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The trials and tribulations of Sister Megan Rice – “The trial was unusual in many ways!”

……According to the receipt presented as evidence, Y-12 purchased 20 five-gallon cans of paint — at a cost of $450.60 — in order to make the graffiti and stains go away.

Boertje-Obed, who served as his own legal counsel in the trial, had one question for Johnson during cross-examination.

“Do you know if any paint was left over?” he asked the retired general.

Boertje-Obed, a house painter by trade, said he thought the job could probably have been accomplished with a single gallon of paint.

When the government objected to his line of questions, Boertje-Obed turned and went back to his seat…….

walli.jpg

KNS photo/SAUL YOUNG

http://blogs.knoxnews.com/munger/2013/05/notebook-was-the-judge-wearing.html

Michael Walli, left, of Transform Now Plowshares dances with costumed Rick Brown during a rally Wednesday at Market Square. Walli, along with co-defendants Sister Megan Rice and Greg Boertje-Obed, participated in the demonstration during a break in their trial. A federal jury later that day found the three guilty on all charges in the July 28, 2012 break-in at the Y-12 nuclear weapons plant.

This week’s trial of Y-12 protesters proceeded at a speedy pace, reminiscent of a fast break by one of Kentucky’s highly talented basketball teams.

That’s probably fitting because the trial was being pushed along by U.S. District Judge Amul Thapar, a huge fan of the Kentucky Wildcats who never let anybody forget where his loyalties lie — at least during basketball season.

Thapar’s normal judicial seat is the Eastern District of Kentucky, but he was on loan to Knoxville for the federal trial of three defendants — Sister Megan Rice, Michael Walli and Greg Boertje-Obed — known collectively as the Transform Now Plowshares.

The trial wrapped up in half the time of the predicted four days.

On Monday, during jury selection, Thapar did all the questioning himself, and he kibitzed with the potential jurors, telling them he was from a “foreign state north of here” where the basketball players go pro.

“Yes, I am a Big Blue fan,” he said, assuming he was talking to a bunch of folks with orange stuff running through their veins (although there was never a retort of “Go Vols!” from the jury box).

The judge continued to make Kentucky references throughout the trial, and more than one participant suggested the speed of the trial was directly related to Thapar’s desire to go home.
The crowds are coming

Continue reading

May 11, 2013 Posted by | Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Shock report! 30 Percent of Japanese Nuclear experts remain uncomfortable with Nuclear Power!

editorial cartoon by laughzilla from may 2011

Image source ; http://laughzilla.com/2011/05/31/endangered-species-nuclear-plants/

The Liberal Democratic Party (LDP) included continuing atomic power in their election promises last year and won a huge victory, so I think nuclear experts might have regained some of their confidence in the technology.

May. 12, 2013 – 04:53AM JST

Kansai University professor of social psychology Shoji Tsuchida, referring to the results of a survey that show 70% of nuclear energy experts with the Atomic Energy Society of Japan (AESJ) remain comfortable with nuclear power. (Mainichi Shimbun)

http://www.japantoday.com/category/quote-of-the-day/view/the-liberal-democratic-party-ldp-included-continuing-atomic-power-in-their-election-promises-last-year-and-won-a-huge-victory-so-i-think-nuclear-experts-might-have-regained-some-of-their-confidence

May 11, 2013 Posted by | Uncategorized | 1 Comment

-*+Fukushima – School students forced to clean swimming pool without proper safety equipment! – 未成年が除染作業を強いられている-福島県郡山市

Published by nuclear-news.net

by Arclight2011

10 May 2013

h/t Mia

HAS THE UN “OPTIONAL PROTOCOL” FAILED

FOR THE CHILDREN OF

FUKUSHIMA?

…On a more technical point, it was explained that annual exposure to radiation was at the level advised by the International Commission on Radiological Protection (ICRP)….

Japanese government delegation statement to the UN concerning the Fukushima Nuclear disaster April 2013

High school students were forced to clean their swimming pool!

未成年が除染作業を強いられている-福島県郡山市

Image

Koriyama City in Fukushima Prefecture

The students were allowed to clean the swimming pool (Gieger showing 0.51 uSv/h) without wearing any safety equipment. They just had their school uniforms for protection!

