the text of the resolution, which simply says those decisions would be made “in consultation” with the ranking Democrat on the committee. But if Pelosi decided to appoint members to the panel, she would likely argue that she extracted a firmer commitment on bipartisanship as a concession from the Speaker.

“You would need to get an agreement with the Speaker,” said Rep. Chris Van Hollen (D-Md.), a senior Democrat who is close with Pelosi. “It doesn’t have to be in the resolution so long as it’s an agreement between the parties that’s negotiated. But again, we haven’t gotten to that point yet.”

Boehner said he spoke on Wednesday with Pelosi, who is out of town, but there was no indication they had reached an agreement.

The House Democratic leadership has maintained that only a panel equally comprised of Democrats and Republicans would ensure fair proceedings. But Republicans rebuffed that request, pointing to a select committee created by Democrats in 2007 to study global warming that did not have an equal partisan balance.

Mike Lillis contributed.

http://thehill.com/blogs/floor-action/house/205651-house-approves-special-panel-to-investigate-benghazi-attack

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xx Re: Stuff & Nonsense
« Reply #10636 on: May 8th, 2014, 9:43pm »

Nice piece wings ..what people are not connecting is the huge volume of arms smuggled by cia backed aq to the aq faction in Africa..to wit Nigeria..and not Just Syria..where we are eager to setup an Africom beachhead.

this is like opening a windshield replacement shop and paying local kids to throw rocks and drum up business..just unreal


Jesus Christ..StoneHenge 10 000 Years old!

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http://www.bbc.com/news/uk-england-wiltshire-27238503

Previously, Thatcham in Berkshire, 40 miles from Amesbury, held the record for the longest continuous settlement in the country.

The dig in Amesbury also uncovered 31,000 worked flints in 40 days as well as animal bones such as frogs' legs.

Mr Jacques said our ancestors were eating a "Heston Blumenthal-style menu".
Continue reading the main story
Amesbury facts

Queen Eleanor of Provence - consort to Henry III - is buried at the town's former abbey
Amesbury residents get a free visitors' pass to Stonehenge each year
In 1965, the Beatles stayed at the Antrobus Arms Hotel whilst filming Help!
The area's most famous resident - Police frontman Sting - lives in nearby Wilsford cum Lake

The find was based on a report by fossil mammal specialist Simon Parfitt, of the Natural History Museum.

Andy Rhind-Tutt, the founder of Amesbury Museum and Heritage Trust, said there was "something unique and rather special about the area" to keep people there from the end of the Ice Age, to when Stonehenge was created and until today.

"The fact that the feasting of large animals and the discovery of a relatively constant temperature spring sitting alongside the River Avon, may well be it," he said.

The dig was filmed and made into a documentary by the BBC, Smithsonian, CBC and others to be screened later in the summer.

The project was led by the University of Buckingham.
with special recognition to Michael Nesbitt and his Museum of Skeptology containing tens of thousands of anecdotal documents connecting Stonehege Ufos , crop circles and ancient beer making

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xx Re: Stuff & Nonsense
« Reply #10637 on: May 8th, 2014, 11:48pm »

http://miami.cbslocal.com/2014/05/06/police-shooting-frenzy-raises-concerns/

Jim DeFede
Jim DeFede joined CBS4 News in January 2006, providing reg...
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South Florida Crime
crime scene Police Shooting Frenzy Raises Concerns
Crime Coverage

MIAMI (CBSMiami) – On December 10, more than two dozen police officers from across Miami Dade County converged on a blue Volvo that had crashed in the backyard of a townhouse on 65th Street just off 27th Avenue.

As the car was wedged helplessly between a light pole and a tree, nearly a minute passed before officers opened up – firing approximately 50 bullets at the car and the two unarmed men inside the vehicle.

The two men inside the car survived that initial volley of gunfire, according to witnesses, who said they could see the men moving inside the Volvo. Everything went quiet for nearly two minutes before the officers opened up a second time – unleashing an unrelenting torrent of bullets that lasted almost 25 seconds. By the time it was over, the two men inside the car were dead.

CBS4 News has learned a total of 23 officers fired a total of at least 377 rounds.

