"Am I therefore become your enemy,because I TELL YOU THE TRUTH...?"
(Galatians 4:16)

Friday, May 2, 2008

US in contact with Nepal Maoists

The United States has made its first official diplomatic contact with the leader of Nepal's former rebel Maoists.The Maoists came first in last month's national elections but are still listed as a terrorist group by Washington.US ambassador to Nepal Nancy Powell met Maoist leader Prachanda on Thursday, a statement from the US embassy in Kathmandu said.The BBC's correspondent there says this is a diplomatic milestone, with the US rethinking its policy on the Maoists.The statement said Ms Powell would visit Washington soon for consultations on US-Nepal relations.
'Words and actions'
The US embassy statement said that Ms Powell and Prachanda, whose real name is Pushpa Kamal Dahal, discussed the outcome of last month's elections to a constituent assembly.It said Ms Powell encouraged the Maoist leader to ensure that the former rebels showed their commitment to the political process through their words and actions.The Maoists were the biggest single party in recent elections, winning 220 out of 601 seats.They are committed to abolishing the monarchy and have urged King Gyanendra to leave office voluntarily.Prachanda has said that he wants to be president.The Maoists now have to forge a coalition interim administration to draw up a new constitution.
For the past year the US has tried to bypass the Maoists while dealing with an interim government of which they were members.Speaking just after the 10 April elections, former US President Jimmy Carter told the BBC he found America's failure to deal with the Maoists "embarrassing".During 10 years of insurgency which left thousands dead, both the Maoists and the military were accused of gross human rights abuses.Analysts say there are many problems facing the Maoists.The other main parties do not trust them.Since the elections, Prachanda has promised that the Maoists are committed to multi-party and peaceful politics.However its members, particularly in its youth wing, have been accused of intimidation and extortion.The army is also opposed to the Maoists' demand that its former fighters be integrated into the armed forces.The long insurgency has worsened the chronic poverty in Nepal which, like other countries in the region, is suffering from rising food prices.The Maoists signed a peace accord with Nepal's main political parties in 2006. The year before the increasingly unpopular King Gyanendra had been forced to restore parliament amid a wave of street protests. http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/south_asia/7379567.stm
As in the days of Noah...

Berlin Burns In May Day Riots.

Extremist violence rocks Hamburg

Street battles lasting several hours have gripped the German port city of Hamburg, in what police describe as the worst riots there for years.Left-wing demonstrators angered by a neo-Nazi rally hurled bottles at police and set cars and rubbish bins ablaze. Police responded with water cannon.The violence erupted on Thursday evening, after thousands of protesters had gathered in the city for May Day.About 250 rioters were detained and about 20 police officers reported hurt.Police said about 7,000 leftists tried to break through a police cordon shielding about 1,100 far-right demonstrators. The violence centred on the Barmbek district of Hamburg.The neo-Nazis had travelled to Hamburg from all over Germany. Some of their buses were damaged in the violence.Leftists set several cars ablaze and erected street barricades with planks, street signs and rubbish, local officials said. A police vehicle was among those set on fire.Some of the neo-Nazis also got involved in fights. Germany's Der Spiegel website says several journalists were assaulted by them.Lower-level violence also erupted at May Day demonstrations in Berlin and Nuremberg on Thursday. http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/europe/7379615.stm
As in the days of Noah...

LOVE WAXING COLD:India:Surat Cops In The Dock For 'Torturing' Kids In Custody.

BLASPHEMY WATCH:New documentary claims Jesus married, had child;Da Vinci Code deja vu: Moviemaker challenges Christianity's history

A controversial new documentary, following in the footsteps of the popular, if heretical, "The Da Vinci Code," asks the brazen question: "What if the greatest story ever told was a lie?"Coming to theaters later this month, "Bloodline" seeks to prove the conspiracy tale that Jesus married Mary Magdalene and had a child whose bloodline continues today.Ben Hammott, an English adventurer, claims to have discovered in southwest France a remote tomb and relics from Jerusalem, dated back to the first century. The discovery provides the subject matter for this new film about what producers say is "the Church's best kept secret."The findings include a pottery cup and an ointment vase that were reportedly used at the alleged marriage of Jesus and Mary Magdalene. The British Museum and Gabriel Barkay of Bar Ilan University in Jerusalem have analyzed the items."It is possible that artifacts excavated by the Templars on Temple Mount would find a way to Europe," said Barkay. "The finds in this chest are really intriguing and it is really something that inflames the imagination."The tomb contained a mummified corpse lying beneath a shroud with a red cross, the symbol of the Knights Templar, a medieval Christian military order. The documentary shows that a DNA test revealed that the corpse is of Middle Eastern origin.According to the documentary, the tomb was discovered because of information found in a bundle of papers, hidden by a French priest at the end of the 19th century. The papers explained that he discovered the tomb and it led to him to break from his Catholic faith."The resurrection of Jesus was a trick, it was Mary Magdalene who took his body from his tomb," the priest said. "Later, the body of Jesus was discovered by the Templars and then hidden three times. Not in Jerusalem. The Tomb is here. Parts of the body are safe."Bloodline, the film documenting the finding of these artifacts, premieres May 9 at the Village East Cinema in New York City, and then on May 16 at the Laemmle Sunset Five Cinema in Los Angeles before a nationwide release later this month.The film is a documentation of a three-year-long investigation by Bruce Burgess, an English filmmaker, and Rene Barnett, his American producer, into the conspiracy involved in Dan Brown's book and the secret society known as Prior Sion that allegedly is behind it all."It is not a history lesson, nor a theological debate, overlaid with biblical re-creations," says Burgess."There have been dozens of those on television already. This is my raw, and very personal journey to get closer to the truth about a subject that has huge implications for us all."Barnett explained the goal in making the documentary was to determine if there was any truth to the story."We set out to see if evidence that Jesus and Mary Magdalene were married and came to France really did exist, and whether this Priory of Sion was, in fact, real, or just a hoax," said Barnett."What we ultimately found was both shocking and controversial."The book "Holy Blood, Holy Grail" published in 1982, first drew attention to the conspiracy theory before Brown's bestseller. It served at the inspiration behind Hammot's exploration.
As in the days of Noah....

Meet Obama's new pastor:Otis Moss compares Wright to Jesus, backs up predecessor on AIDS, drugs

