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

Saturday, November 22, 2008

Huge Meteorite Stuns Witnesses as Fireball Plunges to Earth in Western Canada

A brilliant fireball streaks a cross the western Canada sky, with numerous people witnessing the meteor of many colors. No fragments have been found, but an expert says it is likely some fell to to the ground in Alberta and Saskatchewan...

Somali Pirates Release Greek Chemical Tanker Hijacked in September

ATHENS,Greece-Somali pirates released a Greek-owned tanker that was hijacked in September, a Greek government spokesman said Saturday.The tanker MV Genius was released Friday with its cargo of refined oil intact and the crew of 19 safe,Merchant Marine Ministry spokesman Constantine Gialelis said.He said the ship's owners would not provide any information, including whether ransom was paid.The 6,765 gross-ton vessel is on its way to the United Arab Emirates and is about 500 miles off Somalia, Gialelis said.The crew are Georgian, Sri Lankan and Syrian citizens, he added.Somali pirates seized the vessel Sept. 26 in the Gulf of Aden near the Horn of Africa, waters that have become highly dangerous for shipping.In the past two weeks, Somalia's increasingly brazen pirates have seized eight vessels, including a huge Saudi supertanker loaded with $100 million worth of crude oil. Several hundred crew are now in the hands of Somali pirates. The pirates dock the hijacked ships near the eastern and southern Somali coast and negotiate for ransom.Saudi Arabia's foreign minister said Friday that the Saudi government was not negotiating with pirates and would not do so, but that what the ship's owners did was up to them.The same day, a radical Islamic group in Somalia said ships belonging to Muslim countries should not be seized and that it would fight the pirates holding the Saudi supertanker.NATO has four warships on duty off the 2,400-mile-long coastline of Somalia, an impoverished nation caught up in an Islamic insurgency that has had no functioning government since 1991.The U.S. 5th Fleet based in Bahrain, contributes to the policing of the coast with several ships stationed in the region as part of America's anti-jihadist war. Working alongside are frigates from several other nations-including Russia, India, Malaysia and Denmark.Next month, the European Union takes over the NATO mission, sending four ships to replace the four now patrolling under the NATO flag.
As in the days of Noah....

Piracy Too Lucrative To Be Stopped?

Pirates will infest Gulf if US quits Iraq too soon:minister

Iraq's defence minister(picture left) warned on Saturday that the Gulf would be infested by pirates and Iraq left at risk of attack by its neighbours if US forces leave the country too soon."Coalition forces are currently protecting the Gulf, and our navy will not receive its first ships until April 2009," Abdel Qader Jassem Mohammed al-Obeidi told a press conference in Baghdad.If those forces "withdraw precipitously, our gulf will become like the Gulf of Aden, where there have been 95 acts of piracy," he said.Obeidi was addressing journalists on his support for the controversial military pact that would allow US troops to remain in Iraq until the end of 2011, a deal now being considered by the Iraqi parliament.The minister did not enlarge on his remarks or explain how the Gulf would become prey to pirates when one of its littoral states, Bahrain, is home to the US Navy's Fifth Fleet.The Gulf, which supplies the bulk of world oil imports, is also bordered by Kuwait, Saudi Arabia, Qatar, the United Arab Emirates,Oman and Iran, all of whose navies patrol the waterway. Somali-based pirates have in recent months been plaguing shipping in the Gulf of Aden and in the Indian Ocean off the east coast of Africa.Obeidi also said Iraqi territory risks being attacked by neighbouring states, referring to Turkey's bombing of Turkish Kurdish PKK rebels in their mountain hideaways of northern Iraq."Today, Iraq is the target of bombing from abroad but it is limited because the (US-led) coalition represents a dissuasion force," he said."If it not there any more, the whole country risks being the target of shooting, even (the southern port of) Basra, and they will justify their actions by referring to information on a PKK base there," the minister said.Obeidi also said his country has turned into "a battleground for different foreign intelligence services," without naming any countries."Iraqi security forces, backed by the coalition, must impose a limit on their activities, of which Iraqis are the victims," the defence minister added.
As in the days of Noah....

Crackdown on Sea Terror

Islamists on trail of Somali pirates

MOGADISHU-Dozens of Somali Islamist insurgents stormed a port on Friday hunting the pirates behind the seizure of a Saudi supertanker that was the world's biggest hijack, a local elder said.Separately, police in the capital Mogadishu said they had ambushed and shot dead 17 Islamist militants, in the latest illustration of the chaos in the Horn of Africa country that has fueled a dramatic surge in piracy.The Sirius Star-a Saudi vessel with a $100 million oil cargo and 25-man crew from the Philippines, Saudi Arabia, Croatia, Poland and Britain-is believed anchored offshore near Haradheere, about half-way up Somalia's long coastline."Saudi Arabia is a Muslim country and hijacking its ship is a bigger crime than other ships," Sheikh Abdirahim Isse Adow, an Islamist spokesman, told Reuters."Haradheere is under our control and we shall do something about that ship."Both the U.S. Navy and Dubai-based ship operator Vela International said they could not confirm a media report the hijackers were demanding a $25 million ransom. That would be the biggest demand to date by pirates who prey on boats in the Gulf of Aden and Indian Ocean off Somalia.A pirate identifying himself as Jamii Adam told the Saudi-owned Asharq al-Awsat newspaper that negotiations were taking place with the ship's owners, saying the ransom demanded was not excessive but declining to give a figure.He said it had cost the pirates $500,000 to seize the vessel."We bore many costs to hijack it," he said.Iran's biggest shipping firm said gunmen holding a Hong Kong-flagged ship carrying wheat and 25 crew members had set demands for its release, but it did not reveal what they were.An upsurge of attacks this year has forced up shipping insurance costs, made some firms go round South Africa instead of via the Suez Canal, brought millions in ransom payments, and prompted an international naval response.Pirates released a commercial vessel with 19 crew on board which had been hijacked in September, Andrew Mwangura of the East African Seafarers' Association said on Friday.Mwangura said the crew were Romanians, but the Romanian authorities denied this. Interfax news agency said the crew included six Georgian citizens.
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As in the days of Noah....

Pirates Get Ships Routes From Yemen

They have collaborators in other places too. Asharq Alawasat interviews pirates:
Riyadh, Asharq Al-Awsat- Adam disclosed that the pirates benefit from information they receive from their partners who support and provide them with information from other countries and said: "We have countries that give us information about the ships in the sea, if there are commercial ships or sailing in our way." He added that these neighboring countries are Yemen, Eritrea, Kenya, and South Africa. Asked how they follow the ships, he said: "We have radars and know every ship's location. We have collaborators in Kenya, Sri Lanka, Yemen, and Dubai." He pointed out that these collaborators have nothing to do with the money "and they only provide us with the information." Jami Adam stressed that the pirates' partners who are present in more than one Arab, African, and Asian country raise the costs of their operating expenditures in the single hijack, adding that the cost of a hijacking might reach $500,000.
HT: Crossroads Arabia
Full article worth a read.
By Jane
As in the days of Noah...

