Wednesday, January 12, 2011

Patriot App Designed To Aid In Terrorism Fight

Charles Reinighaus thinks Americans are “disenfranchised” when it comes to the war on terror. He feels like the federal government has all the power to keep the country safe and is missing a key component: the American people. He loves to point out that the Times Square Bomber was not stopped by high tech cameras are other security systems, but rather, by alert citizens who noticed something odd and reported it.
That’s why Reinighaus and a group of friends created “The Patriot App” for the iPhone. It’s an application that makes it easy to report things you think might not be on the up and up.
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Man arrested in Arizona bus bomb scare

A Phoenix man in jail  in connection with a bomb scare aboard a Las Vegas-bound Greyhound bus.
Yavapai County Sheriff’s officials said Monday that 45-year-old Ernesto Lopez-Rodriguez is being held on $5,000 bond at the Camp Verde Detention Center.
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Floods hit empty Brisbane; 20,000 homes in danger

Two men and two children prepare to take a small boat onto a flooded street of Brisbane, Australia, Wednesday, Jan. 12, 2011. Almost 20,000 homes in l AP – Two men and two children prepare to take a small boat onto a flooded street of Brisbane, Australia, Wednesday, …

BRISBANE, Australia – Emergency sirens blared across Australia's third-largest city Wednesday as floodwaters that have torn a deadly path across the northeast poured into an empty downtown, swamping neighborhoods in what may be Brisbane's worst flooding in 100 years.
The surging, muddy waters reached the tops of traffic lights in some parts of Brisbane, and the city's mayor said at least 20,000 homes were in danger of being inundated.
At least 22 people have died and more than 50 are missing elsewhere in Australia's northeastern state of Queensland since drenching rains that began in November sent swollen rivers spilling over their banks, inundating an area larger than France and Germany combined. Brisbane, the state capital with a population of 2 million, is the latest city to face down the waters.
On Wednesday, Brisbane residents who had spent two days preparing took cover on higher ground while others scrambled to move their prized possessions to the top floors of their homes Some stacked furniture on their roof.
The Brisbane River is expected to reach its peak Thursday, Mayor Campbell Newman said. The figures were constantly being revised as the threat became clearer — and it was getting consistently worse.
Australia's dragged-out crisis escalated when a violent storm sent a 26-foot (eight meter), fast-moving torrent — described as an "inland instant tsunami" — crashing through the city of Toowoomba and smaller towns to the west of Brisbane on Monday. Twelve people were killed in that flash flood, and 51 remain missing.
"This is a truly dire set of circumstances," Prime Minister Julia Gillard said.
The flooding has transfixed Australia and is shaping up to become the nation's most expensive disaster, with an estimated price tag of $5 billion. The relentless waters have shut down Queensland state's crucial coal industry and ruined crops across vast swaths of farmland.
Brisbane's office buildings stood empty Wednesday with the normally bustling central business district transformed into a watery ghost town. Most roads around the city were closed, and people moved about in kayaks and rowboats. One of the city's sports stadiums, which hosts international rugby games, was flooded with muddy, chest-deep water.
Boats torn from their moorings floated down the rising river along with massive amounts of debris. A popular waterside restaurant's pontoon was swept away by the current and floated downstream. Officials said they would probably have to sink a barge that serves as an entertainment venue, to stop it from breaking free and becoming a floating torpedo.
Two evacuation centers have been established in the city and Newman said up to 6,500 were expected to use them in coming days. Officials have urged people to get to higher ground and keep off the streets.
"This incident is not a tourist event — this is a deeply serious natural disaster," Queensland state Premier Anna Bligh said. "Stay in your homes. Do not travel unless it is absolutely necessary."
The Brisbane River broke its banks on Tuesday and was continuing its rise Wednesday — partly controlled by a huge dam upstream that has had its floodgates opened because it is brimming after weeks of rain across the state.
Water levels were expected to stay at peak levels until at least Saturday, but many people won't be able to access their homes for several days beyond that, Bligh said.
Energex, the city's main power company, said it would switch off electricity to some parts of the city starting Wednesday as a precaution against electrocution. Almost 70,000 homes were without power across Queensland by Wednesday afternoon, Bligh said.
"I know that this is going to be very difficult for people," Bligh said. "Can I just stress: Electricity and water do not mix. We would have catastrophic situations if we didn't shut down power."
Darren Marchant spent all day moving furniture and other household goods to the top floor of his home, near the river in the low-lying Brisbane suburb of Yeronga, which is expected to be inundated. He and two neighbors watched in awe as dozens of expensive boats and pontoons drifted past.
"We were watching all kinds of debris floating down the river — one of the (neighbor's) pontoons just floated off," he said Wednesday. "It was amazing."
For weeks, the flooding had been a slow-motion disaster, devastating wide swaths of farmland and small towns. On Monday, the crisis took a sudden, violent turn, with a cloudburst sending a raging torrent down the Lockyer Valley west of Brisbane. Houses were washed from their foundations and cars tossed about like bath toys in what Police Commissioner Bob Atkinson described as "an inland instant tsunami."
Hundreds had to be rescued by helicopter Tuesday and emergency vehicles were moving into the worst-hit parts of the valley on Wednesday. Bligh warned that the death toll would likely rise as rescue officials gained access to the devastated areas.
In the Lockyer Valley town of Grantham, entire houses that had been swept off their foundations sat in sodden heaps of jumbled debris. Waters that had submerged a railway bridge receded, exposing an avalanche of twisted wreckage caught in its foundation: furniture, a "for sale" sign, a child's swing set — even a dead cow.
The city of Ipswich, home to about 15,000 people, was swamped Wednesday by the water heading Brisbane's way. By the afternoon, 3,000 properties had been inundated, and 1,100 people had fled to evacuation centers, Mayor Paul Pisasale said. Video from the scene showed horses swimming through the brown waters, pausing to rest their heads on the roof of a house — the only dry spot they could reach.
In Brisbane, the river is expected to crest Thursday at levels higher than those of a devastating 1974 flood, though the damage is expected to be less because that flood struck with little warning. The mayor urged people to stay away from downtown.
Steph Stewardson, a graphic designer, said there was an exodus from a downtown area around lunchtime Tuesday with people streaming out of skyscrapers as the river broke its banks. Stewardson, 40, hopped in her car and crossed the swollen river to collect her dog, Boo, from daycare while waters started covering the boardwalk stretching along its banks.
Stewardson took shelter in her house and plans to stay there — for now.
"I'm about 800 meters (half a mile) from the river on a hill, so I think it's going to be OK," she told The Associated Press.
Gelineau reported from Sydney.

