Yemen crisis: Al-Qaeda seizes southern airport

•April 19, 2015 • 4 Comments

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http://www.bbc.com/news/world-middle-east-32341836

Militants from al-Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula (AQAP) have seized an airport in southern Yemen, officials say.

Troops guarding the site in the major port city of Mukalla, Hadramawt province, have fled, they said.

AQAP has exploited the chaos gripping the country, overrunning Mukalla earlier this month and freeing inmates from a prison.

A Saudi-led coalition has been bombing Shia Houthi rebels, who have been advancing across the country.

The Houthis swept into the capital Sanaa last September, eventually forcing President Abdrabbuh Mansour Hadi to flee abroad.

AQAP fighters have also reportedly took control of a sea port and an oil terminal in southern Yemen.

As the coalition strikes continue against the Houthis, Yemeni Vice-President Khaled Bahah said he did not want a Saudi-led ground offensive.

With the raids failing to stop the rebels, there has been speculation a ground campaign could be launched.

But Mr Bahah said: “We are still hoping that nothing will happen, and we are not expanding the war, but we are trying to stop the war.”

Earlier, it was announced the UN’s special envoy to Yemen, Jamal Benomar, has stepped down from his post.

The UN said it would name a successor “in due course” and “spare no efforts to relaunch the peace process”.

The Moroccan diplomat is believed to have come under pressure to resign from Saudi Arabia and other Gulf states after he failed to get the warring Yemeni factions to attend peace talks.

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so its getting confusing..we have hadi the president and his supporters and army..being take to task by houthis who are allegedly backed by saleh and we have the black flag wavers threatening to enter and we also have AQ..whoever they are these days..seeing an opportunity to make some ground and create a presence..its an almighty clusterfuck..

401

Japan is now the biggest holder of US debt

•April 19, 2015 • 4 Comments

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http://rt.com/business/250149-japan-debt-holder-us/

Japan now officially holds more US debt than China, which has been America’s major creditor since 2008. In February Japan held $1.224 trillion in US government bonds compared to China’s $1.223 trillion.

Both countries reduced their US debt investment, with China reducing its by $15.4 billion, and Japan by $14.2 billion, data from the Treasury Departments monthly report on bond holdings, published on Wednesday, shows.

In the last year, Japan has boosted its US Treasury debt by $13.6 billion, while China has decreased holdings by $49.2 billion.

China displaced Japan as the biggest holder of US debt in August 2008, but has been gradually cutting down on its US debt since July 2014.

Economic growth in China, which is at a 25-year low, is the most obvious explanation for the scale back. With more capital leaving mainland China, the less the government needs US dollars to keep the yuan in check.

The opposite is true in Japan, where the weak yen under the Bank of Japan’s monetary stimulus continues to push up the demand for dollar-held assets. HSBC Holdings forecast Japanese investors may buy up $300 billion in US Treasuries in the next two or three years.

After Japan and China, Caribbean banking centers hold the third largest amount of US debt, at $350 billion in February, pushing Belgium back to fourth place with $354 billion.

In total, foreign holdings dropped 0.9 percent to $6.16 trillion in February.

Russia, the 20th largest holder of US debt, sold off $69.6 billion in bonds, the sixth consecutive month of scaling back. In 2014, Russian investment in US securities decreased by a third, or $52.6 billion.

http://www.treasury.gov/ticdata/Publish/mfh.txt

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as i noted the other day..japan is just another state of america based in asia..and its now holding the majority of the hot toxic potato..

401

Greece would struggle to find creditors outside Europe..Greece says it will reach agreement with EU creditors

•April 19, 2015 • 5 Comments

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http://www.bbc.com/news/business-32335758

Greece would struggle to find creditors outside the EU and IMF, German finance minister Wolfgang Schaeuble has said.

He said it would be welcome to try to find investment from Beijing or Moscow, but may have difficulties, he said.

His warning came after fears of a Greek debt default saw its borrowing costs jump 3.5 percentage points to 27%.

Greek Finance Minister Yanis Varoufakis said his government refuses to consider leaving the EU: “Toying with Grexit… is profoundly anti-European.”

He also promised to “compromise, compromise, compromise without being compromised” to satisfy current creditors.

Both men were speaking at talks in Washington.

On Wednesday, ratings agency S&P downgraded Greece’s credit rating.

Yields also rose on longer-term Greek borrowing, with the 10-year bond yield – the amount investors demand for lending – rising one percentage point to 13%.

