Thursday, May 26, 2011

2 dead after bomb blasts in eastern Chinese city by enraged farmer Qian Mingqi -- is growing unrest beginning to surface?

Explosions at three government facilities in eastern China Thursday left two people dead, including the alleged perpetrator, the country's state-run Xinhua news agency reported.

At least six people were injured in the blasts, which occured within a half hour of each other, local officials told CNN.

"A car bomb went off at 9:18 a.m. in the parking lot of the Fuzhou city prosecutor's office, followed by a blast at 9:20 a.m. at the Linchuan district government building and another car bomb at 9:45 a.m. near the local drug administration building," said Zhang Baoyun, a spokesman for the government of Jiangxi province, where Fuzhou is located.

One body was found in the district government building and another person died in the hospital, Zhang added.

Xinhua, citing police sources, reported that one of the people who died in the blast was the man suspected of setting off the explosives. The man was identified as Qian Mingqi, 52, an unemployed resident of the area.

Earlier, Xinhua said a disgruntled local peasant farmer had set off the bombs because of an ongoing lawsuit.

On the Weibo page allegedly belonging to Qian, the bio line reads: "I am physically and mentally normal, and have no criminal record or history of illegal petitions. When my new house was illegally torn down, it caused me huge financial loss. After a futile ten years of appealing for justice, I am forced to take a path I don't want to."

US consumers in spending retreat as economy continues to collapse

American consumers' spending weakened more than initially estimated in the first quarter of the year, renewing concerns about the pace of the economic recovery for the rest of the year.

Purchases by households climbed at an annual pace of 2.2pc during the first three months of the year, the US Commerce Department said on Thursday, shy of the 2.7pc it had first calculated. It was also weaker than the 2.8pc forecast by economists on Wall Street.

Although it was known that consumer spending had slowed from the final quarter of 2010, the new reading raised fears about whether the US consumer remains in a position to power an acceleration in growth later this year.

Millions of Americans are currently being squeezed by higher petrol and food prices.

"The second quarter rebound is likely to be muted," said Nigel Gault, the chief US economist for IHS Global Insight.

The consumer spending figures were released as part of the second estimate of how the world's biggest economy performed in the first quarter. That, too, disappointed expectations as the Commerce Department left it unchanged at 1.8pc. Economists had pencilled in an upward revision to 2.1pc. (read more)

Greece could be disqualified from IMF cash injection

Greece could be disqualified from claiming part of its next cash injection from the International Monetary Fund (IMF), the chairman of European Finance Ministers has warned.

Jean-Claude Juncker said the stricken country was unlikely to be able to guarantee its funding over the next 12 months, preventing the IMF from releasing funds under its own rules.

"The IMF can only be active when there is a refinancing guarantee for 12 months," Mr Juncker told a conference in Luxembourg.

He added he did not believe that the European Union, European Central Bank and the IMF would decide this condition had been met. He said: "I don't think that the troika will come to this result."

The fresh doubts over Greece's financial aid package caused investors to flee to the safe haven of German bonds. The euro also gave away earlier gains, hitting a two-and-half month low against sterling.

Greece is due to receive a €12bn (£10.4bn) injection from Europe and the IMF on June 29 as part of the country's €110bn bail-out programme. Inspectors from the EU, ECB and IMF are carrying out an audit of Greece's finances ahead of the decision on whether to deliver the next instalment. Although the country has announced a radical programme of asset sales, it has fallen behind its targets for overhauling its finances. (read more)

Thousands flee fighting in disputed Sudan border region

Tensions remained high Thursday as the president of the Southern Sudanese government demanded an immediate withdrawal of Sudanese armed forces that continue to occupy the disputed oil-rich Abyei border region.

On Wednesday, a team of U.N. officials patrolled the area to assess the extent of the destruction after nearly a week of fighting, pillaging and looting by government-backed militias. Homes and vehicles smoldered, and Abyei was a virtual ghost town except for the armed men walking in the street.

"I am calling upon my president, President Omar al-Bashir, to pull out his force from Abyei," said Salva Kiir, president of Southern Sudan, to allow displaced residents to return home and humanitarian organizations to deliver assistance.

Tens of thousands of people from the population of 110,000 have been forced to flee over the border into Southern Sudan, a U.N. official said on condition of anonymity. "Civilians have deserted Abyei town and surrounding areas."

The latest satellite images released by the Satellite Sentinel Project show purported evidence of Sudanese tanks and amored vehicles in and around Abyei, and a southern-aligned base at Todach is destroyed, allegedly by northern troops. (read more)

Ron Paul warns of Dictatorship



The last nail is being driven into the coffin of the American Republic. Yet, Congress remains in total denial as our liberties are rapidly fading before our eyes. The process is propelled by unwarranted fear and ignorance as to the true m…eaning of liberty. It is driven by economic myths, fallacies and irrational good intentions. The rule of law is constantly rejected and authoritarian answers are offered as panaceas for all our problems. Runaway welfarism is used to benefit the rich at the expense of the middle class. Who would have ever thought that the current generation and Congress would stand idly by and watch such a rapid disintegration of the American Republic? Characteristic of this epic event is the casual acceptance by the people and political leaders of the unitary presidency, which is equivalent to granting dictatorial powers to the President.

Our Presidents can now, on their own:
1. Order assassinations, including American citizens,
2. Operate secret military tribunals,
3. Engage in torture,
4. Enforce indefinite imprisonment without due process,
5. Order searches and seizures without proper warrants, gutting the 4th Amendment,
6. Ignore the 60 day rule for reporting to the Congress the nature of any military operations as required by the War Power Resolution,
7. Continue the Patriot Act abuses without oversight,
8. Wage war at will,
9. Treat all Americans as suspected terrorists at airports with TSA groping and nude x-raying.

And the Federal Reserve accommodates by counterfeiting the funds needed and not paid for by taxation and borrowing, permitting runaway spending, endless debt, and special interest bail-outs. (read more)

IMF Chief Strauss-Kahn held hostage by US government?

By now, everyone knows that Dominique Strauss-Kahn, the head of the IMF, was hauled off an Air France flight two minutes before it was due to take off, and taken into custody by the NYPD. Why? The US cover story is that he allegedly forced or attempted to force a maid at the Sofitel hotel in Manhattan to perform oral sex on him. The real story behind his detainment has to do with the US economy – the bankruptcy of the United States of America.'

On Monday evening, May 16, 2011 the Obama government reached and crashed through the $14.29 trillion debt ceiling. What is the debt ceiling? The debt ceiling is simply a cap on how much money the US federal government can owe. For instance, if the debt ceiling was set at $14.29 trillion, then the US government would be forbidden from incurring a total public debt load of over $14.29 trillion. This $14.29 trillion number includes both public debt (money that is owed to individual investors, foreign governments, pension funds, etc) and intragovernmental holdings (money that is owed to various government programs).

