Archive for January 19th, 2010

US Begins Airdrops of Food and Water into Haiti, French Complain

Tuesday, January 19th, 2010

We are one of the few nations that’s actually been able to get food and water into Haiti, but the French are complaining about us being there. Unbelievable.

The US military has begun airdropping food and water supplies into earthquake-hit Haiti.

Some 14,000 ready-to-eat meals and 15,000 litres of water were dropped north-east of the capital Port-au-Prince, the US said.

It had earlier said airdrops were too risky but congestion at the airport has hampered aid distribution. The US is now considering airdrops across Haiti.

More than 2,000 US Marines are set to join 1,000 US troops in Haiti.

They are equipped with heavy-lifting and earth-moving equipment, a dozen helicopters and medical support facilities.

Their arrival comes amid widespread violence and looting.

Original Link.

Meanwhile…

The French minister in charge of humanitarian relief called on the UN to “clarify” the American role amid claims the military build up was hampering aid efforts.

Alain Joyandet admitted he had been involved in a scuffle with a US commander in the airport’s control tower over the flight plan for a French evacuation flight.

“This is about helping Haiti, not about occupying Haiti,” Mr Joyandet said.

Geneva-based charity Medecins Sans Frontieres backed his calls saying hundreds of lives were being put at risk as planes carrying vital medical supplies were being turned away by American air traffic controllers.

But US commanders insisted their forces’ focus was on humanitarian work and last night agreed to prioritise aid arrivals to the airport over military flights, after the intervention of the UN.

The diplomatic row came amid heightened frustrations that hundreds of tons of aid was still not getting through. Charities reported violence was also worsening as desperate Haitians took matters into their own hands.

The death toll is now estimated at up to 200,000 lives. Around three million Haitians – a third of the country’s population – have been affected by Tuesday’s earthquake and two million require food assistance.

While food and water was gradually arriving at the makeshift camps which have sprung up around the city, riots have broken out in other areas where supplies have still not materialised.

Haiti was occupied by the US between 1915 and 1935, and historical sensitivities together with friction with other countries over the relief effort has made the Americans cautious about their role in the operation.

American military commanders have repeatedly stressed that they are not entering the country as an occupying force.

US soldiers in Port-au-Prince said they had been told to be discreet about how they carry their M4 assault rifles.

A paratrooper sergeant said they were authorised to use “deadly force” if they see anyone’s life in danger but only as a “last resort”.

Capt John Kirby, a spokesman for the joint task force at the airport, said the US recognised it was only one of a number of countries contributing to a UN-led mission.

He also emphasised the US troops, which he said would rise to 10,000 by Wednesday would principally be assisting in humanitarian relief and the evacuation of people needing medical attention.

The main responsibility for security rests with the UN, which is to add a further 3,000 troops to its force of 9,000.

However, it was agreed on Sunday night that the Americans would take over security at the four main food and water distribution points being set up in the city, Capt Kirby said.

“Security here is in a fluid situation,” he said. “If the Haitian government asked us to provide security downtown, we would do that.” He played down the threat of violence, saying: “What we’re seeing is that there are isolated incidents of violence and some pockets where it’s been more restive, but overall it’s calm.”

In the mean time, please continue to pray for the people of Haiti.

Original Link.

World Misled Over Himalayan Glacier Meltdown

Tuesday, January 19th, 2010

Here is yet another example of false climate data being manipulated at worse, not fact checked at best, and proving to be wrong. It seems to be another nail in the coffin of the “global warming” alarmist.

A WARNING that climate change will melt most of the Himalayan glaciers by 2035 is likely to be retracted after a series of scientific blunders by the United Nations body that issued it.

Two years ago the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) issued a benchmark report that was claimed to incorporate the latest and most detailed research into the impact of global warming. A central claim was the world’s glaciers were melting so fast that those in the Himalayas could vanish by 2035.

In the past few days the scientists behind the warning have admitted that it was based on a news story in the New Scientist, a popular science journal, published eight years before the IPCC’s 2007 report.

It has also emerged that the New Scientist report was itself based on a short telephone interview with Syed Hasnain, a little-known Indian scientist then based at Jawaharlal Nehru University in Delhi.

Hasnain has since admitted that the claim was “speculation” and was not supported by any formal research. If confirmed it would be one of the most serious failures yet seen in climate research. The IPCC was set up precisely to ensure that world leaders had the best possible scientific advice on climate change.

Professor Murari Lal, who oversaw the chapter on glaciers in the IPCC report, said he would recommend that the claim about glaciers be dropped: “If Hasnain says officially that he never asserted this, or that it is a wrong presumption, than I will recommend that the assertion about Himalayan glaciers be removed from future IPCC assessments.”

The IPCC’s reliance on Hasnain’s 1999 interview has been highlighted by Fred Pearce, the journalist who carried out the original interview for the New Scientist. Pearce said he rang Hasnain in India in 1999 after spotting his claims in an Indian magazine. Pearce said: “Hasnain told me then that he was bringing a report containing those numbers to Britain. The report had not been peer reviewed or formally published in a scientific journal and it had no formal status so I reported his work on that basis.

“Since then I have obtained a copy and it does not say what Hasnain said. In other words it does not mention 2035 as a date by which any Himalayan glaciers will melt. However, he did make clear that his comments related only to part of the Himalayan glaciers. not the whole massif.”

The New Scientist report was apparently forgotten until 2005 when WWF cited it in a report called An Overview of Glaciers, Glacier Retreat, and Subsequent Impacts in Nepal, India and China. The report credited Hasnain’s 1999 interview with the New Scientist. But it was a campaigning report rather than an academic paper so it was not subjected to any formal scientific review. Despite this it rapidly became a key source for the IPCC when Lal and his colleagues came to write the section on the Himalayas.

