This is the story told to me by a 14-year-old Yazidi girl I’ll call “Narin,” currently staying in northern Iraqi Kurdistan. I am a Kurdish journalist with a journalism degree from the University of Missouri at Columbia who covers northern Iraq as a freelancer for several international news outlets. I heard about Narin’s tale through a Yazidi friend who knew her. Aside from translating from Kurdish and excerpting her story in collaboration with Washington Post editors, the only things I changed are all the names, at Narin’s request, to protect her and other victims from reprisal; many of her relatives are still in captivity.
Prosecutors will seek the death penalty against a man charged in the shooting death of a veteran Killeen police officer.
Marvin Louis Guy, 49, has been indicted for capital murder in the shooting death of police Detective Charles “Chuck” Dinwiddie, 47, and is named in indictments charging three counts of attempted capital murder, as well.
During a hearing Thursday, Bell County District Attorney Henry Garza said he’ll seek the death penalty.
The charges stem from a shooting, which occurred as officers served a so-called no-knock search warrant just after 5:30 a.m. May 9 at 1104 Circle M Dr. Apt. 3 in Killeen.
Dinwiddie later died in the intensive care unit of Baylor Scott & White Hospital.
Denton, who was shot in the femur, underwent surgery and was later released from Scott & White.
Two other officers were hit by gunfire, but were spared injury by their protective gear.
The story carefully avoids mentioning no drugs were found. Oh, and it has a picture of MArvin – guess his race without looking.
The mother of slain American journalist James Foley said she wasn’t necessarily surprised that the U.S. government threatened her family with prosecution should they raise money to pay her son’s ransom, but she was astounded by how such a devastating message was delivered.
“I was surprised there was so little compassion,” Diane Foley told ABC News today of the three separate warnings she said U.S. officials gave the family about the illegality of paying ransom to the terror group ISIS. “It just made me realize that these people talking to us had no idea what it was like to be the family of someone abducted… I’m sure [the U.S. official] didn’t mean it the way he said it, but we were between a rock and a hard place. We were told we could do nothing… meanwhile our son was being beaten and tortured every day.”
Earlier this week five current and former officials with direct knowledge of the Foley case confirmed the alleged threats were made.
“It was an utterly idiotic thing to do that came across as if [the U.S. official] had the compassion of an anvil,” said a former official who has advised the family.
That’s an insult to anvils everywhere.
The U.S. government threatened to fine Yahoo $250,000 a day in 2008 if it failed to comply with a broad demand to hand over user communications — a request the company believed was unconstitutional — according to court documents unsealed Thursday that illuminate how federal officials forced American tech companies to participate in the National Security Agency’s controversial PRISM program.
The documents, roughly 1,500 pages worth, outline a secret and ultimately unsuccessful legal battle by Yahoo to resist the government’s demands. The company’s loss required Yahoo to become one of the first to begin providing information to PRISM, a program that gave the NSA extensive access to records of online communications by users of Yahoo and other U.S.-based technology firms.
The ruling by the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court of Review became a key moment in the development of PRISM, helping government officials to convince other Silicon Valley companies that unprecedented data demands had been tested in the courts and found constitutionally sound. Eventually, most major U.S. tech companies, including Google, Facebook, Apple and AOL, complied. Microsoft had joined earlier, before the ruling, NSA documents have shown.
“Just two hours ago, allied air forces began an attack on military targets in Iraq and Kuwait.”
—President George H. W. Bush
January 16, 1991
“Good evening. Earlier today, I ordered America’s armed forces to strike military and security targets in Iraq.”
—President Bill Clinton
December 16, 1998
“My fellow citizens. At this hour, American and coalition forces are in the early stages of military operations to disarm Iraq, to free its people and to defend the world from grave danger.”
—President George W. Bush
March 19, 2003
“My fellow Americans. Tonight, I want to speak to you about what the United States will do with our friends and allies to degrade and ultimately destroy the terrorist group known as ISIL.”
—President Barack Obama
September 10, 2014
Every American President in the past quarter century has now gone on television during prime time to tell the nation and the world that he has decided to bomb Iraq.
His statement might alarm many people.
But Jonas Schmidt-Chanasit of the Bernhard Nocht Institute for Tropical Medicine in Hamburg told DW that he and his colleagues are losing hope for Sierra Leone and Liberia, two of the countries worst hit by the recent Ebola epidemic.
“The right time to get this epidemic under control in these countries has been missed,” he said. That time was May and June. “Now it is too late.”
Schmidt-Chanasit expects the virus will “burn itself out” in this part of the world.
With other words: It will more or less infect everybody and half of the population – in total about five million people – could die.
But the point here is that yesterday Apple launched the most significant innovation in payments since the credit card itself. Few people have noticed and that includes the market that took Apple stock on its traditional, post-announcement, plunge.
