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Sunday, 24 August 2014

Candid interview with Ukrainian general and hostage negotiator Vladimir Ruban: "The Militia are exactly the same Ukrainians"

Preamble: The following is a translation of an interview given by Colonel-General Vladimir Ruban to the "Ukrainskaya Pravda" newspaper. There is much that is of great interest, and the General undoubtedly deserves great respect for the work he is involved in. Nonetheless, his connection to the Ukrainian Army and government gives us reason to doubt his claims of torture being conducted by the Militia. Original article here Translated by Vera Van Horne / Edited by @GBabeuf General Ruban on militants in eastern Ukraine: "There are people who were standing with us on Maidan." For more than three months Colonel-General Vladimir Ruban has been engaged in freeing people who were taken captive in eastern Ukraine. Recently, he founded a specialised centre that anybody whose relatives were taken hostage can contact. For many, Ruban has already become a legend. He is even the only Ukrainian professional negotiator who, they say, is admired by "Demon" - the Gorlovka DNR Militia commander, Igor Bezler. It was Ruban who managed to negotiate improved conditions of detention and, later, to rescue seventeen people from captivity, including soldiers from the 72nd and 25th brigades and several civilians, including Basil Budika, whom Bezler "shot" on camera in May. General Ruban rarely smiles. He has the look of a man with nerves of steel and perfect composure. It is impossible to crack him. It seems as though in his head he calculates many steps ahead, and his every response - it is but the tip of an iceberg. The correspondent of "Ukrainskaya Pravda" talked with the General about what happens to detainees in captivity, the ethics of ransom and who is fighting on the territory of eastern Ukraine. Ukrainskaya Pravda: How many people have you liberated so far? General Ruban: More than a hundred. We stopped counting after one hundred.

Summer hailstorm and cold temperatures produces wintry scene in Belton, UK

Hail is not unusual during a British summer as it's produced in the towering thunderstorm clouds that often build up during the season. However it can quickly turn a summer scene into a wintry wonderland. That's what happened in Belton near Great Yarmouth in Norfolk on Saturday 23 August 2014 at the start of the Late Summer Bank Holiday weekend. These pictures were sent in by ITV Anglia viewers Lesley Chalmers and John Welsby:

More than 90% of USA's 'staple crops' now GMO - killers of the 'New Frontier'

scarecrow GMO

© www.ufo-blogger.com

Thanks, Monsanto, for killing our food...

According to the United States Department of Agriculture, genetic engineering of

US corn, beets and soy has increased from 65 percent in 2006 to a shocking 90 percent in 2013.

Why do so many countries around the world outright reject GMOs when America is forcing them down the throats of the general population without so much as a label for the victims to distinguish? If the wordvictim sounds drastic, it's time to consider just what it is humans are consuming on a daily basis, and how

it shows up in hundreds of thousands of food items and ingredients sold in just about every store


Consider this: What if confusion was for sale -- would you buy some? Most bees that touch down on pesticides end up unable to locate the honeycomb and they just die. Could GMOs be

the culprit of most Alzheimer's and Parkinson's

? Your food may be able to withstand heavy doses of herbicides and pesticides, but can you? Your

cells may be mutating

as you read right now, but there's a way to repair them. First, turn off the TV and throw away the newspaper. You won't find the "repair mechanisms" there. Throw away all of your "commodity crops" that are present in 70 percent of the

processed foods

found on grocery store shelves.

Next, if you have a smart phone, get the

free phone app "Fooducate"

(pronounced like educate)


and you can scan the barcodes of all food products to find out instantly if they are GMO. Yes, this is a great tool on the battlefield of the "Food War."

Then, check out

GMO labeling laws

in 64 different countries around the world, including China, Brazil, Japan, Portugal, South Africa and the entire European Union.

Last year in the USA, 52 GMO labeling bills were proposed in 26 states. Maine and Connecticut are two of those success stories requiring labeling of "Frankenfoods" and serving as beacons of truth about the health detriment of consuming pesticides.

biohazard crop

© foodfreedomgroup.com

What's in YOUR refrigerator?

Frankenfoods deserve that label!

The warning on all GMO foods in America should say, "Consume Frankenfoods at your own risk," and have the list of side effects that have already been proven on animals in laboratories,

including cancerous tumors

. Frankenfoods are foods that

warp cells because they contain bug and weed killer.

Frankenfoods are foods that

contain DNA from organisms that would never normally "breed" or mix with crops, much less be fused into the genes.


grow pesticide in your gut

-- instead of feeding healthy bacteria and turning on your enzymes, they're shutting them down with



In 2012, French scientist Gilles-Eric-Seralini discovered that

GM feed (corn) given to animals caused specific issues with kidney and liver function

. Of course, "Big Food" tried to discredit him and his team's profound research, but they failed to bury it. Seralini's research is now part of history and vital information for consumers who want to know the truth about Frankenfoods like US corn, soy, canola, cottonseed, beets and alfalfa.

Biotech wants to hide the truth -- they are heavily vested in the ultimate "Ponzi scheme" called the Affordable Care Act .
Americans are supposed to invest their hard-earned pay in sick care that prescribes chemicals for chemical food sickness -- GMO toxic blood. You can't "cut out" GMO, unless you stop eating and drinking it .

Still, GMO Propaganda Ensues Did you know that the USDA, the FDA and the EPA do not perform their own independent research on GMOs, that they actually rely on the companies that create it?!

Do you believe that Monsanto would ever say or report anything bad about the billions of dollars they stand to make each year off selling Frankenfoods that go completely unlabeled and invade most staple food? Guess what? You have a right to know everything that's in your food, no matter what!

