Tag Archive: Thursday


Earth Watch Report  –  Avalanche

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18.01.2013 Avalanche USA State of New Hampshire, [Tuckerman Ravine, Coos County] Damage level
Details

Avalanche in USA on Friday, 18 January, 2013 at 05:27 (05:27 AM) UTC.

Description
An avalanche was reported late Thursday evening at Tuckerman Ravine in North Conway, NH. Between six and nine people were said to be on the mountain at the time of the incident, several of whom were injured transported to Androscoggin Valley Hospital, according to a spokesman from Berlin Fire Department. “It seems like they are all off the mountain,” said firefighter Jonathan Larin. “I noticed that about three or four ambulances from both Gorham and Jackson were utilized.” The condition of those injured was not immediately available. The Mount Washington Avalanche Center had issued an avalanche advisory for Tuckerman Ravine on Thursday.

 

 

 To Ontario Men  Charged  With Terrorism, Extradited To The  US

 

By Douglas Quan, Postmedia News

Two Ontario men charged with terrorism extradited to the U.S.

 

Supreme Court of Canada

Photograph by: File Photo , Postmedia News

 

Suresh Sriskandarajah and Piratheepan Nadarajah, who are accused of providing assistance to the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam, were arraigned Thursday in a federal court in Brooklyn, N.Y., and pleaded not guilty to the charges. If convicted, the men face maximum sentences of 25 years to life in prison.

The Supreme Court of Canada earlier this month dismissed a claim by the pair that Canada’s terrorism laws infringed on their constitutional rights. It also ruled that Justice Minister Rob Nicholson did not err when he ordered that the pair surrender to the United States.

Their extradition was announced Thursday in a news release by Loretta Lynch, U.S. attorney for the eastern district of New York.

Nadarajah, 36, is accused of conspiring and attempting to acquire $1 million worth of anti-aircraft missiles, missile launchers and other equipment in support for the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam – or Tamil Tigers – deemed in Canada and the U.S. as a terrorist group.

 Read Full Article Here

 

Earth Watch Report  –  Meteors

Meteor lights up sky over Toronto; not a Leonid

Kris McCusker
680 News

There was an unexpected sight in the sky Thursday morning for some 680News listeners, who called the newsroom to say they believe they saw an asteroid of meteor shooting over the sky around 6:45 a.m.

One listener named Sherry said she was waiting for a coffee when she saw a very bright light that caught her eye.

“You know how the North Star is really bright and big. From where I was looking it was five times bigger than that from the naked eye; it was huge, it was massive,” Sherry said.

Although it’s not yet confirmed, an astrophysicist and lecturer with the University of Toronto isn’t doubting what people saw, and he too, is pretty sure it was a meteor.

“The 680News report that I got from a woman that I heard this morning, that sounded like there be some real meat to it,” Dr. Ian Shelton said.

“There’s regular clockwork in terms of the fact that you can predict that there’s going to be a certain number every year coming down, whether you see them or not,” he added. “But in terms of knowing where they’re going to happen, exact frequency and any other details about them, they’re gifts from heaven basically and we just take them as they come.”

Shelton said based on the ground track, what people saw probably was not the slow-moving space station, which quickly moved across the sky approximately an hour earlier, nor was it an early meteor from the Leonid shower, which is supposed to peak Friday night into Saturday.

And for anyone who missed Thursday morning’s show, Shelton said the Leonid shower will start becoming visible late Thursday night, anytime after 11:30.

Winter storm Brutus threatens snow, severe weather for US West, Midwest

Weather.com

© Weather.com

This time, not only will there be a wind-snow combo on the cold side of the system, but there will be a warm sector with severe weather potential – eventually.

But first things first.

Wintry Side: Snow, Wind, Blizzard?

With strong low pressure developing over the northern Rockies and a strong high pressure zone to the north over western Canada, the stage is set for a wind-driven snow.

That snow will develop over Montana and central Idaho on Thursday. There will also be snow farther west over the Oregon Cascades and the northern Sierra Nevada in California.

The worst conditions are expected over parts of northern Montana, where blizzard warnings are in effect from Thursday morning through early Saturday morning – a long period of dangerous travel conditions. Winter storm warnings cover much of western and central Montana, including the Interstate 15 and Interstate 90 corridors.

