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Archive for April 2018

Iran's Nukes

Israel Presents Iran Nuclear Files

April 30th 2018

Iran centrifuges

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu stepped up pressure on the United States to pull out of a 2015 nuclear deal with Iran, holding a primetime address on Israeli TV to present what he called evidence of a secret Iranian nuclear weapons program.

Intelligence experts and diplomats said he did not seem to have presented a “smoking gun” showing that Iran had violated the agreement, although he may have helped make a case on behalf of hawks in the U.S. administration who want to scrap it.

Most of the purported evidence Netanyahu unveiled dated to the period before the 2015 accord was signed, although he said Iran had also kept important files on nuclear technology since then, and continued adding to its “nuclear weapons knowledge”. Tehran dismissed Netanyahu as “the boy who cried wolf”, and called his presentation propaganda. Read more ..

Media on Edge

Drew Cloud Is a Well-Known Expert on Student Loans--But He’s Not Real

April 29th 2018

New York Times Bldg

Drew Cloud is everywhere. The self-described journalist who specializes in student-loan debt has been quoted in major news outlets, including The Washington Post, The Boston Globe, and CNBC, and is a fixture in the smaller, specialized blogosphere of student debt.

He’s always got the new data, featuring irresistible twists:

One in five students use extra money from their student loans to buy digital currencies.

Nearly 8 percent of students would move to North Korea to free themselves of their debt.

Twenty-seven percent would contract the Zika virus to live debt-free.

All of those surveys came from Cloud’s website, The Student Loan Report.

Drew Cloud’s story was simple: He founded the website, an "independent, authoritative news outlet" covering all things student loans, "after he had difficulty finding the most recent student loan news and information all in one place." Read more ..

The Finer Things

Macallan 1926 Scotch Fetch Record $1.2m

April 29th 2018

Sand Clock at Sunset

Two rare bottles of Macallan 1926 single malt whisky have set a new world record after they were sold by Dubai Airport retailer Le Clos for US$1.2m.

The bottles, with labels designed by artists Sir Peter Blake and Valerio Adami, were bought by an international businessman for his private collection for US$600,000 each, setting a new record for the most expensive pair of whisky bottles sold.

The spirit was distilled at Macallan in 1926 and matured for 60 years in ex-Sherry casks before being bottled and released in 1986.

Of the 40 bottles produced, Sir Peter Blake – the pop artist famed for designing the Sgt Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band cover for The Beatles – and Italian graphic artist Valerio Adami designed the labels for 12 bottles each.

These were originally offered as corporate gifts to Macallan’s most valued customers, but have since become some of the most sought-after bottles by whisky collectors.

‘These represent some of the most exclusive bottles ever produced, making this an iconic sale that will be remembered worldwide for years to come,’ said Geoff Kirk, Macallan’s director of prestige.

‘It is incredibly rare for The Macallan 1926 to be made available for purchase, and the sale offers whisky connoisseurs the chance to secure historic bottles emblematic of 20th-century pop culture.’


The Digital Age

Facebook Bans Frontpage Editor Jamie Glazov For Reporting a Muslim’s Threat

April 17th 2018

Frustrated computer user

Facebook has banned Frontpage Editor and Glazov Gang host Jamie Glazov for seven days. Jamie's crime is posting/reporting on his Facebook page a physical threat that was made to him personally on his FB page by a member of the Religion of Peace.

On Saturday, April 14, 2018, a certain Muhammad Irfan Ayoub started commenting on Jamie's page, rebuking him for daring to bring attention to the persecution of women and girls under Sharia and telling Jamie to convert to Islam. As the exchange ensued over various aspects of Islam, and as Jamie made clear he did not want to convert, Ayoub made it evident that there would be punishment and that "Allah will defeat you." Jamie inquired how this punishment from Allah was synonymous with Islam being a Religion of Peace -- which Ayoub contested Islam to be. Read more ..

After the Holocaust

The Challenge of Legacy

April 16th 2018

Edwin Black

EDITOR’S NOTE: This is a transcript of Edwin Black’s April 11, 2018 keynote address in the Michigan Capitol Rotunda for that state’s official Holocaust Commemoration.

Today, I come not just to mourn nor to scorn but rather to warn our world, that is, the world of today whose memories are still whistling and bristling with the torments and tribulations of a generation now passing before our eyes. But also, for the world of tomorrow — and the day after — pulsed by a generation whose torments and tribulations may yet be in store. The outrages are audible just over the horizon. But in many cases the horizon is speeding toward us like an unstoppable tsunami preparing to crash.

