Wednesday, June 29, 2005

Reuters - Israeli army ejects rightist Jews from Gaza outpost
The popular resistance to the disengagement is growing and prompting a quick and very sad reaction by the Sharon government:
Police arrested 150 demonstrators and used water cannon for the first time since
such protests began several months ago, dispersing youths blocking the main
entrance to Jerusalem.
If they use water cannon today, what will they use tomorrow? How can the Sharon government possibly think this will work?

Tuesday, June 28, 2005

Mark Update
Reuters is reporting (Yahoo News - British lawmakers back ambitious ID scheme) that Great Britain is going ahead with a new national ID plan. According to the report:
Britain's plans to launch the world's most ambitious biometric identity cards cleared their first hurdle on Tuesday, despite the first revolt against Prime Minister Tony Blair since his re-election...The cards would use biometric technology in fingerprint, face and iris recognition.
I think it is important to be aware of these trends in identification technology while noting that a very good argument can be made (The Mark of the Beast: Tattoos & Branding) that the mark will not be implanted technology at all, but could take the form of a digital watermark or even something as primitive as a tattoo.
uesday, June 28, 2005 9:34 a.m. EDT
Brits Worried About National ID

The British are bridling over the prospect of a national biometric ID card experts say is "neither safe nor appropriate.”

RFID vs. Wi-Fi ID
By Andy Dornan
07/01/2005 12:00 AM EST

Wireless networks and Radio Frequency Identification (RFID) have always been closely linked: One of Wi-Fi's first applications was transferring data from portable RFID readers. But the popularity of RFID has led some to envision whole networks of readers embedded throughout a building's infrastructure. Start-up Reva Systems has announced what it calls a Tag Acquisition Network (TAN), an array of RFID readers that work with passive, batteryless tags. Meanwhile, established networking vendors led by Cisco Systems are promoting Wi-Fi itself as a way to enable RFID-like applications.
TV Network for Gays, Lesbians to Debut Wires
Monday, June 27, 2005
NEW YORK -- The man who's molding Logo, the new network for gays and lesbians, grew up in rural Illinois, attended Oral Roberts University and counted that cheesy keyboard solo on "Freeze Frame" as his big moment during gigs with his college band the Ozones. At first glance, Brian Graden hardly seems too hip for the room.

But the 42-year-old Graden is one of television's busiest and most imaginative executives, already responsible for the programming on MTV, VH1 and CMT - and now Logo, which debuts Thursday. Long in the works, Logo will initially be seen in about 10 million homes with digital cable. Unlike Here and Q, two pay-per-view, gay-oriented networks already operating, Logo will be available in homes that do not specifically order it.
Films such as "Kissing Jessica Stein" and "Philadelphia" and documentaries will fill many of Logo's first hours. The network also has a scripted series, "Noah's Arc," about a homosexual black man and his friends in Los Angeles, a reality series about opening a gay bar and the stand-up comedy series "Wisecrack."

A gay man himself, Graden had hoped to help out with Logo even before he was appointed its president.
The Post Cold War Peace Is Over
Wes Vernon
Tuesday, June 28, 2005
Excuse me, but there seems to be a disconnect here.

On the one hand, Pentagon officials are warning that China's buildup of its military might is growing faster than U.S. intelligence expected, bolstering suspicions of an attack on Taiwan within two years — meaning war with the United States, which is honor-bound to defend Taiwan.
All the while, China's People's Liberation Army regards the U.S. as "the main adversary," and has laid out plans in black and white as to its preparations for war with us.

On the other hand, we learn that China may be allowed to buy an American oil company. The state-owned China National Offshore Oil Corporation - China's third largest producer - is outbidding Chevron to acquire Unocal, a 115-year old California gas exploration company.

We can only hope that the U.S. China Economic and Security Review Commission's strong misgivings on this transaction will be heeded by policy-makers in Washington. The UCRC, strictly an advisory panel, has fired off a letter to the Senate urging a "thorough assessment" of China's offer to buy Unocal.

UCRC Chairman Richard D'Amato says this is "a national security issue" for the United States, and adds the Treasury Department's Committee on Foreign Investment should go over the deal with a fine tooth comb.

The latest information on China's buildup, front-paged in Sunday's Washington Times under the byline of its crack national security reporter Bill Gertz, is that Taiwan is not the only reason for the Dragon's aggressive pursuit of enhanced military muscle.

"Beijing also is facing a major energy shortage that, according to one Pentagon study, could lead it to use military force to seize territory with oil and gas reserves," the Times reported.

That sets the table for an interesting scenario. Where does it lead? "Let us buy your American energy firm or else?"

If history teaches us anything, it is that you can't buy off dictators hell-bent on aggression.

Nations Call for Tax to Help Fight Poverty

Jun 28, 6:39 AM (ET)


UNITED NATIONS (AP) - France, Germany, Brazil and Chile have called for a tax on airline tickets to help finance the global fight against poverty.
Such a tax makes sense because airlines benefit from globalization and pay low tax rates, and airline passengers "are rarely among the poorest citizens," Thierry Breton, France's economic minister, told a U.N. ministerial meeting on Monday.
He said the tax could be different for domestic and international travel and for economy and business seats, and it could also vary depending on a country's wealth. The proceeds would go through existing institutions "to avoid needless bureaucracy" and could be used to finance urgent programs such as vaccination campaigns or AIDS treatment.
PA Press Rife with Rabid Anti-American Cartoons
18:11 Jun 15, '05 / 8 Sivan 5765

The Palestinian Authority press has been using political cartoons as a vehicle for expressing its public's intense opposition to American policies, especially the war in Iraq.

Although U.S. President George W. Bush has been cozying up to PA chief Mahmoud Abbas, the Palestinian Authority press has been overtly anti-American, especially in regard to the war in Iraq.

While verbal attacks, primarily calls to kill Americans, are repeatedly broadcast in the Palestinian media, some of the most rabid anti-American incitement appears in the form of political cartoons published in PA daily newspapers.

