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

Saturday, July 5, 2008

Israel orders razing of Jerusalem attackers' homes

JERUSALEM-Israeli Defense Minister Ehud Barak on Friday sought the demolition of the houses of two Palestinians behind recent deadly attacks against Israelis after the attorney-general said the move was legally viable.Israel wants to raze the homes of a Palestinian who killed three Israelis in a bulldozer rampage in Jerusalem on Wednesday and another who shot dead eight pupils at a seminary in the city in March. Both lived in the vicinity of Arab East Jerusalem."Barak has ordered the army to start a process for obtaining demolition orders for the terrorists' houses," said a Defense official, who declined to be named.Menachem Mazuz, the attorney-general, gave his legal response following a proposal by Prime Minister Ehud Olmert on Thursday that Israel should destroy the homes of "every terrorist from Jerusalem" after a Palestinian killed three Israelis in a bulldozer rampage."The decision comes following the attorney-general's opinion, which said there was no legal obstacle to destroy the terrorists' houses," the Defense official added.Mazuz said in his opinion: "In light of repeated rulings over the years by the Supreme Court, it cannot be said that there is a legal objection ... to demolish houses in Jerusalem, but the move would create considerable legal difficulties."Israeli authorities say Wednesday's attack and the fatal shootings of eight seminary students in March were carried out by Palestinians who held blue Israeli identity cards that give them wide freedom of movement.Mazuz warned that apart from legal challenges in Israeli courts, a resumption of the practice of house demolitions could draw international condemnation.
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Syria says talk of direct Israel contact premature

PARIS-Syria's foreign minister said on Friday it was premature to talk of direct peace negotiations with Israel, a day after the Jewish state called for face-to-face discussions to start soon.A third round of indirect talks between the long-standing foes took place in Istanbul this week and ended with an agreement to hold a fourth round of negotiations in Turkey in late July, a Turkish government source told Reuters on Thursday."It's premature to answer this question," Syrian Foreign Minister Walid al-Moualem said when asked when direct talks could be held. He confirmed that both sides had agreed to hold a fourth round of indirect talks, but did not say where or when."The moment when we feel that we've got the agreed common ground between us and the Israelis, which covers all elements of a peace agreement, we will agree on the location of these direct talks," he said in a question and answer session at the French Institute for International Relations (IFRI).Syria, demanding that Israel return all of the Golan Heights it seized in 1967, insists peace talks can only succeed with the full involvement of the United States-unlikely to materialize under President George W. Bush, who views Damascus as an "evil" ally of Iran and of groups hostile to U.S.-Israeli interests."The direct talks need an active American participation and sponsoring. To give guarantees we need an active European role maybe represented by France. We need also a role for Russia, a role for the United Nations for these talks," Moualem said.
Moualem was due to meet his French counterpart Bernard Kouchner during his trip to Paris ahead of the July 13 launch summit for French President Nicolas Sarkozy's Mediterranean Union project, which Syrian President Bashar al-Assad and Israeli Prime Minister Ehud Olmert are due to attend.
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EU says received Iran reply on nuclear issue

BRUSSELS-European Union foreign policy chief Javier Solana's office confirmed on Friday it had received a reply from Iran concerning an international offer of incentives for Tehran to stop enriching uranium.A spokeswoman for Solana said the office had received Iran's reply but gave no further details.Iran's official IRNA news agency said earlier that Tehran had responded on Friday to the incentives package offered by six world powers aimed at resolving a standoff over the Islamic Republic's disputed nuclear ambitions.
As in the days of Noah....

Israel reclosure of crossings dampens Gazans' hopes

GAZA-Israel responded to Thursday's rocket attack by again closing its border crossing with Gaza on Friday, dampening hopes among Gazans that a ceasefire between Hamas and the Jewish state might ease an Israeli-led blockade.A truce brokered by Egypt on June 19 calls on militants in the Gaza Strip to halt rocket fire in return for Israel gradually lifting its blockade of the Hamas-ruled territory.But, the Israeli army's killing of a top militant commander in the occupied West Bank, sporadic rocket attacks and periodic Israeli closures of Gaza's crossings have strained the truce.Like thousands of Gazans who had hoped the ceasefire would offer respite from the stifling blockade, 60-year-old Kefaya Abu-Odah is angry at Gazan militants who have been breaching the truce, prompting Israel to shut the border crossings."They (militants) do not want calm and neither does Israel," she said at a cattle market in the northern Gaza Strip where she sought to sell her two sheep.She doubted the ceasefire would last.Rocket fire against Israel is rarely criticized by Palestinians, who view such attacks as a legitimate response to Israel's economic blockade of Gaza and its military operations against militant groups in the occupied West Bank.Israel maintains its cordon is a response to rocket attacks against its civilians and has said its crackdown on militants in the West Bank was necessary to stop attacks against Israelis.
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PS:Israel opens the border and what does it get in return????Rockets and a bulldozer rampage that kills 3 innocent people and injured another 66...and Israel is the BAD GUY right?????
Hamas,Fatah,AlAqsa and the like in Palestine DON'T CARE ABOUT THE PEOPLE...They terrorize them...They dont care about the suffering of lil children and babies crying...they always point the finger at Israel...
Would you let some criminals that hate you come into your house--where you are with your family--armed and ready to kill you?????I dont think so....Its common sense....And even somebody living and working in Jerusalem,decides to carry on its own "lil jihad",so jumps on a bulldozer and runs over and kills and injures people in the name of "allah" and his folks says about the incident that "it was all "allah's will".....What kind of lunacy is that?????
As in the days of Noah....

Hamas says suspends prisoner swap talks with Israel

GAZA-Islamist Hamas said on Friday it was suspending indirect talks with Israel over a prisoner swap deal, citing Israeli violations of a declared truce in Gaza.Gaza's Islamist leaders have accused Israel of dragging its feet in implementing the truce deal that includes a gradual increase of goods shipments into the Gaza Strip.Israel has briefly closed the crossings and has suspended shipments in response to cross-border rocket attacks by militants after the ceasefire went into effect last month.Hamas officials were set to travel to Cairo as early as this weekend for Egyptian-mediated talks on a deal to free Israeli soldier Gilad Shalit in exchange for Palestinians jailed in Israel.Hamas had sought the release of some 1,400 prisoners, a third of them serving several life terms, in return for freeing Shalit, whom Hamas and two other militant groups abducted in a cross-border attack in 2006."Hamas has decided to suspend talks over Shalit's case because of the occupation's (Israel's) non-commitment to the calm deal," Hamas official Sami Abu Zuhri told Reuters."There is no way for those talks to begin before the obligations of calm are implemented (by Israel)," he said.Hamas officials said they had received an invitation to visit Cairo but said "there was no arrangement for a Hamas delegation to leave soon."
As in the days of Noah...

Nigeria voices displeasure at Zimbabwe run-off

ABUJA-Nigeria expressed "strong displeasure" on Friday at the process leading to the re-election of Zimbabwe's President Robert Mugabe and said the outcome of the run-off vote should not form a basis for negotiations."We express our strong displeasure at the process leading to the election and its outcome...we therefore do not consider the outcome of that election as a basis for moving forward," Foreign Minister Ojo Maduekwe told reporters.
As in the days of Noah...

