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 51 
 on: Aug 18, 2014, 06:34 AM 
Started by Sunyata - Last post by Rad

Hague court under western pressure not to open Gaza war crimes inquiry

Potential ICC investigation into actions of both the IDF and Hamas in Gaza has become a fraught political battlefield

Julian Borger, diplomatic editor
theguardian.com, Monday 18 August 2014 08.00 BST   

The international criminal court has persistently avoided opening an investigation into alleged war crimes in Gaza as a result of US and other western pressure, former court officials and lawyers claim.

In recent days, a potential ICC investigation into the actions of both the Israel Defence Forces and Hamas in Gaza has become a fraught political battlefield and a key negotiating issue at ceasefire talks in Cairo. But the question of whether the ICC could or should mount an investigation has also divided the Hague-based court itself.

An ICC investigation could have a far-reaching impact. It would not just examine alleged war crimes by the Israeli military, Hamas and other Islamist militants in the course of recent fighting in Gaza that left about 2,000 people dead, including women and children. It could also address the issue of Israeli settlements in the Palestinian territories, for which the Israeli leadership would be responsible.

The ICC's founding charter, the 1998 Rome statute (pdf), describes as a war crime "the transfer, directly or indirectly, by the occupying power of parts of its own civilian population into the territory it occupies".

Also at stake is the future of the ICC itself, an experiment in international justice that occupies a fragile position with no superpower backing. Russia, China and India have refused to sign up to it. The US and Israel signed the accord in 2000 but later withdrew.

Some international lawyers argue that by trying to duck an investigation, the ICC is not living up to the ideals expressed in the Rome statute that "the most serious crimes of concern to the international community as a whole must not go unpunished".

John Dugard, a professor of international law at the University of Leiden, in the Netherlands, and a longstanding critic of Israel's human rights record, said: "I think the prosecutor could easily exercise jurisdiction. Law is a choice. There are competing legal arguments, but she should look at the preamble to the ICC statute which says the purpose of the court is to prevent impunity."

In an exchange of letters in the last few days, lawyers for the Palestinians have insisted that the ICC prosecutor, Fatou Bensouda, has all the legal authority she needs to launch an investigation, based on a Palestinian request in 2009. However, Bensouda is insisting on a new Palestinian declaration, which would require achieving elusive consensus among political factions such as Hamas, who would face scrutiny themselves alongside the Israeli government. There is strong US and Israeli pressure on the Palestinian leader, Mahmoud Abbas, not to pursue an ICC investigation.

Western pressure on the ICC to stay away from the issue has caused deep rifts within the prosecutor's office. Some former officials say the Palestinians were misled in 2009 into thinking their request for a war crimes investigation – in the wake of an earlier Israeli offensive on Gaza, named Cast Lead – would remain open pending confirmation of statehood. That confirmation came in November 2012 when the UN general assembly (UNGA) voted to award Palestine the status of non-member observer state, but no investigation was launched.

Bensouda initially appeared open to reviewing the standing Palestinian request, but the following year issued a controversial statement (pdf) saying the UNGA vote made no difference to the "legal invalidity" of the 2009 request.

Luis Moreno Ocampo, who was prosecutor at the time of the Palestinian 2009 declaration, backed Bensouda, saying in an email to the Guardian: "If Palestine wants to accept jurisdiction, it has to submit a new declaration."

But another former official from the ICC prosecutor's office who dealt with the Palestinian declaration strongly disagreed. "They are trying to hiding behind legal jargon to disguise what is a political decision, to rule out competence and not get involved," the official said.

Dugard said Bensouda was under heavy pressure from the US and its European allies. "For her it's a hard choice and she's not prepared to make it," he argued. "But this affects the credibility of the ICC. Africans complain that she doesn't hesitate to open an investigation on their continent."

Moreno Ocampo took three years to make a decision on the status of the 2009 Palestinian request for an investigation, during which time he was lobbied by the US and Israel to keep away. According to a book on the ICC published this year, American officials warned the prosecutor that the future of the court was in the balance.

According to the book, Rough Justice: the International Criminal Court in a World of Power Politics, by David Bosco, the Americans suggested that a Palestine investigation "might be too much political weight for the institution to bear. They made clear that proceeding with the case would be a major blow to the institution."

