Monday 30 November 2015

Has Turkey Become the New Home for the Hassassin? #TahirElci

Quote; "A prominent pro-Kurdish lawyer and rights activist has been shot dead in Diyarbakir, south-eastern Turkey.
Tahir Elci was killed in a gun battle between police and unidentified gunmen. Two police officers also died.
He had been making a statement calling for an end to violence between the Turkish state and the Kurdish rebel group the PKK when he was shot dead.*
Police in Istanbul fired water cannon to disperse crowds demonstrating against Mr Elci's death.
A curfew has now been imposed in the neighbourhood where Mr Elci was shot.
Mr Elci, who was head of the Diyarbakir Bar Association, had previously been detained and received death threats after saying the separatist PKK should not be regarded as a terrorist organisation.
In July violence resumed in the conflict between the army and the PKK after a ceasefire collapsed. Dozens have been killed in violent clashes since." Go to:

*Bold italics mine.

Go to: 

Many are clearly very sure what happened...!
Go to: &

Quote: "Video footage, captured moments after Elçi, along with nearly two dozen lawyers, held a press meeting in which he called for an end to the ongoing battle between the terrorist Kurdistan Workers' Party (PKK) and the Turkish security forces conflict, has generated a series of queries about the possible perpetrators.
In his statement before the press, Elçi was trying to attract attention to the damage suffered by the historic Four Legged Minaret, part of the adjacent Kasım Padişah Mosque, in recent clashes.
Elçi was also a lawyer at the trial that followed the Uludere massacre in which 35 Kurdish villagers were killed on the assumption that they were the members of the PKK. It was later revealed that the villagers were smugglers but not the terrorists. The issue still remains unsolved.
One of the videos which has appeared on TV stations shows a shootout between police officers and a group of three men surrounding a white car next to a small fruit stand. It is thought that the three men near the car were plain-clothes officers. When one of the plain-clothes police officers opens the car door, a man inside fires his gun, shooting one of the policeman, while the two others run away. The police officers respond with heavy gunfire as journalists stand behind them. Despite the close range and the many shots fired, none of the attackers were injured and instead made good their escape. Seconds later, Tahir Elçi can be seen lying face down. No journalists were even able to approach the place where Elçi lay due to the intensity of the gun battle.
Here are some questions raised by some officials from the pro-Kurdish Peoples' Democratic Party (HDP) and lawyers in pursuit of the truth.
1-It is understood that the men inside the car had been traced to their location. Were they running away after they had committed an act of terrorism or heading for a place where they could stage an attack?
2-Why didn't the police officers take the required security measures when stopping the white car?
3-Why was the car not stopped by an armored police vehicle instead?
4-How many police officers were on duty when Elçi held the press conference?
5- Did the policemen consider the safety of others when they started shooting?
6- Why were Elçi and his companions not transferred to a safer place as soon as the shootout erupted?
7- Why didn't the police who shot at one of the suspected terrorists follow the man after the gun battle?
8- To whom did the gun, seen next to Elçi's feet after he was shot, belong?
9- Was the cartridge of the bullet that hit Elçi found?
10-Could one of the police officers who shot the men running away from the scene have mistakenly shot Elçi?
Prime Minister Ahmet Davutoğlu, in a statement after the killing on Saturday, did not deny the possibility that Elçi was assassinated, saying that Elçi could have been caught in the crossfire between the terrorists and the policemen." Go to: For full article.

Quote; "On Sunday, the EU and Turkey approved a joint plan to combat the flow of refugees to the bloc, under which the EU member states will allocate €3 billion euros to Turkey and boost negotiations on its membership in the EU, according to President of the European Council Donald Tusk.

“As Turkey is making an effort to take in refugees – who will not come to Europe – it’s reasonable that Turkey receive help from Europe to accommodate those refugees,” Hollande told reporters." Go to:

Also see;  "Murky Business; "U.K and U.S Turn Blind Eye to Islamic State Oil Sales" Nafeez Ahmed: Middle East Eye" Go to: "9/11, 3/11, 7/7, 11/13" Go to:
"Nature Abhors a Vacuum (re: the E.U refugee crisis)" Go to: "The European Arrest Warrant Should be Applied to this Bunch!" Go to: & "The Omerta's Deceivers" Go to:

Tuesday 24 November 2015

Is Travel In and Out of #Yemen's Conflict Zones Being Made Unnecessarily Difficult? #MSF

The struggle for clean water supplies in Sanaa, Yemen.

Quote; "Hospitals closed

For ordinary people it means that it is hard to move around the city and it’s an ongoing struggle to access clean water and food.
Many people living in frontline areas are unable to travel to clinics or hospitals for medical care both because of the fighting and the lack of fuel.
Even those who are able to make it to health facilities, find that they are not functioning. At least 12 hospitals in Taiz had to close their doors and stop receiving patients, for these reasons.
War is an abnormal situation – no one should have to get used to the sound of bullets and airstrikes. But after a couple of months in the country, we and the civilians are unfortunately getting used to it.
People try to avoid frontline areas, but the problem is that fighting can start up unexpectedly, and shelling is extremely unpredictable.
It is sometimes frustrating to be here because the needs are so high and the amount of assistance provided is so low in comparison to what is needed.
But despite that, we are doing the best we can to provide humanitarian and medical aid to people suffering from the ongoing conflict.”...."


MSF in Yemen

Despite the numerous logistical and security challenges, MSF teams continue to deliver medical assistance to people in Yemen. MSF medical staff have treated more than 1,700 war-wounded patients in Yemen since 19 March.
MSF is currently working in Sana’a, Aden, Ad-Dhale, Amran, Taiz and Hajjah governorates."
Go to:
For full article.


