February 17, 2007

News for February 17, 2007

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Solar flares might knock out cell phones (February 17, 2007) - Solar flare activity is expected to build for the next three years to a crescendo that some scientists say could be cataclysmic, causing a telecommunication blackout that would down mobile phones and navigational systems. "The solar flares are expected to be at its maximum intensity by the year 2010," Markus Aschwanden, a solar physicist at the Solar and Astrophysics Laboratory, Lockheed Martin Advanced Technology Center, told the Hindu News. "These solar flares and Coronal Mass Ejections from the sun have the ability to travel all the way to the earth and create a black-out of cellular phone services and navigational systems like the GPS. Solar flares and CMEs occur when magnetic energy built up in the Sun's atmosphere is suddenly released. The flares carrying high amount of energy, travel at high speeds and reach the Earth in a matter of hours. "If a solar flare or a CME collides with the Earth, it can cause a geomagnetic storm," Aschwanden said, adding large geomagnetic storms have caused electrical power outages and damaged communication satellites. "A few years back, these solar flares destroyed the satellite Galaxy 4." That outage in 1998 resulted in widespread loss of pager service and numerous other communication problems. For more details, see the complete report in Joseph Farah's G2 Bulletin.
| Earth Changes |


Defusing the Middle East powder keg (February 17, 2007) - THE Bush Administration's policies have generated such destructive conditions in the Middle East and west Asia that they have turned the region into more of a powder keg than ever before in its modern history. Iraq is locked in a devastating civil war, Afghanistan is balanced on a knife edge, Lebanon is teetering on the brink of civil war, Palestinians are at each other's throats, and Arabs are set against Iranians and Sunni Muslims against Shiites, with a US-Iran confrontation looming. In the meantime, while US credibility is in tatters, a powerful regional Shiite strategic entity linked to Tehran has emerged, causing fear among Iran's Sunni-dominated neighbours as to what this might entail. This entity stretches from western Afghanistan, where Iran has made huge financial and infrastructural investment, with a strong sectarian inroad into some of the 15 to 20 per cent of the country's Shiite population, to Lebanon, where the Iranian-backed Hezbollah has become a critical player. The US push for democratisation in Iraq and its virtual deliverance of formal power to the country's Shiite majority has, together with the Iran-Syria strategic partnership, created the centrepiece of this entity. A majority of Iraqi Shiites are Arabs and Iraq has historically had an Arab national identity, but the political and social landscape of the country has changed so much under the US-led occupation that no amount of effort can now easily restore sectarian balance in Iraq and in the wider Muslim domain. These developments have alarmed many in the Arab world and in the wider, Sunni-dominated, Muslim domain. The Arabs are disturbed by the rapid change in the sectarian equation and the regional strategic balance, and many Sunni Muslims now think that Washington and Tehran have made a common anti-Sunni cause. As Tehran has quietly revelled in its new strategic gains, the Saudi leaders have summed up the position of many Arabs by calling for open assistance to the Iraqi Sunnis against Iran's growing influence. more...
| Islam | America |


Preparing Armageddon Herb L. Peters (February 17, 2007) - John Walvoord points out that there are four blocs of nations that will converge on Israel in the final days of end-time prophecy. They are a southern alliance of nations (in relation to Israel), a northern alliance, an eastern alliance, and a western alliance (The Nations in Prophecy, page 103). What strikes me about today's news is, that's exactly what appears to be forming. Let's begin with the new military alliance being formed by a powerful king south of Israel. In our first report we read: Pakistan will play a pivotal role in a Saudi-devised strategy to build a strong Sunni block to counter the perceived growing influence in the Middle East of Shiites led by Iran, diplomatic sources in Islamabad have told Adnkronos International (AKI). The strategy includes the creation of a multinational Muslim peacekeeping force comprising troops from core Organisation of Islamic Countries (OIC) member states Saudi King of South. I've also been reporting how Putin's Russia has been pursuing a new, more aggressive strategy in the Middle East. In this report we read: Russia is returning to the [Middle East] region with a visage that bears hardly any resemblance to the Soviet era. Russia today is vastly leaner, more agile, resourceful and imaginative than previously. It has evidently done a lot of homework as to where things went wrong in the Soviet era. Putin's visit to Saudi Arabia, Qatar and Jordan in the past week harnesses a one-year period of extraordinary success in Russia's Middle East policy Russian King of North. In the east we find a new alliance forming against American interests between China, India and Russia. Here we read: In the communique issued at the end of the meeting, the foreign ministers of China, Russia and India call for the democratization of international relations. They praised multi-polarization based on equality among all countries, and mutual respect of each other's sovereignty and territory integrity China and India, Kings of East. And at the same time, we find a new European leader from an alliance of nations to Israel's west calling for much the same things as the leaders in the east. The western leaders says: The nature of the problems thrown up by globalisation mean there is no alternative to multilateral co-operation. But we need new forms, which reflect the problems and power distribution of today's world rather than that of 1945. For us in the West, it also means making space at top tables. At the UN Security Council of course. But also in terms of IMF votes. And, why not, G-8 membership? EU King of West pdf As I thought about these four blocs, I realized that all four include nuclear powers. And, all four are very interested in securing for themselves the important energy supplies of the Middle East. It's really no wonder that we're seeing these alliances now forming. And preparing Armageddon.
| Iran | Gog/Magog | Israel | Islam | EU/UN |


