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Saturday, March 22, 2003

$90 Million Club Congressional District Maps

The Center for Public Environmental Oversight has developed state maps to accompany the $90 Million Club--a list of 126 Department of Defense Sites whose estimated cleanup will exceed 90 million dollars. Each state map is broken down by congressional district and we've done our best to cite the facility--or in some cases former facility--as accurately as possible.

Please remember that there are many more sites for which DOD and the military services are responsible for cleaning up. These merely represent the most costly and most contaminated.

The maps can be viewed online at: http://www.cpeo.org/pubs/club/CD/

Posted by Richard
3/22/2003 05:57:36 PM | PermaLink

Los Angeles Direct Action Conference

COME HEAR FROM THE INDIVIDUALS WHO HAVE BROUGHT ANIMAL ABUSERS TO THEIR KNEES. FOR ONE DAY, ACTIVISTS WILL OPENLY DISCUSS INVESTIGATIONS, OPEN RESCUES, ANIMAL LIBERATION, ECONOMIC SABOTAGE, ACTIVIST PROTECTION, AND LEGAL STRATEGY. DONT MISS THIS UNIQUE OPPORTUNITY TO LEARN THE GREAT LENGTHS SOME HAVE GONE TO FIGHT A SYSTEM THAT SACRIFICES LIFE.
 
When: SATURDAY, APRIL 5, 9:30am-4:30pm

Where: THE DRAGONFLY, a hip nightclub @ 6510 Santa Monica Blvd, Hollywood, CA

Who:CRAIG ROSEBRAUGH, MATT ROSSELL, KEVIN JONAS, NATHAN RUNKLE, SHANNON KEITH, CHRIS DEROSE, NIK HENSEY, AND MORE TBA!!!

Cost: $5

Lunch by VEGAN EXPRESS (additional $2)

Craig Rosebraugh is the former spokesperson for the Earth Liberation Front.  As someone who knows all about harrassment, Craig can attest to new policies that threaten activist privacy... and security.

Matt Rossell will tell you that it's easier to get hired by the animal abusers than you think. Matt has been employed in animal research labs and on fur farms, and he is responsible for much of the horrifying footage we now have.

Kevin Jonas is a volunteer with Stop Huntingdon Animal Cruelty (SHAC USA), an organization that has predominantly used direct action to financially cripple Huntingdon Life Sciences, one of the most powerful animal research facilities in the world.

Nathan Runkle is the founder of Mercy for Animals, an Ohio-based organization that investigates animal cruelty. Nathan doesn't wear a mask--he just goes right onto factory farms and rescues animals.

Shannon Keith is an animal rights attorney who brings animal liberation philosphy into the courtroom. Shannon has defended activists charged with chaos and mayhem and can answer all your legal questions.

Chris DeRose is a former Hollywood actor who founded Last Chance for Animals in 1984, which has become a national organization promoting the end of animal exploitation. Chris has been involved in countless civil disobedience events and asserts that direct action is crucial in the struggle for animal liberation.

Nik Hensey is an activist from Los Angeles who has traveled all over the country to speak about and participate in direct action. Nik urges activists to maintain security culture to ensure the most effective actions.

 SPONSORED BY FOUNDATION FOR ANIMAL LIBERATION

EMAIL APRIL5_LA@HOTMAIL.COM FOR DIRECTIONS OR QUESTIONS

Posted by Richard
3/22/2003 05:23:26 PM | PermaLink

Angel or Devil: How Do You Measure Up?

Are you helping to save humanity or contributing to its downfall? Every choice you make carries environmental costs. But can you spot them? Follow our intrepid researcher and find out if the world is as simple as you think -- take the quiz: are you an angel or a devil?

At: http://www.newscientist.com/hottopics/environment/quiz1a.jsp

Posted by Richard
3/22/2003 05:20:12 PM | PermaLink

 
Friday, March 21, 2003

Un-damming Iraq

Again, I ask, will the American and British liberators of the Iraqi people re-flood the fertile crescent that Saddam had dammed in order to make an un-sustainable profit off of the oil rich marshbeds? Will the liberators of Iraq liberate the Southern Arabs and restore their traditional environment?

http://news.nationalgeographic.com/news/2001/05/0518_crescent.html

Posted by Richard
3/21/2003 03:07:03 PM | PermaLink

 
Thursday, March 20, 2003

UNEP Info on War and the Environment

Got this nice message from Ben Parker at UNEP -- this is worth checking out...
Dear Richard,
You may be interested in a new page at UNEP: Conflict and the Environment in West Asia.

