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Wed, 25 Apr 2018
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Fish

Scandinavian Stone Age society more reliant on fishing than previously thought - particularly aquatic mammals

The scientists said fish made up more than half of what the individuals ate. Before now researchers believed that land mammals played a bigger role in the diets of Stone Age people. File photo

The scientists said fish made up more than half of what the individuals ate. Before now researchers believed that land mammals played a bigger role in the diets of Stone Age people.
Stone Age people depended more heavily on fish than scientists thought, according to a new report.

Researchers from Sweden's Lund University studied human bones that are thousands of years old for a new study on the diets of Stone Age individuals.

Previously, scientists thought that these people depended largely on land mammals for food.

But, while they did eat some mammals, the researchers found that more than half of what they consumed was fish, emphasizing the importance of fishing to prehistoric Scandinavian people.

Comment: As noted above, we have to bear in mind the climate of the area and the era. In an area near the coast or that's too cold to sustain land mammals, it makes sense they would feast on sea mammals particularly since, as evidenced by their choices, they seem to have understood how vital saturated fat is in order to remain healthy - like the Inuit nowadays - even more if we consider that they've just left an ice age, with the landscape and food choices they will have had access too.


Pirates

JFK Documents: US government planned false flag attacks to justify war with Soviet Union

International Aviation and Space Salon
© REUTERS/Maxim Zmeyev
MiG-35 (L) jet fighter and MiG-3, Soviet era fighter aircraft, perform during the MAKS International Aviation and Space Salon in Zhukovsky outside Moscow, Russia, August 30, 2015.
The U.S. government once wanted to plan false flag attacks with Soviet aircraft to justify war with the USSR or its allies, newly declassified documents surrounding the assassination of President John F. Kennedy show.

In a three-page memo, members of the National Security Council wrote, "There is a possibility that such aircraft could be used in a deception operation designed to confuse enemy planes in the air, to launch a surprise attack against enemy installations or in a provocation operation in which Soviet aircraft would appear to attack US or friendly installations to provide an excuse for U.S. intervention."

The memo shows that the department, along with the CIA, considered buying Soviet aircraft to stage the attacks, even getting estimates from the Air Force on how long it would take and how much it would cost to produce the planes domestically and covertly. Costs ranged from $3.5 million to $44 million per plane, depending on the model, most taking several months to build.

Comment: One of the most remarkable things about this article is that it is brought to us by Atlantic Council-influenced publication Newsweek! Newsweek had been one of the most rabidly Russophobic publications in the West for the last several years. That it would publish this information - showing the precedent of US-directed false flags AND dangerous antagonism towards Russia - is almost shocking!


Map

How Britain wrought destruction on the Palestinian homeland

Zionists claimed Palestine
© Getty Images
"The Zionists claimed Palestine and renamed it 'Israel'"
When I was a child growing up in a Gaza refugee camp, I looked forward to November 2. On that day, every year, thousands of students and camp residents would descend upon the main square of the camp, carrying Palestinian flags and placards, to denounce the Balfour Declaration.

Truthfully, my giddiness then was motivated largely by the fact that schools would inevitably shut down and, following a brief but bloody confrontation with the Israeli army, I would go home early to the loving embrace of my mother, where I would eat a snack and watch cartoons.

At the time, I had no idea who Balfour actually was, and how his "declaration" all those years ago had altered the destiny of my family and, by extension, my life and the lives of my children as well.

All I knew was that he was a bad person and, because of his terrible deed, we subsisted in a refugee camp, encircled by a violent army and by an ever-expanding graveyard filled with "martyrs".

Top Secret

In 1974 CIA said Israel had A-bombs that could hit its neighbors

New York Times story from January 26, 1978 on the declassification of the “Summary and Conclusions
© The New York Times
New York Times story from January 26, 1978 on the declassification of the “Summary and Conclusions” of SNIE 4-1-74
Newly released details link Israel's highly enriched uranium to Pennsylvania plant

The Central Intelligence Agency believed that by 1974 Israel could strike all of its bordering countries with nuclear-tipped two-stage Jericho missiles. Israel was viewed by CIA as a proliferation threat via sales of turn-key nuclear weapons systems to its close allies such as apartheid South Africa. This was corroborated in year 2012 news reports revealing Israeli sales contracts. Although the now-defunct Atomic Energy Commission (AEC) demurred, the CIA also believed that a substantial quantity of weapons-grade highly-enriched uranium (HEU) was diverted from the Nuclear Materials and Equipment Corporation (NUMEC) in Apollo, Pennsylvania to Dimona for weapons production. These stunning new revelations are contained in the top-secret report Special National Intelligence Estimate, "Prospects for Further Proliferation of Nuclear Weapons" otherwise known as the 1974 SNIE.

