A gunman entered an immigration services center in downtown Binghamton today, shot at least four people and took as many as 41 hostage, according to media reports. Mayor Matthew Ryan told the Binghamton Press & Sun Bulletin that there was a hostage situation involving a gunman with a high-powered rifle. The condition of the victims wasn't immediately clear. A Binghamton police dispatcher who spoke to The Associated Press wouldn't confirm a number of people shot or injured. BBC: 'Multiple casualties' in US siege. NYT: In a Town With Few Immigrants, an Unlikely Horror.
Former US ambassador to Saudi Arabia Charles W. Freeman has cast doubt whether Israel can continue to survive in the Middle East. "I don't see how Israel can continue to survive in the long term as a state in the Middle East if it is not prepared to deal with respect and consideration with its Arab neighbors specially the Palestinians," Freeman said in an exclusive interview with Press TV. In mid March, Freeman turned down Director of National Intelligence (NIC) Dennis C. Blair's offer to be the chairman of the body. Later, Freeman accused the Israeli lobby of being behind his withdrawal.
In what should send a frightening chill down the spine of every blogger, writer, journalist and First Amendment advocate in the United States, Phoenix police raided the home of a blogger who has been highly critical of the department. Jeff Pataky, who runs Bad Phoenix Cops, said the officers confiscated three computers, routers, modems, hard drives, memory cards and everything necessary to continue blogging.
The United States has warned North Korea not to launch its planned rocket after Pyongyang threatened to answer any disruption harshly. In a straight message to Pyongyang on Thursday, the State Department spokesman Robert Wood said, "Don't launch your missile." "We don't want to see this launch go forward," Wood was quoted as saying by CNN. North Korea announced earlier that it would launch satellite Kwangmyongsong-2 into orbit as part of its space program between April 4 and 8. However, the United States, South Korea, and Japan have accused the North of testing a long-range missile, the Taepodong-2 -- capable of reaching Alaska. This is while US experts said earlier this week that recent satellite photos appear to confirm the North has indeed mounted a satellite atop the missile. Washington and Tokyo have deployed anti-missile Aegis destroyers to monitor the possible launch. Japan has also deployed Patriot guided-missile units on land, and says it will try to bring down the rocket should it start falling toward Japanese territory. Al Jazeera: North Korea: any attempt to destroy the missile will be considered an act of war.
Late last February, North Korea announced that it was preparing a rocket launch in order to — allegedly — put a communications satellite into space. While U.S. and allied officials widely believe “the launching is a cover for testing technology for a long-range missile that could carry a nuclear warhead,” Defense Secretary Robert Gates said last Sunday that the U.S. has no plans to militarily disrupt the launch.
The United States will push for new U.N. sanctions against Iran later this year if President Barack Obama's effort to improve relations fails to stop Tehran from pursuing its nuclear program. But plans for a fourth round of international sanctions will remain on hold at least until after Iran's presidential elections in June, diplomats said. Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and several of his military aides told Atlantic magazine this week that the Jewish state would not wait too long. One Israeli military aide was quoted as saying Israel's time lines are now drawn in months, "not years."
Barack Obama's team in tactical retreat at Nato summit. Tensions within alliance at 60th anniversary meeting. European leaders are expected to resist American pressure today to join in the Pentagon's military "surge" in Afghanistan, disappointing Barack Obama. The US president has made the campaign against the Taliban and al-Qaida the centrepiece of his new foreign policy. A Nato summit opening in France and Germany will also struggle to commit civilian resources to match the increased US military deployments, may fail to agree on a new alliance secretary general despite months of negotiation, and is also split over policy towards a resurgent Russia. Al Jazeera: US seeks Nato boost for Afghan war.
The G20 summit concluded Thursday having failed to adopt the principal demands of either the US and Britain, which came to the London gathering advocating coordinated global fiscal stimulus, or a European bloc led by Germany and France, which called for international regulation of major financial institutions. Brown: 'New world order' emerging from global economic crisis (Breitbart) Gordon Brown New World Order Speech (2007) New World Order (You Tube) FCN: G-20 Pact Has New Rules and $1.1 Trillion for Loans and Trade.
Unemployment rate in the US has reached its highest level in 25 years, after 663,000 jobs were lost in March, official figures show. The Bureau of Labor Statistics reported on Friday that the jobless rate spiked to 8.5 percent in March from February's figure of 8.1%. The figure, however, is less than the 741,000 jobs lost in January -- which now stands as the biggest monthly drop in 59 years.
“Bagram detainees who are not Afghan citizens, who were not captured in Afghanistan, and who have been held for an unreasonable amount of time —— here, over six years —— without adequate process may invoke the protections of the Suspension Clause, and hence the privilege of habeas corpus,” Bates wrote.
[A Palestinian woman cooks near the ruins of her house that was destroyed by IOF in 'Abassan village, east of Khan Yunis in the southern Gaza Strip] Israeli Occupation Forces (IOF) Continue Systematic Attacks against Palestinian Civilians and Property in the Occupied Palestinian Territory (OPT): Total siege on the Gaza Strip continues. ►Two members of the Palestinian resistance were killed by IOF in the Gaza Strip. ►A Palestinian woman died of injuries sustained during the recent IOF offensive on the Gaza Strip. ►8 Palestinian civilians, a PCHR field worker, were injured by the IOF gunfire in the West Bank and the Gaza Strip. ►IOF conducted 20 incursions into Palestinian communities in the West Bank and two into the Gaza Strip. ►IOF arrested 27 Palestinian civilians, including 10 children and two women, in the West Bank. ►IOF have continued to impose a total siege on the OPT and have isolated the Gaza Strip from the outside world. ►IOF troops positioned at military checkpoints in the West Bank arrested two Palestinian civilians. ►IOF have continued measures aimed at creating a Jewish demographic majority in east Jerusalem. ►IOF informed a school in Jerusalem that 3 classrooms would be demolished. ►An Israeli court ordered 3 families to evacuate their homes in Silwan village. ►IOF have continued settlement activities in the West Bank and Israeli settlers have continued to attack Palestinian civilians and property.
Yesterday Rachel Maddow interviewed Colin Powell. Here is the section devoted to what Powell refused to call “torture”. Strangely, given some of his other statements since leaving office, he looks like a Bush administration apologist here. At a minimum, he was totally not forthcoming. Since he is one of the few who was present at the crucial Principals meeting who might talk, this is disturbing. Democrats duck Bush torture probe (Online Journal).
Rush Limbaugh Leaves New York: For years New Yorkers have done everything in their power to get Rush Limbaugh to leave town.
Hurrah for the Malawi court that has placed the rights of the child in adoption ahead of gratifying a wealthy celebrity. Celebrity accessories come and go. Once upon a time, it was expensive designer handbags. Then, it was miniature doggies – which were often carried in those handbags. These days, it's children from Africa.
Though it looks like a cardboard tube that got left out in the rain, it's a priceless instrument whose owner changed the world. The mottled brown cylinder on display at The Franklin Institute science museum is a 400-year-old telescope used by Galileo Galilei, whose observations of the heavens ultimately changed the face of not only astronomy but all of science.
Did Humans Evolve From Monkeys? -Humans are (distantly) descended from a fish that was able to escape some of it's competition and predation by escaping the water. By coming out of the water it got more food and was able to escape all the bigger fish. Over time certain species of fish were just better made for escaping to land so they passed on their traits and little by little these traits became more pronounced and they became an entirely separate species, amphibians. Meanwhile, back in the water, there were many other species of fish who survive particularly well right where they are, either as top level predators, or because they feed on something that other fish don't feed upon, or they swim faster, or they have a swim bladder, or whatever.
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