Monday, January 31, 2011

Water flowing into the Arctic Ocean is 'warmest it's been for more than 2,000 years'



-Scientists fear temperature rise could lead to an Ice-free Artic, endangering polar bears.

Water flowing from the North Atlantic into the Arctic is at its warmest level for more than 2,000 years.

The sea in the Gulf Stream between Greenland and the Norwegian archipelago of Svalbard reached an average of 6C (42F) in recent summers, warmer than at natural peaks during Roman or Medieval times.

Scientists fear the temperature spikes could lead to an ice-free Arctic in years to come and could endanger polar bears, who need the ice in order to survive.

Such changes could also lead to rising sea levels around the world and ‘drastic changes’ to the environment, researchers have concluded.

The latest findings were presented by scientists at the University of Colorado in Boulder who examined tiny plankton-like organisms on the seabed of the Fram strait, which is is the main carrier of ocean heat to the Arctic.

As data from the water only goes back 150 years, they had to drill into sediment on the ocean’s sea bed to find organisms dating back 2,000 years and then analysed their chemical composition to determine past water temperatures. Read more...

Volcano evacuation zone widens - JAPAN

MIYAZAKI (Kyodo) Officials in Takaharu, Miyazaki Prefecture, have told about 500 households to evacuate because the eruption of Mount Kirishima's Shinmoedake peak on the border with Kagoshima could trigger landslides and send boulders flying.

Takaharu issued the recommendation at around midnight Sunday after the Miyazaki Local Meteorological Observatory said the lava dome on the 1,421-meter peak was rising. The warning could affect as many as 1,100 residents.About 610 people had evacuated to four shelters as of Monday morning, the town said.

The Kagoshima Local Meteorological Observatory, however, said the degree of risk is not high enough to issue such a recommendation.

According to the Kagoshima observatory, satellite images of the volcano show that the lava dome, which was 100 meters in diameter Thursday, had grown to about 500 meters in diameter on Saturday.

At Shinmoedake peak, small eruptions have continued since it spewed ash and rocks in its first major eruption in 189 years last week, disrupting traffic and people's lives. Source...

Climate change: 2011 bodes more weather anomalies

The world is finally coming to terms with an inconvenient truth. Across the globe, leaders are waking up to the fact that global warming is a real threat. And its impact is palpable, often immediate—disasters and human suffering carried live on television or the Internet almost as they occur. Last month, as the United States prepared for Christmas, its East Coast was buried under the avalanche of gale-force blizzards. This record snowfall was a reprise of a wintry assault that devastated major cities in the mid-Atlantic region in February last year. In July last year, an intense heat wave spread from Maine to Pennsylvania. By the following month, the continuing drought shrank Lake Mead, America’s largest reservoir in Nevada and Arizona, by a significant margin. Then in spring, torrential rains unleashed floods across southeast America even as summer heat waves ravaged much of the northern hemisphere. As 2011 approached, thousands in Queensland, Australia, suddenly found themselves marooned by floodwaters of Tropical Cyclone “Tasha,” which eventually swamped a vast land area equivalent to France and Germany combined. While diplomats and scientists pondered over an accord that could replace the Kyoto Protocol, 19 nations were experiencing unusually high temperatures, including 53.5 degrees Celsius in Pakistan, the hottest ever in Asia. In Pakistan, record monsoon rains destroyed infrastructure, left thousands dead and millions homeless. In Eastern Europe, Russia suffered its hottest year in 1,000 years of history. At least 10,000 people died from Moscow’s heat phenomenon. Wildfires erupted across the country, heavily damaging its wheat crop and forcing Moscow to impose an export ban that raised global wheat prices.

In Baguio City - Philippines, millions worth of fruits and vegetables were ruined by heavy frost of an unseasonably cold weather. More than a week of abnormally heavy rains left 33 dead last December. About 70,000 fled the flash floods and landslides in Davao del Norte, Compostela Valley and Albay. Read More..

The ROSWELSH Incident - Wales 1974

EVERY time Huw Lloyd ventures on to the peaks above his farmhouse, his thoughts return to a strange night almost 40 years ago - and a UFO mystery that has never been explained.

Huw, then 14, had been watching television with his two older sisters and a neighbour when their hillside home in North Wales was rocked by a "violent thud" that knocked him from his chair.

Within minutes four police officers were at his front door, asking if his father could drive them into the inhospitable Berwyn Mountains in a farm vehicle.

They said a plane had crashed.

Huw's father was out so the teenager, who had been driving Land Rovers around the family farm for years, volunteered to take them.

Within minutes he was at the wheel of his dad's Land Rover, driving the officers through the gloom.

Huw said: "Our neighbour, a retired RAF officer, sat in the -passenger seat and the policemen were in the back."

As the Land Rover nosed carefully along the track that wound through thick forests and bogs, the officers kept colleagues informed of their progress via their radios.

Meanwhile, Huw began to prepare himself for the grim scene that might lie ahead.

"I was expecting we'd find a blazing aircraft with bodies strewn among wreckage," he said.

The Land Rover was nearing the 2,723ft summit of the highest peak in the Berwyn mountain range - Cadair Berwyn - when they were "blinded" by the brightest light Huw, now 51, has ever seen.

"It must have been about 30 minutes after the explosion we'd heard while we were in the house. Suddenly the whole sky was lit up by the most incredible white light, brighter it seemed than even the sun. For close on 30 seconds the skies were filled with this light for as far as you could see."

The awed youngster quickly composed himself and pressed on, only for the 4x4 to get stuck in a bog.