Although the US does not provide funding for the ICC, "Washington's enormous diplomatic, economic and military power can be a huge boon for the court when it periodically deployed in support of the court's work," writes Bosco, an assistant professor of international politics at American University.

In his book, Bosco reports that Israeli officials held several unpublicised meetings with Moreno Ocampo in The Hague, including a dinner at the Israeli ambassador's residence, to lobby against an investigation.

A former ICC official who was involved in the Palestinian dossier said: "It was clear from the beginning that Moreno Ocampo did not want to get involved. He said that the Palestinians were not really willing to launch the investigation, but it was clear they were serious. They sent a delegation with two ministers and supporting lawyers in August 2010 who stayed for two days to discuss their request. But Moreno Ocampo was aware that any involvement would spoil his efforts to get closer to the US."

Moreno Ocampo denied that he had been influenced by US pressure. "I was very firm on treating this issue impartially, but at the same time respecting the legal limits," he said in an email on Sunday. "I heard all the arguments. I received different Oxford professors who were explaining the different and many times opposing arguments, and I concluded that the process should … go first to the UN. They should decide what entity should be considered a state."

He added: "Palestine was using the threat to accept jurisdiction to negotiate with Israel. Someone said that if you have nine enemies surrounding you and one bullet, you don't shoot, you try to use your bullet to create leverage."

A spokeswoman for his successor, Fatou Bensouda, rejected allegations of bias in the prosecutor's choice of investigations. "The ICC is guided by the Rome statute and nothing else," she said. "Strict rules about jurisdiction, about where and when ICC can intervene should be not be deliberately misrepresented … Geographical and political consideration will thus never form part of any decision making by the office."

The French lawyer representing the Palestinians, Gilles Devers, argued that it was for the court's preliminary chamber, not the ICC's prosecutor, to decide on the court's jurisdiction in the Palestinian territories. Devers said negotiations were continuing among the Palestinian parties on whether to file a new request for an investigation, even though he believed it to be unnecessary in legal terms. Ultimately, he said, the outcome would be determinedly politically.

"There is enormous pressure not to proceed with an investigation. This pressure has been exerted on Fatah and Hamas, but also on the office of the prosecutor," Devers said. "In both cases, it takes the form of threats to the financial subsidies, to Palestine and to the international criminal court."

Among the biggest contributors to the ICC budget are the UK and France, which have both sought to persuade the Palestinians to forego a war crimes investigation.

 52 
 on: Aug 18, 2014, 03:47 AM 
Started by Wei - Last post by Skywalker
Hi Rad,

I´d like to thank you for always sharing your knowledge and experience with us. It is really generous of you.

I had a deep shamanic experience in which I realized that food was not necessary, I realized that the need to eat was simply a belief that was deeply ingrained. And it seems to be true as you just confirmed. Why do we have a stomach, teeth and a digestive system if we don´t even need them? The only logical answer seems to be that it is all simply a step in the evolutionary process of returning to the Source.

Something else I keep on experiencing is a level of awareness in which I am consciously creating my reality, simply by desiring or thinking of something. I begin to see the results of whatever is going on in my mind starting to manifest or I realize how my thoughts and desires are creating certain outcomes. This seems to be the Causal plane but it also seems that the awareness of this plane is becoming more grounded in my everyday reality and instead of my desires manifesting at the slower rate they used to, they are actually speeding up as if thou in some time it will become instantly as when in the Causal.

I don´t know if you have seen what many say about the end of the Mayan calendar in 2012 and how that marked the beginning of a new cycle for mankind in which these higher planes of existence will be integrated into the physical realm. How we are all moving into "Fifth dimensional awareness". How those that are able to "ascend" as they say, will not need to physically die and that the whole planet and universe is going thru this ascension process.

Do you have any thoughts/insight into this?

Thank you

All the best

 53 
 on: Aug 17, 2014, 11:26 PM 
Started by AndreaManik - Last post by AndreaManik
Muchísimas gracias Gonzalo por tu tiempo. Ahora entendí bien como resolver los pasos saltados, no lograba entender cuando te referías a la "última conjunción" pero ahora si.

Bendiciones!

