Thursday, April 30, 2009

In the News: Apr-30

Wordle: In the News: Apr-30

Britain ends combat operations in Iraq - 30 Apr 2009 at 8:02am - British troops ended six years of combat operations in Iraq on Thursday, beginning to withdraw from the southern city of Basra after a bloody and costly mission that was deeply unpopular at home. Prime Minister Gordon Brown praised his military's accomplishments and sacrifices, speaking after meeting with Iraqi Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki at Brown's Downing Street office in London.

Iraq war wanes; military families' struggles don't - 30 Apr 2009 at 7:16am - HAMLET, N.C. -- Spc. Jobel Barbosa had spent the past hour with his family in a parking lot after a public ceremony marking his unit's deployment to a war that's coming to an end. It was time to go.

Thought for the day:
Few people are capable of expressing with equanimity opinions which differ from the prejudices of their social environment. Most people are even incapable of forming such opinions. -Albert Einstein (1879 - 1955)

Wednesday, April 29, 2009

In the News: Apr-29

Wordle: In the News: Apr-29

Study: World can 'safely' burn only 25% of remaining oil, coal - 29 Apr 2009 at 1:12pm - The world can burn only a quarter of proven reserves of oil, gas and coal to be confident of staying within safer climate limits, ...

Transsexual wins $500,000 lawsuit - 29 Apr 2009 at 11:05am - A federal judge has awarded a former Army Special Forces commander nearly $500,000 because she was rejected from a job at the ...

Holder: 30 Gitmo inmates approved for release - 29 Apr 2009 at 10:51am - U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder says about 30 detainees have been cleared for release from Guantanamo Bay.

U.S. economy performed worse than expected in Q1 - 29 Apr 2009 at 10:40am - The U.S. economy turned in a worse performance than expected in the first quarter as it contracted at an annualized pace of 6.1 per cent, the U.S. Commerce Department said Wednesday.

Thought for the day:
Television news is like a lightning flash. It makes a loud noise, lights up everything around it, leaves everything else in darkness and then is suddenly gone. -Hodding Carter

Tuesday, April 28, 2009

In the News: Apr-28

Wordle: In the News: Apr-28

Fed court revives rendition lawsuit against Boeing - 28 Apr 2009 at 2:09pm - SAN FRANCISCO -- A federal appeals court has ruled that a Boeing Co. subsidiary can be sued for allegedly flying terrorism suspects to secret prisons to be tortured as part of the CIA's "extraordinary rendition" program.

Feds disavow toxic water study on Marine base - 28 Apr 2009 at 1:15pm - In an abrupt reversal, the U.S. government is disavowing a report that had reassured Marines and their families there was little or no increased cancer risk for adults who drank contaminated water at Camp Lejeune in North Carolina.

Sources: Sen. Specter intends to switch parties - 28 Apr 2009 at 12:13pm - WASHINGTON -- Several officials say veteran Republican Sen. Arlen Specter of Pennsylvania intends to switch parties, advancing his own hopes of winning a new term next year while pushing Democrats one step closer to a 60-vote filibuster-resistant majority.

Most Americans oppose interrogation probe: poll - 28 Apr 2009 at 12:00pm - WASHINGTON (Reuters) - Most Americans oppose a U.S. congressional investigation into harsh interrogation methods used on terrorism suspects during the Bush administration, a poll said on Tuesday.

British court acquits 3 charged in 2005 London bombings - 28 Apr 2009 at 9:55am - A British jury cleared three men on Tuesday of charges that they helped suicide bombers who killed 52 people on London's transit system four years ago.

Obama orders review of New York City flyover - 28 Apr 2009 at 2:57pm - WASHINGTON -- President Barack Obama has ordered an internal review to determine how the decision was made to send of one of his official airplanes on a low-flying photo op past the New York City skyline.

Pandemic-preparedness money stripped from stimulus - 28 Apr 2009 at 8:55am - Congress stripped nearly $900 million to combat an influenza pandemic from the economic-stimulus package earlier this year as ...