The officers got out to free it but when they had done so and got back in, one of them said quietly: "Take us back down the mountain, please. We're done here."

The teenager was dumbfounded. Read more...

Moscow flu epidemic closes all schools: 90,000 diagnosed within one week, 93 H1N1 cases

Moscow and two other cities shut their schools for a week Saturday and urged children not to play in groups in a bid to stamp out the worst flu outbreak to hit central Russia in more than a decade.

The Moscow education department's order covered more than 1,500 public and private elementary schools.

Education officials said this meant that nearly 500,000 children would get an unscheduled week-long vacation in the first such shutdown to strike the Russian capital since 1998.

"Even today, some classes are already missing half their students," an official with Moscow's health control service told the Komsomolskaya Pravda daily.

Source

Sweet potato culprit in death of 200 cows?

Authorities investigating the deaths of 200 cows in Wisconsin have come up with an unlikely culprit: the sweet potato.

The cows were found dead in a Stockton pasture two weeks ago. Locals were left scratching their heads about what caused the mass die-off. Investigators from the University of Wisconsin have determined that the animals were killed by a poison found in spoiled sweet potatoes that were part of the cattle's feed.

"It is likely that a mycotoxin from moldy sweet potato was a major factor in the disease and deaths of these steers," said Peter Vanderloo, associate director of the Wisconsin Veterinary Diagnostic Laboratory.

- Mycotoxins can appear in the food chain as a result of fungal infection of crops, either by being eaten directly by humans, or by being used as livestock feed. Mycotoxins greatly resist decomposition or being broken down in digestion, so they remain in the food chain in meat and dairy products. Even temperature treatments, such as cooking and freezing, do not destroy mycotoxins.

I have several questions regarding the explanation of this case, the farmer I assume is well aware of the risks involved with certain feeds considering he has been cattle farming for 20 years or more, Farmers earn their living from healthy and well maintained crops, cattle and land, it is their job and their life to know how to achieve this. Most famers would know what was wrong with their stock or crops before even calling in a vet.

Why did the farmer feed his cows sweet potato if it is so highly toxic when spoiled? Why would he risk it?

Why did the original report mention the Farmer had no clue what had killed his herd? Did he not notice Mycotoxins poisoning Symptoms?

Here is a simular case from 2003 -

FIGHERA, Rafael A. et al. Interstitial pneumonia in cattle fed moldy sweet potatoes (Ipomoea batatas). Pesq. Vet. Bras. [online]. 2003, vol.23, n.4, pp. 161-166. ISSN 0100-736X. doi: 10.1590/S0100-736X2003000400004.

Cases of respiratory disease were diagnosed in five out of 23 cattle (21.7%) after they were fed moldy damaged sweet potatoes (Ipomoea batatas) on a small farm in the county of São Vicente do Sul, state of Rio Grande do Sul, Brazil. Of those five cattle, three died spontaneously and another one was euthanatized for necropsy while showing advanced respiratory clinical signs. The disease manifested itself approximately 24 hours after the ingestion of the sweet potatoes and lasted from 1 to 4 days. Clinical signs included dyspnea (labored breathing and abdominal respiration), tachypnea, extended neck with low carriage of the head and rhythmical flaring of the nostrils. Two cows were necropsied. Necropsy findings included distended pale and rubbery lungs which failed to collapse when the thorax was open, and marked pulmonary interstitial emphysema and edema. Lymphoid hyperplasia was observed in the hilar nodes and spleen. Histologically, the lesions were those of interstitial pneumonia. Alveolar septa were thickened by fibroblasts and inflammatory cells, and there was hypertrophy and hyperplasia of type II pneumocytes; the interlobular septa were distended by edema and emphysema. The culture of the moldy sweet potatoes yielded Fusarium solani and Fusarium oxysporum.

BREAKING NEWS - Magnitude 6.0 Hits TONGA 30th Jan 2011

Monday 31st Jan 2011 at 06:03 UTC a Magnitude 6.0 hit Tonga, at a debth of 68.6 KM (42.6 miles)

There is currently no immediate Tsunami warning and no further reports available from the Pacific Tsunami Warnign Centre, which monitors the region and issues bulletins in the event of a Tsunami being generated .

The quake follows a 5.8 Magnitude of 7 days ago which struck 65 km southeast of Neiafu, Tonha.

The region lies in the "Pacific Ring of Fire", a highly active earthquake and volcanic zone.

The Real China #2: 20 million so poor they must live in air-raid shelters

There, in the city's vast network of unused air defence bunkers, as many as a million people live in small, windowless rooms that rent for £30 to £50 a month, which is as much as many of the city's army of migrant labourers can afford.

In a Beijing suburb, beneath one of the thousands of faceless residential tower blocks that have carpeted the city's peripheries in a decade-long building frenzy, one of Beijing's "bomb shelter hoteliers", as they are known, agrees to shows us his wares.

Passing under a green sign proclaiming "Air Defence Basement", Mr Zhao leads us down two flights of stairs to the network of corridors and rooms that were designed to offer sanctuary in the event of war or disaster.

"We have two sizes of room," he says, stepping past heaps of clutter belonging to residents, most of whom work in the nearby cloth wholesale market. "The small ones [6ft by 9ft] are 300 yuan [£30] the big ones [15ft by 6ft] are 500 yuan."