The following is a selection of these highly charged cartoons, culled from the PA press. These and other examples may be found on the website of Palestinian Media Watch, "".
3- and 5-Year Olds Held In Police Custody for 20 Hours
17:22 Jun 28, '05 / 21 Sivan 5765

"The police are trying to scare anti-expulsion protestors that their parents will be arrested, but they won't scare us." So says a woman whose husband was arrested - along with their two toddlers.

Ruth Sariel, a mother of ten from Elon Moreh, told Arutz-7 today of the police "harassment" against her and her family that has been ongoing for three months. The latest incident was the "arrest" of her two youngest children, aged 3 and 5, together with their father.
Sharon on Record: Sinai Precedent Was a Mistake
12:32 Jun 28, '05 / 21 Sivan 5765

Prime Minister Sharon is on record as saying that the evacuation of the Jewish towns in Sinai was a mistake in that they led to talk of evacuation of other towns in Judea, Samaria, Gaza and Golan.

Eleven years ago, on the 12th anniversary of Israel's pullout from the Sinai and the expulsion of the Jewish residents there, Arutz-7 interviewed Ariel Sharon - the man who is most closely associated with that evacuation. He said that in light of the developments since then - which included at the time only the "consideration" of dismantling Jewish communities in Judea, Samaria and Gaza - "it was a grave mistake to dismantle the Jewish communities in Sinai."
Disengagement Supporter Attacks 5-Year-Old Opponent
21:08 Jun 28, '05 / 21 Sivan 5765

( A 5-year-old girl manning a booth against the expulsion plan was assaulted by a passerby, identifying himself as a fan of the planned Jewish transfer and disengagment.

The incident occurred in Ra’anana earlier tonight as the young girl stood near the tent shouting “Jews don’t expel Jews!”

The child was treated on the scene and did not require transport to a medical facility.
Gay Pride, Yes – Jewish Pride, No!
22:47 Jun 28, '05 / 21 Sivan 5765

( Jerusalem police have declined a request for a permit for a Jewish Pride Parade on Jerusalem’s Temple Mount on Thursday to counter the court-approved Gay Pride Parade in the capital on the same day.

In a copy of the police letter received by, Jerusalem police officials decline the requested permit, citing “the welfare of the public” as one of the considerations. Police also stated the Temple Mount is an inappropriate host site for such an event.

In the meantime, the Jerusalem District Court has overridden Jerusalem Mayor Uri Lupolianski and has ordered the Gay Pride Parade held in the capital on Thursday, rejecting the mayor’s position that Jerusalem is an inappropriate host site for such an event.
Despite More Killings, IDF to Hand Bethlehem Over to PA
17:50 Jun 28, '05 / 21 Sivan 5765

Despite an uspurge in terror, with four Jews killed in the past two weeks, Israel is planning on handing over Bethlehem to PA control. The IDF is opposed but must follow Sharon's orders to withdraw.

Despite an upsurge in attacks carried out by Arab terrorists originating from Palestinian Authority, the government is going forward with plans to transfer security control of Bethlehem to the PA by the weekend.

The decision to go ahead with the handover was made yesterday in the Prime Minister’s office. The IDF, citing the murder of four Israelis over the past two weeks, opposes the move, but has been ordered by the government to carry it out.

Monday, June 27, 2005

South Korea dishes out US$800m on RFID

Dan Ilett,
June 27, 2005

The South Korean government is ploughing US$800 million into research and development of radio frequency identification (RFID) tags.

Daeje Chin, the Korean Minister of Information and Communication, said after several pilot projects the government believes RFID to be as important as the mobile phone business.

Chin said: "This will be very important for us in the next 10 years. The handset business is very big but RFID will be as important. We are trying to procure a number of goals with RFID and the application of new technology brings benefits in all social systems including the individual family."

RFID tags broadcast unique identifier signals over a radio frequency, which means their movement can be tracked over long ranges. Chin said families could start seeing RFID in the home with fridges that track what has been eaten.

The Korean government, which said RFID will replace barcodes, is building several research and development centres in the country for different technologies. RFID production is planned for next year in the northern city of Songdo and will receive funding between 2005 and 2010.
Crime-busting cameras: a US-city experiment
By Clayton Collins | Staff writer of The Christian Science Monitor

CHELSEA, MASS. – Sitting in Bellingham Square, hub of this city just north of Boston, Philip Quaglione remembers when a surveillance camera hung here at Washington and Broadway.
Its pole was knocked down several years ago, he says, either accidentally or by someone who didn't like the unblinking eye.

Now, surveillance cameras are coming back. In mid-July, Chelsea, Mass., hopes to throw the switch on a quarter-million-dollar system of 27 digital cameras with the capacity to monitor and record activity in any of its public spaces, says Jay Ash, city manager. His hope: that the system, which has cut crime in Chicago, will do the same in this high-crime city of 36,000 packed into less than two square miles.

Other small cities have similar aims. Officials in Schenectady, N.Y., reportedly plan to have eight cameras trained on the city's main commercial zone by fall. State funds will be used.

Chelsea's ally is the US government, which will add seven more cameras in a shared-feeds arrangement that has city officials encouraged, civil libertarians concerned, and some residents wondering how electronic policing and a federal presence will affect daily life.

The federal government is involved because a few Chelsea landmarks have special post-Sept. 11 significance. The Tobin Bridge, a major gateway into Boston, plants its northern footings here. Tanks of liquefied natural gas huddle down by the Mystic River.
Jerusalem gay pride parade to go ahead, Lupolianski fined

By Amiram Barkat

A court yesterday ordered Jerusalem municipality to drop its ban on the fourth annual gay pride parade in the city, accepting a petition by Open House, Jerusalem's gay and lesbian community center.

