Daily Archives: January 10, 2008

British House of Commons motion to disestablish church is numbered 666

Times Online | Jan 10, 2008

by Ruth Gledhill

A motion calling for the disestablishment of the Church of England has been listed in the House of Commons as 666 – the Number of the Beast.

Labour MP John Austin, who has repeatedly tabled Early Day Motions urging disestablishment, put down his latest motion last night as MPs debated scrapping Britain’s blasphemy laws.

It appeared on the House of Commons order paper numbered 666, the number associated with the Antichrist in the Book of Revelation. Scholars believe 666 referred to the Emperor Nero.

The King James Bible renders Revelation 13:8 as: “Here is wisdom. Let him that hath understanding count the number of the beast: for it is the number of a man; and his number is Six hundred threescore and six.”

Bob Russell, Liberal Democrat MP for Colchester and one of the signatories, said: “It is is incredible that a motion like this should have, by chance, acquired this significant number.

“This number is supposed to be the mark of the Devil. It looks as though God or the Devil have been moving in mysterious ways.

“What is even stranger is that this motion was tabled last night when MPs were debating blasphemy.”

The motion is unlikely to be debated. But momentum for looser ties between Church and State is growing, as the support for the repeal of the blasphemy law illustrates. The blasphemy law favours Christianity and in particular the Church of England.

Although the attempt by Liberal Democrat MP Evan Harris to amend the Criminal Justice Bill was unsuccessful, the Prime Minister Gordon Brown has disclosed that he is consulting with the churches about its repeal.

Mother warns community about ‘Nazi’ home invasion

Officers told her ‘rights’ were ‘only in the movies’
WorldNetDaily.com | Jan 10, 2008

By Bob Unruh

The mother of an 11-year-old boy abducted by SWAT team members and taken to a hospital after he was bruised while horsing around is warning members of her community of the “Nazi” tactics she endured, including a statement from the officers that her “rights” were “only in the movies.”

The case involves Jon Shiflett, who injured himself while trying to grab the handle of a door on a car his sister was driving. He slipped and fell to the pavement, hitting his head. His parents treated him for the injury and rejected paramedics’ demands that they be allowed to take him to a hospital.

Nearly 36 hours later, SWAT team members broke into the family home in western Colorado near New Castle and took Jon to a hospital, where a doctor said the family should keep ice on his bruise, exactly the treatment the family already had been providing.

Tina Shiflett, Jon’s mother, has written a letter to the editor to a local newspaper, the Post Independent, “to awaken, alert and appall any who read it and hear the bells ringing.”

“A fully armed SWAT team broke into our home, slammed my children to the floor face down with their hands behind their backs and shoved a gun in my daughter’s face and handcuffed her…” her letter said.

In a separate letter to WND, she elaborated a little more fully.

During the attack, she wrote, “One (officer) grabbed my daughter Beth (18 years), who also had a gun to her face, slammed her down and kneed her in the back and held her in that position… My sons Adam (14) and Noah (only 7) lay down willingly, yet they were still forced to put their hands behind their backs and were yelled at to keep their heads down.

“My daughter Jeanette was coming out from the back bedroom when she was grabbed, drug down the hallway, across a couch and slammed to the ground,” she said. “The officers then began throwing scissors and screwdrivers across the room (out of our reach, I suppose) and going through our cupboards.

“I asked if I could make a phone call and was told, ‘no.’ My daughter asked if that wasn’t one of our rights. The reply was made, ‘That’s only in the movies,'” she told WND.

It was some unidentified person, possibly a paramedic who had been refused permission to take Jon Shiflett to the hospital as she wanted, who provided information last week that convinced a magistrate to issue a court order that Jon be taken into state custody and examined by a doctor.

He was taken by SWAT team members dispatched by the sheriff to the family’s home at 11 p.m. at night, and they punched a hole in the front door and held guns on other children in the family in order to take Jon.

“The armed men in black masks took my terrified son against his wishes to Grand River Hospital, where he was examined by a doctor and interrogated by Social Services. No evidence was found that he had not been properly taken care of. Upon his return, we were told to keep ice on his head,” Tina Shiflett’s letter to the editor said.

“To the SWAT Team members … how far will you go in ‘just doing your job?’ If you feel no guilt busting into an innocent family’s home, traumatizing young children and stomping the security found therein, will you follow more horrific orders?” she wrote.

