Today's conditions brought to you by the Bush Junta - marionettes of their hyperdimensional puppet masters - Produced and Directed by the CIA, based on an original script by Henry Kissinger, with a cast of billions.... The "Greatest Shew on Earth," no doubt, and if you don't have a good sense of humor, don't read this page! It is designed to reveal the "unseen."
If you can't stand the heat of Objective Reality, get out of the kitchen!

October 23, 2003

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"Disasters involve cycles in the human experiential cycle [...] Human cycle mirrors cycle of catastrophe. Earth benefits in form of periodic cleansing. Time to start paying attention to the signs. They are escalating. They can even be 'felt'by you and others, if you pay attention."

Propaganda, even if it may contain nuggets of truth, is being directed North Korea's way. It just happens to coincide with US troops being sent to South Korea. The sun never sets on the US military.

Pay no attention to the experimental anti-guerrilla equipment the US is sending to Iraq - American forces are encountering "just a few" pro-Saddam militants. So have the White House Neocons pulled off one of the most despicable acts in history? Could it be possible that they have persuaded US citizens to give them billions of their tax dollars in payment for successfully hoodwinking them? In other Mid-East news, Iran turns over documents on its nuclear programs - not that it will matter to Bush and the Neocons.

Israel just keeps inciting its Arab neighbours. You would almost think they actually wanted war, but how can we think such a thing! After all, the bombing by Israel of the USS Liberty back in '67 was just a big mistake, and anyone who says otherwise is a damn anti-Semite, ok! The US, on the other hand, quietly reminds its citizens that Israel is a dangerous place - especially with all those US-made Apache gun ships and tanks.

The most hated man on earth continues to spark protests whereever he turns up. World leaders continue to ignore the outcry as they fall all over themselves to become Bush's lap dog. Perhaps they fear ending on the wrong side of terrorism if they don't, not to mention that it appears that most public "servants" have a standard policy: "dirty deeds done dirt cheap".

Strangely enough, this understanding is used as an excuse to not actually do anything, or to think about where these "people" are leading us. The old "'twas ever so" line is a favorite of many. Even worse: "You focus too much on the negative." We guess as long as no one is starving or bleeding on your doorstep, it's fine to pretend "what a wonderful world" we have: Big Brother loves it's sheeple. It may be a little harder for the world's 1 billion children languishing in chronic poverty to believe that anyone gives a damn about them, however. And mother nature ain't to blame. "Globalisation" has such a nice ring to it.

Unsolved mysteries abound in our little corner of the universe. We post a small one today involving huge boulders and trees. Feeling strange lately? Perhaps it is due to the coronal mass ejection, weighing over a billion tons, that is heading our way. Feeling really strange? Then maybe it's the "filthy pigs" that rule us.



Solar gas cloud racing to Earth

Storm may disrupt power and satellites, Boulder center says

By Jim Erickson
Rocky Mountain News
October 23, 2003

One of the biggest sunspots in a decade has ejected a massive cloud of charged gas that could disrupt electrical power grids and satellite communications when it reaches Earth on Friday, Boulder researchers said.

A sunspot cluster 10 times larger than Earth released a chunk of the sun's outer atmosphere early Wednesday morning, said Larry Combs, a forecaster at the federal Space Environment Center in Boulder.

The so-called "coronal mass ejection" contains more than a billion tons of matter and is streaking toward Earth at nearly 1 million mph, Combs said.

It is expected to slam into Earth's magnetic field Friday, generating a strong geomagnetic storm that could spark a shimmering auroral display as far south as Oregon.

A major solar flare exploded from the same sunspot cluster, known as Region 484, on Sunday. X-rays from the flare knocked out high-frequency radio communications over the continental U.S. for more than two hours, Combs said. Such communications are used by airliners and ships.

The sun reached the peak of its 11-year activity cycle in 2000. The number of sunspots and surface eruptions has been declining since then.

"It's somewhat unusual to have this much activity when we're approximately 3 1⁄2 years past solar maximum," Combs said Wednesday.

Sunspots are dark, relatively cool regions of the sun's surface. They occur when strong, distorted magnetic fields trap heat beneath the sun's surface, keeping the spots slightly cooler than their surroundings.

Region 484 is the fourth-largest sunspot cluster in the current 11- year solar cycle, Combs said.

A solar flare is an explosive release of energy that can last minutes or hours. The equivalent of 40 billion Hiroshima-size atomic bombs can be released.

The Space Environment Center is part of the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration. Earlier this month, Congress threatened to close the center, which provides around-the-clock warnings of solar activity.

No final decision has been made about the center's fate.

Jet winds and Sun flares up trouble on Everest

11:30 a.m. EDT Oct 22, 2003
MountEverest.net

Several Himalaya expeditions including the Berg Everest team have severe difficulties with their data communications since yesterday.