Jerusalem District Court Judge Moussia Arad, who is vice president of the court for administrative affairs, also ordered the municipality and Mayor Uri Lupolianski to pay court costs of NIS 30,000 each.
Settlers Won't Leave Razed Gaza Buildings

Jun 27, 7:31 AM (ET)


JERUSALEM (AP) - Settlers in Gaza set up a makeshift outpost Monday on the rubble of buildings the military knocked down the day before, saying they were preparing to take in thousands of withdrawal resisters.
Police across the country were bracing for massive traffic snarls as opponents of Israel's Gaza Strip pullout planned to descend on major roads to protest the withdrawal.
Israeli soldiers scuffled with settlers Sunday in the first military operation of the pullout, giving a preview of the trouble liable to erupt when the forcible evacuation of 9,000 settlers in Gaza and the northern West Bank begins in mid-August.
Iran's New Leader to Pursue Nuclear Plans
Jun 27, 8:27 AM (ET)

(AP) Iran's President-elect Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, speaks to the media, during his first news conference...
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Iran's meddling in Iraq - Alireza Jafarzadeh, expert on WMD, terrorism, Iraq, and Iran

TEHRAN, Iran (AP) - The president-elect of Iran vowed to restart the nation's controversial nuclear program, saying it was meant only for peaceful energy purposes. Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld labeled the new ultraconservative leader as "no friend of democracy."
Asked about relations with the United States during his first news conference since Friday's election, Mahmoud Ahmadinejad said Sunday that Iran "is taking the path of progress based on self-reliance. It doesn't need the United States significantly on this path."
Beijing devoted to weakening 'enemy' U.S., defector says
By Bill Gertz
June 27, 2005

China's communist leaders view the United States as their main enemy and are working in Asia and around the world to undermine U.S. alliances, said a former Chinese diplomat.
Chen Yonglin, until recently a senior political officer at the Chinese Consulate in Sydney, Australia, said in an interview that China also is engaged in large-scale intelligence-gathering activities in the United States that, in the past, netted large amounts of confidential U.S. government documents from agents.
"The United States is considered by the Chinese Communist Party as the largest enemy, the major strategic rival," Mr. Chen told The Washington Times in a telephone interview from Australia, where he is in hiding after breaking with Beijing in May.

Chicago pairing surveillance cameras with gunshot recognition systems

June 26, 2005 — The police are watching. And in Chicago, they're listening, too.
City officials are using new technology that recognizes the sound of a gunshot within a two-block radius, pinpoints the source, turns a surveillance camera toward the shooter and places a 911 call. Officials can then track the shooter and dispatch officers to the scene.

Welcome to crime-fighting in the 21st century.

"Instead of just having eyes, you have the advantage of both eyes and ears," said Bryan Baker, chief executive officer of Safety Dynamics in Oak Brook, which makes the systems.

After a successful pilot program, Chicago officials have installed 30 of the devices alongside video surveillance cameras in high-crime neighborhoods, with 12 more on the way, and dozens more to follow, Baker said.

The system's formal name is Smart Sensor Enabled Neural Threat Recognition and Identification -- or SENTRI. And the technology is not just gaining favor in Chicago.
THIS IS SIGNIFICANT because Bush has promised to come to the aid of Taiwan in the event of an attack. Would this trigger the war that would kill a third of mankind as prophecied in Revelation?

Chinese dragon awakens

By Bill Gertz
Published June 26, 2005
Part II: Thefts of U.S. technology boost China's weaponry

China is building its military forces faster than U.S. intelligence and military analysts expected, prompting fears that Beijing will attack Taiwan in the next two years, according to Pentagon officials.
U.S. defense and intelligence officials say all the signs point in one troubling direction: Beijing then will be forced to go to war with the United States, which has vowed to defend Taiwan against a Chinese attack.
China's military buildup includes an array of new high-technology weapons, such as warships, submarines, missiles and a maneuverable warhead designed to defeat U.S. missile defenses. Recent intelligence reports also show that China has stepped up military exercises involving amphibious assaults, viewed as another sign that it is preparing for an attack on Taiwan.
High Court Disallows Ten Commandments in Courthouses
In Separate Decision, Justices Uphold Displays on Government Land
The Associated Press
Monday, June 27, 2005; 11:59 AM

WASHINGTON -- A sharply divided Supreme Court on Monday upheld the constitutionality of displaying the Ten Commandments on government land, but drew the line on displays inside courthouses, saying they violated the doctrine of separation of church and state.

The court ended its term Monday with no retirement announcements from any justices. Speculation focused on Chief Justice William H. Rehnquist, who has thyroid cancer, and is widely believed to be considering retirement.

Sending dual signals in ruling on the separation of church and state for the first time in a quarter-century, the high court said that displays of the Ten Commandments _ like their own courtroom frieze _ are not inherently unconstitutional. But each exhibit demands scrutiny to determine whether it goes too far in amounting to a governmental promotion of religion, the court said in a case involving Kentucky courthouse exhibits.

Sunday, June 26, 2005

ABC Online - Israeli soldier refuses to demolish Jewish settlement: "An Israeli soldier has been arrested and his gun confiscated after he refused to help demolish abandoned cottages in a Jewish settlement in the Gaza Strip." This just seems so wrong.
Gospel Update
The greatest living Christian evangelist will take his bow tonight on the stage in New York. This AP report (MyWay News - Graham to Give Last Crusade Sermon Tonight) demonstrates the reach of his amazing ministry:
Graham has preached to more than 210 million people in 185 countries. He has been sought out by U.S. presidents and leaders worldwide and, more than any other religious figure, has come to represent the American evangelical movement.
One of the things I admire about Billy Graham is the way he has always preached the simplicity of the gospel message of salvation through faith in Jesus. Times have changed over the many years of his ministry and the church has changed in many ways, but his message has remained true to the gospel. For more information on the crusade and on Billy Graham, visit the Billy Graham Evangelistic Association. [Gospel Preached to All Nations, Matthew 24:14]

Saturday, June 25, 2005

Pestilence News
The AP is reporting some grim news on the pestilence (Luke 21:11) front. Scientists have been doing some projections on what would happen if bird flu jumped species and became contagious to humans. According to the report (Yahoo News - Group Estimates Potential Flu Death Toll):
More than a half-million people could die and more than 2.3 million could be hospitalized if a moderately severe strain of pandemic flu virus hits the United States, a research group said Friday. The report from the Trust for America's Health assumes that 25 percent of a country's population would become infected if a strain of avian flu became highly contagious and humans had no natural immunity against it. The researchers also assumed the severity of the strain would fall about midway between the pandemic of 1918 and the pandemic of 1968. The research group says the staggering number of potential deaths and hospitalizations would overwhelm the nation's health care system - and displays the need for greater planning and resources.
I'm glad scientists and the health care community are taking steps now to plan for this. Previous reports have stated that it is only a matter of time before there is another global flu pandemic like the 1918 outbreak and the more they can do now to prepare and raise awareness so that the public won't panic, the better.