Unless you’re judging American security by the safety of freelance Syria correspondents, nothing that happened to them proves that there’s any increased danger to Americans. We learned nothing new about the power or reach of ISIS, or its cruelty. The beheadings were designed to make the U.S. overreact, and to draw the country into a one-on-one war with “the Islamic state.” Let’s hope on that count they fail.
The Economist has run an extraordinary piece that apparently defends slave owners. Its review of a book on slavery, The Half Has Never Been Told: Slavery and the Making of American Capitalism by Edward Baptist, suggests the book is biased for making white people look bad.
The Economist: panderers to the rich and powerful, finally come out on the side of those woefully misunderstood fellows, decent white slave owners.
Since they never assign an author to any article in their magazine the whole editorial board is er…tarred with the same brush. (They have since retracted the story).
Domestic violence takes an enormous death toll. Every week two women are killed by current or former partners in England and Wales. And so, up and down the country, there are thousands of bereaved families struggling to come to terms with the loss of a beloved mother, daughter or sister. In too many of these cases, the police – and other state agencies – have failed to protect women and children at their moment of greatest need.
Timely reminder in light of this AJE report that domestic violence kills more than civil war:
“For every civil war battlefield death, roughly nine people are killed in inter-personal disputes,” said Anke Hoeffler of Oxford University and James Fearon of Stanford University, who wrote the for the Copenhagen Consensus Centre…
Civil wars cost the world economy about $170bn a year.
Illegal killings, mainly of men unrelated to domestic disputes, cost $650bn.
But those figures were dwarfed by the $8 trillion annual cost of domestic violence, mostly against women and children.
Corporate executives theoretically work for the owners of the company, namely, the shareholders. But there is an agency problem in that owners can’t closely manage and object to the actions of these executives. Collective owners, such as mutual funds, seem to have no interest in doing so. What we end up with is a management class that works for itself instead of on behalf of the owners of the publicly traded banks. Many of these executives committed crimes; got big bonuses for doing so; and paid huge fines using shareholder assets (i.e., company cash), helping them avoid prosecution.
“I think we risk becoming the best informed society that has ever died of ignorance.”
The Ebola virus is spreading exponentially in Liberia, where many thousands of new cases expected over the coming three weeks, the World Health Organization (WHO) said on Monday.
Raw honey has been used against infections for millennia, before honey – as we now know it – was manufactured and sold in stores. So what is the key to its’ antimicrobial properties? Researchers at Lund University in Sweden have identified a unique group of 13 lactic acid bacteria found in fresh honey, from the honey stomach of bees. The bacteria produce a myriad of active antimicrobial compounds.
These lactic acid bacteria have now been tested on severe human wound pathogens such as methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA), Pseudomonas aeruginosa and vancomycin-resistant Enterococcus (VRE), among others. When the lactic acid bacteria were applied to the pathogens in the laboratory, it counteracted all of them.
While the effect on human bacteria has only been tested in a lab environment thus far, the lactic acid bacteria has been applied directly to horses with persistent wounds.
For the last 35 years the behaviour of the Westminster establishment has been particularly egregious. The establishment class has repeatedly got away with neglecting the public interest in order to put their own interests first, in accordance with the cult-like economic dogma of greed, social neglect, privatisation and financialisation that they have become so obsessed with since Thatcher introduced it in 1979.
The Westminster establishment seized the profits from Scottish oil and siphoned them into the City of London and used them to fund tax breaks for their wealthy backers. Instead of creating a sovereign wealth fund which would surely have rivaled Norway’s as one of the biggest in the world, the establishment class squandered it all on the ridiculous fantasy of building a post-industrial economy based around the City of London financial sector.
Interesting times; polling is getting it wrong more often (hard to get a representative sample in an increasingly disparate world), but a recent poll has the “Yes” side gaining ground. The Establishment are crapping themselves…Is it going to be “Scotland, the Brave…?”
With West African governments increasingly desperate to contain an ever-quickening Ebola epidemic, Sierra Leone has decreed a stringent new measure confining residents to their homes later this month.
For three days, from Sept. 19 to Sept. 21, “everybody is expected to stay indoors” as 7,000 teams of health and community workers go door to door to root out hidden Ebola patients, a government spokesman, Abdulai Bayraytay, said Saturday from the capital, Freetown. The military and the police will enforce the measure, Mr. Bayraytay added.
With an incubation time of 8 to 21 days, that sounds woefully inadequate.
Right now they’re only managing to quarantine about 8% of social contacts of victims, and that was in the data published by Science- as the epidemic spread and resources run thing it’s probably even fewer now.
