"No great genius has ever existed without some touch of madness." Aristotle

Friday, June 29, 2007

I Heard The News Today

I have to wonder when there will be a bit of good news to read. Violence all over the world. It seems the past few weeks have just been mounting with tension, death and injury.

First story today?

London police find 2 bomb-rigged cars
By DAVID STRINGER, Associated Press Writer

LONDON - Police in London's bustling nightclub and theater district on Friday defused a car bomb that could have killed hundreds after an ambulance crew spotted smoke coming from a Mercedes filled with a lethal mix of gasoline, propane and nails. Hours later, police confirmed a second explosives-rigged car was found nearby.

The first car bomb, found near Piccadilly Circus, was powerful enough to have caused "significant injury or loss of life" at a time when hundreds were in the area, British anti-terror police chief Peter Clarke said.

Clarke said Friday evening that the second car — another Mercedes — was originally parked illegally on nearby Cockspur Street, but had been towed from the West End to an impound lot near Hyde Park.

"The vehicle was found to contain very similar materials to those that had been found in the first car," he said. "There was a considerable amount of fuel and gas canisters. As in the first vehicle, there was also a quantity of nails. This like the first device was potentially viable."
The discoveries came just ahead of the second anniversary of the July 7, 2005, suicide bombings that killed 52 people on three London subways and a bus.

"We are currently facing the most serious and sustained threat to our security from international terrorism," Britain's new home secretary, Jacqui Smith, said after an emergency meeting of top officials.

In Washington, two officials said British authorities found no link between the defused car bomb and any terrorist group during the early hours of the investigation. The officials, who were briefed on the inquiry, said the investigation had yielded no suspects and no definitive description of anyone leaving the vehicle. The officials spoke on condition of anonymity because they were not authorized to discuss the case.

Police were examining footage from closed-circuit TV cameras, Clarke said, hoping the surveillance network that covers much of central London will help them track down the drivers of the cars.

Rep. Peter King, R-N.Y., the ranking member of the House Homeland Security Committee who was briefed on the investigation, said British authorities had recovered a cell phone that they believed was to be the trigger for the explosion.

"They found a cell phone and it was going to be used to detonate the bomb," he said.
The events unfolded when an ambulance crew — responding to a call just before 1:30 a.m. about a person who had fallen at a Haymarket nightclub — noticed smoke coming from a car parked in front of the building, Clarke said.

The crew alerted police, and a bomb squad manually disabled the device, Clarke said.
Photographs of the metallic green Mercedes discovered first show a canister bearing the words "patio gas," indicating it was propane, next to the car. The back door was open with blankets spilling out. The car was removed from the scene after a bomb squad disabled the explosives.
The Haymarket thoroughfare is packed with restaurants, bars, a cinema complex and West End theaters, and was buzzing at that hour. "Phantom of the Opera" is playing at Her Majesty's Theater down the street.

It was ladies' night Thursday, nicknamed "Sugar 'N' Spice," at the Tiger Tiger nightclub, a three-story venue that at full capacity can pack in 1,770 people and stays open until 3 a.m.
Police also were investigating the possibility that the planned attack could have been criminal in nature. Authorities closed the Piccadilly Circus subway station for eight hours and cordoned off a 10-block area around the scene.

The incident triggered a series of security scares across central London, and police closed Park Lane, Fleet Street and nearby Chancery Lane to investigate other suspicious vehicles.
Gordon Brown, who only Wednesday succeeded Tony Blair as prime minister, called it a reminder that Britain faces a serious and continuous threat of terrorist attacks: "I will stress to the Cabinet that the vigilance must be maintained over the next few days."

There had been no prior intelligence of planned attacks from the al-Qaida terror network, a British government official told The Associated Press on condition of anonymity because of the sensitivity of the investigation.

Londoners were relatively unfazed by the news. People crowded onto buses and subway trains during the afternoon rush hour, shopping streets were busy and sidewalk cafes did brisk business.

"Sure, it's disturbing, and obviously it reminds everyone of 7/7," said Ian Hiskos, 32, eating at a cafe across the block from the police cordon on Haymarket. "I try not to think about these things."

The terror threat level in Britain has remained at "severe" — meaning a terrorist attack is highly likely — since last August.

On Friday, Metropolitan Police said it sent more officers on the streets of central London. Authorities also stepped up security at Wimbledon.

One analyst said the bombers could be trying to send Britain's new leader a message.
"It's a way of testing Gordon Brown," said Bob Ayers, a security expert at the Chatham House think tank. "It's not too far-fetched to assume it was designed to expedite the decision on withdrawal (from Iraq)."

The U.S. government urged Americans abroad to be vigilant but officials said they saw no potential terrorist threat in the United States ahead of next week's July 4 Independence Day holiday.

"At this time we are characterizing this as a localized incident in London," said Laura Keehner, a spokeswoman for the Department of Homeland Security.

New York strengthened its already tight security as a precaution, putting additional police in Times Square and the mass transit system.

"We're going to ramp up a little bit, but nothing dramatic," Mayor Michael Bloomberg said on his weekly radio show. "We'll take a little bit of extra precaution. Some of you will notice, some of you won't — but we have to be cognizant."
I have to wonder how many more days we will have scares like this. How many more cities will be paralyzed with terror. That is their objective, right? To have us live in a constant state of terror, fear? I, for one refuse to live in that state. I refuse to give them power over me. I refuse! Perhaps if more of us stand up and say, "You don't scare me anymore, Kill me, it doesn't matter, we will never give in to the fear you so desperately want us to feel." then their scare tactics become useless. If they can't instill fear into us, they have no power. NONE. Quit giving them power over your life! What will be, will be. There is not a damn thing we can do to change what will happen. That is the cycle of life. I know that sounds harsh, but it's the truth. If it's your time to go, it's your time....


Plane carrying Ivorian PM attacked
By PARFAIT KOUASSI, Associated Press Writer

ABIDJAN, Ivory Coast - A plane carrying Ivory Coast's prime minister came under heavy gunfire as it landed Friday at an airport in the country's north but the leader was not harmed, his spokesmen said.

Three other people were killed by the force of the landing at Bouake airport, roughly 250 miles from the country's commercial capital, Abidjan, two spokesmen for Prime Minister Guillaume Soro said.

"You heard the sound of heavy explosions and then several volleys of shots," Sidiki Konate, who was with Soro on the plane, told French radio. "Many were also injured seriously. The prime minister was unhurt," he said.

Alain Lobognon, another spokesman traveling with Soro, said the prime minister was taken to a safe place after the attack. Lobognon confirmed three were killed in the landing.

Following a brief civil war in 2002, Ivory Coast was divided into a rebel-controlled north and a government-ruled south. Before becoming prime minister, Soro had headed the New Forces rebels from Bouake, while President Laurent Gbagbo governed the south.

Soro became prime minister in April following a peace deal between his New Forces rebels and the government. But Friday's attack could set back the nascent accord under which Soro joined in a government with his former enemy Gbagbo.

About 9,000 U.N. troops and 3,500 French soldiers are deployed in Ivory Coast to ward off all-out civil war. Many used to patrol the giant buffer zone that runs east to west, dividing the country in half.