Mr Schaeuble said that the Greek government needs to find creditors.

http://www.telesurtv.net/english/news/Greece-Says-It-Will-Reach-Agreement-with-EU-Creditors-20150416-0020.html

Greece’s prime minister says the country is on track to repay loans to the IMF and EU. Greek Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras said Thursday he was confident that Greece will be able to reach an agreement with its European creditors by the end of the month.  “The Greek government is working hard on every individual aspect of the negotiations in order to reach a mutually beneficial solution … A compromise, which will respect the recent popular mandate as well as the euro zone’s operational framework,” Tsipras told Reuters.  Meanwhile, International Monetary Fund chief Christine Lagarde told a press conference in Washington that she was against a Greek request to delay its repayments to the IMF.  “We have never had an advanced economy asking for payment delays,” she stated.  Greece’s finance ministry on Thursday denied a report by the Financial Times that Athens approached the IMF to request a delay in loan repayments. Greece met a deadline last Thursday to repay US$494 million in debt to the IMF, snubbing rumors the country wouldn’t pay up in time.

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blah blah blah..its a greek epic..it just goes on and on..

greece is not on track to pay back..it will never pay back..the eurozone is ready to cut them loose..the banks are safe now..commence the detachment..

401

IBM and Apple want to share how you are with others

•April 19, 2015 • 1 Comment

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IBMsWatson

PHYTEL LOGO

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http://www.bbc.com/news/technology-32301118

IBM has launched a health unit to make sense of the wealth of data created by the boom in fitness trackers and apps.

Watson Health aims to create “a secure, cloud-based data sharing hub” that can feed analytic technologies, it said.

It could provide diagnoses or health alerts which could also be sent to doctors, carers, or insurers for example, with the user’s permission.

IBM has teamed up with Apple and wants to launch “new employee health and wellness management solutions”.

The company says it is buying two firms to help with its goal: Explorys which has one of the largest healthcare databases in the world and Phytel that works with digital medical record systems to reduce hospital readmissions and automate communications.

IBM says it wants to provide “individualised insights and a more complete picture of the many factors that can affect people’s health”.

There has been concern over personal technology being used to help diagnose an individual’s condition.

In the US, some apps that claimed to diagnose cancer, for example, have been criticised by the Federal Trade Commission.

There is also concern over the sharing of health data. Companies including Jawboneare talking to firms about how personal fitness trackers could be used to monitor a workforce.

Christopher Coughlan, a UK solicitor who has written on the subject advises bosses considering such a move to be careful:

“If you rely on consent it must be freely given. This means a worker must be able to say ‘no’ without a penalty being imposed and must be able to withdraw consent once given.

“A person is more likely to be in this position at the recruitment stage than when they are employed.”

Insurers are also interested in monitoring customers. UK health insurance firm Vitality is incentivising policy-holders to take up a more active lifestyle by offering rewards for certain tasks that can be tracked through personal fitness devices.

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i feel so much more secure and safe now..

“Watson Health aims to create “a secure, cloud-based data sharing hub” that can feed analytic technologies, it said.”

how about staying out of my body and life eh?

“Insurers are also interested in monitoring customers.”

i bet they are..

401

Dark matter map unveils first results

•April 19, 2015 • 7 Comments

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logo-des

http://www.bbc.com/news/science-environment-32284995

A huge effort to map dark matter across the cosmos has released its first data.

Dark matter is the invisible “web” that holds galaxies together; by watching how clumps of it shift over time, scientists hope eventually to quantify dark energy – the even more mysterious force that is pushing the cosmos apart.

The map will eventually span one-eighth of the sky; this first glimpse covers just 0.4%, but in unprecedented detail.

It shows fibres of dark matter, studded with galaxies, and voids in between.

The international collaboration, known as the Dark Energy Survey (DES), will present its preliminary findings on Tuesday at a meeting of the American Physical Societyand publish them on the Arxiv preprint server.

The survey involves more than 300 scientists from six countries and uses images taken by one of the best digital cameras in the world: a 570-megapixel gadget mounted on the Victor Blanco telescope at the Cerro Tololo Inter-American Observatory, high in the Chilean Andes.

Incredible detail is required to detect dark matter, based purely on the way it warps the light from very distant galaxies.

“Our goal all this time has been to see the invisible – to see dark matter,” said Sarah Bridle, an astrophysics professor at the University of Manchester and co-chair of the DES weak lensing group, which produced the map.

“To be able to look at a map and say, ‘That part of the sky’s got more dark matter in it, that bit’s empty,’ is the dream that we’ve had all this time,” Prof Bridle told the BBC.

“It’s been a long time coming.”

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hope it wasnt a wet one..sort of junky science this..mainly all theory..