Zimbabwe opposition:103 killed and 1,500 arrested

HARARE-Zimbabwe's opposition said on Friday more than 100 of its supporters had been killed and 1,500 arrested in a crackdown by supporters of President Robert Mugabe.The Movement for Democratic Change (MDC) raised the death toll amongst its supporters since the first round of elections in March to 103 from the previous 86.Those arrested included 20 legislators or parliamentary candidates. The MDC said in a statement that 5,000 supporters, including polling agents and candidates for local councils, were missing.The MDC won the March polls but its leader, Morgan Tsvangirai, fell short of the majority needed for outright victory. He pulled out before the second round of the presidential election on June 27, in which Mugabe was re-elected.
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EU calls for early new election in Zimbabwe

PARIS-The European Union called on Friday for a new election as soon as possible in Zimbabwe after a short transition from the rule of President Robert Mugabe."The European Union will only accept a formula which respects the will of the Zimbabwean people as it was expressed in the elections of March 29, 2008," a statement by the French EU presidency said, referring to a first round ballot won by opposition leader Morgan Tsvangirai."The result of this vote must be the basis for a political settlement...This transition period must be as brief as possible," the statement said."The aim of any solution must be the rapid holding of a new, free, democratic and transparent consultation of the Zimbabwean people," it said. Mugabe was declared re-elected after a June 27 runoff in which he was the only candidate once Tsvangirai withdrew in protest at violence and intimidation by the security forces and government-backed militia against opposition supporters.The EU, which refused to recognize Mugabe's victory, called for an end to all forms of violence and said it was prepared to study quickly "appropriate individual measures against those responsible for this violence".African observers declared the second round vote neither free nor fair, and an African Union summit this week called on Mugabe to negotiate with the opposition.French Foreign Minister Bernard Kouchner and the European Commission have said the EU will only accept an interim government that is headed by Tsvangirai.
As in the days of Noah....

Zimbabwe solution could now take years

HARARE-A solution to Zimbabwe's crisis could be months or even years away despite President Robert Mugabe's public promise, under heavy international pressure, to negotiate with the opposition.Mugabe suffered unprecedented African and world censure after his refusal to call off a presidential vote in which he was re-elected as the sole candidate last week following opposition leader Morgan Tsvangirai's withdrawal.The African Union called for talks leading to a unity government and the West is preparing new sanctions against Mugabe's entourage because of violence which the opposition Movement for Democratic Change says killed 86 supporters.Analysts said however that Mugabe is far from surrendering the power he has held since independence from Britain in 1980."Anyone who thinks Mugabe or (his ruling) ZANU-PF are on their way out or about to surrender, will be surprised that we are into a long game," said Lovemore Madhuku, a political analyst and chairman of National Constitutional Assembly (NCA)."Yes, there is pressure but Mugabe clearly went into this for strategic reasons, to ease pressure on his government and to get some breathing space," he said."I think his strategy is to wear the opposition down, make a few concessions, but he is not going to do anything that substantially changes or threatens the ZANU-PF order," Madhuku said.Some analysts say Mugabe and ZANU-PF might still want to strike a deal with the opposition before South African President Thabo Mbeki leaves office next year.
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UK says peace-keepers for Zimbabwe an option

LONDON-There is widespread agreement that action must be taken to change the status quo in Zimbabwe, possibly with the help of a peacekeeping force, British Prime Minister Gordon Brown said on Thursday.Pressure has intensified on Zimbabwe's President Robert Mugabe to negotiate after he was returned to power at the weekend in a one-sided vote boycotted by the opposition and widely condemned by global leaders.The African Union has been trying to broker talks between the opposition Movement for Democratic Change (MDC)-which won an initial presidential vote-and Mugabe's ruling ZANU-PF party to establish a unity government. "Virtually the whole international community is saying the status quo cannot continue, the MDC has got to be recognized for the electoral support it had," Brown told a group of cross-party British lawmakers."There will be no support for this regime until democracy is restored, we will intensify the sanctions unless action is taken to change the status quo."Brown said the second election was a "travesty of justice and during that election the regime has blood on its hands for what has happened".While African leaders have preferred a softer approach, there have been calls for tougher measures to force Mugabe to the negotiating table."There has been some discussion of an international peacekeeping force and that is an option that is obviously on the table," Brown told the parliamentary committee. "I think we have got to bear in mind that all the pressure at the moment is political pressure to try and achieve a desired result.""We now have the pressure, that I think is growing, from the African Union counties and from the community of the United Nations that the status quo cannot be held, that action has got to be taken."
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South Africa doubts need for U.N. action on Zimbabwe

UNITED NATIONS-The United States said on Thursday it expects the U.N. Security Council to vote next week on sanctions against Zimbabwe's leaders for last week's widely criticized election but South Africa suggested it would oppose the resolution.U.S. Ambassador Zalmay Khalilzad told reporters after a closed-door council session that he had formally submitted the U.S.-drafted resolution to the full 15-nation council."We expect a vote on the resolution sometime next week," Khalilzad said.The sanctions would impose an arms embargo on Zimbabwe and travel bans and asset freezes on President Robert Mugabe, the central bank governor and 10 other top government and security officials.Mugabe won re-election in a June 27 run-off ballot after Morgan Tsvangirai, leader of the opposition Movement for Democratic Change, pulled out because of attacks on his supporters. Tsvangirai had won a first-round vote on March 29. Khalilzad said the council had no choice but to respond to Zimbabwe's defiance. But it did not want to do anything that would harm the country's already-suffering people, he said."We have proposed a resolution that will impose targeted sanctions on those that are responsible for the crisis with the expectation and hope that they will be incentivized to cooperate," he said."This crisis not only impacts the people of Zimbabwe, and we stand with them, but also the region," Khalilzad said.
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Zimbabwe condemnation expected at G8: White House

ABOARD AIR FORCE ONE-Leaders of the Group of Eight rich nations meeting in northern Japan this week will condemn the government of Zimbabwean President Robert Mugabe, a White House official said on Saturday.Mugabe has been defiant despite growing international condemnation of a June 27 runoff presidential election, in which he was the only candidate after opposition leader Morgan Tsvangirai pulled out, citing state-sponsored violence.Dennis Wilder, a senior National Security Council official, said Zimbabwe was sure to come up when Britain, France, Germany, Italy, Japan, Russia, Canada and the United States meet July 7-9 on the northern Japanese island of Hokkaido."I think the G8 will strongly condemn what Mugabe has done. It will strongly condemn the legitimacy of his government and his governing of Zimbabwe," Wilder told reporters aboard Air Force One as President George W. Bush was on his way to Japan for the summit.The G8 leaders, meeting at a luxury hotel in the lakeside resort of Toyako, will be joined by the heads of seven African states and major economies including China and India.
As in the days of Noah...

Zimbabwe 'vote-rigging' film

Film shows Zimbabwe vote rigged: report

LONDON-A film secretly taken by a Zimbabwe prison guard and smuggled out of the country shows the extent of the rigging that took place for the June 27 presidential run-off vote, the Guardian said on Saturday.The film taken by Shepherd Yuda using a camera supplied by the newspaper shows prison staff being told by a war veteran how to fill in their ballot papers for Robert Mugabe.Mugabe, in power since independence from Britain in 1980, claimed a landslide victory in the vote in which there was no opponent and which outside observers said was neither free nor fair due to a campaign of violence and murder.Morgan Tsvangirai, leader of the opposition Movement for Democratic Change, withdrew from the run-off saying a fair vote was impossible because of the blatant attacks which he says have killed 103 of his supporters."I had never seen that kind of violence before," Yuda said in a video diary accompanying the clandestine filming. "How can a government that claimed to be democratically elected kill its people, murder its people, torture its people."Yuda, 36, a prison guard for 13 years, has fled the country with his family in fear of his life."I don't regret doing this, although it is a painful decision I have taken," he said. "We can live without the memories of seeing dead bodies in the prison, dead bodies in the street, dead bodies in my family."He said his uncle had been killed and his father beaten by gangs of thugs loyal to Mugabe's ruling ZANU-PF."I've served this government for the past 13 years and was loyal to my government," the quietly-spoken Yuda said. "Unfortunately I didn't know that I was being loyal to a government that was not loyal to its people."
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ZIM WATCH:Secret Zimbabwe Election Video

Footage of the Zimbabwe election filmed in secret shows how Robert Mugabe's officials rigged the result. This clip shows a rally where prison guards were told Opposition leader Morgan Tsvangirai would never rule the country.

