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Mr. Potato

US: Herman Cain - God told me to run, 'I was like Moses'

Herman Cain

Republican presidential candidate Herman Cain says that he was shocked when God told him to run for president.

"Before President Obama took office, I never even conceived or thought of running for president," Cain told a group of Young Republicans in South Carolina Saturday. "It was only after he took office and I saw his arrogant disregard for the American people that I know that I had to do what I could do. ... That when I prayed and prayed and prayed. I'm a man of faith. I had to do a lot of praying for this one."

"And when I finally realized that it was God saying that this is what I needed to do, I was like Moses: 'You've got the wrong man, Lord. Are you sure?'"

Watch this video from CNN, broadcast Nov. 12, 2011.

Evil Rays

Nuke Agency Reports Unusual Radiation in Europe

© Daily MailUnusual levels of iodine-131 have been detected in the Czech Republic and northern Germany.
Vienna - Very low levels of radiation, which are higher than normal but don't seem to pose a health hazard, are being registered in the Czech Republic and elsewhere in Europe, the International Atomic Energy Agency said Friday.

The agency said the cause was not known but was not the result of Japan's Fukushima Daiichi nuclear disaster, which spread radiation across the globe in March.

The "very low levels of iodine-131 have been measured in the atmosphere," the agency said in a statement. It said such radioisotope will lose much of its radiation in about eight days.

However, an official familiar with the matter, who asked for anonymity because he was not authorized to comment, said the release appeared to be continuing.

The agency said that it was investigating.

Heart - Black

'Iraqi women forced into sexual slavery'

© Press TV
A rights group says that thousands of Iraqi women and girls have been forced into sexual slavery since the 2003 US-led invasion of the country.

The Social Change through Education in the Middle East (SCEMC) organization said as many as 5,000 Iraqi women and girls have been trafficked for sexual exploitation since 2003.

Syria and Jordan are the two main destinations for Iraqi females, the London-based group said in a statement.

The SCEMC accused Iraqi authorities of "failing to address the problem."

Traffickers target vulnerable girls and young women, generally offering to take them to shelters that turn out to be brothels, the SCEMC said.

Some of these girls have been taken to Lebanon, the United Arab Emirates and Saudi Arabia.


Italy: Berlusconi Resigns, Crowds in Rome Celebrate

© Reuters/Remo Casilli People celebrate in front of the Presidential palace in Rome, November 12, 2011. Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi formally resigned on Saturday, ending one of the most scandal-plagued eras in recent Italian history amid the jeers of hundreds of protestors gathered in central Rome to celebrate his departure.
Silvio Berlusconi resigned on Saturday to make way for an emergency government Italians hope will save them from financial ruin as thousands of jeering protesters shouted "clown, clown" and toasted the end of a scandal-plagued era.

Berlusconi, who failed to secure a majority in a crucial vote on Tuesday, stepped down as prime minister after parliament passed a package of measures demanded by European partners to restore market confidence in Italy's strained public finances.

Former European Commissioner Mario Monti is expected to be given the task of trying to form a new administration to face a widening financial crisis which has sent Italy's borrowing costs to unmanageable levels.

More than a thousand demonstrators waving banners mocking Berlusconi flocked to the president's residence at the Quirinale Palace as the motorcade carrying the billionaire media entrepreneur, who has been Italy's longest serving prime minister, entered.

The crowd grew so unruly that Berlusconi was forced to leave secretly via a side entrance and return to his private residence.

Cheers broke out when they heard that Berlusconi had resigned and the square broke out into a party atmosphere. People sang, danced and some broke open bottles of champagne.


US: Denver police force Occupy Denver to move their property in Civic Center

Occupy Denver
© Craig F. Walker, The Denver Post
Authorities extinguish a fire during the Occupy Denver Protest at Civic Center in Denver, CO, Saturday, November 12, 2011. Denver police forced stubborn protestors out of Civic Center park early this evening, tearing down illegally pitched tents.

Denver police in riot gear forced stubborn protestors out of Civic Center park early this evening, tearing down illegally pitched tents.

A cloud of smoke rose - not from tear gas, but from wood smoke as the protesters' cooking fire was extinguished.

A total of 17 people were arrested, according to Sonny Jackson, spokesman for the Denver Police Department. Five of those arrests were made on the 16th Street Mall, where some protesters headed after the encampment was cleared.

The confrontation came about five hours after Occupy Denver demonstrators marched through downtown for the sixth straight Saturday.


US: Right Wing Christians Mobilize Prayer Teams to Pray Away Occupy Wall Street

Or, Welcome to the Autumn of Hate

Once there was a summer of love. People were protesting not to take rights away, not to hate, but to grant rights - and to love. Welcome almost half a century later to the winter of hate.