Since the signing of the peace deal on March 4, Ivorians have begun dismantling the buffer zone, and some of the international peacekeepers stationed in the country were preparing to leave.
The world's largest cocoa producer has embraced a series of peace deals in recent years, but so far none have taken hold. The most recent, known as the Ouagadougou accord after the capital of Burkina Faso where it was signed, has been seen as the most promising.
I only have one thing to say about this, It better not stretch us more thin than what we are. I know 12,500 troops isn't that many, but I surely don't want the "higher" guys deciding we need to send more people in. I think the majority of the U.N. based countries are tapped out enough as far as troop strength. If they want to have a civil war, then by all means let them...

Iraq ambush caps bloodiest months for US
By ROBERT H. REID, Associated Press Writer

BAGHDAD - A huge bomb exploded near an American patrol and five U.S. soldiers died in the blast and the hail of gunfire and grenades that followed, the U.S. military said Friday. The attack came as the Pentagon tallied up the deadliest three-month period for Americans since the war began.

Seven soldiers were wounded in the attack Thursday in the Rasheed district, a mixed Sunni-Shiite area of southern Baghdad where U.S.-led forces recently stepped up pressure on extremists. The commander of U.S. forces in Baghdad suggested the ambush could be part of an escalating backlash by Sunni insurgents.

Those deaths brought to 99 the number of U.S. troops killed this month, according to an Associated Press count. The toll for the past three months — 329 — made it the deadliest quarter for U.S. troops in Iraq since the March 2003 invasion. That surpasses the 316 soldiers killed during November 2004 to January 2005.

Maj. Gen. Joseph F. Fil Jr., who heads U.S. forces in the Iraqi capital, said U.S. casualties had mounted because Sunni extremists are "starting to fight very hard" as U.S. forces press into areas of the capital where militants once had free rein.

"This is a skilled and determined enemy. He's ruthless. He's got a thirst for blood like I've never seen anywhere in my life," Fil told reporters. "And he's determined to do whatever he can."
During a teleconference with Pentagon reporters, Fil described the Thursday attack as "very violent," displaying a "level of sophistication that we have not often seen so far in this campaign."

He said a blast from a "very large" bomb buried deep in the ground triggered the attack, which was followed by volleys of small-arms fire and rocket-propelled grenades. Four soldiers were killed in the attack and a fifth died Thursday night of his wounds, Fil said.

"As far as the assessment, we believe that we are into an area" of south Baghdad "where we're seeing a very strong al-Qaida cell," Fil said. "Those areas are now denied to them ... They are starting to fight very hard and that's what we saw yesterday."

Sunni insurgents have used similar "swarming" tactics for years, mostly in rural areas to the north and west of the capital. Militants have also been burying explosives deep in the ground, making them difficult to detect and triggering them as vehicles pass by.

Such "deep buried bombs" have been especially effective against U.S. vehicles, including Humvees, Bradley fighting vehicles and Strykers, prompting commanders in some areas to shift to foot patrols to avoid losing so many soldiers in a single blast.

U.S. casualties have been rising since President Bush ordered nearly 30,000 more troops to Iraq in a major push to pacify Baghdad and surrounding areas. The goal was to curb the violence so Iraq's Shiite, Sunni and Kurdish leaders can strike agreements to share power in this fractious country.

But progress toward agreements to share oil wealth, provide a greater political role to the Sunni minority and shore up local governments has been slow because of deep suspicions after four years of bloodshed.

In a hopeful sign, radical Shiite cleric Muqtada al-Sadr called off a July 5 march to a bombed shrine in Samarra north of Baghdad after appeals from the government, which feared Sunni extremists would attack marchers along the way.

Sheik Asad Al-Nassiri, an aide to the cleric, told a congregation at Friday prayer services in Kufa that al-Sadr canceled the march because of "the government's inability to secure the route and many officials' appeals for a postponement."

At the same time, however, anger has been welling up among Sunni Arabs, who complain they are being marginalized in the Shiite-dominated government.

A Sunni political party said Friday that four Sunni Cabinet members will refuse to attend government meetings to protest the way Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki handled legal proceedings against the fifth Sunni minister.

Earlier this week, an arrest warrant was issued for Culture Minister Asad Kamal al-Hashimi and security forces raided his Baghdad home after allegations he masterminded an assassination attempt against a politician two years ago.

Sunni politicians considered the move politically motivated and asked al-Maliki, a Shiite, to do something to stop it. The prime minister refused, saying he would not intervene in the work of the judiciary.

"The ministers have decided to suspend their participation in government meetings because they consider the stance of the prime minister and the government unsuitable," Ayad al-Samarraie, a leading member of the Sunni bloc the Iraqi Accordance Front, told AP.
"Had this minister been a member of his (al-Maliki's) party, would he have dealt with the matter the way he did?" al-Samarraie asked.

Muhannad al-Issawi, a spokesman for Accordance Front leader Adnan al-Dulaimi, said the boycott of the 37-member Cabinet "will continue until a compromise is reached."
Al-Issawi said the Sunnis were also protesting the dismissal this month of the Sunni speaker of parliament, who was voted out by the legislators because of erratic behavior.

In April, six Cabinet ministers loyal to al-Sadr quit the government to protest his refusal to call for a timetable for American troops to leave. They have not been replaced.
The boycotts are likely to complicate efforts to enact key "benchmark" legislation that the U.S. is demanding, since the Cabinet must sign off on such proposals before they go to parliament.
Even if the other Shiite and Kurdish members give their endorsement, the absence of key constituencies from the decision-making process would raise doubts whether such legislation would contribute to the goal of national reconciliation.

Elsewhere Friday, a suicide truck bomber attacked an Iraqi army post 20 miles north of the capital Friday, killing six soldiers and wounding five others, police said. Two civilians were also killed in a barrage of gunfire that followed, they said.

The blast occurred at a railway station in Mishada, an officer said on condition of anonymity because he was not authorized to release the information.

Iraqi police said a bomb exploded under a pipeline south of Baghdad, spilling crude oil and sparking a huge fire. The pipeline carries oil from Iraq's southern oil fields to the Dora refinery in the capital.

I can't write much about how Iraq has affected my love these last few weeks, because that is not my story to tell. I have links to his blog on here in a couple of different places. (On the left side menu & in my last blog) I will say this from the perspective of a loved one, everyday you fear, as much as you don't want to fear, that fear remains. Even though, I know in my heart that he will be home safe in a few months, there is always a glimmer of fear that tries to force it's way forward. (As you can tell by my last few posts.)

I just wish, I wish, I wish we could just wipe our hands clean and leave...
Sweetie, I know you read this, remember you are in my thoughts always, I love you more than words could ever express. Keep your eyes and ears open, and stay safe...

Thursday, June 28, 2007

To My Love....

Thoughts on my mind as I wake up from a restless sleep:

Your face haunts my dreams. I could feel the breath move upon my back, up my neck, sending waves of anticipation through my body. It always feels real, your voice ringing out crystal clear, I hear it and I turn, but nothing. The sound of your laughter fades as soon as I look.
I miss the days laying curled in your arms, whether it be a fever induced sleep or just a much needed nap. I miss the touch of your lips as they brush across my forehead, gently wiping the hair from my face.... How I long for those days again.... I miss the comfort of your touch. I miss the safety of your arms.

