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At least six killed in Karachi mosque attack
Today's Headlines
Headline Comments [Views]
Page 3: Non-WoT
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-Short Attention Span Theater-
WAPO CONFIRMS: Mark Felt was "Deep Throat"
Follow-up to earlier Rantburg report from Vanity Fair.
Identity of 'Deep Throat' Source Revealed

Washington Post Story-Felt confirmed as source.

SANTA ROSA, Calif. - The Washington Post said Tuesday that a former FBI official, W. Mark Felt, was the confidential source known as "Deep Throat" who provided the newspaper information that led to President Nixon's impeachment and eventual resignation. The paper made its announcement on its Web site after Felt, 91 and living in California, talked to a lawyer who wrote a magazine article for Vanity Fair. "The No. 2 guy from the FBI, that was a pretty good source," said Ben Bradlee, who had been the key editor at the Post in the Watergate era.

Posted by: Atomic Conspiracy || 05/31/2005 21:06 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [6474 views] Top|| File under:

#1  Rats! Did it again. Belongs on Page 3.
Posted by: Atomic Conspiracy || 05/31/2005 21:10 Comments || Top||

#2  Figures...there goes the neighborhood.
Posted by: Rex Mundi || 05/31/2005 22:02 Comments || Top||

#3  I have been trying to figure out how world history would have been effected if this guy had kept his mouth shut: no Gerald Ford, no Jimmy Carter--would the Iranian revolution have occurred for instance?? Did he commit any crimes (number 2 at the FBI rats out the president). Anyone care to speculate? The media treats him like a hero...is he really?
Posted by: Elmereper Jomosing1480 || 05/31/2005 22:12 Comments || Top||

#4  So, "Deep Throat" is finally revealed.


That is so last century.
Posted by: Barbara Skolaut || 05/31/2005 22:14 Comments || Top||

#5  What I find amazing is that all this time, the guy wasn't all that far away from here.
Posted by: Bomb-a-rama || 05/31/2005 22:21 Comments || Top||

#6  File this under "For once, the MSM Tells the Truth."
Posted by: badanov || 05/31/2005 22:42 Comments || Top||

#7  "For once, the MSM Tells the Truth."

Dang! I hope they didn't sprain nuthin'.
Posted by: SteveS || 05/31/2005 23:03 Comments || Top||

#8  Who friggin cares anymore? Felt is just another reason to clean house at the CIA. If the President cant trust our spies who can he rely on?
Posted by: Cyber Sarge || 05/31/2005 23:32 Comments || Top||

Toilet Papers: The Gendered Construction of Public Toilets
Call for Papers Honest, we can't make this stuff up!
Toilet Papers: The Gendered Construction of Public Toilets

Olga Gershenson (University of Massachusetts-Amherst)Where else?Barbara Penner (University College-London)

"You know what they say about men who hang around women's lavatories. They're asking to have their illusions shattered."
- Georgina to Albert, The Cook, The Thief, His Wife, and Her Lover

We invite contributions for the edited collection Toilet Papers: The Gendered Construction of Public Toilets.
Public toilets are amenities with a functional, even a civic, purpose. Yet they also act as the unconscious of public spaces. They can be a haven: a place to regain composure, to 'check one's face,' or to have a private chat. But they are also sexually-charged and transgressive spaces that shelter illicit sexual practices and act as a cultural repository for taboos and fantasies.

This collection will work from the premise that public toilets, far from being banal or simply functional, are highly charged spaces, shaped by notions of propriety, hygiene and the binary gender division. Indeed, public toilets are among the very few openly segregated spaces in contemporary Western culture, and the physical differences between 'gentlemen' and 'ladies' remains central to (and is further naturalized by) their design. As such, they provide a fertile ground for critical work interrogating how conventional assumptions about the body, sexuality, privacy, and technology can be formed in public space and inscribed through design.

We welcome papers which explore the cultural meanings, histories, and ideologies of the public toilet as a gendered space. Any subject is appropriate: toilet design and signage, toilet humour and euphemisms, personal narratives and legal cases, as well as art sited in public toilets. We invite submissions in the format of traditional academic papers of no more than 7000 words (including footnotes).

We also welcome the submissions of design and art projects that expose the gendered nature of the 'functional' toilet spaces and objects.

Completed articles and projects should be directed to Olga Gershenson at the following email address.
Email: " with "@").">gershensonjudnea.umass.edu (email address is not linked in order to thwart spam; to send email replace the "" with "@").
Posted by: Steve || 05/31/2005 10:45 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [6462 views] Top|| File under:

#1  We invite submissions in the format of traditional academic papers of no more than 7000 words (including footnotes).

Does it have to be a certain ply?
Posted by: BH || 05/31/2005 10:58 Comments || Top||

#2  And to think I thought public tiolets were just a last resort place to take a dump.
But this treatise should keep Olga in grant money for years...
Posted by: tu3031 || 05/31/2005 11:05 Comments || Top||

Posted by: Korora || 05/31/2005 11:11 Comments || Top||

#4  Oops, forgot the text.

That is a picture of the author.
Posted by: Korora || 05/31/2005 11:13 Comments || Top||

#5  A long-held suspicions that the edumacayshun funding is going into toilets has been confirmed!
Posted by: Sobiesky || 05/31/2005 12:00 Comments || Top||

#6  Penis envy
Posted by: john || 05/31/2005 12:38 Comments || Top||

#7  That was a load! I feel better now.
Posted by: Olga Gershenson || 05/31/2005 19:54 Comments || Top||

Paris to marry Paris, prob'ly in Paris...
Hotel heiress and "The Simple Life" reality TV star Paris Hilton is engaged to her boyfriend, Greek shipping heir Paris Latsis, her spokesman said. "They are happy and excited," Hilton spokesman Rob Shuter said Monday, confirming the story first reported on People magazine's Web site. Latsis, 27, proposed to Hilton, 24, on Wednesday after she returned from a three-week publicity tour in Europe to promote her horror flick "House of Wax" and her new fragrance.

"I'm so in love and grateful to have found such an honest and loyal person," Hilton told Us Weekly magazine. "I feel like we were meant to be, and I'm happy to have found someone to spend the rest of my life with." The magazine quoted her fiance calling Hilton "the most beautiful woman I've ever met. I feel like the luckiest man in the world."
"Or at least as lucky as all the other guys who've had her..."
The couple, who have been dating for about eight months, marked the engagement Saturday with a barbecue for 75 friends and family at their Hollywood Hills home, Shuter said.
Then they watched some videos...
No wedding date has been set. It would be the first marriage for both.
Posted by: Fred || 05/31/2005 09:56 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [6460 views] Top|| File under:

#1  F* her, buddy, we did!
Posted by: BH || 05/31/2005 10:14 Comments || Top||

#2  He'll always have Paris...well, him and a buncha other guys...
Posted by: Seafarious || 05/31/2005 10:48 Comments || Top||

#3  Assuming she'd be old-fashioned enough to take his name, that would make them Paris Latsis and Paris Latsis. We were wondering how many married couples have the same name. (Chrises, Pats, etc)

I told my boyfriend that Parislatsis sounds like some sort of medical conditions, but that's peristalsis (and it's not a condition, just a mechanism).
Posted by: Angie Schultz || 05/31/2005 11:11 Comments || Top||

#4  Another one of them Greek shipping magnates? Really? I'm so surprised that he doesn't drive a trash truck in Compton...well, maybe not.
Posted by: tu3031 || 05/31/2005 11:33 Comments || Top||

#5  Rating: P-3
Posted by: Captain America || 05/31/2005 14:42 Comments || Top||

#6  Guy's in the shipping biz?

-- Any port will do
Posted by: Captain America || 05/31/2005 14:44 Comments || Top||

#7  I give it six months...at best.
Posted by: 2b || 05/31/2005 16:16 Comments || Top||

#8  Mods - I'da bet money that you couldn't have Paris Hilton and a hummer in the same pic since this is (most times) a family blog.

Ding Dong I'm wrong. :0
Posted by: Doc8404 || 05/31/2005 19:22 Comments || Top||

Fire Allegedly Set to Get Guests to Leave
A 46-year-old man allegedly set his own home on fire in order to get two visitors to leave, police said.
I think I had them over last week...
Dean Craig was charged with felony arson after allegedly splashing rubbing alcohol on the floor of the two-story home in Aurora Township and using a lighter to ignite the fire around 1 a.m. Sunday, the Kane County Sheriff's office said. When authorities arrived at Craig's home, which is owned by his mother, it was engulfed in flames, police said. Craig and his two guests were not injured. Craig allegedly had asked two visitors to leave, but when they refused, he threatened to light his house on fire, police said.
Posted by: Fred || 05/31/2005 00:00 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [6463 views] Top|| File under:

#1  Call me crazy, but I'm thinking there was another form of alcohol involved, as well.
Posted by: .com || 05/31/2005 0:47 Comments || Top||

#2  stoopid stoopid stoopid! shulda tried em ole candels an unlit stove trik insted.
Posted by: Flairong Omeart38114doo || 05/31/2005 1:07 Comments || Top||

#3  "Craig allegedly had asked two visitors to leave, but when they refused, he threatened to light his house on fire, police said."

lamest alibi I ever heard.

..OTOH they were prolly too lame to be cooking up a batch...ethyl ether,acetone for the cocaine and ethyl alcohol for the "lab tecs".
Posted by: Super Fly || 05/31/2005 9:46 Comments || Top||

#4  Chicago Sun Times says "crackheads".
Posted by: tu3031 || 05/31/2005 11:55 Comments || Top||

#5  Hokay. I can believe it. I changed the graphic.
Posted by: Fred || 05/31/2005 14:21 Comments || Top||

Scholars Frustrate Extremists on Women Driving Issue
A number of extremists have expressed their frustration at the reaction of some scholars to the matter of women driving which was ruled out at the Shoura Council Session last week. The reaction of the scholars, which frustrated their followers, was of two kinds. Some of the scholars, such as Naser Al-Omar and Safar Al-Hawali, kept quiet and did not comment on the issue. Others, such as Salman Al-Oudah and Abdul Mohsin Al-Obaikan, said there were no religious objections to women driving but that the community was not yet ready for it. The scholars agreed that if women were allowed to drive at present, it might lead to situations which would result in behavior which violated religious laws.

In addition, some of the extremists referred to statements by the late Saudi scholars, Sheikh Bin Baz and Sheikh Ibn Othaimeen. They were among the most learned scholars in the Islamic world and their opinions and ideas are still respected in matters of religion. The extremists accused the present-day scholars of being less strict and less honest than the two sheikhs. Some of them said that Ibn Othaimeen said in the late 90s that women driving was religiously prohibited. Arab News, however, listened to a recording of the sheikh's speech and he never used the word "haram" (forbidden) when speaking of women driving. What he said was that for women to drive was a "mistake because it could lead to corruption." His idea was that the community was not ready to accept women driving.
This article starring:
ABDUL MOHSIN AL OBAIKANLearned Elders of Islam
NASER AL OMARLearned Elders of Islam
SAFAR AL HAWALILearned Elders of Islam
SALMAN AL UDAHLearned Elders of Islam
Posted by: Fred || 05/31/2005 00:00 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [6461 views] Top|| File under:

#1  So women never drove the oxen/camels?
Posted by: anonymous2u || 05/31/2005 2:48 Comments || Top||

#2  the ruling on women driving is based on the sharia principle that the activity will have bad consequences, e.g., women leaving the home and not cooking for the men, women seeking independence, women rebelling against their fathers, etc.

these consequences are not universal; in some communities they would not occur

there was a ruling in about 1990 by the Saudi religious authority

this is the ruling that was being discussed
Posted by: mhw || 05/31/2005 8:21 Comments || Top||

#3  Actually, it appears that the threshold is not that the activity will inevitably lead to bad consequences, but that the activity MIGHT lead to bad consequences. It does not matter if 99% of the time the consequences are good or benign. That possible 1% is what is used.

Further evidence of a theory I have, where I postulate that leftists and muslims share similar mind-sets, ways of thinking, and behaviors that are strangely self-destructive.
Posted by: Ptah || 05/31/2005 9:27 Comments || Top||


Theory indeed,

Your absolutist comments are representative of a fascist point of view, are you a fascist or just too lazy too look beyond your immediate stereotype comfort zones?

The world is not black and white my friend, but a cornicopia of gray.

Absolutism is far too akin to fascism for any good redblooded American to purport to subscribe to it, however, I am sure that the fuehrer would agree with your absolutist statements?

While I would agree with your first statements, why must you indict all Muslims, I know a few fundamentalist christians who don't allow their women to ct their hair. So must we indict all Christians? No, so step back and take a look at your statement again, while it may be semantical error on your part. It seems you need to evaluate your "theory" again.

Posted by: Mountain Man || 05/31/2005 13:58 Comments || Top||

#5  Hmmm... Y'ain't from around here, air yew?

Since I'm too lazy to repeat myself yet again on the subject of fascism, perhaps you could try reading more than one article and its comments out of an archive going back four years. Then you can read up on who Safar al-Hawali is, and maybe find out something about the other three clerics and ponder what an "absolutist" point of view actually is.
Posted by: Fred || 05/31/2005 14:27 Comments || Top||

#6  a cornicopia of gray.

LOL! 9.483

Points for mixer mets.
Posted by: Shipman || 05/31/2005 14:41 Comments || Top||

Yemen: hookers banned from evening strolls. I think.
A security decision was issued last week for banning women belonging to the marginalized category from walking in the evening in many zones in the city of Taiz [Yemen]. Colonel Nasser al-A'awash, General Director of the Police Department of West Taiz, told the Yemen Times that his department received numerous complaints by locals in al-Musalla Street urging policemen to arrest marginalized women ( from Akhdam category) who walk in the street over the night. According to locals, these women commit immoral crimes with youths in the zone. Colonel al-A'awash added all the marginalized women are prohibited from walking in streets at night, and some of them were arrested and released after they pledged not to leave their homes at night. According to the police, whosoever violates the regulations will be arrested and punished.
I do believe they're talking about hookers...
Posted by: Fred || 05/31/2005 00:00 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [6467 views] Top|| File under:

#1  Can the walk in the daytime or open viewing shops like in Amsterdam?
Posted by: 3dc || 05/31/2005 0:18 Comments || Top||

#2  In the good ol' bad old days of Mayor Marion Barry, the DC cops brainstormed a new way to restrain the trade of the marginalized category workers: drivers of cars were forbidden from making right hand turns in the marginalized category trade zones.
Posted by: Seafarious || 05/31/2005 0:32 Comments || Top||

#3  Looks like they may be being arrested for being Akhdam;
The Akhdam, literally "servants" in Arabic, is the lowest rung in the Yemeni caste system and by far the poorest. Marginalized and shunned by mainstream society, its members live in small shantytowns, mostly in big cities, including the capital, San'a. The common belief is that the Akhdam descended from the remnants of the Ethiopian kingdom in Yemen, defeated in the sixth century. Its soldiers were consigned to the lowest form of servitude. As a result, they are viewed as dirty and polluted. As one popular Yemeni proverb puts it: "Clean your plate if touched by a dog, but break it if touched by a Khadem" — the singular form of Akhdam.
"Once I joked with my brother that I had eaten with a Khadem," recalls a student at San'a University. "He became angry and said: 'Stay away from me! You're a Khadem. They're filthy, and they don't pray!' "
In Yemen's conservative Muslim society, Yemenis see the Akhdam as not fulfilling their religious duties, and therefore consider them impure. Huda Seif, a fellow at Emory Law School, said in a report last year: "The further condemnation of the 'non-Arab' as a fallen Muslim, who is unable to fully carry out the moral codes of Islam, only serves to legitimize the initial ethnic difference and prejudices, which are unequivocally proscribed in Islamic teachings." No official figures exist on the Akhdam population, but a study conducted by the United Nations Children's Fund in the late 1990s estimated there were roughly 200,000 in Yemen.