Russia straddles Sunni-Shi'ite divide (February 17, 2007) - "We see that new 'Berlin Walls' are being erected. Instead of a common space, what we see is that this 'Berlin Wall' is simply being shifted further east and that new bases are being established." These were Russian President Vladimir Putin's words in a media interview in Moscow last week. Never before had Putin come so close to acknowledging that he has heard the drumbeat of the "cold warriors" in the West. That Putin chose an Arab media outlet to make such a stark description should come as no surprise. Of all regions, it is in the Middle East that the tensions that have been accruing in Russia-US relations over recent years have begun outstripping other turfs - the Black Sea, the Caspian, the Caucasus, Central Asia. The Middle East is also a region where it is to Russia's advantage tactically to differentiate its policies from those of the West. Russia-US discord in the Middle East has picked up the thread from where the two powers left off some two decades ago. But Russia is returning to the region with a visage that bears hardly any resemblance to the Soviet era. Russia today is vastly leaner, more agile, resourceful and imaginative than previously. It has evidently done a lot of homework as to where things went wrong in the Soviet era. Putin's visit to Saudi Arabia, Qatar and Jordan in the past week harnesses a one-year period of extraordinary success in Russia's Middle East policy. It all began last March when a Hamas delegation led by Khaled Meshaal was hosted by Moscow. The event was a loud declaration that Russia was returning to big-time politics. Israel promptly protested that the Russian act was a "real knife in the back". But Moscow was undeterred. Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov affirmed, "The talks in Moscow are not a one-off action." more...
| Iran | Gog/Magog | Israel | Islam |

Is it any wonder Russia will be part of the Turkey/Iran attack on Israel?

Temple Mount Dig Connects Jewish Past (February 16, 2005) - When the Islamic Waqf began construction in 1999 of an underground mosque on the Temple Mount in Jerusalem, many Israeli archeologists tried in vain to stop the illegal digging that dumped tons of debris in Jerusalem's Kidron Valley. But a salvage operation on the debris is recovering ancient artifacts and in the process rediscovering Israel's past. What most people see as a pile of meaningless rubble can be a treasure trove for the archaeologists of Israel. "Another one of the arrowheads is especially significant. This is a tiny but very nasty arrowhead," said Archeologist Gabriel Barkay, holding up the artifact. "This type of arrowhead was introduced by the armies of Nebuchadnezzar who destroyed the First Temple of Jerusalem and this is from the sixth century BC" Barkay, an archeologist from Bar-Ilan University deals with Jerusalem's past, from the armies of Nebuchadnezzar to the Knights Templar of crusader times. He directs one of the most unusual and yet important archeological efforts in Israel today. Barkay oversees the examination of the tons of discarded material from Jerusalem's Temple Mount. "The Temple Mount is totally unknown archaeologically, so not even us single shard has ever been published from the Temple Mount," he said. "What we do is very significant because we can establish a history of the Temple Mount through the finds." The finds provide a fascinating view back into the history of Jerusalem. It's ancient detective work, examining artifacts ranging from this flint - more than 3,000 years-old - to this Christian artifact from a more modern era. more...
| Temple Mount |


The Mugrabi Ramp Reconstruction Project (February 15, 2005) Video: 1:32 min. - Contrary to Islamic deception, Israel is merely repairing an access ramp for the benefit and safety of all visitors. Watch the truth for yourself!
| Temple Mount |


Hamas Gets the Upper Hand (February 15, 2007) - The two smiles said it all. Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas looked as if his smile had been painfully stapled onto his face, while his rival, Hamas leader and Prime Minister Ismael Haniyeh, beamed with satisfaction. Haniyeh had reason to be cheerful. Everything is going Hamas's way — even though it was Haniyeh who had to resign. Abbas accepted Haniyeh's resignation on Thursday evening in Gaza, but then had to formally request that the Hamas chief form a new "national unity" government. And that was only after Abbas had caved in on several key demands by the Islamic militant group. First, Abbas agreed to recognize all decisions made by the 11-month old Hamas government, including the formation of a 3,000-man, pro-Haniyeh security force that roams Gaza's dangerous streets. The commander of this force will be a Hamas man. This enables Hamas to keep its edge in the Gaza strip over Abbas's armed Fatah militias. Since December, fighting between the rival militias has cost over 90 Palestinian lives. Secondly, Hamas will have veto power over Abbas's choice of deputy premier. That is a blow not only to Abbas but also to the Israelis and the Americans. The president had wanted to place Fatah strongman Mohammed Dahlan, a favorite of the Israelis, in that post. Dahlan is the sworn enemy of Haniyeh — the Fatah security forces commander accuses Hamas of trying to kill him. But Haniyeh told Abbas that having Dahlan as deputy premier was a deal-breaker, and could plunge the Palestinians into a second round of civil war. Abbas relented and the power-sharing deal between Hamas and Fatah, brokered by the Saudis, went ahead. The survival of the new Palestinian government will hinge on whether the international community will lift its crippling embargo on the Palestinians, imposed when Hamas took power last March. Israel and the western countries are demanding that Hamas recognize the existence of Israel and renounce fighting, which the organization so far has refused to do. The loophole, according to Hamas, is that the new government will "respect" all past international accords, including those with the Jewish state. Meantime Hamas says it is observing a cease-fire with Israel and is willing to extend it. more...
| Islam |


