Monday, July 25, 2016

Monday Post

The terrorist who killed one person and injured twelve other was a Syrian migrant who was denied refugee status. He was not allowed into a local music festival where he might have detonated himself and taken more lives with his:

A suspected suicide bomber has killed himself and injured 12 others, three seriously, in an explosion outside a wine bar in the German city of Ansbach.

Detectives have said the attacker was a 27-year-old Syrian man who had been denied asylum in Germany.

Security officials say he detonated an explosive device after being turned away from a music festival being attended by thousands of people because he didn't have a ticket.

Joachim Herrmann, Bavaria's interior minister, said the contents of his backpack had the potential to kill and injure many more victims as they included both explosives and metal parts. 

The hashtag for this tragic event is forthcoming. A probable denial about the terrorist's true motives is also forthcoming.

Japan's national broadcaster NHK is reporting that 15 people were killed and 45 injured in a knife attack at a facility for the handicapped in Sagamihara, just outside Tokyo.

The report said police have arrested a knife-wielding man after he turned himself in. NHK said the suspect, 26, is a former employee at the facility.

Kyodo News agency reported that 19 people are dead and 20 injured.

This tragedy will be used as counter-argument the next time France and Germany experience yet another terrorist incident in their restive midsts. 

Guarantee it.

Florida police had three people in custody and were searching for additional suspects in a shooting outside a nightclub that left two teenagers dead and more than a dozen people wounded early on Monday.

Police in Fort Myers, located on Floria's Gulf Coast, said terrorism was not a factor in the state's latest gun violence this summer, but provided no details about a possible motive or the individuals who were detained.

(Sidebar: I wonder why everyone would be so quick to deny a terrorist link. Oh, yeah...) 

The number of children killed or wounded in Afghanistan's conflict surged in the first half of 2016, compared to the same period last year, the United Nations mission in Afghanistan said on Monday.


Doctors unhappy with a new fee agreement between the Ontario Medical Association and the Liberal government have forced a delay in voting on the four-year deal.

A non-binding vote by doctors was scheduled to take place before an Aug. 6 meeting of the OMA’s governing council, which would then have decided whether to accept the new physician services agreement or reject it.

But 3,000 doctors signed a petition put forward by opponents of the deal, so the OMA agreed to call off the vote and instead hold a full membership meeting to discuss the agreement.

The tentative agreement would increase Ontario’s $11.5-billion physician services budget by 2.5 per cent a year, to $12.9 billion by 2020.

The last time the OMA held a meeting of the more than 25,000 physicians it represents was in the 1980s, when Maple Leaf Gardens was rented for the event. Now, there are some 42,000 doctors in Ontario. 

Some physicians, including a group calling itself Concerned Ontario Doctors, said funding is not adequate to meet growing demands or to keep operating rooms and diagnostic equipment from sitting idle some of the time.

A new pan-Asian alliance is need to counter China's militarism:

A watered-down statement Monday by Southeast Asian nations that failed to mention a landmark legal ruling over China’s claims to most of the South China Sea could diminish the clout of the region’s key grouping, analysts say.

The 10-member Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) avoided mentioning in its annual foreign minister’s communique the July 12 ruling by the U.N.-backed Permanent Court of Arbitration, instead offering the equivalent of a slap on the wrist to China, the group’s biggest trading partner, over its moves in the disputed waters.

“The choice was between a weak statement or no statement,” said David Capie, director of the Centre for Strategic Studies at Victoria University of Wellington. “This isn’t the first time ASEAN has avoided mentioning the elephant in room in order to get consensus. But it underscores ASEAN’s weakness and raises questions about its relevance.”
Like the UN and - increasingly - NATO, any organisation that won't even mention another country's belligerence let alone counter it will be useless.

South Korea and Japan move forward to close an ugly chapter in their shared history:

Foreign Minister Fumio Kishida and his South Korean counterpart, Yun Byung-se, affirmed in Laos on Monday their intention to implement the landmark bilateral settlement on the “comfort women” forced into Japan’s military brothels during the war by setting up a foundation this week designed to help the surviving victims.

The ministers, who are in the Laotian capital of Vientiane for a series of regional meetings, also confirmed plans for bilateral cooperation and close coordination with the United States in dealing with North Korea as they stay on alert for a fifth nuclear test or further ballistic missile launches by Pyongyang, a Japanese official said.

In a major turnaround in bilateral ties, the two ministers signed a deal in late December under which Japan pledged to deposit ¥1 billion ($9.5 million) into a new South Korean foundation dedicated to helping the surviving comfort women, Japan’s euphemism for the former sex slaves. Sources close to the matter said earlier it is set to be established this week, though not all of the women support the pact.

After that, the focus will shift to when the Japanese government will disburse the ¥1 billion. Some in the ruling Liberal Democratic Party have said the public funds should not be released unless the statue of a girl symbolizing the comfort women is removed from its place in front of the Japanese Embassy in Seoul.

At the time of the deal, the Japanese and South Korean governments did not mention the removal of the statue as a condition for Tokyo’s contribution, but the pact said South Korea “will strive to solve this issue in an appropriate manner.”

And now, the debate for the ages -  should "Deep Space Nine" be revisited?:

The Deep Space Nine’s Federation crew isn’t obliged to hopscotch from one planet to another, on the lookout for weekly extraterrestrial intrigue. While The Next Generation’s favoured story templates involved investigating an oddity that proves dangerous, happening upon strife or responding to a distress signal that imperils them all, DS9’s action is drama furnished by whatever descends upon the station each week. That could mean an alien fleeing from a Running Man-style pursuit stowing aboard, warring species visiting for a heated arbitration or a puckish deity boarding and wreaking havoc! 

It’s like a western: the space station is a frontier town, replete with Sheriff and saloon. (The alien black-hats always seem to cause trouble at the DS9 bar.) Law and order prevails only tenuously. Anarchy is only a baddie with a six-shooter away from breaking loose.
This space station isn't big enough for the both of us!

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