As in the days of Noah....

Tablet Ignites Debate on Messiah and Resurrection

JERUSALEM-A three-foot-tall tablet with 87 lines of Hebrew that scholars believe dates from the decades just before the birth of Jesus is causing a quiet stir in biblical and archaeological circles, especially because it may speak of a messiah who will rise from the dead after three days.If such a messianic description really is there, it will contribute to a developing re-evaluation of both popular and scholarly views of Jesus, since it suggests that the story of his death and resurrection was not unique but part of a recognized Jewish tradition at the time.The tablet, probably found near the Dead Sea in Jordan according to some scholars who have studied it, is a rare example of a stone with ink writings from that era — in essence, a Dead Sea Scroll on stone.It is written, not engraved, across two neat columns, similar to columns in a Torah. But the stone is broken, and some of the text is faded,meaning that much of what it says is open to debate.Still, its authenticity has so far faced no challenge, so its role in helping to understand the roots of Christianity in the devastating political crisis faced by the Jews of the time seems likely to increase.Daniel Boyarin, a professor of Talmudic culture at the University of California at Berkeley, said that the stone was part of a growing body of evidence suggesting that Jesus could be best understood through a close reading of the Jewish history of his day.“Some Christians will find it shocking-a challenge to the uniqueness of their theology-while others will be comforted by the idea of it being a traditional part of Judaism,” Mr. Boyarin said.Given the highly charged atmosphere surrounding all Jesus-era artifacts and writings, both in the general public and in the fractured and fiercely competitive scholarly community, as well as the concern over forgery and charlatanism, it will probably be some time before the tablet’s contribution is fully assessed. It has been around 60 years since the Dead Sea Scrolls were uncovered, and they continue to generate enormous controversy regarding their authors and meaning.The scrolls, documents found in the Qumran caves of the West Bank, contain some of the only known surviving copies of biblical writings from before the first century A.D. In addition to quoting from key books of the Bible, the scrolls describe a variety of practices and beliefs of a Jewish sect at the time of Jesus.
How representative the descriptions are and what they tell us about the era are still strongly debated. For example, a question that arises is whether the authors of the scrolls were members of a monastic sect or in fact mainstream. A conference marking 60 years since the discovery of the scrolls will begin on Sunday at the Israel Museum in Jerusalem, where the stone, and the debate over whether it speaks of a resurrected messiah, as one iconoclastic scholar believes, also will be discussed.Oddly, the stone is not really a new discovery. It was found about a decade ago and bought from a Jordanian antiquities dealer by an Israeli-Swiss collector who kept it in his Zurich home.When an Israeli scholar examined it closely a few years ago and wrote a paper on it last year, interest began to rise.There is now a spate of scholarly articles on the stone, with several due to be published in the coming months.“I couldn’t make much out of it when I got it,” said David Jeselsohn, the owner, who is himself an expert in antiquities. “I didn’t realize how significant it was until I showed it to Ada Yardeni, who specializes in Hebrew writing, a few years ago. She was overwhelmed. ‘You have got a Dead Sea Scroll on stone,’ she told me.”Much of the text, a vision of the apocalypse transmitted by the angel Gabriel, draws on the Old Testament, especially the prophets Daniel, Zechariah and Haggai.Ms. Yardeni, who analyzed the stone along with Binyamin Elitzur, is an expert on Hebrew script, especially of the era of King Herod, who died in 4 B.C. The two of them published a long analysis of the stone more than a year ago in Cathedra, a Hebrew-language quarterly devoted to the history and archaeology of Israel, and said that, based on the shape of the script and the language, the text dated from the late first century B.C.A chemical examination by Yuval Goren, a professor of archaeology at Tel Aviv University who specializes in the verification of ancient artifacts, has been submitted to a peer-review journal. He declined to give details of his analysis until publication, but he said that he knew of no reason to doubt the stone’s authenticity.It was in Cathedra that Israel Knohl, an iconoclastic professor of Bible studies at Hebrew University in Jerusalem, first heard of the stone, which Ms. Yardeni and Mr. Elitzur dubbed “Gabriel’s Revelation,” also the title of their article. Mr. Knohl posited in a book published in 2000 the idea of a suffering messiah before Jesus, using a variety of rabbinic and early apocalyptic literature as well as the Dead Sea Scrolls. But his theory did not shake the world of Christology as he had hoped, partly because he had no textual evidence from before Jesus. When he read “Gabriel’s Revelation,” he said, he believed he saw what he needed to solidify his thesis, and he has published his argument in the latest issue of The Journal of Religion.Mr. Knohl is part of a larger scholarly movement that focuses on the political atmosphere in Jesus’ day as an important explanation of that era’s messianic spirit. As he notes, after the death of Herod, Jewish rebels sought to throw off the yoke of the Rome-supported monarchy, so the rise of a major Jewish independence fighter could take on messianic overtones.In Mr. Knohl’s interpretation, the specific messianic figure embodied on the stone could be a man named Simon who was slain by a commander in the Herodian army, according to the first-century historian Josephus. The writers of the stone’s passages were probably Simon’s followers, Mr. Knohl contends.The slaying of Simon, or any case of the suffering messiah, is seen as a necessary step toward national salvation, he says, pointing to lines 19 through 21 of the tablet — “In three days you will know that evil will be defeated by justice” — and other lines that speak of blood and slaughter as pathways to justice.To make his case about the importance of the stone, Mr. Knohl focuses especially on line 80, which begins clearly with the words “L’shloshet yamin,” meaning “in three days.” The next word of the line was deemed partially illegible by Ms. Yardeni and Mr. Elitzur, but Mr. Knohl, who is an expert on the language of the Bible and Talmud, says the word is “hayeh,” or “live” in the imperative. It has an unusual spelling, but it is one in keeping with the era.Two more hard-to-read words come later, and Mr. Knohl said he believed that he had deciphered them as well, so that the line reads, “In three days you shall live, I, Gabriel, command you.”To whom is the archangel speaking? The next line says “Sar hasarin,” or prince of princes. Since the Book of Daniel, one of the primary sources for the Gabriel text, speaks of Gabriel and of “a prince of princes,” Mr. Knohl contends that the stone’s writings are about the death of a leader of the Jews who will be resurrected in three days.He says further that such a suffering messiah is very different from the traditional Jewish image of the messiah as a triumphal, powerful descendant of King David.“This should shake our basic view of Christianity,” he said as he sat in his office of the Shalom Hartman Institute in Jerusalem where he is a senior fellow in addition to being the Yehezkel Kaufman Professor of Biblical Studies at Hebrew University. “Resurrection after three days becomes a motif developed before Jesus, which runs contrary to nearly all scholarship. What happens in the New Testament was adopted by Jesus and his followers based on an earlier messiah story.”Ms. Yardeni said she was impressed with the reading and considered it indeed likely that the key illegible word was “hayeh,” or “live.” Whether that means Simon is the messiah under discussion, she is less sure.Moshe Bar-Asher, president of the Israeli Academy of Hebrew Language and emeritus professor of Hebrew and Aramaic at the Hebrew University, said he spent a long time studying the text and considered it authentic, dating from no later than the first century B.C. His 25-page paper on the stone will be published in the coming months.
Regarding Mr. Knohl’s thesis, Mr. Bar-Asher is also respectful but cautious. “There is one problem,” he said. “In crucial places of the text there is lack of text. I understand Knohl’s tendency to find there keys to the pre-Christian period, but in two to three crucial lines of text there are a lot of missing words.”Moshe Idel, a professor of Jewish thought at Hebrew University who has just published a book on the son of God, said that given the way every tiny fragment from that era yielded scores of articles and books, “Gabriel’s Revelation” and Mr. Knohl’s analysis deserved serious attention. “Here we have a real stone with a real text,” he said. “This is truly significant.”Mr. Knohl said that it was less important whether Simon was the messiah of the stone than the fact that it strongly suggested that a savior who died and rose after three days was an established concept at the time of Jesus. He notes that in the Gospels, Jesus makes numerous predictions of his suffering and New Testament scholars say such predictions must have been written in by later followers because there was no such idea present in his day.But there was, he said, and “Gabriel’s Revelation” shows it.“His mission is that he has to be put to death by the Romans to suffer so his blood will be the sign for redemption to come,” Mr. Knohl said. “This is the sign of the son of Joseph. This is the conscious view of Jesus himself. This gives the Last Supper an absolutely different meaning. To shed blood is not for the sins of people but to bring redemption to Israel.”
PS:The last statement above in partly true:Jesus came to His Own and His own REJECTED Him....therefore salvation came to us=gentiles.....
To say that the shed blood of Jesus is not for the remision of sins is straight blasphemy.
As in the days of Noah...

