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Global Recon
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Global Recon Update: October 14, 2005
Europe - Dutch police make terror arrests
08:14 AM EDT | Posted By Oskar van Rijswijk
>> Go here to visit Oskar van Rijswijk's weblog.
The BBC, Reuters and other media report:
Six men and a woman were detained in raids in The Hague, Amsterdam and nearby Almere, the national prosecutor's office said. (...) Riot police moved in to strengthen security at the Binnenhof castle in the city where Prime Minister Jan Peter Balkenende and others have offices.
Global Recon Update: October 10, 2005
Natural Disasters - How We Can Help Quake Victims
12:54 PM EDT | Posted By Dan Spencer
>> Go here to visit Dan Spencer's weblog.

The death toll is in the tens of thousands and the United Nations says more than 2.5 million people were left homeless by Saturday’s monster 7.6-magnitude quake.

A number of charities have already launched appeals to help with the earthquake relief efforts in south Asia. As always in a natural disaster, the immeadiate need is for cash.

Give to the charity of your choice, or consider one of these and while you have the checkbook or charge card out consider giving even more to the US hurricane victims.

Direct Relief
In the US, 805 964-4767

International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies
In the US, 800-HELPNOW

Mercy Corps International
In the US: 503-796-6827

Muslim Aid

Oxfam

Relief International
In the US, 800 573-3332 or 310 478-1200

UNICEF
In the US, 800-367-5437

World Vision
In the US, 888-56-CHILD

From California Yankee.

Natural Disasters - Quake kills More Than 18,000
09:13 AM EDT | Posted By Dan Spencer
>> Go here to visit Dan Spencer's weblog.

The Associated Press reports more than 18,000 were killed in South Asia earthquake:

Village after village was reduced to rubble, and landslides flattened an apartment building after an earthquake shook the Pakistan-India border Saturday. More than 18,000 people were killed, a Pakistani official said.

Maj. Gen. Shaukat Sultan, Pakistan's chief army spokesman, told Pakistan's Geo TV network early Sunday that the magnitude 7.6 quake had killed more than 18,000 people and injured about 41,000. The toll included 250 girls who died when their school in northwestern Pakistan collapsed, as well as 200 soldiers on duty in the Himalayas.

Global Recon Update: September 14, 2005
- Bin Laden Seeking Medical Attention
08:40 AM EDT | Posted By Dan Spencer
>> Go here to visit Dan Spencer's weblog.

UPDATE: Reuters reports the U.S. military denies that one of its officers had told reporters Osama bin Laden was seeking medical attention.

Reuters reports that Osama bin Laden is in poor health and is seeking medical attention.

“Osama bin Laden is trying to obtain medical attention,” Colonel Don McGraw, director of operations at the Combined Forces Command in Kabul, told a group of British reporters, including one from al-Hayat, it said.

“He (McGraw) refused to say what the al-Qaida leader is suffering from or whether it is the same kidney disease which Pakistani officials said in the past he was suffering from,” the newspaper added.

Al-Hayat said it was not clear how the U.S. military had obtained its information or where it thought bin Laden might be.

Another Reuters report states that Afghan commanders let bin Laden escape to Pakistan from Tora Bora in 2001:

Lutfullah Mashal, Afghanistan's Interior Ministry spokesman, said commanders helped the al Qaeda leader escape from the Tora Bora mountains as U.S. warplanes and Afghan forces attacked his hideout near the Pakistan border in late 2001.

“The help was provided because of monetary aid availed by al Qaeda and also partly because of ideological issues,” Mashal said.

“Osama along with other al Qaeda people managed to go to Parachinar (in Pakistan) at the time and then Pakistani forces battled the al Qaeda runaways, killing around 70 of them,” Mashal added, referring to an area in Pakistan's Kurram tribal agency.

He said commanders loyal to Maulvi Yunus Khalis had helped the al Qaeda leader escape. The whereabouts of Khalis, a top mujahideen leader from the war against the Soviet occupation of Afghanistan, is unknown.

From California Yankee.

Global Recon Update: September 04, 2005
- Chief Justice Rehnquist Dies
08:18 AM EDT | Posted By Dan Spencer
>> Go here to visit Dan Spencer's weblog.

Chief Justice Rehnquist died of cancer at his suburban Virginia home, shortly before 11 p.m. ET Saturday.

Rehnquist had an extraordinary career.

Rehnquist's grandparents emigrated to the United States from Sweden in 1880 and settled in Chicago. His grandfather was a tailor, his grandmother a school teacher. Rehnquist grew up in Wisconsin, the son of paper salesman and a translator.

Rehnquist attended college after World War II on the GI Bill. At Stanford, he earned both a bachelor and a master of arts degree in political science. A distinguished student, Rehnquist was elected to Phi Beta Kappa in 1948. He continued his education at Harvard where he received another master of arts degree — this time in government. Rehnquist returned to Stanford Law School in 1950; he graduated at the top of his class.

Rehnquist clerked for Supreme Court Justice Robert Jackson. He Practiced law in Phoenix before moving to Washington. He served as Assistant Attorney General of the US from 69-71

President Nixon nominated Rehnquist to replace Justice Harlan in 1971. A Democratic Senate overwhelmingly confirmed his nomination. When Rehnquist took his oath of office on January 7, 1971, he was the court's youngest member.

In 1986, President Reagan elevated Rehnquist to chief justice to replace Warren Burger.

Rehnquist was the force behind the court's push for greater states' rights. The chief justice has been the leader of five conservatives, sometimes called “the Rehnquist five,” Rehnquist and O'Connor, Scalia, Anthony Kennedy and Thomas - who generally advocate limited federal government interference.

Rehnquist was the second-oldest person to preside over the court.

Global Recon Update: September 02, 2005
- Order Being Restored
10:32 AM EDT | Posted By Dan Spencer
>> Go here to visit Dan Spencer's weblog.

With thousands of National Guard troops being deployed to the Katrina devastated area, public order is being restored in New Orleans. The Times-Picayune reports less anarchy:

Evidence that authorities were beginning to get a grip on gargantuan problems varied from the successful and orderly evacuation of Baptist Mercy Hospital to a sharp reduction in the menacing bands of idle refugees, many of them intent on looting that had haunted Uptown neighborhoods in the immediate aftermath of Hurricane Katrina.

With thousands of National Guard troops being mustered to join the Louisiana guardsmen already deployed to the hurricane-stricken city, one of the early signs of the beefed-up military presence was a Blackhawk helicopter touching down near the Riverwalk to deliver water to some 1,000 refugees still sheltered in the Ernest N. Morial Convention Center.

[. . .]

As a greater presence of Chinook and Huey military helicopters became apparent in the skies over New Orleans, the near-term tactical goal was a simple one: to rescue survivors and complete an evacuation that, while massive in the days just before the hurricane struck, still left behind somewhere between 50,000 and 100,000 of the city's 480,000 residents, many of them infirm, elderly and low-income people without the means to escape.

By day's end, the massive bus-lift to Houston had reduced the Superdome's population to a few thousand refugees, authorities said. But many now homeless people continue to wait on bridges and highway ramps. And while officials remained adamant about the need to get out of a flooded city without power, water, or much prospect of these services being restored for months to come, efforts to comply were frequently mired in miscommunication.

From California Yankee.

Global Recon Update: September 01, 2005
Natural Disasters - Congress to Reconvene to Address Hurricane
04:17 PM EDT | Posted By Dan Spencer
>> Go here to visit Dan Spencer's weblog.

Bloomberg reports Congress will return early from its summer recess to address damage caused by Hurricane Katrina:

Both the House and Senate will be back at work by tomorrow to begin work on a package of federal disaster aid for areas of Louisiana, Mississippi, Alabama and Western Florida affected by Hurricane Katrina, the aide said. Lawmakers were initially slated to return to work next week from an August break.

According to Bloomberg, Homeland Security Secretary Michael Chertoff said the federal government has spent $2 billion on Katrina emergency aid so far.

