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Mystery Alabama ‘boom’ rattles Twitter theorists, NASA unsure of origin — RT US News

Published time: 15 Nov, 2017 11:58 Witnesses across Alabama reported a mysterious “boom” that rocked their...

NASA to test ‘space lasers’ with latest launch — RT US News

Published time: 11 Nov, 2017 11:53 Edited time: 11 Nov, 2017 13:07 Sunday marks the day...

NASA building very own ‘Big F**king Rocket’ to rival SpaceX (VIDEO) — RT US...

Published time: 10 Nov, 2017 11:39 Not to be undone by Elon Musk and SpaceX, NASA...

Spooky sounds of space from NASA (AUDIO, POLL) — RT US News

Published time: 30 Oct, 2017 12:45 As people on Earth prepare to pay homage to ghosts,...
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Video: Armchair Astronauts: Walk around on Mars trails with NASA’s new VR project

NASA and Google launch 'Access Mars' virtual reality program that lets users explore Mars online. Thanks to this VR project, people can skip an...

Moon photobombs Sun during NASA observations — RT America

Published time: 22 Oct, 2017 00:37 Not one to be outdone by its “hotter” counterpart, the...

NASA’s ion thruster breaks power & propulsion records — RT America

Published time: 16 Oct, 2017 09:05 NASA’s newest ion thruster has broken previous records of generating...
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Video: NASA Cassini probe plunges into Saturn to end 20yr mission (STREAMED LIVE)

NASA is providing live footage of the final moments of the Cassini spacecraft, as it plunges through Saturn's atmosphere and vaporizes to end its...

'You are not alone': NASA celebrates 40 years of Voyager 1 spacecraft with interstellar...

The National Aeronautics and Space Administration is honoring the legacy of its farthest reaching spacecraft by...

NASA’s Plan To Fix the Yellowstone Supervolcano

A NASA plan to stop the Yellowstone supervolcano from erupting could actually cause it to blow – triggering a nuclear winter that would wipe...

NASA issues safety guidelines ahead of rare ‘coast-to-coast’ total solar eclipse

Published time: 25 Jul, 2017 23:29 With the US set to experience its first “coast-to-coast” total...

‘A civilization on Mars thousands of years ago’: Congressman stuns NASA scientists

Published time: 19 Jul, 2017 02:23 Edited time: 19 Jul, 2017 09:52 A California congressman baffled...

Too broke to go Martian: NASA says it can’t afford to send humans to...

Published time: 14 Jul, 2017 19:11 The perspectives for landing humans on Mars in the next...

Martian technicolor worms? NASA reveals incredible snap of Mars crater

Published time: 16 Jul, 2017 00:00 A trippy snap of a Mars crater embedded with material...

NASA Releasing Artificial Clouds Over Maryland Coast

Associated Press is reporting that NASA is to release luminescent, artificial clouds above the mid-atlantic coast. The clouds will be accompanied by a sounding...

Touching the sun: NASA to reveal plans for hellish mission (PHOTOS)

Published time: 29 May, 2017 16:19 Edited time: 29 May, 2017 16:19 NASA will shed some...

NASA next gen spacesuits not ready before Intl Space Station retires – audit

NASA spent nearly $200 million on three new spacesuit designs for deep space exploration, although only...

Saturn's moon Enceladus may support alien life – NASA (WATCH LIVE)

Published time: 13 Apr, 2017 18:15Edited time: 13 Apr, 2017 18:15 New research from NASA indicates that...
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Video: ‘There are no borders in space; I wish our president could see this...

Russia and the US should work together to benefit humanity, American astronaut Douglas H. Wheelock has said, noting that all human differences are forgotten...

Trump in Outer Space: The NASA Bill

You could send Congress to space. — Senator Ted Cruz, March 21, 2017 The NASA authorisation bill was another Trump huff and puff show, brimming with...

‘Critical’ NASA Climate Missions Targeted in Budget Cuts

In his most recent weekly address, President Trump praised NASA’s “mission of exploration and discovery” and its ability to allow mankind to “look to...

Trump signs NASA funding bill to send astronauts to Mars

President Donald Trump has signed a bill authorizing $19.5 billion in funding for NASA, which includes...

Congress passes NASA funding bill, Mars mission date set

A trip to Mars by 2033 is among the several long-term NASA goals included in a...

‘Exoplanet hop’: NASA release epic travel poster to mark landmark discovery (PICTURES)

Published time: 23 Feb, 2017 14:40 NASA has released a stunning new ‘space tourism poster’ to mark...
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Video: LIVE: NASA to reveal new discovery ‘from beyond our solar system’

NASA has announced that it has some big news to reveal to the world this week, intriguingly sourced 'from beyond our solar system'. RT...

Where no man has gone before: NASA awards Space Poop Challenge champs, plans 2019...

The top three designers of NASA’s Space Poop Challenge won a total $30,000 in prizes, and now the agency may use the designs in...

NASA spends $2mn on ‘advanced life support tech’ for deep space travel

NASA has awarded $2 million to two companies for the development of technology that will help...

New NASA ‘poop suit’ set for inaugural trip aboard Orion

NASA has revealed that the winning suit design in its “space poop challenge” will likely fly...

NASA's Space Launch System counts down to liftoff

The race to the Red Planet is on, as NASA's Space Launch System reached two milestones...

Chips, not fried: NASA develops technology able to survive +450C on Venus

Venus, with its caustic atmosphere, +450C temperatures, and enormous pressure, has long been off bounds for...

Fly the irradiated skies: Radiation hits air travelers, NASA finds

You are now free to radiate about the cabin. Airline travelers and pilots risk increased radiation...

Have spacesuit, will travel: NASA unveils new astronaut outfit

NASA is still working on the ability to send people into orbit once again, but the...

‘Low-hanging fruit of the solar system’: NASA asteroid missions may be worth trillions (VIDEO)

NASA is sending a satellite to the surface of a Massachusetts-sized asteroid that is completely made...

Closest ever: NASA captures image of Saturn’s spooky ‘Death Star’ moon

On its closest-ever flyby of Saturn’s moon Mimas, NASA’s Cassini spacecraft has captured what may be...

Terrible splendor: NASA captures Iras snowstorm from space in amazing animation

While the weather outside may be frightful – the western US is freezing under several feet...

NASA Is Not Just a Propaganda Apparatus

Why is it that all our heroes inevitably try to kill us? From Winston Churchill to Albert Einstein, the people we laud the most...

NASA captures spectacular burst of northern lights over Canada (PHOTOS)

A burst of particles from the Sun hit the Earth’s magnetic field soon after the winter...

‘Not a hell of a lot we can do’: NASA scientist warns Earth vulnerable...

Earth is essentially defenseless in the face of comets and asteroids that bring little warning, a...
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Video: Pegasus XL rocket launch attempt as part of NASA’s CYGNSS mission (Streamed live)

Pegasus XL rocket is launched from aircraft as part of NASA's CYGNSS mission. Note: First launch attempt fails due to hydraulic problem, second attempt...

NASA designing nano-starship which travels at 20% the speed of light

The US space agency and a team of scientists, including Stephen Hawking, is developing a nano-starship...

SpaceX grabs $112mn contract from NASA for unique ocean survey

SpaceX has added a $112 million NASA contract to its trophy case, winning the privilege of launching a satellite for the first-ever global surface...

Trump to ‘Free NASA’ and Set Sights on Further Space Exploration

Despite criticism from the media about his stance on space policy, President-elect Trump is set to focus NASA mainly on space exploration following...

NASA’s most advanced telescope complete after 20 years (PHOTO)

The James Webb Space Telescope (JWST) has finally been unveiled at NASA. The fruit of 20...

SpaceX’s Falcon 9 fueling plan alarms NASA advisory panel – report

A NASA advisory panel has reportedly sounded the alarm over SpaceX’s unique and contrarian fueling process...

Back to the Moon: NASA seeks small payloads for lunar mission

NASA is seeking information from private companies on "the availability of small payloads" that could be...

When Matthew met NASA: Hurricane damages important NASA, SpaceX buildings

Hurricane Matthew may not have wreaked the havoc in the US that some predicted, but it...

NASA gives 3D look into Hurricane Matthew (VIDEO)

NASA has provided incredible views of Hurricane Matthew from space. Now they’re providing a different glimpse...

NASA disappoints ET seekers: Aliens not among ‘surprising’ findings on Jupiter moon (VIDEOS, PHOTOS)

When NASA announced a press conference about “surprising activity” on Europa, one of Jupiter’s many moons,...

NASA space telescope captures black holes ‘burping’ after eating up stars

For the first time ever, astronomers have documented the process by which radiation is expelled from...

NASA solar observatory captures spectacular double eclipse (VIDEO)

A rare double eclipse was captured by NASA this week when both the Earth and the...

Moment in the sun: NASA scientists get first ‘global picture of solar wind evolution’

A recent breakthrough from NASA allows scientists to see the sun in a whole new way....

NASA completes year-long Mars simulation in Hawaii

Six scientists have left Mauna Loa dome after spending a complete year in near-isolation in a mission to simulate living on Mars. NASA-funded study...

One step closer to Mars: NASA completes splashdown test for red planet-bound Orion (VIDEO)

NASA has completed an important step in its quest to send a manned-mission to Mars and...

Back online: NASA reestablishes contact with sun-watching spacecraft

NASA has reestablished contact with its sun-watching Stereo-B spacecraft after communication was lost almost two years...

Fracking leaks a major factor in US methane 'hot spot' – NASA

Using airborne thermal infrared spectrometers, a NASA-led team has found 25 leaks due to fracking natural...

NASA building ‘space habitats’ near the moon

It's not quite the Star Trek Enterprise but NASA has revealed it's developing "deep space habitats,” which will house astronauts in outer space in...

NASA test legacy engine for future Mars missions

Compensating for a setback two week ago, NASA has successfully tested the RS-25 engine, a legacy...

NASA’s Kepler telescope discovers over 100 planets

A team of astronomers have discovered and confirmed 104 planets outside of our solar system using NASA’s Kepler spacecraft on its K2 mission. At least...

‘Dark streaks’ on Mars give NASA a hint that Red Planet may have water

NASA has examined thousands of “dark streaks” on Mars which might have formed due to liquid...
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Video: Post Juno Orbital Insertion NASA Science Briefing

RT LIVE http://rt.com/on-air Subscribe to RT! http://www.youtube.com/subscription_center?add_user=RussiaToday Like us on Facebook ... Via Youtube

NASA spacecraft reveals sounds made when crossing into ‘Jupiter’s home turf’

NASA’s Juno spacecraft, which is heading towards Jupiter, has entered the planet’s magnetic field and has given scientists the chance to hear what it...
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Video: NASA tests new rocket booster for extended space missions

NASA's most powerful rocket Space Launch System (SLS) is testing a new rocket booster from the Orbital ATK Propulsion Systems' test facilities in Promontory,...