Hard to say from the article, but "being descended from the Ethiopian kingdom" may be one way of saying they're black.
Posted by: Steve || 05/31/2005 8:27 Comments || Top||

#4  Why don't they let them drive then?
Posted by: john || 05/31/2005 10:12 Comments || Top||

#5  It seems that they may be the descendents of Ethiopians left behind during a failed invasion in the 6th century.

"...they have, in most, African characteristics in as far as the color of their skin, snub nose and tough, short curly hairs are concerned..."

Posted by: Tom || 05/31/2005 20:35 Comments || Top||

Caribbean-Latin America
Russia Buys Its Way Into Latin America
May 31, 2005: The Venezuelan decision to buy 100,000 assault rifles from Russia has produced a lot of contradictory information. Even for the usually torturous military procurement process, this is unusual. Russian media initially announced that the deal for 100,000 AK-103s (a much updated version of the half century old AK-47 design) for $54 million (which appeared to be the wholesale/bulk purchase price for the AK-103), was followed by reports (the usual reliable sources) from inside Venezuela, that the actual price was $1200 each, with a third being distributed as bribes to various politicians. This made sense, as it had happened so often before, and the new "revolutionary" government of Venezuela has, so far, proved to be as corrupt as previous ones.

Now the Venezuelan government announced that they are getting the AK-103s for $186.22 each. In the United States, you can buy the same rifle for $825. But it gets more interesting. As part of the deal, Russia will transfer the technology to enable the Venezuelans to build the AK-103 themselves, under license (paying the Russian patent holders royalties.) Venezuela is sending 45 people to Russia to spend eleven months mastering the manufacturing technology.) No details given on when the manufacturing plant will be ready, or how many AK-103s it will produce.

The Russians are selling 100,00 AK-103s at a loss, and granting a license to produce them in Venezuela. What does this mean? It means that the Russians are continuing their energetic efforts to capture arms markets in Latin America. Russian weapons have a reputation, in Latin America, as being cheap, but crude. This is no longer the case. Since the end of the Cold War, Russian arms manufacturers, at least the ones that are still in business, have upgraded their manufacturing technology. While not up to Western standards yet, they are producing much better stuff than they did in the past. But they realize they have to take some drastic measures to overcome their old reputation. It's quite possible that the Venezuelan AK-103 deal went through several twists and turns before someone in Russia decided to offer a deal that could not be refused, and would serve as a way to get Latin American countries to take another look at Russian weapons.
Posted by: Steve || 05/31/2005 14:00 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [6465 views] Top|| File under:

More on Chavez
Again, translated by computer with subsequent clean-up by me. All errors mine.

I've tweaked this translation a bit but don't have my dictionaries with me so this is still rough .....

President Hugo Chävez, ending the speculation swirling around him after he failed to appear at a rally he called on Saturday [NB: as previously scheduled] and on his Sunday program [NB: !Alo Presidente!, his weekly TV broadcast], will preside over the 428th Counsel of Ministers meeting in the palace of government.

The President said that he had been visiting his daughter in Barquisimeto, reiterating that the suspension of his broadcast was due to the Venezuela-Brazil volleyball match.

The President showed up on Venezuelan television announcing the approval of a series of credit measures and the quick opening of the Metro to the Teques. In response to the rumors that spread regarding the absence of the head of state, zones of security were set up around Miraflores Monday morning by followers of the government who insisted on knowing on his life and health, which convinced the President to appear on the TV screen.
Posted by: Steve White || 05/31/2005 00:15 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [6464 views] Top|| File under:

#1  If syphillis can't kill Mugabe then I doubt losing to Brazil in volleyball will kill Hugo. More than likely he had a recurrence of acne breakout that made him unacceptable goods for a national TV spot but got him a role as Scarface in the upcoming sequel to Dick Tracy.
Posted by: Jack is Back! || 05/31/2005 9:45 Comments || Top||

#2  ah see .... the very possibility that I am in danger calls out my supporters! Who would dare to attack me????
Posted by: too true || 05/31/2005 10:07 Comments || Top||

Chavez reappears in public
Translated from Spanish by FreeTranslation.com with some cleanup by me. Hat tip to Babalu Blog.
Caracas.- The president of the Republic, Hugo Chävez, explained today in the Counsel of Ministers, transmitted live by the channel of the state, the motive of his absence of 24 hours that caused all types of hypothesis (NB: speculation?).

The president said that after seeing the volleyball match between Venezuela-Brazil, yesterday (May 29), he decided to travel to Barquisimeto to visit his daughter, Rosainés Chävez, age approximately seven years. "He has not passed anything, absolutely nothing" expressed President Chävez. "I took advantage of not doing "Hello President" (NB: !Alo President!, his weekly TV broadcast) and I went to see my girl", he said.

It explained that the reason of the suspension of the Sunday program "Hello President" was the match between Venezuela-Brazil in the world league of volleyball, that was played in the Polyhedron of Caracas.
I doubt that Hugo cancelled his weekly broadcast becasue volleyball is so important to the nation. In the comments section of the referring blog, speculation is that Chavez played possum -- set up a disappearance to smoke out those who might want him gone. Create some confusion and then ID everyone who moved against you. Dunno, but something is going on.
Posted by: Steve White || 05/31/2005 00:15 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [6459 views] Top|| File under:

#1  This is the kind of behavior you expect from a sicko fascist personality cult leader like Stalin or Papa Doc or Ceausescu. After Hitler launched Barbarossa against Stalin, the latter disappeared from public view for nearly two weeks, incapacitated by depression, moaning to Khrushchev and others, "What would Lenin think? We've let the Revolution go to shit...."

Something very weird is happening with Chavez.
Posted by: thibaud (aka lex) || 05/31/2005 0:31 Comments || Top||

#2  >Something very weird is happening with Chavez.

But that's not really news. The guy's the Latin version of Doctor Evil.
Posted by: Slick Cletle5880 || 05/31/2005 12:28 Comments || Top||

#3  I'd guess he's more the Latin version of Ion Antonescu and the kindred fascists running Mittel Europan countries during WWII. 50-60 years later, they're long since forgotten, probably even by the people in their countries.
Posted by: Fred || 05/31/2005 15:10 Comments || Top||

Caucasus/Russia/Central Asia
Russia to withdraw Georgia troops
Russia has agreed to withdraw its remaining troops from Georgia by 2008. The deal was announced in Moscow by Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov after he held talks there with Georgian counterpart Salome Zurabishvili. Mrs Zurabishvili called it an "important and constructive step", and said Georgia had achieved its goal. Russia currently has two Soviet-era bases in Georgia, whose continued presence has been a source of tension between Moscow and Tbilisi. The two bases are home to about 3,000 troops.

The deal follows months of talks between Moscow and Tbilisi, after previous attempts failed to reach an agreement on Russian withdrawal. Tbilisi had wanted Russian troops to leave by the beginning of 2008, but Moscow said it needed four years to complete the pull-out. Russian Defence Minister Sergei Ivanov had previously said it could take up to four years to build accommodation to house the servicemen who would be withdrawn. In March this year, Georgian MPs voted unanimously to outlaw Russia's military presence in the country unless Moscow withdrew its servicemen by 1 January 2006. They threatened to declare the bases illegal and stop issuing entry visas to Russian troops if they failed to withdraw.
Posted by: Fred || 05/31/2005 00:00 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [6470 views] Top|| File under:

China Loses A Submarine
A Chinese Navy submarine stalled apparently after a fire broke out aboard the vessel while it was submerged in the South China Sea, sources close to the Japanese and U.S. defense authorities said Monday. As of Monday afternoon, the submarine was being towed above the water in the direction of Hainan Island. The Japanese and U.S. governments have been monitoring the vessel, and it is unknown whether there were any casualties, the sources said. The warship in question is a Chinese Navy Ming-class diesel-powered hunter-killer submarine, the sources added.

According to the sources, the accident occurred in international waters about halfway between Taiwan and Hainan Island on Thursday, and the submarine was being towed by a Chinese vessel apparently in the direction of Yulin Naval Port on the island. It is not known whether the submarine surfaced on its own, the sources added. Three or four Chinese warships were spotted around the site of the accident, and another Chinese submarine was detected, which suggests that an accident may have occurred during a military exercise, the sources said.

The Japanese and U.S. governments believe the accident will not affect surrounding areas because the vessel was not nuclear-powered, the sources said. In 2003, all 70 crew members of a Ming-class submarine were killed in an accident caused by a mechanical malfunction. The accident is believed to have been caused by a rapid decline in the amount of oxygen inside the submarine. China never disclosed the cause. The waters in which the latest accident occurred are strategically important for China as the South China Sea includes Spratly Islands, on which several countries lay territorial claims. China also has conducted frequent drills involving submarines in the area. In the event of a military attack on Taiwan, China likely would use the area to block U.S. carrier-borne fighters from coming to the aid of the island.
Posted by: Anonymoose || 05/31/2005 11:02 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [6473 views] Top|| File under:

#1  Romeo! Romeo!
Where art thou knock-off?

It's the batteries Juliet,
Upon my floor.
Posted by: Shipman || 05/31/2005 13:16 Comments || Top||

#2  He-he Shipman!
Posted by: mmurray821 || 05/31/2005 13:35 Comments || Top||

#3  Are we seeing the beginning of the end for the Chinese navy (like the Russkies before them)? Or is this another chess play off the coast of Taiwan?
Posted by: BA || 05/31/2005 15:12 Comments || Top||

#4  Mandarin is such a tonal language, can you imagine how confusing it must be for them when they communicat via sound powered phones?
Posted by: Penguin || 05/31/2005 16:13 Comments || Top||

#5  China wants to play a numbers game with its navy, like with everything else. They probably figure that if they can send several submarines after one US submarine, they can sacrifice any submarine just to get the US submarine to expose itself, then have their remaining ships concentrate its fires on it. Do not discount the willingness to sacrifice, or the value of quantity over quality.
Posted by: Anonymoose || 05/31/2005 17:28 Comments || Top||

#6  It is said that quality has a quantity all of it's own.
Posted by: Shipman || 05/31/2005 17:35 Comments || Top||

#7  Andre... you've lost another submarine?

Posted by: Seafarious || 05/31/2005 17:53 Comments || Top||

#8  The Hunt for Red October, first thing I thought when I read the headline
Posted by: djohn66 || 05/31/2005 18:41 Comments || Top||

#9  Accident number two, eh?

Those Mings are merciless...
Posted by: Pappy || 05/31/2005 20:06 Comments || Top||

#10  Romeo! Romeo!
Where art thou knock-off?

Same as the other Romeos:

2 CZ's away with a busted snort, listing to port.
Posted by: OldSpook || 05/31/2005 20:43 Comments || Top||

#11  China wants to play a numbers game with its navy, like with everything else. They probably figure that if they can send several submarines after one US submarine, they can sacrifice any submarine just to get the US submarine to expose itself, then have their remaining ships concentrate its fires on it. Do not discount the willingness to sacrifice, or the value of quantity over quality

Chinese Sailor: "He said what???"
Posted by: Frank G || 05/31/2005 21:19 Comments || Top||

#12  The Ming is probably the oldest basic design of submarine currently in service with a major power, certainly the oldest serving in significant numbers. The "Romeo" class were an
improved version of the "Whiskey," itself derived from the German Type XXI U-boat of WW2.

Nevertheless, these boats have a significant strategic potential. The vagaries of the ocean being what they are, it is possible for even an obsolete sub to get lucky against major opposition, and this likelihood naturally grows with the numbers.
The Ming, like all subs of any reasonable size, has a pretty good range. They could disrupt commerce and divert resources over a very large and critical area by forcing merchant ships to travel in convoy. In the time required to get a convoy system organized, the Chinese sub fleet could pick off dozens of container ships, tankers, fishing vessels and other unprotected traffic all over the western Pacific and perhaps further afield. The economic impact would be in the many billions within hours. Perhaps even more importantly in the age of media-warfare, such sinkings would greatly assist the Fifth Column media in their utterly predictable efforts to sow panic and defeatism at an early stage.

It is also likely that subs like the Ming can be used for special ops insertion, again over a huge area. A diesel-electric sub that avoids drawing attention to itself has a fair chance of reaching any coastline in the world adding to the diversion of resources from the most important areas.
Posted by: Atomic Conspiracy || 05/31/2005 21:42 Comments || Top||

#13  Iirc, the Ming is credited with a range of about 4500 miles. This is pretty good in and of itself, but there is great potential for clandestine replenishment in other areas; Iran, certain African countries on both coasts, and Venezuela for example.
Beyond that, it is conceivable that the submarines could replenish clandestinely from merchant ships or naval auxiliaries belonging to any of these countries, or possibly even from vessels operated by various pirate and traitor elements of any nationality.
This would be on a small scale, and losses would be high, but the propaganda value of being able to threaten any part of the world would be enormous.
It is unlikely that these submarines could approach the US coast closely enough to do real danger (though even this is not impossible) but attacks and sinkings in nearby but relatively unprotected areas would have a devastating psychological impact. This could include the coast of Mexico or the Caribbean, as well as certain outlying territories of the US. Similar damage could be done in European waters. In the age of media-based warfare, the objective military importance of the targets would be a secondary consideration.
In this respect, the strategy would resemble that of modern terrorists.
Like the Islamic terrorists, the Chinese admirals could count on defeatist media to inflate any target into evidence of their invincibility and power.
Posted by: Atomic Conspiracy || 05/31/2005 22:00 Comments || Top||

#14  Remember, in WW2, the Germans and Japanese were able to operate WW2-era-technology subs within visual range of the coasts of the United States... and we were able to blockade Japan with similar subs.
Posted by: Phil Fraering || 05/31/2005 22:47 Comments || Top||

Japan's Top Court Gives OK To Reopen Monju Fast Breeder Reactor
Japan's Supreme Court on Monday gave the green light to reopen an experimental reactor opposed by residents on safety concerns, in a landmark ruling on the country's nuclear energy program.
The Monju nuclear reactor located in Tsuruga, 350 kilometers (217 miles) west of Tokyo, was a signature of Japan's energy projects until December 1995 when it was closed due to a massive leak of sodium coolant.

