Gates of Vienna News Feed 9/5/2013

The “Troika” has demanded that Greece liquidate its arms industry in order to meet the goals of austerity and qualify for the next tranche of aid from the EU. Arms manufacturing in Greece is widely seen as producing little, and at too high a cost.

In other news, the publication of a newspaper in Oman has been suspended after it ran an interview with a gay man.

To see the headlines and the articles, click “Continue reading” below.

Thanks to C. Cantoni, Fjordman, Insubria, JD, and all the other tipsters who sent these in.

Notice to tipsters: Please don’t submit extensive excerpts from articles that have been posted behind a subscription firewall, or are otherwise under copyright protection.

Caveat: Articles in the news feed are posted “as is”. Gates of Vienna cannot vouch for the authenticity or accuracy of the contents of any individual item posted here. We check each entry to make sure it is relatively interesting, not patently offensive, and at least superficially plausible. The link to the original is included with each item’s title. Further research and verification are left to the reader.

Financial Crisis
» Greece: Mickey Mouse Mag Stops 48-Year Run
» Greece: Troika Demands That Athens Liquidate Arms Industry
» Italy: Suicides Rose 12% at Height of the Recession
» A Diamond as Large as an Egg? Sotheby’s to Sell ‘The Greatest White Diamond to Ever Appear at Auction’
» Alert: GMO Oranges Now Under Development
» Community Organizer Goes to War
» Fetal Exposure to BPA Has Now Reached 100 Percent; Plastics Chemical Contaminating Everyone
» Global Government Gone Wild
» Massachusetts Cop Threatens to Smash Camera Into Man’s Face
» N.S.A. Foils Much Internet Encryption
» People Who Grow Their Own Food Labeled ‘Extremist’ By Dept. of Defense
» The Drake Equation Revisited: Interview With Planet Hunter Sara Seager
» The Most Embarrassing President of My Lifetime
» Underwater Volcano is Earth’s Biggest
Europe and the EU
» Asian Hornets Head for Britain: Public Warned Swarms Which Deliver Vicious Sting Are Coming Across the Channel
» Austria: ‘Carinthian Hypo Makes Campaign Promises Obsolete’
» Iraq Birth Blocks Swedish Teen’s High School Place
» Italy: Kyenge to Join Pope in Fast for Peace
» Italy: Husband Arrested After Beating Wife
» Italy: High Speed Rail Company to File Charges Against Writer
» Italy: Berlusconi’s Party Sees Crisis ‘Approaching’ For Letta Govt
» Jewish Patrol on Alert Over UK Mosque Attacks
» Luxembourg: ‘Juncker Flies to Krecke’s Rescue’
» MEPs: EU Needs Defence Force ‘Under Union Command’
» Netherlands: Smell a Rat at a Crime Scene? It’s Probably the Latest Police Recruit
» Ten Things the Mainstream Media Didn’t Tell You About the Seralini GM Corn Study
» UK: Friend of Simon Cowell Who Killed Great-Grandmother With Her Porsche as She Cycled to Visit Husband’s Grave is Spared Jail Because of Her Charity Work
North Africa
» Tunisia: Ennahda, Allies Nix ‘Outside’ Mediation
Middle East
» Ecumenical Patriarchate Criticizes Plan to Turn Hagia Sophia Into a Mosque
» Letta Says No Action on Syria Without UN
» President Bashar Al-Assad’s Interview With Le Figaro
» Russia Says Syria Chemical Weapons Made by Rebels
» Syria: NYT Images of Rebel Execution Fuel Doubts in US
» The Syrian War: What You’re Not Being Told (Video)
» Thousands of Syrian Refugees on Jordan Border
» Turkey’s Giant Projects to Fuel Islamic Finance Boom
» U.S. Bishops to Obama: No Military Attack in Syria
» Vatican, Italy Warn Against Syria Intervention
» What Kind of President Would Throw in the World’s Lot With Evil Al-Qaeda?
» Will Congress Authorize?
» Armenia-EU: Moscow Makes Yerevan an Offer it Can’t Refuse
Far East
» AgustaWestland Signs 170-Mn-Euro Deal With China
» Fukushima: Radioactive Effluent Circulating Into All Oceans
» Japan: TEPCO Admits Deliberately Using Radiation Detectors That Give Deceptively Low Readings; Radiation Leaks Far Worse Than Reported
» Nuclear Disaster: Radiation Levels at Fukushima Would Now be Fatal Within Hours
Australia — Pacific
» Tasty Science! Baker Creates Out-of-This-World Planet Cakes
Culture Wars
» A Lesson in Futility
» Hey… Liberals… Where’s Your ‘Tolerance’ Now?
» Oman: Paper Suspended After Running Interview With Gay Man
» Monster Saturn Storm Dredged Up Icy Water From the Deeps
» OIC Warns Against Islamophobia

Greece: Mickey Mouse Mag Stops 48-Year Run

Publisher, but we hope to resume publications

(ANSAmed) — ATHENS, SEPTEMBER 4 — The magazine which generations of young Greeks grew up with, Mickey Mouse — in Greek, of course — is stopping publication after 48 years, as GreekReporter website writes. Publisher Christos Terzopoulos wrote on his page on Facebook: “Some things, like the government reshuffle, the currency devaluation and the closure of the magazines, are not announced in advance. The stoppage of the issuing of the magazines was not a frivolous and sudden choice.” “For several months, from the beginning of the year, we had contacts and we have been negotiating to find a viable solution for the magazines. Until the last moment we have been keeping the sparkle alive in order to be able to continue the publication of the magazines” He said it didn’t work. He hinted there was a glimmer of hope for return. “Unfortunately I can’t expatiate any further on this issue because I’m not allowed due to the confidentiality of the negotiations.”

           — Hat tip: Insubria [Return to headlines]

Greece: Troika Demands That Athens Liquidate Arms Industry


On September 3, the EU-ECB-IMF troika rejected a Greek government plan to restructure three companies — Larco (metals), Elvo (vehicles), EAS (defence systems) — which it judged to be “unrealistic, unviable and ineffective.” The troika wants a more incisive solution for the loss making and heavily indebted companies, which would force them to file for bankruptcy and lay off workers without severance pay, explains I Kathimerini, whose front-page headline announces “Troika involvement in EAS”.

The fate of the companies is “the major bone of contention” in ongoing talks with the troika on the provision of further tranche of financial aid, remarks the business daily, which blames the Greek defence sector’s inability to compete on —

Finally, the paper also highlights the role of trade unions and political appointees in the decline of an unproductive arms industry —

Greece never produced anything, and, whenever it attempted to produce something, it was always three times more expensive.

           — Hat tip: C. Cantoni [Return to headlines]

Italy: Suicides Rose 12% at Height of the Recession

Rome, 4 Sept. (AKI) — The number of people aged 25-64 who committed suicide climbed 12 percent in 2009-2011 during Italy’s worst postwar recession, according to data to be mulled at a meeting in Rome next week.

Maurizio Pompili, head of the suicide prevention service at Rome’s Sant’Andrea hospital described the situation as “dramatic”.

“The ‘economic crisis-related’ suicide statistics represent a considerable increase,” Pompili told Adnkronos.

There are around 3,900 suicides a year in Italy, he said.

“The most vulnerable people right now seem to be those of working age,” Pompili noted.