QUAKEWATCH:Earthquake hits north of Tokyo, no damage reported

An earthquake with a preliminary magnitude of 5.1 shook northern Japan on Saturday...
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CHINA Communist Party graduation....

India Party Backs Government Over Nuclear Deal

NEW DELHI-A key regional party in India said on Saturday it backed the government over a controversial nuclear energy agreement with the United States, easing concerns the pact could trigger early elections.Support from the Samajwadi Party (SP) is likely to help the Congress Party-led ruling coalition secure a parliamentary majority if communist parties carry out their threat to withdraw support in protest at the nuclear deal."The deal is in the interest of the nation, we should have come out in support of the deal a year ago," SP leader Amar Singh told reporters in New Delhi.The regional party from Uttar Pradesh state had on Friday hinted that they would back the ruling coalition in parliament if the communists walked away.The SP has a history of pragmatic alliances with national parties, but it said that they had buried years of bitter relations and described the Congress party as secular."In politics, parties switch sides often, but we never sided with communal forces," Singh said.He said Congress should seek a vote of confidence in parliament without any worries. "We will not vote against the government, even if the communists and other parties do," Singh added.With time fast running out, the government needs to seek approval for the deal from the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA), the next international move needed to make the agreement operational.
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Pakistan's Foreign Ministry Declares Nuke's Case Closed

Israel blocks WBank village over barrier protests

RAMALLAH, West Bank-Israeli forces blockaded a Palestinian village on Saturday in what the army called an open-ended effort to curb protests against the construction nearby of the West Bank barrier.Troops were encircling Ni'lin, near the Palestinian city of Ramallah, under orders to vet those entering or leaving and turn back would-be demonstrators against the barrier, which has been condemned internationally for taking in occupied land."These protests have been getting increasingly violent, and they must be stopped," an Israeli military spokeswoman said. The barrier, a network of razor-wire fences and concrete barricades, is intended to keep out Palestinian suicide bombers, Israel says. But it also loops around Jewish settlement blocs, cutting off some West Bank villages from swathes of farmland.Construction sites are flashpoints for confrontations between Israeli security forces and local Palestinians, who are often supported by left-wing protestors from Israel and abroad.Ni'lin residents said the closure was imposed on Friday, which also saw a march against the barrier during which around 20 protesters were hurt by rubber bullets fired by Israeli security forces. Four protesters from an Israeli solidarity group were arrested, an organizer of the demonstration said.Casualties and other patients were prevented from leaving the village for treatment, said Salah al-Khawaja, spokesman for the Ni'lin Committee for Resisting the Wall.The military spokeswoman said security forces were attacked by hundreds of Palestinians who pelted them with rocks and rolled burning tires at them, injuring a border policeman. She denied that the closure was affecting the movement of patients.
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Iran vows to pursue nuclear work

TEHRAN-Iran vowed on Saturday to pursue its uranium enrichment program, a day after delivering its response to an incentives package by world powers trying to curb its nuclear ambitions.No details were released of Iran's formal reply on Friday-submitted to EU foreign policy chief Javier Solana-to the offer of talks on benefits if Tehran halts enrichment the West suspects is for nuclear bombs. Iran says its plans are peaceful.In its first public statement after giving the response, government spokesman Gholamhossein Elham said that Iran had no intention of discussing its "right to enriching uranium"."Iran's stance has not changed (on uranium enrichment) and we are ready to hold talks in the framework of preserving Iran's nuclear rights," Elham told a news conference on Saturday.Foreign Minister Monouchehr Mottaki said Solana would meet Iran's chief nuclear negotiator Saeed Jalili in the next two weeks for preliminary talks."They will start to establish a modality for continuation of this cooperation," Mottaki told Malaysian private broadcaster Astro Awani in an interview broadcast late on Saturday.Solana's spokeswoman said he was willing to meet Jalili soon, but gave no details. "In principle, the position is to respond favorably," she said.Iran, the world's fourth-largest oil exporter, says its nuclear activities are only aimed at generating power so that it can export more oil but the United States and its European allies suspect Tehran is pursuing an atomic weapons project.
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Lebanese leaders close to government deal

BEIRUT-Lebanese leaders are finalizing a deal on the formation of a national unity government as stipulated in an agreement that ended the country's political crisis, political sources said on Saturday.Prime Minister-designate Fouad Siniora indicated progress in his efforts to form the new government, in which Hezbollah and its allies would have a blocking minority, but ruled out announcing it as early as Saturday."I am continuing (efforts) to form the government and I'm confident that during a short period of time we will form the government," Siniora said after talks with Christian opposition leader and Hezbollah ally Michel Aoun.The prime minister said he had agreed with Aoun on his share in the government, removing a main hurdle. He said he would hold similar talks with other leaders before announcing his line-up.Lebanon's U.S.-backed majority coalition and the opposition, led by the Syrian- and Iranian-backed Hezbollah, signed a Qatari-brokered deal in Doha on May 21 that pulled the country back from the brink of a new civil war.President Michel Suleiman was elected four days later in line with the deal, but squabbling over cabinet portfolios has held up the formation of a government.Political sources from both sides said the breakthrough in the government came after a series of contacts by Qatari Prime Minister Shiekh Hamad bin Jassim al-Thani with rival leaders.The new government, led by Siniora, would have two Hezbollah ministers in addition to nine ministers from its Shi'ite Muslim, Druze and Christian allies.
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RUMOURS of WARS:Russia warns of "new war" in Abkhazia conflict

MOSCOW-A "new war" could break out in Georgia's breakaway region of Abkhazia if Tbilisi uses military force to resolve the conflict, Russia's Defense Ministry said on Saturday.Separatist leader Sergei Bagapsh accused Georgia on Saturday of planning to take over the region by force earlier this year, though the operation did not come to fruition."Such plans by Tbilisi can only be seen as yet another step towards further escalating the tensions in the region, which will bring the conflict into a new war,"the Defense Ministry said in a statement on its Web site http://www.mil.ru./A popular Soviet-era resort, Abkhazia threw off Tbilisi's rule in a 1990s separatist war. It is not recognized by any state, but runs its own affairs.Earlier this week, Abkhazia said it was sealing itself off from Georgian-controlled territory after a series of explosions it blamed on Tbilisi. http://www.reuters.com/article/worldNews/idUSL0543719820080705
As in the days of Noah....