NASA opens airport research lab in N. Carolina to revolutionize air travel

With more than 4 billion additional passengers expected to start travelling globally over the next 20...

Introducing ‘Maxwell’: NASA reveals experimental electric X-plane (VIDEO)

NASA has unveiled plans for its experimental electric plane, designated the X-57 and nicknamed "Maxwell," in...

‘Dancing’ with Earth: NASA discovers tiny asteroid companion

Move over, Moon – Earth has as new celestial companion. A tiny asteroid, named 2016 HO3,...

‘Work the night shift on Mars’: NASA unveils retro recruitment posters

NASA has released retro recruitment posters that attempt to inspire people in joining the mission to...

Mars now a bit more predictable: NASA orbiters discover ‘seasons’ of dust storms

When it comes to putting people on Mars, timing can’t be taken for granted. Now, thanks...

NASA uses balloons to map Earth’s magnetic field

It’s been two years since NASA released miniature membranous balloons above Antarctica in order to learn...
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Video: Not so bright: NASA captures huge dark void in sun’s atmosphere

Images of the sun usually show a burning ball of fire, shining bright in the sky. However, NASA has just released a stunning picture...

Coronal hole paints sun black in stunning NASA video

Images of the sun usually show a burning ball of fire, shining bright in the sky....

OSIRIS Re-X asteroid-bound spacecraft arrives at NASA’s Kennedy Space Center

A spacecraft that scientists hope could obtain samples from asteroids is one step closer to its...

Deep sleep and interstellar travel: NASA advances investment for new tech

NASA has chosen to inject new investments in eight space-exploration technologies with transformational potential. The projects...
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Video: Spacelapse of rare Mercury transit captured by NASA telescope

It only happens a few times a century: the smallest planet in our solar system is passing between the Earth and the Sun, allowing...

NASA discovers atomic oxygen in Martian atmosphere for 1st time in 40yrs

NASA researchers have detected atomic oxygen in the Martian atmosphere for the first time in four...

‘Science fiction to fact’: NASA hackathon expands its diversity worldwide

In some 163 locations across 72 countries spanning six continents, hackers joined with scientists, engineers and...

Birthplace of innovation:’ Astronaut tells RT how NASA’s Space Apps Challenge can change science

NASA’s annual Space Apps Challenge has kicked off in Pasadena, California, with more than a hundred...

Senate bill underfunds Mars mission to spend $1 billion on rocket NASA doesn’t need

NASA’s goal of sending humans to Mars requires some extra cash, so a $21 million budget...
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Video: ‘Let’s be honest, NASA isn’t buying Russian made engines for charity’ – Roscosmos...

Russian engineers have presented a prototype of Russia's most powerful “Angara A5V” heavy-lift rocket that may perform its first manned flight to the Moon...
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Video: NASA astronaut Scott Kelly shares his experience after 1 year in space

Scott Kelly and MIkhail Kornienko returned from their mission at the beginning of March. They spent just over 12 months in orbit, double the...

New ‘Titanic’ prepares for voyage as NASA reports record low Arctic sea ice

A luxury cruise liner bigger than the Titanic is set to embark on an epic voyage...
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Video: RAW: NASA’s Orbital ATK Cygnus capsule with supplies for ISS launched from Cape...

NASA's Orbital ATK Cygnus capsule is taking off from Cape Canaveral, Florida. The rocket is filled with nearly 7500 lbs of science and research,...

NASA's Scott Kelly retires after year in space, says 'journey is not over'

NASA astronaut Scott Kelly, who during almost a year in space regularly surprised us with stunning...

NASA’s gigantic ‘Super Guppy’ cargo plane ships spacecraft destined for Mars

A manned mission to Mars is a little closer after a big move from NASA on Monday. A Super Guppy cargo jet was used...

NASA wants public to create robotic arm for its ISS flying robot

NASA wants its robot on the International Space Station to acquire new capabilities, including the ability to perch. In order to do so, it's...

NASA safety panel throws major shade on space agency’s Mars plan

A panel charged with annual assessments of NASA says that the agency's plan to reach Mars by the 2030s is doubtable given its lack...

NASA finds supermassive black hole that ‘burps’ gas

A supermassive black hole in a nearby galaxy has been spotted “burping” gas and star-forming dust, NASA says. Scientists now think black holes could...
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Video: 4th time is the charm: NASA’s contractor Orbital finally launches spacecraft with supplies...

After three days of strong winds, NASA's Orbital successfully launches from Cape Canaveral, bringing supplies from US to ISS for the first time since...

Health hazards remain obstacle to human travel to Mars – NASA report

Major health risks must be addressed before humans can successfully travel to Mars, according to an new audit conducted by NASA. The US space...
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Video: Spacewalk footage: NASA astronauts conduct repair works outside Intl Space Station

Expedition 45 Commander Scott Kelly and Flight Engineer Kjell Lindgren are conducting a spacewalk from the International Space Station (ISS). During the ... Via Youtube

Antarctica gaining more ice than losing — NASA

Antarctica has been accumulating more ice than it’s been losing in recent decades, a new study by NASA has revealed, challenging existing theories on...
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Video: Cosmic Walk: NASA astronauts perform maintenance outside of Intl Space Station

NASA astronauts Scott Kelly and Kjell Lindgren left the International Space Station on a spacewalk to perform essential maintenance tasks on the station's ... Via...
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Video: Flowing on Mars: NASA confirms water on Red planet, social media mocking it

NASA has confirmed the existence of liquid water on the surface of Mars. The finding stems from data and analysis by NASA's Mars Reconnaissance...

NASA: Giant asteroid will not destroy Earth next month

The world can breath easy. A giant asteroid is not hurtling towards Earth about to wipe out much of the Americas, NASA has felt...
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Video: NASA tests super-engine that will one day take us to Mars

NASA has just tested its next-generation, RS-25 super-engine that promises to take humans to Mars. Designed for the agency's 70-ton Space Launch System ... Via...

Google using NASA partnership to test drones inside the US – report

A partnership with NASA has enabled Google to test-fly its drones in US airspace, dodging federal aviation regulations. Citing current rules as too restrictive,...

NASA discovers ‘smallest supermassive’ black hole ever

Just 50,000 times the mass of the Sun, a new supermassive singularity discovered by NASA is a tiny thing by cosmic standards. Scientists hope...
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Video: Pluto’s Mordor moon awesomeness: NASA gurus’ great discovery

NASA holds a briefing on the New Horizons' mission to Pluto at the Johns Hopkins Applied Physics Laboratory in Laurel, Maryland. On July, 14...

Solar Shockwave Coming On Friday The 13th — NASA Footage

By Susan Duclos Three massive solar flares have been recorded, with reports of aircraft communications and military radio in Europe being disrupted, and an expectation of a possible huge magnetic shockwave which could hit Earth on Friday the 13th ...

NASA’s IRIS Observes Gigantic Eruption of Solar Material

A coronal mass ejection, or CME, surged off the side of the sun on May 9, 2014, and NASA's newest solar observatory caught it...

NASA warns of ‘potentially hazardous’ asteroid

A new, “potentially hazardous” asteroid has been discovered by one of NASA's recently reactivated spacecraft — and it's headed in Earth's direction.Read Full Article...

Nasa spacecraft spots ‘potentially hazardous’ new asteroid

Lucy KinderLondon TelegraphJanuary 10, 2014 Nasa's newly reactivated asteroid hunting space telescope has spotted its first...

Did You Know that Nasal Flu Vax Recipients Can Pass the Flu to Everyone...

Did you know that when a person receives the “FluMist” flu vaccine that anyone around them becomes exposed to the flu as the recipient “sheds” the viruses contained within the vaccine?  With all of the propaganda about how you MUST be vaccinated in order to protect those around you, you’dRead the Rest...

NASA developing Super Ball Bots for robotic exploration

William Atkins The U.S. space agency NASA is developing Super Ball Bots – a new type of robotic explorer that is shaped...

NASA releases this year’s best photos of Earth taken from space

Richard Thompsonrare.usDecember 27, 2013- See more at: http://rare.us/story/nasa-releases-this-years-best-photos-of-earth-taken-from-space/#sthash.qlXsKRg4.dpuf Thanks to the nearly 3,000 satellites monitoring Earth,...

NASA unveils 6-foot-tall humanoid robot (VIDEO)

NASA scientists have been secretly at work for a year on a walking, humanoid-like robot meant to evoke awe in anyone who comes across...

Puffy clouds, blue water: NASA video depicts Mars 4 billion years ago

Amina Khanlatimes.comDecember 9, 2013 Don't be fooled – this epic video of plump clouds, clear lakes and gorgeous landscapes isn't from some remote vacation spot...

Ex-NASA expert issues call for climate solutions

AFPDecember 3, 2013 Longtime NASA expert James Hansen has issued a call for new approaches to stop global warming, saying solutions are needed and that...

How NASA might build its very first warp drive

George Dvorsky A few months ago, physicist Harold White stunned the aeronautics world when he announced that he and his team at NASA had begun...

NASA Plans To Grow Plants On The Moon

The new balanced diet includes space fruits. The Independent reports: NASA has announced plans to grow plants on the moon by 2015 in a project...

Denver Police To Use “Nasal Ranger” To Track Sources Of Marijuana Smoke

Alternet notes the latest advance in being a narc — cops prowling the streets holding up what appear to be hair dryers in front...

NASA Releases Comet ISON Images from STEREO

NASA.govNovember 22, 2013 Comet ISON appeared in the higher-resolution HI-1 camera on NASA's STEREO-A spacecraft. Dark “clouds” coming from the right are more dense areas...

NASA Sees ‘Watershed’ Cosmic Blast in Unique Detail

NASA.gov November 22, 2013 On April 27, a blast of light from a dying star in a distant galaxy became the focus of astronomers around the...

NASA Video Depicts Ancient Mars With Water and Blue Skies

Nice video, but I kind of half-expected to see one of the “Engineers” from that crappy movie Prometheus. Wonder if intelligent civilizations of the...

Have You Been Smoking Pot? Denver Police Have a New Way to Tell: The...

Despite cannabis being legal in Colorado,...

