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Trayvon Martin case: special prosecutor decides not to use grand jury

April 9, 2012 by legitgov

Trayvon Martin case: special prosecutor decides not to use grand jury --'There will be no further comment from this office.' 09 Apr 2012 The special prosecutor investigating Trayvon Martin's death has decided against using a grand jury to determine whether any charges should be brought in connection with the Florida teenager's killing. A statement released by Angela Corey's office on Monday did not give a reason for the decision. "From the moment she was assigned, Corey noted she may not need a grand jury," the statement said. Martin, 17, was shot dead in Sanford, Florida, on 26 February by a self-declared neighbourhood watch captain, George Zimmerman.

New Haven Occupiers Lose Court Battle

April 9, 2012 by legitgov

New Haven Occupiers Lose Court Battle 09 Apr 2012 A federal judge decided on Monday afternoon that Occupy New Haven protesters must leave the New Haven Green by noon on Tuesday. The protesters, believed to live in one of the last Occupy encampments in New England, have been living on the Green for 176 days and have recently been in a battle with the city. The New Haven Green is privately owned but maintained by the city. During the last hearing, the judge granted a temporary restraining order, prohibiting the city from clearing Occupiers from the New Haven Green until at least today.

Guenter Grass banned in Israel after controversial poem

April 9, 2012 by legitgov

Guenter Grass banned in Israel after controversial poem 09 Apr 2012 Israel on Sunday declared Guenter Grass persona non grata, deepening a spat with the Nobel-winning author over a poem that deeply criticised the Jewish state and suggested it was as much a danger as Iran. The dispute with Grass, who only late in life admitted to a Nazi past, has drawn new attention to strains in Germany's complicated relationship with the Jewish state — and also focused unwelcome light on Israel's own secretive nuclear program. In a poem called What Must Be Said published last Wednesday, Grass, 84, criticised what he described as Western hypocrisy over Israel's nuclear program and labeled the country a threat to "already fragile world peace" over its belligerent stance on Iran.

US, Afghanistan sign deal on controversial night raids

April 9, 2012 by legitgov

US, Afghanistan sign deal on controversial night raids 08 Apr 2012 The United States and Afghanistan have signed a deal on the controversial night raids carried out by the US-led forces in the southwest of the Asian country. The deal was signed by the commander of the US forces in Afghanistan, General John Allen, and Afghan Defense Minister Abdul Rahim Wardak in the Afghan capital Kabul on Sunday, AFP reported. The Afghan government said that it had been given authority over the raids in line with the agreement. Under the deal, the newly-formed Afghan Special Operations Unit will take the lead in searches of houses and private compounds.

Germany throws weight behind Iran's nuclear energy program

April 9, 2012 by legitgov

Germany throws weight behind Iran's nuclear energy program 09 Apr 2012 German Foreign Minister Guido Westerwelle has underlined Iran's right to develop its nuclear energy program as a member of the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) and a signatory to the nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT). According to a commentary by the top German diplomat in the Sunday paper Bild am Sonntag, Westerwelle stressed on "Iran's right to have nuclear energy for civilian use," IRNA reported. He also made reference to his country's ongoing efforts for a diplomatic solution to the Western dispute over Iran's nuclear issue.

National heat records shattered during March

April 9, 2012 by legitgov

National heat records shattered during March 09 Apr 2012 It's been so warm in the United States this year, especially in March, that national records weren't just broken, they were deep-fried. Temperatures in the lower 48 states were 8.6 degrees above normal for March and 6 degrees higher than average for the first three months of the year, according to calculations by the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration. That far exceeds the old records. The magnitude of how unusual the year has been in the U.S. has alarmed some meteorologists who have warned about global warming.