Lots of background on the 1991 Gulf War, interactive mapping, species and protected areas etc.

http://www.unep.org/Documents/Default.asp?DocumentID=307


Thanks,
Ben Parker
Internet Unit
UNEP
Nairobi, Kenya

http://www.unep.org

Posted by Richard
3/20/2003 09:42:52 AM | PermaLink

 
Wednesday, March 19, 2003

Some Small Case for Hope from the US Senate...

The U.S. Senate on Wednesday was expected to narrowly vote against opening the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge to oil drilling, defeating the centerpiece of President George W. Bush's energy policy.

At: http://biz.yahoo.com/rm/030319/energy_congress_2.html

Posted by Richard
3/19/2003 09:14:06 AM | PermaLink

Environmentalists Against the War

This is a pretty good website with a great collection of articles from a variety of organizations concering War and Environment themes:
http://www.envirosagainstwar.org/know/index.html


Posted by Richard
3/19/2003 09:05:17 AM | PermaLink

Depleted Uranium (DU) is a Nuclear Weapon

This article from the BBC on DU gets some things right and ends on a note that correctly questions the enthusiasm such as expressed by Col. Naughton in this piece. However, the case is far far worse against DU than this piece ever lets on by ending on a note of "circumstantial evidence." It is true that the exact science is complex in legally substantiating the claims that soldiers, civilians, species and the environment are harmed by the use of DU in the battlefield -- but this is not because it is unknown that DU is the type of element that would cause all of these, but rather b/c engaging in a thorough scientific analysis of its use on the battlefield and thereafter is generally impossible due to the complexity of factors involved. Thus, the evidence is "circumstantial" but circumstantial in the way that the evidence against O.J. Simpson was circumstantial. The case is quite clear for all ethical and moral purposes, but for legal damages the science required can only mount a convincing series of related studies into DU but which are not enough to provide 100% legal certainty. Part of this problem, no doubt, would be helped if the people who use such a weapon (the Pentagon, e.g.) would release the data they have on its actual use in the battlefield. But as they are exactly the people who stand to gain from its use, such data is difficult or impossible to come by and must be arrived at via circumstantial research technique.

Again, countering the Colonel's claim below that the case against DU is an "Iraqi propaganda ploy" because they don't want to get "their asses kicked" -- it goes to show the mentality of a Colonel I suppose -- there are a great many people within the US and internationally who devote a tremendous amount of time and research into this question -- including noted academics at major research universities.

The major reason why the Colonel plays up the "DU is not a threat but it is a great armor-piercing, anti-tank metal" card is b/c this is the legal argument expounded by the US and others as to why DU should be useable on the battlefield -- it is functional in conventional warfare. Unfortunately, what this article fails to convey is the opposite case: that DU is technically by international law, as classified by the International Atomic Energy Agency, not a conventional weapon but a NUCLEAR WEAPON. It involves a nuclear material and is radioactive as such. Further, it is well known that such weapons are favored by militaries b/c when DU does explode or explode a metal surface, it produces a quasi-gaseous cloud of imperceptible firey metal bullets -- the white hot exploded surface reduced to the size of a micron. This effect causes a firestorm upon the enemy attacked by DU and hence such missles as the US BunkerBusters used in Iraq and Afghanistan have DU laden tips. Reports from Afghanistan about the BBs made no bones about how the military was excited about this firey-effect. This effect, however, is also nuclear and radioactive (technically). And geiger counters going around DU explosions have and will prove such every time.

Therefore, DU's use in battle is not just about being an armor-piercing bullet. It is not just a conventional weapon. This is the rhetoric that gets used to downplay its legal culpability. In truth, it is a nuclear weapon that appears to cause widespread and long-term damage to the environment, the people living in it, and the soldiers who battle over it. As such, it is also (fearfully) a precedent setting weapon for other illegal weapons of mass destruction like "mini-nukes" and related terrors. Once a nuclear weapon can achieve a long standing precedent on the battlefield it is not much of a slippery slope to begin to admit slightly different and larger weapons of a kind.

