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Hersh: Children sodomized at Abu Ghraib, on tape

Socialism OnLine! -

URL: http://www.salon.com/2004/07/15/hersh_7/

If you think the torture report is bad, in 2004 Seymour Hersh alleged the Pentagon possessed videotape of children being raped in front of their mothers by Army Interrogators. It was later confirmed.

(See also: Classified Evidence: US Soldiers Raped Boys In Front Of Their Mothers.)

Topic(s): Geography:  Vote Up/Down

ZTE launches Star 2 smartphone with enhanced voice controls

Liliputing -

Voice control features have been available for smartphones for a while, letting you do things like search the web or make phone calls just by talking to your phone. But the ZTE Star 2 takes things a bit further. You can unlock and turn on this 5 inch Android phone, take a picture, play music, […]

ZTE launches Star 2 smartphone with enhanced voice controls is a post from: Liliputing

Schneier Explains How To Protect Yourself From Sony-Style Attacks (You Can't)

Slashdot -

phantomfive writes: Bruce Schneier has an opinion piece discussing the Sony attack. He says, "Your reaction to the massive hacking of such a prominent company will depend on whether you're fluent in information-technology security. If you're not, you're probably wondering how in the world this could happen. If you are, you're aware that this could happen to any company." He continues, "The worst invasion of privacy from the Sony hack didn’t happen to the executives or the stars; it happened to the blameless random employees who were just using their company’s email system. Because of that, they’ve had their most personal conversations—gossip, medical conditions, love lives—exposed. The press may not have divulged this information, but their friends and relatives peeked at it. Hundreds of personal tragedies must be unfolding right now. This could be any of us." Related: the FBI has officially concluded that the North Korean government is behind the attack.

Read more of this story at Slashdot.








Thousands of wolves, bears and lynx striding Europe alongside humans

RT -

There are about 17,000 of them living in 22 countries. They are followed by 12,000 wolves, 9,000 Eurasian lynx and 1,250 wolverines. The latter live in the cold northern areas of Scandinavia.

The research, which was carried out in all countries in Europe except for Ukraine, Russia and Belarus, and published in the Journal Nature, found that the total area with a permanent presence of at least one large carnivore species in Europe covers 1,529,800 square kilometers which is roughly one-third of mainland Europe “and the area of occasional presence is expanding.”

Only Belgium, Denmark, the Netherlands and Luxembourg in mainland Europe – as well as Britain – have no breeding populations of at least one large carnivore species.

All four of the carnivores are living and reproducing in the natural environment and not in protected areas such as national parks. And the scientists say it’s partly because of the predators living next to people that their populations are rising.

In contrast in the United States, which has vast areas of wilderness, which are by and large separated from humans, wolf numbers are half what they are currently in Europe.

“Our results are not the first to reveal that large carnivores can coexist with people but they show that the land sharing model for large carnivores (coexistence model) can be successful on a continental scale,” the authors wrote.

However, wolves and other predators and humans do not make for peaceful neighbors; French sheep farmers recently staged a protest in Paris, as many of them are facing extreme financial hardship as a result of wolves attacking their flocks.

READ MORE: French farmers take sheep flocks to Eiffel Tower to protest 'govt-protected' wolves

“I’m not saying it’s a peace and love story – coexistence often means conflict – but it’s important to manage that conflict, keep it at a low level and resolve the problems it causes,” Guillaume Chapman, from Sweden’s University of Agricultural Sciences, told the Guardian.

But it’s the political will in Europe, which has been key to the revival of species, which were once almost wiped out from the continent, as they are being intentionally reintroduced.

Thousands of wolves, bears and lynx striding Europe alongside humans

RT -

There are about 17,000 of them living in 22 countries. They are followed by 12,000 wolves, 9,000 Eurasian lynx and 1,250 wolverines. The latter live in the cold northern areas of Scandinavia.

The research, which was carried out in all countries in Europe except for Ukraine, Russia and Belarus, and published in the Journal Nature, found that the total area with a permanent presence of at least one large carnivore species in Europe covers 1,529,800 square kilometers which is roughly one-third of mainland Europe “and the area of occasional presence is expanding.”

Only Belgium, Denmark, the Netherlands and Luxembourg in mainland Europe – as well as Britain – have no breeding populations of at least one large carnivore species.

All four of the carnivores are living and reproducing in the natural environment and not in protected areas such as national parks. And the scientists say it’s partly because of the predators living next to people that their populations are rising.

In contrast in the United States, which has vast areas of wilderness, which are by and large separated from humans, wolf numbers are half what they are currently in Europe.

“Our results are not the first to reveal that large carnivores can coexist with people but they show that the land sharing model for large carnivores (coexistence model) can be successful on a continental scale,” the authors wrote.