NASA’s Hubble Sees Asteroid Spout Six Comet-like Tails

HubbleSite.orgNovember 9, 2013 Astronomers using NASA's Hubble Space Telescope have identified what they can only describe as a never-before-seen “weird and freakish object” in the...

New NASA Map Shows Where You Are Most Likely to Die From Air Pollution

Via PlanetSave: Each year millions of premature deaths world-wide result from various forms of air pollution. According to a new atmospheric pollution model designed by...

American authorities charge UK man with hacking Army, Missile Defense Agency and NASA websites

A 28-year-old man from Stradishall, England has been charged in the United States with hacking into US government and military computers, stealing sensitive data...

NASA hails new era of laser-fast interplanetary internet

Published time: October 24, 2013 13:39 An artist's concept of NASA's Lunar Atmosphere and Dust Environment Explorer (LADEE) spacecraft firing its maneuvering thrusters...

China calls Nasa conference ban ‘discriminatory’

BBCOct. 9, 2013 China has criticised the US space agency Nasa over its decision to bar...

NASA ban on Chinese sparks boycott

A number of prominent American astronomers are boycotting a NASA conference on exoplanets after they realized that the US government space agency has banned...

Apollo 10, story is changed, astronaut Cernan tells a different story as the NASA...

awe130Planet InfowarsOct. 7, 2013 In 1969 the Apollo 10 did a landing test, and something went...

Drinking Coffee and Tea Slashes Nasal MRSA Infection Risk in Half

With the CDC's recent warning that deadly, antibiotic resistant 'nightmare bacteria' are taking the lives of at least 23,000 U.S. patients a year, the...

Drinking Coffee and Tea Slashes Nasal MRSA Infection Risk in Half

With the CDC's recent warning that deadly, antibiotic resistant 'nightmare bacteria' are taking the lives of at least 23,000 U.S. patients a year, the...

NASA to Investigate Tropical Storm Humberto: Atlantic’s Second “Zombie Tropical Storm”

NASA.govSept. 16, 2013 This GOES-East image from Sept. 16 shows Tropical Storm Humberto, the Atlantic Ocean's...

NASA Voyager Leaves Solar System

NASA.govSept. 12, 2013 NASA's Voyager 1 spacecraft officially is the first human-made object to venture into...

Clinical efficacy of Manasamitra Vataka (an Ayurveda medication) on generalized anxiety disorder with comorbid...

BACKGROUND: Studies on alternative medicines for generalized anxiety disorder (GAD) are few. Manasamitra Vataka (an Ayurveda preparation) is explored for its efficacy in patients...

Space Caterpillar Imaged by NASA’s Hubble Telescope

NASA August 30, 2013 This light-year-long knot of interstellar gas and dust resembles a caterpillar on its way to a feast. But the...

Cut-price space? NASA successfully tests 3D-printed rocket engine injector

NASA has published a video of a rocket engine partly manufactured using 3D printing technology. The US space agency looks forward to bringing the...

NASA sells platforms that launched Apollo missions

Two competing space travel companies backed by internet billionaires have placed bids on a renowned space shuttle launchpad at Kennedy Space Center. NASA is...

Necrosis of nasal and airway epithelium in rats inhaling vapors of artificial butter flavoring.

Abstract Title: Necrosis of nasal and airway epithelium in rats inhaling vapors of artificial butter flavoring.Abstract Source: Toxicol Appl Pharmacol. 2002 Dec 1...

NASA starts building faster-than-light warp engine

Researchers at NASA’s Texas-based Johnson Space Center are trying to prove that it is possible to travel faster than the speed of light, and...

Jim Marrs And NASA Insider Talk About Anti Grav!

Infowars.comJuly 7, 2013 Had a chance to talk to two of my old friends yesterday. ...

NASA’s IRIS Mission Aims to Answer Solar Questions

NASA.govJune 28, 2013 NASA’s Interface Region Imaging Spectrograph (IRIS) solar observatory separated from its Pegasus rocket...

NASA probe finds new zone at doorstep to interstellar space

Irene Klotzreuters.comJune 27, 2013 Reports last summer than NASA’s long-lived Voyager 1 space probe had finally...

NASA, global warming and Transhumanism

Al WhitneyAntiCorruption SocietyJune 24, 2013 IN 2001 NASA AND THEIR ‘CORPORATE PARTNERS’ PRESENTED THEIR PLANS FOR...

Global warming debunked: NASA report verifies carbon dioxide actually cools atmosphere

Ethan A. HuffNatural NewsMay 22, 2013 Practically everything you have been told by the mainstream scientific...

Pizza from a printer: NASA to spend $125,000 funding 3D food production project

NASA is funding research into 3D printed food which would provide astronauts with meals during long space flights. The futuristic food printers would use...

NASA Announces Brightest Lunar Explosion Ever Recorded

NASA.govMay 17, 2013 For the past 8 years, NASA astronomers have been monitoring the...

Shackles, masks and nasal tubes: Gitmo revises force-feeding techniques (PHOTOS)

Hunger strikers being force-fed at Guantanamo Bay must wear masks over their mouths while being shackled to a restraint chair for up to two...

Mars mishap: Technical glitch halts NASA rover

Published time: March 19, 2013 09:08
This image released by NASA on February 7, 2013, taken by Mars Hand Lens Imager (MAHLI) onboard NASA's Mars rover Curiosity, shows a self-portrait of NASA's Mars rover Curiosity that combines dozens of exposures taken by the rover's Mars Hand Lens Imager (MAHLI) during the 177th Martian day, or sol, of Curiosity's work on Mars (February 3, 2013). (AFP Photo/NASA/JPL-Caltech/MSSS)

A computer systems hiccup has left the Mars rover Curiosity out of action after the probe detected the first chemical evidence of possible alien life. The rover was sidelined earlier this month following a first bout of technical troubles.

Scientists had previously said that operations would be resumed on Monday after a problem with the Rover’s computer memory caused the mission to be put on hold two weeks ago.

However, the latest technical upset that arose on Sunday forced engineers to extend the unexpected break in the mission.

"This is not something that is rare or even uncommon,"
John Grotzinger, lead scientist at the California Institute of Technology assured press at a news conference during the Lunar and Planetary Science Conference in Houston. He added that the setback is likely to delay the latest science results from the rover for the next couple of days.

The latest hiccup occurred during an information transmission to Earth on Sunday night.

The problems have arisen at a crucial time in the rover’s mission, just after the mission uncovered the first ever telltale signs that there was once life on the red planet.

Chemical analysis of a sample obtained by NASA’s curiosity last month revealed traces of a benevolent environment capable of supporting life. The analysis also unearthed a life-sustaining chemical footprint comprised of sulfur, nitrogen, hydrogen, oxygen, phosphorus and simple carbon.

The rover’s camera and Russian-manufactured probe are currently located in Mars’ Yellowknife Bay region, where more evidence of water has been discovered than anywhere else on the planet.

"I see the difference between Yellowknife and the area which is just before Yellowknife ... showing the different distribution of water. This is a significant variation,"
Maksim Litvak of the Space Research Institute in Moscow told reporters.

The rover mission, which was extended indefinitely in December of last year, seeks to ascertain whether Mars’ Gale Crater was able to support microbial life at some point in its history. The groundbreaking discoveries made by NASA’s mission are expected to pave the way for possible habitability studies during future exploration missions.

“We have found a habitable environment that is so benign and supportive of life that probably if this water was around and you had been on the planet, you would have been able to drink it,”
said Grotzinger.

NASA alert: Middle East loses freshwater reserves size of Dead Sea in 7 years

Thousands of wells have been dug in the extremely arid region. (Reuters / Ali Jarekji)

Thousands of wells have been dug in the extremely arid region. (Reuters / Ali Jarekji)

The Middle East is headed towards a water shortage crisis, as NASA satellites show that reserves the size of the Dead Sea have been depleted in just seven years, largely due to well-drilling.

Newly-obtained results show that 144 cubic kilometres of freshwater – a volume nearly equivalent to that of the Dead Sea or Lake Tahoe – had been removed from the ground in the area that encompasses Turkey, Iran, Iraq and Syria between 2003 and 2009.

"That's enough water to meet the needs of tens of millions to more than a hundred million people in the region each year, depending on regional water use standards and availability," said Jay Famiglietti, the UC Irvine professor who led the team who made the findings, which are due to be published on Friday in Water Resources Reasearch magazine.

While 40 percent of the decline is in the soil and surface water, the decrease in groundwater, caused by human actions, is responsible for 90 cubic kilometers of the shortfall.

"Satellite data shows an alarming rate of decrease in total water storage in the Tigris and Euphrates river basins, which currently have the second fastest rate of groundwater storage loss on Earth, after India," said Famiglietti.

The study was made possible by the US space agency’s Gravity Recovery and Climate Experiment (GRACE) satellites. The two identical vessels measure miniscule changes in the planet’s gravity through the variations in distance between them as they circle the Earth; postions influenced by the varying mass of the water reserves.

The research team said the depletion was caused by poor water management, combined with unfavorable climate conditions.

A devastating 2007 drought in the area not only caused depletions of surface water, which have still not been compensated, but also forced Iraqi authorities to order the drilling of more than 1,000 water wells. The actual number of wells drilled is likely to be much higher, as official statistics in the region are often patchy.

"That decline in stream flow put a lot of pressure on northern Iraq," said Kate Voss, another study author, "Both the UN and anecdotal reports from area residents note that once stream flow declined, this northern region of Iraq had to switch to groundwater.”

At the time, the country was at the height of a deadly sectarian conflict.

“In an already fragile social, economic and political environment, this did not help the situation," said Voss.

Last year’s authoritative Global Water Security report, produced by US intelligence agencies, marked the Middle East, naturally the driest region in the world alongside North Africa, as the area most vulnerable to water shortages, saying the situation was exacerbated by a lack of legal agreements and political instability.

"They just do not have that much water to begin with, and they're in a part of the world that will be experiencing less rainfall with climate change," Famiglietti said. "Those dry areas are getting dryer. Demand for freshwater continues to rise, and the region does not coordinate its water management because of different interpretations of international laws.”

Turkey, whose territory houses the headwaters of the region’s two major rivers, Tigris and Euphrates, enjoys a strained relationship with Syria and Iraq, the countries further downstream, and has systematically diverted water for its irrigation, which is frequently inefficient (throughout the Middle East).

Meanwhile, the World Bank predicts that water demand in the region will rise by 60 percent by 2045.

Groundwater has made up the shortage so far but it is being extracted at much faster rates than it is replaced.