Thought for the day:
When the politicians complain that TV turns the proceedings into a circus, it should be made clear that the circus was already there, and that TV has merely demonstrated that not all the performers are well trained. -Edward R. Murrow (1908 - 1965)

Monday, April 27, 2009

In the News: Apr-27

Wordle: In the News: Apr-27

Britain would consider taking Gitmo detainees - 27 Apr 2009 at 2:11pm - LONDON -- British Justice Secretary Jack Straw said Monday his country would consider taking Guantanamo Bay detainees if the United States asks for such help to close the detention facility.

Obama seeks reversal of mountaintop mining rule - 27 Apr 2009 at 1:35pm - WASHINGTON -- The Obama administration wants to reverse a last-minute Bush-era rule that allows mountaintop mining waste to be dumped near streams.

US Official: Harman was monitored, but not by NSA - 27 Apr 2009 at 11:57am - COLLEGE PARK, Md. -- The top U.S. intelligence official says California Democrat Jane Harman was monitored by a government wiretap but that the surveillance was not directed by the National Security Agency.

Lesbian couple legally marries in Iowa ceremony - 27 Apr 2009 at 11:36am - A lesbian couple has apparently become the first same-sex couple to legally wed in Iowa since a court ruling took effect legalizing gay marriage.

Holder meets with British officials, tours Tower - 27 Apr 2009 at 10:16am - LONDON -- U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder, on the first stop of a European tour, met privately on Monday with British officials to talk about intelligence-sharing and terrorism.

U.S. forces say kill 7 al Qaeda suspects in Iraq - 27 Apr 2009 at 9:44am - TIKRIT, Iraq (Reuters) - Seven suspected al Qaeda insurgents were killed in clashes with U.S. forces in a largely Sunni Arab province of Iraq, the U.S. military said Monday.

Iraqi government claims U.S. raid violated agreement - 27 Apr 2009 at 6:48am - BAGHDAD — An early morning U.S. raid that left two Iraqis dead was launched without Iraq's permission, a serious violation of the rules that are supposed to govern American military conduct here, the Iraqi government said Sunday.

Thought for the day:
War is the biggest ego trip of all time. -Molly Wiest

Friday, April 24, 2009

In the News: Apr-24

Wordle: In the News: Apr-24

White House: No point appealing photos' lawsuit - 24 Apr 2009 at 2:57pm - The White House says it was clear an appeal of a court ruling ordering the administration to release photographs of prisoners abused by U.S. military or civilian personnel in Iraq and Afghanistan would not succeed.

New, deadly swine flu hits Mexico, may spread - 24 Apr 2009 at 12:51pm - MEXICO CITY (Reuters) - A deadly strain of swine flu never seen before has broken out in Mexico, killing as many as 60 people and raising fears it is spreading across North America.

Appeals court tosses Gitmo suit _ again - 24 Apr 2009 at 12:25pm - WASHINGTON -- A federal appeals court has for a second time rejected a lawsuit by Guantanamo Bay detainees who say they were tortured and denied religious rights.

Petraeus: Tunisian militants attacking Iraq - 24 Apr 2009 at 11:17am - WASHINGTON -- The top U.S. military commander in the Mideast says attacks in Iraq will continue for some time, and they may be the work of a network of foreign fighters from Tunisia.

U.S. soldier dies in noncombat incident in Iraq - 24 Apr 2009 at 8:56am - The U.S. military says an American soldier has died as a result of a noncombat related incident in a province north of Baghdad.

US military worried about Taliban move on Pakistan - 24 Apr 2009 at 7:57am - WASHINGTON -- The chairman of the U.S. Joint Chiefs of Staff said in an interview broadcast Friday that he's "extremely concerned" about indications the Taliban was moving closer to Pakistan's capital of Islamabad.

Canadian soldier found dead on base in Afghanistan - 24 Apr 2009 at 7:43am - An investigation has been launched into the death of a Canadian soldier whose body was found in her room at Kandahar Airfield.