Image

Nearby were students doing vigorous exercise, as dust and moisture droplets were being made airborne.

Image

The Reading here was 0.50 mcSv/h, an air reading taken approximately 1 metre off the ground.

Screenshot from 2013-05-10 14:09:52

This is the video footage from the high school in Koriyama City in Fukushima Prefecture showing the work being done;

Published on 8 May 2013

2013年5月8日
福島県立郡山高等学校の生徒が教諭の命令によりプールの除染作業を強いられています。

The Japanese Government has allowed decontamination work to be done by minors!

Committee on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights considers Report of Japan

Committee on Economic, Social
  and Cultural Rights

30 April 2013

[Extracts]

[…]

Regarding those that survived the atomic bombing, their medical needs related to their exposure was subsidised and this would allow them to maintain a suitable level of living. 

Continue reading

May 11, 2013 Posted by | Uncategorized | 2 Comments

Dumping of Fukushima radioactive water into Pacific Ocean

water-radiationReport: Tepco now dumping contaminated water from Fukushima plant into ocean — 200 tons of radioactive groundwater “pumped out” http://enenews.com/report-tepco-begins-dumping-contaminated-water-into-ocean-200-tons-of-radioactive-groundwater-pumped-out

Kyodo News: Tokyo Electric Power Co. plans to discharge some groundwater that has flowed into the premises of the crippled Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant […] As a trial, TEPCO has pumped out about 200 tons of groundwater using the wells. Its density of radioactive substances was “the same as rivers in surrounding areas,” according to company officials. […] The utility hopes to hold a meeting with local fishermen Monday to seek approval of the groundwater release […]

SimplyInfoTEPCO B Begins Dumping Contaminated Water Into The Sea […] TEPCO has begun dumping groundwater pumped out of a set of wells inland from the reactors into the Pacific. TEPCO dumped 200 tons of groundwater yesterday as a test. […]
From Yesterday: Asahi: Tepco to dump groundwater from Fukushima nuclear plant into Pacific Ocean — Trying to “avoid a total collapse” of system for handling radioactive water (PHOTO)

May 11, 2013 Posted by | Fukushima 2013, Japan, oceans | Leave a comment

Anti nuclear Sister Megan Rice, in handcuffs and leg irons – not allowed out before sentencing

see-this.way(scroll down for video) http://www.rawstory.com/rs/2013/05/09/83-year-old-nun-gets-20-year-sentence-for-symbolic-nuclear-facility-break-in/ VIDEO 83-year-old nun gets 20 year sentence for ‘symbolic’ nuclear facility break-in Raw Story By Stephen C. Webster, May 9, 2013  “…….Sister Rice has been arrested between 40 or 50 times committing acts of civil disobedience, according to The New York Times, including once in Nevada after she physically blocked a truck at a nuclear test site.

Rice,-Sister-Megan-82

Depleted uranium munitions like the kind stored at the facility Sister Rice targeted are blamed for some of the worst birth defects and soaring cancer rates seen in post-war Iraq, particularly in the city of Fallujah following the siege of 2004, in which U.S. soldiers killed thousands of civilians.

The city has never recovered, particularly from the use of depleted uranium munitions, and to this day residents suffer from health effects “worse” than those seen following the nuclear detonations at Hiroshima and Nagasaki, according to a study by the International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health.

“I believe we are all equally responsible to stop a known crime,” Sister Rice said from the witness stand, according to quotes published by her group. She called herself a “citizen of the world” and reportedly smiled as the verdict was read.

Convicted nuclear protesters must stay in jail  MIAMI HERALD, BY ERIK SCHELZIG 9 MAY 13,  ASSOCIATED PRESS “….The trio appeared in court Thursday in handcuffs and leg irons seeking their release until their Sept. 23 sentencing…” .http://www.miamiherald.com/2013/05/09/3389262/nuclear-protesters-seek-release.html

May 11, 2013 Posted by | Resources -audiovicual | 1 Comment

The planet to heat faster, with record carbon in the atmosphere

globe-warmingCarbon pollution hits highest point in 3 million years http://www.abc.net.au/news/2013-05-11/carbon-pollution-reaches-highest-point-in-3-million-years/4680276  By environment reporter Sarah Clarke Global greenhouse gases in the atmosphere have reached an ominous milestone that is unprecedented in human history.

graph-carbon-in-atmosphere

The world’s longest measure of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere has reached 400 parts per million (PPM) for the first time in three million years. The daily CO2 level is measured at the Mauna Loa Observatory in Hawaii, which tracks greenhouse gases in the Northern Hemisphere.

