• Israel, given its current brutal occupation and belligerence cannot be salvaged any more than apartheid south Africa could be when as late as 1987 Israel was the only “Western” nation that upheld diplomatic ties with South Africa and was the last country to join the international boycott campaign before the regime collapsed;
• The Israel leadership, with its increasing support of the 700,000 illegal settlers on the occupied West Bank is increasing out of touch with the political, military and economic realities of the Middle East;
• The post Labor government Likud coalition is deeply complicit with and influenced by the settlers’ political and financial power and will increasingly face domestic civil strife which the US government should not associate itself with or become involved with;
• The Arab Spring and Islamic Awakening has, to a major degree, freed a large majority of the 1.2 billion Arab and Muslims to pursue what an overwhelming majority believe is the illegitimate, immoral and unsustainable European occupation of Palestine of the indigenous population;
• Simultaneous with, but predating, rapidly expanding Arab and Muslim power in the region as evidenced by the Arab spring, Islamic Awakening and the ascendancy of Iran, as American power and influence recedes, the US commitment to belligerent oppressive Israel is becoming impossible to defend or execute consistent given paramount US national interests which include normalizing relations with the 57 Islamic countries;
• Gross Israeli interference in the internal affairs of the United States through spying and illegal US arms transfers. This includes supporting more than 60 ‘front organizations’ and approximately 7,500 US officials who do Israel’s bidding and seek to dominate and intimidate the media and agencies of the US government which should no longer be condoned;
• That the United States government no longer has the financial resources, or public support to continue funding Israel. The more than three trillion dollars in direct and indirect aid from US taxpayers to Israel since 1967 is not affordable and is increasingly being objected to by US taxpayers who oppose continuing American military involvement in the Middle East. US public opinion no longer supports funding and executing widely perceived illegal US wars on Israel’s behalf. This view is increasingly being shared by Europe, Asia and the International public;
• Israel’s segregationist occupation infrastructure evidenced by legalized discrimination and increasingly separate and unequal justice systems must no longer be directly or indirectly funded by the US taxpayers or ignored by the US government;
• Israel has failed as a claimed democratic state and continued American financial and political cover will not change its continuing devolution as international pariah state;
• Increasingly, rampant and violent racism exhibited among Jewish settlers in the West Bank is being condoned by the Israeli government to a degree that the Israel government has become its protector and partner;
• The expanding chasm among American Jews objecting to Zionism and Israeli practices, including the killing and brutalizing of Palestinians under Israeli occupation, are gross violations of American and International law and raise questions within the US Jewish community regarding the American responsibility to protect (R2P) innocent civilians under occupation;
• The international opposition to the increasingly apartheid regime can no longer be synchronized with American claimed humanitarian values or US expectations in its bi-lateral relations with the 193 member United Nations.
For full report and astonishing list of authors.
The nuclear industry’s “lingering death” was further accelerated of late by new and on-going shutdowns. At Calvert Cliffs, Maryland on the Chesapeake Bay, a control rod fell into the reactor core, shutting Unit 1, one of two reactors at the site where plans for a third reactor have stalled indefinitely. At the troubled Palisades nuclear power plant in Covert, Michigan, the reactor was idled on August 12 after a leak from a control rod drive mechanism inside the containment building. At the Millstone nuclear plant on the Long Island Sound in Connecticut, Unit 2 was shut down as water temperatures in the Sound soared above 75 degrees. Meanwhile, the Crystal River nuclear station in Florida, has been closed for three years and may never reopen, potentially costing ratepayers – or Duke shareholders – as much as $2.5 billion in repairs if attempts are made to fix the containment dome. The Progress Energy-Duke merger could spell the end of the combined companies‘ nuclear expansion plans in Levy County, Florida and at the North Carolina, Harris site. The two San Onofre reactor units remain shut near San Diego, due to steam generator flaws and malfunctions. And the Ft. Calhoun, Nebraska reactor has never been reopened since flooding devastated the site when the Missouri River crested and surrounded the plant in the summer of 2011, turning it into an atomic island [photo].