Saudi Arabia to Join NATO Naval Mission;Pirates Boost Defenses

Saudi Arabia said it will join a fleet of NATO warships on an anti-piracy mission, as hijackers bolstered defenses around an oil-laden Saudi tanker captured off the East African coast.The kingdom will contribute"naval assets to help in pursuing piracy in the region, and this is the only way this can be dealt with,'' Saudi Foreign Minister Prince Saud al-Faisal told reporters in Oslo today after meeting with his Norwegian counterpart, Jonas Gahr Stoere. "Negotiations and ransoms only encourage piracy and are not a solution.' 'Al-Faisal didn't provide details of the Saudi contribution to the forces in the Gulf of Aden, flanked by Somalia and Yemen and leading to the Suez Canal, where at least 91 merchant vessels have been attacked since January. The Saudi ship is being held for a ransom of $25 million.In Harardhare, a town in Somalia's semi-autonomous Puntland region close to where the ship is anchored, pirates are bringing in extra fighters to strengthen security, Bile Mohamoud Qabowsade, senior adviser to Puntland President Adde Muse, said in an interview yesterday.The Sirius Star, which belongs to Saudi Arabia's state-owned shipping line, Vela International Marine Ltd., along with its crew of 25 was seized on Nov. 15 about 420 nautical miles (833 kilometers) off Somalia. It is carrying more than 2 million barrels of crude valued at about $110 million. The ship itself is worth about $148 million new.The Saudi foreign minister confirmed two days ago that Vela was in talks with the pirates; Vela has declined to comment. A man who identified himself as Abdi Salan, a member of the hijacking gang, said in a telephone interview yesterday that the ship's owners must pay up"soon.'' He didn't say what would happen if they didn't....
By Caroline Alexander and Marianne Stigset

As in the days of Noah....

Friday, November 21, 2008

Dad links son's suicide to 'The God Delusion':Says atheism-promoting book hidden under mattress, last page bookmarked

A New York man is linking the suicide of his 22-year-old son, a military veteran who had bright prospects in college, to the anti-Christian book "The God Delusion" by Richard Dawkins after a college professor challenged the son to read it."Three people told us he had taken a biology class and was doing well in it, but other students and the professor were really challenging my son, his faith. They didn't like him as a Republican, as a Christian, and as a conservative who believed in intelligent design," the grief-stricken father, Keith Kilgore, told WND about his son, Jesse. "This professor either assigned him to read or challenged him to read a book, 'The God Delusion,' by Richard Dawkins," he said.Jesse Kilgore committed suicide in October by walking into the woods near his New York home and shooting himself. Keith Kilgore said he was shocked because he believed his son was grounded in Christianity, had blogged against abortion and for family values, and boasted he'd been debating for years.After Jesse's death, Keith Kilgore learned of the book assignment from two of his son's friends and a relative. He searched Jesse's room and found the book under the mattress with his son's bookmark on the last page.A WND message seeking a comment from Dawkins or his publisher was not returned today.The first inkling of a reason for the suicide came, Keith Kilgore told WND, when one of Jesse's friends came to visit after word of his son's death circulated."She was in tears and said he was very upset by this book," Keith Kilgore said. "'It just destroyed him,' were her words."Then another friend at the funeral told me the same thing," Keith Kilgore said. "This guy was his best friend, and about the only other Christian on campus."The third one was the last person that my son talked to an hour before he died," Keith Kilgore told WND, referring to a member of his extended family whose name is not being revealed here.That relative, who had struggled with his own faith and had returned to Christianity, wrote in a later e-mail that Jesse "started to tell me about his loss of faith in everything.""He was pretty much an atheist, with no belief in the existence of God (in any form) or an afterlife or even in the concept of right or wrong," the relative wrote. "I remember him telling me that he thought that murder wasn't wrong per se, but he would never do it because of the social consequences - that was all there was - just social consequences."He mentioned the book he had been reading 'The God Delusion' by Richard Dawkins and how it along with the science classes he had taken had eroded his faith. Jesse was always great about defending his beliefs, but somehow, the professors and the book had presented him information that he found to be irrefutable. He had not talked … about it because he was afraid of how you might react. ... and that he knew most of your defenses of Christianity because he himself used them often. Maybe he had used them against his professors and had the ideas shot down."He then explained to Jesse his own personal journey of seeking "other explanations of God's existence" and told of his ultimate return."I told him it was my relationship with God, not my knowledge of Him that brought me back to my faith. No one convinced me with facts. ... it was a matter of the heart."Keith Kilgore believes it was a biology class that raised questions for his son, and a biology professor at Jefferson Community College in Watertown, N.Y., where his son was attending, who suggested the book.A school spokeswoman told WND that the "God Delusion" was not a part of the biology curriculum, and several of the professors she contacted said they had not even read the book. However, the spokeswoman was unable to contact all of the professors in the department and could not state that none of them had suggested the book to Jesse.Local police also did not respond to WND inquiries about the investigation into the death."One of his friends, and his uncle (they did not know each other) both told me that Jesse called them hours before he took his life and that he had lost all hope because he was convinced that God did not exist, and this book was the cause," Keith Kilgore told WND.Keith Kilgore, a retired military chaplain who has dealt with the various stages of grief and readily admits he's still in the "anger" stage over his son's death, said his son apparently had checked the "Delusion" out of the college library. "I'm all for academic freedom," Keith Kilgore said. "What I do have a problem with is if there's going to be academic freedom, there has to be academic balance."They were undermining every moral and spiritual value for my son," he said. "They ought to be held accountable."He suggested the moral is for Christians simply to abandon public schools wholly."Here's another thing," he continued. "If my son was a professing homosexual, and a professor challenged him to read a book called 'Preventing Homosexuality'… If my son was gay and the book made him feel bad, hopeless, and he killed himself, and that came out in the press, there would be an outcry."He would have been a victim of a hate crime and the professor would have been forced to undergo sensitivity training, and there may have even been a wrongful death lawsuit."But because he's a Christian, I don't even get a return telephone call," the father told WND.He said he tried to verify the book assignment himself several times, without getting a response from the school.Jesse Kilgore blogged on NetPotion and Newblog, and the writings that remained mostly addressed social ills and how anti-Christian many of the world's developments appeared to be.He used the pen name JKrapture because, his father said, "He believed in the rapture, the evangelical concept of the Lord coming back."On the Web, Jesse described himself as "conservative and mainly independent. I am a culture warrior and traditionalist. I have been debating since I was in 5th Grade, and never looked back. It is a habit I can't let go of."One of Jesse's uncles, writing on the same website as Jesse, wrote: "While I knew he was having struggles with his faith, I had no idea that it ran that deep. … There are not enough words to describe how devastated I am at his loss. I know that some of you got to know him pretty well and (since I already started getting some questions about him) felt that you all should know that he is no longer with us." From among the online community came these responses: "I am shocked and so sorry for your loss – our loss. My prayers are with you and all of your family at this difficult time," and "I AM at a loss of words.....I am sooooo sorry to hear your loss. My thoughts and prayers are with you and your family."Keith Kilgore told WND he feels, by allowing his son to move into the atmosphere of a secular school, like "I put a toddler in the front of my car.""My son is the Adam Walsh of the culture war. That's who my son is," he said, referring to the child abduction victim whose case was used to create a wide range of amber alert and other programs to protect children.He said he has a wake-up call over the anti-Christian agenda of public education. And he has some goals."I want to hold schools accountable for what they're teaching our kids. This was malpractice," he said.Dawkins, considered one of the world's most outspoken atheists, is a professor in the United Kingdom. He came to prominence in 1976 with his book "The Selfish Gene," promoting evolution.In his "Delusion" treatise he claims that a supernatural creator almost certainly does not exist and that faith qualifies as a "delusion" – a fixed false belief.
Read about the militant evangelists of God-denial, as David Kupelian exposes atheism in America.
By Bob Unruh
PS:I've been almost screaming from this blog to pull your children out of public school ASAP,and that of course includes liberal colleges,where the faith of young people is killed and where--like in this sad case--even their lives are TERMINATED by an overwhelming atheistic structure that has taken over and RULES in the AIR....
As in the days of Noah...

