Tuesday, January 1, 2013

EXTRATERRESTRIAL & UFO MEMES: National UFO Alert - Four American States Report 200 December Cases!

January 01, 2013 - UNITED STATES -The National UFO ALERT Rating System has been updated January 1, 2013, with California, Michigan, Florida and Texas moving to a UFO Alert 3 as the highest reporting states during the month of December 2012, filed with the Mutual UFO Network (MUFON).

California was the leading high-reporting state in December with 75 cases, up from 53 cases in November, 83 cases in October, 69 cases filed in September and 75 in August.  Those states in a UFO Alert 4 category with 13 or more reports include: Pennsylvania, Georgia, North Carolina, New York, Indiana, Ohio, Arizona and Maryland.  All other states move to a UFO Alert 5 category with lower numbers of UFO activity. The Watch States - with 10 or more cases - are Colorado, New Jersey, Kentucky and Tennessee.  MUFON released December statistics January 1, where the total number of reported UFO sightings is listed by state. The UFO Examiner uses these statistics to rate states. The entire country was moved back to the lowest alert level - UFO Alert 5.  California takes the lead with 75 cases; Michigan, 45; Florida, 42; and Texas, 38 cases.

Those states with 13 or more reports, the next reporting tier level, are a UFO Alert 4 status: Pennsylvania, 22; Georgia, 20; North Carolina, 19; New York, 17; Indiana, 14; Ohio, 13; Arizona, 13; and Maryland, 13.  Our Watch States this month are - with 10 reports or more: Colorado, 11; New Jersey, 10; Kentucky, 10; and Tennessee, 10 cases.  The sphere remains the most-reported UFO shape with 158 December reports; down from 168 reports in November; 161 in October, 246 in September and 238 August reports. Other shape reports include: Circle, 121; Star-like, 95; Triangle, 84; Fireball, 69; Disc, 67; Other, 66; Unknown, 63; Oval, 54; Flash, 36; Cylinder, 29; Cigar, 25; Diamond, 14; Square/Rectangle, 13; Boomerang, 12; Chevron, 9; Egg, 9; Bullet/Missile, 9; Blimp, 8; Cone, 8; Teardrop, 6; Saturn-like, 3; and Cross, 1. The object's distance from the witness includes: Less than 100 feet, 71 cases; 101 to 500 feet, 92 cases; 501 feet to one mile, 140 cases; over one mile, 146 cases; unknown, 190; and no value stated, 8.  In addition, there were "25 landings, hovering, or takeoffs reported and 2 entities observed."  The most interesting UFO reports do not necessarily come from high reporting states - but those states with higher numbers do account for some of the most interesting evidence to study. While UFO sightings seem to pop up randomly around the country, this list is meant to offer a small insight into where Americans are filing reports. - Roger Marsh / UFO Examiner.

GLOBAL ECONOMIC MELTDOWN: The Euro-Zone Crisis - The United Kingdom "Faces A 50-50 Risk Of Suffering Triple-Dip Recession, As Think Tank Warns Of Sluggish "Groundhog" 2013!

January 01, 2013 - UNITED KINGDOM - There is a 50:50 chance that Britain will slide into a devastating triple-dip recession this year, leading economists warn today.  Output ‘probably’ fell in the final three months of 2012 and could do so again in the first three months of 2013, said the Centre for Economics and Business Research.  Another two quarters of decline in a row would mean the third recession in five years and set the scene for another bleak year.  

