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DARPA to create brain-chipped cyborg moths
Famed US military mad-scientist bureau DARPA (the Defense Advanced Projects Research Agency) is engaged in an effort to grow/build cyborg moths for use as spies. No, really.

Can cyborg moths bring down terrorists?
A moth which has a computer chip implanted in it while in the cocoon will enable soldiers to spy on insurgents, the US military hopes

Scientist: Military Working on Cyborg Spy Moths
At some point in the not-too-distant future, a moth may take flight in the hills of northern Pakistan, and flap towards a suspected terrorist training camp.
But this will be no ordinary moth.

New Agency Develops Spy Tools
The Intelligence Advanced Research Projects Activity will try to develop groundbreaking technology for the 16 spy agencies.

If IARPA can clear some crucial hurdles, including convincing its congressional skeptics, the new office will be modeled after a similar agency that develops gee-whiz toys for the Pentagon.
The Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency was created after the Russians launched Sputnik in 1957, driving home the U.S. competitive disadvantage in space. Since then, DARPA researchers have brought the United States much-heralded advances including stealth technology, global positioning systems and the Internet.

Where did the Internet come from?

Iraq residents rise up against al-Qaida

BAGHDAD - A battle raged in west Baghdad on Thursday after residents rose up against al-Qaida and called for U.S. military help to end random gunfire that forced people to huddle indoors and threats that kept students from final exams, a member of the district council said.



Azzam al-Amriki

Qaeda warns of attacks 'worse than 9/11'
An American member of Al-Qaeda warned in an Internet video that US President George W. Bush should withdraw all his troops from Muslim land or face attacks worse than September 11.


Torture, Al-Qaeda Style

‘How-to’ Manual Found in Al Qaeda Safe House Shows Disturbing Torture Methods
WASHINGTON — Al Qaeda terrorists use blow torches, electric drills and meat cleavers to torture and force information out of their victims, according to a "how-to" book discovered in a terrorist safe house in Iraq.
The Defense Department recently released disturbing images and cartoons showing how to torture a captive found by American forces during a raid on a Al Qaeda safe house a few weeks ago. They also found photos of tortured Iraqi victims.

U.S. frees 42 Iraqi captives in raid
BAGHDAD - American forces freed 42 kidnapped Iraqis — some of whom had been hung from ceilings and tortured for months — in a raid Sunday on an al-Qaida hideout north of Baghdad, the U.S. military said.

more from The Smoking Gun


From The World Factbook:

Following the capture of Syria from the Ottoman Empire by Anglo-French
forces in 1918, France received a mandate over this territory and separated out
a region of Lebanon in 1920. France granted this area independence in 1943. A
lengthy civil war (1975-1990) devastated the country, but Lebanon has since made
progress toward rebuilding its political institutions. Under the Ta'if Accord -
the blueprint for national reconciliation - the Lebanese established a more
equitable political system, particularly by giving Muslims a greater voice in
the political process while institutionalizing sectarian divisions in the
government. Since the end of the war, Lebanon has conducted several successful
elections, most militias have been disbanded, and the Lebanese Armed Forces
(LAF) have extended authority over about two-thirds of the country. Hizballah, a
radical Shi'a organization listed by the US State Department as a Foreign
Terrorist Organization, retains its weapons. During Lebanon's civil war, the
Arab League legitimized in the Ta'if Accord Syria's troop deployment, numbering
about 16,000 based mainly east of Beirut and in the Bekaa Valley. Damascus
justified its continued military presence in Lebanon by citing Beirut's requests
and the failure of the Lebanese Government to implement all of the
constitutional reforms in the Ta'if Accord. Israel's withdrawal from southern
Lebanon in May 2000, however, encouraged some Lebanese groups to demand that
Syria withdraw its forces as well. The passage of UNSCR 1559 in early October
2004 - a resolution calling for Syria to withdraw from Lebanon and end its
interference in Lebanese affairs - further emboldened Lebanese groups opposed to
Syria's presence in Lebanon. The assassination of former Prime Minister Rafiq
HARIRI and 20 others in February 2005 led to massive demonstrations in Beirut
against the Syrian presence ("the Cedar Revolution"). Syria finally withdrew the
remainder of its military forces from Lebanon in April 2005. In May-June 2005,
Lebanon held its first legislative elections since the end of the civil war free
of foreign interference, handing a majority to the bloc led by Saad HARIRI, the
slain prime minister's son. Hizballah kidnapped two Israeli soldiers in July
2006 leading to a 34-day conflict with Israel. UNSCR 1701, which passed in
August 2006, called for the disarmament of Hizballah.

