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Friday, March 11, 2011

Something Crazy For Everyone In Gadhafi U.N. Speech

Moammer Gadhafi called for the dissolution of the U.N. Security Council and investigations into the murders of John F. Kennedy and Martin Luther King during an address at the United Nations today, offering bones to both right- and left-wing nuts all over the world.

Mixing good sense in with craziness like all the non compos mentis, Gadhafi also gave a critique of the U.N. and told them to stay out of countries' internal affairs, noting that ancient Romans had the right to grant dictatorial powers to certain men in the event of emergency.

Standing for 90 minutes in front of the General Assembly and rambling with no prepared speech, Gadhafi instead paged through a copy of the U.N. Charter, offering his reflections interspersed with long pauses as he read through the material (see the priceless video).

After noting how much he approved of the preamble, he went on to say: "No one is objecting to the preamble, but everything that came after that is contradiction of the preamble. The preamble says the nations are equal whether they are small or big. Are we equal in permanent seats? No, we're not equals," referring to the fact that the five victors of World War II hold permanent vetos in the Security Council.

He also noted that 65 wars have taken place since the creation of the Security Council, calling it the "terrorism council" and wondering why the entire continent of Africa had no seat on it, reproved U.S. wars in Korea, Vietnam, and Grenada, said Obama was a "son of Africa" and the world would be happy for him to be president forever, condemned Abu Ghraib and the hanging of Saddam Hussein, said "perhaps America will be targeted again, perhaps by a rocket and tons of heads of state will die," and called for global unity in confronting climate change and food shortages. Funny. We've heard people say all of these things at NYC cocktail parties

Get em Gaddafi!!!! Stay strong against the empire

Get em Gaddafi!!!! Stay strong against the empire!!! the true values of islam will prevail!!! and im agnostic even!! its obvious these people will not allow the perverted midset of america to disease there country. Keep up your righteousness Gaddafi, let everyone know you've led the most succesful country in the whole great continent of africa!! One of the only ones resisting the seduction of RAPE from the western world.

US, France, Britain set up bases in Libya

Britain and France alone as EU rejects no-fly zone

Britain, France and the United States have dispatched hundreds of military advisors to Libya to set up military bases in the country's oil-rich east, reports say.

Several Libyan diplomats have been quoted by news outlets as saying these forces are setting up bases in the eastern cities of Benghazi and Tobruk -- the two oil-rich cities that have been liberated by the opposition forces.

British and US special forces entered Libyan port cities of Benghazi and Toburk on February 23 and 24.

Three Indian navy warships are also expected to be deployed in the region. Earlier on Monday, the US military confirmed it has deployed naval and air forces around Libya.

A Pentagon spokesman said various contingency plans are considered to provide options and flexibility once decisions are made.

Earlier on Monday, the US military confirmed it has deployed naval and air forces around Libya.

On Monday, US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton said Washington would “continue to explore all possible options for action."

European leaders have locked horns over the handling of the crisis in Libya during emergency talks in Brussels yesterday, with France and Britain looking isolated in their push for military intervention.

A communiqué from the EU noticeably failed to mention possible no-fly zones. Britain and France had pushed hard for the document to declare an explicit backing for such action.

Appearing frustrated, David Cameron said: "Every day that [Gaddafi] goes on brutalising his own people is bad for humanity and is a bad day for people in Libya, and we need to stand by those people who want a better future. That future cannot include Col Gaddafi. We need to continue with planning."

Several Eastern European countries, as well as Germany, refused to move on the issue, which has been repeatedly raised as a possibility by Britain and France. After a day of tense discussions among the bloc's 27 leaders, the German Chancellor Angela Merkel said: "I see no need for military intervention."

The EU did not rule out the possibility of sanctioning force, but stressed it would do so only with the support of the United Nations and the Arab League. The Arab League meets in Cairo today, and is not expected to support a no-fly zone. "We expect Syria and Algeria to be against," said one European diplomat. Gulf states, including Saudi Arabia, are likely to back a no-fly zone; such a move, they hope, will help to mollify restless populations at home. Russia and China, members of the UN Security Council, have also both indicated reluctance to approve military action.

