Wednesday Reads: Civil War in Syria, Mittens Wins, and the Iceman ComethPosted: February 29, 2012
Get your coffee poured, because I have a juicy post for you today.
First things first…Romney wins Michigan and Arizona
Well, good now that is out-of-the-way, lets move on to other more important news…
I wonder, maybe Boston Boomer can give us some thoughts on why she thinks the shooter, TJ Lane, ran after the shooting, compared to so many mass shooter/killers that will eventually turn the gun on themselves. Ohio School Shooting Suspect Confesses, Prosecutor Says – NYTimes.com
The fatal shooting rampage in a high school in this quiet suburb of Cleveland remained a puzzle on Tuesday, with prosecutors saying that a student had confessed to the killings and had told them that he did not know his victims and chose them at random.
Prosecutors said the student, T. J. Lane, 17, admitted taking a .22-caliber Ruger semiautomatic pistol to Chardon High School on Monday and firing 10 rounds at four students at a cafeteria table. He has not been formally charged, but prosecutors said it was likely that he would be tried in an adult court.
Three of the victims — Russell King Jr., Demetrius Hewlin and Daniel Parmertor — have died. Two others were wounded. One has been released from the hospital.
Sticking with stateside news, some people just don’t like Obama, hey…I am one of them, and y’all know my reasons…however, race is not one of them.
But for those who do have a problem with the color of Obama’s skin…it seems they tend to take it to a whole other level. Ariz. police sergeant demoted over bullet-riddled Obama Facebook photo – USATODAY.com
An Arizona police sergeant has been demoted and suspended for two weeks without pay for posting a photo of a bullet-riddled image of President Obama on Facebook.
Makes this next link even more obvious: Suit Says Obama Can’t Run In Alaska Because He’s of the “Mulatto” Race
A man from Juneau, Alaska, has filed suit with the state’s Division of Elections to bar President Obama from appearing on that state’s ballot on the basis that the President is a “Mulatto“, and “the race of ‘Negro‘ or ‘Mulatto‘ had no standing to be citizens of the United States under the United States Constitution.”
Gordon Warren Epperly, who lists his address as a P.O. Box, filed the nomination petition objection on February 21, 2012.
According to the complaint:
Barack Hussein Obama II, Aka Barack Hussein Obama, Aka Barack H. Obama has the race status of being a “Mulatto.” Barack Obama’s father (Barack Hussein Obama I) was a full blood Negro being born Nyang’oma Kogelo, Nyanza Province, Kenya and raised in the Colony of Kenya. Barack Obama’s mother (Stanley Ann Dunham) was a white Caucasian woman being born in Wichita, Kansas on November 29, 1942 and raised in the state of Washington and in the State of Hawaii.
As stated above, for an Individual to be a Candidate for the Office of President of the United States, the Candidate must meet the qualifications set forth in the United States Constitution and one of those qualifications is that the Candidate shall be a “natural born Citizen” of the United States. As Barack Hussein Obama II is of the “Mulatto” race, his status of citizenship is founded upon the Fourteenth Amendment to the United States Constitution. Before the [purported] ratification of the Fourteenth Amendment, the race of “Negro” or “Mulatto” had no standing to be citizens of the United States under the United States Constitution.
Damn, that is horrid…
Yet, it underscores the next story I am about to bring you. The following links are from a town south of my little chunk of redneck heaven, Banjoville, Georgia. The town I am talking about is the poultry capital of the Peach State…Gainesville, Georgia.
Let me give you a bit of background.
There is a highschool in Gainesville that tallied up the students grades and found that a student named Cody Stephens received the highest GPA. So naturally, you would expect Cody to go on to be celebrated as class valedictorian.But remember, this is Georgia…and Cody happens to be black.
So what do you think the principal of the school does? He names two valedictorians. (Yup…two.) The co-valedictorian, Charlie Bryant, had a GPA that was slightly lower than Cody Stephens. (Did I say that Cody Stephens is black?) Cody would have been the first African-American valedictorian in Gainesville history.
This caused a big stink as you can imagine, which led to a school board meeting and vote. The resulting vote, 4 to 1 in favor of having two valedictorians…you can say the shit hit the fan with that…eventually the parents of Charlie Bryant issued this letter stating:
The academic achievements of Cody Stephens and Charlie Bryant stand on their own merits and are to be celebrated, not tarnished by controversy.
After much prayerful consideration, we would like to offer an alternative perspective to those being discussed so prominently. Because of Cody’s unique position of being our first African-American valedictorian, we propose that Gainesville High School utilize the upcoming graduation ceremony to celebrate his, and only his, academic record as valedictorian of perhaps one of the most talented classes that GHS has ever produced.
