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Mon, 20 Aug 2018
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Over 300 injured after ocean boardwalk collapses during Spanish music festival

boardwalk collapse vigo spain
© Salvador Sas/EPA-EFE/REX/Shutterstock
The wooden boards cracked along a central section, about 130 feet long, and people slid down into the sea below.
Nine people have been hospitalized, with five in serious condition, following an accident at a seaside music festival in Vigo, Spain, on Sunday night. The boardwalk caved during the event's closing ceremonies and fell into the sea, taking down several concertgoers into the water below, the New York Times reports.

The mayor of Vigo has launched an investigation into the incident, which resulted in a total of 313 injured guests, according to CBS News. Enrique Cesar Lopez Veiga, the president of the Vigo port authority, told Cadena Ser radio that he believes the pier most likely crumpled "because of excessive weight" as hundreds of people danced to live music atop the wooden panels.

Cell Phone

German children are drowning because parents pay more attention to smartphones than their kids

smartphones parents
German lifeguards have said that a recent spate of child drownings is down to the inattentiveness of parents who are obsessed with their smartphones.

The German Lifeguard Association (DLRG), an organization with a 40,000-strong membership, said that among the 279 people who have drowned in the country so far this year, 20 were children under the age of 15. Some 40 victims were aged between 16 and 25. One recent case involved a seven-year-old boy whose body was found in an open-air pool in Bavaria.

Too few parents and grandparents are heeding the advice: when your children and grandchildren are in the water, put your smartphone away," Achim Wiese, the DLRG's spokesman, told The Guardian.



Syrian officials report that battle-scarred Palmyra will be ready for tourists next summer

© Mikhail Alaeddin / Sputnik
The ancient ruins of Palmyra. March, 2017.
The ancient Syrian city of Palmyra will be expecting tourists next summer, according to local officials. However, much of its historic beauty and significance has been reduced to rubble by Islamic State (IS, formerly ISIS).

Governor of Homs Province Talal al-Barazi believes that "by the summer of 2019 Palmyra will be completely ready for tourists," as quoted by RIA Novosti.

Palmyra, often referred to as the Bride of the Syrian Desert, was a center of commerce and culture, as well as home to a crossing of trade routes. It reached its peak of grandeur in the 1st and 2nd centuries AD.

Comment: Also see: Syria Bloody but Unbowed by Western-backed Terror campaign


Miss Germany to follow Miss America Pageant in killing off the 'bikini' category

Miss Germany 2018
© Sebastian Gollnow / AFP
'Miss Germany 2018' contestants
Contestants in the Miss Germany beauty pageant will no longer strut their stuff in skimpy bikinis, as organizers are set to remove the 'swimwear' category. They say the contest will now focus on "personality."

"We want to turn Miss Germany into a personality [contest]," said pageant CEO Max Klemmer. "For that, the bikini was not very relevant." Contestants will now pose in more modest 'summer outfits' instead, from next year's pageant onwards. The new rules apply to men too. "Mister Germany" will sacrifice its swimwear category in favor of a jeans-and-shirt section.

Personality-centered or not, Klemmer insists that looks will still play a part in the contest, as good looks indicate a healthy lifestyle.

Comment: Also see:

Stock Down

The world's economic debt train has runaway and it spells disaster for everyone

debt poverty
© Ismail Taxta / Reuters
The entire planet is swimming in debt, yet no one seems to criticize the system itself as being fundamentally flawed.

"A man in debt is so far a slave," American essayist Ralph Waldo Emerson once reportedly said.

In light of this statement, I contend that I don't need to have a college degree in economics to tell you that our current financial system enslaving the entire world is not sustainable - and headed for one hell of a spectacularly ugly crash.

Last month, the Washington-based Institute of International Finance published their latest statistics indicating that global debt had reached $247.2 trillion by the end of March this year, an increase of 11.1 percent from last year alone. In other words, since the start of this year, global debt rose by a whopping $8 trillion in just three to four months.

In 2016, the global debt was already at $164 trillion, which was equivalent to 225 percent of global GDP. The global debt-to GDP ratio currently exceeds 318 percent, having risen for the first time since the third quarter of 2016. Just the US debt to GDP ratio alone currently exceeds 100 percent. This debt-to-GDP ratio is 12 percentage points higher than in 2009, during the aftermath of the global financial crisis. We are now at levels not seen since during the 1980s and the International Monetary Fund (IMF) expects this to continue on an upward trend.

Comment: At this point, it's not a matter of 'if' but when. See also:


Based on lies: Russiagate is like Iraq's WMD all over again

liberal activist
© C-Span/BookTV/YouTube Screenshot
"The evidence against Trump and Russia is huge and mounting every day," declared liberal celebrity activist Rosie O'Donnell at a protest in front of the White House last week. "We see it, he can't lie about it," she added. "He is going down and so will all of his administration."

"The charge is treason," O'Donnell declared. Protesters held held large letters that spelled it out: "T-R-E-A-S-O-N."