Source

Iraq and Afghanistan Casuality Diagram: A Year of Colourful Sadness

In 2010, the United States and its allies continued to shift the military focus from Iraq and to Afghanistan. American troop levels in Iraq fell by half, from more than 100,000 troops in January to under 50,000. In Afghanistan, a surge of mainly United States troops brought numbers to roughly 140,000, from near 100,000 at the beginning of the year. As shown in the chart (based on data from the Pentagon, icasualties.org and American allies), in 2010 there were 696 fatalities in Afghanistan and 56 in Iraq.

Source

Egypt's Crisis Intensifies: Tribes Threaten to Attack Suez Canal if Mubarak Does Not Step Down


Bedouin tribesman have reportedly taken control of two towns in the Sinai Peninsula. These two towns are the closest to the Gaza Strip and right next to the border with Israel. There were reports yesterday that Bedouin tribes had besieged a police station in Suez and it appears that these riots have spread. This would effectively end the Mubarak dictatorship’s control of the region. There are no reports of the Egyptian military stepping in here.

The more disturbing news is a threat that has been made by the tribes if Mubarak does not step down. According to one report coming from Time Magazine, they are willing to attack the Suez Canal if Mubarak does not leave. The Suez Canal currently is where a third of the world’s oil and six percent of all products passes through. A seizure of the Canal could spike oil prices beyond the current $90 level, perhaps over $110. This could come to pass despite the fact that Egypt is not a major oil producer.

Source

Amazing on-the-ground scenes from Egypt's People's Revolution

Church Foreclosures Surge, Seen as 'Next Wave' in Crisis

Residential and commercial real-estate owners aren't the only ones losing their properties to foreclosure. The past few years have seen a rapid acceleration in the number of churches losing their sanctuaries because they can't pay the mortgage.

Just as homeowners borrowed too much or built too big during boom times, many churches did the same and now are struggling as their congregations shrink and collections fall owing to rising unemployment and a weak economy.

Since 2008, nearly 200 religious facilities have been foreclosed on by banks, up from eight during the previous two years and virtually none in the decade before that, according to real-estate services firm CoStar Group, Inc. Analysts and bankers say hundreds of additional churches face financial struggles so severe they could face foreclosure or bankruptcy in the near future.

Source

Sunday, January 30, 2011

Thousands of fishes, turtles die in Etawah pond - India

Kanpur: Thousands of fishes and about a dozen turtles were found dead during the past few days in Pakka Talab in Etawah. The fishes and turtles have been dying since last week and the number is increasing gradually.

NGOs suspect poisoning as the reason while residents blame the local body for poor upkeep of the water body over the years which has led to the death.

On January 20, residents at Pakka Talab gathered near the water body after they came across thousands of dead fishes and about a dozen turtles floating on the water surface. "Again on Friday morning, we found thousands of fish lying motionless on the surface. But, we had no idea that so many fish would die," said Animesh, a local.
Read More......

Hundreds of dead fish found in north Fort Collins

More than 250 dead fish were found on a 150 feet stretch of of shoreline near an irrigation ditch just north of Willox Street in Fort Collins Saturday.

The fish, which were mostly sucker fish with some brown trout, were discovered by Fort Collins resident Bob Jackson. Jackson immediately informed local authorities, who sent out representatives from the department of wildlife.

“I walked the shoreline on the north side of Willox and took some samples that I turned into the health lab,” said Shane Craig, district wildlife manager and game warden for Fort Collins.

Craig said the fish most likely swam into the irrigation ditch as the temperatures turned mild and became trapped in the canal after being released from the Horsetooth Reservoir. When the water levels in the canal dropped, so presumably did the oxygen levels, Craig said.

“We’re pretty confident (the cause) is just low oxygen levels,” Craig said. Source...

The curious phenomenon of the new Northern Lights: Optical illusion caused by ice crystals in the Yorkshire night sky

To the left are the lights of Holmfirth, to the right a TV transmitter glows. But between these man-made creations, Mother Nature has put on a show which outshines them both.

Dwarfing the Emley Moor transmitter – at 1,083 feet, the UK’s tallest free-standing structure – are these pillars of light piercing the winter’s night sky like bolts of fire.

They were formed when ice crystals in low cloud trapped light from Holmfirth and, like millions of tiny mirrors, reflected it back to earth.

The stunning phenomenon is usually formed from the light of the setting sun, but can also be created by artificial light as in this case near Holmfirth, the West Yorkshire town where TV’s Last of the Summer Wine was filmed.

The pillars could be seen by the naked eye, but their appearance for around 30 minutes was more dramatic when captured at long exposure in this image by photographer Steve Doherty in temperatures of around -3c (27f) on Thursday night.

Mr Doherty caught a fleeting glimpse of the pillars when temperatures to around -3c (27f) at 10pm on Thursday night. Read More...

"God is Great!": Protests Spread to Saudi Arabia



While the biggest threat to the Middle East region is the possibility that the population of Saudi Arabia may try to imitate what has been happening in the area, thereby bringing total chaos to the established regional geopolitical and more importantly, energy, structure, the first protests in the Saudi Arabia city of Jeddah are already in the books. The clip below shows the peaceful demonstrations that have taken place recently, which as Fedupmontrealer explains are "taking place in front of the Municipality in protest of the severe lack of infrastructure, and corruption, that led the city to be inundated this week causing billions of dollars of damages for the second time in two years."

Read More

Billions in Fake US Bonds Confiscated in Italy (Yet Again)

Italian authorities have confiscated $20 billion in counterfeit U.S. government bonds.

Authorities say the bonds were of a quality that theoretically could have defrauded financial institutions.

But a stop at a highway rest area where a group of Carabinieri military police were taking a break proved to be the undoing of the group.