Climate change impacts are frequently happening more quickly and at lower levels of global warming than scientists expected, even a decade or two ago. And this week the Arctic has provided a dramatic and deeply disturbing example.
According to IARC/JAXA satellite data at Arctic Sea-ice Monitor from the Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency, the sea-ice extent of 24 August 2012 of 4,189,375 square kilometres broke the previous record in the satellite era of 4,254,531 square kilometres set on 24 August 2007. Back then the were scientific gasps that the sea ice was melting “100 years ahead of schedule”.
[The 24 August figure is subject to revision the next day, the but point remains that record has been broken or will be broken in next day or two. The NSIDC chart using 5-day running averages, so it is a few days behind.]
|JAXA Arctic sea ice extent to 24 August 2012. Updates: http://www.ijis.iarc.uaf.edu/en/home/seaice_extent.htm|
What is astounding is that the record has been broken with three to four weeks of the melt season to go, and that the rate of melting this month is unprecedented in the modern record. Check the chart above (click to enlarge), with the red line mapping 2012 sea-ice extent. The slope of the line is much steeper than in previous years for August.
For full article click here.
Two future climate impacts above all others will overwhelm human efforts to mitigate global warming should temperatures and carbon dioxide levels reach critical levels, which in the latter case we are already close to achieving.
The last time carbon dioxide levels were apparently as high as they are today — and were sustained at those levels — global temperatures were 3 to 6 degrees Celsius higher than they are today, the sea level was approximately 25 to 40 metres higher than today, there was no permanent sea ice cap in the Arctic and very little ice on Antarctica and Greenland.
For full article read here.
GLOBAL NUCLEAR SCENARIO – Jeff Wefferson
The scientist in me must insist that, all things considered, the global nuclear scenario in all its manifestations is unequivocally THE most dangerous threat to life as we know her that exists on this planet, qualitatively and quantitatively, by several orders of magnitude greater than even the astronomical threats from, for example, endocrine disrupting chemicals, electromagnetic pollution, or GE/GM organisms.
Contrary to popular belief, Fukushima is NOT ‘under control'; at least three molten reactor cores continue to eat their way down into the ground, nearing the subterranean water-table. Immeasurable quantities of hundreds of long-lived radio-active isotopes continue to be created from uncontrolled fissioning, released and dispersed into the sea and air. And Japanese officials are incinerating thousands of tons of radio-active debris, lofting the ash into the jet-stream.
CLUSTER OF QUAKES DIRECTLY BENEATH FUKUSHIMA
These could be the precursor events to the massive “hydro-volcanic” explosion predicted to occur when the three molten reactor cores hit the water table. Note also that the live on-site cameras were taken off-line immediately after these quakes.
IMPORTANT: Building Four, which has been toppling and on the verge of collapse for months now, may have gone down. This would be catastrophic, as the building contains/-ed another spent fuel rod pool containing hundreds of thousands of highly radio-active rods, with extremely high plutonium content. IF this pool has spilled, the amount of radio-nuclides entering the environment would increase astronomically.
IF a ‘hydro-volcanic’ explosion occurs, even more HIGHLY ASTRONOMICAL QUANTITIES OF RADIO-NUCLIDES will be blown sky-high, further into the atmosphere than any of the earlier Fukushima explosions. Radiation levels throughout the northern hemisphere would increase dramatically in a short period of time.
“…burning Fukushima’s radioactive rubble is the worst possible way to deal with the problem. That’s because incinerating it releases much more radioactivity into the air, not only magnifying the contamination all over Japan but also sending it up into the jet stream. Once in the jet stream, the radioactive particles travel across the Northern Hemisphere, coming back down to earth with rain, snow, or other precipitation.”
Textbook signs of acute radiation poisoning are already showing up in Alaska seal populations:
How about the people of Japan and the Fukushima that we aren’t seeing? All this is just the mere BEGINNINGS of what is in store for life as we know her. Bio-spheric radiation levels for longer-lived isotopes in the Pacific ocean should more than likely be measured in new units like the ‘EXA-BECQUEREL’, which is 10 to the 18th power Becquerels, or 10 to the 18th particle-decays.