"All lovers live by longing, and endure: Summon a vision and declare it pure."

Theodore Roethke

How do I....

When you told me the news the other day that you wrote about yesterday, I felt sadness of course, but you saw how well, I responded. For I can not dwell upon such things. If I did, madness would become me. I can only hold on to the belief that everyone has their time and their place, and I believe with every ounce of being that it just isn't yours yet. You will come home to me.

"At the first kiss I felt something melt inside me that hurt in an exquisite way. All my longings, all my dreams and sweet anguish, All the secrets that slept deep within me came awake, Everything was transformed and enchanted, everything made sense."

I do not want to seem calloused, but I just can not dwell upon it. With you, my step-dad, several friends over there, I just can not think about it. For to think upon it would drive that stark reality home and I am functioning quite well in my dream world.

Of course, I am guilty of the what if scenarios all the time. What if you were kidnapped? I know exactly what I would do. I would be in that country, secure any arms that I may need. Then I would hunt the mother fuckers that took you down. They better hope that you are still alive. Because if I find you dead? It will be a long few days for them, because they will die a slow, painful death. I will not get into the details of what all I would do, as it would probably frighten most.

I can not dwell upon things like this.

Soon, it will be over, the nightmare will end.

Soon, I will wake up and that touch will be real, laughter will ring out once again, and all will be well, because life will be as it should be....

"It is the future that creates his present. All is an interminable chain of longing."

Robert Frost

Sunday, June 24, 2007

Does Understanding Our Past, Save Our Future?

I was reading through some articles earlier and came across one that was essentially laughing at the students of Anthropology. I could only shake my head in dismay at the ignorance of the voice speaking through words.

"Are you as interested as I am in knowing how, when, and where human life arose, what the first human societies and languages were like, why cultures have evolved along diverse but often remarkably convergent pathways, why distinctions of rank came into being, and how small bands and villages gave way to chiefdoms and chiefdoms to mighty states and empires? "
Marvin Harris

The word anthropology itself tells the basic story--from the Greek anthropos ("human") and logia ("study")--it is the study of humankind, from its beginnings millions of years ago to the present day.
Nothing human is alien to anthropology. Indeed, of the many disciplines that study our species, Homo sapiens, only anthropology seeks to understand the whole panorama--in geographic space and evolutionary time--of human existence.

This subject is of great interest to me, as Archeology and Anthropology are my fields of study. It is my passion.... A great quote that I think of when I hear people question the validity of these fields is this:

"I am a human, and nothing human can be of indifference to me."
--Terence, The Self-Torturer

The question that one should ask themselves is this: Does understanding our Past, Save our Future?

How anyone can say no, is beyond my realm of understanding. If we understand why we are the way we are, then that leads to a greater understanding of mankind. Take for instance, our neighbors to the East and the West. Great Civilizations existed there, long before the America's were settled. Generations of war, generations of peace. If we find the answers to the questions, what has molded them into the people they are, then perhaps instead of seeking to change other countries, we can embrace them and the differences that make them unique.

Of course, we have the answers, most of them. We just choose not to embrace the differences, we seek to change them into what we think is beneficial. Even though great men and women seek the keys to the past everyday, searching for answers, their findings have blind eyes turned upon them.

Will we ever learn? It is all cycles, that is the way of life. When one thing ends, another begins. It has been that way since the beginning of time and will continue to remain that way. The question we have to ask ourselves as human beings is this: Will we allow the cycle of war to continue? Or will we finally learn from our mistakes? Will we learn to embrace the differences of our cultures, or will we continue to seek to convert?

I will never understand the greed of man.

Friday, June 22, 2007

Thank You Morons! A Letter To The White House

I read about this the other day, and have remained silent up until now about this issue.

First of all, I just want to extend a thanks to all you morons in the White House.
Thank you for already extending my love, twice. Thank you for keeping him over there longer. Thank you for robbing his children of their father. Thank you for subjecting him to sights that no one should see, day in day out. Thank you for allowing him to spend over 27 months out of the last 36 months in that land of sand (by the time he gets home). Thank you for underpaying him. Thank you for the stress. Thank you for the stolen time, the stolen memories. Thank you for making it near impossible for him to leave the military if he wanted to, by instituting stop-losses. Thank YOU!

I just want to congratulate you all on your sacrifice and service to this country. I am sure, all of "us" citizens of this great country appreciate the fact that you personally (or a family member) has put on the uniform, has sacrificed your family and put your life on hold. We appreciate the fact that you have missed the births of your children, their first steps, graduations, deaths in your family, birthdays, holidays, anniversaries, etc. We DO appreciate that sacrifice!

And now, now that you are considering extending our loved ones even more than the fifteen months, I just want to say thanks. I really didn't want to see him anyways. I have enjoyed the limited communication, the constant worrying whether he is safe, the loneliness of the night, having my best friend and lover not by my side. I have, no really, I have enjoyed it! Every fucking moment of it.

And let me tell you what else I am going to love, getting reacquainted with him once he gets home. I am just hoping that he will not have changed to much. I hope that he is strong enough to deal with everything he has seen. I just hope that you will actually stay true to your word and allow him to be home for at least a year, before you send him over there again.

Thank you for robbing us. Thank you for forgetting the needs of everyone other than the need to line your pockets. Thank you for your selfishness.

" A Pissed Off American"

Let me just show you how I truly feel:

Photo Sharing and Video Hosting at Photobucket

Mental stress of troops in Iraq no bar to longer duty, US says

The Pentagon could extend combat tours in Iraq despite an official report showing that hundreds of thousands of US troops who have been involved in at least one war zone in Iraq or Afghanistan are experiencing serious psychological problems, including post-traumatic stress disorder.

According to the Pentagon's own mental health taskforce, US troops have been undertaking higher levels of sustained combat duty than that experienced by soldiers during the war in Vietnam and in the second world war.

It found that 38% of soldiers, 31% of marines, 49% of national guard members and 43% of marine reservists showed symptoms of post-traumatic stress disorder or other psychological problems within three months of returning from active duty. Its report also noted inadequate mental healthcare and facilities, and prejudice over mental health problems.

The US has about 155,000 troops in Iraq, most of whom typically spend 15 months in combat zones with a guaranteed 12 months at home. But that is a breach of the Pentagon's own rules saying equal time should be spent on and off duty.

This week, Peter Geren, acting army secretary, told Congress that extended stints of frontline duty could be ordered if President Bush opted to push the 30,000-strong troop surge in Iraq beyond September. The senate armed services committee heard that while no decisions had been made, plans had to be started.

Yesterday, Vice-Admiral Donald Arthur, co-chairman of the Pentagon's mental health taskforce, said there was "no doubt" that more numerous and lengthier deployments were exacerbating mental health problems. "Not since Vietnam have we seen this level of combat," he said.
The taskforce's report said symptoms of post-traumatic stress disorder and traumatic brain injury - the two "signature injuries" associated with service in Iraq and Afghanistan - included anger and substance abuse. And soldiers' reticence meant the problem was probably greater than research indicated. The report also questioned the practice of returning troops to frontline duty while they were taking medication such as lithium or Prozac.