A Carabinieri statement said officers did a routine search of the vehicles after the "suspicious" behaviour of the men and found "to their surprise" a briefcase with 40 bonds 0each valued at $500 million. Source

Of course, what they would like to remain buried is the fact that this is the second time in two years that his has happened. Here's an excerpt from the first incident back in 2009 when some Japanese were caught with 100+ billion dollars worth of bonds in Italy:

Italy’s financial police (Guardia italiana di Finanza) has seized US bonds worth US 134.5 billion from two Japanese nationals at Chiasso (40 km from Milan) on the border between Italy and Switzerland. They include 249 US Federal Reserve bonds worth US$ 500 million each, plus ten Kennedy bonds and other US government securities worth a billion dollar each.

Read More



Oh wait, this has actually happened before? Let's not forget the 2001 incident in the Philippines, involving $2 trillion - yes, trillion - in bonds:

United States and Philippine officials have seized more than $2,000bn (two trillion) in fake US Federal Reserve bonds in the southern Philippines.

They said the large-denomination counterfeit bonds may have been intended to be sold as part of ''lost treasure'' scam where buyers are told the documents have recently been found.

Read more

Dodging UFO Spotted over Innsbruck, Austria

Playing UFOs Spotted over Chepstow, Wales

Incredible UFO Sighting Over Jerusalem (Old City) - Fake or Fantastic?

China Blocking Internet Activity Regarding Egypt - Is Revolution Viral?

China has blocked the word "Egypt'' from the country's wildly popular Twitter-like service, while coverage of the political turmoil has been tightly restricted in state media.

China's ruling Communist Party is sensitive to any potential source of social unrest.

A search for "Egypt'' on the Sina microblogging service brings up a message saying, "According to relevant laws, regulations and policies, the search results are not shown".

Read more

Japan: No Hope for Young Graduates

Kenichi Horie was a promising auto engineer, exactly the sort of youthful talent Japan needs to maintain its edge over hungry Korean and Chinese rivals. As a worker in his early 30s at a major carmaker, Mr. Horie won praise for his design work on advanced biofuel systems.

But like many young Japanese, he was a so-called irregular worker, kept on a temporary staff contract with little of the job security and half the salary of the “regular” employees, most of them workers in their late 40s or older. After more than a decade of trying to gain regular status, Mr. Horie finally quit — not just the temporary jobs, but Japan altogether.

Read more

UFO sightings spawn COMETA report, fear of world crisis

EUGENE, Ore. – Confirmed UFO sightings over Cairo and the port city of Suez in Egypt early Saturday morning comes at a time when the United Nations is reviewing the French government produced COMETA Report that states “about five percent of UFO sightings defy conventional explanation” and often occur at a time of world crisis; while, also stating that UFOs “constitute a real phenomenon warranting immediate international attention.”

Foreign exchange students at Eugene’s Lane Community College told local media today that while there’s a news blackout in Egypt. But, there’s also reports of UFOs. Moreover, there have been BBC and other international media confirmations; news of lights and UFO sightings in skies over this ancient land.

Information about the COMETA Report and the photo that accompanies this story was researched in part by a review of National Archives and the Division of Special Collections and University Archives, at the University of Oregon here in Eugene. Read More...

Egyptian looters destroy 2,000-year-old mummies in bid to steal King Tut's treasures

- Heavy army presence at Pyramids as Priceless treasures become target.
- 30.000 Stranded British tourists warned to stay in Hotels after 4 pm.

The army was on guard at Egypt’s most popular tourist sites last night after two 2,000-year-old mummies in the country’s national museum were destroyed by looters attempting to steal the treasures of King Tutankhamun.

Soldiers were positioned at the Pyramids and Cairo’s Egyptian Museum – the holding place for Tutankhamun’s priceless golden mask and other artifacts – on the fifth day of anti-government demonstrations in the country’s capital.

The military deployment came amid an almost complete collapse of law and order, with the violence escalating outside the capital. Residents in Alexandria, north-west of Cairo, were forced to stand guard outside their homes armed with sticks as gangs rampaged through the city. Read more...

Vigilantes Emerge As Egyptian Elites 'Flee'

Thousands of Egyptians have joined local vigilante groups to protect their neighbourhoods as claims emerge of rich elites fleeing to Dubai.

Report of gangs looting and robbing has resulted in people coming together to protect their families and neighbourhoods.

It's unclear who is behind the crime, but the result is the same - the choice between protesting and protecting has emptied the streets.

"Our jobs are done and over. There are thugs everywhere, ransacking our shops," shop owner Saleh Salem said.

Islamic leaders called on people to join the vigilante groups to protect their homes themselves and scenes of looting appeared to spread from upscale parts of Cairo to downtown and poorer areas as well.

Egyptians armed with guns, sticks, and blades have formed vigilante groups to defend their homes from looters after police disappeared from the streets following days of violent protests.

"Since the government is not doing it, we are sending down our boys to create human shields to fight the criminals." Read More..

Non-stop rains affect 394,065 families - Philippines

MANILA, Philippines — Non-stop rains that started before New Year’s Day continue to wreak havoc on several parts of the country, adversely affecting 394,065 families or 1,972,433 people in 2,188 villages in 189 towns and 18 cities throughout the country, while the death toll increased to 75 and 22 remain missing, the National Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Council (NDRRMC) reported on Saturday.

The NDRRMC also said that Bohol province and the cities of Cebu and Mandaue were placed under state of calamity due to floods.