You could be allergic to GMO! Check now. Here's the allergy test -- take it: NaturalNews.com .

Thousands protest police violence in New York, call for justice in Eric Garner death

© AFP/Stan Honda

Protesters at a rally against police brutality in memory of Eric Garner August 23, 2014 in Staten Island, New York. The New York City medical examiner's office ruled that Garner, the 43-year-old father of six, died from a chokehold and chest compressions while being arrested by the police on July 17, 2014.

Thousands of people gathered on New York's Staten Island on Saturday as they protested against police violence and called for justice in the case of an unarmed man killed by an officer via an illegal chokehold.

Organized by Rev. Al Sharpton's National Action Network advocacy group, the


march attracted close to 3,000 people from across New York City and New Jersey, according to initial estimates by the police.

Protesters marched through the streets, chanting against police brutality and holding up numerous signs, many of which read, "Respect Human Rights." Others featured statements like, "The police are criminals, not our youth," and, "We seek justice, not violence."

People playing music, singing "don't shoot" to voice opposition to police brutality #WeWillNotGoBackhttp://ift.tt/1shS8Gu

- Jordan Mammo (@jordanmammo) August 23, 2014

The event specifically highlighted the death of Staten Island resident Eric Garner, who was killed in July after a New York Police Department officer placed him in a chokehold for allegedly selling loose, untaxed cigarettes. With the additional help of other law enforcement officials, the 43-year-old father of six was taken to the ground, where he repeatedly complained that he could not breathe. However, video of the incident shows that police did not seem to respond to his objections.

The city's medical examiner ruled Garner died as a result of the chokehold - a move which is banned by the NYPD - and declared his death a homicide.

The officer who performed the chokehold has yet to be charged with a crime

, and that has triggered harsh criticism from African Americans and others in the community who say police continue to apply excessive and deadly force against black, unarmed men.

This is the spot where it all ended for #EricGarner. #WeWillNotGoBack#JusticeForEricGarnerhttp://ift.tt/1BQbN73

- Linda Sarsour (@lsarsour) August 23, 2014

Some protesters told RT that regardless of who was occupying the mayor's office - current leader Bill de Blasio was an outspoken critic of the NYPD before being elected last year - African Americans would have to continue to fight against wrongful police behavior themselves.

In addition to Garner's death, protesters and speakers honored the lives of others who have been killed by law enforcement, including Michael Brown in Ferguson, Missouri.

4 freedom, 4 peace: all one under God #WeWillNotGoBack#EricGarnerhttp://ift.tt/1BQbQ2v

- Jordan Mammo (@jordanmammo) August 23, 2014

Addressing the crowd, Sharpton emphasized the non-violent nature of the protest, rebuking those who would use force to accomplish their goals. He also dismissed claims that the rally was anti-police. While most officers do their jobs correctly, he said, there must be accountability when crimes are committed.

"We're not here to cause violence.

We're here because violence was caused

," he said, before urging the NYPD to remove its "bad apples."

© Reuters/Carlo Allegri

People take part in the "We Will Not Go Back" march and rally for Eric Garner in the Staten Island borough of New York August 23, 2014.

Bishop Victor Brown of the local Mount Sinai United Christian Church also spoke, energizing the crowd by proclaiming the protests would not cease until law enforcement agencies stopped debasing the lives of African Americans.

"How many more times must we drink from the bitter cup of injustice?" he asked. "We will not take the tranquilizing drug of gradualism ... we will not go away until indictments give way to convictions."

Arab Americans & friends get ready for #WeWillNotGoBack March on Staten Island. #JusticeForEricGarnerhttp://ift.tt/1BQbOb6

- AAANY (@ArabAmericanNY) August 23, 2014

Garner's family was present onstage, as were other mothers and grandmothers of young men who had been killed by police, and they thanked those in attendance for participating. House Rep. Jose Serrano (D-NY) and former Gov. David Paterson also spoke briefly and in favor of reform.

Support the NYPD? Here's how #WeWillNotGoBack#EricGarnerhttp://ift.tt/1BQbOrm

- Jordan Mammo (@jordanmammo) August 23, 2014

Meanwhile, police presence at the rally was strong - at least four helicopters could be seen hovering overhead - but the event was marked by peaceful demonstrations and cooperation between law enforcement and citizens. The NYPD reacted quickly and administered medical attention when an older woman seemed to lose consciousness in the crowd.

Crowd marching on Bay St now 2 Helicopters overhead #WeWillNotGoBack#Ferguson#EricGarner#KONYHhttp://ift.tt/1BQbQ2z


Before concluding the protest, Sharpton said another rally would be organized in Washington, DC, when Congress is back in session.

Sierra Leone imposes jail time for harboring Ebola patients, flights barred and borders closed due to outbreak

Ebola continues to spread in West Africa as Sierra Leone voted to pass a new amendment imposing jail time for anyone caught hiding an Ebola patient.

With 142 new cases recorded, the total number is now 2,615 with 1,427 deaths, the World Health Organization said Friday. The group added that the magnitude of the Ebola outbreak has been "underestimated."

"Many families hide infected loved ones in their homes," the organization wrote in an assessment. "Others deny that a patient has Ebola and believe that care in an isolation ward - viewed as an incubator of the disease - will lead to infection and certain death. Most fear the stigma and social rejection that come to patients and families when a diagnosis of Ebola is confirmed."

