1. The Middle East:
Ankara seeking Turkey-Egypt alliance
Turkish Foreign Minister Ahmet Davutoglu said that Ankara is seeking a partnership between Turkey and Egypt that will create a new axis of power in the Middle East at a time when US influence in the region is waning.
Frantic Quartet Efforts to Fend Off PA Statehood Bid
The United States and the European Union are making last-ditch efforts to fend off the Palestinian Authority's bid to gain statehood...
Both the U.S. and the EU, as well as Russia and U.N. officials – a group that comprises the Quartet of peacekeeping nations – were working over the weekend to find a way to stop the PA from moving ahead with its plan.
In a new twist, we see this:
PA Chairman Mahmoud Abbas warned over the weekend that if the bid is successful and the PA is gains status as a new country, he will consider all PA terrorists being held in Israeli prisons as “prisoners of war.”
Palestinians warn Obama not to stand in way of statehood
On Saturday, the Palestinians were at it again, warning the Obama Administration that vetoing their UN Security Council bid for statehood would "destroy" the two-state solution to the conflict.
The warnings cames just hours after Palestinian leader Mahmoud Abbas confirmed in a speech in Ramallah that on Friday, September 23 he will address the UN General Assembly, after which he will submit to the Security Council an official application for UN membership for "Palestine."
This next situation is one to watch closely - very closely:
Israeli-Greek-Turkish air sea forces on guard for first Cypriot drilling
Military tension is building up among Greece, Turkey and Israel as Cyprus prepares to start exploratory drilling for gas offshore Monday, Sept. 19 in the face of threats from Ankara.
All three have placed their air and sea forces in a state of preparedness along with the Cypriot army.
Thursday, Sept. 15, in Tunis, Turkish Prime Minister Tayyip Erdogan continued to inveigh against Israel declaring: "They will see what our decisions will be on this subject. Our navy attack ships can be there at any moment."
Turkey seeks to impose their will in these waters:
Since last Tuesday, Sept. 13, Turkish troop reinforcements are reported by DEBKAfile's military sources as having landed in North Cyprus along with drilling equipment.
This would mean that Prime Minister Erdogan, while spouting high-sounding pledges to "preserve freedom of navigation in international waters" is preparing a wildcat breach of international law and treaties.
Friday, the Greek government in Athens warned Ankara against pursuing this step
Next Monday, therefore, many eyes will be alertly watching to see what happens when the Noble rig starts drilling in Cyprus' Block 12 of the Mediterranean.
The Turkish prime minister has painted himself into a corner: If he orders his naval and/or air units to strike the American rig, he will have to take the consequences, possibly a confrontation with the US, Israel, Greece and Cyprus.
If he does nothing, or nothing more than a token drilling off the Turkish side of the island, he will lose face as a leader able to back up his threats.
The guessing in Washington, NATO and Israel is that the most likely arena for a potential clash of arms in the Mediterranean is offshore Cyprus and it is most likely to evolve into sea and air confrontatons involving Turkey, Greece, Cyprus and Israel.
2. Earthquake Update:
Big earthquake in Sikkim, tremors across India 38 dead, over 100 injured
At least 38 people have been killed, 26 in India, five in Nepal and seven in Tibet, and over 100 are injured after an earthquake measuring 6.8 on the Richter Scale shook Sikkim on Sunday evening. Strong tremors were also felt in parts of North and East India and parts of Bangladesh and Nepal, causing widespread panic. The epicentre of the quake is said to be just 64 kilometre North-West of Gangtok.
Three aftershocks, of magnitude 5.7, 5.1 and 4.6 were also felt in Sikkim, says the India Meteorological Department.
Aleutian volcano's behavior a challenge for scientists
A volcano in Alaska's Aleutian Islands has been in an unusual low-level eruption for two months, raising the spectre of an explosive eruption with little warning, officials at the Alaska Volcano Observatory said on Friday.
3. Update: Day of Rage:
Anarchist Theater - Days of Stage
The Days of Rage non-event came and went Saturday. The overall conclusion was basically a giant meh… Instead of the publicized 20,000 purported to show, I understand it was between 700 and 1,000 in number. Not bad for a bunch of anarchist, Progressive hippies, but not exactly the end of America as we know it either. I heard wild reports of half a million and others of 5,000. I would put my money on the low end though.
You had the usual calls for throttling big business and wealth redistribution that Marxists are known for. There were a couple of passionate bullhorn rants on how tearing down the whole system is what America really needs. And then there was yoga in the park. You could hear the massive yawn from America as a whole from coast to coast as if to say, “Is that all you are bringing to this dead man’s party?” Impressive fail.
Day of Fail
Really, I should have learned my lesson by now: The bigger the build-up to a protest, and the more grandiose the promises, the louder the sound of the bellyflop onto the dustbin of irrelevancy.
In other words: “Day of Rage” was a massive FAIL.
This photo essay includes photos from all three protest sites (NY, SF and LA) integrated together, to give you the feel of the fizzled revolution as a whole.
In earlier times, the communists and the anarchists hated each other; they are natural enemies. But in recent decades they have formed an uneasy and deeply unstable alliance; since they both hate the status quo of American capitalism, they feel they ought to band together and smash the system as a unified front, and worry about how to pick up the pieces later.
But the Day of Rage revealed that this alliance can never succeed, because it can never offer a consensus philosophy; it’s impossible to draw the sympathy of the great masses when you offer two completely divergent philosophies as your “unified message.” In truth, there is no unified message, and there never can be; that’s why the “Day of Rage” organizers couldn’t even decide on what their one single demand would be at the protest.
Take a look at the pictures in the link above - as they say "a picture is worth 1,000 words".
4. In the World:
Asteroid YU55 Will Pass Close to Earth November 2011
The 55-million tones of Asteroid YU55 is a quarter of a mile across and will pass between Earth and our cosmic neighbor the Moon during the month of November 2011.
YU55 is the largest object to pass so close to Earth in modern times, it will pass just 201,000 miles away, and should be a fantastic opportunity for amateur astronomers to study such a rare event.
Nationwide EAS Test to Last About 3 Minutes
More technical details about the upcoming national EAS test are trickling out of the FCC.
For one thing, the commission is confirming that the test on Nov. 9 will last for about three minutes, something of an eternity in modern-day radio.
The FCC says that during the test, FEMA will originate a “live” Emergency Action Notification code to all EAS participants, including radio and TV stations, cable systems, Sirius XM, satellite TV providers and wireline video service providers. As part of the test, the public will be told the EAS has been activated for a national emergency, along with an audible notice that “this is a test.”
Life After An EMP Attack: No Power, No Food, No Transportation, No Banking and No Internet
Most Americans do not know this, but a single EMP attack could potentially wipe out most of the electronics in the United States and instantly send this nation back to the 1800s.
If a nuclear bomb was exploded high enough in the atmosphere over the middle part of the country, the electromagnetic pulse would fry electronic devices from coast to coast.
A nation that does not know how to live without technology would be almost entirely stripped of it at that point. Yes, this could really happen. An EMP attack is America's "Achilles heel", and everyone around the world knows it. It is only a matter of time before someone uses an EMP weapon against us, and at this point we are pretty much completely unprepared.
But an EMP weapon is not the only danger that can produce this type of effect. The truth is that a really bad geomagnetic storm could also potentially produce almost as much damage.