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 veryhotthread  Author  Topic: Stuff & Nonsense  (Read 149678 times)
WingsofCrystal
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xx Re: Stuff & Nonsense
« Reply #8925 on: Aug 6th, 2013, 09:54am »

on Aug 5th, 2013, 09:32am, ZETAR wrote:
CRYSTAL,

EXCELLENT ARTICLE...THE D...E...A...PRESSED THE INFAMOUS..."NEED AND GREED" BUTTON WITH VICTOR BOUT AND A WELL EXECUTED OP...ALL WENT HOME THAT NIGHT ...WELL ...WITH THE EXCEPTION OF ONE RUSSIAN PROFITEER...

WELL...CAN WE SAY..."PANDORA'S BOX"...HAS BEEN OPENED...I'M SURE MANY SOPHISTICATED ATTORNEYS WILL SUBPOENA FUTURE RECORDS FROM THIS PROGRAM...WHICH MAY IN TURN FORCE A MISTRIAL DUE TO...NATIONAL SECURITY ISSUES...WE SHALL SEE...

SHALOM...ZETAR


Good morning Zetar cheesy

It's gettin' scary out there!

Crystal

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xx Re: Stuff & Nonsense
« Reply #8926 on: Aug 6th, 2013, 09:55am »

The Husband pulled a back muscle. He's NEVER sick. Off to the doctor, be back tomorrow morning to post.

Crystal



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xx Re: Stuff & Nonsense
« Reply #8927 on: Aug 6th, 2013, 10:09am »

HEY CRYSTAL,

BUENOS DIAS...TO YOU.
YOU'RE ENTITLED TO A DAY OFF...TAKE CARE OF YOUR FAMILY...WE ALL KNOW WHAT COMES FIRST!
AND YES...WHAT'S GOING ON...GLOBALLY... CAN EASILY MAKE AN OPTIMISTIC PERSON QUITE CYNICAL...

SHALOM...ZETAR
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xx Re: Stuff & Nonsense
« Reply #8928 on: Aug 7th, 2013, 08:57am »

on Aug 6th, 2013, 10:09am, ZETAR wrote:
HEY CRYSTAL,

BUENOS DIAS...TO YOU.
YOU'RE ENTITLED TO A DAY OFF...TAKE CARE OF YOUR FAMILY...WE ALL KNOW WHAT COMES FIRST!
AND YES...WHAT'S GOING ON...GLOBALLY... CAN EASILY MAKE AN OPTIMISTIC PERSON QUITE CYNICAL...

SHALOM...ZETAR


Good morning Zetar cheesy

Crystal

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« Reply #8929 on: Aug 7th, 2013, 09:01am »

Associated Press

AP sources: First charges filed in Benghazi attack

By DONNA CASSATA
— Aug. 6 9:14 PM EDT

WASHINGTON (AP) — The Justice Department has filed the first criminal charges in the deadly attack on the U.S. diplomatic mission in Benghazi, Libya, two U.S. officials said Tuesday.

The officials confirmed that a sealed complaint was filed in U.S. District Court in Washington against an unspecified number of individuals in the September 2012 attack that killed Ambassador Chris Stevens and three other Americans. One official said those charged included Ahmed Abu Khattala, the head of a Libyan militia. The officials spoke on condition of anonymity because they were not authorized to discuss a sealed filing.

The New York Times reported late Tuesday that Khattala had been charged with murder and that he has said in an interview that he is innocent. At least two other foreigners have been charged in the attacks, the newspaper said.

Earlier, CNN, NBC News and The Wall Street Journal reported that unspecified counts had been filed and sealed in the Benghazi attack.

"The department's investigation is ongoing. It has been, and remains, a top priority," said Justice Department spokesman Andrew C. Ames, who declined to comment further.

A key Republican urged the administration to do more than file charges.

