Friday, November 30, 2012

Power Generating Leg Braces

Watch for this technology to seep into the private sector as it gets smaller and less obtrusive.

"We've seen several designs for military exoskeletons that can boost soldier strength, but these leg braces from Canada's Bionic Power generate electricity on the go.

The PowerWalk system looks like an athletic knee brace and weighs about 1.7 pounds. The braces generate about 12 watts of electricity when the user walks at a normal pace; an hour's walk can apparently produce enough juice to recharge four cell phones.

That's especially handy for soldiers who have to carry up to 28 pounds of batteries on a 72-hour mission to power everything from flashlights to night vision goggles, according to Bionic Power.

While they've been under development for years, undergoing Canadian military testing in 2008, the PowerWalk braces are now the subject of three development contracts from Defence Research and Development Canada (DRDC), DARPA, and the U.S. Army.

So-Called Austerity and Growth in Europe (Veronique de Rugy)

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Obama Cuts Pell Grants After Campaigning on Increasing Funding

Did not take long for that election promise to fall by the wayside.

"During the election this year the Obama Campaign released this online ad targeting young voters.
In the ad Obama told American youth that he kept his promise to make college more affordable.

He forgot to tell them he cut Pell Grants.
The information was released this week.
The Examiner reported:

Sorry, college students. President Obama has cut your access to Pell Grants by 33%; he just forgot to mention it before Election Day.

During the recent campaign, President Obama claimed credit for increasing funding to the Pell Grant program, which provides college funds, free from repayment, to millions of students. However, an email sent out Tuesday to some Dallas college students is revealing a detail the President forgot to mention: the time a student can receive a Pell Grant has been cut, by as much as three years. With Pell Grants for the fall semester now dispersed, colleges are informing students of their options, bringing the cuts to light.

The email, sent out by the Dallas County Community College District, informed students of the changes to the Pell Grant program. It revealed that the number of semesters a student could receive a Pell Grant had been cut from 18 semesters down to 12. It is a detail likely unknown to most students; in fact, the cut in grants has gone largely unreported by the media.

Head to the source for the video.

Pelosi - 'Of course I support Giving Obama Unilateral Control Over The Debt Ceiling'

Separation of powers, whats that...

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"Of course she does, didn’t even have to think about it — because who even cares about a silly ol’ self-imposed restriction like a ‘debt ceiling,’ anyway?"

Silent Spring at 50: The False Crises of Rachel Carson (Richard Tren)

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Texas Schools Track Students with RFID Chips!

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Last Laugh Before Fiscal Cliff: GOP Laughs At Obama's Call for Higher Taxes & Spending

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Pelosi Shows Her Strong Knowledge of the Constitution

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Thursday, November 29, 2012

Science Can Answer Moral Questions

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UN Votes to Recognize Palestine as a Non-Member State

Another shinning example of 'Smart Diplomacy'...

"This has more to do with Palestinian infighting than it does with Israel, and it’s highly likely to backfire. Which means it’s no different from 90 percent of Palestinian political gambits.

You know the UN motto: You can never have too many Israel-hating pro-terrorist states.

[T]he vote offered a showcase for an extraordinary international lineup of support for the Palestinians and constituted a deeply symbolic achievement for their cause, made even weightier by arriving on the 65th anniversary of the General Assembly vote that divided the former British Mandate of Palestine into two states, one Jewish and the other Arab — a vote that Israel considers the international seal of approval for its birth…

A major concern for the Americans is that the Palestinians might use their new status to try to join the International Criminal Court. That prospect particularly worries the Israelis, who fear that the Palestinians might press for an investigation of their practices in the occupied territories.

Another worry is that the Palestinians might use the vote to seek membership in specialized agencies of the United Nations, a move that could have consequences for the financing of the international organizations as well as the Palestinian Authority itself. Congress cut off financing to the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization, also known as Unesco, in 2011 after it accepted Palestine as a member. The United States is a major contributor to many of these agencies and plays an active role on their governing boards.
The vote was 138-9 with 41 abstentions, and it was indeed the 65th anniversary of Arabs deciding that a Jewish state alongside a Palestinian one was a casus belli, not a “diplomatic solution.” So why’d they do it? Because, with his pal Mubarak swept away by the Muslim Brotherhood and Hamas enjoying a new shot of jihadi cred from its latest glorious futile skirmish with Israel, Mahmoud Abbas is a forgotten man in the Middle East. He’ll take this back to the West Bank as proof of his stature, which is one of the reasons why some western nations voted for statehood (or abstained). They’re handing him a counterweight, in theory, against Hamas in the battle for Palestinian legitimacy. Just one problem: Who’s going to explain to the Palestinians back home that tonight’s vote achieved little more than the right to join UNESCO?
Long story short, Muslim regimes and the international left will soon have a new diplomatic tool with which to try to delegitimize Israel and the Palestinian project of ending the Zionist dream will continue to go nowhere.

Feds Shut Down 100-Year-Old Oyster Company, Destroy Some Lives And Dreams

Reagan said it best, "The nine most terrifying words in the English language are: I'm from the government and I'm here to help."

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"Hey, no bigs. It’s just a 100-year-old company and California’s only surviving cannery, a sustainable, family-owned operation employing 30 people. The Drakes Bay Oyster Company has been in a seven-year fight with the federal government and environmental groups over whether it’s 40-year lease would be renewed this week. The Lunny family, which owns the oyster farm, was among a group of families that sold their ranch lands to the National Parks Service in the 1970s to protect them from developers, with the understanding they would get 40-year-leases renewed in perpetuity. After buying and operating the oyster farm without incident— they were even featured as outstanding environmental stewards by the National Parks Service— the Lunnys learned in 2005 they were accused of bringing environmental damage to an area the NPS and environmentalists were anxious to designate as the nation’s first federally recognized marine wilderness.

Sec. of the Interior Ken Salazar decided todaythe farm’s lease will not be renewed, despite some support for it from from Sen. Dianne Feinstein and serious questions raised by scientists about the research used to impugn the Lunnys.

A Post Election Outlook From TFAS President Roger Ream

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The First Ever 'Spidernaut' Safely Returns to Earth

Where can I sign up to Volunteer to be bitten by it?

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"Take eight steps back, Psy and Biebs. Another YouTube star is born today as Nefertiti, the first-ever “spidernaut” who was the key element to the winning YouTube Space Lab experiment has made it home safely and will live out the rest of her life at the Smithsonian Museum.

Nefertiti is the first jumping spider to successfully return from space and adjust to life on Earth after a 100-day stay aboard the International Space Station. “Neffi,” as she’s called by friends, will take up residence starting today at the Insect Zoo in the Smithsonian National Museum of Natural History.