U.S. lawyers to meet Sudan Gitmo detainee families - 24 Apr 2009 at 5:43am - KHARTOUM (Reuters) - Lawyers from the Pentagon's legal office will meet with families of Sudanese Guantanamo detainees to discuss how they might be released, a Sudanese foreign ministry official said Friday.

Thought for the day:
On account of being a democracy and run by the people, we are the only nation in the world that has to keep a government four years, no matter what it does. -Will Rogers (1879 - 1935)

Thursday, April 23, 2009

In the News: Apr-23

Wordle: In the News: Apr-23

Greg Mitchell: U.S. Soldier Who Killed Herself--After Refusing to Take Part in Torture - April 23, 2009 - With each new revelation on U.S. torture in Iraq, Afghanistan and Gitmo (and who, knows, probably elsewhere), I am reminded of the chilling story of Alyssa Peterson, who I have written about numerous times in the past three years but now with especially sad relevance. Appalled when ordered to take part in interrogations that, no doubt, involved what we would call torture, she refused, then killed herself a few days later, in September 2003.

Court rules PM must press U.S. for Khadr's return - 23 Apr 2009 at 1:37pm - A Federal Court judge ruled Thursday that Prime Minister Stephen Harper is obliged to press the United States for the return of Omar Khadr to Canada.

Cuomo questions TARP, pressure on BofA's Lewis - 23 Apr 2009 at 1:15pm - NEW YORK (Reuters) - An investigation of Bank of America Corp revealed facts that raise questions about the transparency of the U.S. government program to help banks in the financial crisis, New York's top legal officer said in a letter made public on Thursday.

U.S. mass layoffs rise to highest on record - 23 Apr 2009 at 11:13am - NEW YORK (Reuters) - Large-scale U.S. layoffs rose again in March, according to Labor Department data on Thursday, as the economy struggles with what many expect will be the country's worst post-World War II recession.

Lewis testified that U.S. urged silence on Merrill deal: report - 23 Apr 2009 at 8:32am - NEW YORK (Reuters) - Bank of America Corp CEO Kenneth Lewis testified under oath that Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke and then-Treasury Secretary Henry Paulson pressured him to keep quiet about losses at Merrill Lynch & Co, which the bank was buying, the Wall Street Journal reported.

US lacks civilians for Afghan 'civilian surge' - 23 Apr 2009 at 8:25am - WASHINGTON -- The Obama administration is having trouble finding the hundreds of civilians it wants to bolster the troop buildup in Afghanistan. So military reservists might be asked to do the civilian jobs.

Thought for the day:
It isn't that they can't see the solution. It is that they can't see the problem. -G. K. Chesterton (1874 - 1936), Scandal of Father Brown (1935)

Wednesday, April 22, 2009

In the News: Apr-22

Wordle: In the News: Apr-22

Pelosi knew NSA had listened to Harman phone calls - 22 Apr 2009 at 2:44pm - WASHINGTON -- House Speaker Nancy Pelosi says she knew a few years ago that California Democrat Rep. Jane Harman had been overheard on a government wiretap.

Report: Bush policies led to prisoner abuses - 22 Apr 2009 at 2:40pm - WASHINGTON -- The brutal treatment of prisoners by the military at Guantanamo Bay, Iraq's Abu Ghraib prison and Afghanistan was systematic and a direct result of the CIA's early use of harsh interrogation tactics, according to a Senate report.

LaHood to reject FAA secrecy on bird data - 22 Apr 2009 at 2:28pm - Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood says he intends to overrule the Federal Aviation Administration on its plan to keep secret data on where and when collisions between birds and airplanes occur.

Intel director: High-value info obtained - 22 Apr 2009 at 12:37pm - The Obama administration's top intelligence official privately told employees last week that "high value information" was obtained in interrogations that included harsh techniques approved by President George W. Bush. "A deeper understanding of the al-Qaeda network" resulted, National Intelligence Director Dennis Blair said in the memo, in which he added, "I like to think I would not have approved those methods in the past."

