Wednesday, November 19, 2014

In The News: Ebola In NYC, Iran Nuclear Talks, Putin Declares That The U.S. Will Not 'Subjugate' Russia

Ebola In Brooklyn? FDNY Arrives In Hazmat Suits As Woman Drops Dead With Blood Coming From Face, Nose And Mouth

  • The FDNY activated their Special Operations and Hazmat units in response to a death in Brooklyn on Tuesday afternoon
  • A woman who dropped dead at Amy Professional Hair Braidig had blood 'coming from her face, nose and mouth' said an eyewitness 
  • The woman had recently traveled from Guinea three weeks ago, and was being monitored for Ebola said a worker at the salon 
  • She was at the salon visiting the owner and was said to have died of a heart attack said the same worker
  • An Ebola test will be run on her remains 'out of an abundance of caution,' and results will be available by Wednesday morning
  • The woman, who was being checked daily, had not shown any symptoms of the deadly virus according to the New York City Health Department
There are new fears of a possible Ebola outbreak in New York City after a woman who was being monitored for the deadly virus dropped dead on Tuesday afternoon.
FDNY activated the Special Operations and Hazmat units after the the woman, who had traveled to Guinea three weeks ago according to a source on the scene, died at Amy Professional African Hair Braidig in the Brownsville area of Brooklyn.
An eyewitness who saw the body said there was blood coming from her 'face, nose and mouth.'
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The woman, who was born in Guinea according to the worker at the salon, was not a health care worker, and therefore did not have to be under the 21-day home quarantine required of those individuals introduced by New York's Governor Cumo in October. 

The remains of a woman who died of an apparent heart attack at a hair salon in Brooklyn will be tested for Ebola.

EMS responded to the hair salon on Belmont Avenue in Brownsville around 2:30 p.m. on Tuesday.

She was declared dead at the scene.

The woman had been on the list of those being monitored for Ebola exposure.

She had recently arrived in the city from Guinea and was one of 350 people on the monitor list.

The New York City Health Department said at last check the woman did not have symptoms and was being monitored because of her travel history.

She had been back in the country for 18 days.

Test results are expected back late Tuesday or early Wednesday.

 members of FDNY could be seencarefully changing into Hazmat gear outside before heading into the establishment, for what they referred to as a 'fever travel illness.'

At the same time, individuals could be seen walking in and out of Amy Professional African Hair Braidig wearing no protection at all.

It had been reported in October that an FDNY memo instructed all personnel to use more vague terms when discussing Ebola, such as 'fever travel incident.'

Iran and six world powers get down to business in Vienna on Wednesday, groping for the elusive magic formula to secure a milestone nuclear deal that satisfies hardliners in Tehran and Washington.

The clock will be ticking though on the second day of a final round of talks, with the deadline for Iran and the five permanent members of the UN Security Council plus Germany on Monday.

“This is a very critical week obviously in Iran negotiations,” US Secretary of State John Kerry, expected in the Austrian capital later in the week, said in London on Tuesday.
“We hope we get there but we can’t make any predictions.”
Iran’s Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif, arriving in Vienna on Tuesday, said that a deal was “possible” and that if the talks fail it will be because the six powers asked for too much.
“If, because of excessive demands… we don’t get a result, then the world will understand that the Islamic Republic sought a solution, a compromise and a constructive agreement and that it will not renounce its rights and the greatness of the nation,” Zarif told Iranian media.
But Kerry, who held the latest in a string of meetings with Zarif in Oman last week, put the onus on Iran.
“It is imperative that Iran works with us with all possible effort to prove to the world that the programme is peaceful,” Kerry said.

Some areas appear provisionally settled. But the big problem is still enrichment — rendering uranium suitable for power generation and other peaceful uses, but also, at high purities, for a weapon.
Iran wants to massively ramp up the number of enrichment centrifuges — in order, it says, to make fuel for a fleet of future reactors.
The West wants the number slashed, saying Iran has no such need in the foreseeable future.
Other thorny issues are the duration of the accord and the pace at which sanctions are lifted, an area where Iranian expectations are “excessive”, one Western diplomat said.