Most of the new cases are in Liberia. So far, that country has record 1,082 cases and 624 deaths. New treatment centers are overwhelmed by patients that were not previously identified.

One center with 20 beds opened its doors to 70 possibly infected people, likely coming from "shadow-zones" where people fearing authorities won't let doctors enter, the U.N. health agency said.

"This phenomenon strongly suggests the existence of an invisible caseload of patients who are not being detected by the surveillance system," the agency said. This has "never before been seen in an Ebola outbreak."

The government in Liberia was delivering donated rice to a slum where 50,000 people have been sealed off from the rest of the capital in an attempt to contain the outbreak.

Sierra Leone has recorded at least 910 cases and 392 deaths. The World Health Organization believes the hiding of Ebola patients in the country has contributed to a major underestimation of the current outbreak.

The country's new law, enacted to compel residents to cooperate with government officials, was passed on Friday and imposes prison terms of up to two years for violators, said lawmaker Ansumana Jaiah Kaikai.

The Ivory Coast announced late Friday it was closing land borders with neighboring Guinea and Liberia. Gabon, Senegal, South Africa and Cameroon had all earlier in the week imposed restrictions on some or all of the four countries with confirmed Ebola cases.

Speaking in parliament on Friday, Sierra Leone majority leader Ibrahim Bundu said Sierra Leone had suffered "abandonment and isolation from those we viewed to be our biggest friends" in the region and beyond.

"These ugly developments are evidenced in the cancellations of flights, closing of borders, reduction of operational hours of banks and further isolation by shutting down businesses at the time of greatest need," he said, adding lawmakers would soon review the country's partnerships "so as to form a permanent record of who are true friends are."

Some countries continue to impose travel restrictions, even though they aren't recommended by the U.N. health agency.

On Friday, the Central African country of Gabon announced it was barring all flights and ships from Ebola-stricken countries. South Africa already announced a travel ban for non-citizens from these countries "unless the travel is considered absolutely essential." Senegal closed its borders with Guinea and is barring air or sea travel from Sierra Leone and Liberia. Cameroon barred flights from Nigeria.

On Saturday, the Philippine government said it was recalling 115 peacekeepers from Liberia because of the health risk posed by Ebola.

Meanwhile, two new cases emerged in Nigeria, where patients were quarantined two days ago while being tested, Health Minister Onyebuchi Chukwu said Friday. Authorities are now trying to identify and monitor everyone they have been in contact with. In all, 213 people are now under surveillance in Nigeria.

Contributing: Associated Press

OSCE mission says "no major incidents or violations recorded" as Russian aid convoy re-enters Russia


© REUTERS/ Vasily Fedosenko

OSCE observers in the city of Luhansk in eastern Ukraine

The return of Russian humanitarian aid convoy is underway,

no major incidents or violations recorded

, the Head of the


's mission in Rostov region Paul Picard told RIA Novosti, as trucks that have delivered humanitarian aid to eastern Ukraine are returning to Russia.

"There was nothing [no incidents]. The return process is underway," Picard said, adding that he could speak only about the situation at Russia's border checkpoint of Donetsk. "We cannot see beyond it as we have no authority and it is beyond out mandate," he noted.

On August 14, the trucks with Russian humanitarian aid arrived at the border, but Ukraine began customs clearance only on August 21. On Friday, the convoy crossed the border and

arrived in Luhansk

, the city struggling daily without regular food supplies, water, electricity and under constant shelling.

The Ukrainian Foreign Ministry described the convoy crossing the Russian border as a violation of international norms and urged its international partners to condemn the Russia's move.

Later, UN chief Ban Ki-moon


deep concern over the Russian aid convoy crossing the border into Ukraine.



the UN that

Russia received a formal agreement from Kiev authorities for the passage of the humanitarian convoy through the Ukrainian border on August 12.

The humanitarian disaster in Luhansk, controlled by independence supporters, occurred after the Ukrainian army had blocked approaches to the city.

Rare sei whale seen off Cornwall's coast in Penzance, UK

Sei whale photo courtesy of Hannah at Marine Discovery.

A rare whale has been spotted off the coast of Penzance.

Experts believe these photographs show a sei whale -

the creatures rarely visit water around the UK.

Sei whales are the third largest rorqual after the blue whale and fin whale.

These photographs were taken by Penzance-based marine wildlife tour company Marine Discovery.

Hannah Jones, from Marine Discovery, said: "We're usually the last people to try and make things sound rarer than they actually are - after all simply seeing any whales off the coast of Cornwall is exciting enough. Reasons we think this whale was a Sei Whale; very visible blow, but probably not dense or tall enough for a fin whale; blow and fin seen at same time; "chin up" surface with pronounced rostrum (the "seam" running from the blowholes to the tip of the upper jaw); spots! On one of the photos, there are visible pale spots behind the fin; swathes of pale colouration on the back (though minkes do often have this as well) Feasibly large, sickle shaped fin, though you can never ID rorqual whales from the fin alone."

"So we don't think this was a juvenile fin whale as was first thought, but a possible sei whale.

These are usually seen in deeper water, but rarely seen full stop

. However obviously we are not utterly 100 per cent."

A sei whale can grow up to 64 feet long weighing 28 tonnes. Yet the colossal creature feasts mainly on plankton.

Sei whale photo courtesy of Hannah at Marine Discovery.

Hundreds of methane plumes erupting along U.S. Atlantic coast

Methane bubbles

© NOAA Okeanos Explorer Program/2013 Northeast U.S. Canyons Expedition

Methane bubbles rising from the seafloor 1,400 feet (425 m) below the surface offshore of Virginia.