Bullets were sprayed everywhere. They hit the Volvo, other cars in the lot, fence posts and neighboring businesses. They blasted holes in a townhouse where a 12-year-old dove to the ground for cover and a four month old slept in his crib.

“It was like the Wild Wild West, man, crazy,” said Anthony Vandiver, who barely made it through the back door of his home before the gunfire erupted. “Shooting just wild; shooting all over the place. Bullets could have come through the window. Anything could have happened man. They weren’t thinking, they weren’t thinking at all.”

Earlier that night, the driver of the Volvo, Adrian Montesano, robbed a Walgreens at gunpoint, and then later shot Miami Dade Police Officer Saul Rodriguez in a nearby trailer park.

Montesano escaped in the officer’s patrol car eventually dumping it at his grandmother’s house in Hialeah – before fleeing in her blue Volvo

By 5 am every cop in South Florida was looking for that blue Volvo – intent on catching the man who had shot one of their own.

But what police didn’t realize before they started shooting at the Volvo is there was a second man in the car – Corsini Valdes – who had committed no crime.

And in fact, as CBS4 News was the first to report, both men inside the Volvo were unarmed at the time police caught up with them. All of the gunfire came from police.

Montesano and Valdes were killed by the dozens of rounds that tore through their bodies.

But Montesano and Valdes weren’t the only ones struck – two Miami Dade police officers were hit as well – caught in the crossfire. One officer was shot in the arm and the second was hit in the arm and grazed in the head. If the bullet had struck just a half an inch to the side the officer would have been killed.

The sound of the gunfire was deafening – literally deafening. Two Miami police officers sustained ruptured ear drums from the cacophony of shots.

CBS4 News has spent the last five months piecing together the events of that evening and the hunt for the blue Volvo. CBS4 News reviewed radio transmissions, analyzed video taken during the shooting, interviewed officials from the different agencies involved, and reviewed records related to the officers who fired their weapons.

The nature of the shooting suggests the officers lost sight of their own training and that the officers, caught up in the heat of the moment, failed to listen to their radios or coordinate their actions endangering not only their own lives but the lives of the public.

It is worth saying, none of this would have happened if Adrian Montesano had not made the decision to rob the Walgreens and shoot a police officer. None of those officers would have been in that backyard if it weren’t for the actions of Montesano. But that does not absolve the officers of responsibility for their own conduct, as well.

Senior commanders admit they are very lucky more officers weren’t seriously hurt or killed. Even more haunting is the danger the residents in the area faced. At the time of the shooting, parents were getting their kids ready for school and across the street men and women stood exposed on a Metrorail platform.

The shooting is being reviewed by both the State Attorney’s Office and the Miami Dade Police Department.

While those reviews will likely take years to complete, what is clear is the Walgreens robbery and the shooting of Officer Rodriguez sent officers across the county into a state of frenzy.

No call is more harrowing for a police officer than a report of an officer being shot. By the time police determined the shooter was Montesano and broadcast a description of the Volvo, officers from a half dozen different departments flooded into the north side of the county.

Many of the officers just seemed to be racing through the streets, according to one supervisor on the scene

“I don’t know what’s going on here,” the supervisor declared over the radio. “There are units running threes everywhere.”

A Code 3 is when police cars are travelling with lights and sirens blaring. The supervisor finally ordered the patrol units to slow down unless they were actually chasing the car.

Dispatchers and supervisors repeatedly told officers Montesano was to be considered armed and dangerous. At 6:23 am police spotted the Volvo.

“I got the Volvo, he’s going southbound on two seven avenue from 79 street,” the officer said.

“It’s going to be occupied by a white male, 5-11, 225 pounds, Adrian Montesano,” the dispatcher affirmed. “Use caution. Subject is armed.”

Unknown to the officers is that there was a second man in the car. It is still not known when Montesano picked up 50-year-old Corsini Valdes.

Montesano led police on a brief chase before busting through a fence and crashing into a tree and light pole. As officers raced in from different directions, there was a pause before that first burst of gunfire. When the shooting stops after several seconds, one of the supervisors on the scene tries to take control. He notes the car is stuck and isn’t going anywhere.

“We need to establish that perimeter, I have not verified if the subject is down or not,” he said.