On the weekend (May 14 and 15, 2011) prior to this historic event the US government and the IMF chief were engaged in behind closed doors negotiations for an IMF financial bailout of the US government. IMF chief Dominique Strauss-Kahn, a French citizen and political opponent of French president Nicolas Sarkozy for the French presidency, was in the US for this meeting. The Obama government failed to secure funds from the IMF chief. In retaliation the US government immediately launched a pre-planned smear campaign against the IMF – IMF head Dominique Strauss-Kahn. (read more)

Greenpeace warns of radioactive sea life off Japan

Environmental activist group Greenpeace warned Thursday that marine life it tested more than 20 kilometres (12 miles) off Japan's stricken Fukushima nuclear plant showed radiation above legal limits.

The anti-nuclear group, which conducted the coastal and offshore tests this month, criticised Japanese authorities for their "continued inadequate response to the Fukushima nuclear crisis" sparked by the March 11 quake and tsunami.

Greenpeace said it detected seaweed radiation levels 50 times higher than official limits, which it charged raised "serious concerns about continued long-term risks to people and the environment from contaminated seawater".

It also said that tests, which it said were independently verified by French and Belgian laboratories, showed above-legal levels of radioactive iodine-131 and caesium-137 in several species of fish and shellfish.

"Our data show that significant amounts of contamination continue to spread over great distances from the Fukushima nuclear plant," said Jan Vande Putte, a Greenpeace radiation expert, at a Tokyo press conference.

Japan has said ocean currents and tides are rapidly diluting contaminants from the tsunami-hit atomic plant, and Fukushima prefecture told AFP on Thursday that no fishing is going on at the moment in its waters.

"We have exercised self-restraint as (prefectural) safety tests have not been conducted yet," said a Fukushima official. "We will make a decision after confirming the results of the tests, which will take place shortly."

The official added: "People do not bother fishing now. If you caught fish or other marine products in waters near the plant, they wouldn't sell." (read more)

New leak feared at stricken Japan nuclear plant: Fukushima crisis continues despite lack of media coverage

Radioactive water appears to be leaking from a waste disposal building at Japan's Fukushima nuclear complex, operator Tokyo Electric Power said on Thursday, in a new setback to the battle to contain radiation from the crippled power plant.

The disclosure by Tepco raises the stakes in a race to complete by next month a system to decontaminate a massive pool of radioactive water at the site that critics see as a growing risk to both the nearby Pacific and groundwater.

A magnitude 9.0 earthquake and the massive tsunami that followed killed about 24,000 people and knocked out the Fukushima plant on March 11, triggering the world's worst nuclear accident since Chernobyl.

The crisis, which has displaced some 80,000 residents from around the plant, prompted a review of Japan's energy policy and growing calls for efforts to step up health monitoring for a crisis now in its 11th week.

Experts from the International Atomic Energy Agency began an inspection on Thursday of equipment damaged by the tsunami at a second nuclear plant, the Tokai complex about 120 km (75 miles) north of Tokyo, as part of an investigation prompted by the Fukushima accident. (read more)

232 still missing in Joplin, Missouri after tornado destroys city

Officials in Missouri have released a list of the names of people unaccounted for after a tornado hit Joplin.

Missouri Department of Public Safety deputy director and general counsel Andrea Spillars says 232 are still missing. She said Thursday officials know some of them are dead, but she wouldn't say how many.

Spillars also would not say when a list of names of the deceased would be released.

Officials have said previously that they believe many of the missing are alive and simply haven't been in touch with friends or family. Spillars urged people to check in.

THIS IS A BREAKING NEWS UPDATE. Check back soon for further information. AP's earlier story is below.

More than 230 people remain unaccounted for four days after the deadliest single tornado in more than six decades tore through the middle of Joplin, Missouri officials said Thursday.

Andrea Spillars, deputy director and general counsel for the Missouri Department of Public Safety, said a list of the 232 names will be released later Thursday. She urged survivors to check in. (read more)

Financial Terrorism: TSA Holds Texas Flights Hostage

An astounding Department of Justice threat to cancel airline flights to and from Texas, in addition to underhanded lobbying by TSA representatives, has killed efforts in the state to pass HB 1937, a bill that would have made invasive pat downs by TSA agents a felony.

HB 1937, a bill that would have made it “A criminal act for security personnel to touch a person’s private areas without probable cause as a condition of travel or as a condition of entry into a public place,” was headed for an imminent Senate vote in Texas having already passed the House unanimously 138-0, before the federal government stepped in to nix the legislation.

In a letter sent to Texas lawmakers, including to Lt. Gov. David Dewhurst, Speaker Joe Straus, the House Clerk, and the Senate Secretary, U.S. Attorney John E. Murphy threatened to cripple the airline industry in the state if legislators did not back down.

“If HR [sic] 1937 were enacted, the federal government would likely seek an emergency stay of the statute,” Murphy wrote. “Unless or until such a stay were granted, TSA would likely be required to cancel any flight or series of flights for which it could not ensure the safety of passengers and crew.”

“We urge that you consider the ramifications of this bill before casting your vote,” Murphy added. (read more)

From California to New York, the devastating power of tornadoes is felt across entire U.S. - 26th May 2011

From east to west coast, the devastating power of the tornadoes hitting the U.S. was felt last night as twisters touched down as far west as northern California.

The National Weather Service reported several tornadoes touching down in rural Butte and Glenn counties on Wednesday evening, as severe continued to rumble through the country.

A total of 81 tornadoes were reported in 24 hours from Texas through to New York state as the death toll for this year reached 500 for the first time in 50 years.

But many people counted themselves lucky on Wednesday night after the powerful storms swept through the country for the third time in four days but without claiming any lives.

Heavy rain, hail and lightning pounded Memphis just two weeks after floods devastated the city. A tornado warning sounded, but there were no confirmed reports of tornadoes touching down.

Dozens of people were injured thought, mobile homes were flipped and roofs were torn off houses when tornadoes and thunderstorms hit Indiana, Illinois, Missouri and other states.

On Thursday, forecasters withdrew a slew of tornado watches in the South and said the heavy weather that pounded the Midwest in recent days had finally receded.

Nevertheless, violent storms could not be ruled out elsewhere. Read More

John Cooper, killer who blasted victims to death with shotgun in 25 year reign of terror is jailed for life - 26th May 2011

A farm labourer who murdered four people in the 1980s by blasting them at point-blank range with a sawn-off shotgun has been handed four life sentences.

John Cooper was also found guilty of a string of sex attacks on schoolgirls and attempted robberies in the late 1990s.

The 66-year-old, of Letterston, near Fishguard, west Wales, was described as 'evil' and 'wicked' for the 'reign of terror' he imposed on Pembrokeshire.

He gained 'next to nothing' for his chilling crimes which also saw him burn down a house to try and cover his tracks and rape one of his victims - who could have been dead at the time.

Prolific burglar Cooper murdered millionaire farmer Richard Thomas, 58, and his sister Helen, 54, at their burnt-out Pembrokeshire mansion in December 1985.

He murdered tourists Peter Dixon, 51, and wife Gwenda, 52, on the final day of their holiday four years later.

The couple, from Oxfordshire, were attacked as they walked along a coastal path near Little Haven in June 1989.

All four victims died after being blasted at close range with a shotgun.