By Friday, this snow expands south into the central and perhaps even southern Sierra. The mountains of Utah, and potentially western Colorado as well, should get in on the snow by the end of Friday.

Friday night into Saturday, the snow and wind will expand east into eastern Montana and North Dakota. Gusty winds will whip this snow sideways across the open prairie, leading to potential near-blizzard conditions along Interstate 94.

Some locations in Montana and North Dakota will likely see well over a foot of snow from this storm system.

Severe Side: Saturday Storms

As the storm system starts to emerge into the Plains and Midwestern states this weekend, it will encounter a tongue of unseasonably warm, moist air from the Gulf of Mexico reaching all the way north into the upper Mississippi Valley.

The strong cold front will push east into this unstable air and a powerful jet stream will supply plenty of energy in the upper atmosphere.

The likely result? Thunderstorms, some of which could turn severe Saturday along the Interstate 35 corridor from Minneapolis to Dallas.

It appears that the most likely mode for severe weather would be one or more squall lines of thunderstorms with damaging winds.

(MORE: Severe weather tracker)

Crossroads News : Changes In The World Around Us And Our Place In It

Madison Square Garden Company Strong-Arms Employees Into Using Vacation Days Post-Sandy

 

Gawker

Madison Square Garden is a name so synonymous with New York City greatness and success that artists and athletes who perform there have a tendency to call it “the main stage of the world” and “a mecca.” So how does Madison Square Garden treat its New York City employees, who have helped sustain its grandness, when they’re down and out? By demanding they get back to work, of course.

Here’s an email I received from an anonymous source that was sent out yesterday to every employee under the MSG Company umbrella, including franchises like the New York Knicks and Rangers, Fuse TV channel and the MSG Network, and venues like the Beacon Theater. The gist of the message: We know your power’s out, your houses are crumbling, transportation is a mess, and that you’re suffering from myriad health issues, but if you don’t come to work you can kiss your vacation and personal days goodbye. (Emphasis mine)

Today, the MTA announced that several commuter railroad and subway services are beginning to operate, and that the City Transit bus service is now running as close to schedule as possible. In an effort to decrease traffic and speed people’s commute, it was also announced this afternoon that POV (personal vehicle) traffic across all East River bridges will be restricted to high occupancy vehicles from 6 a.m. to midnight Thursday and Friday, which means that you must have three or more people in the car.  We have attached more below and, because this information is changing, would encourage you to monitor news reports or visit www.mta.info for the most recent updates.
As you know, there are several exciting things going on across the company, including our Friday night game against Miami, which we currently still expect to take place. In addition to this highly anticipated game, we are also preparing for the kick off of our Christmas Spectacular, upcoming shows at the Beacon and live game coverage by the Networks.
In order to ensure that we continue operating our business and are able to deliver the very best experience for our customers, we are asking employees to come to work. We recognize that many employees are impacted by the transportation issues as well as a lack of power, and that some are even dealing with personal damage and health issues. In the event that you need to make the personal decision that you are unable to come to work, you will need to notify your supervisor and take a personal or vacation day to cover the time off.
As a reminder, the employee meeting, which was moved from Monday to Thursday, is now postponed, and we will let you know as soon as a new date has been set. The Meat Loaf performance scheduled for Thursday night at the Beacon Theatre has also been postponed. In addition, it was announced today that the Thursday night game between the Knicks and the Nets at Barclays Center has been canceled.
Thank you,
MSG Communications
Earlier this year, James Dolan, the porcelain-veneered CEO of Cablevision and also the executive chairman of Madison Square Garden, Inc., expressed “disappointment” when a group of Cablevision technicians in Brooklyn voted to unionize. Blaming himself, he said, “Management’s supposed to do a good job … [W]e’re not supposed to put you in a position where you’d think somebody else can better represent you than yourself.”
One wonders where Dolan’s employees would ever get the idea that their boss doesn’t respect them.
 