Friday, June 24, 2005

War Update
UPI and SpaceWar report: Russia and China have joined forces in a major U.N. forum to oppose U.S. plans to develop new space weapons. And the move could herald a far more wide-ranging strategic cooperation between the two nations. The report is here: Russia, China Join Against US 'Star Wars'

An OH PUH-LEASE! Alert :-/ This one made me LOL! It just goes to show that education without TRUTH and WISDOM is useless! You can have a Harvard or Yale degree and still flunk heaven!

The Wages of Fundamentalism

Peter Watson
The International Herald Tribune, 22 June 2005

CAMBRIDGE, England For decades, "big science" - indeed any kind of science - has been led by the United States. There are warning signs, however, that American science is losing its edge, and may even have peaked. One reason is that as religious and political fundamentalism tighten their grip, they are beginning to sap America's intellectual vitality.

By contrast, the political turmoil that has broken out on the other side of the Atlantic shows that Europeans grasp how destructive fundamentalism can be.
America's "religious right" alert! :-)

You ain't seen nothing yet
From The Economist print edition


Christian America's political arm is more complex and more dynamic than it first appears. And it will be hard to stop
THIS week, for the fourth year in a row, President George Bush broke from affairs of state to address the Southern Baptist Convention. He promised the strict evangelical group, which has 16m members, that he would work hard to ban gay marriage and abortion, and that their “family values” were his values, too.

After the Scopes Monkey trial in 1925, where creationist ideas were widely discredited, the idea of fundamentalists from the Bible Belt ruling the roost would have looked foolish. In the 1960s, many liberal Americans thought they had banned religion from the public square for good. Yet nowadays the president, the secretary of state and the House speaker accept the evangelical label. A packed prayer breakfast takes place every Thursday in Congress. And liberals regularly contend that one of America's two great parties is bent on creating a theocracy—backed by a solid core of somewhere between a quarter and a third of the population.
Muslim Nations Plan to Set Up Islamic Bank
06.22.2005, 06:22 AM

Muslim bankers and regulators announced plans Wednesday to set up a global Islamic bank by next year that could rival Western lenders and to chart a 10-year blueprint to bolster growth in the Islamic financial sector.

The Bahrain-based Albaraka Banking Group will take up a 10 percent stake in the US$1 billion (euro824 million) bank to be known as the Emaar International Group, said Saleh A. Kamal, chairman of the General Council for Islamic Banks and Financial Institutions, which proposed the project.
US accuses China of using UN funds for forced abortions

Friday, Jun 24, 2005,Page 1

The US urged the UN population agency to end its family planning program in China until Beijing stops using coercion, forced abortions, and punishment to enforce its one-child policy.
US President George W. Bush's administration has for the last three years barred all US funding for the UN Population Fund (UNFPA), charging that its support for China's population planning programs allows Beijing to implement its policies of coercive abortion.
U.S. Defense Official Confirms Chinese Missile Test

A U.S. defense official has confirmed the recent test by China of a submarine-launched long-range ballistic missile, the Associated Press reported yesterday (see GSN, June 20).

The range of the Ju Lang 2 is believed to be up to 6,000 miles, outstripping all other missiles carried by Chinese submarines. The missile would be capable of reaching U.S. territory from the western Pacific Ocean.

The test is an indication that China is continuing to move toward deployment of the missile, the official said. It would also expand the nation’s nuclear capability beyond land sites and aircraft.

China has also been developing a new nuclear-missile submarine, AP reported. It was not known if the missile was launched from the new Type 094-class vessel (John Lumpkin, Associated Press/Tucson Citizen, June 22).

Jerusalem to Ban Annual Gay Pride Parade
The Associated Press
Thursday, June 23, 2005; 1:46 PM

JERUSALEM -- Jerusalem officials said Thursday they will ban the annual gay pride parade set for next week, claiming the march would offend many of the holy city's residents.

Organizers of the parade appealed to Israel's Supreme Court to repeal the ruling, saying the decision was a violation of the homosexual community's freedom of expression.
PA Television Continues to Teach Children to Become "Martyrs"
17:07 Jun 23, '05 / 16 Sivan 5765

The Palestinian Authority continues to promote “martyrdom” in its state-produced children’s television programs, according to a report by Palestinian Media Watch (PMW).

“Shahada, or death for Allah, has been the backbone of the Palestinian Authority's messages to its children since the start of the terror war in September 2000," states the Wednesday report. "Although the number of these messages has been reduced in recent months, the promotion and glorification of child Shahada continues nonetheless, as seen this week on PA TV.”

The report cites a broadcast of a PA TV series named “The Palestinian Diaspora.” The series is presented daily as a factual portrayal of history. Though throughout the series, Israel's creation and ongoing existence have been presented as injustices that must be fought, this past week’s episode honed in on the issue of child martyrdom.
Bill Gates, Sharon to Meet in October
00:25 Jun 24, '05 / 17 Sivan 5765

( Microsoft founder Bill Gates is scheduled to visit Israel in early October and meet with Prime Minister Ariel Sharon and Finance Minister Binyamin (Bibi) Netanyahu. Israel will be included in Gate's tour of several European countries.

Gates helped make Hebrew one of the main languages at Microsoft's development headquarters in California. Microsoft has invested $100 million in translating programs into Hebrew and employs about 200 people at its Ra'anana and Haifa offices.

Child Reported in Serious Condition in Shooting Attack
17:15 Jun 24, '05 / 17 Sivan 5765

( Magen David Adom emergency medical service officials report a 14-year-old boy has been critically wounded in the Hevron Hills shooting attack at Beit Haggai Junction.

He and a second victim in less serious condition will most likely be transported in the coming minutes by army helicopter to the trauma unit of Jerusalem’s Hadassah Ein Kerem Hospital.