Pupils are recruited to spy on us and schools are being 'run like totalitarian regimes', say teachers

April 9, 2012 by legitgov

Pupils are recruited to spy on us during our lessons and schools are being 'run like totalitarian regimes', say teachers 08 Apr 2012 (UK) Pupils are being 'actively recruited' by schools to spy on their teachers in the classroom, a union has warned. They are being used as 'management tools' to carry out covert - and even open - surveillance of members of staff, it was claimed. Chris Keates, general secretary of the National Association of Schoolmasters Union of Women Teachers, condemned the practice... adding: 'We've had practices ranging from children sitting at the back of classrooms, watching teachers with check lists, to unacceptable covert practices where children have been identified before a lesson starts by management.'

Police probe possible racial motive in Tulsa killings

April 9, 2012 by legitgov

Police probe possible racial motive in Tulsa killings --Tulsa police arrested 2 early Sunday 08 Apr 2012 Police are investigating whether the shootings of five African-Americans in Tulsa, Oklahoma, were a hate crime after the weekend arrests of two white suspects in the case, local authorities said Sunday. Jake England, 19, and Alvin Watts, 32, are scheduled to be arraigned Monday morning. The shootings left three dead and two wounded. Both suspects are charged with three counts of murder and two counts of shooting with intent to kill, police said.

Rendition ordeal that raises new questions about secret trials

April 9, 2012 by legitgov

Special report: Rendition ordeal that raises new questions about secret trials By Ian Cobain 08 Apr 2012 In 2004, Fatima Bouchar and her husband, Abdel Hakim Belhaj, were detained en route to the UK, and rendered to Libya. This is the story of their imprisonment, and the trail of evidence that reveals the involvement of the British government.

Polar bears have symptoms of mystery disease: U.S. agency

April 8, 2012 by legitgov

Polar bears have symptoms of mystery disease: U.S. agency 06 Apr 2012 Symptoms of a mysterious disease that has killed scores of seals off Alaska and infected walruses are now showing up in polar bears, the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) said on Friday. Nine polar bears from the Beaufort Sea region near Barrow were found with patchy hair loss and oozing sores on their skin, similar to conditions found in diseased seals and walruses, the agency said in a statement. Preliminary studies showed that radiation poisoning is not the cause [?], temporarily ruling out a theory that the animals were sickened by contamination from the Fukushima nuclear plant in Japan.

CIA stealth drones made hundreds of passes over Iran

April 8, 2012 by legitgov

CIA stealth drones made hundreds of passes over Iran 07 Apr 2012 More than three years ago, the CIA [illegally] dispatched a stealth surveillance drone into the skies over Iran. The bat-winged aircraft penetrated more than 600 miles inside the country, captured images of Iran's nuclear facility at Qom and then flew home. CIA stealth drones scoured dozens of sites throughout Iran, making hundreds of passes, before a version of the RQ-170 crashed inside Iran's borders in December. The surveillance has been part of what current and former U.S. officials describe as an intelligence surge that is aimed at Iran's nuclear program... The effort has included ramped-up eavesdropping by the National Security Agency, formation of an Iran task force among satellite-imagery analysts and an expanded network of spies, current and former U.S. officials said. [Gee, how would USociopaths react if another country dispatched hundreds of drones to illegally spy on America I wonder what the hypocritical sacks of sh*t at the Pentagon would say and do? --LRP]

Black community on edge after 5 shootings in Oklahoma

April 8, 2012 by legitgov

Black community on edge after 5 shootings in Oklahoma 08 Apr 2012 Tulsa's African-American community was on edge Saturday after police said one or more gunmen, in apparently random shootings, had killed three black men and critically injured two more as they walked down Tulsa streets. Saturday afternoon, the FBI said it has now joined Tulsa police to determine whether the attacks violated federal hate-crime laws. The U.S. Marshals Service also is involved. Officer Jason Willingham said Saturday that police are searching for a white man driving a white pickup spotted in the area of three of the shootings.

'Expect more online attacks' Anonymous hackers say

April 8, 2012 by legitgov

'Expect more online attacks' Anonymous hackers say 08 Apr 2012 The hacking group Anonymous says it will launch online attacks every weekend in the wake of allegations it disrupted access to the Home Office website. Anonymous Twitter messages warned of the attack on 4 April, and said: "EXPECT a DDOS (Distributed Denial of Service) every Saturday on the UK Government sites." The website became inaccessible around 21:00 BST on Saturday, and was patchy from 05:00 on Sunday.

