Archive for June 11th, 2009

Be Still, and Know that I am God

Thursday, June 11th, 2009

Be Still and Know that I am God

“Be still, and know that I am God;
I will be exalted among the nations,
I will be exalted in the earth.”

Psalm 46:10 (New International Version)

Obama Administration Ordered FBI to Read Rights to Detainees

Thursday, June 11th, 2009

This is what we were afraid of.

A senior Republican on the House Intelligence Committee is accusing the Obama administration of quietly ordering the FBI to start reading Miranda rights to suspected terrorists at U.S. military detention facilities in Afghanistan.

The move is reportedly creating chaos in the field among the CIA, FBI and military personnel, according to Rep. Mike Rogers, R-Mich. The soldiers, especially, he says, are frustrated that giving high value detainees Miranda rights — the right to remain silent, the right to an attorney — is impeding their ability to pursue intelligence on the battlefield, according to a story first reported by the Weekly Standard.

“What I found was lots of confusion and very frustrated people on the front lines who are trying to, well, make Afghanistan successful for the United States and its allies,” said Rogers, who serves on the House Intelligence Committee.

Rogers, a former FBI special agent who served in the U.S. Army, just returned from Afghanistan and a visit to Bagram Air Base, where he said the rights are being read.

“I witnessed it myself, talked to the people on the ground,” he said. “What you have is two very separate missions colliding in the field in a combat zone. Again, anytime that you offer confusion in that environment that’s already chaotic and confusing enough, you jeopardize a soldier’s life.”

U.S. commanders told FOX News soldiers are not reading Miranda rights to detainees, but those commanders could not speak to whether the FBI was doing so. The practice has not been instituted at detention facilities in Iraq or at Guantanamo Bay, according to U.S. senior military officials.

Asked if the Obama administration had ordered that Miranda rights be read to certain detainees, White House spokesman Robert Gibbs said, “I have no reason to disbelieve a member of Congress. But I don’t know any of the circumstances that are involved around it.”

But Gibbs acknowledged that it wouldn’t be a surprise to find out that it was happening.

Justice Department spokesman Dean Boyd denied there has been a policy change covering detainees.

“There has been no policy change nor blanket instruction for FBI agents to Mirandize detainees overseas,” he said in a statement, adding, “While there have been specific cases in which FBI agents have Mirandized suspects overseas, at both Bagram and in other situations, in order to preserve the quality of evidence obtained, there has been no overall policy change with respect to detainees.”

Some senators wonder what would have happened if Khaled Sheikh Mohammad, a self-confessed architect of the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks, had been read his Miranda rights.

“I’d be very concerned if we’re sending FBI agents over to Bagram Air Base in the middle of a military operation to start reading Miranda rights to detainees caught on the battlefield,” Sen. Lindsey Graham, R-S.C., said.

Original Link.

Nearby Star May Be Getting Ready to Explode

Thursday, June 11th, 2009

Starbix,
As our resident expert on the highly anti-religious “Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy” series, would you like to comment on how this news might effect the character from that series Ford Prefect?

Bye-bye, Betelgeuse?

The nearby, well-known and very bright star may soon explode in a supernova, according to data released by U.C. Berkeley researchers Tuesday.

The red giant Betelgeuse, once so large it would reach out to Jupiter’s orbit if placed in our own solar system, has shrunk by 15 percent over the past decade in a half, although it’s just as bright as it’s ever been.

“To see this change is very striking,” said retired Berkeley physics professor Charles Townes, who won the 1964 Nobel Prize for inventing the laser. “We will be watching it carefully over the next few years to see if it will keep contracting or will go back up in size.”

Betelgeuse, whose name derives from Arabic, is easily visible in the constellation Orion. It gave Michael Keaton’s character his name in the movie “Beetlejuice” and was the home system of Galactic President Zaphod Beeblebrox in “The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy.”

Red giant stars are thought to have short, complicated and violent lifespans. Lasting at most a few million years, they quickly burn out their hydrogen fuel and then switch to helium, carbon and other elements in a series of partial collapses, refuelings and restarts.

Betelgeuse, which is thought to be reaching the end of its lifespan, may be experiencing one of those collapses as it switches from one element to another as nuclear-fusion fuel.

“We do not know why the star is shrinking,” said Townes’ Berkeley colleague Edward Wishnow. “Considering all that we know about galaxies and the distant universe, there are still lots of things we don’t know about stars, including what happens as red giants near the ends of their lives.”

Eventually, the huge star may become a nesting doll of elements, with a mixed iron-nickel core surrounded by onion-like layers of silicon, oxygen, neon, carbon, helium and hydrogen.

As the iron fuel runs out, it may explode into a supernova, blasting newly created elements out into the universe and leaving behind a small, incredibly dense neutron star.

All the heavier elements in the universe — including all the oxygen, carbon and iron in your own body — were created in such a way.

It’s possible we’re observing the beginning of Betelgeuse’s final collapse now.

If so, the star, which is 600 light-years away, will already have exploded — and we’ll soon be in for a spectacular, and perfectly safe, interstellar fireworks show.

Original Link.

Surgery Tomorrow

Thursday, June 11th, 2009

My cancerous tumor is scheduled to be removed tomorrow afternoon.
I’ll try to post updates as I am able.
Please continue to pray for us.
Thanks and God Bless!!
-Steve