"Osama bin Laden had been criminally charged long before the Sept. 11, 2001, terrorist attacks but was not apprehended," Rep. Darrell Issa, R-Calif., the chairman of the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee, said in a statement. U.S. Navy SEALS killed bin Laden in Pakistan on May 2, 2011. "Delays in apprehending the suspected Benghazi killers," Issa added, "will only put American lives at further and needless risk."

The Associated Press reported in May that American officials had identified five men who might be responsible for the Sept. 11, 2012, attack in Benghazi that occurred just weeks before President Barack Obama's re-election. The suspects were not named publicly, but the FBI released photos of three of the five suspects, asking the public to provide more information on the men pictured. The images were captured by security cameras at the U.S. diplomatic post during the attack, but it took weeks for the FBI to see and study them. The FBI and other U.S. intelligence agencies identified the men through contacts in Libya and by monitoring their communications. They are thought to be members of Ansar al-Shariah, the Libyan militia group whose fighters were seen near the U.S. diplomatic facility prior to the violence.

Waiting to prosecute the suspects instead of grabbing them now could add to the political burden the Benghazi case already has placed on Obama and Democrats who want to succeed him in 2016.

Since Obama's re-election, Republicans in Congress have condemned the administration's handling of the matter, criticizing the level of embassy security and questioning the talking points provided to U.N. Ambassador Susan Rice for her public explanation of the attack. Conservatives have suggested that the White House tried to play down the incident to minimize its effect on the president's campaign.

Republicans also have taken political aim at Hillary Rodham Clinton, who was secretary of state at the time of the attack and is a possible Democratic presidential contender in 2016.

In an interview with the Times in October, Khattala said he had arrived at the American compound in Benghazi as gunfire broke out but that he had played no role in the attack. He told the newspaper that he entered the compound at the end of the siege in an attempt to rescue Libyan guards who worked for the Americans and were trapped.

Khattala accused American leaders of using the Benghazi attack to play "with the emotions of the American people" in an effort to "gather votes for their elections," according to the Times.

http://bigstory.ap.org/article/reports-first-charges-filed-benghazi-attack

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« Reply #8930 on: Aug 7th, 2013, 09:05am »







Published on Aug 6, 2013

~


Crystal

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« Reply #8931 on: Aug 7th, 2013, 09:10am »

Der Spiegel

NSA Aftermath: German Firms Scramble to Boost Data Protection

By SPIEGEL Staff

German companies have long suspected China and Russia of trying to steal their secrets. But the NSA scandal has turned their attention west, forcing them to worry about prying American eyes and to rapidly bolster security measures.

August 6 2013

Building No. 14 of SAP's service center in St. Leon-Rot seems as secure as Fort Knox. But, in the end, it isn't the exterior walls of meter-thick reinforced concrete that give off this impression. Nor is it the security cameras or the high-tech steel gate. In fact, the latter wasn't even working a few weeks ago, as can be seen from the handwritten note taped to it, saying: "Gate broken. Please open manually."

What really makes this building in southwestern Germany secure is a state-of-the-art fingerprint verification system. The computer center is filled with servers containing data on this German software giant and thousands of other companies, together making up a giant library of secret company information spanning much of Europe. To get into it, visitors must pass through five security control points, each equipped with its own fingerprint scanner. Only authorized fingers are given access, and only when they are still attached to living individuals. No one gets into the building with severed fingers.

In other words, it would be wrong to say that efforts aren't made to protect business secrets in Germany. On the contrary, the precautionary measures taken by German companies sometimes read like a chapter from a John Grisham novel -- or, in some cases, like pages from a medical textbook on paranoia.

When BMW managers fly to other countries, they leave their company-issued mobile phones at home in Munich. In their place, they are given disposable phones to be discarded upon return.

At the specialty chemicals giant Evonik, managers are required to store their mobile phones in cookie tins during meetings, the idea being that the tins will serve as Faraday cages that prevent anyone from listening in on the conversations.