The Nagoya High Court in January 2003 for the first time ordered the closure of a Japanese reactor, siding with a lawsuit filed before the accident by local people who wanted Monju shut down due to fears of a meltdown.

But the Supreme Court backed the government which said it has taken sufficient measures to ensure safety at Monju, administered by the government-run Japan Nuclear Cycle Development Institute.

"We cannot say that there were mistakes or oversights in discussions on safety measures or decision-making," the supreme court ruled.

"Therefore, we cannot say it is unconstitutional and we cannot nullify its approval," the court said.

The six billion-dollar, 280,000-kilowatt "fast-breeder" reactor designed to produce more plutonium than it consumes has been emblematic for Japan, which relies heavily on nuclear energy due to its lack of natural resources.

Even ahead of the Supreme Court ruling, local government authorities citing the economic impact of the plant had approved a plan to repair it and resume operation in 2008.

"The ruling means confirmation that safety inspections were proper," said Yuichi Tonozuka, head of the nuclear institute. "We are determined to do our best to resume operation."

But residents said the ruling had done nothing to ease their worries.

"There will undoubtedly be problems if they try to operate it," the plaintiffs' lawyer, Yuichi Kaido, told a news conference. "When that happens, it is the Supreme Court that will be put to shame."

No one was injured in the 1995 incident and no radiation was leaked, but the public was outraged after workers and officials involved in the project allegedly lied by hiding a video recording of the accident.

Concerns about safety at nuclear reactors grew further after five workers were killed in the nation's worst nuclear accident in 2004 at Mihama nuclear plant just 10 kilometers (6.2 miles) away from Monju.

Japan's nuclear energy reliance hit a peak of 36.8 percent for the year to March 1999 but plunged to some 25 percent in 2003 after power firms temporarily shut down reactors for emergency check-ups following accidents and cover-up scandals.

But the use of nuclear energy climbed back up to 29.1 percent in the year to March 2005 and the government has set a goal of 41 percent in 2010.

Currently, 54 nuclear reactors are operating in Japan to provide electricity.

Japan's insistence on the fast-breeder reactor project even after the 1995 accident is at odds with much of the developed world.

Major developed countries such as the United States, France and Germany have tried but abandoned the development of the controversial reactors due to huge development costs and concerns about the environment.

But India and China, developing countries concerned about a shortage of power in the near future, have both begun planning for the fast-breeders.
Posted by: Spavirt Pheng6042 || 05/31/2005 02:26 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [6464 views] Top|| File under:

#1  Should be filed under Signs and Portents (N. Korea Division)? Go for it Japan! I've never heard of "fast breeders," but if it makes more plutonium than it consumes...go for it! And, what's with the bias on that country's WORST nuclear accident killing only 4 people (who were workers, at that). While I grieve for those workers, that, my friend, is no bad accident (in the nuclear world). Heck, here in the red state of Georgia, we had 34 people killed this weekend alone (Memorial Day weekend) in car accidents! That's it...let's ban cars!
Posted by: BA || 05/31/2005 8:43 Comments || Top||

#2  Call me pessimistic, but isn't this exactly the sort of thing than always ends with Tokyo being stomped flat by giant rubber monsters?

On the other hand, it *will* piss off the Chinese.
Posted by: SteveS || 05/31/2005 9:28 Comments || Top||

#3  The six billion-dollar, 280,000-kilowatt "fast-breeder" reactor designed to produce more plutonium than it consumes has been emblematic for Japan, which relies heavily on nuclear energy due to its lack of natural resources.

Hmm is this the Japaneese way of telling the Chineese to get off their back and chill or China will wake up one morning at the end of the fuel cycle to find out Japan joined the nuclear club and can now match the Chineese MADD style deturence.

One thing I like about the new US policy unlike the old one when facing Soviet Union in Europe we are now not letting our allies get off with making us carry all of our water and thiers to the fight. We are pushing Japan and others to stand up themselves to the Chineese not just go socialist and complain while the whole time expecting full well the US military to come to the rescue.
Posted by: C-Low || 05/31/2005 11:50 Comments || Top||

#4  Japan already has tons of plutonium. Their newly opened reprocessing plant can produce enough plutonium for 1000 bombs per year.

If they went nuclear, with their scientific and industrial base, they could easily be the second most powerful nuclear power in a few years.
China could never match them.

Also, the Japanese Navy far outclasses other asian powers. It has more frigates than the Royal Navy and some flat tops the Japanese insist on calling cruisers. They are in fact small aircraft carriers, able to take Harriers or JSFs.

Posted by: john || 05/31/2005 15:59 Comments || Top||

#5  and some flat tops the Japanese insist on calling cruisers

? A building?
Posted by: Shipman || 05/31/2005 16:45 Comments || Top||

#6  Several helicopter carriers that could easily embark VTOL aircraft.

Posted by: john || 05/31/2005 17:09 Comments || Top||

#7  Glad to hear about them.
Posted by: Shipman || 05/31/2005 17:41 Comments || Top||

#8  Japanese Plutonium Program Threatens Nonproliferation Regime, Warn Nobel Laureates and Other Experts
UN Delegates Told Reprocessing Plant Could Produce Plutonium for 1,000 Nuclear Bombs a Year
Despite the fact that Japan has a stated policy of having "no surplus plutonium," at the end of 2003 its plutonium stockpile stood at 40.6 metric tons—enough to construct some 5,000 nuclear weapons.
"With Rokkasho operational, by 2020 Japan's domestic stock of plutonium could equal the U.S. stockpile of plutonium for weapons," said Frank von Hippel, physicist and professor at the Science and Global Security Program at Princeton. "Separated plutonium poses a risk of theft, and such large stocks would be destabilizing."
Posted by: john || 05/31/2005 18:11 Comments || Top||

#9  Officially, Japan has no Navy. Its self defense forces have several of these.
The Japanese refuse to call them carriers.

Posted by: john || 05/31/2005 18:27 Comments || Top||

Down Under
Tim Blair's Modest Proposal
A man, a plan, er, Indonesia?
(edited to the good bits)

But the prime minister's invitation would only be a first step. The next would come somewhere between Jakarta and Sydney, when a covert baggage-handler, operating under Australian government instruction, would add 3kg of high-quality Afghan heroin, 2kg of uncut Bolivian cocaine, 1kg of hydroponic marijuana, four child pornography DVDs, and 120 MDMA tablets to the president's luggage. Also, several panda cubs and one or two handguns. The baggage handler need not worry about leaving any fingerprints, as this "evidence", when discovered by customs officials, won't be tested. Nor will Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono's angry denials be videotaped; instead, he'll be reported to have instantly asserted ownership over the drugs, DVDs, protected species and weapons. In fact, according to customs staff, the president would at one point attempt to ingest all the drugs at once while screaming obscene abuse about Phar Lap and Ruth Cracknell.

Then would come the president's trial, before one of our finest narcoleptic magistrates and a jury selected randomly from Bali bomb survivors, East Timorese refugees and Corby family members. Despite the best efforts of his legal team (three TAFE engineering students), Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono might expect an unusually harsh sentence: something in the range of 7000 years, plus hanging (and don't forget the $13,000 fine!).

The final step would be relatively simple, beginning with an email (subject line: "prisoner exchange") from the prime minister to the Indonesian government. Events thereafter would swiftly restore the post-tsunami harmony both nations have recently enjoyed.

Posted by: mojo || 05/31/2005 14:18 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [6469 views] Top|| File under:

Nobody smuggles pot to indonesia: corby is innocent
Why Australian marijuana is a big hit in Bali

The Balinese drug dealer, who would not be named, said that while there was a lot of marijuana for sale, "it's hard for foreigners to get access to it" because they were fearful of getting caught. "It's safer for foreigners to bring their own. It's been happening for quite some time and it's not only marijuana."

While he was aware of the importation of marijuana from Australia, he said it was more common for foreigners to bring in hashish or other drugs.

While a number of foreigners have been arrested for trafficking or possessing hashish, Bali police say the marijuana found in Corby's luggage was the first incidence in which they have found the drug being brought into Bali from another country.


Despite this article's attempt to make it sound plausible that Schapelle Corby could have had a motive for bringing marijuana to Bali it hasn't washed with ordinary Australians for very good reason: it doesn't ring true. IT's crap that drug dealers can command such high prices for ' quality ' pot in Bali. The drugs planted in Schapelle's bag could be bought in Bali for less than A$100. Hardly something to risk your life for.

So many Aussies have been to Bali and know what it is like there that we don't buy this argument. The writer admits that this is the first ever time... with all those other drug smugglers caught by the Indos, why do you reckon they'd have NO other documented cases? It's because drugs are routinely smuggled OUT of Bali - not into it!

In answer to yesterday's questions:

Cybersarge - did she request drug screening? YES - the test came back negative, she had no trace of any drug in her blood.

The Indos didn't care.

Dave: Baggage handler drug smuggling ring WEREN'T trying to smuggle pot to indonesia. Two theories exist: 1) They bungled while they were trying to smuggle it from Brisbane to Sydney, 2) They planted it as a diversion to the much bigger cocaine shipment that came in the very hour Schapelle was flying out - diverts attention, sniffer dogs etc. It is a matter of public record this drug smuggling ring was working at Brisbane and Sydney airports the day and the hour that Schapelle left.

The whistleblower prisoner who testified IN BALI that there was a drug ring operating among baggage handlers was later stabbed

YES, baggage has been tampered with before and YES drugs have been put in people's bags before. One couple came out on Australian TV just this week claiming exactly the same thing had happened to them. They got to Bali and found drugs in their bag they had no knowledge of. They reported it to the Australian consulate, where an officer told them to flush it down the toilet. Very unprofessional.

In other news from the wires: Indonesian-based hackers have been attacking Schapelle-supporting websites such as www.dontshootschapelle.com and www.SchapelleCorby.com in an eerie echo of the web attacks Indonesia launched on Malaysia in January this year when they faced off over a disputed island between the Muslim nations. Hack attack attempts have been traced back to servers in Indonesia.

The reason Schapelle gets so much support isn't because she is young and pretty but because people think she is innocent and has been dealt with unjustly. It could have been anyone.

When she made her final plea before sentencing there wasn't even an interpreter in the room so the three Indonesian judges couldn't even understand her words. This is not justice.

For all the sycophancy about "respecting" the indonesian legal system, it has PROVED it doesn't deserve our respect. It has rested on the presumption of guilt and expected her to prove her innocence. this is ridiculous.
Posted by: anon1 || 05/31/2005 12:15 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [6464 views] Top|| File under:

#1  Yet that buck-toothed jihadi dipsh*t who set up the bombings walks free. Why the f*ck are people vacationing in muslim-infested countries?
Posted by: BH || 05/31/2005 12:56 Comments || Top||

#2  I was wondering about that. The whole case sounded like trying to smuggle snow to the Eskimos.
Can anybody who's been to Bali comment on how hard it is to buy pot in Bali?

Posted by: Frozen Al || 05/31/2005 20:31 Comments || Top||

#3  Finding weed in Bali is about as hard as finding a cab in Manhattan.
Posted by: Sheik Abu Bin Ali Al-Yahood || 05/31/2005 22:25 Comments || Top||

#4  I want to be the first to float the thery that Miss Corby is just trying to get publicity. I am probably wrong but I wanted to be first to float the story.
Posted by: Cyber Sarge || 05/31/2005 23:30 Comments || Top||

never-elected-to-office de Villepin is new French PM
Dominique de Villepin has been named France's new prime minister following the resignation of Jean-Pierre Raffarin. The government reshuffle came in response to Sunday's referendum in which French voters inflicted a humiliating defeat on the government by rejecting Europe's constitutional treaty by almost 55 per cent. The CAC-40 index of leading French shares softened slightly on the news, reflecting investors' disappointment that the more reformist Nicolas Sarkozy had not been appointed to the job.

Mr Raffarin, who had served as prime minister since 2002, saw his approval rating plummet to just 21 per cent as the economy slowed and unemployment rose above 10 per cent again this year. Although he did introduce limited reforms of the pensions system and the social security sector, Mr Raffarin's critics accused him of not being bold enough. Mr de Villepin, 51, who previously served as interior minister, is one of France's most high-profile politicians even though he has never held elected office.

A classic French technocrat, who studied at the elite Ecole Nationale d'Administration (Ena), Mr de Villepin shot up the ranks of the civil service before emerging as President Jacques Chirac's private secretary in 1995. He is best known internationally for his passionate opposition the US-led war in Iraq in 2003 while serving as foreign minister. Mr de Villepin's top priority will be tackle the country's unemployment crisis. In the past, he has called on the government to pursue more socially oriented reforms but his precise views about economic policy are not widely known. As one of Mr Chirac's closest confidantes, Mr de Villepin will receive strong backing as a possible presidential candidate in 2007. But Mr de Villepin will first have to prove himself in the highly demanding job of prime minister.
Posted by: too true || 05/31/2005 09:48 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [6464 views] Top|| File under:

#1  This is great news! This allows Nick to watch Dominic screw up in aces while setting up his fortunes for '07 or even earlier if the government falls on de Villepin's watch (which is highly likely since Dominic is a Chirac clone).
Posted by: Jack is Back! || 05/31/2005 10:00 Comments || Top||

#2  Ok, Fred - now we need a pic of Dominique (reputed to be a man) doing his best raised-chin Benito Mussolini impersonation...
Posted by: mojo || 05/31/2005 10:06 Comments || Top||

#3  This is gettin' to be quite the little soap opera. Just needs a fresh sex scandal now.
Posted by: Tom || 05/31/2005 10:07 Comments || Top||

#4  Wonder if Dom baby has written a poem to celebrate this momentous occasion?

I'd rather listen to Vogon verse, myself.
Posted by: Desert Blondie || 05/31/2005 10:13 Comments || Top||

#5  Just yesterday on Bloomberg or one of the other cable finace channels I saw the FT.com guys say Villepin would never be chosen!