 54 
 on: Aug 17, 2014, 09:16 PM 
Started by AndreaManik - Last post by Gonzalo
Hola Andrea

Quote
La carta de esta mujer, que se encuentra en el primer estadío Espiritual, tiene a Plutón en Escorpio en casa X en cuadratura a Júpiter retrógrado en Acuario en Casa I que a su vez está en cuadratura a los nodos lunares, con nodo norte en Tauro en Casa IV, cuyo regente Venus se encuentra haciéndole un trígono en Casa VIII conjunto a Marte en Virgo. Si entendí bien de acuerdo a lo que expusiste anteriormente, las temáticas que aún no están resueltas de Júpiter se resolverían en este caso a través del nodo norte no?

Los pasos saltados simbolizados por Júpiter en cuadratura a los Nodos Lunares se resuelven a través del Nodo Sur de Escorpio en la Casa X: el Nodo que formó la última conjunción a Júpiter. Esto implica, por ejemplo, la necesidad de aceptar parámetros y estructuras -Casa X - que limiten o condicionen la exploración - Júpiter en la Casa I - en función de la integración de las intuiciones que la persona va teniendo sobre su propia naturaleza y sobre la naturaleza de la verdad en general-Júpiter- en vez de tener que estar siempre explorando en cualquier dirección instintiva lo cual conduciría a mantener una multiplicidad de perspectivas - Júpiter en Acuario - que no son necesariamente consistentes con las necesidades evolutivas y/o con la propia naturaleza de la persona, o que no consiguen volverse consistentes por ser reemplazadas por otras perspectivas o visiones, etc. Implica abrazar un sistema de creencias, que sea esencialmente natural, que sea aplicado de forma consistente y que provea una perspectiva compasiva para abordar las propias dinámicas y experiencias creadas que están conectadas con sentimientos de culpabilidad interiores: Plutón/Nodo Sur en la Casa X, Marte/Venus en Virgo. También implica por ejemplo que el resultado de las exploraciones necesita traducirse en formas de aportar a la sociedad a través de tipos de roles o funciones, en vez de tener que alienarse o abstraerse de la sociedad.

Quote
De ser así, y aquí va un posible planteamiento acerca de que esta persona en vidas pasadas alternadas haya pospuesto o suprimido parte de su búsqueda de la verdad total en pos del consenso, tal vez por aceptar un rol social influyente, basado en la inseguridad emocional que le provocaba apartarse de la sociedad (Plutón Escorpio Casa X), además Plutón se encuentra en sextil a Marte/Venus en Virgo en VIII que a su vez se encuentra en cuadratura a Urano en XI en sagitario, con lo que podría pensar que además pudo haber vivido violencia, humillación y persecución por tener una creencia espiritual diferente al consenso, y con esto la necesidad de liberarse en esta vida de cualquier tipo de limitación que la detenga en su búsqueda espiritual, esto también apoyado por la resolución del nodo norte en Tauro en la Casa IV en trígono a Marte/Venus en Virgo, que pide no depender de otros emocionalmente evaluando, valorando los propios recursos internos y externos, para no dudar de si mismo, en este caso de su intuición acerca de su conexión con la Verdad.

Estos son temas que están reflejados en la signatura que comentas, junto a otros. Plutón, Escorpio, la Casa VIII, se correlacionan con confrontaciones con fuerzas mayores, y Urano y Acuario, y también Virgo, se correlacionan con persecusión/discriminación de minorías. Entonces el Júpiter en Acuario en la Casa I, en recepción mutua con Urano en Sagitario en la Casa XI, refleja a minorías definidas por sistemas de creencias de distinto tipo, filosofías, ideologías, que están conectadas con esas confrontaciones y persecusiones, con un nivel de trauma de vidas pasadas: Jupiter en Acuario en la Casa I en cuadratura a los Nodos y a Plutón, Urano en cuadratura a Marte/Venus en la Casa VIII, Casa de Plutón, en Virgo. Y también hay otras vidas en que como resultado de estas y otras dinámicas han existido deseos de esconderse, de esconder la propia naturaleza.     
   
Quote
Otra pregunta que me queda dando vueltas es respecto a la sexualidad en esta carta con estos aspectos, ya que también esta persona podría haber estado en una búsqueda de la conexión con el Todo a través de la sexualidad y su ley natural, puede haber sido así?.