“May I remind you that in Nazi Germany, outrageous, monstrous crimes were committed by soldiers ‘just doing their job?’ What will be next? Where will this stop?” she wrote.

“Fathers, mothers, families and countrymen, I challenge you to consider our story and ask yourself the question, ‘If this were my family, what would I do?’ For it very well could be you … next!”

Garfield County Sheriff Lou Vallario told WND he simply ordered his officers to do exactly what the magistrate demanded.

“I was given a court order by the magistrate to seize the child, and arrange for medical evaluation, and that’s what we did,” he said.

The situation developed at the Apple Tree Mobile Home Park near New Castle last week when Jon Shiflett was horsing around and fell. Tom Shiflett carried his son home and put an ice pack on his head, while examining him to see whether his mental faculties were there. The boy correctly recited Bible verses and spelled words, the parents told WND.

But paramedics were called by a neighbor, and when they arrived, Tom Shiflett let them see his son, but refused their demands that he be taken to a hospital. The paramedics then apparently lobbied the city police, the sheriff’s office, social workers and eventually the magistrate in order to get their way in having Jon taken to a hospital.

Jim Bradford, a court clerk in Garfield County, said it was a juvenile matter and he could not comment on any aspect of the case, and he declined to allow WND to leave a message for Garfield County Magistrate Lain Leoniak, who signed the order.

But participants in a forum at the Rocky Mountain News, which carried reports subsequent to the WND report, seemed to agree with Tina Shiflett.

Wrote ItsJustMe, “Welcome to the coming socialist police state.”

Said “mrNiceGuy,” “Police man shoots man in heart at a distant range, is not charged. Police cover up the events that proceed (sic) the death of someone in their custody, no one is charged. Police enter wrong apartment and shoot an unarmed man thinking a can is a weapon, no charges filed. But a kid bumps his head and his parents deem him to be ok – knock the door in and start cuffing people.”

“I cannot describe the feeling of having your child abducted, taken from your care, not knowing what will happen to him, and if he will ever be returned back into your arms again,” Tina Shiflett wrote in the separate letter to WND. “I record this by my own hand in hopes of awakening anyone who would read it to the injustice of our police depart (sic), social services and court system. But above all to glorify my Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ, whose reign is supreme over all this earth…”

The letter clarifies that the family did, indeed, cooperate with officers who arrived about 11 p.m. on that night.

“Between 10 and 11 … a sheriff came to the door. My husband met him at the window and he began to question my husband. My husband spoke with him and answered all his questions. The sheriff then said if Tom would just let him speak with Jonathan (our 11 yr. old son) this whole matter (story following) would be closed,” she documented.

“Tom said, ‘You are saying, ‘If I let you speak to Jonathan this whole matter will be closed.?’ Then Tom called for Jonathan to come to the window,” she said.

“As soon as Jonathan was visible to the sheriff, a SWAT team appeared shining lights on Jon’s face and others were bashing at the door with a ramming device. My daughter resisted and pushed against the door to stop them as she didn’t know who they were. I told her to back up and not try to fight them. They then entered our home, held a gun to my daughter’s face and others of them, five or more, rushed into the living room and physically forced my other children to the ground.”

“We were told Jonathan would be taken to a hospital near us for evaluation, and then questioned by the human resources. At this point Jonathan was scared, crying and shaking. We asked if we could accompany him, or follow them to the hospital. We were warned not to try to follow him or come to the hospital or criminal charges would be pressed against us.

“Our son was returned to us at 2:30 a.m. Saturday morning. In all this was not one shred of evidence found that we had done anything wrong or that Jon had not been properly cared for at home,” she said.

“what the?” was KarlSpackler’s comment on a forum at the Denver Post.

And “mamm354” added, “Whoever it was that gave the order to do this should be thrown in jail. Illegal assaults on our privacy is why we need the second ammendment. I don’t see the police being this agressive against illegal aliens but they approach their work with this level of zest against citizens!?!?! Heads should roll for this.”

Lynn Rennick, the social services director in Garfield County, has said her office is required to intervene when it receives a report about “possible mistreatment” of children, but she didn’t comment on any such report in this case, who may have filed it, or what it might have said.

A spokeswoman for WestCare Ambulance, which reportedly responded to the call, also refused to answer any questions about the case, saying all issues were considered patient confidentiality issues.

Ross Talbott, the owner of the Apple Tree Mobile Home Park who rents to the Shifletts, called the SWAT team actions “gross irresponsibility and stupidity.”