Obviously, they have no clue what they are talking about.
Posted by: 3dc || 05/31/2005 11:13 Comments || Top||

#6  Gee, my rowboat is tied to the Titanic. What could go wrong?
Posted by: Anonymoose || 05/31/2005 11:18 Comments || Top||

#7  How could the French President appoint a man as Prime Minister who is so patently anti-American? This is not at all helpful for Franco-American relations. de Villepin's immoderate use of language about the United States and his clearly duplications dealings with the United States and its enemies should have disqualified him from serving in this post. The President of France has a moral and ethical obligation to pursue policies and appoint individuals which would narrow the gap between our two nations.

France already suffers from a world-wide opinion of it as a rogue nuclear state, as well as a state that pursues a foreign policy bereft of international sanction. Its unilateral military interventions and neo colonialist policies have made it nearly a pariah in the world. Only a foreign policy dedicated to rapprochement with the United States can restore any of France's former prestige on the world stage. This appointment does not pursue that goal, but make it much more difficult to achieve. [/sarcasm]
Posted by: Chuck Simmins || 05/31/2005 11:40 Comments || Top||

#8  Looks to me like a page out of French Politics 101:

When zee president is up to his neck in zee soupe de merde, he must appoint as prime minister an individual even more universally loathed than himself. Toute suite (if not sooner). Does de Villepin give you the creeps? Oh, how that makes Jacques happy! You are not thinking of him!
Posted by: mrp || 05/31/2005 12:34 Comments || Top||

#9  Is anyone getting that erie felling that we have seen and 'unelected' politician elevated to a PM by a weak President? Do the names Otto Von Hindenberg and Adolf Hitler ring a bell? But then Hitler was the leader of the National Socialist and de Villepin is a Communists. Like many of his American brothers de Villepin probably believes that communisism hasn't worked because he has been in charge.
Posted by: Cyber Sarge || 05/31/2005 13:51 Comments || Top||

#10  It should be pretty obvious that this vote is bad news for the US. Note that close to one third of the French electorate is either the rabidly anti-US far left or the rabidly anti-US far right. And the swing vote in this referendum belonged to the anti-globo left wing of the Socialist Party. It's pretty obvious that the only way Villepin can have any popularity at all is to play the anti-US card, again and again, with as much force as he can muster.

Mark my word: Merkel or no Merkel, the EU Three will wobble on Iran. Sarkozy will not attain office before Villepin has sold the mullahs everything they seek. No better way to appease that 70% or more of the implacably anti-American French public than to score some quick and highly public contracts with the mullahs and with the Chinese.

The only question is which venue that bombastic ass, he of the flowing silver mane and the purple prose, will choose for his grands gestes. Maybe a signing ceremony with the mullahs under the grand obelisk in the Place de la Concorde?
Posted by: thibaud (aka lex) || 05/31/2005 14:13 Comments || Top||

#11  He's got great hair, doesn't he? Nice insouciant knotting of his cravat, too.
Posted by: thibaud (aka lex) || 05/31/2005 14:18 Comments || Top||

#2: Is that the one? With the fuzzy sash?
Posted by: Fred || 05/31/2005 14:19 Comments || Top||

#13  He could stand in for George Hamilton. Needs a bit more orange in his perpetual tan, though.
Posted by: thibaud (aka lex) || 05/31/2005 14:32 Comments || Top||

#14  1. Cyber sarge, Villepin belongs to the same Gaullist party as Chirac, (and Sarkozy for that matter. The French communists supported the Non vote.

2. The two leading figures left in the Gaullist party who could have been PM were Villepin, and Sarkozy. Chirac didnt have the cojones to appoint his main adversary as PM, so Villepin was all that was left.

3. Im not certain that they'll cave to the Iranians. Too much of the business elite in both France and Germany dont want to alienate the US further. That means betraying us on Iran has to be done subtly - Doctor of Philosophy (in Political Science) Rice has, by SUPPORTING the EU3, and moving away from confrontational rhetoric, outmaneuvered Chirac, I think - it takes away the excuse that the US isnt supporting the negotiations. That, combined with the open intransigence of the Iranians, is pushing the EU3 in the direction of a UNSC referral, though excuses for foot dragging will be sought.
Posted by: liberalhawk || 05/31/2005 14:36 Comments || Top||

#15  I actually adjusted the colors to try and get him into the human category and out of the citrus.
Posted by: Fred || 05/31/2005 14:47 Comments || Top||

#16  I'd still bet they'll cave. First, it's obvious that the French public is out for politicians' heads. THey're justifiably furious at chronically high unemployment and sh**ty wages, and any French PM will be under enormous pressure to deliver some quick relief for the economic pain the blue-collar French are suffering.

Second, this vote represents the triumph of a far left / far right alliance based on hatred of foreigners. It's a very easy and obvious mental step to seek to transfer this energy from Turkish/Polish bogeymen to American ones. Villepin's just the guy to do so.

I'd bet good money that we will soon hear of a multi-billion euro investment by either Renault or Bouygues or Alcatel in Iran.
Posted by: thibaud (aka lex) || 05/31/2005 14:50 Comments || Top||

#17  What I want to know is, how can we have had all these EU threads without someone posting a fresh jpg of Sabine Herold? (OK, I think she supported the constitution, but in her case I'm willing both to forgive and forget.)
Posted by: Matt || 05/31/2005 14:54 Comments || Top||

#18  Dom's family bought the last name.
Posted by: anonymous2u || 05/31/2005 15:05 Comments || Top||

#19  #12 - Fred

Close enough for gubmint work...
Posted by: mojo || 05/31/2005 15:15 Comments || Top||

#20  "de Villepin" was the name of an aristocrat who supported the American revolution. He and his whole family were murdered during the French revolution, and the name was sold to an ambitious man who wanted his descendants to pretend that their better, aristocratic part was related and under ground.

You see, in Europe the elite judges you by your name and who your ancestors "were".
Posted by: Kalle (kafir forever) || 05/31/2005 16:51 Comments || Top||

EU without France?
From the Times On Line
"The political vacuum has prompted a battle for the "heart of the Union", with Mr Blair keen to push more liberal economic policies, rather than French-style social protection with a large welfare state."

It would appear that a union without France may be in the works. Instead of Chirac pulling out, the citizens of France may be pulling out (a reverse of the way France pulled out of NATO in the 50s).

Can you see any way in which the French will allow even a semi-market driven economy to be forced on them?
Posted by: SamL || 05/31/2005 09:07 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [6464 views] Top|| File under:

#1  I dont think Germany, whose voters have resisted market reforms, would be interested in a Blair led "market oriented" Europe. Esp without France. And if France AND Germany are out, I doubt that the Benelux countries, Italy or Spain would be interested. Youd be looking at an alliance of Britain the Scandinavians, Portugal, and the Eastern Europeans. And the Eastern Europeans, though theyd be much more ideologically sympathetic than the Scandinavians, are too dependent on trade with Germany. And I dont think Sweden would be interested, and if not Sweden, than not Finland. So youre down to UK, Port, and Denmark. Maybe.
Posted by: liberalhawk || 05/31/2005 10:13 Comments || Top||

#2  LH,

Not so quick on the Netherlands. And a Germany under CDU may look at this differently. A lot of this will be the way Blair and Chiraq appear through the press over the next six months. If Blair looks like the wise and patient parent dealing with the unruly child Chiraq throwing tantrums, there may be a lot of re-evaluation about who should hold the reins. The French were always threatening a two tier Europe. Perhaps the Brits should help it come to pass.

If there is to be a Europe it should be flexible enough to accomodate both social models. If this cannot be done, any Europe will founder on having one side try force its model on the other. Tony might be able to pull it off. Chiraq wouldn't even try.
Posted by: Mrs. Davis || 05/31/2005 10:22 Comments || Top||

#3  while Merkel may be favorable to market reforms, and less supportive of very tight relations with France, in opposition to the US. I cant see here going for a market EU without France. Keeping France and Germany together inside the EU has been German policy since the EEC, and even the Euro Coal and Steel Commision, 50 years ago, through admins of both parties in Germany. While Merkel might win the next election, the fact is that Schroeder is being hurt largely by voters who want LESS market oriented change. (it should be noted that Kohl did little in the was of market reforms - one of the reasons Schroeders position was worse than Blair or Clinton - Thatcher and Reagan made enough changes that a Third way pol could move (or try to move) things to the left - in Germany a Third way pol had to move things to the right)

As for the Netherlands, IF Germany wont go to a new UK led EU, AND France wont, it would be very hard for the Netherlands to, given their trade patterns. Not to mention their reluctance to break up Benelux.
Posted by: liberalhawk || 05/31/2005 11:16 Comments || Top||

#4  Liberalhawk

You relied on the comments of the NYT instead of relying in your own judgement about the results in Baden-Wurtemberg isn't it? If you were true then there would have been a shift toward leftier partists but these remained at abysmal lows. There could be some SPD people who abstained but most of the "missing" SPD votes seem to have gone to the CDU.

It is not so much about people opposing liberal reforms than about opposing reforms who don't work (Schroeder's)
Posted by: JFM || 05/31/2005 11:51 Comments || Top||

#5  1. I thought it was North Rhine, NOT Baden Wurtemberg.

2.Ive seen that in a number of sources. In any case even if majority of Germans want more free market reforms (which has yet to be demonstrated) actually joining a new EU dedicated to that would be quite another thing. I think that might stretch Merkel's supporters farther than they want to go.

TGA's opinion would be useful on this, if not entirely unbiased.
Posted by: liberalhawk || 05/31/2005 11:56 Comments || Top||

#6  I'd agree with LH. I can't see the Germans embracing free market principles. Simply won't happen after thirty years of slackery. It's like telling your thrity year-old slacker son that he needs to go to medical school. The bar is far too high.

That said, the fundamental contradiction remains: you cannot have any real integration of two economic models, one based on high wages, sky-high taxes, labor inflexibility and heavy social protection (Fr-Ger) and another based on low wages, low - hell, flat taxes!! - and labor flexibility and deregulation (Pol-Estonia-Cz-Hun). Either integration will suffer, or wages and tax rates will race toward the bottom.

The French public has overwhelmingly signalled that they prefer social protection to a dynamic, competitive capitalist economy. The same answer would be given by the Germans were the question put to them with simplicity and honesty.

So the inevitable result is a compromise that yields neither real protection nor real growth. The French and Germans will buy off the East Euro-Tigers with increased subsidies, esp for farmers, steelworkers etc, in exchange for keeping their markets closed to real competition in the high growth service sectors that make up 70% of an advanced economy these days.

The EU can have protection or growth but not both. It can be great in geographic scope or great in coherence and focus, but not both. Most likely it will have neither.
Posted by: thibaud (aka lex) || 05/31/2005 12:56 Comments || Top||

#7  BTW, I notice both Lex(Thib) and Mrs D posting at Belgravia Dispatch.
Posted by: liberalhawk || 05/31/2005 13:45 Comments || Top||

#8  The EU will not break up. It will continue to expand, to include Bulgaria and Romania and eventually Ukraine. It will muddle forward as it always does.

But the elites' dream of an EU superpower is finished. There will be no coherent, unified political counterweight to the US. Instead there will be a customs union that produces some great technology and a few world-class technologies but nothing of great political significance outside of Europe. A tighter version of APEC.
Posted by: thibaud (aka lex) || 05/31/2005 13:52 Comments || Top||

#9  the 2 tiered europeon union will take place
the eastern europeon block tier 2
the traditional ten nations tier 1 briton will be in neither
Posted by: Chavith Snavick6681 || 05/31/2005 13:54 Comments || Top||

#10  The EU as a political force in the non-European world is a dead letter. Long past time that Americans recognized that all of the threats and all of the opportunities for us in this century arise from Asia ie the near and far east. The axis of history no longer runs (as Kissinger put it to Allende) from Moscow to Bonn to London to Washington. It now runs from Washington to Tokyo to Beijing to New Delhi and Tehran and Baghdad.

The EU nations cannot seriously help or harm or hinder us in those regions. About time we shifted half or more of our Europe-based diplomatic and military assets out of the has-been region and into the region that is already defining the trajectory of our age. 2005 will be seen as the end of the American elite's foolish, outdated obsession with Europe.
Posted by: thibaud (aka lex) || 05/31/2005 14:09 Comments || Top||

#11  liberalhawk

You are right it was Rhenania. It happens I made a trip to Baden-Wurtemberg by early May so I mixed names.

I don't care about what medias say. I care about data and common sense. The SPD people didn't go to the ecologists or the far left (both made poor scores), if total number of votes went strongly down it would mean many, many SPD people abstained and it would mean they did it due to lack of socialism, if stood stabmle then it could mean that many SPD peole abstained while an improbably high number of people who abstained in the previous election went CDU or, more prpobably that many SPD people went CDU. In those two later cases it would mean people only care about a policy who does work and the only thing they see is that Schroeder's doesn't.

In order to see what hypothesis is right you have to read the pols who are published in the following days where by asking or by analyzing the local political variations they can more or less determine who abstained and who turned coat.

Here in France they were telling that people were unhappy about Schroeder's liberal reforms within minutes of knowing the results. The data I mentioned is usually known only several days after the election.

And I still think is that stronger reason for SPD's routing is that simply it is not getting results.
Posted by: JFM || 05/31/2005 15:36 Comments || Top||

France ready to help Libya with nuclear programme
France told Libya Monday that it is prepared to help Libya develop its civilian nuclear energy programme, according to an official Libyan source.
French Ambassador to Tripoli, Jean-Luc Sibiude, handed Libyan Foreign Minister Abdelrahman Shalgham an official note announcing France's readiness to cooperate with Tripoli on its nuclear power projects, the Jana news agency reported.

A French delegation is expected here soon to work out the details of this cooperation.

In Paris, a diplomatic source said France had "examined a request from Libya. We are going to enter into some form of cooperation with this country".

France's favourable response to Tripoli's overtures was indeed communicated to the Libyan authorities by the French ambassador, he added.

During a visit by President Jacques Chirac last November, Libyan leader Moamer Kadhafi told the French head of state that his nation had renounced weapons of mass destruction and hoped that the transfer of technology would permit the oil-rich nation to develop a nuclear programme for peaceful means.

On that occasion Chirac vowed to forge a "true partnership" with Libya.

Chirac's visit was the first by a French head of state since Libyan independence from Italy in 1951.

Kadhafi has undergone a dramatic diplomatic reversal in the past year since agreeing to stop developing weapons of mass destruction, denouncing terrorism and acknowledging responsibility for the Lockerbie and French UTA plane bombings in the 1980s.

Various controls apply to Libya, notably supervision by the UN's nuclear watchdog, the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA).