JERUSALEM-More pastor problems for Sen. Barack Obama?The man slated to become chief pastor at the Trinity United Church of Christ has called blacks "lepers" with a "skin disease," claimed U.S. entertainment corporations operate with "disdain" for black people, and in a fiery sermon claimed retired pastor Rev. Jeremiah Wright was "lynched" by the media and compared the embattled pastor to Jesus.Otis Moss III, lauded this week by Obama as a "wonderful young pastor," also recently refused to deny claims by Wright that the U.S. government was involved in distributing illegal drugs to minorities or spreading the AIDS virus to blacks.The 37-year-old Moss, nicknamed the "hip-hop pastor" by congregants, will become the head of Trinity Christ in June, taking over for Wright, whose controversial remarks landed Obama in hot water.Following a series of national media interviews given by Wright last week, Obama strongly denounced some of Wright's statements as "divisive and destructive."Wright had defended his views that the U.S. was to blame for the 9-11 attacks and referred to Nation of Islam head Louis Farrakhan as "one of the most important voices in the 20th and 21st century." Wright also quoted controversial Farrakhan remarks, such as his calling "Zionism" a "gutter religion."While slamming Wright this week, Obama told the New York Times he will continue his membership in Trinity. He referred to Moss as "wonderful.""Well, you know, the new pastor – the young pastor, Rev. Otis Moss, is a wonderful young pastor. And as I said, I still very much value the Trinity community."In what was labeled his first national broadcast interview, Moss spoke last month to National Public Radio amid national media controversy surrounding some of Wright's views.NPR interviewer Michelle Noris asked about Wright's statements regarding the spread of drugs and AIDS:
"As part of a member of this new generation is that a concept that you embrace? That the government was involved in the distribution of drugs or in the spread of HIV and AIDS?" asked Noris.
Moss replied: "Well, I think in terms of that particular narrative, I think we need to be very, very honest in terms of that our government has the ability to place a Hubble Telescope in the sky but yet we haven't had the political will to shut down drugs coming into our community. And from that perspective I think that's something we can look at in terms of policy. That we just have lacked the political will."Like Wright, Moss has a trail of fiery sermons posted on YouTube.In one, an animated Moss compares blacks to biblical "lepers" who have a "skin disease.""You see they still are lepers. They still have a skin disease. They had a skin disease. They had a skin disease. Based on their skin condition, they were considered to be second-class citizens. They had a skin issue. They had a skin disease."And the lepers lived in a leper project. The lepers had bad health care. The lepers were disrespected. They had funny names for lepers. The lepers were considered inferior. They had an inferior school system. The lepers lived in a ghetto leper colony. The lepers were segregated from everybody else," he continued.Moss went on to imply those who segregated blacks are the "enemy.""But they (blacks) refused to give up. They decided to leave the city. They said that's not going to stop me from my destiny. Once they left the particular area, they then find out God has cooked things up. The camp of the enemy...nobody is there. So they go into the enemy's camp. They find food. They find shelter. They find gold. They find silver. They even find some drink. In the enemy's camp. They find gin and juice. In the enemy's camp.""The one who wanted to destroy them ends up being the one who blesses them. Every once in a while God will use your enemies to end up blessing you," said Moss.In his Easter sermon last month, Moss said Wright was "lynched" by the international media."No one should start a ministry with lynching, no one should end their ministry with lynching,” Moss said."The lynching was national news. The RNN, the Roman News Network, was reporting it and NPR, National Publican Radio had it on the radio. The Jerusalem Post and the Palestine Times all wanted exclusives, they searched out the young ministers, showed up unannounced at their houses, tried to talk with their families, called up their friends, wanted to get a quote on how do you feel about the lynching?” he stated.He went on to compare Wright to Jesus:"The people gathered around Jesus, they knew better. But they kept repeating sound bytes from his ministry. They kept saying, you know, things like the last shall be first and didn't say the first shall be last.""They just kept quoting things. Did not talk about his parables. Did not talk about his work. Just there he is on the cross being lynched. No rabbis came to the aid of Jesus during his lynching."Moss served under Wright as an assistant pastor for two years. He graduated from Yale Divinity School and is the son of a preacher and former adviser to Martin Luther King Jr.Under Wright, Moss wrote in the Trinity church newsletter that American entertainment companies operate with contempt for the black community."Currently, there are about eight companies controlling 90% of everything we hear, read, watch on television or view in the movie theater. These companies operate with contempt and disdain for the Black community," Moss wrote.He was introducing an article featured in the newsletter about the music industry and blacks.That same church newsletter was widely featured in the media after it was reported the bulletin reprinted an opinion piece by a top Hamas official that defended terrorism as legitimate resistance, refused to recognize the right of Israel to exist and compared the terror group's official charter-which calls for the murder of Jews – to America's Declaration of Independence.The Hamas piece was published on Wright's "Pastor's Page," which later printed an open letter by a pro-Palestinian activist that labeled Israel an "apartheid" regime and claimed the Jewish state worked on an "ethnic bomb" that kills "blacks and Arabs."
PS:More of the SAME....What a dis-service these"reverends"are doing to their own church community....!!!!The Truth shall set you free!!!!says John 8:32 and painfully these people are enslaving their own people by preaching hatred and twisting THE BIBLE....!!!!Unbelievable....!!!!!
As in the days of Noah...


"And Jesus went out, and departed from the temple: and his disciples came to him for to shew him the buildings of the temple.
And Jesus said unto them, See ye not all these things? verily I say unto you, There shall not be left here one stone upon another, that shall not be thrown down.
And as he sat upon the mount of Olives, the disciples came unto him privately, saying, Tell us, when shall these things be? and what shall be the sign of thy coming, and of the end of the world?
And Jesus answered and said unto them,Take heed that no man deceive you.
For many shall come in my name, saying, I am Christ; and shall deceive many.
And ye shall hear of wars and rumours of wars: see that ye be not troubled: for all these things must come to pass, but the end is not yet.
For nation shall rise against nation, and kingdom against kingdom: and there shall be famines, and pestilences, and earthquakes, in divers places.
All these are the beginning of sorrows.
Then shall they deliver you up to be afflicted, and shall kill you: and ye shall be hated of all nations for my name's sake.
And then shall many be offended, and shall betray one another, and shall hate one another.
And many false prophets shall rise, and shall deceive many.
And because iniquity shall abound, the love of many shall wax cold.
But he that shall endure unto the end, the same shall be saved
Matthew 24:1-13

NATO warns Russia not to interfere in Georgia

BRUSSELS-NATO warned Russia Wednesday to stop undermining Georgia's territorial integrity, after Moscow announced it would send more peacekeepers to two rebel Georgian regions.Russia's move, to counter what it said was the massing of Georgian troops near Abkhazia and South Ossetia, raised concern in the United States while the European Union has said that any military build-up would not be wise."The steps that have been taken (by Russia) and the rhetoric that has been used concerning the threat of force have increased tensions and have undermined Georgia's territorial integrity," NATO spokesman James Appathurai said."The allies are unanimous in supporting, endorsing Georgia's territorial integrity and will not recognise or support steps that undermine that sovereignty," he said.NATO announced at a summit early this month that Georgia would one day become a member of the 26-nation military alliance, in the face of fierce Russian opposition.Russia objects to NATO moving closer to its borders and is deeply concerned that the breakaway regions could be destabilised by Tbilisi's rapprochement with Moscow's old Cold War-era foe.Georgia claims that Russia has, over the last three months, strengthened its control over Abkhazia and established direct ties with the local authorities.In a tit-for-tat measure, Tbilisi vowed Wednesday to block Russia's bid to join the World Trade Organisation unless it drops plans for direct trade links with the two regions.The Russian peacekeeping announcement is only fuelling problems, said President Mikheil Saakashvili's new "special representative" and top Georgian diplomat, David Bakradze."It's hard to believe that this is being done for the purposes of peacekeeping, it's rather the beginning of full-scale military aggression," he told AFP by telephone during a trip to Brussels."The Georgian side, as the host country, should be notified in advance and there should be consent from Georgia on any troop deployment, including peacekeepers. We have not been notified," he said."Peacekeeping is not strengthened by unilateral steps."White House spokeswoman Dana Perino said the United States was concerned about the situation."We respect Georgia's territorial integrity, and we would urge everyone to maintain a level of dialogue, rather than take any further action," she told reporters, adding that due to the fast-changing situation it would be imprudent of her to comment further.Russia has peacekeepers in Abkhazia and South Ossetia under an agreement with Georgia from the 1990s following wars in which separatists broke away and established close ties with Moscow.The Russian defence ministry did not say how many extra soldiers were being sent, but said that 15 new observation posts would be set up on the front line in Abkhazia.
Around 2,000 Russians serve there and a further 1,000 in South Ossetia.As the rhetoric escalated, Appathurai said that neither Russia nor Georgia had informed the military alliance of any plans to actually move their forces, although he said Moscow could "technically" do so without notifying NATO.But he said: "Have no doubt, everyone is watching very carefully what is happening on the ground."Bakradze said that a UN mission monitoring Georgia and Abkhazia, UNOMIG, "verifies everything" in terms of his country's military deployments."If there is something on our side, it will immediately be known," he said, adding: "We're not going to move troops."In a statement on April 21, UNOMIG said that its monitors "did not observe anything to substantiate reports of a build-up of forces on either side."Appathurai said that Russian and NATO ambassadors, in a regular meeting Wednesday, had "a clear and sometimes sharp exchange of views but certainly no meeting of minds" over the region.The ambassadors, in their so-called North Atlantic Council, will travel to Georgia in "coming months" in a show of support for the would-be member, officials have said.

As in the days of Noah...