From California Yankee.

Natural Disasters - Airborne Troops Alerted For Katrina Duty
04:15 PM EDT | Posted By Dan Spencer
>> Go here to visit Dan Spencer's weblog.

Reuters reports 3,000 regular Army soldiers may be sent to help end lawlessness in New Orleans:

The Army has put on alert roughly 3,000 active-duty ground troops from Fort Bragg, North Carolina, to be prepared to deploy to New Orleans to help bring security to the flooded city amid looting and lawlessness, said an Army official, who asked not to be named.

The brigade-sized force, likely to be from the 82nd Airborne Division, would engage in crowd control and site-protection activities, the official said.

U.S. law bars active-duty military troops from engaging in domestic law enforcement, but the Army official said crowd control and site-protection were not defined as law enforcement activities.

The official said another 240 troops from the Army's 4th Infantry Division at Fort Hood, Texas, also were going to the region.

From California Yankee.

Natural Disasters - USS Truman To Join Relief Effort
04:09 PM EDT | Posted By Dan Spencer
>> Go here to visit Dan Spencer's weblog.

The USS Harry S. Truman (CVN 75) to join the Katrina relief effort.

Reuters reports the number of National Guard troops under the command of state governors would reach 21,000 by the end of Friday and top 30,000 in the next few days:

The crew of up to 5,000 on the carrier would bring to nearly 35,000 the number of National Guard and active duty military troops committed to the biggest domestic relief effort ever mounted by federal agencies in the United States.

There also are nearly 8,000 sailors and other active duty troops committed to the effort, most of them aboard ships or flying air support missions.

The Truman will provide a major naval command post in the Gulf of Mexico, helping coordinate the actions of nearly a dozen other warships and supply vessels, including two Navy helicopter assault ships.

The Navy dock landing ship USS Whidbey Island will also join the relief effort. Whidbey Island will provide the capability to employ a movable causeway to help where bridges were destroyed.

The hospital ship Comfort will soon join the relief effort, providing an offshore floating medical center with 12 operating rooms and up to 1,000 beds.

From California Yankee.

Global Recon Update: August 30, 2005
Natural Disasters - Help Hurricane Katrina Victims
09:38 AM EDT | Posted By Dan Spencer
>> Go here to visit Dan Spencer's weblog.

Update: I and other bloggers are matching reader donations dollar for dollar over at Strengthen the Good. Double your money! Make us pay!! Visit STG and donate now …

****

Government agencies and private relief organizations are mounting what the Washington Times reports is the largest mobilization ever for a natural disaster after Hurricane Katrina struck the Gulf Coast.

You can help the victims of Hurricane Katrina by making a financial donation to any of the following charities:

For a complete list of charitable agencies recommended by FEMA, visit http://www.fema.gov/rrr/help2.shtm.

The American Red Cross

The American Red Cross is launching the largest mobilization of resources in its history for a single natural disaster. More than two hundred Red Cross shelters are housing thousands of residents who fled Katrina’s wrath. More than 200 emergency response vehicles and countless other Red Cross resources are en route or on the scene to provide hot meals, snacks, bottled water and distribute other much-needed relief supplies.

You can help the victims of Hurricane Katrina by making a financial donation to the American Red Cross Disaster Relief Fund, which enables the Red Cross to provide shelter, food, counseling and other assistance to those in need.

You can make a secure online contribution by visiting the Red Cross Online Donation Page.

You can also donate by phone:

1-800-HELP-NOW
(1-800-435-7669)
English speaking

1-800-257-7575
Spanish Speaking

Catholic Charities USA

1-800-919-9338, or online at http://www.catholiccharitiesusa.org/

Salvation Army

1-800-SAL-ARMY, or online at http://www.salvationarmyusa.org/

United Methodist Committee on Relief

1-800-554-8583, or online at http://gbgm-umc.org/

UPDATE:

Episcopal Relief & Development:

1-800-334-7626 or http://www.er-d.org/

Archdiocese of Miami-Dade

Monetary donations are being accepted by the Archdiocese of Miami, Catholic Charities, Hurricane Katrina Relief Fund, 9401 Biscayne Blvd., Miami Shores, FL 33138.

The Greater Miami Jewish Federation

Monetary donations are being accepted by The Greater Miami Jewish Federation, 4200 Biscayne Blvd., Miami, FL 33179.

Or visit www.jewishmiami.org/pledge.cfm and make a notation in the comment box for Hurricane Katrina Relief. For more information, call 305-576-4000.

Operation Helping Hand

The Miami Herald, El Nuevo Herald and the United Way of Miami-Dade have activated Operation Helping Hands to help hurricane victims:

Operation Helping Hands c/o United Way of Miami-Dade, P.O. Box 459007, Miami, Florida 33245-9007.

Operation Blessing

(800) 436-6348 or online at https://www.cbn.com/giving/ob/option.asp?m=alertbar&so=3

America's Second Harvest

(800) 344-8070 or online at http://www.secondharvest.org/default2.asp

Adventist Community Services

(800) 381-7171 or online at http://www.adventist.communityservices.org/index.html

Christian Reformed World Relief Committee

(800) 848-5818 or online at http://www.crwrc.org/donate/online.html

Checks be made out to “CRWRC,” earmarked “Hurricanes 2005,” and sent to 2850 Kalamazoo Ave. SE, Grand Rapids, MI, 49560 or PO Box 5070, STN LCD 1, Burlington, ON, L7R 3Y8.

Church World Service

(800) 297-1516 or online at https://secure.churchworldservice.org/catalog/display.php?product_id=177

Convoy of Hope

(417) 823-8998 or online at http://www.convoyofhope.org/

Lutheran Disaster Response

(800) 638-3522 or online at http://www.elca.org/disaster/

Mennonite Disaster Service

(717) 859-2210 or online at http://www.mds.mennonite.net/

Presbyterian Disaster Assistance

(800) 872-3283 or online at http://www.pcusa.org/pda/

Wal-Mart

Wal-Mart Stores Inc. is accepting donations at its 3,800 stores and Web site, www.walmart.com.

From California Yankee.

Global Recon Update: August 29, 2005
Natural Disasters - President Bush Declares Disasters In Louisiana and Mississippi
01:57 PM EDT | Posted By Dan Spencer
>> Go here to visit Dan Spencer's weblog.

President Bush on approved major disaster declarations for Louisiana and Mississippi The declarations will allow federal funds to start being used to deploy resources to help victims of Hurricane Katrina in those two states.

The Associated Press reports Hurricane Katrina weakened overnight to a Category 4 storm and made a slight turn to the right before making landfall at 6:10 a.m. CDT near the bayou town of Buras. Katrina passed just to the east of New Orleans as it moved inland. Although New Orleans avoided the worse case scenario, the hurricane caused lots damage:

Elsewhere along the Gulf Coast, the storm flung boats onto land in Mississippi, lashed street lamps and flooded roads in Alabama, and swamped highway bridges in the Florida Panhandle. At least a half-million people were without power from Louisiana to Florida's Panhandle, including 370,000 in southeastern Louisiana and 116,400 in Alabama, mostly in the Mobile area.

At New Orleans' Superdome, home to 9,000 storm refugees, the wind peeled pieces of metal from the golden roof, leaving two holes that let water drip in. People inside were moved out of the way. Others stayed and watched as sheets of metal flapped and rumbled loudly 19 stories above the floor.

Building manager Doug Thornton said the larger hole was 15 to 20 feet long and four to five feet wide. Outside, one of the 10-foot, concrete clock pylons set up around the Superdome blew over.

Elsewhere in the city, the storm shattered scores of windows in high-rise office buildings and on five floors of the Charity Hospital, forcing patients to be moved to lower levels. At the Windsor Court Hotel, guests were told to go into the interior hallways with blankets and pillows and to keep the doors to the rooms closed to avoid flying glass.

From California Yankee.