Haitians yearn for change after year in "hell"

S. Korea firm plans big investment in Haiti AFP/File – File photo shows Haitian earthquake survivors pulling the coffin of a victim through Port-au-Prince. …

PORT-AU-PRINCE (Reuters) – As Haitians mark the anniversary on Wednesday of the earthquake that flattened much of the capital Port-au-Prince, hopes that a better nation could rise from the rubble have given way to a crushing sense of bitterness and despair.
Reconstruction work has barely begun despite billions of dollars in pledged aid, profiteering by Haiti's tiny and notoriously corrupt elite has reached epic proportions, and a national cholera epidemic has added to the misery of a country where the quake killed about 250,000 people and left more than a million homeless.
Haiti, the Western Hemisphere's poorest country, was in bad shape before the quake. But promises from the international community to "build Haiti back better" now ring hollow to many of the country's most vulnerable.
Banks, schools and government offices were ordered closed for the anniversary and a national day of mourning was to kick off with a service offered by the papal envoy to Haiti at the quake-shattered remains of the National Cathedral in downtown Port-au-Prince.
Former U.S. President Bill Clinton, the special U.N. envoy for Haiti who heads its main disaster management body, was due to attend the service along with a host of officials including outgoing Haitian President Rene Preval.
But in Champs Mars, Port-au-Prince's central plaza where thousands of families made homeless by the quake live in a sweltering tent city, residents said the official ceremonies and renewed pledges of aid and progress for Haiti from foreign officials, were like something taking place in another world.
Hundreds of thousands are still living in such camps and are falling victim to the cholera that has already taken some 3,750 lives since mid-October.
A political impasse since a disputed presidential election on November 28 has fueled further instability in the Caribbean country.
"I hear about aid on TV but us in Champs Mars, we've never seen it. We have no way to get out," said 55-year-old Ginelle Pierre Louis.
"The diplomats pass through in the air, in helicopters, but they never come through here on the ground," said Hyacinthe Mintha, 56, a resident of Champs Mars, which overlooks the heavily damaged presidential palace.
Mintha's daughter, Hyacinthe Benita, 39, lives in a metal and wood shack with a frayed tarp roof and a thin pallet as the only bed for herself and her four children.
"We are still here in misery," she said of the quake anniversary. "I hope this year brings serious change because 2010 was hell for us," she added.
"The president's right over there," said Benita, gesturing toward the annex where Preval, who is deeply unpopular, works behind the presidential palace. "He's never done anything for us, he's never come to see us at all. They look at us like animals," she said.
Clinton, who co-chairs the Interim Haiti Reconstruction Commission with Haiti's Prime Minister Jean-Max Bellerive, has faced pointed criticism for painfully slow progress in relief and rebuilding efforts so far. He acknowledged disappointment with the commission's work in remarks to foreign reporters on Tuesday.
"Nobody's been more frustrated than I am that we haven't done more," he said.
Denis O'Brien, a supporter of Clinton and chairman of the Irish-owned cell phone company Digicel that is Haiti's biggest foreign investor, told Reuters in an interview this week that the former U.S. leader had a solid understanding of what needs to be done to get Haiti back on its feet.
But one of his big problems, according to O'Brien, is that most members of Haiti's ruling class have done little to help, seeking only to profit on the back of their nation's catastrophe.
"There's very few of the elite families that are actually doing a lot for Haiti," O'Brien said. "They're making massive profits on the importation of goods, products, services, everything ... Profiteering at a major scale is going on here," he said.
Jimmy Jean-Louis, a Haitian-born actor and performer who now lives in Los Angeles but has visited his homeland frequently since the quake, said the ruling class had always benefited from chaos and mayhem in Haiti.
"The more destabilization there is, unfortunately, the more money the elite makes," he said.