In the past three days, two strong centers of dynamic activity have emerged on the sun. The largest is a sunspot cluster roughly 10 times larger than Earth which has already produced a major flare. The NOAA predicts the region will grow and produce additional substantial flare activity. The second not yet visible active region resulted in two powerful eruptions yesterday. The NOAA states, "These eruptions may herald the arrival of a volatile active center with the potential to impact various Earth systems." [...]

In a Special Advisory Bulletin issued yesterday, the NOAA related:

"Further major eruptions are possible from these active regions as they rotate across the face of the sun over the next two weeks. Agencies impacted by solar flare radio blackouts, geomagnetic storms, and solar radiation storms may experience disruptions over this two-week period. These include satellite and other spacecraft operations, power systems, HF communications, and navigation systems." [...]

Comment: Something to consider during these strangest of times:

Tchijevsky found that periods of mass movement rise and fall in regular phases even in nations that had no contact with each other. This suggested to him that some external factor was causing the cycles, and he found it in the forces controlling the 11.2-year sunspot cycle. The UHP usually repeats itself 9 times in each century, synchronistically with the 11.2-year sunspot cycle:

"We must assume that there exists a powerful factor outside our globe which governs the development of events in human societies and synchronizes them with the sun's activity;and thus we must also assume that the electrical energy of the sun is the superterrestrial factor which influences the historical process."

Tchijevsky held that the ionization of Earth's atmosphere, caused by solar activity, stimulates mankind physiologically and psychologically:

"Therefore, solar disturbances tend to aggravate social crises, if such crises happen to exist at the time of greater solar activity." [ A. Tchijevsky: The Universal Historical Process]

Rumsfeld doubts on terror war

A leaked internal memo by US Defence Secretary Donald Rumsfeld says the US faces what is described as a "long, hard slog" in Iraq and Afghanistan.

The memo, which was sent to the Pentagon's senior civilian and military leaders last week and was first reported in the USA Today newspaper, also questions if the US really knows whether it is winning the war on terrorism.

Posing a number of challenging questions, the memo says the record against the al-Qaeda network is mixed, and suggests the US does not have the right mechanisms to know whether it is capturing, killing or deterring more terrorists than are being recruited.

Comment: Excellent. So the 30,000 dead Iraqis? What should we tell them? What about the 20,000 dead Afghanis? What about the 2,764 Americans murdered on 9/11 so that their own government could wage this endless war and get rich off the proceeds?

Official: Rumsfeld 'Livid' Over Memo Leak

Thursday, October 23, 2003
FOXNews.com

WASHINGTON — Defense Secretary Donald H. Rumsfeld was "livid" when he discovered a memo written to top aides made it onto the front page of the nation's largest circulated newspaper, a senior defense official told Fox News.

Rumsfeld appeared calm later on Wednesday when he and a top Pentagon official described the memo as an internal discussion paper, not an insight into the defense secretary's opinion about U.S. success in the global war on terror.

But speaking to reporters Wednesday evening, Rumsfeld was clearly annoyed by the leak.

"If I wanted it published, I would have written it as a press release, which I didn't," Rumsfeld said after a closed-door meeting with senators on Capitol Hill. [...]

Comment: First the White House grabs control of Iraq security planning from Rummy and the Pentagon, and now this report. Is Rumsfeld being forced into retirement?

Iraqi official calls Halliburton oil prices too high

The head of an Iraqi oil agency said Tuesday that his group has been trucking in gasoline and other badly needed fuels to Iraq for considerably less money than Halliburton, which has so far received more than $700 million from the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers to stave off shortages in Iraq. Separately, a report by the independent Congressional Research Service, the nonpartisan public policy research arm of Congress, warned earlier this month that the Corps of Engineers may be paying too much to import fuel.

The revelations support allegations by Democratic Reps. Henry Waxman of California and John Dingell of Michigan that Halliburton is overcharging American taxpayers and Iraqis, in particular. The lawmakers sent a letter to the head of the Corps of Engineers on Tuesday asking the Corps to look into the price disparity between the Iraqi agency's imports and Halliburton's...

Comment: The above is interesting in light of the recent report that the White House is threatening to veto a proposed bill that would change the status of the $87 billion destined for Iraq from a grant to a loan. Why would Bush not want to give a loan to Iraq? A loan would ensure that US taxpayers got their money back at a future time, yet Bush is insisting on a grant.

Could the $87 billion, which is apparently far more than needed for the rebuilding of Iraq, be destined for the coffers of Haliburton et al, by way of paying the extortionate prices they have set for the stolen Iraqi oil they are now pumping? Is the above $700 million the first installment?

Essentially, Bush, Cheney, Rumsfeld, etc., have written themselves cheques for billions of dollars using US taxpayers' money. This is payment, as they see it, for going to the considerable bother of massacring almost 3,000 US civilians on 9/11, 20,000 in Afghanistan, and 30,000 in Iraq, and then convincing the US public that it was someone else's fault. No small feat indeed, and they have been richly rewarded for it.
Are we exaggerating? See below.