Thursday, June 23, 2005

MoB Tech
Those of you following developments in the field of m-commerce will be interested in this report from the AP (Technology Finding New Ways to Pay) on the growing trend of cashless payments. Barcodes are out, blinking is in. [Mark of the Beast, Rev 13:16-18]

Who Is the Enemy?
by William Norman Grigg
June 21, 2005

The REAL ID Act, signed into law by George W. Bush on May 11, created our country's first national identification card.
The measure imposes federal standards on state driver’s licenses, and creates a huge central identification database — which will be shared by the governments of Mexico and Canada. The law also “gives authority to the Secretary of Homeland Security to unilaterally add requirements as he sees fit,” noted Rep. Ron Paul (R-Texas), an opponent of the act. Those requirements, in short order, will probably involve the use of “biometric identifiers,” such as retinal scans.

Appropriately, the REAL ID measure was attached to the war supplemental spending bill. In Iraq, noted Gulf News on May 5, “Suspected insurgents are being issued with hi-tech identity cards by U.S. forces.... The cards allow American intelligence services to keep track of people taken into custody even if they are released because they are found to have done nothing wrong.”

Once taken into custody, Iraqi detainees “are immediately put through a series of tests to record biometric data. Fingerprints are taken and iris scans carried out on both eyes. Four digital photographs are then taken of the individual’s face from different angles. Cutting-edge computer technology allows a three dimensional map of the suspect’s head to be drawn up from this information. That way, even if external changes are made to a face, such as a beard, the computer will be able to recognize the person from unchanging facial dimensions.”

What’s going on in Tikrit, Iraq, could be considered a pilot program for the next phase of the REAL ID program in the U.S.

Wednesday June 22, 7:07 AM

Experts say world's WMD attack risk is substantial

WASHINGTON (Reuters) - There is a 70-percent risk of an attack somewhere in the world with a weapon of mass destruction in the next decade, arms experts predicted in a survey released on Tuesday.
They also said up to five more countries are likely to acquire nuclear weapons within the next 10 years.

The survey, conducted by U.S. Senate Foreign Relations Committee Chairman Richard Lugar, describes a threat that is "real and increasing over time" and endorses vastly increased funding for non-proliferation programs.

"Even if we succeed spectacularly at building democracy around the world, bringing stability to failed states and spreading economic opportunity broadly, we will not be secure from the actions of small, disaffected groups that acquire weapons of mass destruction," the Indiana Republican said in a preface to the survey.

"Everything is at risk if we fail in this area," he said.

Tuesday, June 21, 2005

Gospel News
This AFP report (Billy Graham announces final US crusade) states that Billy Graham, one of the greatest evangelists in history, will have his last crusade this year. [Gospel Preached to All, Matthew 24:14]

US Bookstore Chain Expects Record Sales for New Harry Potter

Barnes & Noble, Inc. announced today that pre-orders for “Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince” have topped 750,000 copies, well ahead of the pace of the last Potter book two years ago.

“The Harry Potter series has shattered all records in publishing history, and the enormous amount of pre-orders to date confirm that the latest Harry Potter title will be the most popular yet,” Barnes & Noble CEO Steve Riggio said in a statement.

“In fact, we predict that our pre-orders will top one million.”

The new Potter book, the sixth in J.K. Rowling’s fantasy series, is scheduled to come out on July 16 with a first printing of 10.8 million copies.

“The Half-Blood Prince” has topped the best seller lists of Barnes & and, with only brief interruptions, since its release was announced last December. announced last week that more than 500,000 pre-orders have been taken for the new Potter book.

AP: Feds Collect Data on Air Travelers
Monday June 20, 3:15 pm ET
By Leslie Miller, Associated Press Writer
AP: Federal Agency Collected Extensive Personal Data About Airline Passengers Despite Pledge

WASHINGTON (AP) -- A federal agency collected extensive personal information about airline passengers although Congress told it not to and it said it wouldn't, according to documents obtained Monday by The Associated Press.

A Transportation Security Administration contractor used three data brokers to collect detailed information about U.S. citizens who flew on commercial airlines in June 2004 in order to test a terrorist screening program called Secure Flight, according to documents that will be published in the Federal Register this week.

States look to high-tech tools to track, map sex offenders

By Martha T. Moore, USA TODAY Mon Jun 20, 7:00 AM ET

Last month, Florida and Oklahoma passed laws requiring lifetime GPS satellite tracking for certain sex criminals: repeat offenders in Oklahoma, those whose victims were under 12 in Florida.

Legislatures in Pennsylvania, New Jersey and New York are considering satellite tracking. Legislation now before Congress would require all repeat sex offenders to wear a GPS ankle bracelet for life.

U.S. History of Aggression and War Can Never Be Concealed

"As long as the U.S. imperialists remain alive, the world can never be tranquil and there can be no end to aggression and war bringing misfortunes and disasters to the people.
The world is sure to keep a tab on the anti-historical and anti-human crimes of the U.S. in destroying peace and barring the development of human civilization."

My father is a Korean War vet, and suffers with Post Traumatic Stress Syndrome. It gave me a hellish childhood. And now this is just more fodder for the flames of suffering our soldiers suffered.

Anti-U.S. Photo Show Opens in Seoul

Pyongyang, June 17 (KCNA) -- A ceremony of opening an "anti-U.S. photo show of the south, north and overseas sides on the lapse of 60 years since U.S. military occupation" was reportedly held at the Maroni Park in Seoul on June 13 under the sponsorship of the South Headquarters of the National Alliance for the Country's Reunification on the occasion of the "June 13-September 8 period of intensive struggle for peace against war and for the withdrawal of the U.S. forces." On display were pictures exposing murder of civilians and crimes committed by GIs, U.S. war drills under various code names, and environmental pollution at the U.S. military bases, pictures showing scenes of Pyongyang during the June 25 war, atrocities of the U.S. imperialists in dropping germ bombs and the capture of the U.S. imperialists' spy ship Pueblo and pictures on the anti-U.S. struggle of Koreans overseas. Speakers at the opening ceremony said that the show would help all the members of the nation in the south and the north and overseas keenly feel once again the urgency of the withdrawal of the U.S. forces and lead them to an energetic work to draw the masses into the movement for U.S. troop pullout.
They hoped that the show would serve as a major occasion in fortifying the will of all the fellow countrymen to oppose war and drive the U.S. forces out of south Korea.
After seeing the photos, the visitors said they came to clearly know the real nature of the U.S. imperialist aggressors who seek pleasure in human killing, and strongly demanded the withdrawal of the U.S. forces.
The South Headquarters declared that it would sponsor the function for anti-U.S information at over 100 spots across south Korea till September 8.
For some unknown reason my yahoo mail was bouncing. I have fixed the problem, I think. I apologize for any inconvenience this may have caused. Please check out what I've posted on the blog just in case they didn't resend my posts.


