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When the jury in Department 34 of Santa Clara County Superior Court finally sits down to deliberate, the main question facing the nine men and three women sounds simple: Just who is the victim here?

William Lynch, 45, is accused of tracking down Father Jerold Lindner on May 10, 2010, and assaulting him at his Jesuit retirement home. Witnesses testified during the preliminary hearing that Lynch had punched and kicked the elderly priest, yelling: "You ruined my life. Turn yourself in. You molested me."

Lynch and his younger brother sued the Society of Jesus, Lindner's order, 15 years ago, alleging that the priest had raped them and forced them to have sex with each other when Lynch was 7 and his brother 4. The case was settled for $625,000, and Lindner was removed from Loyola High School in Los Angeles, where he had been teaching. The church never informed law enforcement about the allegations.

More than a dozen men and women have accused Lindner of molesting them through the years — including his sister, nieces and nephew. The Catholic Church has settled three cases brought against him, according to a Jesuit spokesman. But the 67-year-old has never faced charges because the statute of limitations for the alleged abuse had run out.

William Lynch, right, and his father, John Lynch

William Lynch, right, hugs his father, John Lynch, as they arrive at a San Jose courthouse. William Lynch is being tried on charges of assault and elder abuse. (Paul Sakuma / Associated Press / June 20, 2012)

Now Lynch has been charged with felony assault and elder abuse, facing up to four years in prison. He turned down a plea agreement, he said in an interview as his trial began here Wednesday, because "I realized it was the only way I could get Father Lindner in court and to have an opportunity to possibly find some justice that way."

Deputy Dist. Atty. Vicki Gemetti began her dramatic opening statement in silence, placing a larger-than-life photo of a dazed and bloodied Lindner on an easel before the jurors. Every seat in the courtroom was filled.

"Who beat up the old man?" Gemetti began. "That's what you thought about when you saw that picture and you didn't know anything else about it. The defendant beat up the old man. The defendant beat this man up because he's angry and wanted revenge.

"The defendant planned and executed a violent attack against the man who molested him over 30 years ago," she continued, saying Lynch had acted as a vigilante. And revenge, Gemetti said, "is not a defense, ever, to a criminal act."

Lynch — and possibly other alleged victims of Lindner — are scheduled to testify in the trial. To blunt the stories of stolen innocence and defuse the power of details that she called "gut-wrenching," Gemetti on Wednesday played a nine-minute video of Lynch describing for the San Jose Mercury News how Lindner had raped and strangled him and forced him to commit incest as the priest watched.

Then she told the jury that the evidence in the trial "will show that he molested the defendant all those years ago."

In addition, Gemetti said, Lindner "will probably lie to you" and say the abuse never happened. But Lynch is the one on trial, she said, and "the evidence in this case will establish that the defendant beat this man. It will be undeniable."

Defense attorney Pat Harris countered the photograph of a Lindner with an elementary school picture of Lynch, age 7, smiling, and a Polaroid of the Lynch boys and their sister. William has his arm around his younger brother.

"The case did not begin in 2010," Harris told the jury. "It began with a 7-year-old boy and his 4-year-old brother … the two of them were on a camping trip with their family."

It was Memorial Day weekend, 1974, and the campout in the Santa Cruz Mountains was sponsored by a group of devout lay Catholics called the Christian Family Movement. "Father Jerry," as he was known then, was the group's spiritual advisor.

Lindner lured Lynch into his tent twice and raped him, Harris said. The first time, the boy was alone. The second time he arrived at Lindner's tent, Lynch's little brother was already there, looking dazed.

Lindner proceeded to rape and sodomize Lynch, Harris said, "then he forced Mr. Lynch and his brother to have a sexual act." Afterward, Harris said, Lindner "told Mr. Lynch, 'You are no longer a child of God. You are dirty.'

"And he threatened that he would do unspeakable acts to his family if they ever told," Harris continued. "For years they didn't."

But Lynch did not act out of revenge, Harris said. After his brother told their parents about the abuse when the two young men were in their 20s, Lynch went to police and to the Catholic Church. He said he and his brother finally filed a civil suit in an effort to get Lindner out of the classroom and away from other young people.

In the years since the alleged abuse, Lynch has suffered from depression and alcohol abuse and twice attempted suicide. He and his brother have since become estranged. "I essentially died that day," Lynch said in an interview after the opening statements.

Source: Los Angeles Times - Copyright ©

 

A recent large study corroborates other independent study surveys comparing unvaccinated children to vaccinated children.

They all show that vaccinated children have two to five times more childhood diseases, illnesses, and allergies than unvaccinated children.

Originally, the recent still ongoing study compared unvaccinated children against a German national health survey conducted by KiGGS involving over 17,000 children up to age 19. This currently ongoing survey study was initiated by classical homoeopathist Andreas Bachmair.

However, the American connection for Bachmair's study can be found at VaccineInjury.info website that has added a link for parents of vaccinated children to participate in the study. So far this ongoing survey has well over 11,000 respondents, mostly from the U.S.A. Other studies have surveyed smaller groups of families.