The level has been measured at Mauna Loa since 1958, with data before that taken from ice core samples. The last time it reached this level, temperatures rose by between three and four degrees and sea levels were between five and 40 metres higher than today.

The rise in greenhouse gases corresponds with the extra carbon dioxide known to have been emitted by humans through fossil fuels and clearing forests.

Climate Institute chief executive John Connor says greenhouse gas concentrations have increased by about 40 per cent since the industrial revolution. ”So there’s a clear trend and a dangerous trend in carbon pollution,” he said.

Mr Connor says the worrying trend puts the planet on a path towards dangerous climate change. ”This matters because the extra heat is loading the dice for even more dangerous weather extremes and climate risk,” he said. ”We’ve already seen a lot of those with a warming of around one degree warming of average levels. ”We’re heading towards two to three and four and if you think the weather extremes have been dangerous and unsafe, then you ain’t seen nothing yet.”

May 11, 2013 Posted by | 2 WORLD, climate change | Leave a comment

A sad week for the nuclear industry: 6 reactors to go

nuke-plant-sadExperts: Easily the worst single week for U.S. nuclear power industry since Fukushima — 4 major setbacks in 3 days — 6 reactors on chopping block http://enenews.com/experts-easily-the-worst-single-week-for-u-s-nuclear-power-industry-since-fukushima-4-major-setbacks-in-3-days-6-reactors-on-chopping-block
Title: Worst Week Since Fukushima: 4 Major Setbacks In 3 Days Are Latest…
Source: PRNewswire-USNewswire
Author: Peter Bradford , adjunct professor, Vermont Law School and Mark Cooper, senior fellow for economic analysis, Institute for Energy and the Environment, Vermont Law School
Date: May 8, 2013

Worst Week Since Fukushima: 4 Major Setbacks In 3 Days Are Latest Stumbles For U.S. Nuclear Power Industry

Reverse Renaissance? Experts Point to 6 Reactors on the Chopping Block and Passage of Anti-Industry Florida Law; Beleaguered Industry’s Woes Start With Bad Economics … and Go Downhill From There.

Call it the “renaissance in reverse.” Not only is the U.S. nuclear power industry mothballing plans for planned reactors in North Carolina and Texas, it also is now pulling the plug (or threatening to do so) on existing reactors in California. All of that and the passage of anti-industry legislation in Florida happened last week (April 28th-May 3rd), easily the worst single week for the U.S. nuclear power industry since the March 2011 meltdown of nuclear reactors in Fukushima, Japan. […]
Full release here

May 11, 2013 Posted by | general | 1 Comment

USA entraps and spies on activists

secret-agent-SmAn Interview With Julian Assange, the Nation, Chris Hedges, 8 May 13 “……The dragnet has swept up any person or organization that fits the profile of those with the technical skills and inclination to burrow into the archives of power and disseminate it to the public. It no longer matters if they have committed a crime. The group Anonymous, which has mounted cyberattacks on government agencies at the local and federal levels, saw Barrett Brown—a journalist associated with Anonymous and who specializes in military and intelligence contractors—arrested along with Jeremy Hammond, a political activist alleged to have provided WikiLeaks with 5.5 million e-mails between the security firm Strategic Forecasting (Stratfor) and its clients. Brown and Hammond were apparently seized because of allegations made by an informant named Hector Xavier Monsegur—known as Sabu—who appears to have attempted to entrap WikiLeaks while under FBI supervision.

To entrap and spy on activists, Washington has used an array of informants, including Adrian Lamo, who sold Bradley Manning out to the US government.