The Sant’Andrea hospital’s suicide helpline and centre assists some 800-1,000 people each year he said, adding: “suicides can be prevented”.

Thirty speakers and over 300 participants are due to attend a conference at the hospital to mark the 11th World Suicide Prevention Day on 10 September.

Italy’s economy is forecast to contract 1.8 percent this year, the OECD said on Tuesday, although its chief economist Carlo Padoan said it now appears to be “at a turning point”.

Italy is the only one among the G7 — the world’s seven most industrialised economies — to contract this year, according to the Paris-based OECD.

           — Hat tip: C. Cantoni [Return to headlines]

A Diamond as Large as an Egg? Sotheby’s to Sell ‘The Greatest White Diamond to Ever Appear at Auction’

A 118-carat, flawless-colored diamond has gone on display at Sotheby’s in New York.

The renowned auction house will sell the white diamond in Hong Kong on October 7. It is expected to shatter white diamond sale records.

The stone, which has been cut into an oval shape, is said to be approximately the size of an egg. Sotheby’s is reportedly calling it ‘the greatest white diamond ever to appear at auction.’

At a media preview on Wednesday evening, representatives for Sotheby’s said that the diamond is expected to fetch between $28 and $35 million.

           — Hat tip: Fjordman [Return to headlines]

Alert: GMO Oranges Now Under Development

(NaturalNews) Unknown to many, since 2005, a large portion of America’s orange supply has been under attack by a bacterium that is carried by the psyllid (a jumping plant lice) and sours oranges, leaving them half green. The disease, which has already cost Florida growers more than $4.5 billion, has been labeled citrus greening. Ricke Kress is the president of Southern Gardens citrus and in charge of two and a half million orange trees in the state of Florida.

Since the disease was discovered, Kress and one thousand other Florida growers, who supply the majority of the nation’s orange juice, have battled it with everything they have. They’ve gone as far as chopping down thousands of infected trees, spraying an array of different pesticides at triple the normal amount and even seeking out orange trees that carry a natural immunity — – all to no avail.

Biotechnology to the rescue

Kress and others in the orange industry decided that the only possible answer to this outbreak lay in biotechnology. Since 2008, millions have been spent on creating a genetically engineered orange that can withstand citrus greening. The orange growing industry is well aware that the public is not going to willingly or easily accept the idea of genetically modifying one of the healthiest and most popular foods on the planet.

Kress’ boss, uneasy about ruining the healthy image of the fruit, stated in a 2008 meeting, “Do we really want to do this?”

Mr. Kress assured his boss: “The consumer will support us if it’s the only way.”

One astute grower stated, “The public will never drink GMO orange juice, it’s a waste of our money.”

Your oranges may now contain pig genes

In the past few years, genetic material from two different plants, a virus, a pig and, perhaps most frightening of all, a laboratory synthesized gene have been evaluated for use in the new transgenic GMO orange. If approved by regulatory agencies, the new GMO orange trees could be planted in as little as two years.

Cross breeding doesn’t equal genetic engineering.

           — Hat tip: JD [Return to headlines]

Community Organizer Goes to War

With the vast majority of Americans opposing a strike against Syria, President Obama has requested that Congress vote on his powers as commander in chief under the Constitution. The president doesn’t need congressional approval to shoot a few missiles into Syria, nor — amazingly — has he said he’ll abide by such a vote, anyway.

Why is Congress even having a vote? This is nothing but a fig leaf to cover Obama’s own idiotic “red line” ultimatum to President Bashar al-Assad of Syria on chemical weapons. The Nobel Peace Prize winner needs to get Congress on the record so that whatever happens, the media can blame Republicans.

No Republican who thinks seriously about America’s national security interests — by which I mean to exclude John McCain and Lindsey Graham — can support Obama’s “plan” to shoot blindly into this hornet’s nest.

           — Hat tip: JD [Return to headlines]

Fetal Exposure to BPA Has Now Reached 100 Percent; Plastics Chemical Contaminating Everyone

(NaturalNews) New research published in the peer-reviewed journal Environmental Science & Technology completely debunks the government lie that the plastics chemical bisphenol-A (BPA) is neither harmful nor persistent in humans at current exposure levels. Originating out of California, this latest assessment of fetal exposure to BPA has concluded that 100 percent of both young and unborn children now have BPA circulating in their bloodstreams, suggesting universal exposure to this ubiquitous toxin.

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) claims that BPA is fully metabolized by the liver upon exposure and thus rendered innocuous. But actual science reveals quite the contrary situation, as BPA typically ends up circulating in active form throughout the bloodstream. Additionally, the chemical manifests itself in multiple toxic forms, another shocking finding that was made possible using the latest in laboratory analysis techniques.

For the new research, umbilical cord blood samples were taken from 85 full-term, aborted babies in San Francisco and tested for BPA. The samples were found to contain both active BPA and various BPA metabolites. In three of the samples, BPA levels were detected at levels higher than have ever been detected in fetal blood tests. And for the first time ever, BPA sulfate, a metabolite of active BPA, was also found in cord blood samples, which came as a surprise to researchers.

           — Hat tip: JD [Return to headlines]

Global Government Gone Wild

The weatherman at KUSI-TV, John Coleman, the Weather Channel founder, had told Red Eye host on Fox News a long time ago that he wanted to sue Al Gore for global warming fraud. He said that “30,000 scientists among whom 9,000 have Ph.D.’s have signed on to debunk global warming.”

In spite of their efforts, global warming advocates have marched on, transforming how we obtain and use energy in this country and around the globe.

Interestingly, scientists from the University of Geneva will present this month “Laser, Weather, and Climate” at the conference of the World Meteorological Organization and report on “experiments using lasers to cause water to condense or ice to form, crucial in accelerating rainfall.” Cloud “seeding” had been known since 1940s, shooting silver iodide or dry ice into a cloud, “simulating the natural salt, dust, and other tiny particles in the atmosphere that help form water drops.”

Coleman had hoped that this large group of scientists would have the opportunity to debate Al Gore and the scientists behind him who have decided that global warming is real. But Al Gore and his alarmist followers refused to debate because their “consensus” opinions mixed with carefully manipulated data had become “settled science” and were thus not open for debate…

Elite globalists like Al Gore and Maurice Strong, who have pushed the idea of global warming for a long time, actually own the carbon trading system who is supposed to protect the earth from CO2 emissions, and are going to enrich themselves from the cap and trade scheme, taking a percentage of each transaction.

           — Hat tip: JD [Return to headlines]

Massachusetts Cop Threatens to Smash Camera Into Man’s Face

A Massachusetts cop threatened to smash a camera into a man’s face if he dared take one more photograph of her.

Instead, he started video recording her.

The video shows Barnstable police officer Gretchen Allen walking away from Robert Bastille, who runs a local news site called Hyannis News.

“You’re going to hit me?” Bastille can be heard saying. “I”m sorry, you’re going to threaten me, officer?”

           — Hat tip: JD [Return to headlines]

N.S.A. Foils Much Internet Encryption

The National Security Agency is winning its long-running secret war on encryption, using supercomputers, technical trickery, court orders and behind-the-scenes persuasion to undermine the major tools protecting the privacy of everyday communications in the Internet age, according to newly disclosed documents.