Attempts at presenting a show of unity during the summit were trampled on by the French President, under fire both for his hawkish military calls and also for his decision a day earlier to grant diplomatic recognition to Libya's opposition Interim Governing Council.

The Council is made up of opposition leaders in the rebel stronghold of Benghazi but EU diplomats say the members are still largely unknown. The move was slammed by the Dutch Prime Minister as "crazy". Mark Rutte said common diplomatic practice was to "recognise countries, not governments".

Mr Sarkozy said he stood by his "wise decision", adding: "As far as I am concerned, it's the Council we are now speaking to. Other countries may prefer to wait until its make-up becomes more stable. And anyway, what choice do we have?"

Ultimately, it would most likely fall on Nato to mount any potential military action such as imposing a no-fly zone. But Nato defence ministers urge caution, stressing the need for a legal mandate and support from regional partners.

Ex-Blackwater contractors guilty in Afghan's death

Two former Blackwater contractors were found guilty on Friday of involuntary manslaughter in the May 2009 shooting death of an unarmed Afghan civilian in Kabul, but were acquitted of all other charges related to the shootings of two others.

A federal jury found Justin H. Cannon of Corpus Christi, Texas, and Christopher Drotleff of Virginia Beach not guilty of murder and weapons charges that could have resulted in life sentences. They also were acquitted in the death of a second unarmed civilian who was killed and of assaulting a third person injured during the shooting at a dark intersection near the scene of an accident.

Drotleff cried as a series of not guilty verdicts were read while Cannon stood silently.

Their first trial in September ended in a hung jury and jurors in this case could be heard arguing behind closed doors since they received their instructions Wednesday morning.

The men now face a maximum sentence of eight years in prison and will be sentenced June 14. Both men were released until sentencing, although Drotleff was required to post a $10,000 bond over prosecutors' objections. U.S. District Judge Robert Doumar had previously found that Drotleff would be a danger to society if released while awaiting trial.

"We're happy our client is being released at this point. We felt he should've been acquitted on all charges," said Lawrence H. Woodward Jr., one of Drotleff's attorneys.

The trial focused on whether Drotleff, 29, and Cannon, 27, feared for their lives the night of the shooting, when the vehicle in front of them that was escorting their translators home got into a bad accident.

Defense attorneys said they opened up fire on a Toyota Corolla driven by Fareed Haji Ahmad because they believed it had caused the original accident and it had started approaching them at a high speed afterward.

Cannon and Drotleff fired about 30 rounds — Cannon with an AK-47 rifle and Drotleff with a 9mm pistol — toward the vehicle. Their attorneys said they acted in self defense and that any reasonable person would have done the same thing on a dangerous road in a war-torn nation.

Prosecutors said it was a truck that caused the lead vehicle to get into an accident, that the Corolla wasn't a threat and Ahmad only approached to help the accident victims. They said Drotleff and Cannon acted irrationally out of anger and frustration on a day their boss had been fired and that they had been drinking.

They noted that all the bullet holes in the vehicle were in the rear of the vehicle, which was shown to jurors during the trial and during deliberations.

The man walking his dog, Rahib Mirza Mohammad, was unintentionally hit. The jury didn't find Drotleff or Cannon guilty any charges related to his death.

The involuntary manslaughter verdict was issued in the death of Romal Mohammad Naiem, the passenger in the Corolla.

The U.S. Attorney's Office declined to comment Friday.

Blackwater, based in North Carolina, has since changed its name to Xe Corp.

Read more: http://www.sfgate.com/cgi-bin/article.cgi?f=/n/a/2011/03/11/national/a143821S11.DTL#ixzzG3qh1wZ2R

Tsunami warning issued for California, Oregon coasts

Tsunami warning issued for California, Oregon coasts
By Rong-Gong Lin II, Los Angeles Times March 11, 2011 StoryPhotos ( 1 )
Stranded people wait for their train at Kawasaki station after subway and train were suspended by an earthquake in Tokyo March 11, 2011. The biggest earthquake to hit Japan since records began 140 years ago struck the northeast coast on Friday, triggering a 10-metre tsunami that swept away everything in its path, including houses, ships, cars and farm buildings on fire.Photograph by: Reuters, YomiuriLOS ANGELES — A tsunami warning has been issued for the central and northern California coast and Oregon, the National Weather Service announced early Friday.