1000 Wrongfully Convicted and Counting: New Registry Checks Justice System's Power

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Read My Lips: Why The 'No-Tax-Hike' Pledge IS an IQ Test for Republicans

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Wednesday, November 28, 2012

Two-Thirds of Millionaires Left Britain to Avoid 50% Tax Rate

I do not know about you, but I am SHOCKED that millionaires are not just sitting there and taking it. I mean, it is as if these people do not want to pay higher taxes and are actually taking steps to avoid them. Who could have possibly foreseen such a thing... you know, except for all of the people warning the politicization in this country that raising taxes will be counter productive.

"In the 2009-10 tax year, more than 16,000 people declared an annual income of more than £1 million to HM Revenue and Customs.

This number fell to just 6,000 after Gordon Brown introduced the new 50p top rate of income tax shortly before the last general election.

The figures have been seized upon by the Conservatives to claim that increasing the highest rate of tax actually led to a loss in revenues for the Government.

It is believed that rich Britons moved abroad or took steps to avoid paying the new levy by reducing their taxable incomes.

White House - 'Obama is Not Particularly Concerned Whether Rice Misled The Public'

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Chris Matthews (MSNBC) - 'Nomiating Rice Would Not be a Good Idea'

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Can the feds invite a U.S. citizen to the local embassy for the purpose of killing him?

I am beginning to like this guy (see the first video at the post).

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"Consider this of a piece with my Greenroom post earlier about strange, dark questions raised by long years at war. The impetus for this one is the news that the State Department tried to reach out somehow to Anwar al-Awlaki in March 2011 and invite him to the embassy in Yemen to formally notify him that his passport had been revoked. Minor problem: The New York Times had reported 11 months earlier that Obama had marked him for death. Go figure that he politely declined State’s invite to appear in person before them. As Politico notes, this was probably some sort of half-assed gesture at due process from the White House, to give him the option of surrendering peacefully and coming home to face (unspecified) charges instead of facing a rendezvous with a Predator. The fact that he was already very publicly known to be targeted for assassination, however, tends to … complicate the surrender process."

If We Survive: Andrew Klavan's New Novel Pits Justice and Courage Against an Imperfect Culture

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The Rich Ditch Britain: Millionaires Disappearing at Alarming Rate in UK

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The Fire Next Door: Mexico's Drug Violence and the Danger to America (Ted Galen Carpenter)

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Empire State Building Gets an External LED Upgrade

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Tuesday, November 27, 2012

Israel Deploys 'David's Sling' (Missile Defense)

Israel has sped of deployment of their intermediate missile defense system, David's Sling. It is for missiles to large for the Iron Dome, but not large enough for an Arrow interceptor. It will also act as a back up for larger, potentially WMD tipped ballistic missiles that the Arrow misses.

Israel is really changing up the game here; again.

"A new Israeli air shield against rockets more powerful than those intercepted by Iron Dome in the Gaza conflict passed its first field test last week after being rushed through development, officials said on Sunday.

They said that David's Sling, billed as Israel's answer to the longer-range missiles of Lebanese Hezbollah guerrillas and Syria, shot down a target rocket in a secret November 20 desert trial that coincided with fierce shelling exchanges between Israel and Palestinians in the Gaza Strip.
A source in Israel's defense industries said David's Sling was originally scheduled for live trials in 2013, and that this was brought forward "given the general sense of urgency".

David's Sling uses technology similar to that of the Iron Dome system, which Israel says had a 90 percent success rate, intercepting 421 of the rockets fired from Gaza in eight days of fighting that ended in a ceasefire on Wednesday.
"The completion of the program will be a significant layer for Israel's multi-tiered anti-missile defense system," Defense Minister Ehud Barak said in a statement
Iron Dome is the lowest of the tiers, tackling the guerrilla rockets of Gaza and Hezbollah. It was originally meant to handle ranges of up to 70 km (45 miles), but designers say this is being expanded to some 250 km (155 miles).

The top-most tier is Israel's Arrow ballistic interceptor, designed to shoot down long-range Iranian and Syrian missiles at atmospheric altitudes - high enough so that any non-conventional warheads they might carry would be safely destroyed.
David's Sling would serve as a bridge between Iron Dome and Arrow, Israeli officials say, blocking out rockets that prove too fast and powerful for Iron Dome, or any ballistic missiles that are missed by Arrow."

Susan Rice - 'On second thought, there was no protest before the Benghazi attack'

You think...

Notice how every so often they give just a little bit more hoping that it will be enough to tamp down on the controversy. This drip-drip-drip is not making it any better for them though, just making people more determined to find out the whole truth; and we will find out the whole truth eventually.

"Does this mean it’s no longer racist to oppose her nomination as Secretary of State? Or, since she’s now admitting her mistake, does this mean it’s really racist to oppose her nomination as Secretary of State?

I’m sure the left will tell us when the time is right.

Today, Acting CIA Director Michael Morell and I met with Senators McCain, Graham, and Ayotte to discuss my September 16th public comments regarding the attack against the U.S. facilities in Benghazi, Libya, and the intelligence assessments that formed the basis for those comments. I appreciated the opportunity to discuss these issues directly and constructively with them.

In the course of the meeting, we explained that the talking points provided by the intelligence community, and the initial assessment upon which they were based, were incorrect in a key respect: there was no protest or demonstration in Benghazi. While we certainly wish that we had had perfect information just days after the terrorist attack, as is often the case, the intelligence assessment has evolved. We stressed that neither I nor anyone else in the Administration intended to mislead the American people at any stage in this process, and the Administration updated Congress and the American people as our assessments evolved.

The Administration remains committed to working closely with Congress as we thoroughly investigate the terrorist attack in Benghazi and bring to justice the terrorists responsible for the tragic deaths of our colleagues, Ambassador Chris Stevens, Sean Smith, Glen Doherty and Tyrone Woods. We also look forward to the findings of the Accountability Review Board and the FBI investigation.
The White House press corps got Carney to say the magic words this afternoon too. For what it’s worth, Rice’s statement does jibe with what U.S. intel officials told the Wall Street Journal last month about what she knew and when. If you believe them, the first intelligence inklings that the whole “protest” storyline was crapola came on the evening of Saturday, September 15th, hours before Rice appeared on the Sunday shows to talk Benghazi.

Republicans Significantly Troubled by Rice’s Statements On Benghazi After Private Meeting With Her

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Brazilian Elevator Ghost Prank

Clearly the USA needs to step up its prank game.

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David Friedman on How to Privatize Everything

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Sandra Fluke Person of the Year?!

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Sunday, November 25, 2012

White House Refuses to Release Photos of The Obama Team During The Benghazi Attack

Most transparent administration ever...