Global Recon Update: August 23, 2005
- Canada Asserting Arctic Claim
10:31 AM EDT | Posted By Venomous Kate
>> Go here to visit Venomous Kate's weblog.

From BBC News:

Canada is sending its navy back to the far northern Arctic port of Churchill after a 30-year absence.

The visit by two warships to the area is the latest move to challenge rival claims in the Arctic triggered by the threat of melting ice.

The move follows a spat between Canada and Denmark, over an uninhabited rock called Hans Island in the eastern Arctic region.

Read the full story here.

Global Recon Update: August 22, 2005
North Korea - White House Appoints Special Envoy for N. Korea Human Rights
05:37 PM EDT | Posted By OneFreeKorea
>> Go here to visit OneFreeKorea's weblog.

As expected, the White House has appointed Jay Lefkowitz as Special Envoy for Human Rights in North Korea, a position mandated by Section 107 of the North Korean Human Rights Act of 2004. In naming Mr. Lefkowitz at this time, the administration appears to have waited for a “decent interval” between negotiating sessions with North Korea during six-nation talks. The Washington Post covered the story with an article written by Reuters, which benefits from actually taking the trouble to contact the people who were behind the NKHRA in the first place:

Continue reading "White House Appoints Special Envoy for N. Korea Human Rights"

North Korea - Interview with North Korea Expert Nicholas Eberstadt, on the Talks and Aftermath
05:34 PM EDT | Posted By OneFreeKorea
>> Go here to visit OneFreeKorea's weblog.

A transcript of my interview with Korea expert Nicholas Eberstadt is here. The primary focus is on diplomatic and other options available to the United States and its allies if the six-party talks turn out to be demonstrable failure.

My thanks to Mr. Eberstadt for being so generous with his time. I've posted a version without hyperlinks below. The version on my own blog has hyperlinks where relevant.

Continue reading "Interview with North Korea Expert Nicholas Eberstadt, on the Talks and Aftermath"

Global Recon Update: August 19, 2005
Israel - Settlers Call Israeli Troops "Nazis"
11:40 AM EDT | Posted By Venomous Kate
>> Go here to visit Venomous Kate's weblog.

From IOL News comes the latest report out of Gaza:

Die-hard settlers took to rooftops in the tiny Gadid enclave shouting “Nazis” as forces swept in, hours after clearing Gaza's main anti-pullout strongholds and all but breaking the back of opposition to ending 38 years of occupation.

With the latest poll confirming solid support among the Israeli public for the first removal of settlements from land Palestinians want for a state, troops rushed to wrap up their toughest tasks before the start of the Jewish Sabbath at sunset.

Marching past flaming cars, unarmed riot troops surrounded Gadid's synagogue and forced their way in as 90 protesters, mostly radical youths who had locked themselves inside, lay on the floor. Some prayed. Others cried or shouted abuse.

In what has become a familiar scene this week, police wrestled them out one by one and carried them to waiting buses - as they had in raids on two other enclaves on Thursday.

“This is a desecration of everything that is sacred to Jews,” said Boaz Puterel, 30, echoing the belief of ultranationalist Israelis that the Gaza Strip is part of God's gift to the Jewish people and should never be relinquished.

Read the rest of the story here.

Global Recon Update: August 01, 2005
Saudi Arabia - Saudi Arabia's King Fahd Dead @ 82
06:16 AM EDT | Posted By Alan
>> Go here to visit Alan's weblog.

Cause: Heart attack (Reuters). Read the perspective on the resulting shifts in the power base from Kuwait's Arab Times here, and the Telegraph has a historical profile of key Saudi players here. And don't expect a bunch of new blood: Prince Abdullah, who has been leading SA in effect during Fahd's illness, is 81.

Global Recon Update: July 24, 2005
Natural Disasters - Tsunami Alert
12:43 PM EDT | Posted By Billy Beck
>> Go here to visit Billy Beck's weblog.

CNN is now reporting that a tsunami alert has been issued throughout the Indian Ocean basin follwing a 7+ magnitude earthquake centered near the Nicobar Islands.

“In an hour or less, a tsunami could hit all coasts of the Andaman and Nicobar Islands of India and, in Indonesia, the Indian Ocean coast and Malacca coast of Sumatra.”

(CNN)

Global Recon Update: July 22, 2005
Egypt - Blasts Rock Egypt Resort Town - Update - Three Explosions
06:44 PM EDT | Posted By Michele Catalano
>> Go here to visit Michele Catalano's weblog.

Breaking

Reuters:

An explosion shook the Egyptian Red Sea resort of Sharm el-Sheikh on Saturday, starting a fire and sending a cloud of smoke up over the town, a resident said.

The explosion, audible more than one km (half a mile) away, appeared to take place in a market area which includes shops popular with tourists, said the resident, who asked not to be named.

Will update.

update:

The first explosion, shortly after one a.m., was audible more than one km (half a mile) away, he said. It started a fire and smoke billowed over the town.

About 15 minutes later, two explosions were audible from the direction of Naama Bay, about six km (four miles) away, he said. Naama Bay has dozens of luxury hotels popular with divers and holidaymakers from Europe.

This source says three killed in five blasts.

Update: Confirmed car bombs, moving this to GWoT page

Global Recon Update: July 20, 2005
Fundamentalism - Winds HateWatch Briefing: 2005-07-15
03:38 AM EDT | Posted By Winds of Change.NET
>> Go here to visit Winds of Change.NET's weblog.

Welcome! This briefing will be looking hard at the dark places the mainstream media sometimes seem determined to look away from, to better understand our declared enemies on their own terms and without illusions. Our goal is to bring you some of the top jihadi rants, idiotarian seething, and old-school Jew-hatred from around the world, leaving you more informed, more aware, and pretty disgusted every month. This Winds of Change.NET HateWatch briefing is brought to you by zorkmidden of Discarded Lies. Lewy14 is on vacation. Past briefings and posts on related topics can be found here. Entil'zha veni!

HIGHLIGHTED TOPICS

  • Religious Hate: Van Gogh's muderer speaks chilling words at trial; Suicide bomber kills 4 in Netanya; Hate crimes in Britain after London bombings; US Muslim woman files suit over headscarf issue; Christians in Rajasthan attacked by Hindu extremists; Four mosques vandalised in New Zealand; Virginia church vandalized after gay marriage endorsement;

  • Idiotarian Seethings: Head of London Center for Islamic History: In Islam, there are no such things as civilians; American Muslim leader: Jews control the media and don't let us spread our ideas; Anti-Americanism in Australia; Toyota spends $100,000, sponsors Farrakhan; Polish MP: “We can&'t tolerate any persons who are open about their homosexuality”

  • Race and Culture: Holocaust imagery used to advertise dance rave in Holland; Racism increasing in Portugal; Jewish community offices spray painted with swastikas in the Ukraine; anti-Europeanism and anti-Americanism; Bulgarian fascist party targets Jews; PA textbooks reject peace, present “Protocols” as historical fact; Racism in Japan 'deep and profound'; Hate groups use racist video games to recruit teens;

  • A Hopeful Note: Kuwaitis talk back to radical imams in the mosque; American Muslim groups urge mosque rights for women; The Shape of the Future; Support for bin Laden and suicide attacks declines in Muslim countries;

Global Recon Update: July 19, 2005
US News - Retired Gen. William Westmoreland Dies
06:14 AM EDT | Posted By Michele Catalano
>> Go here to visit Michele Catalano's weblog.
Retired Gen. William Westmoreland, who commanded American troops in Vietnam — the nation's longest conflict and the only war America lost — died Monday night. He was 91.

Westmoreland died of natural causes at Bishop Gadsden retirement home, where he had lived with his wife for several years, said his son, James Ripley Westmoreland.

More about Westmoreland here
A CNN interview with him here
Wikipedia entry
More stories here

Global Recon Update: July 15, 2005
China - Chinese General Threatens Nuclear War
08:13 AM EDT | Posted By Dan Spencer
>> Go here to visit Dan Spencer's weblog.