"Groundwater is like your savings account," said Matt Rodell, another study author, "It's okay to draw it down when you need it, but if it's not replenished, eventually it will be gone."

NASA tests laser communications by sending Mona Lisa to space

A digital version of the Mona Lisa has been beamed to space using lasers. (Image courtesy: Xiaoli Sun, NASA Goddard)

A digital version of the Mona Lisa has been beamed to space using lasers. (Image courtesy: Xiaoli Sun, NASA Goddard)

A new experiment by NASA proving the effectiveness of laser communications has raised the prospect that beam technology could one day replace radio. That’s after NASA scientists successfully beamed an image of the Mona Lisa to the moon.

­NASA scientists usually use lasers to track the position of its Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter (LRO) – the robotic spacecraft that creates gravitational maps of the moon. It collects the information then transmits it back to earth at a rate of 50 Mbs.

Then NASA scientists had the bright idea of reversing the flow by beaming an image of the Mona Lisa to the LRO using lasers.

"This is the first time anyone has achieved one-way laser communication at planetary distances," says LOLA's principal investigator, David Smith of the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. "In the near future, this type of simple laser communication might serve as a backup for the radio communication that satellites use. In the more distant future, it may allow communication at higher data rates than present radio links can provide."

The picture was transmitted to the LRO spacecraft, because it is the only satellite that has a laser receiver.  

An image grab taken from a video uploaded on http://www.nasa.gov
An image grab taken from a video uploaded on http://www.nasa.gov

Precise timing was the key to transmitting the simplified black and white image, because the laser pulse has to hit a small target a very very long way away.

The first attempt to reassemble the image was not successful, the quality of the picture was significantly degraded. Atmospheric turbulence and a slight pause in transmission caused errors, making the resulting image grainy, distorted and incomplete. The scientists then applied the same kind of data correction methods used for CDs and DVDs, which substantially helped clear up the image.

A data rate of 300 bits per second is woefully slow compared to what is possible with cables or radio, so NASA has come up with a new experimental laser they hope will be capable of transmitting 600 million bits per second. This system will be carried by the Lunar Atmosphere and Dust Environment Explorer satellite, which is to be launched in August. 

This is just one aspect of NASA’s planned research into laser communications. In 2017 it plans to start a new experiment called Laser Communications Radar Demonstration – a commercial satellite that is going to test beam-based communication systems. Theoretically the speed and volume of information that can the transferred by laser is an order of magnitude greater than the rates attainable with radio waves.

An image grab taken from a video uploaded on http://www.nasa.gov
An image grab taken from a video uploaded on http://www.nasa.gov

Inflatable hope: NASA looks forward to a blow-up space module

This NASA photo shows NASA Deputy Administrator Lori Garver and President and founder of Bigelow Aerospace Robert T. Bigelow as they talk while standing next to the Bigelow Expandable Activity Module (BEAM) during a media briefing where it was announced that the BEAM expandable space habitat technology will be tested on the International Space Station on January 16, 2013 in Las Vegas, Nevada. (AFP Photo/NASA)

This NASA photo shows NASA Deputy Administrator Lori Garver and President and founder of Bigelow Aerospace Robert T. Bigelow as they talk while standing next to the Bigelow Expandable Activity Module (BEAM) during a media briefing where it was announced that the BEAM expandable space habitat technology will be tested on the International Space Station on January 16, 2013 in Las Vegas, Nevada. (AFP Photo/NASA)

NASA has spotted an evolution in space engineering that could save money for space exploration if privately developed inflatable space dwelling prove to be successful.

A new agreement between NASA and a Nevadan firm to add a privately built module to the International Space Station could evolve into uses of the innovative technology beyond low-Earth orbit, space agency and company officials said on Wednesday.

NASA’s $17.8 million venture with Bigelow Aerospace to build an inflatable module, the Bigelow Expandable Activity Module (BEAM), is planned to be tested at the ISS in 2015.

California-based SpaceX company will help BEAM make it to orbit by providing a Falcon 9 rocket. Once in space, the module will be installed on an open dock of the station's Node 3 by uniting the module using a robotic arm.

The Beam weighs around 1,360 kilograms and is about 4 meters long and 3.2 meters wide.

Bigelow Aerospace has so far spent around $250m to develop inflatable space habitation. It has preliminary agreements with seven non-US space and research agencies in the UK, the Netherlands, Australia, Singapore, Japan, Sweden and the UAE.

NASA has placed high hopes in private industries to develop ways to take its astronauts to and from the space station. That service is now provided by Russia at a cost of more than $60 million per person.

Is a Planetary Cooling Spell Straight Ahead? NASA: We May Be On the Verge...

All climate scientists agree that the sun affects Earth’s climate to some extent. They only disagree about whether or not the effect form the sun is minor compared to man-made causes.

We noted in 2011:

This week, scientists from the US Solar Observatory and the US Air Force Research Laboratory have discovered – to their great surprise – that the sun’s activity is declining, and that we might experience the lowest solar output we’ve seen since 1645-1715. The Register describes it in dramatic tones:

What may be the science story of the century is breaking this evening.

Scientists who are convinced that global warming is a serious threat to our planet say that such a reduced solar output would simply buy us more time … delaying the warming trend, but not stopping or reversing it.

On the other hand, scientists who are skeptical about global warming say that the threat is a new mini ice age. (Remember that scientists have been convinced in the past that we would have a new ice age, and even considered pouring soot over the arctic in the 1970s to help melt the ice – in order to prevent another ice age. Obama’s top science advisor was one of those warning of a new ice age in the 1970s. And see this.)

NASA reports this week that we may be on the verge of another Maunder Minimum (a period with an unusually low number of sunspots, leading to colder temperatures):

Much has been made of the probable connection between the Maunder Minimum, a 70-year deficit of sunspots in the late 17th-early 18th century, and the coldest part of the Little Ice Age, during which Europe and North America were subjected to bitterly cold winters. The mechanism for that regional cooling could have been a drop in the sun’s EUV output; this is, however, speculative.

 NASA: We May Be On the Verge of a Mini Maunder Event

The yearly averaged sunspot number for a period of 400 years (1610-2010). SOURCE: Courtesy of NASA Marshall Space Flight Center.

***

The sun could be on the threshold of a mini-Maunder event right now. Ongoing Solar Cycle 24 is the weakest in more than 50 years. Moreover, there is (controversial) evidence of a long-term weakening trend in the magnetic field strength of sunspots. Matt Penn and William Livingston of the National Solar Observatory predict that by the time Solar Cycle 25 arrives, magnetic fields on the sun will be so weak that few if any sunspots will be formed. Independent lines of research involving helioseismology and surface polar fields tend to support their conclusion.

NASA explains that interactions between the sun, sources of cosmic radiation and the Earth are very complicated, and it takes an interdisciplinary team of heliophysicists, chemists and others to quantify what is really going on. And the Earth’s climate is also affected by cosmic radiation.

So – even if NASA’s prediction of a period of an unusually low amount of sun spots is proven correct – it is hard to know whether that will lead to a large or small reduction in temperature trends.

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As Malaysia Airlines bleeds out, twin tragedies are still a question mark

Malaysia Airlines has had a profoundly difficult year. Between two harrowing air disasters and the company’s precarious financial woes, the national carrier faces daunting challenges as it attempts to restructure and recover its reputation as a leading regional airline. Despite poor commercial performance in recent years, it maintained a stellar record for decades as one of the Asia-Pacific's safest and most reliable airlines.


Malaysia Airlines has suffered the two worst disasters in modern aviation less than five months apart. Both incidents involved Boeing 777-200ERs, widely considered being one of the safest aircrafts. Over six months have past since flight MH370 disappeared on route from Kuala Lumpur to Beijing. A multinational search team has scoured remote southern stretches of the Indian Ocean, unable to find even a trace of debris from the aircraft.


A preliminary report on the demise of flight MH17 released by Dutch investigators has failed to provide a wider understanding of the incident, leaving critical questions of culpability unanswered. The crippling impact of the two air disasters has forced Malaysia Airlines into accelerating a major restructuring effort to rescue the brand and return it to profitably by 2017, with plans to relist the company by 2019.


Nationalize or privatize?


As the flagship carrier, Malaysia Airlines is viewed as a symbol of national prestige and development. The state has played a vital role in using public funds to restructure the airline over the years. The key challenges confronting the carrier are competition from low-cost national and regional rivals, high operating costs, unprofitable long haul routes, and a bloated payroll.


The main question going forward is whether further nationalization or drastic privatization will more effectively resuscitate the airline. Khazanah Nasional, a state investment fund that owns about 70% of Malaysia Airlines, proposed a strategy to recover the national carrier, involving plans to take full ownership of the airline and the most stringent job cuts in the company's history.


Unlike the four previous attempts to restructure the airline, which reneged on plans to scale back the workforce under pressure from politically influential airline unions, the company intends to cut staffing by 6,000 jobs or 30% of the carrier's 20,000 employees. Malaysia Airlines has about 30 percent more staff than comparable airlines, and while the cuts will be painful, the status quo can clearly not be maintained under the prevailing circumstances.


Khazanah Nasional will channel around RM6bn ($2 billion) into reviving the carrier, buying out remaining stock from shareholders, layoffs and other restructuring costs, debt settlement and capital injections. Putrajaya claims these funds are an investment, rather than a bailout, expressing its intention to regain the funds when the airline returns to profitability. One can be forgiven for being skeptical of the carrier’s strategy, taking into account the shortcomings of previous restructuring attempts.


An accumulative sum of RM17.4bn ($5.3 billion) was injected into the airline between 2001 and 2014, and losses of RM8.4bn ($2.6 billion) were incurred nonetheless during that period. Malaysia Airlines reported a net loss of RM443mn ($140.8 million) for the first quarter of 2014. Second-quarter earnings following the unexplained disappearance of MH370 in March saw losses of RM307mn ($97.6 million). The second-half earnings are expected to be even grimmer in the wake of MH17, following reports from the airline that average weekly bookings had declined by 33 percent. The company has lost more than 40 percent of its market value this year and has not made an annual profit since 2010.


Shareholders will be meeting in early November to consider Khazanah’s selective capital reduction proposal plan before the recovery plan can go into effect. Although shareholders will be losing money by selling off their assets for lower prices than they purchased them for, the independent adviser AmInvestment Bank advised that they accept the offer, because without the proposed capital injection from Khazanah, the airline will go under and the share price will collapse. It’s better to lose a finger than to lose an arm.