Crisis: The UK could suffer a triple-dip recession with the crisis in the eurozone proving a
major challenge for the economy.
The think-tank singled out the crisis in the eurozone as ‘a major challenge for the UK economy’, given it is Britain’s biggest trading partner.  A weak recovery in Britain would blow a gaping hole in its creaking finances and cost the country its coveted AAA credit rating. Business leaders will today call for ‘bold moves’ from ministers to unleash growth in 2013 – including investment in infrastructure and an assault on red tape.  John Longworth, of the British Chambers of Commerce, will say the Government risks doing ‘too little too late’ to bolster the economy and get young people into work.  ‘We need a clear, agreed and long-term push to improve Britain’s business environment before we reach a point of no return – leading to decades of stagnation and further decline,’ he will add.  City economists are predicting growth of only 1.1 per cent in 2013 and 1.7 per cent in 2014, followed by 2 per cent in 2015 and 2.1 per cent in 2016.  That is far weaker than expected by the Treasury and will leave George Osborne struggling to cut government borrowing and get the ballooning national debt under control.  The Office for Budget Responsibility, the government’s official forecaster, last month predicted growth of 1.2 per cent in 2013 and 2 per cent in 2014, followed by 2.3 per cent in 2015 and 2.7 per cent in 2016.  Erik Britton, of financial research group Fathom Consulting, said the forecasts were too optimistic.  ‘The outlook for growth is very weak. Bumping along the bottom is the order of the day, and double, triple, quadruple, and n-tuple dips are the likely corollary,’ he added.  Such an outcome would wreak havoc with the Chancellor’s plans to cut borrowing, having inherited a record deficit of £159billion from Labour.  Borrowing fell to £142billion in the Coalition’s first year in power and again to £121billion last year but the decline has not been as fast as Mr Osborne predicted.  He now hopes to cut the annual deficit to £31billion by 2017-18 – but this will require yet more austerity and could prove optimistic if the recovery does not live up to the Treasury’s expectations.  The CEBR warns that the deficit will be around £75billion in 2017-18 and the Chancellor will borrow almost £100billion more than expected between now and then – pushing the national debt to ever more dangerous levels. - Daily Mail.  

Shop closures could be on the cards again in 2013.
A think tank has warned that 2013 could turn out to be a "groundhog year" with a repeat of sluggish growth and crisis in Europe seen in 2012.  The Institute for Public Policy Research (IPPR) said that consumer and business spirits have been so thoroughly dampened by talk of years of austerity ahead that the economy mail fail to grown again this year.  In a gloomy New Year message, IPPR chief economist Tony Dolphin said the Government "still does not have a path back to growth" and appeared to be pinning hopes on "something just turning up".  The Office for Budget Responsibility's forecast of 1.2% GDP growth in 2013 and 2% in 2014 depend on a "very unlikely" readiness for hard-pressed households to drop the habits of the last four years and take on additional debt, he added.  The IPPR is calling on the Government to boost demand in the economy, pump more investment into infrastructure, establish a British Investment Bank and guarantee a minimum wage job in charity or local government for anyone unemployed for more than a year.  Mr Dolphin said: "Policy-makers appear to have little idea how to boost growth in the economy and are left hoping that the news will get better.  "The risk is that 2013 could be groundhog year for the UK economy. - SKY News.

FIRE IN THE SKY: The Quadrantids - First Meteor Shower Of 2013 Peaks This Week!

January 01, 2013 - SPACE - The first meteor shower of 2013 will kick off the year's night sky events this week, giving stargazers a chance to ring in the New Year with a celestial fireworks display. The Quadrantid meteor shower is an annual meteor shower every January.

Astrophotographer Jeff Berkes took this photo of the Quadrantid meteor shower on Jan. 4, 2012. Jeff Berkes.
While this year's "shooting star" show is not expected to outshine some of the more spectacular meteor showers of 2012, it may give stargazers with clear, dark skies a great start to the New Year. "Those who brave the cold might see up to 40 meteors per hour, although moonlight will make faint meteors harder to spot," officials with the Hubble Space Telescope explained in a January skywatching video guide. The waning gibbous moon will be out in full force during the shower's peak, but skywatchers in dark areas of the Northern Hemisphere during the wee hours of Thursday morning might still get a decent show. Scientists suspect that the meteors of the Quadrantids are debris from the asteroid 2003 EH1 — the same source of the Geminid meteor shower every December. The asteroid itself may be a chunk from a shattered comet that broke into pieces several hundred years ago, NASA officials said in a statement.

The Quadrantid meteor shower should give skywatchers looking up at the Eastern sky (shown here) a good show
when it peaks in the early hours of Thursday morning (Jan. 3) this week. Starry Night Software.
The Quadrantid meteor shower occurs when the Earth passes through a stream of debris from the comet. The fragments slam into the atmosphere at 90,000 mph (144,841 kph) and burn up 50 miles (80.5 km) above the planet in a dazzling display. The meteor shower is named for the outdated Quadrans constellation, which is no longer recognized by astronomers, NASA officials said. "Located between the constellations Bootes and Draco, Quadrans represents an early astronomical instrument used to observe and plot stars," they added. However, the constellation was still relevant in 1825, when the meteor shower was first documented by astronomers. Just in case you aren't interested in braving the cold, NASA is streaming the shower for free online from Jan. 2 to Jan. 4. NASA's Marshall Space Flight Center in Huntsville, Ala., has a light-activated camera pointed to the sky to record and live-stream the meteor shower during its peak. - MSNBC.