Nevertheless, the results were similar. Of course, none of these studies were picked up by the MSM (mainstream media). None were funded by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) or the World Health Organization (WHO) or any national or international health agency or medical profession group (http://healthimpactnews.com).

They don't dare compare the health of unvaccinated children to vaccinated children objectively and risk disrupting their vaxmania (vaccination mania). The focus for all the studies was mostly on childhood illnesses occurring as the children matured.

Dramatic, debilitating, or lethal vaccine injuries were not the focus since so few, five percent or less, actually get reported to VAERS (Vaccine Adverse Injury Reporting System) in the U.S.A. for various reasons including:

* It's a complicated system that takes time from a doctor's practice.
* Most parents don't know about it.
* Only adverse reactions that occur immediately after vaccinations are considered.
* Since VAERS is voluntary, most doctors don't want to incriminate themselves with vaccination injuries and maintain their denial of vaccine dangers.

Consequently, even the most terrible adverse reactions are minimally acknowledged, while long term negative health issues resulting from vaccines are not even considered relevant.

Different surveys summarized

The childhood diseases usually posed to respondents by the independent surveys involved asthma, reoccurring tonsillitis, chronic bronchitis, sinusitis, allergies, eczema, ear infections, diabetes, sleep disorders, bedwetting, dyslexia, migraines, hyperactivity, ADD, epilepsy, depression, and slower development of speech or motor skills.

In 1992, a New Zealand group called the Immunization Awareness Society (IAS) surveyed 245 families with a total of 495 children. The children were divided with 226 vaccinated and 269 unvaccinated. Eighty-one families had both vaccinated and unvaccinated children.

The differences were dramatic, with unvaccinated children showing far less incidence of common childhood ailments than vaccinated children (http://www.vaccineinjury.info/images/stories/ias1992study.pdf).

From a different survey in the South Island New Zealand city of Christchurch, among children born during or after 1977, none of the unvaccinated children had asthma events where nearly 25% of the vaccinated children were treated for asthma by age 10 (http://www.vaccineinjury.info/images/stories/ias1992study.pdf).

Many of the comments from non-vaccinating parents to VaccineInjury.info for the ongoing Bachmair survey mentioned vaccination danger and developing true immunity naturally were concerns (http://www.vaccineinjury.info).

A PhD immunologist who wrote the book Vaccine Illusion, Dr. Tetyana Obukhanych, has gone against the dogma of her medical training and background. She asserts that true immunity to any disease is not conferred by vaccines. Exposure to the disease, whether contracted or not, does (http://www.vaccinationcouncil.org).

Perhaps the most informal grass-roots survey going on now is by Tim O'Shea, DC, author of Vaccination is Not Immunization. He simply has non-vaccinating parents email him with comparisons of their children's health to friends and families they know with vaccinated children. That and more is available on his site (http://www.thedoctorwithin.com).

Sources for this article include:

http://healthimpactnews.com

http://www.vaccineinjury.info/images/stories/ias1992study.pdf

Link to participate in Bachmair survey here: http://www.vaccineinjury.info

http://www.vaccinationcouncil.org

http://www.thedoctorwithin.com

May be of interest for the undecided: http://churnyourown.com/2011/11/28/vaccine-controversy/

Learn more: naturalnews.com/

 

On 1 June 2011 in Seville, the Coordinadora para la Prevención y Denuncia de la Tortura (CPDT, a network that includes 44 associations) released its eighth annual "Report on torture in the Spanish state", a comprehensive analysis of cases of torture enacted by police officers and public officials in different contexts that range from demonstrations and prisons to police stations and policing in the streets. The definition that is used in collecting these cases is drawn from art. 1 of the UN Convention against Torture (CAT):

"For the purposes of this Convention, torture means any act by which severe pain or suffering, whether physical or mental, is intentionally inflicted on a person for such purposes as obtaining from him or a third person information or a confession, punishing him for an act he or a third person has committed or is suspected of having committed, or intimidating or coercing him or a third person, or for any reason based on discrimination of any kind, when such pain or suffering is inflicted by or at the instigation of or with the consent or acquiescence of a public official or other person acting in an official capacity. It does not include pain or suffering arising only from, inherent in or incidental to lawful sanctions".