At one point there was speculation the Dixons died because they stumbled on a cache of IRA weapons. Read More

Mugabe torturer who pulled out man's teeth with pliers is granted asylum in UK (and we'll also have to pick up the tab for their HIV treatment)

A murdering asylum seeker who worked as a torturer for the Mugabe regime in Zimbabwe will not be deported - because of concerns for his safety if he returns home.

Phillip Machemedze smashed a man's jaw with pliers before extracting his teeth, one of his many victims while working for Zimbabwe's notorious Central Intelligence organisation.

The 47-year-old also gave electric shocks to a white farmer, whipped a woman before pouring salt in her wounds and took part in the 'slow' killing of one of Mugabe's political opponents, the Sun reported today.

However, Machemedze 'grew tired' of his work as a torturer and apparently fearing Mugabe would turn against him, he fled to Britain 11 years ago.

Despite only having a temporary visa, Machemedze has remained in the country ever since, receiving taxpayer-funded treatment for HIV.

Thanks to the Human Rights Act, Machemedze and his wife Febbie, 40, who also has the disease, will continue to live and be treated in Britain at the taxpayers' expense.

At an asylum appeal hearing in Newport, South Wales, Mr Justice David Archer said Machemedze was 'deeply involved in savage acts of extreme violence'.

The tribunal also heard that some of the tortures 'were too gruesome to recount'.

He added: 'Whatever crimes he has committed he cannot be returned to face the highly likely prospect of torture and execution without trial, the Sun reported.

The appeal hearing was brought by the Home Office and followed a judgment earlier this month which allowed the pair to stay in Britain indefinitely but did not grant asylum.

At the earlier hearing, Senior Immigration Judge Robert Martin said: 'It is true that Phillip Machemedze committed abhorrent acts and deserves no sympathy or favours.

'However, it is also true that we are bound by the European Convention on Human Rights and Articles 2 and 3 are absolute,' New Zimbabwe reported. Read More

HAPPY BIRTHDAY MATT!!! - 26th May 2011

Bizarre NOAA Radar Image — Reader Assistance Required - 26th May 2011

One of our dedicated readers has submitted a bizarre, if not disturbing radar image released by the NOAA, and we're at a loss as to what it could be, despite our research. Are they meteors? Radar artefacts? Vessels of some kind? We would like to know, since it's obvious they aren't a normal or natural radar object. Please weigh in if you have any insight as to what this could be.

Radar >>>>>>

Amondawa tribe in Brazil lacks abstract idea of time, study says -- they probably also lack "rat race", "corporatism" and "burn out"

An Amazonian tribe has no abstract concept of time, say researchers.

The Amondawa lacks the linguistic structures that relate time and space - as in our idea of, for example, "working through the night".

The study, in Language and Cognition, shows that while the Amondawa recognise events occuring in time, it does not exist as a separate concept.

The idea is a controversial one, and further study will bear out if it is also true among other Amazon languages.

The Amondawa were first contacted by the outside world in 1986, and now researchers from the University of Portsmouth and the Federal University of Rondonia in Brazil have begun to analyse the idea of time as it appears in Amondawa language.

"We're really not saying these are a 'people without time' or 'outside time'," said Chris Sinha, a professor of psychology of language at the University of Portsmouth.

"Amondawa people, like any other people, can talk about events and sequences of events," he told BBC News.

"What we don't find is a notion of time as being independent of the events which are occurring; they don't have a notion of time which is something the events occur in."

The Amondawa language has no word for "time", or indeed of time periods such as "month" or "year".

The people do not refer to their ages, but rather assume different names in different stages of their lives or as they achieve different status within the community. (read more)

Zimbabwe may sell diamonds to launch gold-backed currency -- other countries to follow suit?

Zimbabwe may sell diamonds for gold, so that it can have a gold-backed currency, according to a recent proposal from the governor of Zimbabwe’s central bank.

The Zimbabwean dollar is no longer in active use after it was officially suspended by the government due to hyperinflation. The United States dollar, South African rand, Botswanan pula, Pound sterling, and Euro are now used instead. The US dollar has been adopted as the official currency for all government transactions with the new power-sharing regime, says Wikipedia.

But the central bank of Zimbabwe—Reserve Bank of Zimbabwe (RBZ)—believes that the US dollar is no longer stable.

According to Dr Gideon Gono, RBZ Chief, the inflationary effects of United States’ deficit financing of its budget may impact foreign countries and would lead to a resistance of the green back as a base currency; cited newzimbabwe.com. (read more)

Dark Energy Is Driving Universe Apart: NASA's Galaxy Evolution Explorer Finds Dark Energy Repulsive

A five-year survey of 200,000 galaxies, stretching back seven billion years in cosmic time, has led to one of the best independent confirmations that dark energy is driving our universe apart at accelerating speeds.

The survey used data from NASA's space-based Galaxy Evolution Explorer and the Anglo-Australian Telescope on Siding Spring Mountain in Australia.

The findings offer new support for the favored theory of how dark energy works -- as a constant force, uniformly affecting the universe and propelling its runaway expansion. They contradict an alternate theory, where gravity, not dark energy, is the force pushing space apart. According to this alternate theory, with which the new survey results are not consistent, Albert Einstein's concept of gravity is wrong, and gravity becomes repulsive instead of attractive when acting at great distances.

"The action of dark energy is as if you threw a ball up in the air, and it kept speeding upward into the sky faster and faster," said Chris Blake of the Swinburne University of Technology in Melbourne, Australia. Blake is lead author of two papers describing the results that appeared in recent issues of the Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society. "The results tell us that dark energy is a cosmological constant, as Einstein proposed. If gravity were the culprit, then we wouldn't be seeing these constant effects of dark energy throughout time." (read more)

WikiLeaks bolsters argument for ‘enhanced’ interrogation tactics

WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange’s ongoing release of the Guantanamo Bay prison files, and large numbers of classified State Department cables, attempts to expose what he calls American corruption.

But supporters of the George W. Bush administration’s global war on terrorism say the nearly 800 Guantanamo files show that “enhanced” interrogations of hundreds of captured operatives at secret overseas prisons and at the Cuban prison amounted to one of the most successful intelligence operations in history.

Before the interrogations, the U.S. knew little about al Qaeda in the immediate aftermath of the Sept. 11, 2001, terrorist attacks. Years later, the CIA and military had accumulated a large database of ongoing plots and the identities of terrorists, the WikiLeaks files show.

“The WikiLeaks documents provide still additional evidence that intelligence gained from CIA detainees not only helped lead us to Osama bin Laden, it helped us disrupt a number of follow-on attacks that had been set in motion after 9/11,” said Marc Thiessen, a former Bush speechwriter.

“Without this program, we would not have gone nearly 10 years without another catastrophic attack on the homeland. This is quite possibly the most important, and most successful, intelligence program in modern times. But instead of medals, the people behind this program have been given subpoenas.” (read more)

China Is Now Top Buyer of World Gold

Chinese investors are snapping up gold bars and coins, buying more than ever before in the first quarter of 2011 and overtaking Indian buyers as the world's biggest purchasers of the metal.