Japan deploys missile defences in Tokyo

April 8, 2012 by legitgov

Japan deploys missile defences in Tokyo 08 Apr 2012 Japan has deployed missile batteries in Tokyo and dispatched destroyers carrying interceptor missiles as it boosts its defences against a planned North Korean rocket launch this month. Pyongyang says it will launch a satellite for peaceful scientific research between April 12 and 16 to mark the 100th anniversary on April 15 of the birth of founding leader Kim Il-Sung. But the United States and its allies say it is a disguised missile test [because that's what USociopaths do] and that the launch would contravene UN sanctions aimed at curbing North Korea's missile programme. Patriot missiles were Saturday deployed at three military facilities in the greater Tokyo region and the defence ministry dispatched three Aegis destroyers carrying sea-based interceptor missiles, reportedly to the East China sea.

Fukushima radiation found in California kelp

April 8, 2012 by legitgov

Fukushima radiation found in California kelp --Largest concentration was about 250 times higher than levels found in kelp before disaster. 07 Apr 2012 Kelp off California was contaminated with short-lived radioisotopes a month after Japan's Fukushima Dai-ichi nuclear plant accident, a sign that the spilled radiation reached the state's coastline, according to a new scientific study. Scientists from CSU Long Beach tested giant kelp collected off Orange County, Santa Cruz and other locations after the March 2011 accident and detected radioactive iodine, which was released from the damaged nuclear reactor. Giant kelp concentrates radioactive iodine - for every 1 molecule in the water, there would be 10,000 in its tissues.

Armed Neo-Nazis Patrolling Sanford, Say They Are 'Prepared' for Post-Trayvon Martin Violence

April 8, 2012 by legitgov

Armed Neo-Nazis Patrolling Sanford, Say They Are 'Prepared' for Post-Trayvon Martin Violence 06 Apr 2012 Neo-Nazis are currently conducting heavily armed patrols in and around Sanford, Florida and are "prepared" for violence in the case of a race riot. The patrols are to protect "white citizens in the area who are concerned for their safety" in the wake of the Trayvon Martin shooting last month, says Commander Jeff Schoep of the National Socialist Movement. The patrols are comprised of between 10 and 20 locals and "volunteers" from across the state, including some from Miami, Schoep tells Riptide. He couldn't go into specifics on what kind of firepower, exactly, the patrols had with them.

Anonymous attacks UK Prime Minister and Home Office websites with DDoS assault

April 7, 2012 by legitgov

Anonymous attacks UK Prime Minister and Home Office websites with DDoS assault 07 Apr 2012 Anonymous hacktivists have launched a distributed denial-of-service attack against the websites of 10 Downing Street and the British government's Home Office website. The hacktivists, operating under the Anonymous banner, say that they have launched the action in support of Pentagon hacker Gary McKinnon and TVShack's Richard O'Dwyer who face extradition from the UK to the United States. The attackers have rallied others to join the denial-of-service attack via social networks such as Twitter. [<g>] One message read: TANGO DOWN - http://www.homeoffice.gov.uk For your draconian surveillance proposals! Told you to #ExpectUs!

Walker signs bill barring workers from collecting damages for employment discrimination

April 7, 2012 by legitgov

Walker signs bill barring workers from collecting damages for employment discrimination 06 Apr 2012 Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker has signed a bill that prohibits workers from collecting damages in employment discrimination cases. Under current state law, employees who prevail in discrimination lawsuits can collect between $50,000 and $300,000 in compensatory and punitive damages. The Republican bill blocks anyone from collecting such damages in employment discrimination suits. [Coward] Walker signed the bill Thursday but announced the signing Friday.

