Hey Obama, if you have enough time to play nearly 100 golf games by now since taking office, don’t try to squirm out of Georgia by claiming that you’re too busy as President to defend your own eligibility. If the question of eligibility is without merit, then appear in court with proof …
By Chuck Williams – “A Georgia judge has ordered President Barack Obama to appear in court in Atlanta Thursday for a hearing on a complaint that says Obama isn’t a natural-born citizen and can’t be president.
Orly Taitz, the California attorney who brought the legal challenge to Obama’s name on the March Georgia presidential primary ballot, says this is what she has been working for over the last three years.
‘This will be 100 times bigger than Watergate,’ she said Saturday morning, referring to the scandal that brought down President Richard Nixon in 1974.
‘There are high ranking judges and federal officials who are involved in this cover up. The ramifications of this trial will be enormous.’
Taitz said she expects the president’s legal team to fight his appearance in the Georgia court.
‘But he’s in a catch-22,’ she said. ‘If he is appealing this decision, then he looks guilty. The whole nation understands this man is a fraud.’
Taitz has led the ‘Birther’ movement that insists Obama is not a natural-born U.S. citizen. She is also familiar to Georgia courts.
Taitz represented two soldiers in U.S. District Court in Columbus who sought to avoid deployment by arguing Obama wasn’t the commander-in-chief because he wasn’t eligible to be president.
Federal Judge Clay Land warned Taitz against filing a frivolous suit, then fined her $20,000 after he denied the second claim.
This is one of many such lawsuits that have been filed across the country, so far without success.
A Georgia resident made the complaint, which is intended to keep Obama’s name off the state’s ballot in the March presidential primary.” Read more.
Ex-CIA Chief James Woolsey: The United States Should Bomb the Entire Iranian Revolutionary Guard’s Infrastructure
“The United States should consider military strikes against not just Iran’s nuclear sites but the entire Iranian Revolutionary Guard infrastructure, argued former CIA director James Woolsey in a radio interview today.
Comparing the Guards to Adolph Hitler’s blackshirts, Woolsey named several ‘fair game’ Guard-related targets, including Iran’s space program, ballistic missile program, training facilities and the Guard’s substantial commercial interests.
The ex-CIA director said the U.S. should consider these military options if Iran blocks the strategic Strait of Hormuz waterway or takes other significant aggressive action.
Woolsey also recommended that President Obama immediately send four to five aircraft carriers to the Indian Ocean to demonstrate U.S. resolve in the face of Iranian threats to blockade the strait.
‘We went to war in 1812 over something just about like what Iran says it is going to do – close the straits,’ said Woolsey, referring to the British naval blockade of the Atlantic coast of the U.S.
Woolsey was speaking on Aaron Klein Investigative Radio on New York’s WABC Radio.
While applauding the recent round of tougher sanctions against Tehran, Woolsey contended such economic initiatives combined with continued dialogue are not enough to deter Iran from seeking nuclear weapons or halt the country’s threats to blockade the strait.” Read more.
‘Major, Major Damage’ Reported in Alabama After Storms Rage Across the South, Killing At Least Two and Leaving Thousands Without Power
“Powerful storms ravaged through Alabama early this morning in an area that has not yet fully recovered from tornadoes that left the community in despair last year.
At least two people were killed and heavy damage was reported just hours after tornadoes struck portions of Arkansas, downing trees and power lines and leaving thousands without electricity there.
The predawn storms struck the Birmingham area, with the towns of Center Point and Trussville just to the northeast of the city being particularly hard hit, emergency management officials said.
The devastation prompted Alabama Gov Robert Bentley to declare a state of emergency for the entire state.
Fatalities were reported in the towns of Oak Grove and Clay, but those weren’t the only towns affected.
‘Center Point was hit pretty badly,’ Jefferson County Emergency Management Agency spokesman Mark Kelly said.
An emergency management spokesman told the Associated Press that more than 100 people have been injured in central Alabama by the line of storms.
Homes were flattened, windows were blown out of cars and roofs were peeled back in the middle of the night in the community of Oak Grove near Birmingham. As dawn broke, residents surveyed the damage and officials used chainsaws to clear fallen trees.
Chief Deputy Randy Christian told the Birmingham News: ‘The hardest hit area at this time includes Oak Grove and Center Point through Clay and Trussville. Several homes are reported destroyed and numerous reports of injuries have come in to our call center’.
Jefferson County EMA official, Bob Ammons said: ‘We have major, major damage’.” Read more.