China's investment demand for gold more than doubled to 90.9 metric tons in the first three months of the year, outpacing India's modest rise to 85.6 tons, the World Gold Council said in its quarterly report on Thursday. China now accounts for 25% of gold investment demand, compared with India's 23%.

The report underscores the rising appetite for gold among the growing middle-class in China. Fears of the country's soaring inflation, as well as a search for new investments, is luring investors to gold, and marketing of the precious metal has also increased in recent months.

"I think people will be surprised by the strength in the Chinese demand, but we think this is a trend that is set to continue," said Eily Ong, an investment research manager at the gold council. (read more)

Four Muslims who battered man for teaching RE to girls jailed for being 'a danger due to their extreme religious beliefs' - 26th May 2011

Four Muslim men were jailed today after they carried out a brutal attack on an RE teacher because they did not approve of him teaching religious studies to Muslim girls.

Gary Smith, 38, received 'appalling injuries' after he was set upon by the gang as he walked to work at Central Foundation Girls' School in Bow, east London, on July 12 last year.

Armed with a metal rod and a brick, they punched, kicked and attacked Mr Smith, leaving him unconscious and covered in blood on the pavement in Burdett Road, Tower Hamlets.

Simon Alam, 19, of Whitechapel, Azad Hussain, 26, of Wapping, Sheikh Rashid, 27, of Shadwell, and Akmol Hussein, 26, of Bethnal Green, all in east London, pleaded guilty to causing grievous bodily harm with intent earlier this year.

Sentencing them at east London's Snaresbrook Crown Court, Judge John Hand QC said he believed they all remained a danger to the public due to their extreme religious beliefs.

Addressing the defendants one by one, he said: 'Your belief is that you carried out a duty to your God and you did so with no mercy.'

'If you think that people around you in society present an insult or threat to God then you will not hesitate in attacking again in the way that you have acted.' Read More

David Chaytor, First MP to be jailed for expenses fraud released after serving just a QUARTER of his sentence - IS THIS JUSTICE? - 26th May 2011

The first former MP jailed over the parliamentary expenses scandal has been released from prison after serving just a quarter of his 18-month sentence.

David Chaytor spent four and a half months behind bars after admitting he fiddled his parliamentary expenses to falsely claim more than £22,000 of taxpayers' money.

The ex-Labour MP for Bury North was freed from Spring Hill open prison, near Aylesbury, Buckinghamshire, under the home detention curfew scheme, which allows non-violent prisoners who pose a low risk to be tagged and released early.

Chaytor, 61, became the first former MP to be jailed since Tory peer Lord Archer when he was sentenced in January.

Southwark Crown Court heard that he forged tenancy documents and invoices to make fraudulent expenses claims for rent and IT work from the Commons authorities.

Passing sentence, Mr Justice Saunders told Chaytor that putting him behind bars was one of the first steps in restoring public faith in the parliamentary system.

In March the Court of Appeal rejected an attempt by the former lecturer to have his prison sentence reduced, ruling that his offences were 'a grave breach of trust' that contributed to 'serious damage' to Parliament's reputation.

Chaytor, of Lumbutts, Todmorden, West Yorkshire, will be on the home detention curfew scheme for the next four and a half months before spending the last nine months of his sentence on probation.

Fellow disgraced ex-Labour MP Eric Illsley, who was jailed for 12 months in February, has already been released from prison.

Former Labour MP Jim Devine was jailed in March for fiddling his parliamentary expenses.

Devine, 57, submitted false invoices worth more than £8,300 for cleaning and printing work then tried to blame his office manager when he was found out.

He was jailed for 16 months at the Old Bailey after becoming the first former MP to stand trial in the wake of the expenses scandal. Read More

Ratko Mladic The Alleged War Criminal has been Arrested By Serbian Police - 26th May 2011

The Serbian president has confirmed that alleged war criminal Ratko Mladic has been arrested following an anonymous tip-off.

Mladic, now 68, is accused of masterminding the 44-month siege of Sarajevo that left 10,000 people dead in 1995 and the massacre in July of the same year of around 8,000 Muslim men and boys at Srebrenica.

Serbian President Boris Tadic confirmed that Mladic had been arrested and said that "all war criminals must face justice."

Colonel Bob Stewart, former commander of the British forces in Bosnia, spoke to Sky News about his delight on hearing the news.Link

"This man was a hero to many people in Serbia and most certainly to the Bosnian-Serb army.

"But this is all linked to the fact that Serbia wants to be a member of the European Union.

"Mladic has been in hiding for a very long time and they will have known where he was and they should have weeded him out a long time ago. Source

Forecasters urge residents to take cover as storms rip through region - 26th May 2011

Forecasters warned thousands to take cover as severe storms pummeled parts of Arkansas and Tennessee early Thursday, while communities in neighboring states picked up the pieces after tornadoes cut a path of destruction a day earlier.

A line of strong thunderstorms stretches from northern Indiana all the way to Mississippi, National Weather Service radar showed.

At least 16 people have died in the latest round of storms that struck Oklahoma, Arkansas and Kansas late Tuesday and early Wednesday. Ten people were killed in Oklahoma, four in Arkansas and two in Kansas, authorities said.

The National Weather Service warned residents from Memphis to Nashville to take shelter and, in some cases, evacuate after spotters reported a possible tornado moving toward eastern Tennessee communities. Read More

U.S. warns against travel to Yemen, tells Americans to get out - 26th May 2011

The United States has warned Americans against travel to Yemen and advised those in the Gulf nation to depart, citing "terrorist activities and civil unrest."

In addition, the State Department "has ordered all eligible family members of U.S. government employees as well as certain nonemergency personnel to depart Yemen."

The travel warning follows Wednesday's clashes between tribesmen and government forces near Sanaa International Airport.

All arriving flights were diverted to Aden, and no flights were taking off from Sanaa, said a transportation official who asked not to be identified because he is not authorized to speak to the media.

The flight restrictions were imposed as anti-regime tribesmen battling Yemeni forces occupied the government's news agency compound and the tourism ministry in the capital Wednesday, the latest regime entities to be taken over during this week's street battles, witnesses said.

Hundreds of al-Hashid tribal members occupied and surrounded the SABA news agency compound and the tourism building in Sanaa after fighting with government forces in the Hasabah neighborhood. Read More

Egypt to open Gaza border crossing at Rafah - 26th May 2011

Egypt will permanently open its Rafah border crossing into Gaza beginning Saturday, an Egyptian official reported Wednesday. The move provides Gazans with an open door to the outside world for the first time in four years.

"The Egyptian government decided to open the Rafah border to (give) relief (to) the people of Gaza permanently," said Ambassador Menha Bakhoum, head of media and public diplomacy for the Egyptian Foreign Ministry. The crossing officially will remain open daily from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. except on Friday and public holidays.

All the country's security apparatus will be involved in the security of the border, he said.

Rafah Crossing has been a portal to the rest of the world for Gaza's 1.5 million Palestinian residents since Israel "closed Gaza's air space and territorial waters and all but closed Erez Crossing to Palestinians" four years ago, said the Israeli non-governmental organization Gisha, which advocates on the issue of Palestinian freedom of movement.