HUMAN DEVOLUTION: Gang-Rape Epidemic In India - Rage And Panic As More Women Are Attacked?!

January 01, 2013 - INDIA - The ashes of an Indian student who died after being gang-raped were scattered in the Ganges river on Tuesday as reports of more attacks stoked a growing national debate on violence against women.

Demonstrators hold candles during a candlelight vigil for a gang rape victim who was assaulted in New Delhi
December 29, 2012. (Reuters/Danish Siddiqui).
The death of the 23-year-old woman, who has not been named, prompted street protests across India, international outrage and promises from the government of tougher punishments for offenders. Police on Tuesday confirmed they would push for the death penalty for her attackers - the force can recommend prosecutors pursue particular punishments in Indian trials. The physiotherapy student was raped and tortured on Dec. 16 by a group of men armed with a metal bar on a private bus in New Delhi, nicknamed India's 'rape capital'. She died from her injuries on Saturday in a Singapore hospital. Relatives scattered the woman's remains in India's largest river, which is sacred to the Hindu religion, during a small ceremony in the district of Ballia where she was born, a senior local official told Reuters. "The immersion of the ashes was a private affair, a family affair," said R.M. Srivastava, home secretary of Uttar Pradesh, the state where the ceremony took place.

Indian media reported a string of new attacks on Tuesday, including a woman set on fire, allegedly by a stalker, in Uttar Pradesh and another woman stabbed to death in a busy market district of eastern Delhi. In a debate titled "New Year, New Attacks, New Rapes" on television network NDTV, lawyers and politicians from several parties promised fast action to tighten laws. "Keep up the social pressure, socially ostracise these people," said Renuka Chowdhury, a senior member of the ruling Congress party. Protesters braved chilly weather in New Delhi to hold candlelight vigils and small rallies on New Year's Day. "I'm going to stand here until the government actually decides to give women some safety," one young woman told journalists. Other protesters brandished placards that read "First of January is a black day." The attack revealed deep fissures in Indian society, where staunchly chauvinist views clash with a fast-modernising urban culture in which women play a growing role in public life. The case also cast a spotlight on an epidemic of violence against women in India, where a rape is reported on average every 20 minutes. Media coverage of such crimes has intensified in the wake of the outcry over the Delhi attack. Five men and a teenager have been detained over the attack and police sources on Tuesday said charges would likely be filed on Wednesday or Thursday. Police are seeking the death penalty against four of the accused, one senior police source told Reuters. - Huffington Post.

SHADOW WARS: Escalating Towards World War III - Iran Successfully Test-Fires Two Missiles And Warns Off Foreign Planes During Naval Drill!

January 01, 2013 - IRAN - Iranian naval forces have successfully test fired Qader (Capable) coast-to-sea and Nour (Light) surface-to-surface missiles on the fifth day of the Velayat 91 military maneuvers, Press TV reports.  Spokesman for the Velayat 91 naval drill Rear Admiral Amir Rastegari told Press TV on Tuesday that Qader cruise missile had successfully and precisely hit and destroyed its mock enemy target during the exercises.

"Qader coast-to-sea missile has been designed and produced by domestic industries," the Iranian commander added.  Referring to the indigenous long-range Nour missile, Rastegari said, "Nour surface-to-surface missile is launched from surface units and is used to destroy surface targets."   "Nour missile had previously passed all its tests with success and the new version is an optimized version of this missile," Rastegari added.  Iran's Navy launched the six-day naval maneuvers on December 28 in order to display the country's capabilities in defending its maritime borders.  The specialized maritime maneuver covers an area from "east of the Strait of Hormuz in the Sea of Oman and north of the Indian Ocean as far as the 18th parallel north," according to Iran's Navy Commander Rear Admiral Habibollah Sayyari.  On the fourth day of the major military exercises, Iranian Navy forces successfully test-fired the latest version of the indigenous surface-to-air missile Ra'd (Thunder) and launched its indigenous short-range cruise missile Nasr (Victory).  Over the past few years, Iran has held several military drills to enhance the defensive capabilities of its armed forces and to test modern military tactics and equipment. - Trend.

