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Thu, 30 Mar 2023
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Writer Gore Vidal, 86, has died

Gore Vidal
© Genaro Molina
Gore Vidal, pictured here in 2006, has died at age 86.
Gore Vidal, the iconoclastic writer, savvy analyst and imperious gadfly on the national conscience, has died. He was 86.

Vidal died Tuesday at his home in the Hollywood Hills of complications of pneumonia, said nephew Burr Steers.

Vidal was a literary juggernaut who wrote 25 novels, including historical works such as Lincoln and Burr and satires such as Myra Breckinridge and Duluth. He was also a prolific essayist whose pieces on politics, sexuality, religion and literature -- once described as "elegantly sustained demolition derbies" -- both delighted and inflamed and in 1993 earned him a National Book Award for his massive United States Essays, 1952-1992.


US Drone Pilot: 'I Feel No Emotional Attachment'

 drone pilot
© Heather Ainsworth for The New York Times
A drone pilot at the base at Hancock Field, near Syracuse, working the controls of a craft flying over Afghanistan.
Intimate look at Afghan family life from above does impact execution of 'duty,' say US drone pilots

In a profile piece in the New York Times on Monday, interviews with military operators of US drones operating in the skies over Afghanistan and Pakistan reveal a class of pilots who remotely control the targeted killings of human beings thousands of miles away.

"I see mothers with children, I see fathers with children, I see fathers with mothers, I see kids playing soccer," says Colonel Brenton, one of the pilots profiled who works out of a dark control room in the suburbs of Syracuse, New York.

But, when it comes to engaging the target and after stipulating this means that the children and mothers away from the fire zone -- for example, "out at the market" -- he says: "I feel no emotional attachment to the enemy. I have a duty, and I execute the duty."


Peaceful Protest Over Tar Sands Takes a Violent Turn in Burlington, Vermont

Hundreds of protesters participate in a 'human oil spill'
© Elliot deBruyn/Burlington Free Press
Hundreds of protesters participate in a 'human oil spill' in front of the Hilton Hotel on Battery Street in Burlington as part of demonstrations coinciding with the 36th Annual Conference of New England Governors and Eastern Canadian Premiers, 07/29/12.
Riot police use excessive force to move protesters.

Sunday tar sands protest in Burlington, Vermont turned violent when riot police shot protesters with pepper spray and rubber bullets.

Hundreds of activists demonstrating against a proposed tar sands oil pipeline that would extend across northern New England gathered at the Burlington Hilton where the 36th annual conference of New England Governors and Eastern Canadian Premiers was being held.

Protesters created a "human oil spill" over the possibility that tar sands oil from western Canada might be shipped across Vermont, New Hampshire and Maine.

"It's clear the governors and premiers are meeting to talk about trade policy, energy and infrastructure," said Avery Pittman, spokeswoman for the protest groups. "They're definitely prioritizing profits and money-making over the needs of the people or the impact these proposals will have on us."


Suicidal Attempts Continue in Israel

© Unknown
As the Zionist regime intensifies its cruelty and injustice even against its own so-called citizens, more and more Israelis embark on suicide attempts to escape destitute.

A man threatened to set himself on fire at Beersheba City Hall on Sunday. The man was stopped by a security guard and transferred to police custody for questioning.

According to Israel Radio, the man was threatening to set himself ablaze because of financial and housing problems.

Overnight Friday a man in his 30s set himself on fire at a psychiatric hospital near Netanya.

Magen David Adom paramedics provided first aid treatment and transferred the man in critical condition from the Lev-Hasharon Mental Health Center in Pardesia to Sheba Medical Center in Tel Hashomer. Hospital officials at Sheba stated that he was suffering from second and third degree burns on 60 percent of his body.


Flash Mob Crimes And Organized Looting Have Become A Normal Part Of Life In America

Flash Mob
© End of The American Dream
Once upon a time, most Americans had never even heard of "flash mob robberies" or "organized looting". Now they are considered to be a part of normal life in America. On Saturday, more than 20 teens stormed into a trendy clothing store in Chicago and stole more than $3,000 worth of jeans, but it barely made a blip on the national news because this kind of thing has become so common. After all, we just saw the exact same kind of thing happen in Jacksonville, Detroit, Baltimore and a whole bunch of other places. Flash mob crimes have become so common in Chicago that they take public opinion polls about them.