Sería posible. En la primera subetapa de la condición Espiritual, los símbolos que mencionas -Plutón/Nodo Sur en la Casa X, en Escorpio, Marte/Venus en la Casa VIII, en cuadratura a Urano en Sagitario en la Casa XI, Júpiter en la Casa I en Acuario en cuadratura a los Nodos-sí se correlacionan directamente con el impacto en la evolución del Alma de la transición matriarcado/patriarcado en las formas naturales de ser sexual del Alma y dentro de esto el impacto en la sexualidad del cambio de la estructura familiar y el surgimiento de prohibiciones y morales artificiales. La sexualidad en tiempos matriarcales si era un vehículo natural para conocer el Todo.

Bendiciones, Gonzalo

 55 
 on: Aug 17, 2014, 04:23 PM 
Started by AndreaManik - Last post by AndreaManik
Muchas Gracias Gonzalo por tu respuesta. Quisiera poder aplicarlo a este caso:
La carta de esta mujer, que se encuentra en el primer estadío Espiritual, tiene a Plutón en Escorpio en casa X en cuadratura a Júpiter retrógrado en Acuario en Casa I que a su vez está en cuadratura a los nodos lunares, con nodo norte en Tauro en Casa IV, cuyo regente Venus se encuentra haciéndole un trígono en Casa VIII conjunto a Marte en Virgo. Si entendí bien de acuerdo a lo que expusiste anteriormente, las temáticas que aún no están resueltas de Júpiter se resolverían en este caso a través del nodo norte no?. De ser así, y aquí va un posible planteamiento acerca de que esta persona en vidas pasadas alternadas haya pospuesto o suprimido parte de su búsqueda de la verdad total en pos del consenso, tal vez por aceptar un rol social influyente, basado en la inseguridad emocional que le provocaba apartarse de la sociedad (Plutón Escorpio Casa X), además Plutón se encuentra en sextil a Marte/Venus en Virgo en VIII que a su vez se encuentra en cuadratura a Urano en XI en sagitario, con lo que podría pensar que además pudo haber vivido violencia, humillación y persecución por tener una creencia espiritual diferente al consenso, y con esto la necesidad de liberarse en esta vida de cualquier tipo de limitación que la detenga en su búsqueda espiritual, esto también apoyado por la resolución del nodo norte en Tauro en la Casa IV en trígono a Marte/Venus en Virgo, que pide no depender de otros emocionalmente evaluando, valorando los propios recursos internos y externos, para no dudar de si mismo, en este caso de su intuición acerca de su conexión con la Verdad. Otra pregunta que me queda dando vueltas es respecto a la sexualidad en esta carta con estos aspectos, ya que también esta persona podría haber estado en una búsqueda de la conexión con el Todo a través de la sexualidad y su ley natural, puede haber sido así?.

De antemano Gracias Gonzalo por el tiempo dedicado a mis preguntas.

 56 
 on: Aug 17, 2014, 09:44 AM 
Started by Steve - Last post by Rad
Kiev Forces Push into Rebel City ahead of Russia, Ukraine Talks

by Naharnet Newsdesk
17 August 2014, 11:13

Ukrainian forces battled into a key rebel bastion as fresh claims that rocket launchers had crossed over from Russia stoked tensions Sunday ahead of talks between Kiev and Moscow's top diplomats.

The foreign ministers of Russia, Ukraine, Germany and France gathered for a snap meeting in Berlin, after Western leaders had scrambled frantically to contain the crisis in Ukraine.

Kiev's military said it hoisted the national flag over a district police station in a northeast suburb of the second-largest rebel bastion of Lugansk after a fierce battle with pro-Russian separatists Saturday.

A push into the city limits of the stricken 420,000-strong industrial hub would be a major breakthrough for government forces after four months of fighting that has claimed more than 2,100 lives and brought the region to the brink of a humanitarian catastrophe.

Ukraine also ramped up the stakes before the talks in Germany by alleging another military convoy including three Grad rocket systems crossed over from Russia.

The fresh claims come as a furore still swirls over Kiev's earlier boasts that it destroyed part of a Russian armored convoy that breached the frontier Thursday.

Ukraine's Foreign Minister Pavlo Klimkin said Sunday's talks with his Russian counterpart Sergei Lavrov would "not be easy" as Germany also demanded that Moscow clarify rebel claims that they had received hundreds of fighters trained in Russia to bolster their flagging insurgency.