Vladimir Putin issued a defiant message to the West on Tuesday, accusing the United States of trying to "subjugate" Russia while promising it would never succeed.
The Russian president also appeared to channel Al Capone, the Chicago mobster, when he joked that "weapons and politeness" were more effective than "politeness alone".
Meeting supporters at a forum in Moscow, Mr Putin corrected another speaker who said that the United States wanted to humiliate Russia.
"They don't want to humiliate us, they want to subjugate us, to solve their problems at our expense," he said. "They want to bring us under control." Mr Putin added: "Throughout history no one has ever succeeded in doing that to Russia and they never will."
The president was speaking to members of the All-Russia People's Front, a coalition of groups that back him.

Mr Putin quipped: "You can get a lot more done with weapons and politeness than you can with politeness alone."

Mr Putin said that events in Crimea and Ukraine – where pro-Moscow rebels have carved out a de facto independent territory in the Russo-phone east of the country – had united the Russian people.
"Our nation has shown the way with real civil participation, empathy and patriotism, and it has demonstrated its unity," he said.
Mr Putin defended the government's decision to introduce a ban on food imports from western states that imposed sanctions on Russia over its alleged meddling in Ukraine. He said those countries had "put themselves in a spot" by introducing sanctions and provoking the Russian measures in response.

According to Earth’s dedicated team of satellite observers — astronomers that spend their nights watching orbiting satellites through telescopes and reporting on their movements — Russia is developing a satellite that can chase down other satellites. Obviously, such an ability could be used for the forces of good, such as repairing or refueling other spacecraft — but the rest of the world is worried that Russia might be looking to disable other satellites, or to get close enough that it can take photos of classified designs or eavesdrop on communications.
Kosmos 2499 is most likely a proof of concept for a future Russian satellite that actually does something — such as taking photos of military satellites that belong to other countries, refueling its own satellites… or something far more nefarious, such as blowing other satellites out of the sky. The problem with doing anything malicious, of course, is that everyone with a telescope can see exactly what’s going on — so it’s unlikely that Russia would actually do anything untoward. Just like missile launches, nuclear tests, and large military exercises in the Persian Gulf, inspector satellites are all about showing the world that you can do something, not that you’ll actually do it. (Not to mention, there international treaties in place that are meant to prevent the weaponization of space.)

It’s also worth pointing out that the US has had similar technology for years. Way back in 1990, the NRO’s highly classified Prowler spacecraft was launched from Space Shuttle Atlantis to study Russian geosynchronous satellites. More recently, the US Air Force launched an ANGELS satellite on in July 2014 that uses “sophisticated artificial intelligence” to closely maneuver around other orbiting spacecraft. China, too, seems to be trialing similar technology with its Shijan 15 satellite, which has been in orbit since last summer.
So, there you have it: Most of the world’s major space agencies now have the ability to launch satellites that can, at velocities of around 5 miles per second, autonomously maneuver itself close to another hypersonic satellite. Short of all-out war, no one is likely to exercise its ability to blow up each other’s satellites — but when that war does come, the first nation to knock out all the other communication and reconnaissance satellites will obviously have a rather large advantage.

It is a tale that could have come from the cold war. A mysterious object launched by the Russian military is being tracked by western space agencies, stoking fears over the revival of a defunct Kremlin project to destroy satellites.
For the past few weeks, amateur astronomers and satellite-trackers in Russia and the west have followed the unusual manoeuvres of Object 2014-28E, watching it guide itself towards other Russian space objects. The pattern appeared to culminate last weekend in a rendezvous with the remains of the rocket stage that launched it.
The object had originally been classed as space debris, propelled into orbit as part of a Russian rocket launch in May to add three Rodnik communications satellites to an existing military constellation. The US military is now tracking it under the Norad designation 39765.

But interest has been piqued because Russia did not declare its launch—and by the object's peculiar, and very active, precision movements across the skies.
Russia officially mothballed its anti-satellite weaponry programme—Istrebitel Sputnikov or satellite killer— after the fall of the iron curtain, though its expertise has not entirely disappeared. Indeed, military officials have publicly stated in the past that they would restart research in the event of a deterioration in relations with the US over anti-missile defence treaties. In 2010, Oleg Ostapenko, commander of Russia's space forces, and now head of its space agency, said Russia was again developing "inspection" and "strike" satellites.
Moscow's ministry of defence did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

"Whatever it is, [Object 2014-28E] looks experimental," said Patricia Lewis, research director at think-tank Chatham House and an expert in space security. "It could have a number of functions, some civilian and some military. One possibility is for some kind of grabber bar. Another would be kinetic pellets which shoot out at another satellite. Or possibly there could be a satellite-to-satellite cyber attack or jamming."

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