From BBC News:

Lebanon is the most politically complex and religiously divided country in the
Middle East, which is what makes it such a potentially explosive factor in an
unstable region.
Tiny Lebanon baffles outsiders. Even people in the Middle
East find its politics confusing.
Set up by France after World War I as a
predominantly Christian state, Lebanon is now about 60% Muslim, 40% Christian.
It has 18 officially recognised religious sects and sharing power between
them has always been a complicated game.
Lebanese Muslims have tended to
look east for support from the other Arab states and from Iran. The Christians
have tended to look west to Europe and the United States.
The country's
proximity to Israel - and the presence of a large number of Palestinian refugees
on its soil - mean it is also intimately tied to the Arab-Israeli dispute.
While Lebanon has plenty of problems of its own, it has also become the
arena where many of the region's conflicts and rivalries are played out.

Syrian influence
The long conflict which ravaged
the country from 1975 until 1990 was both a civil war and a regional war.
left Lebanon firmly under Syria's thumb, and with a southern strip of territory
occupied by Israel as a buffer zone.
Israel has repeatedly intervened in
Lebanon to protect its northern border.
The civil war also drew in Iran to
fight Israel and support the Lebanese Shia.
In 1982, with Iranian help, the
Shia created Hezbollah, the Party of God, which has evolved into a major player
in Lebanese politics and an important ally of Iran and Syria.
Israeli forces
eventually withdrew in 2000 and Syrian forces in 2005.
But while Syria no
longer has a military presence, it has retained political influence through its
relationship with Hezbollah.

Israeli onslaught
is against this backdrop of conflict and polarisation that the war on the
Lebanese-Israeli border unfolded during the summer.
The capture of two
Israeli soldiers by Hezbollah provoked a month-long Israeli onslaught.
areas where the Shia movement enjoys support - south Lebanon and the southern
suburbs of Beirut - bore the brunt of the Israeli offensive.
This caused
large-scale death and destruction but failed to secure the soldiers' release or
Hezbollah's defeat.
Hezbollah claimed it had won a "divine victory".
the aftermath of the war, the country began the task of physical reconstruction
- but was still plagued by its old divisions.

The government is badly split between anti-Syrian and pro-Syrian
The first is a loose alliance of Sunnis, Christians and Druze (a
heterodox offshoot of Islam) and enjoys the support of the United States.
The second is an essentially Shia grouping dominated by Hezbollah, with the
backing of Syria and Iran.
Symbolising the polarisation is the fact that the
president is pro-Syrian and the prime minister anti-Syrian.
The political
deadlock has persisted into 2007, defying the mediation efforts of various Arab
Relations with Syria are complicated by ongoing efforts to establish
an international tribunal to investigate the killing of the former Lebanese
prime minister Rafiq Hariri in 2005. Many Lebanese hold Syria responsible for
the assassination - something Damascus staunchly denies.
The UN Security
Council has indicated that, if Lebanese politicians are too divided to agree on
the setting up of a tribunal, it will become the UN's task to do so.
outbreak of fighting in the north of the country on 20 May has added a new twist
to Lebanon's problems.
Clashes between the Lebanese army and a shadowy group
called Fatah al-Islam, based in a Palestinian refugee camp near Tripoli, have
left dozens dead.
The Lebanese government sees the hand of Syria behind
Fatah al-Islam.
Others see a different but no less worrying possibility -
that radical Islamists of the al-Qaeda type now see Lebanon, like other failing
states, as attractive terrain in which to establish a foothold.

NYTimes: Lebanon



Muslim Americans are largely integrated in US society and moderate in their views, a nationwide survey suggests.

The study by the Pew Research Center says US Muslims - most of whom are immigrants - believe in the American work ethic and reject extremism.

Their income and education levels mirror those of the general US public, according to the survey.

However, most respondents say life has become more difficult for US Muslims since the 11 September attacks.

Overall, the study says, Muslim Americans have a positive view of US society at large.
Most say their communities are excellent or good places to live.

WASHINGTON - One in four younger U.S. Muslims say suicide bombings to defend their religion are acceptable at least in some circumstances, though most Muslim Americans overwhelmingly reject the tactic and are critical of Islamic extremism and al-Qaida, a poll says.

Numbers, Facts and Trends Shaping Your World
Released: May 22, 2007

more from Michelle Malkin



Arabs despair over Palestinian violence

Israeli Airstrike on Hamas: PICTURES

Hamas threatens Israel suicide bombings

Israeli School Hit by Rocket

Immigration Bill

Deal Struck on Immigration Bill

Bush hails deal on immigration reform

From Michelle Malkin -

Excerpts from an e-mail bulletin by Roy Beck of

Although we don't have the legislative language yet, here are the key

WE LOSE -- by getting an immediate amnesty for nearly all 12-20 million
illegal aliens who will get legal status for residence and jobs (with assurance
of green cards no later than 13 years).