11-01-11 | WORLD

The nuclear agreement between Russia and the U.S. entered into force

 It is an alliance for the civilian use of nuclear energy that was signed in 2008 by both countries. Was  frozen by the war in the Caucasus for three years until Obama proposed to retrieve it and send it to Congress for approval

Sergei Kiriyenko, head of the Russian state atomic energy Rosatom said the agreement was very important for Moscow "And that America is a key part of the global market for nuclear technology."
Among other things, this  mutual trade treaty allows nuclear technology, including  possibility that Russia will reprocess spent fuel rods for United States.
The text came into force after U.S. Ambassador to Moscow, John Byrle, exchange the appropriate diplomatic offices with Deputy Russian Foreign Sergei Ryabkov.

For his part, Russian President Dmitri Medvedev called to  not to politicize the agreement. "Good job. The important thing is not to politicize  and pursue it as a business, "Bush said after Kirienko join.
Also, the head of the Russian state RosatomRecalled that Russia and "covers about 40 percent of fuel requirements for nuclear power plants" U.S..
"Last year we signed contracts worth U.S. $ 4,900 million. We have assets in U.S. territory," he added.

Kirienko noted also that  December 20, Russia drew the first tonne of uranium U.S. territory that belongs to 20 percent of U.S. reserves of this mineral.
The agreement, which is the result of several years of negotiations, allow  extend the transfer of nuclear equipment and technology, the fight against the proliferation and storage of radioactive materials.
Likewise, rise  restrictions on joint projects between companies from both countries such as the creation of joint ventures.
Up  Russia now had direct access to attractive market segment U.S. in the absence of a legal framework for cooperation, which Moscow saw as a "vestige" of the Cold War.

Russian Prime Minister Vladimir Putin, had  repeatedly complained that Russian companies were suffering "limitations discriminatory "in the U.S. and could only supply uranium for U.S. nuclear plants through an intermediary monopolist.

S: translates LPPNEWS

The U.S. government fears for the safety of their charges

Congresswoman shot in Arizona improves and can breathe without assistance

Antonio Lafuente 11/01/2011 22:00 Updated: 11/01/2011 22:29
Un policía con rifle vigila el Capitolio en Washington. - AP

A policeman with a rifle watching the Capitol in Washington. - AP

The state attorney general who heads the Department of Justice of the U.S. government, Eric Holder, has warned that killing of Tucson (Arizona) last Saturday, which was struck Rep. Gabrielle Giffords and killed a federal judge also  five other people, shows that there is a real threat to public office in the country.
"Undoubtedly, threats to public office, whatever form they take, continue to cause concern and require monitoring ",  Holder said. However, it believes that such hazards "are not as strong as the forces fighting for peace and tolerance. "
Some  MPs go further and have expressed their desire to bear arms to defend themselves in case of an attack. But the security chief Capitol rejected this idea. "I think we should leave the safety Police in the hands of those professionals, "he told ABC.
Tucson physicians gave encouraging news about the state of Giffords
While  So doctors gave encouraging news to Tucson on State Giffords, 40, whom the gunman Loughna Jared Lee reached on Saturday in the head with a bullet from his automatic. With half of the skull up to keep the swelling of his brain that organ damage, the doctors said that he had removed the artificial respirationl and Giffords began breathing on her own.
In addition,  is awake and responsive to the instructions of the doctors, despite the which is still in serious condition, said Michael Lemolad, chief Neurology, University Hospital of Tucson, where he is hospitalized. He cautioned that his recovery will be very long because "week will week, month by month. "

Obama's visit to Tucson

Three  days after the killing of Tucson is shaking to the United States where shelled media surrounding the details of how the event, especially those of the murderer, for whom the prosecutor, Barbara Lawall, called on Monday for the death penalty.
Loughna had applied to join the army by the end of 2008
Among  these details include the testimony of a neighbor's parents  Loughna, who said they are "broken." "When I told the Saturday that his son was the suspect in the shooting, Amy, her mother, almost  faint spot, "the newspaper said Wayne Smith The Wall Street Journal.
It has also been known to Loughna had requested to join the army by the end of 2008 but was rejected when declared as a regular user of marijuana, An addiction that can not tolerate the military for medical reasons.
For  Moreover, come to Tucson on Thursday U.S. President Barack Obama, to participate in a ceremony in memory of the victims, including a 9 year old girl. In this act will greet relatives  the dead and probably give a speech on tolerance.
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