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S Korea-US military exercise begins in the Sea of Japan

S Korea-US military exercise begins in the Sea of Japan 24 Jul 2010 The US and South Korea are beginning a major military exercise in the Sea of Japan, despite threats of retaliation from North Korea. The navy and air force manoeuvres involve 20 ships, 200 planes and 8,000 US and South Korean personnel. Washington and Seoul say they want to send a clear signal to the North following the sinking of a South Korean warship in March [aka US false flag. See: US Professors Raise Doubts About Report on South Korean Ship Sinking 09 Jul 2010.]

Uncovered: Britain's secret rendition programme

Uncovered: Britain's secret rendition programme --Until now, this country has been guilty only by association in the illegal transfer of prisoners. But the covert rendition of a Moroccan man by MI5 agents suggests that the practice was central to Britain's 'war on terror' 21 Jul 2010 MI5 was directly involved in the rendition of a Moroccan national, illegally taken from a Belgian prison to work for Britain's Security Services in London, an investigation by The Independent has discovered. The man, now aged 29 and who cannot be named for his own safety, was secretly transferred from a Brussels jail in April 2004 and then further held and interrogated by senior MI5 officers at a secret base near London... The Home Office document, dated 4 November 2004, says: "It has been decided that the Secretary of State's discretion should be exercised in your favour and you have been granted limited leave to remain in the United Kingdom for a reason not covered by the Immigration Rules." 

Health plans may be raising premiums despite outsize surpluses, watchdog finds

Health plans may be raising premiums despite outsize surpluses, watchdog finds 22 Jul 2010 Nonprofit health insurers may be setting aside unnecessarily large surpluses even as some of them continue to raise premiums, according to an analysis by a consumer rights group. The report released Thursday by Consumers Union, the nonprofit publisher of Consumer Reports, found that seven of 10 Blue Cross Blue Shield affiliates examined had amassed surpluses more than three times the level regulators deemed necessary for them to remain solvent.

Pakistani official's son killed

Pakistani official's son killed 24 Jul 2010 A Pakistani provincial minister's son has been shot dead by unidentified gunmen in broad daylight outside of Peshawar. On Saturday evening, Mian Rashid Hussain and his cousin were walking home in the Nowshera district, 25 kilometers (15 miles) east of Peshawar, when militants sprayed them with bullets. Mian, the only son of provincial Information Minister Mian Iftekhar Hussain, reportedly received seven bullet wounds, including some on his face, and died on the spot.

Congress' Food Tab: $604,000 for Bottled Water, $152 at Quiznos

Congress' Food Tab: $604,000 for Bottled Water, $152 at Quiznos 24 Jul 2010 House members spent part of their Members Representational Allowances on [food] -- and more -- during the nine-month period between late 2009 and early 2010 covered by the Sunlight Foundation's House Expenditure Reports Database. The info is highly enlightening, revealing, for instance, the popularity of Chantilly Donut's sinkers... and how lucrative it can be to own a part of the cottage industry of keeping our duly elected representatives fed and well hydrated.

Two US service members missing in Afghanistan

Two US service members missing in Afghanistan 24 Jul 2010 Two US service members are missing in eastern Afghanistan, officials said today. The two service members left their compound in Kabul on Friday but did not return, a Nato official said. A search is under way for them.

US-led strike kills dozens of civilians

US-led strike kills dozens of civilians 24 Jul 2010 A US-led air strike has reputedly left dozens of civilians dead in Afghanistan, raising concerns about the growing number of civilian casualties in the country. The late Friday bombardment took place in the city of Sangin in southern Helmand Province. Locals told Press TV that the attack has also injured seven children in Helmand Province.

Nick Clegg's 'illegal' Iraq war gaffe prompts legal warning

Nick Clegg's 'illegal' Iraq war gaffe prompts legal warning --Coalition in confusion as deputy prime minister pronounces invasion 'illegal' at dispatch box 21 Jul 2010 Nick Clegg was tonight forced to clarify his position on the Iraq war after he stood up at the dispatch box of the House of Commons and pronounced the invasion illegal. The deputy prime minister insisted he was speaking in a personal capacity, as a leading international lawyer warned that the statement by a government minister in such a formal setting could increase the chances of charges against Britain in international courts.