IN EXCHANGE FOR -- we get mandatory workplace verification and a lot of
extra enforcement (with a lot of typical Kennedy loopholes) to try to slow the
flow of the next 12 million illegal aliens enticed by the amnesty;

WE LOSE -- by getting a tripling of the rate of chain migration of
extended family from around 250,000 a year to around 750,000 a year for about a

IN EXCHANGE FOR -- after about a decade, there should be no more chain
migration (assuming that Kennedy doesn't add it back in by then);

WE LOSE -- by getting new flows of 400,000 temporary foreign workers
each year, bringing their families and having anchor babies who will be given
U.S. citizenship;

IN EXCHANGE FOR -- at least the temporary workers are supposed to leave
and not be able to apply for greencards and permanent residency.

The majority
of Republican Senators last year voted against the S. 2611 amnesty that

But at a noon meeting today with nearly all GOP Senators, Sen. Kyl
outlined the amnesty agreement he had negotiated with Sen. Kennedy. Our sources
say only about three Senators raised concerns. Most of the rest were saying
things like, "If you think this is a good idea, John, I guess that should be
good enough for us."

Pres. Bush and staff have been brilliant in moving Sen. McCain
(R-Ariz.) and Sen. Martinez (R-Fla.) into a more secondary role and persuading
conservative leader Kyl to lead the negotiations. Kyl is able to lead many
Senators to follow him who would otherwise not support an amnesty of any

At the moment, the only Senators whom we feel relatively certain are
opposing this new amnesty are Sen. DeMint (R-SC), Enzi (R-Wyo.), Crapo
(R-Idaho), Vitter (R-La.), Allard (R-Colo.), Sessions (R-Ala.), Chambliss
(R-Ga.), Grassley (R-Iowa)...


Bush, Blair Defend War in Iraq Together
Standing side by side in the Rose Garden, the two leaders said they had no regrets about the decision, contending Iraq has become the main battleground in the war against global terrorism.

Iraq Withdrawal Move Thwarted in Senate
WASHINGTON (AP) - The Senate on Wednesday rejected legislation that would cut off money for combat operations in Iraq after March 31, 2008.

Senate Dems fail to cut off war funds
WASHINGTON - Anti-war Democrats in the Senate failed in an attempt to cut off funds for the Iraq war on Wednesday, a lopsided bipartisan vote that masked growing impatience within both political parties over President Bush's handling of the four-year conflict.

Search for 3 missing soldiers continues

U.S. says it has suspects in Iraq ambush
Military gives details of the ambush in which four soldiers were killed and three apparently were captured.

This undated U.S. Army photo released Tuesday, May 15, 2007, by the Public Affairs Office at Fort Drum shows Pfc. Christopher E. Murphy, 21, of Lynchburg, Va. The Pentagon on Tuesday identified Murphy as one of the four soldiers killed in the May 12, 2007, ambush in Iraq. The attack near Mahmoudiya, in a Sunni stronghold 20 miles south of Baghdad, left four U.S. soldiers and an Iraqi translator dead, and three other soldiers missing. (AP Photo/U.S. Army)

Private Daniel Courneya has been named as among those killed



Trans fatty acids have been linked to heart disease and diabetes, and are worse for you than saturated fats. It is estimated that between 30,000 and 100,000 premature cardiac deaths could be prevented by replacing partially hydrogenated fats with natural non-hydrogenated oils.
Trans fatty acids are produced commercially in large quantities to harden liquid oils into solids. Trans fatty acids are created when a naturally occurring unsaturated fatty acid, which would be a liquid at room temperature, is heated in the presence of metal catalysts and hydrogen. This process, called partial hydrogenation, causes carbon atoms to bond in a straight configuration and remain solid at room temperature. Naturally occurring unsaturated fatty acid molecules are curved, and this new straight molecule is what is called a "trans fatty acid".

Trans fatty acids are in almost all commercially processed food. Partially hydrogenated oils are used in foods to help maintain their shape and to give them a longer shelf life, as hydrogenated oils do not spoil as quickly as natural ones. The FDA now requires information about trans fatty acids to be listed on nutrition labels. The way to identify trans fatty acids in foods is to read the ingredient list. Look for the word HYDROGENATED. If anything has been hydrogenated, it has gone through the process of partial hydrogenation and should be avoided.


Morning swim, Gaza
courtesy of


King Herod

King Herod's ancient tomb 'found'
An Israeli archaeologist says he has found the tomb of King Herod, the ruler of Judea while it was under Roman administration in the first century BC.

Tomb Of King Herod Discovered At Herodium
Science Daily — The long search for Herod the Great's tomb has ended with the exposure of the remains of his grave, sarcophagus and mausoleum on Mount Herodium's northeastern slope, Prof. Ehud Netzer of the Hebrew University of Jerusalem Institute of Archaeology just announced.

Terrorists caught

6 charged with plot on Army post in N.J.
FORT DIX, N.J. - Six Islamic militants from Yugoslavia and the Middle East were arrested on charges of plotting to attack the Fort Dix Army post and "kill as many soldiers as possible," authorities said Tuesday.

Arrests over US army base 'plot'
Six men have been arrested on charges of plotting to attack Fort Dix army base in the US state of New Jersey.

Project Vote Smart

Voting records and other background materials on politicians.

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