Early this morning (0359 GMT Jan. 23, which corresponds to late Sunday, Jan. 22 at 10:59 p.m. EST), NASA’s Solar Dynamics Observatory caught an extreme ultraviolet flash from a huge eruption on the sun , according to the skywatching website Spaceweather.com.
The solar flare spewed from sunspot 1402, a region of the sun that has become increasingly active lately. Several NASA satellites, including the Solar Dynamics Observatory, the Solar Heliospheric Observatory (SOHO), and the Stereo spacecraft observed the massive sun storm.
A barrage of charged particles triggered by this morning’s solar flare is expected to hit Earth tomorrow at around 9 a.m. EST (1400 GMT), according to experts at the Space Weather Prediction Center, a division of the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration. [Video & photos of the huge solar flare]
According to NOAA, this is the strongest solar radiation storm since May 2005, and as a precaution, polar flights on Earth are expected to be re-routed within the next few hours, Kathy Sullivan, deputy administrator of NOAA, said today at the 92nd annual American Meteorological Society meeting in New Orleans, La.
Scientists call these electromagnetic bursts ‘coronal mass ejections’ (CMEs), and they are closely studied because they can produce potentially harmful geomagnetic storms when the charged particles rain down Earth’s magnetic field lines.
In addition to generating stronger than normal displays of Earth’s auroras (also known as the northern and southern lights), geomagnetic storms aimed directly at our planet can also disrupt satellites in orbit, cause widespread communications interference and damage other electronic infrastructures.
‘There is little doubt that the cloud is heading in the general direction of Earth,’ Spaceweather.com announced in an alert. ‘A preliminary inspection of SOHO/STEREO imagery suggests that the CME will deliver a strong glancing blow to Earth’s magnetic field on Jan. 24-25 as it sails mostly north of our planet.’” Read more.
“BAGHDAD – Iraq’s Shiite-led government cracked down harshly on dissent during the past year of Arab Spring uprisings, turning the country into a ‘budding police state’ as autocratic regimes crumbled elsewhere in the region, an international rights groups said Sunday.
Security forces abuse protesters, harass journalists, torture detainees and intimidate activists, Human Rights Watch said in the Iraq chapter of its annual report.
‘Iraq is quickly slipping back into authoritarianism,’ said Sarah Leah Whitson, Middle East director for the New York-based group. ‘Despite U.S. government assurances that it helped create a stable democracy (in Iraq), the reality is that it left behind a budding police state,’ she said.
Protests against Iraq’s U.S.-backed and democratically elected government erupted around the country in February 2011, alongside other demonstrations in the Arab world.
While protests in other countries demanded the downfall of autocratic regimes, most of the demonstrations in Iraq pushed for improved services like reliable electricity and water, and an end to corruption.
The government clamped down, sometimes sparking bloody clashes — as when 14 were killed in confrontations between security forces and civilians across the country during the Feb. 25 protests billed as the ‘Day of Rage.’
A year later, with U.S. troops withdrawn and Iraq’s government mired in a political crisis, the protest movement has all but died out. Demonstrators who gather in Baghdad’s central Tahrir Square are usually outnumbered by the security forces watching over them.
‘Iraqis are quickly losing ground on the most basic of rights, including the right to free speech and assembly,’ said Samer Muscati, an Iraq researcher for the group.” Read more.
Flashback: Barack Obama declares Iraq war ‘an extraordinary achievement’ – “Barack Obama marked an end to a war he once described as ‘dumb’ by declaring the conflict in Iraq a success and saying the last US troops will leave in the coming days with their ‘heads held high’. The president told an audience of soldiers at Fort Bragg that the final pullout from Iraq after nearly nine years of war is a ‘historic’ moment and that the country they leave behind is ‘an extraordinary achievement’.” Read more.
As I commented here, I’m not convinced that Russia is directly mentioned in the Gog-Magog war of Ezekiel 38 and 39. The word that many often point to in an effort to suggest that Russia is mentioned specifically here is the word “rosh” (H7218) in 38:2, but this word simply means “chief” or “head”, as in Rosh Hashanah (Head of the Year). Nowhere in the whole of Scripture has “rosh” ever referred to Russia.