Another supervisor tells officers to stay back. There is no need for any of them to get into harm’s way at this point.

“We have the vehicle confined,” he said. “The officers need to pay attention to the radios, they are not listening, okay, that’s the inner perimeter – we’re good.”

A dispatcher replies: “Units pay attention. Please listen to your radios.”

Now that the car is surrounded, the plan now is to bring in SRT – the special response team – and have them take over. But so many units have flooded the area, SRT commanders are complaining they can’t reach the scene because the streets are blocked.

“Make sure the units are not in our way so we can pull in, and they’re not blocking the whole road,” the SRT commander said.

“Any units do not block SRT,” a dispatcher

Inside his house, Anthony Vandiver, used the temporary quiet to race upstairs and check on his family. He said he looked out his bedroom window, which looked directly down onto the blue Volvo below. He said he could hear the police yelling at the men in the car.

“They were saying put your hands up, and the guys were still moving after they shot maybe 50, 60 times,” Vandiver recalled. “And the guy tried to put his hands up. And as soon as he put his hands up, it erupted again. And that was it for them. That guy tried his best to give up.”

Asked if he was certain the men in the car were trying to put their hands up, Vandiver replied: “I swear to God on everything I love, my kids my momma, everything, I seen it all.”

We may never know which officer fired the first shot or why. Did he mistakenly think he saw a gun even though neither Montesano nor Valdes had a weapon? But what is clear – once one officer fired the others joined in.

But Montesano and Valdes weren’t the only ones struck. Two Miami Dade police officers were hit as well, caught in the crossfire created when officers on three different sides of the Volvo began firing.

“Get all of the officers off to the side,” shouted one supervisor, “we’ve got to get rescue in here. There are too many officers in here, back them up.”

To avoid any more officers shot, dispatchers pass the order there is to be no more shooting

“Have all units stand down in that inner perimeter, hold it for SRT, let’s give service to that officer that’s injured right now,” an officer declared. “Get out of the way, let fire rescue get in there and let SRT take that inner perimeter.”

As the smoke cleared and the sun begins to rise officers dragged Montesano and Valdes’s bodies from the car. Although he appears dead, they decide to transport Valdes to Jackson.

Slowly neighbors came out of their homes.

“The policemen that had on the black and white vests were out there laughing like it was so funny,” said one of the neighbors, “because they got a free shot off them people. Shooting all them bullets like that, that don’t make no sense.”
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« Reply #10638 on: May 9th, 2014, 09:48am »

GOOD MORNING SYS AND UFOCASEBOOKERS cheesy

CRYSTAL


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« Reply #10639 on: May 9th, 2014, 09:52am »

Guardian

Nigeria had warning of Boko Haram attack but failed to act, says Amnesty

Human rights group says military had warning four hours before attack on 14 April that led to kidnapping of schoolgirls

Agence France-Presse in Lagos
theguardian.com, Friday 9 May 2014 10.39 EDT

Nigeria's military had advanced warning of the 14 April attack by Boko Haram that led to the kidnapping of more than 200 schoolgirls but failed to take immediate action, Amnesty International said on Friday.

"Damning testimonies gathered by Amnesty International reveal that Nigerian security forces failed to act on advance warnings about Boko Haram's armed raid on the state-run boarding school in Chibok which led to the abduction," the rights group said.

Amnesty said it had verified the information about the abduction with "credible sources".

"Amnesty International has confirmed … that Nigeria's military headquarters in Maiduguri was aware of the impending attack soon after 7pm (6pm GMT) on 14 April, close to four hours before Boko Haram began their assault on the town," the group said.

According to Amnesty, the military could not assemble the troops needed to suppress the attack, "due to poor resources and a reported fear of engaging with the often better equipped" Islamists.

The 17 army personnel based in Chibok were overpowered by the attackers and had to retreat, the group added.

"The fact that Nigerian security forces knew about Boko Haram's impending raid but failed to take the immediate action needed to stop it will only amplify the national and international outcry at this horrific crime," said Netsanet Belay, Amnesty International's Africa director for research and advocacy.

http://www.theguardian.com/world/2014/may/09/nigeria-military-warning-boko-haram-attack-amnesty-international

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« Reply #10640 on: May 9th, 2014, 09:55am »

Wired

Follow an Urban Treasure Hunter as He Unearths Strange Americana

By Brendan Seibel
05.09.14 | 6:30 am

Unlike the pioneers and prospectors of the Wild West, who dwelled in choleric, ramshackle camps and risked rickety mine shafts in hopes of striking it rich, today’s treasure hunters trudge through the parks and junkyards within city limits.