Chirac backs easing pressure on Iran to protect UNIFIL troops (February 15, 2007) - French President Jacque Chirac has announced his support for lessening pressure on Iran to stop its nuclear program, for fear Hezbollah will strike at French troops serving in Lebanon, according to information recently received in Jerusalem. According to reports, Chirac proposed sending a special envoy to Tehran to reach understandings that would protect the French soldiers serving in in the United Nations Interim Forces in Lebanon (UNIFIL). A government source said Chirac's position is controversial in Paris, with the French Foreign Ministry continuing to support a hard line with regard to the Iranian nuclear program, a position also expressed Wednesday by the French ambassador to Israel, Jean-Michel Casa, in an interview with Haaretz. Chirac told reporters at the end of January that it would not be terrible if Iran had a nuclear bomb or two, but quickly reversed himself following protests from officials at home. Israeli experts said that the link Chirac is making between French presence in Lebanon and the closing down of Iran's nuclear program shows the shortcomings of UN Security Council Resolution 1701, which ended the second Lebanon war. According to one expert, Israel "begged the French to send soldiers to Lebanon" and end up paying for it by damaging its strategic interests. Israel is conducting an intensive international diplomatic effort to increase sanctions on Iran, in an attempt to put a stop to its nuclear program. more...
| Islam | EU/UN |

Caving in won't get them anywhere. However it will boost Iran's and others' confidence and morale. I'm sure when they decide to attack Israel they won't be expecting the weak nations of the West to do much about it, but they won't be expecting the fire and brimstone from heaven to be what puts a stop to their plan either. I don't understand this appeasement attitude that dominates the political landscape. It's like the parents in the grocery store giving their child what they want because they're throwing a temper tantrum and knocking stuff off the shelves and being loud. I think we've clearly seen the dysfunction involved and the whining and tantrums don't stop, they get worse as the child gets older and realizes they can get away with so much more. How is dealing with radical Islam any different. "I want Israel gone now!!! *stomp - stomp*" Maybe if we just give them what they want they'll be ok... Until they implement their next plan -WORLD DOMINATION in the name of Allah!!!! There's a couple leaders and nations that need to wake up. Bible prophecy doesn't show them waking up though, just a falling away and deception from the master of deception himself, Lucifer.

2,000-year-old date seed grows in the Arava (February 15, 2007) - The wind ruffles the leaves of the date sapling in its planter, and Dr. Elaine Soloway quickly shields it. "There's only one plant like this in the world, and I'm still worried about it," she says. Methuselah - that is the sapling's name - is indeed unique. In 2005, Soloway, from Kibbutz Ketura in the Arava, germinated it from a 2,000-year-old date seed found at Masada. For the past two millennia, since approximately the time of the Great Revolt of the Jews against the Romans, in 66-73 C.E., the seed lay dormant, until Soloway and her team breathed life into it, making it the oldest seed ever to germinate. For two years, the seed was kept in isolation in a plant nursery to protect it from the modern diseases to which it would have been vulnerable. Now that it is stronger, Soloway is planning on transplanting it. "I think it has a future," she says. Last week, Methuselah underwent chronological testing, using the radioactive isotope Carbon-14, which confirmed that the tree grew from a seed that lived when the Romans ruled the land. If the sapling continues to flourish, Soloway believes they will be able to renew a species of date that grew in the Kingdom of Judea at that time. Soloway says the type of date grown by ancient Judeans disappeared in the centuries following the repression of the revolt. Dates presently grown in Israel were brought here from other countries in the Middle East, particularly Iraq, and do not derive from ancient stock. more...
| Israel |

Read Ezekiel 36:8-15.