Iran has warned off foreign surveillance planes that have tried to approach its forces during naval drills in the Strait of Hormuz, an Iranian military spokesman said on Tuesday.  The drills, which began on Friday, are aimed at showcasing Iran's military capability in the shipping route through which 40 percent of the world's sea-borne oil exports pass.  Iran has threatened to block the strait if it comes under military attack over its disputed nuclear program. The United States has said it would not tolerate any obstruction of commercial traffic through the strait.  "So far about 30 warnings have been given to reconnaissance and surveillance planes of extra-regional forces that wanted to approach the area where the drills are taking place," Commander Amir Rastegari told the semi-official Mehr news agency.  He said the planes had been warned to keep out of Iranian air space and away from the site of the exercises.  The official IRNA news agency quoted Rastegari as saying the foreign planes kept away after Iran issued warnings because they were "afraid of being destroyed" by Iranian forces.  Six days of drills are taking place in an area of about 1 million sq km in the Strait of Hormuz, the Gulf of Oman and northern parts of the Indian Ocean.  State television reported that naval forces had successfully test fired Qader (Capable) coast-to-sea and Nour (Light) surface-to-surface missiles.  Rastegari was quoted as saying by Iran's English-language Press TV that the Qader cruise missile with a range of 200 km had "successfully and precisely hit and destroyed its mock enemy target".  On Sunday, Iran said its special forces and diving units had drilled defending ports and the coastline against attack. - Reuters.

WATCH: Iran successfully test-fires Qader, Nour missiles.

MONUMENTAL GEOLOGICAL UPHEAVAL: Sea Floor Next To Australia's Great Barrier Reef "Close To Collapse"!

January 01, 2013 - AUSTRALIA - Scientists have discovered a giant slab of collapsing sea floor near Australia's Great Barrier Reef which is starting to break and could eventually trigger a tsunami. The researchers, whose findings were published in the journal Nature Hazards, said the one cubic kilometre slab in the Coral Sea – dubbed the Noggin Block – "eventually will collapse".

Great Barrier Reef, Australia: Researchers have warned that a huge slab of sea floor near the Great Barrier Reef
is in the early stages of collapse and could generate a tsunami when it finally breaks off Photo: ALAMY.
The ominous slab was discovered by geologists who have been using 3-D mapping techniques to build a picture of the sea floor along the deepest parts of the reef. "It is a pretty big chunk of sea-floor [in] the very slow, early stages of starting to break away from the edge of the Great Barrier Reef," said Dr Robin Beaman, a marine geologist at James Cook University. "If it were to break away catastrophically, that is break away really quickly, what that would do is it would create a surface wave above it. It would actually cause a tsunami. That tsunami would travel across the Great Barrier Reef, it's about 70 kilometres offshore, and it would impact the local area, the North Queensland area." The Noggin Block, perched on the edge of the continental shelf, is the remnant of an ancient underwater landslide.

Dr Beaman said the slab appeared stable for now and was only likely to move in the near future if there were a trigger such as a very large earthquake nearby. While such an earthquake is "unlikely", it is possible – and the slab will in any case eventually collapse. "We don't really know when such a block might collapse," he told ABC Radio. "All I can say is sometime it eventually will." The finding marks the first discovery of an undersea landslide on the Great Barrier Reef. "We found this one large block that stood out," Dr Beaman said. "It is sitting on top of a submarine canyon, cutting into the slopes and it is in the preliminary stage of collapse We're not trying to alarm people, but we need to know it is there and what could happen when it falls." - Telegraph.

MONUMENTAL EARTH CHANGES: Great Arctic Cyclone of 2012 Really Was Impressive - The Storm Helped Break Up Sea Ice, Causing A New Record Low!

January 01, 2013 - ARCTIC - This summer saw a new record low in the ice covering the Arctic Ocean, with levels bottoming out well below those seen in 2007, the previous low year. A major contributor to that drop was an unusual summer cyclone, which parked over the pole for several days in the course of its nearly two-week long existence. Researchers from Australia have now run the numbers on the storm, and found that it really does deserve the moniker "great Arctic cyclone." But they also conclude that the storm wasn't fueled by the unusually open ocean beneath it.  The storm was hard to miss in satellite imagery such as the example shown above, but its full history wasn't necessarily obvious. So, the authors of the new study downloaded atmospheric data and plugged it into an atmospheric model that specializes in identifying cyclonic systems. They were able to detect the first indication of the storm over Siberia on the 2nd of August.