The agency has circumvented or cracked much of the encryption, or digital scrambling, that guards global commerce and banking systems, protects sensitive data like trade secrets and medical records, and automatically secures the e-mails, Web searches, Internet chats and phone calls of Americans and others around the world, the documents show.

Many users assume — or have been assured by Internet companies — that their data is safe from prying eyes, including those of the government, and the N.S.A. wants to keep it that way. The agency treats its recent successes in deciphering protected information as among its most closely guarded secrets, restricted to those cleared for a highly classified program code-named Bullrun, according to the documents, provided by Edward J. Snowden, the former N.S.A. contractor.

[Return to headlines]

People Who Grow Their Own Food Labeled ‘Extremist’ By Dept. of Defense

(NaturalNews) If the founding fathers were reincarnated today, they’d probably start another revolution, this time to break away from an American government that has become far too imperial for its own good.

And as such, they’d be labeled “extremists” by those who mean to rule us.

In fact, the nation’s founders are considered extremists by the Pentagon, according to a new “training manual” that explicitly labels the framers as such.

Discovered by legal watchdog Judicial Watch via a Freedom of Information Act request, the manual was part of 133 documents provided by the Air Force. The January 2013 Defense Equal Opportunity Management Institute “student guide” is entitled “Extremism.” The document says that it is “for training purposes only” and “do not use on the job.”

           — Hat tip: JD [Return to headlines]

The Drake Equation Revisited: Interview With Planet Hunter Sara Seager

Planet hunters keep finding distant worlds that bear a resemblance to Earth. Some of the thousands of exoplanet candidates discovered to date have similar sizes or temperatures. Others possess rocky surfaces and support atmospheres. But no world has yet provided an unambiguous sign of the characteristic that still sets our pale blue dot apart: the presence of life.

That may be about to change, says exoplanet expert Sara Seager of the Massachusetts Institute of Technology in Cambridge. Upcoming NASA missions such as the Transiting Exoplanet Satellite Survey (TESS) and the James Webb Space Telescope, both due to launch around 2018, should be able to find and characterize Earth-like planets orbiting small stars.

Spotting signs of life on those planets will be possible because of progress in detecting not only planets, but their atmospheres as well. When a planet passes in front of its host star, atmospheric gases reveal their presence by absorbing some of the starlight. Oxygen, water vapor or other gases that do not belong on dead worlds could very well provide the first evidence of life elsewhere.

           — Hat tip: Fjordman [Return to headlines]

The Most Embarrassing President of My Lifetime

Congressional offices on Capitol Hill are reporting phone calls coming in at a rate of more than 200 to 1 against approving Obama’s plan to attack Syria. Republican and Democrats alike are being bombarded with negative responses from their constituents. Still, there are those among the insulated legislative class — John McCain, Lindsay Graham, John Boehner, etc. — who have not gotten the message that the American people are about as enthusiastic about Obama’s proposed war plans as they are about undergoing a quadruple root canal. In fact the Senate Foreign Relations Committee voted to approve a resolution to allow Obama to use force.

Meanwhile, Facebook postings from members of our military are appearing with sentiments like this: “I didn’t join the Marine Corps to fight for al-Qaeda in a Syrian civil war.”

           — Hat tip: JD [Return to headlines]

Underwater Volcano is Earth’s Biggest

Tamu Massif rivals the size of Olympus Mons on Mars

Geophysicists have discovered what they say is the largest single volcano on Earth, a 650-kilometre-wide beast the size of the British Isles lurking beneath the waters of the northwest Pacific Ocean.

The megavolcano has been inactive for some 140 million years. But its very existence will help geophysicists to set limits on how much magma can be stored in Earth’s crust and pour out onto the surface. It also shows that Earth can produce volcanoes on par with Olympus Mons on Mars, which, at 625 kilometres across, was until now the biggest volcano known in the Solar System.

“This says that here on Earth we have analogous volcanoes to the big ones we find on Mars,” says William Sager, a marine geologist at the University of Houston in Texas. “I’m not sure anybody would have guessed that.” Sager and his colleagues describe the structure, named Tamu Massif, in Nature Geoscience on 8 September. ‘Tamu’ is an acronym for Texas A&M University in College Station, where Sager was formerly employed.

           — Hat tip: Fjordman [Return to headlines]

Asian Hornets Head for Britain: Public Warned Swarms Which Deliver Vicious Sting Are Coming Across the Channel

Swarms of vicious Asian hornets are heading across the Channel to Britain, the public has been warned.

The Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs said it feared the species had already, or was about to, spread to Britain during its peak season of September.

Defra said the Asian hornet — Latin name Vespa velutina nigrithorax — was ‘invasive and predatory’ and attacked honey bee colonies.

A statement said: ‘It has spread very quickly to many areas of France where it is reported to be causing many problems for both beekeepers and biodiversity in the country. The hornet can predate on bee colonies, causing significant harm.’

           — Hat tip: JD [Return to headlines]

Austria: ‘Carinthian Hypo Makes Campaign Promises Obsolete’

Die Presse

The closure of the Hypo Alpe Adria bank, which was nationalised in 2009 “has become the most costly financial scandal in Austrian history,” remarks Die Presse.

The bank will need €2.6bn between now and 2017, including €1.9bn this year. With four weeks left to run before general elections on September 29, “these figures have fired up the election campaign,” notes Die Presse —

All the parties have pledged to cut taxes. But given the burden of Hypo, it will probably be impossible to keep these promises.

The European Commission has approved a plan for the orderly wind down of Austrian bank Hypo Group Alpe Adria, which includes provision of state aid up to a limit of €11.7bn.

           — Hat tip: C. Cantoni [Return to headlines]

Iraq Birth Blocks Swedish Teen’s High School Place

A Swedish teenager has been denied a place on a flight engineer course at a Swedish high school due to having been born in Iraq, a decision described as “unacceptable” by a legal expert at the Swedish Schools Inspectorate (Skolinspektionen).

           — Hat tip: Fjordman [Return to headlines]

Italy: Kyenge to Join Pope in Fast for Peace

Pope Francis calls for peace in Syria, leads day of fasting

(ANSA) — Rome, September 4 — Italy’s Integration Minister Cecile Kyenge said Wednesday that she will support Pope Francis’s call for peace in Syria by joining his international day of fasting and prayer.

“I will fast to build with you and Papa Francesco a peace beyond the boundaries and borders,” Kyenge said in a tweet to her followers posted on her Twitter feed.

Earlier in the day, Francis vowed to lead prayers and fasting on Saturday to promote peace in Syria, the Middle East and around the world.

As he spoke, the United States appeared close to a bombing campaign against Syria, where the government has apparently been attacking its citizens with poison gas.

The Grand Mufti of Syria, Ahmad Badreddin Hassoun, and member of Rome’s Jewish community and along with chief rabbi Riccardo Di Segni have also said they will take part in Saturday’s initiative, making it an inter-religious peace vigil.

The pope has urged pilgrims and the faithful in Rome to join a prayer vigil in St. Peter’s Square at 19:00 on Saturday.

           — Hat tip: Insubria [Return to headlines]

Italy: Husband Arrested After Beating Wife

Woman begs hospital staff for help after husband attacks

(ANSA) — Florence, September 3 — Police said Tuesday they arrested an Egyptian man in Florence after his wife, who had been beaten by him, begged hospital staff for help.