Bug-sized spies:US develops tiny flying robots

In this photo taken from computer animation video Friday, Nov. 21, 2008, and released by the U.S. Air Force, shows the next generation of drones, called Micro Aerial Vehicles, or MAVs. The MAVs could be as tiny as bumblebees and capable of flying undetected into buildings, where they could photograph, record, and even attack insurgents and terrorists. U.S. military engineers are trying to design flying robots disguised as insects that could one day spy on enemies and conduct dangerous missions without risking lives. (AP Photo/U.S. Air Force, HO)
DAYTON,Ohio-If only we could be a fly on the wall when our enemies are plotting to attack us. Better yet, what if that fly could record voices, transmit video and even fire tiny weapons?That kind of James Bond-style fantasy is actually on the drawing board. U.S. military engineers are trying to design flying robots disguised as insects that could one day spy on enemies and conduct dangerous missions without risking lives."The way we envision it is, there would be a bunch of these sent out in a swarm," said Greg Parker, who helps lead the research project at Wright-Patterson Air Force Base in Dayton."If we know there's a possibility of bad guys in a certain building, how do we find out? We think this would fill that void."
In essence, the research seeks to miniaturize the Unmanned Aerial Vehicle drones used in Iraq and Afghanistan for surveillance and reconnaissance.The next generation of drones, called Micro Aerial Vehicles, or MAVs, could be as tiny as bumblebees and capable of flying undetected into buildings, where they could photograph, record, and even attack insurgents and terrorists.By identifying and assaulting adversaries more precisely, the robots would also help reduce or avoid civilian casualties, the military says.Parker and his colleagues plan to start by developing a bird-sized robot as soon as 2015, followed by the insect-sized models by 2030.The vehicles could be useful on battlefields where the biggest challenge is collecting reliable intelligence about enemies. "If we could get inside the buildings and inside the rooms where their activities are unfolding, we would be able to get the kind of intelligence we need to shut them down," said Loren Thompson, a defense analyst with the Lexington Institute in Arlington, Va.Philip Coyle, senior adviser with the Center for Defense Information in Washington D.C., said a major hurdle would be enabling the vehicles to carry the weight of cameras and microphones."If you make the robot so small that it's like a bumblebee and then you ask the bumblebee to carry a video camera and everything else, it may not be able to get off the ground," Coyle said.Parker envisions the bird-sized vehicles as being able to spy on adversaries by flying into cities and perching on building ledges or power lines.The vehicles would have flappable wings as a disguise but use a separate propulsion system to fly. "We think the flapping is more so people don't notice it," he said. "They think it's a bird."Unlike the bird-sized vehicles, the insect-sized ones would actually use flappable wings to fly,Parker said.He said engineers want to build a vehicle with a 1-inch wingspan, possibly made of an elastic material. The vehicle would have sensors to help avoid slamming into buildings or other objects.Existing airborne robots are flown by a ground-based pilot, but the smaller versions would fly independently, relying on preprogrammed instructions.Parker said the tiny vehicles should also be able to withstand bumps."If you look at insects, they can bounce off of walls and keep flying," he said. "You can't do that with a big airplane, but I don't see any reason we can't do that with a small one."An Air Force video describing the vehicles said they could possibly carry chemicals or explosives for use in attacks.Once prototypes are developed, they will be flight-tested in a new building at Wright-Patterson dubbed the "micro aviary" for Micro Air Vehicle Integration Application Research Institute. "This type of technology is really the wave of the future," Thompson said. "More and more military research is going into things that are small, that are precise and that are extremely focused on particular types of missions or activities."
On the Net:
Air Force Research Lab: http://www.wpafb.af.mil/AFRL/
As in the days of Noah...

Cyber Attack on Pentagon May Have Come From China, Admiral Says

The cyber attack on the Department of Defense that has led to a ban on the use of external hardware devices may have come from China, a Navy rear admiral outside the Pentagon told his staff, FOX News has learned.The admiral, in a briefing to his staff on Thursday, characterized the virus as a coordinated attack that was strategically timed to hit between the Nov. 4 presidential election and Inauguration Day, Jan. 20.He described how a service member with access to classified information inadvertently loaded the virus onto his computer via a flash drive. As a result, he no longer knows where the computer's sensitive information is being stored.The cyber attack so alarmed the Pentagon that it took the unprecedented step of banning the use of external hardware devices, such as flash drives and recordable CDs and DVDs.The attack came in the form of a global virus or worm that is spreading rapidly throughout a number of military networks."We have detected a global virus for which there has been alerts, and we have seen some of this on our networks," a Pentagon official told FOX News. "We are now taking steps to mitigate the virus."The official could not reveal the source of the attack because that information remains classified."Daily there are millions of scans of the GIG (the Global Information Grid), but for security reasons we don't discuss the number of actual intrusions or attempts, or discuss specific measures commanders in the field may be taking to protect and defend our networks,"the Defense Department said in an official statement. Military computers are often referred to as part of the GIG, a system of 17 million computers, many of which house classified or sensitive information.FOX News obtained a copy of a memo sent out last week to an Army division warning of the cyber attack:"Due to the presence of commercial malware, CDR USSTRATCOM has banned the use of removable media (thumb drives, CDRs/DVDRs, floppy disks) on all DoD networks and computers effective immediately."
FOX News' Justin Fishel and Jennifer Griffin contributed to this report.
As in the days of Noah....