Censored Gulf news: People bleeding internally, millions poisoned says 'EPA whistleblower'

'Tell the American people who’s getting money for poisoning the millions of people in the Gulf.' Censored Gulf news: People bleeding internally, millions poisoned says 'EPA whistleblower' By Deborah Dupre' 21 Jul 2010 In its report, "EPA Whistleblower Accuses Agency of Covering Up Effects of Dispersant in BP Oil Spill Cleanup," Democracy Now! states that "many lawmakers and advocacy groups say the Obama administration is not being candid about the lethal effects of dispersants." ...Amy Goodman interviewed Hugh Kaufman, a senior policy analyst at the EPA’s Office of Solid Waste and Emergency Response and a leading critic of the decision to use Corexit, who disclosed how the officials are lying about many things related to the catastrophe poisoning "millions of people."

BP Hires Prison Labor to Clean Up Spill While Coastal Residents Struggle

BP Hires Prison Labor to Clean Up Spill While Coastal Residents Struggle By Abe Louise Young 21 Jul 2010 In the first few days after BP's Deepwater Horizon wellhead exploded, spewing crude oil into the Gulf of Mexico, cleanup workers could be seen on Louisiana beaches wearing scarlet pants and white t-shirts with the words "Inmate Labor" printed in large red block letters. Coastal residents, many of whom had just seen their livelihoods disappear, expressed outrage at community meetings; why should BP be using cheap or free prison labor when so many people were desperate for work? The outfits disappeared overnight.

North Korea Warns of Nuclear Response to Naval Exercises

North Korea Warns of Nuclear Response to Naval Exercises 23 Jul 2010 North Korea said it would counter U.S. and South Korean joint naval exercises with "nuclear deterrence" after the Obama administration said the government in Pyongyang shouldn’t take any provocative steps. North Korea will "legitimately counter with their powerful nuclear deterrence the largest-ever nuclear war exercises to be staged by the U.S. and the South Korean puppet forces," the National Defense Commission said, according to the Korean Central News Agency.

Oil Rig's Siren Was Kept Silent, Technician Says

Oil Rig's Siren Was Kept Silent, Technician Says 24 Jul 2010 The emergency alarm on the Deepwater Horizon was not fully activated the day the rig caught fire and exploded, killing 11 people and setting off the massive spill in the Gulf of Mexico, a rig worker on Friday told a government panel investigating the accident. The worker, Mike Williams, the rig's chief electronics technician, said the general safety alarm was habitually set to "inhibited" to avoid waking up the crew with late-night sirens and emergency lights.

Severe Weather Strikes City, Tri-State

Severe Weather Strikes City, Tri-State 23 Jul 2010 New York City and the surrounding area was walloped by a bout of severe weather Friday night. The National Weather Service issued a rare tornado watch for our area just before 6 p.m., it was expected to last until 1 a.m. but was cancelled at about 9:15 p.m. The alert covered Fairfield county in Connecticut, Bergen, Passaic, Essex, Hudson and Union counties in New Jersey, and Rockland, County, Westchester, Putnam, Orange, Nassau and Suffolk in New York as well as all five boroughs of New York City.

Alaska couple on US terror charge

Alaska couple on US terror charge 23 Jul 2010 A National Weather Service employee and his British-born wife have pleaded guilty to domestic terrorism charges of lying to the FBI about a hit list of possible targets who the couple suspected were enemies of Islam. Google News reports that Paul Rockwood Jr., a convert to Islam and his British-born wife, Nadia Rockwood, of King Salmon, Alaska, were charged with lying and making false statements about domestic terrorism. There were 15 targets on the list but none of its contents have been made public.

Senate passes $60B war bill, kills House add-ons

Senate passes $60B war bill, kills House add-ons 22 Jul 2010 The Senate has passed an almost $60 billion bill funding President Barack Obama's troop surge in Afghanistan after stripping out more than $20 billion in domestic spending approved by the House. In a take-it-or-leave-it gesture, the Senate is returning the bill it passed in May to the House.