"Today, the White House officially refused to release photos of US officials during the September 11 terrorist attacks on our consulate in Benghazi, Libya, that ended with the deaths of four Americans. CBS News requested the photos on October 31; the White House has routinely released photos showing members of the Obama administration in their hero poses during national security crises. That happened most famously with pictures of the Obama administration key players clustered into the White House situation room during the raid on Osama Bin Laden’s compound in Pakistan.

The White House told CBS to ask the White House Photo Office; that office then delayed for nearly three weeks. Finally, the Office said they wouldn’t release any photos without the permission of the White House Press Office, which has been utterly unresponsive to this point. CBS News has also not been told any details about the Obama administration’s actions during the Benghazi events.

Fixing Chicago's Traffic Gridlock

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Bill Whittle - 'Why Don’t Republicans Commit to Their Own Philosophy'

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The Joy of Hate, Liberal Speech Police, & Conservative Punks

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In Defense of Wal-Mart

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Saturday, November 24, 2012

Friday, November 23, 2012

Morsi Declares Himself Dictator of Egypt

To the surprise of, well, only those foolish enough to belief that the Muslim Brotherhood managed to moderate itself in the 30 seconds before he put himself in power in the first place. That list includes far to many people in leadership positions in our government including those within the Obama administration.

What is happening in Egypt is a perennial problem with upstart Democracies, and frankly even some established Democracies. That is that the principle of one man one vote has a 'one time' appended to the end of it.

"Egypt's president on Thursday issued constitutional amendments that placed him above judicial oversight and ordered the retrial of Hosni Mubarak for the killing of protesters in last year's uprising.

Mohammed Morsi also decreed immunity for the Islamist-dominated panel drafting a new constitution from any possible court decisions to dissolve it, a threat that had been hanging over the controversial assembly.
The Egyptian leader also decreed that all decisions he has made since taking office in June and until a new constitution is adopted and a new parliament is elected — which is not expected before next spring — are not subject to appeal in court or by any other authority. He also barred any court from dissolving the Islamist-led upper house of parliament, a largely toothless body that has also faced court cases.

The moves effectively remove any oversight on Morsi, the longtime Muslim Brotherhood figure who became Egypt's first freely elected president last summer after the Feb. 11, 2011 fall of autocrat Hosni Mubarak...

Morsi not only holds executive power, he also has legislative authority after a previous court ruling just before he took office on June 30 dissolved the powerful lower house of parliament, which was led by the Brotherhood.

Clash at Gaza Border Shakes Cease-Fire

Shaken, but apparently still holding.

Does Hamas really want to go another round with Israel? It would seem to me that they got just about the best outcome they could have already.

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Turkey Admits to Skirting Iranian Sanctions

Not to worry, besides this example I am sure the sanctions are working. Another shining example of 'Smart Power' from the Obama administration. (via)

"The most important reason behind the significant increase in Turkey’s golden bullion export is Iran, said Turkish Deputy Prime Minister Ali Babacan in a parliamentary session late Nov. 23.

Iranians are buying Turkish gold with the Turkish Lira, which is deposited into their bank accounts in exchange for Turkey’s natural gas purchases from the Islamic republic, the deputy prime minister said. U.S. dollars are unable to be transferred into the country due to international restrictions and U.S. sanctions.

France Hints it Will Support Palestinian UN Bid

Another shining example of 'Smart Power' from the Obama administration...

"France is considering voting in favor of the Palestinian Authority’s unilateral statehood bid at the United Nations, its foreign minister hinted on Thursday.

Speaking at a hearing in the French senate, Foreign Minister Laurent Fabius reminded that French President Francois Hollande promised during his election campaign to promote the issue of Palestinian statehood.
U.S. President Barack Obama has announced that he opposes the PA bid and asked Abbas not to go through with it. However, Abbas responded to Obama with a direct “no”.

Michael Barone on Why So Many Failed to Predict the Reelection of Obama

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3 Reasons to Kill The Dept. of Homeland Security: It's Unnecessary, Inefficient, & Expensive.

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Thursday, November 22, 2012

Woman Loses Job After 'Flipping The Bird' at The Tomb of The Unknown Soldier

This just in; doing stupid things still have consequences.

I offer this bit of advice knowing, stupid people being what they are, are unlikely to listen.

1) Do not do stupid things.
2) If you insist on doing stupid things, do not document your stupidity.
3) If you insist on documenting your stupidity, do not share it on social media or in any other way distribute those images.
4) If you insist on sharing your stupidity, prepare for the consequences.

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Lindsey Stone was at Arlington National Cemetery last month, having some fun at the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier, so she decided to post the picture shown above. She seemed a bit surprised that anyone could take offense at her stunning display of disrespect…

And the Fire Lindsey Stone Facebook group is, well, on fire… The Save Lindsey Stone Facebook group, not so much.

Update 3: Lindsey and Jamie have apologized.

Update 4: Lindsey and Jamie both lost their jobs tonight.


Susan Rice - 'All of This Benghazi Criticism of me is Unfounded'

Nice try, but still not buying it. Who is responsible for the misinformation, and why didn't commonsense lead you to question what should have been obviously poor/bad/false information?

"Ambassador Rice finally broke her silence on the subject on Wednesday, and defended her remarks by insisting that they were based on the best information she had at the time provided to her by the intelligence community. Via Reuters:

“I relied solely and squarely on the information provided to me by the intelligence community,” said Rice…

“I made clear that the information provided to me was preliminary and that our investigations would give us the definitive answers,” Rice told reporters at the United Nations in her first comments on the controversy. …

“Everyone, particularly the intelligence community, has worked in good faith, to provide the best assessment based on the information available,” Rice said. “None of us will rest … until we have the answer and the terrorists responsible for this attack will be brought to the justice.” …

Rice said some statements about her by McCain were “unfounded.” “I look forward to having the opportunity at the appropriate time to discuss all of this with him,” she said.
She relied “solely and squarely” on info from the intelligence community? That seems a bit odd, considering that the intelligence community suspected terrorism from the very beginning, which means that something doesn’t fit here — and the most obvious possibility for that missing link is that somebody high up in the food chain tweaked the talking points on a very inconvenient situation with only weeks to go before a close presidential election, although the White House has denied having done so.

The Gods of Wisdom and Virtue

Bill Whittle 'translation' of the Gods of The Copybook Headings.

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Scientist Proves That Ain't Nobody Knows How to Do Nothing No More

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The Fiscal Cliff: Raising Taxes on Middle-Income Americans

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Stephen Kruiser Gives Thanks 'We Much'

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Wednesday, November 21, 2012

Jack Taylor Scored 138 Points in a Single Game

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"Tuesday, Jack Taylor, a 5-10 sophomore guard for Grinnell College, scored 138 points in a game against Faith Baptist Bible. Taylor went 52 for 108 from the floor and 27 for 71 from three-point land in a 179-104 victory.

