Just how many people may ultimately die as a result of the Chernobyl nuclear disaster two decades ago has been one of the largest questions raised by the meltdown. A new report released by Greenpeace (pdf) on Tuesday argues that the number may be much higher than the 4,000 estimated in a 2005 report (pdf) issued by the United Nations group Chernobyl Forum. As many as 90,000 victims may eventually succumb to radiation-related illnesses, the Greenpeace report says.What I don't understand is why would people move back to Chernobyl?
The report relied on extrapolations from data on incidents of cancer taken from Russia, Belarus and Ukraine -- all countries hit hard by the vast radiation cloud which spewed out of Reactor Four after it exploded in the early morning hours of April 26, 1986. Statistics from Belarus, for example, indicate that there are 270,000 cases of cancer attributable to the Chernobyl disaster in the hardest hit areas with 93,000 of those cases likely to be fatal, according to the report. Greenpeace also cited a report by Veniamin Khudolei of the Center for Independent Environmental Assessment of the Russian Academy of Sciences which found that the mortality rate in western Russia has sharply increased in the last 15 years, suggesting a possible connection with Chernobyl radiation.
Students whose tests aren't being counted in required categories include Hispanics in California who don't speak English well, blacks in the Chicago suburbs, American Indians in the Northwest and special education students in Virginia, AP found.Gaming the system at the expense of the students.
Bush's home state of Texas — once cited as a model for the federal law — excludes scores for two entire groups. No test scores from Texas' 65,000 Asian students or from several thousand American Indian students are broken out by race. The same is true in Arkansas.
One consequence is that educators are creating a false picture of academic progress.
"The states aren't hiding the fact that they're gaming the system," said Dianne Piche, executive director of the Citizens' Commission on Civil Rights, a group that supports No Child Left Behind. "When you do the math ... you see that far from this law being too burdensome and too onerous, there are all sorts of loopholes."
ST. LOUIS, Mo (KMOX News) -- The FBI wants to know what a former member of the Iraqi artillery is doing in Irondale, Missouri -- a small town south of Potosi-- with stolen cars and a U-Haul truck.Who wants to bet he got here by crossing our Mexican border?
KMOX's Kevin KIlleen reports the man also has been wiring substantial amounts of money to Iraq through Jordan
Universities, for those of us who lecture on campuses, are the battleground for the heart and soul of the next generation of leaders. It is the battleground where we must fight to win back the opinion and allegiance of American college students. This is made harder when Islamists in both the college and local communities try to intimidate us and deny our free speech on campuses in some of the least likely places.Read the whole thing. And for an idea about the kinds of things Brigitte talks about, see her amazing interview, still available on the redoubtable Phyllis Chesler's website, which zorkie and I watched together.
We have grown to expect these things on the major East and West Coast "elite" university campuses that harbor radical professors and anarchist student and radical Muslim community activities. But not in the heartland where I spoke last week at the University of Memphis. What was shocking was that it occurred in the South, in "Bubbaland" as my friends from the region call it.
I was invited to give a lecture sponsored by Professor David Patterson of the Judaic Studies Program. When news about my appearance spread, the Muslim community both on and off campus launched a full-scale campaign to stop my lecture. They demanded that Dr. Patterson cancel my speech. E-mails flooded the University of Memphis administration and Dr. Patterson from Muslim students on campus and Muslims in the community and mosques. Here are some of their comments:"People like Brigitte are plenty in the world, they are the true enemies of Islam. And despite their rubbish talks, the truth about Islam is spreading like a wildfire across Americas and across the globe (All Praise to Allah)."It is interesting to see the reaction of the Muslim community to someone with Muslim shrapnel in her body who speaks against butchering innocent people in the name of Allah. If they would put the same energy into condemning the radical element within Islam and join us in saying that slaughtering people in the name of Allah is murder – not jihad – maybe we wouldn't question their loyalty as American citizens. Dr. Patterson refused to bow to their intimidation and insisted on going on with the scheduled speech.