We get the infected patients in their home, they also quarantine everyone living in the home and try to track down anyone who was in contact with those people, who will also be in their home, hopefully. They’re not going to be just quarantining the ones that are actually ill, but also they contacted, who may become ill in the next 21 days.
It’s true you need to do this for 21 days to root everyone out. But they’ve done a number of studies on what’s a feasible quarantine length for a large population (I actually helped run one) and three days is pretty much as long as you can go without meeting a hell of a lot of resistance. So three days it is.
And they may well be wrong.
To examine trust over time, the researchers looked at data from two large, nationally representative surveys of people in the US: the General Social Survey of adults (1972-2012) and the Monitoring the Future survey of 12th graders (1976-2012). Together, the surveys included data from nearly 140,000 participants. Both surveys included questions designed to measure trust in other people and questions intended to gauge confidence in large institutions.
The data showed, for example, that while 46% of adult Americans agreed that “most people can be trusted” in 1972-1974, only 33% agreed in 2010-2012. And this finding was mirrored by data from 12th graders – while 32% agreed that “most people can be trusted” in 1976-1978, only 18% did so in 2010-2012.
How to Know When it’s Time to Euthanize Your Dog
The most important thing to be alert for is The Look. It’s capitalized because it is a Real Thing. At some point near the end of its life, your dog will make eye contact with you. There will be something about that particular eye contact that you will recognize when you see it. Your dog will tell you, as clearly as if they had it notarized, that they are ready to go.
At Dear Prudence, Pet Euthanasia and Can I Lie About It?
…the subject of euthanizing her has come up at home and briefly in the vet’s office. Is this wrong? And if we decide to go down this path, am I obligated to be honest about why she was put down when relatives and friends ask?
The Global Combat Support System-Army, a logistical support system meant to track supplies, spare parts and other equipment, was launched in 1997. In 2003, the program switched from custom software to a web-based commercial software system.
About $95 million was spent before the switch was made, according to the report from the Department of Defense IG.
As of this February, the Army had spent $725.7 million on the system, which is ultimately expected to cost about $4.3 billion.
The problem, according to the IG, is that the Army has failed to comply with a variety of federal laws that require agencies to standardize reporting and prepare auditable financial statements.
“This occurred because DOD and Army management did not have adequate controls, including procedures and annual reviews, in place to ensure GCSS-Army compliance with Treasury and DOD guidance,” the IG report concludes.
No problem… just spend another $4.3b on a system to track the spending on the system to track the spending
Today, flavor and fragrance houses bring in annual revenues of twenty billion dollars. About ninety per cent of the money that Americans spend in the supermarket goes toward processed food, much of which could not be made without companies like Givaudan. “Most of the food-and-beverage companies have become marketing-and-distribution companies,” a flavor-company executive told me, only somewhat in jest. I understood what he meant when, in one of his laboratories, I saw a number of his colleagues working on a tasteless “slurry,” consisting largely of starch, oil, and salt, which a client was hoping to transform into a marketable product. The client had asked the flavor company’s in-house chef to develop various dips, such as guacamole, using fresh ingredients; after settling on the best recipes, the company’s flavorists mimicked them chemically, with an eye toward injecting the flavor compounds into the slurry in the most stable and cost-effective way.
Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel, who is supporting Comcast’s purchase of Time Warner Cable, has received more than $100,000 in donations from Comcast’s political committee and its employees.
As detailed by the International Business Times yesterday, public records show that Comcast’s political arm and employees have been supporting Emanuel for a decade. Emanuel was a member of Congress from 2003 to 2009 and then served as President Obama’s chief of staff for nearly two years. He has been Chicago mayor since May 2011.
“[D]uring his time running for and serving as mayor of Chicago, Emanuel has received large campaign contributions from Comcast and its employees, including from [Comcast Executive Vice President David] Cohen himself, who contributed $5,000 to Emanuel’s mayoral campaign in February 2011,” the International Business Times wrote. “Cohen also contributed $10,000 to the Chicago Committee, which the Chicago Tribune has described as Emanuel’s ‘other political fund (which) he uses for political activities that support his policy initiatives at City Hall.’ In all, records from the Illinois State Board of Elections show that Emanuel’s mayoral campaign and his other municipal political organizations have received $50,000 from Comcast employees since he began running for mayor in 2010.”
Besides that, Comcast’s political action committee gave $46,000 to Emanuel’s congressional campaigns between 2003 and 2008.
Cohen wrote last week that Comcast is proud to have Emanuel’s support, saying it “underscores the powerful benefits of this transaction for their cities, constituents, and customers—and the impact that the enhanced scale, investment, and innovation of Comcast will have on their local communities.”
In a recent study by psychologists Colin Camerer and Tetsuro Matsuzawa, chimps and humans played a strategy game – and unexpectedly, the chimps outplayed the humans.