If you’ve got any information about other bosses behaving horribly the wake of Hurricane Sandy, email me.
—Cord
[Image via AP]

Earth Watch Report

Cyclone Nilam spares Chennai

T. Ramakrishnan

  • Onlookers gather to get a glimpse of ‘Pratibha Cauvery’ that ran aground near Elliots Beach on Wednesday. Photo: V. Ganesan
    The Hindu Onlookers gather to get a glimpse of ‘Pratibha Cauvery’ that ran aground near Elliots Beach on Wednesday. Photo: V. Ganesan
  • Cyclone ‘Nilam’ hits the Mamallapuram beach, in Chennai on Wednesday. Photo: B. Jothi Ramalingam
    The Hindu Cyclone ‘Nilam’ hits the Mamallapuram beach, in Chennai on Wednesday. Photo: B. Jothi Ramalingam
  • A bird’s eye view of Marina beach in Chennai on Wednesday. Nilam evoked fears of large-scale destruction among the people in coastal districts in north Tamil Nadu. Photo: PTI
    A bird’s eye view of Marina beach in Chennai on Wednesday. Nilam evoked fears of large-scale destruction among the people in coastal districts in north Tamil Nadu. Photo: PTI
  • An aerial view of the cyclone Nilam ravaged Marina on Wednesday evening. Schools, colleges and other educational establishments have announced holiday for the third day on Thursday. Photo: S.R. Raghunathan
    The Hindu An aerial view of the cyclone Nilam ravaged Marina on Wednesday evening. Schools, colleges and other educational establishments have announced holiday for the third day on Thursday. Photo: S.R. Raghunathan
  • A man takes cover from gusty winds at Anna Salai in Chennai on Wednesday. Photo: M. Vedhan
    The Hindu A man takes cover from gusty winds at Anna Salai in Chennai on Wednesday. Photo: M. Vedhan
  • Image shows Cyclone Nilam as captured by Kalpana-1 satellite on Wednesday.
    India Meteorological Department Image shows Cyclone Nilam as captured by Kalpana-1 satellite on Wednesday.

Storm makes landfall near Mamallapuram; rain claims four lives in Tamil Nadu

Cyclonic storm Nilam, which threatened to hit the Chennai coast, spared the city, but made landfall near Mamallapuram, about 60 km south of Chennai, on Wednesday evening.

 

Four persons were reported to have died during the day in different parts of the State, but a Revenue department official clarified that Kancheepuram district, where the storm crossed the coast between 4 p.m. and 5 p.m., did not report even a single death.

 

Nilam evoked fears of large-scale destruction among the people in coastal districts in north Tamil Nadu.

 

The exact details about the landfall would be known on Thursday after an assessment by the Meteorological Department, according to Y.E.A. Raj, Deputy Director General of Meteorology.

 

Though many areas in the northern belt received heavy rainfall on Tuesday night, the intensity was not much during the day when Nilam made the last leg of its journey. According to a bulletin issued on the basis of observations at 8-30 a.m., the storm lay centred about 260 km south southeast of Chennai, and by 6 p.m, it made landfall.

 

At the time of crossing the coast, Chennai recorded the maximum wind speed of 75 km per hour and Kalpakkam 65 km per hour. Hereafter, it was expected to weaken rapidly after making northwestward movement.

 

A holiday has been declared for schools and colleges in all coastal districts, including Chennai, on Thursday.

Politics, Legislation and Economy News

Politics  :  War on terror – Costs of War – Blow back – Hypocrisy – Security – Psy – Ops

FBI Investigators In and Out of Libya in 12 Hours

 

Associated Press| by Eileen Sullivan and Lolita C. Baldor

WASHINGTON — A team of FBI agents arrived in Benghazi, Libya, to investigate the assault against the U.S. Consulate and left after about 12 hours on the ground as the hunt for those possibly connected to the attack that killed Ambassador Chris Stevens and three other Americans narrowed to one or two people in an extremist group, U.S. officials said Thursday.

Agents arrived in Benghazi before dawn on Thursday and departed after sunset, after weeks of waiting for access to the crime scene to investigate the Sept. 11 attack.

The agents and several dozen U.S. special operations forces were there for about 12 hours, said a senior Defense Department official who spoke anonymously because he was not authorized to speak publicly about the ongoing investigation. The FBI agents went to “all the relevant locations” in the city, FBI spokeswoman Kathy Wright said. The FBI would not say what, if anything, they found.