PERSECUTION WATCH:North Korea enraged by launch of Gospel gas balloons

North Korean officials are infuriated by leaflets that have been floated over the communist nation's secured borders and dropped from plastic bags attached to gas-filled balloons, and one organization behind the effort says there's good reason the atheists in power are upset – the pamphlets are carrying a Gospel message directly to the people...
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Sailors prefer pirates to no job

UN imposes fresh sanctions on Somalia after piracy talks:15-nation Security Council agrees to freeze pirates' assets

The United Nations Security Council unanimously imposed fresh sanctions on Somalia today amid calls for armed peacekeepers to be sent to the Horn of Africa.The diplomatic initiative came as Arab countries held a crisis meeting on how to tackle piracy, as the gang who hijacked a Saudi supertanker demanded a $25m ransom to be paid within 10 days.The 15-nation Security Council in New York adopted a British plan for enhanced sanctions aimed at freezing the assets of those involved in piracy and undermining Somalia's weakened national government. There has been a UN arms embargo against Somalia since 1992.The most senior diplomat of the African Union also called for UN peacekeepers to be sent to Somalia.Increasing piracy, he said, was "a clear indication of the further deterioration of the situation, with far-reaching consequences for (Somalia), the region and the larger international community".Pirates who seized the Sirius Star and its $100m oil cargo have warned of "disastrous" consequences unless the money is paid, according to the news agency, AFP. Mohamed Said, who claimed to be one of the pirates who seized the ship, told the agency:"We are demanding $25m [£17m] from the Saudi owners of the tanker."The Saudis have 10 days to comply, otherwise we will take action that could be disastrous."The demand came as Egypt hosted an emergency meeting on piracy attended by representatives from Yemen, Saudi Arabia, Sudan, Jordan and Somalia.Egyptian diplomat Wafaa Bassem said several options would be discussed at the Cairo meeting, including establishing joint operations by Arab navies and setting up a piracy monitoring centre and warning systems for ship.Egypt is concerned that piracy will force shipping companies to opt for safer routes that avoid the Suez canal, which links the Red Sea with the Mediterranean.Odfjell SE, a big Norwegian shipping group, has already ordered its 90 tankers to take the long route around South Africa.The British foreign secretary, David Miliband, signalled that Britain would not pay a ransom for the two British crew members held hostage on the Sirius Star.Speaking to reporters, he said the international community must "stand firm" against hostage-taking in all its forms. He insisted that making payments in return for the release of hostages would only encourage further such incidents."There is a strong view of the British government, and actually the international community, that payments for hostage-taking are only an encouragement to further hostage-taking and we will be approaching this issue in a very delicate way, in a way that puts the security and safety of the hostages to the fore."
By Xan Rice in Nairobi, Matthew Weaver and agencies
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As in the days of Noah....

Kenya pledges to fight piracy

Islamists say they'll fight Somali pirates

MOGADISHU, Somalia-A fighter with a radical Islamic group in Somalia says it will go after the pirates holding a Saudi supertanker.Abdelghafar Musa says the pirates should not seize ships belonging to Muslim nations or loot the property of Muslims.He claims to speak on behalf of all Islamic fighters in Somalia.The seizure on Saturday of the massive Saudi supertanker loaded with $100 million worth of crude oil was the most daring by the pirates to date.In the past two weeks Somalia's increasingly brazen pirates have seized a total of eight vessels. Several hundred crew are now in the hands of Somali pirates.
As in the days of Noah...

To Be a Pirate in Somalia

Somalia's increasingly brazen pirates are seizing large ships at sea and funneling dollars back to shore, creating their own rule in this African country, the AP's Mohamed Olad Hassan reports from Mogadishu...

Yemen powerless to combat Somali piracy

BEIRUT-Somali pirates preying on shipping in the Gulf of Aden have struck most often off the coast of Yemen, an unstable, impoverished Arab state that has few resources to tackle the maritime scourge.Ships often take sea lanes near Yemen to avoid proximity to pirate lairs in lawless Somalia or its breakaway Somaliland and Puntland regions, but there is no sign of Yemeni involvement in the attacks, diplomats in Sanaa and some analysts say.They do not exclude links between Somali pirates and some of the several hundred thousand Somali refugees and migrants in Yemen, but cannot confirm theories that pirates have forged ties with criminal networks there during years of people-smuggling.Many analysts, however, regard Yemen's own chronic problems as a major potential threat to order in the Horn of Africa."Future instability in Yemen could expand a lawless zone stretching from northern Kenya, through Somalia and the Gulf of Aden, to Saudi Arabia," concluded researcher Ginny Hill in a paper issued by London's Chatham House think-tank on Wednesday. A European diplomat in Sanaa said the Yemeni government had grave concerns about maritime insecurity, in part because of the risk that it could damage efforts to attract foreign investment. These include offshore oil exploration and a liquefied natural gas terminal due to operate next year, both seen as vital to counter declining oil output. Oil now accounts for 90 percent of export earnings and 75 percent of state revenue.Despite Western training and assistance, Yemen's tiny coastguard and navy is ill-equipped to patrol its 1,906 km (1,191 mile) coastline, even against the crammed boatloads of Somali refugees smuggled to its shores every year."At the last count, the Yemeni navy had 15 ships, nine of which were operational. Only two have deepwater capacity," said another Sanaa-based diplomat."Yemen lacks the ability to really police the deep water in the Gulf of Aden area."Pirates operating across ocean expanses have defied the foreign navies trying to stop them-they showed their reach last week by seizing a Saudi supertanker with a $100 million oil cargo 450 nautical miles southeast of Mombasa, Kenya.A naval force with NATO and European Union components guards a shipping corridor in the Gulf of Aden. U.S., French and Russian warships are also deployed off Somalia...
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As in the days of Noah...