Police say the woman, who has a six-month-old baby and a two-year-old child with her husband, pretended to be ill to get to a hospital where she pleaded with emergency room doctors for assistance.

She said her husband had been abusing her for three years and even threatened her with death after he had imposed what he called the rules of Islam on their household.

Family of the woman, who is 30, said the 33-year-old husband strictly controlled her, refusing her permission to leave the house and barring visitors unless he was present. The breaking point came last month, the woman said, when he beat her and threatened her with a kitchen knife.

The woman’s family says he also abused them, beating and slapping her mother and demanding money to buy a house.

Abuse of women has become a major social concern in Italy, with the government recently passing legislation to try to help end what is termed “femicide”.

           — Hat tip: Insubria [Return to headlines]

Italy: High Speed Rail Company to File Charges Against Writer

De Luca accused of inciting sabotage

(ANSA) — Turin, September 5 — LTF, the company in charge of building the controversail Lyon-Turin TAV high speed rail connection, plans to file charges within the next few days against leftwing writer and gadfly Erri De Luca, an LTF source said on Thursday.

The charges are related to recent positions taken by De Luca that encourage construction site “sabotage”, the source explained.

De Luca, who is an ex-militant of the 1970’s radical leftwing group Lotta Continua (Continuous Struggle), told radio listeners on Tuesday that “every action” is legitimate in the fight to prevent high speed TAV rail from being built in the Susa Valley, between Lyons and Turin.

“If someone puts your life in danger, all you can do is fight to the bitter end and sabotage the work. Every action is legitimate,” De Luca told Radio 24 on a programme called Zanzara (Mosquito).

To a question about the use of violence against police by militant protesters, De Luca replied,”Wounded police? For now I think the losers are those of the valley who see their territory raped and militarily occupied”.

Anti-TAV activists have organized a series of protests against the high-speed rail link throughout Italy over the last few years, some of which included violent clashes with police, vandalism, threats and disruption of highway traffic.

           — Hat tip: Insubria [Return to headlines]

Italy: Berlusconi’s Party Sees Crisis ‘Approaching’ For Letta Govt

PdL threatens to sink govt over vote on ex-premier’s Senate seat

(ANSA) — Rome, September 5 — Renato Schifani, the Senate whip for Silvio Berlusconi’s People of Freedom (PdL) party, said Thursday he can “see the moment of crisis approaching” for Premier Enrico Letta’s government. The PdL has said it will sink the executive if Letta’s Democratic Party (PD) votes to strip Berlusconi of his Senate seat after a tax-fraud conviction.

           — Hat tip: Insubria [Return to headlines]

Jewish Patrol on Alert Over UK Mosque Attacks

Ultra-orthodox Jews and Muslims say they are working together to keep one London neighbourhood safe.

London, UK — Muslim leaders in an area of north-east London have recruited the help of a police-trained ultra-orthodox Jewish neighbourhood patrol to bolster security following attacks on mosques and threats against Muslim communities in the UK.

           — Hat tip: Fjordman [Return to headlines]

Luxembourg: ‘Juncker Flies to Krecke’s Rescue’

Le Quotidien

Luxembourgian Prime Minister Jean-Claude Juncker dismissed allegations on September 3 that his former finance minister, Jeannot Krecke, took part in a cigarette trafficking scam that was used to finance Iran’s nuclear programme.

Le Quotidien explains that “Nuqudy, which claims to be a Middle Eastern economic news website,” alleges that Krecke and a senior official in his ministry “covered up and profited from cigarette trafficking to Iran.” The trade served to finance Iranian companies in Europe “whose goal was to acquire technologies and components for Tehran’s military nuclear programme.”

Having noted that it is impossible to identify the publisher of Nuqudy, the Luxembourg daily adds that the website —

Jean-Claude Juncker has described the claim as defamatory.

           — Hat tip: C. Cantoni [Return to headlines]

MEPs: EU Needs Defence Force ‘Under Union Command’

BRUSSELS — Europe should create a civilian and military crisis operations HQ under EU command, according to a report by centre-right MEPs.

The proposal, contained in a policy paper published on Tuesday (3 September), by deputies from the European People’s Party, the largest group in the assembly, said EU “heads of state and government have to start building stand-by forces under Union command.”

It called for EU leaders to commit themselves to defining the union’s security interests, prioritising its strategic objectives and linking these with operational deployments.

They said this should include a definition of European defence interests and its geographical priority zones.

           — Hat tip: Fjordman [Return to headlines]

Netherlands: Smell a Rat at a Crime Scene? It’s Probably the Latest Police Recruit

Dutch police have pioneered a whole new way to rat out criminals by hiring some of the keenest noses in the underworld.

Five “sniffer rats” have spent two years at the animal training centre in Rotterdam learning to distinguish a range of scents including blood, drugs and explosives, and communicate with their handlers.

The brown rats are due to go into active service next year, operating under the names Poirot, Magnum, Derrick (a German TV detective popular in the Netherlands) and Jansen & Janssen (the Dutch names for the bowler-hatted detectives in Tintin).

Their sensitive noses — rats have 1,493 receptor genes compared to 1,093 for dogs and 650 in humans — and their small size make them ideally suited for the task, trainer Monique Hamerslag told De Volkskrant.

The trainers at the Levende Have centre have set up a training room for the rats, where they learn to identify suspicious substances kept in jars and hamster wheels and notify their handlers by making a clicking noise.

A radio is left playing permanently in the room to allow the rats to acclimatise to the background noise of a bustling city. When not training in their cages the rats are left to run free around the room.

A sign on the door advises visitors not to carry guns or traces of explosives and adds the message: “Please do not tread on the rats.”

The Netherlands will be the first country in the world to use trained rats in civilian police investigations.

           — Hat tip: Fjordman [Return to headlines]

Ten Things the Mainstream Media Didn’t Tell You About the Seralini GM Corn Study

(NaturalNews) It has been almost a year now since French researcher and scientist Gilles-Eric Seralini published his groundbreaking study on the deleterious effects of eating Monsanto’s genetically-modified (GM) corn, and there are still millions of people out there who are confused about its controversial findings. To help sort things out, here are ten facts about the study that you probably heard nothing about from the mainstream media:

1) Seralini’s study was a chronic toxicity study, not a cancer study. Not long after being published, Seralini’s study was maliciously ripped apart by “skeptics,” the media and many industry-backed institutions that claimed it was a badly-designed cancer study. But the truth is that Seralini’s study was actually a chronic toxicity study, and one that met or exceeded all accepted scientific standards.

2) No other long-term studies have ever been conducted on NK603 GM corn. The chorus of whining that ensued about how Seralini’s study allegedly contradicted all other similar studies is also invalid, as no other similar studies have ever been conducted — Seralini’s study is the only long-term study involving Monsanto’s NK603 GM corn that has ever been conducted.

3) There was nothing wrong with the types of rats Seralini used. Another popular criticism involves the Sprague-Dawley (SD) variety of rat used by Seralini in his study. This same variety has been used by Monsanto on many occasions in its 90-day “safety” studies on GMOs.