The Financial Times reports a Chinese general said on Thursday that China is prepared to use nuclear weapons against the U.S. if China is attacked by the U.S. during a confrontation over Taiwan:

“If the Americans draw their missiles and position-guided ammunition on to the target zone on China's territory, I think we will have to respond with nuclear weapons,” said General Zhu Chenghu.

[. . .]

We . . . will prepare ourselves for the destruction of all of the cities east of Xian. Of course the Americans will have to be prepared that hundreds . . . of cities will be destroyed by the Chinese.

From California Yankee.

Global Recon Update: July 13, 2005
Africa - 22 School Children Slaughtered in Kenya
08:40 AM EDT | Posted By Michele Catalano
>> Go here to visit Michele Catalano's weblog.
AT least 22 schoolchildren have reportedly been shot dead in a brutal raid on a remote village in northeastern Kenya.
A total of 66 were killed in what is believed to be the country's worst-ever single episode of inter-clan violence, a local politician said.

Bonaya Godana, the member of parliament for North Horr district in which the attack took place, said that 56 villagers, most of them young children and their mothers, had been killed in yesterday's raid on Turbi village.

Police said earlier that 10 of the attackers had also been killed.
Advertisement:

Mr Godana, a former Kenyan foreign minister who was touring the scene of the brutal attack, said many of the victims had been shot dead while preparing to go to school.

“As of this morning, 56 of our people have been confirmed dead and of them are 22 schoolchildren, and most of them died in their school uniforms,” he said, adding that 10 schoolchildren were among those seriously wounded in the attack.

Read more…

Global Recon Update: July 11, 2005
- Srebrenica Ceremony Marks 10 Years Since Massacre
08:26 AM EDT | Posted By Michele Catalano
>> Go here to visit Michele Catalano's weblog.
The families of Bosnian Muslim men and boys who were killed by Serb forces in the mining town of Srebrenica are gathering today to mark the 10th anniversary of the massacre, the worst slaughter in Europe since World War II.

More than 7,000 Bosnian Muslim males died when Srebrenica was overrun by soldiers commanded by General Ratko Mladic, who has been indicted by the United Nations war-crimes court in The Hague on charges that include genocide in connection with the massacre during Bosnia's 1992-1995 civil war.

50,000 will mark Srebrenica, but the bitterness still endures

“May grief become hope, may revenge become justice, may mothers' tears become prayers, that Srebrenica never happens again,” reads one of the stones.

Among the hundreds of flimsy wooden grave markers, the Foreign Secretary, Jack Straw, Serbia's President Boris Tadic, Bosnia's high representative, Paddy Ashdown, and many other dignitaries will bow their heads today, assenting to the view that Srebrenica's atrocities belong to history, as irrevocably as VE Day.

The Srebenica massacre

Srebrenica: A Cry From the Grave

BBC: Timeline of Srebrenica

Global Recon Update: July 10, 2005
Dennis - Dennis Flickr Photos
11:12 AM EDT | Posted By Alan
>> Go here to visit Alan's weblog.

There are an increasing number of photos over at Flickr tagged “Dennis” with more being added all the time.

Good collection here.

Check out this photo (not on Flickr - Weather channel has some great reader photos)

Dennis - Hurricane Dennis V/ Landfall [updated 5:14pmEST]
10:30 AM EDT | Posted By Michele Catalano
>> Go here to visit Michele Catalano's weblog.

Live feed from WKRG can be found here.

Emergency phone numbers

9am position estimate

All reports say Dennis is still strengthening.

3 year old boy first Dennis related fatality:

Waves pound beach; Dennis about one hour away from landfall:

Hurricane Dennis closed in on the Gulf Coast on Sunday with battering waves and high wind after strengthening into a dangerous Category 4 storm, roaring toward a region still patching up damage from a hurricane 10 months ago.

As the eye of the storm got closer to shore Sunday, wind exceeding 45 mph blew rain sideways and rolling waves pounded piers and beaches. Landfall was expected Sunday afternoon somewhere along the coast of the Florida Panhandle or Alabama in virtually the same spot as last year's Hurricane Ivan.

More here

4:00pm

The storm landed as a category 3 hurricane

RADAR OBSERVATIONS INDICATE THAT HURRICANE DENNIS MADE LANDFALL AT 1925Z…225 PM CDT…ON SANTA ROSA ISLAND BETWEEN NAVARRE BEACH AND PENSACOLA BEACH FLORIDA. DATA FROM THE STEPPED FREQUENCY MICROWAVE RADIOMETER ON BOARD THE NOAA HURRICANE HUNTER AIRCRAFT…AS WELL AS FLIGHT-LEVEL OBSERVATIONS FROM NOAA AND AIR FORCE RESERVE
AIRCRAFT…INDICATE THAT THE LANDFALL INTENSITY OF DENNIS WAS 100
TO 105 KT…115 TO 120 MPH…CATEGORY THREE ON THE SAFFIR-SIMPSON
HURRICANE SCALE.

Satellite photo here

Dennis slams Pensacola

More here and here

5:14

Damage reports from Pensacola
More at Reuters
Local help for victims
Latest warnings
—————-

HURRICANE COVERAGE ON BLOGS

We'll keep/update the list of blogs covering the storm on this post, at the bottom of any further updates.

Alabama weather blog
Weather Undeground blog, also here.
Brendan Loy
Jordan Golson
Eye of the Storm
Foot's Forecast
Eye on Dennis
Hurricane!
Razor Kiss is liveblogging and has a good links list
Pensacola Beach blog has signed off for the day.
Coalition of the Swilling
Jim Matheis
Stay safe, those in the way.

Collection of Dennis-related photos here.

Dennis - Mobile Alabama Sources
09:39 AM EDT | Posted By Alan
>> Go here to visit Alan's weblog.

Mobile, Alabama is in Dennis' crosshairs this morning; here are some local Mobile, AL news sources:

  • AL.com has a storm blog here. Not updated since last night, but plenty of local details. (And oddly, to me the AL.com coverage seems a bit cheery … personally, I'd be scared off my rocker.)
  • WKRG Mobile has local coverage, and a blog as well, which is much more bloggy than that of AL.com. Lots of local photos and first-person entries, including a note that many of the folks from WKRG have hunkered down with their pets at the station, and this post about life in news as Dennis approaches:

I think it was Mark Twain who once said “in the real world, nothing happens at the right place at the right time.” This is one of those times.

Covering a hurricane is a journalist’s double-edged sword. We all understand the obligation to provide information that can mean the difference between life and death. It’s also a time when a journalist has to leave his or her family. We do our jobs, but that awful feeling in the pit of our stomach stays with us. Working for a station like WKRG and a company like Media General makes it less painful. If you could take a quick tour around the studio in Mobile, you’d understand. We’re in our second day of 12 hour shifts. The folks who just got off are asleep on the floor. The community affairs and sales department cooked up a pot of spaghetti tonight that would make Emeril jealous. I only wish we could get the hot meal to our crews working in the field.

Media General asked what extra resources we needed in Mobile…and within a day 10 company employees arrived to assist the dedicated WKRG employees providing 24/7 live continuing coverage. We’re now in our 14th hour. Employees from Media General stations and newspapers in Birmingham, Lexington, Wichita, Spartanburg, Savannah, Charleston, Opelika left their jobs and families to come to Mobile to help. Their hotel closed, so they’ve joined our employees sleeping on the floor. We thank them.

No one knows where Dennis will make landfall or how strong he’ll be. News 5 reporter Steve Alexander may have put it best as he gazed out over the Gulf of Mexico in his afternoon live report from Pensacola Beach. “Dennis is knocking at our doorstep”.

Be safe.

Be safe indeed.

Dennis - Hurricane Dennis IV: Updates/blog links [updated 9:45 am]
06:10 AM EDT | Posted By Michele Catalano
>> Go here to visit Michele Catalano's weblog.