In the San Francisco Bay Area, an emergency warning system announcement for a tsunami warning was broadcast just after 1 a.m. Waves could begin arriving in Crescent City, Calif., at 7:23 a.m. and the Bay Area shortly after 8 a.m. local time.

A lower-level tsunami advisory was issued for the Southern California coast south of Point Concepcion, which includes southern San Luis Obispo County and the counties of Ventura, Los Angeles, Orange and San Diego.

According to the weather service, those living in tsunami warning areas near the beach or in low-lying regions "should move immediately inland to higher ground and away from all harbors and inlets, including those sheltered directly from the sea."

"Those feeling the earth shake, seeing unusual wave action, or the water level rising or receding may have only a few minutes before the tsunami arrival and should move immediately. Homes and small buildings are not designed to withstand tsunami impacts."

A tsunami warning means that a tsunami "with significant widespread inundation is imminent or expected. Warnings indicate that widespread dangerous coastal flooding accompanied by powerful currents is possible and may continue for several hours after the initial wave arrival.

A tsunami advisory means a tsunami capable of producing strong currents or waves dangerous to anyone in or very near the water is expected, but widespread inundation is not expected.

Still, currents may be hazardous to swimmers and boats, the weather service said.

The waves were expected to hit Santa Barbara at 8:17 a.m. and Santa Monica and San Pedro harbors at 8:32 a.m.

Authorities said they will update current conditions hourly in areas under an advisory until the warning is either upgraded or they determine the event poses no further threat.

According to the weather service "the potential exists for a tsunami 3 feet or less in Southern and Central California."

Tsunamis less than 3 feet would cause damage only at the local harbors, caused by strong currents entering and exiting for several hours.


The West Coast and Alaska Tsunami Warning Center has issued more details about the potential for small waves hitting the California coast due to the Japan earthquake.

Estimated arrival times:



SANTA MONICA: 8:32 a.m.

SAN PEDRO 8:32 a.m.


LA JOLLA 8:48 a.m.

Officials don't expect the waves to cause damage. But as a precaution, officials are likely to urge people to avoid beach areas.

Officials said people living in low-lying coastal areas should seek higher ground as a precaution and listen for special instructions from emergency agencies. Unusual wave action from the quake might last for several hours

Barely a ripple on Vancouver Island as weather advisory cancelled
Tsunami grazes Vancouver island, communities evacuate residents but no damage reported

A tsunami carries buildings across waters in Kamaishi city port in this still image taken from video footage March 11, 2011. A massive 8.9 magnitude quake hit northeast Japan on Friday, causing many injuries, fires and a four-metre tsunami along parts of the country's coastline, NHK television and witnesses reported.Photograph by: REUTERS, NHK via Reuters TVDo you have photos or know of someone affected by the quake or tsunami? Send your pictures and stories to tabtips@theprovince.com

Sections of the B.C. coast recorded up to one-metre waves and minor flooding but no significant damage from a tsunami generated by Japan's 8.9 magnitude earthquake Friday.

By the time the tsunami — a 10-metre-wall of water sweeping up cars, buildings and houses in Japan — travelled 6,800 kilometres, at the speed of a jetliner, across the Pacific Ocean to Vancouver Island's west coast, it caused barely a ripple.

A tsunami advisory from B.C.'s Provincial Emergency Program went out at 1:50 a.m. warning communities on the Haida Gwaii Islands, the central coast including Bella Bella, and Vancouver Island's west coast from Cape Scott to Port Renfrew.

The advisory told communities to evacuate marinas, beaches and other areas below the high-tide mark. Because of strong surges in waters off Port Alberni, the advisory was in effect until shortly before 7 p.m. Friday.

Evacuations occurred at some First Nations reserves, the entire community of Port Renfrew and Pacific Rim National Park. All schools were closed in the Tofino-Ucluelet area.