"It is important to stop the flow of weapons and mercenaries from Russia," Klimkin wrote on Twitter Sunday.

Russia earlier dismissed claims that it had sent in hardware as "fantasies", as it again denied persistent allegations by the West that it is arming the rebels.

Meanwhile, Russia and Ukraine appeared to edge closer to agreeing a deal over a mammoth Russian aid convoy parked near the border as Ukrainian officials prepared to inspect the first of some 300 lorries.

An AFP journalist saw 16 trucks drive from a parking lot where they have been idling since Thursday to a Russian border post some 30 kilometers (20 miles) away.

The West and Kiev fear the convoy could be a "Trojan horse" to help the rebels in eastern Ukraine, or provide Moscow with an excuse to send in the 20,000 troops that NATO says it has massed on the border.

The International Committee of the Red Cross, which is overseeing the aid delivery, has said Russian and Ukrainian officials agreed on procedures to check the cargo -- supposedly bound for Lugansk -- but insisted that "security guarantees" are still needed on how the vehicles could cross rebel-held territory.

An AFP crew saw a column of black smoking rising from across the Ukrainian side of the border as the Russian trucks approached Sunday.

President Petro Poroshenko told U.S. Vice President Joe Biden on Saturday that the separatists had yet to grant safe passage for the aid.

Russia's foreign ministry has repeatedly demanded that Kiev cease fire in order for the aid to reach residents of blighted cities in eastern Ukraine who have been stuck for days without water or power.

Around the region fierce clashes continued between government and rebels, with Ukraine's military saying a MiG fighter jet was shot down not far from Lugansk and the pilot parachuted to safety.

Lugansk has been the scene of some of the heaviest clashes, and local authorities said that power and water were not working for a 15th day running in the increasingly deserted city.

The United Nations says more than 285,000 people have fled the fighting in the east.

Authorities in the besieged main rebel city of Donetsk said shelling killed 10 civilians and wounded eight in 24 hours as government forces tightened the vice on rebels hunkered down there.

An AFP journalist continued to hear the rumble of mortar fire around the mining center on Sunday.

German Chancellor Angela Merkel called on Moscow to "clarify" bragging by a top separatist leader in the city that troop reinforcements trained across the border had arrived to prop up the ailing insurgency.

Alexander Zakharchenko, "prime minister" of the self-proclaimed Donetsk People's Republic, said in a video posted online Saturday that rebel forces had welcomed 1,200 personnel "who have received four months of training on Russian territory" as well as 150 items of military hardware, including tanks.

 57 
 on: Aug 17, 2014, 09:38 AM 
Started by Deva - Last post by Deva
Thanks to all who participated in last Saturday's class! The next class is scheduled for 9/13/14  at 10-11 am PT. We will review core EA principles (open Q and A) as needed and discuss Pluto in Aquarius/11th house. We will use these case studies:

1) Albert Einstein- March 14 1879, 11:30 am, Ulm, Germany

2) Sarah Palin- February 11, 1964, 9:43 PM, Sandpoint, ID 


Dial-in Number:    1-605-475-6333
Participant Access Code:    9890099

Recordings of previous classes are available (please contact me via email at devagreen@fastmail.fm).

=====================================================

Deva Green, Jeffrey Wolf Green's daughter, has stated a monthly phone class for all who are interested in learning and discussing the core principles of E.A. These phone classes will be a forum in which we can discuss and apply the main principles of Evolutionary Astrology as an interactive group (study/practice group).

     The first class was Saturday Oct.19th 2013, from 10am- 11am PT.  We began with the core correlations of Pluto and their meaning from an evolutionary point of view in the birth chart.  We discuss Pluto and its correlation to the Soul, its meaning from an individual as well as generational point of view, and practice interpreting specific Pluto placements (house and sign locality) in the birth chart. The classes are open to Q and A as well. We are applying the various components of the “Pluto Paradigm”  using case studies, and review/discuss core principles that students/study group want to develop/understand further. If you would like to participate in these monthly classes, please contact Deva at devagreen@fastmail.fm.