Quote; "This week has been the same never ending reports of death and destruction in Yemen. And the UN is saying today that the peace talks – due to start next week – are now delayed until December. I guess Hadi and his powerful neighbours want to make more progress in the ground war before entering the talks, but as usual – the ground war is at stalemate. Everyone says this war can only be ended by negotiations, so why oh why do they have to kill more Yemenis before they talk, for God’s sake?

Taiz is a ferocious battleground, with both sides hoping to use any progress there as a bargaining chip in peace negotiations. I read in one paper that the Houthi-Saleh alliance are using mercenaries from Ethiopia – I don’t know if it is true – and the Saudi-led alliance is definitely bringing in mercenaries and allies from all over the Middle East, Africa, and South America. If you read newspaper articles in papers from members of the Saudi led coalition, they are winning.  On the other hand, if you read Iranian or Houthi papers and news agencies, then you would also read that they too are winning.  When I hear from ordinary Taiz people with no political affiliations, they only state that they are being killed and starved.
Hadi – who ran away from his country and responsibilities at the beginning of the war has moved back to Aden at last – he says permanently.  I guess he’s left his family safe and comfortable in Riyadh. I hope this development means that more effort will be put into security matters in Aden.  Al Qaeda is driving around openly and the Houthi-Saleh alliance are said to be approaching the city – again.  Adenis have been asked to leave their weapons at home – but with gun-toting militias around and no effective police or army, that’s a big ask.  Hadi’s return may indeed draw the fight to Aden, as he is himself a divisive figure with limited popularity and many enemies.
The Saudi bombing raids are as fearsome as ever, killing and destroying all in their wake, especially in the northwest of Yemen.  They obviously have used up lots of their bombs (they dropped 40,000 in the first seven months of war); they have now ordered another 25,140 air to ground missiles from US, including 1,500 penetrator warheads (usually nuclear tipped) and 2,000 of the huge Mother Of All Bombs*, each over 1000 pounds. Total cost said to be 1.3 billion US dollars. Human Rights Watch have called on the US not to send weapons to Saudi Arabia, but I guess no-one is listening.  An Italian news outlet said the weapons are on their way already. There is the usual round of dire warnings about the Yemeni humanitarian situation – this week ICRC has put out an appeal about the crisis – as has UNICEF.  The two recent cyclones have added to the disastrous situation in Yemen. But it’s one thing making a plea and wringing your hands.  Yemenis actually need action now – they are already dying.
Hadramaut had so far has been spared from the war, but the news today is that the war has been taken to them, with suicide bombs and attacks in the UNESCO World Heritage city of Shibam and nearby Al Qatn. A home video of the attack shows it is no mini matter – some of the explosions were horrendous.  As ISIS has claimed responsibility, in the week after the Paris attacks, at least this is getting some media coverage.
The UK media this week has really focused on Paris and the events there, and I guess for people like me who are trying to get empathetic coverage of a much bigger disaster elsewhere this is frustrating.  For example, on BBC Radio 4 a man said that after two lots of bombs in 10 months, he is wondering whether Paris is a good place to bring up his children.  HELLO!!!!  People in Yemen have had massive destructive bombs every single day for over 237 days in some cities like Saada; their homes, schools, hospitals destroyed and perhaps they too think that this is not a good place to bring up children.   Some cities such as Taiz have had ground war every day for over four months, their city looking as damaged as cities in Syria after 5 years.  Don’t Yemenis and Arabs want to protect their children too?  Surely this is the reason why there are so many refugees in Europe today.
Last but not least, there is an important inquiry in UK into the government’s response to the crisis in Yemen.  Written submissions are being invited.  I shall send a submission on behalf of Yemen News Today, but other charities and organisations linked to Yemen should also send their own observations.  It may not change anything, but those of us who love Yemen must do our best to assist Yemen and Yemenis in every way we can." Go to:
For full article.

*Bold italics mine.

Quote; "unexploded cluster bombs are an increasingly common sight in Yemen’s farms and small villages, a visible reminder of Saudi Arabia’s continuing air war there – and of Washington’s large but little-known role in arming and fueling Riyadh’s warplanes.
When the Saudi-led coalition of Sunni Arab nations began their bombing campaign against the Iranian-backed Houthi rebel movement in March, the allies promised a quick, sharp air war to push the rebels out of the capital city of Sanaa. But eight months later, the fighting has only intensified. First, ground troops from Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates stormed into the country in U.S.-made armored vehicles as part of a push to blunt perceived Iranian influence in the region and return ousted President Abed Rabbo Mansour Hadi  to power. Those troops were later joined by hundreds of soldiers from Egypt, Qatar and Sudan.

While the fighting on the ground has been intense, it is the air war that has caused the most destruction, with warplanes circling Sanaa and the small villages throughout the country looking for military targets, but too often hitting civilians instead. The United Nations estimates that the war has resulted in the deaths of over 2,500 civilians, including hundreds of women and children.
A top Royal Saudi Air Force general recently insisted that his country is “sticking to the rules, the international rules and Geneva Convention, first, and law of conflict.” Despite the rising civilian death toll, “we don’t target civilians,” he said.