The fundamental task of ALL organizations reporting on radiation levels is to give the impression that they are measuring the levels and informing us, but the reality is that 1) they ALWAYS under-report the levels by factors of thousands or more, and 2) they ALWAYS conclude that THESE ARE SAFE LEVELS OF RADIATION.
The entire ‘scientific edifice’ of a massive bureaucratic UN organization like the IAEA is built on the delusion and/or hoax that ‘safe levels of ionizing radiation’ exist. I just scanned over several dozen articles from their ‘library’ on radiation contamination in the ocean. Almost without exception, the pattern is identical in every article: yes, they admit that some radiation is in fact there, but no, it’s not at all dangerous or anything to be concerned about. It’s all at SAFE LEVELS.
This is the LIE of the EPOCH….just ask any biologist who worked on the Manhattan Project…or “UNSAFE AT ANY DOSE” DR. HELEN CALDICOTT
Climate Change And The Syrian Uprising (By Shahrzad Mohtadi}
A drought unparalleled in recent Syrian history lasted from 2006 to 2010 and led to an unprecedented mass migration of 1.5 million people from farms to urban centers.
Because the Assad regime’s economic policies had largely ignored water issues and sustainable agriculture, the drought destroyed many farming communities and placed great strain on urban populations.
Although not the leading cause of the Syrian rebellion, the drought-induced migration from farm to city clearly contributed to the uprising and serves as a warning of the potential impact of climate change on political stability.
For whole article click here.
For the world’s growing population these are the most fearsome maps you will see.
The United States and many other heavily populated countries face a growing threat of severe and prolonged drought in coming decades, according to a new study by National Center for Atmospheric Research (NCAR) scientist Aiguo Dai. The detailed analysis concludes that warming temperatures associated with climate change will likely create increasingly dry conditions across much of the globe in the next 30 years, possibly reaching a scale in some regions by the end of the century that has rarely, if ever, been observed in modern times.
Geoff Thomas has written: Something receiving little attention world wide that would seem to me very important is the Western Antarctic Ice Shield, (WAIS)
as it could soon contribute over 3 metres of ocean rise and in the long term almost 5 metres, – I have been watching the WAIS situation as possible over the last few years and the situation there has deteriorated, particularly with the instability of the ice shields into the Amundsen sea and the increasing flows from the Thwaites, Smith and Pine Island Glaciers, which are now contributing an increasing portion of the world annual sea rise, – should those Ice Shields blocking flow from those three glaciers into the Amundsen Sea significantly collapse, a process already happening with no reliable prediction method to know how quickly or when, a good metre of sea level rise could happen in a month or two, as the unimpeded glaciers accelerate into the ocean.
Those three glaciers drain area containing ice total that would cause 2 metres in sea level rise if completely melted, so just how much would let go is hard to know, – we do know the Antarctic Archipeligo broke up very quickly.
In my opinion, if one or two of those glaciers accelerated enough to cause say half a metre in sea level rise I believe that would wake up the world without wiping it out, – I find myself actually wishing such a milder calamity would occur, to perhaps cause humanity to act enough to be spared far far worse.
The rich world is causing the famines it claims to be preventing, by George Monbiot, published in the Guardian 14th August 2012
I don’t blame Mo Farah, Pele and Haile Gebrselassie, who lined up, all hugs and smiles, outside Downing Street for a photocall at the prime minister’s hunger summit. Perhaps they were unaware of the way in which they were being used to promote his corporate and paternalistic approach to overseas aid. Perhaps they were also unaware of the crime against humanity over which he presides. Perhaps Cameron himself is unaware of it.
You should by now have heard about the famine developing in the Sahel region of West Africa. Poor harvests and high food prices threaten the lives of some 18 million people. The global price of food is likely to rise still further, as a result of low crop yields in the United States, caused by the worst drought in 50 years. World cereal prices, in response to this disaster, climbed 17% last month.