 58 
 on: Aug 17, 2014, 08:06 AM 
Started by Steve - Last post by Rad
In the USA...United Surveillance America

Missouri governor declares state of emergency and curfew in Ferguson

Rory Carroll and Jon Swaine in Ferguson, Missouri
theguardian.com, Sunday 17 August 2014 05.05 BST   
   
Jay Nixon, Ron Johnson Missouri Governor Jay Nixon, with Captain Ron Johnson second left, declares a state of emergency and curfew in Ferguson. Photograph: Lucas Jackson/Reuters

The governor of Missouri declared a state of emergency and imposed an overnight curfew in Ferguson on Saturday, in an attempt to quell disturbances that have rocked the city since police shot dead an unarmed teenager a week ago.

The unexpected announcement by Jay Nixon, made at a raucous press conference, marked another shift in law enforcement tactics which have veered from overtly militarised to inclusive and conciliatory in an effort to contain protests over last Saturday’s killing of Michael Brown, 18.

Nixon, a Democrat, said the latest measure were necessary after a small group of looters smashed windows, lobbed bottles and ransacked three stores on Friday night. The looters sabotaged not just property but the community’s peaceful protests, he said.

“We must have – and maintain – peace,” he said. “The eyes of the world are watching.” The curfew was scheduled to start at midnight and be lifted at 5am, local time.

As the curfew approached, hundreds of people gathered in the main street where clashes have taken place over the past week. Some drove through in cars with music blaring, and passengers sitting on the roof or hanging out of windows.

Dozens of police officers dressed in riot gear, some holding assault rifles, started filing in more than two hours before midnight, lining the street and guarding store fronts from potential looters. Several people called abuse to them as they passed.

    2hr15m before curfew, a column of police in riot gear is arriving in Ferguson. "Why are you here already?" people ask pic.twitter.com/VQdLMuQtBP
    — Jon Swaine (@jonswaine) August 17, 2014

Heavy rain, thunder and lightning occasionally flashing on the horizon appeared to be doing little to deter the mainly young and African American crowd to return to their homes. Few present expressed confidence that the street would empty by midnight.

“They’re letting this all build up,” said Jamal Harris, 23. “They could be out here gradually correcting things, mingling with us. But people are drinking, smoking and getting fired up. It could go down again.”

Observers from Amnesty International, which earlier on Saturday condemned curfews as the tool of dictators, were walking the street in bright yellow tshirts to monitor the situation.

At the earlier press conference, Nixon said the media would be given access to the curfew zone in order to observe it and ensure transparency.

Captain Ron Johnson of the Missouri state highway patrol, handed responsibility for policing the protests on Thursday when it was taken out of the hands of the St Louis County police, tried to placate angry shouts from activists who attended the press conference, held in a church.

The curfew did not mean a return to military-style policing, he promised. “We won’t enforce it with tanks,” he said. “We won’t enforce it with teargas.” But it remained unclear how a curfew could be maintained without the use of at least some force.

Community leaders who flanked Nixon and Johnson appeared to welcome the move but some residents and outside activists called it counterproductive and feared its enforcement could fuel a new round of mayhem.

“I don’t think this was wise,” Malik Shabazz, the president of Black Lawyers for Justice, told the Guardian. “This could backfire.” Expecting people to stay indoors on a Saturday night was unrealistic, he said, adding that the move also sabotaged increasingly organised efforts by volunteers to rein in the troublemakers. Shabazz, a former leader of the Black Panthers, and who has a history of anti-Semitic views, came to Ferguson to organise some of the protests.

Police and protesters have repeatedly clashed since Brown was fatally shot in sharply disputed circumstances. For the first few nights Ferguson police and St Louis county police used tear gas and armoured vehicles to try to cow largely peaceful demonstrations, prompting criticism from President Barack Obama and protests across the US.

Nixon tried to calm the situation by appointing Johnson, an African-American, the de facto commander on the ground. A savvy communicator, Johnson personally engaged with protesters and ordered his officers to stand back.

The approach brought peaceful, exuberant scenes on Thursday, with cavalcades of honking horns, but a small riot marred Friday’s peaceful protests – and left Johnson facing criticism that his officers had stood by as business were ransacked. Jay Kanzler, a lawyer for the owner of Ferguson Market and Liquor, said police did nothing to stop the pillage. “They were told to stand down and I don’t know why,” he said.
Ferguson looting Sam’s Meat Market & More employee Steve Sumad surveys damage caused by looters. Photograph: Lucas Jackson/Reuters

Tanya Littleton, the owner of a beauty supply store, also criticised police after thieves stole hundreds of dollars’ worth of hair extensions. Other residents streamed towards stores to form human barriers and curb the looting. In the morning they swept broken glass and tried to repair damage. So many turned up to help the owners had to turn people away.