Putin calls for convening broad int'l conference on Mideast issues (February 14, 2007) - Visiting Russian President Vladimir Putin called here on Tuesday for convening a new broad international conference on Middle East issues which all concerned parties, including Lebanon and Syria, should participate in. At a joint press conference with Jordan's King Abdullah II after their talks, Putin said, "We confirm our call for a broad international conference in the Middle East and we see the number of supporters of this proposal growing." "But it should be well prepared and the agenda should include the Palestinian and the Lebanese Syrian tracks," said Putin, who arrived in Jordan late on Monday on the final leg of his regional tour. The two leaders vowed in their talks to exert efforts and further cooperate to achieve a Palestinian-Israeli settlement and turn the Middle East into a zone free from weapons of mass destruction. Putin said Russia, a member of the Quartet on the Middle East, would "use its influence in the region, its special relations with Arab friends and Israel" to achieve a settlement. The Russian president is due to meet Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas, currently on a visit to Amman, later in the day to discuss ways to revive the long-stalled Israeli-Palestinian peace process.
| Gog/Magog | Israel | Islam | EU/UN |

As Herb Peters stated in His post, Like Reading the Bible, "it appears possible part of Putin's new Middle East strategy could be to lure Israel into her foretold false sense of security."

Deadly Storms Sweep Nation (February 13, 2007) - A blast of wind-driven snow and plunging temperatures created headaches for travelers Tuesday across the Midwest with canceled flights and slick, slushy roads. In the south, a powerful storm and likely a tornado hit the New Orleans area, killing one and injuring at least 15 others. A blizzard warning was in effect until midnight for counties north of Indianapolis, and up to a foot of snow was possible across Indiana's midsection. As the storm pushed eastward, the National Weather Service issued winter storm watches and warnings extending from Iowa and Missouri across the Ohio Valley into parts of New England. Snow was already falling in the mid-Atlantic states by midmorning. WBBM-TV meteorologist Ed Curran says 5 to 8 inches of snow can be expected in the Chicago and western suburbs, but south of Interstate 80 in both Illinois and Indiana, 8 to 13 inches may fall. Chicago's O'Hare International Airport canceled over 400 flights Tuesday, said city aviation department spokeswoman Wendy Abrams. Midway Airport canceled about 100 flights. A handful of flights also were canceled at the Indianapolis International Airport, and about 20 percent of the flights out of Cincinnati's main airport were canceled because of poor conditions elsewhere, spokesmen said. Schools were canceled or delayed in several states. Northeast Ohio was expecting up to 10 inches of snow Tuesday, plus 10 more by Wednesday night, when temperatures were expected to plummet to low single digits, meteorologists said. Illinois was expecting accumulations of 12 inches. more...
| Earth Changes |


Damascus Masses Condemn Israeli Aggressions on al-Aqsa Mosque (February 13, 2007) - Damascus expressed in a mass rally Tuesday a vehement angry and condemnation over Israeli aggressions against al-Aqsa mosque. With the participation of political, economic, religious and social activities, Hundreds of thousands of citizens have come from Damascus city main axis till Youssef al-Azma square in Damascus down town, carrying Syrian flags, photos of President al-Assad and embodiments representing al-Aqsa mosque , as well as banners expressing the strong condemnation of the Israeli daily and continued crimes against the Palestinian people and Muslims holy places. The banners are reading as "here I am !at your service… Oh, Aqsa the first two Qiblateens", secondly "with our blood we sacrifice al-Aqsa" then " We demand the Islamic People to protect al-Aqsa " , and "We will not surrender to the Zionist and US plots" , in addition to "We bless the Palestinian national unity in face of Zionist Occupation ", finally "we are coming for liberating Golan". The demonstrators burned the Israeli flag, asserting their support to Syria's pan-Arab and national stances and to the sisterly Palestinian people and their just cause till liberating the land, restoring their legitimate rights and establishing the independent state as Jerusalem its capital.
| Israel | Islam |


Utah gunman, 18, was Muslim from Bosnia (February 13, 2007) - The 18-year-old gunman who killed five people in a crowded Utah shopping mall was a Bosnian Muslim refugee who was prepared to kill many more, say investigators. An off-duty police officer having an early Valentine's Day dinner with his wife was credited today with cornering Sulejmen Talovic, exchanging fire with him until other officers arrived to shoot and kill the gunman. The trench-coated teenager wanted to "to kill a large number of people" and probably would have killed many more if not for the off-duty officer, Police Chief Chris Burbank said. A friend said Talovic was from the war-torn country of Bosnia and that the trauma he experienced while growing up may have led to him snapping for some reason. Ken Hammond, an off-duty officer from Ogden, north of Salt Lake City, jumped up from his seat at a restaurant after hearing gunfire and cornered the gunman, exchanging fire with him until other officers arrived, Burbank said. "There is no question that his quick actions saved the lives of numerous other people," the police chief said. Police said it was not immediately clear who fired the shot that killed Talovic. Talovic had a backpack full of ammunition, a shotgun and a .38-caliber pistol, police said. Investigators knew little about Talovic, except than he lived in Salt Lake City with his mother, the chief said. He was enrolled in numerous city schools before withdrawing in 2004, the school district said. Initially, police refused to release his name or any information about his background. more...
| Islam | America |