David Cameron defends secret courts and surveillance plans

April 7, 2012 by legitgov

David Cameron defends secret courts and surveillance plans 04 Apr 2012 David Cameron has defended plans to create a new generation of secret courts and to extend powers to monitor the public's emails, phone calls and social media communications, saying the government needed to take every step to keep the country safe. The prime minister had been asked about criticisms of the proposals levelled by his deputy, Nick Clegg, and the joint committee on human rights. Earlier the justice secretary, Ken Clarke, defended the secret courts plan arguing it would make the system more accountable and more conducive to intelligence-sharing with other countries.

WikiLeaks chief: I've made 75 press complaints

April 7, 2012 by legitgov

WikiLeaks chief: I've made 75 press complaints 05 Apr 2012 WikiLeaks chief Julian Assange said Thursday he had made 75 official complaints over what he described as shoddy reporting on his long-running extradition battle. Online activist Assange itemized the complaints in a submission to Britain's judge-led inquiry into media ethics, which is examining the standards and practices of the country's scandal-tarred press. He said in a statement published by the inquiry Thursday that he had been subjected to "ongoing, widespread inaccurate and negative media coverage" and that Britain's press watchdog had failed to protect him.

Ex-CIA Officer Indicted for Alleged Leaks, False Statements

April 7, 2012 by legitgov

Ex-CIA Officer Indicted for Alleged Leaks, False Statements 06 Apr 2012 Former CIA officer John Kiriakou was charged in a five-count indictment Thursday for allegedly disclosing classified information to journalists and lying to the CIA about information he included in his book, "The Reluctant Spy: My Secret Life in the CIA's War on Terror." The indictment charges Kiriakou with one count of disclosing the identity of a covert CIA officer, three counts of disclosing sensitive national defense information, and one count of making false statements to the CIA's Publications Review Board in an effort to trick the board into allowing him to publish classified information in his book. The information was related to individuals allegedly involved in controversial CIA interrogation techniques that some have termed are torture.

California nuclear plant shut indefinitely

April 7, 2012 by legitgov

California nuclear plant shut indefinitely --In winter, federal regulators could not identify how much radioactive gas leaked or why it happened 07 Apr 2012 A large Southern California nuclear plant is out of commission indefinitely, and will remain so until there is an understanding of what caused problems at two of its generators and an effective plan to address the issues, the nation's top nuclear regulator said Friday. Gregory Jaczko, chairman of the U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission, refused to give a timetable as to when the San Onofre nuclear plant could resume operation. The power plant has been shut since this winter, when radioactive gas escaped from a steam generator during a water leak.

Navy jet crash: Don't breathe the air, don't touch the debris

April 7, 2012 by legitgov

Navy jet crash: Don't breathe the air, don't touch the debris 06 Apr 2012 Virginia Beach residents were warned Friday to avoid the site of a Navy jet crash lest they come in contact with toxic materials sent swirling into the air upon impact. They were also warned to leave alone any debris they might find from the downed aircraft -- and to call 911 to report it. A Navy official said the jet suffered "catastrophic engine failure" shortly after takeoff from Naval Air Station Oceana, causing the F/A-18 Hornet to drop out of the sky, as one witness described it. The crash occurred around 12:30 p.m. Eastern time, and the two pilots aboard ejected safely.

Navy held recent drill to prepare for 'exact' events of Va. crash

April 6, 2012 by legitgov

Holy coincidence, Batman! Navy held recent drill to prepare for 'exact' events of Va. crash 06 Apr 2012 The US Navy held a drill on 15 December to prepare for the 'exact' situation that took place Friday, regarding the F/A-18 Navy jet crash. (No link, Fox News, 7PM ET live broadcast)

Radioactive fluid leaks at French nuclear reactor

April 6, 2012 by legitgov

Radioactive fluid leaks at French nuclear reactor 05 Apr 2012 Radioactive cooling fluid leaked at a French nuclear reactor Thursday following two fires, but the spillage was collected in special tanks, officials said. A reactor at the power plant in Penly on the English Channel near the port of Dieppe shut down automatically after two small fires broke out Thursday, the plant's operator EDF said. Firefighters easily extinguished the blazes but a cooling pump was damaged, in turn causing a joint to leak radioactive water into collection tanks located inside the reactor building, EDF said.