$4bn Iraq cash has vanished, claims charity

Gethin Chamberlain Diplomatic Correspondent
Thu 23 Oct 2003

REPRESENTATIVES from more than 70 countries were gathering in Madrid today to discuss funding of post-war Iraq amid accusations that the coalition authority in the country has failed to account for billions of dollars of oil and aid revenues.

A Christian charity claimed yesterday that failure of the Coalition Provisional Authority (CPA) to set up an independent auditing board to oversee spending had left a question mark over what had happened to up to $4 billion that should have been spent on rebuilding the country. [...]

Anti-war senators heckle Bush

23/10/2003

Two senators opposed to the US-led war in Iraq have heckled the American president as he spoke to Australia's Parliament.

But George W Bush responded by smiling and saying: "I love free speech". Green Party members, Senator Bob Brown and Senator Kerry Nettle, were ordered out of the chamber, but refused to leave.

Brown even shook Bush's hand after the address that was capped by a standing ovation.

The son of a terror suspect being held by US authorities at Guantanamo Bay in Cuba was removed from the public gallery.

Brown was the first to interrupt Bush, as the president said people should be happy that Saddam Hussein's regime had been toppled in Iraq. When a parliamentary official motioned for Brown to leave, he shook his head and sat in his seat.

When Bush paid tribute to Australia for promoting peace in Southeast Asia, Brown shouted: "But we are not a sheriff."

It was a reference to Bush's recent comment that Australia was a lawman in the war on terror. The comment apparently was intended to portray Australia as being on equal footing with the United States. Instead, it reinforced sentiment among some Asian nations that Canberra was an agent for the Bush administration. [...]

Protesters arrested in Canberra

October 23, 2003

Four protesters were arrested today as thousands descended on the nation's capital in a show of anger against US President George W Bush.

A mass police presence and unprecedented security was in place, but protesters breached plastic webbed fencing outside the US embassy before being pushed back [...]

Comment: Even the politicians got into the act of protesting the most hated man in the world:

Earlier, senators Bob Brown and Kerry Nettle were ordered out for protesting as Mr Bush today addressed a joint sitting of Australia's Parliament, praising the nation's war effort and reminding everyone that he had called prime minister John Howard "a man of steel" because "that's Texan for fair dinkum. [ Bush departs Australia after whirlwind tour]

N. Korean prisoners starved, tortured: rights group

Associated Press
3:45 AM EDT Thursday, Oct. 23, 2003

Washington — Between 150,000 and 200,000 political prisoners are confined to camps in North Korea, subjected to starvation diets, inhumane conditions and torture, according to a report by a human rights group that collected satellite photographs and accounts from former prisoners.

The report by the U.S. Committee for Human Rights in North Korea concerned prison camps known as kwan-li-so.

Three generations of family members are sometimes given life terms along with family members charged with political crimes, said David Hawk, a longtime human rights advocate and author of the report who interviewed more than 30 former prisoners and guards. [...]

Starving North Korea kills 'foreign' babies

The Telegraph

Refugees returning to North Korea face forced abortions in Kim Jong-il's prison camps in a drive by the dictator to keep his people 'ethnically pure', reports Richard Spencer in Beijing [...]

Comment: We are not saying this does not happen. We don't know. But it sounds suspiciously like the Saddam and the baby incubator stories that circulated and were proven to be lies. The web site, The Lie, has compiled research regarding this bit of Iraq war propaganda.

US marines in South Korea for fast deployment drill

SEOUL (AFP) Oct 23, 2003

Some 400 US military personnel have arrived at the southern navy port of Chinhae in South Korea for a drill aimed at speeding up deployment, US military authorities said Thursday. [...]

The two ships are "strategically positioned to rapidly respond to any crisis in the Pacific region, including the Korean peninsula." [...]

Nth Korea supplies 400 scuds for Middle East: report

23/10/2003

South Korea's defence ministry has said in a parliamentary report that North Korea exported about 400 scud missiles to Middle East countries since the mid-1980s .

Iran, Iraq, Syria and Yemen were the main recipients of Scuds from North Korea, the ministry said.

Ministry spokesperson Kim Ki-Beom stated the report as saying: "Since the middle of the 1980s, North Korea has exported 400-odd scud missiles along with missile-related parts to the Middle East region".

The report did not say how much the communist state earned from the missile exports, but Yonhap news agency estimated the figure to be $110m (€92.30m)

Military: Iraqi Detainee Was Strangled

A Baath Party official who died in a detention camp in southern Iraq suffocated after a U.S. Marine reservist grabbed him by the neck and snapped a bone in his throat, according to a military investigation. An autopsy found that Nagem Sadoon Hatab's death on June 6 was caused by "strangulation/asphyxiation,''

Marine spokesman 1st Lt. Dan Rawson said Wednesday. Hatab suffered a broken hyoid bone, a U-shaped bone that supports the tongue. Lance Cpl. Christian Hernandez and his superior officer, Maj. Clark A. Paulus, are charged with negligent homicide in the death. [...]

