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Archive for September 12, 2012

Christian communities under threat to everyone’s detriment

September 12, 2012 Comments off

thenational

Christianity, which started in a Bethlehem stable, has been an integral part of the Middle East for 2,000 years. At its best it has contributed greatly, along with Islam and Judaism, to the culture and life of the region; at its worst it has been a source of conflict.

Today, the destiny of the region’s Christian communities is umbilically linked to the future of the countries in which they live – and to the ideologies competing for power. Ahead of Pope Benedict’s visit to Lebanon this week, it is timely to look at the circumstances of Christian communities in the region.

The cruellest paradox is that Christian minorities – and others – are criticised for not embracing the ideologies and acts of those who seek to annihilate them.

The situation has varied from country to country, but Read more…

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Was U.S. Ambassador Lynched?

September 12, 2012 Comments off

prisonplanet

Paul Joseph Watson

Despite initial reports suggesting he died in a rocket attack on the U.S. Consulate in Benghazi, photos appear to indicate that U.S. Ambassador J. Christopher Stevens was killed by a lynch mob, illustrating the disastrous consequences of the Obama administration’s military intervention in Libya – arming some of the very same men who carried out today’s attack.

Was U.S. Ambassador Lynched? 120912stevens

“The US ambassador to Libya, Christopher Stevens, has been killed in a rocket attack in the eastern city of Benghazi along with three other embassy staff, the White House confirmed on Wednesday,” reports France 24.

However, images released in the hours after the attack show Stevens’ body being paraded around by a mob. The body appears to show signs of torture.

Subsequent reports speculated that Stevens’ car was attacked as he and the three other personnel attempted to escape from the Consulate. The other embassy staff were shot while Stevens’ died of “suffocation,” suggesting he was Full Article Here

Is Privacy Dead? 4 Government and Private Entities Conspiring to Track Everything You Do Online and Off

September 12, 2012 Comments off

alternet.org

Americans’ personal privacy is being crushed by the rise of a four-headed corporate-state surveillance system.  The four “heads” are: federal government agencies; state and local law enforcement entities; telecoms, web sites & Internet “apps” companies; and private data aggregators (sometimes referred to as commercial data warehouses).

Conventional analysis treats these four domains of data gathering as separate and distinct; government agencies focus on security issues and corporate entities are concerned with commerce. Some overlap can be expected as, for example, in case of a terrorist attack or an online banking fraud.  In both cases, an actual crime occurred.

But what happens when the boundary separating or restricting corporate-state collaboration, e.g., an exceptional crime-fighting incident, erodes and becomes the taken-for-granted operating environment, the new normal?  Perhaps most troubling, what happens when the traditional safeguards offered by “watchdog” courts or regulatory organizations no longer seem to matter?  What does it say that the entities designed to Read more…

Permafrost thaw will speed up global warming, study says

September 12, 2012 Comments off

www.cbc.ca

A polar bear wanders along the Hudson Bay. New research suggets that permafrost soils in Canada's Arctic are melting at a rate that will significantly speed up global warming. A polar bear wanders along the Hudson Bay. New research suggets that permafrost soils in Canada’s Arctic are melting at a rate that will significantly speed up global warming. (iStock)

Permafrost soils in Canada’s Arctic are melting at a rate that will significantly speed up global warming, according to new research from the University of Victoria.

The study, published this week in Nature Geoscience, predicts that the thawing permafrost will release between 68 billion and 508 billion tonnes of carbon into the atmosphere by the year 2100.

As a result of those carbon emissions, researchers say the Earth’s temperature will rise by more than 0.5 C by the end of the century.

Although seemingly insignificant, that amount is in addition to the two degrees the Earth’s temperature is expected to rise because of global warming from industrial sources.

Andrew Weaver, a climate scientist at the University of Victoria and one of the study’s authors, warns that once the planet warms by more than two Read more…

China Silent on Status of Ships Sent to Japanese-Controlled Islands

September 12, 2012 Comments off

voanews

The status of two Chinese government ships sent to assert Beijing’s claim over Japanese-controlled islands in the East China Sea remained a mystery early Wednesday, with no word from either government on the ships’ whereabouts.

China’s official news agency Xinhua reported that the two China Marine Surveillance ships “reached the waters around” the disputed islands Tuesday morning. It said the Chinese agency in charge of the vessels had a plan to safeguard Chinese sovereignty and would “take actions pending the development of the situation.” Since then, Chinese state media have been silent on the ships’ movements.

Japanese officials also had no comment on the status of the Chinese government ships. Japan’s coast guard has confronted Chinese fisherman and nationalists in the waters of the archipelago several times in recent years. It was not clear if Japanese authorities were taking similar action this time.

Japan refers to the disputed islands as Senkaku, while China calls them Diaoyu. The waters around the islands contain Read more…

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