Latest NDRRMC bulletin also showed 225 families of 1,089 persons from Mainit town and Surigao City, both in Surigao del Norte, were evacuated due to massive flooding that have so far affected 65 barangays in nine municipalities in the province and one municipality of Dinagat Islands.

One person, identified as Amado Basadre, from Barangay Honrado in the same town was reported missing when he was caught by strong current while attempting to cross a river. A bridge in Libjo, Dinagat Islands was damaged.

Reports reaching the NDRRMC operations center in Camp Aguinaldo showed that massive flooding was experienced in Metro Cebu as a result of a heavy downpour on January 25 that lasted almost two hours, affecting 12 barangays in Cebu City. Read More ...

Train Collision In Germany Kills 10

A head-on train crash in eastern Germany has killed 10 people and injured at least 33 others, eight of them severely.

A passenger and a cargo train crashed near Hordorf village, close to Saxony-Anhalt's state capital Magdeburg.

Several train cars derailed and overturned, a spokesman for the district's firefighters said.

Rescue operations were still under way early on Sunday, and police had no immediate information as to what could have caused the accident late Saturday evening, regional police spokesman Frank Kuessner said.

Eight bodies have been retrieved from the passenger train so far and some 35 suffered injuries, he said.

Mr Kuessner had no immediate explanation for the differing casualty figures as the rescue operations continue.

"The death toll may well rise further," Mr Kuessner said.

Saxony-Anhalt's Deputy Interior Minister Ruediger Erben, who rushed to the scene last night, said the trains must have crashed head-on at high speed.

The accident happened about 125 miles southwest of Berlin. Source...

Deadly 'War On Cops' Sparks US Tactic Review

US government officials are set to review a spate of deadly attacks on police officers that has been dubbed a 'war on cops'.

A series of shootings has left 15 officers dead in January alone - with 11 gunned down in one 24-hour period alone.

The Department of Justice says it will study whether the behaviour of officers, deficits in training or financial cut-backs could have contributed to the number of fatalities.

The crisis has been highlighted by extraordinary CCTV footage from a police station in Detroit showing a man opening fire on officers, injuring four.

The gunman struck because he was angry at a search of his home.

The shootings have taken place across the US and follow a dramatic rise in the number of officers killed in the line of duty last year. Read More...

Saturday, January 29, 2011

Recent eruptions similar to those 300 yrs ago / Lava dome confirmed; experts warn more violent blasts could be in offing at Shinmoedake peak

Volcanic experts have sounded an ominous warning about the recent eruptions on Shinmoedake peak, saying they closely resemble highly destructive blasts that occurred there nearly 300 years ago.

One of more than 20 volcanic peaks in the Kirishima mountain range on the Kagoshima-Miyazaki prefectural border, Shinmoedake is believed to have formed between 7,300 and 25,000 years ago.

Most of the recorded eruptions on the Kirishima range have occurred at Shinmoedake and Ohachi peaks.

Small eruptions caused by phreatic explosions were observed on Shinmoedake from March to May last year. Phreatic explosions occur when the heat of rising magma causes underground water to boil and steam pressure rises.

According to experts, however, the eruptions that have taken place since Wednesday are explosive eruptions characteristic of phreatomagmatic explosions, which are caused when magma and underground water directly interact. Read More..

17 peacocks found dead in Wankaner, West India in 3 Days

WANKANER: Seventeen peacocks have been found dead in the last four days from Vidi area near Gadhiya Dungar in Wankaner. While carcasses of 13 peacocks were recovered on January 25 and 26, four more dead birds were found on January 28.

Though preliminary investigations by the forest department indicate food poisoning as the cause of death, viral infection is not ruled out. "The carcasses were detected by Kana Rajgor, who alerted the forest department on January 25. Upon inspection, we found five dead peacocks and more dead birds were found strewn across the area on January 26. It may be noted that bird lovers of Wankaner come to Vidi area to feed birds," round forest officer M S Makadiya told mediapersons.

The carcasses were sent to Junagadh veterinary hospital, where veterinarian Dilipsinh Barad hinted at the possibility of food poisoning as the cause of death. "The birds might have died after consuming poisonous seeds. However, the possibility of some viral fever causing the deaths can not be ruled out. The exact cause of the tragedy will be known only after the postmortem," he said.

The bird carcasses will be sent to Anand Veterinary Laboratory for postmortem, and the report is expected in the next two to three days. Source...

Thousands of dead fish found in Erie, St. Clair

TRAVERSE CITY — Officials say cold weather and a fish virus likely are to blame for thousands of dead gizzard shad found recently in Lakes Erie and St. Clair, the St. Clair River and the Detroit River.

The Detroit Free Press and The Detroit News report that the weather and viral hemorrhagic septicemia, or VHS, are suspected in the fish deaths. Researchers from Michigan State University and the University of Toledo took samples of dead shad Thursday and Friday that showed signs of the fish virus.

Shad deaths are typical in the winter. It's expected to take a month to determine whether the fish had VHS.

Although not dangerous for humans, the virus has previously caused large fish kills in Lakes Ontario, Erie and Huron. It also has turned up in Lake Michigan. Source...

BREAKING NEWS - Magnitude 6.1Hits JAN MAYEN ISLAND REGION 29th Jan 2011

JAN MAYEN (BNO NEWS) — A strong earthquake struck near the Norwegian island of Jan Mayen on early Saturday morning, seismologists said, but no tsunami alert was issued.