GAY WATCH:Anti-gay violence mars Hungarian parade

BUDAPEST-Hungarian riot police used water cannon and tear gas on Saturday to stop far-right extremists from throwing petrol bombs and breaking up the annual gay parade in the capital Budapest.Hundreds of far-right demonstrators threw petrol bombs and stones at the police as the police tried to separate them from the participants of the "Gay Pride" march. They also threw eggs and firecrackers at people in the parade.Riot police detained 45 people, police spokeswoman Eva Tafferner said.Ambulance workers and police said at least eight people were wounded in the clashes, including two policemen.The anti-gay demonstrators attacked a police car carrying Socialist European Parliament member and human rights activist Katalin Levai. They slammed a stone through the window of the police car but she was not hurt."This is outrageous and shameful that some 20 years after the change of regime, this is what we have ... such intolerance," Levai told Reuters."This (violence) is sad," said 32-year-old book editor Istvan Ruzsacz, who took part in the parade."Those people simply don't accept that gays exist and use this as an opportunity to advertise themselves."A leading liberal politician Gabor Horn was also attacked according to local news agency Index.Although homosexuality was legalized in eastern Europe after the collapse of communism, same-sex couples rarely display their affection publicly and gay parades have sparked scorn and violence in several other countries in the region.A week ago, about 60 far-right extremists were arrested in Bulgaria's capital, Sofia, after they tried to break up the country's first gay parade.Participants in a parade in the Czech city of Brno were also attacked by anti-gay activists last week.Hungary passed a law last year which will legalize registered partnerships of same-sex couples from 2009. Hungarian gay groups have argued they should be allowed to adopt children.Last year, when participants of the gay parade were pelted with eggs in Budapest, rights group Amnesty International criticized Hungary for what it said was a failure of police to protect the peaceful march.
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Hitler waxwork sparks controversy

NAZI REVIVAL WATCH:Man rips head from Hitler wax figure

BERLIN-A man tore the head from a controversial waxwork figure of Adolf Hitler on the opening day of Berlin's Madame Tussauds museum on Saturday, police said.Just minutes after the museum opened, the 41-year-old German man pushed aside two security men guarding the exhibit."Then he went over to the figure and ripped off the head," a police spokesman said.The man tore off the head in protest at the exhibit, the spokesman added. The police were alerted and arrested the man, who did not resist. He was later released though he remained under investigation for assault and damaging property.The waxwork figure of a glum-looking Adolf Hitler in a mock bunker during the last days of his life was criticized as being in bad taste. A media preview of the new branch of Madame Tussauds on Thursday was overshadowed by a row over the exhibit.Critics said it was inappropriate to display the Nazi dictator, who started World War Two and ordered the extermination of Europe's Jews, in a museum alongside celebrities, pop stars, world statesmen and sporting heroes.Dressed in a grey suit, the figure of Hitler gazed downwards with a despondent stare, his arm outstretched on a large wooden table with a map of Europe on the wall of his gloomy bunker.About 25 workers spent about four months on the waxwork, using more than 2,000 pictures and pieces of archive material and also guided by a model of the "Fuehrer" in the London branch of Madame Tussauds where it is standing upright.It is illegal in Germany to show Nazi symbols and art glorifying Hitler and the exhibit was cordoned off to stop visitors posing with him.
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Friday, July 4, 2008

Google ordered: hand over user data

Iran:death penalty for “corrupt weblogs”

New legislation has been proposed in Iran that could make blogging a crime punishable by death. Cyrus Farivar has a story on today's edition of the PRI radio show The World: Iran considers harsh penalty for some bloggers (3:30).Over at Global Voices, Hamid Tehrani writes:
On Wednesday, Iranian members of parliament voted to discuss a draft bill that seeks to “toughen punishment for disturbing mental security in society.” The text of the bill would add, “establishing websites and weblogs promoting corruption, prostitution and apostasy,” to the list of crimes punishable by death.In recent years, some Iranian bloggers have been sent to jail and many have had their sites filtered. If the Iranian parliament approves this draft bill, bloggers fear they could be legally executed as criminals. No one has defined what it means to “disturb mental security in society”.Such discussion concerning blogs has not been unique to Iran. It shows that many authorities do not only wish to filter blogs, but also to eliminate bloggers!
A translated English copy of the proposed legislation is here. [International Campaign for Human Rights in Iran]
Image: "Women In Black," by Matthew Winterburn, who has some really neat photos of Iran in his Flickr stream.
Posted by Xeni Jardin
As in the days of Noah...

QUAKEWATCH:Major quake hits region of Okhotsk Sea

A major earthquake with a magnitude of 7.5 hit the region of the Sea of Okhotsk early Saturday....
To read these news go to:
As in the days of Noah...

Netherlands bans Iranian students from nuclear studies

The Netherlands will ban Iranian students from studying nuclear technology, a source of tension between Iran and world powers,at its universities, the government said Friday."It is forbidden...to grant Iranian nationals access to special training or teaching that could contribute to nuclear proliferation activities in Iran and the development of systems for transmitting nuclear arms," the foreign ministry said in a statement.Some powers including the United States suspect Iran of seeking to develop a nuclear bomb. Iran insists its nuclear program is aimed at producing energy to serve a growing population.Friday's measure adds to a Dutch decree adopting international sanctions against Iran that were put in place last year.It bans Iranians notably from the nuclear reactor in Borssele in the southeastern Netherlands, and from a test reactor at the Delft University of Technology.The ministry said the ban does not cover undergraduate studies up to bachelor's degree level, which are considered not to be specialised, and that it will consider requests for exceptions to be made.
As in the days of Noah....

Bad News Plagues Beijing Olympics With Algae...Now:"Locusts"

Beijing Olympic organizers, struggling to clear their algae-choked sailing venue and facing a possible locust invasion, say these latest challenges to next month's games are no"major problem.''
About 10,000 people are scooping algae out of the sea at the eastern city of Qingdao, while officials in Inner Mongolia are preparing to fight off a plague of locusts that may arrive in the capital city during the Olympics."There's an old saying in China that good things only come after enduring a lot of hardship,'' Jiang Xiaoyu, vice president of the Beijing organizing committee, said yesterday in Beijing."We expected to face many challenges so it's not a surprise. These issues aren't major problems.''So far this year, the world's most populous nation has faced the worst winter snowstorms in 50 years, riots in Lhasa, violent protests about government policies toward Tibet along the Olympic torch relay route in Europe and North America, an earthquake and flooding.China is still recovering from the Sichuan earthquake that killed more than 69,000 people in May, tempering the run-up to an Olympics billed as the country's coming-out party.The nation's focus on helping survivors and rebuilding dozens of towns and cities is taking its toll on Olympic- related businesses, said Devin Kao, whose company holds the license to market metal Olympic souvenirs.
'Bad Things'
Monthly sales of 400,000 Olympic pins or key chains before May have since slumped to 50,000 as companies canceled orders so they could make donations to relief efforts, he said."Quite a lot of bad things have happened in China,'' Kao said in a telephone interview from Shanghai."Sales aren't meeting our expectations; it shouldn't be like this.'' Advertising spending in China also fell 15 percent in May from April because of the quake, according to Rita Chan, executive director for China at rating agency Nielsen Co."This is mainly because there was a mourning period of three days in mainland China,'' she said in a televised interview yesterday. Even Olympics sponsors cut their ad spending, she said.In Qingdao, host to the five-day sailing event, some 4,000 troops and 6,000 workers have collected 290,000 tons of string- like algae in the past week. The city government is aiming for a return to normal conditions along its coastline by July 15.
'Full Confidence'