For more on DU's categorization as "nuclear" see: Depleted-Uranium Weapons: the Whys and Wherefores

US to use depleted uranium, from the BBC

A United States defence official has said moves to ban depleted uranium ammunition are just an attempt by America's enemies to blunt its military might.

Colonel James Naughton of US Army Materiel Command said Iraqi complaints about depleted uranium (DU) shells had no medical basis.

"They want it to go away because we kicked the crap out of them," he told a Pentagon briefing.

If war starts, tonnes of depleted uranium (DU) weapons are likely to be used by British and American tanks and by ground attack aircraft.

Some believe people are still suffering ill health from ammunition used in the Gulf War 12 years ago, and other conflicts.

In the House of Commons in London on Monday, Labour MP Joan Ruddock said a test of the UK Government's pledge to keep civilian casualties to a minimum in an attack on Iraq would include not using depleted uranium weapons.

Military uses

Apparently anticipating complaints, the US defence department briefed journalists about DU - making it plain it would continue to be used.

Depleted uranium, a by-product of uranium enrichment for nuclear weapons or nuclear reactors, has valuable military properties.


It is very dense, about 1.7 times heavier than lead, and not only very hard but unlike other materials is self-sharpening when it penetrates armour.
Used defensively as armour, it tends to make ordinary munitions bounce off.

These properties contributed to the relative success of American tanks against Iraq's in 1991.

For the M1 Abrams tank there is no other option: it uses only DU-tipped shells and has DU armour.

'Who says?'

"In the last war, Iraqi tanks at fairly close ranges - not nose to nose - fired at our tanks and the shot bounced off the heavy armour... and our shot did not bounce off their armour," Col Naughton told the briefing.

"So the result was Iraqi tanks destroyed - US tanks with scrape marks."

He questioned the motives of those who challenged US use of depleted uranium.


"Who's asking the question? The Iraqis tell us 'terrible things happened to our people because you used it last time'.
"Why do they want it to go away? They want it to go away because we kicked the crap out of them, OK?

"I mean, there's no doubt that DU gave us a huge advantage over their tanks. They lost a lot of tanks.

"Their soldiers can't be really amused at the idea of going out in basically the same tanks with some slight improvements and taking on Abrams again."

'Marked increase in cancers'

Cancer surgeons in the southern Iraqi port of Basra report a marked increase in cancers which they suspect were caused by DU contamination from tank battles on the farmland to the west of the city.

But the director of the Pentagon's deployment health support directorate, Dr Michael Kilpatrick, said: "To the question, could depleted uranium be playing a role, the medical answer is no."

Depleted uranium is mildly radioactive but the main health concern is that it is a heavy metal, potentially poisonous.

The likelihood of absorbing it is increased significantly if a weapon has struck a target and exploded because the DU vaporises into a fine dust and can be inhaled.

Dr Kilpatrick said a study that had followed 90 US Gulf War veterans exposed to the dust and to shrapnel from DU rounds in "friendly fire" incidents had found no DU-related medical problems.

Uncertainty

Some Gulf War veterans believe DU might have contributed to health problems they have suffered. And it has been blamed for a number of leukaemia cases among former Balkans peacekeepers.

BBC News Online environment correspondent Alex Kirby says scientists disagree about the ability of DU to cause the horrific problems that have been reported.

The World Health Organisation recommends cleaning areas with high concentrations of radioactive particles.

"There is real controversy, and real uncertainty," he said.

There have also been various health warnings. A 1995 report from the US Army Environmental Policy Institute, for example, said: "If DU enters the body, it has the potential to generate significant medical consequences."

Alex Kirby says the Pentagon claim that criticisms of DU come only from Iraq and "other countries that are not friendly to the US" is demonstrably untrue.

"To sum up, I guess the Iraqis have got much worse things than DU to worry about in the immediate future, and any risk to environment and health over the longer term remains unproven and perhaps circumstantial.

"But that does not mean the risk is proven not to exist."

Posted by Richard
3/19/2003 07:38:46 AM | PermaLink

 
Tuesday, March 18, 2003

Consumer Culture is No Accident By David Suzuki

Most people I talk to today understand that humanity is inflicting harsh damage on the planet's life support systems of clean air, water, soil, and biodiversity.