A cut in combat duties to lessen psychological stress was also urged by an army study based on research in Iraq last year. But that proposal was rejected this week by a senior aide to the ground forces commander in Iraq. Brigadier-General Joseph Anderson told USA Today: "We would never get the job done."

Thursday, June 21, 2007

Domestic Spying: How Much Scrutiny Are You Under?

The Article that has inspired this blog tonight.

President Bush signed a secret order in 2002 authorizing the National Security Agency to eavesdrop on U.S. citizens and foreign nationals in the United States, despite previous legal prohibitions against such domestic spying.

Bush's' words about the program: "A program that is in my judgment necessary to win this war and to protect the American people."

You know something Bush, I haven't trusted your judgement since you were the Governor of Texas.

Different groups that have been monitored: Greenpeace, PETA - the People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals, Catholic Worker, anti-war groups and even bicyclists in New York City.

So what constitutes the government rights to spy on us in their eyes?

Do you have a friend or family member that lives in a country other than the US? Do you correspond with them regularly through phone calls or emails? You might want to be careful as to what you say, chances are you being spied on. You pose a risk to the United States simply because you have ties outside of our borders.

Do you speak out against the president? Question his judgements? His decisions? Be forewarned you may very well be under surveillance.

Yes, we live in the land of the Free, well, as long as what you say coincides with what they want you to think, to say.

Welcome to America!

Monday, June 18, 2007

I Hate The World Today

You know you are sick, when you are a smoker and you can't even choke down one smoke...... Yes, this has been the reasoning for my absence, the mere thought of out-putting any effort what-so-ever has been tiring in itself.

I do believe, the worst thing about being sick, is it leaves the mind to much freedom to wander. I already have this problem and it does not need anymore freedom... (Trust me on this one.)

Dreamland has been my escape... Although, today's dreams were better left undreamed, kept hidden and locked in a vault somewhere, but alas, they came to play and serve as stark reminders of reality. The very reality I hide from, day in and day out...


Don't mind me, I am rambling... I was searching through the web for an image, trying to avoid the news, but that can not happen. My eyes and ears have stayed peeled to the screen, searching for confirmation of my strange dream, thank the gods, no such confirmation has happened yet....

Anyways, Onto images.... I found this painting and I cried.... Silly perhaps, I, truly must be sick, for it takes a lot for this gal to cry... But this painting, teased me, playing with my memories, like a jokester, reminding me of memories and days gone past, memories and time that has been stolen for the past nine months and will continue to be stolen for at least six more...

I, truly resent their happiness, their smiles, their joy. Sometimes, I just want to stomp and kick my feet, throwing a tantrum like a child about the unfairness of it all. Can I do that?

I wish... But, no, I must remain strong, steadfast, unrelenting, unemotional, painted mask upon my face, for that is what is expected. Never allowing weakness or fear to show, never allowing one single sign of neediness to shine through. For that does no one any good.

I hate the world today.

Sometimes you find a song, that can put into words how you feel..... Here is that song for me today:

Friday, June 15, 2007

Mama Said There Would Be Days Like This

Days, where I don't care about anything, anyone. Days where, quite honestly the whole world can just go to hell. Can you tell, I'm in a lovely mood?

What a world we live in..... Yeah, I've kept up with the news the past couple of days... Yay, Western Nations, backing Abbas. I honestly could care less.

I could care less that Kelly Clarkson canceled her summer tour.

I could care less that the Duke District Attorney got "carried" away.

I could care less that "Pace" failed on his Iraq assessment.

I could care less if Angelina Jolie tries to control the media or not.

I could care less that Defense Secretary Gates paid a surprise visit to Iraq. Tell you what Gates, why the hell don't you put on ACU's, carry a rifle and go out on some conveys... Let's see how long you survive, oh, and while you're at it, put your 'Ole boy Bush on that convey with you...

I could care less that Oprah has topped Forbes' list. Take over the world, I don't care.

I really could honestly care less that The Sopranos Fans are pathetic and have no life. It's a television show already, get over it.

I could care less that Bush has decided it's time to push Congress to act on Immigration. I mean, geez, you've been in office how long now? What exactly have you done for us??? Besides, sending thousands of our men and women to their grave?

And the biggest thing I could care less about??? Billy Graham's wife Ruth dying.... Everyone dies sometimes, stop wasting my time...

Welcome to the world baby girl, not a damn good thing going on in the news today...

Thursday, June 14, 2007

Pepsi Ice Cucumber: The Latest Craze?

Bottles of Pepsi Ice Cucumber are on display at a convenience store in Tokyo Wednesday, June 13, 2007. Japanese are staying cool as a cucumber this summer with 'Pepsi Ice Cucumber,' a new soda based on the crisp green gourd, which hit stores here in the day. (AP Photo/Junji Kurokawa)

What do You Think? I'm thinking this is one soda I'll pass on..

Wednesday, June 13, 2007

US arming Sunni groups in Iraq, report says

Baghdad/New York - US military leaders are supplying Sunni groups in Iraq with weapons and other armoury to fight al-Qaeda terrorists, The New York Times reported Monday. After a test phase in early 2007 conducted in the western province of Anbar, US military leaders had reluctantly agreed to extend the arms support to four other Sunni-dominated restive provinces in central Iraq, the report added.

The support is going mainly to Sunni groups, who used to back al- Qaeda terrorists, but later turned their backs on them.

They are to receive - mainly through the Iraqi Army - weapons, ammunition, money and other equipment. During initial negotiations, they had agreed to warn US soldiers of booby traps.

The government in Baghdad is sceptical of these plans and so far Shiites have resisted negotiating with Sunni insurgents.

The office of the Shiite government chief said Monday that Prime Minister Nuri al-Maliki had met Admiral William Fallon, a commander in the US Central Command who is responsible for the Arab world and Central Asia, on Sunday.

During that meeting, al-Maliki said his government "would never subject itself to terrorists and militias and we have made a great step forward. We would never come to an agreement with those who operate beyond the law."

US officers also fear that Sunni groups could use these weapons against Shiites and later perhaps against US soldiers, The New York Times reported.


Story From The New York Times:

U.S. Arming Sunnis in Iraq to Battle Old Qaeda Allies

BAGHDAD, June 10 — With the four-month-old increase in American troops showing only modest success in curbing insurgent attacks, American commanders are turning to another strategy that they acknowledge is fraught with risk: arming Sunni Arab groups that have promised to fight militants linked with Al Qaeda who have been their allies in the past.

American commanders say they have successfully tested the strategy in Anbar Province west of Baghdad and have held talks with Sunni groups in at least four areas of central and north-central Iraq where the insurgency has been strong. In some cases, the American commanders say, the Sunni groups are suspected of involvement in past attacks on American troops or of having links to such groups. Some of these groups, they say, have been provided, usually through Iraqi military units allied with the Americans, with arms, ammunition, cash, fuel and supplies.

American officers who have engaged in what they call outreach to the Sunni groups say many of them have had past links to Al Qaeda in Mesopotamia but grew disillusioned with the Islamic militants’ extremist tactics, particularly suicide bombings that have killed thousands of Iraqi civilians. In exchange for American backing, these officials say, the Sunni groups have agreed to fight Al Qaeda and halt attacks on American units. Commanders who have undertaken these negotiations say that in some cases, Sunni groups have agreed to alert American troops to the location of roadside bombs and other lethal booby traps.