Ferdinand Piëch, the chairman of Volkswagen's supervisory board, has conference rooms regularly swept for bugs, and the company even has its own airline, Volkswagen Air Services. The planes are registered in the Cayman Islands, but not in order to avoid paying taxes. Instead, the point is to make the aircraft less recognizable as VW planes so that passenger lists are not readily accessible.

At the aerospace group EADS, employees are not permitted to use iPads or iPhones at work. Only Blackberrys are allowed. Employees working in high-security areas are also not allowed to read work-related emails outside their sealed-off offices.

Heightened Worries about Data Abuse

After the revelations of large-scale data mining by the United States, German managers have become even more nervous about data security. EADS CEO Tom Enders and other senior executives have ratcheted up their defensive measures even further. "Many documents that used to be sent by email are now hand-delivered to the recipient," says an EADS official. He notes that the only documents that are now sent electronically are those that the company would have no objections to posting publicly or displaying "on the church door."

Enders and his fellow managers are not alone. Many German business executives are worried about what the NSA does with all the data it presumably collects on German companies, says Ulrich Brehmer, a member of the executive board of the German Association for Security in Industry and Commerce (ASW).

Brehmer is far from a conspiracy theorist, and he isn't trying to suggest that US intelligence services are deliberately poaching industrial know-how from Germany and channeling it to American companies. Instead, what worries him is that US intelligence agencies are working hand-in-hand with consultants from the private sector. "Who knows whether they might be selling information to interested parties here and there," says Brehmer, who assesses the risk of such data abuse as "high."

SAP founder Hasso Plattner also feels uneasy about the surveillance operations of American intelligence agencies. "It certainly is strange that much of the surveillance is centered on southern Germany," he says, "precisely where all the large and small technology companies are located."

This sense of anxiety has become widespread in Germany. "We are noticing that companies have become more sensitive in recent weeks," says Michael George, the head of the Cyber Alliance Center at the Bavarian State Office for the Protection of the Constitution, the state branch of Germany's domestic intelligence agency. "When it comes to industrial espionage, they had focused almost exclusively on the East. And now they're wondering whether the threat might not also be coming from the West."

Small and medium-sized businesses (SMEs), in particular, are contacting the experts at the state agency and asking some very basic questions: What about products made by US software companies, such as Microsoft, that are commonly used by German companies? Should managers still use Skype for meetings? In addition to hacker attacks from China, do SMEs now have to worry about industrial espionage originating in the United States?

'The Americans Are Pros'

German companies once had a lot of confidence in everything coming from the United States. But it's already clear that much of this has been lost.

Granted, to date, there are no known cases in which US agencies have tried to steal German know-how. But perhaps this is only because German authorities and companies haven't been looking hard enough. The victims of hacker attacks are usually kept in the dark, and it might be that American intelligence agencies are just better at covering their tracks.

In fact, they don't even have to gain direct access to German companies. What sometimes happens is that US intelligence agencies, while conducting their extensive searches on the Web, flush out packets of data from German companies "that don't belong there," says a senior official with the Federal Office for the Protection of the Constitution (BfV). Through data leaks, this information often reaches German authorities, who then notify the affected companies.

"The Americans are pros. They don't leave any tracks behind -- and if they do, they're the wrong ones," says Christopher Fischer of BFK, a consulting firm in the southwestern city of Karlsruhe. "It's always easy to act as if the attack were coming from China. And although they are very active at the moment, everything is now of course being blamed on the Chinese."

All companies know that they should protect themselves from the prying eyes of competitors. But, until now, it was commonly believed that threats of industrial espionage emanating from government entities primarily came from China and Russia, where it is common for intelligence services to spy on foreign economies.

Likewise, it has always been clear that Germany is a stomping ground for industrial spies. Dozens of cases have been publicized in recent years. The only real difference among them is that the spies were looking for different things. The Iranians wanted to know where in Germany they could secretly buy parts for their nuclear program. The Russians have an appetite for all things military. And China's product bootleggers are interested in everything from military technology to high-end record players.