"Dr. Patterson, hosting of this lady is orders of magnitude worse than hosting of the Imperial Wizard of the Ku Klux Klan."
"Do you honestly think the scheduled lecture will serve any useful purpose other than inflaming the Muslims, insulting them and spilling poison in the community?"
By the time I showed up at the amphitheater-style lecture hall on campus, police officers were already standing at each entrance. Nearly half of the hall was filled with Muslims with their leaders dressed Osama bin Laden style sitting in the front two rows at eye level making "their point," that I wasn't going to get away with speaking freely.
Last Monday, just before he announced that Iran had gatecrashed "the nuclear club", President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad disappeared for several hours. He was having a khalvat (tête-à-tête) with the Hidden Imam, the 12th and last of the imams of Shiism who went into "grand occultation" in 941.If Amer Taheri knows this, Bush himself can't possibly be ignorant of it. We'll see...
According to Shia lore, the Imam is a messianic figure who, although in hiding, remains the true Sovereign of the World. In every generation, the Imam chooses 36 men, (and, for obvious reasons, no women) naming them the owtad or "nails", whose presence, hammered into mankind's existence, prevents the universe from "falling off". Although the "nails" are not known to common mortals, it is, at times, possible to identify one thanks to his deeds. It is on that basis that some of Ahmad-inejad's more passionate admirers insist that he is a "nail", a claim he has not discouraged. For example, he has claimed that last September, as he addressed the United Nations' General Assembly in New York, the "Hidden Imam drenched the place in a sweet light".
Last year, it was after another khalvat that Ahmadinejad announced his intention to stand for president. Now, he boasts that the Imam gave him the presidency for a single task: provoking a "clash of civilisations" in which the Muslim world, led by Iran, takes on the "infidel" West, led by the United States, and defeats it in a slow but prolonged contest that, in military jargon, sounds like a low intensity, asymmetrical war.
In Ahmadinejad's analysis, the rising Islamic "superpower" has decisive advantages over the infidel. Islam has four times as many young men of fighting age as the West, with its ageing populations. Hundreds of millions of Muslim "ghazis" (holy raiders) are keen to become martyrs while the infidel youths, loving life and fearing death, hate to fight. Islam also has four-fifths of the world's oil reserves, and so controls the lifeblood of the infidel. More importantly, the US, the only infidel power still capable of fighting, is hated by most other nations.
According to this analysis, spelled out in commentaries by Ahmadinejad's strategic guru, Hassan Abassi, known as the "Dr Kissinger of Islam", President George W Bush is an aberration, an exception to a rule under which all American presidents since Truman, when faced with serious setbacks abroad, have "run away". Iran's current strategy, therefore, is to wait Bush out. And that, by "divine coincidence", corresponds to the time Iran needs to develop its nuclear arsenal, thus matching the only advantage that the infidel enjoys.
Moments after Ahmadinejad announced "the atomic miracle", the head of the Iranian nuclear project, Ghulamreza Aghazadeh, unveiled plans for manufacturing 54,000 centrifuges, to enrich enough uranium for hundreds of nuclear warheads. "We are going into mass production," he boasted.
The Iranian plan is simple: playing the diplomatic game for another two years until Bush becomes a "lame-duck", unable to take military action against the mullahs, while continuing to develop nuclear weapons.
Thus do not be surprised if, by the end of the 12 days still left of the United Nations' Security Council "deadline", Ahmadinejad announces a "temporary suspension" of uranium enrichment as a "confidence building measure". Also, don't be surprised if some time in June he agrees to ask the Majlis (the Islamic parliament) to consider signing the additional protocols of the Nuclear Non-proliferation Treaty (NPT).
Such manoeuvres would allow the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) director, Muhammad El-Baradei, and Britain's Foreign Secretary, Jack Straw, to congratulate Iran for its "positive gestures" and denounce talk of sanctions, let alone military action. The confidence building measures would never amount to anything, but their announcement would be enough to prevent the G8 summit, hosted by Russia in July, from moving against Iran.