WikiLeaks collaborators or supporters are routinely stopped—often at international airports—and attempts are made to recruit them as informants. Jérémie ZimmermanSmári McCarthyJacob AppelbaumDavid House and one of Assange’s lawyers, Jennifer Robinson, all have been approached or interrogated. The tactics are often heavy-handed. McCarthy, an Icelander and WikiLeaks activist, was detained and extensively questioned when he entered the United States. Soon afterward, three men who identified themselves as being from the FBI approached McCarthy in Washington. The men attempted to recruit him as an informant and gave him instructions on how to spy on WikiLeaks.

On Aug. 24, 2011, six FBI agents and two prosecutors landed in Iceland on a private jet. The team told the Icelandic government that it had discovered a plan by Anonymous to hack into Icelandic government computers. But it was soon clear the team had come with a very different agenda. The Americans spent the next few days, in flagrant violation of Icelandic sovereignty, interrogating Sigurdur Thordarson, a young WikiLeaks activist, in various Reykjavik hotel rooms. Thordarson, after the US team was discovered by the Icelandic Ministry of the Interior and expelled from the country, was taken to Washington, DC, for four days of further interrogation. Thordarson appears to have decided to cooperate with the FBI. It was reported in the Icelandic press that he went to Denmark in 2012 and sold the FBI stolen WikiLeaks computer hard drives for about $5,000.

There have been secret search orders for information from Internet service providers, including Twitter, Google and Sonic, as well as seizure of information about Assange and WikiLeaks from the company Dynadot, a domain name registrar and web host…..” .http://www.thenation.com/article/174227/interview-julian-assange#

 

May 11, 2013 Posted by | civil liberties, secrets,lies and civil liberties, USA | 3 Comments

Fukushima nuclear reactor 1 to have its cover removed

Fukushima-coverCover over Reactor No. 1 to be removed at Fukushima plant — Radiation levels expected to rise http://enenews.com/cover-reactor-1-be-removed-fukushima-plant-radiation-levels-expected-rise
Title: TEPCO to take off cover of No. 1 reactor building for fuel removal
Source: Kyodo News
Date: May 9, 2013
The operator of the crippled Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant said Thursday it plans to temporarily take off a cover placed around the damaged No. 1 reactor building to prepare for the removal of fuel in the spent fuel pool.
Tokyo Electric Power Co. installed the cover in October 2011 to prevent the further release of radioactive substances into the air […]

A TEPCO official said that dismantling the cover — work which will start in the fall — is expected to lead to a “slight rise” in the radiation level but the impact will be “little.” […]
UPDATE: Tepco to demolish makeshift cover at Fukushima Reactor No. 1 — Trying to remove “radioactive material” — Will take 4 years for new one (PHOTO)

May 11, 2013 Posted by | Fukushima 2013 | Leave a comment

Hanford Nuclear reservation getting ever more dangerous

Hanford Nuclear Cleanup May Be Too Dangerous, Future Of Storage Plant Uncertain  http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2013/05/09/hanford-nuclear-cleanup-too-dangerous_n_3246263.html?utm_hp_ref=green |  By Valerie Brown 05/09/2013 , Scientific American:  (click here for original article)

Hanford-waste-tanks

The most toxic and voluminous nuclear waste in the U.S.—208 million liters —sits in decaying underground tanks at the Hanford Site (a nuclear reservation) in southeastern Washington State. It accumulated there from the middle of World War II, when the Manhattan Project invented the first nuclear weapon, to 1987, when the last reactor shut down. The federal government’s current attempt at a permanent solution for safely storing that waste for centuries—the Waste Treatment and Immobilization Plant here—has hit a major snag in the form of potential chain reactions, hydrogen explosions and leaks from metal corrosion. And the revelation last February that six more of the storage tanks are currently leaking has further ramped up the pressure for resolution. Continue reading

May 11, 2013 Posted by | Reference, safety, USA, wastes | Leave a comment

Nuclear industry’s battle against public opinion and rising costs

NUCLEAR-INDUSTRY-FIGHTS-ONPlatts Survey: High Capital Costs and Maintaining Public Confidence Cited as Greatest Challenges Facing European Nuclear Power Markets Sacramento Bee, May. 9, 2013 -LONDON, May 8, 2013 – /PRNewswire/ — High capital costs and maintaining public confidence are seen as the greatest challenges facing the European nuclear power industry, according to a recent survey conducted by Platts, a leading global energy, petrochemical and metals information provider. The survey included more than 100 utilities, builders, consultancies, and regulators in Europe and precedes the eighth annualPlatts European Nuclear Power Conference set for June 26-27 in Warsaw, Poland.