Army officer feels vindicated by Senate report - 22 Apr 2009 at 7:34am - WASHINGTON -- An Army Reserve brigadier general demoted because of prisoner abuses at the Abu Ghraib facility in Iraq says a new Senate report supports claims that uniformed military people were made "scapegoats" for Bush administration prisoner interrogation policies.

U.K.: All terror suspects arrested in raids released - 22 Apr 2009 at 6:59am - British police say all 12 suspects arrested in anti-terror raids earlier this month have been released without charge.

Britain won't charge 12 arrested in anti-terror sweep - 22 Apr 2009 at 6:50am - Twelve men arrested in a series of anti-terrorist raids involving hundreds of officers across northwest England earlier this month will not face charges due to insufficient evidence, British prosecutors said Wednesday.

Thought for the day:
The surprising thing about young fools is how many survive to become old fools. -Doug Larson

Tuesday, April 21, 2009

In the News: Apr-21

Wordle: In the News: Apr-21

Cheney: US gained information from interrogations - 21 Apr 2009 at 10:31am - WASHINGTON -- Former Vice President Dick Cheney says the U.S. government gained valuable intelligence from its aggressive interrogations of high-value detainees after the September 2001 terrorist attacks.
Isn't this kinda like saying you needed money, so you didn't think twice about robbing that bank, but you shouldn't be prosecuted, because robbing the bank succeeded in getting you that money you needed?

Rivers shrinking: Flow of many rivers in decline - 21 Apr 2009 at 3:01pm - WASHINGTON -- The flow of water in the world's largest rivers has declined over the past half-century, with significant changes found in about a third of the big rivers.

Lawmaker asks for release of spy case transcripts - 21 Apr 2009 at 2:05pm - WASHINGTON -- The former senior Democrat on the House Intelligence Committee asked the Justice Department on Tuesday to release all transcripts of her recorded conversations involving the treatment of two pro-Israel lobbyists accused of spying.

EPA restores stricter reporting of toxic pollution - 21 Apr 2009 at 1:45pm - WASHINGTON -- The federal government plans to once again require companies to fully disclose the toxic chemicals they release into the air, onto land and into water.

Obama open to prosecution, probe of interrogations - 21 Apr 2009 at 12:55pm - WASHINGTON -- President Barack Obama said Tuesday the United States lost "our moral bearings" with gruesome terror-suspect interrogations and he left the door open to prosecuting Bush administration officials who vouched for their legality.

Supreme Court limits warrantless vehicle searches - 21 Apr 2009 at 10:42am - WASHINGTON -- The Supreme Court ruled Tuesday that police need a warrant to search the vehicle of someone they have arrested if the person is locked up in a patrol cruiser and poses no safety threat to officers.

Thought for the day:
Peace is not an absence of war, it is a virtue, a state of mind, a disposition for benevolence, confidence, justice. -Baruch Spinoza (1632 - 1677)

Monday, April 20, 2009

In the News: Apr-20

Wordle: In the News: Apr-20

Justices skeptical on allowing Iraq to be sued - 20 Apr 2009 at 1:56pm - WASHINGTON -- The Supreme Court seemed skeptical on Monday about holding the current Iraqi government responsible in American courts for the acts of Saddam Hussein's regime.

Va. whistleblower loses bid for reinstatement - 20 Apr 2009 at 10:12am - WASHINGTON -- The Supreme Court has rejected the appeal of a fired bank executive who blew the whistle on alleged shoddy accounting practices and wants his job back.

Official: Obama doesn't want interrogation charges - 20 Apr 2009 at 6:12am - WASHINGTON -- President Barack Obama does not intend to prosecute Bush administration officials who devised the policies that led to the harsh interrogation of suspected terrorists, White House chief of staff Rahm Emanuel said Sunday.