With more than 20 Olympic teams already in town preparing for the games, officials are focusing on clearing the training areas and may use chemicals to speed up the process, Jiang said."We've seen algae along the coast of Qingdao before but it's the most serious case in recent years,'' he said."We have full confidence that we can complete the cleanup in time for the competition and the algae won't affect operations.''Local officials blamed the algae bloom on warmer weather, higher rainfall and increased levels of nutrients in the sea, and said about one tenth of the sailing regatta area remains covered.The northern province of Inner Mongolia has mobilized 33,000 people to repel swarms of locusts, the official Xinhua news agency reported. The locusts have come within 430 kilometers (267 miles) of Beijing and infested an area of 1.3 million hectares (5,000 square miles).Beijing organizers said they are in contact with Inner Mongolian officials to monitor the situation and discuss contingency plans. Cooler-than-usual weather means the hatching of locust eggs in the areas closest to Beijing has been delayed until late July or August."Trials and tribulations serve to revitalize a nation,'' said Peng Zaiwei, a Shenzhen resident who has tickets for the swimming events in Beijing and is visiting the capital to look after his pregnant daughter.Six months of bad news haven't diminished residents' faith that the games will be a success."The trials are problems which could have happened anytime-before or after the Olympics,'' said Mu Zhanquan, who works in the capital's central business district."But my confidence in a successful Beijing Olympics won't erode.''
By Grant Clark
As in the days of Noah....

Tropical Storm Bertha churns in the Atlantic

MIAMI-Tropical Storm Bertha is still churning in the Atlantic Ocean off the coast of Africa.At 8 p.m. EDT Friday, Bertha was centered about 505 miles west of the Cape Verde Islands.
Maximum sustained winds are near 50 mph. Some gradual strengthening was forecast during the next day or two.It's still too early to say if or where Bertha will hit land.The first named storm this year, Arthur, formed in the Atlantic the day before the season officially started June 1 and soaked the Yucatan Peninsula.
As in the days of Noah....

The Great Price of Our Freedom...!!!!!

Dear friends:
I've just arrived home from spending a wonderful day with friends and really taking it easy and relaxing and enjoying some good cooking by the grill...It was sunny and warm...Another 4th of July is already gone!!!!
When checking my messages just now,4 of them were not good news about friends that are battling disease.
They were not celebrating today...they are in pain...
It hurts me that they are suffering so much in their bodies...and that made me think about being grateful to God for every day of our lives--good or bad--we take so many things for granted!!!!!
We take our freedom for granted--but it wasn-t FREE for those who gave their lives for us to enjoy it...
We take our salvation lightly sometimes--but it wasnt FREE for Jesus,HE gave it ALL for us on the Cross of Calvary....
Before we left my friends house tonite,we just sat by the table and were talking about the days we are living in and how we are suppose to live them....with the fear of God and being sober,knowing not the day or the hour....but knowing for sure that the time is getting nearer and nearer....We cannot SLEEP or SLUMBER....We cannot QUIT now....We cannot just GIVE UP....WE cannot live in DEFEAT....We cannot go thru the motions....We cannot waste any time in distractions that may kill us spiritually in the future....We ARE to SPEND TIME WITH GOD in the closet of prayer....We NEED to SEEK His Face and His Presence like never before....There is SO MUCH MORE for those who hunger and thirst for the Kingdom of God and He wants us to have it all!!!!!!
For such a time as this we are here....For such a times as this we have this daily challenge before us....We need to walk softly before the Lord....We need to make Him the center of our lives and keep on seeking and knocking and asking,cause HE IS NEAR....
This is not a time for CONDEMNATION....but a time to believe in His Word and Use it as our weapon as we walk thru this straight narrow way....
This is not time for SELF PITY....but a time to know who we are in Christ and live and move and exist from that place of authority
This is no time for EXCUSES....but a time to ask God to forgive us for all the times we closed our ears to somebody's cries and to His Woeing,and start again afresh.....
This is a time to BE READY AT ALL TIMES....cause the hour is near today than when we first believed.....
These times are not for us to draw back unto perdition but for us to BELIEVE to the saving of our souls...
May the Lord help us to never take this Great Salvation for granted....
May we can celebrate every day--as born again christians--and be ALWAYS grateful to the LORD for our independence from the kingdom of darkness...
May we always remember that our spiritual freedom came at a GREAT PRICE....:JESUS DEATH ON THE CROSS OF CALVARY....!!!!

May the Lord bless you and your family whoever you may be that are reading...
In Jesus
As in the days of Noah....
PS:I salute the brave men and women in uniform that have fought or are fighting for us somewhere in the world and my respects to the families of those fallen heroes that paid the ultimate sacrifice for their country.
May the Lord bless you all richly,protect you and comfort you.
Thank you!!!!

HAPPY 4th OF JULY...!!!!!

Thursday, July 3, 2008

Israeli rabbi invited to Saudi interfaith meeting

JERUSALEM-Saudi Arabia has invited an Israeli rabbi to an interfaith conference in Spain, potentially the first step in wider contacts between the kingdom and Israel, the rabbi told The Associated Press on Thursday.Rabbi David Rosen said Saudi Arabia called the conference, set for Madrid from July 16-18, to bring world religions together to confront common challenges. Rosen called the invitation "a historic step for them."But he warned that it might be no more than a Saudi attempt to improve its image and that of Islam in the face of criticism over the Sept. 11, 2001 terrorist attacks in the U.S. and other instances of Islamic extremism.No comment was available Thursday from the Saudi embassy in Madrid.Israel and Saudi Arabia have no diplomatic relations. As guardian of Islam's two holiest sites, Saudi Arabia has traditionally shunned any public contact with Israel or its representatives.About 200 people have been invited, including Islamic notables from Arab countries, as well as Jewish and Christian leaders. Among them are Franklin Graham, son of renowned evangelist Billy Graham, and former Vice President Al Gore.Rosen said he received an invitation from the World Muslim League, sponsored by King Abdullah of Saudi Arabia.Rosen, former chief rabbi of Ireland who serves as head of interfaith relations for the American Jewish Committee, is not identified as an Israeli on the conference list; rather, as an American Jewish Committee official.He said the invitation stemmed from the Saudi recognition that "the world needs to see Muslim initiatives for cooperation and for constructive engagement."At a meeting last month, Abdullah told 500 delegates from around 50 Muslim nations that Muslims must do away with the dangers of extremism to present Islam's "good message" to the world.Rosen is a veteran of efforts to bring religious leaders together for talks. He was prominent in negotiations in the 1990s that resulted in Israel and the Vatican establishing diplomatic relations.Interviewed by telephone from Tangiers, Morocco, where he is helping to set up a Jewish-Vatican-Moroccan conference, Rosen said the value of the Madrid conference depends on the goal of the Saudi organizers.If holding the meeting for the sake of publicity is the whole intention, Rosen said, "then I have no great expectations, and it will be another one-off event of very limited consequence."However, even then it would not be a lost cause, he said, citing a passage from the Jewish Talmud, "He who does right for the wrong reason will eventually do right for the right reason."Rosen said the conference could be "the beginning of a process that is in our interest, not just in their interest, in the interest of Israel, the Jewish people and the free world."Others on the list obtained by the AP are Archbishop of Canterbury Rowan Williams, Archbishop Desmond Tutu of South Africa and Pope Shenouda III, head of the Coptic Church.Those from Arab nations are largely establishment figures from government-condoned institutions, including several prominent clerics representing Saudi Arabia's strict Wahhabi interpretation of Islam. Several Shiites were also invited.It was not immediately known who among those invited had agreed to attend.
As in the days of Noah...