But critics of the strategy, including some American officers, say it could amount to the Americans’ arming both sides in a future civil war. The United States has spent more than $15 billion in building up Iraq’s army and police force, whose manpower of 350,000 is heavily Shiite. With an American troop drawdown increasingly likely in the next year, and little sign of a political accommodation between Shiite and Sunni politicians in Baghdad, the critics say, there is a risk that any weapons given to Sunni groups will eventually be used against Shiites. There is also the possibility the weapons could be used against the Americans themselves.

American field commanders met this month in Baghdad with Gen. David H. Petraeus, the top American commander in Iraq, to discuss the conditions Sunni groups would have to meet to win American assistance. Senior officers who attended the meeting said that General Petraeus and the operational commander who is the second-ranking American officer here, Lt. Gen. Raymond T. Odierno, gave cautious approval to field commanders to negotiate with Sunni groups in their areas.

One commander who attended the meeting said that despite the risks in arming groups that have until now fought against the Americans, the potential gains against Al Qaeda were too great to be missed. He said the strategy held out the prospect of finally driving a wedge between two wings of the Sunni insurgency that had previously worked in a devastating alliance — die-hard loyalists of Saddam Hussein’s formerly dominant Baath Party, and Islamic militants belonging to a constellation of groups linked to Al Qaeda.

Even if only partly successful, the officer said, the strategy could do as much or more to stabilize Iraq, and to speed American troops on their way home, as the increase in troops ordered by President Bush late last year, which has thrown nearly 30,000 additional American troops into the war but failed so far to fulfill the aim of bringing enhanced stability to Baghdad. An initial decline in sectarian killings in Baghdad in the first two months of the troop buildup has reversed, with growing numbers of bodies showing up each day in the capital. Suicide bombings have dipped in Baghdad but increased elsewhere, as Qaeda groups, confronted with great American troop numbers, have shifted their operations elsewhere.

The strategy of arming Sunni groups was first tested earlier this year in Anbar Province, the desert hinterland west of Baghdad, and attacks on American troops plunged after tribal sheiks, angered by Qaeda strikes that killed large numbers of Sunni civilians, recruited thousands of men to join government security forces and the tribal police. With Qaeda groups quitting the province for Sunni havens elsewhere, Anbar has lost its long-held reputation as the most dangerous place in Iraq for American troops.

Now, the Americans are testing the “Anbar model” across wide areas of Sunni-dominated Iraq. The areas include parts of Baghdad, notably the Sunni stronghold of Amiriya, a district that flanks the highway leading to Baghdad’s international airport; the area south of the capital in Babil province known as the Triangle of Death, site of an ambush in which four American soldiers were killed last month and three others abducted, one of whose bodies was found in the Euphrates; Diyala Province north and east of Baghdad, an area of lush palm groves and orchards which has replaced Anbar as Al Qaeda’s main sanctuary in Iraq; and Salahuddin Province, also north of Baghdad, the home area of Saddam Hussein.

Although the American engagement with the Sunni groups has brought some early successes against Al Qaeda, particularly in Anbar, many of the problems that hampered earlier American efforts to reach out to insurgents remain unchanged. American commanders say the Sunni groups they are negotiating with show few signs of wanting to work with the Shiite-led government of Prime Minister Nuri Kamal al-Maliki. For their part, Shiite leaders are deeply suspicious of any American move to co-opt Sunni groups that are wedded to a return to Sunni political dominance.

With the agreement to arm some Sunni groups, the Americans also appear to have made a tacit recognition that earlier demands for the disarming of Shiite militia groups are politically unachievable for now given the refusal of powerful Shiite political parties to shed their armed wings. In effect, the Americans seem to have concluded that as long as the Shiites maintain their militias, Shiite leaders are in a poor position to protest the arming of Sunni groups whose activities will be under close American scrutiny.

But officials of Mr. Maliki’s government have placed strict limits on the Sunni groups they are willing to countenance as allies in the fight against Al Qaeda. One leading Shiite politician, Sheik Khalik al-Atiyah, the deputy Parliament speaker, said in a recent interview that he would rule out any discussion of an amnesty for Sunni Arab insurgents, even those who commit to fighting Al Qaeda. Similarly, many American commanders oppose rewarding Sunni Arab groups who have been responsible, even tangentially, for any of the more than 29,000 American casualties in the war, including more than 3,500 deaths. Equally daunting for American commanders is the risk that Sunni groups receiving American backing could effectively double-cross the Americans, taking weapons and turning them against American and Iraq’s Shiite-dominated government forces.

Americans officers acknowledge that providing weapons to breakaway rebel groups is not new in counterinsurgency warfare, and that in places where it has been tried before, including the French colonial war in Algeria, the British-led fight against insurgents in Malaya in the early 1950s, and in Vietnam, the effort often backfired, with weapons given to the rebels being turned against the forces providing them. Maj. Gen. Rick Lynch, commander of the Third Infantry Division and leader of an American task force fighting in a wide area between the Tigris and Euphrates rivers immediately south of Baghdad, said at a briefing for reporters on Sunday that no American support would be given to any Sunni group that had attacked Americans. If the Americans negotiating with Sunni groups in his area had “specific information” that the group or any of its members had killed Americans, he said, “The negotiation is going to go like this: ‘You’re under arrest, and you’re going with me.’ I’m not going to go out and negotiate with folks who have American blood on their hands.”

One of the conditions set by the American commanders who met in Baghdad was that any group receiving weapons must submit its fighters for biometric tests that would include taking fingerprints and retinal scans. The American conditions, senior officers said, also include registering the serial numbers of all weapons, steps the Americans believe will help in tracing fighters who use the weapons in attacks against American or Iraqi troops. The fighters who have received American backing in the Amiriya district of Baghdad were required to undergo the tests, the officers said.

The requirement that no support be given to insurgent groups that have attacked Americans appeared to have been set aside or loosely enforced in negotiations with the Sunni groups elsewhere, including Amiriya, where American units that have supported Sunni groups fighting to oust Al Qaeda have told reporters they believe that the Sunni groups include insurgents who had fought the Americans. The Americans have bolstered Sunni groups in Amiriya by empowering them to detain suspected Qaeda fighters and approving ammunition supplies to Sunni fighters from Iraqi Army units.

In Anbar, there have been negotiations with factions from the 1920 Revolution Brigades, a Sunni insurgent group with strong Baathist links that has a history of attacking Americans. In Diyala, insurgents who have joined the Iraqi Army have told reporters that they switched sides after working for the 1920 group. And in an agreement announced by the American command on Sunday, 130 tribal sheiks in Salahuddin met in the provincial capital, Tikrit, to form police units that would “defend” against Al Qaeda.

General Lynch said American commanders would face hard decisions in choosing which groups to support. “This isn’t a black and white place,” he said. “There are good guys and bad guys and there are groups in between,” and separating them was a major challenge. He said some groups that had approached the Americans had made no secret of their enmity.

“They say, ‘We hate you because you are occupiers’ ” he said, “ ‘but we hate Al Qaeda worse, and we hate the Persians even more.’ ” Sunni militants refer to Iraq’s Shiites as Persians, a reference to the strong links between Iraqi Shiites and the Shiites who predominate in Iran.