Thought for the day:
Civilizations in decline are consistently characterised by a tendency towards standardization and uniformity. -Arnold Toynbee (1889 - 1975)

Thursday, April 16, 2009

In the News: Apr-16

Wordle: In the News: Apr-16

No charges against CIA officials for waterboarding - 16 Apr 2009 at 2:35pm - WASHINGTON -- The Obama administration on Thursday informed CIA officials who used waterboarding and other harsh interrogation tactics on terror suspects that they will not be prosecuted.

NY governor introduces bill to allow gay marriage - 16 Apr 2009 at 11:01am - NEW YORK -- Gov. David Paterson announced plans Thursday to legalize same-sex marriage in New York, making a political gamble that he can ride the momentum of other states that have recently allowed the practice.

Mich. Muslim group says FBI asking people to spy - 16 Apr 2009 at 10:40am - DETROIT -- A Michigan Muslim organization said Thursday it has asked U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder to investigate complaints alleging the FBI is asking followers of the faith to spy on Islamic leaders and congregations.

Senate panel to investigate wiretapping violations - 16 Apr 2009 at 10:35am - WASHINGTON -- Senate Intelligence Committee Chairman Dianne Feinstein says she will investigate indications of new wiretap violations by the National Security Agency.

US soldier gets life for murders of Iraqi prisoners - 16 Apr 2009 at 10:33am - A senior United States soldier has been jailed for life for the murder of four bound and blindfolded prisoners in Iraq, a court martial said.

Thought for the day:
It is knowledge that influences and equalizes the social condition of man; that gives to all, however different their political position, passions which are in common, and enjoyments which are universal. -Benjamin Disraeli (1804 - 1881)

Wednesday, April 15, 2009

In the News: Apr-15

Wordle: In the News: Apr-15

Fan cries foul over ejection from Yankee stadium - 15 Apr 2009 at 2:07pm - NEW YORK -- A baseball fan says he was ejected from Yankee Stadium for leaving his seat to use the bathroom while "God Bless America" played.

Afghan women pelted with stones during rape law protest - 15 Apr 2009 at 1:04pm - Afghan women protesting against a new law that severely undermines women's rights were pelted with stones in the country's capital Wednesday, say reports.

Report: United States ripe for recruiting by extremists - 15 Apr 2009 at 7:47am - Homeland Security officials are warning that right-wing extremists could use the bad state of the U.S. economy and the election of the country's first black president to recruit members to their cause. In an intelligence assessment issued to law enforcement last week, Homeland Security officials said there was no specific information about an attack in the works by right-wing extremists.

Thought for the day:
Before a war, military science seems a real science, like astronomy. After a war it seems more like astrology. -Dame Rebecca West

Tuesday, April 14, 2009

In the News: Apr-14

Wordle: In the News: Apr-14

10 years later, the real story behind Columbine - 14 Apr 2009 at 1:48pm - A decade after [Eric Harris and Dylan Klebold] made Columbine a synonym for rage, new information — including several books that analyze the tragedy through diaries, e-mails, appointment books, videotape, police affidavits and interviews with witnesses, friends and survivors — indicate that much of what the public has been told about the shootings is wrong.

NY governor wants gay marriage bill - 14 Apr 2009 at 1:37pm - ALBANY, N.Y. -- New York legislative officials say Gov. David Paterson is expected to introduce legislation to legalize gay marriage.

Canadian soldier killed, 4 wounded by roadside bomb in Afghanistan - 14 Apr 2009 at 11:32am - One Canadian soldier was killed and four others were wounded when their armoured vehicle struck a roadside bomb north of Kandahar in southern Afghanistan, the Canadian military said Tuesday.

US troops could stay in Mosul past June 30 - 14 Apr 2009 at 11:19am - WASHINGTON -- The top U.S. commander in a northern Iraq province where al-Qaida remains a strong threat says his combat troops may stay in cities there past a June 30 deadline requiring them to pull back.

Appeals Court: Marine can't sue Murtha - 14 Apr 2009 at 10:58am - WASHINGTON -- A federal appeals court has ruled that a Marine cannot sue Pennsylvania Rep. John Murtha for defamation.