Agreement reached on incentives for Iran on nuclear program

LONDON-World powers negotiating with Iran have agreed on a repackaged offer of incentives to try to coax the Islamic regime into rolling back its disputed nuclear program, Britain's foreign secretary said Friday. However, the details of the amended offer being made by the United States, Britain, France, Russia, China and Germany were not revealed.
"We've got an agreement on an offer that will be made to the government of Iran," Foreign Secretary David Miliband said following a meeting of the group at Britain's Foreign Office.
The group has previously promised to enhance the package of political, security and economic incentives they put on the table in June 2006 if Iran suspends its enrichment of uranium, which critics say could feed a covert nuclear weapons program.It was not clear whether the current offer sweetens the deal or merely makes clear that the same basic economic and political inducements remain an option if it wants to begin bargaining.Miliband called the new offer an update, but did not say whether the offer contains any new enticements. A Western diplomatic source later said the offer contains nothing new.Iran had effectively rejected the previous offer before any bargaining began. The offer contained a precondition-that Iran suspend the enrichment of uranium-that the regime said was insulting.Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice has said that precondition would remain part of any repackaged offer, and she doubted that Iran would accept.Miliband said he hoped for a response "in a timely manner," but set no deadline and did not say what the group would do if Iran rejected the package or failed to respond.The incentives offered in 2006 included an offer by the United States to provide Iran with peaceful nuclear technology, lift some sanctions and conduct direct negotiations with Tehran.Though Iran said it saw some good in the proposal, it has continued enrichment.The United States, the European Union, Israel and others suspect Iran of using its atomic energy program as a cover for the production of nuclear weapons. Iran says it only wants to produce nuclear energy.Meanwhile, dozens of opponents of the Iranian regime demonstrated Friday near the Foreign Office, holding pictures of opposition leaders and demanding tough action against the Iranian government.

As in the days of Noah...

Azerbaijan Releases Russian Equipment for Iran's Bushehr Nuclear Plant

BAKU, Azerbaijan-Azerbaijan released a shipment of Russian equipment for Iran's first nuclear power plant on Thursday, more than a month after it was halted at the border, a customs official said.The cargo passed through the Astara customs checkpoint on the border with Iran, said the official with Azerbaijan's State Customs Committee. He spoke on condition of anonymity since he was not authorized to speak to the media.Azerbaijan had halted the cargo of heat-isolating equipment headed for the Bushehr plant on March 29, and demanded more information from Russia about the nature of the material. Azerbaijani officials said they feared the equipment could violate United Nations sanctions.The Russian state-run company building Bushehr, OAO Atomstroiexport, accused Azerbaijan of deliberately obstructing the cargo. Atomstroiexport officials could not immediately be reached for comment Thursday.Iran is paying Russia more than $1 billion to build the light-water reactor-Iran's first atomic energy plant. Construction has been held up by disputes between Tehran and Moscow over payments and a schedule for shipping nuclear fuel.The United States and other Western nations that fear Iran is seeking to acquire nuclear weapons have criticized Russia in the past for building Bushehr.Washington, however, softened its position after Iran agreed to return spent nuclear fuel to Russia to ensure it does not extract plutonium from it that could be used to make atomic bombs.The United States and its Western allies also agreed to drop any reference to Bushehr in the sanctions resolutions passed by the U.N. Security Council as a result of Russian pressure. Russia says the plant's contract is in line with all international agreements aimed at preventing nuclear weapons proliferation.
As in the days of Noah...

Inside Iran's Natanz Nuclear Facilty

IS UFO a Flying Human...?

UFO WATCH:Is UFO a flying human?

SENSATIONAL sightings of a flying HUMAN above the skies of Mexico could be genuine, says a paranormal expert.The mysterious woman-like figure was caught on camera as it hovered above mountains in Nuevo Leon city.UFO watchers said the figure appeared to be wearing a cape leading to claims that it was a witch or wizard when it was first seen in 2006.Now Mexico’s leading Ufologist Anna Luisa Cid says the sightings were true after carrying out her own investigations.She said:"I think that the possibility is there. An imaginary object is not recorded on film, nor it produces over 40 witnesses."Nuevo Leon UFO club managed to film the spooky flying character.And policeman Leonardo Samaniego also claimed a floating person had dropped out of the sky and landed on his bonnet.Ms Cid told the Ghosttheory.com website: "In conclusion, from my professional point of view, both cases are real.From officer Samaniego’s experience to the UFO club’s video."I do not believe the entity to be a witch, but I do know that it is something that we cannot explain."
As in the days of Noah...

World powers urge Arabs to honor Palestinian pledges

LONDON-World powers called on Friday on Arab states to honor their financial and political pledges to help the Palestinians in their U.S.-backed Middle East peace effort with Israel.
The Quartet of Middle East peace mediators, which comprises the European Union, Russia, the United Nations and the United States, also called on Israel to freeze all settlement building and to dismantle outposts erected since March 2001 to prevent the collapse of the peace talks."The Quartet called for all donors to follow through on pledges made...The Quartet encouraged the Arab states to fulfill both their political and financial roles in support of the Annapolis process," it said after talks in London.U.S. President George W. Bush announced the resumption of peace talks between Israel and the Palestinian Authority with fanfare at a November 27 conference in Annapolis, Maryland but the negotiations have since yielded no visible progress.Arab diplomats and foreign policy analysts suggest that the absence of tangible headway has disheartened Arab states, who are deeply skeptical of Bush's goal of achieving a peace deal by the end of this year."Let's remember this is not about the United States, this is ... for the Palestinian people," U.S. Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice said when asked if Arab doubts about the U.S. peace push has made them reluctant to contribute."Clearly if you made a pledge, you ought to fulfill it," she added at a news conference before Quartet members were to meet with Arab states including Saudi Arabia, Egypt, Jordan, Tunisia, Kuwait and the United Arab Emirates.Norwegian Foreign Minister Jonas Gahr Stoere said the Palestinian Authority's need for money would grow more acute in the second half of this year and that donors need to "step up with budget support".
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As in the days of Noah...

China builds its large-scale future

BEIJING: The new Terminal 3 at the airport in Beijing is twice the size of the Pentagon.Adorned in the colors of imperial China, with a roof that evokes the scales of a dragon, the massive glass- and steel-sheathed structure, designed by the British architect Norman Foster, cost $3.8 billion and can handle more than 50 million passengers a year.The developers call it the "most advanced airport building in the world," and say it was completed in less than four years, a timetable some believed impossible.It opened in late February with little fanfare, but also without the kind of glitches that plagued Heathrow's new $8.7 billion terminal near London, which took six years to complete. This is the image China would like to project as it plays host to the Olympic Games this summer-a confident rising power constructing dazzling new monuments that exemplify its rapid progress and its audacious ambition.While much of the world has focused on protests trailing the Olympic torch relay, Beijing's poor human rights record, its pollution, product safety and child labor scandals and a host of other problems, workers here have been putting the finishing touches on one of the biggest building programs the world has ever seen.Beijing hopes to overcome these negatives, and the bleak side of its roaring economy, by emphasizing its ability to upgrade and modernize, at least when it comes to buildings and infrastructure projects.For instance, Beijing's main Olympic stadium, nicknamed the Bird's Nest, is already widely admired for its striking appearance and its use of an unusual steel mesh exterior.The nearby National Aquatics Center, known as the Water Cube, is a translucent blue bubble that glows in the dark.And east of the main Olympic arenas, construction is winding down on the new headquarters of the country's main state television network, China Central Television.The $700 million building, designed by Rem Koolhaas, consists of two leaning,L-shaped towers that rise 234 meters, or 768 feet, and may be the world's largest and most expensive media headquarters.New York has the Empire State Building and the Guggenheim, Paris has the Louvre and the Pompidou Center, now Beijing is determined to build its own architectural icons."Beijing is a huge experimental site right now," said Zhu Wenyi, dean of the school of architecture at Tsinghua University."This modern architecture is the identity of modern China."Thirty years after economic reforms began, this country has built a series of superstructures that almost seem intended more for the Guinness Book of World Records than cityscapes.China is home, for instance, to the world's largest shopping mall (the 650,000-square-meter, or seven-million-square-foot, South China Mall); the longest sea-crossing bridge (stretching 36 kilometers, or 22 miles, over part of the East China Sea); the largest hydroelectric dam (the massive Three Gorges project); and the highest railroad (an engineering marvel that crosses the Tibetan permafrost almost 5,000 meters above sea level).Late last year, Beijing opened what may be the world's largest concert hall, the National Center for the Performing Arts, a $400 million opera house and theater facility twice as big as the Kennedy Center in Washington. Nicknamed The Egg, its titanium dome rises above a wide pool of water.For decades, the ruling Communist Party used huge building programs to lure foreign investment and to create millions of jobs. But this new wave is different."This is just the start," said Ma Yansong, a 32-year-old architect who studied in the United States and runs a practice here. "The last 10 years we've had landmark buildings in Beijing and Shanghai. But now the private developers are coming in, and second tier cities want to develop."In recent weeks, many Chinese have complained about what they say are Western media distortions about China and its role in Tibet, where riots broke out in March.Behind the increasingly nationalistic counterprotests is a fear that China's Olympic moment is being overshadowed by critics and that the country's remarkable achievements are being ignored.Many Chinese believe that will change on Aug. 8, 2008 - an auspicious date by traditional reckoning because eight is a lucky number - as the world focuses on the Olympics and China's undeniable accomplishments.In Beijing, officials have used the Olympics to justify razing old neighborhoods and relocating tens of thousands of poor residents with hopes of remaking the city into a modern capital of new highways, subway lines and gleaming skyscrapers.Similarly, city officials in Shanghai have relocated huge factories and thousands of residents along the famed Huangpu Riverfront to prepare for the 2010 World Expo, Shanghai's own coming out.
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As in the days of Noah...