As budget carriers like AirAsia, which was formally state-owned before being taken private, lead the Southeast Asian market, there are those who will view any further capital injection into Malaysia Airlines as an imprudent use of public funds. Khazanah itself has noted that the RM17.4bn used to restructure the national carrier could have helped improve education or provide water and power to remote villages. It also doesn’t make sense to refer to Khazanah’s move to take full ownership of the airline as a privatization since it is a government investment fund; it’s more like a de-facto nationalization.


At this stage, whether Malaysia Airlines is nationalized or privatized is a periphery concern: the real question is how can it be restructured to viably compete with discount airlines that make up some 58 percent of the air traffic in Southeast Asia? There are concerns going forward that Khazanah lacks the expertise needed to micromanage the airline and implement the kind of solutions needed to shift the balance back toward profitability. Additionally, there will be no minority shareholders to scrutinize the management and provide helpful input under Khazanah’s full ownership of the carrier.


Structural adjustments are needed to make the airline leaner and more efficient if it has any chance of surviving. Long unprofitable routes that require heavy subsidies should be cut with renewed focus on competitively priced medium-haul services within Asia. The fleet of Boeing 777s and Airbus A380s can be sold off and replaced with more fuel-efficient A330s and the A350s designed for shorter distances.


If employees and unions were better informed about the dire ill health of the airline, perhaps they would agree to voluntary pay cuts for a limited period if it meant retaining job security. Under the current circumstances, bonuses should be suspended and the balance sheet should be carefully scrutinized. In addition to rolling out a public relations blitz to repair the image of the company, Malaysia Airlines should emulate some qualities of their rivals’ business models, but differentiate themselves by offering greater value for money to the extent that a full-service airline can provide.


No answers, no closure


As the enquiry continues into the demise of Malaysia Airlines flight MH17 over the skies of eastern Ukraine in July, the preliminary findings of the international investigation have done little to develop a clearer understanding of the incident. The parties responsible for bringing down the aircraft, and exactly what means were utilized to do so, have yet to be firmly established.


The Dutch Safety Board (DSB), which is leading the investigation into the MH17 crash, released a preliminary report in September, which sought to analyze air traffic control and radio communication data, assess the inflight break-up sequences, and conduct a forensic examination of the wreckage. Assigning culpability to any party was not in the report’s mandate; the authors of the text use highly guarded and ambiguous language to explain their findings.


Due to the continued obstruction and contamination of the crash site as a result of military hostilities, it is highly questionable whether further forensic examinations can be carried out under such protracted circumstances. Another barrier is a lack of political will to consider certain findings, due to the politically charged nature of the Ukrainian conflict, which has resuscitated Cold War-era hostilities, bringing US-Russia relations to new lows.


Though Ukraine, the United States, and other countries have accused Russia of supplying the rebels with surface-to-air missiles and orchestrating the shoot-down of MH17, those governments have yet to declassify their intelligence on MH17, refusing even to discuss the sources and methodology behind their findings. Comments by Russian officials at the UN and elsewhere indicate that Moscow feels its side of the story has been neglected and overlooked.


The satellite images and military data made public by Moscow, which suggest a completely different series of events, have been entirely absent from the media’s narrative. The Dutch findings conclude that the aircraft abruptly ended its flight after a large number of “high energy objects”penetrated the aircraft from the outside, but does not identify the nature of those objects.


Dutch investigators have wholly omitted findings from radar data submitted by Moscow that purportedly showed a Ukrainian Su-25 fighter jet flying in close proximity to MH17 prior to it disappearing from radar.  BBC’s Russian language service broadcasted a report shortly after the disaster where several local eyewitnesses claimed to see a military aircraft in the sky flying in the vicinity of MH17 as it exploded and broke apart. The investigation has a responsibility to address the question of the Ukrainian fighter jet and its possible role in the incident.


The case of MH370 has proven to be the most baffling incident in commercial aviation history and one of the world's greatest aviation mysteries. Despite the largest multinational search and rescue effort ever conducted, not a trace of debris from the aircraft has been found, nor has the cause of the aircraft’s erratic change of trajectory and disappearance been established.


After a fruitless search in the southern Indian Ocean where the plane is believed to have crashed after running out of fuel, the Australian Transport Safety Bureau leading the investigation has admitted that investigators are not entirely sure if the current underwater search is being conducted in the right spot, although Malaysian officials have been more optimistic.


Tim Clark, the CEO and president of Emirates, questioned the methodology used by investigation team to pinpoint the crash site, claiming it was downright “suspicious” that a Boeing 777 could disappear without a trace with its communications being disabled. Clark also raised concerns that the public was not being told the whole truth about the cargo manifest.


The families of the passengers and crewmembers onboard the missing aircraft recently renewed calls for Putrajaya to release the full cargo manifest, which they say was only partially released some two months after the incident, claiming that there were missing gaps in the document. The manifesto claimed that the cargo contained 2.4 tons of lithium ion batteries and radio accessories and chargers consigned for Motorola, and 4.5 tons of mangosteen.


IGP Tan Sri Khalid Abu Bakar promised the media that authorities would investigate the mangosteen supplier after the Federal Agricultural Marketing Authority claimed that the fruit was not in season, nor were there any orchards in Johor where the mangosteen supplier, Poh Seng Kian, is based. The way in which certain information has allegedly been withheld from the public domain has worked to stoke skepticism that investigators must address. 


Inmarsat, the British satellite telecommunications company responsible for analyzing MH370 satellite data, has also come under scrutiny from independent satellite experts and engineers that found glaring inconsistencies in their analysis. The Atlantic magazine published a report in May based on the analysis of Michael Exner, founder of the American Mobile Satellite Corporation, Duncan Steel, a physicist and visiting scientist at NASA’s Ames Research Center, and satellite technology consultant Tim Farrar.


The team of analysts used flight and navigation software to deconstruct Inmarsat’s analysis, and determined that Inmarsat’s data contained irregular frequency shifts, and even when the values were corrected, Inmarsat’s example flight paths failed to match and proved to be erroneous. In other words, these analysts believe there may be grounds to believe that the search is being conducted on the basis of a false mathematical conclusion.


The authors of the report attempted to reach Inmarsat and other relevant bodies, but they claim that the company did not reply to requests for comments on basic technical questions about their analysis, leading them to determine that “Inmarsat officials and search authorities seem to want it both ways: They release charts, graphics, and statements that give the appearance of being backed by math and science, while refusing to fully explain their methodologies.”


While the investigation teams are doing their level best to establish accounts of the two Malaysia Airlines disasters, there is undoubtedly a dimension of political pressure involved that can create various barriers to understanding. The astonishing nature of these two incidents demand that uncomfortable scenarios and questions be addressed and examined. The media still has an important role to play.

This article was appeared in the October 28 and 29, 2014 print edition of The Malaysian Reserve newspaper.

Nile Bowie is an independent journalist and political analyst based in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia. His articles have appeared in numerous international publications, including regular columns with Russia Today (RT) and newspapers such as the Global Times, the Malaysian Reserve and the New Straits Times. He is a research assistant with the International Movement for a Just World (JUST), a Malaysian NGO promoting social justice and anti-hegemony politics. He can be reached at [email protected].


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Reckless Russia Bashing Persists

by Stephen Lendman

It's relentless. It persists daily. Big Lies drown out truth. Containing Russia is longstanding policy. Doing so reflects US hegemonic ambitions.

Eliminating a major rival is prioritized. Marginalizing, weakening, isolating, and co-opting it is planned. Escalated tensions risk belligerent East/West confrontation.

Whenever Washington wages war or plans one, media scoundrels march in lockstep. They regurgitate official propaganda ad nauseam. Doing so substitutes lies for truth.

New York Times editors, contributors and correspondents are some of the worst. Russia bashing persists daily. 

It's in front page feature stories. It's malicious. It's irresponsible. It's longstanding against America's enemies. Times editorial policy long ago fell from grace. 

Discredited correspondent Judith Miller perhaps is Exhibit A. She lied for power. She did it daily for months. She did it disgracefully.

She served up regular anti-Iraq propaganda. She used disreputable sources. They represented a Noah's Ark of scam artists. 

She substituted Big Lies for truth. She claimed nonexistent WMDs. She sank to the level of straight Pentagon press handouts. 

Her late 2001 - mid-2003 stories showed a reporter with an agenda. Garbage in. Garbage out. She almost single-handedly spearheaded Bush's drive for war.

She supported it. She promoted it. She used daily front page feature stories doing it. Strung together, they represented a litany of lies, damn lies, and misinformation. 

Truth was systematically buried. Imperial adventurism alone mattered. She's gone from Times front pages. Other disreputable reporters replaced her.

They continue where she left off. They supported Obama's war on Libya. They back ravaging and destroying Syria. 

They ignore the worst of America's longest war. They call imperial aggression humanitarian intervention. They mindlessly bash Russia. 

Perhaps they want what Paul Craig Roberts calls "final war." Maybe they're comfortable about destroying planet earth to save it. 

They support wealth, power and privilege exclusively. They do so over popular interests. They do it with disturbing regularity. They do it disgracefully.

They support NATO encroaching close to Russia's border. They repeat Big Lies about a nonexistent Russian threat. None whatever exists. Claiming otherwise turns truth on its head.

Moscow's Presidential Executive Office Chief of Staff Sergey Ivanov raised concerns about NATO strengthening its positions in Eastern Europe. 

At the same time, he said "(l)ets wait and see" what happens. He doesn't dismiss the threat of potentially hostile forces massed near Russia's border.

Lavrov expressed concern about NATO suspending cooperation with Moscow. Doing so based on nonexistent Russian aggression doesn't wash.

Foreign Ministry spokesman Aleksandr Lukashevich said "(t)he decision taken by the foreign ministers in the NATO council to suspend civil and military cooperation with Russia creates a deja vu effect."

"The language of the statement reminds one of the battle of words during the Cold War era."

"It’s not hard to see who is going to benefit from curbing Russia and NATO's joint work on countering modern threats and challenges to international and European security, in particular in areas like fighting terrorism, piracy, and natural and man-made disasters."

"In any case, this is going to be neither Russia, nor NATO member-states."

Russia categorically denies "aggressive preparations." No evidence suggests any. 

No military activities "aside from the previously declared." They're routine. They're non-belligerent. Russia has nothing to hide.

It welcomes foreign inspectors "who wished to get acquainted with the real situation in the border regions with Ukraine," said Lukashevich.

Lavrov was clear and unequivocal saying "(w)e have absolutely no intentions of crossing Ukrainian borders."