Report: Iran will halt enrichment if West removes sanctions

Iran expressed readiness to freeze its uranium enrichment program in return for lifting the international sanctions imposed on it, Israel's Channel 2 senior analyst Ehud Ya'ari revealed Thursday evening.He cited unnamed Western officials as the source of the new development.In the newly formulated deal, incentives were also reportedly discussed, including rebuilding Iran's fleet of aircraft and aiding the country with civilian nuclear technology.According to the report, an initial six-week trial period would be implemented.The Jerusalem Post could not neither confirm nor deny the report.In the past, Iran has staunchly resisted repeated incentive packages offered by the West in return for halting it enrichment program and has also intermittently limited access of IAEA officials to its nuclear sites.The West, spearheaded by the US and Israel, rejects Iran's claim that its nuclear program is geared towards peaceful purposes only.Recently a set of sanctions was imposed on Teheran by the European Union, after the UN has already imposed three rounds of sanctions on the Islamic Republic.The recent EU sanctions include a ban on trading with Bank Melli, Iran's main state-sponsored bank.The unconfirmed report Thursday comes after Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad expressed scorn at the West's sanctions and said Iran will push on with its nuclear program despite them.Reportedly, talks on Iran freezing its enrichment program were being held between the Islamic Republic and the five permanent members of the UN Security Council - the US, Russia, Britain, France and china - and also Germany and the EU.
As in the days of Noah...

'Allah's Will,' Says Family of Bulldozer Terrorist

Sur Baher, Jerusalem-As Israeli officials were mulling Israel's response to what is being described as a terror attack in the heart of Jerusalem, Arab residents of the man's Jerusalem neighborhood-and his widow-were still in shock and disbelief on Thursday.The incident highlighted the delicate balance between Israeli Jews and Arabs who share the city.Husam Taysir Dwayat, 30, an Arab resident of Jerusalem, drove a front-end loader down a busy main street of Jerusalem on Wednesday, crushing cars in his path, ramming a bus until it overturned and setting off a stampede of people running for their lives.Three Israelis were killed, including a 33-year-old mother whose five-month old baby was snatched from her vehicle by a passer-by just seconds before Dwayat smashed her car.Dozens of others were injured. Dwayat was finally stopped by an off-duty soldier, a civilian and an off-duty anti-terror policeman, who all climbed onto the cab, struggled with him and finally shot him dead as he yelled Allahu Akbar and tried to continue driving. Three terrorist organizations claimed responsibility for the attack, but residents of Sur Baher, where Dwayat lived with his wife and two sons, said that Dwayat had no such connections. According to reports, Dwayat appears to have acted alone and was not part of a terrorist organization.He did have a criminal record, mainly for drug felonies and furniture theft, the Jerusalem Post quoted a police spokesman as saying.
A widow in denial
Sur Baher is an Arab village of some 15,000-20,000 residents that is part of Jerusalem. Surrounded by Jewish neighborhoods on three sides, an estimated 90 percent of its residents work in Jerusalem with Jewish Israelis.Sitting in her living room,Dwayat's 20-year-old widow Jamilla seemed to be in denial on Thursday. Dressed in black, she was attended by her mother and female relatives and did not seem to have been crying."Hussam had an accident. He was a good man, a nice man," said Huda Dawash, Jamilla's mother. She said she told her daughter it was Allah's will.Jamilla doesn't believe Husam is dead, another relative said.Jamilla, who married at 15, said she would continue to live in her house and raise her two boys, ages five and three. The apartment is part of a family home: Dwayat's parents live on the third floor and Jamilla on the second, as is customary in Middle Eastern culture. The apartment, which has a commanding view of the neighboring Jewish area, is comfortably furnished. A picture of the Dome of the Rock on the Temple Mount and verse from the Koran adorn the walls of the living room. Huda said that Dwayat had been engaged to a Jewish woman but her parents had taken her away. She said it doesn't make sense that a man who was engaged to a Jewish woman would want to go and kill Jews.Maher, 38, a father of five was sitting in a circle with other men and boys from the village outside the Dwayat home."Nothing was clear and no one knows what happened there. According to the television video, we think someone killed him intentionally...We are waiting for the results of the investigation,"(((Isn't it AMAZING the State of Denial in which muslims are--most of the time????it's scary!!!!!)))) he said."We never thought about something like this, especially not from him. All his life he went from his house to work and from work to his house. He didn't have contact with anyone," Maher said. "If he wanted to commit a terror attack, he could have gone up on the bus and that would have been it-30-40 dead but he didn't do anything to the bus.""All the village is in shock.We don't understand how this could happen.Usually things like this don't happen here," said one resident who gave his name as Mahmoud, 30, and said he is a truck driver. "We don't know anything regarding the man. How he reacted. What they said to him. They said he took drugs. We don't know how something like this happened and we don't support this kind of thing at all. We're really sorry about everything that happened. We extend our condolences to the families of those killed. But there's nothing to do. It's not connected to us."Mahmoud said he did not believe there were extremist elements like Hamas and Islamic Jihad in the village. Dwayat was not a religious man and wasn't connected to terrorist elements, he said. "It was his own idea," he said. It was a shame they killed him and didn't just stop him, he said."Everyone here supports peace -- only peace. They want to live; they want to enjoy life. They don't have anything against the state (Israel)," said Mahmoud, even if the state does things against them.
Delicate balance
The attack highlighted again the intricate balance of co-existence that exists between the city's Jewish and Arab residents, where Israel has maintained sovereignty over the entire city since the 1967 Six-Day War. Jerusalem Arabs carry blue Israeli identity cards, allowing them to travel freely throughout the city (and country). They have all the social benefits of Israelis and vote in municipal elections - though they complain that their infrastructure and educational system are not on par with Jewish residents of the city. Many work together with Israeli Jews or within or interface with the Israeli governmental or educational systems or business sector.Reserve Col. Reuven Berko, who recently ended a 10-year stint as the Arab Affairs Adviser to the Jerusalem police, said that Arabs are living in Jerusalem under a "formula of co-existence" in the united city. "Of course they will never stop being Palestinians. They will never turn into Zionists," Berko told Cybercast News Service ."But they prefer our hell to Palestinian paradise."Berko said he did not believe that there was a "new trend" developing whereby Jerusalem Arabs would want to start carrying out terror attacks against Israel. But he said that Jerusalem Arabs are exposed to "intensive incitement," not only in the schools and mosques but also through satellite television-where they can tune into Hezbollah and Hamas television - as well as through the Internet.Palestinian radical groups concentrate on making chaos in Jerusalem. Places like Sur Baher and other Arab neighborhoods of Jerusalem are exposed to intensive recruiting activity from radical Islamic groups, said Berko.The majority of Jerusalem Arabs are ordinary people who just want to live quietly, and although they are hesitant to admit it publicly, they prefer to live under Israeli authority, he said.Israeli Prime Minister Ehud Olmert held consultations with his senior advisors following the attack on Wednesday and said there was no way to "fence-off the Arabs of east Jerusalem and every home of a potential terrorist."But he said that terror attacks by Arabs from eastern Jerusalem had to be stopped, even if that meant demolishing culprits' homes as a means of deterrence, Israeli press reports quoted him as saying.Shortly after Wednesday's attack, the Israeli Knesset passed the preliminary reading of two related bills: one would strip terrorists and those belonging to terrorist organizations of their citizenship and a second would prohibit the erection of a mourning tent for terrorists.Berko said that he favors the idea of demolishing the homes of terrorists, not for the sake of revenge but as a punishment for their acts and as a means of deterrence, provided the individual's home is isolated from that of others.If Israel allows this incident to pass without taking any action, it will encourage others to do the same, said Berko.
As in the days of Noah....