Erez Crossing is on the border between Gaza and Israel. Passage through it has been limited to "extraordinary humanitarian cases, especially urgent medical cases," which has prevented Palestinians from traveling between Gaza and the West Bank, the group says.

Rafah was closed after the Israeli soldier Gilad Shalit was captured in June 2006; it stayed largely closed until last June, when Egypt opened it after an incident in which nine activists aboard a flotilla of ships carrying aid to Gaza were killed, according to Gisha. From then until January, an average of 19,000 people per month have crossed Rafah in both directions, nearly half the rate during the first half of 2006, it added.

At present, foreigners, visa holders and people seeking medical attention or study in Egypt can cross through Rafah, it said. Among Palestinians, only those who are listed in the Israeli-controlled population registry can cross, it said. Read More

Harold Camping Rapture-happy preacher to be probed for fraud? Christians urge Camping to quit, atheists want Congress to investigate

The failed prediction of Jesus to return to Earth over the weekend is prompting calls for the ouster of the Doomsday preacher and a congressional probe of his broadcasting network.

Harold Camping, 89, of Oakland-Calif.-based Family Radio made worldwide headlines in recent months for his prediction that Judgment Day was guaranteed to be May 21, 2011, prompting many believers to quit their regular jobs to help spread the warning.

It was not the first time Camping got the forecast wrong, having prognosticated the return of Jesus numerous times, including 1994.

"This guy is something else," Richard Myers, the administrator of abibleanswer.org told WND. "We are calling for the Family Radio board to remove him."

No matter when Jesus returns, learn the spectacular, ultimate destiny of mankind, something far more glorious than floating around on clouds in heaven. Read the best-selling "Shocked by the Bible: The Most Astonishing Facts You've Never Been Told," personally autographed by the author.

In a new posting on Myers' website, he says the board of directors of Family Radio is just as culpable as Camping in the spreading of erroneous information:

He is not able to spread these false doctrines without their direct involvement. There is a great responsibility resting on them to do what is right. By allowing Camping to continue on the air and on the board, they are guilty of all that Harold Camping is guilty of. That guilt increases daily. Read More

Harold Camping’s own people “did not believe The Rapture”

“My understanding is that they were soliciting money to help people understand the word of God,” Miniutti said, according to Media Bistro.

She added: “It’s unethical if people doing soliciting didn’t believe that the rapture wasn’t going to happen in the first place. ”

Now that it is pretty obvious that there is no truth to Harold Camping’s May 21-prediction, the self-proclaimed Bible Scholar has attempted to redeem himself by setting another date for another Judgment Day. Article>>>>

Harold Camping: I can’t be responsible for anybody’s life My advice to Devestated Followers 'Cope and Pray' - 24th May 2011

Harold Camping, the failed Doomsday prophet, appeared on Monday, May 23, 2011 at the Open Forum in Family Radio headquarters in Oakland, Calif. where he announced October 21, 2011 to be the new Doomsday date.

The 89-year-old Family Radio president had predicted earlier that on May 21, 2011 around 200 million people will Rapture into heaven. In addition, deadly natural disasters will strike the earth and continue until October 21, 2011 when the world will be completely destroyed. Many followers of Camping bought into his words and invested in the Doomsday campaign, to the extent of quitting their jobs and emptying their savings.

At the Open Forum, Camping did not admit that his prediction was totally wrong. He claimed that Rapture indeed took place, but only in a spiritual sense. Camping maintained that the world will be completely destroyed physically on October 21, 2011. He added that he will not be returning any money to his followers whose life may have been ruined and will take no responsibility for any act committed as an aftermath of the unfulfilled prediction. To those who lost all they had, Camping simply said they should have “relied on God and not me” because only God is infallible. He also told them to “cope” and “pray”.

Do you think Camping’s October 21 Doomsday prediction will come true? Or is he too arrogant to admit that his prediction is all wrong? Source


Russian Teen Committed Suicide on Eve of HAROLD CAMPING'S FALSE Predicted 'Rapture' - 25th May 2011

A 14-year-old girl Russian girl was so scared by the doomsday predictions of Californian evangelist Harold Camping that she hanged herself, investigators said Wednesday.

Camping warned the world would end last Saturday, predicting that 200 million Christians would be elevated to heaven while the rest of civilization would be wiped out by devastating earthquakes.

He faced ridicule when his predicted "Rapture" failed to materialize, but his apocalyptic prophecy managed to spook his American followers, some of whom quit their jobs and depleted their savings in readiness.

It was also reported Wednesday that a teenager living in the Mari El Republic, central Russia, was so scared by Camping's claims, she decided to hang herself just hours before his Saturday night deadline.

Russia's state-owned news agency, RIA Novosti, said the girl had written about Judgment Day in her diary. Investigators said Camping's predictions had also triggered a dramatic change in her behavior.

"We are not righteous people, only they will go to heaven, the others will stay here on Earth to go through terrible sufferings," the girl, whose name has not been revealed, wrote in what she called a "death diary."

Her last entry said, "I don't want to die like the others. That's why I'll die now."

Investigators are looking for possible ties she had with alternative youth groups or religious sects, RIA Novosti said.

Camping, 89, insisted in a radio broadcast Monday he was not wrong but had simply muddled his dates. He also penciled in a new diary slot for the world's destruction -- October 21. Source

How the Japanese plan to turn the moon into a mirrorball: All of Earth's energy 'to be supplied by lunar ring of solar panels' - 25th May 2011

It sounds like something out of science fiction - a huge swathe of the moon covered with solar panels to beam captured energy back to Earth.

But plans to turn the moon into a gigantic mirrorball manned by robots to provide all the Earth's energy came a step closer to reality today when they were unveiled by Japanese scientists.

The ambitious project would result in 13,000 terawatts of continuous solar energy being transmitted back to receiving stations on Earth, either by laser or microwave.

The plans were unveiled by Japanese construction giant Shimizu Corporation's research division, and would result in a 6,800 mile-long band stretching around the light side of the moon's equator.

It would measure up to 248 miles in width and feature 12 mile-wide antennae to transmit the power.

The quest for finding alternate energy sources has been hastened in Japan in the wake of the Fukushima nuclear power station crisis sparked by the tsunami in March.

No intended timeline for the project - which would result in the biggest public infrastructure installation ever constructed - has been announced. Read More

Exploding star that's the oldest and most distant thing we've ever seen - 26th may 2011

Astronomers may have detected the most distant and ancient object ever seen, a massive explosion that lit up the early universe soon after its birth.

When the blast, known as a gamma ray burst (GRB), occurred, the universe was less than four per cent of its present age and 10 per cent of its current size.

Light from the event has taken 13.14billion light years to reach the Earth. It began its journey only about 600million years after the Big Bang that created the cosmos.

The source of the burst, designated GRB 090429B, was an exploding star which for a brief time shone a million million times more brightly than the Sun.

Its fading ‘afterglow’ was detected by the American space agency's Swift satellite in April 2009.