Israel Gets Brutal With Media

Israel Gets Brutal With Media By Mel Frykberg 23 Jul 2010 Palestinian activists are being jailed, Israeli activists are under surveillance, and the Israeli military is increasingly targeting journalists who cover West Bank protests. The Foreign Press Association (FPA) in Israel issued a statement recently condemning what it sees as a change in Israel Defence Forces (IDF) policy in their treatment of journalists covering the growing number of West Bank protests against Israel's separation barrier, illegal settlements and land expropriation.

Spanish activists sue Israeli PM

Spanish activists sue Israeli PM 23 Jul 2010 Two Spanish activists have filed a court case against Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, accusing him of war crimes and crimes against humanity. Manuel Tapial and Laura Arau, who were arrested in the Israeli attack on a Gaza-bound humanitarian convoy in May, lodged their complaint against Netanyahu, six of his cabinet members and the Israeli navy commander at Spain's National Court on Friday. The activists say they were illegally arrested in international waters, tortured and forcibly returned to Turkey.

BP oil company stops work for Gulf storm

BP oil company stops work for Gulf storm 23 Jul 2010 The BP oil company has stopped work on a damaged well in the Gulf of Mexico due to a tropical storm approaching the site. Tropical Storm Bonnie has formed near the Bahamas with winds of 64 kilometers per hour. It is expected the storm to move across the oil spill area on Saturday.

Cancer rate in Fallujah worse than Hiroshima

Cancer rate in Fallujah worse than Hiroshima --The consequences of a US war crime By Tom Eley 23 Jul 2010 The Iraqi city of Fallujah continues to suffer the ghastly consequences of a US military onslaught in late 2004. According to the authors of a new study, "Cancer, Infant Mortality and Birth Sex-Ratio in Fallujah, Iraq 2005–2009," the people of Fallujah are experiencing higher rates of cancer, leukemia, infant mortality, and sexual mutations than those recorded among survivors in Hiroshima and Nagasaki in the years after those Japanese cities were incinerated by US atomic bomb strikes in 1945.

Feinberg: Unfair to Ask Firms to Return Payouts

Feinberg: Unfair to Ask Firms to Return Payouts 23 Jul 2010 U.S. "pay czar" [9/11 cover-up crony] Kenneth Feinberg on Friday declined to request 17 financial firms that doled out $1.6 billion in "ill advised" executive compensation to return the excessive payouts, saying to do so would be unfair to the companies and could trigger private lawsuits and additional Congressional investigation. Mr. Feinberg released a report that found 17 firms--including Goldman Sachs Group Inc., J.P. Morgan Chase & Co. and Citigroup Inc.--made the bonus-like payouts to top executives in late 2008 and early 2009 even as the companies were receiving taxpayer assistance.

Pentagon workers tied to child porn

Well, knock me over with a feather! Pentagon workers tied to child porn --Security agencies were left at risk, investigators say 23 Jul 2010 Federal investigators have identified several dozen Pentagon officials and contractors with high-level security clearances who allegedly purchased and downloaded child pornography, including an undisclosed number who used their government computers to obtain the illegal material, according to investigative reports. The investigations have included employees of the National Security Agency, the National Reconnaissance Office, and the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency -- which deal with some of the most sensitive work in intelligence and defense -- among other organizations within the Defense Department.

'BP trying to gag scientists'

'BP trying to gag scientists' 23 Jul 2010 British energy giant BP is trying to silence scientists and academics involved in the oil titan's spill response in the Gulf of Mexico, the American Association of Professors says. The British company, which faces more than 300 lawsuits for the April disaster that lead gallons of oil to gush into the Gulf, has reportedly offered scientists contracts preventing them from publishing all research done for BP.

Israel deploys navy to stop aid ships

Israel deploys navy to stop aid ships 23 Jul 2010 Israel has urged Lebanon to stop a Gaza-bound aid convoy, saying it will use "all necessary means" to stop the humanitarian convoy from reaching the blockaded coastal sliver. The Israeli navy has deployed ships at sea to stop the Lebanese vessels and commandos from the navy's Flotilla 13 -- known as the Shayetet -- are put on standby so that in case it becomes necessary they would board the ships to prevent them from sailing into the Gaza Strip, The Jerusalem Post reported on Friday.