Abbas Sends Warmest Greetings to Iran’s Ahmadinejad (February 12, 2007) - At a time when Iran is being isolated by most of the world for its nuclear program and its calls for the destruction of Israel, Palestinian Authority [PA] President Mahmoud Abbas [Abu Mazen] has sent a telegram of effusive greetings to Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad for Iran’s national holiday. According to the PA daily Al-Hayat Al Jadida, Abbas’s greeting earlier this week also wished for "further progress and prosperity" for Iran. The following is the paper’s account of the message: “The president said in the greeting: ‘I am happy to express to your excellency and, through you, to your honorable government and to your brother people, on behalf of the Palestinian people and their leadership and on my behalf personally, the warmest, most heartfelt wishes, in a prayer to Allah, that He shall bestow on you on this holiday further progress and prosperity. We wish you and your people happy holidays.’ President Abbas expressed the greatest wishes of wealth, health, and joy to the President of Iran, and to his people and his sister country, continuous respect, glory, and well-being.”
| Iran | Islam |


Report: Saudi Arabia reaching out to Israel (February 12, 2007) - Saudi Arabia and other Gulf states have been sending overtures to Israel and US Jews in a campaign aimed at countering Iran 's rising sway in the region and denting its nuclear program, USA Today reported Monday. Saudi Arabia is keen on shoring up its influence in the Middle East by brokering a unity deal between rival Palestinian factions and defusing tensions between the Hizbullah-led opposition and the western-backed government in Lebanon. Preventing Iraq from sliding into an all-out civil war is also on the agenda. The most evident sign of rapprochement came in the form of the attendance of Saudi Arabia's outgoing ambassador to the US to a ceremony in Washington held by American Jewish organizations in honor of a State Department official appointed to fight anti-Semitism. William Daroff of the United Jewish Communities told USA Today that Prince Turki al-Faisal's presence at the reception was "unprecedented." The paper reported that Qatar, and the United Arab Emirates have made similar outreach gestures towards Israel and American Jews. The overtures have been blessed by the US Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice who has said that six Gulf states, alongside Egypt, Jordan and Israel form a new moderate alignment to counter Iran and Syria, whom Washington accuses of supporting extremist groups like Hizbullah and Hamas. more...
| Israel | Islam |


EU Working Hard For Mid-East Peace (February 12, 2007) - This week EU foreign ministers are looking for ways to expand funding to the Palestinian Authority. Last week German Chancellor Angela Merkel went on a four-day tour of Egypt, Saudi Arabia and some of the gulf states. Germany holds the EU's rotating presidency, and is hoping to harness Ms Merkel's growing stature as the EU's most influential leader, in the twilight days of both Tony Blair and Jacques Chirac. Officials and politicians in Berlin say she is assiduously working on what she sees as the two big issues at the heart of the crisis in the Middle East - Iran, and the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. She has been particularly active, they say, since the war in Lebanon last summer, pursuing a relatively quiet but intensive diplomatic strategy and "working the phones" to all the key players.

A senior official says: "We have been involved in trying to calm things... and Merkel was pushing the US to have the quartet meeting, and we got that commitment in January, so now it's important that it continues." He emphasises that Germany "will welcome any agreement that leads to more peace and stability in the Palestinian community," while emphasising that any agreement must be assessed to see if it meets the Quartet aims on recognition of Israel and an end to violence. On the other hand, he says Germany has no illusions about the extent of its influence. "We just say we are in the [EU] presidency and have to contribute and do what we can," he says. So the mood in Berlin is cautious but nonetheless somewhat upbeat on the outlook for the Middle East. more...
| Israel | Islam | EU/UN |


60,000 evacuated from flooded central Mozambique (February 12, 2007) - Soldiers and relief workers using helicopters and canoes have evacuated 60,000 people from the flooded Zambezi River Valley in central Mozambique, where more than 100,000 others are at risk. More rains are forecast and floodgates that must be opened to save the wall of a massive hydroelectric dam will add to the dangers this week. About 100 people have drowned or been electrocuted by fallen power lines and hundreds of thousands have been forced from their homes in torrential rains that have swamped a large area of southern Africa from Angola in the west to Mozambique in the east with Malawi, Zambia and Zimbabwe in between. Thousands of acres of crops have been destroyed. Bridges have collapsed and roads have been swept away. The Zambezi, a floodplain river that crosses the continent and has three major dams, burst its banks weeks ago. Its swollen waters and those of its tributaries came together at Mozambique’s north-western Cahora Bassa hydroelectric dam. Officials began discharging water from the overflowing dam, which covers more than 1,000 square miles, at a rate of up to 353,000 cubic feet a minute last week. More floodgates must be opened this week to prevent the dam wall from bursting, authorities said. That will unleash walls of water that will bear down the Zambezi and sweep into the centre of the country. The Mozambicans are co-ordinating with water authorities in Zambia, where dams and reservoirs are also near capacity. The director of Mozambique’s National Disasters Management Office, Paola Zucula, said 60,000 people had been evacuated from the Zambezi Valley in the past three days. more...
| Earth Changes |