Nothing suggests otherwise. Not according to NYT reports.

On April 2, it headlined "NATO General Says He Sees Potent Russian Threat."

He sees what doesn't exist. General Philip Breedlove claims Russian hoards are within striking distance of Ukraine. They're "poised to attack on 12 hours' notice," he claims. He lied saying so.

They're able to "accomplish their military objectives within three to five days," he added.

"What we can say now is that we do see a battalion size unit moving, but what we can't confirm is that it is leaving the battlefield."

"Whether that movement is aft to a less belligerent configuration or returning to barracks, we do not see that."

Breedlove called what remains "a potent mix of warplanes, helicopter units, artillery, infantry and commandos with field hospitals and sufficient logistics to sustain an incursion into Ukraine," according to The Times report.

It might be a "coercive force," he added. It's able to move into Odessa, Transnistria, and intervene in eastern Ukraine areas.

"I think they have all the opportunities and they can make whatever decision they want," said Breedlove. 

He lied claiming "(t)his is a very large, very well-equipped force to be called an exercise."

In January, Pentagon officials raised concerns about Russian ground-launched cruise missile tests.

They're silent about their own naked aggression. It's ongoing in multiple theaters. Post-9/11, it killed millions. 

Russia is a powerful force for peace. It's up against a belligerent monster. It's headquartered in Washington. 

Don't expect the NYT to explain. It ignores US war crimes. Bashing Russia takes precedence. Breedlove lies were featured. He stated one after another.

He outrageously said Russia used military exercises to mask its planned intervention. Once it begins, it'll "cut telephone cables, jam communications an engage in cyberwarfare to isolate the Ukrainian military on the peninsula," according to The New York Times.

Russia uses "snap" exercises to rehearse its ability to assemble substantial combat power in a short period of time," The Times added.

"They are absolutely able to bring great force to a position of readiness," said Breedlove. 

"That is something that we have to think about: What does that mean geo-strategically that we now have a nation that can produce this ready force and now has demonstrated that it will use that ready force to go across a sovereign boundary?"

Stars and Stripes (S&P) is a Pentagon publication. Propaganda is regularly featured. On April 2, it headlined "Breedlove: Ukraine situation shows need for US forces in Europe."

He argued for greater US European troop strength "in light of a newly assertive Russia."

"We think it is ready to go and we think it could accomplish its objectives in between three and five days if directed to make the actions," he added.

He lied about a nonexistent threat. He said Russian hoards can invade Ukraine within 12 hours and take control in several days.

They deployed "the whole package" to the border, he claimed. Invented crisis conditions makes the case for enhancing Washington's Eastern European force presence, S&P added.

It's part of Pentagon strategy for greater military spending, not less. It's Washington's plan to confront Russia recklessly.

Doing so risks the unthinkable. World conflicts start this way. Deploying US-led NATO forces near Russia's border risks war.

Moscow wants answers. On April 3, Itar Tass headlined "Russia expects NATO to respect bilateral agreements - Lavrov." 

"Russia expects explanations from NATO of its decision to deploy additional troops in East European states," he said.

"We have addressed questions to the North Atlantic military alliance. We are not only expecting answers, but answers that will be based fully on respect for the rules we agreed on," he stressed.

"It is necessary to de-escalate rhetoric which overshoots the mark and crosses into the unreasonable."

"Russia-NATO relations are based on certain rules, particularly the Rome Declaration, under which no country has a right to deploy additional troops in East European states," he added.

Doing so is a belligerent act. At the same time, NATO suspended "all practical civilian and military cooperation (with) Russia."

From Brussels, John Kerry urged greater NATO expansion. He wants more Eastern European military spending.

He wants it to show its "shared security" commitment. He lied claiming Russia confronts European borders "with force."

"It's clear the (North Atlantic) alliance is prepared for this moment…We are unified, and the alliance is strong," he added.

"…Article 5 of NATO's treaty means what it says on land, air and sea. The United States has already begun" to act.

It augmented its Eastern European presence. It plans more of the same. It "reject(s)" Crimean reunification.

"(W)e have all challenged" what doesn't exist. Kerry called it the tactics of intimidation, particularly the deployment of unprecedented amounts of military forces around Ukraine's borders."

He ludicrously claimed Ukraine is on a path toward "democratic and economic success."

He cited NATO Secretary General Rasmussen calling events in Ukraine "a wake-up call - a reminder that the stability and security in NATO's neighborhood requires our constant vigilance."

"To that end," Kerry urged "step(ped) up defense spending."

He outrageously claimed an expanding NATO "open(ed) doors for millions of people who, through the power of this alliance, now are able to experience greater opportunity, a greater prosperity, and greater security." 

"As free nations, we will continue to stand together and stand always in defense of international law, of our mutual security, and of the right of nations and people everywhere to freely choose their own destiny."

On April 3, Itar Tass headlined "NASA suspends cooperation with Russia," saying:

"The US has suspended space cooperation with Russia. Ongoing activity on the International Space Station (ISS) is not affected by this decision."

"The National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) said on Wednesday that such a decision was taken over the current crisis in Ukraine."

"According to a NASA's memo, 'ongoing violation of Ukraine's sovereignty and territorial integrity' prompted the agency to halt contacts with Russia."

A growing East/West divide deepens. It does so recklessly. A leaked NATO plan calls for joint exercises and training between alliance members and three Eastern European nations - Armenia, Azerbaijan and Moldova.

It's part of NATO's so-called "smart defense" strategy. It proposes opening a Moldovan liaison office, Armenian military training, and Azerbaijan projects to secure Caspian oil and gas fields.

Ludicrous claims about Russia destabilizing Eastern Europe persist. Washington responded by beefing up its regional presence.

According to UK Prime Minister David Cameron:

"We should do everything we can to reassure our friends and colleagues in Latvia, Lithuania, Estonia and Poland that we really believe in their NATO membership and the guarantees that we have given them."

Planned US-led NATO military exercises in Ukraine suggests trouble. Rapid Trident is scheduled for this summer. Similar exercises are conducted annually. 

US forces in Europe web site says they're designed to "promote regional stability and security, strengthen partnership capacity, and foster trust while improving interoperability between the land forces of Ukraine, and NATO and partner nations."

Perhaps something sinister is planned this year. Maybe confrontation with Russia.

Days earlier, Vice President Joe Biden warned about Washington invoking NATO's Article 5 against Russia. It states an attack on one alliance member obligates them all to respond.

Reckless comments heighten tensions. They do so irresponsibly. Rhetoric risks becoming policy. It bears repeating. Great conflicts start this way.

On April 1, Ukraine's parliament unanimously approved joint military exercises with US-led NATO forces. Doing so puts Western troops close to Crimea.

Washington wants Ukraine made a NATO member. It's currently a Euro-Atlantic Partnership Council (EAPC) one. 

Russia strongly opposes integrating Ukraine fully into NATO. Doing so assures US bases along its 1,400 kilometer border.  

Nearby long-range nuclear-armed missiles will be deployed. They'll target its heartland. Doing so is reckless and dangerous. 

Events seem headed in that direction. The worst of all possible outcomes may follow.

Avoiding confrontation with Russia should be top priority. Ongoing policies are polar opposite. On Thursday, Russian Deputy Foreign Minister Sergei Ryabkov commented, saying:

"In recent days we have been flooded by signals from Washington that in light of the events in Crimea and Ukraine, the US administration is changing the entire pattern of its dialogue and cooperation with us in a wide range of areas."

Washington is "seeking to demonstrate its refusal to recognize the free expression of will by the population in Crimea and the decisions adopted by us in connection with it, plans to suspend contacts even in areas where, in our opinion, the continuation of our dialogue meets the interests of the US itself."

US Russian policy "exacerbat(es) bilateral relations." Ryabkov hopes things will change. So far, East/West divisions deepen. Doing so risks the unthinkable.

Stephen Lendman lives in Chicago. He can be reached at [email protected] 

His new book is titled "Banker Occupation: Waging Financial War on Humanity."

http://www.claritypress.com/LendmanII.html

Visit his blog site at sjlendman.blogspot.com. 

Listen to cutting-edge discussions with distinguished guests on the Progressive Radio News Hour on the Progressive Radio Network.

It airs three times weekly: live on Sundays at 1PM Central time plus two prerecorded archived programs. 


http://www.progressiveradionetwork.com/the-progressive-news-hour

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Maybury writes, "...the CIA’s legendary chief of counter-intelligence – its brain for years – was James Jesus Angleton (aka The Kingfisher)...the narrative of the CIA would not be complete without him to be sure.

"He began his career shortly after the formation of the CIA in 1947, and was the station chief in Italy just after the war ended. Here he was instrumental in the undermining of the bourgeoning communist movement taking root in the later 40s, and amongst the tactics he used was eliciting the support of Italy’s Mafia, thereby setting a long-time precedent for the agency that was to feature frequently in its clandestine operations for decades to come.

"He was amongst the most out-there of people, a TS Eliot quoting/loving, chain-smoking, hard-drinking, orchid-growing, fly-fishing, gem collecting, insomniac raconteur who burned the spy-candle at both ends. Exceedingly well read and (counter?) intelligent, he was something of a polymath. In his day many considered this dude the sharpest tool in the spy shed, bar none! JJ’s motto: ‘absolute security at any cost’, one that would prove to be his undoing, as we will see.

"The term ‘Angeltonian’ even entered the espionage vernacular to become a byword in spy circles for overly conspiratorial and/or obsessively paranoid behaviour. Angleton was like DCI Allen Dulles alter ego – he was the uber-counter-spy, the spookiest of spooks in the spookier end of the spook business.

"If his boss Dulles was the Dagger in the Cloak and Dagger business, JJ was the Cloak! His spycraft was apparently second to none in the non-communist world. Even the Soviets had a fan club going of sorts; he was that good at what he did, they even copied his methods, proving that even in the spy world, the ‘imitation as the sincerest form of flattery’ thing still applies. He was once quoted as saying that: ‘Deception is a state of mind and the mind of the state’.

"The origin of his nick-name The Kingfisher is uncertain, but interestingly they are a bird species that have evolved unique visual faculties whereby they can see equally well in polar opposite environments, in their case air and water. A nice metaphor one suspects given his line of work, especially if it was not intended.

"On a more mundane level his nick-name may have been because of his striking features, which were indeed bird-like, if not ‘kingfisherish’. He eventually rose to the position of chief of Counter-intelligence at The Company, and although it’s not known if he ever sought the position or was even offered it, he would have been a prime candidate for Director either way. He could even have interrogated/interviewed himself for the job, a bonus. The motherfucker was that good.