If we consider Gog-Magog and the “known world” from Ezekiel’s time and perspective, however, the far north would likely bring us all the way up to the Black Sea and the northern shores of modern day Turkey to areas northeast of Turkey, even to northern Iran and Afghanistan and beyond where we find other former Soviet Republics. It is my view that we are likely looking at northern nations/peoples/fighters from Turkey, Azerbaijan, Dagestan and possibly even Chechnya, and across the Caspian Sea to Turkmenistan, Afghanistan, Tajikistan. In these areas, Islam is the dominant religion. This does not mean that Russia will not be involved, however. After all, there are “many people” or “nations” with Gog according to 38:6, and Russia could be one of them in some way, shape or form. But Russia is not mentioned by name specifically at all in the text …
Psalm 83:1-4,17-18, “… Do not keep silent, O God! Do not hold Your peace, And do not be still, O God! For behold, Your enemies make a tumult; And those who hate You have lifted up their head. They have taken crafty counsel against Your people, And consulted together against Your sheltered ones. They have said, ‘Come, and let us cut them off from [being] a nation, That the name of Israel may be remembered no more’ … Let them be confounded and dismayed forever; Yes, let them be put to shame and perish, That they may know that You, whose name alone [is] the LORD, [Are] the Most High over all the earth.”
Ezekiel 39:6-8, “And I will send fire on Magog and on those who live in security in the coastlands. Then they shall know that I [am] the LORD… Then the nations shall know that [I am] the LORD, the Holy One in Israel. ‘Surely it is coming, and it shall be done,’ says the Lord GOD. ‘This [is] the day of which I have spoken.‘”
By Joshua Kucera – “Russia will be holding a series of military exercises in the North Caucasus, Armenia, Abkhazia and South Ossetia this fall, reportedly in preparation for a possible U.S.-Israeli attack on Iran. The exercises, called Kavkaz-2012, will be held in September and won’t be tactical/operational but strategic (i.e. won’t involve large numbers of troops). The exercises will, however, include officers from the breakaway Georgian territories. The focus on surveillance, air defense and logistics suggests that Russia is tailoring the exercise to prepare for a U.S.-Israel-Iran war, says Russian newspaper Nezavisimaya Gazeta :
As suggested by the head of the Center for Military Forecasting, Colonel Anatoly Tsyganok, ‘Preparations for the Kavkaz-2012 exercises seems to have begun already largely due to the increasing military tensions in the Persian Gulf.’ ‘In a possible war against Iran may be drawn some former Soviet countries of South Caucasus. How, then, to ensure the viability of Russian troops stationed abroad, for example, in Armenia? Apparently, the General Staff will plan some proactive measures, including learning to organize in critical logistic supply of troops,’ said the expert…
Meanwhile, Azerbaijan is ratcheting up the bellicose rhetoric (even by the high standards of the Caucasus) against Armenia, reports Bloomberg :
Azerbaijan is buying up modern weaponry to be able to regain control of the breakaway Nagorno- Karabakh region quickly and with few losses should peace talks with neighboring Armenia fail, President Ilham Aliyev said.
Defense spending will rise 1.8 percent this year to $3.47 billion, which Aliyev said tops Armenia’s entire state budget.
‘It’s not a frozen conflict, and it’s not going to be one,’ Aliyev said today in remarks broadcast on state television channel AzTV.
Would war in Iran have any effect on the Nagorno-Karabakh situation? The mind reels” Read more.
Report: Russia in deal to deliver Syria fighter jets – “Russia has signed a deal to sell Syria nearly 40 fighter jet trainers for over half a billion dollars, a Russian newspaper reported on Monday, despite growing international criticism over its military trade with the violence-ridden country. Syrian President Bashar al-Assad has used troops and tanks to try to crush a 10-month-old popular revolt and thousands of people have been killed.” Read more.
Iranian trucks carrying missile materials intercepted en route to Syria – “Four Iranian trucks were stopped two weeks ago in Turkey’s Kilis province on the border with Syria and were found to be carrying raw materials used in the making of ballistic missiles, Turkish daily Taraf has reported… Although the contents of the trucks were not publicized by customs officials, Taraf stated that on Friday it obtained reports confirming the trucks’ dangerous load. According to the daily, one of the trucks was carrying four six-meter-long cylindrical tanks and heat-resistant materials, while the other three were carrying 66 tons of sodium sulfate, all of which were on their way to Syria possibly to be used in the making of chemical missiles.” Read more.
Three people died and there were 16 confirmed cases of Murray Valley encephalitis virus in 2011, according to an article in the Medical Journal of Australia.
There were no cases reported in 2010 and just four confirmed cases of the virus in 2009, data from the National Notifiable Diseases Surveillance System shows.