Riyadh has come under fierce criticism from outside human rights groups, who have charged the country’s air force of bombing civilian targets without investigating afterward, or admitting responsibility. “The obligation of any warring party is to conduct a serious investigation” into charges of civilian deaths said Joe Stork, Middle East and North Africa deputy director for Human Rights Watch. “The Saudis have simply not done that.”
But some of that blame should land at Washington’s feet: the daily bombing campaign would not be possible without the constant presence of U.S. Air Force tanker planes refueling coalition jets, and the billions worth of precision-guided munitions sold to Riyadh and its allies by American defense contractors.
American planes began taking off in support of the campaign on April 5, less than two weeks after the bombs started falling in Yemen in late March. As of Nov. 13, U.S. tankers have flown 471 refueling sorties to top off the tanks of coalition warplanes 2,443 times, according to numbers provided by the Defense Department. The American flights have totaled approximately 3,926 flying hours while delivering over 17 million lbs. of fuel.
The mostly American-made fighter planes guided by Arab pilots are also primarily dropping American-made munitions, bolstered recently by the $1.29 billion in weaponry Washington agreed to sell Saudi Arabia. The sale includes 22,000 bombs, featuring 1,000 laser guided bombs, and over 5,000 “kits” that can transform older bombs into GPS-guided bombs.
Despite the civilian toll from the airstrikes, top U.S. military officials haven’t shied away from talking about their involvement in planning the war. American military personnel are currently working out of a Saudi Arabian planning center helping the Saudis plan the daily airstrikes and providing intelligence help to coordinate flights, Lt. Gen. Charles Q. Brown Jr., the commander of the U.S. Air Force’s Central Command, told an audience earlier this month at the Dubai Air Show.
The Obama administration, meanwhile, has stood solidly behind its Gulf allies. Earlier this month, State Department spokesman Mark Toner said “the reason the Saudis are there conducting these airstrikes is because of the ongoing violence stoked by Houthi rebels.” He acknowledged that the strikes have resulted in civilian casualties but stopped short of holding any single party responsible, saying that U.S. policy makers “always call for restraint in conducting these kinds of airstrikes” when they are near civilian areas.
The air campaign, and the civilian fallout, has been a black eye for Washington, however. Just weeks after an American AC-130 gunship struck a Doctors Without Borders hospital in Kunduz, Afghanistan, killing 14 of the aid group’s staffers, a suspected Saudi jet struck another Doctors Without Borders hospital in Yemen. And while the group says no one was killed in the Oct. 26 incident, the destruction of the hospital will likely leave up to 200,000 Yemenis without health care. While Riyadh denied responsibility for the air strike, U.N. Secretary General Ban Ki-moon reacted quickly, saying he “condemned the airstrikes by the Saudi-led coalition.”" Go to:

Quote; "Modern 5th gen weapons are often of much lower yield than the Hiroshima and Nagasaki bombs with yields of less than 1 kiloton (1000 tonnes of TNT equivalent). They also have different manners of explosion – instead of one big bang they can have much longer burn times producing visual effects that look quite different.
This is why it is important to learn a little about these new weapons types and how their explosions would appear visually as it will better enable the identification of nuclear events in future; allowing people to discern between the explosion of a warehouse full of rocket fuel and a nuclear explosion.
Make no mistake, we have entered into a dangerous new age where the use of these advanced low yield nuclear weapons will become increasingly commonplace; therefore we all need to become better informed about these weapons so it becomes harder to use them covertly to commit acts of terrorism.

The uranium hydride bomb is a variant design of the atomic bomb first proposed as far back as 1939. It uses deuterium, an isotope of hydrogen, to act as a neutron moderator in a U235 based implosion weapon. The neutron chain reaction is a slow nuclear fission process vs a fast fission process. Due to the use of slower moving neutrons the bombs total explosive power is adversely affected by the thermal cooling of neutrons since it delays the neutron multiplication factor or Alpha production rate. Two uranium hydride bombs are known to have been tested back in the 1950’s,the Ruth and Ray test explosions in Operation Upshot-Knothole, 1956. The tests produced a yield comparable to about 200 ton of TNT or more each. However both tests were considered to be fizzle yields at the time. Since the trend was for weapons with a bigger bang, the technology was shelved for over 20 years"...

"In a slow burn nuclear weapon over 75% or more of the energy is now released as thermal and neutron radiation instead of a shock wave blast. It starts out as a very small fireball that quickly grows in size until full detonation level is achieved at about the 200 to 300 ton level. Then you get the classical explosion (the flash) and blast wave from the rapidly expanding fire ball. After the massive explosion, the fireball  continues to burn and consume its unburnt nuclear fuel that is now in a fully plasmatized state. The nuclear fuel in a plasma form will continue to burn at a slower and slower rate until the alpha or neutron production goes to zero."...

"in a modern boosted weapon the pure fission yield is only about 300 tons with boosting kicking in around 200 tons, and the total number of integrated doubling intervals between criticality and full criticality is less than the number of intervals required to take one neutron generation (a shake) up to the population level required to produce a full 200 ton boosted yield. This means that not only is pre-detonation not a problem in a modern boosted weapon design, but you can design the bomb in such a way that you actually have to inject a large number of neutrons into it to get it to explode at full yield. This is called a subcritical device and it is the basis of all mini or micro nukes operation." Go to:
For full article.