The report includes information on 280 cases of attacks and ill-treatment suffered by 853 people, the highest number of victims recorded since the CPDT's first report in 2005 (covering the year 2004) when 755 people were affected and over 300 more victims than in 2010, the year with the lowest number of victims (540). The number of cases has remained roughly stable over these eight years, with a maximum of 319 in 2008 and a minimum of 242 in 2009. The data is not exhaustive because cases have been excluded at the request of victims or if the information received was insufficient or not adequately confirmed, and a significant number of incidents involving violence by police or prison officers are never reported, especially when the victims are prisoners or foreigners. Moreover, the report is based on information gathered by associations that are CPDT members and, hence, there are autonomous communities in which they are not present. In spite of the "spectacular" increase in people who have suffered torture and ill-treatment, the report notes the "trend of not reporting attacks suffered by people who participate in various social mobilisations" due to the fear of becoming involved in counterclaims by the police and to a lack of trust in the authorities that investigate these cases. To illustrate this, the authors refer to a demonstration in Plaza de Catalunya in Barcelona in which the Mossos d'Esquadra (the Catalan police force) intervened forcefully: the medical services officially acknowledged having tended to 120 people, the media reported that 150-200 people were injured, but only 56 people lodged formal complaints.

Three criteria are used to analyse the problem of torture in Spain: the geographical location where it is practised; who the people on the receiving end of violence are; and which bodies or police and security forces have carried out abuses. The highest number of incidents were in the Madrid region (50), followed by Andalucía (48), Catalunya (40), Euskal Herria (the Basque Country, 35), the Valencia region (22), Castilla y León (20), Galicia (18), Aragón (14) and the Balearic islands (10). There were no cases in La Rioja, one in Castilla La Mancha and Melilla, and less than ten cases were recorded in all the other autonomous communities. The number of victims was highest in Catalunya (241), followed by Euskal Herria (158), the Madrid region (111), Andalucía (105), the Balearic islands (60), the Valencia region (55), Castilla y León (40) and Galicia (36). The figures vary somewhat compared to the total because some people suffered violence in different locations and at the hands of different bodies (particularly in the context of anti-terrorist operations in which suspects are transferred to Madrid).
By breaking down the data and comparing it with the population of the different autonomous communities, the outcome is that the average rate of victims per 100,000 people throughout Spain is 1.78, above which there are only four autonomous communities - Euskal Herria tops the chart, with 5.59, followed by the Balearic islands, 5.39, Ceuta, the Spanish enclave in northern Morocco, with 3.64 (for three victims, considering its low population) and Catalunya, with 3.19. Despite recording over 100 victims, the rate for the Madrid region (with a population comparable to Catalunya) is 1.48, the sixth worse nationwide, and Andalucía (the largest autonomous community in terms of population) is tenth with 1.25 per 100,000 people.

Analysis of the personal situation of victims of police violence is divided into six categories: people in incommunicado detention; participants in social mobilisations; migrants; prisoners; minors; and a wide-ranging "others" category (including sports events, identification by officers in the street or alcohol testing for drivers, for example) that tops the list for the number of cases (77), followed by social mobilisations (75), migrants (74), prisoners (64), minors (13) and people in incommunicado detention (6). The highest number of victims was among participants in social mobilisations (433), followed at a distance by "others" (235), migrants (110), prisoners (71), minors (27) and people held incommunicado (18). The total (894) is higher than the total for the year (853) because there are people who belong in more than one category. The high number of victims among participants in social mobilisations must be read within the context of increasing social unrest and the nationwide Indignad@s 15M protest movement, during whose mobilisations (camps in squares, sit-in protests, actions against evictions) police operations resulted in people being wounded. A comparative chart on victims of police ill-treatment during social mobilisations shows that this year's figure of 433 is the highest to date, followed by 2004 when the figure was 368 and then 2009 with 302 victims. The figure for 2010 was 200, less than half the figure for 2011. 246 people, equivalent to 57% of those ill-treated during social mobilisations, were on the receiving end of abuse by police forces during Indignad@s 15M actions, a group that also makes up 28.8% of the total number of affected people. It is worth noting that a majority of the women who were on the receiving end of violence or ill-treatment were participants in social mobilisations (98 out of a total of 148), followed by "others" (20) and migrant women (19).

As for the officers against whom complaints were lodged for cases of torture or ill-treatment, there were 100 cases involving the national police force, with 289 people affected; both the local police forces and the prison service were accused in 64 cases, involving 141 and 71 people respectively; autonomous community police forces were involved in 36 incidents (33 of which concerned the Catalan Mossos d'Esquadra and the Basque Ertzaintza) that were reported and affected 338 people in total (of whom 213 were in Catalunya and 116 in Euskal Herria); complaints were lodged against Guardia Civil [police force with military status] officers in 15 cases affecting 18 people; and, finally, complaints were lodged in four cases against staff from minors' centres affecting 13 people.

By analysing the data on police forces and the typology of victims, it becomes evident that people in incommunicado detention were only allegedly abused by national police (22.2%) and Guardia Civil (77.8%) officers. This is logical, considering that this kind of detention - which has repeatedly drawn criticism from UN Special Rapporteurs on Torture - is used for terrorist suspects who are dealt with in the context of national operations for which these two forces are responsible. Almost half of the participants in social movements who suffered abuses (49.2%) did so at the hands of the Mossos d'Esquadra or the Ertzaintza, whereas the national police force was responsible in 37.9% of cases and local police forces the alleged culprits in 9.8% of cases. Half the migrants (50%) who reported that they had been mistreated accused the national police force, with local police forces responsible in 28.2% of cases.