Comment: "Negligent homicide" - homicide through negligence. Does this mean that the Marine simply grabbed the man by the neck in the wrong way?

U.S. Sending New Anti-Guerrilla Gear to Iraq

By Jim Wolf
Wed Oct 22, 5:16 PM ET

WASHINGTON (Reuters) - The United States is sending new counter-guerrilla systems to Iraq, including a kind of microphone in the sky to help pinpoint snipers, the head of the Pentagon's cradle of technologies said on Wednesday.

Other anti-guerrilla gizmos would help detect roadside bombs and booby traps that have been killing U.S.-led occupation forces, said Anthony Tether, head of the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency, or DARPA.

The devices use everything from lasers and acoustic sensors to electromagnetic technologies, he said, adding they would ship in the next three to four months or sooner, after stepped-up, last-minute development and testing. [...]

New Spy Gear Aims to Thwart Attacks in Iraq

By ERIC SCHMITT
THe New York Times
October 23, 2003

WASHINGTON, Oct. 22 — The Air Force and the Army are working on a classified project to use new combinations of surveillance aircraft and other sensors, along with intelligence on the ground, to try to detect and counter the increasingly deadly ambushes against American forces in Iraq, senior Pentagon officials said on Wednesday.

The surveillance effort could include a range of tactics and technology, the officials said, including equipping remotely piloted Predator aircraft with special radar or sensors to help find homemade bombs or suspected guerrilla activity.

Air Force experts are culling lessons from the New York City Police Department about helicopter surveillance techniques in urban areas. [...]

Annan tells Iraq donors to dig deep

BBC
Thursday, 23 October, 2003, 09:55 GMT


About $50bn is needed to rebuild Iraq, aid officials say United Nations Secretary General Kofi Annan has called on the international community to "give and give generously" at the opening of a major conference to raise money for the reconstruction of Iraq.

He warned that ensuring a prosperous future for Iraq would be a long-term challenge that will "require effort and engagement for many years", but that immediate action was needed.

More than 70 countries and multilateral organisations are attending the two-day meeting in Madrid, Spain, which has the strong backing of the United States. [...]

Comment: There is no doubt that the meeting has the strong backing of the United States. Annan is encouraging the world to clean up America's mess.

Iran turns over documents on nuclear program

Associated Press
6:58 AM EDT Thursday, Oct. 23, 2003

Vienna — Iran on Thursday handed over to the UN nuclear agency documents on its past atomic energy activities, calling the dossier a full disclosure of a program the United States contends masks a covert weapons effort.

"We have submitted a report fully disclosing all our past activities in the nuclear field," Ali Akbar Salehi, Iran's representative to the Vienna-based International Atomic Energy Agency, told reporters. [...]

Cover-Up Alleged in Probe of USS Liberty

Wed Oct 22
By JENNIFER C. KERR, Associated Press Writer

WASHINGTON - A former Navy attorney who helped lead the military investigation of the 1967 Israeli attack on the USS Liberty that killed 34 American servicemen says former President Lyndon Johnson and his defense secretary, Robert McNamara, ordered that the inquiry conclude the incident was an accident.

In a signed affidavit released at a Capitol Hill news conference, retired Capt. Ward Boston said Johnson and McNamara told those heading the Navy's inquiry to "conclude that the attack was a case of 'mistaken identity' despite overwhelming evidence to the contrary."

Boston was senior legal counsel to the Navy's original 1967 review of the attack. He said in the sworn statement that he stayed silent for years because he's a military man, and "when orders come ... I follow them."

He said he felt compelled to "share the truth" following the publication of a recent book, "The Liberty Incident," which concluded the attack was unintentional.

The USS Liberty was an electronic intelligence-gathering ship that was cruising international waters off the Egyptian coast on June 8, 1967. Israeli planes and torpedo boats opened fire on the Liberty at what became known as the outbreak of the Israeli-Egyptian Six-Day War.

In addition to the 34 Americans killed, more than 170 were wounded.

Israel has long maintained that the attack was a case of mistaken identity, an explanation that the Johnson administration did not formally challenge. Israel claimed its forces thought the ship was an Egyptian vessel and apologized to the United States.

After the attack, a Navy court of inquiry concluded there was insufficient information to make a judgment about why Israel attacked the ship, stopping short of assigning blame or determining whether it was an accident.

It was "one of the classic all-American cover-ups," said Ret. Adm. Thomas Moorer, a former Joint Chiefs of Staff chairman who spent a year investigating the attack as part of an independent panel he formed with other former military officials. The panel also included a former U.S. ambassador to Saudi Arabia, James Akins.

"Why would our government put Israel's interests ahead of our own?" Moorer asked from his wheelchair at the news conference. He was chief of naval operations at the time of the attack.

Moorer, who has long held that the attack was a deliberate act, wants Congress to investigate.

Israeli Embassy spokesman Mark Regev disputed any notion that Israel knowingly went after American sailors.