4) SD rats and humans are almost equally prone to developing cancer. Contrary to what you may have heard, SD rats are not inherently more prone to cancer than humans, and in fact have almost an equal risk with humans. This makes them a perfect choice for a long-term safety study on GMOs, vindicating Seralini in his use of them.

5) Seralini’s study far more in-depth than any ‘safety’ study ever conducted by Monsanto. It is hypocritical for the mainstream scientific community to criticize Seralini’s study methodologies, especially considering the fact that they were far more rigorous than those used by Monsanto to gain GMO approval. Seralini’s sample sizes, testing protocols and other methods all exceed those routinely used by the biotechnology industry.

           — Hat tip: JD [Return to headlines]

UK: Friend of Simon Cowell Who Killed Great-Grandmother With Her Porsche as She Cycled to Visit Husband’s Grave is Spared Jail Because of Her Charity Work

A businesswoman who killed a great-grandmother with her Porsche as the victim was cycling to lay flowers on her husband’s grave has been spared jail.

Tracy Capal, 51, accidentally clipped 77-year old Margaret Ward’s front wheel as she was turning into a Porsche dealership.

She then parked her Boxster car on the forecourt and initially was unaware the elderly widow had been sent sprawling on the ground by the impact. Mrs Ward died later in hospital from head and chest injuries.

           — Hat tip: JD [Return to headlines]

Tunisia: Ennahda, Allies Nix ‘Outside’ Mediation

From trade unions, employers, and human rights organizations

(ANSAmed) — TUNIS, SEPTEMBER 4 — Tunisia’s ruling moderate Islamist Ennahda party has called for a congress to restart the national dialogue, but without the input of non-political mediators.

Ennahda issued a joint communique along with its allies, the secularist Congress for the Republic (CPR) and the Democratic Forum for Labor and Liberties, known by its Arabic name Ettakatol.

The communique effectively bars mediators from the country’s powerful UGTT trade union, UTICA employers’ organization, the Tunisian League for Human Rights and the national order of lawyers, who have been trying for weeks to set up a platform for dialogue between the majority and the opposition.

It came hours after the majority nixed opposition demands for the government, led by Ennahda Premier Ali Laarayedh, to step down immediately. Ennahda made known it will not negotiate on this point, because only a legitimate executive can lead the country out of its political impasse.

           — Hat tip: Insubria [Return to headlines]

Ecumenical Patriarchate Criticizes Plan to Turn Hagia Sophia Into a Mosque

Rapidly re-Islamizing Turkey has already converted two churches back into mosques. They were converted to mosques at the time of the jihad conquest of the Byzantine Empire, and then made museums by the secular Turkish government. The same thing happened to the Hagia Sophia of Constantinople, once the foremost and grandest church in the entire Christian world. Its reconversion to use as a mosque would be the crowning hallmark of Turkey’s re-Islamization and re-Ottomanization.

           — Hat tip: Fjordman [Return to headlines]

Letta Says No Action on Syria Without UN

Premier says he understands U.S. concerns over Syria

(ANSAmed) — St. Petersburg, September 5 — Italian Premier Enrico Letta said Thursday that he could understand the concerns of the United States over Syria’s behaviour, but Italy would not involve itself without the endorsement of action from the United Nations. Letta told a press conference at the G20 summit in the Russian city of St. Petersburg that he felt an “understanding” of the American outrage towards alleged chemical weapons use by the Syrian government. However, without an endorsement of action from the United Nations, Italy is “unable” to intervene, said Letta.

He also said that he noticed no “coldness” between US President Barack Obama and Russia’s Vladimir Putin, an ally of Syrian President Bashar al-Assad.

“There does not appear to be any point of coldness,” said Letta.

           — Hat tip: Insubria [Return to headlines]

President Bashar Al-Assad’s Interview With Le Figaro

President Bashar al-Assad gave an interview to Le Figaro. Following is the full text:

Le Figaro: How can we stop the war, the crisis in Syria has been on going for more than two-and-half years? You have suggested a National Unity government, the international community has suggested Geneva II, how can we stop the blood bath in Syria?

Solution lies in stopping the influx of terrorists into Syria, stopping financial and military support to them

President al-Assad: Discussing a solution at the beginning of the crisis is very different to discussing it today. From the beginning I have emphasised that a resolution can only be achieved through dialogue, which would lead to solutions that can be implemented through political measures.

The situation today is different; today we are fighting terrorists, 80-90% of them affiliated to Al-Qaeda. These terrorists are not interested in reform, or politics, or legislations. The only way to deal with the terrorists is to strike them; only then can we talk about political steps. So in response to your question, the solution today lies in stopping the influx of terrorists into Syria and stopping the financial, military or any other support they receive.

           — Hat tip: JD [Return to headlines]

Russia Says Syria Chemical Weapons Made by Rebels

A new report from Russia lends evidence that the March 19 chemical attack in Syria was in fact carried out by the Obama-backed Syria rebels, highlighting the reality of the latest attacks.

In a new breaking report released by the Russian Foreign Ministry just moments ago, it has now been announced that the March 19 chemical weapons responsible for the attacks in Syria and blamed on Assad’s government army are linked up to rebel-made weaponry. Specifically, the findings state that the chemical weapon shells are very much different from the standard Syrian army weaponry and extremely similar to those made by the US-funded rebels who have been caught time and time again burning villages full of innocents.

           — Hat tip: JD [Return to headlines]

Syria: NYT Images of Rebel Execution Fuel Doubts in US

Video shows ‘ruthless’ execution of captured loyalist soldiers

(ANSAmed) — NEW YORK, SEPTEMBER 5 — The New York Times on Thursday ran a five-column photo from a video still of a group of machine gun-wielding Syrian rebels standing over seven captured Syrian soldiers, their faces pressed into the dirt.

Shot by the Jund al-Sham rebel brigade, the video shows the trussed soldiers pressing their faces into the dirt as the rebel commander recites a poem over them: “We swear to the Lord of the Throne, that this is our oath: we will take revenge.” The rebels then summarily execute the kneeling captives.

While the video is not new — Italian RAI state TV obtained it in August 2012, and ran it in December — the New York Times has only just received it, saying it was smuggled out of Syria a few days ago by a former rebel who grew disgusted by the killings.

The video, which according to the New York Times was shot in April, is now fueling doubts about a possible Syria strike: who are the rebels? Commander Abdul Samad Issa, 37, who was identified by the man who smuggled the video, a former aide, and who stars in the grisly video, could be the illustration that “many rebels have adopted some of the same brutal and ruthless tactics as the regime they are trying to overthrow”, wrote the New York Times.

In Washington on Wednesday, Secretary of State John Kerry told senators just 15-20% of insurgents fighting to topple Syrian President Bashar al-Assad are extremists. But intelligence sources told Reuters news agency these are overly optimistic, if not naive estimates. “The al-Qaeda linked Al Nusra Front is highly organized, armed and trained,” the sources said.

There are 1,200 armed rebel groups in Syria, the US Defense Intelligence Agency deputy director reported at the end of July.

“They could become monopolized by the extremist fringes,” he added. Many now question the wisdom of intervening on behalf of rebels of doubtful ideology, who might well install a fundamentalist Islamist state on the ashes of the Assad regime. Even worse, the specter of the regime’s weapons of mass destruction falling into the hands of jihadists and terrorists has risen again: arms that could include not just the poison gases used in the August 21 attack, but also lethal viruses and bacteria such as anthrax and botulin. While Syria’s biological weapons program has been dormant since the 1980s, it could well be reactivated in retaliation for a strike, the Washington Post warned on Thursday.