The National Security Archive at George Washington University obtained a heavily redacted version of the SNIE in 2008. Earlier the CIA accidentally released an excised version of the 1974 SNIE conclusions, which became the basis for the New York Times front page story, "C.I.A. said in 1974 Israel had A-Bombs." Late in 2017, responding to a broad year 2009 IRmep FOIA request for a variety of Israeli nuclear weapons program related files, the CIA released the least-redacted SNIE version yet (PDF) which included additional details on the Israeli and Indian nuclear weapons programs, including a map of the estimated range of Israel's Jericho nuclear missile. Also review side-by-side comparisons of the 2008 and 2017 releases of the 1974 SNIE. (PDF)

Israeli Jericho Missile map

1 Israeli Jericho Missile, 1974 SNIE released 12/07/2017, page 24
The CIA believed both India and Israel were "potential sources of assistance relevant to nuclear weapons proliferation." The CIA did not believe that Israel would openly help foreign countries with nuclear weapons development because they were "highly dependent on the U.S. for critical military items." But exports of complete "turnkey" delivery systems including nuclear warheads could help the Israelis keep the Jericho missile production line from shutting down. The CIA stated in a previously redacted paragraph that, "The Israelis have close ties both to Taipei and to South Africa and we cannot rule out bilateral or trilateral cooperation in the nuclear weapons field."

Nuke

Looking back: Fault lies on both sides after 25 years of NK negotiations

KimTrump
© extra.ie
Soon it could be all behind them.
With the prospect of Donald Trump holding a summit with Kim Jong Un in the near future, it's worth looking back at the history of American negotiations with North Korea over the past 25 years.

The conventional wisdom says that whenever any agreement has been reached, North Korea has cheated. But the reality is more complex. Not all negotiations have failed - and the collapse of agreements during that time has been as much the responsibility of Washington as of Pyongyang.

Start with the Agreed Framework of October 1994. North Korea agreed to freeze its reactor at Yongbyon. In return, the Clinton administration promised heavy fuel oil, support for the construction of proliferation-resistant light-water reactors, and a gradual overall improvement in relations.

The North Koreans did indeed freeze Yongbyon for eight years, a time when they could otherwise have produced enough weapons-grade plutonium for dozens of bombs. Soon after the deal was signed, however, the Republicans, deeply skeptical both of the Framework and of President Bill Clinton, took control of Congress. In the following years, they repeatedly blocked funding for key elements of the deal, making it difficult for Washington to provide what it had promised.

Comment: It is a diplomatic failure to not be sensitive to and familiar with the cultural tendencies of other nations. With hubris, the US assumes all think and react like it does, therefore reaching out for further understanding is not necessary.

There is only one party at fault here.


Eye 2

My Lai Slaughter: 50 Years Ago Today US Military Massacred A Village And Tried To Cover It Up

my lai
Fifty years ago, a platoon of US soldiers stormed the quiet hamlet of My Lai in South Vietnam, unleashing a barrage of gunfire, grenades and sexual assault which left as many as 500 dead.

On March 16, 1968 an army unit entered My Lai. The troops were ordered to lay waste to anything "walking, crawling or growing" on a search and destroy mission that lasted four hours and left the village razed to the ground. Not even crops or livestock were spared. The atrocities of My Lai would remain largely hidden for 20 months, until vivid images and accounts of the massacre appeared in newspapers, shocking Americans and sparking massive anti-war protests.

THE MY LAI MASSACRE

US Infantry battalion Charlie Company entered the area under the erroneous understanding that Viet Cong guerrilla fighters were present. Instead, they found unarmed civilians, many of whom were children, women and the elderly.

Unleashing a hail of firepower from M-16s and an M79 grenade launcher, the soldiers rounded up villagers and killed them, not before sexually assaulting as many as 20 women and teenagers. The horror only began to die down when army helicopter pilot Hugh Thompson Jr landed between the soldiers and the villagers, threatening to fire at the troops.