Residents of Port Renfrew awoke early Friday to the insistent blast of a tsunami-warning siren. Many of the 300 residents then evacuated to higher ground.

"The community responded wonderfully and the emergency services handled it very professionally," said Rose Betsworth, chamber of commerce president. "I sure feel comfortable if we ever have to go through it for real."

At the Huu-ay-aht First Nation community of Anacla, 12 kilometres from Bamfield, about 130 residents evacuated from their water-level homes to the House of Huu-ay-aht, the community hall on a hill above the village, said spokesman Brent Ronning.

"We don't have all the facts yet, but we heard the water surge came right up to the band office and there has been some flooding and now the tide has gone way out," he said.

In Victoria and Nanaimo police stations were inundated with calls from citizens concerned for their safety

Chris Duffy, executive director of emergency co-ordination for the B.C. Provincial Emergency Program, hunkered down in his office throughout the night anxiously waiting for whatever was to roll onto B.C.'s coastline.

Duffy first received news of the earthquake just before 10 p.m. Thursday. "There's always anxiety with activation for an event like this," Duffy said.

No inundation waves were forecast, given the distance and alignment of the coastal shoreline and other factors.

But flooding was a possibility, along with hazards for boaters, swimmers, and surfers.

"The waves come in a series and potentially dangerous waves can come in after the initial arrival time," Duffy said.

The first wave generated by Japan's earthquake was forecast to hit Langara Island, in the Haida Gwaii, formerly known as the Queen Charlottes, about 5:30 a.m. At 6:12 a.m. an Institute of Ocean Sciences member noted there was a small surge but no measurement to report. That's about eight hours after Japan's earthquake. A flight from Tokyo to Vancouver takes about 10 hours.

Tsunami waves typically travel at 600 km/h, said Christopher Barnes, professor emeritus at the University of Victoria and project director for the Neptune Canada ocean exploration project.

By 7:05 a.m. the first discernible wave rolled in at 0.40 metres hitting Winter Harbour, the northern tip of Vancouver Island. By 7:52 a.m., in the same location, a 1.0- to 1.3-metre wave hit.

Travelling easterly, at 8:30 a.m. a wave of 0.6 metres rolled in off Port Alberni

At 8:55 a.m. there were reports of a 0.9 to 1.0 metre wave hitting Tofino.

Vancouver Island's west coast was lucky there was an ebbing tide, when the tsunami hit, rather than a high tide, said Barnes. "If it happened to hit during a high tide then the addition of a metre would be significant . . . it could have a pretty serious effect," Barnes said.

Three Neptune bottom-pressure recorders on the sea floor recorded the first wave 250 kilometres off shore at 6:35 a.m.

The recorders measure the height of water on top of them caused by tides or tsunamis.

A recorder at Abyssal plain, at a depth of 2,660 metres, detected the tsunami at 6:35 a.m. at a height of about 25 centimetres.

The surge was detected seven minutes later at the continental slope, with a recorder at a depth of 1,250 metres. By the time it came to Folger Pass, at the mouth of Barkley Sound near Bamfield, the tsunami wave was at 40 centimetres.

When it hit the beach, it had grown to about a metre, Barnes said

Japanese Tsunami

Some Good news: 81 rescued from ship swept off by A ship that was swept away by the tsunami on Japan's northeastern coast was found and all 81 aboard were airlifted to safety. The vessel was washed away from a shipbuilding site in Miyagi prefecture. Four trains remained unaccounted for

Seattle/Vancouver: Could big quake happen here?

The short answer is yes. Major quakes, every few hundred years, rupture along the 680-mile-long Cascadia subduction zone, a fault that runs from Northern California to British Columbia. Tsunami waves then hit the shore in 10 to 15 minutes. The fault last ruptured in 1700

Japan: More than 1,000 feared dead in northeast
A day after the strongest earthquake ever recorded in Japan struck the northeast coast, unleashing a 23-foot tsunami that swept hundreds to their deaths and washed away buildings, rescuers fanned out Saturday to search for survivors and victims.