           — Hat tip: Insubria [Return to headlines]

The Syrian War: What You’re Not Being Told (Video)

What’s really going on in Syria? Let’s look at the evidence from a non-mainstream media perspective…

           — Hat tip: JD [Return to headlines]

Thousands of Syrian Refugees on Jordan Border

Rebels accuse Amman of allowing limited numbers to enter daily

(ANSAmed) — AMMAN, SEPTEMBER 5 — Thousands of Syrian refugees have been pilling up on the Jordanian border during the past week, the majority coming from Damascus, where a US lead airstrike draws near, Syrian activists and Jordanian officials said Thursday.

The numbers are believed to be in tens of thousands, stranded in the hostile territories in Wadi Yarmouk region, amid continued fighting between government forces and rebels, said Sami al Hariri, an activist from Deraa.

“Most of the refugees escaped the capital Damascus as they fear an attack on government buildings and security installations could bring large number of civilian casualties,” Hariri told ANSA by skype. Rebels and activists, however accused Jordan of allowing limited numbers to enter daily, with no more tan 200 allowed to cross to the kingdom. Jordan this week said it was ready to receive up to 120,000 Syrian refugees as the build up to a military strike against Damascus continues in Washington.

           — Hat tip: Insubria [Return to headlines]

Turkey’s Giant Projects to Fuel Islamic Finance Boom

(ANSAmed) — ISTANBUL, SEPTEMBER 4 — Turkey’s large infrastructure investments may boost the country’s Islamic finance sector which has already been witnessing a boom, daily Hurriyet reports quoting the country’s top capital markets officials as saying. “Islamic finance tools may be benefited from in (financing of) in Turkey’s mega projects like bridges, airports, and Kanal Istanbul. These projects are compatible with the Islamic financing structure,” Ibrahim Turhan, chairman of Turkey’s stock exchange Borsa Istanbul said yesterday, speaking at the Islamic Finance News Roadshow. Vahdettin Ertas, Capital Markets Board (SPK) chairman, also said that they “believed” the private sector’s sukuk, an Islamic compliant bond, export needs would increase due to the large infrastructure investments on the agenda. Currently, the Treasury’s sukuk exports have outpaced USD 5 billion, while the private sector has exported more than USD 1.5 billion. During the ceremony, Bank Asya said it was planning to export at least USD 60 million of additional sukuk before the year ended, while Albaraka Turk said it was mulling exporting over USD 200 million worth of sukuk within the last quarter or at the beginning of next year. In the past 10 years, the non-interest finance sector grew around 15% and the number of countries in which financial bodies operating in compliance with Islamic finance rules could be found has surpassed 70, Ertas stressed. “It’s expected to exceed USD 1.9 trillion by the end of this year,” he said. Islamic finance has been sublimated as a safe haven during the financial crisis that sparked skepticism towards interest-oriented finance.

           — Hat tip: Insubria [Return to headlines]

U.S. Bishops to Obama: No Military Attack in Syria

A letter signed by card. Dolan and the President of Justice and Peace ask for a cease-fire and inclusive peace negotiations. The international political group “The Elders” , founded by Nelson Mandela, contrary to the military attack. John Kerry, Secretary of State: Out of 100 countries contacted, “some” would support and join in the armed action. The “Arab countries” ready to pay for the whole operation.

New York City (AsiaNews/Agencies) — The Catholic bishops of the United States are opposed to any military action against Syria and called on President Barack Obama to engage instead in the search for a cease -fire and an end to the civil war.

In a letter to Obama , the Episcopal Conference recalls that Francis Pope and the Middle East bishops urgently asked the international community to avoid any military intervention , which would have “ unintended negative consequences” , and would “exacerbate an already deadly situation”.

The letter, signed by Card. Timothy Dolan , president of the episcopal conference and by Msgr. Richard Pates , president of the Justice and Peace Commission , condemned the use of chemical weapons , but insists on the judgment of Pope Francis, according to which “ God and history “ will judge those who use them .

The bishops also appealed to all Catholics in the United States to contact U.S. lawmakers pressing on them to vote against military intervention. The vote is scheduled from September 9 on. The appeal also asks the faithful to push political representatives so that “ U.S. leadership , in collaboration with the international community “ can work for “an immediate ceasefire in Syria and serious, inclusive negotiations for peace”.

Bishops revealed that on August 29 Msgr. Pates sent a letter to John Kerry, U.S. Secretary of State , which expresses the Church’s position : “ [T]he path of dialogue and negotiation between all components of Syrian society, with the support of the international community, is the only option to put an end to the conflict and to the violence that every day causes the loss of so many human lives….’ We ask the United States to work with other governments to obtain a ceasefire, initiate serious negotiations, provide impartial and neutral humanitarian assistance, and encourage building an inclusive society in Syria that protects the rights of all its citizens, including Christians and other minorities.”

Meanwhile , just yesterday , John Kerry, discussing with U.S. lawmakers , made ​​the point on allies who support armed intervention against Syria , guilty, in their eyes, of using chemical weapons on 21 August. Out of 100 countries contacted, 57 are convinced that chemical weapons have been used; 34 would support some military action against Syria , “some” would agree to join in the military intervention . He added that “Arab countries have offered “ to pay all the expenses of the military operation and that such offer “ is quite significant”.

Yesterday, a group of prominent international politicians, “The Elders” , headed by former UN Secretary General Kofi Annan has spoken out against any military action in Syria. The group, founded by Nelson Mandela, collects personalities like Nobel Prize winner Desmond Tutu , former U.S. President Jimmy Carter , former Irish President Mary Robinson. In a public statement they claim that “There is no military solution to this conflict .. Therefore, every effort must be made ​​to stop further bloodshed and reinvigorate the political process to end the conflict that has devastated and brutalized Syria. “

The group condemns the use of chemical weapons as “ inhumane and criminal” and demands that “ the perpetrators be convicted in an individual and collective .” But it stresses the world’s leaders should wait for the U.N. chemical weapons inspectors’ report and “deliberations of the U.N. Security Council” before taking any action.

           — Hat tip: C. Cantoni [Return to headlines]

Vatican, Italy Warn Against Syria Intervention

Pope, Letta urge negotiations for at G20 on Syrian conflict

(ANSA) — Rome, September 5 — Pope Francis and the Italian government sounded a similar note on Thursday as they urged world leaders to find negotiated solutions to the Syrian crisis.

In a heartfelt letter sent to Russian President Vladimir Putin as host of the G20 summit as it opened Thursday, Pope Francis called on leaders there to find a peaceful resolution that will prevent further war in Syria.

“To the leaders present, to each and every one, I make a heartfelt appeal for them to help find ways to overcome the conflicting positions and to lay aside the futile pursuit of a military solution,” wrote the pope.

“Rather, let there be a renewed commitment to seek, with courage and determination, a peaceful solution through dialogue and negotiation of the parties, unanimously supported by the international community,” he added.

“Moreover, all governments have the moral duty to do everything possible to ensure humanitarian assistance to those suffering because of the conflict, both within and beyond the country’s borders”.