Morning updates:

Dennis is back to a category 4 storm and is now located 175 miles south/southeast of Pensacola, Florida.

A hurricane warning remains in effect for portions of the
Northeastern gulf coast from the Steinhatchee River westward to the
mouth of the Pearl River. Satellite image here.

With nearly 1.4 million people under evacuation orders, some towns in the projected path were left almost deserted. Landfall was expected Sunday afternoon somewhere along the coast of the Florida Panhandle, Alabama or Mississippi.

After weakening to a Category 2 storm over Cuba, Dennis regrouped in the Gulf on Saturday and became a Category 4 storm again early Sunday, with sustained winds of 145 mph.

“Category 4 is not just a little bit worse _ it's much worse,” said Max Mayfield, director of the National Hurricane Center in Miami. “Damage increases exponentially as the wind speed increases. And no matter where it makes actual landfall, it's going to have a tremendous impact well away from the center.”

Dennis' expected landfall on Sunday would be the earliest a Category 4 hurricane has hit the United States since Hurricane Audrey struck the Louisiana and Texas coasts in June 1957, according to the National Hurricane Center.

For all news and updates on the aftermath in Cuba, please check here.

Blogs with coverage:

Razorkiss


technorati tag
Alabama weather blog
Weather Undeground blog, also here.
Brendan Loy
Jordan Golson
Eye of the Storm
Foot's Forecast

Collection of Dennis-related photos here.

Latest strike map (click for bigger):

9:45:

Curfews in some areas
Power could be out for three weeks
Updated strike probablities here

Latest satellite:

dennis2.jpg

Global Recon Update: July 09, 2005
Dennis - Hurricane Dennis III : Storm Regains Major Hurricane Status[updated 7:20pmEST]
06:02 AM EDT | Posted By Michele Catalano
>> Go here to visit Michele Catalano's weblog.

Dennis has weakened a bit as it heads to the states.

Here is what the warning/watch situation looks like now (last updated 5am).

The death toll in Cuba is at 20. The storm also killed 15 people in Haiti before slamming into Cuba.

In southern Haiti, 15 people died when a swollen river tore away a bridge. The total number of deaths in Haiti reached 22, according to various officials.

Cuban authorities had evacuated more than 600,000 people in different parts of the country as Dennis approached the southern city of Cienfuegos. But the measures, which usually allow the Communist island to escape hurricane strikes with minimal casualties, failed to prevent 10 deaths on Thursday night.

Cuban President Fidel Castro said most of the victims died in collapsed houses in two coastal towns in Granma province. An 18-day-old baby was among those who died, he said on state television, calling the hurricane a “diabolical force.”

Officials said 15,400 of the adjacent towns' 20,000 homes were destroyed or damaged. Television images showed rows of clapboard houses flattened by the storm.

Dennis is now Category 2, with 110 mph winds, but experts expect it to pick up strength as it heads over the waters towards the US coast.

You can see here that the hurricane doesn't look as tight and concentrated as it did yesterday.

..to be updated…

11:45:

Hurricane Dennis Swipes Florida Keys


Coastal residents packed up and evacuated or hunkered down Saturday as Hurricane Dennis lashed the Florida Keys with wind and sheets of rain and churned along a path toward areas still rebuilding from last year's storms.

More than 1 million people from the Florida Panhandle to Louisiana were under evacuation orders. Landfall was expected Sunday afternoon anywhere from the Florida Panhandle to southeast Louisiana.

“This is a very dangerous storm and we hope that you will evacuate,'' Gov. Jeb Bush said to residents in the Panhandle.

Updated warnings and watches

Position estimate

Some blogs talking about Dennis:

Nicholas Roussos
Hurricane Land
Mike Bonnett

—-

3:36PM

Dennis cuts power to all of Key West

-

Coastal residents packed up and evacuated or hunkered down Saturday as Hurricane Dennis lashed the Florida Keys with wind and sheets of rain and charged toward areas still rebuilding from last year's storms.

More than 1 million people from the Florida Panhandle to Louisiana were under evacuation orders. Landfall was expected Sunday afternoon anywhere from the Florida Panhandle to southeast Louisiana.

“This is a very dangerous storm and we hope that you will evacuate,” Gov. Jeb Bush said to residents in the Panhandle.

The latest warning from the Hurricane Center says Dennis is reorganizing.
Check out the satellite image here - looks much more like a hurricane than it did this morning.

—-

7:20

Million told to flee as Dennis closes in


The storm was on a north-west track that could take it to landfall today local time between Florida's north-western panhandle and Mississippi - an area still recovering from a battering by Hurricane Ivan in September.

Dennis could be Cat. 4 at landfall

Hurricane Dennis is rapidly intensifying and could be a Category 4 storm at landfall near the Florida/Alabama state line, the National Hurricane Center reported in its 4 p.m. briefing.

Reports from aircraft reconnaissance and signs of the storm resuming its track toward Northwest Florida have National Hurricane Center and National Weather Service forecasters concerned that this storm will be more intense and have higher storm surge than Hurricane Ivan, which made landfall in Gulf Shores, Ala., on Sept. 16 as a Category 3.

Thousands lose power, tornadoes touch down in South Florida

Update from Hurricane Center:


REPORTS FROM AN AIR FORCE RESERVE HURRICANE HUNTER AIRCRAFT INDICATE
THAT THE CENTRAL PRESSURE OF DENNIS HAS FALLEN RAPIDLY TO 947 MB.
DENNIS HAS REGAINED DANGEROUS MAJOR HURRICANE STATUS…CATEGORY 3
ON THE SAFFIR-SIMPSON HURRICANE SCALE…WITH MAXIMUM SUSTAINED
WINDS OF 115 MPH. WINDS ARE EXPECTED TO INCREASE EVEN MORE THIS
EVENING.

Check this out:

Looks a lot different than this morning.

Global Recon Update: July 08, 2005
Dennis - Hurricane Dennis II
04:07 PM EDT | Posted By Michele Catalano
>> Go here to visit Michele Catalano's weblog.

News from Weather Undeground:

Dennis has come ashore on the south coast of Cuba, and it took one of the worst possible landfall trajectories—a 70-mile long track scraping the coast with its right eyewall. The right eyewall contains the hurricane's strongest winds and highest storm surge, and normally only a 5 to 10 mile section of coast suffers it. Cuba just had 70 miles of coast with some of its prime tourist areas suffer a storm surge of at least 13 feet, and probably 20 feet or higher in many places. Add to this the hurricane's sustained winds of 145 - 150 mph, and the result will be a multi-billion dollar destruction of a key part of the island's economy. Dennis has also made a direct hit on Cienfuegos, a city of 200,000, and is now aiming at the Caribbean's largest city, Havana. The destruction occurring in Cuba from this storm must be truly staggering.

Also:


Today will be the worst day in Cuba's modern history. Dennis is a worst-case hurricane following a worst-case path for the island. The storm is already punishing Cuba as it moves parallel to the island, subjecting much of the island to hurricane force winds and rainfall totals of 10 - 15 inches, and destroying much of the rich sugar cane fields and other crops. The situation will get much worse tonight when the storm makes landfall, pushing a storm surge of 20 feet or higher onto a long section of the coast. Dennis will pass near Havana, the most heavily populated part of the island. Although loss of life will be low thanks to Cuba's excellent civil defense system, the destruction of buildings will probably be the worst in Cuba's history

Will update as we get more updates.

5:34pm:

18 dead in Haiti

Tourists evacuated as hurricane hits Guantanamo Bay

From National Weather Service:

REPORTS FROM THE CUBAN METEOROLOGICAL SERVICE AND CIVIL DEFENSE THROUGH HAM RADIO OPERATORS INDICATE A WIND GUST TO 149 MPH
OCCURRED AT CIENFUEGOS CUBA AROUND 130 PM EDT. MORE THAN 85 PERCENT
OF THE POWERLINES WERE DOWN AND EXTENSIVE DAMAGE HAS OCCURRED TO
THE COMMUNICATIONS INFRASTRUCTURE.

