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Canadian town center 'wiped out' as freight train carrying hundreds of tons of crude oil derails and explodes

Canadian town center 'wiped out' as freight train carrying hundreds of tons of crude oil derails and explodes --First confirmed victim of freight train fire --About 30 buildings destroyed in Lac Megantic --Oil from train cars is spilling into nearby river 06 Jul 2013 The center of a Quebec town has been wiped out, according to the mayor, after a runaway freight train carrying crude oil derailed and exploded in a fireball at 1am on Saturday. One person was killed and about 30 buildings were destroyed as the unmanned train exploded. About 60 people are believed to be missing, but the force of the fire has slowed rescue efforts. Parts of the town were evacuated in the early hours as fireballs shot several metres in the air, flames spread to nearby homes and thick acrid smoke filled the air in Lac-Megantic, which is close to the Maine border and about 250km from Montreal.

Russians signal openness to Venezuela's offer to shelter Snowden

Russians signal openness to Venezuela's offer to shelter Snowden 06 Jul 2013 Venezuela's offer of asylum for NSA whistleblower Edward Snowden got a thumbs up from key members of the Russian parliament Saturday, even as the Kremlin and Foreign Ministry kept a studious silence. "Sanctuary for Snowden in Venezuela would be the best decision," Alexei Pushkov, head of the foreign affairs committee of Russia's lower house of parliament, wrote in a tweet Saturday. Another parliamentary deputy and member of Pushkov's committee, Alexander Babakov, told the Russian News Service on Saturday that he thinks the offer of asylum Friday from Venezuelan President Nicoláss Maduro was Snowden's best recourse.

'Anonymous' Targets Hawthorne Police Department for Fatally Shooting Dog

'Anonymous' Targets Hawthorne Police Department for Fatally Shooting Dog 05 Jul 2013 The group "Anonymous" -- self-described "hack-tivists" -- has targeted the Hawthorne Police department in response to authorities fatally shooting a man's dog. The video of that dog's shooting has gone viral with more than 4 million hits on YouTube. CBS2 said the cyber threat is being taken seriously and Hawthorne Police are on high alert. The FBI and LA County Sheriff’s are both monitoring social media to investigate any threats. The City of Hawthorne's website was hacked Monday and it's been down ever since. [LOL! Guess the monitoring is workin' so good...]

Mass. lawmakers weigh bills responding to Newtown

Mass. lawmakers weigh bills responding to Newtown 04 Jul 2013 Massachusetts lawmakers are still grappling with dozens of gun-related bills more than six months after a shooting rampage left 20 first-graders and six educators dead in neighboring Connecticut. Those bills include proposals like Gov. Deval Patrick's legislation to tighten access to high-powered rounds of ammunition, create four new types of firearms-related crimes and mandate that buyers undergo background checks before purchasing weapons at gun shows.

Edward Snowden offered asylum by Venezuelan president

Edward Snowden offered asylum by Venezuelan president --Nicolás Maduro says whistleblower has 'told the truth in spirit of rebellion', while Nicaragua also weighs asylum offer 05 Jul 2013 Venezuelan president Nicolás Maduro said on Friday he had decided to offer asylum to former US intelligence contractor Edward Snowden, who has petitioned several countries to avoid capture by Washington. "In the name of America's dignity...I have decided to offer humanitarian asylum to Edward Snowden," Maduro told a televised military parade marking Venezuela's independence day. Maduro said Venezuela was ready to offer him sanctuary, and that the details Snowden had revealed of a US spy program had exposed the nefarious schemes of the US "empire". "He has told the truth, in the spirit of rebellion, about the US spying on the whole world," Maduro said.

Venezuela offers asylum to U.S. intel leaker Snowden, state news says

Venezuela offers asylum to U.S. intel leaker Snowden, state news says 05 Jul 2013 Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro has offered asylum to U.S. intelligence leaker Edward Snowden, the state-run AVN news agency reported Friday, without offering details. The report came shortly after Nicaraguan President Daniel Ortega said he would grant Snowden asylum in his country "if the circumstances permit." Another country that has seemed supportive of Snowden's quest for a new home is Bolivia, whose president is now expressing anger at the United States over an incident involving the presidential plane and a rumor about Snowden.

Snowden will not get citizenship in Iceland

Snowden will not get citizenship in Iceland :( by Birgitta Jónsdóttir 05 Jul 2013 I have been waiting for some time to get an official request from Edward Snowden in regard for application for Icelandic citizenship. Yesterday the request came, and me and members of 4 parties in the Icelandic parliament put forward a bill urging the parliament to process his request... We had election April 27th this year. After elections we always have summer parliament session. The newly elected government is very different from the last government that was elected in the wake of the financial collapse. This new government intentions is to bring us back to the same form of governing as we had before and lead us to the 3rd largest financial collapse in the history of the world. Non of the wisdom nor the attempts for democratic reform and more open society we gained just after the collapse will stick under the reign of this new governing.