Blast at Yemen mosque kills 15, wounds 60

SANAA-About 15 people were killed and more than 60 wounded on Friday when a bomb hidden in a motorcycle exploded outside a mosque in Yemen's volatile northern city of Saada where army officers were praying.A security source said several suspects had been detained at a checkpoint in Saada and preliminary investigations showed rebels loyal to Abdul-Malik al-Houthi were behind the attack.The northern province has been rocked by sporadic violence since a conflict broke out in 2004 between government forces and Houthi, a member of the Zaydi sect of Shi'ite Islam.Houthi denied any role in the blast that took place as worshippers left the Salman Mosque after Friday prayers."We criticize and condemn this regrettable incident ... We deny completely any role in this incident. It is not part of our ethics to target any mosque or any worshippers at all," he told Al Jazeera television by telephone from Saada."We believe that someone is trying to blow up a war and foil all the peace efforts through these incidents ... The real target of these incidents is us, the people of Saada."The governor of Saada, Motahhar Rashad, had earlier given a count of six dead and 35 wounded in the blast but a Yemeni security source put the death toll higher at "around 15" and said between 60 and 70 people were wounded.Yemen has witnessed attacks by different groups targeting everything from tourists and embassies to government offices and oil pipelines in recent years, but attacks on mosques were virtually unheard of until Friday.
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As in the days of Noah...

California faces water rationing...

Two parched years-punctuated by the driest spring in at least 150 years-could force districts across California to ration water this summer as policymakers and scientists grow increasingly concerned that the state is on the verge of a long-term drought.State water officials reported Thursday that the Sierra Nevada snowpack, the source of a huge portion of California's water supply, was only 67 percent of normal, due in part to historically low rainfall in March and April.With many reservoirs at well-below-average levels from the previous winter and a federal ruling limiting water pumped from the Sacramento-San Joaquin River Delta, the new data added a dimension to a crisis already complicated by crumbling infrastructure, surging population and environmental concerns."We're in a dry spell if not a drought," said California Secretary for Resources Mike Chrisman."We're in the second year, and if we're looking at a third year, we're talking about a serious problem." Chrisman stopped short of saying the state would issue mandatory water rationing, which appears possible only if the governor declares a state of emergency.Rather, the burden will fall on local water agencies. Many, such as San Francisco and Marin County, have asked residents and businesses over the past year to cut water usage voluntarily by 10 to 20 percent.Others have taken more drastic steps.In Southern California, the water district serving about 330,000 people in Orange County enacted water rationing last year, due in part to a ruling by U.S. Judge Oliver Wanger reducing water pumped from the delta by about a third to protect an endangered fish.The East Bay Municipal Utility District announced in April that it was considering water rationing, price increases and other measures in response to critically low reservoirs. The district, which serves 1.3 million customers in Contra Costa and Alameda counties, will vote on the measures this month."If you catch a third (dry) year, then you're looking at a supply that's so low you can't manage it well anymore," said Charles Hardy, spokesman for the district. "That's when its starts to hurt businesses and people across the board."No industry faces bigger changes than agriculture, which uses about 80 percent of California's available water; the remainder goes to urban areas. Some experts say they believe the balance could shift toward urban areas.Already, some farmers are switching to crops requiring less water and letting fields go fallow. One water agency official recently talked to a Southern California avocado grower who cut his trees back to stumps and won't begin growing again until water supplies recover."We have a lot of water, but we also use a lot of water," said Jeffrey Mount, director for watershed sciences at UC Davis. "From an economic perspective, it makes sense moving water from agriculture to urban uses."In fact, some farmers are already selling their water to urban districts. But there is no easy system for transporting that water, and the infrastructure required would be extremely costly.Californians have suffered through droughts before.A deep, two-year drought in the late 1970s drew discussions about dragging glaciers down from Alaska or filling huge plastic bladders at river sources and dragging them by tugboat to users, Hardy said. Consumers endured rationing during a longer drought in the late 1980s and early 1990s.After those dry periods, water conservation initiatives kicked into high gear. Low-flow toilets and showerheads became the norm, and homeowners started filling their yards with drought-resistant plants. Today, that might not be enough in a state with a population expected to reach nearly 50 million by 2030.In addition to possible restrictions on watering lawns and washing cars, water prices could spike - at least for those who use too much.The district serving 330,000 customers in Orange County has developed a type of water profile based on household size, yard size and average temperature in the area. Using that data, water managers have come up with base water allocations; above that level, water bills jump."If you really want to use more water there, you're going to pay for it - and (the district) uses the extra funds to finance conservation investments," said Ellen Hanak, a senior fellow at the Public Policy Institute of California in San Francisco. "There's a lot of room for innovating in that area - some places are doing it, but there's hardly any penalty for the extra water."It is unclear whether this dry period is a full-blown drought. Much like economic recessions, droughts can be diagnosed only in retrospect.However, it is certain that if the dry conditions that began with the low 2006-2007 snowpack levels continue, they could have a cascading effect. The dryness of 2006-2007 contributed to this year's poor water supply totals, said Elissa Lynn, chief meteorologist with the California Department of Water Resources."We're losing a lot of what we did have as snow melted into the ground," Lynn said. "It's either in subsurface, waiting to come down, or it's going into soil moisture because we had a dry fall."There is also a small chance that dry windy conditions blew snow straight from the mountains into vapor, she said.Not all Bay Area agencies face the same challenges, because they get water from various sources: San Francisco and the Peninsula from Hetch Hetchy, East Bay Municipal Water District from the Mokelumne River watershed and the Santa Clara Valley Water District from a combination of reservoirs and the delta. Some local water managers say their supplies look good. Marin County, for instance, said its reservoirs are at more than 100 percent of capacity.Nevertheless, stricter water controls could be a continuing part of California's future. So might large-scale projects that aim to use water in new and better ways."We're facing some pretty grim circumstances that call for some bold action - recycling water, desalinating water," said Tim Quinn executive director of the Association of California Water Agencies. "Above and beyond that, we have to invest in the sustainability of this system that our grandfathers constructed in the middle of the last century. It was developed with the convenience of human beings in mind, not aquatic beings."
Online resources
-- http://www.sfwater.org/
-- http://www.valleywater.org/
-- http://www.sonomacountywater.org/
-- http://www.ebmud.com/
-- watersupplyconditions.water.ca.gov


As in the days of Noah...

China Opens Super Sea Bridge

China opens one of world's largest bridges

China Thursday inaugurated one of the world's longest bridges, which will provide an important new route into Shanghai, state press said.Presented as the "world's longest sea bridge", the 36-kilometre (22-mile) structure connects Jiaxing city near Shanghai to the port city of Ningbo in the eastern province of Zhejiang.It is slightly shorter than the 38.4-kilometre Lake Pontchartrain Causeway Bridge in the southern United States, which is often billed as the world's longest.The 11.8 billion yuan (1.7 billion dollars) bridge cuts the length of the road trip from Shanghai to Ningbo by 120 kilometres, the official Xinhua news agency said.Construction of the six-lane bridge started in November 2003 in an effort to reduce traffic congestion in the booming area, Xinhua said.Hundreds of people attended an opening ceremony on Thursday afternoon, it said.The bridge was opened to traffic on a trial basis at 11.58 pm (1658 GMT), Xinhua said. However, officials did not know how long the trial would last, it added.
As in the days of Noah...