Many of us dwell in the dark past hoping to immunize our future from the maniacal and ideological fires that immolated six million Jews and so many others— and left a world’s hands and souls smoke-singed in the process. The Holocaust was unique among history’s great cruelties for it was a 12-year international persecution and murder machine perpetrated in the glare of broad daylight as well as the dim of night… emboldened by its own German Ministry of Propaganda advertising it and amid incessant media coverage that bled across the front pages of newspapers, crackled into regular radio reports, flickered in newsreels, and even saddened the whispers and diaries of children hiding in an Amsterdam attic. The world knew.

With study, revelation, and investigation, many now understand how we got here. Make no mistake. The Germans did it. Their allies and accomplices did it. Hitler did it.

But Hitler had help.

The Trump Era

Coalition Launched 105 Weapons against Syria, None Intercepted

April 16th 2018

Standard Missile 3

As American, British and French ordnance rained down on a trio of Syrian regime targets, Russian air defense systems made no attempt to intercept the weapons, the Pentagon said Saturday.

The attacks may have set the Syrian chemical weapons programs back for “years,” said Marine Corps Lt. Gen. Kenneth McKenzie, the director of the Joint Staff, while acknowledging that the three sites were not the totality of the Syrian chemical weapons program.

The strikes involved ordnance from all three of the western allied nations, from both air and naval assets. Overall, 105 weapons were launched by the three nations. The three targeted areas were:

1) The Barzah Research and Development Center, which McKenzie called the “heart” of the chemical weapons program for the Assad regime and is located in “one of the most heavily defended” areas in the world, very close to the capitol of Damascus. This site was targeted by American forces only, with 57 Tomahawk missiles launched by sea and 19 JASSM-ER weapons launched from a pair of B-1 bombers, accompanied by protective fighter coverage. The U.S. assesses this facility was destroyed. 


The Trump Era

A New Law Is Needed to Protect Lawyer-Client Communications

April 15th 2018

File Folders

The raid on President Trump's lawyer dramatically demonstrates the need for new legislation to assure that no FBI agents or US attorneys ever get to read privileged communications between a lawyer and a client, a doctor and a patient, a priest and penitent, or a husband and a wife.

Under current law, confidential material is read or listened to by a taint team comprised of FBI agents and prosecutors. The taint team then sends over to prosecutors all non-privileged material. But a number of FBI agents and prosecutors have already read and listened to the privileged material. They must be trusted not to leak it or misuse it in any way. Even if they don't, the very fact that government agents have been given access to the most confidential and sacred materials should trouble every American, because the government does have the right to seize material that is not privileged, and such material may be comingled with privileged material.

There is a better and safer way to deal with this issue than the current approach of using prosecutors and FBI agents to do the sifting. A law should be enacted under which anytime the government is seeking to search an office or home that may contain confidential and privileged information, the search team must be accompanied by a judicial officer – a judge, a magistrate or someone appointed to fulfill that function.


The Battle for Syria

Russia blames Israel for Attack on Syrian Air Base Likely Over Gas Atrocity

April 9th 2018

Syria fighting injured baby

ussia blamed Israel for a missile attack on a Syria air base on Monday morning, which came after President Bashar al-Assad triggered international outrage by carrying out a suspected chemical attack in a besieged suburb of Damascus.

The US and France both denied attacking the T-4 airfield near Homs, which is close to the ancient city of Palmyra in central Syria.

Russia said Israel launched eight missiles, five of which were shot down, from outside of Syrian airspace.

At least 14 fighters, including Iranians, were killed in the early morning strike, according to the monitoring organisation the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights. Syria also accused Israel of carrying out the strike.


Facebook on Edge

‘Unsafe to the Community’: Facebook Takes on pro-Trump Diamond and Silk

April 8th 2018

Online dating keyboard

The hilarious duo of Diamond and Silk is a danger to society.

That’s according to Facebook.

The pro-Trump pair posted on the embattled social media platform on Friday night, saying after months of correspondence, they were deemed to be “unsafe to the community.”“Diamond And Silk have been corresponding since September 7, 2017, with Facebook (owned by Mark Zuckerberg), about their bias censorship and discrimination against D&S brand page,” they wrote.