By BRUCE MEYERSON, AP Business Writer Sat Jun 18, 5:27 AM ET
NEW YORK - Already a device of multiple disguises, from camera to music player and mini-TV, the cell phone's next trick may be the disappearing wallet. After all, since more than a quarter of the people on the planet already carry around cell phones, and hundreds of millions are joining them every year, why should they bring along credit and debit cards when a mobile device can make payments just as well?

At the simplest level, all that's needed is to embed phones with a short-range radio chip to beam credit card information to a terminal at a store register. It's not unlike the wireless system used to pay tolls on many highways or the SpeedPass keychain wand used to buy gas at Exxon Mobile Corp. pumps.

The Jerusalem Connection, International
Dear Friend of Israel,

The Jerusalem Connection, International is a 501 (c)-(3) non-profit organization whose main objectives are to educate, inform and activate, Christian and Jews regarding:

1. God’s purposes for Israel and the Jewish people
2. The Jewish roots of our faith
3. The dangers of Anti-Semitism
4. Why Christians need to support Israel and the Jewish people
5. And what we should do about it

Chinese Submarine Test-Fires Ballistic Missile

China on Thursday test-fired a new ballistic missile from a nuclear submarine in the Pacific Ocean off Qingdao on the Shandong Peninsula, the Daily Yomiuri reported (see GSN, March 11).

The missile flew several thousand kilometers before landing in a desert. It was likely a Ju Lang 2, a modified version of the Dong Feng 31 ICBM with a range of roughly 8,000 kilometers, Japanese government sources said Friday.

The test could be seen as a warning to the United States against China’s territorial dispute with Taiwan, the Yomiuri reported.

U.S. officials believe China could have 100 nuclear warheads aimed at the United States on Dong Feng 31 missiles by 2015 (Daily Yomiuri, June 18).
(I love this! The Hebrew people are so creative and never cease to amaze me with their humor and strength.)

Ramat HaSharon and Maaleh Adumim Painted Orange
13:35 Jun 21, '05 / 14 Sivan 5765

A group calling itself "Pensioners in Orange" painted parking spots in Ramat HaSharon orange last night, while drivers in Maaleh Adumim awoke to find their cars adorned in orange ribbons.

Parking spots in Israel are normally indicated with blue and white curbside markings. Orange and white markings were painted last night near the Ramat Aviv shopping mall, accompanied by letters of explanation.

"Good morning, dear residents," the letters read. "We believe that as strong supporters of the disengagement plan (or perhaps not...), and as people who are essentially humanitarian, you will be happy to welcome in your homes the uprooted Jews of Gush Katif and northern Shomron. We are sure that you would be happy to take their place and live 'temporarily' in one of the 'luxurious caravilot' being prepared for them on the sands of Nitzanim."

Caravilot are the upgraded mobile homes without wheels into which the families are supposed to move this summer for an indefinite amount of time until their permanent housing is ready.

Fifty Islamic Jihad Terrorists Arrested
13:07 Jun 21, '05 / 14 Sivan 5765

IDF forces arrested some 50 Islamic Jihad terrorists throughout Judea and Samaria during the course of Monday night. Islamic Jihad has been behind much of the recent terrorism wave.

Half of the arrested terrorists were from the Hevron area, and the others were from the Bethlehem, Ramallah, Jenin and Kalkliye regions. The IDF emphasized that it had apprehended even terrorists who are not considered "ticking time bombs."
This is an update on your last post re Middle East Peace: CNN - 'Difficult' Mideast talks focus on terrorism.

Sunday, June 19, 2005


For immediate release: 16 June 2005

"Children from different religions can pray together in school"

by Friedrich Degenhardt (*)

Free photo of Usha Jesudasan available see below

How to teach religion in multifaith contexts is a growing concern for churches and religious communities everywhere. This interview presents a specific experience emerging from a multireligious context in Asia.

"Children from different religions can pray together in school," says Usha Jesudasan, a journalist and writer from India, where Christians, Hindus, Muslims and people of other religions live within the same local community. Jesudasan is committed to the concept of integrating interfaith religious and value education in schools to promote peace and harmony.
Terrorists Attack Kfar Darom as Rice Praises PA
11:34 Jun 19, '05 / 12 Sivan 5765

Arab terrorists unsuccessfully tried to attack Kfar Darom, hours before Condoleezza Rice praised PA anti-terror efforts. The IDF turned back the terrorists, who struck for the third time in a month.

A four-member terror gang launched the assault with gunfire on Israeli army positions next to Kfar Darom, in Gush Katif. Golani soldiers returned fire and killed an Islamic Jihad terrorist and injured another attacker, who was identified as a member of the Al-Aqsa Martyrs' Brigade, a branch of Abu Mazen's Fatah party. Two other terrorists escaped unharmed. IDF soldiers recovered a rifle and ammunition.

Terrorists also shot at IDF soldiers near Gadid, in Gush Katif, and fired almost a dozen mortar shells at several towns. One soldier was lightly injured and several greenhouses were damaged. Last month, terrorists tried to attack Kfar Darom in a pre-dawn attack before Israeli soldiers repelled the attacks following an hour-long delay until superiors allowed them to shoot.

IDF Colonel Moti Kidor, commander of a battalion in Gaza, said that terrorists have "almost doubled" the number of attacks towards the planned August transfer of 9,000 Jewish residents from Gaza. He added, "Terror gangs attack because the PA stands on the side and does not prevent them." Kidor also revealed that soldiers in the past month prevented another assault on the town.