Shipping Route Changes Because of Pirates

Somali pirates seize ninth vessel in 12 days

The battle with pirates operating off the coast of Somalia grew yesterday when raiders seized two more ships but lost one of their own in an uneven firefight with the Indian Navy. The International Maritime Bureau (IMB) described the situation yesterday as “out of control”.The surge in hijackings came as Saudi Arabia confirmed that a ransom demand had been made for the freeing of the Sirius Star supertanker, seized at the weekend with her crew of 25 and a cargo of oil worth $100 million (£65 million).Two more vessels – a Thai fishing boat with a crew of 16, and a bulk carrier, believed to be Greek, with an unknown number of people aboard-were seized by pirates in the Gulf of Aden yesterday, bringing the total to nine vessels in 12 days.Late on Tuesday night the Indian frigate Tabar destroyed the raiders’ “mother ship” after coming under attack from pirates firing rocket-propelled grenades, the Indian Navy said. The confrontation was the first involving one of the vessels used by the pirates to extend their range. Shipping groups said that the loss of a vessel did not mean that the pirates’ activities would be curtailed. “The situation is already out of control,” said Noel Choong, head of the piracy reporting centre at the IMB in Kuala Lumpur. “With no strong deterrent, low risk to the pirates and high returns, the attacks will continue.”David Miliband, the Foreign Secretary, said yesterday that the Royal Navy was coordinating the European response to the supertanker’s seizure from its warship in the region,HMS Cumberland.Saudi Arabia has also pledged to join the international task force operating under a UN mandate, along with new pledges of ships from Sweden and South Korea.Two British crewmen held hostage aboard theSirius Starwere named yesterday as chief engineer Peter French and second officer James Grady. Of the remaining crew, 19 are Filipino, 2 Polish, 1 Croatian and 1 Saudi.The international furore over the hijack of the supertanker, the largest ship yet taken by pirates, may lead its captors to seek a swift resolution for fear of other intervention. However, the value of both vessel and cargo may also lead to drawn-out bargaining, as it has in the case of the Ukrainian arms ship seized in September. The Qatar-based Arabic TV channel al-Jazeera aired video yesterday of a purported middleman saying that negotiations had begun on board the tanker and on shore.The Saudi Foreign Minister, Prince Saud al-Faisal, said the ship’s owners, Vela International, had opened negotiations over a sum, although the company itself remained tight-lipped, citing the safety of the crew. The ship is moored off the Somali coast, close to the well-defended pirate haven of Eyl...
By Catherine Philp, Diplomatic Correspondent
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As in the days of Noah....

Pope Had `Prophecy' of Market Collapse in 1985, Tremonti Says

Pope Benedict XVI was the first to predict the crisis in the global financial system, a"prophecy'' dating to a paper he wrote when he was a cardinal, Italian Finance Minister Giulio Tremonti said."The prediction that an undisciplined economy would collapse by its own rules can be found'' in an article written by Cardinal Joseph Ratzinger, who became pope in April 2005, Tremonti said yesterday at Milan's Cattolica University.German-born Ratzinger in 1985 presented a paper entitled"Market Economy and Ethics'' at a Rome event dedicated to the Church and the economy. The future pope said a decline in ethics"can actually cause the laws of the market to collapse.''Pope Benedict in an Oct. 7 speech reflected on crashing markets and concluded that "money vanishes, it is nothing'' and warned that"the only solid reality is the word of God.''The Vatican's official newspaper, l'Osservatore Romano, on the same day criticized the free-market model for having"grown too much and badly in the past two decades.''
By Flavia Krause-Jackson and Lorenzo Totaro
As in the days of Noah...

Report:U.S. Dominance and Influence Predicted to Fade

The next two decades will see a world living with the daily threat of nuclear war, environmental catastrophe and the decline of America as the dominant global power, according to a frighteningly bleak assessment by the U.S. intelligence community."The world of the near future will be subject to an increased likelihood of conflict over resources, including food and water, and will be haunted by the persistence of rogue states and terrorist groups with greater access to nuclear weapons," said the report by the National Intelligence Council.The analysts said that the report had been prepared in time for Barack Obama's entry into the Oval office on January 20, where he will be faced with some of the greatest challenges of any newly-elected president."The likelihood that nuclear weapons will be used will increase with expanded access to technology and a widening range of options for limited strikes," the 121-page assessment said. Click here to read the report in full The analysts draw attention to an already escalating nuclear arms race in the Middle East and anticipate that a growing number of rogue states will be prepared to share their destructive technology with terror groups."Over the next 15-20 years reactions to the decisions Iran makes about its nuclear program could cause a number of regional states to intensify these efforts and consider actively pursuing nuclear weapons," the report Global Trends 2025 said. "This will add a new and more dangerous dimension to what is likely to be increasing competition for influence within the region," it said.The spread of nuclear capabilities will raise questions about the ability of weak states to safeguard them, it added. "If the number of nuclear-capable states increases, so will the number of countries potentially willing to provide nuclear assistance to other countries or to terrorists."The report, a year in the making, said that global warming will aggravate the scarcity of water, food and energy resources. Citing a British study, it said that climate change could force up to 200 million people to migrate to more temperate zones. "Widening gaps in birth rates and wealth-to-poverty ratios, and the impact of climate change, could further exacerbate tensions," it said.The report says the warming earth will extend Russia and Canada's growing season and ease their access to northern oil fields, strengthening their economies. But Russia's potential emergence as a world power may be clouded by lagging investment in its energy sector, persistent crime and government corruption, the report says."The international system will be almost unrecognizable by 2025, owing to the rise of emerging powers, a globalizing economy, a transfer of wealth from West to East, and the growing influence of non-state actors. Although the United States is likely to remain the single most powerful actor, the United States' relative strength-even in the military realm-will decline and US leverage will become more strained."Global power will be multipolar with the rise of India and China, and the Korean peninsula will be unified in some form. Turning to the current financial situation, the analysts say that the financial crisis on Wall Street is the beginning of a global economic rebalancing.The U.S. dollar's role as the major world currency will weaken to the point where it becomes a "first among equals.""Strategic rivalries are most likely to revolve around trade, investments and technological innovation, but we cannot rule out a 19th-century-like scenario of arms races, territorial expansion and military rivalries." The report, based on a global survey of experts and trends, was more pessimistic about America's global status than previous outlooks prepared every four years. It said that outcomes will depend in part on the actions of political leaders. "The next 20 years of transition to a new system are fraught with risks," it said.The analysts also give warning that the kind of organized crime plaguing Russia could eventually take over the government of an Eastern or Central European country, and that countries in Africa and South Asia may find themselves ungoverned, as states wither away under pressure from security threats and diminishing resources..The intelligence community expects that terrorism would survive until 2025, but in slightly different form, suggesting that Al Qaeda's "terrorist wave" might be breaking up. "Al Qaeda's inability to attract broad-based support might cause it to decay sooner than people think," it said.On a positive note it added that an alternative to oil might be in place by 2025.
The Times of London and Associated Press contributed to this report.
As in the days of Noah....

Chinese Military Hacks Pentagon's computer system

PS:This report by FOX sounds almost identical to the one I posted earlier today,where Jennifer Griffin says almost the same thing--like a mantra...Is this for real...?And IF this is so WHY are they not saying it openly,cause it is HUGE...!Actually since last nite that the news broke NOTHING else can be found about the subject NOWHERE....IF China is hacking us we are headed to Big Trouble...I know with Obama as president we are gonna get hit for sure and with something that we dont even imagine and for which we are unprepared....Let's just be watchful and prayerful about it.....

As in the days of Noah...


PS:This is a Sep 04, 2007 by CNN Wolf Blitzer...It seems this has been happening for a while now....

As in the days of Noah...

