23/09/2004

Liberty Film Festival

Nouvelle page 1

hollywood's first
conservative
Film festival


right before
the election

right in the
heart of hollywood


& there's nothing
michael moore
can do
about it.
 

& there's nothingmichael moorecan do about it.

03:54 Écrit par Kathy Schmurtz et Had | Lien permanent | Commentaires (0) |  Facebook |

06/09/2004

Il était une fois l'Iran

Nouvelle page 1

Une autre conception de la prostitution:

 
TEHRAN (Reuters) - About 500 hardline vigilantes have taken to the streets of Tehran, demanding authorities crack down on women who
wear colourful headscarves and figure-hugging coats which they denounce as "prostitution".

Tehran's hardline authorities have announced a clampdown on women who do not dress suitably modestly but the crowd, mainly composed
of long-shirted black-bearded men, called on the police and new conservative parliamentarians to do more.

"The promotion of bad dress codes is the desire of arrogant powers, shame on the government," chanted the crowd on Friday, punching the
air with their fists.

"Arrogant powers" is hardline rhetoric usually referring to the United States, Britain and Israel.

"We object to street prostitution and vice," read one placard brandished by protesters.

Dress codes eased a little after the election of reformist President Mohammad Khatami in 1997 but hardliners are trying to claw back these
concessions since their conservative allies retook parliament in May.

Many Tehran girls wear heavy make-up, tight jackets, glitzy jewellery and bright headscarves that allow their hair to spill out.

The placards were signed by the conservative Ansar-e Hizbollah group which last year manned checkpoints around parts of Tehran where
student demonstrations turned violent.

Witnesses said they saw the group's vigilantes thrashing people with sticks during the student protests.

"A proper dress code is defined by our religion and allows women to expose only their faces and hands," said a middle-aged female
protester, one of more than 100 dressed in the all-enveloping black chador.

"We hate these girls who go around all dolled up in the streets."

One member of the Ansar-e Hizbollah, who declined to be named, said this was the first stage of the group's campaign but he did not reveal
what the next would be.

Ansar-e Hizbollah members declined to comment on France's ban on Muslim headscarves in state schools.

 

06:57 Écrit par Kathy Schmurtz et Had | Lien permanent | Commentaires (0) |  Facebook |

Marché libre = possibilités infinies

Nouvelle page 1

 

Le simple fait de briser le monopole des voyages
dans l'espace permet enfin d'infinies possibilités
que dans le passé, seuls les auteurs de science
fiction pouvaient imaginer.

Un exemple de plus de l'apport négatif de
l'interventionnisme étatique.

Holidays in space are on the horizon

19:00 01 September 04

Technology Trends report from New Scientist Print Edition.
Subscribe and get 4 free issues.

When SpaceShipOne blazed a contrail into the
clear blue sky above the Mojave desert on 21 June 2004,
it became the first privately built crewed craft
to reach space.

With that one flight, Burt Rutan's budget
rocket plane broke the government monopoly
on spaceflight
– leaving pundits excitedly predicting
an era of private sub-orbital space travel,
with orbital travel and space hotels beckoning.
But is there enough consumer demand to
support commercial space flight?

Maybe, according to a 2002 study by the management
consultancy Futron, of Bethesda, Maryland, which boldly
predicts that no less than 12,000 people a year will
be taking sub-orbital tourist flights by 2020.

Although SpaceShipOne's flight came well after the
study was completed, it does not change any of its basic
assumptions, Futron analyst Janice Starzyk says.
"We made some pretty good assumptions, so we are
sticking to these numbers."


Wealthy and weightless
 

Futron polled only wealthy Americans who were
itching to experience weightlessness and see the
curvature of Earth from space. It assumed that competition
would drive down ticket prices from an initial $100,000
to $50,000 by 2021.

Already, scores of would-be space tourists have
put down substantial deposits on those first flights.
The money is going to companies like Rutan's Scaled Composites
that are competing for the $10 million Ansari X prize,
which will be awarded to the first viable, reusable
sub-orbital spacecraft.

One of those hoping for a ride on an early commercial
flight is the London-based Danish investment banker
Per Wimmer, to whom space is a logical extension
of his interest in adventure travel.

When one of his fellow adventurers told him he could
make a reservation for a sub-orbital flight, he jumped at
the chance, even though no commercial sub-orbital
craft then existed.

"It was really exciting to know this might be
possible," Wimmer says. And when he has made his sub-orbital
ride, he would like to take a holiday in orbit.

Some think he will not have to wait too long.
Jim Benson, head of SpaceDev, which built Rutan's
rocket engine, says far more powerful orbital spacecraft
will undoubtedly follow the sub-orbital vehicles,
and orbit could be reached by 2008.


Mach 25 capability
 

Challenges abound: SpaceShipOne got to sub-orbit at a
speed of Mach 3. Getting to orbit will require engines
capable of Mach 25. But Benson sees no show-stoppers.

Of course, tourists need accommodation, and Las Vegas
hotelier Robert Bigelow is aiming to supply it. Bigelow
made his fortune as the owner of the Budget Suites of
America hotel chain, and he is now launching a
$500 million effort to expand his business off-planet.

Adapted from TransHab, a never-used NASA design for an
inflatable space station, Bigelow's Nautilus space station
module will provide 330 cubic metres of living space for
space tourists or industrial researchers.

The inflatable multilayered polymer hull of the
"hab" will be around 30 centimetres thick and will contain
layers of Kevlar - as used in bullet-proof vests - to provide
some protection against micrometeorites and space debris.