No Kuwaiti casualties in Japan quake

TOKYO: There were no reports of injuries among Kuwaiti citizens in Japan so far from the powerful earthquake with a magnitude of 8.8 that hit an extensive area in the eastern half of Japan yesterday, Kuwaiti Ambassador to Japan Abdulrahman Al-Otaibi said.

The embassy is trying to reach Kuwaiti nationals registered in Japan around the clock, but communications were constantly cut in Tokyo. However, we have not received any reports of injuries among Kuwaiti citizens in Japan, including students, and I hope they are all safe and in good health, Al-Otaibi said.

All Kuwaiti diplomats are safe," the ambassador said adding that Kuwaiti citizens traveling in Japan are strongly encouraged to notify the embassy about their whereabouts and contact numbers.

At least 69 people died, dozens were missing and numerous others were injured from the 2:46 pm quake. In Tokyo, more than 60 people were reported to be injured, according to local officials.

The quake measured 7, the highest level of the Japanese seismic intensity scale in some areas of Miyagi prefectures, about 430 km north of Tokyo. The agency defines an intensity of 7 as strong enough to make most furniture move to a large extent and some to even leap into the air. --- KUNA

Bahrain's protesters march on royal court

MANAMA: Thousands of opposition activists marched yesterday towards Bahrain's royal court, a protest that looked set to spark fighting on a Gulf island where the majority is Shiite Muslim but the ruling family is Sunni. Carrying Bahraini flags and flowers, several thousand mainly Shiite protesters began walking from the Aly area to Riffa, a district where Sunnis and members of the Sunni royal family live. Near a clocktower in Riffa, about a thousand residents armed with clubs gathered to block the proteste
rs' advance.

The royal family has lots of palaces and houses here. We're peaceful. We want to go to their house and ask for our rights," said Ahmed Jaafar, as he set off from Aly. "Power should not be with one family, it should be with the people." Bahrain, home to the US Navy's Fifth Fleet, has been gripped by the worst unrest since the 1990s when protesters took to the streets last month, inspired by uprisings that unseated entrenched autocratic rulers in Egypt and Tunisia.

Seven people have been killed in clashes with security forces and thousands of the Feb 14 youth movement still occupy Pearl roundabout, a busy traffic intersection in Manama's financial district, but the opposition is increasingly split. Moderate opposition leaders urged hardliners to cancel the march, warning it could spark clashes between Shiites protesting against the government and Sunnis who support it.

Bahrain's top Shiite Muslim cleric warned protesters not to slip into a sectarian conflict with Sunni Muslims that would undermine the opposition's campaign for political reform. "I say to all our people, Sunnis and Shiite, that it is forbidden to shed the blood of anyone under any pretext. We must all hold those who are inciting sectarian conflict accountable for what they are doing," Sheikh Issa said in his Friday sermon.

Unlike mostly Sunni Tunisia and Egypt, Bahrain is divided between Shiites, who have long complained of discrimination in access to jobs and services, and a Sunni minority. Over half of Bahrain's 1.2 million population are foreigners. Bahrainis disagree on the exact figures but analysts say over 60 percent of Bahraini nationals are Shiite.

Moderates led by the largest Shiite party, Wefaq, are calling for constitutional reforms and have called a less provocative rally that is expected to draw tens of thousands. The coalition of much smaller Shiite parties behind the march on the royal court are calling for the overthrow of the monarchy and the establishment of a republic-demands that have scared Sunnis who fear this would play into the hands of the oil-producing Gulf's main Shiite power, non-Arab Iran.

We want to bring down the government, and the Al-Khalifas are the government," said protester Said Ibrahim. "They're (Sunnis are) gathering over there. They live here but others are coming from other areas." The march comes on a day of rallies in neighboring Saudi Arabia, the world's No 1 oil exporter, where protests are banned. On Thursday, police dispersed a gathering in its Eastern Province, home to Shiites and joined to Bahrain by a causeway. Both sides are watching closely, as any weakening of the go
vernment in either of the neighbours could cause contagion.