China has accelerated computer espionage

WASHINGTON-China has accelerated computer espionage attacks on the U.S. government, defense contractors and American businesses, a congressional advisory panel said Thursday.The U.S.-China Economic and Security Review Commission also said in its annual report to lawmakers that aggressive Chinese space programs are allowing Beijing to more effectively target U.S. military forces."China is stealing vast amounts of sensitive information from U.S. computer networks," said Larry Wortzel, chairman of the commission set up by Congress in 2000 to advise, investigate and report on U.S.-China issues.The commission of six Democrats and six Republicans said in the unanimously approved report that China's massive military modernization and its "impressive but disturbing" space and computer warfare capabilities "suggest China is intent on expanding its sphere of control even at the expense of its Asian neighbors and the United States."The commission recommended that lawmakers provide money for U.S. government programs that would monitor and protect computer networks.Messages left with the Chinese Embassy in Washington were not immediately returned.But officials in Beijing have responded to past reports of this kind by saying that China does not try to undermine other countries' interests and seeks strong ties with the United States.The report comes two months before President-elect Barack Obama takes office. The Democratic Obama administration probably will continue the Republican Bush administration's efforts to work with and encourage China, a veto-holding member of the U.N. Security Council that the United States needs in nuclear confrontations with Iran and North Korea.During the campaign for president, then-candidate Obama said that "China is rising, and it's not going away," adding that Beijing is "neither our enemy nor our friend; they're competitors."In the commission's report, military strategist Wang Huacheng is quoted as calling U.S. dependence on space assets and information technology its "soft ribs."China's space program is "steadily increasing the vulnerability of U.S. assets," the report said. For instance, improvements in satellite imagery allow China to locate U.S. carrier battle groups more accurately, faster and from farther away.People's Liberation Army officer and author Cai Fengzhen is quoted as saying that the "area above ground, airspace and outer space are inseparable and integrated. They are the strategic commanding height of modern informationalized warfare.""If this becomes Chinese policy," the report said, "it could set the stage for conflict with the United States and other nations that expect the right of passage for their spacecraft."The commission also criticized China for violating commitments to avoid trade-distorting measures, adopting new laws that may restrict foreign access to China's markets and keeping its currency undervalued.It recommended that Congress enact legislation to respond to China's currency manipulation and create enforceable disclosure requirements on investments in the United States for foreign sovereign wealth funds and other foreign state-controlled companies.
As in the days of Noah...

China 'using cyberwarfare to challenge US power'

China's advancing space programme is increasing the vulnerability of US assets Photo: REUTERS/Xinhua
The report accuses China of using its foreign exchange reserves, built up through "heavy-handed government control" to buy influence.In one recent example, a government sovereign wealth fund agreed to use the reserves to loan money to Costa Rica in return for its dropping diplomatic recognition of China's rival, Taiwan.Meanwhile, it has built up its army of cyber-spies to such an extent that it can launch attacks "anywhere in the world at any time".The number of attacks on US government, defence companies and businesses rose by a third in 2007, to 43,880 incidents affecting five million computers, according to the claims by the US-China Economic and Security Review Commission.Some were so sophisticated that they might be impossible to counteract, or even detect. Meanwhile, its space programme, targeted at what one Chinese military strategist called "America's soft ribs", was steadily increasing the vulnerability of US assets."China is intent on expanding its sphere of control even at the expense of its Asian neighbours and the United States," it said.Pentagon and other Washington studies have accused China of using computer hacking to steal information and threaten disruption to both civil and defence services before, and particularly since an alleged co-ordinated attack in 2002, code-named by the US "Titan Rain", downloaded huge quantities of information.The Chinese government vociferously denies being involved in such attacks.But the current report comes at a time of great American unease that China will benefit from the global financial crisis to cut into its economic, political and even military dominance.A separate US study published yesterday said that by 2025 America would probably have to share world leadership with India and China.The increased attention given in the report to China's economic policy is another sign of that unease.China has been accused of keeping its exchange rate too low, boosting its exports artificially and using the dollars it is forced to buy as a result of the policy to lend back to the United States, exacerbating the recent credit bubble."Rather than use this money for the benefit of its citizens-by funding pensions and erecting hospitals and schools, for example-China has been using the funds to seek political and economic influence over other nations," Larry Wortzel, the Commission chairman, said at the report's launch.The regular publication of such reports over the last six years with cross-party backing – the committee consists of six Democrats and six Republicans – has not deterred President George W Bush from pursuing ever closer business and diplomatic relations with China, a policy set in place by his father, the first President Bush.China is waiting anxiously to see whether an Obama presidency brings less hawkishness on international relations, or a more protectionist trade policy, which Beijing fears.The commission called for legislation pressuring China to raise the value of its currency and to demand its main sovereign wealth fund, China Investment Corporation, disclose investments it is making in the United States."China appears far less likely than other nations to manage its sovereign wealth funds without regard to political influence that it can gain by offering such sizeable investments," the report said.
By Richard Spencer in Beijing
As in the days of Noah

Cyber Attack:Pentagon Hit by Unprecedented Cyber Attack

Pentagon Hit by Unprecedented Cyber Attack

The Pentagon has suffered from a cyber attack so alarming that it has taken the unprecedented step of banning the use of external hardware devices, such as flash drives and DVD's, FOX News has learned.The attack came in the form of a global virus or worm that is spreading rapidly throughout a number of military networks."We have detected a global virus for which there has been alerts, and we have seen some of this on our networks," a Pentagon official told FOX News. "We are now taking steps to mitigate the virus."The official could not reveal the source of the attack because that information remains classified."Daily there are millions of scans of the GIG, but for security reasons we don't discuss the number of actual intrusions or attempts, or discuss specific measures commanders in the field may be taking to protect and defend our networks," the department said in an official statement.Military computers are often referred to as part of the Global Information Grid, or GIG, a system composed of 17 million computers, many of which house classified or sensitive information.FOX News obtained a copy of one memo sent out last week to an Army division within the Pentagon warning of the cyber attack."Due to the presence of commercial malware, CDR USSTRATCOM has banned the use of removable media (thumb drives, CDRs/DVDRs, floppy disks) on all DoD networks and computers effective immediately."
FOX News' Justin Fishel and Jennifer Griffin contributed to this report.
As in the days of Noah....

Russia Refuses To Sell Syria Cutting-Edge Iskander Missile System

Months after offering Russia the opportunity to deploy long-range ballistic missiles in his country, Syrian President Bashar Assad was informed this week that Moscow will not sell its Iskander missiles to foreign clients due to delays in production. According to a reports Russia’s state arms exporter has decided that despite interest from a number of countries, including Syria, Moscow will not export the Iskander missile until the Russian Armed Forces are fully equipped with the system...

As in the days of Noah....