Libya, which has proven oil reserves of 30 billion barrels and claims to have triple that.
Posted by: Spavirt Pheng6042 || 05/31/2005 02:38 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [6461 views] Top|| File under:

#1  Amazing. France doesn't already have enough problems?
Posted by: trailing wife || 05/31/2005 13:44 Comments || Top||

Blair faces clash over move to kill EU treaty
Tony Blair was on a collision course with fellow European leaders last night over Government plans to kill off the EU constitution if, as now seems almost certain, the Dutch follow the French and reject it in their referendum tomorrow. As Mr Blair's counterparts abroad demanded no let-up in the drive to ratify the document, the Prime Minister called for "a time for reflection", while Whitehall began preparing the ground for a full-scale U-turn on the commitment to put it to the vote in Britain. Bertie Ahern, the Irish prime minister, confirmed that his country would soldier on with plans to hold a referendum on the text. He is one of a number of leaders still trying to save the constitution from destruction. However, Foreign Office sources said that a second No vote in four days from a founding member state, this time the Netherlands, would make it impossible for the ratification process to continue in Britain and across the continent. Such an outcome seemed almost guaranteed as the latest opinion polls indicated that the Dutch majority against the constitution would be even bigger than the French - and might approach a landslide.
Posted by: Fred || 05/31/2005 00:00 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [6476 views] Top|| File under:

#1  The UK should vote, to kill it for good. No weasle room here, a vote must occur. Dead is dead.
Posted by: Sock Puppet 0’ Doom || 05/31/2005 1:20 Comments || Top||

#2  Yup, I think a UK vote would be a suitable coup de grace. Hardly worth the expense and gnashing of teeth though.. C'est fin.
Posted by: Howard UK || 05/31/2005 5:07 Comments || Top||

#3  If the British referendum was expected in a few months' time rather than 'some time next year', that would be a good idea, but as things stand, continuing with plans for the UK referendum on this constitution is pointless. If the constitution's to be re-released for France, Holland and the others who vote 'no', it will now have to be re-drafted, and when will that be finished? I'd like to see Blair call a snap-referendum on the issue, but he certainly won't do that because he knows full well what would happen ;) .
Posted by: Bulldog || 05/31/2005 6:11 Comments || Top||

#4  I thought the EU constitution had to ratified by all members. If the frogs said no, then it's already dead. The Dutch would just be putting a wooden stake through its heart.
Posted by: Spot || 05/31/2005 8:49 Comments || Top||

#5  The Europhiles are already speaking of redrafting... they'll NEVER give up until we have a glass dome built over the top and Europe looks like one of the pictures off the front of a Jehovahs Witness propaganda pamphlet.
Posted by: Howard UK || 05/31/2005 8:54 Comments || Top||

Posted by: Howard UK || 05/31/2005 8:57 Comments || Top||

#7  "thought the EU constitution had to ratified by all members"

Yes, but that doesnt mean a no vote kills it. In theory they could just hold ANOTHER referendum in the country that voted no, till they get a yes vote. IIRC thats what happened when Denmark voted no on the Maastricht treaty. If the a SMALL country voted down the constitution, by a NARROW margin, thats probably what would happen. But this was France, and the margin was large, so it seems unlikely they will try that.
Posted by: liberalhawk || 05/31/2005 10:08 Comments || Top||

#8  (Anyone else chuckling at the image of Aris sputtering and spewing with anger over what the French did to his beloved nation?)
Posted by: Robert Crawford || 05/31/2005 10:27 Comments || Top||

#9  Now that you come to mention it, RC... [snigger]
Posted by: Bulldog || 05/31/2005 10:38 Comments || Top||

#10  "Kill it! Kill it! Somebody get a stick!"
Posted by: mojo || 05/31/2005 11:14 Comments || Top||

#11  In order to kill The proposed Constitution (note: really a massive treaty disguised as a constitution), someone has to offer an alternative. Since all EU komissars and various country leaders have repeatedly stated that there is NO alternative, they won't kill it.

I wish there were a group of Europeans who would propose to copy the American Constitution and publish The Federalist and Anti-Federalist Papers all over the EU. I would have done it, but I've left Europe for good.
Posted by: Kalle (kafir forever) || 05/31/2005 12:34 Comments || Top||

#12  In order to kill The proposed Constitution (note: really a massive treaty disguised as a constitution), someone has to offer an alternative. Since all EU komissars and various country leaders have repeatedly stated that there is NO alternative, they won't kill it.

Isn't the alternative simply to, oh, go on as you are?
Posted by: Robert Crawford || 05/31/2005 13:15 Comments || Top||

#13  I'm all for the committee working up another draft constitution for the countries to vote on. Such activity keeps them healthily occupied and out of trouble, which means the rest of the EU can get on with (hopefully) making things work.
Posted by: trailing wife || 05/31/2005 13:47 Comments || Top||

#14  Well...they (the French) made the A380 fly, there could still be some hope left.
Posted by: Rafael || 05/31/2005 23:24 Comments || Top||

Raffarin faces the axe
President Jacques Chirac will announce a new government on Tuesday and then make a televised address to the nation, his office has said. A replacement for Prime Minister Jean-Pierre Raffarin has been expected after the rejection of the EU constitution in Sunday's referendum. Interior Minister Dominique de Villepin was widely tipped to get the job, though Defence Minister Michele Alliot-Marie and ruling party chief Nicolas Sarkozy have also been mentioned.

Chirac will on Tuesday unveil decisions concerning his government, AP reported quoting Elysee Palace on Monday. An aide to Raffarin said he was expected to present his resignation to Chirac on Monday. Earlier on Monday, Chirac spent 30 minutes with Raffarin, who has been in office since May 2002. Other important figures called to the presidential palace included Nicolas Sarkozy, the ambitious head of the governing party, the Union for a Popular Movement, with his eye on the 2007 presidency. A chief rival of Chirac, he is among a handful of possible choices to replace Raffarin.
Posted by: Fred || 05/31/2005 00:00 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [6460 views] Top|| File under:

#1  He who is a man got the job.
Posted by: True German Ally || 05/31/2005 6:12 Comments || Top||

#2  Michele Alliot-Marie?
Posted by: Harry Tuttle || 05/31/2005 7:05 Comments || Top||

#3  How much longer until the fall of this Republic is acknowledged (is it #5? I'm afraid I've lost track; they whiz by so very quickly, not like our simple American 1st Republic)? What next, I wonder? Clearly not another Empire, the various pretenders to the throne are so pathetic that a Monarchy is right out, and Communism has proved itself laughable, so it won't be a Workers Commune. The Economic Union is successful enough that they can't surrender to anyone, and after rejecting the Draft Constitution they can't even subsume themselves in a Federal Europe. Such difficulties the clever French get themselves into!
Posted by: trailing wife || 05/31/2005 7:05 Comments || Top||

#4  Using an axe? That is unfrench and unRepublican. Guillotine, that is the French way!

ah ça ira, ça ira, ça ira...
Posted by: JFM || 05/31/2005 7:12 Comments || Top||

#5  In the immortal words of Sir Edmund Blackadder, 'Well, Percy, someone's for the chop...and it's you ..."

Posted by: Mike Kozlowski || 05/31/2005 7:28 Comments || Top||

Home Front: Politix
New Clinton Book: The Lies, The Fights, The Insults
EFL: Hat tip to Drudge. Looks like a popular subject this summer...and by a Postie no less.
Summer starts with a bang as veteran WASHINGTON POST reporter John Harris traces the emotional highs and lows of the Clinton presidency.THE SURVIVOR: BILL CLINTON IN THE WHITE HOUSE drops this week from RANDOM, but the DRUDGE REPORT can now sneak:
--Bill Clinton was so upset that his weight-loss regimen in 2000 was not working that he made his aides release a bogus number after his annual Navy physical to make him five pounds lighter.
There's a shocker...
--Hillary taunted her husband's aides as being wimps by not fighting hard enough on Whitewater - "JFK had real men in his White House!"
...and then she beat them with her strap on.
--Tipper Gore was so disgusted in 2000 with Bill and Hillary that she stayed cloistered in a holding room instead of going to a New York reception with major Democratic fund-raisers where the Clintons would be. "No, I'm not doing it," she snapped to an aide. "I'm not going out there with that man."
...and then Hillary beat her with her strap on.
--The first conversation between Clinton and Gore after the Lewinsky story broke. Clinton is shouting at Gore, "This is a fucking coup d'etat!" Gore just stared back blankly.
This must've happened before Al went insane and became a raving loon.
--Former White House counter-terrorism chief Richard Clarke on the record hitting Clinton for not having the guts to fire FBI director Louis Freeh, who Clarke called a major obstacle on anti-terrorism policy. "He should have just fired Freeh and taken the shit it would have caused."
Hi, Richard Clarke. Remember me? I was famous for about five minutes once...
Swearing Steaming Screaming -- White House as Hot House
From pages 356-7 of THE SURVIVOR: BILL CLINTON IN THE WHITE HOUSE by John F. Harris, national correspondent for the WASHINGTON POST: Context is Sally Quinn's article from 11/98 explaining why the Washington Establishment was appalled by Clinton's behavior during Lewinksy.
Some time afterward the president was going over papers with his staff on the upcoming Presidential Medal of Freedom awards. Spontaneously, he launched into a little riff for his assembled aides. His nominee for the prestigious award this year would be none other than the famous [Watergate editor] Ben Bradlee, husband of Sally Quinn. The aides looked on in puzzled amusement."Anyone who sleeps with that bitch deserves a medal!" he explained.
Bill must've been pissed he wasn't getting a medal too.
Posted by: tu3031 || 05/31/2005 15:44 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [6479 views] Top|| File under:

#1  I wonder how much of it I've already read in Unlimited Access.
Posted by: eLarson || 05/31/2005 22:01 Comments || Top||

Hawaii native bill roils U.S. Senate
Hawaiian politicians are urging passage of a bill that would allow a separate government for ethnic Hawaiians. Sponsored by Sen. Daniel K. Akaka, D-Hawaii, with support from Gov. Linda Lingle and other Republicans in the islands, the measure would designate ethnic Hawaiians, thought to account for about 20 percent of the state's population, as an "indigenous people," the Washington Times reported Monday. "All my bill does is clarify the political and legal relationship between native Hawaiians and the United States, thereby establishing parity in the federal policies towards American Indians, Alaska natives and native Hawaiians," Akaka said.
Reading between the lines, the "native Hawaiians" want to open a few casinos and tax-free smoke shops.
But Republicans in the Senate decry the bill. "By creating a race-based government in the United States, we would be enhancing a trend toward the Balkanization of our culture," said Sen. Jon Kyl of Arizona, the Senate Republican Policy Committee chairman. "This would be the first time that we would actually be creating a race-based government entity within the United States."

Related Article, EFL: Hawaiian registry has 18,000 on its list
Bradford Lum is Irish, Dutch, German and Chinese, but it's the three-eighths Hawaiian blood running through his veins that matters most. That's why Lum and his elderly mother, Lily, entered their names with the Native Hawaiian Registration Program, a database of people with documented proof of their Hawaiian bloodlines. Many Hawaiians believe a catalog of all living Hawaiians, estimated at 400,000 worldwide, is the key to founding a nation, or at least gaining federal recognition, for Hawaii's native people. "We need to be a nation within a nation," Lum said, "but we're not even recognized as an indigenous people right now." Others who entered their names in the registry, including John Kaukali, 67, do not believe a Hawaiian nation or government is a practical goal. "I really don't think so," said Kaukali, who is half Hawaiian. "You cannot have a nation within a nation." Kaukali doubts the registry, dubbed Kau Inoa, or "place your name," will do anything to help Hawaiians in his lifetime. He signed up hoping his grandchildren will benefit from any social services the government offers to Hawaiians if they manage to gain the same federal status as other indigenous groups in the United States.
The Native Hawaiian Recognition Act, also called the Akaka Bill, after its sponsor, Democratic Sen. Daniel Akaka, would formally recognize native Hawaiians as an indigenous people in the same way the U.S. government recognizes American Indians and Alaska natives.
It requires them to live in igloos, though...
Congress is scheduled to take up the bill later this year. Kau Inoa is the third attempt to count Hawaiians since the 1990s when self-determination for Hawaii's native population became a more prominent issue. The process became easier after the U.S. Census began counting native Hawaiians for the first time in 2000. Many Hawaiians were inspired by the 1993 centennial of the overthrow of Queen Liliuokalani and a congressional apology for the U.S.-backed coup that same year. The apology resolution included federal recognition of Hawaiians' sovereignty over their lands. "We have been robbed of our country," Lum said. "I believe it's time to be recognized."

So far, the Kau Inoa project has registered only 18,000 since starting sign-ups in January 2004, according to Hawaii Maoli, the group funded by the state Office of Hawaiian Affairs to gather and store the information. The Office of Hawaiian Affairs, a state agency, is funding the ads and the sign-up effort, but Administrator Clyde Namuo said the registry is free of state or federal influence because the information is stored in an independent repository. Almost half of the people with Hawaiian blood live on the U.S. mainland, clustered mainly in West Coast cities, according to the U.S. Census, which included the Hawaiian designation for first time in 2000.

But even those living far from Hawaii are encouraged to sign up. Hawaiians, however, have divergent views on what such a nation or government would be. Many scoff at federal recognition and say the Hawaiian nation is already legitimate. Others support a Hawaiian government based in the state of Hawaii and sanctioned by the United States. Some demand full sovereignty and the reinstatement of a monarchy. The most radical endorse a separate nation-state that would partner with the United States only on certain issues, such as defense or trade.
Just great, all we need is a Hawaiian Liberation Front.
Posted by: Steve || 05/31/2005 12:54 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [6464 views] Top|| File under:

#1  Nope, Steve, what the "reinstituted Hawaiian Gov't", the local sucessionist movement, wants is not a casino; they want the land back. They also think the Akaka bill is a cheap buy-off compared to what they want.
Posted by: Thong Phomotch2218 || 05/31/2005 13:16 Comments || Top||

#2  Okay! "Indigenous peoples"! How much is this gonna cost?
Posted by: tu3031 || 05/31/2005 13:19 Comments || Top||

#3  Hawaiians are "indigenous peoples"? Damn, there goes my plan to get the local high school mascot changed to the "Fightin' Fat Guys in Grass Skirts"
Posted by: BH || 05/31/2005 13:49 Comments || Top||

#4  native hawaiins dont have a reservation,ergo no area of sovereignty, no casinos, and certainly no independence.