"I can say unequivocally that the Liberty tragedy was a terrible accident, that the Israeli pilots involved believed they were attacking an enemy ship," Regev said. "This was in the middle of a war. This is something that we are not proud of."

Calls to the Navy seeking comment were not immediately returned.

In Boston's statement, he does not say why Johnson would have ordered a cover-up. Attempts were made to reach Boston at his home in Coronado, Calif., but he did not return calls seeking comment.

Moorer's panel suggested several possible reasons Israel might have wanted to attack a U.S. ship. Among them: Israel intended to sink the ship and blame Egypt because it might have brought the United States into the 1967 war.

Comment: "No! It can't be! There are no conspiracies! They are the domain of crazy conspiracy theorists! Our government would NEVER do something like that! I mean, they would NEVER just let America's sons and daughters DIE! Would they?"

Well, apparently they would and have done so on many occasions. If you have the capacity to accept these facts, then simply extrapolate further and ask yourself this: If the people who do this find themselves in a position where they can carry out even more heinous acts and get away with it, what would stop them from doing it?...Welcome to the real world.

Palestinian 'collaboratrors' shot dead and bodies displayed

23/10/2003

Masked Palestinian gunmen killed two Palestinian men suspected of collaborating with Israel today before displaying their bodies in the central square of the Tulkarem refugee camp, witnesses and Palestinian security officials said.

The two men were abducted two weeks ago with six other men in a kidnapping planned by two militant groups, the Al Aqsa Martyr’s Brigade and Islamic Jihad.

The men were suspected of giving away the hideout of a wanted Al Aqsa militant, Palestinian security sources said in Nablus.

A source in Al Aqsa said the men had been kidnapped and interrogated by Islamic Jihad, but that the two groups had carried out the killings together “to share the honour.”

The two men reportedly confessed to betraying Sirhan Sirhan, a militant shot dead by Israeli troops in Tulkarem on October 4 after a yearlong manhunt. One of the men, who had been an Islamic Jihad member, also confessed to betraying two comrades who were killed by Israeli troops.

Sirhan – who is not related to the Robert Kennedy assassin of the same name - was wanted by Israel for killing five people on an Israeli communal farm, including a mother and her two small children.

The confessions were videotaped and broadcast in the central square last night, witnesses said.

The six other suspects were released.

Just after daylight today, the two suspected collaborators were taken into an alley and shot at close range, said a witness.

The bullet-riddled bodies were then dragged to the central square and propped up for camp residents to see, witnesses said. The bodies were displayed for about 15 minutes around 7am, a time when residents are heading to work and children are on their way to school.

Family members who came to take the bodies away identified the men as Mohammed Suliman Faraj and Samer al-Oufi.

A Palestinian security official said they were investigating the incident but were currently powerless to act.

Israeli Minister Makes Provocative Visit To Al-Aqsa

October 22 2003
By Mohammad Yassin

GAZA CITY - Palestinians branded as "provocative" a visit to Al-Aqsa mosque compound, one of Islam's holiest sites, by Israel's Interior Security Minister Tzahi Hanegbi on Wednesday, October 22.

"This is a provocative visit aimed at inflaming the already tense situation and find an excuse to ban Muslims from praying at the blessed mosque," Mufti of Al-Quds and occupied Palestine Sheikh Ekremah Sabri told IslamOnline.net.

Hanegbi’s tour of the site under heavy guard is reminiscent of a similar visit to the holy site in September 2000 by then Israeli opposition leader and current prime minister Ariel Sharon, which triggered the second Intifada against occupation. [...]

'One-Way Strategy'

For his part, Hamas activist Adnan Asfour said it seemed as if "the Zionist government has adopted a one-way strategy with the Palestinian cause."

"It has already kicked off the project of Greater Israel, leaning on military superiority," he asserted.

The Hamas leader refused to label Hanegbi's visit as "naïve", underlining it "reflects the Israeli intransigence, which ignited the Intifada."

"The visit can be portrayed as a way to escape from the current limbo of the Zionist government, which pledged to bring security to the Israelis within 100 days of assuming office and failed," Asfour said.

"Sharon is pursuing his genocide against Palestinians being supported by the U.S. occupation of Iraq and Afghanistan," he added. [...]

Comment: Yes indeed, nothing like ordering your minsiter of the interior to visit one of the most religiously and politically sensitive places of your enemy to show that you are respectful and reasonable and therefore to be trusted.

Israeli jets roar over Lebanon despite UN warning

Israeli warplanes roared across Lebanon on Wednesday breaking the sound barrier over the northern city of Tripoli, witnesses said, despite a United Nations call to Israel last week to stop overflights. Witnesses said Israeli jets also circled over the capital Beirut and swooped over parts of southern Lebanon and the eastern Bekaa valley -- a stronghold of Syrian- and Iranian-backed Hizbollah.