Gas line spills 25,000 gallons on Montana tribal land

Corpora-terrorists strike again: Gas line spills 25,000 gallons on Montana tribal land 05 Jul 2013 Officials say just over 25,000 gallons of gasoline leaked from an 8-inch underground Phillips 66 pipeline on the Crow Reservation in southeastern Montana. It occurred about 15 miles from the city of Lodge Grass. The agency spokesman says Houston-based Phillips 66 Co. workers discovered the leak Wednesday after pressure dropped on the line.

Snowden trained as hacker while with NSA - report

Snowden trained as hacker while with NSA - report --Snowden was taught all he needed to know about snooping into records while he was working for the NSA, according to The New York Times. 05 Jul 2013 More details about the mysterious past of Edward Snowden, the former contractor for the National Security Agency who leaked details about the agency's surveillance program, are starting to emerge. Snowden, who is reportedly currently holed up in an airport in Moscow, was taught all he needed to know about hacking while he was working for the NSA, according to The New York Times. And those are the very skills that he would have needed in order to snoop into the records that he accessed.

Egypt clashes after army fire kills Morsi supporters

Egypt clashes after army fire kills Morsi supporters 05 Jul 2013 Supporters and opponents of ousted Egyptian President Mohammed Morsi have clashed hours after three pro-Morsi protesters were killed by army fire. The rival groups hurled fireworks and stones at each other across a bridge near Cairo's Tahrir Square. At least 12 people have been killed and 318 hurt around the country.

Russian Emergency Ministry and FEMA to exchange 'experts' for security and rescue operations in disasters

Russian Emergency Ministry and FEMA to exchange 'experts' for security and rescue operations in disasters 26 Jun 2013 The Russian Emergency Situations Ministry and the USA Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) are going to exchange experts during joint rescue operations in major disasters. This is provided by a protocol of the fourth meeting of the U.S.-Russia Bilateral Presidential Commission Working Group on Emergency Situations and seventeenth meeting of Joint U.S.-Russia Cooperation Committee on Emergency Situations, which took place in Washington on 25 June... In addition, the parties approved of U.S.-Russian cooperation in this field in 2013-2014, which envisages exchange of experience including in monitoring and forecasting emergency situations, training of rescuers, development of mine-rescuing and provision of security at mass events.

U.S. Postal Service Logging All Mail for Law Enforcement

U.S. Postal Service Logging All Mail for Law Enforcement 04 Jul 2013 As the world focuses on the high-tech spying of the National Security Agency, the misplaced card offers a rare glimpse inside the seemingly low-tech but prevalent snooping of the United States Postal Service. A longtime surveillance system is called mail covers, a forerunner of a vastly more expansive effort, the Mail Isolation Control and Tracking program, in which Postal Service computers photograph the exterior of every piece of paper mail that is processed in the United States -- about 160 billion pieces last year. It is not known how long the government saves the images. Together, the two programs show that postal mail is subject to the same kind of scrutiny that the National Security Agency has given to telephone calls and e-mail.

Man with guns, explosive devices arrested in Seattle

Man with guns, explosive devices arrested in Seattle 05 Jul 2013 Law enforcement is investigating a Nevada man who was driving a stolen pickup truck that contained a cache of dangerous weapons. The man, who was arrested Wednesday night near the University of Washington in Seattle, had a stolen scoped rifle, a stolen shotgun, explosive devices and body armor in his possession. "The suspect is in custody," University of Washington Deputy Police Chief Randy West said Thursday evening. "An investigation is underway." [Yeah, good luck with that. Check the DHS drill schedule -- I'm sure you'll find your man.]

Iceland proposes citizenship for Snowden

Iceland proposes citizenship for Snowden 04 Jul 2013 Lawmakers introduced a proposal Thursday to grant immediate citizenship to Edward Snowden, who admits to leaking key details of U.S. surveillance activities. Ogmundur Jonasson of the liberal Left-Green Party put the issue before the Judicial Affairs Committee, but the idea received minimal support. Snowden, believed stuck in a Moscow airport transit area, has told the newspaper the Guardian that he was inclined to seek asylum in a country that shared his values -- and that "the nation that most encompasses this is Iceland."