The goal for these hobbyists is not the treasure itself, which is sometimes limited to items like doll heads, vintage glass bottles, and more marbles than will fit in your pockets. It’s about the act of tracking down leads, traveling, and searching. It’s a pursuit fueled by imagination, not greed.

Photographer Jenny Riffle tracked the expeditions of an urban treasure hunter she knows well, her boyfriend of almost 10 years, Riley. Through old dumps and river banks, Riffle followed Riley and documented his adventures for her series Scavenger: Adventures in Treasure Hunting.

“What I really wanted to do was show the character that he becomes and how I romanticize him into being this adventurer,” says Riffle. “Putting him up with Amelia Earhart and Davy Crocket. Tom Sawyer. Huckleberry Finn. The American mythology of this kind of person going out and exploring and discovering new things.”

Partially raised off the grid in a North Cascades cabin, Riffle’s rustic bonafides and adventuresome spirit rival that of her subject. Their digging excursions are often social affairs with friends joining in, but as the series took shape Riffle began to frame Riley distant and in isolation. She avoided any tight close-ups or hints of familiarity during the hours spent seeking veins of esoteric curios.

Some of the old things end up being worth money. Riley’s first big score came when he was using a metal detector to survey a grassy parking strip and found a $300 ring. Even when the shovel is left at home he’s on the prowl for anything that might sell on eBay, from hitting up estate sales to snagging piles of old magazines on the street. But a lot of these old things end up being worthless on the market. Choice baubles come home to live with the couple.

The two enjoy striking out for unexplored lands but for treasure hunting, Riley has his favorite spots and returns to them often. One exception brought the couple to Vashon Island, seated in Puget Sound near their home of Seattle. Legend has it a logger stashed gold there a hundred years back, and Riley charted its likely location. They came up empty, but the day wasn’t lost.

“The reality of it is we went to the side of the road, we dug around for a couple hours and we found nothing,” she says. “But the romanticized idea of just going off to find this man’s gold is what I’m trying to capture in the image that I made.”

History is rife with blood spilled over caches of gold, but even aimless scavenging can be a competitive pastime. Riley has smoothed over territorial pissing matches in the past, even working out a trade agreement with a fellow prospector working the beaches of Dead Horse Bay, Brooklyn’s old dump.

Still, puppy dog eyes and a boyish grin don’t always save your skin. Riley was 86’d from another old dump, the arboretum in Seattle, after being caught digging holes by a park employee. Fortunately Riffle and he were moving to the east coast for her graduate studies, lending time for the heat die down. Since returning to the Pacific Northwest Riley has quietly returned to his old treasure trove.

Riffle shares the appreciation for old things, but is less committed to the pursuit.

“I have always been a collector. Old cameras and ephemera and postcards and stuff like that,” Riffle says. “But I don’t have the drive that Riley has. I’m not going to dig a big hole. That’s too much work. But I will go to the beach, the old dump in New York and just walk the beach and find things. I love finding old weird, strange things as long as I don’t have to spend two hours digging.”

Scavenger opened this week at San Francisco’s Rayko Photo Center.

gallery after the jump:
http://www.wired.com/2014/05/jenny-riffle-treasure-hunting/

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« Reply #10641 on: May 9th, 2014, 6:41pm »

Reuters

U.S. passenger jet nearly collided with drone in March: FAA

By Alwyn Scott

NEW YORK Fri May 9, 2014 7:24pm EDT

An American Airlines Group Inc aircraft almost collided with a drone above Florida earlier this year, a near-accident that highlights the growing risk from rising use of unmanned aircraft, the U.S. air safety regulator said.

The pilot reported seeing a small, remote-control aircraft very close to his plane while preparing to land at Tallahassee Regional Airport, said Jim Williams, manager of the Federal Aviation Administration's Unmanned Aircraft System Integration Office.