Blogger 26th parallel has links and updates

Satellite view of storm, 5:31 pm via Weather Channel.

cuba.jpg

You can see a loop of the storm in action here (java).

7:00pm

At least ten killed in Cuba

More from Cuba:

Powerful Hurricane Dennis struck Cuba Friday in Cuba, entering through the bay of the central province of Cienfuegos, 250 kilometres east of Havana, officials said.

The hurricane's eye reached Cuba early Friday afternoon and maximum sustained winds slowed slightly as it moved over island.

The storm's raging winds and intense rains had already caused power outages in most of Cuba as well as heavy flooding, but there were no immediate reports of injuries, the Cienfuegos office of Civil Defence said.

—-

8:30pm

Reuters:

Hurricane Dennis roared through the Caribbean on Friday, leaving 10 dead in Cuba and 22 in Haiti before aiming for Havana on a course toward the U.S. Gulf of Mexico, where oil rigs and vulnerable coastal areas were evacuated.

The storm weakened slightly as it crossed Cuba but the U.S. National Hurricane Center in Miami said Cuban meteorologists had reported a 149-mph (240 kph) gust that caused extensive damage in the city of Cienfuegos.

Updated public advisory

Dennis - Hurricane Dennis
09:04 AM EDT | Posted By Michele Catalano
>> Go here to visit Michele Catalano's weblog.

Hurricane Dennis has strengthened to a category 4 hurricane.

The storm is working its way through Haiti now and headed towards the Florida panhandle.

The Hurricane Center in Miami said the eye was swirling over water about 230 miles southeast of Havana, Cuba, and about 285 miles southeast of Key West, Fla. It was moving to the northwest at about 12 miles an hour.

It has already killed five people in Haiti and people from the Florida Keys to Louisiana are fleeing or making preparations in advance of Dennis's arrival.


Forecasters warned residents from Florida to Louisiana to be ready this weekend for Hurricane Dennis, with top winds already at 135 mph. The Category 4 storm was projected to hit the Gulf Coast by Sunday and the National Hurricane Center warned Dennis had become “an extremely dangerous” storm.

Gov. Jeb Bush has already declared a state of emergency.

You can track Dennis here. We'll be giving the storm full coverage, so stay tuned for news, updates, links and emergency/evactuation postings.

10:51:

Dennis closes in on Cuba:

Packing devastating 135 mph winds, Hurricane Dennis tore down a guard tower at the U.S. detention camp for terror suspects as it stalked Cuba's south coast and prepared Friday to strike into the heart of the largest Caribbean island.

[…]

The eye was taking aim at central Cuba Friday morning from 60 miles at sea, a few miles short of the storm's most dangerous winds, the U.S. National Hurricane Center said.

“It's right off the coast, they'll be getting hurricane-force winds before long if they haven't already,'' meteorologist Trisha Wallace told The Associated Press by telephone from the center in Miami.

Hurricane-force winds extended 50 miles with tropical storm force winds stretching another 140 miles. Dennis was moving northwest near 12 mph.

Three day track - click for bigger.

3:40pm

  • Southern Walton County in the Florida Panhandle will be evacuated beginning at 4 p.m. Friday.
  • Eglin Air Force Base in Florida was ordered evacuated. The evacuees were told to get at least 100 miles away from the base by noon Saturday.
  • The Lower Keys Medical Center closed, and even emergencies were not treated.
  • Florida and Alabama remained under a state of emergency declared by their governors.

[Via AP]

Forecasting Dennis: Why it may get stronger

Global Recon Update: July 07, 2005
North Korea - N. Korea Executes Christians for Their Beliefs
04:16 PM EDT | Posted By OneFreeKorea
>> Go here to visit OneFreeKorea's weblog.

From the Joongang Ilbo, a major South Korea daily, comes a new report of a ruthless new wave of religious persecution:

Citing interviews with North Korean defectors, a Seoul-based research institute said yesterday that the regime in Pyongyang is continuing an aggressive campaign to suppress underground churches in the country.

The 2005 North Korea Human Rights White Paper published by the Korea Institute of National Unification reported a number of executions of religious figures operating underground Protestant churches in the North. In 2001, five people found guilty of conducting missionary work were executed by firing squad in Nampo.

North Korean defectors are quoted in the report as saying that Pyongyang is doing everything it can to stop the spread of Protestantism in the communist country. According to the report, 86 members of underground churches were rounded up in the early 1990s in Anak, South Hanghae province, some of whom were executed while the rest were sent to political prisons.

A North Korean defector said he had once participated in a three-year long operation to uproot an underground church in 1996. Since 1997, North Korea has been instructing its people to report any kind of proselytizing to the authorities.

- Explosions in London Underground; Casualties Reported [Updated continuosly]
05:36 AM EDT | Posted By Michele Catalano
>> Go here to visit Michele Catalano's weblog.

Very spotty coverage coming in right now - police say it was a power surge, but reports of a bus also exploding give question to that…

Original BBC story here

Explosions close London Underground

This blog has a rumor of thirty dead

map12.gifBBC has confirmed the bus explosion as well as casualties and confirmed the presence of an explosive on the underground.

Updates below:

CNN is calling it a coordinated terrorist attack.

Scotland Yard has confirmed explosives….

More coming… It's hard to get on the BBC and Sky news sites right now…I'm getting most of my news from friends in London, CNN tv, the BBC radio feed works sometimes..

All trains into London have been stopped. Roads are closed, etc.

CNN is now reporting six different explosions.

There are still people reporting power surges, but most reports are saying confirmed explosives, and that explosives have been found in trash bins.

CNN ticker says at least three bus bombings..

Kind of confusing…they are talking about power surges right now on CNN, but that doesn't explain a bus being blown in half

Now CNN is saying nine explosions…

Keep scrolling at this blog…constant updates

BBC is reporting another blast

Some working links..

Reuters
AP

FOX is reporting at least 90 casualties

“I was on the bus in front and heard an incredible bang, I turned round and half the double decker bus was in the air,” Belinda Seabrook told Press Association (search), the British news agency.

Photo from Kings Cross here

—-

The health services are in support to deal with the terrible injuries that there have been,” Clarke told reporters outside Downing Street.

Number 10 said it was “still unsure” whether the explosions were a terrorist attack and although casualties were reported, no further details were yet available.

Ministers are meeting to clarify the situation and the government will make a statement later, Leader of the House Geoff Hoon told the Commons.

Confirmed explosions: A bus at Tavistock Square, and two at Aldgate East and Edgware Road Tube station

Via comments: Swindon Train station (100 miles west of london) and Brighton Station (South Coast) are reported to be experiencing “security Situations”, they are being evacuated.

tubemap.jpg
Map from BBC

[Thanks to TFark members for lots of this breaking info]

Two deaths confirmed…

Police responding to reports at the Edgware Road, Kings Cross, Liverpool Street, Russell Square, Aldgate East and Moorgate subway stations….also rumors of controlled explosions forthcoming at Russell Square.

ALL public transport in London closed.

Forbes reports police investigating this as a terrorist incident.

“When they led us to safety, I went past the carriage where I think the explosion was. It was the second one from the front.

“The metal was all blown outwards and there were people inside being helped by paramedics.

“One guy was being tended outside on the track. His clothes were torn off and he seemed pretty badly burned.


Union: Explosive device on tube

The Guardian is live blogging:

1110 PA is reporting fears of “many” dead after a series of what are now, patently, terrorist bomb blasts around the city. Eyewitness reports talk of terrible injuries, and “many fatalities”.

Blair will be making a statement soon

BBC: that the mobile phone networks have been shut down in London to prevent remote detonations (thanks again for the updates, Rich)

More pictures here

First person accounts at BBC

There's already talk of al Qaida, though it's all speculation right now which, of course, they are asking people not to do - but several news sites are quoting “sources” as saying this is the work of AQ. We're waiting for confirmation of terrorism before moving this story to the GWoT page.


image from Newsday

BBC reporting that the army is moving into the area

More photos at flickr - they are off the tv, but are better than what I'm getting here in the states

BBC text only coverage, if you are having trouble accessing that site.