#YemenNuclearStrike archive:

Also see; "Saddam, The Bomb and the Almagordo Thefts (an alternative view of "Desert Storm")" Pt.1 Go to:

Monday 23 November 2015

"Gruaniads Well and Truly Ground"; Guardian Admits Deliberate Self-Censorship #ParisAttacks: Johnathon Cook

Quote: "Guardian admits its cowardice over Paris

23 November 2015
From the horse’s mouth: For fear of upsetting readers, the paper silenced any commentary in the first days after the Paris attacks that might have suggested there was a causal relationship between western foreign policy in the Middle East and those events.
Instead, writes the Guardian reader’s editor Chris Elliott, the paper waited several days before giving some limited space to that viewpoint:
On the Opinion pages, one factor taken into consideration was timing – judging when readers would be willing to engage with an idea that in the first 24 hours after the attacks may have jarred. The idea that these horrific attacks have causes and that one of those causes may be the west’s policies is something that in the immediate aftermath might inspire anger. Three days later, it’s a point of view that should be heard.
In other words, the liberal Guardian held off offering a counter-narrative about the attacks, and a deeply plausible one at that, until popular opinion had hardened into a consensus manipulated by the rightwing media: “the terrorists hate us for our freedoms”, “we need to bomb them even harder”, “Islam is a religion of hatred” etc.
Excluding legitimate analyses of profoundly important events like those in Paris when they are most needed is not responsible, careful journalism. It is dangerous cowardice. It is most definitely not a politically neutral position. It provides room for hatred and bigotry to take root, and allows political elites to exploit those debased emotions to justify and advance their own, invariably destructive foreign policy agendas.
In the paragraph above, Elliott happily concedes that this is the default position of mainstream liberal media like the Guardian.
" Go to:

Quote; "Caught in the Act?" (re: Pt. Manning)

Manufacturing consent. Is that what Jon Snow was doing on Channel4 News the other night? Are we meant simply to accept that Private First Class Bradley* Manning's fate is sealed and that his is a noble but necessary sacrifice to the corn deities which preside over our errant climate? Abrogation of responsibility is of-course far from uncommon (infact many at "MediaLens" -for instance-, would claim that such was de rigueur), in mainstream journalism, but such blatant collusion appears only to occur when certain stories become iconic and there is a presumed consensus within the mainstream media organisations. Interestingly some stories seem to qualify for this treatment not because of lack of sympathy (or at least that is what the "journos" themselves would have us believe), but because of a (feigned), acquiescence to a perceived zeitgeist . We are often being told as a nation what we think however the practice of using polls and public opinion surveys is only valid if the framing of the questions asked is an open and democratic process. The sectarian restriction of source material (such as that which lead to the BBC's complicity in the death of Dr.Kelly -whereby one individual is scapegoated because theirs is considered the only valid opinion-), that occurs in these organisations (as has been said many times), is often simply an indication of the presumed self-interest of the journalists concerned, therefore "media influence" need not require direct political manipulation of the actual source.

Private Manning's Counsel: "How are you today?"
Pt Manning: "Fine, but I think someone's scratched my arm."
Pt. Manning's Counsel: "Ah."
Pt. Manning: "What do you mean "aaaahhhh"!"
Pt. Manning's Counsel: "I think it was a sample."
Pt. Manning: ""A sample"?!"
Pt. Manning's Counsel: "Yes, you see (unfortunately), in your case the U.S administration believes that "Justice" should be seen to be done." (perhaps an even more subversive notion now that *"Chelsea" has only been sentenced to 35 years!)" Go to:

"Bye! Bye! Children!" ..... (at least you don't feel that you want to buy her a large plastic sphere -but then with enough coca and guarana?-, ....!)

Sunday 22 November 2015

"..Aaaand no beating up the doctors (if everyone isn't watching Celebrity Come Dancing)!" MSF Hospital Struck Again

Quote; "Humanitarian organisation Medecins Sans Frontieres (MSF) says one of its hospitals in Syria has been hit by airstrikes.
MSF said two people were killed and six injured when the makeshift facility was hit while several wounded were arriving for treatment.
An attack was launched on Erbin, one of the besieged zones east of Damascus on Thursday afternoon local time, MSF said, during which two missiles exploded just outside the hospital.
It follows a US air strike last month that "mistakenly struck" an MSF hospital in Afghanistan, killing 30 people.
"MSF is appalled that again a health structure and staff are targeted after responding to provide life-saving treatment to wounded victims of an indiscriminate bombing campaign," MSF director of operations Brice de le Vingne said.
It is not yet clear whether the bombs came from the American-led coalition, Russia or some other group.
Yesterday the United States Defence Department said it would redact the report into last month's hospital bombing in Afghanistan, meaning some details as to why a hospital was targeted may remain secret." Go to:

Saturday 21 November 2015

The "Second Green Revolution" Threatens to Destroy Africa's Agricultural Base: Article "Truthout"

Quote; "This article is drawn from a presentation by Mariam Mayet and edited by Simone Adler. It is the second article in a series which features interviews with grassroots African leaders working for seed and food sovereignty, the decolonization of Africa's food system, and the preservation of traditional farming practices.
Our farmer-managed seed systems in Africa are being criminalized and displaced by a very aggressive green revolution project of corporate occupation by big multinational companies. This violent agrarian transformation is facing profound objection. African farmer organizations are outraged because decisions have been made and imposed on us in a very patronizing, patriarchal way, as if the agrarian vision and solution has been designed for us.
The Gates Foundation is funding the green revolution, along with the many governments linked to the old hub of capitalism, including your government [the US], the UK and the Netherlands. It is working in very close partnership with around 80 African seed companies. The Gates Foundation is the kingpin in charge of coordinating the various green revolution initiatives taking place in Africa.