An Iraqi government official who was reached by telephone on Sunday said the government was uncomfortable with the American negotiations with the Sunni groups because they offered no guarantee that the militias would be loyal to anyone other than the American commander in their immediate area. “The government’s aim is to disarm and demobilize the militias in Iraq,” said Sadiq al-Rikabi, a political adviser to Mr. Maliki. “And we have enough militias in Iraq that we are struggling now to solve the problem. Why are we creating new ones?”

Despite such views, General Lynch said, the Americans believed that Sunni groups offering to fight Al Qaeda and halt attacks on American and Iraqi forces met a basic condition for re-establishing stability in insurgent-hit areas: they had roots in the areas where they operated, and thus held out the prospect of building security from the ground up. He cited areas in Babil Province where there were “no security forces, zero, zilch,” and added: “When you’ve got people who say, ‘I want to protect my neighbors,’ we ought to jump like a duck on a june bug.”


I'm not even sure what to say....

Your Political Profile

I was thumbing through blogs earlier and came across this one: RIGHTWINGBASTARDO . Saw this quiz and Had to take it.

Your Political Profile:
Overall: 50% Conservative, 50% Liberal
Social Issues: 25% Conservative, 75% Liberal
Personal Responsibility: 25% Conservative, 75% Liberal
Fiscal Issues: 75% Conservative, 25% Liberal
Ethics: 25% Conservative, 75% Liberal
Defense and Crime: 100% Conservative, 0% Liberal

I laughed my bum off, it's so true. I don't ever classify myself from one party, although I do lean towards the Democratic side more. But, I DO have very strong opinions on certain issues, as you can tell by the scores. I knw exactly where I stand on all issues, there is never an in-between for me..
Take it, Did you do as you thought you would??

Dear Sunni's & Shiites: Proposal For A New Solution

I am writing this in response to this article. If you haven't heard a key Samarra Mosque was bombed today, and will probably set off another wave of violence.

So, I have decided to construct a proposal to submit to the two key players in this damn "conflict". The Sunni's and the Shiites.

June 13, 2007

Dear Sunni's and Shiites,

I sit here day after day and watch the telly and see how many innocent lives are being slaughtered. I try to understand the reasoning on turning your backs upon your own people, yet I can't. I do, however understand one thing.

I know that we aren't wanted there, and quite frankly I don't want us there either. If you guys want to kill each other off, so be it. So, I have come up with the following proposal. I believe that you will find it agreeable.

Stop the violence for at least six months. No more IEDS, no mortars, No bombs, No kidnappings, nothing. NONE of that. Now, I realize this is a hard concept, and you must think I am insane for even bringing up such a daring plan, but if you will just hear me out, I think you will see it is quite genius.

If you two will stop fighting, then perhaps Bush will get his head out of his ass, see he keeps sending more troops over there, because you guys won't stop killing each other (and us). If there is no killings for six months, then he can proclaim he was a success, then he will bring our troops home. He won't be in office much longer and I don't foresee the new "President" wanting the stain of your blood upon his/her name.

I know it's a radical move, but I think it just might work! After we leave, by all means, resume the killing, kill each other off. Destroy your nation, I don't care. To be honest, I am completely selfish in my writing of this. You see, the love of my life is over there, and to be quite frank, he doesn't want to be there, but just like you, he has to follow orders. I know he would rather be home, safe and sound with his family, hearing the laughter of his kids, then running for cover because of mortars or hearing the news of lost friends or living in fear that everyday may well be his last.

Six months, that's is all. Six months, hey, think of it this way, it will give you time to get better weapons, to better kill your people off with. This is my proposal to you, I am hoping that you will give it the utmost consideration.

Peace Be with You and Yours,


Tuesday, June 12, 2007

US Needs To Back G8 On Climate Changes

Democratic presidential candidate John Edwards on Tuesday said the United States should join the Group of Eight in a call to cut global warming gas emissions in half by 2050. Edwards, speaking in the Texas state capital of Austin, said U.S. climate-changing greenhouse gas emissions should be cut by 20 percent by 2020 and 80 percent by 2050, according to a statement released by his campaign.

"Global warming is an emergency that requires immediate action from the world community," Edwards said. "Before the United States can rally the world to take action, we need to show leadership here at home. We should be leading the charge in this area, not turning our back on the world."

The former North Carolina senator and 2004 vice presidential nominee said he favors a cap-and-trade system of emissions credits and requiring developing nations to also aggressively cut greenhouse gas emissions.

Edwards has said previously he wants U.S. automakers to produce vehicles that average 40 miles per gallon by 2016.

So, Kudos to Edwards for pushing for change on this issue. With the G8 summit already passed for this year, what exactly did Bush to help the greenhouse effect? Not a thing... In fact this was said about the meeting on this issue:

"The president came to Germany with a simple message for the G8 leaders: not on my watch," Philip Clapp, president of the U.S.-based National Environmental Trust, told the Times."

In fact all he could give them was "the United States will seriously consider the goal".

But, this doesn't suprise me out of Bush, just another example of who's needs he "truly" looks out for...

Follow the "yellow" brick road and you will find Bush and his stance on issues.....

Monday, June 11, 2007

One Day! One Voice! 30,000 Bloggers

I lifted this off of My View Of It's blog, click on the title to visit her site, great stuff! I encourage each and every one of you to take up this challenge!

One Day! One Voice! 30,000 Bloggers
Contact: brian@bravehumans.com

Total: 234
Left To Go: 2966
When the list reaches 30,000, a date and a word will be listed on the page. On that date, every weblog on the list agrees to make a single post with the word as the title. The content of the post should be about what you want for the world, whatever that may be. The purpose is not to make a particular political statement, but simply to make a noise. If 30,000 weblogs all post the same unusual word, it WILL be heard.
Send an email to brian@bravehumans.com with the subject: Yop!
In the body of the email list the name of your weblog, and the URL.
Your weblog will be added to the list . [ website ]
Tell your friends who blog about it, and urge them to send in their weblog as well.

A Poem I found online:

The difference

One tree can start a forest

One smile begins a friendship

One handclasp lifts the soul

One star can guide a ship at sea

One vote can change a nation

One candle wipes out darkness

One step must start each journey

One word must start each prayer

One hope will raise our spirits

One voice can speak with wisdom

One heart can know what's true

One life can make a difference

You can make a difference!

Indefinite Imprisonment

Bush received another blow to his policies today. The court has order the release of Ali Saleh Kahlah al-Marri. He has been held now for 4 years in military detention without any charges being brought up against him.

I understand that in this day and age we ARE all under scrutiny. But, to hold some one for four years without bringing up any charges? How long does it take to find evidence? How long does it take to charge someone?

Is this another example of Bush jumping in first without examining all the evidence?

It just serves to remind me again, of how Bush runs his administration and this country.... He could care less about anything other than his own gain, his own views....

I CAN NOT wait for the day he is out of office....

No Confidence In Gonzales: Will Bush Listen?

Democratic Senators hope to prod this Man, Gonzales into resigning with a vote of no confidence. The Republicans will attempt to block it, of course, although many of them have expressed their displeasure over his performance. Gonzales has refused to step down and is supported by the Republican president, who is his long-time mentor from Texas.