In an unexpected discovery, hundreds of gas plumes bubbling up from the seafloor were spotted during a sweeping survey of the U.S. Atlantic Coast.

Even though ocean explorers have yet to test the gas, the bubbles are almost certainly


, researchers report today (Aug. 24) in the journal

Nature Geoscience.

"We don't know of any explanation that fits as well as methane," said lead study author Adam Skarke, a geologist at Mississippi State University in Mississippi State.

Surprising seeps

Between North Carolina's Cape Hatteras and Massachusetts' Georges Bank, 570

methane seeps

cluster in about eight regions, according to sonar and video gathered by the National Oceanographic and Atmospheric Administration ship Okeanos Explorer between 2011 and 2013. The vast majority of the seeps dot the continental slope break, where the seafloor topography swoops down toward the Atlantic Ocean basin. [

Gallery: Amazing images of Atlantic Methane Seeps


The Okeanos Explorer used sound waves to detect the methane bubbles and map the seafloor. The technique, called multibeam sonar, calculates the time and distance it takes for sound waves to travel from the ship to the seafloor and back. The sonar can also detect the density contrast between gas bubbles and seawater.

Huge canyons etched in the shallow continental shelf also hide bubble plumes, as well as diverse ecosystems that are based on methane-loving bacteria. In 2013, researchers explored a handful of these seeps with Jason, a remotely operated vehicle, finding them teeming with crabs, fish and mussel beds. In Norfolk canyon off the coast of Virginia, researchers from the University of North Carolina at Wilmington discovered the

largest methane seep

ever found in the Atlantic Ocean, and possibly all the world's oceans.

Most of the methane seeps are in water less than 1,640 feet (500 meters) deep. Most of these shallow methane seeps seem to arise from microbes blurping out methane, the researchers said. The researchers did find some deeper methane vents, at which the ROV Jason glimpsed patches of methane hydrate. This is the icy mix of methane and water that appears when deep ocean pressures and cold temperatures force methane to solidify. Any type of methane gas can form hydrates.

Atlantic margin

© A. Skarke and C. Ruppel/Nature Geoscience

An illustration of the Atlantic margin showing the relationship between methane seeps and seafloor features.

While methane vents are common around the world, only three natural gas seeps - where methane escapes from seafloor sediments - had been found off the East Coast before 2012.

"It was a surprise to find these features," Skarke said. "It was unexpected because many of the common things associated with methane gas do not exist on the Atlantic margin."

Gas, gas, gas?

The East Coast is a passive margin, and methane isn't expected to come out of this environment. The margin hasn't been squeezed or pulled by plate tectonic activity for tens of millions of years, and that means a lack of escape routes for methane. "I usually describe passive margins as cold, old and boring," said study co-author Carolyn Ruppel, chief of the U.S. Geological Survey gas hydrates project in Woods Hole, Massachusetts.

Also missing from the Atlantic Coast are layers of salt, which are responsible for the Gulf of Mexico's oil and gas.

Without more exploring, the researchers can't say for sure why there are so many methane plumes along the Atlantic coastline. "It's a huge research area that needs to be pursued," Ruppel said.

If the East Coast could hide hundreds of bubbling methane pits, then it's likely there are nearly 30,000 more awaiting discovery in the world's oceans, the researchers said.

"These processes may be happening in places we didn't expect them," Skarke said.


© NOAA Okeanos Explorer Program/2013 Northeast U.S. Canyons Expedition

Cup corals and bubblegum corals live on rock near the edge of the mussel bed.

There's also a good chance more

methane vents

will be found off the East Coast, but that doesn't mean one should expect new drilling platforms popping up offshore to extract the gas, the researchers said. "We have no evidence to suggest this material would be a recoverable resource," Skarke told Live Science. "There is no evidence whatsoever that there are conventional deep-seated oil and gas reservoirs underneath the Atlantic margin."

The more likely scenario: A fleet of research ships hurries to claim the seeps. The methane seeps are near ports where many of the U.S. research ships dock. The ease of access has set off an exploration stampede, with several new projects in planning stages or already funded.

"We're setting the stage for a decade of discovery," Ruppel said.

From the Arctic to Atlantic

Interest is running high because the seeps could be a laboratory for studying how methane hydrates respond to

climate change


Methane is a greenhouse gas that disappears more quickly than carbon dioxide in the atmosphere, but has more warming power than carbon dioxide. Millions of tons of methane are frozen in Arctic permafrost, both on land and in the seafloor. Recently, several studies have warned that rapid warming in the Arctic could upset these deposits,

melting them and freeing the gas

. This would boost the planet's greenhouse gas levels and could accelerate climate change.

Methane Hydrate

© NOAA Okeanos Explorer Program/2013 Northeast U.S. Canyons Expedition

A close-up of methane hydrate observed at a depth of 3,460 feet (1,055 meters) off the U.S. Atlantic Coast.

"Now we have a study site where we can monitor these locations and see how they change," said David Valentine, a geochemist at the University of California, Santa Barbara, who was not involved in the study. "Finally we have a place where we can begin to address some of the questions about how water temperatures are influencing methane."

At present, scientists think the East Coast seeps don't contribute much methane to climate change.

Most of the methane gas dissolves in the ocean before reaching the surface, Ruppel said. The total amount of gas is also much smaller than sources on land, such as cows or gas drilling. "It's probably on the order of a feedlot of methane," Valentine said. However, some shallow-water seeps could vent methane to the surface, and researchers expect that future surveys will uncover even more shallow seeps. These regions only received a cursory look during the survey.