“Finally after several emails, chats, phone calls, appeals, beating around the bush, lies, and giving us the run around, Facebook gave us another bogus reason why Millions of people who have liked and/or followed our page no longer receives notification and why our page, post and video reach was reduced by a very large percentage,” echoing the complaints of many conservative and pro-Trump pages. Read more ..

French Jewry on Edge

France: Soon with No Jews?

April 8th 2018

Paratroopers at Eiffel

A year ago, in Paris, on April 4, 2017, Sarah Halimi, an elderly Jewish retired physician, was horribly tortured and murdered in her home in Paris, then thrown from her window by a man shouting "Allahu Akbar" ("Allah is the greatest") . She had reported to the police several times that she was the victim of anti-Semitic threats -- in vain.

Less than a year later in Paris, another elderly -- and disabled -- Jew, Mireille Knoll, was raped, tortured and murdered in her apartment by another Muslim extremist. Mrs. Knoll, a Holocaust survivor, had also contacted the police to say that she had been threatened. Again, the police did nothing.

For months, the French justice system tried to cover-up the anti-Semitic nature of Sarah Halimi's murder; the judge in charge of Mireille Knoll's case at least recognized the anti-Semitic nature of her murder at once.

Both women were victims of an anti-Semitic hatred that is rising quickly in France.

French Jews live in constant insecurity. The men who murder them evidently do not hesitate to break into homes and attack elderly women; they seem to know they can threaten their future victims without fear of arrest. More often than not, the police do not even record the complaints of Jews who go to the police station, but simply note in the daybook that a Jew claiming threats came and went. The French authorities say they are fighting anti-Semitism, but they never speak of the only anti-Semitism that today in France kills Jews: Islamic anti-Semitism. If the murderer is a Muslim, he is usually described as suddenly "radicalized". Read more ..

The Race for EVs

Wireless Recharging EVs on the Go

April 8th 2018

Traffic Jam

Researchers at the University of Colorado Boulder (Boulder, CO) have developed a proof of concept for wireless power transfer that could potentially allow electric vehicles to be charged while they are moving.

The researchers' wireless power concept is based on transferring electrical energy through electric fields at very high frequencies. Future electric vehicles, they envision, could be able to recharge while driving down the highway by drawing wireless power directly from low-cost charging plates installed in the road.

Most electric vehicles today can only travel between 100 and 250 miles on a single charge, and charging stations are still far from ubiquitous in the U.S., requiring drivers to carefully plan their trips. That problem, say the researchers, could go away with this technology.


The Digital Age

Is Facebook Intentionally Blocking Viewer Engagement on the Jewish Voice Page?

April 5th 2018

Computers multiple

Social media outlets are no longer just ways to meet new people with similar interests and for dating like the old “America Online Chat room “days. With over 2 billion users on Facebook, 1 billion YouTube users and close to 500 million users on Twitter, user-content created social media and video sharing is a way of life for many.

While those daily visits to your Facebook “wall” might include pictures of your co-workers dinner they cooked last night; those visits are also news sources for potentially 2 billion people. Fewer and fewer people are getting their news from the morning network news shows and morning newspaper; the information seeking crowd is simply logging on to Facebook, YouTube and Twitter to see the latest, ranging from sports-scores and weather, to government policy, politics, world affairs and diverse opinions. Read more ..

The Race for EVs

Electric Vehicles Are Now The Equivalent Of Driving An 80 MPG Car

April 5th 2018

Better Place

There are lots of reasons to buy an electric vehicle these days, starting with their cost. A recent analysis found that running an EV is, on average, 2.3 times cheaper than operating a traditional gas vehicle. There’s always been some concern that, despite the environmental cred not pumping gas gives, EV buyers weren’t doing as much for the environment as they thought: if the electricity powering your car comes from coal, you’re still polluting, just from a power plant, not your tailpipe.

But EVs continue to get more efficient and the electricity they use is becoming cleaner. Because the U.S. grid is switching away from coal-fired power to natural gas and renewables, the footprint of the electricity grid, and therefore your EV, is getting smaller all the time.