Political risk, long construction periods, regulatory uncertainty and safety concerns were also highlighted as key hurdles before the Continent’s nuclear power companies.

“While most of these challenges are traditional to the industry and likely always will be, they’ll likely be heightened as new units, particularly those using new designs, are built,” said Platts Chief Editor of nuclear publications Tom Harrison, who reviewed the survey results. “Currently these challenges are being viewed in a particular context, one of: increased concerns about climate change, the pursuit of energy diversity, cost/benefit of competing generating sources, and attention to safety and its costs in the wake of the 2011 Fukushima nuclear accident.”

A newer aspect to these challenges, Harrison explained, is that reactor vendors and other suppliers competing for new export opportunities are exploring new ways of packaging deals as nuclear power programs are introduced in other countries.

Industry supporters and detractors are expected to watch closely the first new nuclear projects in Europe to see how they fare as they encounter those political, financial, regulatory and safety issues…… http://www.sacbee.com/2013/05/09/5406980/platts-survey-high-capital-costs.html

May 11, 2013 Posted by | business and costs, EUROPE | Leave a comment

Navajo’s continuing fight against nuclear corporations, uranium companies

The Navajo people’s struggle to prevent the re-entry of mining corporations has so far been successful. It is fair to assume that as long as valuable resources remain on Indigenous lands profit-hungry corporations will continue to circle like vultures.

NavajoNavajo Nation battles uranium corporations, nuclear industry Decades of dealing with environmental degradation, racism, Liberation, By Bethany Woody MAY 8, 2013  “……….In early 2013, uranium companies approached the Navajo Nation in hopes they will allow them to renew mining operations on their land. These companies claim that they have developed newer and safer methods for extracting uranium, after decades of environmental destruction and abuse led the Navajo Nation to officially ban their mining. Continue reading

May 11, 2013 Posted by | indigenous issues, Reference, Uranium, USA | Leave a comment

Time to go for safety: take nuclear missiles off the instant alert status

If the United States reduced its intercontinental ballistic missiles from 500 to 300, it would save $80 billion over the next ten years

Flag-USAHow to Stop Nuclear Proliferation, HUFFINGTON POST,  05/10/2013  The nuclear imbroglio with North Korea has cooled off considerably, and the nuclear issues with Iran remain on the back burner. At home, however, there is a new nuclear concern that involves the removal of 17 Air Force officers in April 2013 assigned to stand watch over nuclear-tipped Minuteman missiles at Minot Air Force Base in North Dakota. In a blunt memorandum, the deputy commander of the missile unit described a “crisis” that involved “rot in the crew force.” In view of the lack of career opportunities for Air Force officers in the missile field, it should not be surprising that there has been loss of discipline, sloppy performance, and even the intentional violation of nuclear safety rules.

This incident raises serious questions about the need for the intense alert status at the missile base where two officers are on constant alert at all times inside an underground launching control center, ready to launch an intercontinental ballistic missile (ICBM) upon presidential order. Continue reading

May 11, 2013 Posted by | USA, weapons and war | Leave a comment

Japan refuses to sign international statement against use of nuclear weapons

atomic-bomb-lflag-japanPreventing use of nuclear weapons, Japan Times Editorial 10 May 13 Japan recently refused to support an international joint statement which stressed that “It is in the interest of the very survival of humanity that nuclear weapons are never used again, under any circumstances.”

The Japanese government’s failure to sign the statement is regrettable in view of the simple fact that Japan became the first nation in history to suffer from the use of nuclear weapons through the U.S. atomic bombings of Hiroshima and Nagasaki in August 1945. In addition, a nuclear catastrophe happened at Tokyo Electric Power Co.’s Fukushima No. 1 nuclear power plant, causing great hardship to residents of Fukushima Prefecture.