Community leaders vowed to organise and form a better defence for subsequent nights, helped by members of the Outcast and Dominant Breed motorcycle clubs who lined their bikes up in front of stores. But the curfew announcement undercut the budding volunteer force. Continuing anger over Brown’s death erupted at the press conference, which developed into a rowdy town hall meeting. Several speakers demanded the arrest of Darren Wilson, the Ferguson police officer who shot Brown after an alleged scuffle in his patrol car.

“You need to charge that officer with murder,” one shouted, drawing cheers. “Indict him!” shouted another, to more cheers.

Friday’s violence came after the release by police of surveillance footage that implicated Brown in the theft of a packet of cigars from a convenience store a few minutes before he was shot. In the early hours of Saturday morning, a small crowd later looted the convenience store. A meat market was also looted and other businesses had windows smashed. Police did not intervene.

Brown’s family condemned the release of the film as a “character assassination” designed to smear the teenager and divert attention from the actions of police. The FBI, which is conducting a federal civil rights investigation into the shooting, and has had a copy of the footage for some days, made it known that it disapproved of its release, NBC reported.
Michael Brown protesters Demonstrators protest at the site where Michael Brown was killed, on Canfield Drive in Ferguson. Photograph: Joshua Lott/AFP/Getty Images

Dozens of FBI agents are in Ferguson investigating the shooting. Key details of the incident remain unclear, including the number of shots fired. Wilson, who has been on the force for four years and is said to have a blemish-free disciplinary record, is on unpaid leave.

Neighbours told reporters who visited Wilson’s St Louis home that the officer and his family appeared to have left several days ago. The television channel KSDK apologised for showing the home in one of its newscasts.

A rally in Brown’s honour is due on Sunday afternoon. A test of normality will come on Monday, when Ferguson’s schools are due to reopen. At least one, Normandy High, was planning a minute’s silence in honour of Brown.

 59 
 on: Aug 17, 2014, 07:52 AM 
Started by Rad - Last post by Rad
Struggling SeaWorld plans new tanks for killer whales, pledges $10 million for new research

By Agence France-Presse
Saturday, August 16, 2014 5:46 EDT

US theme park operator SeaWorld said Friday it would build new, giant tanks for its killer whales, whose captivity has caused uproar and hit the company’s earnings.

SeaWorld also pledged $10 million in funds for killer-whale research and announced a multi-million-dollar ocean health partnership, but animal rights groups were quick to savage the initiatives.

The Orlando, Florida company, whose shares have hit their lowest point since going public in April 2013, has faced rising criticism since last year’s release of the documentary “Blackfish.”

The film probed the impact of captivity on SeaWorld’s orcas and the fatal 2010 attack by one of them, Tilikum, on a trainer.

The first of the so-called whale environments, due to open to the public in 2018 at SeaWorld San Diego, will have a total water volume of 10 million gallons, nearly double that of the existing facility.

With a maximum depth of 50 feet (15 meters) and spanning more than 350 feet in length, the so-called Blue World Project will also provide large viewing points for the public.

“Through up-close and personal encounters, the new environment will transform how visitors experience killer whales,” CEO and president Jim Atchinson said in a statement.

“Our guests will be able to walk alongside the whales as if they were at the shore, watch them interact at the depths found in the ocean, or a bird’s eye view from above.”

But animal rights group PETA ridiculed SeaWorld’s announcement as a “desperate drop-in-the-bucket move to try to turn back the hands of time, at a time when people understand the suffering of captive orcas.”

“It will not save the company,” PETA added.

“What could save it would be the recognition that it needs not to make larger tanks but to turn the orcas out in seaside sanctuaries so that they can feel and experience the ocean again, hear their families, and one day be reunited with them.

“A bigger prison is still a prison.”

New killer whale environments are also planned for SeaWorld Orlando and SeaWorld San Antonio.

On Wednesday, SeaWorld announced a drop in quarterly earnings, sending its shares plunging by more than 30 percent.