"The airplane pilot said that the UAS was so close to his jet that he was sure he had collided with it," Williams said at an industry conference on Thursday, referring to an unmanned aircraft system.

The aircraft, operated by an American subsidiary, did not appear to be damaged when it was inspected after the March 22 incident, Williams said.

But the incident served to highlight the risk of remote-control aircraft, he said.

"The risk for a small UAS to be ingested into a passenger airline engine is very real," Williams said. "The results could be catastrophic."

The FAA currently bans the commercial use of drones in the United States and is under growing pressure to set rules that would permit their broader use. Hobby and many law-enforcement uses are permitted.

Last year, the agency began establishing test sites where businesses can try out commercial uses. [ID:nL2N0K90QW] Two of the centers have started working ahead of schedule.

"The FAA is working aggressively to ensure the safe integration of unmanned aircraft systems into the national airspace," the agency said in a statement.

The March incident was reported to the Tallahassee control tower by the pilot for Bluestreak Airlines, a US Airways commuter carrier. US Airways is part of American Airlines.

The plane, a Bombardier CRJ-200, was a traveling from Charlotte, North Carolina, to Tallahassee.

It was at 2,300 feet and about five miles from the airport when it encountered the remote controlled jet. The FAA investigated but could not identify the pilot of the drone.

American said it is "aware of the published report alleging an incident with one of our express flights and we are investigating."

The airline said it would share any information with the FAA and would not comment further.

The incident was first reported by The Wall Street Journal.

In his address to the Small Unmanned Systems Business Expo in San Francisco, Williams also showed videos of several drone accidents, including one in which a drone crashed into a crowd during the running of the bulls in Richmond, Virginia, last fall.

The crash was caused by a battery failure and resulted in minor injuries, he said.

Williams also noted the "Miracle on the Hudson," in which birds hit the engine of a flight leaving New York, prompting an emergency landing on the river.

"Imagine a metal-and-plastic object, especially that big lithium battery, going into a high-speed turbine engine," he said.

(Reporting by Alwyn Scott; Editing by Diane Craft)

http://www.reuters.com/article/2014/05/09/us-american-airline-drone-idUSBREA480UU20140509

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« Reply #10642 on: May 9th, 2014, 8:34pm »

Wow! Crystal, I live about 20 miles from this airport! The East/West runway has been closed all year for refurbishment, so all planes are using the North/South runway. Five miles from the airport, the glide path takes them right over the plant where I work! shocked
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« Reply #10643 on: May 10th, 2014, 09:24am »

on May 9th, 2014, 8:34pm, Swamprat wrote:
Wow! Crystal, I live about 20 miles from this airport! The East/West runway has been closed all year for refurbishment, so all planes are using the North/South runway. Five miles from the airport, the glide path takes them right over the plant where I work! shocked


Good morning Swamprat cheesy

That is waaaaay too close for comfort!

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« Reply #10644 on: May 10th, 2014, 09:28am »

GOOD SATURDAY TO ALL UFOCASEBOOKERS cheesy

SUMMER WILL BE HERE SOON! YEA!


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« Reply #10645 on: May 10th, 2014, 10:20am »

GOOD MORNING CRYSTAL AND THE CASEBOOK KREW ~ cool

YOU HAVE A GOOD DAY CUZ IT'S ~ grin

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>>>>>>>>>SATURDAY<<<<<<<<<

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« Reply #10646 on: May 10th, 2014, 3:31pm »

FOR THE MOMS ~ cool

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« Reply #10647 on: May 10th, 2014, 4:32pm »

HI Z grin

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Middle East Monitor

US visa restrictions on Israelis likely to continue after latest spy scandal

by Samira Shackle
Wednesday, 07 May 2014 20:43

This week, Newsweek reported that Israel was spying on the US, using the cover of trade missions or joint defense technology agreements between the two countries.

In and of itself, this revelation isn't such a big deal. It's a well-known fact that allies spy on allies all the time. The Edward Snowden leaks last year revealed that the US had tapped the phone of German Chancellor Angela Merkel as well as spying on a whole host of other European leaders, who are technically its partners. The revelations caused outrage, but they merely confirmed what everyone knew: that spying happens all the time, even between friendly states.