Thursday, November 20, 2008

Israel ready to train Arab doctors in peace bid

A leading French Jewish doctor has proposed an initiative under the auspices of the Union for the Mediterranean that would see Arab doctors from around the Middle East train in Israel. Doctor Arnold Munnich, who is an advisor to and close friend of French President Nicolas Sarkozy, revealed his plan to The Jerusalem Post while visiting Israel this week to lecture at a conference on genetics at the Rabin Medical Center.Munnich said he already has the support of top Israeli teaching hospitals, and that officials from several Arab countries have expressed interest.Sarkozy formed the Union for the Mediterranean shortly after taking office last year in an effort to bring Israel and its Arab neighbors together to accomplish shared interests.
As in the days of Noah...

Pig's head hung at Jewish cemetery in Germany

A severed pig's head was hung on the entrance to a Jewish cemetery in Germany over the weekend, next to a sign written in pig's blood reading "six million lies," part of a series of acts of vandalism over the weekend that police suspect were carried out by neo-Nazis. The cemetery was located in the city of Gotha, and a picture of the hanging pig's head was featured on the front cover of the German daily Bild. The Bild article reported that a similar incident happened in 2003, when a group of neo-Nazis calling themselves "Combat 18" hung a pig's head at a Jewish cemetery in the area.Also over the weekend, unknown assailants in the nearby town of Erfurt splashed red paint across a memorial board for deceased members of the local Jewish community. In an additional incident, a swastika was daubed in red paint across the front entrance of a synagogue in the town of Gorlitz in eastern Germany, only nine days after the building had reopened following renovations. Around 800 Anti-Semitic crimes have been reported in Germany over the past year.
By Asaf Uni, Haaretz Correspondent
As in the days of Noah....

Hizbullah urges Iraqi lawmakers to reject US pact

Lebanon's Iranian-backed Hizbullah group has called on Iraqi lawmakers to reject a security pact with the US that would keep American troops in the country for another three years. Thursday's statement by the militant Shiite Muslim group says the pact infringes on Iraq's sovereignty and will cause further damage to Iraq. It says the pact, which still needs to be approved by the Iraqi parliament, would provide unwarranted legitimacy to the US occupation.
As in the days of Noah...

Secret 'peace talks' exposed:Israel, Palestinians still attempting major pact before January

JERUSALEM-Despite media reports painting a dismal picture of negotiation prospects, Israel and the Palestinian Authority are still quietly working to conclude a major agreement before President Bush leaves office in January, informed Israeli and Palestinian sources told WND.The sources, including a senior Palestinian negotiator, said the aim is to reach a series of understandings to be guaranteed by the U.S. that would result in an eventual Israeli withdrawal from the vast majority of the West Bank.The understandings would also grant the PA permission to open official institutions in Jerusalem but would postpone talks on the future status of the capital city until new Israeli and U.S. governments are installed next year.The original plan, initiated at last November's U.S.-sponsored Annapolis summit, was to create a Palestinian state, at least on paper, by January. The summit launched talks aimed at concluding a final status agreement on all core issues – borders, the status of Jerusalem and the future of so-called Palestinian refugees.But a final agreement has been hampered by several recent events here, most notably Prime Minister Ehud Olmert's decision to resign amid corruption charges, leading to general elections scheduled for February that will see a new prime minister elected. The candidate for office from Olmert's Kadima party, Foreign Minister Tzipi Livni, is said to oppose reaching a deal on Jerusalem or refugees ahead of elections, fearing it will harm her prospects among center-right voters. Livni is Olmert's chief negotiator with the Palestinians.In spite of the upcoming elections and the Israeli government's subsequent political instability, teams of Israeli and Palestinian negotiators have been quietly meeting regularly the past few weeks in hope of concluding a series of understandings on key issues. Informed sources said any understandings reached will be backed up by Bush in an official letter. It is unclear how much weight such a letter will carry under a new U.S. administration.According to the sources, neither side expects to conclude any deal on the status of Jerusalem or Palestinian "refugees" before January, putting aside those issues for future talks. Instead, negotiations are focused on reaching an agreement emphasizing borders, particularly a pledged Israeli evacuation of the vast majority of the strategic West Bank, which borders central Israeli population centers.A Palestinian source told WND the U.S. is said to favor Israel withdrawing from nearly the entire West Bank. The source said the U.S. consulate in Jerusalem has been closely monitoring Israeli activities in the territory, which the source said has led to the Jewish state clamping down on what are termed "illegal outposts," or Jewish structures built in the West Bank without government permission. Israel has recently announced a series of small West Bank evacuations, including the threatened forced removal of Jews who legally purchased a house in the ancient city of Hebron.Also being heavily negotiated is an agreement that would allow the PA to official open institutions in Jerusalem. WND previously reported the PA already has been quietly operating in Jerusalem, apparently with tacit approval from the Israeli government. But the expected agreement to be concluded before January would give the PA official operational status in the city, likely leading to the opening of scores of Palestinian institutions there.According to Israeli law, the PA cannot officially hold court in Jerusalem. The PA previously maintained a de facto headquarters in Jerusalem, called Orient House, but the building was closed down by Israel in 2001 following a series of suicide bombings in Jerusalem. Israel said it had information indicating the House was used to plan and fund terrorism.Thousands of documents and copies of bank certificates and checks captured by Israel from Orient House – including many documents obtained by WND – showed the offices were used to finance terrorism, including direct payments to the Al Aqsa Martyrs Brigades terror group.In parallel with an understanding on the West Bank and Jerusalem institutions, the PA is pushing for a massive prisoner release to be pledged before January. A senior Palestinian negotiator told WND the PA requested that all Palestinian prisoners – meaning even convicted terrorists responsible for murdering Israelis as well as members of the rival Hamas terror group – be freed as part of the deal.While the negotiator conceded such a massive release is unlikely, he said the PA's hope is that Israel will grant a large release, possibly including the freedom of convicted murderer Marwan Barghouti.Barghouti is a founder of Fatah's Al Aqsa Martyrs Brigades terror group, the most active Palestinian terror organization. He has boasted of planning the intifada, or Palestinian terror war, launched in September 2000, after then-PA President Yasser Arafat turned down an Israeli offer of a Palestinian state and instead attempted to "liberate" Palestine by force. Barghouti is serving five life sentences for his direct role in murdering Israelis.Other understandings that Israel and the PA are attempting to reach before January surround water and natural resources.While it wasn't clear whether any understanding would actually be reached, the timing apparently favors all involved leaders.With Bush set to depart office in January, sealing a deal between Israel and the Palestinians would bode well for his legacy, which some analysts say is hampered by what is described as an unpopular war in Iraq, an economic meltdown and a growing crisis with Russia.
Olmert is Israel's most unpopular prime minister. Tainted by corruption charges and a heavily mismanaged war in Lebanon in 2006, Olmert would also like to depart office with a deal in hand. Also there is some concern in Jerusalem that President-elect Barack Obama may push Israel into further concessions during future negotiations, so some argue a deal on key issues while Bush is in office may be in Israel's interests.Abbas' term in office expires Jan. 10. His future leadership is sure to be contested by Hamas and by some in Fatah's young guard who want him to be replaced by Barghouti. Abbas' ability to tout an agreement in which Israel is compelled to retreat from the West Bank and release Palestinian prisoners could help his fading street popularity. Also, Abbas is said to be greatly concerned by the prospects of February's Israeli elections resulting in opposition leader Benjamin Netanyahu coming to power. Netanyahu has announced repeatedly, including as recently as yesterday, he would suspend negotiations with the PA.
By Aaron Klein
As in the days of Noah...