The total shattered the college game scoring record of Rio Grande's Bevo Francis, the 1950s star who once scored 113 points in a game.

Taylor's total is, of course, flabbergasting. But if it could happen anywhere, it's Grinnell.

Head to the source to find out why.

Obama Pardons White House Turkey

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Will the GOP Allow Obama to Raise Taxes on the Rich?

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How to Win the Culture

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Philadelphia: No Love for the Homeless

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Kudos Liberals, You Destroyed More Jobs

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Operation Pillar of Defense (Day Eight)

Cease Fire! While there is serious risk of a flare up, it appears that major hostilities have ended.

"Hours after a bomb ripped through a bus in Tel Aviv, apparently sinking all hope of ending eight days of violence in Gaza, Hillary Clinton and Egyptian Foreign Minister Mohamed Kamel Amr announced a ceasefire between Israel and Hamas.

The deal came into effect at 9pm local time following a frantic final day of diplomacy in which Ms Clinton shuttled between Jerusalem, Ramallah and Cairo to help seal the seal.

Around 18 rockets were fired in the first 90 minutes of the ceasefire, but hours later it appeared as if it was being observed by both sides. The Israeli Prime Minister, Benjamin Netanyahu, had warned it might take some time to impose discipline on all the militant cells.

Following the cease fire, a dozen rockets were fired out of Gaza. After that flair up, it appears that the cease fire has held.

"Twelve rockets fired from the Gaza Strip hit Israel on Wednesday in the first hours that followed a ceasefire agreement ending hostilities in the week-long Gaza conflict, a police spokesman told AFP.

The Israeli spokesman added that the attacks caused no injuries or damage, with the rockets mostly landing in open fields in the south of the Jewish state.

A ceasefire agreement announced in Cairo on Wednesday went into effect at 1900 GMT, requiring both sides to halt fire immediately and for Israel to start opening Gaza's crossings if the truce holds for 24 hours.

Early reports indicate that Both Morsi and Clinton deserve serious credit.

"The Gaza cease-fire deal reached Thursday marks a startling trajectory for Egyptian President Mohammed Morsi: an Islamist leader who refuses to talk to Israelis or even say the country's name mediated for it and finally turned himself into Israel's de facto protector.

The accord inserts Egypt to an unprecedented degree into the conflict between Israel and Hamas, establishing it as the arbiter ensuring that militant rocket fire into Israel stops and that Israel allows the opening of the long-blockaded Gaza Strip and stops its own attacks against Hamas.

In return, Morsi emerged as a major regional player. He won the trust of the United States and Israel, which once worried over the rise of an Islamist leader in Egypt but throughout the week-long Gaza crisis saw him as the figure most able to deliver a deal with Gaza's Hamas rulers.

"I want to thank President Morsi for his personal leadership to de-escalate the situation in Gaza and end the violence," U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton, who met Morsi Thursday, said at a Cairo press conference with Egypt's foreign minister announcing the accord.

Here is Clinton commenting on the cease Fire.

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The Terrorists had moved beyond just launching rockets, and bombed a bus in Tel Aviv today. While two dozen people were injured, fortunately there were no fatalities.

"A bus bombing in this seaside city Wednesday appears to be strengthening the Israeli public's support for a ground offensive in Gaza.
Twenty-four people were injured, three seriously, when a bomb left in a bag on a bus exploded shortly after midday on the busy Shaul HaMelech Boulevard in Tel Aviv.

Last week, Hamas threatened to renew deadly bombings against civilians in Israel in a Hebrew-language video released on its YouTube account.

Police spokesman Micky Rosenfeld said the search for the person who left the bomb was continuing and investigators were examining the shrapnel and other remnants of the explosive device. He said there had been no official claim of responsibility for the bombing, and police were uncertain whether it was carried out by an individual or an organized terrorist group.

The Palestinians celebrated the attack, hoping that there would eventually be Israeli fatalities, while passing out candy.

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The IDF have put out this summary of the whole operation.

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Al Jazeera reports the number of Palestinians killed at 162.

"Before the announcement in Egypt, Israeli attacks on the Gaza Strip continued for an eighth day.

Twenty people were killed in Gaza on Wednesday, according to medical officials, bringing the death toll to a total of 162 since Israel's military operation was launched. Seven children were among those killed.

The Palestinian center for Human Rights reports a fewer dead, but claims around 2/3rds were civilian.

"Since the beginning of the offensive:

- Palestinian Deaths Rise to 136, Including 91 Civilians, and 941 Wounded, Including 922 Civilians
- 28 Children Killed and 258 Others Wounded
- 13 Women Killed and 149 Others Wounded
- 3 Journalists Killed

Israel has released the following figures for their casualty count.

"More than 1,300 rockets have been fired at Israel since Saturday (10 Nov), over 1,100 since the start of Operation Pillar of Defense (14 Nov), landing mostly in the south. The Iron Dome anti-missile defense system has intercepted over 400 rockets, preventing them from striking populated areas in Israel.

Israeli casualties: 5 killed (4 civilians and 1 soldier), 7 in critical condition, 7 in moderate condition and 204 lightly injured (figures of wounded include 16 soldiers).

Past Posts on Operation Pillar of Defense (from first to last):
Berman Post: Israel Launches Operation "Pillar of Defense"
Berman Post: Operation Pillar of Defense (Day Two)
Berman Post: Operation Pillar of Defense (Day Three)
Berman Post: Operation Pillar of Defense (Day Four)
Berman Post: Operation Pillar of Defense (Day Five)
Berman Post: Operation Pillar of Defense (Day Six)
Berman Post: Operation Pillar of Defense (Day Seven)

Tuesday, November 20, 2012

Should Federal Workers Get a Raise?

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CBS - 'Office of the DNI' Cut Al-Qaeda And Terrorism References From Benghazi Talking Points'

Which makes James Clapper the current fall guy. Still not buying it, and even if it was the case it does not get past the point that by Sunday Rice should have known better (and almost certainly did).

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China to Build the Tallest Building in the World in Just 90 Days

An impressive claim. We will not have to wait long before seeing if they can back this up. If they do, I would expect to see this company breaking their own record soon enough.

"According to its engineers, this will be the tallest skyscraper in the world by the end of March of 2013. Its name is Sky City, and its 2,749 feet (838 meters) distributed in 220 floors will grow in just 90 days in Changsha city, by the Xiangjiang river. Ninety days!

It's not a joke. According to the construction company, the skyscraper will be built in just 90 days at the unbelievable rate of five floors per day.
Unlike the Burj Khalifa, the tower will be mostly habitable. Its final height will be 2,749 feet high (838 meters). Compared that to the Burj's 2,719 feet (829 meters), which include the spire at the top resulting in a total of 163 floors.
The record figures don't stop there: in addition to the 90-day construction time—as opposed to the 210 days initially reported by the Chinese media—the company claims it will cost $1,500 per square meter as opposed to the Burj's $15,000 per square meter, all thanks to the prefab technology.