Bigelow's engineers are testing the strength of the
sandwich of high-tech fabrics and radiation shielding
that will make up Nautilus's hull by firing high-speed
projectiles at it. They are also testing the hab to
destruction by over-inflating the modules, with the resulting
explosions contained in rigid test cages.


Economies of scale
 

Nautiluses could be flown as independent space stations
or connected with a docking mechanism to make bigger hotels.
Bigelow sees economies of scale as one of the keys to
profitability, and plans to sell space hotels to rivals
for $100 million each.

It all sounds far-fetched, but like Rutan, Bigelow is
approaching his space ideas methodically, treating
the space hotel like any other real-estate project.
"We act as a general contractor," he says.

He sources materials, tests them to ensure quality, and
tries to match the best materials with the best prices,
just as he would on a terrestrial construction project.
"Good is good," Bigelow says, whether it's on Earth or in orbit.

If all goes well with orbital tests of one-third-scale
test modules to be launched late next year, Bigelow plans
to launch the first habitable Nautilus in 2008, around the
time SpaceDev expects the first private orbital
flights to be happening.

While Starzyk, for one, does not think commercial
orbital vehicles will happen that soon, space flight has
always been fuelled by dreamers daring to expect the impossible.
Time will tell if they are right.

 

 

 

 

 

06:21 Écrit par Kathy Schmurtz et Had | Lien permanent | Commentaires (0) |  Facebook |

Elevage d'espions en Corée du Nord.

<Nouvelle page 1

Le Telegraph nous apprend encore de bonnes nouvelles sur le sympathique régime de
Kim Jong Il :

Celui-ci aurait kidnappé des soldats Américains ainsi que des femmes au
Moyen-Orient pour que leurs enfants puissent devenir des espions au service
du grand leader.  Le régime Nord Coréen pratiquait une forme d'élevage
d'enfants pouvant passer pour des Américains. On leur pratiquerait un lavage
du cerveau et les enverrait commes espions aux Etats Unis.

Charmant.

 

North Korea 'bred spies using former US soldiers'
By Damien McElroy
(Filed: 05/09/2004)
 

An American army sergeant who spent 40 years in North Korea
has revealed that the Stalinist state operated a programme to
breed spies who could pass themselves off as Westerners.

As a part of a plea-bargain with the American military, who want him court-martialled
on desertion charges, Charles Jenkins has made the extraordinary claim
that other former American soldiers living in North Korea were used to
father children who are now operating as spies abroad.

Mr Jenkins disappeared from a guardbox on the Demilitarised Zone
dividing Korea in 1965. He is now receiving medical treatment in a Tokyo
hospital after being allowed to leave North Korea with his
Japanese wife, but faces attempts to extradite him to the
United States for trial.

According to testimony which Mr Jenkins
will pass to the US, to whom he says he is ready to
surrender, North Korean agents abducted women from eastern Europe
and the Middle East, to be married to American soldiers in
Pyongyang.

In a statement prepared by his American
military lawyer, Mr Jenkins said: "In two of the cases,
the Americans had multiple children who are now young
adults who appear to be American or European."

According to Mr Jenkins's account, the
Americans were allowed to marry only so that they could
produce spies for North Korea, "so they could target
American interests in South Korea and beyond".

To back up his claim,
Mr Jenkins has produced a photograph of five people he
alleges to be spies for North Korea.
They are believed to be the children of three other
American soldiers -

James Dresnok, Larry Abshier and Jerry Wayne - who disappeared into
North Korea during the Cold War.
He says that the photograph was taken in April.

The 64-year-old infantry trooper was
allowed to leave North Korea for the first timesince 1965
in June. He and his two daughters flew first to Indonesia
to meet his Japanese wife, Hitomi Soga, and then on to Japan.

After undergoing corrective treatment for
a botched prostate operation carried out in North Korea,
Mr Jenkins last week promised to turn himself in to
the American military. Since then he has for the
first time spoken of his hatred for the North Korean regime.
Under its control he endured beatings as officials
turned the American soldiers against each other.

The diminutive Mr Jenkins claims that he
was repeatedly bullied by Mr Dresnok.
"If I didn't listen to the North Korean government,
they would tie me up, call Dresnok in to beat me.
Dresnok really enjoyed it," he said.

The claim that North Korea ran a spy
breeding programme is the latest in a long list
of extraordinary operations that North Korea is believed to have
undertaken in its struggle to gain information about the West.

An impoverished hardline Communist state,
the country survives by devoting most of its resources to
arms programmes and drug-running. Its reclusive leader,
Kim Jong-il is known to have installed "pleasure
squads" of young women from Asia and the Middle
East in villas in Pyongyang. He is also fascinated by
the world of espionage and regularly watches James Bond
films in his private cinemas.

Kim has been accused of leading terrorist
operations in the 1980s, including planting a bomb
on a South Korean airliner, killing hundreds of people.

He was widely believed by the West to be
insane until Madeleine Albright, the former American
secretary of state, declared him to be "perfectly
rational" after a summit in 2000.

The American military said last week that
it would provide Mr Jenkins with a uniform and quarters
on a base outside Tokyo when he surrenders.
"We're always ready to take in deserters and receive them
back," said Major John Amberg, a spokesman for the American army in Japan.

 

 

 

 

04:52 Écrit par Kathy Schmurtz et Had | Lien permanent | Commentaires (0) |  Facebook |