************

Below are various videos you can watch that document the horrible sadistic cruelty towards Orcas:

BLACKFISH - Killer Whales at SeaWorld Documentary Maker Gabriela
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=A_gk1sVAyhU

Frontline: A Whale of a Business
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=D3fZ2dMdtu8

Blackfish Clip: Mother Orca Cries for Her Baby
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eWFo6kf21Hw

"Tilikum's Story" - a tale of kidnap and exploitation
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TUTetFY__B4

Lolita Slave to Entertainment animal right documentary
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wGxMLiL1uZI

Liberating Lolita
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MAB9yn3Wn1U

And this is what happens because of the sadistic cruelty: Just one example which is enough because there are many others.

FULL: Killer Whale Drowns Trainer! (Seaworld)
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1EhqM7Q82sw

 60 
 on: Aug 17, 2014, 07:30 AM 
Started by Steve - Last post by Rad
20,000 Mexicans fear for their health after acid leak that leaves orange river, toxic water

By Agence France-Presse
Saturday, August 16, 2014 5:37 EDT

Ramona Yesenia stood in her town square with two empty jugs, waiting for water to replace the municipal supply contaminated by a chemical spill that turned Mexico’s Sonora river orange.

Yesenia is one of 20,000 people left without water since a massive sulfuric acid leak last week at the Buenavista copper mine in northwestern Mexico, one of the largest in the world.

She waited in the sweltering heat with her mother and two daughters for water brought into the town of Arizpe by a tanker truck, but left empty-handed after the truck ran dry, unable to meet the demand from the seven affected towns.

The housekeeper and farm laborer said she was afraid to even eat local food.

“If they kill a cow, we don’t know if we can eat it… They say if the (cattle) drink just a little water (from the river), they get infected,” she said.

An estimated 40,000 cubic meters (10.6 million gallons) of sulfuric acid, which is used to dissolve copper from ore for processing, leaked out of a holding tank at the mine, owned by leading Latin American mining company Grupo Mexico.

The spill happened on August 6, but the authorities say the company only informed them 24 hours later.

Executives, who blame the spill on “abnormal rains” that caused the acid to overflow its holding tank, insist the government was alerted by email.

Juan Rebolledo, Grupo Mexico’s vice president for international relations, downplayed the impact.

“The content of these acids is not toxic in itself,” he said on radio network Formula.

“There’s no problem, nor any serious consequence for the population, as long as we take adequate precautions and the company pours lime into the river, as it is currently doing.”

The mine has dumped 100 tonnes of lime into the Sonora to neutralize the acidity, according to the state government.

But environmentalists say that is not enough to address the health risks posed by the altered metal content of the water.

They have also condemned a government plan to make the company responsible for testing the water for the next five years.

“It’s illogical,” said local activist Rafael Chavez. “The company would have to be pretty stupid to say ‘Yes, I’m contaminating the river.’ It will never declare itself responsible for what it did.”

The National Human Rights Commission has opened an investigation into the spill, saying it may constitute a human rights violation.

- ‘Rotten smell’ -

Residents of the affected towns say they received no warning before officials cut off their water, and still do not know exactly how big the accident is or how long it will take to clean up.

Usually the 400-kilometer (250-mile) river is a crystalline ribbon winding its way through the region at this time of year, the rainy season in Sonora.

But the leak turned its waters a reddish orange for a 60-kilometer stretch.

“I took this from the river a couple days after,” Octavio Toledano said, displaying a small plastic bottle with a yellowish liquid and reddish sediment at the bottom. “It had a rotten smell.”

Jesus Sabori, a resident of nearby Huepac, said the river has been growing “more and more red every day.”

“But it was only (Monday) that they told us to keep our animals away,” he added.

Pickup trucks with the logos of the National Water Commission and Grupo Mexico can be seen driving around the affected towns, but residents complain they have received little information from the government or the company.

“We’re angry because they didn’t take the time to tell us either that the spill had happened or that they were cutting off our water,” said 70-year-old resident Israel Duran.

“Even if (the mine) creates jobs, it would be better if they closed it if they’re going to behave like this every time something happens.”

The mine employs 9,000 people and has announced plans to expand, seeking to boost its annual output from 200,000 tonnes of copper to 510,000 by 2016.

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