There was no immediate report of any response from Hizbollah guerrillas, who often fire anti-aircraft rounds at Israeli jets over Lebanon. The United Nations urged Israel last week to stop what it called violations of Lebanon's airspace and called for calm on all sides after an Israeli soldier and a Lebanese boy were killed in border flare-ups.

Comment: Yes indeed, nothing like ordering your military jets to agressively fly over your neigbour's cities to show them that you are a man of peace.

Israel says Jordan "cornerstone" for peace with other Arabs

AMMAN (AFP) Oct 23, 2003

Israel on Thursday described Jordan as the "cornerstone" for comprehensive peace with other Arab states, in a statement to mark the ninth anniversary of the signing of the Israel-Jordan peace treaty.

"On October 26 we will celebrate the ninth anniversary of the peace treaty between Israel and Jordan. Israel sees its ties with Jordan as strategic and is seeking to develop them in all possible fields," an embassy statement said. [...]

It noted that there is "constant political dialogue" between Jordan and Israel, as well as economic, scientific and cultural cooperation between the two neighbours. [...]

U.S. warns against traveling to Israel

Haaretz

The State Department yesterday warned U.S. citizens to avoid Israel because of the risk of terror attacks. In an unusual step, the State Department stepped up its travel warnings to Israel, which in the past focused on specific areas, and now covers all of Israel.

The travel warning noted that violence has caused numerous civilian deaths and injuries. American tourists, students and government contract workers have been among the casualties...

Most Israelis back Gaza air strikes: poll

Video of missile strike indicates civilians were in the vicinity

10/23/2003 5:54 AM

JERUSALEM (AP) — A video of an Israeli missile strike in a Gaza refugee camp shows people running in a nearby alley, and the army said Thursday it is investigating whether this could explain the high number of casualties reported by the Palestinians.

Monday's attack in the Nusseirat refugee camp, which left eight people dead and 70 wounded, revived debate in Israel over targeted killings, prompted in part by Palestinian claims that one missile was fired into a crowd. [...]

EU elite are filthy pigs, says Bossi

By Ambrose Evans-Pritchard in Strasbourg
23/10/2003

The European Union's elite are determined to destroy Europe's Christian heritage, Italy's reform minister, Umberto Bossi said yesterday.

He described the elite as "filthy pigs" who wanted to "make paedophilia as easy as possible".

Mr Bossi, leader of the Northern League, said Brussels was "transforming vices into virtues" and "advancing the cause of atheism every day". He denounced the European arrest warrant as a step towards "dictatorship, deportation, and terror, instilling fear in the people, a crime in itself". It would lead to a Stalinist regime "multiplied by 25".

One day Italian citizens would be locked up on the orders of Turkish judges, he told Il Giornale newspaper, which is owned by the family of the Italian prime minister, Silvio Berlusconi. He added that the euro was a "total flop", its inflationary effects costing ordinary people "a fortune" in lost purchasing power.

The outburst was a public relations disaster for Mr Berlusconi, who was at the European Parliament in Strasbourg yesterday for the first time since his calamitous debut as EU president in July.

Global trade keeps a billion children in poverty, says Unicef

International targets to reduce child poverty are going to be missed because globalised trade and cuts to aid budgets are creating an ever-greater chasm between the richest and poorest countries. More than one billion young people in the developing world are now living in conditions of severe deprivation, according to a report for the United Nations Children's Fund (Unicef).

Tens of millions of children in developing countries still do not have access to basic human needs such as food, water and sanitation, the study found. The report is the first attempt to scientifically measure world poverty, and paints a grim picture of how little the lives of the world's poorest people have improved in the last few years. A UN declaration in 2000 pledged that by 2015, it would halve the proportion of people whose income was less than one dollar a day and achieve a similar reduction in the number of people suffering from hunger...

Comment: And who promotes globalisation? Ever wondered why Africa, much of India, most of South America, and many other places on the planet are steeped in abject poverty? Look at Africa - famine, drought, war, disease - mother nature must really have something against those poor Africans, right? Think again.

The current severe world economic imbalance does not happen by accident. It is 100% manipulated. Ever wonder why it is that America has 5% of the world's population, yet consumes 30% of the food produced by the world - and then wastes half of that? Again, welcome to the real world.

Toxic ricin found at U.S. postal facility

Thursday, October 23, 2003

WASHINGTON (CNN) -- The FBI and postal authorities are investigating traces of the deadly toxin ricin found last week in a sealed envelope at an airport postal handling facility in Greenville, South Carolina, the Department of Homeland Security said Wednesday.

Authorities said the envelope contained an unsigned, threatening note that "demanded an action," but they said no connection to terrorism was apparent.

One law enforcement official said the note expressed anger over legislation regulating the trucking industry. [...]

Flesh-Eating Infection Strikes Fishermen, Surfer In Volusia (Florida)

Several fishermen and at least one surfer in Volusia County, Fla., have reportedly contracted a mysterious infection that eats at their flesh, according to a Local 6 News report. Doctor Jeff Parks, an Ormond Beach dermatologist, said he has treated eight patients, including two who were hospitalized, in the last two months with the painful and contagious crater-like lesions. Parks says the disease has been found in patients who had been in the ocean. Bacterial infections are common among commercial fishermen and others who handle fish.