Some 150,000 people from the prefecture are still forced to live away from their homes because the homes are located in areas contaminated by radioactive substances from the plant.

The Japanese are among the few on Earth who have experienced the dread of exposure to radiation whether it is from a nuclear weapon or from a nuclear power plant accident. Many Japanese citizens will not accept the government’s decision not to sign the statement, which was supported on April 24 by 74 countries at the second session of the Preparatory Committee for the 2015 Review Conference of the Parties to the Treaty on the Non-Proliferation of Nuclear Weapons in Geneva.

The joint statement said in part, “It is a shared responsibility of all States to prevent the use of nuclear weapons.” It also said, “The only way to guarantee that nuclear weapons will never be used again is through their total elimination.” It would not be far-fetched to say that by not supporting it, Japan has negated its own hard experience it could use to accelerate moves toward the elimination of nuclear weapons…… http://www.japantimes.co.jp/opinion/2013/05/11/editorials/preventing-use-of-nuclear-weapons/#.UY68JqJwpLs

May 11, 2013 Posted by | Japan, politics international, weapons and war | Leave a comment

UK: call to reopen case of murdered anti nuclear activist

murder-1flag-UKHilda Murrell murder: call to examine ‘MI5 link’ to murder of nuclear activist  Guardian UK, 6 May 13 ,  The Observer,   18 March 2012 Michael Mansfield QC wants to know what intelligence services knew about killing of anti-nuclear activist Hilda Murrell in 1984 One of Britain’s leading human rights lawyers has demanded a fresh police inquiry to establish what the British intelligence services knew about the murder of a prominent anti-nuclear campaigner.Michael Mansfield QC said new evidence meant that an independent police force should be appointed to examine enduring concerns and inconsistencies relating to the death of Hilda Murrell in March 1984.

Murrell, 78, was abducted from her home in Shrewsbury and her body was discovered days later in a nearby copse. A high-profile campaigner against nuclear weapons, she had been due to present evidence to the public inquiry into the proposed Sizewell B nuclear reactor in East Anglia. Her death triggered numerous conspiracy theories and allegations relating to the involvement of MI5, with one MP, Tam Dalyell, telling parliament that “men of British intelligence” were involved.

Subsequent claims from intelligence sources that they never even opened a file on the rose-growing anti-nuclear campaigner have now been dismissed by Mansfield as “completely ludicrous”.

He said: “There must have been a file for a number of reasons. One of them being that she plainly was very active and very outspoken about a government policy that was extremely sensitive at that time – nuclear power.

“It was central to Margaret Thatcher’s thinking. They would have been watching closely what she was up to, who she was associating with and so on.

“The victim was consumed with anxiety that something was going to happen to her. A look at why that might be involves the evidence she was about to give to the Sizewell inquiry.”

The involvement of Mansfield, whose past cases include the Stephen Lawrence murder, follows the painstaking accumulation of evidence on the case by Murrell’s nephew, Commander Robert Green…….

 

Despite 28 years having passed since her death, Green will this week reveal details of what he claims are attempts to intimidate him in order to prevent him from investigating the case. Despite having moved to New Zealand, Green says he is the subject of continuing surveillance and that the tyres of his car have been slashed, his mail intercepted and, occasionally, his house broken into.

He has continued to investigate, arriving in London this week to share fresh evidence collated for his book on the murder, A Thorn In Their Side.

Among questions raised about the case are those casting fresh doubts on the conviction of a burglar, Andrew George, who was jailed for life in 2005 for Murrell’s murder. George was aged 16 at the time and in care at a children’s home near her home. The prosecution believed that he panicked during a burglary before abducting Murrell.

George’s DNA was found to match samples taken from the scene, yet a previously undisclosed witness statement made by a forensic scientist in the case, Michael Appleby, indicates that he found DNA under Murrell’s fingernails from another man.

Green claims that this information was withheld from the trial jury……. http://www.guardian.co.uk/law/2012/mar/18/hilda-murrell-michael-mansfield

 

May 11, 2013 Posted by | Legal, UK | Leave a comment