Category Archives: Top Stories

UN Watchdog Reports: Iran could produce a nuclear weapon within two months


Iran is only a matter of months from being able to create a nuclear weapon, according to experts.

President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, 54, has long been pushing his country’s nuclear capabilities, and at the current rate of uranium enrichment the first bomb could be eight weeks away.

Gregory S. Jones, from RAND, published a report this week explaining the severity of the situation and to confirm the fears expressed by a United Nations watchdog.

In spite of a number of set backs, says the researcher, the Iranian regime is back on track with their nuclear programme – and there is very little American, or the U.N. can do about it.

Jones based his report on recent findings by the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) – their report was published two weeks ago.

Manufacturing the bomb will take about two months, Jones believes – as constructing a nuclear warhead is a complicated process.

In order to halt the process, Jones comments, forces will have to deploy ground forces – airstrikes will no longer be sufficient.

He believes that Tehran, the Iranian capital, has produced 38.3kg of uranium enriched at 19.7 per cent.

If its centrifuges continue to work at the current capacity, it will take around two months for the Iranian regime to produce the 20 kg of uranium enriched to 90 per cent required for the production of a nuclear warhead.

Meanwhile Yukiya Amano, director general of the 35-nation IAEA, made clear in a speech his growing frustration at the Islamic state’s failure to answer agency queries about its nuclear programme.

His remarks are likely to be welcomed by Western powers as a sign that he is gradually ratcheting up the pressure on Iran – but the hope is that he is not too late.

The U.S. and its allies accuse Iran of seeking to develop an atomic weapons capability.

The Iranian nuclear scientist who defected to the United States is thought to have worked on the Iran nuclear program at this suspected uranium-enrichment facility near Qom, Iran.

Iran rejects the accusation, saying its nuclear programme is aimed at generating electricity so that it can export more of its oil and gas.

For several years, the IAEA has been investigating Western intelligence reports indicating Iran has coordinated efforts to process uranium, test explosives at high altitude and revamp a ballistic missile cone so it can take a nuclear warhead.

Western diplomats believe Amano is in effect warning Tehran to co-operate or face a possible assessment by the IAEA on the likelihood it has conducted nuclear activity with possible military aspects.

Such an assessment could lend weight to any renewed Western push to tighten sanctions on the major oil producer.

Amano said the U.N. agency had received ‘further information related to possible past or current undisclosed nuclear-related activities that seem to point to the existence of possible military dimensions to Iran’s nuclear programme’.

The Japanese later told a news conference, without disclosing the source of the information: ‘The activities in Iran related to the possible military dimension seem to have been continued until quite recently.’

Iran’s refusal to halt uranium enrichment, activity which can have both civilian and military uses, has drawn four rounds of U.N. sanctions since 2006.

Amano said he had written last month to the head of Iran’s Atomic Energy Organisation, Fereydoun Abbasi-Davani, to reiterate ‘the agency’s concerns about the existence of possible military dimensions’.

He had also asked for Iran to ‘provide prompt access’ to locations, equipment, documentation and officials to help resolve the agency’s queries.

Abbasi-Davani replied and said U.N. sanctions resolutions against his country were ‘illegal and unacceptable’.

Iran was ‘not providing the necessary cooperation to enable the agency to provide credible assurance about the absence of undeclared nuclear material and activities in Iran’, Amano said.

‘I urge Iran to take steps towards the full implementation of all relevant obligations in order to establish international confidence in the exclusively peaceful nature of its nuclear programme,’ he added.


The NSA bypasses the US Constitution to Spy on ANY Americans, Whistle Blower to Stand Trial


New details about the NSA’s post–Sept. 11 domestic surveillance programs have emerged in a stunning New Yorker article about NSA whistle blower Thomas Drake, who faces trial next month for allegedly leaking information about waste and mismanagement at the agency.

The NSA bypasses the US Constitution to Spy on ANY Americans, Whistle Blower to Stand Trial

The article provides new insight into the warrantless surveillance program exposed by The New York Times in December 2005, including how top officials at the intelligence agency viewed the program. Former NSA Director Michael Hayden, in 2002, reportedly urged a congressional staffer who was concerned about the legality of the program to keep quiet about it, telling her that she could “yell and scream” about the program once the inevitable leaks about it occurred.

nsa operation thinthread classified wire tapping

Asked why the NSA didn’t employ privacy protections in its program, Hayden reportedly told the staffer, “We didn’t need them. We had the power,” and admitted the government was not getting warrants for the domestic surveillance.