But they feel so insignificant among 6.2 billion people that whatever they do to lighten our impact on nature seems trivial. I am often asked, "What can I do?"

Well, how about examining our consumption habits. Not long ago, frugality was a virtue. But today two-thirds of our economy is built on consumption. This didn't happen by accident.

Read on at: http://www.enn.com/news/2003-03-18/s_3374.asp


Posted by Richard
3/18/2003 07:52:08 AM | PermaLink

Warning from Ingrid Newkirk, PETA

Recently, animal rights groups and even our own staff have reported incidents of harassment and information gathering expeditions by the FBI and Homeland Security, even by local police.

The incident below shows one way this works:

An FBI agent, who at first did not identify himself as such, made a call to one of our staff whose name he had simply read in the paper, assuring her that she was "not in any trouble" and asking her to call him back. Quite properly, she did not. It is dangerous to engage in even the most innocuous-seeming discourse with the FBI/ Homeland Security/ a local detective for, rest assured, if you do, you will become a notation in a federal file! The next day, the agent called her at home on her private number at 7:45 a.m. "to chat." She properly told him she had nothing to chat with him about and told him not to call her at work or home again. That ended it.

As you may know, the FBI has a massive current investigation into the ALF and ELF and, by default, as with McCarthyism, into the entire animal rights community. As new Homeland Security laws make clear, law enforcement is using the climate of fear of real domestic terrorists to collect information on perfectly law-abiding animal rights activists. We should not allow this to happen in what is still supposed to be a free country. There is now a central data bank set up as a resource in the event of any break-in or liberation, i.e. to use to conduct a witch hunt, to harass and intimidate ordinary people. Don't think this can't happen, because it already has. Most importantly, please don't contribute to it.

Many scholars have written regarding social cause movements, like the civil rights movement and the peace movements and the FBI's crude and sometimes downright illegal tactics in dealing with them. PETA itself has a history of FBI and ATF harassment. We suffered through (successfully) defeating subpoenas to examine our membership and volunteer lists, and many of us were compelled to give handwriting samples and photographs and to appear before grand juries without lawyers present. Wire taps were put on our telephones (dollars to doughnuts they are there again now, and that's not being paranoid, just practical), our telephone records were seized at source, and the postal authority turned over our mail for pre-sorting. All this happened because, unable to come up with real evidence and pinpoint anyone in particular, the FBI set out to "troll" through the most outspoken animal rights group and see if they turned up anything. Doesn't sound very much like the America we know and love, but there you are.

I don't say any of this to alarm you, for you will probably never receive any communication from the FBI/Homeland Security/local law enforcement but to warn you that if you do, it is not at all smart to think you can outwit them, convert them, or just give them "harmless" information and they'll go away. By allowing an FBI agent to write in his book, "Spoke for 20 mins to (your name here)." instead of "She had nothing to say," you have helped keep the chain alive. If you talk to them, they write things like "(your name here) confirmed that she `knows all about the ALF' and is familiar with the recent mink liberation," when, in fact, you simply answered "Yes" to the question "Do you know what the ALF is?" and "Yes, I read about it in a newspaper clipping" to the question "What do you know about the mink liberation?" If you invite them in, talk to them, and so on, you will almost certainly be used in the future.

One reason people disregard this advice is because the first reaction most of us have is to think "well, we have nothing to hide, so what's the harm?" Or, my favorite, "But, they seemed so nice!" How far would they get with us if they said, "I hate animals" or "I'm out to get you?" One of our staff recounts how an FBI agent came and sat next to him when he was detained after a protest. The agent was very friendly, slouched in his chair and called the police who had been at the demo, "jerks." He acted as if he and our staffer were old friends and casually asked our fellow for his name, his age, how long he'd worked at PETA, if he traveled much in his work, if "higher ups" decided how a demo was going to go. When our person said he wasn't answering and would need to speak to an attorney, the FBI agent acted offended and said, "Wow, we were just having a conversation here." He then told our staffer that he'd heard him on the radio and that "you were articulate, fantastic. That one caller - he was an idiot." When it was clear he wasn't going to get answers, he left the room.