Thought for the day:
The only alternative to coexistence is codestruction. -Jawaharlal Nehru (1889 - 1964)

Monday, April 13, 2009

In the News: Apr-13

Wordle: In the News: Apr-13

Afghan villagers say NATO strike killed civilians - 13 Apr 2009 at 12:50pm - ASADABAD, Afghanistan (Reuters) - An overnight NATO-led airstrike on a remote Afghan village killed six civilians, including two children, Afghan officials said on Monday, but Western forces said they had targeted armed militants.

Obama to ease limits on U.S.-Cuba family ties: official - 13 Apr 2009 at 12:35pm - WASHINGTON (Reuters) - President Barack Obama on Monday will lift some U.S. restrictions to allow Cuban Americans to travel more freely to the communist-ruled island and send financial assistance to family members, a U.S. official said.

Sudan's Bashir hails Obama's overture to Islamic world - 13 Apr 2009 at 10:48am - KHARTOUM (Reuters) - Sudan's leader welcomed on Monday "positive signs" sent by U.S. President Barack Obama to the Islamic world, striking a more conciliatory tone toward Washington, seen as an enemy of Khartoum in the past.

Thought for the day:
The real hero is always a hero by mistake; he dreams of being an honest coward like everybody else. -Umberto Eco (1932 - ), Travels in Hyperreality

Thursday, April 09, 2009

In the News: Apr-09

Wordle: In the News: Apr-09

CIA says shuttering detention "black sites" - 9 Apr 2009 at 2:44pm - WASHINGTON (Reuters) - The CIA will decommission the infamous "black sites" where terrorism suspects were interrogated with harsh techniques that included waterboarding, agency director Leon Panetta said on Thursday.

Obama to seek $83.4 billion for Iraq, Afghan wars - 9 Apr 2009 at 2:31pm - WASHINGTON -- Congressional aides say President Barack Obama is seeking $83.4 billion to fund the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan into the fall.

Obama announces new record system for vets - 9 Apr 2009 at 12:28pm - WASHINGTON -- President Barack Obama on Thursday promised a more efficient record system to ease delays in health care for wounded veterans, as the government copes with more than 33,000 military personnel injured in two wars in Iraq and Afghanistan.

Returning troops getting tested for brain injuries - 9 Apr 2009 at 10:43am - FORT CAMPBELL, Ky. -- Every soldier who's gone to war in the past year paused before leaving to take a brain test - basic math, matching numbers and symbols and identifying patterns to measure response time and accuracy. Now that some of these troops have returned, they're taking a fresh round of tests, all part of a broad effort by the military to better treat head injuries.

U.S. jobless claims ease in latest week - 9 Apr 2009 at 9:40am - WASHINGTON (Reuters) - The number of U.S. workers filing new claims for jobless aid fell last week, but the number of people on unemployment rolls surged to a record in March, data showed on Thursday, suggesting the labor market's decline has not yet hit bottom.

Jobless rate climbs to 7-year high of 8% - 9 Apr 2009 at 8:10am - Canada's employment situation continued to deteriorate in March, as 61,000 jobs were lost - with all the cuts coming in full-time work.

Shia rally marks anniversary of fall of Baghdad - 9 Apr 2009 at 6:35am - Tens of thousands of supporters of an anti-U.S. Shia cleric rallied Thursday at a main downtown square in Baghdad to protest the U.S. military presence and mark the sixth anniversary of the fall of the Iraqi capital to American forces.

Thought for the day:
Money is better than poverty, if only for financial reasons. -Woody Allen (1935 - )

Wednesday, April 08, 2009

In the News: Apr-08

Wordle: In the News: Apr-08

US to attend group nuclear talks with Iran - 8 Apr 2009 at 2:51pm - WASHINGTON -- The Obama administration said Wednesday it will participate directly in group talks with Iran over its suspect nuclear program, marking another significant shift from former President George W. Bush's policy toward a nation he labeled a member of the "Axis of Evil."

