Tuesday, January 15, 2008

Mexican Army and paramilitaries converge on Zapatista stronghold

" ... The Zapatista guerrillas and their supporters in the southern Mexican state of Chiapas are experiencing the
worst onslaught by state forces in the last 10 years, according to reports from a local research center.

On Monday, in the area under Zapatista influence, "we rescued a wounded Indian grassroots supporter of the guerrillas who had been shot by
paramilitaries. The situation is serious," said Ernesto Ledesma, head of the Chiapas-based nongovernmental Center for Political Analysis and
Social and Economic Research.

According to the center -- which has had brigades out for the past five years, monitoring military movements in areas held by the barely-armed
Zapatista National Liberation Army (EZLN) -- in recent weeks there has been an increased presence of uniformed soldiers who are acting in
concert with paramilitary groups. However, most people are unaware of this fact. ... "
 
 

'The offences are under the International Criminal Court Act 2001'

Officers from Scotland Yard have commenced a criminal investigation into the deaths of Iraqi citizens killed during the armed invasion and occupation of Iraq. The Metropolitan Police are acting in response to crimes reported by peace activists from We Are Change UK and The Campaign to Make War History. In an unprecedented step, the case was handed to the War Crimes division of the Counter Terrorism branch who are now investigating allegations of 14 criminal offences committed by Tony Blair, Lord Goldsmith and others. The offences are under the International Criminal Court Act 2001, which came into effect under English common law, just two days before 9/11.

Two Members of We Are Change UK and a representative from the Campaign to Make War History were interviewed for six hours at Belgravia Police station on the 20th December 2007. Evidence was provided to the police relating to the crimes of:-

• genocide, crimes against humanity, war crimes and conduct ancillary to these crimes under Sections 51 and 52 of The International Criminal Court Act 2001.
• a crime against peace and complicity in a crime against peace under Articles 6 and 7 of The Nuremburg Principles.
• murder, incitement to murder and conspiracy to murder under the Offences Against the Person Act 1861.
• conspiracy to commit genocide, a crime against humanity and war crimes under the Criminal Law Act 1977.
 
 
 

"Unexplained" Forces Keep Mars Rovers Moving

By Michael Goodspeed
 
" ... On Jan. 4, 2004, the rover Spirit landed on Mars, followed three weeks later by Opportunity. The two robots were given an expected lifespan of 90 days to gather as much scientific data as possible. Four years later, both rovers are still going strong, much to the astonishment of NASA and scientists around the world.

"We never thought we'd still be driving these robots all over Mars," said Mark Lemmon, a planetary scientist at Texas A&M University and member of the rover science team. "We joked about driving Opportunity into Victoria Crater, but now we're there, and we're looking at doing even more science. Each day they still work is an amazing one."
 
[ ... ]
 
 While the rovers' cleanings and endurance is unexplained by NASA, a clue to the puzzle is provided by the agency's own news release dated July 14, 2005: "When humans visit Mars, they'll have to watch out for towering electrified dust devils." With these words, NASA gave official sanction to an idea that had already been percolating from separately funded research projects in recent years. This research has explored the electrical component to dust devils in the Arizona desert -- investigators were surprised to find that these vortices are electrically charged. According to the recent news item "Electric Sand Findings Could Lead to Better Climate Models," one investigator speculates that "electric fields get so large on the Red Planet they produce ground-level sparks."

But since it is verboten within official science to speak of planets as charged bodies, the investigators can only envision the electric fields associated with dust devils as an effect of particles bouncing and rubbing against each other -- ignoring the larger electrical condition required to generate the vortex in the first place.
 
[ ... ]
 
 Ironically, a number of researchers have posited that the best cleaning method for removal of dust from power-systems on Mars will involve electrostatic applications. At the 2002 Photovoltaic Specialists Conference, G.A. Landis and P.P Jenkins stated in their paper "Dust mitigation for Mars solar arrays": "The environment of Mars is expected to be an ideal one for use of electrostatic dust-removal techniques."

This is yet another instance where those with a real-world understanding of electricity are better equipped to interpret space discoveries than NASA scientists. Perhaps sooner than later, NASA officials will begrudgingly acknowledge the meaning in all of this. Until then, the "unexplained" cleanings of the rovers will remain one of many events in the solar system over which NASA investigators are still scratching their heads. ... "
 
 

Support candidates against torture

By Tom Harbinson / Winona
 
" ... Because these “techniques” have already been widely reported in the media, he does not need to refuse to discuss them in order to preserve secrets. Instead, he tells us we should simply take his word for it, based solely on his self-asserted definition of torture. But torture is defined, not based on the president’s own “definition,” but by international and American law.

Under Bush’s direction and with his approval, American personnel have used water-boarding, forced exposure to freezing cold and extremely hot temperatures, forced sleep deprivation (often for more than 24 hours), forced nakedness (when unnecessary for search purposes and solely to humiliate the prisoner) and other “special techniques” on detainees. These “techniques” also have included roughly grabbing or kicking prisoners’ genitals, twisting limbs into painful positions, including the shackling of hands to feet for lengthy time periods, hanging prisoners from the ceiling, use of dogs to terrorize the detainees, prolonged isolation from others, mock executions and beatings.

As of February 2006, at least 86 prisoners have died in U.S. custody and 35 of those cases are being investigated as homicides from use of these or similar “techniques.”

Under the Geneva Conventions, these “techniques” constitute torture and are illegal. These “techniques” also are defined as torture and illegal under the Convention Against Torture Treaty, ratified by the Senate and signed into law by President Ronald Reagan.

Interrogation experts have stated torture is not an effective interrogation technique because prisoners will say anything to get the pain to stop. Torture not only harms the detainee but it demeans the U.S. Americans shouldn’t use torture because our enemies will justify torturing American prisoners based on our practices. Please let your elected officials know that you believe torture is wrong and should stop. ... "
 
 

White bread for young minds, says university professor

14 Jan 2008

" ... Google is “white bread for the mind”, and the internet is producing a generation of students who survive on a diet of unreliable information, a professor of media studies will claim this week.

In her inaugural lecture at the University of Brighton, Tara Brabazon will urge teachers at all levels of the education system to equip students with the skills they need to interpret and sift through information gleaned from the internet.

She believes that easy access to information has dulled students’ sense of curiosity and is stifling debate. She claims that many undergraduates arrive at university unable to discriminate between anecdotal and unsubstantiated material posted on the internet. ... "

 
 

Troops will be in Afghanistan 'for decades'

BRITISH troops could be in Afghanistan for decades, the country's Defence Secretary Des Browne says.

Asked by The People weekly newspaper when Britain's soldiers would withdraw from Afghanistan, Mr Browne said: "We cannot risk it again becoming an ungoverned training haven for terrorists who threaten the UK.

"But there is only so much our forces can achieve. The job can only be completed by the international community working with the Afghan Government and its army.

"It is a commitment which could last decades, although it will reduce over time.''

Mr Browne's comments echo those of the head of the army, senior figures in the security services and former prime minister Tony Blair that the battle against Islamist extremism could last a generation.

Prime Minister Gordon Brown visited British troops in southern Afghanistan last month and told President Hamid Karzai of Britain's commitment to the country's long-term success.

Britain has about 7800 troops in Afghanistan as part of a 40,000-strong UN-sanctioned, NATO-led force aimed at helping reconstruction and fighting Taliban militia.

http://www.news.com.au/story/0,23599,23048678-2,00.html

 

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