The CPDT reports that in 2011 there were 51 deaths in custody, which it refers to as an "endemic disease in the Spanish state." It notes that in a decade from 1 January 2001 to 31 December 2011, the CPDT has "directly" learnt of 722 deaths, 65% of them (465) in prisons. The 51 deaths recorded for 2011 include 34 deaths in prison, seven in the custody of the national police force, five in the custody of local police forces, four in the custody of minors' centres' staff, and one in the custody of the Mossos d'Esquadra.

Sources:

"La Tortura en el Estado Español en el año 2011", Coordinadora para la Prevención y Denuncia de la Tortura, Seville, 1 June 2012, summary:
http://www.prevenciontortura.org/wp-content/uploads/2012/05/Info-CPDT-2011-resumen.pdf

Full-text of the report: http://www.statewatch.org/news/2012/jun/spain-cpdt-annual-report-2011.pdf

 

Instead, it stretches across at least 23 million square miles of earth's tropical oceans; the uppermost layers of which make a prime natural source of thermal energy.

Regardless of time of day or cloud cover, Ocean Thermal Energy Conversion (OTEC) promises to harness this thermal sea-based resource year round.

OTEC production converts heat energy from seawater into kinetic energy using the ocean’s naturally steep temperature gradient.  It’s this juxtaposition of tropical (and sometimes subtropical) subsurface seawater at temperatures typically above 80 degrees F. and below 40 degrees F. that makes OTEC possible.

An OTEC plant literally pumps the warm surface seawater through a heat exchanger connected to a closed circuit filled with several hundred tons of liquid ammonia.  Since ammonia boils at lower temperatures and at lower pressures than water, once the warm seawater hits the heat exchanger, it causes the ammonia to vaporize and expand in volume.  As this ammonia vaporizes, it creates pressure to run a turbine coupled to a generator.  In most cases, the resulting electricity would be delivered onshore via an undersea cable.

Once this ammonia vapor exits the turbine, it flows through a second heat exchanger that is connected to a cold water pipe carrying tons of seawater pumped from depths of 3000 ft.  This cold seawater, in turn, condenses the spent ammonia vapor back into liquid and the whole OTEC process begins again.

But despite the fact that the idea for the technology is more than a century old; to date, OTEC has only been successfully demonstrated on small scales of less than a quarter of a megawatt (MW) and has yet to produce utility-scale power.

Source: Renewable Energy World - via zeitnews.org

 

The approval could open the door to a range of biologic drugs that are generated in plant cells and then transferred to human patients.

The drug, called Elelyso, is a treatment for a disorder known as Gaucher disease that results from the lack of a specific enzyme. Engineers at Israeli biotech firm Protalix Biotherapeutics figured out how to grow this enzyme in carrot cells by inserting a specific gene into them that encodes for this human enzyme. In trials, subjects who received the “bio-pharmed” version of the enzyme showed improvement comparable to that of subjects given another treatment for Gaucher disease derived from hamster cells.

The ability to manipulate the genes of plant cells to produce certain human enzymes isn’t new, but up until now concerns about human biologics derived from plant cells have kept them from gaining traction with the FDA. But plant-derived biologic treatments have proven successful in drugs given to animals in recent years, and for the first time the FDA seems to have softened its skepticism toward bio-pharmed treatments.

For those suffering from Gaucher disease (it’s a lysosomal storage disorder, in case you were curious) that means another treatment option, and one not susceptible to pathogens that can affect mammalian cell stocks and lead to a shortage of usable drugs--shortages that have actually occurred in recent years. But the bigger impact is in the world of bio-pharming itself. Now that plant-derived human biologics have a foot in the door with the FDA, researchers think they can create enzymes to treat a variety of disorders using bio-pharming techniques.

Source: Popular Science - via zeitnews.org

 

It's baked in the cake. Preparations began months ago. Regime change plans are longstanding. The road to Tehran runs through Damascus.

Washington runs everything. It controls the process. At stake is regional dominance. Key also is shutting out Russia and China.

War is the strategy of choice when other methods fail. Insurgent attacks won't oust Assad. Increasingly war looks likely. Only its timing is unknown.

For months, regional states, including Israel, have been supplying insurgents with weapons. They're entering cross border. Lebanon's Khamat Airport is used. It borders Syria. It underwent reconstruction for reasons other than commercial development.

Retired Lebanese General Amin Khteit explained months earlier. He said official reasons for using the airport belie its real purpose. "(P)roven reports" say its a "transshipment base" to supply Syrian insurgents with weapons.

On June 10, Haaretz headlined "Netanyahu: Assad slaughtering Syrian civilians with the aid of Iran, Hezbollah," saying:

On Sunday, he accused Assad of carrying out recent massacres. "We see horrid pictures of children and the elderly."