Killed in the attack were Stevens, a State Department computer expert and two security agents who were former Navy SEALS. Al-Qaida-linked militants are believed responsible.

In the U.S., the attack has become caught up in election-year politics. Republicans accuse Obama administration officials of being misleading in the early aftermath about what they knew about the attackers and for lax security at the diplomatic mission in a lawless part of post-revolution Libya.

Immediately after the attack, officials said the consulate was stormed by protesters outraged over an anti-Muslim film produced by a California man.

U.S. intelligence and special operations forces have focused on at most “one or two individuals” in the Libya-based extremist group Ansar al-Shariah who may have had something to do with the attack, according to a U.S. counterterrorism official. But that official and two others said there was no definitive evidence linking even those individuals to the attack. The officials spoke on condition of anonymity because they were not authorized to comment on the investigation publicly.

Members of Ansar al-Shariah were recorded making boastful calls to other militants after the attack, including to members of al-Qaida in the Islamic Maghreb, which is suspected of having a role in the attack, one of the officials said. But that’s common in the aftermath of any such attack, when different militant groups try to claim credit to build their own stature in the region, the official said.

So far, U.S. intelligence has found no evidence showing communication between militants prior to the attack, which took place on the 11th anniversary of the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks on the U.S.

Several Republican lawmakers have said Stevens and his staff made repeated requests for security improvements at the Benghazi consulate that the State Department denied.

The State Department has assigned an independent panel to look into the security procedures before, during and after the attack. That five member accountability review board met for the first time Thursday and compiled documents to go through, State Department spokeswoman Victoria Nuland said. The board must submit its findings and any recommendations it may have to Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton within 60 days, unless it is determined that more time is required.

The Pentagon is conducting its own internal review to see whether the military played any role in assessing the security in Libya, spokesman George Little said.

agents had been staying away from Benghazi until the city was more secure, law enforcement officials said. But agents were in other parts of the country investigating the attack since Sept. 18.

Little said it was “a matter of days” between the request for the FBI to access the Benghazi crime scene and the team’s arrival Thursday, Libya time, when the U.S. military airlifted them to the city.

The request to the Pentagon to transport the FBI to Benghazi came several days ago and it took a few days to get authorization from the Libyan government and to make other necessary arrangements to get the team there, the senior Defense Department official said.

U.S. officials also suggested that there may have been some disagreement between the State Department and the FBI over whether or not the FBI team would use Libyan security or seek approval for the U.S. military to handle the mission. The U.S. Army Delta Force troops flew into Benghazi with the FBI team on three C-130 transport aircraft.

Attorney General Eric Holder said people should not assume that “all that we could do or have been doing” in the investigation is restricted solely to Benghazi.

“I’m satisfied with the progress,” Holder said Thursday. He said there were a variety of other places inside and outside Libya where “all these things could be done and have been done and that the matter has been under active investigation.”

— Associated Press writers Kimberly Dozier, Matthew Lee and Pete Yost contributed to this report.

 

 

 

Email Reveals State Dept. Denied Libya Embassy Security Request

I have a feeling more of these types of exchanges will come to light now that House Oversight Committee Chairman Darrell Issa has taken on the case and whistle blowers are stepping up. Jake Tapper reports on an internal State Department email that shows officials rejecting a request for a DC-3 airplane from the Libyan embassy security team in May:

ABC News has obtained an internal State Department email from May 3, 2012, indicating that the State Department denied a request from the security team at the Embassy of Libya to retain a DC-3 airplane in the country to better conduct their duties.

Copied on the email was U.S. Ambassador Chris Stevens, who was killed in a terrorist attack on the diplomatic post in Benghazi, Libya, Sept. 11, 2012, along with three other Americans. That attack has prompted questions about whether the diplomatic personnel in that country were provided with adequate security support.

As Tapper points out, it’s not clear that the DC-3 have been of any use during the terrorist attack. From the reports, it sounds like the consulate needed a lot more security personnel and Marines who were trained to respond to potential militia attacks. Plus, the requested plane was supposed to support the embassy in Tripoli. Still, this is another indication the State Department may not have been taking the security concerns of diplomats in Libya seriously.