The Great Arctic Cyclone of 2012 churns its way towards the North Pole. NASA.
But it really got going once it entered the Arctic basin on the 4th; by the 6th, the eye of the storm had reached its lowest pressure. The very next day, it took a slight detour and hovered over the Pole for several days before heading south over Canada and finally dissipating on the 14th.  A notable thing about the storm is that it did not seem to involve a large redistribution of atmospheric heat content. Storms like hurricanes famously take the energy from warm surface waters and redistribute it to the atmosphere. But readings from the Arctic Cyclone showed that the heat flux was small for most of its history. This suggests that the storm wasn't powered by the ocean below it, which in turn indicates that the loss of ice wasn't a factor in driving the storm's unusual strength. As the authors put it, "This leads to the view that it was the enhanced influence of the cyclone which contributed to the reduction in ice area, rather than low sea ice area being responsible for releasing energy to maintain the system." 

One potential influence on the storm that came out of the analysis was a link to a vortex at the lower boundary of the stratosphere. A tropopause polar vortex had developed a few weeks earlier and had spent time north of Europe before heading east. By the 6th of August, the vortex was near the center of the storm. The two remained associated from that point onward.  How unusual was the 2012 storm? The authors pulled up records of 1,618 Arctic cyclones that struck during August, dating back to 1979. By one measure, the 2012 storm is the strongest on record: it reached the lowest pressure at the center of the storm. But, when you include other cyclonic properties such as size and duration, the storm dropped to third on the overall list.  Arctic cyclones tend to be more common and severe in winter months, so the authors expanded their analysis to include over 19,500 storms that have struck at any time of the year. In this list, the 2012 storm ranked 13th. As far as they're concerned, the storm earned the title Great Arctic Cyclone of 2012.  Climate change is thought to strengthen storms that move over the ocean because it warms the ocean waters, providing the storms with more heat and moisture. Since that doesn't appear to have been the case here, the existence of an extreme storm appears to have been a fluke weather event. Its impact on the ice, however, was shaped by climate, which had left the August ice very thin. As a NASA staff member said when the storm was first spotted, “Decades ago, a storm of the same magnitude would have been less likely to have as large an impact on the sea ice, because at that time the ice cover was thicker and more expansive.” - ARS Technica.

MASS ANIMAL DIE-OFF: The Significant Decrease In Ice - NOAA Lists Ringed And Bearded Ice Seal Populations Under The Endangered Species Act!

January 01, 2013 - ALASKA - NOAA Fisheries announced on December 21, in compliance with a court ordered deadline, its final listing decision for four subspecies of ringed seals and two distinct population segments (DPSs) of bearded seals under the Endangered Species Act. Specifically, in line with the proposal, NOAA will list as threatened the Beringia and Okhotsk DPSs of bearded seals and the Arctic, Okhotsk, and Baltic subspecies of ringed seals. The Ladoga subspecies of ringed seals will be listed as endangered. The species that exist in U.S. waters (Arctic ringed seals and the Beringia DPS of bearded seals) are already protected under the Marine Mammal Protection Act.

A ringed seal pup peeks out from its protective snow cave near Kotzebue, Alaska.
(Credit: Michael Cameron, NOAA's Alaska Fisheries Science Center).
This science-based listing decision will not result in any immediate restrictions on human activities; however, Federal agencies that permit or fund projects that may affect a listed species must consult with NOAA Fisheries to ensure the existence of the species is not jeopardized. In addition, this listing will have no impact on the subsistence harvest of ice seals by Alaska Natives, a practice that is central to the traditional culture and nutrition in many Alaskan Native coastal communities. "Our scientists undertook an extensive review of the best scientific and commercial data. They concluded that a significant decrease in sea ice is probable later this century and that these changes will likely cause these seal populations to decline," said Jon Kurland, protected resources director for NOAA Fisheries' Alaska region. "We look forward to working with the State of Alaska, our Alaska Native co-management partners, and the public as we work toward designating critical habitat for these seals."