The green revolution projects are a very expensive technological package for farmers to buy into. Tens of millions of small-scale, resource-poor farmers cannot afford the high costs of inputs unless they're subsidized by our governments or your taxpayer money. This money goes into the public purse and out to agribusiness such as Monsanto and Pioneer Hi-Bred for hybrid or improved seed and agrochemicals.
Investment has become a euphemism for land grabs, disposition, and dislocation of our communities. We've already seen the beginnings of corporate control and concentration of our seed sector. Monsanto and Pioneer Hi Bred, both US multinational companies, control most of the hybrid maize market in southern Africa. Through the acquisition of South Africa's maize company, Panaar Seed, by Pioneer HiBred, hybrid pioneer [seeds] will make a lot of incursions [elsewhere] into Africa.
We see and fear a great deal of social dislocation, of collapse of our farming systems - and it's already happened. In industrialized-agriculture countries like South Africa, farmers have become completely deskilled and divorced from production decisions, which are made in laboratories or in far-away board rooms.

In Uganda and other east African countries where the banana is a staple food, the Gates Foundation has invested millions of dollars into a genetically engineered banana project*. Their idea is to enable Ugandans and other east Africans to access vitamin A by commercially growing a banana genetically engineered to produce beta carotene, which the body converts into vitamin A, as if a diverse diet won't give Africans this vitamin. Ugandans grow around 27 varieties or more of bananas. So this super banana project is a Trojan horse; it's very similar to the golden rice they've been trying to commercialize since the mid-80s, which has gone nowhere after a huge expenditure of money. They've even started the process of feeding trials of the GM banana to US citizens at Iowa State University. It's a way to capture the commercial markets and pry open countries that are closed to GMOs, like Uganda.

The likes of Gates revile peasant farming systems as backward and responsible for poverty and starvation in Africa. It's as if there's a concerted effort to make these systems obsolete, to do away with them. They're ugly, they have to go, and they have to go now. But 80 percent of our population live in rural areas and about 70 percent of income is generated from agriculture, so what is going to happen when they empty out our rural areas? Where are all these people going to go?

I want you to reimagine Africa as a vibrant continent where farmers are in control of their seed systems, are proud of their knowledge systems, share seeds from generation to generation through the age-old practice of exchange where they are self-reliant on a huge diversity of seeds under their control, where women play an important role in production decisions, seed selection, and breeding, and where our local food economies find their roots." Go to:

*Quote; "The documentary also interviews children and teachers in a special needs school who are being impacted on a daily basis by airborn particles and droplets from planes spraying the entire area within which the school is situated, the monoculture having become completely dominant. It is undoubtedly the case that the major proportion of the children whose needs the school caters for developed their conditions (either in the womb or as an infant -or both-), as a direct result of exposure to the chemicals with which they continue to be poisoned!" From; "Democracy Gone: "Bananas; Blood, Bullets and Poison"" Go to:

Also see; "Integrating Conventional and Traditional Medicine in Africa (Cameroon -and Kalahari-)" Go to:

Friday 20 November 2015

"High Probability" of 30% Decline in Polar Bear Numbers by 2050 Due to Retreating Sea Ice, IUCN Study Finds: The Guardian

Quote; "Global warming is now the single most important threat to the survival of the polar bear with retreating sea ice set to decimate populations, according to a new study by the International Union for the Conservation of Nature (IUCN).
It found a “high probability” that the planet’s 26,000 polar bears will suffer a 30% decline in population by 2050 due to the loss of their habitat, which is disappearing at a faster rate than predicted by climate models.
“There is a high risk of extinction and the threat is serious,” said Dena Cator of the IUCN’s species survival commission. “You could consider polar bears to be a canary in the coal mine. They are an iconic and beautiful species that is extremely important to indigenous communities. But changes to their sea ice habitat are already being seen as a result of climate change.”
The animals, already classified as vulnerable by the IUCN, depend on seasonal sea ice, which they use as a platform to hunt ring seals and bearded seals after their summer fast.
But the extent of sea ice at its lowest point each year, in September, has shrunk at a rate of 14% per decade from 1979 to 2011, with the fourth-lowest extent recorded this year.
Annual ice-free periods of five months or more will spread hunger among polar bears, the IUCN said, pushing the species over a “tipping point”, with widespread reproductive failure and starvation in some areas.
Latest projections indicate that swaths of the Arctic could be ice-free for five months of the year or more by mid-century. Three of the 19 sub-population groups of polar bears studied are already in decline, in Baffin Bay, Kane Basin and the Southern Beaufort Sea.
But warming temperatures could also increase diseases among the polar bear’s traditional prey, further reinforcing the negative spiral. Pollution, human encroachment, and resource exploitation such as oil drilling only add to this dynamic.
In Canadian towns such as Churchill, polar bears have already come into conflict with humans, as the ice season in the western Hudson Bay has fallen by about one day per year over the last three decades.

“Human-bear conflict strategies are really coming into play in Churchill,” Cator said. “Polar bears are opportunists, like other bears. They look for what they can eat. When there is no sea ice, they will scavenge anything from whale carcasses to small animals or human rubbish.”
Because the charismatic bears sit at the top of polar food chains, their decline could be devastating for local ecosystems, which could become unbalanced and chaotic.
It could also affect indigenous communities which have traditionally hunted the animals for food and fur. In some mythologies, where polar bears are revered as wise, powerful and almost human, the sense of loss is acute.
“In living memory, my people have never experienced the extinction of any animals in Greenland, so losing the polar bear would be very sad,” said Bjarne Lyberth, a biologist for KNAPK, the hunters and fishers’ association of Greenland.
Some communities in east Greenland still speak of mythical giant polar bears living on sea ice far from human civilisation, Lyberth said. But Greenland is poor - only 2% of the frozen country is arable - and KNAPK lobbies for an extension of polar bear hunting permits.
Bear skins are a status symbol in northern Greenland, and frequently used for clothing. In 2012, Greenland contributed 138 kills to the world’s annual cull of 700-800 polar bears.