The problem in fending off espionage is that many potential access points must be monitored at the same time. SAP alone sees about 3,000 attacks a month. Throughout Germany, the number of attacks is allegedly in the hundreds of thousands -- per day. "It isn't even necessary to have a great deal of expertise to attack small and mid-sized companies," says a senior BfV official.

Moreover, no one knows exactly where the attacks are coming from. Are they industrial spies? Intelligence agencies? Or just amateur hackers? It is clear, however, that there are entire armies of mercenaries roaming the web, ready to sell their services to the highest bidder. And they are good at what they do. "We have cases in which attackers played around in a company's computers for more than 100 days before being discovered," says Fischer, the BFK consultant. "When that happens, you can assume that nothing is secret anymore."

more after the jump:
http://www.spiegel.de/international/world/companies-in-germany-scramble-to-strengthen-data-protection-abilities-a-914922.html

Crystal

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« Reply #8932 on: Aug 7th, 2013, 09:14am »

Wired

Martial Arts Lightsaber Paintings Slice Through the Dark

By Jakob Schiller
08.07.13
6:30 AM



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In his new Light Painting KATA series, Patrick Rochon makes fluid designs by moving around in a martial arts-inspired dance while holding custom lightsaber flashlights.

“The process is definitely a performance,” says Rochon, who lives in Montreal. “The movement I use is a way for me to express my feelings. I was like, here is my energy translated into an art form.”

Kata is in the title because it’s a Japanese word that refers to the kind of repetitive training or choreography that happens in martial arts.

All the photos are made in a completely dark room. Rochon says he moves, often to music, until he thinks he’s finished. Each exposure is between one and five minutes, and he usually has to do several takes before he’s satisfied. Occasionally, he only needs one.

“Sometimes I get into a different state of mind, and before I look at the camera, I know it’s going to be good,” he says.

gallery after the jump:
http://www.wired.com/rawfile/2013/08/light-painting/

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xx Re: Stuff & Nonsense
« Reply #8933 on: Aug 7th, 2013, 09:25am »

WELCOME BACK...I'M HOPING ALL WENT WELL!

SHALOM...Z
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« Reply #8934 on: Aug 7th, 2013, 10:08am »



Since August 2012, the Indian Army and Indo-Tibetan Border Police (ITBP) have recorded several hundred sightings of luminous, yellow sphere-shaped objects in the Ladakh region of Jammu and Kashmir. The objects appeared to rise from the Chinese side of the border, to move slowly across the sky for three to five hours, then disappear. They were seen both day and night, but could neither be detected on radar nor by a spectrum analyzer. By November, the Army believed that they were not unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs), drones or satellites, and astronomers from the Indian Astronomical Observatory at Hanle could only say what they were not: celestial bodies, meteors or planets. Some suspected a psywar op on the part of the Chinese, others, new and sophisticated surveillance devices or probes, while some considered that they were simply balloons or balloon borne objects catching ambient light. Other Indian military organizations stumped by the phenomenon included the Defense Research Development Organisation (DRDO) and the National Technical Research Organisation (NTRO). Nevertheless, on 12 December India’s defence minister, A.K. Antony, informed the Indian Parliament that “there is no conclusive proof of unidentified flying objects flying over the India-China border,” and when the issue was raised with the Chinese, it was met with both denial and laughter. Most recently, the Indian Army called in an astro-physicist, and, under the banner “The Last Laugh,” the 12 August 2013 edition of India Today reported that the UFOs were actually the planets Venus and Jupiter.