Even though the methane may not escape to the atmosphere, the gas still adds to the ocean's overall carbon budget - which is still a wildly uncertain number.

"It's not a huge number, but it's an important number for us to know," Ruppel said.

Good luck! Russia wants regular, transparent reports on MH17 crash probe amid silence from the West

MH17 wreckage

© RIA Novosti / Andrei Stenin

Parts of wreckage are seen at the site where the downed Malaysian Boeing 777 flight MH17 crashed

Moscow wants the investigation into the


of a Malaysian Boeing 777 to be as most transparent as possible, and insists on regular provision if prove reports in accordance with the UN Security Council resolution, a diplomatic source told RIA Novosti.

"Investigation into the reasons of the catastrophe should be carried out

under international control, should be all-encompassing and transparent for the wide international audience and mass media

," the source said. "We will keep pressing for it, demanding the implementation of the UNSC resolution 2166 which stipulates monthly reports about the course of the investigation."

Resolution 2166 adopted by the UN Security Council in July calls for a thorough and impartial investigation into the MH17 tragedy and requires the secretary-general to provide the Security Council with investigation progress reports.

The source stressed that

the majority of Western media "seem to have been ordered to avoid the investigation issue for about two weeks."

"US official representatives who rushed to accuse Russia and Donetsk self-defense forces in the first hours following the tragedy, also maintain silence. America's allies, particularly the British and the Australian, who were also among the first accusers, stick to the same policy. The international community has not yet seen the promised "incontestable evidence."

The explanation is that the truth could be inconvenient to Washington, London and Canberra

," the source told RIA Novosti.

The source added that Kiev's official position is also telling.

"As the curtain of allegations is clearing, the specialists have more and more questions over the actions of the Ukrainian authorities and military toward the Boeing.

Kiev still has not made public the recordings of the talks between air traffic control and the crew

, which would allow to understand why the plane was in the combat area," the diplomatic source said.

Malaysia Airlines flight MH17 was shot down over eastern Ukraine on July 17 en route from Amsterdam to Kuala Lumpur,


all 298 people on board, including 193 Dutch nationals, 43 Malaysians and 27 Australians.

Rare 45-foot sei whale dies in Virginia river

A 40-foot whale that had been swimming around in a river died Thursday afternoon. A necropsy will be performed on the animal to find out just what caused its death

A rare whale that entered the Elizabeth River in Virginia earlier this week has died.

Joan Barns of the Virginia Aquarium & Marine Science Center says the whale died on Thursday. A necropsy is planned, including tissue and blood samples for further study.

The 35- to 45-foot sei whale was first spotted Monday in the river's Southern Branch near the Jordan Bridge and Paradise Creek.

Marine experts said the whale been acting strangely and may have been ill or disoriented. Boaters had reported that the whale appeared to be swimming without a clear direction.

The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration says

sei whales are usually seen in deeper waters of oceanic areas far from the coastline.

Source: The Associated Press

It belongs in a (Crimean) museum!: Kiev claims Scythian gold as its own, Netherlands too cowardly to make the right choice

scythian gold

© EPA/P Photo/Peter Dejong

Crimea is ready to give up part of its cultural heritage in swap for the Scythian gold collection which is currently on view in Amsterdam.

Andrei Malgin, director of the Tavrida Central Museum, told Itar-Tass that ancient artifacts had been found during excavations at the Nogaichinsky Kurgan in steppe Crimea in the 1970s. The archeologist handed over his archaeological findings to Kiev. These exhibits from the Ukrainian Museum of Historical Valuables are also part of "Crimea: Gold and Secrets of the Black Sea" exhibition in the Netherlands.

"These things are very beautiful. They date back to a period of late antiquity.

They are also part of Crimean cultural heritage

," Malgin said.

"But Crimea might give up its claim to these things

if Kiev leaves what belongs to us in peace

. Otherwise, I do not see how we can reach a compromise," Malkin stressed.

Earlier this week, the Allard Pierson Museum in Amsterdam decided to leave the disputed "Scythian gold" collection in the Netherlands until a qualified judge passes a decision or the sides reach a kind of compromise.

The exhibits have been claimed both by Kiev and Crimea but the Allard Pierson Museum is still at a loss to where they should be returned.

"Until recently, the museum has failed to pass any decision or meet the demands of either of the sides," the museum said in its press release last Wednesday.

The four Crimean museums that loaned the collection of ancient cultural items on the basis of lease contracts believe that the exhibits should return to them.

Ukraine's Culture Ministry, however, claims that these exhibits are the state property (of Ukraine) and should, therefore, be returned to Kiev.

"As it was mentioned in previous statements, the situation is unique and extremely complicated. Therefore, the museum deems it necessary to study the problems in detail and find a way out of the situation," the museum said.

The Allard Pierson's Museum has by now studied the legislation and international treaties under which the "Crimea: Gold and Secrets of the Black Sea" exhibition went to Amsterdam.

Malgin said that the Dutch museum's decision was not unexpected for the Crimean residents. He believes that any decision, including a court one, to hand over the exhibits to Ukraine would be unacceptable.

He recalled how Ukrainian troopers had shelled a museum in Donetsk damaging its exhibits.

"This fact speaks for itself.

It shows how the Ukrainian authorities care for museum exhibits.

I do hope that (the Scythian gold) will not be handed over to Kiev. Ukraine is not in a position to ensure the safety of museum exhibits. It would be absolutely impossible to hand over any new exhibits to it under these circumstances," Malgin told Itar-Tass.