Drake tried to get the word out. But now, as a result, he has been charged under the Espionage Act of 1917 and if convicted of all charges could spend the next 35 years of his life in prison. The government says he betrayed his country.

Drake says the only thing he betrayed was NSA mismanagement that undermined national security.

After a long career in U.S. intelligence, Drake never imagined he’d be labeled an enemy of the United States. As a young airman, he flew spy missions in the Cold War; in the Navy, he analyzed intelligence for the joint chiefs at the Pentagon.

Later, he worked for defense contractors in the highly technical world of electronic eavesdropping. He became an expert in sophisticated, top secret computer software programs and ultimately rose, in 2001, to a senior executive job at the NSA.

Part of the failure at the NSA, the largest U.S. intelligence agency, was in its old technology. The agency eavesdrops on the communications of the world. But in the 1990s it was becoming ineffective, overwhelmed by the explosion of digital data.

“Vast volumes of data streaming across all kinds of different networks, wired, wireless, phones, computers, you name it,” Drake explained.

“And what does that look like to NSA? Coming into building in Maryland?”

“Choking on it,” Drake said. “Just incredible amounts. Even just storing it was becoming a challenge.”

Anonymously, Drake contacted Sun reporter Siobhan Gorman and became an unnamed source for her, starting with an article about the failing, over budget NSA programs designed to keep up with growing technology.


NEW Face found on the Surface of Mars

A new feature on the surface of mars that looks quite a bit like a face in profile. Could it be a trick of light and shadow? Is it yet another clue of the ancient race of beings that lived on mars ages ago?

Researcher Mr. Ianneo found this feature while pouring over the
satellite images of the martian surface. it is one in series of rock formations that appear artificial.

There has been pyramids, cities, the big face found in the 70’s and even a monolith on a moon of mars
( see this article for more).

Here are the pictures:

Side note:

Data, recently transferred from the apparatus Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter, which explores Mars, may indicate the existence of underground life on Mars. This conclusion comes after a high-quality processing and data validation from scientists at the Institute of Planetology, located in Tucson, USA.

Meteorology images show mysterious patterns on radar system Possible Haarp or Scalar

* Mysterious shapes appear on radar
* Bureau of Meteorology says it’s interference
* Conspiracy theorists buzzing


THEY are the digital-age equivalent of crop circles – mysterious patterns appearing on the Bureau of Meteorology’s national radar system without any explanation.

And the random images described as red stars, rings of fire and white doughnuts are sending online conspiracy websites into meltdown.

The anomalies first began on January 15 when an “iced doughnut” appeared over Kalgoorlie in WA.


Interference or something else? Tell us in the comment box below.

Satellite imagery showed there was no cloud over the area at the time to explain the unusual phenomenon but farmers’ online comments claimed it was “unusually hot” all day.

It was followed by a bizarre red star over Broome on January 22 and a sinister spiral burst over Melbourne described by amateur radar buffs as the Ring Of Fire Fault.

The Bureau, which did not respond to repeated requests for comment, has acknowledged the anomalies on its popular website.

It has since posted a disclaimer above the national loop feed putting the images down to “occasional interference to the radar data”.

“The Bureau is currently investigating ways to reduce these interferences,” the disclaimer said.

Conspiracy websites, however, have lit up with dozens of breathless theories behind the strange anomalies from alien involvement, secret military testing to government weather modification.

One theory gaining traction online is the belief the US military has expanded its High Frequency Active Auroral Research Program.

Based at a remote research station in Alaska, the HAARP project involves shooting extremely high frequency radar bursts into the upper reaches of the atmosphere to see what happens after particles of the ionosphere are temporarily excited.

Ostensibly the research is to study the effects of solar flares on radio communications and improve missile detection and navigation systems.

But, unlike the failed cloud seeding experiments of yesteryear, conspiracy theorists claim HAARP is engaged in a sophisticated form of weather modification and that testing is also being done from a secret facility near Exmouth in Western Australia.

UK electrical engineer and crop circle expert Colin Andrews said Australians deserve an explanation.

“Until [the Bureau of Meteorology] make a formal and complete response to all the various strange patterns, one can only speculate about what is taking place,” he said.

Mr Andrews urged people concerned by the bizarre radar symbols and strange weather patterns to contact the Bureau of Meteorology or a government representative.

Another theory suggests the anomalies appear before major weather events such as cyclones Olga and Paul and the violent storms which hit Victoria in recent weeks.