Food crisis leaves many Afghans desperate

KABUL,Afghanistan-Hungry Afghans looking for their next meal eye bread scraps piled up like heaps of trash at a Kabul market as a vendor weighs out fistfuls of the stale crusts on a scale. A Pashtun woman waits with an empty plastic sack.She isn't scavenging-she's paying for leftovers that in better times were sold for feeding to sheep and cows.The woman said her household of 14 people had to give up fresh bread a month ago as the price spiraled out of reach.Rising global food prices have hit few places as hard as Afghanistan, where the cost of wheat flour has shot up 75 percent in three months, fueling anger against the U.S.-backed government of President Hamid Karzai. In the volatile south, officials fear it could boost recruitment for the Taliban insurgency."Karzai is the king and this is my life," wailed the Pashtun woman, who declined to give her name because of her conservative social code. "Since the Americans came here, nothing is cheap."The U.N. World Food Program, or WFP, warns that the situation for the poorest in Afghanistan is dire and deaths from malnutrition are likely to increase. Protests have broken out in at least one city.Even middle-income professionals are struggling."People are not dying of starvation, per se, but that's very rare these days. Usually people die from diseases they never should have died from but their bodies are weakened by hunger," he said.Even before the food crisis, U.N. data showed 54 percent of children under five in Afghanistan are stunted. An estimated 10,400 people die of nutritional deficiencies each year.In two of the poorest provinces, Ghor and Badghis, communities are buckling under the double impact of the global food crisis and a drought that wiped out 70 percent of last year's crop, said Mary Kate MacIsaac of the aid group World Vision."If they did have assets, they have been forced to sell them off," she said. "People are desperate and living in greater fear of what's to come if this year's crop fails." Reliable statistics are hard to come by, but Commerce Minister Amin Farhang estimated that in 2007 Afghanistan produced 1.3 million tons less grain than the 6.6 million tons it requires each year.Deputy Agriculture Minister Pir Mohammad Azizi said initial signs show the 2008 harvest will be worse because of insufficient rains in the early spring.Because of its reliance on aid and imports to help fill its food deficit, Afghanistan is particularly vulnerable to rising international prices driven by growing demand from China and India and the use of grain to make bio-fuel.
To read more go to:

As in the days of Noah....

80 mph winds damage hundreds of Mo. homes, businesses

KANSAS CITY, Mo.-Hurricane-force winds, hail and heavy rain moving through Missouri have left hundreds of homes and businesses damaged. Fire officials say several people were injured in the storms late Thursday and early Friday. Authorities in the Kansas City area say the worst damage is in the city's northern and eastern suburbs. The weather service says winds reached 80 miles per hour.Other states also have been hit. The National Weather Service says a tornado likely touched down Friday morning in central Arkansas. There were injuries and damage reported, but no further details were available.At least two tornadoes and large hail was reported in Oklahoma late Thursday, though no injuries or significant damage was reported there.
As in the days of Noah...

Torch tours China

Dalai Lama envoys travel to China for talks

NEW DELHI-Senior envoys of the Dalai Lama are traveling to China to meet the government over the crisis in Tibet, the government-in-exile said on Friday, only three months before the Beijing Olympics open.After a crackdown on protests against Chinese rule in Tibet, an international diplomatic chorus earlier this year urged dialogue with the Dalai Lama.Beijing abruptly announced in late April that it intended to meet his aides."During this brief visit, the envoys will take up the urgent issue of the current crisis in the Tibetan areas," the government-in-exile said in a statement on its website.Shen Kaiyun, the deputy director of the official government information department in Tibet, said he supported the Chinese government's move to talk to representatives of the Dalai Lama, but expected the spiritual leader to back his non-separatist words with deeds."As early as 1978, Deng Xiaoping said it was not too late to let bygones be bygones, so our policy is consistent," Shen told Reuters in an interview in Tibet."But we have pre-condition-that is being patriotic. I hope the 14th Dalai Lama will back up his words with deeds."Tibet has become a flashpoint for anti-China protests that have disrupted the Olympic torch relay around the world and has led to calls for state leaders to boycott the Beijing Games, which open on August 8.The talks will be the first since violent protests broke out in Tibet in March. It was not clear where they would take place.
To read more go to:
As in the days of Noah...

Thursday, May 1, 2008

KNOWLEDGE SHALL INCREASE:Cell Phone 'Tricorders' Give Instant Medical Diagnoses

New handheld medical scanners coupled with regular cell phones resemble "Star Trek" tricorders and could see what ails you with a push of a button.The invention, using off-the-shelf cell phone technology, would allow medical scanners to boldly go where none have gone before-to the aid of the roughly three-quarters of the world's population currently without access to ultrasounds, X-rays and other imagers used for everything from detecting tumors to monitoring fetuses.In addition to offering medical scans in developing nations, the devices "could find their way in ambulances, or rural clinics," said Boris Rubinsky, a professor of bioengineering at the University of California, Berkeley.Medical imagers are typically bulky combinations of scanners, processors and video monitors.Rubinsky and his colleagues instead physically separated these components so that the most complicated elements of imagers-the powerful computer processors-could reside at remote central locations.The researchers next devised a simple portable scanner that could plug into a cell phone.The phones transmit the raw scanning data to the processors, which create images to relay back for viewing on the cell phone screen.
Cheaper approach
The surprisingly simple setup is described in the April 30 issue of the journal PLoS ONE.The scheme would significantly lower the cost of medical imaging because one processor facility could serve multiple imagers."You could be out in the middle of a remote village and still have cell-phone access," said researcher Antoni Ivorra, also at Berkeley.The portable scanner was hooked up to a cell phone with a USB cable and tested on a gel-filled container that simulated breast tissue afflicted with a tumor. Diseased tissue conducts electricity differently than healthy tissue does.The image that was sent back had the simulated tumor clearly visible onscreen.
Simple and flexible
These devices could work with any cell phone that can send and receive pictures or audio and video clips."The size of the data in the study was only six kilobytes, which is ridiculously small," explained researcher Yair Granot at Berkeley. "A one-sentence, text-only e-mail message is bigger than that."Rubinsky noted that "people are able to watch full movies on their iPods," so cell-phone screen sizes should not be a major impediment.In the future, ultrasound scanners could also be coupled with cell phones.Just the ultrasound scanner "might cost about $1,000, while a whole ultrasound machine with all the other components might be about $70,000," Rubinsky told LiveScience. "We could take medical imaging and possibly benefit the entire world."Simply donating existing medical scanners to the world's poorest regions is not a viable, long-term solution, Rubinsky said."More than half of the medical equipment in developing countries is left unused or broken because it is too complicated or expensive to operate and repair," he explained. "We set out to develop something that locals could sustain on their own, as well as something that is relevant to local economies and technologies."
Broad implications
These portable scanners "could open up whole new avenues of health care for the developing world," Rubinsky said. "Health professionals in rural clinics could affordably get the tools they need to properly diagnose and treat their patients."Although diagnosis and treatment of roughly one-fifth of all diseases can benefit from medical imaging, "this advancement has been out of reach for millions of people in the world because the equipment is too costly to maintain," Rubinsky said. "Our system would make imaging technology inexpensive and accessible for these underserved populations."The scanners could have broad applications in the developed world, too, he said."Health professionals in rural clinics could affordably get the tools they need to properly diagnose and treat their patients," Rubinsky said. "If you had a car accident, you could put a cap on the hat of the victim in the ambulance, and before the ambulance even gets to the hospital, all the information can go through the cell phone, maybe to spot if that person has internal bleeding in their head."
As in the days of Noah...