Man arrested in stolen truck carrying weapons, explosives, body armor in Seattle

Man arrested in stolen truck carrying weapons, explosives, body armor in Seattle 04 Jul 2013 The FBI and Seattle authorities were investigating a Nevada man who was arrested after he was spotted on the University of Washington campus in a stolen truck carrying multiple explosive devices, stolen firearms and body armor, police said Thursday. The man was arrested a few blocks away after a police pursuit near Seattle Children's Hospital late Wednesday, said John Vinson, chief of the University of Washington police. Justin Miles Jasper was arrested early Thursday and was being held without bail in the King County jail on suspicion of possessing an incendiary device.

Rerouted Morales plane has South American leaders irate

Rerouted Morales plane has South American leaders irate 05 Jul 2013 President Evo Morales warned on Thursday that he could close the U.S. Embassy in Bolivia, as South America's leftist leaders rallied to support him after his presidential plane was rerouted amid suspicions that NSA leaker Edward Snowden was on board. Morales again blamed Washington for pressuring European countries to refuse to allow his plane to fly through their airspace on Tuesday, forcing it to land in Vienna, Austria, in what he called a violation of international law. He had been returning from a summit in Russia during which he had suggested he would be willing to consider a request from Snowden for asylum.

2 feet of hail blankets eastern N.M. town Santa Rosa

2 feet of hail blankets eastern N.M. town Santa Rosa 03 Jul 2013 The eastern New Mexico town of Santa Rosa will begin the holiday weekend with a white Independence Day. According to this report from ABQjournal.com, nearly two feet of hail fell in parts of the city about 60 miles west of Tucumcari on Interstate 40. Some of the hail -- the size of golf balls -- did some damage to roofs, skylights and the like.

H1N1 flu outbreak in northern Chile kills 11

H1N1 flu outbreak in northern Chile kills 11 05 Jul 2013 At least 11 people have been killed in an outbreak of H1N1 flu virus in northern Chile, where the rate of infection is more than six times higher than the rest of the country, according to authorities. "The average across the country is 24 patients per 100,000 residents, but in Tarapaca, in the past week, the rate was 148 patients per 100,000 residents," Medical Association president Enrique Paris said on Thursday.

Ecuador: Spy microphone recorded secret conversations inside London embassy

Ecuador: Spy microphone recorded secret conversations inside London embassy --The embassy has also been home for more than a year to WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange, who received asylum from Ecuador in August and risks arrest if he leaves the property. 04 Jul 2013 Ecuador is calling for British authorities to help investigate after officials found a secret recording device planted inside the South American country's embassy in London. A "spy microphone" was found inside the Ecuadorian ambassador's office on June 14, Ecuadorian Foreign Minister Ricardo Patino told reporters Wednesday. It was hidden inside a small white box inside an electrical outlet, partially covered by a bookshelf, he said.

Feds planned to arm drones; weapons would be used against 'targets of interest'

Feds planned to arm drones; weapons would be used against 'targets of interest' 04 Jul 2013 The U.S. Department of Homeland Security developed plans at least three years ago to mount weapons on drones operated by Customs and Border Protection -- though the agency denied Wednesday that it has any current plans to use armed drones. The plans, outlining the idea of mounting "expendables or non-lethal weapons" on CBP drones, are disclosed in a 2010 document signed by Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano. The document was obtained through a Freedom of Information Act lawsuit and first posted Tuesday by the Electronic Frontier Foundation. According to the document, titled "Concept of Operations for CBP's Predator B Unmanned Aircraft System," the weapons would be used against "targets of interest," described as people or vehicles carrying smugglers or undocumented migrants [or 'others']. [The petitions are not working. Start reading.]

France 'runs vast electronic spying operation using NSA-style methods'

France 'runs vast electronic spying operation using NSA-style methods' 04 Jul 2013 France runs a vast electronic surveillance operation, intercepting and stocking data from citizens' phone and internet activity, using similar methods to the US National Security Agency's Prism programme exposed by Edward Snowden, has reported. An investigation by the French daily found that the DGSE, France's external intelligence agency, had spied on the French public's phone calls, emails and internet activity.

European firms 'could quit US internet providers over NSA scandal'

European firms 'could quit US internet providers over NSA scandal' 04 Jul 2013 European businesses are likely to abandon the services of American internet providers because of the National Security Agency surveillance scandal, the European commission has warned. Neelie Kroes, the commission vice-president who speaks on digital affairs, predicted that providers of cloud services, which allow users to store and access data on remote servers, could suffer significant loss of business if clients fear the security of their material is under threat. The warning came as it appeared that the Americans and the Europeans were to start investigating alleged breaches of data privacy in the EU as well as US intelligence and espionage practices.