The virus is endemic in northern Australia but re-emerged in southeastern Australia last year, according to author Dr Jack Richards, of the Victorian Infectious Disease Service at Royal Melbourne Hospital, and his co-authors.
The increase in cases came in the wake of significant regional flooding, with deaths occurring in Western Australia, South Australia and the Northern Territory.
‘The risk during this summer and the coming autumn remains uncertain, especially in areas that remain flooded,’ the report said.
‘Recent circumstances remind us of the limited information we have about this disease, the challenges of clinical management and the need to prepare for future outbreaks.’
The virus, which causes brain inflammation, is fatal in about 15 to 30 per cent of cases, with long-term neurological problems occurring in 30 to 50 per cent of survivors.
Just 40 per cent of sufferers make a complete recovery.” Read more.
“Malkangiri (Odisha), Jan 22 (PTI) The death of a large number of birds at several places in this tribal district of Odisha has triggered a bird flu scare, especialy with villagers throwing carcasses in the open. Hundreds of dead birds including crows, storks, pigeons and mynahs were seen in many villages under Malkangiri and Korkunda blocks during the last week. ‘We just received a report about death of birds. A team of veterinarians rushed to the area to initiate remedial measures,’ chief district veterinary officer Rabi Narayan Behera said. Meanwhile, due to lack of awareness, fear stricken people threw carcasses in the open which were then devoured by stray dogs and other animals. ‘No step has been taken by the district administration to create awareness among the people on dealing with bird carcasses. Ignorant villagers throw them here and there, causing health hazards in the area,’ said village president of MV-20 Subash Banarjee. Another village leader, Paritosh Ray, said that people have been advised not to eat the fowls, even as poultry business in the area came to a standstill. A member of the state bird-flu team Rajesh Kumar Kuanr, now on a tour of the district, said they were yet to get proper information about the incident. ‘We will rush to the spot once we get the information from the concerned authorities,’ Kuanr said.” Source – IBNLive.
Project Jonah chief executive Kimberly Muncaster said volunteers had tried desperately to save the whales, which became stranded just after midday.
‘It was very sad,’ she said.
‘But there was nothing more that we could have done.’
Volunteers had begun leaving the scene for the evening about 8.45pm on Monday for safety reasons.
Ms Muncaster said although there was only a small chance the remaining live whales would refloat at high tide about 11pm, she remained hopeful.
Volunteers had spent the afternoon trying to keep the whales cool and upright.
Project Jonah marine mammal medics have also been called to give the whales first aid.
Rescue efforts were due to resume at first light on Tuesday.
Project Jonah volunteer Jo Woods, of Motueka, said it was difficult to leave the whales to their fate this evening.
‘It’s hard to walk away. You get attached. My one had a big chunk behind his eye missing and every time we talked to him he’d would put his head up and shake it.’
She spent the day laying wet sheets on the whales to keep them cool and using sandbags to keep them upright. She trained as a volunteer after seeing a previous stranding on the Spit.
‘I realized I would have no idea what to do and I just want to be helpful rather than doing nothing,’ she said.” Read more.
The strain represents some 90 percent of detected cases of influenza in the country, the health ministry said in a statement.
The number of cases reported was up sharply from Thursday, when health officials said 333 had been identified. Authorities have brushed aside suggestions of a new health emergency but have begun tracking new cases since December 2011.
The first outbreak of the A(H1N1) virus occurred in April, 2009 in Mexico and the United States, and quickly became a global pandemic that claimed the lives of 17,000 people. In Mexico alone, more than 1250 people died.
The World Health Organization declared the pandemic over in 2010 as the flu returned to typical seasonal patterns.” Source – Herald Sun.
N.C. reports another swine flu death – “Health officials say a 55-year-old man diagnosed with swine flu died this week. The man was admitted to a Transylvania County hospital on Monday with pneumonia and flu-like symptoms. He died on Tuesday, county Health Department Director Steve Smith said. Tests confirmed the man had H1N1 swine flu, Smith said Friday. But he said further tests are needed to determine if the flu caused his death. The man’s name was not released. Officials said he was the first confirmed death associated with swine flu in the western North Carolina county.” Read more.
China reports second bird flu death in a month – “China on Sunday reported its second bird flu fatality in a month following deaths last week in Vietnam and Cambodia. The patient died Sunday in Guizhou province in the southwest after being hospitalized on Jan. 6, the health ministry said in a brief statement. It said the flu was highly pathogenic but gave no indication whether it was confirmed to be the H5N1 strain. Mainland officials told Hong Kong authorities the patient was a 39-year-old man who reported having no contact with poultry, government-run Hong Kong broadcaster RTHK said. It gave no other details of his identity.” Read more.