Safety team warns of 'catastrophic' wiring in Iraq - 8 Apr 2009 at 6:47am - WASHINGTON -- A military team sent to evaluate electrical problems at U.S. facilities in Iraq determined there was a high risk that flawed wiring could cause further "catastrophic results" - namely, the electrocutions of U.S. soldiers.

Thought for the day:
When a thing ceases to be a subject of controversy, it ceases to be a subject of interest. -William Hazlitt (1778 - 1830)

Tuesday, April 07, 2009

In the News: Apr-07

Wordle: In the News: Apr-07

Red Cross: Gitmo medical personnel violated ethics - 7 Apr 2009 at 1:57pm - WASHINGTON -- Medical professionals who monitored CIA interrogations at the Guantanamo Bay, Cuba, detention facility violated medical ethics, the International Committee of the Red Cross says in a report.

Vermont legalizes gay marriage with veto override - 7 Apr 2009 at 11:26am - Vermont has become the fourth state to legalize gay marriage and the first to do so with a legislature's vote.

Judge: U.S. hid witness' mental illness in Guantanamo cases - 7 Apr 2009 at 6:49am - WASHINGTON — The Justice Department improperly withheld important psychiatric records of a government witness who was used in a "significant" number of Guantanamo cases, a federal judge has concluded.

As Iraq rape trial begins, attorneys attack law - 7 Apr 2009 at 3:54am - PADUCAH, Ky. -- Former soldier Steven Dale Green is accused of raping a 14-year-old girl and killing her and her family while serving in Iraq, but he won't face an Iraqi or military jury.

Thought for the day:
I must say that acting was good training for the political life that lay ahead of us. -Anthony Burgess (1917 - 1993)

Monday, April 06, 2009

In the News: Apr-06

Wordle: In the News: Apr-06

Accused chief torturer for Khmer Rouge blames U.S. for regime's rise - 6 Apr 2009 at 11:32am - American policies in the 1970s buoyed the rise of the Khmer Rouge to power in Cambodia, the man accused of being the brutal regime's chief torturer testified Monday in Phnom Penh.

Obama declares US 'not at war with Islam' - 6 Apr 2009 at 8:44am - ANKARA, Turkey -- Barack Obama, making his first visit to a Muslim nation as president, declared Monday the United States "is not at war with Islam" and called for a greater partnership with the Islamic world.
One might think it goes without saying that the U.S. is not at war with Islam, but apparantly, sadly, it does not.

Obama commits U.S. to eliminating nuclear weapons - 6 Apr 2009 at 7:53am - PRAQUE, Czech Republic — For half a century, American presidents have talked about easing or eliminating the threat of nuclear annihilation while maintaining an arsenal at the core of U.S. defense strategy.

Thought for the day:
Of course, our failures are a consequence of many factors, but possibly one of the most important is the fact that society operates on the theory that specialization is the key to success, not realizing that specialization precludes comprehensive thinking. -R. Buckminster Fuller (1895 - 1983), Operating Manual for Spaceship Earth, 1963

Friday, April 03, 2009

In the News: Apr-03

Wordle: In the News: Apr-03

N.C. Sen. Burr delays Duckworth vote - 3 Apr 2009 at 12:05pm - U.S. Sen. Richard Burr of North Carolina is delaying the nomination vote and swearing-in of injured Iraq veteran Tammy Duckworth for a top post in the Veterans Affairs administration.

Iowa court says gay marriage ban unconstitutional - 3 Apr 2009 at 10:29am - DES MOINES, Iowa -- The Iowa Supreme Court issued a unanimous ruling Friday finding that the state's same-sex marriage ban violates the constitutional rights of gay and lesbian couples, making Iowa the third state where marriage will be legal.