Two years of analysis has now shown the object to be a candidate record breaker.

British astronomer Dr Andrew Levan, from the University of Warwick, who was one of the first to view the explosion, said: ‘The race to find distant objects stems from the desire to find and study the first stars and galaxies that formed in the Universe, in the first few hundred million years after the Big Bang. Read More

Leah June Rabon, 20, was arrested and charged as she 'left her nine-month-old baby alone to go on a date at the bowling alley' - 25th May 2011

A mother left her nine-month-old son home alone while she went to the bowling alley on a date, police say.

Leah June Rabon, 20, from Pensacola, was arrested on Monday night after authorities received an anonymous tip off that she left her baby home alone.

She was charged with cruelty towards a child and child neglect and held without bail.

Escambia County Sheriff's Office said that on Monday night, deputies went to the Enterprise Drive Apartments at 6111 Enterprise Drive after they received a tip that the child may have been left alone in Rabon’s apartment.

Deputies tracked down Rabon’s cell phone number, contacted her and confirmed that her son was inside the residence without supervision.

Deputy Chris Welborn said: 'Once we determined that an infant was inside the apartment we made a forced entry into the unit. We found the baby asleep in his bedroom and, thankfully, he was healthy.'

Rabon allegedly admitted that she had left her son for about two hours to go on the date at the local bowling alley.

The Florida Department of Children and Family services placed the child into the custody of maternal grandparents. Source

Timmothy Pitzen: CCTV of boy, six, who went missing after his mother committed suicide just hours later - 26th May 2011

It looks to all like a happy and normal scene.

A lively young boy jumps up and down and around as his mother waits to check out of a water park resort where they had just spent the night.

But the silent video taken nearly two weeks ago now has an deeply eerie feel.

For these are the last images of six-year-old Timmothy Pitzen before he vanished and they were shot just hours before his mother booked into a motel in Illinois and killed herself.

Amy Fry-Pitzen, 43, left a note saying her child was safe and being cared for - but did not say by whom.

And there has been no sign of the vanished boy whose picture has been plastered on missing posters across the midwest of the United States and on websites throughout the country.

A massive hunt across three states involving federal, state and local law enforcement has failed to unearth any clues as to what happened to Timmothy.

As time moves on police increasingly fear for the young boy's welfare.

Police in Aurora, west of Chicago, where the family lives, issued the videotape, showing the mother and son at 10:10am on May 13, as part of the wider investigation into the young boy's disappearance.

And the department also gave a more detailed timeline from May 11 when Timmothy was taken out of his elementary school by his mother to when she booked into the hotel, almost certainly without her son, two days later. Read More


Jared Loughner: 'Thank you for the freak show... she died in front of me' is Ruled Incompetent to Stand Trial - 25th May 2011

The former student accused of shooting U.S. Congresswoman Gabrielle Giffords was ruled mentally incompetent to stand trial today after an angry outburst in federal court.

Horrified survivors of the January 8 shooting watched as Jared Loughner was dragged from the courtroom by U.S. Marshals after he said what sounded like: 'Thank you for the freak show - she died in front of me'.

It's not clear who he was referring to.

The 22-year-old's voice was loud as he lowered his face to a few inches from the table in front of him, then raised it again. He mumbled, however, garbling his words.

Two marshals standing behind him grabbed him by the arms and marched him from the room.

Loughner's father, sitting a few rows behind his son, lowered his eyes and huddled with two women seated with him.

U.S. District Judge Larry Burns said he would only be allowed back in if he composed himself.

Judge Burns then ruled him incompetent to stand trial - a decision which puts the federal criminal case against Loughner on hold indefinitely. Read More

I thought it would be very obvious who he is referring to, as Gabrielle Giffords was pronounced Dead by several News Stations at the time of the Shooting and shortly after.

** Reckless media race to be first on Rep. Giffords story

Inaccurate initial reports and rampant speculation drifted across social media feeds and television screens Saturday following a shooting at a grocery store in Tucson, Ariz.

At least two news outlets pronounced U.S. Rep. Gabrielle Giffords dead before retracting the report. Ms. Giffords survived the shooting rampage that claimed six lives, including a 9-year-old girl and Pittsburgh native John Roll, chief judge for the U.S. District Court for Arizona. Read More

Casey Anthony ' Fun Party Girl' modelling in 'hot body' contest four days after daughter Caylee disappeared - 25th May 2011

Casey Anthony paraded for a 'hot body' contest at a Florida nightclub four days after her two-year-old daughter went missing, a court heard today.

The single mother from Orlando carried on as normal during June 2008, showing no signs of distress, anxiety or depression and never mentioning the sudden disappearance of little Caylee, flatmates testified.

'She seemed like a fun party girl,' said Roy 'Clint' House, 23, who shared an apartment in Orlando with Anthony’s then boyfriend, where Anthony spent much of that month.

Fellow flatmate Nathan Lezniewicz, 23, told the court: 'She always seemed like she was having a good time. She’s not an introvert personality by any means.'

Anthony, 25, faces the death penalty if convicted of first-degree murder. Her parents last saw Caylee alive on June 16, 2008, and for the next 31 days were told by their daughter that the little girl was away staying with a nanny, or being cared for by friends.

But when they finally called in police on July 15, suspicious over Anthony’s stories and frantic over Caylee’s whereabouts, she broke down and claimed that the child had been kidnapped by the nanny – a tale that police later disproved. Read More


Facebook are NOT going after children, claims Zuckerberg, 'Well not right Now' (while Sarkozy says internet freedom will lead to anarchy)

Mark Zuckerberg has denied allegations he was trying to open up Facebook to children under the age of 13, claiming his comments were taken out of context.

The social networking site, which has more than half a billion active users, operates policies around the world not to register children under a certain age. The age varies by country but is typically around 13.

When asked about the issue at the e-G8 Internet forum in Paris on Wednesday, he said: 'We're not trying to work on the ability for people under the age of 13 to sign up.'

The media attacked the billionaire after he made comment about children using the site at an education conference last week, which he said was completely taken out of context.

He said the complexity of protecting children online meant the question was not a priority for the company.

'That's just not top of the list of things for us to figure out right now,' said Zuckerberg. 'Some time in the future, I think it makes sense to explore that, but we're not working on it right now.'

Meanwhile, Nicolas Sarkozy has claimed the lack of regulation online risks plunging the world into anarchy. Read More

Fukushima The Veterin Suicide Squad: Pensioners prepare to risk their lives in Fukushima clean up, Youngsters have more to Live for - 25th May 2011

Dozens of pensioners are preparing to risk their lives heroically in an effort to clean up the Fukushima Dai-ichi plant in Japan.

The Skilled Veterans Corps, as the volunteers have named themselves, have recruited some 180 members aged between 54 and 78 for the cause.

They will be gratefully received by the workers at the nuclear plant, who have been battling to cool reactors since an earthquake and a tsunami rocked the country in March and sparked fears of a nuclear fall out.

The selfless new recruits - which include both men and women, and are all retired - will be tasked with rebuilding the cooling system in the power plant.