“Is this Russia? I don’t know what we’re coming to when they think your kid needs medical help and they send a SWAT team,” he said.

McCain: Americans Fine With Troops In Iraq For 10,000 Years

McCain: Americans Fine With Troops In Iraq For 10,000 Years

On Face The Nation this morning, Sen. John McCain (R-AZ) defended his recent statement that he is fine with keep troops in Iraq for 100 years, saying “Americans aren’t concerned” about troops in Iraq for the next 10,000 years. On Meet The Press, he also said he would support permanent bases in Iraq.

Russian Journal: HAARP Could Cause Planetary Pole Shift

Russian Journal: HAARP Could Capsize Planet

Wired | Jan 8, 2008

By Sharon Weinberger

Just when you think you’ve heard all the possible far-out theories behind the High Frequency Active Auroral Research Program (HAARP) in Alaska, leave it to the Russians to come up with one better. Forget mind control, the Russians think HAARP is a “geophysical weapon” that’s gonna capsize the planet. HAARP, just by way of a reminder for those who don’t obssessively follow its progress, is a military project that’s supposed to study the ionosphere and “use it to enhance communications and surveillance systems for both civilian and defense purposes.” In more recent years, the Pentagon has also expressed interest in using HAARP to mitigate the effects of high-altitude nuclear explosions. However, HAARP’s use of an antenna array operating in the High Frequency (HF) range has also prompted tons and tons of other theories about its uses, ranging from weather control to altering human behavior.

According to this article published in a Russian military journal (and helpfully translated by the CIA-funded Open Source Center), HAARP is the ultimate superweapon…

Full Story

Related

ARCO, Eastlund and the Roots of HAARP

Jerusalem lights to go out so that Bush may enjoy the sunrise

breitbart.com | Jan 8, 2008

Lights in the Old City of Jerusalem will be turned off before dawn this week so visiting US President George W. Bush can get a better view of the sun rising over its ancient walls.

Bush, who arrives in the Middle East on Wednesday for a visit lasting more than a week, had made a request to watch the sun rise over the Old City from his suite at the King David Hotel, a municipal spokesman said on Tuesday.

To make the scene more dramatic, the authorities have decided to turn off the lights illuminating the limestone walls before dawn on Thursday and Friday, the spokesman told reporters.

The gesture is just one of several that Bush’s Israeli hosts will extend to the president of their main ally during his landmark three-day visit this week — the first by a sitting US president to Israel and the Palestinian territories in nine years.

Awaiting Bush at his King David suite — reportedly costing 2,600 dollars a night — will be a white terry bathrobe embroidered with his name in gold, local media have reported.

Israeli television broadcast footage of the garment throughout the day on Tuesday.

And the main highway leading into Jerusalem from the west — already plagued by traffic problems — will be completely closed in one direction for an hour on Wednesday after Bush arrives to allow the unhindered passage of the convoy containing his hundreds-strong entourage.

Computer games rewiring children’s brains

Under 7s ‘should be banned from playing computer games or risk damaging their brains’

Daily Mail | Jan 9, 2008

By SEAN POULTER

Experts fear computer consoles such as the Nintendo Wii harm child development

Children should be banned from playing computer games until the age of seven because the technology is “rewiring” their brains, it is claimed.

Bombardment of the senses with fast-pace action games is said to be causing a shortening of attention span, harming the ability to learn.

The concerns emerged as technology industry experts gathered at a special summit discussing the development of children, held yesterday at the Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas.

Educational psychologist Jane Healy said research indicated that computer games fuelled the development of basic “flight or fight” instincts rather than considered reasoning.

“If you watch kids on a computer, most of them are just hitting keys or moving the mouse as fast as they can. It reminds me of rats running in a maze.”

She believes parents would be wise to keep children away from computer games until at least the age of seven to allow their brains to develop normally.

Researchers from the Joan Ganz Cooney Centre, which investigates the relationship between children, the media and technology, said the average age that U.S. youngsters begin to use electronic gadgets has come down from just over eight to just over 61/2 since 2005.

They looked at more than 300 products including computer games, toys, virtual worlds for children and supposedly educational software to be run on home computers.

Of these only two educational video games employed proven learning techniques.

The researchers found that too many products involve children sitting isolated in front of a computer screen.

Others make unsubstantiated claims about their educational benefits.

There has been an explosion in the creation of virtual worlds for children in the past year.