Bush's response to this? In his words: "They can try to have their votes of no confidence, but it's not going to determine -- make the determination who serves in my government," Bush declared.

The word my, is what I want to focus on today. My government. Hmmm..... I thought that the government belonged to Us, the people, not to one man. The last time I checked it was we, the people, who elected our officials, Our Senators & Congressmen represent us, our President represents us, our needs, our wishes, our concerns. But yet, once again, Bush is refusing to listen to the people.

It is reasons like this, that we, as Americans, need to stand up and raise our voices! No longer do we need to allow ourselves to be bullied by our government. Our voices need to be heard once again, not falling shy upon the ears of our leaders.

How much longer are we going to put up with leadership who continues to turn a deaf ear to the cries and the needs of our nation?

I can not stress enough how important it is to let your voice be heard. It is time our nation rallied together so we can bring this country to where it needs to be. It is time we stand up and declare that WE NO LONGER will be bullied and ignored. We are the ones who make up this country. It is our money that pays their salaries, it is our money that makes this country strong.

Change has to happen, What Role will you play in our Future? Will you sit by and watch us destroy ourselves, or will you stand up and say enough, is enough!

Sunday, June 10, 2007

One Life Lost: Is One Life To Many

The Headline?
I read this article earlier today, and while it saddened me that once again, life has been lost, I didn't know how it would affect me personally. Well, I suppose I should rephrase that, it doesn't affect me personally, it affected someone whom I love very dearly.

Everyday it seems as if the war over there creeps closer and closer to home. My only experience so far with injuries in Iraq have been with a dear friend whose life has been forever altered. He was lucky though, he lived. Even though, half of his face was blown off and he lost an eye, he is alive. It's been two years since that happened and his life is still in limbo. He is still going through surgeries, procedures, etc, with no end truly in sight. His life and his families lives have been forever changed. But yet, they give me hope, for they have prevailed and made the best of the circumstances.

People ask me all the time how can I oppose something that the love of my life is doing. My answer is simply this: It is his job. He is part of our military and he does what he is ordered to do. Does he want to be there? No, I'm sure he doesn't. I know he would rather be here with his family, safe and sound every night, as opposed to wondering if the next mission will be his last, or if his friends will make it back alive and in one piece. It isn't him or the troops I oppose, it is this war. It is our reasoning for being there.

The piece I wrote earlier about those of us who are left behind focused on feelings that I struggle with, anger I deal with. Not directed at him, but at the situation. At this stupid senseless war. At the reckless disregard our government has about placing our men and women in a situation where they can't prevail. The enemy is unseen. The enemy remains hidden behind the normalcy of life. Those who oppose our presence there are many, we are few.

Today's headlines will be the same tomorrow, just as they were yesterday. The same result, just different incidents involving different people. When will it be enough? How many more lives will be taken before this madness ends?

How many more lives will be forever altered?

I sit here, in the comfort of our home, safe from the dangers of the night, but yet my heart bleeds. With every incident that happens, I feel the loss of our sons and daughters, but yet I will never know the true pain, the true heartache. For I have never experienced it. I will never know what it feels like to have a buddy get killed or injured beside me, or have them leave in the morning, never to return. I will never be able to understand. I will never truly know how he feels.

I don't know how many times I have said it (it's never enough), but it's time to bring our troops home.

Saving The Planet: One Piece At A Time

I was doing my daily news search, when I came across this piece:

American Buys Slices Of South America

The Story? Multimillionaire Douglas Tompkins goal is to save the planet, by buying pieces of it. He owns over a million acres in Chile and Argentina. Of course, as with any news story there is always opposition. There are those in South America that believes the land should belong to foreigners and should be given back to it's government.

He insists that he will turn the land back over one day to be used as nature reserves or parks, but wants to hold on so they see what a private conservation can do.

As I read this, I decide to dig deeper, to find out how many other millionaires were taking part in a "project" like this.

Here are my findings:

Swedish millionaire to help Baltic Sea environment protection:

Bjorn Carlson has donated almost 63 million dollars to help protect the Baltic Sea environment.

Luciano Benetton also owns a vast amount of land in Argentina for environmental purposes.

Ok, that is all I can come up with at the moment. Does anyone else know of examples of this? While researching this, I did come across another article of extreme interest to me. The Title?

Cape Windbags

I'll just summarize the article here, although you can click on the title to read the whole thing. There are plans to build America's first offshore wind farm, located in Cape Cod. It would generate 75 percent of the electricity needs of Cape Cod and Massachusetts’ islands without producing any of Kennedy’s mercury, or greenhouse gas. Yet, the Kennedy's and other affluent families in the area are fighting it being built.

Why? From the looks of it, they simply don't want an "eyesore" in their backyard.

Here we have two very different examples of uses of money. There are some who are doing what they can to ensure resources for our future generations, but others who spend millions of dollars trying to stop the very thing that would benefit them greatly.

I had written a blog last month called A Looming Crisis? It focused on America's water usage compared to other countries. I often wonder how little we do to save our planet. If every person in America could buy half an acre (our population is estimated at 301,139,947 ) to set aside for conservation purposes, think of the effect that would have.

9,161,923 sq km is the amount of land we have in the United States. 1 sq km is equal to 247.1 acres. That equals 2,263,911,173.3 acres of land. Buying half an acre would save 150,569,973 acres. Yes, I realize that this is unrealistic, as I doubt there are that many acres for sale in the US. (and I haven't taken in account National Forests, etc) But when you look at the numbers, it doesn't seem like an impossible task, does it? Each of us doing our part to ensure that our future generations can continue to enjoy this planet of ours. Just think, the US is the Third largest Country by size.

Did you know that the US is the largest single emitter of carbon dioxide from the burning of fossil fuels?

I realize that most of us aren't millionaires and we don't have the capital to do what Tompkins is doing. But, what we can do is use our voice and what resources we do have to make a difference. Use our voice to let our government know that we want to see changes in our environmental laws. Changes that would benefit the world. Changes that would show the world that yes, we want to do our part in protecting this planet, in saving this planet....

The administration is so focused on creating governments that they think will be beneficial, they have forgotten the larger picture. Men will rule, men will fall, men will die. Our Earth, is our source of being. Without her resources, we will all perish and our future generations will have nothing. Use your voice to help our government RE-FOCUS their attention! Do your part in helping heal our planet.

Saturday, June 9, 2007

Another Blogging Resource

Below is a matrix of 120 stars, I have already added a link to my blog onto one of the stars, all you need to do is copy and paste the grid into your blog or website and add your own link to one of the other spare stars, and tell others to do the same!


When I receive a ping back once you have added the Viralink to your site, I will add your link to this grid, and each person who copies the grid from this blog`will also link to your site!
No Porn Sites
One link per person only! (do not hog the viralink!)
DO NOT change or tamper with other individual url’s.
Here are how the numbers add up, I will use the term saturation to describe the spread of the Viralink with Zero being your blog 1 being 1 link down, 2 being 2 links down and so on.
Saturation -
Backlinks 0 - 0
1 - 3
2 - 12
3 - 39
4 - 93
5 - 336
6 - 1065
7 - 3252
8 - 9813
9 - 29,496
10 - 88,545
The above numbers rely on 3 people copying and pasting the Viralink onto their blog and that being replicated 3 times continuously 10 times. The numbers are quite staggering, there are 119 spaces left on the Viralink from this page and I expect that there will be allot of clones which begin to pop up. The best strategy with this is to start early and tell all of your blog and online friends! You may be wondering what happens if you are at the end of the chain when the Viralink is full ? What would be the benefit to me? Well there is no reason why you can’t add another line of dots to the bottom and keep the process going. You also can start another form, but please retain a link to this site.
It will be interesting to see how this works!