However, wolves and other predators and humans do not make for peaceful neighbors; French sheep farmers recently staged a protest in Paris, as many of them are facing extreme financial hardship as a result of wolves attacking their flocks.

READ MORE: French farmers take sheep flocks to Eiffel Tower to protest 'govt-protected' wolves

“I’m not saying it’s a peace and love story – coexistence often means conflict – but it’s important to manage that conflict, keep it at a low level and resolve the problems it causes,” Guillaume Chapman, from Sweden’s University of Agricultural Sciences, told the Guardian.

But it’s the political will in Europe, which has been key to the revival of species, which were once almost wiped out from the continent, as they are being intentionally reintroduced.

Russia’s military doctrine remains ‘solely defensive’ – Putin

RT -

The Russian president made the comments in a speech at the Ministry of Defense meeting at the newly established National Defense Control Center in Moscow.

“Our military doctrine does not change despite all odds. It has, as is well known, an exclusively defensive character, but we’re going to assert our security consistently and rigorously,” Putin said.

Russia is set to develop its sea-, land- and air-based nuclear deterrent, the president said.

READ MORE: Pentagon confirms military buildup along Russian borders for ‘peace and stability’

“In 2015 our strategic nuclear forces will get 50 new intercontinental ballistic missiles. You could imagine what a powerful force it is,” Putin said, revealing that by 2021 all ground-based components of the nuclear deterrence force are going to be replaced with modern systems.

Russian Defense Minister Sergey Shoigu said at the same meeting that 38 new ICBMs came into service in 2014, of them 22 for the naval component of the nuclear deterrence force.

President Putin ordered the modernization of all strategic bombers currently operated by Russia’s Air Force, specifically the Tupolev Tu-95, Tu-160 and Tu-22, with the next generation strategic bomber being developed.

READ MORE: 3rd Russian Borei-class nuclear sub raises its colors

By the end of 2015 Russia is set to finalize the deployment of its Space Forces.

The Defense Minister also said that Russian military are reestablishing themselves in the Arctic after decades of absence, with at least four bases being rebuilt right away.

Shoigu announced that Russia’s military forces in Crimea have been beefed up and are now a “self-sufficient force grouping.”

Putin was also briefed by the generals on the venue – a brand new National Defense Control Center (NDCC), which is Russian military’s principal control installation.

The center's computing capabilities are “three times greater than those of the Pentagon, while the stored data capacity is almost 20 times larger," said NDCC head Lieut-Gen. Mizintzev.

READ MORE: US nuke atrophy: Mismanagement stripping nation of nuclear superpower status?

The system allows commanders to see any unit of the Russian Armed Forces in real time, and simulate a crisis situation in any part of the world. The system's strong point is numerous back-up data processing centers located across Russia.

The installation is ready to host and ensure the simultaneous operation of the country's General Staff, other military institutions, National Security Council and federal executive bodies.

Russia’s military doctrine remains ‘solely defensive’ – Putin

RT -

The Russian president made the comments in a speech at the Ministry of Defense meeting at the newly established National Defense Control Center in Moscow.

“Our military doctrine does not change despite all odds. It has, as is well known, an exclusively defensive character, but we’re going to assert our security consistently and rigorously,” Putin said.

Russia is set to develop its sea-, land- and air-based nuclear deterrent, the president said.

READ MORE: Pentagon confirms military buildup along Russian borders for ‘peace and stability’

“In 2015 our strategic nuclear forces will get 50 new intercontinental ballistic missiles. You could imagine what a powerful force it is,” Putin said, revealing that by 2021 all ground-based components of the nuclear deterrence force are going to be replaced with modern systems.

Russian Defense Minister Sergey Shoigu said at the same meeting that 38 new ICBMs came into service in 2014, of them 22 for the naval component of the nuclear deterrence force.

President Putin ordered the modernization of all strategic bombers currently operated by Russia’s Air Force, specifically the Tupolev Tu-95, Tu-160 and Tu-22, with the next generation strategic bomber being developed.

READ MORE: 3rd Russian Borei-class nuclear sub raises its colors

By the end of 2015 Russia is set to finalize the deployment of its Space Forces.

The Defense Minister also said that Russian military are reestablishing themselves in the Arctic after decades of absence, with at least four bases being rebuilt right away.

Shoigu announced that Russia’s military forces in Crimea have been beefed up and are now a “self-sufficient force grouping.”

Putin was also briefed by the generals on the venue – a brand new National Defense Control Center (NDCC), which is Russian military’s principal control installation.

The center's computing capabilities are “three times greater than those of the Pentagon, while the stored data capacity is almost 20 times larger," said NDCC head Lieut-Gen. Mizintzev.

READ MORE: US nuke atrophy: Mismanagement stripping nation of nuclear superpower status?