Still unexplained is a 2004 close encounter which took place in the Samudra Tapu Valley less than 100km south of Ladakh in which Dr. Anil Kulkarni from the Indian Space Research Organization’s Space Applications Centre and his team of geologists and glaciologists saw and reportedly filmed a four-foot tall robot-like figure which changed colour from white to black, took to the air, and disappeared. (Donald Soryu)
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« Reply #8935 on: Aug 7th, 2013, 11:38am »

Soryu,

... but could neither be detected on radar nor by a spectrum analyzer...

I am aware of reports saying that objects seen were no on radar. In fact it seems to be a common characteristic.
But I'm wondering about the spectrum analyser part.

When you see an object you are seeing light rays in a quite narrow band (the visible spectrum) from an object that is either reflecting light from another source, or producing it's own light.

It follows that if you can see the rays with your eyes then a visible light spectrum analyser will also see it.

Do you have any source specific to this point ?

HAL

Mods. Maybe this needs to be given it's own thread ?
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« Reply #8936 on: Aug 7th, 2013, 12:32pm »

Hi.

No, the reports on this subject were provided in news articles, and the investigative effort was pretty shoddy.

Although the sightings began in August, the first news item I came across on it was from the Hindustantimes of 2 November 2012. By that time, according to the paper, "in September, the army moved a mobile ground-based radar unit and a spectrum analyser - that picks up frequencies emitted from any object - to a mountaintop near the 160-km-long, ribbon-shaped Pangong Lake that lies between India and China. The radar could not detet the object that was being tracked visually, indicating it was non-metallic. The specturm analyser could not detect any signals being emitted from them. The army also flew a reconnaissance drone in the direction of the floating object, but it proved a futile exercise. The drone reached its manimum altitute but lost sight of the floating object."

Clearly, they sound like the foo fighters of WWII, or the yellow, or orange or amber spheres that were written off as meteors in the 1950s, but as Chinese lanterns nowadays.
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xx Re: Stuff & Nonsense
« Reply #8937 on: Aug 7th, 2013, 7:30pm »

on Aug 7th, 2013, 09:25am, ZETAR wrote:
WELCOME BACK...I'M HOPING ALL WENT WELL!

SHALOM...Z



Thank you Zetar cheesy

The Husband is on aspirin and taking warm showers for the back.

Crystal

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« Reply #8938 on: Aug 8th, 2013, 08:53am »

on Aug 7th, 2013, 11:38am, HAL9000 wrote:
Soryu,

... but could neither be detected on radar nor by a spectrum analyzer...

I am aware of reports saying that objects seen were no on radar. In fact it seems to be a common characteristic.
But I'm wondering about the spectrum analyser part.

When you see an object you are seeing light rays in a quite narrow band (the visible spectrum) from an object that is either reflecting light from another source, or producing it's own light.

It follows that if you can see the rays with your eyes then a visible light spectrum analyser will also see it.

Do you have any source specific to this point ?

HAL

Mods. Maybe this needs to be given it's own thread ?


Good morning HAL,

Anyone that wants to start a thread on this is welcome to lift anything you need from Stuff & Nonsense.

Crystal

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« Reply #8939 on: Aug 8th, 2013, 08:56am »

Reuters

Exclusive: IRS manual detailed DEA's use of hidden intel evidence

By John Shiffman and David Ingram

WASHINGTON | Wed Aug 7, 2013 9:23pm EDT

(Reuters) - Details of a U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration program that feeds tips to federal agents and then instructs them to alter the investigative trail were published in a manual used by agents of the Internal Revenue Service for two years.

The practice of recreating the investigative trail, highly criticized by former prosecutors and defense lawyers after Reuters reported it this week, is now under review by the Justice Department. Two high-profile Republicans have also raised questions about the procedure.

A 350-word entry in the Internal Revenue Manual instructed agents of the U.S. tax agency to omit any reference to tips supplied by the DEA's Special Operations Division, especially from affidavits, court proceedings or investigative files. The entry was published and posted online in 2005 and 2006, and was removed in early 2007. The IRS is among two dozen arms of the government working with the Special Operations Division, including the Federal Bureau of Investigation, the National Security Agency and the Central Intelligence Agency.