Saturday's attacks on Israel came almost simultaneously with praise for Abu Mazen by visiting American secretary of State Condoleezza Rice. She called the successor to Yasser Arafat "a man of peace" and added that the PA is "making progress" in training Arab security forces. Rice then acknowledged, "More could be done."
AP is reporting two new quakes, one in Japan, the other in California:

AP - Moderate Quake Hits Off California Coast

AP - Moderate Quake Hits Japan's Eastern Coast
Mideast Peace
Here is the latest Mideast peace efforts, the U.S. is pushing the Israeli disengagement plan: AP - Rice: Parties Committed to Gaza Pullout and doesn't seem too worried about Hamas and Islamic Jihad still armed and dangerous.

Saturday, June 18, 2005

The RFID Future
Government and industry reps are getting together to talk about the future of RFID technology (UPI - RFID Future, Hazards Discussed). I wonder if privacy is high on their list of concerns? [mark of the beast, Rev 13:16-18]

Friday, June 17, 2005

New CA Quake on Friday
Ok, I wonder how many of you had this experience, I saw this news report about the CA quake and I thought they were still talking about the one from yesterday. So, just to be clear, California had another quake on Friday: AP - 4th Significant Earthquake Shakes Calif.
Ecumenical Patriarch Welcomes Pope's Call

Jun 17, 6:42 AM (ET)


(AP) Ecumenical Orthodox Patriarch Bartholomew I leads the Easter Resurrection Service at the...

ANKARA, Turkey (AP) - The spiritual leader of the world's 200 million Orthodox Christians welcomed Pope Benedict XVI's pledge to end a schism between the Catholic and Orthodox churches, calling it a mutual "obligation to God.
Ecumenical Patriarch Bartholomew I's statement to The Associated Press was his first response to the new pope's call to heal the 1,000-year rift and reflected the difficult task of trying to reconcile differences between the two churches. He warned that the path to unity would be "slow and painful."

Rice Visit: Preparing for Disengagement, Talk-Down About China
11:52 Jun 17, '05 / 10 Sivan 5765

U.S. Secretary of State Condoleeza Rice will arrive in Ramallah tomorrow for talks with PA Chairman Mahmoud Abbas, and will meet with Prime Minister Sharon in Jerusalem on Sunday.

U.S. Secretary of State Condoleeza Rice will arrive in Ramallah tomorrow (Sabbath)for talks with Palestinian Authority Chairman Mahmoud Abbas, and will meet with Prime Minister Ariel Sharon in Jerusalem on Sunday. She told reporters yesterday, "Obviously, the primary goal for going to Israel and to the Palestinian territories at this time is to talk with the parties about the preparations for the very important and historic disengagement from the Gaza that is about to take place."
Israeli Invention Enables Diving Without Oxygen Tank
16:27 Jun 16, '05 / 9 Sivan 5765

Israeli inventor Alon Bodner has found a way to use the small amounts of air already in the water to provide oxygen to divers and even to submarines.

Bodner's device has the potential to overcome limitations imposed on divers by oxygen tanks. The tanks limit not only the amount of time a diver can remain under water, but also affect the diver's buoyancy and they empty out over the course of a dive. Divers carefully monitor their buoyancy - the tendency to either float up toward the surface or to sink - and actually wear weight belts to be able to keep it at zero. This enables them to concern themselves only with swimming in the direction they want, without having to fight against a potentially increasing tendency to float up or sink. In addition, of course, tanks must be brought to refueling facilities to be reused.

Nuclear submarines and the international space station have long used systems that generate oxygen from water by performing 'Electrolysis' – the separation of oxygen from hydrogen. However, these systems require too much energy for standard submarines, let alone divers, to use.

Bodner told IsraCast that he got the idea for his invention from fish, who do not perform chemical separation of oxygen from water. Instead, they use the dissolved air that exists in the water in order to breathe.

The system uses a physics principle known as "Henry's Law," which states that the amount of gas that can be dissolved in a liquid body is proportional to the pressure on the liquid body.

Using a rapidly rotating centrifuge to create increased pressure inside a small sealed chamber containing sea water, Bodner was able to extract enough oxygen from the water for a human being to breathe.

A laboratory model of the system has already been built and tested. It runs on rechargeable batteries, and can be worn in the form of a vest.

Bodner is now building a full-sized prototype, has already received a patent for the invention in Europe, and is expecting to receive one in the US as well.

Thursday, June 16, 2005

AP - Vandals Desecrate Jewish Graves in London
According to the AP, "Vandals desecrated 86 tombstones dating to the 1870s in a Jewish cemetery in London, spraying some of them with Nazi swastikas and racial slurs while knocking them over, police said Thursday." A spiritual awareness is required to understand why this keep happening. The secular world has no way of understanding such irrational hate or why the phenomenon is so persistant across the generations.
CA Quake
Hi all, thanks for letting me join the team. Reuters is reporting a new quake today in California - California rattled by third quake in week. Hope I did this right.

Wednesday, June 15, 2005

International ID Standards
Here is the latest report on the U.S. delay in imposing biometric standards on allies, from the AP - U.S. Confirms Passport Requirements Delay. Why the delay? Apparently, "Twenty-seven allied nations - mostly from Europe - whose citizens enjoy visa-free travel rights to the U.S. have resisted the stricter biometrics passport standards that would incur additional costs and privacy concerns."

Tuesday, June 14, 2005

My Way News - Calif. Post-Quake Tsunami Warning Canceled
A 7.0-magnitude quake hit California late today and prompted a tsunami warning to be issued for a short time. AP reports, "A major earthquake struck about 80 miles off the coast of northern California on Tuesday night, briefly prompting a tsunami warning along the Pacific coast." [Quakes & Roaring Waves, Matthew 24:7 & Luke 21:25]
Privacy Concerns
Ted Koppel is worried about the privacy implications of the Patriot Act, RFID chips, wireless surveillance and ID theft. In this New York Times op-ed (Take My Privacy, Please!), the respected newsman reviews these concerns and calls for greater transparency and protections for sensitive private information. [Mark of the Beast, Rev 13:16-18]
Chile Quake
Reuters AlertNet (Chile earthquake death toll rises to 11) reports on the latest big quake news, "Boulders littered city streets and highways in northern Chile on Tuesday after a 7.9-magnitude quake caused landslides and wrecked homes, killing at least 11 people and injuring 200." [Quakes, Matthew 24:7]