Cyclone More Likely to Hit Burma Than Bangladesh

Satellite images of the Bay of Bengal show a cyclone on track for Burma.The government in Bangladesh is warning fishermen to stay off the open sea and those living in vulnerable coastal areas to take precautions.Nargis is categorized by the Tropical Storm Risk consortium in London as a very severe or Category One cyclone.Both the British forecasters and the U.S. Navy's Joint Typhoon Warning Center at Pearl Harbor, Hawaii predict the storm will make landfall on the Burmese coast Friday evening, with winds gusting to a speed of 185 kilometers per hour.The lead scientist at the British center,Mark Saunders, says the prospects of Nargis turning into a super cyclone are about one in three."In southern Burma, I think the chances of anything as catastrophic as Sidr last November are low. Sidr was a Category Four which was winds of over 250 kilometers per hour," Saunders said.Although the storm is on target to hit Burma, there is also significant concern in Bangladesh. The country, now in the midst of a critical rice harvest, saw more than three thousand people die and 2.5 million others made homeless when Sidr struck.Masud Siddiqui is the director general of the Disaster Management Bureau in Dhaka. "Our experts are saying that the eye of the cyclone is very messy now.So, we're not sure it's going to hit Bangladesh,"," Siddiqui said."And, we've asked the deputy commissioner at this moment not to evacuate people to shelters because it's a huge operation and it creates panic to the people."However, local media report many panicky residents, with memories of last year's cyclone still fresh, have already taken refuge in schools and other designated shelters.
As in the days of Noah...

What is a Christian Zionist?

A simple definition of a Christian Zionist is a Christian who supports the right of the Jewish people to establish and defend a state in their historic homeland of Israel.The vast majority of Christian Zionists are Evangelicals who believe that God is fulfilling promises today that were made to the Jewish people thousands of years ago in Bible prophecy. The cornerstone of their support is the belief that the title to the land which God granted to the Jews in the Abrahamic Covenant (Genesis 12:1-7 and 13:14-18) is everlasting and irrevocable.The Bible makes it clear that God Himself is a Zionist. Psalm 132:13 proclaims that "The Lord has chosen Zion" as His everlasting dwelling place. Psalm 87:2 says "the Lord loves the gates of Zion." In the Abrahamic Covenant God promised to bless those who bless Israel and curse those who curse the Jews, and history is littered with the carcasses of nations who mistreated the Jews. We are commanded by the Lord "to pray for the peace of Jerusalem" (Psalm 122:6).Through the prophet Zechariah, God warned that those who touch Israel, touch "the apple of His eye" (Zechariah 2:8). A similar warning is contained in Psalm 129:5 - "May all who hate Zion be put to shame and turned back." The passage goes on to say that no blessing of any kind should be given to those who hate Zion.We are exhorted to comfort the Jewish people and to speak tenderly to them (Isaiah 4:1-2). We are commanded to speak out for Zion's sake and to be watchmen on the walls for Israel until the Lord "makes Jerusalem a praise in the earth" (Isaiah 62:1, 6-7). We are warned not to be arrogant toward the Jews (Romans 11:18). And we are reminded that due to our spiritual debt to them, we should minister to them in material things (Romans 15:27).Jeremiah twice says that when God has accomplished all His purposes in history, the Jewish people will look back and consider their regathering in unbelief to be the greatest of God's miracles among them - greater even than their deliverance from Egyptian captivity (Jeremiah 16:14-15 and 23:7-8).What an exciting time we are privileged to live in! Maranatha!
by David Reagan
As in the days of Noah...

GAY WATCH:Monument to honor homosexual Holocaust victims

First Israeli monument honoring tens of thousands of homosexual Holocaust victims to be erected in Tel Aviv park...
A monument honoring the homosexual men and women who were persecuted due to their sexual orientation and perished during the Holocaust is to be established in Meir Garden in Tel Aviv, according to Tel Aviv Mayor Ron Huldai.A quarter of a million homosexuals were persecuted during the Holocaust, and tens of thousands were murdered because the Nazi Party believed their sexual preference to be deviant. In the concentration camps in which they were imprisoned, gay men were forced to wear a pink triangle while lesbian women wore a black patch. Plans for the monument's erection were initiated by Itai Pinkas, one of the homosexual community leaders and a member of the Tel Aviv Municipality City Council, who serves as the mayor's advisor in matters of the gay community. The monument is to be the first in Israel to commemorate these victims, though four of its kind exist worldwide, in Sydney, Copenhagen, Berlin, and Amsterdam. It has been designed as an iron triangle, on which the victims' names are to be inscribed.
As in the days of Noah...

Italy: Israeli, US flags set on fire during May 1st rally

'We realize that our act was harsh, but what is even harsher is the daily killing of Palestinian civilians,' protester says
Italian youngsters and members of a pro-Palestinian movement set Israeli and American flags on fire during a May 1st rally held at Turin's San Carlo Square, the Corriere della Sera reported. The incident was harshly condemned by leaders of Italy's Jewish community.According to the Italian daily, the decision to burn the flags at the event was reached several months ago after Israel was declared an honorary participant at next week's book fair in the city.Most of the 30,000 people who took part in the rally dispersed following the flag-burning incident."We realize that our act was harsh, but what is even harsher is the daily killing of Palestinian civilians, including babies, by Israeli fire," one of the protesters said. "We are ashamed that Turin and the book fair organizers wish to respect and honor a country that does not cease to undermine the sovereignty of another." A spokeswoman for the Union of the Italian Jewish communities said in response that "this boorish act, which was carried out during the preparations for Israel's 60th anniversary celebrations, is unacceptable in a democratic state."
As in the days of Noah...

'Iran may get nuke technology this year'

Iran will likely have nuclear bomb technology in 2008, Transportation Minister Shaul Mofaz said Wednesday, citing an updated Israeli intelligence assessment.In the past, the general consensus in the intelligence community has been that Iran had hit some technical difficulties with enrichment and that its attainment of nuclear capability was much further off. In fact, a recent Israeli Military Intelligence assessment showed that the "point of no return" with regards to Iran going nuclear was 2010.However, Mofaz, a former defense minister and IDF chief of General Staff, said in a speech at Yale University, Connecticut, that Iran could have the know-how to build nuclear arms within months.Prime Minister Ehud Olmert's office would not comment on Mofaz's new assessment of the Iranian program.In his speech on the eve of Holocaust Remembrance Day, the transportation minister went on to say that while the diplomatic channel was the preferred and correct option to stop Iran becoming a nuclear power, if sanctions do not prove effective, that option must be removed from the table. He said every scenario must be prepared for and that any means of ensuring Iran does not go nuclear would be valid.Referring to the Holocaust, Mofaz said that everyone has learned that history sometimes repeats itself but that now the world had an opportunity to ensure that it doesn't. He said "this time," the Jewish people would not let it happen, expressing hope that the world, too, would not let it happen.He called the Iranian regime the central threat to humanity in the 21st century.Mofaz was in the US heading an Israeli delegation, which was holding meetings with US officials, including Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice, within the framework of the Israel-US Strategic Dialogue.
As in the days of Noah...

IDF Chief in Auschwitz

To watch the video click on the URL below:
Ashkenzaki says, "I have come here to tell the world: Never again."
As in the days of Noah...