- Spy v Spy Redux -

"He served under Dulles, and then later on Dulles successors, firstly John McCone, then Richard Helms, and for a brief time William Colby. A cryptographer by training (and it has to be said) inclination, he was also very knowledgeable about nuclear technology, having worked on the Manhattan Project (of which more in a later episode), and was apparently involved in the breaking of the Germans’ Enigma code, which did so much to aid the allied effort in the latter part of the War.

"Both these skills were handy during a Cold War. If there is such a thing as spy heaven (a safe house or waiting room in the afterlife maybe?), most of them be coming up to the Kingfisher, high-fiving his avian-eyed ass and be saying how much they ‘love his work’.
As indicated he was as paranoid as they come, for the most part a truly valuable character trait in the counter-spy business, given that the counter espionage and counter intelligence business is all about stopping the targets of your spying from doing what you’re trying to do to them, which is to spy on them. By definition, this means being permanently paranoid.

"Or more accurately, the counter spy/espionage/intelligence ‘schtick’ is more about ensuring that the spies on the other side enjoy minimal success at recruiting your own spies to spy on you and not them as you’d prefer them to continue doing without you finding out about it until it is too late.

"However, like JJ often did, I digress!

"And if Angleton trusted anyone, it is not known whether it worked to their advantage or not, and we’re not even talking about the Soviets here. We’re talking his own – indeed, especially his own – CIA colleagues. He was one of the coldest and most calculating of the Langley Cold Warriors. A strong pro-war hawk on Vietnam, he was also notoriously known for his surveillance of anti-war protesters, political activists and domestic dissidents (of which there were no shortages) during the Vietnam War and throughout the 60’s and early 70’s. He has also been frequently mentioned as having involvement in, knowledge of, and/or connections to the JFK hit and the Norma Jean suicide/accidental death/murder.

- The Hollow Man -

"As good as Angleton was, he wasn’t good enough though to pick up on arguably the biggest spies in the West before they defected to the USSR, who were located in the UK, and operating out of the august Cambridge University.

"As CIA CI chief, part of his responsibility was liaison with foreign intelligence and security officials and spooks, including with Mossad, SAVAK and MI6. Although some say he had his suspicions about the Cambridge group before anyone else did including the British – yes, he was that paranoid – he failed to act on these in time to prevent their subsequent defection. This was an outcome from which he never recovered, and indeed amongst many other missteps, it brought about his downfall eventually, but not for a long time to come.

"After the belated discovery of the aforementioned Cambridge spies (one of whom – Philby – Angleton worked with closely in London during the war, and later got pissed with on a frequent basis, and with whom he shared secrets that got many Western agents killed), Angleton became even more paranoid, seeing spies all over the Langley complex, which began to irritate a lot of people, managing to piss off not only then DCI Richard Helms, but also J Edgar Hoover over at the FBI HQ as well, with Hoover pulling the pin on any further cooperation with the super-spook.

"To piss Edgar off, or to have him pull the pin on you as we’ve seen in an earlier episode, was not all that difficult and certainly not always a good career move to repeat it inside or outside of the FBI. And as for being paranoid, there were few more so than Edgar. But Angleton survived Edgar; he was that ‘good’! And that paranoid! History tells us that paranoia is often proven most justified when it is the most ignored, but many would argue the lessons of history don’t appear to have become a collective political wisdom in the West, and especially some might say in Washington D.C., or for that matter in Langley.

"Not even Angleton though could last forever in the CIA. The culture didn’t make allowances for that. His increasingly pathological paranoia eventually brought him unstuck."

Maybury's apt portrayal of JJ Angleton left me chilled and angry. To think that America was literally turned over, post-WWII, to rats like him and the Dulles brothers never stops infuriating me. Shrewd, ruthless, paranoid, warmongering sociopaths controlled our foreign and domestic policy for over half a century and still do. Of course, they could not have done it in a vacuum. When considering the sources and consequences of Corporation Invisible Army's consolidation of power, one must remember that Operation MK-ULTRA (the covert experimentation with and drugging of innocent Americans) relied on Operation Mockingbird (the subversion of the free press); Operation PBSUCCESS (the overthrow of duly elected foreign governments) went hand in hand with Operation Paperclip (the secret recruitment of Nazi war criminals to serve in our intelligence, medicine, military and aerospace spheres). Angleton and Dulles made sure they could run roughshod over democracy in secret. In so doing, they amassed power unprecedented in our history. More power than presidents, legislative bodies, the Pentagon, and the media combined.

While I concur with most of the content, I take exception to three assertions--one) von Braun was a Nazi...his reputation was softened by a compliant press (which assiduously, and at Dulles's insistence, referred to him as a "German" scientist) once he emigrated to America and his new position at NASA; two) ALL Nazis were war criminals because they either knew of the death camps or participated in the executions; three) Dulles was sympathetic to Hitler and the Reich because his Sullivan and Cromwell clients had big-time investments to protect. Dulles's "Heil Hitler" salutation in correspondences with the Fuhrer is telling.

May Angleton and Dulles and all the other rats burn in hell for eternity.

http://www.amazon.com/Presidents-Mortician-Tim-Fleming/dp/098882907X

Kerry Backs Keystone XL Pipeline

Kerry Backs Keystone XL Pipeline

by Stephen Lendman

Kerry mocks legitimacy. He represents the worst of America's dark side. He's going all out to be Washington's worst ever Secretary of State. 

He's Obama's war on humanity front man. He blames Syrian President Assad for US-supported death squad crimes. He wants him ousted. He wants Syrian sovereignty destroyed. 

He wants Washington deciding Syria's future. He wants it colonized for profit. He wants Ukraine exploited the same way. 

He supports ultranationalist extremists. He blames Ukrainian President Viktor Yanukovych for US-supported street thug violence.

He's Israel's man in Washington. His peace deal is fake. It's entirely one-sided. It demands unconditional Palestinian surrender.

He's a billionaire. He supports corporate-enriching trade deals. They legitimize selling unsafe foods, medicines and other products. 

They're designed to make him richer. They're at the expense of enormous public harm. They risk ecocide.

On January 31, the State Department endorsed the Keystone XL Pipeline project. It risks enormous environmental damage. 

It's a controversial 1,661-mile Alberta, Canada to Port Arthur, TX pipeline. At issue is transporting toxic tar sands oil from Western Canada to refineries on America's Gulf coast. 

Doing so entails passing through environmentally sensitive areas in six states. They include waterways and the Ogallala Aquifer. 

It's one of the world's largest. It supplies about 30% of America's irrigation ground water. It's vital for human consumption.

Friends of the Earth said Keystone XL (KXL) "will carry one of the world's dirtiest fuels: tar sands oil." Its route "could devastate ecosystems and pollute water sources, and would jeopardize public health."

It'll double America's dirty tar sands oil supply. Environmental toxicity will increase exponentially. 

Big Oil wants it. So do Republicans and many Democrats. Expect Obama to rubber-stamp approval. 

The State Department's Environmental Impact Statement (EIS) falsely claimed no risks to health and safety. More on this below.

TransCanada Corporation will build KXL. It's spill-prone construction record assures trouble. 

It promised its Keystone I pipeline would leak at most once every seven years. In year one, it leaked 12 times. It was once a month on average. It was unprecedented in US pipeline history.

TarSandsBlockade.org asks "Why Oppose KXL?"

For many reasons, it states. NASA scientist James Hansen calls it "a fuse to the largest carbon bomb on the planet."

All pipelines spill. Avoidance is impossible. Large-scale environmental damage is too great a price to pay. 

TransCanada said up to 700,000 gallons of tar sands crude could leak without detection. Safeguards are weak and ineffective.

Pipeline construction abuses eminent domain. TransCanada "intimidated landowners" along planned routes. It did so in previous pipeline construction.

It contractually forced landowners to accede to its demands. It "fraudulently steals land from private citizens through eminent domain."

Water contamination is certain. The Carrizo-Wilcox Aquifer (CWA) is threatened. 

In March 2011, water resources & environmental engineer/consultant Lawrence Dunbar said CWA spillage would be environmentally disastrous. Human and natural resources would be impacted.

Release of enough tar sands contaminants would make affected water resources unfit for human consumption. 

CWA "is one of the greatest assets of the East-Central region of Texas. It provides water for agriculture, industry, and human consumption and use."

It's far too valuable to contaminate. KXL assures it. Remediation would be hard to impossible to achieve.

According to Cornell University's Global Labor Institute, KXL will destroy more jobs than it creates. Its September 2011 "Pipe Dreams?" report said job creation claims lack credibility.

At best up to 4,650 temporary ones will be created. In two years or less they'll be gone. "KXL will not be a major source of US jobs, nor will it play any substantial role at all in putting Americans back to work."

Diverting tar sands oil "now supplying Midwest refineries, so it can be sold at higher prices to the Gulf Coast and export markets (means) Midwest (consumers) could be paying 10 to 20 cents more per gallon for gasoline and diesel fuel."

Doing so will adversely impact other spending and cost jobs. KXL will have "a chilling effect on green investments and green jobs creation."

Green investments generated "2.7 million jobs in the US and could generate many more."

"Tar Sands oil and energy independence really do not belong in the same sentence."

Cornell, the Natural Resources Defense Council and other independent assessments say KXL assures higher gas prices.

Exporting tar sands oil won't reduce US dependence on foreign supplies. Prioritizing exports is planned. At issue is selling at the highest possible price.

KXL violates tribal sovereignty. The Indigenous Environmental Network's "Mother Earth Accord" supports and urges opposition to tar sands development. At issue is preserving the integrity of US and Canadian First Nations and tribal lands.

TransCanada won't disclose an analysis of chemical dilutents used to facilitate transporting tar sands oil through KXL. At issue are human and environmentally destructive substances.

The Pipeline Hazardous Material Safety Administration told Congress that pipeline regulations weren't crafted with tar sands oil in mind. 

They're woefully inadequate and require strengthening. At a time of business as usual, don't expect it.

On January 31, the State Department released its EIS report. Its  analysis was rigged. Its methodology lacked credibility. 

Results falsely claimed minimal environmental contamination risk. KXL's southern area "Gulf Coast Project" failed to conduct its own environmental assessment. 

Issues related to the Carrizo-Wilcox Aquifer, wild fires, droughts, and others weren't examined.

Friends of the Earth (FOE) responded, saying:

"The State Department’s environmental review of the Keystone XL pipeline is a farce. Since the beginning of the assessment, the oil industry has had a direct pipeline into the agency." 