Lyberth was wary of the IUCN’s assessment – which he had not seen – even though it surveyed all 19 polar bear populations in the most comprehensive science-based assessment yet undertaken.
“No hunter that I know can see any decline in the polar bear populations,” he said. “They are observing more polar bears in east Greenland. Twenty years ago, hunters had to travel hundreds of kilometres to find polar bears. Now they come to the town of Ittoqqortoormiit.”
Charlotte Moshøj, a wildlife biologist who has studied the region attributed this to global warming already underway. “There aren’t more bears,” she told the Arctic Journal. “There is less habitat.”
Last September, the five polar bear range states – Greenland, Canada, the US, Russia and Norway – agreed a Polar action plan, which the IUCN describes as “the first global conservation strategy to strive for the long-term persistence of polar bears in the wild”." Go to: For video.

"Drunken Forests" Warn of Permafrost Melt; Pt.2 of 4: Scientific American

A drunken forest in Siberia caused by melting permafrost           NASA/Wikimedia Commons

Quote; "GOOSE LAKE, Northwest Territories—In a fragile landscape where footsteps leave an imprint for years, Jennifer Baltzer stood and surveyed the surrounding bog of green sphagnum moss. Black spruce trees tilted here and there like drunkards.
Using a metal rod, Baltzer, an ecologist with Wilfrid Laurier University in Waterloo, Ontario, pierced the ground near a spruce.
“You are jamming into ice there,” she said. Without that freeze, the unstable spruce trees would entirely lose their footing and drown.
Goose Lake is at the knife’s edge of climate change. Half a century ago, this region, which is 250 miles from the Arctic Circle, used to contain mostly permafrost, or perennially frozen ground. Today, the ground has partially thawed and the region is predominantly wetland.
The rapid changes have been catalyzed by climate change, which has warmed these environs by 4 degrees Fahrenheit in the past half-century. Scientists worry that, as permafrost thaws, a portion of the carbon stored in the northernmost ecosystems will be released to the atmosphere and trigger runaway global warming. The biggest threat at present is posed not by the frozen tundras of the Arctic, but by the soils of the boreal—the southern reaches of the deep freeze in Canada, Alaska and other parts of the world—like at Goose Lake, where the permafrost is thin and sporadic, the soil temperature close to melting point, and the land already disturbed by oil and gas exploration.
Baltzer and her fellow scientists are based at a nearby research camp named Scotty Creek, where they are studying how permafrost melt is reverberating through the landscape. They begin each March, snowmobiling like lynxes over blankets of snow. As the sun gets stronger and the ice melts, lakes become transport routes for canoeing graduate students. By September, snow blankets the ground again and the scientists pull up their tents, dismantle their makeshift bench press (two 40-pound sandbags hung on a log) and head home for the year.
Scotty Creek is the only research station located in the western boreal taiga of Canada. It is part of FORESTGeo, a global effort spearheaded by the Smithsonian Tropical Research Institute to understand how global warming is altering the planet’s forests. It is one of the few groundtruthing stations for NASA’s ABoVE (Arctic Boreal Vulnerability Experiment) initiative, meant to help understand how a warming sub-Arctic will respond to climate change in the next century.
Climate models say that if humans continue emitting at present-day rates, between 37 and 174 gigatons of carbon could be lost from permafrost by 2100, according to a study published in April in Nature. Most of the release would be in the form of CO2 and methane. President Obama highlighted the risk at a conference in Alaska this August.
“If we do nothing, temperatures in Alaska are projected to rise between 6 and 12 degrees by the end of the century, triggering more melting, more fires, more thawing of the permafrost, a negative feedback loop, a cycle—warming leading to more warming—that we do not want to be a part of,” he said.

Plunging into a warming unknown

At Scotty Creek, Baltzer, 37, chatted with her fellow scientists in the weather haven, a semi-permanent shelter that doubles as a kitchen and meeting hall. In 2014, a fire had ravaged the forest across Goose Lake, turning all aboveground vegetation to charcoal. Baltzer had installed experimental stations at the burn site to track the forest’s recovery.
Bill Quinton, a hydrologist at Wilfrid Laurier, mentioned that his experiments at the burn site might overlap with Baltzer’s. Baltzer asked him to eliminate the overlap, and he agreed.
Baltzer is consumed by her research in the boreal and the Arctic. This summer, she spent six weeks on field trips studying how the Northwest Territories’ 2014 fire season, the worst on record, had affected the boreal ecosystem. She is running three research projects and is coordinating with the Smithsonian and NASA on two of them. The punishing schedule keeps her away from her two young daughters.
When Baltzer speaks about her research, her words seem to be directly lifted from a grant proposal.
“[The boreal] is such a large biome on the planet and, as a consequence, changes in that system have direct impacts on the global climate,” she said one evening, sitting on a dock jutting out into Goose Lake. Flies flitted around, and a loon laughed in the background.
“I’m not doing a very good job explaining this,” she said suddenly, with a sigh.
The boreal covers 5.3 million square miles in Europe, Asia and North America, and is an ancient carbon sink. About 20,000 years ago, ice sheets that had covered all of Canada rolled back into the Arctic. Coniferous forests rapidly expanded northward, their roots firmly planted on permafrost.
As the planet entered the summer-like Holocene Epoch 11,500 years ago, some of the southern reaches of the permafrost thawed and forests there turned to bogs and fens, which are known in Canada as muskeg. In that sense, the boreal has always been a shifting landscape.
Quinton, 50, arrived at Goose Lake with a colleague in 1999, on a helicopter. The region is at the delta of the Mackenzie River, where members of the Jean Marie River First Nation tribe traditionally hunt moose and caribou. From the air, the land appears as muskeg and ever more muskeg, separated by stands of conifers.
Fens are peculiar surfaces. They consist of blankets of sedges and sphagnum with mostly open water beneath. The helicopter pilot was a novice. He hovered 10 feet above the ground and shouted to the scientists, “OK, throw your stuff out! Now!”
Quinton looked at his colleague, who stared back. They threw out their backpacks, which landed on the fen with a splash and quickly sank in. The scientists jumped out and sank waist-deep. “Oh, my God! This is awful,” Quinton shouted.
He spotted conifers that seemed to be on stable ground. This is due to a quirk of permafrost. The freeze lifts soil out of the wetland to form plateaus that are dry enough for trees to grow on. Without permafrost plateaus, tree roots would drown.
“If the trees can stand, I can stand,” he thought. The scientists walked to the plateau and established their research station, named after a Scottish hermit who lived and died around here.