401

Houthi rebels condemn UN arms embargo

•April 17, 2015 • Leave a Comment

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http://www.bbc.com/news/world-middle-east-32311809

Houthi rebels have condemned Tuesday’s UN Security Council arms embargo imposed on them and their allies.

They called for protests against what they termed UN support of “aggression”.

The Houthis have made rapid advances across the country, sparking air strikes on their strongholds by a Saudi-led coalition.

The UN says at least 736 people have been killed and 2,700 injured since 26 March, but officials believe the actual death toll may be far higher.

The Houthis’ Supreme Revolutionary Committee “called on the masses of the Yemeni people to rally and protest on Thursday to condemn the Security Council resolution in support of the aggression”.

Saudi Arabia’s UN Ambassador, Abdallah al-Moualimi, said the resolution was “a very clear endorsement” of the air strikes.

When asked about a possible ground offensive, he warned that the air strikes were a response to Houthi military action and if the Houthis failed to comply with the resolution, “they will continue to face more of the same”.

The Egyptian presidency said on Tuesday that Egypt and Saudi Arabia had discussed holding a “major military manoeuvre” in Saudi Arabia with other Gulf states.

The resolution targets rebel leader Abdul Malik al-Houthi and two other senior rebels, Abd al-Khaliq al-Houthi and Abdullah Yahya al-Hakim.

The sanctions also apply to key supporters, including former President Ali Abdullah Saleh and his eldest son Ahmed, a former commander of the elite Republican Guard force.

The embargo also applies to “those acting on their behalf or at their direction in Yemen” – effectively all rebel fighters and Saleh loyalists in the security forces.

The resolution demanded that the Houthis withdraw from areas they have seized, including the capital Sanaa, and resume negotiations on the democratic transition begun in 2011 when Mr Saleh was forced to hand over power to Abdrabbuh Mansour Hadi following mass protests.

It was passed by 14 votes to nil. Russia, which had insisted on imposing an arms embargo on all parties, abstained.

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see how quick they can move on the “bad” guys when they want to..they didnt impose sanctions on anyone in ukraine when they overthrew yanky..so who decides who is good and who is bad?

401

Monsanto has a secret department of social media trolls

•April 17, 2015 • 2 Comments

http://www.trueactivist.com/monsanto-admits-theres-a-whole-department-dedicated-to-discrediting-anti-gmo-experts/

Last Friday, the World Health Organization (WHO) released a report linking glyphosate, the key ingredient in Roundup, to cancer. While this news might not surprise many of us, Monsanto are demanding a retraction of this damning verdict, claiming that the WHO ‘have something to explain’.

The WHO’s International Agency for Research on Cancer (IARC) had reviewed scientific literature and decided to classify glyphosate as ‘probably carcinogenic to humans’. This is great news in the fight against Big-Ag, but it would be naive to expect Monsanto to lie down and take it on the chin.

“We question the quality of the assessment,” said Monsanto‘s vice president of global regulatory affairs, Philip Miller, on Tuesday. No surprise there, then. Reuters report that Miller claimed the corporation had offered the IARC some scientific data showing that glyphosate was safe, but that it was ‘largely ignored’.

A separate investigation into glyphosate’s toxicity is currently being carried out by the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), who have the power to ban the toxic chemical once and for all. Miller expressed concern that the destructive report by the IARC might influence the result of the EPA’s findings, and he called for the WHO to retract their statement. However, the EPA will be taking the IARC report into consideration when making their decision.

All this sounds like a step in the right direction, but Monsanto have a reputation for discrediting scientists, experts, and even journalists who dare to speak out against them, so the battle isn’t won yet. It’s long been thought that the world’s worst corporation has an entire department dedicated to silencing its critics, but up until now nobody has any conclusive evidence of this.

However, in a recent article by Natural Society, it was claimed that Dr. William Moar, a Monsanto employee whose job involves giving seminars to persuade people that Monsanto products are safe, has admitted for the first time that the company does in fact spend an incredible amount of time and money on discrediting experts who give the corporation bad press.

While no external sources were given in the article, they report: In a recent talk attended mostly by students hoping to get decent paying internships in their field, a student asked what the company was doing to negate “bad science” concerning their work.

The report continues by claiming that Dr William Moar said Monsanto has: “an entire department (waving his arm for emphasis) dedicated to ‘debunking’ science which disagreed with theirs. 

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you know them..those annoying pricks who continually try to muddy the waters and will call you a conspiracy nutter or a bible thumping anti-science ultra conservative..they want us eating, breathing and drinking all the poison they can create..glyphosate creates cancer..agent orange will fuck you up..these things are not in dispute..

401

 
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