US and Germany to hold talks over European NSA surveillance concerns

US and Germany to hold talks over European NSA surveillance concerns 04 Jul 2013 Germany and the US will begin talks as soon as Monday, to address mounting European concerns over internet surveillance that are threatening to overshadow trade negotiations and damage Silicon Valley exports. A German government spokesman, Steffen Seibert, said a working group of high-level US and German intelligence experts will begin "an immediate and intense discussion" over the issues of data protection and intelligence collection revealed by the National Security Agency whistleblower Edward Snowden... France's top security official publicly admonished the United States at the American ambassador's 4 July garden party, denouncing alleged US "espionage" of France and other countries.

Guantanamo hunger strike: US to force-feed detainees during Ramadan

Guantánamo hunger strike: US to force-feed detainees during Ramadan 03 Jul 2013 The US government has refused to stop force-feeding detainees prisoners on hunger strike at Guantánamo Bay during the holy month of Ramadan. In court papers rejecting a petition by four of more than 100 detainees said to be refusing food, the US said the feedings provided "essential nutritional and medical care" and would not interfere with religious observance of Ramadan, which begins on Monday. Observant Muslims fast daily from sunrise to sunset during Ramadan.

State media: Egypt orders arrest of 300 Islamists

State media: Egypt orders arrest of 300 Islamists 04 Jul 2013 The Egyptian police has orders to arrest 300 leaders and members of Mohamed Morsi's Muslim Brotherhood after the army deposed the Islamist president on Wednesday, the website of the official Al-Ahram newspaper reported early Thursday. A senior interior ministry official confirmed to AFP that arrest warrants had been issued for "Muslim Brotherhood members", but provided no further details.

Homeland Security Drill Prepares Police for July 4th Holiday

Homeland Security Drill Prepares Police for July 4th Holiday --Details of 'Operation Independence' are top secret. 03 Jul 2013 The Los Angeles County Sheriff's Department, working with the Department of Homeland Security, has planned one of its biggest drills and deployments of the year to coincide with the Fourth of July. Starting today, throughout the county, those who use public transportation will see more deputies than usual. At Union Station this morning, there are hundreds of them already.

Bees dying by the millions

Bees dying by the millions 19 Jun 2013 Local beekeepers are finding millions of their bees dead just after corn was planted here in the last few weeks. Dave Schuit, who has a honey operation in Elmwood, Canada, lost 600 hives, a total of 37 million bees. "Once the corn started to get planted our bees died by the millions," Schuit said. He and many others, including the European Union, are pointing the finger at a class of insecticides known as neonicotinoids, manufactured by Bayer CropScience Inc. used in planting corn and some other crops.

Fallen Tree Shuts Down Nuclear Reactor

Fallen Tree Shuts Down Nuclear Reactor 03 Jul 2013 Operations at a nuclear power plant in East Tennessee have returned to normal after shutting down when a tree fell on a transmission line. The Watts Bar nuclear plant near Spring City, about 55 miles southwest of Knoxville, shut down its reactor on June 28th after a tree (which had been cut down by a nearby homeowner) crashed into an electrical transmission line. The reactor returned to service on June 30th, according to the Associated Press.

BET Awards: Jamie Foxx makes statement with Trayvon Martin T-shirt

BET Awards: Jamie Foxx makes statement with Trayvon Martin T-shirt 01 Jul 2013 Actor Jamie Foxx made a silent but powerful fashion statement at Sunday's BET Awards, where he opted out of the usual red-carpet finery in favor of a T-shirt bearing the image of Trayvon Martin, the unarmed Florida teen whose shooting death last year sparked intense national debate over gun control and racial profiling. Foxx won the evening's prize for lead actor for his role as a vengeance-seeking freed slave in "Django Unchained." On stage to accept the award, he opted not to mention the controversy by name, allowing the shirt -- which featured a stylized black-and-white version of the now-iconic close-up of Martin in a hoodie, and was paired with bright white jeans and shoes -- to do the talking for him.

Al Jazeera, other TV stations forced off air in Egypt

Al Jazeera, other TV stations forced off air in Egypt 03 Jul 2013 Al Jazeera's Egyptian broadcast has been taken off the air. Both Reuters and Al Jazeera itself reported that security forces raided Cairo offices and detained at least five staff members. Karim El-Assiuti has told Reuters his colleagues at the Al Jazeera Mubasher Misr channel were arrested while working at their studio. The station was prevented from broadcasting from a pro-Morsi rally, and a broadcasting crew was detained.

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CLG's Michael Rectenwald, Ph.D. and Lori Price receive the Patrick Henry Think Tank's American Hero Award 02 Nov 2005 The Patrick Henry Democratic Club --A Think Tank working to give the government back to the people. "Give me liberty or give me death!"

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