F/A-18 Navy jet crashes into apartments in Virginia

April 6, 2012 by legitgov

F/A-18 Navy jet crashes into apartments in Virginia 06 Apr 2012 A Navy jet crashed Friday into some apartments near Virginia Beach, Virginia, sending flames and thick black smoke into the air, a military spokesman and a witness said. At least two people were hurt Friday, a hospital spokeswoman said. The pilot and a person who was on the ground were being treated for injuries, but the nature and extent of those injuries were not immediately clear, the spokeswoman said. Two apartment buildings were on fire, CNN affiliate WTKR reported, citing witnesses. The F/A-18 was from Naval Air Station Oceana in Virginia Beach, the Federal Aviation Administration said.

'Long Live Zimmerman' Spray-Painted On Ohio State's Black Cultural Center

April 6, 2012 by legitgov

'Long Live Zimmerman' Spray-Painted On Ohio State's Black Cultural Center 06 Apr 2012 Officials say graffiti spray-painted on the wall of a black cultural center at Ohio State University likely stems from the nationwide unrest over the fatal shooting of a black Florida teenager. The graffiti painted early Thursday said "Long Live Zimmerman." Columbus media outlets report that officials believe it's a reference to George Zimmerman, the neighborhood watch captain accused of killing 17-year-old Trayvon Martin in Sanford, Fla., in February. Larry Williamson, executive director of The Frank W. Hale Black Cultural Center, wants the person that did this brought to justice.

CIA agent who publicly opposed waterboarding charged with leaking classified secrets to journalists

April 6, 2012 by legitgov

CIA agent who publicly opposed waterboarding charged with leaking classified secrets to journalists 06 Apr 2012 A high profile CIA agent made famous by his public opposition to waterboarding has been indicted by a grand jury for leaking government secrets to reporters. John C. Kiriakou is accused of telling journalists the name of another operative and his role in the capture of 'al-Qaida' financier Abu Zybaydah shortly after the September 11 terrorist attacks. The indictment of Kiriakou, returned by a federal grand jury in Alexandria, Virginia, is part of an aggressive Justice Department crackdown on leakers and is one of a half-dozen such cases opened during the Obama administration. [Too bad Obusha doesn't prosecute the waterboarders instead of the leakers. --LRP]

LulzSec hacker pleads guilty

April 6, 2012 by legitgov

LulzSec hacker pleads guilty 05 Apr 2012 LulzSec hacker Cody Kretsinger has pleaded guilty to charges of taking part in an extensive computer breach against Sony. Kretsinger, 24, pleaded guilty in a California federal court to one count each of conspiracy and unauthorised impairment of a protected computer in a deal with prosecutors. "I joined LulzSec, your honour, at which point we gained access to the Sony Pictures website," Kretsinger, who went by the hacking moniker "Recursion," told the judge after entering his guilty plea. Kretsinger faces up to 15 years in prison but it is thought likely he will receive a much lower sentence.

Rush Limbaugh: Olbermann a '$50 lampshade'

April 6, 2012 by legitgov

Rush Limbaugh: Olbermann a '$50 lampshade' 05 Apr 2012 Rush Limbaugh on Wednesday mocked Keith Olbermann for referring to himself as a "$10 million chandelier" this week, by using a different household item to describe the recently fired TV host – "a $50 lampshade." In an appearance on "Late Show with David Letterman" Tuesday night, Olbermann - whose show on Current TV was terminated last week – told the comedian that he considered himself a "$10 million chandelier" that didn't have the proper house to be put in. "Keith, you are not a $10 million chandelier. You're the guy wearing a $50 lampshade sitting in the corner of the room that nobody else wants to go in," Limbaugh said, according to a transcript of his show.

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