As the drip-drip-drip of bad State Department news comes in from the media investigations, the FBI finally made it to Benghazi to carry out an investigation of its own. And it appears the three-week delay might have been caused in part by foot-dragging from Foggy Bottom:

A team of FBI agents arrived in Benghazi, Libya, to investigate the assault against the U.S. Consulate and left after about 12 hours on the ground as the hunt for those possibly connected to the attack that killed Ambassador Chris Stevens and three other Americans narrowed to one or two people in an extremist group, U.S. officials said Thursday.

Agents arrived in Benghazi before dawn on Thursday and departed after sunset, after weeks of waiting for access to the crime scene to investigate the Sept. 11 attack. …

U.S. officials also suggested that there may have been some disagreement between the State Department and the FBI over whether or not the FBI team would use Libyan security or seek approval for the U.S. military to handle the mission. The U.S. Army Delta Force troops flew into Benghazi with the FBI team on three C-130 transport aircraft.

Attorney General Eric Holder said people should not assume that “all that we could do or have been doing” in the investigation is restricted solely to Benghazi.

It does seem bizarre that the State Department left the consulate completely unsecured for so long after the attack, as WaPo reported in a chilling dispatch from Benghazi. By the time the FBI arrived yesterday, I wonder how many documents that could have been critical for this investigation (and potentially embarrassing for State) had already “walked away.”

 

Crossroads News : Changes In The World Around Us And Our Place In It

Global Community :  Women – Government Hypocrisy -Fundamental Rights – Sexual Harassment

Egypt women who fight harassment are beaten, but not broken

Egyptian women walking in Cairo face sexual violence, and it’s growing.

CAIRO: Egyptian women’s organizations condemned the state’s blind eye towards sexual harassment crimes in the country, most recently last Thursday when two girls were sexually harassed in downtown Cairo and then beaten when they fought back, reported the New Women Foundation.

On Thursday, September 27, two Egyptian girls were walking in the commercial center of downtown by the infamous al-Shawarby street at around three in the afternoon. One of the girls was attacked suddenly when a seller jumped on her, kissing and hugging her by force.

She screamed and fought him, only to have him call his friends to join in the battering and abuse frenzy.

The two girls were beaten with a stick and pulled by the hair. Deciding to take the men to the police station, they fell into a web of bureaucracy.

The first police station they went to refused to file a report and they had to head to a different police station. The second, the Abdeen station, stalled for a long time before sending a police aid to arrest the criminal.

The man responsible was summoned and his family tried to offer the two girls money to let him go unpunished and so did the police, who encouraged the women to simply drop the case and go home.

The girls refused and the police report was made under number 6711 as a misdemeanor crime at the Abdeen police station.

The assaulter tried to say he beat them because they tried to steal from him, yet the next day he said he never saw them before. He was detained from Thursday to Saturday pending investigation.

“This incident is not the first and will not be the last that women face sexual harassment then be subjected to further violence because they refused to be silent on these crimes,” said the New Women Foundation and the al-Nadeem Center for Rehabilitation of Victims of Violence in a joint statement on Wednesday.

“We appeal to all state agencies to address the crime of sexual harassment and the allocate a hotline to receive complaints about sexual crimes against women,” the statement continued.

But women can only do so much, they need the cooperation of the law enforcement to bring violators to justice, yet police attempt to play a mediating role to solve the problem without it taking its natural official course. Hence, women’s organizations continue to ask the ministry of interior, mostly in vain, to be tough on its police force to take these crimes seriously.

“The Interior Ministry must issue clear and firm orders for its policemen to deal seriously with the issues, and hold accountable all those who refuse to file a police report against a sexual harasser or predator,” the groups stated.

According to a 2007 report by the Egyptian Center for Women Rights (ECWR), 86 percent of Egyptian women are sexually harassed daily, including those who dress modestly.

Last month, the National Council for Women (NCW) said that Egyptian women are harassed “7 times every 200 meters.”