Bogs where forests stood

Scientists are concerned that permafrost will thaw and the deep carbon reserves consisting of the remnants of partially decayed, ancient vegetation will dry out and decompose, releasing carbon to the atmosphere. But they have struggled to accurately model the scale of the problem, with certainty so low that the information is useless to policymakers.
Climate modelers, who use computers to mathematically represent the Earth and project its future, do not use these values in their simulations. Their models at present find that nations can emit 485 gigatons more of CO2 before the world approaches the threshold of dangerous climate change. But without the permafrost releases, this carbon budget may be an overestimate.
April brings the onset of spring thaw to Goose Lake, and the start of the growing season, which has advanced by a day and a half every decade since the 1980s. Temperatures have warmed by 4 degrees Fahrenheit since 1970. Wintertime temperatures have increased by 7.3 F.
The warming has triggered a chain reaction in this frozen, peat-rich landscape, which also occurs in circumpolar Asia and Europe. Permafrost, which typically occurs 1.6 feet below ground here, has plunged to 10 feet at places and disappeared entirely elsewhere. Permafrost plateaus have collapsed and formed bogs.
Since 1947, 30 percent of land at Goose Lake has switched from boreal forest to wetland. The rate of forest loss in the early 21st century was three times as high as in the previous decades, Baltzer said. She has done a census of every tree at a nearby 50-acre plot to see if there are any changes in species composition over time. She is also tracking changes in soil carbon and the rate of photosynthesis. She will redo the measurements in five years’ time to track any changes.
“The landscape is reorganizing due to permafrost thaw,” Quinton said.
But thaw does not automatically translate to a net loss of carbon at Scotty Creek. Oliver Sonnentag, 41, an atmospheric scientist and wannabe float plane pilot, keeps a close eye on the CO2 and methane entering and exiting the site from a monitoring station on top of a $90,000, 165-foot-tall tower. This August, he dispatched his field technician, Karoline Wischnewski, to clean the sensors. A large spider appeared above her on the harness rope, and Wischnewski eyed it. She is usually unfazed by the challenges of living in the north, an attitude reflected in a wooden plaque she has hung at the weather haven that reads, “Life isn’t living with the ponies.”
“I don’t like spiders,” she shouted down to Sonnentag, and then calmly polished the sensors. The measurements here follow the protocols established through FLUXNET, a global network of 500 sites tracking local changes in the CO2, water and energy balance in order to construct a detailed picture of Earth system changes. Sonnentag said this tower was particularly difficult to install, since it is founded in permafrost that is susceptible to degradation. Over three years, the ground has subsided by 20 centimeters.
“If the permafrost [completely] thaws out, then this thing has no foundation, it is gone,” he said, standing at the base of the tower.
Sonnentag is also tracking the amount of carbon carried in channels of water, as bogs drain into the Mackenzie River, which joins the Arctic Ocean. Sonnentag thinks that, overall, the landscape changes at Scotty Creek have released as much carbon as its plants are taking up for photosynthesis. The sphagnum moss, particularly, is thriving.

Fires help a CO2 sink to become a source

“Overall, these preliminary results suggest that there is more methane coming out, but at the same time, more CO2 is taken up,” he said. Once the bogs drain out and dry in the future, they may become sources of CO2.
The complexity of the carbon balance at Scotty Creek illustrates why it is difficult to predict whether the boreal sink will become a source of carbon as the planet warms. There are two large, opposing trends that will determine its fate, said Steven Wofsy, an environmental scientist at Harvard University, in an interview last October.
The northern edge of the boreal is expanding into the treeless tundra in places, responding to a longer growing season and warmer temperatures. And at intermediate locations, like Goose Lake, bogs are ramping up CO2 uptake.
But at the southern edge of the boreal, farther south than Scotty Creek, where temperature changes are outpacing precipitation, trees are dying. Throughout the circumpolar boreal, wildfires, which are a quick way to turn trapped soil carbon into CO2, have become more frequent and are burning larger areas.
“A big concern about what is happening is that you’ve got drier conditions that promotes more frequent big fire years and more severe fires,” Baltzer said.
Scientists witnessed this threat at Scotty Creek in June 2014, when lightning set off a fire on a permafrost plateau during a record drought and fire season. The province dispatched tankers to fight the blaze, and when it was done, the ground was scorched. The scientists set up experiments to see whether the blackened ground would speed thawing. Quinton is studying the flow of water in the ecosystem, and Baltzer is looking at how vegetation recovers after a wildfire at this site and 30 others across the Northwest Territories.
The scientists and graduate students, who sometimes spend months with each other at this remote camp without modern distractions, incessantly tease each other.
This August, at the burn site, blackened twigs and sticks poked out of the black ground. Flecks of green suggested plants were finding a roothold. At the edge of the burn site, the permafrost plateau had collapsed into bog. The bright orange of fire retardant was hardly visible.
So far, the scientists have found that the permafrost layer has dropped almost 8 inches within months, Quinton said. The buzz of a drone filled the air, and the machine came into view, high over the canopy, maneuvered by a graduate student photographing landscape changes.
“It is Baltzer, her eye in the sky,” Quinton said. “I’m afraid there’s going to be a loudspeaker on it, ‘Quinton, back to the camp!’”