Cody and Charlie, as students and friends, can deservedly share the honor at school, and we as a community, can collectively lift up Cody’s accomplishments as a unifying element to be proudly witnessed on graduation day. In support of this approach, we have made the decision to respectfully withdraw from the ceremonial recognition bestowed at graduation. We believe that this decision is in the best interest of GHS and our community. More importantly, we feel the decision is in the best interest of two incredible young men, our son Charlie and his friend, Cody Stephens.
Stephen’s mother welcomed the letter, but felt it came a bit late. Yesterday, she gave a press conference and had this to say: Valedictorian student’s mother says issue still open
Valerie Stephens credited Charlie Bryant’s parents for withdrawing him for co-valedictorian honors, but added that does not let school board members who voted 4-1 for co-valedictorians off the hook.
“That does not mean that the Gainesville City School System or Gainesville High School should not be held accountable for the things they set in place,” she said.
Stephens said Board Chairman Willie Mitchell voted the right way for Stephens sole honor but the others did not ‘vote the right way.’
Stephens vowed to campaign against board members up for re-election, and called for dismissals for superintendent Merrianne Dyer and high school principal Chris Mance.
Stephens said the co-valedictorian issue is not going away and she wants an investigation into why the system went against its own policy of granting the sole honor to the student with the highest grade point average.
“We cannot allow this situation to happen anymore to any parent or any child,” Stephens added and then she smiled and announced that “Cody Stephens is the sole valedictorian of Gainesville High School.”
Marcus Coleman, Founder of the Atlanta Chapter of Reverend Al Sharpton’s National Action Network added his concerns on the matter.
“Here this school board on Friday had this emergency secret vote and it’s four to one,” Coleman said. “I think it’s unfair to the public and definitely unfair to the system because the honesty is not there.”
Coleman said the public was expecting a public meeting on the 28th, which was canceled after the board’s decision was disclosed Monday. Coleman added that he was glad the Bryants had some integrity because the school board did not.
“We don’t want another child, black, white, Latino, Asian, to go through this same thing when it deals with simple math,” Coleman said. “We plan to do something about the members of the School Board.”
I’m glad Cody is the sole valedictorian, bottom line is, he has the highest GPA in the school. End of story. I wonder if it were the other way around, would Charlie be sharing the spotlight with a co-valedictorian. What do you think?
I’m going to post some links on Syria now, because it is really turning into a human right’s disaster. The makings of a Civil War is going on right before our very eyes.
Abu Ali fled his life as a Shiite cleric and student in Homs, the besieged Syrian city at the center of an increasingly bloody uprising, but it was not the government he feared.
It was the rebels, who he said killed three of his cousins in December and dumped a body in the family garbage bin.
“I can’t be in Homs because I will get killed there,” he said from this religious city in Iraq where he has taken refuge. “Not just me, but all Shiites.”
Like his fellow Shiites in Iraq, Abu Ali, who used his nickname to protect his family back in Syria, said he regards the Syrian rebels as terrorists, not freedom fighters, underscoring one of the complexities of a bloody civil conflict that has persisted as diplomatic efforts have failed. In spite of President Bashar al-Assad’s willingness to unleash a professional military on a civilian population, with lethal results, Mr. Assad retains some support at home and abroad from allies, including religious and ethnic minorities who for decades relied on the police state for protection from sectarian aggression.
“What the government is doing is trying to protect the people,” Abu Ali said, echoing the Assad government’s propaganda. “They are targeting terrorist groups in the area.”
That is one point of view, here is another:
Syrian forces kill 25 in bombardments – activists
* UN official says Syria toll exceeds 7,500
* France says Security Council working on new resolution (Adds US drafts outline of new resolution, China comment)
Syrian President Bashar al-Assad could be classified as a war criminal, U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton said as the United Nations announced more than 7,500 civilians had been killed by his forces since the start of the revolt.
At least 25 people were killed in the shelling of opposition strongholds by Syrian forces on Tuesday, activists said. In Homs alone, opposition groups said hundreds of civilians had been killed or wounded in the 24-day-old assault.
As world dismay grew over the bloodshed, France said the Security Council was working on a new Syria resolution and urged Russia and China not to veto it, as they have previous drafts.
An outline drafted by Washington focused on the humanitarian situation in order to try to win Chinese and Russian support and isolate Assad, Western envoys said. But they said the draft would also suggest Assad was to blame for the crisis, a stance Russia in particular has opposed.
In the besieged district of Baba Amro and other parts of Homs, terrified residents were enduring dire conditions, without proper supplies of water, food and medicine, activists said.
A wounded British photographer managed to escape from Homs, but the fate of French reporter Edith Bouvier was not clear.
She was the journalist who sustained more severe injuries than British photographer, Paul Conroy.
“There are credible reports that the death toll now often exceeds 100 civilians a day, including many women and children,” U.N. Under-Secretary-General for political affairs Lynn Pascoe told the U.N. Security Council. “The total killed so far is certainly well over 7,500 people.”