The 6.1-magnitude earthquake at 6.55 a.m. local time (GMT) was centered just east of Jan Mayen, a volcanic island in the Arctic Ocean that belongs to Norway. It is partly covered by glaciers and is located about 500 kilometers (300 miles) east of central Greenland, or 1,000 kilometers (600 miles) west of the North Cape in Norway.

The strong earthquake struck just 9.5 kilometers (5.9 miles) deep, making it a shallow earthquake, according to the United States Geological Survey (USGS). No damage or casualties were expected as the island is usually uninhabited.

A seismologist with the USGS said Saturday’s earthquake was the largest in the region since a 6.0-magnitude earthquake on April 14, 2004, but smaller earthquakes occur more frequently. “This part of the world, the earthquakes, it’s a spreading ridge, so the plates are moving away from each other. They normally don’t produce large earthquakes,” the seismologist said. Source.

World business leaders told flying saucers are real & extraterrestrials exist

At five thousand dollars a ticket, some business leaders got more than they bargained for when they attended the first day of the Global Competitiveness Forum (GCF) being held in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia. They were told flying saucers are real, and they had better start thinking about the business implications of extraterrestrial life and technologies. Convened each year by the Saudi Arabian General Investment Authority, the GCF brings together business and political leaders to discuss ways of promoting business competitiveness. For the first time at its annual conference, the GCF held a panel discussing UFOs and extraterrestrial life. Titled “Learning from Outer Space” the panel comprised five speakers who all endorsed the view that extraterrestrial life is real, and has many implications for the world as we know it.

Read more

Developing Story: Syria is also moving to shut down Internet as protests spread

On the same day that Egypt has suspended online activity, Syria has also blocked internet service.

Syria is known for a tight control of the internet, which was tightened further after the unrest in TUnisia, reports Reuters. Now, Al Arabiya is reporting that internet services have gone down completely in the country.

Follow the developing story here

Interactive Map: The Tunisia effect - The turmoil spreads


Tunisian President Zine El Abidine Ben Ali stepped down on Jan. 14 following a month of violent demonstrations over worsening economic conditions, corruption and political repression.

The protests started after Mohamed Bouazizi, a fruit vendor, set himself on fire after police seized his goods.

He later died.

Access Map Here

Is World on Brink of Global Revolution?

An uprising in Tunisia led to the overthrow of the country’s 23-year long dictatorship of President Ben Ali. A new ‘transitional’ government was formed, but the protests continued demanding a totally new government without the relics of the previous tyranny. Protests in Algeria have continued for weeks, as rage mounts against rising food prices, corruption and state oppression. Protests in Jordan forced the King to call on the military to surround cities with tanks and set up checkpoints. Tens of thousands of protesters marched on Cairo demanding an end to the 30-year dictatorship of Hosni Mubarak. Thousands of activists, opposition leaders and students rallied in the capitol of Yemen against the corrupt dictatorship of President Saleh, in power since 1978. Saleh has been, with U.S. military assistance, attempting to crush a rebel movement in the north and a massive secessionist movement growing in the south, called the “Southern Movement.” Protests in Bolivia against rising food prices forced the populist government of Evo Morales to backtrack on plans to cut subsidies. Chile erupted in protests as demonstrators railed against rising fuel prices. Anti-government demonstrations broke out in Albania, resulting in the deaths of several protesters.


"To put it bluntly: in earlier times, it was easier to control one million people than to physically kill one million people; today, it is infinitely easier to kill one million people than to control one million people."


- Zbigniew Brzezinski

Former U.S. National Security Advisor

Co-Founder of the Trilateral Commission

Member, Board of Trustees, Center for Strategic and International Studies


Read More

America is Hiding That It's Bankrupt: IMF shows figures that US is worse off than Greece

Was the 2009 Christmas "Underwear Bomber" Really a US Goverment Agent?

Wikileaks: America Behind Egypt Protests?

The American government secretly backed leading figures behind the Egyptian uprising who have been planning “regime change” for the past three years, The Daily Telegraph has learned.

The American Embassy in Cairo helped a young dissident attend a US-sponsored summit for activists in New York, while working to keep his identity secret from Egyptian state police.

On his return to Cairo in December 2008, the activist told US diplomats that an alliance of opposition groups had drawn up a plan to overthrow President Hosni Mubarak and install a democratic government in 2011.

Read more

Friday, January 28, 2011

Mystery crack on the ground at Kuchchuveli None would have known if not for two boys

Dr. Fernando said that the substance hadn’t solidified even after 48 hours earlier.

Dr. Vijayananda said that it was a normal happening and there was absolutely nothing to worry about. Responding to a query by The Island, Dr. Wijayananda said that once a team dispatched to investigate the ‘cracks’ returned, a report would be submitted to the government. He dismissed the perception that this could be sign of an earthquake.

Senior Geologist Dr. Starin Fernando, a member of the GSMB team, which investigated the Kuchchuveli phenomenon said that a similar ‘ground condition’ had been observed at Madampe in the Chilaw area some time back, though nothing oozed out of the ground like at Kuchchuveli.

Responding to a query, Dr. Fernando asserted that oozing of a clay, sand and water out of the ground couldn’t have been caused by recent heavy rains, though rains could have created the conditions for the still

unexplained phenomenon. Dr. Fernando’s team included scientist Mahinda Seneviratne, Wasantha Wimalaratne of GSMB Trincomalee office and Technical Officer M. Padmasiri.

Expert teams from the Moratuwa and Peradeniya Universities and the Board, too, conducted studies.

Dr. Fernando said that more tests would have to be conducted and the area monitored for some time in addition to their ongoing inquiry.