Putin, Saudi king meet in landmark visit (February 12, 2007) - President Vladimir Putin of Russia held talks yesterday with Saudi Arabia's King Abdullah on Iraq and the Palestinian-Israeli conflict in the first visit by a Russian leader to the kingdom. King Abdullah gave Putin, who accused the United States on Saturday of making the world a more dangerous place, a red carpet welcome. Prior to the talks urged Moscow to help revive the Arab-Israeli peace process. "There is no doubt that Russia has an important role in achieving peace," the king told Russia's Itar-Tass news agency ahead of the trip, which Moscow hopes will help restore Soviet-era links with the Middle Eastern region. Saudi media has said Moscow also wants to sell Riyadh, which enjoyed a record budget surplus of $78 billion last year on high oil prices, military hardware including tanks, and antimissile systems as well as win a tender to expand Saudi railways. Putin's trip highlights a growing connection between the two nations after the king's visit to Moscow in 2003. Riyadh revived its ties with Moscow in 1990 as the communist Soviet era ended. The two nations first established diplomatic ties in the 1920s. King Abdullah had said he hoped Putin's visit would further cooperation on oil and in investment and air transport, but he gave no details. Ahead of the visit, Putin criticized the United States, saying Washington was making the world a more dangerous place by pursuing policies aimed at making it the "one single master." His remarks coincided with disagreement between Russia and the United States over the Iraq war and the nuclear ambitions of Iran and North Korea. more...
| Gog/Magog | Israel | Islam |


One Small Chip for a PC, One Giant Leap for Computing (February 11, 2007) - Researchers at Intel (Nasdaq: INTC) unveiled an experimental 80-core microchip Monday at the International Solid States Circuit Conference in San Francisco. Known as a "Teraflop research chip," it is the first programmable microprocessor capable of delivering performance formerly associated only with supercomputers, according to Intel. If successful, Intel's research into "tera-scale computing" -- in which a chip modeled on Teraflop chips can perform trillions of calculations per second and move terabytes of data -- has the potential to transform computers, software and the way people use their computers. "Basically, it creates a processor that can reconfigure itself on the fly to do a variety of tasks like graphics and physics that required specialized parts in the past," Rob Enderle, principal analyst at Enderle Group, told TechNewsWorld. Previously, Intel concentrated on making microprocessors that ran faster and faster, Martin Reynolds, a Gartner (NYSE: IT) Research fellow, told TechNewsWorld. This strategy more or less followed Moore's Law, which states that the number of transistors on a chip will double every 18 to 24 months with each subsequent generation. Intel, however, "ran into a wall where faster and faster became too hot, consuming too much power," Reynolds said. "So [the question is], how do you use Moore's Law even if you can't make things faster," he explained. "The answer is you put more [microprocessors] on instead." Intel found that by making two slower -- but not much slower -- processors, they consume much less power but do almost twice as much work as a single faster chip, according to Reynolds. Intel's two-core Core Duo and Core 2 Duo chips and Core 2 Quad four-core chips take advantage of that technology. "We have a natural progression coming," Reynolds said. "We've got two-core and four-core, now. And we've got eight- and sixteen-core coming." Intel is attempting to demonstrate that it can take this technology to far greater numbers than was previously thought possible, Reynolds continued. "They are trying to figure out what they have to do to build an 80-core chip, one with 80 processors on it." Intel's answer with the Teraflop research chips is a "tile design" using smaller cores replicated as tiles. According to the company, the new design makes it easier to create a chip with many cores and lays a path to manufacture multi-core processors with billions of transistors more efficiently in the future. more...
| Technology |


Research: God did speak world into existence (February 11, 2007) - A science student in Kentucky says when the Bible records God spoke, and things were created, that's just what happened, and he can support that with scientific experiments. "If God spoke everything into existence as the Genesis record proposes, then we should be able to scientifically prove that the construction of everything in the universe begins with a) the Holy Spirit (magnetic field); b) Light (an electric field); and c) that Light can be created by a sonic influence or sound," Samuel J. Hunt writes on his website. "There are several documented and currently taught laboratory experiments that accurately portray the events in Genesis in sequential order, the most important being that of sonoluminescence," he wrote. That, he described to WND, is the circumstance in which sending a sonic signal into bubbles in a fluid causes the bubbles to collapse and they release photons, or create light. That aligns with one of the earlier descriptions of the creation by God, when, in Genesis 1:1-3, the Holy Spirit moved upon the face of the deep, which generally is considered water, and said "Let there be light," he explained. God was sending a sonic influence into the waters, and basically creating light, Hunt said. He's documented his theory, and the experiments he believes back it up, in his "Episteme Scientia, the Law of All That Is." Researchers at institutions no less than UCLA and the University of Chicago have verified the production of light from bubbles when sound is passed through a liquid, called sonoluminescence. Hunt said he was spurred on in his work because the advanced physics and other courses he was taking were advancing propositions that sometimes didn't match up. "The further I went, the more my questions seemed to be being answered in the Genesis record," he told WND. His abstract states, "An examination of the sequential mathematical and experimental dual proof of the Genesis record of origins underlying the institution of all that is in the universe – from waves to matter to the mind." Hunt said science has been proving the Genesis account in classrooms for centuries, "in spite of the fervency to promote evolution and big bang theories." A student at Western Kentucky University in Bowling Green, Hunt said his questions started very simply. more...