But Parks says he is perplexed about why so many people contracted this particular strain of bacteria. Surfer Gerald Harbrodt was recently treated after an infection called methicillin resistant staphylococcus aureus or MRSA, entered his body through an open wound as he swam in the Atlantic Ocean, said his mother, Jonelle Harbrodt. Harbrodt said the infection spread across her son's body in less than a day...

Defendant: Wife said to kill 'evil' kids

By Lynn Brezosky
The Associated Press

BROWNSVILLE -A man accused of beheading three children said his wife told him to kill them because they were evil, according to a statement read Tuesday at his capital murder trial.

"My daughter started to speak like my grandmother who had passed away. ... She told me that she had taken Julissa's soul," John Allen Rubio said in the statement he made to police a day after the children's bodies were found. "Julissa started to laugh and was making growls at me. ... My wife told me to kill the children because they were evil." [...]

Masons must choose lodge or church: synod

By Malcolm Brown

Email to a friend The Sydney Anglican Synod has called on all Christian members of Masonic lodges to withdraw their membership and for church facilities not to be used for activities linked with Freemasonry. [...]

Debate Over Adding Fluoride in Water

PALO ALTO (KRON) -- Fluoride may be good for your teeth.. But is it good for the water supply? Some palo alto residents are fighting to stop the city's water from being treated with flouride because they believe it's toxic.

For nearly 50 years, the water coming out of taps in Palo Alto contains tooth-decay-fighting fluoride, but now some want that stopped. "When I was first getting into journalism in the 50's, I recall it was considered a communist plot," says Jay Thorwaldson, editor of Palo Alto Weekly. Palo Alto Weekly newspaper has yet to take a position on Measure B on the Nov. 4 ballot which would stop fluoridating water. "Each side has sent us a foot tall stack of documents and books to take a look at," says Thorwaldson. [...]

Comment: Actually, fluoride contributes toward tooth decay. Tooth decay is the least of your worries. The fluoride they put in the water supplies is the toxic waste left over from manufacturing herbicides and pesticides. See our report on fluoride.

I was trying to help 'mentally ill' Diana, says Spencer

By Caroline Davies
The Telegraph

Earl Spencer hit back last night at claims that he had branded his sister, Diana, Princess of Wales, as mentally ill in a "vile" letter sent to her one year before her death. [...]

N.J. Teen Pleads in Rampage Plot Case

By GEOFF MULVIHILL
Associated Press Writer

CAMDEN, N.J. - A 15-year-old boy accused of plotting with two friends to wipe out their enemies in a shooting rampage struck a plea bargain Tuesday. [...]

"I hope that he stays the good person that he is, the loving person that he is," Jackson's mother, Judith, said after the deal was struck. [...]

Journalist shot after 'get rid of him' order

By Christopher Munnion in Johannesburg
The Telegraph

A policeman in Ivory Coast who was told by his boss to "get rid" of a French journalist took the instruction literally and shot him dead. [...]

Man believed father was part of witches' coven, court told

23/10/2003

A mentally-ill man accused of killing his father believed his father was part of a coven of witches, a court heard today.

Kevin Parker, aged 45, also believed he was chosen by God to be the saviour of the second coming and was being pursued by witches in England and had been "bounced from wall to wall by Jesus", a murder trial jury in the Central Criminal Court heard.

Kevin Parker, of an address at Montree House in Athlone, Co Westmeath, has pleaded not guilty to the murder of his father John Parker, aged 75, in Glasson Village near Athlone in September 2000.

State pathologist John Harbison told the court John Parker died as a result of a frenzied knife attack that left him with more than 20 serious stab wounds to his face and neck.

The trial, before Mr Justice Kevin O’Higgins and a jury of seven women and five men, continues today.

Man taunted neighbours with laugh machine

By Stewart Payne
23/10/2003

An irascible home owner who rigged up a laughter machine to jeer at his neighbours each time they set foot in their gardens has been ordered to destroy the device by a judge.

Keith Quartermain managed to fall out with his neighbours over just about everything. Land issues, fence issues, access issues and even issues with a cat led to the retired van driver waging a campaign of harassment against families next door to his terrace home in Abingdon, Oxon.

His laughter machine was attached to speakers and sent out raucous, cackling laughter when his neighbours stepped outside. He also displayed abusive messages about them on 14ft-high boards and left rude notes on their car windscreens.

Quartermain was convicted on two charges of harassment at Oxford magistrates court. District Judge Brian Loosely issued a five-year restraining order prohibiting him from contacting his neighbours, entering their homes or gardens, displaying signs or making any noises between 10pm and 7am.

Earthquake shakes Russia

23oct03

THE latest in a series of earthquakes hit a southern Siberian region today, but no casualties or damage were reported.