O'Donnell is by no means alone in her sentiments. Trump's guilt in "Russiagate" is now assumed by much of the American left, and reaches greater levels of fervor with every passing day.

This kind of partisan religiosity is not new.

In the wake of the 2003 U.S. invasion of Iraq, conservative pundit Ann Coulter accused war opponents of "treason" and insisted of Saddam Hussein, "We know he had weapons of mass destruction."

Coulter was confident and she wasn't alone. Virtually the entire mainstream American right-from pundits like Coulter and Sean Hannity to President George W. Bush and the Republican Congress-was deeply invested in the notion that Hussein possessed WMDs and that the Iraq war was justified based on that unshakeable premise. This belief was so ingrained for so long that many excitedly rushed to pretend that chemical weapons discovered in Iraq as reported by the New York Times in 2014 were somehow the same thing as the "mushroom cloud" the Bush administration said Saddam was capable of.

Comment: See also: Russiagate is like 9/11 - except it's pure narrative and no facts


Iraqi jets drop the hammer on Daesh 'operation room' in Syria

soldier Iraq
The Iraqi military announced Thursday that they had launched airstrikes on Daesh in Syrian territory amid Damascus' efforts to eliminate the last pockets of the terrorist group.

"Fulfilling the orders of the commander-in-chief of the [Iraqi] Armed Forces ... Iraqi F-16 jets successfully carried out an airstrike on the Syrian territory," the statement said, as quoted by the Al-Sumaria broadcaster.

As the Iraqi military reported Thursday, the country's jets destroyed a Daesh "operations room" in Syria, killing several fighters.

"According to intelligence, those terrorists who were killed were planning criminal operations using suicide vests and intended to target innocents in the next few days inside Iraq," the military said in a statement.

Arrow Down

RT hosts debate: Is violence becoming socially acceptable?

antifa protest
© Leah Millis / Reuters
Antifa protesters clash with US Secret Service officers in Washington DC on August 12, 2018.
Following CNN host Chris Cuomo's controversial statement that "all punches are not equal," which prompted accusations that he supports Antifa violence, RT has hosted a debate on whether brute force is sometimes justified.

Speaking during an on-air segment, political and social issues commentator Anthony Brian Logan said the issue of violence is a simple one.

"You can't put your hands on somebody and then hide behind some kind of moral high ground. So don't touch people if you don't want to be touched, it's really just as simple as that. It doesn't matter what political affiliation the other person is."

Comment: It's crazy that society has degraded so much that this is a topic of debate.


Russian space boss insists cooperation with US must be on "equal terms"

Roscosmos General Director Dmitry Rogozin
© Artur Lebedev / Sputnik
Roscosmos General Director Dmitry Rogozin during the briefing on the results of the Big Challenges 2018 educational program
The head of Russia's space research corporation has spoken about its latest planned projects and noted that cooperation with the United States could continue on condition that the American side treats Russia as an equal partner.

"As far as participation in the Deep Space Gateway project is concerned, if it's a purely American project with other participants performing minor helping functions, we are not interested in it. We are ready only to cooperation on equal terms," Dmitry Rogozin said in a major interview with TASS.

"We have the Angara heavy carrier rocket and soon we will get the Federation spacecraft - the tests for the super-heavy project will start in 2028. Russia, like the United States has its own transport system to work in the far space. We were not born yesterday, you know," Rogozin said.

"Unlike NASA, we already have the Soyuz MS manned spacecraft with a tremendous record of launches. Back in Soviet times designers foresaw the necessity of deep modernization for this vehicle, including its use in the Moon program."

Comment: While Trump has been touting the idea of the ISS being handed over to the private sector, the US deepstate needs to demonize Russia to justify its existence so it seems unlikely that any constructive cooperation will be allowed to happen between the two countries anytime soon:


Unbelievable! Palestinian mail and packages, blocked by Israel for 8 years, will finally be delivered

Palestinian blocked mail
A Palestinian postal worker sifts through sacks of previously undelivered mail dating as far back as 2010, which has been withheld by Israel, at the central international exchange post office in the West Bank city of Jericho on Aug. 14, 2018.
Palestinian postal service employees are working overtime to sort through some 10 tons of letters and packages blocked by Israel for up to eight years, Palestinian officials said Tuesday.

The parcels, dating from between 2010 and this year, had been prevented by Israel from entering the West Bank via Jordan but were released in a one-time deal, the officials said.

The goods range from simple letters to medicine and even wheelchairs for the disabled, AFP journalists found at the sorting center in the occupied West Bank city of Jericho.

Palestinian Telecommunications Minister Allam Mousa accused Israel in a statement of having blocked the delivery and of delaying the implementation of an agreement on postal services. Israeli authorities confirmed the packages had been transferred and said an agreement was in the works, but did not comment in detail.

Undelivered Palestinian pakages
Ramadan Ghazawi, a Palestinian official at the post office in the West Bank city of Jericho, stands next to a folded wheelchair, one of many items of previously undelivered mail in Jericho on Aug. 14, 2018.

Comment: Just one in a long list of cruel and unthinkable acts perpetrated by Israel against the Palestinians.