'Who's Who' list challenging Darwin grows (February 11, 2007) - The list truly is a "Who's Who" of prominent scientists in the world today, and now another 100 ranking leaders have added their signatures to a challenge to Darwin's theory of evolution. It's for those who have reached the epitome of their fields, but still are questioning the validity of the Darwinian philosophy and want to put their concerns in writing. The names include top scientists as MIT, UCLA, Ohio State, University of Washington, University of Pennsylvania, University of Georgia, Harvard, the College of Judea and Samaria, Johns Hopkins, Texas A&M, Duke, University of Peruglia in Italy, the British Museum and others. "Darwinism is a trivial idea that has been elevated to the status of the scientific theory that governs modern biology," said Michael Egnor, a professor of neurosurgery and pediatrics at State University of New York, Stony Brook, and an award-winning brain surgeon who was picked as one of New York's top doctors by "New York Magazine." The list includes representatives from the studies of chemistry, biology, dendrology, genetics, molecular biology, organic synthesis, quantum chemistry, bacteriology, astrophysics, mathematics, geriatrics, entomology, economics, biochemistry, physics, electrochemistry, nuclear engineering and is available at www.dissentfromdarwin.org. It's maintained by the Discovery Institute's Center for Science and Culture. The list represents the most educated people in the world from all branches of science with one thing on common – agreement with the following statement: "We are skeptical of claims for the ability of random mutation and natural selection to account for the complexity of life. Careful examination of the evidence for Darwinian theory should be encouraged." more...


Mystery Ailment Strikes Honeybees (February 11, 2007) - A mysterious illness is killing tens of thousands of honeybee colonies across the country, threatening honey production, the livelihood of beekeepers and possibly crops that need bees for pollination. Researchers are scrambling to find the cause of the ailment, called Colony Collapse Disorder. Reports of unusual colony deaths have come from at least 22 states. Some affected commercial beekeepers _ who often keep thousands of colonies _ have reported losing more than 50 percent of their bees. A colony can have roughly 20,000 bees in the winter, and up to 60,000 in the summer. "We have seen a lot of things happen in 40 years, but this is the epitome of it all," Dave Hackenberg, of Lewisburg-based Hackenberg Apiaries, said by phone from Fort Meade, Fla., where he was working with his bees. The country's bee population had already been shocked in recent years by a tiny, parasitic bug called the varroa mite, which has destroyed more than half of some beekeepers' hives and devastated most wild honeybee populations. Along with being producers of honey, commercial bee colonies are important to agriculture as pollinators, along with some birds, bats and other insects. A recent report by the National Research Council noted that in order to bear fruit, three-quarters of all flowering plants _ including most food crops and some that provide fiber, drugs and fuel _ rely on pollinators for fertilization. more...


Abbas looks forward to Rice meeting with Israeli PM (February 11, 2007) - Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas said Sunday he hoped an upcoming meeting between Israel's prime minister and U.S. Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice would jump start a permanent peace process. Abbas, who met with his Egyptian counterpart in Cairo, said the Feb. 19 meeting with Rice and Israeli Prime Minister Ehud Olmert would "lay the features of the road to start the permanent peace process." He also said the meeting would help the so-called Quartet — whose members are the U.S., EU, U.N. and Russia — play a more active role in promoting Mideast peace in their meeting in Berlin on Feb. 21. But Abbas declined to say whether he thought the United States and Israel would accept an accord he signed with his rival, the militant group Hamas, establishing a Palestinian coalition government. The new government "should commit itself to it in spirit and letter without going into details, expressing other opinion or elaborating about this issue," Abbas told reporters. The accord said the new government would "respect" past peace deals signed with Israel by the Palestine Liberation Organization, now led by Abbas. But the United States and Israel have demanded the new government explicitly renounce violence, recognize Israel and agree to uphold past peace accords. Since the deal was signed late Thursday in the Saudi city of Mecca, Palestinian officials have been trying to persuade the international community to embrace the deal and lift crippling sanctions on their government. Olmert said Sunday his government had "urgent consultations" over the weekend about the deal, but had not decided whether to reject or accept the agreements. more...
| Israel | Islam | EU/UN | Temple Mount | America |