Bahrain's interior ministry warned that the march threatened internal security and its forces would prevent clashes. "The attempt to organize a ... march towards Riffa is an action which threatens security and community safety, due to the anticipated reaction from residents to such actions," it said. "The interior ministry confirms that forces to defend public order will be present to prevent any clash that may occur." On Thursday, the political and economic bloc of Gulf Arab oil producers announced a $20
billion aid package for Bahrain and Oman, both of which are facing anti-government protests. - Reuters

N Japan hit by 30 cm tsunami after warning

TOKYO: Tsunami waves of up to 30 cm (12 inches) hit Japan's northern Pacific coast and a tiny southern island yesterday following a massive earthquake in Chile the day before, as the country worried that worse was in store. Officials have ordered some 245,000 households along Japan's Pacific coast to evacuate after one of the world's most powerful earthquakes in a century battered Chile on Saturday, killing more than 300 people. A 30 cm tsunami was recorded in the town of Nemuro, about 970 km (600 miles) n
ortheast of Tokyo, the Japan Meteorological Agency (JMA) said. Earlier, a 10 cm (4 inch) tsunami lapped the small island of Minamitori 1,950 km (1,200 miles) south of Tokyo, it said.

Sirens wailed in coastal towns on Japan's main islands and tens of thousands of people were urged to evacuate to higher ground after the JMA issued the tsunami warning for a wide swathe of Japan's Pacific coast. "I panicked and couldn't think of what to bring. In the end I just brought a few things," an elderly woman at an evacuation centre in northern Japan told NHK. It was the first warning for a major tsunami in 17 years and only the fourth since 1952, the Japan Meteorological Agency said.

Carelessness could be the biggest enemy. In the past, even if the waves were not so big, there has been great damage with 2-metre high tsunami," Prime Minister Yukio Hatoyama told reporters. Train services were halted in many areas along the Pacific coast and some highways were closed. Police cars and fire trucks patrolled coastal roads and fishing boats, seeking to avoid any tsunami, headed out to sea under gray skies, with snow flurries in some areas.

The area that could be hit hardest, where around 140 people died in a previous tsunami 50 years ago, has many small harbors that could concentrate the force of a tsunami. "The waves could climb up the land, so for real safety you should evacuate to a place several times higher than the predicted height of the waves," JMA official Yasuo Sekita told a news conference.

First might not be biggest
The agency said the first wave might not be the biggest and that the warning could remain in effect for a long time. Tohoku Electric Power said it would keep operating its Onagawa and Higashidori nuclear plants on the northern Pacific coast. "Both facilities are high up enough and they are structured so that they would not be affected by a tsunami," said Toshiya Aizawa, a spokesman at Tohoku Electric Power.

TV footage showed elderly women with cloth-wrapped bundles on their backs gathering at evacuation centers as cars pulled up and other women unloaded shopping bags filled with belongings. The tsunami warning covered the eastern seaboard of Japan, although for Tokyo Bay and many other areas the warnings were for waves of only around one meter (3 ft), similar to that seen earlier in Hawaii and New Zealand.

In May 1960, a tsunami struck the coasts of Japan's northernmost island of Hokkaido and other northern Pacific coastal areas after an earthquake in Chile, killing around 140 people. Since then, many harbors have had sea gates installed to try to protect from tsunami and storms. Authorities ordered these closed yesterday.

Coastal barriers have been built since the 1960 tsunami so we can't simply compare the situation with that time but it is still crucial that people evacuate,' said Masaaki Kubo of the Kamaishi Eastern Fishery Union in Iwate, in northern Honshu. Bigger boats were heading out to sea ahead of the tsunami's arrival but smaller boats were staying in the harbor, he said.

The same area has been struck by deadly tsunami in the past. In 1896, a magnitude 8.5 Sanriku earthquake and tsunami left more than 22,000 dead in northeastern Japan. Another 8.1 temblor hit the same region in 1933, killing 3,064. Japan's tsunami warning system has been upgraded several times since its inception in 1952, including after a 7.8 magnitude quake in 1993 that almost instantly triggered a 30-metre wave before a warning could be given. About 190 of the 230 people killed in the quake were victims
of the surging sea. - Reuters

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