In addition, Iranian Pastor Youcef Nadarkhani, who has been on death row since 2010 for seeking to register his home-based church, refused to renounce his Christian beliefs in exchange for his release from prison. He was also jailed for questioning the role of Islam as the dominant form of religious instruction in his children’s school.
According to a report on the website of the International Christian news agency BosNewsLife, ‘Iranian Pastor Youcef Nadarkhani has rejected an offer to be released from prison if he publicly acknowledges Islam’s prophet Mohammed as ‘a messenger sent by God,’ well-informed Christians and rights activists said’ earlier this month.
While Iran’s opaque judicial system coupled with the lack of access for most Western media makes it difficult to verify the new coercion against Nadarkhani, the reports are considered reasonable in light of the Iranian regime’s intense crackdown on its Christian population over the years.
In an e-mail to The Jerusalem Post on Sunday, Giulio Meotti, an Italian journalist with Il Foglio and author of the book A New Shoah, wrote ‘After the ethnic cleansing of Jews in 1948 from the Arab countries, Islamic fundamentalism is now trying to push away the Christians from the region. They want to establish a pure Islamic environment and the mass exodus already began under our noses.’
Meanwhile, the Pakistan Christian Post wrote last week on its website, ‘The Christian community in Syria has been hit by a series of kidnappings and brutal murders; 100 Christians have now been killed since the anti-government unrest began. A reliable source in the country, who cannot be identified for their own safety, told Barnabas Aid that children were being especially targeted by the kidnappers, who, if they do not receive the ransom demanded, kill the victim.’” Read more.
Stop Islamization of Nations (SION) Calls on UN to Protect Christians of Syria – “A prominent international human rights organization is calling upon the United Nations and the international human rights community to act quickly and decisively to save the Christians of Syria, who are being increasingly threatened and victimized by Islamic supremacists. Stop Islamization of Nations (SION) notes with sorrow the one hundred dead in Syria in the recent and ongoing series of kidnappings and murders of Christians. SION President Pamela Geller said in a statement: ‘We deplore the manifest lack of respect for human life and the dignity of the human person. We call upon the United Nations Security Council and UN Commission on Human Rights to schedule an immediate meeting to discuss how to protect the Christians of Syria.’” Read more.
Stare Down: Britain, US and France Send Warships Through Strait of Hormuz as Iran Now Says They Will ‘Definitely’ Close Strait Over Oil Embargo
European Union foreign ministers are today expected to announce an embargo on Iranian oil exports, amounting to the most significant package of sanctions yet agreed. They are also likely to impose a partial freeze on assets held by the Iranian Central Bank in the EU.
Tehran has threatened to block the Strait of Hormuz in retaliation. Tankers carrying 17 million barrels of oil pass through this waterway every day, accounting for 35 per cent of the world’s seaborne crude shipments. At its narrowest point, located between Iran and Oman, the Strait is only 21 miles wide.
Last month, Admiral Habibollah Sayyari, commander of the Iranian navy, claimed that closing the Strait would be ‘easy,’ adding: ‘As Iranians say, it will be easier than drinking a glass of water.’
But USS Abraham Lincoln, a nuclear-powered carrier capable of embarking 90 aircraft, passed through this channel and entered the Gulf without incident yesterday. HMS Argyll, a Type 23 frigate from the Royal Navy, was one of the escort vessels making up the carrier battle-group. A guided missile cruiser and two destroyers from the US Navy completed the flotilla, along with one warship from the French navy.” Read more.
Fars: Iran ‘definitely’ closing Strait of Hormuz over EU oil embargo – “Tensions in the Gulf could reach a breaking point as a senior Iranian official said Iran would ‘definitely’ close the Strait of Hormuz if an EU oil embargo disrupted the export of crude oil, the semi-official Fars news agency reports. The announcement came in response to a decision by the European Union on Monday to impose an oil embargo on Iran over the country’s alleged nuclear weapons program. ‘The pressure of sanctions is designed to try and make sure that Iran takes seriously our request to come to the table,’ EU foreign policy chief Catherine Ashton said. However, with Washington’s decision to deploy a second carrier strike group in the Gulf, the EU’s attempt to pressure Iran economically could greatly increase the likelihood of all-out war in the region.” Read more.