"The massacre is not only carried out by the Syrian government, but is also aided by Iran and Hezbollah. The world must see this axis of evil so everyone would understand in what world we live in."

Like Obama and top US officials, Neyanyahu is a serial liar and war criminal multiple times over.

Earlier Sunday, Vice Prime Minister Shaul Mofaz also pointed fingers at Assad. He accused Russia of arming him. He called for direct military intervention.

Earlier, Israeli officials stayed mostly silent. Going public may prove significant. Hindsight will explain more than now known.

War winds have blown for months. Now they're reaching gale force. Direct intervention could come any time.

On June 11, Press TV headlined "Israel engages in publicity stunt to encourage military intervention in Syria," saying Likud party MK Ayood Kara claimed:

"....(R)ecent reports indicated that the armed groups fighting against the Syrian government have found access to and plan to use chemical weapons, acquired from Libya."

"According to a June 10 report by Russia Today, the armed rebels plan to use the chemical weapons against civilians and then attempt to blame Damascus for the atrocity."

Another same day Press TV report explained that Israeli planes are "smuggling weapons into Iraq's Kurdistan region...." They're transshipped to Syria with Qatari help.

President Massoud Barzani is involved. He's "facilitat(ing) the operations of illegal Israeli firms in the region."

Washington is training Al Qaeda elements in European countries. They're sent to Syria to commit violence.

On Press TV, this writer pointed fingers the right way. America bears full responsibility. At issue is replacing Assad with a pro-Western puppet regime.

US, UK, and other foreign special forces are involved. They're training, arming, funding, and directing insurgent strikes. So are CIA and MI6 operatives. Pro-Assad loyalists are targeted as well as strategic sites. Direct intervention approaches.

On May 27, London Guardian writer Patrick Seale headlined "In Syria, this is no plan for peace," saying:

"After the Houla massacre, it's clear that outside funding of the anti-Assad rebels is undermining efforts to end the conflict."

Unless stopped, Seale predicts "full-scale civil war." Western-sponsored insurgency to topple Assad is more accurate.

War will destroy Syria, he said. It "could destabilize the whole Levant." Assad's waging a battle for survival.

Separately he asked "What Is US Game Plan?" Drone attacks build "fierce anti-American sentiment...." Peace initiatives are sabotaged. Instead of engaging Iran responsibly, confrontational policies continue. Syrian violence increasingly spins more out of control.

"So what is Obama up to?" He adopted Israel's hardline view on most everything. Instead of solving problems, he escalates them. He pays lip service to one thing but does another.

He "embraced the argument of Israeli hawks and American neoconservatives that (toppling Assad) is the best way to weaken and isolate" Iran, "sever its ties to" Hezbollah and "Palestinian resistance movements, and eventually bring about a regime change in Tehran."

Obama, in fact, had these views throughout his tenure. He replicates America's most hardline elements. He's waging more direct and proxy wars than any US president in history.

He itches for more. He abhors peace, calm and stability. Syria is target one, then Iran, followed by other states to be named later. No end game whatever is in sight. Perpetual conflicts continue. So does mass killing and destruction.

It's shocking how few Americans understand what's going on and how it affects them directly.

On June 11, the Mossad DEBKAfile (DF) headlined "Obama speeds up limited air strike, no fly-zones preparations for Syria," saying:

He ordered "the US Navy and Air Force to accelerate preparations for a limited air offensive against the Assad regime and the imposition of no-fly zones over Syria..."

Strategy involves destroying "Assad's central regime and military command centers...."

So-called limited air attacks and no fly zones mean full scale war. Libyan-style mass killing and destruction will follow.

DF also said rebels will be supplied with greater amounts of arms and munitions. Enhanced professional training will be provided. At issue is ousting Assad more quickly.

How Moscow and Beijing react remains unclear. Both countries have vital regional interests. Losing them is unacceptable.

On June 10, Voice of Russia quoted Russian political analyst Georgi Mirsky, saying:

"The rebels are hoping to secure Western air support of their armed campaign against the Syrian government. Safe havens would be established, used by the Free Syrian Army as well as fleeing civilians."

"The Syrian army would have to attack these FSA bases, triggering an opposition appeal to the United Nations. Russia and China, however, would certainly block any intervention motion."

"NATO would probably intervene on its own, launching a massive air campaign. And once started, this new NATO war would draw in Iran."

According to Moscow-based Arab Studies Centre regional expert Boris Dolgov:

"The armed rebels are the main destabilizing force in Syria. During our January visit to that country, we found out that they do not have popular support."

"The majority of the Syrian people support President Assad and his reforms, which include the adoption of a new constitution and the introduction of multiparty democracy."

"Importantly, Syria has already held multiparty elections and formed a broad-based government. The Syrian opposition, however, is after toppling the Assad regime. It continues to stubbornly decline any dialogue with it."

Iran's FARS news agency said insurgents plan using chemical weapons smuggled from Libya. At issue is blaming Assad as a pretext for war.