The Amsterdam University's Allard Pierson Museum has been hosting the exhibition titled 'Crimea: Gold and Secrets of the Black Sea' since February 2014. It consists of exhibits loaned by a museum in Kiev and four museums in Crimea, which was a region of Ukraine back the time the items of the collection were consigned to the Netherlands.

Over 550 items that are on show in Amsterdam include pieces of goldsmithery, weapons and household appliances revealing the rich history of the Crimean peninsula.

The problem of where to return the artifacts sprang up immediately after Crimea's reunification with Russia on March 18, 2014. The Amsterdam museum has obligations both to the Ukrainian Ministry of Culture and the Crimean museums which are now in the territory of Russia.

"Crimea: Gold and Secrets of the Black Sea" exhibition will be open in Amsterdam until August 31.

Difference between psychopaths and anti-social people lies in brain activity

Psychopaths react to human emotion differently to other people

The difference between otherwise similar people with anti-social personality disorder (APD) and psychopaths is the way the latter's brain reacts when confronted with human emotion, a new study has found.

Researchers at the University of Michigan, US, set out to uncover why both people with APD and psychopaths both act on impulse and display a disregard for others -

but psychopaths also callously manipulate others.

Luke Hyde, an assistant psychology professor told

Pacific Standard

magazine that because many studies had been done on criminals with very high levels of psychopathy, the team wanted to better understand adults with lower levels of anti-social and psychopathic traits.

The participants in the study were tested using a technique that experts hoped would distinctly measure the difference between people with APD and psychopaths, while confirming how the two groups also overlap in many ways.

To make their findings, published earlier this year in the

Journal of Abnormal Psychology

, researchers recruited 103 adults from a database of psychologically profiled people managed by the University of Pittsburgh's Adult Health and Behaviour project.

First, the subjects were asked about their own personalities. Each participant was then connected to a brain scanner and shown a series of angry, distressed, and scared human faces.

What separated the psychopaths from those with APD was the way their amygdala reacted. This part of the brain detects threats and controls fear responses, and is also linked to emotions including arousal and aggression. When psychopaths were shown a worried face, the amygdala did not respond as strongly as the average person's. In addition, when psychopaths were questioned, they reported that they did not feel as many negative emotions.

"I was surprised to see that different measures of psychopathy and antisocial behaviour had different prediction of brain reactivity," Hyde told the magazine.

"As a field we seem to have a clear definition and consistent measures of what 'antisocial' behavior is, but different measures of the non-antisocial personality traits seen in psychopathy seem to be tapping different conceptions of what it means to have 'psychopathy.'"

How quickly we forget: Russian envoy Churkin reminds UN that Kiev approved the aid convoy



Russia's UN envoy Vitaly Churkin educating the braindead.

Russia's UN envoy Vitaly Churkin has likened Friday evening's discussion on the situation in Ukraine to what he described as a Kingdom of Curved Mirrors. He explained he got this impression because

some SC members looked worried not so much about the humanitarian disaster in the east of the country as the Russian truck convoy

that had delivered humanitarian aid to Lugansk.

"What was happening in the UN Security Council reminded me of a Kingdom of Curved Mirrors, because some members did not care at all civilians were dying in the east of Ukraine. Nor did they care about the humanitarian disaster there.

They were mostly alarmed by Russia's humanitarian aid being delivered to people in the line of fire

," the diplomat said.

Churkin explained that Russia was keeping in touch with the Ukrainian authorities and hoped that there would be no problems with the delivery of humanitarian aid to its destination.

"After that discussion the tensions in the Security Council over the issue eased somewhat," Churkin said.

He addressed the SC members with a fresh reminder that Russia had dispatched humanitarian aid to eastern Ukraine

only when it had official consent from that country's government


"As far as reproaches about respect for sovereignty are concerned, I can say once again that we received official consent from them. We discussed that issue.

If they deceived us, it is their problem.

We just wish to give help to those who need it," Churkin said.

According to the Russian diplomat, during the just-held discussion he recalled that the Security Council last July voted for Resolution 2165, which authorized direct supplies of humanitarian assistance to Syria

without the country's government


"It was something new from the legal standpoint and it cannot but be borne in mind. As for Ukraine, it can well be said that we have the government's consent," the diplomat added.

He said that some UN SC members,

including China and Latin American countries

, responded with understanding to the Russian position.

The significance of Russia's decision to move the humanitarian convoy into Novorussiya

Russian aid convoy

© RIA Novosti / Maksim Blinov

Trucks of a Russian convoy carrying humanitarian aid for Ukraine, August, 22, 2014

It appears that the Russians got tired of waiting. I suggest that you all carefully parse the

Statement of the Russian Ministry of Foreign Affairs

I posted earlier today. This is an interesting document because besides an explanation of the Russian decision to move it, it is also, potentially,

a legal defense of an unprecedented Russian decision: to overtly violate the Ukrainian sovereignty.

Let me explain.

First, the case of Crimea was also a "special case". The Russian were legally present there and, in the Russian rationale, all the "Polite Armed Men in Green" did was to protect the local population to make it possible for the latter to freely express its will. Only after that will was expressed did Russia agree to formally re-incorporate Crimea into Russia.

So from the legal Russian point of view, none of the Russian actions in Crimea included any form of violation of Ukrainian sovereignty.

I know, most western analysts will not agree, but that is the official Russian stance. And official stances are important because

they form the basis for a legal argument


Second, the aid which Russia has been sending to Novorussia has been exclusively covert.

Covert operations, no matter their magnitude, do not form the basis for a legal position.