UN: Gaza is dumping sewage into the sea

Gaza's water authority has dumped 60 million liters of partially treated and untreated sewage into the Mediterranean Sea since January 24, the UN's Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs said in a report released on Wednesday. "The sewage discharge is contaminating Gaza seawater and posing health risks for bathers and consumers of seafood. The sewage flows northward to Israeli coasts, including near the Ashkelon desalination plant. Urgent studies are needed to examine the extent of the impact," the report reads.The report's authors blamed Israel's blockade of the Gaza Strip for the Gazans' inability to treat the sewage."This sewage cannot be treated due to the lack of a steady electricity supply within the Gaza Strip, Israel's restrictions on fuel imports and prohibitions on the import of materials and necessary spare parts," according to the report.The UN said Gaza's water authority, the Coastal Municipalities Water Utility,required 14 days of uninterrupted electricity to treat the sewage. The utility provides more than 130 million cubic meters of water per year, according to the report, 80 percent of which ends up as sewage. Moreover, because of the restrictions on imports and exports into and out of the Strip, spare parts needed to repair the sewage treatment plants had not been allowed in.But a security source familiar with the situation told The Jerusalem Post on Thursday that the vast majority of Gaza's electrical needs were being met by Israel and Egypt."Gaza is receiving 141 megawatts a day out of its normal requirements of 200 megawatts at this time from Israel and Egypt," the source said.He also said Hamas should be dealing with the issue. "Hamas is in charge there now and they should find a solution to the problem," he told the Post.Israel Water Authority spokesman Uri Schor said the problem was not new and that Israel was doing all it could to help Gaza process its sewage."The Palestinians have been pumping partially treated or untreated sewage water into the sea for years, and not just since the beginning of this year. The State of Israel assists in various ways to the pumping and water distribution and to the continued operation of the sewage treatment plants. That assistance includes approval to transfer most of equipment the Palestinian Authority has requested - the rest is in the process of being verified - and all the diesel fuel necessary to run the plants," Schor said.These plants had not been affected by any cutbacks to electricity, he said.The sewage isn't just flowing into the sea, but into empty lagoons meant to handle runoff from storms, according to the UN. Lagoons in Gaza City and the Jabalya refugee camp have been turned into open cesspools.Long-term plans to improve the sewage treatment system have been drawn up, but were being held up by Israel, the UN report said."KfW, the German government's development bank, has agreed to work with CMWU [the Coastal Municipalities Water Utility] on a project to upgrade the Gaza sewage treatment plant. The project, which will cost between $7 million [and] $15m., could begin by the end of April 2008 if the Israeli authorities allowed the passage of material and equipment. The project will allow the plant to treat 60 million liters of sewage per day and use the treated sewage for agricultural purposes or to directly replenish Gaza's depleted fresh water aquifer," according to the report. A plan to build a new plant in northern Gaza is also being held up, according to the UN.However, Schor said Israel was not holding up those projects but in fact actively aiding them."Israel is very much assisting in the approval, funding $45m. and in executing a large project to deal with northern Gaza's sewage, despite the continuing situation," he said, "Likewise, the construction of a large treatment plant in central Gaza has also been approved, and Israel is willing to help build two more plants in the southern region of the Strip."Schor suggested the PA follow Israel's example and use treated sewage water for agriculture in place of potable water."Right now, 70% of Israel's sewage is treated and recycled, and the plan is to recycle all of it."In the PA, all of the agriculture uses freshwater, and using recycled sewage water would enable the Palestinians to redirect tens of millions of cubic meters of water for household use," he said. Responsible management by the PA would add a respectable amount of expensive freshwater to their supply, he said.
As in the days of Noah...

100,000 Palestinian refugees set to march toward northern border

More than 100,000 Palestinian refugees living in Lebanon are expected to march toward the border with Israel on May 14 in the context of the Palestinian Authority's plan to mark the 60th anniversary of the establishment of Israel, PA officials told TThe PA leadership has, meanwhile, announced that it would boycott any world leader who arrived in Israel to participate in the anniversary celebrations.The officials said the boycott would be a temporary action, adding that the Palestinians would not receive the guests in the Palestinian territories during their visits to Israel.The PA ambassador to Beirut, Zaki Abbas, has been working in the past few weeks to recruit refugees from various refugee camps throughout Lebanon for the march.Fatah's top representative in Lebanon, Sultan Abu Aynain, has also been instrumental in organizing the event, the Post has learned.The two have been coordinating their efforts with PA Deputy Minister for Prisoners Affairs, Ziad Abu Ein, who has drawn up a plan calling on Palestinian refugees to "invade" Israel by land, air and sea in protest against Israel's anniversary celebrations.The plan states that the Palestinians have decided to implement United Nations Resolution 194 regarding the Palestinian refugees.Article 11 of the resolution, which was passed in December 1948, says that "refugees wishing to return to their homes and live in peace with their neighbors should be permitted to do so at the earliest predictable date, and that compensation should be paid for the property of those choosing not to return."Entitled "The Initiative of Return and Coexistence," the plan urges all Israelis to "welcome the Palestinians who will be returning to live together with them in the land of peace."A committee established by the organizers to prepare for the event met at the Al-Bireh Municipality offices this week to discuss ways of rallying support. Abu Ein told participants that more than 100,000 refugees from Lebanon were expected to take part in the march toward Israel's northern border.He added that refugees from the West Bank and Gaza Strip would also participate in the events by staging marches toward Israeli checkpoints and border crossings.At the meeting in Al-Bireh, the organizers strongly condemned world leaders and dignitaries who were planning to participate in the Israeli celebrations. "This is the day when the Palestinians were uprooted from their lands," they added. "It would have been better if these leaders visited the refugee camps which are the victims of Israel's so-called independence."The plan calls on the refugees to return to Israel with suitcases and tents so that they can settle down in their former villages. The refuges are requested to carry UN flags upon their return and to be equipped with their UNRWA-issued ID cards.The plan asks Arab countries hosting the refugees to facilitate their return by opening their borders. The plan specifically refers to Jordan, Syria, Lebanon and Iraq.
Palestinian refugees living in the US, EU, Canada and Latin America have been requested to use their foreign passports to fly to Ben- Gurion Airport, while dozens of ships carrying refugees will converge on Israeli ports. he Jerusalem Post Thursday.
As in the days of Noah....

Young Girl Goes to Heavenly Surgery Room; Receives Healing From Crippling Diseases

A desperate missionary family, unfamiliar with healing revivals, takes their daughter to Lakeland where she has an encounter with Jesus...
(Lakeland, Florida)-Pastor Stephen Strader of Ignited Church in Lakeland, Florida, where a massive revival has broken out, contacted Breaking Christian News about an amazing healing that took place there on Saturday, April 26, in which 14-year-old Kelsey Hays was healed from multiple immune diseases.I telephoned Kelsey's mother, Lesley, of Kansas City, Missouri, on Tuesday, April 29, to ask her details of what happened. She and Kelsey were still in Lakeland, preparing to fly back to Kansas City where they attend the International House of Prayer (IHOP).
Some background on Kelsey and her family: At the age of 9, Kelsey was diagnosed with Hashimoto's disease, an immune related thyroid condition. Later she acquired Hepatitis C, which her mother says she "fought off," but in the process it left her body weakened and subject to other immunological diseases.Mr. and Mrs. Hayes and their family have been missionaries in Mexico—and most recently Ecuador—for at least ten years. In September of last year, they had arrived back in the states for a furlough. Shortly thereafter, in October, Kelsey fell victim to a variety of increasingly serious illnesses. She had her gall bladder removed and during the surgery doctors noticed that her liver was scarred and infected. Later, doctors believed inflammation from the infection had entered the lining of her stomach and was attacking her central nervous system. By April, Kelsey's parents and her baffled doctors were at their wit's ends. She was in continual, intense, and severely crippling pain, taking up to 30 pills a day to try and manage it. Then one day someone at the Hays' church approached them with news of the revival in Lakeland and offered to pay the family's way there. Though they had never experienced meetings such as the ones they were about to attend, the Hays were desperate. Also, Lesley said Kelsey had shared with them a significant vision she had in March of this year, the Saturday before Easter Sunday. In the vision, Kelsey said she found herself connected to an IV, standing before the Throne of God. Jesus came down and cut the IV tube and then God the Father came down, removed the IV from her hand, took off her hospital gown and said, "It's done!" (The day after the vision, noted Lesley, was the worst day of pain Kelsey had ever had.)
Saturday, April 26, Lakeland, Florida:By the time Kelsey and her parents arrived at the venue in Lakeland it was 6:00 in the evening. The lines of people stretching for blocks outside of the church told them that it was filled to capacity and they would not be able to get in. Standing in the crowd, the Hays heard story after story of healings and miracles happening around the world even to those not present in the meetings. Somehow, Lesley and Kelsey were finally able to get in (she thought because they had helped another suffering couple to get in), but Mr. Hays remained outside.Kelsey was in so much pain and so fatigued she couldn't walk. Her mother literally dragged, and half carried, her up to the only space available in the balcony where they began to cry and worship the Lord. It's all they could do, she said. Standing next to them were a man and woman; complete strangers. The woman turned to Kelsey and said, "I believe God wants to give you new organs." (Kelsey's gall bladder had been removed.) The man looked at Lesley and said, "I just saw you in a dream recently. I saw myself carrying your daughter down to the stage to get prayer."Even though at the time Todd was taking testimonies from people who had been healed, the man offered to help take Kelsey down to get prayer. Lesley, unfamiliar with the type of meeting she was in, was afraid of breaking protocol and hesitated. Moments later, Todd stopped the testimonies and said, "I see someone with an IV pain drip in their left arm. Who is that?" Remembering Kelsey's vision of standing before the throne with her IV, her mother took up the man's offer. He carried Kelsey down to the stage. Todd prayed a simple prayer, touched Kelsey's forehead and she fell out under the power of the Spirit for about 45 minutes, said Lesley.
What was happening to Kelsey during this time?According to her mother, Kelsey said while she was "out" she was taken to Heaven. She found herself in a celestial surgical room where Jesus stood next to her looking right down at her, directly face-to-face. He said to her, "Keep your eyes on me, Kelsey. It'll be ok."She saw angels all around her; she felt them kneading her stomach, doing deep massage on her entire body, especially her legs and arms which had been so weak. At one point while Kelsey was lying on the floor under the Spirit, her mother said Todd announced publicly: "Look! There's angels over her."When Kelsey finally came to and stood up, Todd asked her how she felt. "I feel nothing," said Kelsey. "I feel NO PAIN!"At this writing, it has been four days since Kelsey has experienced God's extraordinary touch of healing and she is still without pain. She's feeling just like a 14-year old girl should feel.
Watch this healing revival as it continues from Lakeland, Florida, at the GOD TV link provided.
Source: Lakeland Revival, Hays family
As in the days of Noah...