The quake, with an estimated magnitude of 4.6, struck in the mountains of the southern Siberian republic of Altai, the ITAR-Tass news agency reported.

Since Sept. 27, several quakes measuring up to 8 in magnitude have hit the same area, which borders Mongolia and Kazakhstan. Some have destroyed buildings, leaving hundreds of people homeless. No deaths have been reported, but several people have received slight injuries.

Subatomic oddity hints at pentaparticle family

Peter Weiss

Physicists at a European particle accelerator say they've spotted a never-before-seen elementary particle composed of five of the fundamental constituents known as quarks and antiquarks. [...]

Discovery in Ethiopia sheds new light on history of man

Abram Katz
Register Science Editor
10/22/2003

Michael Rogers was scaling a slope in Ethiopia when he spotted the earliest evidence that tools were used to butcher animals 2.3 million years before the first modern humans appeared on earth. [...]

Mystery of the mummies solved

A German research team has unravelled the mystery of how the ancient Egyptians mummified their dead, using sophisticated science to track the preservative to an extract of the cedar tree. [...]

Unexplained tree-top boulders found in forest (Indiana, USA)

By Judy Hess Staff writer

Something unnatural is going on in Yellowwood State Forest.

The mystery began a few years ago when a turkey hunter, scouting in a remote area of the 23,000-acre forest, discovered a large boulder in the top of an 80-foot-tall chestnut oak tree. What he saw wedged among its branches was a boulder about 4 feet wide and a foot thick.

The boulder was eventually dubbed Gobbler’s Rock after the turkey hunter. It sits high on a south-facing slope overlooking a ravine near Tulip Tree Road in western Brown County and is thought to weigh at least 400 pounds.

After the initial sighting of Gobbler’s Rock, hikers have found at least two more giant sandstone boulders sitting in the top limbs of two sycamores. One boulder is nearly 45 feet off the ground and both rocks appear to weigh about 200 pounds. The trees are 100 yards apart growing near the banks of Plum Creek in a seldom-visited part of Yellowwood State Forest, just southwest of Helmsburg.

Known to locals as URBs, or Unexplained Resting Boulders, officials can’t explain how the boulders got wedged into the branches in the first place. The huge rocks couldn’t grow upward with the trees because the saplings could not have withstood their weight. The boulders must have been placed high in the trees after their trunks were sturdy enough to support them. [...]

Typhoid 'rampant' in Tajik capital

By Alex Kirby
BBC News Online environment correspondent in Dushanbe, Tajikistan
Thursday, 23 October, 2003, 01:36 GMT


All available hospital beds in this remote mountain capital are occupied by victims of a typhoid outbreak which is reported to be spreading rapidly.

The government was urged to act more than a week ago, but appears to have done little beyond making a single radio broadcast to alert people.

Critics say it was anxious to avoid unwelcome publicity during the Asian Games, which ended here on Monday.

Diplomats say they have been warned to keep their children away from school. [...]

Columbine killers' video released

BBC
Thursday, 23 October, 2003


A homemade videotape showing two teenagers playing with guns six weeks before they shot dead 13 people at Columbine High School has been made public by authorities in Colorado.

The footage shows 17-year-old Dylan Klebold, and Eric Harris, 18, laughing as they fire illegally sawn-off shotguns and a semi-automatic pistol at targets in woodland south-west of Denver. [...]

Klebold, clad in a black trench coat he wore on the day of the killings, examines entry and exit holes in one of the pins.

"Imagine that in someone's [expletive] brain," he says.

In one scene, Klebold fires a sawn-off shotgun repeatedly from his hip; in another, Harris blows across the muzzle of a shotgun like a cowboy.

The teenagers laugh at wounds to their hands from the recoil from the high-power weapons.

A voice off camera is heard to say: "Guns are bad; when you saw them off and make them illegal, bad things happen." [...]

Is Your Sheep Stressed? Just Ask It

Wed Oct 22

WASHINGTON (Reuters) - Stressed-out sheep bleat out their anguish, U.S. researchers reported on Tuesday. They found that, like humans, sheep communicate stress by changing the timbre of their voices. [...]

Comment: Coincidence? We think not.

Ohio Man Buys Last Concorde Seats for $60,300

Virgin Mary appears in New Jersey tree

Wed Oct 22

PASSAIC, New Jersey (Reuters) - Believers are flocking to a rundown street in New Jersey to see a tree stump they say has the form of the Virgin Mary and is a divine sign of hope for the impoverished neighbourhood.

"Miracle on Madison Street, that's what I would have called it," said Hector Cruz, who visited the roughly two-foot-high (0.6 metre) stump on Wednesday in Passaic, New Jersey, a largely Hispanic city about 15 miles (25 km) west of New York.

The piece of wood, whose shape believers say resembles a veiled Virgin Mary with a bowed head, was noticed by passers-by over the weekend on state-owned land alongside a street that residents say is a hangout for illegal drug users. [...]

Aliens are out there, say scientists


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