Here is exactly what seasoned attorneys suggest most strongly that you do if approached by an FBI agent, other Homeland Security or other law enforcement officer: who wants to "just chat: " Say politely but firmly and without hesitation, "I have nothing to say" and then hang up, walk away, close the door. Do not be coerced or charmed into helping them by "just answering a few easy questions." If anyone tries to detain you, ask "Am I under arrest?" If they cannot say "yes," you are free to go. Walk or drive away.

If they ring or knock or approach you again, say "Please leave me alone. You are harassing me." Say nothing more. It seems rude, but law enforcement officers are used to hearing it and won't take it personally. They will go away. If you converse with them you will be called/visited again.

In light of the constitution, you have the freedom to associate with whomever you choose, and the right to say what you believes in without fear of reprisal, and they have no right to harass those who object to exploitation, war, racial discrimination, animal slavery and the like.

Thank you.

Ingrid Newkirk

Posted by Richard
3/18/2003 07:49:31 AM | PermaLink

Vulnerable Mice Help Explain Nerve-Gas Action

While the US, Britain and Spain gear up for war "over Iraq's possession of Weapons of Mass Destruction," with the US threatening its own use of such WMD against Iraqi soldiers that "release oil or set well fires" to the crude that Bush seeks to "liberate" and "give back to the Iraqi people," I'd like to point out that we've been using such WMD for a long time against animal populations without the slightest bit of conscience.

As this article from Nature demonstrates nicely -- using VX Nerve gas agents against mice, the same as will be used in the Persian Gulf no doubt by both sides -- there is a fundamental ethical problem in such experimental testing, however. The argument is generally made that animals are not human, and therefore devoid of moral consideration; and that the closer that such test animals come to being human, the more they are deserving of humane consideration and ethical treatement. Mice would be far removed with cats, dogs, monkeys, apes, elephants, dolphins, parrots in between (suppossedly). Therefore, there is no moral problem with using Nerve gas against them in the name of research -- this is not Auschwitz, they are not human test subjects (or even close).

But if this is so, then the science is meaningless. If they are so far removed from being human, then why are the findings of how they react as a species relevant at all to how humans will react? Clearly, the scientific argument at work is one of analogy -- with any lawyer or logician knowing that analogies are only successful the closer the two cases are to being equal. Thus, the argument often made is testing on mice reveals certain findings which point to a possibility of what we might find in humans. To the degree that this inductive method is sound at any level, it means that mice must be reasonably close to humans so as to admit the analogy. Otherwise, the analogy is false -- note: the scientists do not test nerve gas on rocks and make the analogy to humans from there.

Such scientists and pro-animal experimenters would no doubt say that the mice are not close to humans morally, but they are reasonably close biologically (i.e. genetically) to make an analogy to the human situation -- that is what this article in Nature does. But these are the same scientists who make the claim for their work on genes and biology that it is so important for funding and research b/c it unlocks the secrets of life. That is -- biology is all there is, cracking the genome is to reveal God's plan made material. There is no soul, there are only genes. Such science reduces Mind to brain function -- or at best, body function -- and finds that culture and habit have a biological orientation and origination: "It's glandular." "It's not a crime, it's an illness." "He is a product of his environment."

But if this is the case -- if genes are the be all and end all of all there is -- and if mice genes and human genes are sufficiently close for testing purposes, then mice must have a sufficiently close soul for moral purposes too. In other words, the same reasonsing that finds using WMD against humanity is an ethical crime must hold to a degree unpublicized and made unproblematic by such care-free announcements as the below tests of VX upon mice.

We owe Nature a great deal of thanks. Whereas the US forces will have to spend hundreds of billions of dollars to ultimately de-throne Saddam Hussein and find the expected missing documents that provide the evidence of his use of WMD against his own people (as was done with Milosovic and Hitler before him), in America and England, we brazenly publish such info for all the world to see in the name of scientific progress....
The delayed effects of nerve poisons used in chemical warfare depend on a key molecule, new research with mice shows.

The same mechanism in humans could mean that some people are genetically more susceptible to the delayed effects of nerve agents.

"You only need a low level of the toxin to get the effects," says biologist Carolee Barlow from the Salk Institute in La Jolla, California. Understanding how the nerve agents work could help researchers to develop new antidotes.

Nerve agents called organophosphates cause the delayed poisoning. Organophosphate weapons such as sarin and VX are thought to have been used in Iraq during the Gulf War. Their latent effects have been implicated as a cause of the mysterious and controversial Gulf War syndrome suffered by veterans of the 1991 conflict.

