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Tue, 26 Sep 2023
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Over 3,700 Burmese Fishermen Still Missing, Presumed Dead

© Unknown
Of the 7,000 fishermen that were swept into the Andaman Sea during a tropical storm on March 14-16, a total of 3,374 have now been rescued, according to a source close to the Myanmar Marine Fishing Association (MMFA).

The remaining 3,700 are still missing. Nearly two weeks since 400 fishing vessels were overturned or destroyed in 70mph winds, little hope remains of anyone else surviving.

"There are currently about 400 fishing vessels at sea trying to rescue survivors of the storm," said the source. "So far, more than 3,700 fishermen have been rescued and brought to Rangoon."

Burma's state media reported on March 22 that naval ships, large fishing vessels and local fishing boats had jointly rescued 3,374 fishermen. While 3,152 have already gone home, 222 fishermen remain under government care, the report said, adding that the rescued fishermen had been provided medicine, clothes and food.


Canada: Radiation from Japan 'not harmful': British Columbia scientist

Jet stream carries iodine-131 across Pacific to Lower Mainland

A research team at Simon Fraser University has detected an increase in a radioactive isotope they say reached British Columbia from the damaged nuclear station in Japan.

SFU nuclear scientist Kris Starosta said he's confident the beleaguered Fukushima Daiichi station, which was struck by a devastating tsunami following a magnitude 9.0 earthquake on March 11, is responsible for the increase in iodine-131 in rain and seawater samples detected in their studies.

"The only possible source of iodine-131 in the atmosphere is a release from a nuclear fission," Starosta said. "Iodine-131 has a half life of eight days. Thus we conclude the only possible release which could happen is from the Fukushima incident."

However, he said, there is no immediate danger to the public.

"As of now, the levels we're seeing are not harmful to humans. We're basing this on Japanese studies following the Chernobyl incident in 1986 where levels of iodine-131 were four times higher than what we've detected in our rainwater so far," Starosta said.


Yemen Munitions Factory Explosion Leaves Over 120 Dead

Explosions and ensuing fire follow reported raid on factory by locals as President Saleh makes U-turn on exit deal

people carry victim remains
© Reuters
People carry the remains of a victim killed in an explosion at a munitions factory in southern Yemen.
At least 121 people have died after a series of explosions at a munitions factory in southern Yemen, as President Ali Abdullah Saleh was losing his grip on parts of the country amid an anti-regime revolt.

Witnesses said the blasts occurred on Monday after locals from the town of Jaar in Abyan province broke into the factory that was stockpiled with kegs of gunpowder. An ensuing fire spread to nearby houses, killing and injuring dozens of people.

"So far we've counted 121 separate bodies but the death toll could be double that, so many of the corpses have been lost in the inferno," said Marfiz Al-Sharbi, a Syrian doctor working in a nearby private hospital. "There are tens of corpses buried in the factory too."

On Sunday, the army was said to have deserted the town after a weekend of deadly clashes with gunmen the government claimed were al-Qaida in the Arabian Peninsula (Aqap).

"We hold al-Qaida responsible for this tragic incident that killed innocent citizens who fell victim to the trap of those terrorist elements," a government source told the state news agency Saba.

Bizarro Earth

Nuclear Ginza: A look inside Japan's nuclear industry

After watching this short documentary, you'll understand why Japan has been so reluctant about telling anything resembling the truth regarding the nuclear meltdown at Fukushima. Rather than train workers properly and provide safe systems, they instead hire homeless people to perform the yearly maintenance work inside the reactor cores, paying hush money when they grow sick and die. When you hire the homeless and the illiterate, most of them simply don't have the wherewithal to sue when they grow weak and sick, a very convenient cost/benefit ratio for many, but tragic for some. And now everyone must pay for it.


When Does a Nuclear Disaster End? Never.

Those who think Japan's Fukushima disaster is today's headlines and tomorrow's history need to take a good look at the Chernobyl disaster, which to this day is a continuing threat to the people of Ukraine. It will be hundreds of years before the area around the destroyed reactor is inhabitable again and there are disputes over whether or not Chernobyl's nuclear fuel still poses a threat of causing another explosion. There is also a teetering reactor core cover and the deteriorating sarcophagus itself that may collapse and send plumes of radioactive dust in all directions.

The New York Times article "Lessons from Chernobyl for Japan," reflects on the Chernobyl disaster and how its legacy still looms over us today as a very real threat. Those who believe in a quick fix for the Fukushima disaster would be wise to remember Chernobyl's legacy. More importantly, with tens of millions of lives at stake, nation actors that have the ability to assist in mitigating this disaster now, but choose instead to squander their manpower and resources elsewhere (like in Libya), must remember that their actions today will be remembered and judged for centuries to come.

© unknown
The deteriorating "sarcophagus" containment building at Chernobyl.
Below is a sobering look at the Chernobyl disaster and the many men who fought and died trying to contain it. There is also the little known tale of the scientists who over the years have risked their lives to assess and direct the management of the threat Chernobyl's destroyed reactor continuously poses. We must look to history and take the catastrophic effects of Chernobyl's disaster to heart. Downplaying the threat in Fukushima, Japan today needlessly puts millions of people at risk who might otherwise begin making preparations to leave the area on a long-term basis. Knowledge is power, ignorance can literally be death.


Germany: Nazi family history put to good use by Inge Franken

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Inge Franken is a sprightly 70-year-old who lives in an apartment on two floors in Berlin. She has a task, a mission. She tours schools educating children about her - and their - country's dark history.