Hero was rejected from military for protesting Gaza retreat:20-year-old Moshe Klessner shot dead terrorist on murderous bulldozer rampage

JERUSALEM-A heroic off-duty soldier who yesterday shot dead a terrorist on a murderous rampage was initially rejected from the Israeli military because he protested Israel's 2005 retreat from the Gaza Strip, it emerged today.The soldier, 20-year old Moshe Klessner, was forced to fight in court to get accepted into the military due to his activism against the Gaza evacuation.Shocking video footage obtained by Israel's Haaretz newspaper shows Klessner climbing onto a bulldozer driven by a terrorist against traffic and that was plowing into cars, buses and shocked crowds. Klessner can be seen shooting the terrorist several times in the head, halting an attack that had already killed three – including two female teachers – and injured 57 others. Klessner had grabbed the gun of a nearby police officer.In yesterday's rampage, Jabr Duwait, a 30-year-old Palestinian Arab resident of eastern Jerusalem, drove the bulldozer on Jerusalem's popular Jaffa Street. His attack sent pedestrians and bus passengers fleeing the scene. According to witness accounts, two women tossed their infants out of a bus window seconds before the bus was overturned. One of the women was killed in the attack. Israeli media reports today revealed Klessner, who has thus far avoided the limelight, recently enlisted in an elite Israel Defense Forces commando unit after spending two years in court overturning an IDF decision against drafting him. Klessner had been refused, because he took part in the protests against Israel's Gaza evacuation.Klessner is a yeshiva graduate. He has turned down media requests for interviews but released a statement explaining he interceded in yesterday's attack "in accordance with the (biblical) precept of 'don't stand by your brother's blood,' even at the risk of getting hurt."Apparently heroism runs close to Klessner. His brother-in-law, David Shapira, a civilian and former soldier, was the man who finally killed a terrorist gunman in March during a yeshiva massacre in Jerusalem in which eight students were murdered in cold blood. Shapira had run into the school while other police officers refused to engage the terrorist during the gunman's rampage.
As in the days of Noah....

Group Asks for Divine Intervention to Ease Oil Prices

As the price of oil continues to rise, some are turning to God and prayer for an answer to their financial troubles. The Pray at the Pump Movement, founded by Rocky Twyman, has been holding prayer vigils at gas stations across the country. On Monday, Twyman decided to take his movement from Exxon and Shell stations straight to the steps of the Embassy of Saudi Arabia in Washington, D.C., hoping to encourage the oil-rich country to raise the amount of barrels they release each day from 200,000 to 1.2 million. Twyman, who is a member of the Seventh-day Adventist Church, spent the afternoon outside of the embassy praying and asking passersby to sign his petition for the release of more oil, which he hopes to deliver to the Saudi oil minister. "Our people are really suffering through this crisis," Twyman told Cybercast News Service. "We need the Saudis to release at least 1.2 [million] barrels of oil per day for about the next six months until we can get everything settled in America ... (I)f they can just do that for us, than this will help us get through this crisis."Twyman, who prompted the first national campaign aimed at getting African Americans to become bone marrow donors, has moved on to more active participation to lower gas prices than eliciting the help of God through prayer. "I think we have just entered a new phase. We were in the prayerful phase, but now we're going into a more activist phase, because we feel that whole faith without works is dead," Twyman told reporters.Prayer aside, some argue that there is very little the average consumer can do to influence gas prices. John Neurohr from the Center for American Progress, a liberal think tank, has a different approach to managing the high gas prices. "There is little, if anything, the average person can do to reduce gas prices generally," Neurohr told Cybercast News Service. "What they can do is reduce their personal dependence on gasoline by carpooling and utilizing public transportation."Whether consumers decide to pray more or pump less, it is likely that the big changes will result from incremental steps towards more consumer-friendly oil policies.
By Allison Aldrich and Keriann Hopkins
CNSNews.com Correspondents
As in the days of Noah....

'Pregnant man' gives birth to girl: reports

A US man who was born a woman before undergoing gender realignment surgery has given birth to a baby girl, US media reported Thursday.Thomas Beatie, who is legally male but decided to keep his female sex organs during chest reconstruction surgery and testosterone therapy, attracted worldwide attention in April after revealing his pregnancy.The 34-year-old gave birth to a baby girl at a hospital in Bend, Oregon, ABC News reported, without providing further details.Beatie, who sports a beard, was dubbed the 'pregnant man' after appearing on Oprah Winfrey's television talkshow to discuss his pregnancy."I feel it's not a male or female desire to have a child. It's a human need. I'm a person and I have the right to have a biological child," Beatie told the chat show queen. Beatie's unusual situation first became public when he wrote an article in the leading US gay magazine The Advocate in March, entitled "Labor of Love.""To our neighbors, my wife, Nancy, and I don't appear in the least unusual," he wrote, explaining that his wife was unable to have a child after undergoing a hysterectomy. So he chose to become pregnant by artificial insemination, he said."Our situation sparks legal, political, and social unknowns," Beatie wrote, adding the couple had experienced opposition from health care professionals, friends and family.One doctor refused to treat the couple, after consulting an ethics board."How does it feel to be a pregnant man? Incredible.Despite the fact that my belly is growing with a new life inside me, I am stable and confident being the man that I am," Beatie wrote.
PS:This Thomas is still a WOMAN,(and she will always be a woman--no matter what she does to herself,that is in her genes,which she cannot alter)and because she still has an uterus and ovaries and tubes,she could get pregnant....poor baby....
As in the days of Noah....

Google Ordered to Hand Over All YouTube User Data

Ever check out YouTube? Have a user name and password for it? Then Viacom's going to find out all about what you like to watch.A federal judge ruled Tuesday that the online video-sharing Web site, owned by Google, has to turn over all its user logs to Viacom, the mega-corporation that owns MTV, Paramount Pictures, Comedy Central and VH1, among others.Viacom sued Google last year, claiming that YouTube willfully infringed its copyrights by letting its users post clips from "South Park" and "The Daily Show" willy-nilly.YouTube, citing the Digital Millennium Copyright Act of 1998, argues it doesn't have to take down those clips until Viacom complains about each and every one.Viacom says that's bunk, and is joined in its lawsuit by the Premier League of England's Football Association, which doesn't like pro soccer highlights turning up on YouTube.Judge Louis L. Stanton actually delivered a mixed ruling-he refused Viacom's demand that Google turn over YouTube's source code, the software that runs the site, agreeing with Google that that was a trade secret.But he used Google's own argument, explained here on Google's own site, that revealing users' Internet Protocol addresses-which identify every single computer, server, cell phone or toaster connected to the Internet-does not constitute an invasion of privacy.Google must now turn over all its data about YouTube visitors on four 1-terabyte hard drives, a staggering amount of data, as well as copies of all clips it has ever taken down. (One terabyte is 1,000 gigabytes.)The Electronic Frontier Foundation, a San Francisco organization that defends the rights of Internet users, quickly protested the ruling, saying it "threatens to expose deeply private information about what videos are watched by YouTube users."Viacom wants the data to prove that copyrighted "stolen" material is more popular among YouTube visitors than original "user-generated" material.It sought the source code to show that YouTube does have software in place to filter out some objectionable content-for example, YouTube manages to keep pornography and explicit nudity off the site-but chooses to allow copyrighted material as part of its business model.There is no indication Viacom will seek to track down individual users. It would have to contact users' Internet service providers-for example, Time Warner Cable, Verizon or America Online-to do so, and it's not clear if the ISPs would be compelled to turn over the data, especially in a civil case.Google is likely to appeal the ruling.
• Click here to read more about this at Wired.
• Click here to read a BBC News analysis of the ruling's legal implications.
As in the days of Noah....