BM

A bunker in the backyard of the Barrie, Ont., home contained dozens of explosive devices. A bunker in the backyard of the Barrie, Ont., home contained dozens of explosive devices. (Barrie Police Service)

Police in Barrie, Ont., have completed their sweep of a home where more than 80 explosive devices were found, allowing neighbors to return to their residences after a week long evacuation.

The explosives, as well as several weapons, were found following the arrest of two men in connection with a cold-case homicide.

“The evacuees of the area in and around 30 Virgilwood Cr. have been very kind, supportive and patient to all the officers involved, which was appreciated during this long complex situation,” police said in a statement released Thursday afternoon.

Police said the home and neighborhood are now safe, and thanked EMS, fire crews, Red Cross and the city for their help during the search of the home.

As of Thursday morning, police had uncovered an assortment of chemicals, 83 improvised explosive devices — some wired for remote detonation — and 29 firearms. There were also thousands of rounds of ammunition.

The search of the home turned up this device, among many others. The search of the home turned up this device, among many others. (Barrie Police Service)On Wednesday, police released photographs of a bunker in the home. They show a small space crammed with electronic equipment and various items packed in plastic bags hanging on the walls.

The City of Barrie approved a permit in 1984 to the owner of the home for a fallout shelter, which police said has been divided into two rooms.

The explosive devices and weapons were uncovered after police executed a search warrant at the home last Thursday.

They found explosive devices tucked away in hidden places, while others were left out in the open.

Those evacuated from some 20 homes in the neighborhood last Thursday can head back any time they like, Barrie police Const. Angela Butler said.

“I got to tell them personally myself. It was a great feeling,” she said.

Neighbor Joe Ouellette lives just a few doors down and had no hint of the dangers.

“You don’t see these kinds of things in this area,” he said. “Or you don’t think these things happen in this kind of area. And here it is.”

The search was ordered after a 54-year-old resident at the home, Donald Feldhoff, turned himself in to police on Wednesday in connection with the 1978 death of 26-year-old Michael Traynor.

Feldhoff has since been charged with first-degree murder.

His father, William Feldhoff, 75, owns the home and was charged as an accessory after the fact. He made a brief video appearance in court Thursday morning and was prohibited from communicating with his son.

He is scheduled to appear again in court on July 27.

His lawyer, Bernard Cugelman, said outside the court that Feldhoff is a dedicated family man who was traumatized by his boyhood years in post-war Germany.

“Obviously, that’s stayed with him and it’s sort of triggered this survivalist instinct,” he said.

Police will hold a news conference about the sweep of the home on Friday morning.

With files from The Canadian Press

Hackers Publish Over 450,000 Emails and Passwords Stolen From Yahoo

By Lucian Constantin, IDG-News-Service:Romania-Bureau

A Yahoo representative has confirmed that the data published Thursday was indeed some 450,000 names and passwords for Yahoo and other companies.

“We confirm that an older file from Yahoo Contributor Network (previously Associated Content) containing approximately 450,000 Yahoo and other company users names and passwords was compromised yesterday, July 11,” Caroline MacLeod-Smith, Yahoo’s head of consumer PR in the UK said via e-mail. “Of these, less than 5 percent of the Yahoo accounts had valid passwords. We are taking immediate action by fixing the vulnerability that led to the disclosure of this data, changing the passwords of the affected Yahoo users and notifying the companies whose users accounts may have been compromised. We apologize to all affected users. We encourage users to change their passwords on a regular basis and also familiarize themselves with our online safety tips at security.yahoo.com.”

The group of hackers calls itself “the D33Ds Company” and claims to have hacked into the database by exploiting an SQL injection vulnerability found on a Yahoo subdomain. They published a list of over 453,000 log-in credentials on the Internet that were allegedly stolen from a database associated with an unnamed Yahoo service…………

 

…….  Hackers Mock Yahoo’s Security

“We hope that the parties responsible for managing the security of this subdomain will take this as a wake-up call, and not as a threat,” the hackers said. “There have been many security holes exploited in webservers belonging to Yahoo! Inc. that have caused far greater damage than our disclosure. Please do not take them lightly.”

“The subdomain and vulnerable parameters have not been posted to avoid further damage,” the hackers said in their release notes…….