"Perhaps most frustrating, is the apparent collusion between the State Department, oil industry and the Canadian government."

"In what could be perceived as eagerness to please the oil industry and Canadian government, the State Department is issuing this report amidst an ongoing investigation into conflicts of interest, and lying, by its contractor." 

"It is unacceptable that the oil industry and a foreign government are better informed than the American Congress and its citizenry."

"By letting the oil industry influence this process, Secretary Kerry is undermining his long-established reputation as a leader in the fight against climate change." 

"President Obama can end this charade; sufficient scientific data exists to justify denying the Keystone XL pipeline." 

"It is a simple matter of having the political will, and courage, to stand up to the oil industry. This decision is a defining moment in his environmental legacy."

Last September, FOE said:

"(F)rom day one, the State Department's review of the pipeline (was) polluted by conflicts of interest, insider lobbying and the heavy hand of Big Oil."

State Department officials relied on TransCanada-picked contractors for their report. Doing so represents an outrageous conflict of interest.

Relying on Big Oil interests related construction company interests eliminated any chance for responsible analysis.

Obama had plenty of evidence without EIS to reject KXL. "The bottom line," said FOE, "it's not in the national interest. (K)ill "it now."

The National Wildlife Federation (NWF) said:

"Thousands of people around the country are taking a stand against the import of dirty tar sands oil - from farmers and ranchers in Nebraska who don't want a tar sands pipeline plowed through their property, to families in Texas concerned about their drinking water, to Americans everywhere who want to move towards a clean energy future." 

NWF "is working to stop this dangerous project, and your voice is urgently needed. Take a stand against" KXL!

The Sierra Club urged "no more Big Oil pipeline spills that endanger our water."

KXL "threaten(s) the drinking water of two million Americans." TransCanada has a deplorable environmental record.

In 2011 alone, over a quarter million Americans expressed opposition to KXL. Nebraska rancher Susan Luebbe perhaps spoke for others, saying:

"How can the State Department even think of approving a new tar sands pipeline when the existing one is springing leaks on average once a month."

"Ranchers, farmers and millions of other Americans depend on clean water from the Ogallala Aquifer, which lies directly under the path of" KXL.

Last November, Public Citizen published a report titled "TransCanada's Keystone XL Southern Segment: Construction Problems Raise Questions About the Integrity of the Pipeline."

It highlighted safety issues. Documented problems include "excessive bending or sagging, and pealing patches of field coating applied to cover damage on pipe about to be placed into the ground."

"Anomolies" in pipe "buried for months include "dents, sags, and other problems that could lead to spills or leakage of toxic tar sands crude."

Public Citizen's Texas office director Tom "Smitty" Smith said:

"The government should investigate, and shouldn’t let crude flow until that is done."

"Given the stakes - the potential for a catastrophic spill of hazardous crude along a pipeline that traverses hundreds of streams and rivers and comes within a few miles of some towns and cities - it would be irresponsible to allow the pipeline to start operating."

During construction of Keystone I, TransCanada made 50 special conditions pledges. It violated 47 of them.

In July 2011, its Bison natural gas pipeline exploded within six months of startup. 

Iroquois Pipeline Operations is a TransCanada subsidiary. In the 1990s, four senior executives pleaded guilty to knowingly violating environmental and safety pipeline construction permit provisions.

They promised exceptional safety. They willfully failed to deliver. "TransCanada's history with pipeline problems speaks for itself," said Smith.

"I fear we could be looking at another pipeline whose integrity may be in question."

The Natural Resources Defense Council (NRDC) urged "Stopping the Keystone XL." Enormous potential environmental damage is risked, it said.

It'll transport "the dirtiest oil on the planet." It's "difficult, costly and energy-intensive to produce."

Constructing KXL will "kill more jobs than it creates." Oil transported is intended for export, not domestic use.

KXL "was never in America's national interest. Clean energy and fuel efficiency is the path forward for economic and energy security."

Reject "another tar sands pipeline." Expect rubber-stamp Obama approval. He's beholden to Big Oil. He's been this way throughout his political career.

His US Senate voting record was strongly pro-business. He supported strip-mining on public and private land.

He backed secretly drafted Bush administration energy policy. Rhetorically he opposed it.

He supported vastly expanding nuclear power, lax industry regulation, billions of dollars in subsidies, and other benefits demanding rejection.

He voted for biofuels production and other agribusiness interests. He strongly supports GMO foods and ingredients.

He's a corporate stooge. There's never "been a bigger con man in the White House than Barack Obama," said Ralph Nader. He says one thing. He does another. His rhetoric belies his policies.

He's a corporatist "from A to Z." So are Kerry and likeminded administration officials.

On February, the State Department opened a 30 day comment period. Eight US agencies have 90 days to weigh in. They'll offer feedback.

It's pro forma mumbo jumbo. What corporate America wants it gets. Obama's fully on board. Expect rubber-stamp KXL approval.

Last June, he signaled it saying he'll back construction if "it does not significantly exacerbate the climate problem."

Last week, TransCanada began shipping oil through its southern Keystone pipeline leg. It runs from Cushing, OK to Port Arthur, TX.

TC awaits approval to begin building its 1,179 mile northern pipeline. It'll transport tar sands oil from Hardisty, Alberta through Montana to Steele City, NB.

Environmental contamination will follow. Wealth, power and privilege alone matter. 

Obama is no man of the people. He's a corporatist writ large. Change to believe in works one way. Betrayal and failure define him.

Stephen Lendman lives in Chicago. He can be reached at [email protected] 

His new book is titled "Banker Occupation: Waging Financial War on Humanity."

http://www.claritypress.com/LendmanII.html

Visit his blog site at sjlendman.blogspot.com. 

Listen to cutting-edge discussions with distinguished guests on the Progressive Radio News Hour on the Progressive Radio Network.

It airs Fridays at 10AM US Central time and Saturdays and Sundays at noon. All programs are archived for easy listening.


http://www.progressiveradionetwork.com/the-progressive-news-hour

Senator Tom Coburn leaving politics – who will watch the waste now?

Tom Coburn Leaves a Lonely Place Lonelier

Jan 17, 2014


A good man is leaving the Senate. Photographer: Brendan Smialowski/Bloomberg 


You knew what might be coming when Senator Tom Coburn of Oklahoma announced in November that he had a recurrence of cancer. He managed for a long time with a triple threat -- colon and prostate cancer and a benign brain tumor. He announced yesterday that he will leave at the end of this congressional session to spend the time he has left with his three children and seven grandchildren. It may be one of the only times when a politician says he wants to spend more time with his family and we know it is utterly the truth.

 "Coburn has always had a gift for honesty. He didn't need consultants to tell him how to be a senator. He had the white hair, all-American accent and a doctor's wisdom of life and death, his vocation before politics. He talked to the president frequently but didn’t brag about it. His colleagues -- fellow Republicans and Democrats -- liked to have him around, even though he could be a thorn in both sides. He was often the first to be asked to join the various bipartisan "Gangs of."... 


GO read the rest here. 
The Guardian (London) had this to say about Senator Coburn: 

... this decision isn't about my health, my prognosis or even my hopes and desires.
"As a citizen, I am now convinced that I can best serve my own children and grandchildren by shifting my focus elsewhere. In the meantime, I look forward to finishing this year strong."


Coburn, nicknamed "Dr No" for his voting record in the Senate, was supposed to serve through 2016. Instead, he'll step down in January 2015. He had already vowed not to seek a third term.
Senate republican leader Mitch McConnell released a statement Thursday describing Coburn as "one of the most intelligent, principled and decent men in modern Senate history".
"When it comes to the transcendent debate over the size and cost of government, Tom Coburn is simply without peer," McConnell, a Kentucky Republican, said. "No one has done more to awaken Americans to the threat posed by a government that chronically spends more than it takes in, and no one has worked harder at finding a solution."
Known as a conservative maverick during his three terms in the US House in the 1990s, Coburn continued that role after being elected to the Senate in 2004. A fierce critic of what he described as excessive government spending, Coburn was most vocal about opposing the earmarking of special projects.
His office routinely produced reports on wasteful spending, such as a 37-page report in 2011 dubbed Subsidies of the Rich and Famous that detailed nearly $30bn spent annually on government tax breaks and federal grant programs for millionaires....

There is more, and it IS an interesting read, here.

I first became aware of Senator Coburn because of his annual Waste Book, where he detailed the mind-boggling waste that could be painlessly cut from the American budget.  Follow that link and see the 2013 edition.  (For previous posts on Coburn here,  just put his name in the search thing at top left.)

In December, upon release of the latest version of the chronicle of absurdities paid for by American tax dollars, there was this:

Coburn Releases Annual Wastebook Highlighting Most Egregious Spending of 2013
 Dec 17 2013


(WASHINGTON, D.C.) – U.S. Senator Tom Coburn, M.D. (R-OK), ranking member of the Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee, today released his annual oversight report “Wastebook 2013” highlighting 100 examples of wasteful and low-priority spending totaling nearly $30 billion.

“While politicians in Washington spent much of 2013 complaining about sequestration’s impact on domestic programs and our national defense, we still managed to provide benefits to the Fort Hood shooter, study romance novels, help the State Department buy Facebook fans and even help NASA study Congress,” said Dr. Coburn.

“Had Congress, in particular, been focused on doing its job of setting priorities and cutting the kind of wasteful spending outlined in this report, we could have avoided both a government shutdown and a flawed budget deal that was designed to avert a shutdown.  The nearly $30 billion in questionable and lower-priority spending in Wastebook 2013 is a small fraction of the more than $200 billion we throw away every year through fraud, waste, duplication and mismanagement.   There is more than enough stupidity and incompetence in government to allow us to live well below the budget caps.  What’s lacking is the common sense and courage in Washington to make those choices – and passage of fiscally-responsible spending bills – possible,” said Dr. Coburn.

“This report speaks volumes about why confidence in government is at an all-time low.  The hard truth is we’d much rather borrow than cut.  The American people are right to expect more,” said Dr. Coburn.

Examples of wasteful spending highlighted in “Wastebook 2013” include:

    Uncle Sam Looking for Romance on the Web – (NEH) $914,000 
     
     To read the details of just this first entry - and many, many more go over here.
     
     It should be obvious to anybody, that the current administration has NO idea how to manage Americans' money (hard-earned dollars collected by the IRS by the way.)  Now that Senator Coburn has announced his intention to leave, we need other voices raised to keep  attention on the pigs at the trough. 

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