They will be running the risk of being exposed to deadly levels of radiation, but they argue that as they are nearing the end of their lives, they don't have as much to live for as those younger than them.

Volunteers were able to apply to help though a specially established - and multi-lingual - website created by 72-year-old retired engineer Yasuteru Yamada.

'Our generation, who has, consciously or unconsciously, approved the construction of the Fukushima nuclear power plants and enjoyed the benefits of the vast supply of energy ... should be the first to join the Skilled Veteran Corps,' he was quoted as saying in the Times.

'Young people with a long future should not have to be placed in a position of having to undertake such a task.

'Radiation exposure of the generation that will reproduce the next generation should be avoided.' Read More

Scientists unveil most complete EVER map of the universe that extends to 380 million lightyears away - 25th May 2011

The most complete 3D map of the local universe has been unveiled by British astronomers.

The 2MASS Redshift Survey (2MRS) from the University of Portsmouth extends to a distance of 380 million light years and has taken 10 years to complete.

It extends closer than previous surveys to the galactic plane - a region that is generally obscured by dust.

The survey has mapped in detail areas previously hidden behind the Milky Way to better understand the impact they have on its motion in relation to the rest of the universe.

Karen Masters from the University of Portsmouth presented the map in a press conference at the 218th meeting of the American Astronomical Society in the Harvard-Smithsonian Centre for Astrophysics (CfA) in Cambridge, Massachusetts.

She said: 'The 2MASS Redshift Survey is a wonderfully complete new look at the local universe - particularly near the galactic plane.

'A galaxy's light is 'redshifted' or stretched to longer wavelengths by the expansion of the universe. The farther the galaxy, the greater its redshift, so redshift measurements yield galaxy distances.

'It's the vital third dimension in a 3D map and will enable cosmologists to study the area in much more detail.'

Earlier this month, scientists had revealed a similarly massive scale 3D map of the universe, which was one of the most complex images of the cosmos ever made.

Scientists behind the SDSS III map studied the brightest objects in the sky and came up with an image akin to 'looking at the moon through the clouds'. Source

James Allen, QC A High Court judge 'beat up his wife because she hadn't cooked his dinner' - 26th May 2011

A respected High Court judge battered his wife in a fit of temper after being forced to do without his dinner while she comforted their cleaner over a personal problem, a court heard yesterday.

James Allen, QC, had worked on a case file in his bedroom for 90 minutes until he heard the cleaner leave and then ticked off his wife Melanie, 44, for inviting her over.

The prosecution claim that Allen, 61, then assaulted his wife of 14 years by striking her in the face.

The judge denies assault and told Bradford Magistrates’ Court she caused her own injuries by punching herself in the face three times during a ‘heated’ argument.

Yesterday, his wife gave evidence in his defence, saying: ‘I hit myself with my fists in my face.’

But although the couple both say she was responsible for her injuries, the prosecution don’t accept this version of events. They insist Allen assaulted his wife and that both are lying in court.

An eight-year-old child, who was in the house at the time, made a 999 call and told the operator Allen was ‘trying to kill’ Mrs Allen, – a barrister who works as a Deputy Coroner.

A recording of the call was played in court and the couple can be heard arguing in the background.

Mrs Allen: ‘Look at me, look at what you have done to me you stupid man.’

Allen: ‘I haven’t done anything.’

Mrs Allen: ‘Yes you have, you did all of that to me.’

Allen: ‘I have not done that.’

Mrs Allen: ‘You have done all of this to me you stupid idiot.’

Allen: ‘Tell the police all the lies you want.’ Allen drove off to spend the night at his parents’ house ten miles away. He was contacted by police the next day and was arrested and locked in the cells when he went to the police station.

Giving evidence yesterday, Allen, a High Court judge for more than ten years, said his wife had a history of self-harming and was previously admitted to hospital after cutting her wrists. Read More

Liam Cunliffe, The gloating 'killer': Burglar boasts on Facebook after being told he wouldn't face charge over the death of his elderly victim

A teenage burglar who broke into an 80-year-old woman’s home gloated on Facebook, ‘Bring it on, easy!’ just minutes after a judge ruled he and his accomplice would not face manslaughter charges over her death.

Pauline Reddick suffered a stroke after Louis Corbett and Liam Cunliffe broke into her home at 3.30am. She died in hospital eight hours later.

After her death, the two 18-year-olds were charged with manslaughter and the case against them was put before a judge.

Prosecutors argued that they were culpable because they would have been aware that an elderly person lived at the house after hearing her call out and by looking at the decor.

But although Judge Neil Ford, QC, admitted that Mrs Reddick ‘may not have died’ if the two thugs had not broken into her home, he told Bristol Crown Court that the pair could not have known she was susceptible to strokes – and were therefore not responsible for her death.

Both Corbett and Cunliffe have pleaded guilty to burglary and will be sentenced next month.

After yesterday’s ruling, the teenage burglars bragged about the decision on Facebook.

With no regard for his victim, Cunliffe, from Weston-super-Mare, Somerset, wrote: ‘Liam Cunliffe is a happy bunni. All i can say DROPPED!! YAA.

‘I’m only lookin at six months. Haa. Bring it on. Easy!’

And before Judge Ford’s decision, Corbett had written: ‘I’m not goin (sic) prison. I refuse.’
Mrs Reddick was described as a stalwart of her community.

Yesterday, her family was too upset to talk about the ruling, but a close friend said it was ‘no justice’. Read More

Gary McKinnon Hopes Dashed as President Obama refuses to halt extradition - 26th May 2011

Gary McKinnon’s hopes of avoiding extradition to the U.S. suffered a severe setback yesterday when Barack Obama declined to allow him to be tried in Britain.

Campaigners had hoped the President would halt the legal proceedings because of the Asperger’s sufferer’s precarious mental state.

But Mr Obama – despite previously saying he wanted to find an ‘appropriate solution’ to end the computer hacker’s ordeal – effectively endorsed the extradition process.

He said: ‘We have confidence in the British legal system coming to a just conclusion, and so we will await resolution and we will be respectful of that process.’

Over the past decade, the British courts have repeatedly refused to block 45-year-old Mr McKinnon’s extradition, despite doctors saying he will kill himself if bundled on to a plane to the U.S.

Judges have themselves agreed he is a suicide risk but – under the controversial Extradition Act, which is biased in favour of the U.S. – this is considered insufficient reason to halt proceedings.

David Cameron raised his plight in face-to-face talks with Mr Obama yesterday morning. The two leaders were then questioned during a joint press conference at which the extradition was one of only a handful of subjects raised, alongside Libya and the Middle East.

Campaigners say this shows the huge importance of the case, which has been the subject of the Daily Mail’s Affront to British Justice campaign.

Shami Chakrabarti, director of Liberty, said: ‘If, as the President says, he will be “respectful” of our legal process, then he should be happy for Gary to be dealt with here in the UK. Read More

Met Office and the great ash cloud fiasco: Forecasters under fire as threat to half-term holiday flights is lifted - 25th May 2011

The Met Office was last night under fire for its ‘unreliable’ predictions about the movement of the volcanic ash cloud which had threatened to ruin the holiday plans of millions of families.