FARS also reported Qatar's involvement with Israel in transshipping weapons to insurgents. Syrian security forces "discovered a large cache of weapons, explosives and ammunitions piled up and used by terrorist groups."

"(M)aterial is being stockpiled in Damascus, in Idlib near the Turkish border, and in Zabadani on the Lebanese border."

On Al-Manar Satellite channel, Lebanon's Defense Minister Fayez Ghosn said weapons smuggling continues illegally across his country's borders into Syria.

Tripoli is a base. "The armed men, coming from Turkey, Iraq and other parts, running away from Syria inflame Tripoli and Lebanon in general in implementation for premeditated schemes," he added.

Lebanon's army is doing what it can against elements destabilizing the country.

Earlier, Lebanon's navy seized a cargo ship carrying heavy machine guns, artillery shells, rockets, rocket launchers, and other explosives.

Its crew was arrested. It got permission to enter Tripoli. It originated from Libya. En route, it docked at Alexandria, Egypt. Other weapons caches were also interdicted. Large supplies are sent Syrian insurgents regularly.

On June 11, Now Lebanon headlined "Israel says Syria has the world's biggest chemical arsenal," saying:

Israeli General Staff Deputy Chief, Major General Yair Naveh claims Syrian chemical weapons, missiles and rockets can strike "any part of Israeli territory."

His remarks were broadcast Monday over Israeli military radio. He claimed Assad won't be restrained from attacking Israel. He said Syria stockpiled sarin and other nerve gas weapons.

On Sunday, the Syrian National Council (SNC) appointed a new leader. Former head Burhan Ghalioun was forced out.

Kurdish academic Abdelbaset Sayda replaced him. He lived in exile in Sweden. He told reporters at a news conference:

"We will expand and extend the base of the council so it will take on its role as an umbrella under which all the opposition will seek shade."

At issue is enlisting anti-Assad support from Syria's 1.5 million Kurds. Throughout the conflict, they've been largely neutral. He has no links to Syrian Kurds. Neither do most other SNC members. Whether the scheme works remains unclear.

Prominent dissident Fawaz Tello ended his SNC affiliation last year. At issue was Ghalioun's autocratic leadership. He said Syrian Kurds don't support Sayda.

He added that SNC members who resigned consider him weak and ineffective. "They never considered him as a candidate," they said. He doesn't represent Kurds, they claimed.

Ankara-based Center for Middle Eastern Strategic Studies (ORSAM) Syrian expert Oytun Orhan agreed, saying:

Sayda "does not represent the Kurds in the SNC. He is an independent member." He has no base among Syria's Kurdish population.

He was a compromise choice. One reason he was chosen "was to gain the support of the Kurds. From the very beginning, Kurds did not seriously participate (in) the opposition movement."

Kurdish SNC members dispute openly with other group members over issues vital to them. They deeply resent Sunni Arab SNC dominance. They support interests harming Kurdish interests.

Oytun added that it's hard imagining Kurdish political parties are happy about Sayda's appointment. What he can accomplish seems doubtful.

What's ahead for Syria appears clearer. Obama wants more war intends to get it. More mass killing and destruction will follow. It's how ugly imperialism always works.

Source: mathaba.net

 
By Admin (from 13/06/2012 @ 11:09:43, in en - Global Observatory, read 1243 times)

The vote of the European Parliament will be decisive for the future of ACTA. It has already been rejected by the Development, Civil Liberties, Legal Affairs, and Industry committees in the European Parliament, but the big votes are still to take place in the lead Trade committee and with the final Parliament vote. With pro-ACTA lobbying efforts rising by the day, this is no time to reduce the pressure.

All aspects of the opposition to ACTA deserve to be taken into consideration. Many points have been developed inside and outside the Parliament and argued as grounds to reject it. From the preservation of due process to the freedom to conduct business, from the freedom of expression to the protection of generic competition, we made a sample list and sought and gathered more reasons on our webpage.

The following are a list of 50 Reasons to Reject ACTA, gathered with your help, that we will use to convince our fellow MEPs.