Tomorrow: When the warming tundra burns.
Reprinted from Climatewire with permission from Environment & Energy Publishing, LLC., 202-628-6500" Go to:

Thursday 19 November 2015

Will "The New Ukraine" Destroy its Creator? #Monsanto #GMOs

Quote; "The World Bank and International Monetary Fund (IMF) is helping biotech run the latest war in Ukraine. Make no mistake that what is happening in the Ukraine now is deeply tied to the interests of Monsanto, Dow, Bayer, and other big players in the poison food game.
Monsanto has an office in Ukraine. While this does not shout ‘culpability’ from every corner, it is no different than the US military’s habit to place bases in places that they want to gain political control. The opening of this office coincided with land grabs with loans from the IMF and World Bank to one of the world’s most hated corporations – all in support of their biotech takeover.
Previously, there was a ban on private sector land ownership in the country – but it was lifted ‘just in time’ for Monsanto to have its way with the Ukraine.
In fact, a bit of political maneuvering by the IMF gave the Ukraine a $17 billion loan – but only if they would open up to biotech farming and the selling of Monsanto’s poison crops and chemicals – destroying a farmland that is one of the most pristine in all of Europe. Farm equipment dealer, Deere, along with seed producers Dupont and Monsanto, will have a heyday.*
In the guise of ‘aid,’ a claim has been made on Ukraine’s vast agricultural riches. It is the world’s third largest exporter of corn and fifth largest exporter of wheat. Ukraine has deep, rich, black soil that can grow almost anything, and its ability to produce high volumes of GM grain is what made biotech come rushing to take it over.
As reported by The Ecologist, according to the Oakland Institute:
“Whereas Ukraine does not allow the use of genetically modified organisms (GMOs) in agriculture, Article 404 of the EU agreement, which relates to agriculture, includes a clause that has generally gone unnoticed: it indicates, among other things, that both parties will cooperate to extend the use of biotechnologies.
There is no doubt that this provision meets the expectations of the agribusiness industry. As observed by Michael Cox, research director at the investment bank Piper Jaffray, ‘Ukraine and, to a wider extent, Eastern Europe, are among the most promising growth markets for farm-equipment giant Deere, as well as seed producers Monsanto and DuPont’.”

Former Pro-GMO Biotech Scientist Admits GMOs are NOT Safe
The nation WAS Europe’s breadbasket – and now in an act of bio-warfare, it will become the wasteland that many US farmlands have become due to copious amounts of herbicide spraying, the depletion of soil, and the overall disruption of a perfect ecosystem.
The aim of US government entities is to support the takeover of Ukraine for biotech interests (among other strategies involving the prop-up of a failing cabalistic banking system that Russia has also refused with its new alignment with BRICS and its own payment system called SWIFT). This is similar to biotech’s desired takeover of Hawaiian islands and land in Africa.
The Ukraine war has many angles that haven’t been exposed to the general public – and you can bet that biotech has their hands in the proverbial corn pie.
Originally Published: Global Research
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*Italics mine; "Heyday"? For about a decade until the self-crossed irradiated mutants spawned around Chernnobyl decide to tear up their roots and go seaching for (with the intention to blind), their errant creators!

Wednesday 18 November 2015

"9/11, 3/11, 7/7, 11/13"

Quote; "We cannot forever fool ourselves and others into believing that we are the good guys and ‘the others’ are the bad guys. It’s tempting, and there’s a whole behemoth media apparatus to confirm it, but it doesn’t get us any closer to what happened, and why, and therefore no closer to paying our full and due respect to those who died in Paris on 11/13.

 “They” don’t resent us for our freedom, “they” resent us for not allowing them to have their freedom, too. We need to recognize at some point that we owe our affluence to the misery of others, not to our superior intelligence or morals or religion or way of life. But there’s not a single voice among us which wants to make that recognition happen.
We are not a benevolent force, no matter what we tell ourselves or how many times we repeat it. We are a civilization of oppressors. Just like the Romans and the Mongols and so many others before and after. We seek to uphold our status and our wealth at the expense of others, of strangers, people who live conveniently far enough away in conveniently impoverished conditions.
We have been building our empire this way since well before Columbus, we’ve greatly expanded it over the past 500 years, and we’re now looking at the terminal phase of that empire. Just like the Romans and the Mongols and so many others before and after.
Interestingly enough, it’s our own technological prowess and ‘progress’ that leads us into that phase. The very moment we started exporting our oil drilling technologies, our smartphones, our databases and most of all our modern weaponry to what we still see as colonies, the very foundations of our civilization and our power started eroding." Go to: 
For full article.

"Now all you need to remember are these numbers!"

Also see; ""Burning Flag" The Rage of The Caliphate" Go to:
and, "Nature Abhors a Vacuum (re: the E.U refugee crisis)" Go to: