PHILADELPHIA – The Pennsylvania Health Department has shut down a new Philadelphia abortion facility after discovering that it is affiliated with a notorious abortionist that has been banned from doing business in the Commonwealth. Integrity Family Health has been ordered closed effective November 29th after it was discovered that the location was launched by abortionist Steven Brigham, who runs a multi-site abortion scheme under the name of American Women’s Services. The new facility had been granted a permit earlier this year, but failed to cite on its application that it was connected with Brigham. Following numerous health and safety violations, Brigham surrendered his license in Pennsylvania in 1992, and in 2004, he was barred from owning or operating any abortion facilities in the Commonwealth. His Erie, Allentown, State College and Pittsburgh locations have all been closed. Brigham has been in legal troubles in several states, and was arrested in 2010 for operating a “secret” late-term abortion facility in Maryland after an 18-year-old girl who was hospitalized following a botched abortion called the police. More
Users of the new Xbox One are complaining that Kinect is monitoring their Skype conversations for swearing and then punishing them with account bans. Microsoft has admitted it is punishing gamers for bad language but denied that it is snooping on private Skype chats. Info Wars
In the wake of New York’s latest gun control law, the New York Police Department is now sending out notices to registered gun owners demanding that they give up their firearms, clear proof that gun registration leads to outright confiscations. The notice provides gun owners, who possess firearms now prohibited under New York’s unconstitutional SAFE Act, the “options” to either surrender their firearms to the police, remove them from the city limits or otherwise render them inoperable. The NYPD knew exactly who to send the notices to by using a centralized firearms registry which lists the city’s gun owners and what firearms they have in their possession. With the gun database already in place, the police merely needed to compile a list of firearm makes and models now banned under the SAFE Act and send the notices to the appropriate owners. The SAFE Act, which was passed by the state legislature and signed by the governor on the same day in January, has numerous, draconian provisions including, but not limited to: More
When George Loegering saw a large spinning circle of ice in the Sheyenne River while out hunting with relatives, the retired engineer couldn’t believe his eyes. “At first I thought, no way! It was surreal,” Loegering, 73, said Tuesday of the large ice disk he witnessed Saturday. “You looked at it and you thought, how did it do that?” Then his engineering background kicked in. He calculated the disk’s diameter to be about 55 feet, took photos and videos of it and then turned to the Internet for more information about what he, his brother-in-law and nephew had seen. “It’s not an unknown phenomenon, but it is relatively rare,” said Loegering, who lives in rural Casselton, about 20 miles west of Fargo. Allen Schlag, a National Weather Service hydrologist in Bismarck, and Greg Gust, a weather service meteorologist in Grand Forks, said a combination of cold, dense air last weekend and an eddy in the river likely caused the disk. “It’s actually quite beautiful,” Schlag said.
A new Trojan program that targets users of online financial services has the potential to spread very quickly over the next few months, security researchers warn. The malware was first advertised on a private cybercrime forum in July, according to malware researchers from Kaspersky Lab who dubbed it Trojan Banker.Win32/64.Neverquest. “By mid-November Kaspersky Lab had recorded several thousand attempted Neverquest infections all around the world,” said Sergey Golovanov, malware researcher at Kaspersky Lab, Tuesday in a blog post. “This threat is relatively new, and cybercriminals still aren’t using it to its full capacity. In light of Neverquest’s self-replication capabilities, the number of users attacked could increase considerably over a short period of time.” Neverquest has most of the features found in other financial malware. It can modify the content of websites opened inside Internet Explorer or Firefox and inject rogue forms into them, it can steal the username and passwords entered by victims on those websites and allow attackers to control infected computers remotely using VNC (Virtual Network Computing). However, this Trojan program also has some features that make it stand out. Its default configuration defines 28 targeted websites that belong to large international banks as well as popular online payment services. However, in addition to these predefined sites, the malware identifies Web pages visited by victims that contain certain keywords such as balance, checking account and account summary, and sends their content back to the attackers. This helps attackers identify new financial websites to target and build scripts for the malware to interact with them. Once attackers have the information they need to access a user’s account on a website, they use a proxy server to connect to the user’s computer via VNC and access the account directly. This can bypass certain account protection mechanisms enforced by websites because unauthorized actions like transferring money are done through the victim’s browser. More
Belgian lawmakers are to vote on whether to support a bill that gives extremely sick children the right to die. The proposed legislation would make Belgium the first country to remove the age limit for euthanasia – though it would insist parents have a role in their child’s decision to die. “We want to provide the freedom of choice, also to minors who are able to make up their own mind,” said one of the bill’s backers, Jean-Jacques De Gucht, from the Flemish liberals, who form part of the ruling coalition. A senate panel on Wednesday will vote on whether to allow the bill to be heard in parliament. The panel’s backing would be an important move in the bill becoming law as the committee shares the same political makeup as the broader parliament. The legislation will give a merciful way out for young people suffering from debilitating conditions and legalize a practice that is already going on in secret, say the bill’s backers. “Imagine a cancer or leukaemia patient, a child whom we have already treated for eight years and in which we reach a stage where we know there is nothing more that we can do to cure him,” said Marc Cosyns, lecturer of medical ethics at Ghent University. Opponents say it would open the door to infanticide and leave the ultimate decision in the hands of someone too young to make it. Euthanasia is illegal in most countries. “Once the possibility for euthanasia exists for children, demand is likely to rise. It’s clear among adults that it is difficult to keep euthanasia within limits once the taboo of killing has fallen,” said Benoit Beuselinck, an oncologist and founder of campaign group euthanasiestop.be. More
The latest allegations from the American Humanist Association are shocking, titillating, and (cue the 1950s soap opera organist) downright scandalous. In a complaint filed by the organization on November 20 a Missouri public school teacher has been accused of praying for an injured student, organizing a project to feed hungry children and (brace yourself) — cavorting with a Methodist. “Teachers simply cannot participate in prayers with students at school, nor can they promote their religious beliefs in any other way to their students,” the AHA said in a statement. The humanists filed a federal lawsuit on behalf of two students accusing Gwen Pope and the Fayette R-III School District of violating the Constitution by allowing a Christian club to meet before the start of the school day. The school’s former principal is also named in the lawsuit. Mrs. Pope, who is no longer teaching at the school, was the sponsor of the Fellowship of Christian Students at Fayette High School. Since 2010, students have voluntarily gathered before the start of the school day to pray and read the Bible in her classroom. The American Humanist Association said the two unnamed complainants had been subjected to “unwelcome encounters with the classroom prayer sessions.” It seems her classroom is near the entrance door of the school and apparently non-believing students could see their classmates engaged in religious activities. They alleged that Mrs. Pope and the students were seen reading Bible verses and (again, brace yourself) praying for the ill. “When a student was sick or injured, Pope frequently asked the students in attendance to pray for the afflicted student and joined the attending students in prayer by bowing her head, closing her eyes and saying amen,” the lawsuit alleged. More
Pope Francis issued a bold mission statement for his papacy on Tuesday, outlining how the Roman Catholic Church and the papacy must be reformed to create a more missionary and merciful Church. Issuing his first major document, the Pope said his vision for the Church was one that should be “bruised, hurting and dirty” because of its work on the streets. But despite previously expressing more tolerance on social issues, he ruled out any doctrinal change on abortion, same-sex marriage and women in the priesthood. The “slum Pope”, as Francis has been nicknamed for his work in the shanty towns of his native Argentina, also attacked global capitalism, saying that rising levels of inequality and poverty could “explode” into conflict unless addressed by world leaders. “The poor are accused of violence, yet without equal opportunities the different forms of aggression and conflict will find a fertile terrain for growth and eventually explode,” he said. The Pope laid out his vision for the future of the Catholic Church in an 85-page document that Vatican observers described as a “Magna Carta” for his papacy. He called for power to be decentralised away from Rome and towards bishops and priests working in Catholic dioceses around the world. “I prefer a Church which is bruised, hurting and dirty because it has been out on the streets, rather than a Church which is unhealthy from being confined and from clinging to its own security,” the Jesuit Pope wrote in the document, formally known as an “apostolic exhortation” to the faithful. The Church must not allow itself to be “caught up in a web of obsessions and procedures”, he wrote, in what amounted to a mission statement for the Holy See. More
Russian and North American military officials have held a first planning meeting for next year’s joint anti-terrorism drills involving the Russian, US and Canadian air forces, a Russian Defense Ministry spokesman said Tuesday. The Vigilant Eagle 2014 drills will take place in August and will practice coordination between the Russian armed forces and the North American Aerospace Defense Command (NORAD) in the event of a terrorist attack on a passenger airliner, said Lt. Col. Alexander Gordeyev, a spokesman for the Eastern Military District. The simulated mission will involve the detection, identification and interception of an airplane hijacked by terrorists, Gordeyev said. More
The Supreme Court said it would decide whether businesses, like people, have a right to religious expression, in cases challenging the federal health law’s mandate that employers provide contraceptive coverage to female employees. The high court upheld most of President Barack Obama’s Affordable Care Act in a June 2012 decision. But lower courts have split since then on whether contraceptive coverage must be included in minimum benefits packages. The Obama administration has exempted religiously affiliated nonprofit employers, such as Catholic hospitals, from financing such coverage. At the same time, it held that for-profit companies remain bound by the requirement, regardless of the beliefs espoused by their owners. The justices on Tuesday consolidated into a single argument two appellate rulings that reached opposite conclusions. The cases are expected to be heard in late March, with a decision announced by June. The companies challenging the rule are Hobby Lobby Stores Inc., an Oklahoma City-based arts-and-crafts chain, and Conestoga Wood Specialties Corp., an East Earl, Pa., manufacturer of kitchen cabinet doors. The cases hold implications beyond the health law. They carry the potential of expanding First Amendment rights for corporations, a concept the Supreme Court embraced in the 2010 opinion known as Citizens United, which found that corporations held political speech rights akin to those of individuals. This time, the question involves whether corporations have similar rights to religious expression. In July, the Third U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals, in Philadelphia, found that “secular, for-profit corporations cannot engage in religious exercise.” While Conestoga’s Mennonite owners, the Hahn family, may have a sincere religious objection to contraceptives that may act upon the fertilized egg, such as the so-called morning after pill, the corporation they operated had no beliefs of its own, the court found. More
China’s announcement last weekend of an Air Defense Identification Zone, which includes disputed areas of the East China Sea, has ratcheted up tensions between China and her neighbors, leading some to believe war is imminent. The new air defense area includes the airspace above the hotly disputed cluster of tiny islands known as the Diaoyu to China and the Senkaku to the Japanese. International reaction to the ADIZ, particularly from Japan and its ally the U.S., has been uniformly defiant. In addition to official statements from Japanese Foreign Minister Fumio Kishida and U.S. Secretary of Defense Chuck Hagel, Reuters reported Tuesday that two U.S. military aircraft have flown around the disputed islands in direct defiance of China’s ADIZ. “We have conducted operations in the area of the Senkakus,” spokesman Col. Steve Warren said, using the Japanese name for the islands. In addition to declaring the zone’s wide boundaries, Chinese military forces announced that all air travel in the designated ADIZ must be reported to avoid “emergency defensive measures in response.” The U.S. did the flyover without addressing the demands made by China. “We have continued to follow our normal procedures, which include not filing flight plans, not radioing ahead and not registering our frequencies,” Warren continued. The new ADIZ has brought added tension to one of China’s several current territorial disputes. As pointed out in Shanghai-based news-blog, The Shanghaiist.com, earlier this summer, a particularly strident pro-government local newspaper, Weweipo, published a war-mongering article describing the “Six Wars China Is Sure to Fight In the Next 50 Years.” The article essentially predicts that most of China’s current border disputes will eventually lead to war. More
A new study raises concerns of a possible association between cell phone radiation exposure and breast cancer in young women. The research team, led by Dr. Lisa Bailey, a former president of the American Cancer Society’s California Division and one of California’s top breast surgeons, studied four young women – aged from 21 to 39 years old – with multifocal invasive breast cancer. The researchers observed that all the patients developed tumors in areas of their breasts next to where they carried their cell phones, often for up to 10 hours per day, for several years. None of the patients had a family history of breast cancer. They all tested negative for BRCA1 and BRCA2 – breast cancer genes linked to about one-half of breast cancer cases – and they had no other known breast cancer risks. Imaging of the young girls’ breasts revealed a clustering of multiple tumor foci in the part of the breast directly under where their cell phones touched their body. Tiffany Frantz, one of the young girls involved in the study, said that she had no idea of the risks involved. “I put my cellphone right in my bra,” said Miss Frantz in a TV interview that also won an Emmy. However, her mother Traci Frantz immediately made the connection right after Tiffany developed breast cancer at age 21. “We never took it seriously until after she was diagnosed.” Her tumors were exactly where her cellphone had been kept in her bra for about six years. No one ever told us that this was a very bad idea.” said Traci Frantz. Surgeons had to remove Tiffany’s left breast. Her family had no genetic or other risk factors. More
When U.S. officials negotiated an interim nuclear deal with Iran, they left out one very important detail – release of the American pastor imprisoned and tortured in the Islamic republic for more than a year. Nagmah Abedini, the wife of imprisoned American pastor Saeed Abedini, says she is very disappointed by the U.S.-Iranian nuclear deal that left her husband in prison. But she told WND in an interview she is grateful for intervention from another source. Flamboyant billionaire Donald Trump has taken up the cause for the American pastor jailed in Iran for his Christian work there. Trump tweeted today: “How does Obama rationalize giving Iran $8B in sanction relief when a Christian pastor is being tortured in an Iranian prison?” His message followed another one posted yesterday only hours after the Obama administration announced a six-month deal with Iran over its nuclear program and sanctions against the rogue regime. Then, Trump asked: “Why didn’t Obama, as part of the negotiation, free the Christian Pastor Saeed Abedini?” Nagmeh Abedini told WND she is delighted by Trump’s intervention. “I am very happy to hear that he is doing this, because this is the first example of anyone outside of the legal and political areas speaking out,” she said. “I hope that more people like him will speak out.” She said she would like to arrange a meeting to thank Trump. More
Hanukkah is the last feast in the Jewish calendar and tells a remarkable story of the deliverance of Israel from the control of the Syrians in 164 B.C. The Syrians had assumed rule of the area through a political and military struggle after Alexander the Great had died. In their wake, they sought to assimilate the people into their Hellenistic culture (ancient Greek culture or ideals) and way of life with no exceptions, dealing ruthlessly with anyone who would oppose them. Had they been completely successful, they could have threatened the very environment that brought Messiah into the world. Not only did they ransack the holy temple of God, desecrating all of its contents, but they actually sacrificed a pig to their Greek god Zeus on the temple altar, which naturally repulsed all of the Jews, owing to their strict dietary laws, where the pig was considered most unclean. The Jews were outraged, and a priest named Mattathias and his five sons took up against several Syrian soldiers and killed them, which sparked a revolt. Being completely outnumbered, they utilized guerilla-style warfare tactics, first in the hill country and then throughout the land. They met with surprising success, and their faith in the God of Israel inspired the nation to take back their own country, despite the odds that were against them. In the month of Kislev (December), they reached Jerusalem and took back the temple. In restoring the menorah, which symbolized the light of God, they only had enough oil to last for one day, as it took eight days to prepare new oil. However, the oil miraculously lasted for eight days. This event demonstrated two miracles of God: the first to deliver His people and the second to lighten His temple. The temple was restored and rededicated to G-d, and a new holiday was established called Hanukkah (Hebrew for dedication) to remind Israel of these miracles. Hanukkah was not one of the original Jewish feasts mentioned in Leviticus 23, as it had not happened yet. However in light of its significance, its prophetic picture through Daniel, as well as God’s intervention, it became part of the Jewish calendar and has been celebrated ever since by Jews and some Christians all over the world. In fact Yeshua/Jesus celebrated this holiday and forever connected its significance by reflecting His own messiahship through the feast (John 10:22-39). Isn’t it interesting that in every Jewish holiday, we can see the character of God’s love and light for mankind? And nowhere is this clearer than through the Hanukkah celebration that we see the light of the world. More
Bitcoin, the digital ‘crypto-currency’ has passed the $1,000 mark for the first time in history, marking a growth of some 4,000% since the beginning of the year. The milestone was recorded by Tokyo-based Mt Gox bitcoin exchange on Wednesday. The unregulated virtual currency’s popularity has been soaring in recent weeks, having doubled in just the past seven days. In just one day, November 18, the price leaped from $478 in the morning to $744 at midnight (GMT). This was the same day that US Senate Homeland Security & Governmental Affairs Committee held the currency’s first Congressional hearing entitled “Beyond Silk Road: Potential Risks, Threats and Promises of Virtual Currencies” to take a close look at existing virtual currencies, including bitcoin. Bitcoin temporarily exceeded the equivalent of $1,000 on the Chinese exchange, BTC China, on the 19th of November. However, this is the first time the $1,000 mark has been surpassed in a US dollar denominated exchange rate. China is one of the world’s biggest Bitcoin markets, but demand for the virtual currency appears to be exploding on a global level. The University of Nicosia (UNic), one of the major English language universities in the Mediterranean, announced during the past week that it would be accepting bitcoin payments for its digital currency program next year. More
The 2009 H1N1 “swine flu” epidemic killed up to 203,000 people across the globe – a death toll 10 times greater than initially estimated by the World Health Organization, researchers say. In a study published Tuesday in the journal PLOS Medicine, epidemiologists used data on respiratory deaths in 20 nations to calculate a global mortality rate for the pandemic. Prior to this research, the WHO counted just 18,631 lab-confirmed cases of H1N1, a viral infection of the airways. “This study confirms that the H1N1 virus killed many more people globally than originally believed,” read a statement from Lone Simonsen, a research professor in the Department of Global Health at George Washington University. “We also found that the mortality burden of this pandemic fell most heavily on younger people and those living in certain parts of the Americas,” Simonsen said. The 2009 pandemic was far from the worst such outbreak. In 1918, the Spanish influenza pandemic killed 50 million people, roughly 2 percent of the world population at that time. Nevertheless, researchers said it was important for health care providers to understand the full impact of recent flu pandemics. The relatively modest number of deaths estimated by the WHO prompted some to question whether the overall response to the 2009 outbreak was excessive. However, Simonsen and her colleagues argued that lab-confirmed influenza deaths would underestimate the broad reach of the illness. “Many influenza-related deaths result from secondary bacterial infections or from exacerbation of preexisting chronic conditions, and are not recorded as related to influenza infection,” authors wrote.
Among the findings that surprised researchers was the age and geographic distribution of deaths. Most of the people who died – 62 per cent to 85 per cent – were younger than age 65. Traditionally, seasonal influenza hits seniors the hardest. Researchers also calculated that flu-related deaths were 20 times greater in Central and South America than in European countries. That finding stood in sharp contrast to an earlier US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention estimate that heaviest mortality rates occurred in Africa and Southeast Asia, and that death rates in the Americas were lower. The research was funded by the WHO and relied on viral illness and mortality data from 20 nations from 2005 to 2009. The sampled nations represented 35 per cent of the world’s population, and researchers then used statistical methods to calculate mortality rates for all nations. The authors noted that their conclusions were limited by a lack of data from poor nations, and other factors. “The true total mortality burden is likely to be even higher because deaths that occurred late in the winter of 2009-2010 and in later pandemic waves were missed in this analysis, and only pandemic influenza deaths that were recorded as respiratory deaths were included,” authors wrote. EP
BOSNIA – Just outside the village, children fished in a tranquil pond bobbing with green algae and lined with willow trees, as cattle grazed nearby. Now, Rezak Motanic gazes in disbelief down a gigantic crater where the pond used to be. It’s like something from a science fiction movie: a sinkhole swallowed the water, the fish and even nearby trees. “I sat here only a day before it happened, sipping plum brandy,” Cemal Hasan said. “And then, there was panic. Fish were jumping out, and a big plum tree was pulled down like someone yanked it with a hook.” Residents of this remote north-western Bosnian village have been in shock since the pond vanished two weeks ago. The pond was about 20 meters in diameter and about eight meters deep. Now, the “abyss,” as the villagers have dubbed the crater, is some 50 meters wide and 30 meters deep – and growing. Scientists say it is not uncommon that ponds and small lakes suddenly disappear.
They say it could be caused by drying underground water currents, or changes in soil drainage due to irrigation. Sanica villagers, however, are having none of the scientific explanations. “It could have been a giant cave that opened its doors,” offered Milanko Skrbic. “Or a volcano.” Another popular theory – one that experts dismiss along with the others proposed by townsfolk – is that fish could have triggered the explosion of one of several world war two German bombs believed to have been thrown into the pond by an old woman after the war. “She herself died when one of the bombs exploded in her arms,” Cemal Hasan said as he stood on the edge of the “abyss.” Another spooky explanation: the owner of the pond took it with him when he died about a month ago. “Only days before Hasan passed away he said: ‘I’ll take everything with me when I die.’ And that’s what he did,” Motanic said. “His daughter saw him walk on the lake the night he died.” Husein Nanic said it could be a sign that the end is nigh. “All sort of miracles happen before the doomsday,” he said. EP
The volcano at Mount Sinabung at Jakarta, Indonesia, erupted six times early Monday, shooting volcanic ash 2,000 meters into the sky. Thousands have been evacuated from the region since the Sinabung volcano began erupting sporadically in September. 5,000 people were evacuated from the area the day before the eruption on Monday, bringing the total number of evacuees to 11,000. There have been no casualties so far. The Sinabung is just one of 35 active, erupting volcanoes in the world, according to a categorized list on Volcano Discovery. Of the 35 currently erupting volcanoes in the world, seven are in Indonesia. Most of Indonesia is situated along the “Ring of Fire” — a horseshoe shaped ring around the Pacific where most earthquakes and volcanic eruptions take place. About 50 to 60 volcanoes erupt during a year. EP
ALASKA – Mt. Cleveland, an active volcano in the Aleutian Islands underwent a brief, small explosion Tuesday evening. The explosion, which took place at about 7:31 p.m. Alaska time, was detected by remote seismic devices and other monitoring equipment, according to the Alaska Volcano Observatory. “It is possible that a small ash cloud was generated but if so, it was too small to be observed in satellite data,” reported AVO. Cleveland, a stratovolcano (that’s the steeply-sided, symmetrical cone-shaped variety for lay folks) that comprises the western half of Chuginadak Island, is one of the Aleutians most active volcanoes. The AVO currently lists Cleveland at a yellow alert level; it has been at that level since being downgraded from orange following its eruption in May. That eruption threatened, but eventually failed, to disrupt the significant air traffic that travels in nearby corridors. After Tuesday’s explosion, the peak exhibited no further signs of what the AVO terms “eruptive activity.” EP
TEXAS – On Tuesday morning, yet another earthquake rocked the small Tarrant County town of Azle. It was the sixth within a week in Tarrant and Parker counties. More than a dozen quakes have rattled North Texas in November. Azle residents are getting nervous and seismologists are trying to get to the bottom of what’s going on. Some point to natural gas drilling that’s happening in the Barnett Shale, a massive geological formation that covers about 20 North Texas counties. But a geophysicist with the National Earthquake Information Center says more testing is needed to make such a connection. Donna Luce is worried. “I was sitting there watching TV, and my house just shook, and I’ve never felt that before, ever,” she said. “Now, actually, I’m afraid of sinkholes.” Debbie Raub and her husband, Fred, described the big quake with a 3.6 magnitude as “real spooky. Real loud boom, and then it just started shaking the ground under our mobile home,” she said. “Just rocking it. And our dogs, they go totally insane. They know it before it happens.” Each time there’s a quake, their two-bedroom trailer has to be re-leveled. “You just have to get under there, and jack it up in spots, put a level on underneath the trailer, and level it,” Debbie Raub said. “It’s just pulling the ground out beneath our stands.”
Fred Raub, who was born in Azle, says he doesn’t think the quakes are natural. He blames local natural gas drilling. “They say it ain’t what happens, but till then, we didn’t have it,” he said. “You gotta drill about every mile. You just start looking around at all the drills they’re putting down.” Don Blakeman, a geophysicist with the National Earthquake Information Center, says the quakes could be the result of oil and gas production. But he says more testing is needed to know that for sure. ”Obviously, if it is oil and gas production related, they might continue until that activity stops,” he said. “The other possibility is that it’s just a natural swarm, because we do see that sort of thing occurring sometimes in areas where we haven’t had quakes before.” A natural swarm is a series of small quakes. And Blakeman says they aren’t as dangerous as quakes with bigger magnitudes – quakes at 5.0 magnitudes can produce structural damage. In the meantime, in case the ground starts to shake again, Blakeman advises individuals and families to be prepared if a bigger quake strikes North Texas. Scientists and other experts are reportedly teaming up with the U.S. Geological Survey to collect more data to learn more about why these quakes keep occurring in North Texas. EP
JAPAN – Explosive activity has resumed at the remote volcano in the Tokara Island chain. VAAC Tokyo reported explosions yesterday and this morning, with ash plumes rising to 4,000-6,000 ft (1.2-1.8 km) altitude. The last major eruption occurred in July of this year. EP
A NASA spacecraft has captured its best video yet of the icy Comet ISON streaking toward a Thanksgiving Day encounter with a sun, a close shave that the comet might just not survive. The latest video of Comet ISON comes from NASA’s STEREO-A spacecraft, one of several sun-watching space observatories tracking the comet’s close encounter with the sun on Thursday (Nov. 28). ”This movie from the spacecraft’s Heliospheric Imager showsComet ISON, Mercury, Comet Encke and Earth over a five-day period from Nov. 20 to Nov. 25, 2013,” NASA officials wrote in a video description. “The sun sits right of the field of view of this camera.” [Comet ISON’s Thanksgiving Sun Encounter: Complete Coverage] Known officially as C/2012 S1 (ISON), Comet ISON is what scientists call a “sungrazer” comet because its orbit brings it extremely close to the sun. It is that extremely close solar shave, less than one diameter of the sun away, that has scientists guessing as to whether ISON will survive the encounter. In the video, Comet ISON appears as a bright object streaking from left to right as it draws ever closer to the sun. Comet Encke, meanwhile, appears as a dimmer object moving from the upper left to lower right. The planets Mercury and Earth and labeled in the STEREO-A view. NASA scientists, amateur astronomers and a fleet of spacecraft are tracking Comet ISON’s solar passage on Thursday. The comet has drawn wide interest because of its potential to be a spectacular sight in the night sky, with some scientists dubbing the object a possible “comet of the century.” Comet ISON’s origins in the distant Oort cloud, a realm of icy objects surrounding the entire solar system, has scientists excited because ISON is a pristine sample of the raw ingredients that formed Earth and other planets in the solar system. Comet ISON was discovered in September 2012 by Russian amateur astronomers Vitali Nevski and Artyom Novichonok. Since then, it has been meticulously followed by professional and amateur astronomers using ground-based telescopes, as well as space-based observatories. The Hubble Space Telescope and NASA spacecraft orbiting Mars and Mercury have also captured images of the incoming comet. On Thursday, NASA will hold a Google Hangout from 1 p.m. to 3:30 p.m. EST (1800 to 2030 GMT) to stream live views of the comet during its close sun approach. You will be able to watch the Comet ISON hangout live on SPACE.com here.
Michael loves his wife, Kamala. Michael also likes his 27-year-old girlfriend, Rachel. So six months ago, Kamala decided to do what most wives would never even consider: she invited Rachel to come live with them and their six year-old son. Monogamy just doesn’t work for the couple, whose relationship is featured on Showtime’s “Polyamory: Married & Dating.” What does work for them is a polyamorous lifestyle, Kamala and Michael tell Nightline reporter Nick Watt in the report above. (Rachel is not the first person they’ve invited into their relationship during the course of their 12-year marriage; the couple previously shared their home with another couple, and Kamala has been in a relationship with another woman for two years.) ”Monogamy can be a really beautiful agreement between people when they’re deeply in love and they don’t have desire for another,” Kamala says. “But most people in our society are just monogamous because their vows said ‘I will forsake all others.’” The trio’s seemingly blissful relationship — they do yoga together, love tantric sex and collectively raise the couple’s son — leaves the Nightline reporter wondering if maybe they’re on to something. With so many marriages ending in divorce — oftentimes because of infidelity — is polyamory the answer to all our divorce woes? Jenny Block, author of Open: Love, Sex, and Life in an Open Marriage, thinks so. “It’s becoming clear that heterosexual monogamous marriage simply doesn’t work for most people. And I think people are tired of being unhappy and dissatisfied,” she told the Daily Beast earlier this month. More
OKLAHOMA CITY – A racy play set to open next week has many pastors demanding answers. ”I’m not as concerned as offending myself. I’m concerned with offending God,” said Pastor Jerry Peterson who is outraged by a play opening next week at the civic center music hall. ”It is pornographic in nature. It’s actually promoting something that God views as an abomination,” he said. ”The Most Fabulous Story Ever Told” is a biblical satire featuring gay characters. ”Instead of it being Adam and eve its Adam and Steve,” Pastor Peterson said. He along with nearly 70 other religious leaders in the Christian Community wrote a letter to elected officials asking for reconsideration of the play and for the theater to pull it from production. ”We were wanting the input of our civic leaders to consider this and are you aware of it and are you concerned and asking for their help.” Jim Brown, civic center facilities manager, said the hall is governed by the U.S. Constitution and First Amendment rights. ”We’re basically not allowed to turn away groups because of any content they have,” Brown said. Brown responded to the letter on behalf of the city. ”We have no input regarding the shows that come in. As long as the renters, the individuals that come in comply with the ordinances, the laws and pay us rental they can bring in their shows.” Pastor Peterson is not content with that answer. He wants action taken. ”It grieves me that something like this is allowed because it has consequences to the entire community.” The pastors are planning a prayer vigil outside the Civic Center December 6th, the same day the play is set to open. Fox 25 Oklahoma City
Iranian collaboration with North Korea on a new rocket booster for long-range missiles undermines the deal with Tehran on its nuclear program, key Senate and House Republicans said on Tuesday. “While the president was undertaking his secret negotiations—which Congress wasn’t informed of—he had to know Iran and North Korea were testing new engines for ballistic missiles to target the United States,” said Rep. Mike Rogers (R., Ala.) chairman of the House Armed Services subcommittee on strategic forces. Rogers said in a statement that despite sharp budget cuts, U.S. space monitoring systems would not miss the development of the new booster engine. “Every day the president’s deal looks worse and worse,” Rogers said when asked about the Tehran-Pyongyang missile collaboration. The chairman, whose subcommittee is in charge of overseeing U.S. strategic weapons, ballistic missile defenses, and space programs, made the comments in response to a report Tuesday revealing that Iran is covertly working with North Korea on a new 80-ton rocket booster that can be used in both nations’ long-range missile programs.
In the Senate, Sen. Ted Cruz (R., Texas) also criticized the Iran nuclear deal for not addressing the threat of Iran’s ICBM program. Reports of Iran-North Korea ICBM collaboration follow new anti-America and anti-Israel outbursts from the Islamist regime in Tehran, Cruz said. “The Iranian regime is clearly demonstrating through word and deed that they have no intention of moderating the behavior that earned them one of the harshest international programs of economic sanctions on record,” Cruz told the Washington Free Beacon. “Relaxing the sanctions now only encourages them to continue their pursuit of nuclear weapons–and the means to deliver them to Israel, Europe and even the United States. I hope President Obama and Secretary [of State John] Kerry will reconsider this dangerous policy and add the immediate cessation of their ICBM program to the list of prerequisites placed on Iran before any additional negotiations take place.” More
A top Iranian military leader announced late Tuesday that Iran has developed “indigenous” ballistic missile technology, which could eventually allow it to fire a nuclear payload over great distances. Brigadier General Hossein Salami, the lieutenant commander of Iran’s elite Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC), made the critical weapons announcement just days after Iran and the West signed a deal aimed at curbing the country’s nuclear activities. Salami claimed that “Iran is among the only three world countries enjoying an indigenous ballistic missile technology,” according to the state-run Fars News Agency. “Many countries may have access to cruise missiles technology, but when it comes to ballistic missiles, I am confident that only the U.S. and the [former] Soviet Union could master this technology, and now we can announce that we own this technology as well,” Salami told Fars. The IRGC leader said that Iran is quickly developing advanced military know-how. “While we did not have any knowledge about drones, we have developed and acquired drones that travel 2,000 kilometers, conduct their operations, and then land in our desirable regions,” he was quoted as saying. Iran’s claim to ballistic missiles would be a major development for a country known to use its military machinery as a means of intimidating its regional neighbors.
Former U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations John Bolton said Iran’s ballistic missile announcement is no surprise. “Iran’s ballistic missile program has always been to provide the delivery vehicles nor nuclear warheads,” Bolton said. “The timing of the IRGC announcement is no coincidence.” As Iranian President Hassan Rouhani and other officials celebrate the recently announced nuclear accord, Tehran’s military leaders have adopted a harsh line on the West. Another IRGC leader said on Tuesday that Americans only understand “the language of force.” “The U.S. has double-standards towards social issues of nations and the language that Americans understands is the language of force,” General Ramezan Sharif, Head of the IRGC’s Public Relations Department, said on Tuesday. U.S. power is growing weaker every year, he said. “The pillars of the U.S. strength have become seriously shaky in the world, especially in the Middle-East,” according to Sharif. Other Iranian military officials claim that Tehran no longer needs to import key weapons as they once did. “Today, we are honored that we have been able to grow needless in the defense equipment sector with the help of our young scientists and thinkers and now we provide all the needs of the Armed Forces with the best quality,” Iranian Deputy Defense Minister Brigadier General Aboutaleb Shafaqat said on Tuesday. More
Python eats drunk man alive in India
Israeli settlements to grow after Iran deal
(Japan) Strange Black Clouds Forming Over Fukushima Nuclear Power Plant.
Protesters Cut Power Supply To Thailand National Police Headquarters!