They also claim it will be able to sustain earthquakes of a 9.0 magnitude and be resistant to fire for "up to three hours," as well as be extremely energy efficient thanks to thermal insulation, four-panned windows and different air conditioning techniques that were already used in their previous constructions.

Watch as the same company built a 30 story building in 15 days.

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French Officials Accuse US of Hacking Sarkozy's Computers

More 'Smart Power'...

"The United States used U.S.-Israeli spy software to hack into the French presidential office earlier this year, the French cyberwarfare agency has concluded, according to the newsmagazine l'Express.

The magazine reported late Tuesday that the computers of several close advisers to then-president Nicolas Sarkozy – including Chief of Staff Xavier Musca – were compromised in May by a computer virus that bears the hallmarks of Flame, which was allegedly created by a U.S.-Israeli team to target Iran's nuclear program. Anonymous French officials pointed the finger at the United States.

Roderick Long on Race, Gender, Equality and Libertarianism

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Clinton Caught Napping During Obama's Burma Speech?

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"The website Mediaite says Clinton looks "subdued."

"CNN’s cameras first checked in with Secretary Clinton about fifteen minutes into the speech, seated next to Nobel Peace Prize winner and former Burmese dissident Aung San Suu Kyi, who is now a member of Burma/Myanmar’s parliament. Sec. Clinton appeared engaged, if a little bit blinky, but by the time the President’s remarks were nearing their finale, the reaction shot was somewhat more, shall we say, subdued," writes Mediaite.

Athens of the Prairie: How Columbus, Indiana Got Great Architecture

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Israel vs. Hamas: Israeli Consul General David Siegel Gives His Take on the Violence

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Operation Pillar of Defense (Day Seven)

Clinton arrived in Israel and made a joint statement with Netanhayu.

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The first Israeli soldier since the beginning of Operation Pillar of Defense has been killed by rocket fire.

"The Israeli military says a soldier has been killed in a rocket attack on southern Israel.

In a statement, the army said the 18-year-old serviceman was killed Tuesday afternoon.

It was the military's first fatality since it launched an offensive in the Gaza Strip last Wednesday. The operation is meant to halt rocket fire out of Gaza.

There were some reports of a coming cease fire, but those reports proved to be erroneous.

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Hamas does have something to gain be claiming a cease fire is coming. In some media circles, it will be use as further evidence Israel is the 'bad guy' as Hamas will be shown as waning to end the violence. Frankly, Israel has little reason to ask for a cease fire right now. The Iron Dome has proven remarkably successful, and they know if they end their offensive early Hamas can/will rearm and start the hostilities all over again a bit down the road (as happened following Operation Cast Lead.

The IDF has warned journalists to stay away from Hamas members, for fear of getting caught in the cross fire. The IDF fears that Hamas is using, or will try to use, those journalists as human shields.

"The Israeli army has issued a warning to journalists: Stay away from the terrorist group Hamas. The warning was issued on Twitter:

IDF @IDFSpokesperson Warning to reporters in Gaza: Stay away from Hamas operatives & facilities. Hamas, a terrorist group, will use you as human shields. 20 Nov 12 ReplyRetweetFavorite

The warning comes after several targeted attacks hit high-level targets seeking refuge in the same building holding journalists.

The Israeli army says it "surgically targeted a Hamas intelligence operations center on 7th floor of a media building in #Gaza." The military claims a "direct hit."

IDF @IDFSpokesperson Minutes ago, we surgically targeted a Hamas intelligence operations center on 7th floor of a media building in #Gaza. Direct hit confirmed. 20 Nov 12 ReplyRetweetFavorite

To be sure, the Israeli military says, those terrorists were there to plan attacks:

IDF @IDFSpokesperson The Hamas terrorists weren't in the media building to be interviewed. They were there to communicate with field operatives and plan attacks. 20 Nov 12 ReplyRetweetFavorite

Yesterday, a similar targeted attack wiped out terrorists using journalists as human shields in Gaza.

Six Palestinians were executed in front of a mob in Gaza after being accused of being Israeli spies. At least of the people executed was then dragged through the streets tied behind a motorcycle.

"Six men accused of being 'Israeli spies' were dragged through the streets of Gaza City and executed in front of a chanting mob today as Israel warned Palestinians to evacuate some areas of the territory in apparent preparation for a ground invasion.

Witnesses said the six were taken to an intersection in the north of the city where they were summarily shot for providing intelligence that helped Israel pinpoint key figures in Hamas and the Islamic Jihad targeted by their warplanes.

You can find the grim pictures at the source above.

The IDF have released the clip of their strike on the house of the commander of central Gaza Hamas training bases.

The Color Red ('tzeva adom' in Hebrew) app sends a warning message directly to your smartphone giving someone a presuous few extra seconds to reach cover (you can find the app at, and you can use the app to help you figure out where to go).

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See more at

The IDF has released this seventh day recap.

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The Associated Press is reporting the following current casualty count.

According to Gaza health officials
Militants killed:79
Civilians killed:54

According to the Israeli military
Military killed:1
Civilians killed:4

Past Posts on Operation Pillar of Defense (from first to last):
Berman Post: Israel Launches Operation "Pillar of Defense"
Berman Post: Operation Pillar of Defense (Day Two)
Berman Post: Operation Pillar of Defense (Day Three)
Berman Post: Operation Pillar of Defense (Day Four)
Berman Post: Operation Pillar of Defense (Day Five)
Berman Post: Operation Pillar of Defense (Day Six)

Monday, November 19, 2012

Dumb Ways to Die

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Julian Sanchez discusses the Surveillance State on MSNBC

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Chambliss (R) - 'White House Had to Have Changed CIA Talking Points on Benghazi'

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White House Says They Did Not Make The Benghazi Talking Points Changes


"the White House threw some cold water on that hypothesis, claiming that they made only minor adjustments to the talking points with which they prepped Susan Rice prior to her now-infamous round of Sunday talk show appearances, in which she stuck to the narrative of spontaneous protests sparked by outrage over a video. Via the Weekly Standard:

Now, in terms of — I think the focus of this has often been on the public statements that were made by Susan Rice and other administration officials in that first week after the attack. Those were informed by unclassified talking points that we — that were provided to the Congress and to the interagency — the rest of the administration by the intelligence community. …

What we also said yesterday, though — because this question came up as to whether the White House had edited Susan Rice’s points and the points that were provided to Congress and the administration — the only edit that was made to those points by the White House, and was also made by the State Department, was to change the word “consulate” to “diplomatic facility” since the facility in Benghazi had not — was not formally a consulate. Other than that, we worked off of the points that were provided by the intelligence community. So I can’t speak to any other edits that may have been made within the intelligence community.
Hmm — ’cause why on earth would the White House have done such a thing in the first place, anyways? …John McCain said what we’re all thinking on Sunday, via NJ:

Sen. John McCain continued his criticism of the Obama administration’s handling of a deadly attack on the American Embassy in Benghazi, suggesting the president mislead the American public on the attack to support his story that al-Qaida’s influence is diminishing in the middle east.