Dismiss Geraldo Rivera

April 5th 2018

The management of FOX NEWS needs to dismiss Geraldo Rivera for his remarks on THE FIVE last week when he clearly stated his regret for not supporting the 2nd. Intifada where over 2,000 innocent Jews were brutally murdered and over 10,000 injured and permanently maimed for the simple crime of being Jews. This  kind of regret is something we would expect to hear from Louis Farrakhan and the determined Jew-haters of Hamas and Hezbollah not from a commentator on FOX NEWS. By making such an irresponsible remark Mr. Rivera demonstrated he could not possibly have performed anything in the way of journalistic due diligence about the real cause of this unjustified violence which, of course, is the undiminished wish of the Arab Palestinians to destroy the world's only Jewish Nation State. Wishing that he had done more to condone pure evil places Mr. Rivera squarely in the Temple of Disappointment and shows that the moral high-ground upon which he sought to place himself cannot even be measured in mere millimeters. For a long time on FOX NEWS Mr. Rivera has been like a naught in arithmetic, he has had a place but no value. Now, with his morally bankrupt remark he should no longer have that place.

Israel and Saudi Arabia

Israel Has a Right to Exist Says Saudi Prince

April 4th 2018


Saudi Arabia’s crown prince said in an interview on Monday that Israelis are entitled to live peacefully in their own land—a remarkable statement from one of the kingdom’s most powerful men.

In an interview with The Atlantic, Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman said he believes the Jewish people have a right to their own country in at least part of their ancestral homeland, saying “I believe the Palestinians and the Israelis have the right to have their own land. But we have to have a peace agreement to assure stability for everyone and to have normal relations.”

The crown prince, who has gained considerable influence since the ascension of his father, King Salman, to the throne in 2015 and is also heir apparent to the throne, is currently in the United States to grow business ties, as well as seeking support for efforts to halt Iranian influence in the Middle East.

“We have religious concerns about the fate of the holy [Al-Aqsa] mosque in Jerusalem and about the rights of the Palestinian people,” he said. “This is what we have. We don’t have any objection against any other people.” Read more ..

The California Free Speech on Campus Act Will Protect All

April 4th 2018

Over the past year, there has been a sharp spike in acts of hatred and intolerance targeting African Americans, Jews, Muslims, LGBTQ community members, immigrants, women and individuals who hold divergent ideological and political views. Our research and monitoring indicate that this is most problematic on college campuses, where we find that one group’s freedom of expression is being used to denigrate, harass, intimidate and shut down the expression of another group, depriving students of their rights and undermining the very mission of a university. AMCHA has been working with universities across the country to encourage the adoption of equitable responses to exclusionary behavior and the implementation of initiatives that educate students about First Amendment rights and encourage tolerance and respect for the expression of a wide range of views. While our organization focuses primarily on protecting Jewish students from intolerant behavior that is anti-Semitic, we believe the entire campus benefits when all students are ensured equal protection from exclusionary behavior. In California, the Free Speech on Campus Act will go a long way toward that goal of restoring civility and respect on UC, CSU and California Community College campuses, and upholding the pillars of higher education that will benefit our state and our nation for years to come.

The Race for EVs

Smart Charger Connects Solar Panels Directly to EVs

April 2nd 2018

Toyota Prius PHEV

The team worked with Power Research Electronics and Last Mile Solutions, funded by the Dutch Urban Energy Top Consortium (TKI Urban Energy).

Solar panels produce direct current (DC) and this normally has to be converted to alternating current (AC) before it can charge an electric car. The team developed a two-way 10kW direct charger using silicon carbide FETs and quasi-resonant technology which results in a high efficiency of over 96% for both full load and partial load and is a third the size of a conventional AC charger.  

“Charging stations are currently using the 50Hz AC network to exchange power between the solar panels and the vehicle,” said Chandra Mouli at TU Delft. “However, this is not efficient or cost-effective, for two reasons. Firstly, converting to AC results in unnecessary steps and loss. And, secondly, it requires two separate DC-AC converters, one for the vehicle and one for the solar panels, resulting in increased costs and dimensions.”


Inside TV

Record Number of Network Pilots Filming in NYC

April 2nd 2018

Campus crime

It seems the Big Apple is beating Hollywood at its own game. On Thursday March 22nd, the Mayor’s Office of Media and Entertainment announced that the NYC broke its record of Network drama pilots being filmed locally this season. Three of the major networks have opted to film 12 drama pilots in our city. By Contrast, eight pilots will be filmed in Los Angeles. NYC’s boost represents both the largest number of productions across the country and the biggest jump in any city across the nation. “Today’s announcement bodes well for our city’s continued dominance as the episodic TV capital of the world, providing long-lasting, good jobs to New York-based crew members and actors alike,” said MOME Commissioner Julie Menin.

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