The Family Research Council, which likes to claim it advances "faith, family and freedom" as "core values" doesn't actually care much for freedom. The FRC wants God to do away with the evil rabble occupying Wall Street. But what are the protestors doing after all but protesting on behalf of their - and our - freedom? Significantly, FRC wants to pray the whole thing away, rather like similar prayer movements have prayed gasoline back down to a dollar a gallon. As Rick Perry would say, "Ooops." Never mind....

Okay, so since the gas thing didn't work out, how about "labor unions, liberal mayors, governors, the White House, the American Nazi and Communist parties, ACORN, Hollywood entertainers [sic] and a long list of supra-liberal and liberal groups" including a nonexistent "liberal media"? Maybe sky gods have different priorities than those who profess to be his earthly agents. Maybe gas wasn't important to Him but liberal rabble will successfully catch his attention. Maybe?


Matthis Chiroux: All I Want for Veterans Day Is Not to Feel Dead Inside

Matthis Chiroux

I'm sick... and I need help. I need help that I'm not getting and I fear I'll never find. I'm sick of being a veteran, and there is no cure for me.

The other night I dreamt of death. It's ALWAYS there, in EVERY dream. This one was particularly violent. I'm being executed with a half dozen others. We are being hung for the entertainment of a cheering audience. Behind our bound and choking bodies is a wall with several narrow shelves. My heels can barely brace my weight when they find the edge, but alas, the executioner drops some slack, and I come crashing down until the rope snaps taut and I am hoisted skyward again. "Inflicting agony is a sport to these people," I'm thinking. "Please, let the next fall break my neck."

I used to wake up from dreams like this writhing in pools of sweat with my heart beating through my chest and rage exploding from my core. My body has grown accustomed to my state of mind though, and now doesn't react as dramatically.

Your veterans are slipping away, America, at a rate of about 18 a day. The Veterans Administration said that last year veterans accounted for 20% of all suicides in the U.S.; a startling statistic given that we're only 10% of the population.


Iraq eyes F-16 buys on road to new air force

© fotoajans.comAn F-16 Falcon
Dubai - Iraq is planning to expand its fleet of aerial reconnaissance planes "in the near future" and is hoping to sign a deal for a second batch of F-16 warplanes by next year, the country's air force chief said on Saturday.

The moves, laid out by Lt. General Anwer Amin on the sidelines of a conference ahead of Sunday's Dubai Airshow, are part of Iraq's efforts to move gradually away from dependence on U.S. air support.

"We have projects to buy UAVs (unmanned aerial vehicles) in the near future," Amin told reporters on the sidelines of the air marshals conference.

He said the Iraqi air force was looking into several options.

"One of the leading countries in the region is the United Arab Emirates, there is also the United States," he said.

The United States will withdraw its remaining 40,000 troops in Iraq by the end of this year, but Iraqi officials say it will take years before they are able to defend their airspace.

Comment: Physically the United States is not a leading "country in the region", though the Empire has a strong presence.


Accidental blast at Iranian arms depot kills 17

© Associated PressIn this image taken from amateur video smokes rises from an accidental explosion at a Revolutionary Guard ammunition depot outside Bidganeh village,west of Tehran which killed at least 17 people on Saturday Nov. 12, 2001, officials said.
Tehran - An accidental explosion at a Revolutionary Guard ammunition depot west of Tehran killed at least 17 soldiers on Saturday, Iranian officials said.

The explosion occurred while military personnel were transporting munitions at a base, said Guard spokesman Gen. Ramazan Sharif. The site is located outside Bidganeh village, 25 miles (40 kilometers) southwest of the capital.

The Guard is Iran's most powerful military force.

"My colleagues at the Guard were transporting ammunition at one of the depots at the site when an explosion occurred as a result of an accident," Sharif said.

At least 17 Guard members were killed, state TV reported. The broadcast said 16 other soldiers were injured and hospitalized. Sharif said some of them were in critical condition.

Earlier, Sharif had said incorrectly that 27 soldiers were killed but later retracted his statement, explaining that the error was due to an illegible fax from officials at the site of the blast.

Among those killed was Hasan Moghaddam, a senior Guard commander.

Lawmaker Parviz Soroori ruled out sabotage.

"No sabotage was involved in this incident. It has nothing to do with politics," Soroori was quoted as saying by the parliament's website,

Arrow Down

US: Pennsylvania State May Be Downgraded by Moody's in Wake of Abuse Scandal

Penn State University had its Aa1 revenue-bond rating placed on review for possible downgrade by Moody's Investors Service amid the investigation into a child sex-abuse scandal.

Moody's said it will examine the reputational and financial risk arising from the probe, after the Penn State football team's former defensive coordinator, Jerry Sandusky, was charged with sexually assaulting eight boys from 1994 to 2009.

About $1 billion of rated debt would be affected by a downgrade, according to the statement. The company said it will take several months to monitor events, including possible lawsuits, weaker student demand, decreased philanthropic support, changes in its relationship with the state and management moves. Aa1 is Moody's second-highest rating.