“The narrative of the president is ‘I got Bin Laden, and al-Qaida is in the run,’ but al-Qaida is not on the run, and is making a strong comeback all over the Middle East,” McCain said on CBS’s Face the Nation. “This may interfere with that narrative.”
Chairwoman of the Senate Intelligence Committee Dianne Feinstein, on the other hand, expressed confidence that the high-ups in the White House in fact weren’t behind pushing a wedge between the intelligence and the talking points.

Scott Lincicome: US Is a "Huge Subsidizer"

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McCain - 'Why not send Bill Clinton to the Middle East?'

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The Deepening Petraeus Sex Scandal, and Why Congress Is Throbbing to Get to the Bottom of It

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Operation Pillar of Defense (Day Six)

The IDF believe they have successively targeted the head of Hamas' rocket program, Yahyia Abiya. (via)

"The IDF targeted the head of Hamas' rocket program, Yahyia Abiya, after a heavy barrage of rocket fire engulfed Ashdod Sunday afternoon.

The targeted attack was directly ordered by Chief of Staff Lt.-Gen. Benny Gantz.

Army sources say that Abiya was directly responsible for the majority of rockets that have been fired on Israel.

The United States Navy is moving three ships to the eastern Mediterranean. The United States is almost certainly not going to get involved militarily in any way. They are there in the event that an evacuation of Americans become necessary, and for some reason the current commercial exits are cut off or blocked.

"Three U.S. Navy amphibious warships are returning to the eastern Mediterranean to remain on standby in the event they are needed to assist Americans leaving Israel in the coming days, according to two U.S. officials.

The officials stressed an evacuation remains an extremely remote possibility and the Obama administration is not currently planning for one. Americans who wish to leave the region now are able to do so using commercial airlines.

But the decision to send the ships even if the event is such a remote contingency underscores the growing concern about where the Israel-Gaza conflict could be headed.

"This is due diligence. It is better to be prepared should there be a need," one official said Monday. Both officials said the ships would be used only for assisting Americans and not for any combat role.

Hamas is 'daring' Israel to launch a ground incursion. For all their bravado, they have to understand that it would go very poorly for them militarily, but Hamas is likely confident that they will get a media win.

"The top leader of Hamas dared Israel on Monday to launch a ground invasion of Gaza and dismissed diplomatic efforts to broker a cease-fire in the six-day-old conflict, as the Israeli military conducted a new wave of deadly airstrikes on the besieged Palestinian enclave, including a second hit on a 15-story building that houses media outlets. A volley of rockets fired from Gaza into southern Israel included one that hit a vacant school."

Egypt, who could once be counted on as a relatively balanced mediator, is still attempting to fill the mediation roll. Since Mubarak's overthrow, the 'balanced' part of the equation is missing.

"While holding itself out as an honest broker for truce talks between Israel and Hamas over the Gaza conflict, Egypt’s new government sought on Monday to plunge into the battle over international public opinion on behalf of the Palestinian cause — an arena where the Israelis, more experienced in the world of the free press and democratic politics, have historically dominated."

Turkey has also taken sides against Israel in the propaganda war against Israel.

"A top Turkish official has claimed that Israel is committing acts of terrorism by bombing Hamas targets in Gaza.

Turkish Prime Minister Tayyip Erdogan told the Eurasian Islamic Council conference in Istanbul that the Jewish state is systematically mass-killing Muslims.

“Those who associate Islam with terrorism close their eyes in the face of mass killing of Muslims, turn their heads from the massacre of children in Gaza,” Erdogan said, according to Reuters. “For this reason, I say that Israel is a terrorist state, and its acts are terrorist acts.”

The lack of response from the US State Department did not go unnoticed by the media.

Video embedded below.

Israeli museums have been forced to move their collections from their displays to underground bunkers to ensure that they are not damaged or destroyed by rocket fire.

"The wine-red walls of the Brueghel exhibition hall at the Tel Aviv Museum of Art are now bare, like the crime scene of a daring art heist.

Tel Aviv's leading art museum, spooked by rocket attacks on Israel's cultural capital, moved nearly 200 works Friday into a rocket-proof safe the size of an auditorium - including some 100 works painted by relatives of Flemish Renaissance master Pieter Brueghel the Elder.

"Even if there's a very small possibility (of damage), we don't play around. We don't take chances," said Doron J. Lurie, the senior curator and chief conservator. "We've guarded them like our own kids."

One other Israeli art museum followed suit, hauling some of its most prized artworks into fortified vaults deep underground to protect them from the current round of Israel-Palestinian fighting.

Jonathan Schanzer explains why Israel is striking Hamas now.

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Here is some gunner cam of the IDF launching pinpoint strikes on Hamas' operational communications infrastructure.

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The IDF has put out this sixth day recap.

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Al Jazeera is reporting that the casualty count has increased to 111 for the Palestinians with the Israeli casualty count remaining at three.

"despite calls for a truce, with the overall death toll reaching 111, according to medical sources.

A media centre was targeted for a second time on Monday when Israeli fighter jets hit the Shuruq tower in Gaza City. The building houses Palestinian and international media outlets, including Britain's Sky News, Saudi-owned Al Arabiya and the official Hamas broadcaster, Al Aqsa TV.

Past Posts on Operation Pillar of Defense (from first to last):
Berman Post: Israel Launches Operation "Pillar of Defense"
Berman Post: Operation Pillar of Defense (Day Two)
Berman Post: Operation Pillar of Defense (Day Three)
Berman Post: Operation Pillar of Defense (Day Four)
Berman Post: Operation Pillar of Defense (Day Five)

Sunday, November 18, 2012


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In 37 Chicago Precincts, Romney Received No Votes

Simply amazing...

"NBC Chicago reports:

The Philadelphia Inquirer reports that in 59 Philadelphia precincts, Mitt Romney did not receive a single vote. So Ward Room decided to look at the results in the president’s hometown, and see if he won as many shutouts here. The answer: no. Romney was rejected by every voter in only 37 Chicago precincts, an embarrassing result, given that segregation and Machine politics are two of our city’s most notable qualities.