IIRC there are some endowments, started with govt funds way back when hawaii was annexed, that are supposed to give money to native hawaiians only, and somebody sued for discrimination. Presumably calling them a nation would enable the money to go only to those with Native Hawaiin ancestry.
Posted by: liberalhawk || 05/31/2005 13:56 Comments || Top||

#5  The Hawaiian royal family, I believe, still owns the smallest island (Nihau?)

Posted by: mojo || 05/31/2005 14:11 Comments || Top||

#6  Nah, some white family named Robinson owns it. They're not Hawaiian by blood, but they try to maintain Hawaiian traditional culture on the island.

Of course, none of these Hawaiian nationalists want to actually move to Niihau and live like the bruddas do.

More info here.
Posted by: Desert Blondie || 05/31/2005 15:00 Comments || Top||

#7  Wasn't the vote 96% in favor or statehood?

They could have stayed a territory.

Can we vote them off the island and offer the star to Alberta?
Posted by: anonymous2u || 05/31/2005 15:03 Comments || Top||

#8  Hmmmmmmmmm... did somebody say Hawaiian Indigeneous Peoples? What's U of H pay?
Posted by: W. Churchill: Injun Professor || 05/31/2005 15:05 Comments || Top||

#9  I'll admit they should be given tribal status on the same grounds that we have an endangered species act. Unless there is some provision for a reservation (I suggest on Kawai'i) for them, in just a couple more generations, they will be effectively extinct as a people. Ironically, I agree with Kamehameha III, who *wanted* to destroy their repulsive religion and much of their culture; but the people themselves should be preserved as a unique ethnic group. A reservation would give them a group identity away from the cities, encourage intramarriage, and address their special social problems as a tribe. The cost of this would be fairly small, as a huge amount of Kawai'i is uninhabited federal park, difficult to access, yet with arable land, fresh water, considerable coastline, and other amenities. From that launching point, they could reassert some sacred site recognition on the other islands, assert cultural and linguistic rights, self-manage far more then they currently can, and a bunch of other things. To include casinos, I would imagine.
Posted by: Anonymoose || 05/31/2005 15:06 Comments || Top||

#10  Here's my take on Niihau and other human wildlife preserves, in case anyone's interested. It has some information on how that good ol' native culture is preserved on Niihau.
Posted by: Angie Schultz || 05/31/2005 15:10 Comments || Top||

#11  Most of the Indeginious Hawaiians want to have all of the benefits of being part of the US while running their own nation. As if the US tourists would still pour into Hawaii if it weren't a state.

I imagine there are folks in the US Virgin Islands quietly rooting for the Indigenious Hawaiians to have their way.
Posted by: rjschwarz || 05/31/2005 16:23 Comments || Top||

#12  This crap used to boil up almost every year in the Hawaiian State House. Yes lets give the Hawaiians native status and carve out a reservation for them. Let's put it on Kahoolawi and let them run their own affairs and we'll even throw in a hundred milion or so a year to make them comfy. In return they will use the Trask sisters as a human sacrafices to Valcano on the Big island. Man I can't stand that mouthy BITCHES.
Posted by: Cyber Sarge || 05/31/2005 17:21 Comments || Top||

#13  rj - I guess they weren't paying attention in history class. Joining up as a state is a forever deal. (See Civil War, The...1861-1865)
Posted by: Desert Blondie || 05/31/2005 17:36 Comments || Top||

#14  Best outa three DB?

And we get the other DBs ordinance.
Posted by: Bobby Lee || 05/31/2005 18:02 Comments || Top||

#15  Ironically, I agree with Kamehameha III, who *wanted* to destroy their repulsive religion and much of their culture; but the people themselves should be preserved as a unique ethnic group.

Huh? What's this all about, Anonymoose? *has not studied Hawaiian separatism*

But seriously, what the f*ck is this?? They "need a nation within a nation"??? I don't even support the concept of Indian nations as separate nations! One country, fifty states, people!

Almost half of the people with Hawaiian blood live on the U.S. mainland, clustered mainly in West Coast cities, according to the U.S. Census, which included the Hawaiian designation for first time in 2000.

THERE we go ...

Others support a Hawaiian government based in the state of Hawaii and sanctioned by the United States. Some demand full sovereignty and the reinstatement of a monarchy. The most radical endorse a separate nation-state that would partner with the United States only on certain issues, such as defense or trade.

I wonder what else they're going to want ...
Posted by: Edward Yee || 05/31/2005 20:35 Comments || Top||

#16  Now that I think of it, the last excerpt (about what sort of government would take the place of statehood) made me think ...

Are we talking MeCHA types here?
Posted by: Edward Yee || 05/31/2005 20:39 Comments || Top||

#17  The suggestion to give them Kauai is not a good one.

Anyone who hasn't had the pleasure of walking on Hanalei beach in the moonlight is missing out on one of the most beautiful things a person can do.
Posted by: Penguin || 05/31/2005 21:08 Comments || Top||

#18  None of these bozos should be recognized as "indiginous peoples" with any rights different from any other American. They are plain old citizens (POC) and they should get off the dole. I'm sorry they lost the war and I'm sorry they survived. They can assimilate or watch the war go into retuns, makes me no never mind.
Posted by: Mrs. Davis || 05/31/2005 21:23 Comments || Top||

Vanity Fair - "Deep Throat " revealed
(WASHINGTON) -- W. Mark Felt, the number two man in the FBI during the early 70's, has been revealed as "Deep Throat", the legendary source who provided information damaging to President Richard Nixon on the Watergate scandal to the Washington Post, according to an upcoming article in Vanity Fair magazine.
Link to long article at Vanity fair. The nashing of teeth you hear is Woodward and Bernstein, there goes their tell-all book deal.
Posted by: Steve || 05/31/2005 12:03 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [6464 views] Top|| File under:

#1  Contacted by E&P, former Washington Post reporter Carl Bernstein, who with Bob Woodward relied on the man dubbed 'Deep Throat' for crucial advice in their Watergate sleuthing, would neither confirm of deny Felt was the source, and said that the Woodward-Bernstein team would not change its stance.
"I think people are jumping up and down about this, but we have nothing to say other than what we have said which is when the individual dies, we will disclose his identity," he said. "Other sources have released us from pledges, but nothing has happened that could change that in these circumstances." The offices of Woodward and former Post editor Ben Bradlee told E&P they would have no comment.
"There have been numerous books and articles and speculation in journalism classes devoted to Deep Throat," Bernstein told E&P, when contacted at his Manhattan office. "When the individual dies, we will disclose his identity. We have always said the same thing. We do not go into any detail about it, not to play games, but to protect the source."
Asked if he was aware of the Vanity Fair article prior to its publication or had spoken with Felt, Bernstein declined comment. He also declined comment when asked directly if Felt was Deep Throat. "I'm not going to go beyond this," he said. "I've said what I am going to say."
When asked if this report was different than most past reports on Deep Throat's identity because it involved alleged commments by the famed anonymous source, Bernstein said, "that is not exactly true," but declined to elaborate further.

Like I said, there goes the exclusive book deal.
Posted by: Steve || 05/31/2005 12:47 Comments || Top||

#2  Via Bros. Judd:

Timothy Noah nailed that one.


In the summer of 1999, [Bob] Woodward showed up unexpectedly at the home of Felt's daughter, Joan, in Santa Rosa, California, north of San Francisco, and took him to lunch, Joan Felt, who was taking care of him at her home, told me.
Posted by: anonymous2u || 05/31/2005 13:05 Comments || Top||

#3  Is it OK if I don't give a rat's ass?

Seriously, this is as exciting as new information about the Whiskey Rebellion. But the press, being self-centered boomers, will lick this up like a kitten in a bowl of spilled milk. It'll remind them of the Glory Days of the press, when poorly-sourced stories could bring down an administration, and they'll be even less tolerable than normal.

Posted by: Robert Crawford || 05/31/2005 13:19 Comments || Top||

#4  This just in: Oakland A's win 1972 World Series!
Posted by: Kent Brockman || 05/31/2005 13:22 Comments || Top||

#5  Media under siege for running a story from a single anonymous source. The next week the best known single anonymous source goes public and takes over the news cycles.

Coincidence? We report, you decide.
Posted by: rjschwarz || 05/31/2005 16:19 Comments || Top||

#6  Well we knew all along Deep Threat wasn't Freddy B.
Posted by: Darryl Harmonica || 05/31/2005 18:04 Comments || Top||

#7  And all this time I thought Linda Lovelace was Deep Throat.
Posted by: HarryReams || 05/31/2005 20:57 Comments || Top||

#8  WaPo confirms, Felt was "Deep Throat"
Posted by: Atomic Conspiracy || 05/31/2005 21:05 Comments || Top||

#9  And on FoxNews they made a fairly good case refuting that it was Felt - or that he repeatedly lied through his teeth not very long ago - when it no longer mattered to anyone but historians and wankers.

I don't really care. Deep Throat is no American Hero. I've always figured it was a construct that Woodward came up with to make the bits and pieces seem unassailable and factual. Everything from the fact that Woodward said DT was a chain smoker (Felt quit in '48 he says) to the hard-to-swallow notion that there was a single source who had such access across so many different Executive Branch Depts.

Posted by: .com || 05/31/2005 21:16 Comments || Top||

#10  Deep Throat wqas Felt by Linda Lovelace.
Posted by: Mrs. Davis || 05/31/2005 21:18 Comments || Top||

Sen. Clinton Allegedly Intimidated Husband's Sexual Accusers
(CNSNews.com) - A new book detailing the alleged sexual improprieties of former president Bill Clinton also charges that current U.S. Sen. Hillary Clinton played a major role in threatening and intimidating her husband's accusers.

Candice E. Jackson, author of "Their Lives: The Women Targeted by the Clinton Machine," told Cybercast News Service that in addition to the "sexual abuse" she alleges was committed by Bill Clinton, "Hillary's involvement is just as devastating and just as important in all this." "[Hillary Clinton] was right there in the inner circle taking a lead in giving these women zero credibility, in attacking them in the public and through the press and in participating in all of these scare tactics, like hiring private investigators to threaten them and follow them," Jackson explained.
Hillary Clinton is "either as misogynistic as her husband or she is simply willing to conspire to mistreat women if that's what it takes to preserve their political careers," Jackson added.
Jackson admits that one of her goals it to prevent Sen. Hillary Clinton from being elected president in 2008. Mrs. Clinton to expected to run for re-election to the Senate representing New York State in 2006 and then perhaps launch a Democratic bid to win the White House that her husband occupied between 1993 and 2001. "We have let the Clintons go to the White House once and I think this is a serious enough abuse issue to prevent them from going there again," Jackson said.
Jackson, who describes herself as a "libertarian feminist," hopes her book will open the eyes of feminists in the U.S. to the "importance of not allowing the Clintons to escape with a reputation for being pro-woman when they have truly destroyed women along the way. "The Clintons have really gotten away with a political reputation of being defenders of women's rights and women's issues," Jackson said. "To me that really says a lot about the state of feminism in this country. It seems like it doesn't even matter whether women are brutally mistreated as long as politicians support abortion rights," she added.
I look forward to her being interviewed about this book on "60 Minutes". Yeah, when pigs fly..
Posted by: Steve || 05/31/2005 08:51 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [6462 views] Top|| File under:

#1  When I saw the headline, I thought this was Isikoff/Newsweak reporting again ("breaking the story") oh, about 8 years too late. Or like Dan Blather, "I'd like to be the one to break the story on my report being false."
Posted by: BA || 05/31/2005 9:15 Comments || Top||

#2  Old news.

Anyone who saw Hillary's 'Vast Right Wing Conspircy' piece (I think it was on We Hate America Good Morning America) already knows this.
They also know that the Media was a willing participant when they (the MSM) nodded their collective heads in agreement. If a conservative had made such a statement they would have been laughed off the stage.
Posted by: CrazyFool || 05/31/2005 9:37 Comments || Top||

#3  im like ta think hilary encurajed bill. wuldnt want film of em threesum tho.
Posted by: muck4doo || 05/31/2005 10:21 Comments || Top||

#4  I'd like to have Juanita B visit DC and autograph copies of this book during its publicity tour. Then I'd like to see Juanita on Oprah.
Posted by: mhw || 05/31/2005 11:36 Comments || Top||

#5  Sounds like I should have had Hillary working for me, though my pals did a good enough job anyway.
Posted by: Justice Clarence Thomas || 05/31/2005 11:49 Comments || Top||

#6  Must be like having the Boss Dyke at Women's Prison coming after you...
Posted by: tu3031 || 05/31/2005 15:21 Comments || Top||

#7  Or having Martha Stewart come after you. Boss Lady learned a few tricks in the big house http://huffingtonstoast.com/author/martha-stewart/
Posted by: thibaud (aka lex) || 05/31/2005 17:44 Comments || Top||

Southeast Asia
Huge polio vaccination program underway in Indonesia
In the Indonesian island of Java, a huge polio vaccination campaign has begun - nearly six and a half children under the age of five will be vaccinated in an attempt to stop the current polio outbreak that has hit the area. The areas included in this programme are Jakarta, Banten, and West Java. Sixteen people have now come down with polio (two up on last week) - all of them are small children who were never vaccinated.
This outbreak took place in West Java. Authorities are including Jakarta and Banted in this campaign because they are neighbouring regions. Experts are sure this polio virus came from Nigeria West Africa and arrived to Indonesia via Haj pilgrims Saudi Arabia.
Islam, the gift that keeps on giving
Posted by: Steve || 05/31/2005 12:47 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [6460 views] Top|| File under:

#1  It's a feature, not a bug.
Posted by: BH || 05/31/2005 13:08 Comments || Top||

Home Front: Culture Wars
Evil Boy Scouts Lied About Blacks
Thank you WaPo, now the truth about the Boy Scouts has been revealed. Besides, they don't wear condoms and swear an oath to Planned Parenthood.

An independent investigation of the Atlanta-area Boy Scouts found that the organization inflated its number of black Scouts by more than 5,000 in a program for inner-city youth.

The executive director of the Atlanta Boy Scouts resigned after the report was released.

Auditors said Scout officials assigned to inner-city areas may have felt pressure to demonstrate membership growth, which is a part of their performance evaluations. Membership numbers also are used to help determined funding from the United Way, a major Scouts donor.

The audit found that former Scouts too old to participate remained on the memberships lists and that boys who had only attended informational meetings about the program were signed up.

In one example, an official changed the birth date of 87 Cub Scouts so they would be old enough to participate in the program. In another case, an official continued to report membership of a church Boy Scout unit although the church had burned down three years earlier.

The inflated numbers also included 200 Scout units that did not exist.

Edgar Sims Jr., an attorney with the law firm that conducted the audit, said the Atlanta Area Council claimed there were 10,238 Scouts in Operation First Class in 2004, but the audit found that only 5,361 were registered.