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Inge uses this picture of two boys in her lessons on moral choice
She shows the class a photograph of two young boys - they can barely be 10 - who pose in Nazi regalia, and she seeks reaction. One has his chest puffed out in pride, the other seems reluctant and shame-faced. It is for today's children to decide which they would rather be.

If the school visit goes well, she says, a child will say that he or she is going home to ask the parents and grandparents what happened in the war in their family. It makes Inge feel that she has set people thinking and asking.

She was spurred to this mission by her own past, a past hidden in a suitcase - and her mother's mind.

She was only two when her father died in the Siege of Leningrad, so she never knew him, or knew him only through the letters that her mother would read to her on Sundays.

"She said, 'Come, sit down. I will read some parts of father's letter. You should know him because he is not here and you can't see what a wonderful man he was'."


UK rejects EU call for city centre ban on petrol cars

© unknown
The EU wants to cut carbon emissions by more than half
The UK has rejected proposals from the EU which call for a ban on petrol and diesel cars from city centres by 2050.

The European Commission said phasing out "conventionally fuelled" cars from urban areas would cut reliance on oil and help cut carbon emissions by 60%.

But UK Transport Minister Norman Baker said it should not be "involved" in individual cities' transport choices.

"We will not be banning cars from city centres anymore than we will be having rectangular bananas," he said.

Outlining plans for a "Single European Transport Area", the Commission said there needed to be a "profound shift" in travel patterns to reduce reliance on oil and to lower emissions from transport by 60% by 2050.


UK: Anarchists 'plan to target royal wedding'

© Agence France-Presse
Police warned that anarchists would be 'deliberately targeting' the wedding of Prince William and Kate Middleton
Violent anarchists who rampaged through London during anti-cuts protests are planning to target the royal wedding, police intelligence have suggested.

Scotland Yard officers are working urgently to identify the extremists who clashed with police and attacked landmarks on Saturday before they can strike again.

Commander Bob Broadhurst, the head of public order for the Metropolitan Police, warned that the anarchists would be "deliberately targeting" the wedding of Prince William and Kate Middleton on April 29.

"The concern for me is that they do what they did yesterday in central London and divert resources away from my security plan and take our eye off the ball security wise," he said.

Ed Miliband, the Labour leader, was under fire last night for speaking at the TUC march, during which the violence occurred. Writing in The Daily Telegraph, Boris Johnson, the Mayor of London, said Mr Miliband would have been "quietly satisfied" by the chaos and claimed it was not surprising there was violence as Labour was failing to offer any alternative to the cuts.

The weekend's rally against the Government's austerity drive was marred by splinter groups who attacked officers and targeted shops and hotels. Mobs of masked anarchists pelted officers with sticks, paint bombs and fireworks loaded with coins.

Comment: Readers are encouraged to read this article, to get a better idea of who is most likely behind the 'anarchist' groups.


US: New York City Family Sues Facebook Over Image Of Daughter's Corpse

© Sllive.com
Mark Musarella, Caroline Wimmer
The outraged family of a local murder victim is taking on Facebook.

It was a paramedic who took the crime scene photos, and posted them on the site, but is Facebook, itself, to blame?

It's a case of what the family is calling "disrespecting the dead," reports CBS 2's John Slattery.

Martha and Ronald Wimmer think that the photographing and posting of their daughter's brutalized body is just more than they can stand.

"This is on the second anniversary of our daughter's death. I just want to get by, day by day," Martha Wimmer said.

Her daughter, 26-year-old Caroline Wimmer, was strangled with an electric cord. The convicted killer, Calvin Lawson, got 25 to life. One of the first on the scene, former emergency medical technician Mark Musarella, used his cell phone camera to snap a grisly photo of the corpse, which he then uploaded to Facebook. He pleaded guilty to official misconduct and lost his job.

A civil suit now names Musarella and Facebook.


'Death Squad': Full horror emerges of how rogue U.S. brigade murdered and mutilated innocent Afghan civilians - and kept their body parts as trophies

  • Rolling Stone reveals how U.S. troops murdered Afghan civilians
  • Soldiers cut off 15-year-old boy's finger and kept it as trophy
  • Video captures U.S. troops cheering as airstrike kills two Afghan civilians
  • New pictures show dead Afghan man's head on a stick
  • Soldier stabbed the body of a dead Afghan civilian
  • Military tried to pull pictures out of circulation to avoid another Abu Ghraib
  • Army says photos are 'in striking contrast' to its standards and values
The Pentagon tonight apologised after shocking new details emerged of how American soldiers formed a 'death squad' to randomly murder Afghan civilians and mutilate their corpses.

An investigation by Rolling Stone magazine details how senior officers failed to stop troops killing Afghans and keeping their body parts as trophies.

In one horrific episode, the magazine claims troops threw a grenade at an innocent Afghan boy before chopped off his finger and later using it as 'gambling chip' in a game of cards.

The disturbing detail included in the dossier accuses American troops of a new level of depravity and is likely to be a public relations disaster for the military.

The U.S. Army says the photos of American soldiers posing with dead Afghans are 'in striking contrast' to its standards and values - apologising for any distress caused by the images.

© Rolling Stone
Dead: Afghans are tied to a post in one of the many images published by Rolling Stone from the 'Kill Team'

© Rolling Stone
Photo: Jeremy Morlock, right, poses with David Bram with weapons that they have taken from dead Afghans