Take The News Challenge: Can You Find A Positive Headline?

I decided today that I was going to do the impossible. Well, perhaps not the impossible, but it feels that way at times. What is this I speak of? Finding a POSITIVE news story in the Top Stories headlines. These are the results of my findings:


Nothing there....


One there, the elderly drivers racing their scooters. They seemed happy enough in the video.


Bush calls for action over Kosovo

Russia warns US on missile plan

Iraq condemns Turkish 'shelling'
Australia storm death toll rises
Gaza militants launch Israel raid
Sri Lanka troops 'kill 30 Tigers'
Israel 'tests' Syria peace aims
UK police reject rendition claims
Paris Hilton is sent back to jail

The Israel Story looks promising, although I am doubtful that these countries will find peace.


Hispanic Voters Enjoy New Clout With Democrats

Pace out as Joint Chiefs chairman

Russia Wants Freeze on US Missile Plan

Rep. Jefferson pleads not guilty to corruption charges

Bush reassures pope on Iraq's beleaguered Christians

G8 Leaders Pledge $60 Billion To Fight Disease In Third World

Review of Khadr ruling sought

Brownback To Compete In Iowa Straw Poll

If the G8 leaders keep their promise and actually "give" the money that is a good thing.


U.S. Cities Race Ahead of Feds on Climate Change
In Arctic Ice, Lessons on Effects of Warming
VIDEO: Melting Glacier Draws Scientists
Special Report: The Threat of Climate Change
A Changing French Assembly
Alliance of Last Resort in Iraq
Suicide Bomber Kills 13 Iraqi Soldiers
Bush, Pope Benedict XVI Discuss War in Iraq
Joint Chiefs Chair Will Bow Out VIDEO
Romney Boys Dish on Dad
GRAPHIC: Meet Romney's Sons PostTalk
Twitter Develops a Following
Book World: Two Attempts to Get at the Real Hillary
Iran Confirms U.S. Man Jailed
Paris Hilton's Grim-Reality Show

The first story looks promising! If cities would implement changes, it would be a positive step for our climate!


Bush Makes Historic Visit To Meet Pope Benedict XVI

Italian Police Fire Tear Gas on Anti-Bush Protesters

Shuttle Fold Causes Concern

MLK's Pal Charged With Incest

Track Star ODs on Muscle Cream
Justine Henin Wins French Open
Jefferson: 'I Am Absolutely Innocent' VIDEO
Cops: Stepdad Drowned Child for Insurance
Woman Sentenced for Starving Stepdaughters
Letterman Kidnap Plot Con Escapes
Tyson Recalls 40,000 Lbs. of Ground Beef
Kelsey Suspect Had Threatened Sister

18 Iraqis Killed in New Wave of Violence

I would say the Bush and The Pope's meeting, but it doesn't look as if anything "positive" really came out of that. So that leaves us with the winner of the French Open.


Hanging With the Pope: Bush, Pontiff Talk 'Worrisome' Iraq

Thermal Breach? NASA Checks Shuttle

Sports Cream Said to Kill Teen Runner

Crying for Her Mom, Paris Returns to Jail

Will Paris Stay in Jail This Time?

'Sopranos' Swan Song: How Will It End?

6 Die in Attack on U.S. Jail Facility in Iraq

Cover-up of Secret CIA Prisons Alleged

Sanitary State Rep Wages Germ Warfare

Meet France's Sexy, Enigmatic First Lady

Cold Cash Congressman Pleads Not Guilty

Pace Retires As Head of Joint Chiefs

Golfer Daly Claims Knife Attack by Wife

Kate Hudson-Owen Wilson: Fated to Fail?

The Germ warfare looks promising, although it's a shame it will only affect one state....


Bush reassures pope on Iraq's beleaguered Christians

US missile shield threatens resolution of Iran stand-off: Russia

Iraq protests Turkish bombardment of Kurdish north

Japanese envoy hopeful of saving Sri Lanka peace bid

Atlantis heads for International Space Station

Russia's Ivanov seeks to reassure West at economic forum

Aeroflot signs order for 22 Boeing Dreamliners

Well, at least someone(Aeroflot) in Russia had a good day.


Everlasting US pyramids in Iraqi sands

US eyeing bigger UN role in Iraq

An insurgency beyond the Taliban

Putin's smart Gabala gambit

News of Wen's retirement shot down

Philippines puts on a political show

US ire over trigger-happy North Korea

I like the looks of the UN playing a bigger role, that is something to keep an eye out for.


Kuwaiti emir calls for enhanced ties with Iran

Egypt calls for cooperation with Iran

Iran's neighbors not concerned over N-case: Haddad-Adel
Iran's envoy to Mongolia submits credentials
Headlines in major Iranian newspapers
Quake hits northern cities
Haddad-Adel slams Zionists' atrocities
Security official confirms arrest of three Finns in Hormuzgan
Mazandaran province welcomes Italian investors
Mottaki calls for expansion of Iran-Hungary ties

I'm not real sure where to go with this one.... I suppose some of it is good news for the Iranians, although, I think we (US) should be very concerned...


Reasonable exam environment created for quake area students
Chinese panda in Washington zoo may be pregnant again
China enhances ties with Indonesia, Barbados
Blue-green algae discovered in another E China lake
China urges intensified prevention and control of blue-ear pig disease
Preparations begin for election of HK and Macau deputies to 11th NPC

Kenyan police kill 11 as crackdown on sect intensifies
S Korea lifts ban on quarantine inspection on U.S. beef
Putin suggests U.S. deploy missile defense system in Azerbaijan
Malaysia detects new outbreak of bird flu
Jews want control of grave in Ukraine
Cyclone Gonu kills three in Iran

Enhancing their ties is a positive thing.


Lebanese army resumes camp shelling

Iraqi troops die in Hilla bombing

Musharraf cancels media decree

Egypt court permits face-veil use

Palestinian groups in border raid

Bush visits pope amid protests

Quelling Iran's thirst for petrol
Kenyans flee sect crackdown
UN 'concerned' about Darfur
Three killed in Pakistan bus blast
Colombo court halts Tamil evictions
The changing face of my Beijing
Dalai Lama warns of 'lost' Tibet
France invites Lebanese dialogue
Tortured by the Palestinian police
Bush firm on missile shield plan
Chile judge orders Fujimori arrest

G8 leaders in $60bn aid pledge
Syrian arms dealer held in Spain

Once again, I think that 60 million dollar pledge is about the best we can do here.

Why this Quest? I did this to prove a point, the world as a whole is wrapped up in reporting the negative. Rarely, does something positive make the headlines. If so much negativity is floating around the world, how do we honestly expect to make the world a better place for future generations? Take the Challenge, see what positive news you can spread. Maybe by one blog at a time, we can introduce something positive in the world, for a change..