Others argue objects in the atmosphere emitting powerful radiation could be behind the mystery.

Massive bird deaths puzzle investigators!

LABARRE — Hundreds of dead and dying birds littered a quarter-mile stretch of highway in Pointe Coupee Parish on Monday as motorists drove over and around them.

State biologists are trying to determine what led to the deaths of the estimated 500 red-winged blackbirds and starlings on La. 1 just down the road from Pointe Coupee Central High School.


The discovery of the dead birds — some of which were lying face down, clumped in groups, while others were face up with their wings outstretched and rigid legs pointing upward — comes just three days after more than 3,000 blackbirds rained down from the sky in Beebe, Ark.

Necropsies performed Monday on the birds in Arkansas showed the birds suffered internal injuries that formed blood clots leading to their deaths, The Associated Press reported.

In Louisiana, biologists with the state Department of Wildlife and Fisheries spent part of the day Monday scooping up some of the birds in Pointe Coupee Parish to be sent for testing at labs in Georgia and Wisconsin.

The remaining carcasses were still on the roadway, on the shoulder and in drainage ditches Monday afternoon as some motorists sped past, flattening birds lying in the roadway, while other drivers slowed down to gawk.

State Wildlife Veterinarian Jim LaCour said he planned to drive to Pointe Coupee to pick up some of the bird carcasses to study.

Lab tests could take several weeks to come up with an explanation for the deaths, and LaCour declined to speculate on possible causes; however, he did say massive bird deaths have been known to occur in the state in the past, albeit in smaller numbers.

“Underlying disease, starvation and cold fronts where birds can’t get their body heat up” have caused similar occurrences “in various species over the years,” he said.

LaCour said some of the bird samples will be sent to the U.S. Geological Survey’s National Wildlife Center in Wisconsin for analysis.

USGS spokesman Paul Slota said Monday afternoon he was unaware of the mass deaths in Louisiana, but he expects bird samples taken from the Arkansas occurrence on New Year’s Eve to arrive Tuesday in Wisconsin.

Slota also declined to speculate on a cause for the deaths, but he said a search of USGS records shows there have been 16 events in the past 30 years involving blackbirds where at least 1,000 of the birds have died seemingly all at once.

“These large events do take place,” he said. “It’s not terribly unusual.”

Abbas Says Israel Must Choose Between Peace and Settlements – BusinessWeek
Abbas Says Israel Must Choose Between Peace and Settlements
Sept. 26 (Bloomberg) — Israel must “choose between peace and the continuation of settlements,” Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas said in a speech at the United Nations in which he pledged continued
ANALYSIS / The winner in the settlement row is NetanyahuHa’aretz
Deadline peril for Mid-East talksBBC News
US scrambles for compromise to keep direct Mideast peace talks goingLos Angeles Times
Reuters –Bloomberg –Hindustan Times
all 2,134 news articles »

Rescue capsule arrives at Chile mine

Rescuers are dubbing the cage that will be used to haul 33 trapped miners back to the surface the “Phoenix Capsule” and say they will take delivery of the first one Saturday afternoon.

PG&E’s Market Cap Drops $1.2B On Calif Pipeline Fire – Wall Street Journal
PG&E's Market Cap Drops $1.2B On Calif Pipeline Fire
Wall Street Journal
NEW YORK (Dow Jones)–PG&E Corp. (PCG), the owner of the natural-gas pipeline that exploded in a suburb of San Francisco, lost nearly $1.18 billion in market capitalization Friday as the fire in California
PG&E Gas Line Blast Kills at Least Four, Destroys 38 HomesBloomberg
Gas official says explosion cause still not clearThe Associated Press
Four Known Dead In San Bruno
Los Angeles Times (blog) –Voice of America –The Washington Independent
all 2,681 news articles »

Obama: Economic recovery has been ‘painfully slow’

President Obama today acknowledged that bouncing back from the recession has been “painfully slow,” but insisted that the economy continues to grow.

Obama to outline $50-billion plan to jumpstart economy – Los Angeles Times

Obama to outline $50-billion plan to jumpstart economy
Los Angeles Times
The White House says the president will outline transportation spending proposals in his Labor Day speech in Minnesota. The package is front-loaded with a cash surge to boost jobs in the short term, officials say. By Kathleen Hennessey, Tribune
Obama proposed $50 billion to rebuild road, rails and
Obama calling for more infrastructure spendingThe Associated Press
Obama plan will bring jobs in 2011-White HouseReuters
BBC News –New York Times –Washington Times
all 829 news articles »