The system allows commanders to see any unit of the Russian Armed Forces in real time, and simulate a crisis situation in any part of the world. The system's strong point is numerous back-up data processing centers located across Russia.

The installation is ready to host and ensure the simultaneous operation of the country's General Staff, other military institutions, National Security Council and federal executive bodies.

As Hollywood Funds a SOPA Revival Through State Officials, Google (And The Internet) Respond

EFF's Deeplinks -

Almost three years ago, millions of Internet users joined together to defeat the Stop Online Piracy Act (SOPA), a disastrous bill that would have balkanized the Internet in the name of copyright and trademark enforcement. Over the past week, we've been tracking a host of revelations about an insidious campaign to accomplish the goals of SOPA by other means. The latest development: Google has filed a federal lawsuit seeking to block enforcement of an overbroad and punitive subpoena seeking an extraordinary quantity of information about the company and its users.  The subpoena, Google warns, is based on legal theories that could have disastrous consequences for the open Internet.

The subpoena is was issued after months of battles between Google and Mississippi Attorney General Jim Hood. According to the lawsuit, Hood has been using his office to pressure Google to restrict content accessible through the search engine.  Indeed, among other things, he sought "a “24-hour link through which attorneys general[]” can request that links to particular websites be removed from search results "within hours,” presumably without judicial review or an opportunity for operators of the target websites to be heard."  As Google states, "The Attorney General may prefer a pre-filtered Internet—but the Constitution and Congress have denied him the authority to mandate it."

The subpoena itself is bad enough, but here's what's really disturbing: the real force behind it appears to be the Motion Picture Association of America (MPAA), which has been quietly supporting state-level prosecutors in various efforts to target the company and the open Internet. The clear aim of that campaign—dubbed "Project Goliath" in MPAA emails made public through the recent high profile breach of Sony's corporate network—is to achieve the goals of the defeated SOPA blacklist proposal without the public oversight of the legislative process. Previously, Google had responded with a sharply worded notice and a petition titled #ZombieSOPA.

According to Google, the MPAA intended to use the state prosecutors' offices to bring about the aims of SOPA after the bill's embarrassing public defeat nearly three years ago. In January 2012, legislators quickly distanced themselves from SOPA after a widespread online "blackout" campaign drew attention to the way the proposed law could be misused for censoring lawful speech. In addition, EFF helped coordinate a series of letters signed by prominent computer scientists explaining how the proposed blacklist technique—censoring at the DNS level—could undermine the fundamental architecture of the Internet, destabilizing core components in an ill considered effort to reduce copyright infringement.

The MPAA learned a lesson from that campaign, but it appears it was the wrong one. Instead of recognizing that an online blacklist was a fundamentally unworkable idea, they decided that it could only be pushed in secrecy. In one email, MPAA's Global General Counsel Steven Fabrizio includes a section titled "Technical Analyses," that suggests they did not seriously consider the technical concerns highlighted during the SOPA backlash:

Very little systematic work has been completed to understand the technical issues related to site blocking in the US and/or alternative measures IPSs might adopt. We will identify and retain a consulting technical expert to work with us to study these issues. In this context, we will explore which options might lead ISPs to cooperate with us.

Neither the MPAA nor the state attorneys general in question have challenged the authenticity of the leaked documents, which clearly outline a widespread campaign by the MPAA to direct at least $500,000, and potentially up to $1.175 million, to these political offices and towards these goals.

This coordinated campaign by the MPAA follows a trend of lobbyists funneling money and gifts to state attorneys general, who are subject to fewer restrictions and disclosure requirements than elected officials at the national level. The New York Times reported on this broader trend in a series of extensive articles beginning last October. In fact, one leaked Sony email consists of an MPAA official circulating the first in that series to 62 others, including numerous studio executivess and representatives of the Recording Industry Association of America (RIAA).

Some of the state attorneys on the receiving end of these benefits have undertaken legal efforts against Google, sending formal letters and subpoena-like documents called civil investigative demands (CIDs), both of which appear to be drafted in some cases by the MPAA or their attorneys at the firm Jenner & Block. Mississippi's Jim Hood of Mississippi in particular sent the current controversial 79-page subpoena to Google in October as a follow-up to a stern letter last year; a New York Times report demonstrates that the letter was drafted by the MPAA's law firm and delivered largely unedited to Google.

To be clear though: Google may be the target today, but the real target is the open Internet, which depends on free and uncensored platforms to survive.  Any campaign to censor the Internet is cause for concern—and a secret one is all the more so. The public has clearly and unambiguously denounced the SOPA effort; it's shameful to see its backers try to revive its goals by dodging the scrutiny of the democratic process.

Related Issues: Fair Use and Intellectual Property: Defending the BalanceSOPA/PIPA: Internet Blacklist Legislation
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