When finally published, the IPCC report did give its source as the WWF study but went further, suggesting the likelihood of the glaciers melting was “very high”. The IPCC defines this as having a probability of greater than 90%.

The report read: “Glaciers in the Himalaya are receding faster than in any other part of the world and, if the present rate continues, the likelihood of them disappearing by the year 2035 and perhaps sooner is very high if the Earth keeps warming at the current rate.”

However, glaciologists find such figures inherently ludicrous, pointing out that most Himalayan glaciers are hundreds of feet thick and could not melt fast enough to vanish by 2035 unless there was a huge global temperature rise. The maximum rate of decline in thickness seen in glaciers at the moment is 2-3 feet a year and most are far lower.

Original Link.

“WAITING FOR ARMAGEDDON” a Film Review by Fern Sidman

Tuesday, January 19th, 2010

A Film By: Franco Sacchi, Kate Davis and David Heilbroner

Reviewed by: Fern Sidman

In an hour and a quarter, filmmakers Franco Sacchi, Kate Davis and David Heilbroner take us through a tumultuous journey to the final scenario of the world as we know it, as they present the religious prophecies of the 50 million strong American Evangelical Christian movement in a new and powerful documentary entitled, “Waiting For Armageddon.” Riding the wave of the all pervasive eschatological (or End Times) phenomenon that has, in recent years, been highly touted in the media and in literary circles; the filmmakers provide an in depth view of what some interpret to be the Biblically mandated perspective on the final days of our universe. Told in the first person voices of mainstream Christians who subscribe to the beliefs of the evangelical church, they inform us that the end of days will occur in the Land of Israel, with the Jewish people figuring prominently in this venue.

“The Jewish people are G-d’s chosen people” says one American Christian, “and as such they are a light unto the nations. Whoever blesses the Jews will be blessed and whoever curses them will be cursed”, he continues. Providing historical proof of the downfall of the nations that have attempted to eradicate the Jewish nation such as the Babylonians, the Assyrian-Greeks, the Romans, as well as the Nazis, the Christian spokesperson lauds the Jewish people as G-d’s treasured, cherished nation, not to be fooled with. The predicate for their belief emanates from the Book of Revelations and is outlined in four stages – The Rapture, The Tribulation, The Apocalypse and The Millennium.

The film incorporates multiple interviews with everyday, lay people such as James and Laura Bagg, a Connecticut couple who are employed as jet propulsion engineers, Tony and Devonna Edwards of McAlester, Oklahoma and Dr. H. Wayne House of Salem, Oregon who explain in chilling detail the catastrophic and violent events that will unfold in the end of days. We also hear from an Orthodox Jewish scholar who casts aspersions on the ominous prognostications of the evangelicals as well as professors of religious studies and an evangelical tour guide that leads a group to Israel so that they may visit the Temple Mount and other sites such as Meggido.

Clearly, the foundation of their belief rests upon their interpretation of the second coming of Jesus, and they promulgate that notion as a potential, “World War III” in which they will be “raptured” or lifted into the skies to join their perceived messiah while the remainder of humanity suffers for seven years during “The Tribulation”. During this time, they assert with great assuredness that an anti-Christ will emerge and the nations of the world will coalesce to attack Israel and the Jewish people. While they proclaim the immense and pivotal role of Israel will play; it is because of their belief that the battle of Armageddon will take place there and they further claim that the battle will leave the earth ravaged and that their purported messiah will create a new and perfect world. The Jews they say, will eventually abrogate their belief in a monotheistic G-d and embrace the teachings of their deity. “The blood from this battle will be as high as a horse’s bridle. It’s just something mankind has never witnessed before” says Laura Bagg.

As to their take on the Muslims and Islam in the Middle East, the Christian tour guide states that in order for the future biblical prophecies to unfold, “the Dome of the Rock, the Al Aqsa mosque must be removed” and as such shows a photo of his group in Jerusalem with an image of the Beit HaMikdash (the Second Temple) superimposed over the golden dome symbolizing the Al Aqsa mosque. While the filmmakers probe the politically powerful and potentially explosive alliance between evangelical Christians and Israel by clarifying this elusive relationship in the hopes of fostering dialogue among dissenting groups, many questions remain about the dubious agenda they have foisted upon the Jewish people and the ultimate goal of creating a self-fulfilling prophecy of international holy war.

Right now however, it appears that Christian evangelicals and the Jewish people share a common threat arising from the spread of radical Islam. Pastor John Hagee, a fervent Christian Zionist leader, and an enormously influential minister of an 18,000 member mega-church in Texas, declares in this film, “There is a war between Islamofascism and freedom. There is a war between the culture of death (the Muslims) and those who love life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness (Christians and Jews). It is a war we must win.” Something to ruminate upon as madmen, such as Iran’s president Mahmoud Ahmadinejad continue to pursue their global nuclear ambitions.

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Fern Sidman holds a B.A, in political science from Brooklyn College. She was the educational coordinator for the Betar Youth Movement in the late 1970s and early 1980s. She was national director of the Jewish Defense League from 1983-1985. She was a researcher for several books written by Rabbi Meir Kahane, ZTK”L. She was the managing editor of the publication entitled, The Voice of Judea, and is a regular contributor to its web site. She is currently a writer and journalist living in New York City. Her articles have appeared in The Jewish Press, The Jewish Advocate, The Jewish Journal of Los Angeles, and numerous Jewish and general web sites including, Front Page Magazine, Daniel Pipes and Michael Freund.
We are delighted to have Ms. Sidman as a regular contributor to the Jesus is Lord, A Worshipping Christian’s Blog.