We have been cautious about attributing such events to climate change: perhaps too cautious. A new paper by James Hansen, head of NASA’s Goddard Institute for Space Studies, shows that there has been a sharp increase in the frequency of extremely hot summers. Between 1951 and 1980 these events affected between 0.1 and 0.2% of the world’s land surface each year. Now, on average, they affect 10%. Hansen explains that “the odds that natural variability created these extremes are minuscule, vanishingly small”. Both the droughts in the Sahel and the US crop failures are likely to be the result of climate change.
But this is not the only sense in which the rich world’s use of fuel is causing the poor to starve. In the United Kingdom, in the rest of the European Union and in the United States, governments have chosen to deploy a cure as bad as the disease. Despite overwhelming evidence of the harm their policy is causing, none of them will change course.
Biofuels are the means by which governments in the rich world avoid hard choices. Rather than raise fuel economy standards as far as technology allows, rather than promoting a shift from driving to public transport, walking and cycling, rather than insisting on better town planning to reduce the need to travel, they have chosen to exchange our wild overconsumption of petroleum for the wild overconsumption of fuel made from crops. No one has to drive less or make a better car: everything remains the same except the source of fuel. The result is a competition between the world’s richest and poorest consumers, a contest between overconsumption and survival. There was never any doubt about which side would win.
I’ve been banging on about this since 2004, and everything I warned of then has happened. The US and the European Union have both set targets and created generous financial incentives for the use of biofuels. The results have been a disaster for people and the planet.
Already, 40% of US corn (maize) production is used to feed cars. The proportion will rise this year as a result of the smaller harvest. Though the market for biodiesel is largely confined to the European Union, it has already captured seven per cent of the world’s output of vegetable oil. The European Commission admits that its target (10% of transport fuels by 2020) will raise world cereal prices by between 3 and 6%. Oxfam estimates that with every 1% increase in the price of food, another 16 million people go hungry.
By 2021, the OECD says, 14% of the world’s maize and other coarse grains, 16% of its vegetable oil and 34% of its sugarcane will be used to make people in the gas guzzling nations feel better about themselves. The demand for biofuel will be met, it reports, partly through an increase in production; partly through a “reduction in human consumption.” The poor will starve so that the rich can drive.
The rich world’s demand for biofuels is already causing a global land grab. ActionAid estimates that European companies have now seized five million hectares of farmland – an area the size of Denmark – in developing countries for industrial biofuel production. Small farmers, growing food for themselves and local markets, have been thrown off their land and destituted. Tropical forests, savannahs and grasslands have been cleared to plant what the industry still calls “green fuels”.
When the impacts of land clearance and the use of nitrogen fertilisers are taken into account, biofuels produce more greenhouse gases than fossil fuels do. The UK, which claims that half the biofuel sold here meets its sustainability criteria, solves this problem by excluding the greenhouse gas emissions caused by changes in land use. Its sustainability criteria are, as a result, worthless.
Even second generation biofuels, made from crop wastes or wood, are an environmental disaster, either extending the cultivated area or removing the straw and stovers which protect the soil from erosion and keep carbon and nutrients in the ground. The combination of first and second generation biofuels – encouraging farmers to plough up grasslands and to leave the soil bare – and hot summers could create the perfect conditions for a new dust bowl.
Our government knows all this. One of its own studies shows that if the European Union stopped producing biofuels, the amount of vegetable oils it exported to world markets would rise by 20% and the amount of wheat by 33%, reducing world prices.
Preparing for the prime minister’s hunger summit on Sunday, the international development department argued that, with a rising population, “the food production system will need to be radically overhauled, not just to produce more food but to produce it sustainably and fairly to ensure that the poorest people have the access to food that they need.” But another government department – transport – boasts on its website that, thanks to its policies, drivers in this country have now used 4.4 billion litres of biofuel. Of this 30% was produced from recycled cooking oil. The rest consists of 3 billion litres of refined energy snatched from the mouths of the people that David Cameron claims to be helping.
Some of those to whom the government is now extending its “nutrition interventions” may have been starved by its own policies. In this and other ways, David Cameron, with the unwitting support of various sporting heroes, is offering charity, not justice. And that is no basis for liberating the poor.