UK admits using DU ammunition in Iraq

UK admits using DU ammunition in Iraq 23 Jul 2010 UK defense secretary says American and British forces used depleted uranium (DU) ammunitions during the US-led invasion of Iraq in 2003. "UK forces used about 1.9 metric tons of depleted uranium ammunition in the Iraq war in 2003," UK Defense Secretary Liam Fox said in a written reply to the House of Commons on Thursday, the Kuwait News Agency reported.

Army discharges critic of 'don't ask' policy

Army discharges critic of 'don't ask' policy 23 Jul 2010 One of the most vocal critics of the military's "don't ask, don't tell" policy has been honorably discharged for being in violation of it. Dan Choi, a West Point graduate and Army National Guard first lieutenant, said he learned of the decision on Thursday. Choi announced that he is gay during a March 2009 interview on MSNBC. He has since served as a leading Pentagon critic.

'Eye-popping' Bonuses Awarded as Financial System Was on Verge of Collapse

'Eye-popping' Bonuses Awarded as Financial System Was on Verge of Collapse 23 Jul 2010 With the financial system on the verge of collapse in late 2008, a group of troubled banks doled out more than $2 billion in bonuses and other payments to their highest earners. Now, the federal authority on banker pay says that nearly 80 percent of that sum was unmerited. In a report to be released on Friday, Kenneth R. Feinberg, the Obama administration’s special master for executive compensation, is expected to name 17 financial companies that made questionable payouts totaling $1.58 billion immediately after accepting billions of dollars of taxpayer aid, according to two government officials with knowledge of his findings who requested anonymity because of the sensitivity of the report. Mr. Feinberg’s report points to companies that he says paid eye-popping amounts or used haphazard criteria for awarding bonuses, the people with knowledge of his findings said, and he has singled out Citigroup as the biggest offender. [It usually is.]

Allen orders ships at BP well site to begin evacuation

Allen orders ships at BP well site to begin evacuation 22 Jul 2010 Retired Coast Guard Adm. [BP troll] Thad Allen late Thursday ordered BP to begin evacuating the Deepwater Horizon oil spill site after the National Hurricane Center predicted that sustained winds of more than 55 miles per hour would reach the area perhaps as early as Saturday. Allen said he had directed BP to leave the well sealed during the evacuation and said that monitoring of the well, which has not leaked oil into the Gulf of Mexico for more than a week, would continue until the last possible moment.

Rig Worker Was Worried About Safety, Widow Says

Rig Worker Was Worried About Safety, Widow Says 23 Jul 2010 Government investigators on Thursday pressed a BP official who supervised the Deepwater Horizon about whether the company took shortcuts to save money and time by selecting riskier equipment at the oil rig. The official, John Guide, the well team leader, denied that BP had chosen a potentially risky type of well casing over more traditional equipment because it would save the company three days and $7 million to $10 million.

Workers on Doomed Rig Voiced Concern About Safety

Workers on Doomed Rig Voiced Concern About Safety 22 Jul 2010 A confidential survey of workers on the Deepwater Horizon in the weeks before the oil rig exploded showed that many of them were concerned about safety practices and feared reprisals if they reported mistakes or other problems. In the survey, commissioned by the rig’s owner, Transocean, workers said that company plans were not carried out properly and that they "often saw unsafe behaviors on the rig." Some workers also voiced concerns about poor equipment reliability, "which they believed was as a result of drilling priorities taking precedence over planned maintenance," according to the survey, one of two Transocean reports obtained by The New York Times.

Barack Obama calls Shirley Sherrod over false charges of racism

Barack Obama calls Shirley Sherrod over false charges of racism 23 Jul 2010 President Barack Obama on Thursday telephoned a black civil servant who was hastily told to resign over purportedly racist comments to express his regret at his administration's treatment of her... On Wednesday, Robert Gibbs, the White House spokesman, had issued an apology on behalf of the White House, saying "everybody involved made determinations without knowing all the facts and all the events". And on Thursday, Mrs Sherrod received a seven minute call from the Oval Office.

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*****

'We want either a hammer or a fire, to break the spell or dissolve the ice.' Artisan radical freethinker, George Jacob Holyoake, Reasoner V (1848): 2.

CLG's Michael Rectenwald, Ph.D. and Lori Price receive the Patrick Henry Think Tank's American Hero Award 02 Nov 2005 The Patrick Henry Democratic Club --A Think Tank working to give the government back to the people. "Give me liberty or give me death!"

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