Union defends 'anti-Christian' teacher

A federal judge has allowed the California Teachers Association to become involved in a case that accuses a high school history teacher of making anti-Christian remarks during class time.The judge allowed the teacher's union to defend the Capistrano School District and high school history teacher, Dr. James Corbett. The school and the teacher are being sued by Chad Farnan, a student in Dr. Corbett's Advanced Placement European history class. According to the lawsuit, Dr. Corbett encouraged students to remove their "Jesus glasses" so they could see the truth.Robert Tyler, general counsel with Advocates for Faith & Freedom, says the action by the teacher's union is deplorable."The California Teachers Association has jumped in on the side of this teacher who was preaching atheism to tenth-grade students at a public high school, in a class titled 'European History,' and teaching things that have nothing to do with European history," Tyler contends. According to Tyler, this particular case is unique-and he says his group is drawing the proverbial line in the sand."If it's not appropriate or if it's supposedly unconstitutional to speak in a positive fashion about God in public schools, then you certainly cannot speak in a negative fashion about God in public schools," he argues. "And you cannot ridicule and show hostility toward Christianity or other faiths in the classroom,'"Tyler adds. Farnan recorded many of Dr. Corbett's rants on a digital recorder. The lawsuit accuses the teacher of violating his students' First Amendment rights.
As in the days of Noah....

Official says Iran quits using US dollar for oil deals

TEHRAN, Iran-Iran, OPEC's second-largest producer, has stopped conducting oil transactions in U.S. dollars, a top Oil Ministry official said Wednesday, a concerted attempt to reduce reliance on Washington at a time of tension over Tehran's nuclear program and suspected involvement in Iraq.Iran has dramatically reduced dependence on the dollar over the past year in the face of increasing U.S. pressure on its financial system and the fall in the value of the American currency.Oil is priced in U.S. dollars on the world market, and the currency's depreciation has concerned producers because it has contributed to rising crude prices and eroded the value of their dollar reserves."The dollar has totally been removed from Iran's oil transactions," Oil Ministry official Hojjatollah Ghanimifard told state-run television Wednesday. "We have agreed with all of our crude oil customers to do our transactions in non-dollar currencies."Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad called the depreciating dollar a "worthless piece of paper" at a rare summit last year in Saudi Arabia attended by state leaders from the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries.Iran put pressure on other OPEC countries at the meeting to price oil in a basket of currencies, but it has not been able to generate support from fellow members — many of whom, including Saudi Arabia, are staunch U.S. allies.Iran has a tense relationship with the U.S., which has accused Tehran of using its nuclear program as a cover for weapons development and providing support to Shiite militants in Iraq that are killing American troops. Iran has denied the allegations.The U.S. is sending a second U.S. aircraft carrier to the Persian Gulf, a deployment that Defense Secretary Robert Gates said Tuesday could serve as a "reminder" to Iran. But he said it's not an escalation of force.Speaking to reporters after meeting with Mexican leaders, Gates said the number of ships there rises and falls continuously. He said he doesn't expect there to be two carriers there for a long time.Asked if the carrier move went hand in hand with the rising U.S. rhetoric against Iran, Gates said, "I don't see it as an escalation. I think it could be seen, though, as a reminder."Iranian oil officials have said previously that they were shifting oil sales out of the dollar into other currencies, but Ghanimifard indicated Wednesday that all of Iran's oil transactions were now conducted in either euros or yen."In Europe, Iran's oil is sold in euros, but both euros and yen are paid for Iranian crude in Asia," said Ghanimifard.Iran's central bank has also been reducing its foreign reserves denominated in U.S. dollars, motivated by the falling value of the greenback and U.S. attempts to make it difficult for Iran to conduct dollar transactions.U.S. banks are prohibited from conducting business directly with Iran, and many European banks have curbed their dealings with the country over the past year under pressure from Washington.However, the U.S. has been wary of targeting Iran's oil industry directly, apparently worried that such a move could drive up crude prices that are already near record levels.Iranian analysts say Tehran can withstand U.S. pressure as long as it can continue its oil and gas sales, which constitute most of the country's $80 billion in exports.
As in the days of Noah...

Church hosts prayer services after tornado

SUFFOLK, Va.-Many residents in Suffolk, Va., are testifying to God's protection after the worst of six tornadoes in central and southeastern Virginia hit their city April 28, leaving 200 people injured but no fatalities."Everything we've seen on TV, everything we've heard, every testimony-even from unbelievers-has been how merciful God was," Bryan Ray, pastor of First Baptist Church in Suffolk, told Baptist Press. "There has not been one loss of life.It has been supernatural. "The church hosted two citywide prayer services April 30, one at noon attended by about 60 people and another in the evening that drew more than 150."We felt burdened because we have people hurting and we realized it's not just our people, it's the whole city," Ray said. "People all over the place were affected by it. So we wanted to give people an opportunity to come together as believers in the name of Jesus and to pray for those who are hurting and also pray for those who might have the opportunity to hear the Gospel."Ray said a group of men at his church have been praying for a couple of years for God to send revival to Suffolk, a city of 80,000 west of Norfolk, and he hopes the tornado might be a catalyst."We're praying that this might be the way God allows us to experience a spiritual awakening or a great movement of God," he said. "People are obviously very ripe for the Gospel, so we're hoping the Lord will allow us to be a huge blessing in the community and see a lot of people come to know Christ."A graduate of Union University in Jackson, Tenn., Ray said the students who lived through that tornado in February would come closer than anyone to understanding what people are feeling in Suffolk."We have a church member whose house was condemned, and the house beside it was completely destroyed," Ray said. "The only thing that was left standing was an American flag. It was really unique. The lady and her two children made it [through the storm]. Everybody made it. When you look at the houses, it's just totally the hand of God."During the first prayer service on Wednesday, two classes each of second- and fourth-grade students from First Baptist's school joined church members and some people from the community to read Scripture and pray for those affected by the disaster, Ray said. Three families whose homes were destroyed in the tornado attended, and the group surrounded them in prayer.After the noon event, Ray joined other church members who had packed bagged lunches to distribute in neighborhoods hit by the tornado. The pastor repeatedly marveled that "the hand of God has been all over this situation" because homes were left splintered but no one was killed.At the evening service, a praise band led in worship and a man who lost his home spoke about God's mercy and goodness, Ray said. The next morning, the pastor joined other local leaders at a National Day of Prayer breakfast, and he said people there also were grateful for God's protection.Ray requested that Southern Baptists pray for strength and comfort for the city of Suffolk as people dig through the rubble of their homes and try to start over.Mark Gauthier, disaster relief coordinator for the Southern Baptist Conservatives of Virginia, reported April 30 that the state convention had two chainsaw/cleanup teams and one assessment team on site in Suffolk."Currently, both chainsaw teams are assisting in conducting assessments," Gauthier said. "We have four additional chainsaw/cleanup teams standing by and an additional 20-25 volunteers who have yet to be assigned to a specific team."After completing assessments in two of three neighborhoods, disaster relief officials reported that 277 homes were damaged and 24 were destroyed. Gauthier anticipated having six recovery teams on site in Suffolk May 1, in addition to an assessment team finishing up. He said he and Terry Raines, disaster relief coordinator for the Virginia Baptist Mission Board, would be working together on the response."At this time we do not feel that assistance from conventions outside of Virginia will be necessary," Gauthier said.
By Erin Roach staff writer for Baptist Press.
As in the days of Noah...