CNN has a timeline of today's events

I hear that BBC is reporting al Qaeda is responsible for the attacks but I can't get on to the site right now…

Normblog has updates

Londonblogger has pictures (via Jeff Jarvis, who has lots of links)

AP: Police find indications of explosives at scene of one of a series of blasts in London, London's police chief says.


London hospitals on full alert

Reports of many people still trapped underground.

Photos here

On Fox: JERUSALEM — Senior Israeli official says Scotland Yard (search) told Israel minutes before explosions it had received warnings of possible terror attacks.

Blair speaking - he will be leaving G8.

BRITISH PRIME MINISTER TONY BLAIR SAYS IT'S “REASONABLY CLEAR” THAT BLASTS WERE TERROR ATTACKS.

I am going to mirror this whole post at the GWoT page, but updates will only continue there.

———————
Please note, if you are trying to contact me with links, updates, etc., please do not use the TCP address; you can reach me at michele.catalanoATgmailDOTcom. Thanks.
——————————————————————-
Technorati tags:
London, explosions, London tube

Global Recon Update: June 30, 2005
SE Asia - The Alliance: U.S. & India Sign Major 10-Year Defense Pact
03:36 PM EDT | Posted By Winds of Change.NET
>> Go here to visit Winds of Change.NET's weblog.

Yesterday, in my article on Bangladesh, I noted that the behaviour of its rising Islamists “is slowly forcing the US and India together over common strategic concerns.”

Actually, Bangladesh is just one of many - and this week, The United States and India signed a 10-year agreement paving the way for stepped up military ties, including joint weapons production and cooperation on missile defense. Titled the “New Framework for the US-India Defense Relationship” (NFDR), it was signed on June 27/05 by U.S. Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld and India's Defense Minister Pranab Mukherjee.

This is a big deal. A very big deal.

Our readers know that Winds has covered India with enthusiasm and promoted a US-India alliance for a number of reasons. Many of us are fans of the Anglosphere concept, and we also see the economic & cultural trends, historical and geopolitical logic, and moral sense behind such an alliance. I've even advocated a leaf from the British historical playbook via a “Mumbai Doctrine” for the Indian Ocean basin. As Pavitr Prabhakar could tell us, after all, “with great power comes great responsibility.”

This agreement doesn't go that far, but it is a very important step. Under the NFDR, Washington has offered high-tech cooperation, expanded economic ties, and energy cooperation. It will also step up a strategic dialogue with India to boost missile defense and other security initiatives, launch a “defense procurement and production group,” and work to cooperate on military “research, development, testing and evaluation.” Given India's broken military procurement system, the know-how transfer will be every bit as valuable as the technology transfer - maybe more so.

And the agreement doesn't stop there.

Read the Rest….

Global Recon Update: June 27, 2005
North Korea - Second North Korean Family Defects by Sea in a Week
06:30 AM EDT | Posted By OneFreeKorea
>> Go here to visit OneFreeKorea's weblog.

ABC News reports that an entire family has sailed to South Korea. It's the second sea-borne defection in a week, and doesn't include last week's defection by a North Korean soldier through the wire at the DMZ:

A couple and their nine-year-old son defected from famine-hit North Korea by boat on Sunday and were being questioned on South Korea's western island of Baekryong, the military said.

The South Korean navy picked up the 42-year-old man, identified as Hong, his 39-year-old wife and their son after they crossed the border in the Yellow Sea, officials at the South's Joint Chiefs of Staff office said.

Continue reading "Second North Korean Family Defects by Sea in a Week"

Global Recon Update: June 26, 2005
Threats - Winds Hatewatch Briefing: June 24/05
12:38 AM EDT | Posted By Winds of Change.NET
>> Go here to visit Winds of Change.NET's weblog.

Welcome! This briefing will be looking hard at the dark places the mainstream media sometimes seem determined to look away from, to better understand our declared enemies on their own terms and without illusions. Our goal is to bring you some of the top jihadi rants, idiotarian seething, and old-school Jew-hatred from around the world, leaving you more informed, more aware, and pretty disgusted every month. This Winds of Change.NET HateWatch briefing is brought to you by zorkmidden of Discarded Lies. Lewy14 is on vacation. Past briefings and posts on related topics can be found here. Share the hate!

HIGHLIGHTED TOPICS

  • Religious Hate: Kuwait's school debate: to teach or not to teach jihad; Muslim clerics' reactions to female imam; Anti-Semitism, anti-Americanism and martyrdom in Palestinian media; Lessons from a woman terrorist;

  • Idiotarian Seethings: Egyptian historian on Saudi TV: U.S. carried out 9/11 on assignment by the World Council of Churches; Austrian rabbi enlists help of neo-Nazis; Terrorists join PA police; PA: Israel distributes carcinogenic food; Venice Biennale bans sculpture in case Muslim sensitivities get offended;

  • Race and Culture: Authors of anti-semitic letter calling for ban of Jewish organisations in Russia, will not be prosecuted; Arab antisemitism rooted in Nazism; Antisemitism in the Turkish media: targeting Turkey's Jewish citizens; Ukrainian forum calls for Jews to be deported; Anti-Semitism rising in Britain; Hate groups in New Jersey are rising sharply;

  • A Hopeful Note: Arab criticism of Muslim extremist activities in the West; American Muslims strike at spouse abuse.

Global Recon Update: June 23, 2005
North Korea - Freedom House to Broadcast July Human Rights Conference Into North Korea
10:59 PM EDT | Posted By OneFreeKorea
>> Go here to visit OneFreeKorea's weblog.

Recently, Freedom House selected Professor Jae Ku as its North Korea Program Director. I met Professor Ku at a meeting of the North Korean Freedom Coalition in Arlington, Virginia, and he agreed to an interview.

Thanks to Prof. Ku for being so generous with his time (continue to interview).

Global Recon Update: June 17, 2005
Strategy - New Energy Currents: 2005-06-17
05:06 AM EDT | Posted By Winds of Change.NET
>> Go here to visit Winds of Change.NET's weblog.

This week, debate in the Senate began in earnest on the federal energy bill - and the debate in the US, around the world, and on the internet shows no signs of abating. In a widely cited poll, Yale University researchers found that an overwhelming majority of Americans are worried about dependence on foreign oil (92%) and want government to develop new energy technologies to address it (93%). Apparently, they haven't been reading their Kunstler, or else they'd know that there are no solutions other than the long-overdue destruction of our sinfully consumptive civilization - or maybe they've been reading their Engineer-Poet instead, and know better than to buy into sci-fi catastrophilia.

…Or maybe they've been keeping up with New Energy Currents here at Winds of Change, a broad, monthly roundup of new developments in energy science, technology, and policy. By John Atkinson of chiasm

Global Recon Update: June 16, 2005
Cambodia - Boy Killed in Cambodia School Standoff
02:49 PM EDT | Posted By Michele Catalano
>> Go here to visit Michele Catalano's weblog.
Masked gunmen seized dozens of children at an international school Thursday in northwestern Cambodia , killing a 3-year-old Canadian boy with a shot to the head before police rescued the hostages, authorities said.

The four attackers stormed Siem Reap International School , grabbed students from several countries, and demanded money, weapons and a vehicle before police ended the six-hour standoff and took four young gunmen into custody.

Gunfire broke out inside the school, and hostage takers later told police they killed the Canadian boy because he was crying too much. Police moved in after they “threatened to kill the other children one by one,” Information Minister Khieu Kanharith said.

BBC has a first person account:

Around 0930 four men, one of whom was armed, walked into my child's classroom.

They locked the door and held him hostage, along with 20 of his classmates aged between two and six, one teacher and one teaching assistant.

[..]

When I heard the first gunshot, I felt my heart sink.