Monday, June 13, 2005

Battle for Jerusalem
In other news today, Palestinian militants made fresh threats to withdraw from the 4-month-old truce because of recent fighting with Israeli troops (AP - Palestinian Militants Step Up Threat). [Battle for Jerusalem, Ezekiel 38:8; Zechariah 12; Luke 21:20]
Global Spectacle
There was an event today you have no doubt heard about by now, a famous American entertainer was acquitted of criminal charges (ABC Online - Jackson found not guilty on all counts). This post is not about that. This post is about the spectacle of global news events and how they are related to Bible prophecy, specifically Revelation 9:11. This prophecy has to do with the Two Witnesses being executed and then resurrected in full view of the entire world. For many generations this prophecy was difficult to make sense of and many commentators spiritualized it. In pre-modern times, there was simply no way to imagine that an event could be witnessed by everyone on the planet. Thanks to communications satellites, cable news organizations, and the Internet, it is now possible for all of us to participate personally in global news events, witnessing them as they happen, and then registering our reaction to others via the net, e-mail, blogs, and cell phone. Communications companies have noted a sharp increase in phone calls during major news events. The prophecy speaks of people sending each other gifts after the Two Witnesses are executed and I can't help but wonder if these gifts are really e-mails, pictures, ring-tones and videos sent over our global communication system. Time will tell.

Sunday, June 12, 2005

Quake Watch
AP - My Way News - Moderate Quake Rattles S. California
: "A moderate earthquake shook most of Southern California early Sunday, rattling nerves along with homes and businesses. There were no immediate reports of any injuries or damage, authorities said. The magnitude-5.6 quake struck about 8:40 a.m. and was centered 20 miles south of Palm Springs, according to a preliminary report by the U.S. Geological Survey. Dozens of smaller temblors were registered within minutes of the quake, authorities said." [Quakes, Matthew 24:7]

Saturday, June 11, 2005

Expanding the Security Council
World leaders continue to debate plans to expand the U.N. Security Council, the world body charged with preserving peace and security after World War II. Since the organizational structure of the council represents the victors of that world war, there have been calls to expand the council to reflect the geopolitical realities of the 21st Century. The council has five permanent members who have veto power and ten nonpermanent members. In this update from Reuters (Veto dropped in draft for new UN Council members) we learn that, "Germany, Japan, Brazil and India on Wednesday dropped the right to a veto for new permanent U.N. Security Council members in their revised draft resolution to expand the 15-member prestigious body. The four nations, contenders for permanent council seats, want the U.N. General Assembly to adopt a framework resolution as early as this month that would add 10 new members to the council, six permanent members and four nonpermanent ones." We will continue to watch as these negotiations continue. The Security Council remains one of several potential fulfillments of the Ten Kings prophecy (Rev 17:12-14), though it is a bit eerie the way the number 10 keeps showing up in these news reports.

Thursday, June 09, 2005

North Korean Nuclear Crisis
The North is engaged in the usual bluster (AFP - North Korea has nuclear bombs, building more: official) in advance of the U.S. and South Korea summit tomorrow. Still, it is more than a rumor that they have nuclear weapons. [Wars and Rumors of War, Matthew 24:6]
WorldNetDaily: New 'Sanhedrin' plans rebuilding of Temple

A Jewish rabbinical council has long labored to reconstitute the ancient Sanhedrin, which was the original high council that decided all matters of faith for the Jewish people. The Sanhedrin has not sat since the fifth century AD. Does it sit again? That depends on whom you talk to, since key leaders of both the Ashkenazic and Sephardic Jewish communities have refused to recognize the new "Sanhedrin" as such. But they are definitely moving forward to plan the rebuilding of the Temple. That one act could trigger Ezekiel's War [Ezekiel 38-39] and is also necessary to provide a context for the Tribulation [Daniel 9:27; Revelation 13-16].

Wednesday, June 08, 2005

Marburg Outbreak
A quick update on that outbreak of Marburg virus in Angola, according to this report (AFP - Marburg fever claims more than 350 deaths in Angola), it is still spreading. [Pestilence, Luke 21:11]

Tuesday, June 07, 2005

Believers Persecuted
Saudi Arabia is denying that they persecute Christians (AP - Saudis Deny Persecuting Christians). [Believers Persecuted, Matthew 24:8]

Monday, June 06, 2005

Temple Mount Violence
Those of you following events on the Temple Mount no doubt noted a new scuffle today (Reuters - Violence erupts outside Jerusalem's al-Aqsa mosque) between Palestinians throwing stones at Jews and security forces trying to maintain the peace. [Temple Mount, Daniel 9:27, Matthew 24:15 & 2 Thessalonians 2:4]

Saturday, June 04, 2005

Telegraph | News | Blair gives up on his EU dream

That's right, Tony Blair will not seek either an act of Parliament or a referendum on the European Constitution in his country. Indeed, even the future of the euro is now in doubt, in that leading Germans, and now Italians, have called for referenda in their countries for the restoration of their respective national currencies. Is this a reversal of the trend toward a single currency and a single economic system? Or is this, as some stock-market gurus like to say, merely a bump in the road--a "bounce" as they like to put it? As Jesus Himself reminds us, only the Father knows for sure.

Friday, June 03, 2005

Biometric Bandwagon
Russia is also jumping on the biometric ID bandwagon (AFP - Russia to introduce biometric passports in 2007), though their new passports won't debut until 2007. [Mark of the Beast, Rev 13:16-18]

Thursday, June 02, 2005

Doomsday Cult Recruiting
It's been a while since we last heard from the Aum doomsday cult, but they are apparently still around and intent on recruiting new members (AFP - Japanese doomsday cult on drive to double membership). Apparently, they are branching out into new enterprises, like selling used cars. Hmmn, I could make a joke here, but I don't want to insult any used car sellers that may be reading this. [False Christs, False Prophets, Matthew 24:4,11]

Wednesday, June 01, 2005

How is the global fight against AIDS going? My Way News - U.N. AIDS Meeting to Get Mixed Bag of News has some answers. [pestilence, Luke 21:11]