But when I first started writing about this phenomenon a couple of years ago, hardly anyone knew what "mob robberies" were. In fact, I had to explain what these "flash mobs" were doing to a couple of radio hosts because they had never heard of such a thing. But now everybody knows about the flash mobs. Another disturbing trend that we are seeing all over America is "organized looting". Groups of desperate criminals are going into empty or abandoned buildings and stripping out copper wire, copper pipes and anything else that they can sell for money. At one time these kinds of thefts made the news, but now they have also become so common that they don't get much notice anymore.

The sad truth is that the streets of America are changing. They are becoming a lot more hostile and a lot more dangerous.

Young people in America today do not have respect for authority, they do not have respect for those that are older than them and they do not even have respect for themselves.

Posted below is surveillance camera footage of the mob robbery mentioned above during which thousands of dollars worth of jeans were stolen. These kids obviously plotted to commit this crime well in advance. These kids have so little respect for themselves that they are willing to potentially jeopardize their futures over a few pairs of lousy jeans....

Will any of those kids go to jail eventually?

That is a very good question.

In other areas of the country, law enforcement is so overwhelmed that they just let cases such as this one go.


Woman's Remains Stolen From Atlantic County Cemetery

Pleasantville, N. J. - "I feel completely violated, there are six family members there," said Paula Lafolette of Wilmington.

Where there is supposed to be peace, there is unrest for Lafolette and other family members of Pauline Spinelli, who lived in Hammonton.

Police say her remains, buried in 1996 at age 98, were stolen late Thursday night or early Friday morning from the mausoleum she had built for her family at the Atlantic City Cemetery on Washington Avenue in Pleasantville.

Police said the sanctity of the tomb was shattered possibly with a boulder that still sits by the door.

"They then went through [the] process of forcibly removing the lock," said Pleasantville Police Captain Rocky Melendez.

Melendez said once inside, someone broke and moved the stone that covered Spinelli's interment space.

"The casket had been removed, had been pried open," he said.

And Spinelli's body, dressed in a powdered blue gown, according to her granddaughter Paula Lafolette, was taken


Mass Hysteria Rises as Dark Knight Moviegoers Flee From Screaming Man

© Miami-Dade Corrections
David Escamillo
A Miami Beach man was led away in cuffs after he caused people to panic in a movie theater showing the new Batman movie.

Just after midnight police received a call about possible gunfire at the Regal movie theater on Lincoln Road. When officers arrived they found several people detaining 44-year old David Escamillo who was yelling and screaming that he "didn't shoot anybody".

Officers noted, according to the arrest affidavit, that Escamillo was agitated and smelled of alcohol.


Update: Family Seeks Restitution from Diduca Pedophile Case

The investigators had seen so much, but the image of the toddler clutching a stuffed rabbit floored them. They had to find him, and they did, building a case that led from a Milford man, Robert Diduca . . .. . . to a serial abuser in the Netherlands, Robert Mikelsons, and to child pornography traffickers in 7 countries and counting. It was a vast global network and, unthinkably, just the tip of the iceberg.

© Tamir Kalifa for The Boston Globe
When agents in the Homeland Security Investigations office in Boston (above) sent a picture of an abused boy with a toy bunny into an international database, it was a Dutch detective who identified the rabbit as a well known character in a Dutch children's book.
As soon as they saw the terrified boy's photo three years ago, federal agents Peter Manning and Gregory Squire had the same thought: we have to save him. The blue-eyed child, about 18 months old, was naked from the waist down and clutching a stuffed rabbit for comfort. There was no doubt he had been sexually abused. But that doesn't begin to describe his suffering.

Comment: For more information regarding Diduca and international child sex rings, see these Sott links:

Beyond the Dutroux Affair: The reality of protected child abuse and snuff networks in a world ruled by psychopaths

'Monster of Riga' Dutch paedophile jailed for 18 years

Alarm Clock

Spanish Tourist Attacked By Man With Hammer

The assailant reportedly hit the victim in the head several times and screamed obscenities at him.

© Getty Images

A Spanish tourist was attacked by a hammer-wielding man, apparently at random, while sitting inside City Hall Park Monday afternoon, authorities say.

The 31-year-old tourist from Barcelona was sitting in the park at Murray Street and Broadway when a man dressed in a suit and tie began hitting him with a hammer, witnesses told investigators.


India hit by second grid collapse in two days: 620 million without power in larger outage

India suffered its second huge, crippling power failure in two days Tuesday, depriving as much as half of the vast and populous country, or up to 600 million people, of electricity and disrupting transport networks. The first power grid collapse, on Monday, was the country's worst blackout in a decade. It affected seven states in northern India that are home to more than 350 million people.