An IRS spokesman had no comment on the entry or on why it was removed from the manual. Reuters recovered the previous editions from the archives of the Westlaw legal database, which is owned by Thomson Reuters Corp, the parent of this news agency.

As Reuters reported Monday, the Special Operations Division of the DEA funnels information from overseas NSA intercepts, domestic wiretaps, informants and a large DEA database of telephone records to authorities nationwide to help them launch criminal investigations of Americans. The DEA phone database is distinct from a NSA database disclosed by former NSA contractor Edward Snowden.

Monday's Reuters report cited internal government documents that show that law enforcement agents have been trained to conceal how such investigations truly begin - to "recreate" the investigative trail to effectively cover up the original source of the information.

DEA officials said the practice is legal and has been in near-daily use since the 1990s. They have said that its purpose is to protect sources and methods, not to withhold evidence.

NEW DETAIL

Defense attorneys and some former judges and prosecutors say that systematically hiding potential evidence from defendants violates the U.S. Constitution. According to documents and interviews, agents use a procedure they call "parallel construction" to recreate the investigative trail, stating in affidavits or in court, for example, that an investigation began with a traffic infraction rather than an SOD tip.

The IRS document offers further detail on the parallel construction program.

"Special Operations Division has the ability to collect, collate, analyze, evaluate, and disseminate information and intelligence derived from worldwide multi-agency sources, including classified projects," the IRS document says. "SOD converts extremely sensitive information into usable leads and tips which are then passed to the field offices for real-time enforcement activity against major international drug trafficking organizations."

The 2005 IRS document focuses on SOD tips that are classified and notes that the Justice Department "closely guards the information provided by SOD with strict oversight." While the IRS document says that SOD information may only be used for drug investigations, DEA officials said the SOD role has recently expanded to organized crime and money laundering.

According to the document, IRS agents are directed to use the tips to find new, "independent" evidence: "Usable information regarding these leads must be developed from such independent sources as investigative files, subscriber and toll requests, physical surveillance, wire intercepts, and confidential source information. Information obtained from SOD in response to a search or query request cannot be used directly in any investigation (i.e. cannot be used in affidavits, court proceedings or maintained in investigative files)."

The IRS document makes no reference to SOD's sources of information, which include a large DEA telephone and Internet database.

CONCERN IN CONGRESS

House Intelligence Committee Chairman Mike Rogers, R-Michigan, expressed concern with the concept of parallel construction as a method to hide the origin of an investigation. His comments came on the Mike Huckabee Show radio program.

"If they're recreating a trail, that's wrong and we're going to have to do something about it," said Rogers, a former FBI agent. "We're working with the DEA and intelligence organizations to try to find out exactly what that story is."

Spokespeople for the DEA and the Department of Justice declined to comment.

Sen. Rand Paul, R-Kentucky, a member of the Homeland Security and Government Affairs Committee, said he was troubled that DEA agents have been "trying to cover up a program that investigates Americans."

"National security is one of government's most important functions. So is protecting individual liberty," Paul said. "If the Constitution still has any sway, a government that is constantly overreaching on security while completely neglecting liberty is in grave violation of our founding doctrine."

Officials have stressed that the NSA and DEA telephone databases are distinct. The NSA database, disclosed by Snowden, includes data about every telephone call placed inside the United States. An NSA official said that database is not used for domestic criminal law enforcement.

The DEA database, called DICE, consists largely of phone log and Internet data gathered legally by the DEA through subpoenas, arrests and search warrants nationwide. DICE includes about 1 billion records, and they are kept for about a year and then purged, DEA officials said.

(Research by Hilary Shroyer of West, a Thomson Reuters business. Additional reporting by David Lawder. Edited by Michael Williams)

http://www.reuters.com/article/2013/08/08/us-dea-irs-idUSBRE9761AZ20130808

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