Mercury Rising 鳯女

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Archive for April 21st, 2010

The sugar daddy’s sweet find

Posted by Charles II on April 21, 2010


The above map shows the partition of Israel into Arab and Israeli lands under the original UN proposal. Haifa is at the little promontory on the northern coast, and is in Israeli lands. But in terms of territorial waters, Palestinians might have a claim to anything found in the vicinity of Haifa.

Now it turns out that something quite valuable has been found. David Wainer and Calev Ben-David, Bloomberg:

Isaac Tshuva uses sugar packets on a table in the lounge of his Leonardo City Tower Hotel in Tel Aviv to mark the spots of three natural-gas fields off Israel that he said will fuel global growth of his energy business.

The Israeli billionaire, owner of New York’s Plaza Hotel, said his Delek Group Ltd. and partners including Houston-based Noble Energy Inc. are now homing in on more deposits after last year announcing a record find in waters off Haifa, Bloomberg BusinessWeek reports in its April 26 edition….

The Levant Basin, where Tamar is located and which stretches the length of Israel and Lebanon, may hold 227 trillion cubic feet of gas, the U.S. Geological Survey said in a report released April 8, its first review of the region.

It looks to me as if Tamar-1 could be in waters jointly owned by Israel and the Palestinians. In any case, there’s no doubt that parts of the Levant Basin do lie in Palestinian waters.

Tamar-1 gas field 80 km off Haifa

Posted in Conflict in the Middle East, israel, Oil | 2 Comments »

Needs no introduction

Posted by Charles II on April 21, 2010

Nevada Senate race. Candidate and co-pilot

Jed Lewison at DK has a summary of Greg Sargent’s report on the DSCC countermock to Sue Lowden, wildly unqualified candidate for Senate in Nevada, who proposed that the uninsured barter with their doctors for healthcare: “Bring a chicken,” she said.

Like Harry Reid or not, Nevadans do not deserve Sue Lowden. Jed seems to have a pre-release version of the image the DSCC is going to use.

Posted in Harry Reid, health care, Republicans acting badly | 2 Comments »

Honduras dictatorship, day 85

Posted by Charles II on April 21, 2010

Added, 4/21: Adrienne Pine presents a video report stating that Oscar Flores, who chronicled the Resistance, has been kidnapped. Adrienne also translates an article from Tiempo in which Ambassador Hugo Llorens blames all the violence on gang members and organized crime. As I commented, it’s a matter of definitions. If one recognizes that the dictatorship is a gang of organized criminals, what he’s saying is perfectly true. Probably not what he meant, though. Adrienne also has great photos of the “March of the Cowboy Hats.” The cowboy hat, Mel Zelaya’s trademark, has become something like the cry, “I am Spartacus.” It is a message of solidarity between urban and rural and of resistance to the Tegucigalpa elite. Adrienne also links a new film by Jesse Freeston on Bajo Aguan.

That has just been supplemented with Jesse Freeston’s part 2. Part 2 talks about the root causes of the conflict in Bajo Aguan. (I would add two qualifications to Freeston’s report: if history is any guide, any sales of land were probably accomplished by means of promises unfulfilled, by coercion, or irregularly, i.e., without gathering the signatures of all of the people who were the owners of the land. Also, there was a collapse of commodity prices in the 1990s, but farmers were constrained from shifting to more valuable crops. So, any abandonment of the land may have been more a consequence of governmental design than of actual abandonment). An agreement was signed by the government to end the conflict, but they also signed an agreement with the US to get military aid… and permanently mobilized the army for ::cough:: crime fighting. Freeston has been doing a remarkable job of covering the conflict, and these films just earned The Real News a substantial contribution from me. I hope others will follow suit.

RNS reports on the surreal situation relating to the use of special forces in Honduras. In the murderous 1980s, the super-cops, the DNIC, didn’t wear uniforms, but you could tell who they were because they openly carried weapons. Later, there was a reform to equip them with distinctive uniforms. But the uniforms were easily copied by criminals. So, now the DNIC is going back to plainclothes, supposedly so that criminals can’t copy them. Yes, absolutely brilliant.

RNS has a piece about the half-Truth Commission: “former Guatemalan vice president Eduardo Stein; Michael Kergin, a Canadian diplomat; María Amadilia, former Peruvian minister of justice; and Honduran members Julieta Castellanos and Jorge Omar Casco, assisted by Sergio Membreño as technical secretary, the Commission will begin its work on May 4.” There are plans to establish an Alternative Truth Commission, backed by Amnesty. RNS says that the IACHR (the OAS human rights branch) has listed Honduras as a nation which does not respect human rights and links to their report, which I find greatly deficient, but is way better than the State Department’s “they all do it” whitewash.
From Revistazo, journalist Georgino Orellana was shot in the head by a stalker outside the TV station where he worked in San Pedro Sula. Ten journalists have been murdered since 2007, most of them in the last months, and none of their assailants have been identified.

Radio Progreso continues to get threats like, “We’re breaking the asses of journalists like you who talk sh–.”

The Entre Mares (InterSeas) company, owned by Gold Corp. has been summoned for pollution at its San Martin Mine in San Ignacio… ten years late. Heavy metals and cyanide lagoons are among the pollution that has caused significant harm to human an environmental health.

Vos El Soberano has apparently been labeled as an “attack page” by Google. It also states that there is no malware on the page. So, it sounds as if someone is sabotaging the page. It hasn’t been updated in a couple of days.

More as I am able.

Posted in Honduras, Latin America | Comments Off on Honduras dictatorship, day 85

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