The G20 summit represents “the last chance for negotiated, political solutions to be found on Syria”, Italian Premier Enrico Letta told a press conference at the G20 summit on Thursday.

Italy’s concern about the situation is at “the maximum,” he said, adding that although he felt an “understanding” for United States President Barack Obama’s position, Italy would only favour military intervention if it is endorsed by the United Nations. And UN support for joint action against Syria is not expected.

Without an endorsement of action from the UN, Italy is “unable” to intervene, said Letta.

The situation in Syria is rapidly coming to a head as Obama is seeking approval from Congress to begin military action against Syrian President Bashar al-Assad for allegedly using chemical weapons.

Shortly before the summit began, a US Senate panel approved the use of military force in Syria, in response to an alleged chemical weapons attack.

That measure, which goes to a full Senate vote next week, allows the use of force in Syria for 60 days with the possibility to extend it for 30 days.

Following that, it must also be approved by the US House of Representatives.

Letta also said that he noticed no discomfort between Obama and Russia’s Vladimir Putin, an ally of the Syrian president, over the issue.

“There does not appear to be any element of coldness,” said Letta. Just one day earlier, Francis pulled together politicians and religious leaders representing the Jewish and Muslim communities as well as Catholic officials to take part in a day of prayer and fasting for peace this Saturday.

Warmth was very evident in the response.

Integration Minister Cecile Kyenge said that she would participate, along with the Grand Mufti of Syria, Ahmad Badreddin Hassoun, and Rome’s chief rabbi Riccardo Di Segni.

“May a powerful cry for peace go up from every land!” the pope declared.

           — Hat tip: Insubria [Return to headlines]

What Kind of President Would Throw in the World’s Lot With Evil Al-Qaeda?

What kind of a president could reportedly sleep when four courageous Americans were being slaughtered in a terrorist attack in Benghazi, Libya — but within a week of the first anniversary of the tragedy send the U.S. military to fight side by side with al-Qaeda in Syria?

What kind of president could play 15 rounds of Spades while the Seal Team 6 sent by him was taking out Osama bin Laden?

What kind of president would allow his Secretary of State to announce to the world that Saudi Arabia would be willing to finance the U.S. attack on Syria? John Kerry could have added and “we’ll borrow the rest from China”.

No kind of president. And that’s precisely what Barack Hussein Obama really is.

           — Hat tip: JD [Return to headlines]

Will Congress Authorize?

Will Congress authorize a military strike against Syria? The political maneuvering engendered by President Obama’s newfound interest in having the legislative branch be part of the equation is turning into quite the campaign. The latest developments present anything but a clear cut picture of the expected outcome.

On the Senate side of the equation, the Foreign Relations Committee came to a tentative agreement on the wording of a resolution that would authorize the use of force. It would permit 60 days of military engagement against Assad’s regime, with the option for an additional 30 days, conditioned on the president’s notification of Congress. It bars putting U.S. troops on the ground, save for the deployment of a small rescue force for emergency purposes. Within 30 days of the resolution’s enactment, Obama would be required to send Congress a plan outlining a diplomatic solution for ending the violence in Syria.

If this nonsense has a familiar ring, that’s because it sounds remarkably like Obama’s rationale for the use of force in Libya, a military engagement he conducted with no input whatsoever from Congress.

           — Hat tip: JD [Return to headlines]

Armenia-EU: Moscow Makes Yerevan an Offer it Can’t Refuse

European Voice

“Armenia chooses Russia over EU,” headlines the European Voice after the news Yerevan will join Russia’s trade body the Eurasian Customs Union, instead of signing the free-trade deal it spent several months negotiating with the European Union.

The surprise decision follows a Russian request for meeting between Armenia’s President Serzh Sarkisian and Russian President Vladimir Putin on August 30 in Moscow. The EU forbids countries from being members of both its deep and comprehensive free-trade agreement’ (DCFTA) and the Customs Union. The weekly continues –

The agreement comes just two days before a G20 summit that Putin will host in St Petersburg (5-6 September), and in the wake of a trade dispute with Ukraine over its bid to sign an association agreement with the EU. The EU’s leaders were expected to raise their objections to Russia’s pressure on Ukraine at the summit.

           — Hat tip: C. Cantoni [Return to headlines]

AgustaWestland Signs 170-Mn-Euro Deal With China

Finmeccanica subsidiary to deliver 20 helicopters

(ANSA) — Rome, September 5 — Anglo-Italian helicopter company AgustaWestland has signed a 170-million euro deal with China, AgustaWestland’s parent company Finmeccanica announced on Thursday.

AgustaWestland signed an agreement with the Chinese-US Intercontinental Helicopter Investment Company to deliver 20 helicopters, including the AW11iKe, GrandNew, AW169, AW 139 and AW 189 models.

The helicopters are destined for various uses, including transporting VIPs.

The agreement reinforces the presence of GrandNew and AW139 models in China, and introduces the market to AgustaWestland’s new generation AW169 and AW189 helicopters.

AgustaWestland has sold 40 helicopters to China in the past for purposes ranging from passenger and VIP transport to civil protection, fire-fighting and navy patrol.

The Italian State is Finmeccanica’s majority shareholder of reference with a 30% stake in the publicly listed defence, electronics and transport giant.

           — Hat tip: Insubria [Return to headlines]

Fukushima: Radioactive Effluent Circulating Into All Oceans

Twenty-nine months after Fukushima’s nuclear power plants exploded and started leaking millions of gallons of radioactive toxic waste into the Pacific Ocean, the contaminated liquid circulated (s) into all of the oceans of the world.

Fact: that radioactive waste enters into every living creature in the Earth’s oceans and contaminates their flesh. If you eat salmon, tuna, shrimp and other marine creatures in 2013, you cannot help but absorb to some degree, the radioactive contamination of Fukushima.

That single catastrophe may spell greater disasters for humans and all living creatures in the seas around the planet — for decades to come.

           — Hat tip: JD [Return to headlines]

Japan: TEPCO Admits Deliberately Using Radiation Detectors That Give Deceptively Low Readings; Radiation Leaks Far Worse Than Reported

(NaturalNews) At the Fukushima-Daiichi nuclear power plant, radiation isn’t the only thing leaking out. Each week, it seems there’s another small leak of the truth that has been deliberately hidden from the public. Yesterday, TEPCO finally admitted it has been downplaying the ongoing radiation release levels by a factor of almost twenty.

But the real story here is exactly how TEPCO arrived at the deceptively small numbers it has been reporting since the 2011 accident. It turns out (see below) that TEPCO has been deliberately using radiation detectors that “max out” at relatively low levels (i.e. they don’t go higher than 100 mSv). When those detectors are pegged at their max readings, instead of switching to a more capable instrument with a larger detection range, they simply report the maximum detection limit of the smaller detector as the “real” exposure number.

Huh? Yeah. Seriously.

Here’s how we discovered this:…

           — Hat tip: JD [Return to headlines]

Nuclear Disaster: Radiation Levels at Fukushima Would Now be Fatal Within Hours

The crippled Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant has radiation leaks strong enough to deliver a fatal dose within hours, Japanese authorities have revealed, as the government prepares to step in to help contain leaks of highly toxic water at the site.