Chief of the Geological Survey and Mines Bureau (GSMB) Dr. N. P. Wijayananda says that had it not been for two boys from a tsunami village, the country wouldn’t have even heard about the recent earth cracks in Kuchchuveli. One of the boys had stepped on a crack, from which an unidentified sticky substance oozed, Dr. Wijayananda said. Source..

Egypt's 'Internet Kill Switch': An Attempt to Suppress the People


Here's what happened last night in Egypt (late last night in U.S.): (See chart above)

Meanwhile, back in these United States, folks like Sen. Joe Lieberman are pushing a bill, the "Protecting Cyberspace as a National Asset" act, to make provisions for a U.S. government "Internet Kill Switch" to allow them to do the same. Now why would folks like Lieberman want that?

The latest revision of this bill, according to FastCompany, "bans judicial review over executive decrees" to take down all, or portions of, the Internet.

On a very related note... Thanks to the Internet, you can watch the uprising in Egypt going on as we speak, via Al Jazeera English's streaming live coverage here, just in case you find that CNN and the others are still offering wall-to-wall coverage of Charlie Sheen.

And on another very related note... The recent uprising, revolution and new government in Tunisia was triggered, in no small part, thanks to a U.S. diplomatic cable published by WikiLeaks detailing the corruption of the ruling family. That revolution helped spark the one going on right now in Egypt, where the people have taken to the streets to challenge the thirty-year, iron-fisted rule of Hosni Mubarik, a long-time U.S. ally.

Read more

Ten dead, three missing in Jeddah floods

Jan 28th 2011 AFP - Ten people have been killed and three others gone missing in three days of flooding due to heavy rains in the Red Sea city of Jeddah, Saudi Arabia's civil defence chief said on Friday.

Since the floods began on Wednesday, "the death toll has risen to 10 and three people are still missing," said Saad al-Tuwaijri, quoted by the state news agency SPA.

Emergency services mounted a major rescue operation in Jeddah on Wednesday as water levels rose rapidly in Saudi Arabia's commercial capital where flooding killed 123 people in 2009.

After the November 2009 floods in Jeddah, the king sought legal action against officials and contractors for alleged corruption, mismanagement of real estate and land planning that exacerbated the floods.

The inability of Jeddah's infrastructure to drain the waters and uncontrolled construction in and around the city were blamed for the high number of victims.

Thousands of families lost their homes as 10,785 buildings were destroyed, a survey found.

Source - Note: Jeddah in Saudi Arabia received heavy rainfall with thunderstorms measuring about 111mm in three hours bringing life to a near standstill.

Egypt Explodes in Protest - Internet Shut Down - Revolt Spreading to Cities - Elbaradei Arrested

Thousands of angry anti-government demonstrators took to the streets Friday in several Egyptian cities and clashed with police who fired tear gas to quell the crowds.

In Cairo, the capital, vans packed with riot police circled neighborhoods before the start of weekly prayers Friday afternoon. But protesters, fed up with economic woes and a lack of freedoms, defied security warnings to demand an end to President Hosni Mubarak's authoritarian 30-year-rule.

Protesters hurled rocks and chanted that the dictator must go. "Down, Down, Mubarak," they shouted.

A plume of smoke billowed over the Nile River as chaos reigned in the bustling metropolis. A truck drove over the 6 October Bridge firing tear gas at point blank range.

The Muslim Brotherhood -- Egypt's largest opposition bloc -- urged its followers to protest after prayers, the first time in the latest wave of unrest that the group has made such a call.

Opposition leader Mohamed ElBaradei returned home to Cairo on Thursday and said he planned to take part in the protests. Police warned the Nobel Peace Prize winner Friday not to leave a mosque near downtown Cairo where he was attending prayers, a security source told CNN.

Read more

Study finds probable carcinogen in tap water of 31 U.S. cities

A new analysis showing the presence of a probable carcinogen in the tap water of 31 cities across the country has raised questions about possible risks posed to consumers in those communities and how they can reduce their exposure.

The chemical, hexavalent chromium, got public attention in the 2000 film "Erin Brockovich" and has been found to cause cancer in laboratory animals by the National Toxicology Program, part of the National Institutes of Health.

Although basic water filters such as those made by Brita and PUR do not remove hexavalent chromium, several reverse-osmosis systems designed for home use can take the chemical out of water. Such systems are available for purchase online and at hardware stores.

Bottled water is not necessarily an alternative because it is often drawn from municipal water systems and can still contain hexavalent chromium or other contaminants. Read More...

Residents in a Colombian town Blame UFO for mass fish kill

This event was reported in Colombia and has been reported in Spanish ( see original article here )

Residents of a town in northeastern Colombia are reporting that approx 2000 fish have been found dead since last week after a strange flying object with flashing lights was witnessed for a few seconds in the region.

The event occured in the village of El Llanito, Barrancabermeja, where many villagers observed the strange object in the sky according to local media.

Shortly after dead fish floated in the swamp, but unlike simular cases from the past where the cause was lack of oxygen, this time the residents of El Llanito where astonished to find all the fish had noticable burns on their scales.

According to Magaly Gutierrez, leader of the community, the unexplained phenomenon laste about 20 seconds and was witnessed by many people.

RCN Radio Network said that the residents of the nearby village of Bridge Sogamoso, Puerto Wilches also reported seeing a round flying object on the same day the fish died in El Llanito.

The president of the fish and fishermen Association of El Llanito, Juan Tercero, The scorched dead fish floated from the "strange lights in the swamp" according to the statment given to the "Vanguardia Liberal" newspaper in Bucaramanga.