  1. ACTA is bypassing international fora, such as WIPO and WTO, which is particularly worrying considering the magnitude of the issues it is dealing with.
  2. ACTA was negotiated in a totally non transparent way, which is unacceptable considering the impact the agreement may have on citizens.
  3. ACTA establishes the ACTA committee in Article 36 as its own governing body which could lead to amendments of the agreement without any democratic control.
  4. ACTA encourages a climate of relegation of the concerns of the public and of public interests that is counterproductive.
  5. ACTA threatens the balance of copyright legislations.
  6. ACTA locks us into an approach, when we don't know what will be, for instance, the technological evolution in the future.
  7. ACTA can lead to the criminalisation of not-for-profit sharing.
  8. ACTA encourages the targeting of technical intermediaries to be forced to remove material from the Internet, something that presently requires a court order.
  9. ACTA imposes liability rules that will reduce the flexibility of European countries regarding limitation to remedies allowed by the TRIPS agreement to the disadvantage of EU companies, and particularly SMEs.
  10. ACTA never mentions fundamental rights, when it clearly could jeopardise some of them and constitutes an offensive against the vision set out in the Universal Declaration of Human Rights.
  11. ACTA has no provision on freedom on expression, when it can be used by governments and authorities to harm it.
  12. ACTA threatens the protection of personal data (art 27.4), which in the case of dissidents, journalists, etc. opens the door to possible punishment and repression.
  13. ACTA encourages (including in art. 27.3 and 27.4) measures that in many ways involve a form of monitoring of individual's use of the Internet.
  14. ACTA can lead to the recording of personal data of Internet users (as they are defined by Art 2 of the Data Protection Directive 95/4/EC).
  15. ACTA is a breach by corporate action to the right of privacy, to data protection, and to the confidentiality of communications, protected by Art 8 of the European Convention on Human Rights and art 7 and 8 of the Charter of Fundamental Rights of the EU.
  16. ACTA endangers freedom of expression.
  17. ACTA establishes legal uncertainties on many levels (art 19) which understandably generates fears from individuals as well as from businesses.
  18. ACTA leaves key terms undefined and open to interpretation ("commercial scale", "aiding and abetting", etc).
  19. ACTA imposes criminal sanctions (for "aiding and abetting") that are highly problematic.
  20. ACTA allows criminalisation to encompass trivial copyright infringement out of proportion and unreasonable in the face of most national legislation.
  21. ACTA will have a high cost of maintenance, which in itself is questionable from the point of view of government expenditure, especially in the context of the current economic crisis.
  22. ACTA allows the search of details of internet users in breach of due process.
  23. ACTA allows pre-emptive sanction, before due process and therefore erodes the rule of law.
  24. ACTA does not guarantee fair trials.
  25. ACTA favours assumption about infringement, but public action cannot be taken based on assumption and biased information given by the industry.
  26. ACTA creates uncertainty for SMEs in ICT sectors that puts them at risk.
  27. ACTA allows statutory damages which opens the door to litigation and the risk of large and out of proportion payments.
  28. ACTA assumes that one copy equals one lost sale, which is an improper and misleading way to approach both copying and its impacts on business.
  29. ACTA gives increasing power to large rights holders against smaller ones and SMEs.
  30. ACTA does not encompass measures to avoid or sanction abuses from rights holders when it allows action irrespective of whether claims are legitimate or not.
  31. ACTA raises serious competition problems.
  32. ACTA weakens SMEs and their capacity to take part to innovation.
  33. ACTA jeopardises the multi-stakeholder process in Internet governance that allowed for its success.
  34. ACTA paves the way to a balkanisation of the Internet.
  35. ACTA is far from being limited to counterfeiting, contrary to the impression that the name of the agreement gives.
  36. ACTA fuels the confusion between counterfeiting and patent infringement with a clear risk of decreasing access to generic drugs.
  37. ACTA does not tackle the real problem of sub-standard medicines while lauding ineffective and dangerous actions in the name of health protection.
  38. ACTA is misleading for policy makers as it creates a hodgepodge, lumping together of different notions and rights that should not be treated the same way.
  39. ACTA could affect the whole supply chain of medicines in developing countries (third party liability can include the whole generic supply chain).
  40. ACTA targets transit goods which creates an untenable situation from the point of view of trade rules.
  41. ACTA mandates ex officio action at a lower standard of proof than TRIPS, such as ex officio border seizure.
  42. ACTA escalates border seizure requirements while reducing safeguards.
  43. ACTA allows countries to rely on customs officials to perform complex adjudications on IPR issues at the border that they cannot properly exert.
  44. ACTA can potentially greatly expand the number of cases of trademark misuse: one could meet the ACTA definition of a crime by intentionally importing a good with a counterfeit label, even if that person did not intentionally create or use the counterfeit label itself.
  45. ACTA will have a chilling effect on generic competition, and therefore consequences for access to medicines.
  46. ACTA can threaten anybody being in transit with medicines in his/her luggage (5d).
  47. ACTA threatens to prevent the development of news business models.
  48. ACTA overprotects old business models.
  49. ACTA imposes stronger restrictions on the trade in seeds which will threaten future biodiversity and further the corporate cartelisation of the food supply.
  50. ACTA is not legally binding in the US while it will be in the EU if ratified
 

A month ago, the Connecticut Senate voted 21 to 13 in favor of HB 5389, the Palliative Use of Marijuana Act. The legislation, which allows for the limited use and distribution of cannabis as medicine, comes after federal officials ramped up enforcement actions against state-sanctioned medical marijuana dispensaries last fall, with scores of raids primarily in California.

Since October 2009, the Justice Department has conducted more than 170 SWAT-style raids in nine medical marijuana states, resulting in at least 61 federal indictments, according to data compiled by Americans for Safe Access. The latter group worked with local advocates to help pass the Connecticut law.