However, according to the report in Newsweek, intelligence officials said: "Israel has crossed red lines." Counter-intelligence officials apparently told members of the House Judiciary and Foreign Affairs committees that Israel's espionage activities in America are "unrivalled and unseemly", going far beyond the activities of other close allies, such as Germany, France, the UK, and Japan.
Newsweek claims that Israel's spying in the US focuses on America's industrial and technical secrets. In their briefings to Congress, the intelligence officials did not go into detail, but a member of political staff told the magazine that the issue was "very alarming, even terrifying".

The report suggests that America's continued refusal to grant visa exemptions to Israeli citizens is because of concern that it would make it easier for Israelis to spy on the US. This is on top of the more widely stated concerns about discriminatory treatment of Arab-Americans entering Israel, and about the high number of visa refusals of young Israelis allegedly seeking to enter the US to work illegally. Last month, the Washington DC newspaper Roll Call also suggested that a major reason for reluctance to allow Israel into the visa waiver programme – which would allow Israelis to travel to the US for 90 days without applying for a tourist visa – was that it could be exploited by spies.

Perhaps unsurprisingly, the report has caused controversy in Israel. The country's foreign minister, Avigdor Lieberman, unequivocally rejected the allegations. "We're talking about lies and falsehood, simply libel which is baseless and unfounded," he said, adding that Israel is not involved in any form of espionage at all against the US, either indirect or direct in its nature. The Israeli embassy in Washington has been instructed to protest the issue, with spokesman Aaron Sagi condemning the "outrageous false allegations" and saying: "Israel doesn't conduct espionage operations in the US, period." Israel Radio quoted unnamed senior diplomatic officials saying that the Newsweek piece was anti-Semitic and presented Israel as the enemy. Even the liberal newspaper Haaretz said that the Newsweek report "included very strong statements against Israel, verging on anti-Semitism".

The issue is particularly sensitive at the present moment, after Israel recently asked for clemency for Jonathan Pollard, the only America ever convicted of spying for an ally. Pollard is currently serving a life sentence after being found guilty of spying for Israel in 1987. Israeli negotiators raised the subject of his release in March as the US-brokered peace talks between Israel and Palestine floundered. One nameless aide quoted by Newsweek says that "it shouldn't be lost on anyone that after all the hand-wringing over Pollard, it's still going on. It perhaps goes without saying that Israel spies on the US, and – equally – that the US spies on Israel.

The Newsweek report acknowledges this latter fact without going into any detail. It is also par for the course that Liebermann denied all allegations; most states refuse to discuss intelligence matters unless confronted with incontrovertible evidence (as the US was with the Snowden revelations). Israel, in particular, is always tight lipped on security matters.

Despite the fact that inter-ally spying is fairly commonplace, it does not mean that all parties are always happy about it. The discovery last year that the US had been spying on European leaders threatened to cause major diplomatic upset. It is no secret that the relationship between Israel and America, though a close alliance, is sometimes strained. That is particularly true at the moment, as the US-led peace talks grind to a halt. But the alliance remains of paramount importance to both sides, and the likelihood of a serious rift is low. However, if the allegations are true and Israel is overstepping the unspoken boundaries by going after industrial and trade secrets, we can, as the Newsweek article suggests, expect to see the visa waiver programme stay in place for quite some time to come.

http://www.middleeastmonitor.com/blogs/politics/11373-us-visa-restrictions-on-israelis-likely-to-continue-after-latest-spy-scandal

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« Reply #10648 on: May 10th, 2014, 7:59pm »

“UFO” crashes through St. Paul apartment window

Jeffrey DeMars, KARE
May 9, 2014

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SAINT PAUL, Minn. - Bob Urman said he was sitting down in his recliner to take in a Twins game the night of May 7th when just after the first pitch, something came crashing through his St. Paul apartment's window.
"It scared the living heck out of me," said Urman. "I just stood there I was stunned."

He said the object broke through his double paned window, crashed into the back of his television set, broke glass all over the floor and when the metal object came to rest it was so hot it burned his carpet.

Urman said he called police and when they arrived the object was still hot to the touch.
"He went to reach for it and it was warm and he dribbled it out and he picked it up and put it on the shelf by the window," Urman explained.

Not one to be a believer of UFO's or anything extraordinary for that matter, Urman was convinced it fell off of a plane.
St. Paul police took it to the object to the airport where mechanics there said it looks like a part from a vehicle, not an airplane.

Urman isn't convinced of that, while he lives on Snelling Avenue, his window faces an ally, not the main thoroughfare.

The object is now part of an investigation and in the hands of the St. Paul police.
"When I was sitting here and I was trembling, I thought, what does it take to get to 81 you know," smiled Urman.
His 81st birthday is a month away.

As far as police are concerned, nobody was hurt, as far as they can tell no crime was committed, but if anybody recognizes what it could be feel free to call Saint Paul police.

http://www.kare11.com/story/news/local/2014/05/09/ufo-crash-window-saint-paul-airport-airplane-automobile-police-investigation/8909335/
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« Reply #10649 on: May 11th, 2014, 09:38am »

GOOD MORNING SWAMPRAT, Z AND ALL OF OUR UFOCASEBOOKERS grin

CRYSTAL

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Japan Times


Acropolis sculptures get ‘cosmetic surgery’

AP

May 11, 2014

ATHENS – They are some of Greece’s most celebrated beauties. And after nearly 2,500 years, it is perhaps only fitting that they are getting a face-lift.



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The caryatid statues, which until the late 1970s propped up a section of the Erechtheion temple on the Acropolis, are being meticulously cleansed of grime inside the museum where they are now housed.

Three goggle-wearing conservators zap away dirt from the marble maidens with custom-designed lasers as tourists watch the operation on monitors. The restoration work is surrounded by a white fabric screen to protect visitors from laser beams, which can cause permanent eye injury.

One of the six caryatids was removed by Lord Elgin in the 19th century and today stands in the British Museum. The other five were removed from the Erechtheion in 1979 to protect them from air pollution and acid rain and were replaced by copies.

Museum director Dimitris Pantermalis said the main reason for cleaning the sculptures on the spot is to avoid the potential hazards of moving them. But there is the additional value of offering tourists the spectacle of restoring some of the greatest glories of the ancient world.

“We want to offer visitors a backstage peek,” he said.

Visitors are impressed: “The fact that it was in situ, taking place in the museum, it does bring it home to you the actual level of care that is needed to bring these back to life,” said British tourist Trevor Richards, from Manchester. “It’s like cosmetic surgery for statues, isn’t it?”

It takes about seven months to clean each of the larger-than-life-size statues, which were carved around 420 B.C. Work began in 2011 and is expected to be finished in June.

“The process removes all of the pollution, the smoke and everything that has settled on the statues for more than a century and leaves intact the patina, that orange hue that the statues took on with the passage of centuries,” Pantermalis said. “It’s done with very great care to avoid any possible damage.”

The Erechtheion temple was sacred to the gods Athena and Poseidon and is associated with the first kings of Athens. In later times, it served as a church, a Frankish palace and a Turkish harem.

Although Greece’s oldest examples of pillars in the human form are a century older, the caryatids are the most famous of their kind, and were widely imitated from Roman times to Europe’s classical revival.

Conservators use technology developed specially for the Acropolis sculptures by the Foundation for Research and Technology-Hellas in Crete. The technique combines two infrared and ultraviolet wavelengths to avoid causing discoloration or abrasion.

“The laser beam hits the black crust formed on the surface of the statues over the years, and that absorbs energy and disintegrates,” said conservator Costas Vassiliadis, who heads the six-strong team. “The crust has a much lower resistance threshold than the marble, which is not affected.”

Laser operators spend a maximum of three hours on the job every day. Sometimes they get unwelcome intrusions.

“At first, we felt slightly stage-struck. We tried to avoid making any noise, and always had in mind that we might disturb visitors,” Vassiliadis said. “Only it’s the other way around, as visitors several times draw back the curtain — which they really shouldn’t, as laser is dangerous for the eyes.”

http://www.japantimes.co.jp/news/2014/05/11/world/science-health-world/acropolis-sculptures-get-cosmetic-surgery/#.U2-J7pDn-1s

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« Last Edit: May 11th, 2014, 09:55am by WingsofCrystal » User IP Logged

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