Any doubt there was some vote fraud? Check out this comment on NBC Chicago's website:

In critical swing states like Pennsylvania, Ohio, and Illinois there are a lot of precincts in Philadelphia, Cleveland, and Chicago which reported 100% of their votes cast for Obama. These add up to many 10's of thousands of votes for Obama and 0 for Romney. I repeat, 0 for Romney. I have read a number of articles about this and people knowlegable in Political Science and Statistics are starting to take notice of this.Statistically, even if among 10's of thousands of voters all wanted to vote for Obama, it would not be possible to receive 100% of the vote because at least a few would make a mistake and vote incorrectly for Romney. Not to mention the fact that a least a few of those 10's of thousands might actually disagree with Obama. These types of election returns are only seen in countries run by dictators.

Just a reminder to those who want to get rid of the electoral college: corrupt Chicago voting practices could and would determine an election.

Lance Armstrong Cheated to Win. Is that Wrong?


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Gulity of Manslaughter. Sentenced to Church?!

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Operation Pillar of Defense (Day Five)

Rockets continue to be fired at Tel Aviv for the fourth straight day. Buried in this article is a potential widening scope. The article says that two rockets were fired at Tel Aviv, with the Military confirming that they both had been intercepted but only one of which came from Gaza. Where was the second rocket fired from?

"Sirens sounded across Tel Aviv for a fourth straight day on Sunday, AFP correspondents said, as Israeli police confirmed two rockets had been intercepted over the city by the Iron Dome defence system.

"Two rockets were intercepted by the Iron Dome system," police spokesman Luba Samri told AFP shortly after the sirens sent residents running for cover across the commercial metropolis and in nearby Bnei Brak and Ramat HaSharon.

The Israeli army confirmed the interception, but said that only one rocket had been fired from Gaza.

Israel has continue their efforts preparing for a ground incursion if their leadership deems it necessary.

"Israel’s Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu issued a stern warning to Hamas on Sunday, declaring that the Israeli army was prepared to significantly widen its Gaza offensive. Netanyahu’s threat came as Hamas launched a fresh rocket attack on Tel Aviv. "

The Israeli government continues to be under a sustained mass hacking attack. The rate of attemps has skyrocketd from a few hundred a day to almost ten million a day since the start of Operation Pillar of Defense.

"More than 44 million hacking attempts have been made on Israeli government web sites since Wednesday when Israel began its Gaza air strikes, the government said on Sunday.

Finance Minister Yuval Steinitz said just one hacking attempt was successful on a site he did not want to name, but it was up and running after 10 minutes of downtime.

Typically, there are a few hundred hacking attempts a day on Israeli sites, the ministry said.

Attempts on defence-related sites have been the highest, while 10 million attempts have been made on the site of Israel's president, 7 million on the Foreign Ministry and 3 million on the site of the prime minister.

A ministry spokesman said while the attacks have come from around the world, most have been from Israel and the Palestinian territories.

The hacker group 'Anonymous' has claimed credit for additional suspenseful attacks.

"Internet hacktivist group Anonymous has declared cyberwar on Israel, posting personal data of five thousand Israeli officials online.

­The group used their site to address a message to the Israeli government before linking to the page with names, ID numbers and personal emails of 5,000 officials.
Earlier, the group hacked over 700 hundred Israeli websites, including the Bank of Jerusalem, the Israeli Defence Ministry, the IDF blog, the President's official website and many others.

Most of the sites remain down

Obama continues to voice his support for Israel, but does seem to be hedging a bit warning against 'escalation'. Escalation means that Obama is likely apposed to a ground offensive into Gaza.

"Even as Obama turned his sights on Asia, widening violence in the Middle East competed for his attention.

Obama told reporters Sunday that Israel had the right to defend itself against missile attacks from Gaza. But he urged Israel not to launch a ground assault in Gaza, saying it would put Israeli soldiers, as well as Palestinian citizens, at greater risk and hamper an already vexing peace process.

"If we see a further escalation of the situation in Gaza, the likelihood of us getting back on any kind of peace track that leads to a two-state solution is going to be pushed off way into the future," Obama said.

The ongoing violence is likely to trail Obama as he makes his way from Thailand to Myanmar to Cambodia, his final stop before returning to Washington early Wednesday.

Bloggers have apparently found some more Pollywood, this time using a dead child. (via)

"The dead child was paraded before the cameras during the visit of Egyptian prime minister Hisham Kandil, who kissed the dead child in the presence of Hamas prime minister Ismail Haniyeh. But even the New York Times was suspicious.

Bloggers such as Elder of Ziyon quickly pieced together the evidence of Hamas fakery:

The IDF did not launch any airstrikes in Gaza while Egyptian PM Kandil was in Gaza...

If it was an Israeli missile, you can be sure that it would have been shown to the media! Furthermore, PCHR, which is keeping track of everyone killed in Gaza (and which admits that most of the dead have been "militants,") did not list Mahmoud Sadallah or Aiman Aby Wardah in their list of victims of Israeli airstrikes, although they even include one person who died of a heart attack.

Put this together with the fact that Hamas and other terror groups were firing rockets throughout Friday morning while the IDF did not, plus the fact that over 100 rockets have fallen short in Gaza (both using past performance and IDF statistics as proof), and the fact that the shrapnel in the video matches almost exactly the shrapnel damage we have seen from rocket fire into Israel, and it is very clear: this child was killed by Gaza rocket fire, not by Israel.

Hamas has a well-established pattern of faking civilian deaths in Gaza, even as it seeks civilian deaths in Israel (and fakes that, too, pretending it is firing at military targets).

The IDF have put out this fifth day recap of Operation Pillar of Defense.

Al Jazeera reports that an additional 30 Palestinians were killed today, 25 of which were terrorists. That brings to total casualty count to 80 Palestinians and 3 Israelis (all three Israelis were civilians).

"Barack Obama, the US president, said that while Israel had a right to defend itself, it would be "preferable" to avoid an Israeli ground invasion.
Airstrikes have continued in Gaza overnight

Sunday's 30 deaths in Gaza, including the deaths of five civilians on Monday, have brought the total number of Palestinians killed to 80 since the Israeli air strikes began targeting the Hamas-ruled territory six days ago.

On their part, fighters in Gaza continued to fire rockets into Israel. Two of them, aimed at the commercial hub of Tel Aviv, were shot down by Israel's anti-missile system, police said.

Past Posts on Operation Pillar of Defense (from first to last):
Berman Post: Israel Launches Operation "Pillar of Defense"
Berman Post: Operation Pillar of Defense (Day Two)
Berman Post: Operation Pillar of Defense (Day Three)
Berman Post: Operation Pillar of Defense (Day Four)

Saturday, November 17, 2012

Ron Paul's Farewell Address

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Report Says Obama Was Brief Benghazi Was a Terrorist Attack Within 72 Hours

I want to see a report showing he knew within hours, as I believe is the case.