Global Recon Update: June 13, 2005
Americas - Bye-Bye Bolivia: An Update
01:35 AM EDT | Posted By Winds of Change.NET
>> Go here to visit Winds of Change.NET's weblog.

Back on May 26/05, Dr. Jack Wheeler of To The Point News did a time-delayed Guest Blog called Bye-Bye Bolivia. Our maps of Bolivia, he said, may be about to become obsolete:

Bolivia topo

It looks like Dr. Wheeler was right on the money with this one:

  • Kim du Toit offers a fascinating glimpse in an unlikely place: Miss Bolivia. Go read to get a feel for how different Santa Cruz considers itself to be - oh, and he has pictures…
Global Recon Update: June 07, 2005
Threats - David's (Nuclear) Sling: The EMP Threat
06:55 AM EDT | Posted By Winds of Change.NET
>> Go here to visit Winds of Change.NET's weblog.

JK: Winds has run articles about nuclear terrorism and proliferation before from Amitai Etzioni and others. Reader Tom Holsinger forwarded this to me today right after our Winds of War hit these topics, and it's featured in here on Winds by permission. “This is the real threat from 3rd World nukes - North Korea's, Iran's, etc.,” he writes. “Defense is not possible - only pre-emptive regime change can stop such threats.”

The Congressional Panel's warning is certainly serious, and Mr. Gaffney's points re: Iran's recent tests of ship-launched ballistic missiles in EMP trajectories adds a chilling dimenson. See also Gary Farber's The Threat from the Sea.

EMP: America's Achilles' Heel
by Frank J. Gaffney, Jr.
President, Center for Security Policy

If Osama bin Laden - or the dictators of North Korea or Iran - could destroy America as a twenty-first century society and superpower, would they be tempted to try? Given their track records and stated hostility to the United States, we have to operate on the assumption that they would. That assumption would be especially frightening if this destruction could be accomplished with a single attack involving just one relatively small-yield nuclear weapon - and if the nature of the attack would mean that its perpetrator might not be immediately or easily identified.

Unfortunately, such a scenario is not far-fetched. According to a report issued last summer by a blue-ribbon, Congressionally-mandated commission, a single specialized nuclear weapon delivered to an altitude of a few hundred miles over the United States by a ballistic missile would be “capable of causing catastrophe for the nation.” The source of such a cataclysm might be considered the ultimate “weapon of mass destruction” (WMD) - yet it is hardly ever mentioned in the litany of dangerous WMDs we face today. It is known as electromagnetic pulse (EMP).

Global Recon Update: June 06, 2005
India - India's Big Naval Move: INS Kadamba
12:14 PM EDT | Posted By Winds of Change.NET
>> Go here to visit Winds of Change.NET's weblog.

The strategic maneuverings between India, China, Pakistan, Japan et. al. continue, with the Arabian Sea as an emerging focal point.

India's giant new western naval base INS Kadamba was opened on May 31, with India's Defence Minister saying that it would protect the country's Arabian Sea maritime routes. Kadamba is an $8+ billion project that will become India's 3rd operational naval base after Mumbai and Visakhapatnam, and the first base under the sole control of India's Navy.

This is a move that matters at a global-historical level.

Read the Rest…

Global Recon Update: June 03, 2005
South Korea - South Korea Expels Human Rights Activist to Appease North Korea
08:52 AM EDT | Posted By OneFreeKorea
>> Go here to visit OneFreeKorea's weblog.

Dr. Norbert Vollertsen, the man who told the world about the horrors of North Korea, reports that he has been expelled from South Korea. Vollertsen, who admits allowing his South Korean visa to expire, had been in South Korea on a series of tourist visas, which require holders to leave and reenter South Korea for extensions. On a previous reentry, Vollertsen had been detained and asked to sign a statement agreeing to discontinue his political activities; he was released when journalists arrived at the location where he was detained. Vollertsen reports that South Korean officials have told him that he would not be granted further tourist visas because of his political activities.

The full text of Dr. Vollertsen's e-mail message describing his expulsion is here. More information:

Dr. Vollertsen will continue his activities in Japan. The issue is likely to come up during Roh Moo-Hyun's visit to the White House next week. Brilliant timing, guys.


(Photo credit: Ki Ho Park, Time Asia)

Threats - Hatewatch Briefing: 2005-06-03
07:53 AM EDT | Posted By Winds of Change.NET
>> Go here to visit Winds of Change.NET's weblog.

Welcome! This briefing will be looking hard at the dark places the mainstream media sometimes seem determined to look away from, to better understand our declared enemies on their own terms and without illusions. Our goal is to bring you some of the top jihadi rants, idiotarian seething, and old-school Jew-hatred from around the world, leaving you more informed, more aware, and pretty disgusted every month. This Winds of Change.NET HateWatch briefing is brought to you by Lewy14 (hatewatch@winds…), and by zorkmidden of Discarded Lies. Past briefings and posts on related topics can be found here. Entil'zha veni!

HIGHLIGHTED TOPICS

  • Religious Hate: Saudi Arabia desecrates hundreds of Bibles annually; London Islamists back mass murder reprisal for “desecration”; The killing of Shaima Rezayee; Saudi TV demonizes Jews in the time of Muhammad; CAIR distributes anti-Semitic commentary on the Quran; Christian Pastor Swedes had it coming in Thialand; Michigan study suggests mosque attendance a factor in suicide bombing.

  • Idiotarian Seethings: Amnesty: Gitmo “the gulag of our time”; Fallaci prosecuted (again) for “defaming Islam”; PA says teenage suicide bombers 'fabricated'; Sen. Santorum: Senate Democrats = Hitler; Will everyone be Hitler for 15 minutes?; UC Irvine professor admits incomprehension of jihadis.

  • Race and Culture: Crosses burn in Durham; The Obin report; Official PA newspaper continues to print anti-Semitic cartoons; Jews accused of organising 'genocide' of Ukrainians; Young Germans increasingly attracted to right-wing extremism; More neo-Nazis in Israel.

  • A Hopeful Note: First Holocaust museum geared to Arabs opens in Nazareth; Iranian Christian acquitted of apostasy.

Global Recon Update: June 02, 2005
North Korea - A Great Leap Downward? North Korea Orders Millions of City Dwellers Into the Countryside
05:12 PM EDT | Posted By OneFreeKorea
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The New York Times is reporting more troubling signs that famine may be returning to North Korea:

Continue reading "A Great Leap Downward? North Korea Orders Millions of City Dwellers Into the Countryside"

Global Recon Update: May 28, 2005
Rumors- - Saudi Arabian King Fahd Dead
02:15 AM EDT | Posted By Digger
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Reports are coming in that Saudi Arabia's King Fahd is dead. The reports also say it will be announced on Saturday. There is bound to be a power struggle as is highlighted in the article below.

World Peace Herald

Reliable sources in the Saudi capital Riyadh said Friday King Fahd is dead, reports the Saudi Institute.

King Fahd of Saudi Arabia has been dead since late Wednesday, according to several well-placed sources in the capital Riyadh who spoke to the Saudi Institute, a pro-democracy think tank in Washington, on condition of anonymity.

The government also canceled all military leave, "a sure sign that something is happening," said the Saudi Institute.

...

A spokesman for the Saudi Institute told United Press International, "the official death of the king will be announced Saturday."

Fahd's death will impact the succession of the would-be king, Crown Prince Abdullah, who is half brother to the Sudairi Seven.

The Sudairis share one mother and include Fahd, Defense Minister Sultan, Interior Minister Naif, Governor of Riyadh Salman and other Sudiaris who form the most powerful alliance in the ruling tribe of Al-Saud, according to the Saudi Institute.

"Abdullah will find it impossible to wrestle the throne away from the Sudairis who want to maintain power in their branch. The struggle between the Sudairis and Abdullah, if any, would be pose a greater threat to the regime than violent groups who have been engaged in at times fierce clashes with government forces," reported the Saudi Institute.

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Originally posted at Diggers Realm