Barrancabermeja Environmental Authorities have taken samples from the swamp and fish to investigate the cause of the mass fish kill, according to RCN.

Chaos after 19 inches of snow paralyses roads and airports on U.S. East Coast (and it's not getting better any time soon)

Up to 19 inches of snow fell on parts of East Coast-State of emergency called in New York City
-650,000 homes and business left without power at height of storm
-Thousands of airline passengers stranded as airports remain closed
-Schools across the region shut for a second day
-Obama's motorcade stranded for an hour in Washington

More than a foot of snow brought New York to a standstill today as it was revealed that the city has endured the snowiest January in its history.

A state of emergency was called across the city after a vast blanket of snow fell, while Washington D.C. and Boston were also brought to a standstill as most of the east coast was paralysed.

Thousands of airline passengers were left stranded and more than 650,000 homes and businesses were cut off by power cuts.

Even President Obama was caught up in the snow chaos after his motorcade was stranded for an hour in Washington. Read more...

Japan's Debt Downgraded: "Beginning of the End of World Economy"?

The timing of the downgrade of Japan's sovereign bonds by Standard & Poor's on Thursday came as a bit of a surprise to some. After all, Japanese government bond yields have been relatively stable recently, the yen fairly strong, and, as Citigroup points out, the government has vowed to address its sky-high debt load this year.

But S&P isn't convinced that's going to happen. "The downgrade reflects our appraisal that Japan's government debt ratios--already among the highest for rated sovereigns--will continue to rise further than we envisaged before the global economic recession hit the country and will peak only in the mid-2020s."

The agency has been concerned about Japan for months, issuing reports last October and November that said the country's debt, the highest in the developed world, threatened to destroy its credit worthiness. As it did then, S&P says today that the country has no "coherent strategy" to tackle problems that have been decades in the making.

Read More

Chinese Fleeceflower Root Taking Human Form

Stunned farmer Zheng Dexun dug up a crop of fleeceflower, or Chinese knotweed, and found one shaped like a person, in Langzhong, China. The eerie-looking plant, measuring 62 centimetres tall, has clearly defined arms, legs, and head. Zheng said: "I don't know whether it is good or bad to dig out a Chinese knotweed that looks like a human. I'd better put it back in the earth!"

Telegraph Source

But in case you think this is a one-off event and just a freak coincidence, think again; more pictures are included below of other instances of fleeceflower roots taking on human form. What's going on? If you have any information regarding this, please let us know!












The Arab People's Revolution Continues: Protesters march in attempt to force Yemen's president out

Thousands of people demonstrated against Yemen's longtime president Thursday, demanding the kind of change that forced Tunisia's president from office earlier this month.

There were at least four demonstrations Thursday in the capital Sanaa, local journalists told CNN. Security was out in force, but there were no reports of violence.

A much smaller number of people turned out to demonstrate in favor of President Ali Abdullah Saleh, the sources said.

Egypt is also wracked by protests in the wake of the demonstrations that unexpectedly forced Tunisia's longtime President Zine El Abidine Ben Ali to leave the country.

Yemen has become a key al Qaeda battleground, with Yemeni security forces carrying out offensives against suspected militants.

The United States has sent top officials to Yemen and vowed support for the government's fight against al Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula, as the local branch calls itself.

A Yemeni rights activist, whose arrest sparked an international outcry and domestic protests, was released from prison Monday and said there is a revolution taking place in her country.

Read More

Thursday, January 27, 2011

Double Death over $96: Nevada councilwoman found dead faced possible sanctions

A Nevada city councilwoman who faced possible sanctions over a travel expense voucher and public comments was found dead with her husband Tuesday, hours before a City Council meeting that had the issues involving her on its agenda, officials said.

Donna Fairchild and Bill Fairchild were found in a residence in the city of Mesquite, Nevada, on Interstate 15 near the border with Arizona, authorities said. Police got a call from the residence about 4:30 a.m.

Each apparently suffered a single gunshot wound, the city said. Autopsies are scheduled for Wednesday.

Results from the Clark County Coroner's Office were expected to take four to six weeks, according to a statement from the city.

Mesquite city spokesman Bryan Dangerfield would not comment on the circumstances of their deaths but said police confirmed that a note and a 9 mm handgun were found at the scene.

For those keeping track - that's now 3 people of government killed and/or gunned down in the last month.

Read more

BREAKING NEWS - 6.0 MAGNITUDE EARTQUAKE HITS - SOUTHERN IRAN

The 6.0-magnitude earthquake at 12.08 p.m. local time (0838 GMT) was centered about 45 kilometers (27 miles) from Mohammad abad-e rigan in Kerman Province. It struck about 24 kilometers (15 miles) deep, making it a shallow earthquake, according to the Iranian Seismological Center.

The United States Geological Survey (USGS) measured the strength of the earthquake at 5.8 on the Richter scale, slightly weaker than Iran's estimate. The USGS estimated that some people may have felt very strong shaking, while some 209,000 others may have felt moderate to strong shaking.

It was not immediately known if there was damage or if there were any casualties as a result of the earthquake, but earthquakes - even light and moderate ones - often cause heavy damage and severe casualties in certain parts of the country due to poor construction, especially when they hit during the night when most residents are sleeping.

Most recently, on December 20, at least seven people were killed and hundreds more were injured when a strong 6.5-magnitude earthquake struck 16 kilometers (9.9 miles) from the town of Hosein abad in Kerman Province, southeastern Iran. Read More..