"In a blockbuster report, John Solomon, the former Associated Press and Post reporter, has ferreted out the president’s daily brief that informed him within 72 hours of the Sept. 11 attack that the Benghazi attack was a jihadist operation.

Citing officials directly familiar with the information, Solomon writes in the Washington Guardian that Obama and other administration officials were told that “that the attack was likely carried out by local militia and other armed extremists sympathetic to al-Qaida in the region.”

He adds:

The details from the CIA and Pentagon assessments of the killing of Ambassador Chris [Stevens] were far more specific, more detailed and more current than the unclassified talking points that UN Ambassador Susan Rice and other officials used five days after the attack to suggest to Americans that an unruly mob angry over an anti-Islamic video was to blame, officials said.
Most of the details affirming al-Qaida links were edited or excluded from the unclassified talking points used by Rice in appearances on news programs the weekend after the attack, officials confirmed Friday. Multiple agencies were involved in excising information, doing so because it revealed sources and methods, dealt with classified intercepts or involved information that was not yet fully confirmed, the officials said.
Solomon cautions that there were bits of evidence pointing to a spontaneous attack but, as Eli Lake of the Daily Beast and others have reported, he writes: “Among the early evidence cited in the briefings to the president and other senior officials were intercepts showing some of the participants were known members or supporters of Ansar al-Sharia — the al-Qaida-sympathizing militia in Libya — and the AQIM, which is a direct affiliate of al-Qaida in northern Africa, the officials said.”

Media Manipulation and Unconventional Marketing: Author Ryan Holiday on "Trust Me I'm Lying"

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No More Twinkies!?

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Closet Democrat! Did Gov. Chris Christie Really Promise To Hike Taxes?!?

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Operation Pillar of Defense (Day Four)

Missiles fired from Egypt have landed in Israel. There was a report a few days ago that a rocket might have come out of the Sinai, but it was unconfirmed. In this attack there were reports from two different sources. It still does not appear that Egypt is interested in getting involved, but they are either unable or unwilling to stop Hamas from using the Sinai as a launching pad. Retaliations from Israel at strike teams in Egypt could escalate the situation fast; especially if the terrorists are also members of the Egyptian military.

"Two major Israeli newspapers are reporting that rockets fired from Egypt have hit Israel.

"Terrorists in the Sinai Peninsula launched rockets into Israel Friday night," reports the Jerusalem Post. "The rockets fell near an Israeli village on the southern border, causing some damage, but no injuries."

The Israeli daily Haaretz reports, "Rockets fired from direction of Egypt toward Eshkol Regional Council."

Rockets continue being launched at Tel Aviv. Israel has reportedly moved an upgraded Iron Dome system into position to defend against the continued bombardment.

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"The Iron Dome intercepted two Iranian-made Fajr-5 missiles aimed at Tel Aviv on Saturday. The missiles marked the third attack on the heavily populated central city in as many days, after Palestinian terrorists from Gaza fired four missiles toward the financial capital on Thursday and Friday, prompting red alert air raid sirens to sound in the city.
The Defense Ministry deployed an upgraded Iron Dome battery in the Gush Dan area in the center of Israel on Saturday morning, after rushing its production in light of escalation. The battery is the fifth Iron Dome system operational in Israel.

Israel has continued to launch strikes into Gaza targeting Hamas' depots and launch pads.

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"Israel bombarded the Hamas-ruled Gaza Strip with nearly 200 airstrikes early Saturday, the military said, widening a blistering assault on Gaza rocket operations to include the prime minister's headquarters, a police compound and a vast network of smuggling tunnels.

The Israeli military said its "Iron Dome" rocket-defense system shot down an incoming projectile bound for Tel Aviv.

Footage from Associated Press Television News shows a plume of smoke emanating from an Iron Dome battery deployed in Tel Aviv followed by a flash of light overhead as the rocket is intercepted. People huddled along Tel Aviv's beachfront boardwalk cheered Saturday as the interception took place.

Al Arabiya reports that Israel also leveled Hamas' Cabinet building.

"Israeli air strikes killed 10 Palestinians and destroyed the Hamas government building on Saturday as the Jewish state called up thousands more reservists for a possible ground war.

“The cabinet headquarters was targeted with four strikes and the government stresses that it remains committed to its positions and its stand alongside the people,” the Hamas government said in a statement.

Eyewitnesses and Hamas officials said the building located in the Nasser neighborhood of Gaza City was virtually leveled in the strike.

The online hacker group 'Anonymous' has taken up virtual arms against Israel, siding with Hamas, and has had a number of declared successful digital strikes.

"Anonymous, the online hacker group, sided with Hamas this week and declared war on Israel. The radical leftist group bragged today that they brought down over 550 Israeli websites and leaked email addresses and passwords.

The Next Web reported:

When the Israel Defense Forces (IDF) this week began taking military action in the Gaza strip against Hamas (as the IDF announced on Twitter), Anonymous declared its own war as part of #OpIsrael. Among the casualties are thousands of email addresses and passwords, hundreds of Israeli web sites, government-owned as well as privately owned pages, as well as databases belonging to the Bank of Jerusalem and the Ministry of Foreign Affairs.

If you live near Gaza, you have 15 seconds to reach shelter before the rockets hit.

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Ten year old Romie puts a human face to this ever present fear of the sirens, and the bigger fear that the sirens might not even go off in time.

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This clip shows some of the difficulty Israel faces stopping the rockets. While it was uploaded to Youtube today, it is impossible for me to confirm when this 'pop-up' rocket was actually fired.

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Crowder adds some context.

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The IDF has released this recap of day four.

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Al-Jazeera is reporting the current death toll at 40-45 Palestinians, 13 of which were civilians, and three Israeli civilians.

"Israel and Palestinian fighters have traded air strikes and rockets for a fourth day, with Israel hitting the Hamas prime minister's office and also downing a rocket aimed at Tel Aviv.

The death toll from the conflict climbed on Saturday to 45: 40 Palestinians, at least 13 of them civilians, including women and children, and three Israeli civilians.
The rocket - the third aimed at Tel Aviv in three days - came as Israel's Operation Pillar of Defence showed no sign of letting up, with the Israeli air force bombing targets in the Gaza Strip.

By early evening Israel had struck about 950 Gaza sites since Wednesday - a period during which more than 400 Palestinian missiles have also hit Israel.

An additional 240 rockets were intercepted and destroyed by Iron Dome, the Israeli military said.

A late Friday night meeting of the Israeli cabinet called on 75,000 Israeli reservists in the event of a ground incursion into the Gaza Strip.

Past Posts on Operation Pillar of Defense (from first to last):
Berman Post: Israel Launches Operation "Pillar of Defense" (Pillar of Cloud)
Berman Post: Operation Pillar of Defense (Day Two)
Berman Post: Operation Pillar of Defense (Day Three)
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