Organophosphates are more commonly used as pesticides, so they often cause accidental poisoning. Within hours of exposure to high doses of organophosphates, victims suffer seizures and paralysis, after which breathing stops. Without medical intervention, most victims die.

About a week later, survivors go on to develop a second wave of symptoms: the result of the chemical destroying nerves, causing severe and irreversible paralysis.

Now Barlow's team find that mice with low levels of an enzyme called NTE are more sensitive to the effects of organophosphates. They were less mobile, had seizures and were twice as likely to die than normal animals.

At: http://www.nature.com/nsu/030310/030310-14.html

Posted by Richard
3/18/2003 07:30:33 AM | PermaLink

 
Monday, March 17, 2003

Word is Made Flesh as God Reveals Himself... as a Fish

Read the full story here: http://www.observer.co.uk/international/story/0,6903,915125,00.html. I don't see what's so strange about God being revealed as a fish. It happens all the time. Nor, considering the plight of our scaled friends at the hands of the modern scientific fishing technique, is it strange that the message coming from fish would be one of "the end of time." How typical is it that the fish who spoke the word of God still ended up carved for dinner...
An obscure Jewish sect in New York has been gripped in awe by what it believes to be a mystical visitation by a 20lb carp that was heard shouting in Hebrew, in what many Jews worldwide are hailing as a modern miracle.

Many of the 7,000-member Skver sect of Hasidim in New Square, 30 miles north of Manhattan, believe God has revealed himself in fish form.

According to two fish-cutters at the New Square Fish Market, the carp was about to be slaughtered and made into gefilte fish for Sabbath dinner when it suddenly began shouting apocalyptic warnings in Hebrew.

Many believe the carp was channelling the troubled soul of a revered community elder who recently died; others say it was God. The only witnesses to the mystical show were Zalmen Rosen, a 57-year-old Hasid with 11 children, and his co-worker, Luis Nivelo. They say that on 28 January at 4pm they were about to club the carp on the head when it began yelling.

Nivelo, a Gentile who does not understand Hebrew, was so shocked at the sight of a fish talking in any language that he fell over. He ran into the front of the store screaming: 'It's the Devil! The Devil is here!' Then the shop owner heard it shouting warnings and commands too.

'It said "Tzaruch shemirah" and "Hasof bah",' he told the New York Times, 'which essentially means that everyone needs to account for themselves because the end is near.'

The animated carp commanded Rosen to pray and study the Torah. Rosen tried to kill the fish but injured himself. It was finally butchered by Nivelo and sold.

Posted by Richard
3/17/2003 11:12:11 AM | PermaLink

Mark Rey: A Profile of the Agriculture Undersecretary for Natural Resources Who Wants Your Trees

Mark Rey is the point man for a Bush administration effort to redirect national forest policies.

From Canton, Ohio, a state with just one national forest, Rey studied forestry and wildlife biology at the University of Michigan. A registered Democrat in 1973, he interviewed with the Wilderness Society but didn't get the job. Instead, he spent parts of two years as a staff assistant with the Bureau of Land Management.

By 1980 he was a timber-industry lobbyist and an independent who cast his ballot for Ronald Reagan. A few years later, the son of two Democrats became a registered Republican — primarily because of his beliefs in national defense and effective government.

In 1995 he began working on forest-resource issues for Sen. Larry Craig, R-Idaho, and former Sen. Frank Murkowski, R-Alaska.

Today, Rey, 50, is considered one of the most conservative voices on environmental policy in the Bush administration.

As undersecretary for natural resources and the environment, his reach extends beyond the Forest Service to the Natural Resources Conservation Service, which helps farmers protect their land and water. In total, Rey can effect change on roughly 350 million acres of public and private lands, an area more than eight times the size of Washington state.

But the changes in forest management — the issue that helped shape today's environmental community — have caused the most controversy.