Cross

Shroud of Turin Research Project: Interview with Dr. Alan Adler, scientist responsible for investigating 'Blood on the Shroud'

Shroud of Turin
© CC BY-SA 3.0
The Shroud of Turin: modern, digitally processed image of the face on the cloth [left] and the full body image as seen on the shroud [right].
In 1978 a large team of American scientists under the auspices of the Shroud of Turin Research Project (STURP) spent over two years prior to embarking for Turin, planning a large number of specific data gathering tests, on the sacred Shroud of Turin, believed by millions of Catholics around the world to be the shroud in which the body of Christ was wrapped following his crucifixion.

In Turin, the expedition was joined by colleagues from around the world. This was to be the first extensive scientific examination of the shroud and remains to this date the most extensive study of the shroud ever undertaken. To support the effort, they carried several tons of equipment and scientific instruments. The team arrived in Turin in early October 1978. For five full days beginning October 8th and lasting through the 13th, the STURP team studied the Shroud around the clock in a room at the Royal Palace adjoining the Turin Cathedral.

Comment: See also: Historian: The Turin Shroud is a Fake....and It's One of 40


Archaeology

Archaeologists at Oxford have unearthed vast discoveries which reveal what life was like in medieval times

medieval tile
© Oxford Archaeology
Archaeologist Lisa Kennard with a medieval tile
Archaeologists have been unearthing the realities of daily life at Oxford University - as they were experienced some seven centuries ago.

In one of Britain's largest-ever urban excavations, investigators have found the writing equipment, refectory cutlery and even ceramic beer mugs used by students and teachers back in the 13th, 14th and 15th centuries.

They've even been able to rediscover what Oxford's medieval scholars were eating - a very wide range of food including beef, lamb, goose, salmon, trout and eggs.

For the first time for many centuries, archaeologists were able to see substantial parts of one of the university's greatest medieval teaching institutions - a friary established by Franciscan friars in 1224.

Question

Mystery of alien-like skulls from medieval Europe revealed after 50 years

Specimens with strong (left), some (middle) and no (right) skull deformation.
© State collection for Anthropology and Paleoanatomy Munich, Germany
Specimens with strong (left), some (middle) and no (right) skull deformation.
Scientists have finally cracked the mystery of the 1,500-year-old egg-shaped skulls found in Bavaria almost five decades ago. The 'alien-like,' elongated crania were unlike anything seen in northern Europe at that time.

The technique used to form the women's spiked scalps, scientifically known as artificial cranial deformation (ACD), could have only been applied during childhood when the bones were still forming and the skull was still soft and malleable. Egg-shaped skulls, as with most body modifications in ancient times, were seen as a sign of beauty, status or nobility, the researchers reported. The findings were published in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences on Monday.

To unlock the mystery of the egg-shaped skulls, researchers looked at the DNA of 36 adults, 14 of whom had altered skulls, from six different Bavarian cemeteries. They also took DNA samples from a Roman soldier and from two women from Crimea and Serbia.

Comment: Elongated skulls and the practise of cranial deformation has been found all over the world covering wildly different time spans; who were the people with the naturally elongated heads? And why did people seek to imitate them?


Footprints

CIA agents who were 'on the ground' prior to invading Iraq, knew it was going to be a disaster

UStroopsIraq
© Getty Images
US Troops in Iraq
Months before war was declared, a covert team of CIA paramilitaries and Green Berets slipped unnoticed into northern Iraq. They surveyed the battlespace, struck a deal with the enemy - and foresaw the disaster to come.

On March 20, America will be celebrating - if that's the right word for it - the 15th anniversary of our invasion of Iraq, one of the most well-executed projections of U.S. military might in history. Despite fears that we were underestimating Saddam Hussein's capabilities (not to mention an elaborate $250 million dress rehearsal during which the team playing the enemy quickly decimated the U.S. fleet), a coalition including American, British, Australian and Polish armed forces managed to seize control of the country within a mere 21 days, with relatively few casualties on either side.

Leaving aside the difficulties presented by the subsequent occupation, Operation Iraqi Freedom was an impressive feat of war fighting, arguably every bit the "cakewalk" that one widely mocked column predicted it would be.

But while military textbooks attribute the campaign's success to careful planning and coordination, an ability to improvise, superior personnel, air supremacy, and the deployment of overwhelming force, less commonly acknowledged is the role of a minuscule advance team made up of CIA special activities division forces and special forces operators, who spent nine full months in Iraq before the Tomahawks started flying, carefully preparing the battle space. Meanwhile, they also got a preview of the U.S. military's misguided view of the Iraqi Army, which would later lead to the undoing of so much good work.