Syria’s government said in December that “armed terrorist groups” had killed more than 2,000 soldiers and police.
Asked by a U.S. senator whether Assad could be called a war criminal, Clinton told a Senate hearing: “There would be an argument to be made that he would fit into that category”. She added, however, that using such labels “limits options to persuade leaders to step down from power”.
More on what Hillary Clinton stated at the Senate hearing: Hillary Clinton: Syria’s Assad could be labeled a war criminal
Clinton was also asked whether she thought Assad was on his way out eventually. “I do,” she said. “I just don’t know how to define eventually.”
Please take a look at the rest of the article, it gives more details of the latest developments. Including details and quotes from the “delusional” meeting between the UN and the Syrian Ambassador.
It is painfully obvious talks are not moving forward. As we witness the struggle of those journalist remaining in Syria, whose whereabouts are still unknown… including the remains of Marie Colvin and Remi Ochlik, who were killed last week. It truly brings the desperate nature of the situation home. Especially with the dramatic escape this morning of Paul Conroy, in the face of Syria’s refusal to allow safe passage of the foreign press out of Homs.
Up to 13 activists died smuggling the Sunday Times photographer out of the country, it has emerged.
Conroy survived the attack last week that killed his colleague Marie Colvin. Three other western journalists, including Edith Bouvier, who was badly injured in the same incident, were reported to be still trapped in Homs on Tuesday night. A claim by the French president, Nicolas Sarkozy, that Bouvier had also been evacuated was later retracted by his office.
I actually sighed a heavy sigh just now…so sad.
With tensions between Israel and Iran running sky high over the latter’s nuclear program, U.S. officials and military analysts are growing increasingly concerned that Israel will launch a multi-phase air and missile attack that could trigger waves of retaliatory missile strikes from Tehran.
Such a shootout could quickly spiral into a regional conflict that would potentially force the U.S. to intervene to protect its interests.
The emerging consensus among current and former U.S. officials and other experts interviewed by NBC News is that that an Israeli attack would be a multi-faceted assault on key Iranian nuclear installations, involving strikes by both warplanes and missiles. It could also include targeted attacks by Israeli special operations forces and possibly even the use of massive explosives-laden drones, they say.
The Iranian response to such an attack is uncertain, but many experts and officials believe it is likely to include retaliatory missile strikes. Iran has more missiles in its arsenal than Israel, according to some estimates, and has the capability of striking targets in most Israeli population centers.
Now this story was published about 30 minutes after Michigan was called for Romney. Seems a bit of a coincidence to me. The article is not reporting an actual incident that has already happened, it is reporting on what could happen. It rubs me the wrong way. I don’t like the media induced fear and war mongering when it comes to Iran. I hope that we aren’t going to see another US war in the region. With all the talk of bombing Iran from the clown circus that is the GOP primaries. This kind of “what if reporting” gives me the creeps.
After all that, lets check out the latest findings in a murder that took place 5,300 years ago. BBC News – Oetzi the Iceman’s nuclear genome gives new insights
New clues have emerged in what could be described as the world’s oldest murder case: that of Oetzi the “Iceman”, whose 5,300-year-old body was discovered frozen in the Italian Alps in 1991.
Oetzi’s full genome has now been reported in Nature Communications.
It reveals that he had brown eyes, “O” blood type, was lactose intolerant, and was predisposed to heart disease.
They also show him to be the first documented case of infection by a Lyme disease bacterium.
Analysis of series of anomalies in the Iceman’s DNA also revealed him to be more closely related to modern inhabitants of Corsica and Sardinia than to populations in the Alps, where he was unearthed.
My son Jake contracted Lyme disease in Connecticut when he was three years old. It never occurred to me Lyme could actually be found over 5,300 years ago.
Albert Zink, from the Eurac Institute for Mummies and the Iceman in Bolzano, Italy, said the nuclear DNA study was a great leap forward in one of the most widely studied specimens in science.
“We’ve been studying the Iceman for 20 years. We know so many things about him – where he lived, how he died – but very little was known about his genetics, the genetic information he was carrying around,” he told BBC News.
He was carrying around a “haplotype” that showed his ancestors most likely migrated from the Middle East as the practice of formal agriculture became more widespread.
It is probably this period of transition to an agrarian society that explains Oetzi’s lactose intolerance.
Jake is also lactose intolerant…hmmm…funny. Now I can tell him not only was he named after Jake Barnes in Hemingway’s The Sun Also Rises…he also has the same health problems as the 5,300 year old Iceman. Some how I don’t think he will be that impressed. Perhaps his sister Brett will get a kick out of it…Yes and she is named after Lady Brett Ashley, doesn’t it make you want to go and re-read The Sun Also Rises.
With all the disturbing news lately, I think losing myself in The Lost Generation would be a treat.
So that does it for me, catch y’all later in the comments.