Ryanair boss Michael O’Leary launched an extraordinary attack on the agency for a ‘totally inaccurate’ forecast that showed a dense cloud of ash engulfing the UK just in time for tomorrow’s bank holiday and half-term getaway.

Yesterday, the Met Office revised its original forecast, downplaying the density of the ash.

But on Tuesday night the organisation had insisted it stood by its prediction that an ash cloud of the highest density would cover the whole of the UK from 35,000ft to 55,000ft.

Transport Secretary Philip Hammond said the new forecast meant the bank holiday getaway could go ahead uninterrupted.

He has also put in place a new structure to deal more efficiently with any future eruptions by Icelandic volcanos.

‘The threat to the bank holiday has been lifted,’ he announced.

It means a big sigh of relief for millions of Britons preparing to fly out on half-term holiday ahead of Bank Holiday Monday. Read More

Elderly patients dying of thirst: Doctors forced to prescribe drinking water to keep the old alive, reveals devastating report on hospital care

Doctors are prescribing drinking water for neglected elderly patients to stop them dying of thirst in hospital.

The measure – to remind nurses of the most basic necessity – is revealed in a damning report on pensioner care in NHS wards.

Some trusts are neglecting the elderly on such a fundamental level their wards could face closure orders.

The snapshot study, triggered by a Mail campaign, found staff routinely ignored patients’ calls for help and forgot to check that they had had enough to eat and drink.

Dehydration contributes to the death of more than 800 hospital patients every year.

Another 300 die malnourished. The latest report – by the Care Quality Commission – found patients frequently complained they were spoken to in a ‘condescending and dismissive’ manner.

The watchdog said three of 12 NHS trusts visited in the past three months were failing to meet the most basic standards required by law.

They were: Worcestershire Acute Hospitals NHS Trust, Ipswich Hospital NHS Trust and Royal Free Hampstead NHS Trust in North London. Read More

Two RAF pilots flown home in disgrace after being 'found drunk hours before Libya raid' - 25th May 2011

Two RAF pilots have been sent home in disgrace amid claims they were found drunk just hours before they were due to fly on bombing mission Libya.

The officers from RAF Coningsby in Lincolnshire have been disciplined over their ‘inappropriate behaviour’ while waiting for action at an airbase in Italy.

It is believed the pair, who fly £75million Typhoon Eurofighters, were found almost paralytic at 6am on the main square in the historic town of Gioia del Colle, near their base.

One was 'spread-eagled' on the floor while the other was barely able to stand, according to The Sun.

They have been reprimanded for flouting the RAF’s strict rules which state that pilots can drink no more than two pints of beer within 12 hours of flying.

The Ministry of Defence said their removal from the area of operations would have no effect on the military action.

A Ministry of Defence spokesman said : ‘Two RAF personnel have been returned from detachment in Gioia del Colle following inappropriate behaviour.

‘This has not affected the RAF's ability to sustain its current commitments.

‘Individuals who are found to have fallen below the high standards of conduct demanded by the RAF can face appropriate internal action.’

It is understood other RAF staff at the Italian airbase faced a short-term alcohol ban after the incident in March. Britain’s Typhoon and Tornado fighter jets have been based at Gioia del Colle since British jets began to police the no-fly zone over Libya on March 19.

Twelve of the UK's Tornado jets and six Typhoon fighters, used to carry out bombing missions and patrol the no-fly zone, are based there.

The news came as British and French forces continued to pound Tripoli and military hardware being used by Muammar Gaddafi in his desperate bid to hold on to power. Read More

'Racist' Australia compared to Apartheid South Africa by UN Human Rights commissioner - 25th May 2011

The United Nations' top human rights watchdog has attacked Australia's tough refugee policies and the treatment of outback Aborigines, saying there was a strong undercurrent of racism in the country.

According to UN Human Rights Commissioner Navi Pillay, long-standing policies of locking up asylum seekers had 'cast a shadow over Australia's human rights record', and appeared to be completely arbitrary.

'I come from South Africa and lived under this, and am every way attuned to seeing racial discrimination,' she said.

The 69-year-old is a former anti-apartheid campaigner and international criminal court judge, and she was speaking to reporters at the end of a six-day visit.

'There is a racial discriminatory element here which I see as rather inhumane treatment of people, judged by their differences, racial, colour or religions,' she said yesterday.

Before she left Pillay held talks with Prime Minister Julia Gillard and expressed deep concern about the minority Labor government's latest plan to send hundreds of asylum seekers to Malaysia for refugee processing, hoping to appease voter concern about asylum seekers arriving by boat. Read More

Krittika Biwas, 18, The Daughter of an Indian diplomat, sues NYPD for $1.5m over false arrest for cyberbullying teachers - 25th May 2011

The daughter of an Indian diplomat is suing police for $1.5m for having to use a toilet in front of cellmates after she was falsely arrested over cyberbullying claims.

Krittika Biswas, 18, was pulled out of class at John Bowne High School in Queens, New York, handcuffed and then spent 28 hours in a police cell.

Accused of sending abusive emails to her teachers, the innocent teenager claims she was banned from using a private toilet while in custody.

'Eventually, I had to go in front of everyone,' she told the Times of India, referring to a small communal toilet in the cell she shared with others.

During her ordeal, Miss Biswas was allegedly told by police she would be sent to prison and share cells with prostitutes and inmates with HIV if she did not confess.

Charges against the daughter of Debashish Biswas, vice consul at the Indian Consulate in Manhattan, were later dropped but her school insisted on sending her to a suspension teaching centre for one month after the February arrest.

Announcing her intention to sue the NYPD after an 18-year-old male student was found to be the culprit, Miss Biswas said she was 'broken down' by the incident.

'I was walked out of school in handcuffs in front of everybody. I was very broken down after this,' the New York Post reported.

The culprit has since avoided police action over the case because the school has declined to press charges and has not been suspended from the school, it was reported. Read More

Syrian troops 'have killed more than 1,000 civilians in brutal crackdown on pro-democracy demonstrations' - 25th May 2011

As many as 1,300 people may have been killed in Syria by troops and security forces since the uprising against the Assad regime began, a human rights group has claimed.

The organisation, Sawasiah, said it had the names of 1,100 people who it reported had been killed.

It said it had reports of another 200 civilians deaths, but did not have names for those victims.

The group said most deaths were in the Hauran Plain region, in southern Syria, where the uprising started on March 18.

As protest has spread from the area, the ensuing military crackdown has driven the death toll up, according to the rights group, founded by jailed human rights lawyer Mohannad al-Hassani.

Authorities in the country have blamed most of the deaths on ‘armed saboteur groups’.

They say the groups, backed by Islamists and outside powers, have killed more than 120 soldiers and police.

But campaigners say the military response has escalated to such a level that some soldiers have been shot by security agents for refusing to fire on civilians.

The country has been ruled for the past 11 years by the repressive regime of President Bashar al-Assad, with a history of crackdowns on public dissent.

Previously courted by the West, the government has in the past few weeks seen sanctions imposed on its leaders. Read More