Qassam lands in western Negev, no injuries

Palestinian gunmen fired a Qassam rocket from northern Gaza towards the western Negev on Thursday afternoon. The rocket landed in an open area in the Sha'ar HaNegev Regional Council, no injuries or damage were reported.Earlier in the day Defense Minister Ehud Barak addressed the current situation in the region, saying "the recent waves of rocket attacks are a result of our operations, which have resulted in the killing of 20 Hamas gunmen. We will continue to operate with determination, but if the other side works towards restoring the calm, it will find us willing to do the same."In recent days the relative calm has been restored to the communities in southern Israel, though the week began with a series of rocket barrages that endangered the shaky ceasefire with Gaza's armed groups.UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon told Prime Minister Ehud Olmert on Tuesday he was deeply concerned about the humanitarian situation in Gaza and urged Israel to allow UN aid workers into the territory."The secretary-general today telephoned Israeli Prime Minister Ehud Olmert to express his deep concern over the consequences of the deteriorating humanitarian situation in Gaza," the UN press office said in a statement.Olmert denounced the continuing rocket fire into Israel from Gaza, but "agreed to look seriously into the urgent matter" raised by Ban, the statement said.The prime minister made it clear to the UN chief that Hamas was responsible for the violations of the truce deal. According to Olmert, Hamas is attempting to present an extreme picture of the Gaza crisis in order to renounce its responsibility.
By Shmulik Hadad
As in the days of Noah....

UN should suspend Israeli membership:Maguire

Nobel Peace Prize laureate Mairead Maguire says the United Nations should suspend or revoke Israel's membership.Maguire,(pictured center-left) in a news conference Thursday, said that it's time for the international community to take action against Israel. She claimed Israel should be punished for ignoring a series of United Nations resolutions over the years. Maguire, who won the 1976 peace prize for her work with Catholics and Protestants in Northern Ireland,is currently visiting the Palestinian territories to protest Israel's blockade of the Gaza Strip.Wednesday, United Nations Secretary General Ban ki-Moon contacted Prime Minister Ehud Olmert regarding the situation in Gaza and urging Israel to allow UN aid workers into the coastal enclave."The secretary-general expressed his deep concern over the consequences of the deteriorating humanitarian situation in Gaza," the UN press office said in a statement."He strongly urged the prime minister to facilitate the freer movement of urgently needed humanitarian supplies and of concerned United Nations personnel into Gaza," it said.Israel allowed 33 truckloads of supplies into Gaza for the first time in two weeks on Monday, and Olmert told Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas that he would not permit a humanitarian crisis to develop there.
As in the days of Noah....

Iranian TV Campaign against Modern Fashion

http://wwwmemritv.org --http://www.liveleak.com

PS:I truly feel for the people of Iran...In the video it is mentioned about Iranian Muslims dictating what EVERYBODY SHOULD LOOK LIKE...Now...what about Zoroastrians,baha'i,christians,catholics,jews or plain agnostics....?Why should they dress like in the 5th century,just because a group thinks so....?I have news for the mullahs....the people in Iran are SICK and TIRED of you guys RULING about every BREATH they take...Iranians SHOULD HAVE THE FREEDOM to CHOOSE whatever they want to do with their lives--after all that FREE WILL is GOD GIVEN....and BTW NOT given by the god mullahs worship.....Iranians are smart people that are made to live UNDER SUBMISSION....you do the math,under WHAT KIND of SUBMISSION.....Living in FEAR of the AUTHORITIES in the streets,just because you are wearing jeans or you have a different haircut...is it really a LIFE....???

As in the days of Noah....

Iran converts some foreign reserves to gold amid falling oil prices

TEHRAN,Iran-Iranian newspapers are quoting a top adviser to President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad as saying the country has converted some of its foreign currency reserves into gold.The papers published Saturday did not say how much of Iran's estimated $120 billion US in reserves were converted into gold. Iranian officials could not immediately be reached for comment. The daily Jahan-e-Eghtesad, or Economy World, quoted presidential adviser Mojtaba Samareh as saying Ahmadinejad ordered the change.The decision comes after a dramatic fall in oil prices recently triggered by a global financial crisis.About 80 per cent of Iran's foreign currency revenue comes from oil exports.
As in the days of Noah....

US: Iran standoff with IAEA 'unfortunate and disappointing'

WASHINGTON-The White House accused Iran Wednesday of an "unfortunate and disappointing" failure to cooperate with the UN nuclear watchdog agency and effectively rejecting a US offer for high-level talks."The Iranian government's failure to comply with the IAEA and UN is unfortunate and disappointing," spokesman Gordon Johndroe said after the latest International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) report on Tehran.The agency cited scant progress in its investigation of Tehran's suspect nuclear program and said the Islamic republic was defying UN demands to freeze uranium enrichment, which can be a key step to building atomic weapons.Johndroe noted that Iranian compliance could unlock a package of economic and diplomatic incentives-including an offer for talks between US Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice and her counterpart."The door is open if Iran will suspend its enrichment activity, but they don't seem to want to walk through it," he said in a brief statement.
As in the days of Noah...

Livni:If fired upon,we'll fire back

United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon called Foreign Minister Tzipi Livni on Thursday, and voiced the UN's concerns over Palestinian reports of a humanitarian crisis in the Strip.Ban also told Livni that the UN was displeased with the latest Israeli decision to close the goods crossings with the Strip-a decision made by Defense Minister Ehud Barak following the continued rocket fire on the western Negev from armed Palestinian groups in Gaza.Sources in the Foreign Ministry described the conversation as strident, with Livni reportedly telling Ban at one point that "anyone who thinks we will not fire back when fired upon in mistaken."Livni maintained that Gaza was far from a humanitarian crisis and that the responsibility for the dire situation of the residents lies solely with Hamas.The international community, she told the UN chief,"has to stop overlooking the fact that the Israeli communities in the south are under fire.""Anyone who thinks things can just go about as normal when we are under fire is wrong. They keep firing at us and violating Israeli sovereignty. There is no way we will let anyone fire on Israel and not respond," said Livni.The foreign minister reportedly demanded the UN exercise its influence over the international community, and denounce the shelling of innocent civilians.
By Roni Sofer
As in the days of Noah.....