2 earthquakes felt in Israel (February 10, 2007) - Two earthquakes measuring 3.6 and 4.5 on the Richter Scale were felt from the Negev Desert to the Sharon region in central Israel at around 12:15 a.m. Saturday. No injuries or damage were reported. Rami Hofstetter of the Geophysical Institute of Israel told Ynet that the earthquakes were small to moderate in magnitude, adding that the epicenter was on the Jordanian side of the Dead Sea. The earthquakes occurred about a minute apart, he said. “The chair I was sitting on began to wobble,” a Rishon Letzion resident recounted, “but the house itself did not shake.” Aharon Deutch of Tel Aviv told Ynet “I live on the 6th floor; I was lying in bed when I felt the room start shaking.” A Netanya resident said the earthquake that hit the area lasted about two minutes. In 2004 an earthquake measuring 5.1 on the Richter Scale rattled the country; several injuries were reported and a number of buildings were damaged. more...
| Israel | Earth Changes |


Lebanon to use seized Hizbullah arms to fight Israel (February 10, 2007) - The Lebanese army will use weapons seized from the Shiite group Hizbullah to fight Israel in case of any future violation of Lebanese sovereignty, Defense Minister Elias Murr said. "The truck and its content are now with the Lebanese army in southern Lebanon ," Murr said in reference to a truck carrying Hizbullah arms -- including Grad rockets -- seized east of Beirut on Thursday. "If Israel carries out another violation, we will use these weapons to confront it," he told reporters on Friday after a meeting with the commander of the UN peacekeeping force in Lebanon, Major General Claudio Graziano. Murr said he told Graziano that "the Lebanese army deployed in southern Lebanon has orders to confront Israeli forces in case of any new violation" of Lebanese sovereignty. Lebanese and Israeli troops clashed across the border on Wednesday for the first time in decades, causing no casualties. The incident was sparked by Israeli sappers moving towards the border to clear unexploded ordnance. UN chief Ban Ki-Moon called for restraint, saying the clashes breached the ceasefire that ended Israel's devastating war against Hizbullah last year. Hizbullah senior official Mohamad Yazbeck reiterated on Friday that the seized truck was carrying munitions destined for his group's fighters and asked for the weaponry to be returned. "The security and judicial authorities should return the truck which was carrying arms for the Resistance from the (eastern) Bekaa to the south," he said at Friday prayers in the eastern city of Baalbek. more...
| Israel | Islam |


N.Y. Weathers 100-Plus Inches of Snow (February 10, 2007) - Sunshine provided a respite Saturday for residents of an area buried by more than 8 feet of snow, but the blue sky turned gray in the blink of an eye during the afternoon as another intense snow squall cut visibility almost to zero. "This is bad," said 67-year-old Dave DeGrau, who has operated an auto repair shop on Main Street for 45 years. "We had a very easy winter until now. Last fall during hunting season it rained every time I went out. I kept saying 'I'm glad this isn't snow.' Now, it's snow." Persistent bands of lake-effect snow squalls fed by moisture from Lake Ontario have been swinging up and down this part of central New York along the lake's eastern shore since last Sunday. The National Weather Service said Parish - about 25 miles northeast of Syracuse - reached a milestone early Saturday with 100 inches of snow during the past seven days. Unofficial reports pegged totals at 123 inches in Orwell and 122 in Redfield, but those numbers include snow from another storm a couple of days before the current weather system. All three towns are in Oswego County. A warning in effect until Monday morning said 2 to 4 more feet of snow was possible with wind gusting up to 24 mph. "That's all we need," Mike Avery said as he took a brief break from loading dump trucks with snow to be hauled to a pile outside town. "It's getting monotonous." The fluffy new snow was a magnet for snowmobilers, but stopping was out of the question. "You can't stop or you're done," said Dan Hojnacki, 23, of Syracuse, after he ground to a halt in a field. "I never got stuck until today, and I've been snowmobiling for 10 years." more...
| Earth Changes |


Iran Consults With Russia On Security (February 9, 2007) - Yesterday Russian President Vladimir Putin met in the Kremlin with Ali Akbar Velayati, the personal envoy of Iranian Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei. Tehran is making a concerted effort to convince Moscow to lend its support in Iran's standoff with Washington. To show the seriousness of its intentions, Iran yesterday carried out a test of a Russian anti-aircraft Top-M1 missile system, and the country's top spiritual leader threatened to strike "at American interests around the world." Tehran is making its bid for the goodwill of the Russian president on the eve of an international security summit in Munich, at which President Putin is scheduled to give the keynote address.

Yesterday in Moscow Ali Akbar Velayati, a former foreign affairs minister who is one of Iran's most experienced diplomats, met with a number of top Russian foreign policy officials, including Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov and National Security Council Secretary Igor Ivanov, before meeting in the evening with President Vladimir Putin. And while the official line from the Russian negotiators was neutral and cautious, Mr. Velayati was effusive in his compliments: "The steps that Russia is taking have the unconditional support of Iran," declared the Iranian leader's official envoy. "Russia, as an important world power, and Iran, an important regional power, in the future will play a key role in the evolution of this sensitive region." more...
| Iran | Gog/Magog | Israel | Islam |