“We are encouraged that state officials are standing up to federal intimidation and moving ahead with the passage of important public health laws,” said Steph Sherer, executive director of Americans for Safe Access, in a statement Friday. “We hope other states follow Connecticut’s lead in passing medical marijuana laws so that patients are not left unprotected and vulnerable to law enforcement actions.”

Although advocates are celebrating the Connecticut victory, they’ve cited a number of issues with the legislation, including prohibitions against patients growing their own pot and a restrictive list of qualifying medical conditions that excludes “chronic pain,” among other commonly cited ailments.

According to the Associated Press:

Malloy said Friday that the law will allow the Department of Consumer Protection to regulate and monitor the use of marijuana in a way that will help avoid problems seen in other states.Patients will be able to obtain marijuana only from certified pharmacists. The law allows for the licensing of at least three but not more than 10 marijuana producers statewide.

Qualifying conditions for patients include cancer, glaucoma, AIDS or HIV, Parkinson’s disease and multiple sclerosis.

Connecticut is the fourth state in New England to legalize medical cannabis and the 17th state since California first made it legal in 1996. Medical marijuana is now permitted in Alaska, Arizona, California, Colorado, Connecticut, Delaware, Hawaii, Maine, Michigan, Montana, Nevada, New Jersey, New Mexico, Oregon, Rhode Island, Vermont, and Washington, as well as the District of Columbia.

Source: endalldisease.com - via Huffington Post

 

"In some wealthy countries, the difference in the quality of life between the older generation and todays youth is the greatest ever recorded," said the WHO director general, speaking at the opening of the body's board meeting.

"Last year was a time when many countries realised they were losing their middle classes, the very foundation of democracy and economic productivity," she said, urging that a commitment to public health must be sustained.

In a text version of her speech Chan cited a recent Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development report showing income inequality in wealthy nations has reached the worst levels in nearly 25 years.

"That report further concluded that societies with the least inequality had the best health outcomes, regardless of the levels of spending on health," Chan said, noting, "money alone does not buy better health."

She stated: "Those who suffer or who benefit least deserve help from those who benefit most," but this is not what happened last year, particularly in well-off nations, according to numerous reports. In large parts of the developing world vast inequalities in access to health care also exist, she explained.

"But misery, for many groups, for many diseases, is actually going down. Those who benefit least are getting help from those who benefit most," said Chan.

She noted that in the first decade of the 21st century, HIV/AIDS and tuberculosis epidemics peaked, beginning a slow decline along with a turn around in a deteriorating malaria situation. "Young child mortality dropped below 10 million for the first time in nearly six decades. Compared with 12 million under-five deaths in 1990, the figure for 2010 was 7.6 million, a drop of more than 40 percent."

Chan said that in sub-Saharan Africa the fall in the under-five mortality rate was accelerating at double the rate it had shown between 1990 and 2000. Maternal deaths worldwide, "the starkest statistic in public health," have also begun to fall, she said. In addition, "In 2009 alone, an estimated 800 million people received preventive chemotherapy for at least one of the neglected tropical diseases."

Source: MedicalXpress - via ZeitNews.org

 

Now, University of Missouri researchers have found that the way in which news coverage of a crisis is framed affects the public’s emotional response toward the company involved.

Glen Cameron, the Maxine Wilson Gregory Chair in Journalism Research and professor of strategic communication at the University of Missouri School of Journalism, along with Hyo Kim of Nanyang Technological University in Singapore, studied the reactions of news readers when exposed to a story about a crisis. One group read an “anger-frame” story that blamed the organization for the crisis. Another group read a “sadness-frame” story that focused on the victims and how they were hurt by the crisis. Cameron and Kim found that those who read the “anger-frame” story read the news less closely and had more negative attitudes toward the company than those exposed to the “sadness-frame” story.

“The distinct emotions induced by different news frames influenced individuals’ information processing and how they evaluated the corporation,” Cameron said.

Cameron and Kim also found that a corporate response to a crisis that focuses on the relief and wellbeing of the victims tends to improve the public’s perceptions of the corporation as compared to the message focusing on the law, justice, and punishment. This was the case regardless of how the initial news was framed (i.e., anger vs. sadness). Cameron says these findings illustrate the importance of controlling the message during a crisis.

“It is important for corporations to put on a human face during crises,” Cameron said. “If a corporation can focus on the wellbeing of the victims and how the corporation will improve following the crisis, they have a better chance of influencing “sadness-frame” news coverage as opposed to “anger-frame” coverage. If the news coverage remains “sadness-framed,” public perception will stay more positive.

Cameron says this research is important, not to help corporations shirk responsibility, but rather to handle crisis situations in the best way possible.

“Crises are going to happen,” Cameron said. “Unfortunately, planes will crash and there will be oil spills. This study helps to show how the public will react to different types of news coverage of crises, and subsequently, what the best ways are for corporations to handle any crises they may encounter.

This study was published in Communications Research.

Source: University of Missouri - via ZeitNews.org

 
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