The official position of Moscow has been that not only was there absolutely no military aid to Novorussia, but even when Ukie artillery shells landed inside Russia did the Kremlin authorize any retaliation, again in (official) deference to the Ukrainian national sovereignty.

This time, however, there is no doubt at all that

the Russians did deliberately and officially chose to ignore Kiev and move in

. Now, in fact, in reality,

this is clearly the logically, politically and morally right thing to do

. But in legal terms, this clearly a violation of Ukrainian sovereignty. From a legal point of view, the Ukies had the right to keep the Russian convoy at the border for another 10,000 years if they wanted and Russia had no legal right to simply move in. What apparently happened this morning is that the Ukie officials did not even bother showing up, so the Kremlin just said "forget it!" and ordered the trucks in.

Not only did the Russians move in, but they did that without the ICRC whose personnel refused to go because of the lack of security guarantees from Kiev. The Russian response to that lack of security guarantees was a) to order this unarmed convoy in and b) to clearly state in the official statement:

We are warning against any attempts to thwart this purely humanitarian mission which took a long time to prepare in conditions of complete transparency and cooperation with the Ukrainian side and the ICRC. Those who are ready to continue sacrificing human lives to their own ambitions and geopolitical designs and who are rudely trampling on the norms and principles of international humanitarian law will assume complete responsibility for the possible consequences of provocations against the humanitarian relief convoy.

Again, from a logical, political or moral point of view, this is rather self-obvious, but from a legal point of view

this is a threat to use force

("complete responsibility for the possible consequences") inside the putatively sovereign territory of the Ukraine.

The US and their main agent in Kiev, Nalivaichenko, immediately and correctly understood the threat: not only did this convoy bring much needed humanitarian aid to Lugansk,

it also provided a fantastic political and legal "cover" for future Russian actions inside Novorussia

. And by "actions" I don't necessarily mean military actions, although that is now clearly and officially possible. I also mean

legal actions such as recognizing Novorussia

. From their point of view, Obama, Poroshenko, Nalivaichenko are absolutely correct to be enraged, because I bet you that the timing, context and manner in which Russia moved into Novorussia will not result in further sanctions or political consequences.

Russia has now officially declared the Ukie national sovereignty as "over" and the EU will probably not do anything meaningful about it.

That, by itself, is a nightmare for Uncle Sam.

Furthermore, I expect the Russian to act with a great deal of restraint. It would be stupid for them to say "okay, now that we violated the territorial integrity of the Ukraine and ignored its sovereignty we might as well bomb the junta forces and move our troops in". I am quite confident that they will not do that. Yet.

For the Russian side, the best thing to do now is to wait.

First, the convoy will really help. Second, it will become a headache for the Ukies (bombing this convey would not look very good). Third, this convoy will buy enough time for the situation to become far clearer. What am I referring to here?

The Ukie plan has been to present some major "victory" for the Sunday the 24, when they plan a victory parade in Kiev to celebrate independence day (yup, the US-controlled and Nazi-administered "Banderastan" will celebrate its "independence"... this is both sad and hilarious).

Instead, what they have a long streak of *very* nasty defeats during the past 5-6 days or so.

By all accounts, the Ukies are getting butchered and, for the first time, even pushed back (if only on a tactical level). That convoy in Lugansk will add a stinging symbolical "f**k you!" to the junta in Kiev. It will also exacerbate the tensions between the ruling clique in power, the Right Sector and Dmitri Iarosh and the growing protest movement in western Ukraine.

Bottom line: this is a risky move no doubt, probably brought about by the realization that with water running out in Lugansk Putin had to act. Still it is also an absolutely brilliant move which will create a massive headache for the US and its Nazi puppets in Kiev.

The Saker

PS: I heard yesterday evening that

Holland has officially announced that it will not release the full info of the flight data and voice recorders of MH17

. Thus Holland has now become

an official accomplice to the cover-up of this US false-flag operation

and to the murder of the passengers of MH17. This is absolutely outrageous and disgusting I and sure hope that the Malaysian government will not allow this. As for Kiev, it is also sitting on the recording of the communications between the Kiev ATC and MH17. Finally, the USA has it all through its own signals intelligence capabilities.

So they all know and they are all covering up.

Under the circumstances, can anybody still seriously doubt "who done it"?

U.S.: Crooked cops. Cashing in on overtime scheme uncovered when a police officer cited a colleague for speeding

© Shutterstock

It's all right for some; one cop might have made $ 158,000 within these past three years, but committed suicide while being investigated

A Houston police officer handed another man a speeding ticket and probably didn't realize that the offender he was citing was also a cop. What this ticket-receiving officer noticed on his paper slip though has led to a department-wide investigation.

"I immediately [knew] that something's hinky with the ticket," the man

KHOU-TV only identified as Jerry

said. "There was no other officer, he was the only officer there."

The ticket, however, listed another officer as an additional witness.

KHOU launched an investigation into Jerry's claims and uncovered an alleged "

ticket-rigging scheme

," where cops listed on tickets who were not actually present at the time of the offense were cashing in on overtime when they appeared in court later.

The Houston Police Department is conducting its own internal investigation into the issue, putting three officers - Gregory Rosa, Robert Manzanales and John Garcia - on desk jobs during this time.

KHOU reported that a fourth officer identified as Rudolph Farias, who was also being investigated, committed suicide earlier this week in a police parking garage. The 51-year-old was

on the force for 21 years

and, according to KHOU, made $158,000 in overtime within the past three years. How much of that could be due to falsely reported tickets is unknown at this time.