On Wednesday the country’s nuclear regulation authority said radiation readings near water storage tanks at the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant have increased to a new high, with emissions above the ground near one group of tanks were as high as 2,200 millisieverts [mSv] per hour — a rise of 20% from the previous high.

Earlier this week the plant’s operator, Tepco, said workers had measured radiation at 1,800 mSv an hour near a storage tank.

           — Hat tip: JD [Return to headlines]

Tasty Science! Baker Creates Out-of-This-World Planet Cakes

A self-taught Australian baker has crafted some truly out-of-this-world confectionary treats in the shape of familiar mainstays of the solar system.

           — Hat tip: Fjordman [Return to headlines]

A Lesson in Futility

Why is the mainstream pro-family movement so completely ineffective in the culture war?

That it is ineffective, there can be no doubt. Just look at what’s been happening to our culture.

As a perfect illustration of futility, see the column by Rebecca Hagelin from the Aug. 28 edition of, “Culture Challenge of the Week: Public School Culture.” For utter cluelessness, and as a fool-proof recipe for ineffectuality, this one beats ‘em all.

Ms. Hagelin admits that “the social and moral climate within our schools has turned an ugly corner, and poses sharp new challenges for children who are religious believers… Our public schools are a prime battleground; our children are in harm’s way. It’s up to us to make sure that our children do not become the ‘collateral damage’ from the left’s relentless strike against marriage and heterosexuality.” In brief, public school “educators” are going all-out to indoctrinate children into homosexuality. Ms. Hagelin is not bashful about recognizing that as the big problem with “public school culture.” We agree: it is.

It’s only when she suggests what ought to be done about the problem that she comes out with pure, jaw-dropping tomfoolery.

           — Hat tip: JD [Return to headlines]

Hey… Liberals… Where’s Your ‘Tolerance’ Now?

Tolerance, tolerance, tolerance. We hear it all the time from those on the left. They claim to be the champions of it, but we all know the truth. Liberals are pushing an agenda of “anything goes,” and they are most certainly INTOLERANT of ANY opposing views. Just look at what happened to a Christian bakery for the latest example.

Let there be no confusion. Liberals do not believe in tolerance. Their entire goal is a world in which there are no standards… where everything is considered “normal” and “acceptable,” and if you don’t embrace their view that nothing is wrong, nothing is deviant, then they will come down on you like a load of bricks. Tolerance will certainly NOT be part of their vocabulary.

As reported by the Daily Mail, “A Christian bakery that refused to make a lesbian couple a tiered wedding cake because it would violate their ‘religious beliefs’ has shut down after months of hate-mail and plummeting revenues.”

“Melissa and Aaron Klein have been driven out of their shop in Gresham, Oregon — and are taking operations back into their home — after they say they received death- and also rape-threats and saw client numbers fall following their decision not to serve a lesbian couple.

“Media reports say they have been hounded by hate mail since January when Rachel Cryer and Laurel Bowman were refused service and subsequently made a discrimination complaint to authorities about the bakery.”

Not only have the Kleins been harassed, but the level to which the venom has risen against both them and their suppliers is despicable. Here’s the report from The Blaze:


Seeing the blatant hypocrisy of liberals in this case is stunning enough, but there are even more ominous actions to report. Todd Starnes at Fox News writes that the Oregon government is now getting involved:


The scariest word in the quote above is “rehabilitate.” If the government can step in and try to change the views of Christians, then we cease to have the ideals upon which America was founded. “Rehabilitation” sure sounds like a license for the government to tell us what to do and think.

           — Hat tip: JD [Return to headlines]

Oman: Paper Suspended After Running Interview With Gay Man

The Week apologizes, then disappears from newsstands

(ANSAmed) — DUBAI, SEPTEMBER 5 — Muscat, Oman based English-language paper The Week has suspended publication after running an interview with a gay man in a country in which homosexuality is punishable by prison, beatings, and even death.

Titled The Outsiders, the article telling the life of a gay man in Oman, and suggesting the monarchy is more tolerant than its Gulf neighbors sparked an outcry on social media.

Tawfiq al-Lawati, a member of the Shura Council — a body that assists the country’s sultan in policy-making — called on Twitter for the ministry of information to intervene and for the weekly to be suspended. “The problem of homosexuality is understandable,” Lawati said in a later interview. “But an article suggesting that Oman is a paradise for homosexuals is unacceptable.” The paper responded by running a front-page apology. “The Weeknever intended, voluntarily or involuntarily, to damage, wound or offend readers’ feelingsThe Week publicly apologizes to its readers, whose opinions it respects”, the editors wrote.

While authorities did not confirm or deny they took action to force The Weekly off the stands, its editors told advertisers the newspaper would not appear on newsstands on Thursday.

While gays live an underground life in Oman, the press occasionally attempts to break the taboo by running stories about openly gay or transgender people. The most recent case is that of blogger Ala’a Jabar, 21, whose voice was one of the most active in galvanizing the 2011 uprising against former Yemeni president, Ali Abdullah Saleh. In June of this year, Jabar came out on his blog, causing widespread consternation at a confession that would have such grave social and penal consequences.

“I contributed to the revolution, and the revolution cannot be complete without changing all aspects of a society and of ourselves,” Jabar replied.

           — Hat tip: Insubria [Return to headlines]

Monster Saturn Storm Dredged Up Icy Water From the Deeps

A colossal storm that raged on Saturn in 2010 and 2011 churned water ice up from deep within the ringed planet’s thick atmosphere, a new study reports.

NASA’s Cassini spacecraft detected the ice crystals from its perch orbiting Saturn. It’s the first time water has ever been spotted on the planet, some 400 years after Saturn and its rings were first glimpsed through a telescope.

           — Hat tip: Fjordman [Return to headlines]

OIC Warns Against Islamophobia

Ekmeleddin Ihsanoglu, secretary-general of the Organization of Islamic Cooperation (OIC), has warned against the rise of Islamophobia, which seeks to defame Islam and Muslims.

           — Hat tip: Fjordman [Return to headlines]

5 thoughts on “Gates of Vienna News Feed 9/5/2013

  1. I like defaming Islam and Moslems who threaten and kill us! Try it some time? It’s fun!!!
    They killed friends of mine……And they want “resepect”..

    The world has been inccredibky “respectful”….

    Wind the blighters up- As I said it’s great fun!!!!

  2. @Jews helps guard UK mosques after attacks

    Vigilantism and spying on thy neighbours is not the British way of policing, maybe it should be remembered that it was neighbourhood vigilantism and denunciation that facilitated the round-up of peoples in Occupied Europe.

  3. “The “Troika” has demanded that Greece liquidate its arms industry in order to meet the goals of austerity and qualify for the next tranche of aid from the EU. Arms manufacturing in Greece is widely seen as producing little, and at too high a cost.”

    So the next time something like Cyprus happens, they can stop the Turks by throwing rocks and immigrants at them.

  4. Syria is all about natural gas pipelines. Russia is currently Europe’s largest supplier, but Qatar has ample suppy and wants to build a pipeline to Europe – it must cross Syria to get to Turkey to get to Europe. Syria, Russia’s ally, said no to Qatar. The Saudis would like to control Syria in order to have a stranglehold on any other pipelines (from Iraq or Iran for instance) that might attempt to carry gas through Syria into Europe. As Dhimmis to the Saudis, the Obama government would like to help them out.

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