Operation First Class was designed to increase participation by boys in the country's poorest areas, and it provides the boys' books, uniforms and other opportunities, including scholarships for camp.

In resigning, David Larkin, executive director of the Atlanta Area Council, said he was "deeply disappointed both personally and professionally" and took fully responsibility for the false records.

"As scout executive of the Atlanta Area Council, I am charged with overseeing all activities of the organization. When those activities do not reflect the principles and integrity of the Boy Scouts of America, at any level, I take full responsibility," he said.

Joe Beasley, regional director of the Rainbow/PUSH Coalition, claimed in October that the 13-county Boy Scouts council was reporting twice as many black participants as were actively involved.

Georgia Boy Scout officials then commissioned a law firm to independently investigate the complaint. Directors of Atlanta's United Way voted May 18 to withhold money for area Boy Scouts pending an investigation.

Similar allegations have been made in Alabama, where the FBI is investigating whether the Birmingham-based Greater Alabama Boy Scout Council padded its membership rolls.

Posted by: Captain America || 05/31/2005 15:13 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [6468 views] Top|| File under:

#1  This is the problem with affermitive action and all the "multi-culturalism-ness" that the left preaches.
Posted by: mmurray821 || 05/31/2005 15:21 Comments || Top||

#2  Excellent! We are on the move!
Posted by: F Win Spembalist Jr. || 05/31/2005 16:48 Comments || Top||

#3  roughly 1/20th of the fraudulent Democrat voters....which they'll never investigate
Posted by: Frank G || 05/31/2005 17:31 Comments || Top||

Afghanistan/South Asia
Treason, thy name is canned fruits and vegetables
India said Tuesday it would investigate reports that an army brigadier sold the country's battle plan before the 1965 war with Pakistan to fund his wife's hobby of canning fruits and vegetables.
Gohar Ayub Khan, son of former Pakistan President Ayub Khan, said in an interview to the Pakistani newspaper, The News, Monday that Pakistani agents had bought the Indian military plan for 20,000 rupees ($458) from the officer, who needed money to buy equipment for his wife to fulfil her hobby.
The News story was splashed across front pages in the Indian media Tuesday and was a major story on TV news channels.
Gohar, a former Pakistan foreign minister whose autobiography will be released in coming weeks, told the Pakistani newspaper that the Indian brigadier was still alive and served in a very senior position before retiring.
The Indian defense ministry said though it doubted Gohar's claims it would investigate.
"The incident took place 30 to 35 years ago... It needs to be looked into and will be investigated," Indian Defense Minister Pranab Mukherjee told reporters while inaugurating a new naval base on India's western coast.
But he said it was highly unlikely that an officer of the rank of brigadier would have the military's complete battle plan.
India and Pakistan fought their second war with fierce air and tank battles in September 1965 with neither side able to claim a clear-cut victory when a U.N.-sponsored cease-fire came into effect after three weeks of fighting.
India and Pakistan have fought three wars since both gained independence from Britain in 1947, of which two, including the 1965 conflict, were over the disputed territory of Kashmir.
A war in 1971 led to the creation of Bangladesh, formerly East Pakistan.
Both nations are now involved a cautious peace process.
Posted by: Anonymoose || 05/31/2005 11:02 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [6463 views] Top|| File under:

#1  Now over here, this guy would have no problem. "Oh, my poor wife! She's obsesseive compulsive!" they'd go on Oprah, and Dr. Phil and write their book about her struggle with this dread disease and probably be set for life as professional victims.
Unfortunately, they're not over here. So they'll probably shoot him.
Posted by: tu3031 || 05/31/2005 12:50 Comments || Top||

#2  All I can say is... yeah, right.
Posted by: Phil Fraering || 05/31/2005 13:13 Comments || Top||

#3  Well it is a wholesome and frugal hobby.
Posted by: Shipman || 05/31/2005 13:25 Comments || Top||

#4  What I mean, shipman, is this: do you really believe this guy about this? I don't.
Posted by: Phil Fraering || 05/31/2005 13:41 Comments || Top||

#5  Well, it was a long time ago, things were different then. The home canning force was strong in the subcontinent, many fine men were lost fighting the Ball Jar revolution. It's hard to remember that now, it was a long time ago, things were different then.


Hear 'ya Phil. :)
Posted by: Shipman || 05/31/2005 14:39 Comments || Top||

#6  NEW DELHI: The service records of "six retired officers", who were brigadiers during the 1965 war and later went on to become major-generals and lt-generals, are now being minutely examined in the Army HQ in an internal inquiry.

"Four of them are infantry officers, while one is from the armoured corps and the last from a support arm," said sources. This comes after Pakistani politician Gohar Ayub Khan's claim that an Indian Brigadier sold the detailed Indian war plans to Pakistan just before the 1965 war for Rs 20,000.

The names of the six officers are being withheld by this newspaper since the claim of Gohar Khan, whose father Field Marshal Ayub Khan headed the military regime in Pakistan during the 1965 war, is believed to be "fairly exaggerated and far-fetched".

The timing of the "revelations" by Gohar Khan, known for hawkish views against India, is also "suspect", especially since it comes at a time when the two countries are engaged in the composite dialogue process at the highest levels.

The possibility that Gohar Khan's claim could be an "advertising stunt" to boost the sales of his autobiography, that will come out in December, has also not been ruled out.
Posted by: john || 05/31/2005 17:05 Comments || Top||

#7  This is raising hackles in Delhi

40 years on, Gohar Ayub spins a yarn

Pakistan's first military usurper and self-proclaimed Field Marshal Ayub Khan, regularly boasted that one Pakistani soldier was more than a match for ten of his Indian counterparts. This myth was shattered when Pakistan chose to initiate conflict with India in 1965.

Gohar Ayub Khan evidently has three objectives in mind. Firstly, to discredit the Indian Army whose officers don't spend their careers making money selling Cantonment lands, or peddling heroin. Secondly, to restore the "image" of his father who is reviled in Pakistan today as a dictator who presided over the disastrous military adventure in 1965. Finally, sensationalism gets more money for writers.


By claiming that his father knew in advance of India's military plans, Gohar Ayub only confirms that his father was an incompetent military leader, who could not win a battle even after being forewarned of enemy intentions. Having participated in the 1965 conflict and entered Pakistan in the Sialkot Sector, I can personally assert that the Pakistan Army had no clue of where our only Armoured Division was going to strike. This would hardly have happened if, as Gohar, claims his father was fully aware of our plans.


The timing of Gohar's allegations is interesting. His "revelations" come when senior officers of the Pakistan Army are being accused of perpetrating huge frauds on sale of cantonment lands in Lahore and elsewhere and forcibly occupying farmlands in Okara, evicting tenant farmers.
Posted by: john || 05/31/2005 17:53 Comments || Top||

Home Front: Tech
U.S. military develops tiny sensors disguised as rocks
The U.S. military is developing miniature electronic sensors disguised as rocks.
The disguised sensors can be dropped from an aircraft and used to help detect the sound of approaching enemy combatants, the London Financial Times has reported.
The devices, which would be no larger than a golf ball, could be ready for use in about 18 months, the paper said. They use tiny silicon chips and radio frequency identification, or RFID, technology that is so sensitive that it can detect the sound of a human footfall at 20 feet to 30 feet. RFID technology uses radio signals that are sent from a silicon chip to a remote sensing device.
The project is being carried out by scientists at North Dakota State University, which has licensed nano-technology processes from Alien Technology, a California-based commercial manufacturer of RFID tags for supermarkets, the Financial Times said.
The new sensors would be made cheaply enough to be left on the ground without need for retrieval by soldiers.
Posted by: Anonymoose || 05/31/2005 10:31 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [6464 views] Top|| File under:

#1  Trying to track the NorK army after a big meal?
Posted by: Seafarious || 05/31/2005 11:04 Comments || Top||

#2  The Martians have been doing this for years. Trust me. Stay away from sandstone and limestone, only trust the true igneous rock of your native planet.
Posted by: A rock in your backyard || 05/31/2005 13:34 Comments || Top||

#3  Tiny Pebbles

Tiny pebbles
In the Nork wine
Make me happy
Make me feel fine

Posted by: Don Ho || 05/31/2005 15:12 Comments || Top||

Opportunity Still Progressing Through Dune

Opportunity continues to make slow progress through the sand dune, at a slip rate of roughly 99.5 percent. From the time Opportunity resumed driving after digging into the dune until May 26, drives totaling 64.8 meters (about 213 feet) of wheel rotations have been commanded and executed, producing 34.8 centimeters (1.1 feet) of forward progress.

According to MER Prinicpal Investigator, Steve Squyres, "We're seeing slow, steady progress, at a remarkably constant rate. For every meter of wheel turns that we command, we get half a centimeter of actual motion.

"It's been like this since the start of the extraction process. We're typically doing 12 meters of wheel turns a day, and typically seeing about six centimeters of motion. We'll get out of here eventually, but it's a slow, laborious process," he wrote in his online diary.

Opportunity has also been performing atmospheric observations. Each sol the rover takes two measurements of how clear the sky is, checks for clouds, and does a Sun survey. A few sols ago a daily horizon survey was added, and Opportunity also imaged its magnets with the panoramic camera.

Sol-by-sol summaries

Sol 469 (ending on May 20): Two meters (6.6 feet) of commanded motion, resulting in 1.1 centimeters (0.4 inch) of progress.

Sol 470: Twelve meters (39 feet) of commanded motion; about 6 centimeters (2.4 inches) of progress.

Sol 471: Twelve meters (39 feet) of commanded motion; about 6 centimeters (2.4 inches) of progress.

Sol 472: Twelve meters (39 feet) of motions was commanded. Only the first 2 meters were executed. After that step, the rover stopped the drive by itself due to uncertainty about its own position. One centimeter (0.4 inch) of progress was made.

Sol 473: Planning was suspended today due to issues with the ground data system. The rover executed a pre-loaded science sequence.

Sol 474: Eight-meter (26-foot) drive planned, yielding 3.7 centimeter (1.5 inches) of progress.

Sol 475 (ending on May 26, 2005): Ten-meter (33-foot) drive planned; 8.8 meters (29 feet) executed; 3.5 centimeters (1.4 inches) of progress

Looking ahead

Thursday, May 26, the team planned two sols (476 and 477), and Friday, May 27, the team was planning three sols to cover the holiday weekend. Sol 476 will command 12 meters (39 feet), and every other sol will require a "go/no-go" decision that will allow for 0 meters, 2 meters (7 feet), or 12 meters (39 feet) of commanded motion per sol.
Posted by: Spavirt Pheng6042 || 05/31/2005 02:28 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [6463 views] Top|| File under:

#1  I decided not to pursue a career in space exploration because I didn't think I could stand the heart-racing excitement.
Posted by: BH || 05/31/2005 10:21 Comments || Top||

#2  Don't ya just figure there's some guy on the graveyard shift that's just gonna put the hammer down one night.
Posted by: Shipman || 05/31/2005 13:36 Comments || Top||

#3  Overheard in the JPL control room, 3am:
Posted by: mojo || 05/31/2005 15:43 Comments || Top||

#4  Ship - I'm sure they'd love to given the Opportunity....
Posted by: CrazyFool || 05/31/2005 15:56 Comments || Top||

#5  Opportunity Still Progressing Through Dune

You have to go slow to avoid calling in a worm.
Posted by: Steve || 05/31/2005 16:40 Comments || Top||

#6  So we've now got Martian sols? I say we all just go with stardates all over and avoid the expected rash of planetary day conversions.
Posted by: Xbalanke || 05/31/2005 17:26 Comments || Top||

LockMart Delivers First Lot Of Guided MLRS Unitary Rockets To US Army

Guided MLRS Unitary integrates a 196-pound unitary warhead into the GMLRS rocket, giving battlefield commanders the ability to attack targets up to 70 kilometers away with high precision.

Lockheed Martin has delivered the first 72 Guided Multiple Launch Rocket System (GMLRS) Unitary rockets to the U.S. Army, satisfying a request for an immediate capability as part of an Urgent Need Statement from the U.S. Army Aviation & Missile Command (AMCOM), Redstone Arsenal, AL, in January 2005.
The GMLRS Unitary rocket will greatly reduce collateral damage by providing enhanced accuracy to ensure delivery of the warhead to the target.

Guided MLRS Unitary integrates a 196-pound unitary warhead into the GMLRS rocket, giving battlefield commanders the ability to attack targets up to 70 kilometers away with high precision.

Work on the contract quick-reaction was performed at Lockheed Martin facilities in Dallas, TX, and Camden, AR. More than 400 GMLRS Unitary rockets will be delivered as part of the Army's Urgent Need Statement. Deliveries of the rockets will continue throughout the remainder of the year.

"Lockheed Martin is leaning far forward to bring in theater the technology we need to allow the precision we presently lack," said Col. James Heverin, U.S. Army TRADOC system manager for rockets and missiles at Fort Sill, OK.

"The Army requested that Lockheed Martin accelerate the current Guided Unitary SDD program in January in support of an Urgent Need Statement," said Ron Abbott, vice president - Tactical Missiles at Lockheed Martin Missiles and Fire Control.

"We received the go ahead in January and delivered the first lot in May, which in production terms is outstanding performance. But our GMLRS team's passion for invention literally redesigned the boundaries of what is possible for the benefit of our Soldiers."

Performance of the GMLRS Unitary rockets has been outstanding during the testing phase, performing successfully in 10 different tests over the past 14 months.

GMLRS is an all-weather, precision-guided rocket that provides increased accuracy, thus reducing the number of rockets necessary to defeat current targets by as much as 80 percent.

The GMLRS rocket provides increased precision and maneuverability, and can be fired from the MLRS M270A1 and the High Mobility Artillery Rocket System (HIMARS) launchers.

GMLRS is a Future Force system with a modular design intended to incorporate future growth. The system incorporates a GPS-aided inertial guidance package integrated on a product-improved rocket body.

Small canards on the guided rocket nose provide basic maneuverability and enhance the accuracy of the system.
Posted by: Spavirt Pheng6042 || 05/31/2005 02:30 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [6463 views] Top|| File under:

#1  Given that we are talking here about MLRS, a tool used to devastate square kilometers at a time, is it even permissible to use the phrase 'greatly reduce collateral damage'?
Posted by: SteveS || 05/31/2005 9:39 Comments || Top||

#2  is it even permissible to use the phrase 'greatly reduce collateral damage'?