Here's more from KHOU about

what it uncovered


The I-Team found the alleged ticket-rigging scheme took place mostly on highways. In one case in May, Officer Manzalnaes put Officer Farias down as a witness at 11:24 p.m. at I-10 and Westcott Street.

But at the same exact time, records show Farias was writing a ticket nine miles away at I-10 and Wilcrest.

In other example in April, three officers at once allegedly were in on it along the Katy Freeway. At 11:30 p.m. at the 610 Loop, Officer Manzanales listed Garcia as a witness on his ticket. But at 11:31 p.m, Garica also is a witness at Beltway 8, on a ticket Officer Rosa wrote. But records show at 11:31 p.m., Rosa is a witness over at Highway 6, on a ticket written by Officer Garcia.

Watch KHOU's report about the investigation:

Ray Hunt, president of the police officer's union, told KHOU that

these officers are considered "innocent until proven guilty."

Comment: The way officers treat the populace, right?

Ordinary people do not have any legal recourse in our police state, but these cops do?

Police Chief Charles McClelland

offered a similar perspective to KPRC-TV


"I can't assume there's an irregularity. I can't assume the officers falsified a government document. I can't assume anything until I have proof or evidence," he told the news station.

Rabid raccoon attacks Seminole woman and her dog in Florida

Seminole County residents are asked to be on high alert after a raccoon that attacked a resident, and her dog, tested positive for Rabies. The incident occurred in about 3 miles from a Rabies alert that was issued on July 22. Officials say if you or a family member has been bitten or scratched by a raccoon, or if you know anyone who was bitten or scratched, to contact the Florida Department of Health in Seminole County at 407-665-3294. It's important to remember that Rabies is present in the wild animal population, and domestic animals are at risk if they are not vaccinated. An animal with Rabies could infect other wild or domestic animals that have not been vaccinated. Officials say Contact with feral cats, stray dogs and all wildlife particularly raccoons, bats, foxes, skunks, otters, bobcats and coyotes should be avoided. The following advice is issued:

Federal Judge orders IRS to come up with better explanation of missing Lerner e-mails

The dog-ate-my-homework - er, excuse me, hard-drive-ate-our-emails excuse did just about as well in federal court as it would during an IRS audit. Judge Emmet Sullivan rejected the IRS' response to the Judicial Watch complaint about missing e-mails from Lois Lerner and other IRS employees involved in the targeting scandal yesterday. Sullivan in effect took steps to conduct his own independent probe, issuing an order demanding specific answers - and demanding them by one week from today: A federal judge asked the U.S. Internal Revenue Service for more information on efforts it made to recover missing e-mail from the computer of an agency official at the heart of a quarrel between Congress and the Obama administration over scrutiny of Tea Party organizations. U.S. District Judge Emmet Sullivan's order today giving the IRS until Aug. 22 to come up with further details on what it did to retrieve e-mail from the malfunctioning computer of Lois Lerner signals his dissatisfaction with the agency's earlier explanation, contained in an Aug. 11 filing. The order comes in a Freedom of Information Act lawsuit filed by the activist group Judicial Watch. The complaint seeks Lerner's e-mail and other communications concerning the processing of applications for tax-exempt status.

Ferguson area cop says protesters 'should be put down like rabid dogs'

A police officer just 15 miles away from the ongoing protests in Ferguson, Mo. allegedly said he thinks the protesters should have been "put down like rabid dogs." Officer Matthew Pappert is a police officer with the Glendale Police Department. He has been an officer since 2008. Pappert received the 2009 City of Glendale Community Service Award and the 2013 Kirkwood American Legion Post and Kirkwood Optimist Club Public Safety Award.

'Haboob' storm blankets Palm Springs, California in dust with 40 mph winds

Ferocious winds roared through southern California on Thursday, leaving the region covered in thick dust.The summer storm, called a haboob, swept through the area, including Palm Springs, with winds up to 40mph. One man was hospitalized at Desert Regional Medical Center with minor injuries after being hit by a fallen tree. Road conditions were dangerous as tires kicked up dust leaving drivers with low visibility.The sky was turned completely dark by the huge cloud of dust and turned conditions at sea rough and choppy. One driver, Scott Pam told ABC that a 'huge wall of dust and sand' ripped the door straps off his Jeep. Mr Pam, a photographer, managed to snap some shots of the swirling clouds of dust.

Research proves you can smuggle weapons past naked body scanners

Weapons are easily smuggled through so-called naked body scanners, according to new research released Thursday. The devices are no longer used at airports in the United States but remain in other government facilities worldwide. The Rapiscan Secure 1000 Single Post "backscatter" scanner - called the "naked scanner" by critics because of the images it produced of those inside - cannot detect a weapon hidden on the side of one's body, according to the team of researchers from the University of California-San Diego, University of Michigan, and Johns Hopkins University. "We performed several trials to test different placement and attachment strategies. In the end, we achieved excellent results with two approaches: carefully affixing the pistol to the outside of the leg just above the knee using tape, and sewing it inside the pant leg near the same location. ... In each case, the pistol is invisible against the dark background, and the attachment method leaves no other indication of the weapon's presence." In 2012 a Florida man, Jonathan Corbett, filmed himself successfully passing through the backscatters with metal at two different US airports using the same method. At the time, the TSA responded to Corbett's efforts saying the "machines are safe." Comment: Evidence suggests the machines are not safe, the levels of radiation they emit are well above background. Corbett, who is now suing the TSA over the backscatters, has encouraged those who did not believe him to "try it."