Jobless rate bolts to 8.5 percent, 663K jobs lost - 3 Apr 2009 at 9:45am - WASHINGTON -- The nation's unemployment rate jumped to 8.5 percent in March, the highest since late 1983, as a wide swath of employers eliminated 663,000 jobs. It's fresh evidence of the toll the recession has inflicted on America's workers, and economists say there's no relief in sight.

Obama, Sarkozy find common ground on Guantanamo - 3 Apr 2009 at 7:43am - STRASBOURG, France -- In a symbolic gesture, French President Nicolas Sarkozy told President Barack Obama on Friday that France would accept a prisoner from Guantanamo Bay if that would facilitate the closing of the controversial detention center where terrorist suspects are held.

Thought for the day:
Most of the time I don't have much fun. The rest of the time I don't have any fun at all. -Woody Allen (1935 - )

Thursday, April 02, 2009

In the News: Apr-02

Wordle: In the News: Apr-02

House votes on FDA authority for tobacco - 2 Apr 2009 at 1:00pm - The 298-112 roll call Thursday by which the House approved a bill that would for the first time give the government powers to regulate tobacco products.

Judge: Bagram prisoners can challenge detention - 2 Apr 2009 at 11:50am - WASHINGTON -- A federal judge says prisoners in the war on terror being held at a military air base in Afghanistan have a right to challenge their detention in a U.S. court.

Thought for the day:
If one morning I walked on top of the water across the Potomac River, the headline that afternoon would read "President Can't Swim". -Lyndon B. Johnson (1908 - 1973)

Wednesday, April 01, 2009

In the News: Apr-01

Wordle: In the News: Apr-01

Israel's new foreign minister dismisses Annapolis - 1 Apr 2009 at 1:58pm - JERUSALEM (Reuters) - Israel's new foreign minister angered Palestinians and raised the prospect of tension with Washington by saying Wednesday that Israel was not bound by a deal to start negotiations on establishing a Palestinian state.

Harper 'deeply troubled' by Afghan move to limit women's rights - 1 Apr 2009 at 1:52pm - Prime Minister Stephen Harper said Wednesday that Canada remains committed to its mission in Afghanistan, but he voiced strong concerns about new Afghan legislation that would limit women's rights in that country.

US replaces Blackwater for some Iraq security - 1 Apr 2009 at 1:16pm - WASHINGTON -- The State Department said Wednesday it has signed the Virginia-based private security firm Triple Canopy to take over protecting U.S. diplomats on the ground in Iraq from Blackwater Worldwide, now known as Xe.

Toronto police arrest at least 100 in major raid targeting guns, gangs - 1 Apr 2009 at 9:23am - Police arrested at least 100 people early Wednesday morning in a large-scale raid linked to guns and gangs investigations across the Greater Toronto Area.

No forensic match for ammo in Blackwater shooting - 1 Apr 2009 at 8:44am - FBI scientists were unable to match bullets from a deadly 2007 shooting in Iraq to guns carried by guards for U.S. government ...

General: Afghan-Pakistan insurgents get stronger - 1 Apr 2009 at 8:52am - WASHINGTON -- The top U.S. general in the Mideast says the Taliban and other insurgents are growing ever stronger in Afghanistan. General David Petraeus is promising the U.S. military will fight "relentlessly and aggressively" to foil the extremists there and in neighboring Pakistan.

Taliban say U.S. reconciliation offer "lunatic" - 1 Apr 2009 at 8:22am - KABUL (Reuters) - Taliban insurgents rejected on Wednesday a U.S. offer of "honorable reconciliation" as a "lunatic idea" and said the withdrawal of foreign troops was the only way to end the war in Afghanistan.

Monthly U.S. death toll in Iraq lowest since beginning of war - 1 Apr 2009 at 7:51am - BAGHDAD (Reuters) - The number of U.S. troops killed by hostile action in Iraq fell in March to the lowest level since the 2003 invasion, but total civilian deaths remained above January's low point.

Thought for the day:
It is not the strongest of the species that survives, nor the most intelligent, but the one most responsive to change. -Charles Darwin (1809 - 1882)