Not around Bomb-a-rama. He lives for collateral damage.
Posted by: Steve || 05/31/2005 10:38 Comments || Top||

#3  It sound a lot smaler than a JDAM and even smaller than the 250 lb Small Diameter Bomb but with comparable accuracy. Anybody know what the CEP is?
Posted by: Mrs. Davis || 05/31/2005 11:13 Comments || Top||

#4  The Guided MLRS (GMLRS) rocket is being developed under an international cooperative program with the United States, United Kingdom, Italy, France and Germany. GMLRS will have a global positioning system aided inertial guidance package integrated in a rocket body. Additionally, small canards on the guided rocket nose will add basic maneuverability to further enhance the accuracy of the system.
• Began EMD in FY99
• Maximum range 60+ km
• Accuracy measured in meters
• Modular design facilitates future growth
• Warhead payload of 404 DPICM bomblets

That's multiple warhead model, new one in story has single 196 pound warhead.

A second phase of the demonstration will add a Global Positioning System (GPS) receiver and antenna to demonstrate near precision delivery (5 meters CEP).

The ATD culminated on February 11, 1999 with a GPS-aided flight test in which the missile again flew 49 km and impacted only 2.1 meters from the target center, a resounding success.
Posted by: Steve || 05/31/2005 12:42 Comments || Top||

#5  Do they use these rockets on ships? Seems like shipboard launch would be ideal for attacking any targets within 50 km of the coast.
Posted by: DO || 05/31/2005 12:42 Comments || Top||

#6  I watched these launched then a day later surveyed the devastation they cause in GW I. Awesome, utterly awesome. Glad to hear they've been upgraded. Nothing tills a grid sqaure better than these with perhaps the exception of 16" naval guns.
Posted by: 98zulu || 05/31/2005 13:04 Comments || Top||

#7  Ah, finally figured out the Lock-Mart reference - I thought it was a play on K-Mart, implying cheap and shoddy......
Posted by: Thomons Omeans8121 || 05/31/2005 13:12 Comments || Top||

#8  My question is...why is Lockheed Martin measuring the area of impact in meters? Has Redstone arsenal (Alabama) gone metric?
Posted by: BA || 05/31/2005 14:48 Comments || Top||

#9  BA - all military mesurements in distance are done in meters/kilometers.
I think CEP stands for Central Estimated Point, which means that is the point where it is supposed to hit. All smart munitions wander off a bit, but with a dangar radius of 100 meters, 5 or so meters off CEP is not that big a deal.
Posted by: mmurray821 || 05/31/2005 15:26 Comments || Top||

#10  why is Lockheed Martin measuring the area of impact in meters?

Because we're targeting countries that use the metric system. Have to respect their local customs.
Posted by: Steve || 05/31/2005 15:27 Comments || Top||

#11  CEP=Circular Error Probability
Posted by: Steve || 05/31/2005 15:34 Comments || Top||

LockMart Converts Anti-Tank Missile To Urban Applications

In 2004, Lockheed Martin received a contract to refit all remaining Predators to SRAW-MPV (Multi-Purpose Variant) configuration with a new multi-purpose blast-fragmentation warhead. This will convert the missile from an anti-armour to a direct-fire urban assault weapon, which better fulfills the needs of the USMC.

Responding to an urgent request from warfighters, Lockheed Martin expanded the capabilities of its Predator anti-tank weapon and delivered 400 rounds to the U.S. Marine Corps.
The U.S. Marine Corps requested Lockheed Martin to modify the shoulder- fired, short-range Predator anti-tank weapon into a direct-attack urban assault weapon.

Renamed the Short-Range Assault Weapon-Multiple Purpose Variant (SRAW-MPV), the new urban assault missile has a multiple-purpose blast warhead, enabling it to defeat a variety of targets such as buildings and bunkers, as well as light-armored vehicles.

"The ability of the SRAW team to field the SRAW-MPV in less than six months in response to an urgent requirement is testimony to the professionalism and dedication of every member of the team," said Michael Woodson, SRAW project officer for the Marine Corps Systems Command in Quantico, VA.

"I am confident that SRAW-MPV will provide a needed capability to our Marines who are engaged almost daily in urban combat operations in support of Operation Iraqi Freedom."

"The conversion of Predator from a top-down anti-armor weapon to a direct- fire urban assault weapon was prompted by the need for fire-from-enclosure assault weapons, which has become paramount to support current actions," said Andy Hawkins, SRAW-MPV program manager at Lockheed Martin Missiles and Fire Control.

"Other current short-range assault weapon systems cannot meet the requirement."

"This variant of the Predator weapon system is uniquely suited to the urban warfare environment that is prevalent in military operations today," Hawkins added.

"The SRAW-MPV is the only short-range soft-launch assault weapon in the world. It can be safely fired from buildings with single hearing protection, which protects the gunner by minimizing exposure to enemy counter-fire. In addition, its point-and-shoot, fire-and-forget inertial guidance system minimizes gunner operations and corrects for in-flight disturbances such as cross-wind."

The new weapon passed an acceptance test at the Naval Air Warfare Center (NAWC), China Lake, CA, in November, as well as successful man firings last December, demonstrating it can be fired safely even with minimal prior training.

The flight tests included two rounds that successfully breached a triple- brick target, leaving a gap wide enough for troop entry, and another round that disabled an armored personnel carrier. All shots were at a range of 200 meters.

Lockheed Martin previously delivered 344 Predator rounds under a Low-Rate Initial Production-I contract. Both the Predator and SRAW-MPV weapons are fully man-rated (all qualification, safety certification and gunner hazard tests are complete, any limitations on the use of the weapon are quantified and documented, and the weapon is tested as safe to fire within the defined limitations) - ready to deploy.

The U.S. Army is evaluating options for upgrading its urban assault weapon capabilities for fire from enclosure and improved performance over the next few years, and SRAW-MPV, in its current configuration, will meet most of these upgrade requirements. U.S. allies also have urban warfare requirements that SRAW-MPV will meet.
Posted by: Spavirt Pheng6042 || 05/31/2005 02:32 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [6460 views] Top|| File under:

US To Test Airline Anti-Missile Defense System: Report

The US Department of Homeland Security is paying for tests on defensive laser systems designed to thwart attacks from shoulder-fired missiles on passenger airliners, the New York Times reported Sunday.
DHS has spent up to now 120 million dollars on the tests, which are expected to last through 2006, the Times reported.

Many US officials believe that inexpensive shoulder-fired missiles such as the US-made Stingers and Soviet-made SA-7's will soon become a threat within the United States.

The US Congress has ordered DHS to quickly move to adapt military technology for the 6,800 US commercial jets.

Estimates range from 10 billion dollars to install systems in all US commercial jets, and up to 40 billion over 20 years when maintenance and upkeep are included, according to the Times.

The system uses plane-mounted sensors to detect heat-seeking missiles, then automatically fires infrared lasers to jam the missiles' guidance systems.

The system would operate within an 80 kilometer (50-mile) area around airports when planes land or take off, the Times reported.

DHS officials have said there are currently no credible threats of domestic missile attacks.
Posted by: Spavirt Pheng6042 || 05/31/2005 02:36 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [6472 views] Top|| File under:

#1  Were I an engineer (that I am not is cause for us all to be very grateful), I would want to be whatever kind develops weapons. Those guys are having a lot of fun these days!
Posted by: trailing wife || 05/31/2005 13:53 Comments || Top||

#2  TW:
Electrical Engineers design weapons.
Civil Engineers design targets.
Posted by: Jackal || 05/31/2005 18:39 Comments || Top||

#3  And software engineers make the first able to hit the second. ;-)
Posted by: rkb || 05/31/2005 20:07 Comments || Top||

#4  "And software engineers make the first able to hit the second. ;-)"

Provided they remember to use the right measurement units... :-)
Posted by: Dave D. || 05/31/2005 20:16 Comments || Top||

#5  without civils your armies' logistics just lost the war at the first river crossing :-)

Posted by: Frank G || 05/31/2005 21:23 Comments || Top||

#6  I thought there was also a system under development where a laser based at the airport would be used to blind missiles?
Posted by: Phil Fraering || 05/31/2005 22:42 Comments || Top||

Home Front: Culture Wars
Ward Churchill's Great Native Characters in US History (cont'd)
Posted by: thibaud (aka lex) || 05/31/2005 01:13 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [6470 views] Top|| File under:

#1  This one's called, It Takes a Village".

From www.huffingtonstoast.com - another winning Hunter S parody at the top of the day. Excerpt:

“Hitchens!” I exclaimed, drawing my QVC tanto and waving it before him in playful figure-eights, “What possible excuse can you give me for getting off this plane without your hollowed-out skull in my carry-on bag?” “I can think of one,” he said, reaching into his coat pocket. He took out a Baggie and dropped it on my lap.

Could it be? The color was right. I held it to my face and sniffed. Ah, yes. There was no mistaking that friendly, familiar aroma. “My God!”, I exclaimed, “What’s a puffy public-school pederast like you doing with a bag of fine Afghani hash?” “I’m returning from Kabul,” he said, “where I spent a few weeks talking to friendly warlords up by the Pakistan border. Real journalists do things like that. Anyway, they wouldn’t hear of me leaving without a little parting gift.”

“I think I may just let you live,” I muttered, putting down the tanto and pressing the button for the stewardess. By then Hitchens was busy vomiting gin and airline peanuts into a seat pocket. The stewardess steamed her way up the aisle and hove to by my armrest. My God, the size of the bitch. Old, too. Damn, I miss the Sixties.

“Sir,” she mooed, “I’ll have to ask you to give me that knife! I don’t know how you got on the plane with that, but carrying a knife on a commercial flight is a federal crime!”

“Everything is under control,” I told her, flashing my press credentials too fast for her to read, “I’m an Air Marshall. Special Agent Marcus Garvey, at your service. Don’t worry about the knife. We all carry them, for decapitating suspected Muslims and people who refuse to turn off their cell phones. Just treat me like a regular passenger and avoid calling attention to me, and I’ll see to it that we arrive safe and sound in LA, with no more bloodletting than is appropriate under the circumstances.”

“I see,” she said, “Is there anything you need me to do?” “Yes,” I told her, “I left part of my field kit in a whorehouse in Vero Beach, so I’ll need some supplies.” “I’ll do what I can, special agent,” she said, “what do you need?” “Just a few simple items,” I said, “seventy miniatures of your best liquor, all the lemons you have on the plane, ten cups of ice, and the morphine from the first aid kit. Don’t ask a lot of stupid civilian questions. You wouldn’t understand. You’re a fine woman and a great patriot. President Bush would be proud of you. Now trot your big ass back to the galley and get daddy what he needs so he doesn’t have to cut anyone.”
Posted by: thibaud (aka lex) || 05/31/2005 1:19 Comments || Top||

#2  Ward Churchill's Indian Art
Posted by: badanov || 05/31/2005 8:23 Comments || Top||

#3  huffingstoast is one of the funniest, freshest bits of ass-ripping satire I've seen lately. Arianna's such an idiot, she thinks the fact that toast gets more traffic is a compliment
Posted by: Frank G || 05/31/2005 22:00 Comments || Top||

Africa: Subsaharan
Zimbabwe set to nationalise land
Zimbabwe is to proceed with plans to nationalise all farmland, a ruling party official has said. Zanu-PF spokesman Nathan Shamuvarira said the party would amend the constitution so as to abolish rights to private ownership of land. He said the move would end "ceaseless litigation" by white farmers whose property has been expropriated by decree over the past five years. Under the proposed new system, land would be leased for 99-year terms. The statement appeared in state media. "Through the amendments we are going to push for when parliament resumes sitting in June, all land will become state land, with farmers leasing it on a 99-year lease basis," Mr Shamuvarira said. "This will dispense with the ownership litigation process. "All the former farmers can do after these amendments would be to contest the amount of compensation."
Posted by: Fred || 05/31/2005 00:00 || Comments || Link || E-Mail|| [6474 views] Top|| File under:

#1  State ownership of farmland worked so well in the USSR that it must be emulated for his 10 year plan.
Posted by: 3dc || 05/31/2005 0:14 Comments || Top||

#2  After all Lenin's technique worked so well in the breadbasket that after a little major famine all wasn't well.
Posted by: 3dc || 05/31/2005 0:16 Comments || Top||

#3  Yessss...sss.. next we nazionalize, oooh, ah means nationalize underwears. Zambiland sets new hights for world to pursue. We abolish unsocial selfishness to private underwear by selfish non-Zambis. Zambis are the real peepoles and true man... de originale man.. agree or die. Under where our new new Zambiland freedoms are hung out for all to see, we expose ourselves to the world of chained workers. Underwear will be exchanged in tribal and community street circles for 5 years plan until everything is shown thru to the social miracle achieved. Worldwide wonder will follow our nationalized underwear in the streets and even on programs for TV. This will stop unsocial minds and hearts and our nationalised underwear will leave its mark on everyone touched by it. We bring Zambis together to unite in unity and share the common waistband of true man. Remember the tail of the Zeebok isn't really dirty because flies feast there.
Posted by: Sleans Glomolet4123 || 05/31/2005 10:07 Comments || Top||

#4  Awright, Brother Bob! When whitey comin over to do my plantin? Cut a war veteran some slack, man.
Posted by: Farmin B. Hard || 05/31/2005 11:07 Comments || Top||

#5  This could be interesting. As the article says, some party members are annoyed, since they're large landowners themselves.
Posted by: James || 05/31/2005 11:39 Comments || Top||

#6  Get 'em Sleans!
Posted by: Famine B Worse || 05/31/2005 13:27 Comments || Top||

#7  These party members? pay good money to the original owners of the land? or did they pay some 'veterans' to murder them and 'liberate' it?

Pay-back is *such* a bitch!
Posted by: Tony (UK) || 05/31/2005 23:07 Comments || Top||

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Two weeks of WOT
Tue 2005-05-31
  At least six killed in Karachi mosque attack
Mon 2005-05-30
  Doc faces terror charges in Palm Beach
Sun 2005-05-29
Sat 2005-05-28
  King Fahd is dead?
Fri 2005-05-27
  Zark is dead?
Thu 2005-05-26
  Iraqi Officials Confirm Zarqawi Is Wounded
Wed 2005-05-25
  Huge US raid on al-Qaim
Tue 2005-05-24
  Syria ending cooperation with the US
Mon 2005-05-23
  Mulla Omar aide escapes Multan raid
Sun 2005-05-22
  Cairo Blast Suspect Dies in Custody
Sat 2005-05-21
  DHS Arrests 60 Illegals in Sensitive Jobs
Fri 2005-05-20
  UK Quran protests at U.S. Embassy
Thu 2005-05-19
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Wed 2005-05-18
  Uzbek Rebel Leader Wants Islamic State
Tue 2005-05-17
  Chechen VP killed

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