Huge numbers of children in the U.S. and Britain are members of internet sites such as Club Penguin, Webkinz and others dedicated to Barbie or the Bratz dolls.

The summit heard calls for an industry code of ethics designed to do away with commercial exploitation of children who visit such sites.

By contrast, Alice Cahn, of the Cartoon Network, told the summit that technology was delivering huge benefits.

“We should not be worried about technology changing the face of play, but rather that all kids have access to the best kinds of technology.”

Blackwater sprayed US troops with dangerous gas from black helecopter

 

A 2005 photo showed a Blackwater helicopter releasing CS gas at a checkpoint in Baghdad.  Riot control agents in war zones are banned by an international convention on chemical weapons endorsed by the United States

’05 Use of Gas by Blackwater Leaves Questions


NY Times | Jan 10, 2008

By JAMES RISEN

WASHINGTON — The helicopter was hovering over a Baghdad checkpoint into the Green Zone, one typically crowded with cars, Iraqi civilians and United States military personnel.

Suddenly, on that May day in 2005, the copter dropped CS gas, a riot-control substance the American military in Iraq can use only under the strictest conditions and with the approval of top military commanders. An armored vehicle on the ground also released the gas, temporarily blinding drivers, passers-by and at least 10 American soldiers operating the checkpoint.

“This was decidedly uncool and very, very dangerous,” Capt. Kincy Clark of the Army, the senior officer at the scene, wrote later that day. “It’s not a good thing to cause soldiers who are standing guard against car bombs, snipers and suicide bombers to cover their faces, choke, cough and otherwise degrade our awareness.”

Both the helicopter and the vehicle involved in the incident at the Assassins’ Gate checkpoint were not from the United States military, but were part of a convoy operated by Blackwater Worldwide, the private security contractor that is under scrutiny for its role in a series of violent episodes in Iraq, including a September shooting in downtown Baghdad that left 17 Iraqis dead.

None of the American soldiers exposed to the chemical, which is similar to tear gas, required medical attention, and it is not clear if any Iraqis did. Still, the previously undisclosed incident has raised significant new questions about the role of private security contractors in Iraq, and whether they operate under the same rules of engagement and international treaty obligations that the American military observes.

“You run into this issue time and again with Blackwater, where the rules that apply to the U.S. military don’t seem to apply to Blackwater,” said Scott L. Silliman, the executive director of the Center on Law, Ethics and National Security at the Duke University School of Law.

Officers and noncommissioned officers from the Third Infantry Division who were involved in the episode said there were no signs of violence at the checkpoint. Instead, they said, the Blackwater convoy appeared to be stuck in traffic and may have been trying to use the riot-control agent as a way to clear a path.

Anne Tyrrell, a spokeswoman for Blackwater, said the CS gas had been released by mistake.

“Blackwater teams in the air and on the ground were preparing a secure route near a checkpoint to provide passage for a motorcade,” Ms. Tyrrell said in an e-mail message. “It seems a CS gas canister was mistaken for a smoke canister and released near an intersection and checkpoint.”

She said that the episode was reported to the United States Embassy in Baghdad, and that the embassy’s chief security officer and the Department of Defense conducted a full investigation. The troops exposed to the gas also said they reported it to their superiors. But military officials in Washington and Baghdad said they could not confirm that an investigation had been conducted. Officials at the State Department, which contracted with Blackwater to provide diplomatic security, also could not confirm that an investigation had taken place.

About 20 to 25 American soldiers were at the checkpoint at the time of the incident, and at least 10 were exposed to the CS gas after “rotor wash” from the hovering helicopter pushed it toward them, according to officers who were there. A number of Iraqi civilians, both on foot and in cars waiting to go through the checkpoint, were also exposed. The gas can cause burning and watering eyes, skin irritation and coughing and difficulty breathing. Nausea and vomiting can also result.

Blackwater says it was permitted to carry CS gas under its contract at the time with the State Department. According to a State Department official, the contract did not specifically authorize Blackwater personnel to carry or use CS, but it did not prohibit it.

The military, however, tightly controls use of riot control agents in war zones. They are banned by an international convention on chemical weapons endorsed by the United States, although a 1975 presidential order allows their use by the United States military in war zones under limited defensive circumstances and only with the approval of the president or a senior officer designated by the president.

“It is not allowed as a method or means of warfare,” said Michael Schmitt, professor of international law at the Naval War College in Newport, R.I. “There are very, very strict restrictions on the use of CS gas in a war zone.”