Read this alarming piece at: http://seattletimes.nwsource.com/html/nationworld/134654352_rey16m.html

Posted by Richard
3/17/2003 09:58:37 AM | PermaLink

Dangerous Chemical Weapons Not In Iraq - In Alabama

The cache of chemical weapons includes 873,020 pounds of sarin, 1,657,480 pounds of VX nerve agent and 1,976,760 pounds of mustard agent - enough to kill or incapacitate millions. ANNISTON, Ala. -- They told William Hutchings he would have his building by now. But when Hutchings and the 550 students, teachers and staff in his school practice what to do if there is an explosion at the Army depot 5 miles away, they pile into a converted music room, not a state-of-the-art shelter.  Exhaust from the incinerator travels through the pollution abatement system before going out the stack. If there is an accident, the veteran principal declares, "everyone here would die. Everybody'd die."  As Hutchings talks, he paces in the lot where his shelter is supposed to be, behind C.E. Hanna school in Hobson City, just southwest of Anniston. On the other side of the hill, the Army has stored enough nerve agent and mustard to kill or incapacitate millions. The rockets, artillery shells and mortar rounds are pointed toward the sky, awaiting destruction. It has been that way for 40 years. But as the United States prepares to attack Iraq, partly over Saddam Hussein's failure to rid his nation of chemical weapons, Anniston is a vivid reminder that the weapons of mass destruction from the 20th century were a lot easier to make than they are to destroy.  Though the United States is required by international treaty to be rid of chemical weapons by 2007, nearly 75 percent of the nation's now-banned arms still exist. It amounts to a nationwide stockpile of 23,415 tons of liquid sarin nerve agent, blister-causing mustard agent, a deadly  nerve liquid called VX and variants.

At: http://www.sptimes.com/2003/03/16/Worldandnation/Not_Iraq__but_Annisto.shtml

Posted by Richard
3/17/2003 09:29:50 AM | PermaLink

Announcement: Animal Law Reporter

To: lawyers, judges, researchers, librarians and interested professionals:

A. We are deciding whether to create an Animal Law Reporter© with updates. The Animal Law Reporter© would include a searchable federal and state case law database of over 10,000 cases dating back to 1970 (83 cases so far in 2003, 555 cases in 2002), available in both online and print editions. Additionally, every effort is being explored to include trial court level cases. Conference announcements will be included. Pricing will depend on several factors but the intent is to supply a resource that is less costly than standard reporters because so many of you doing animal work give (literally) so much of your time away. While paid advertisements will help, economies of scale will definitely affect pricing. Therefore, it is imperative that you express your interest and pass this along to every other conceivably interested person(s) you know. Note that by responding, you are expressing your serious interest only at this time. Further information will be forthcoming.

B. With the Reporter is a proposed Animal Legal Research Service© to be offered nationwide to lawyers, firms and related organizations.

The intent is to help not only animal lawyers but also those attorneys who may encounter the occasional animal case while practicing law in other areas such as:

*family law *wills, trusts and estates
*environmental *bankruptcy
*property *personal injury/torts


C. A carefully screened Animal Lawyer Referral Service© has also been suggested and is under consideration.

As lawyers, your comments, questions and suggestions are welcome. Persons interested in helping - from writing case summaries to being an advisor board member - are encouraged to express their interest and experience. There are no paid positions yet. Assistance with startup funding would also be extremely helpful.


If you are interested in further information on either A B and/or C please do 2 things:

1. Send an email to: cbmatlack@att.net. It would be helpful if the Subject line read either A, B and/or C - whichever (or all) services in which you are interested. You will be emailed with further details.

2. Please pass this message to any other lawyers, firms and organizations or other people who may know anyone who might be interested. Responses should be received by no later than the end of April.

Decisions will be made in April so please respond ASAP. Thank you.


Carolyn B. Matlack. J.D.
Author,
Journey to Justice (Working Title)

Posted by Richard
3/17/2003 07:03:34 AM | PermaLink

 
Sunday, March 16, 2003

More Info on Depleted Uranium Munitions

See for yourself if they're as safe as the Pentagon says they are for dropping on Iraqi people, animals, plants, environment, etc.

A decent bibliography on depleted uranium (DU) weapons is at: http://www.antenna.nl/wise/uranium/dlit.html

One seemingly reasonable piece weighing the implications of using such munitions, "Science or Science Fiction? Facts, Myths and Propaganda In the Debate Over Depleted Uranium Weapons," by Dan Fahey, is at: http://www.antenna.nl/wise/uranium/pdf/dumyths.pdf

Posted by Richard
3/16/2003 04:08:17 PM | PermaLink