NOAA will work with local, state and Native partners, as well as the public to help determine whether to propose critical habitat designations for Arctic ringed seals and the Beringia DPS of bearded seals. This decision will happen at a later date, after compiling significant additional scientific and economic data and public input. Earlier this year, the President directed that any future designations of critical habitat carefully consider all public comments on relevant science and economic impact, including those that suggest methods for minimizing regulatory burdens. Any potential future critical habitat designation will include a full analysis of economic impact, including impact on jobs, and will strive, to the extent permitted by law, to avoid unnecessary burdens and costs on states, tribes, localities, and the private sector. Ringed and bearded seals depend on sea ice and snow to survive. After a comprehensive review of the best available science including climate models developed by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, NOAA has concluded that sea ice and snow cover are likely to further decrease in the foreseeable future resulting in population declines that threaten the survival of these seals. Ringed seals nurse and protect their pups in snow caves, which are threatened by late ice formation in the fall, rain-on-snow events in the late winter, earlier break-up of spring ice, as well as decreasing snow depths, which are projected to be too shallow for snow cave formation by the end of the century. Both ringed seals and bearded seals rely on sea ice for extended periods during molting, and bearded seals live on sea ice during critical months for breeding, whelping, and nursing. Sea ice is projected to shrink both in extent and duration, with bearded seals finding inadequate ice even if they move north. - Science Daily.

EXOPOLITICAL DISCLOSURE: From UFOs To "Tsunami Bomb" - New Zealand's National Archives Reveal Lots Of Secrets!

January 01, 2013 - NEW ZEALAND - A new book has revealed rare historical gems buried in New Zealand's national archives, including a bizarre WWII plan to create a "tsunami bomb" and military files detailing supposed UFO sightings.  Author Ray Waru said he wrote "Secrets and Treasures" to highlight the material publicly available at Archives New Zealand in Wellington -- where almost 100 kilometres (62 miles) of shelf space is crammed with historical artefacts.  "It was totally overwhelming at the beginning," he told AFP.  "I knew I wanted to get in the important things, the Treaty of Waitangi (New Zealand's founding document), the Declaration of Independence, the women's suffrage petition, and a few other things.  "But once you start digging, one story leads onto another and I'd just follow my nose." 

The suffrage petition Waru refers to contains 36,000 signatures and was dramatically unfurled on the floor of the New Zealand parliament in 1893 by supporters of women's right to vote.  Stretching for almost 300 metres (980 feet), the petition, currently undergoing restoration, proved successful and led New Zealand, then a British colony, to become the first country in the world to grant women the vote later that year.  Alongside notable historical documents, such as a letter written by explorer captain James Cook before his final voyage, are curiosities like "Project Seal", a top-secret US-New Zealand attempt to create a doomsday device to rival the nuclear bomb.  The project was launched in June 1944 after a US naval officer noticed that blasting operations to clear coral reefs around Pacific islands sometimes produced a large wave, raising the possibility of creating a "tsunami bomb".  Explosive tests carried out in waters north of Auckland led scientists to conclude that the weapon was feasible and a series of 10 massive blasts offshore could create a 10-metre (33-foot) tsunami capable of inundating a small coastal city. 

"It was absolutely astonishing," Waru said.  "First that anyone would come up with the idea of developing a weapon of mass destruction based on a tsunami... and also that New Zealand seems to have successfully developed it to the degree that it might have worked.  "I only came across it because they were still vetting the report, so there it was sitting on somebody's desk (in the archives)."  Waru said the project was shelved in early 1945, despite the success of initial, small-scale tests.  "If you put it in a James Bond movie it would be viewed as fantasy but it was a real thing," he said.  Among the other oddities in the archives are Defence Department records of hundreds of UFO sightings by members of the public, military personnel and commercial pilots, mostly involving moving lights in the sky.  Some of the accounts include drawings of flying saucers, descriptions of aliens wearing "pharaoh masks" and alleged examples of extra-terrestrial writing.  New Zealand's most famous close encounter was when a television crew recorded strange lights off the South Island town of Kaikoura in 1978.  However, in a disappointment for ET spotters, the military concluded the lights could be explained by natural phenomena such as lights from boats being reflected off clouds or an unusual view of the planet Venus.  Waru said it was seemingly humdrum documents, like school magazines from the early 1900s extolling the virtues of the British Empire, that provided a window into the attitudes of the past.  "There's masses of records and kilometres of important files but you realise pretty quickly that every piece of paper is related to an individual at some point in time," he said.  "So it gives the modern researcher a peek into the private lives of individuals, which I found interesting -- divorce files from Dunedin, letters a young soldier wrote home to their parents." - Terra Daily.

FUK-U-SHIMA: Japan's Nuclear Dead Zone Spreads Far And Wide - Almost All Of Northern America Covered In Radiation Fallout From 3/11 Mega-Disaster Event!

January 01, 2013 - JAPAN - The following constitute selected excerpts from a PDF presentation from Pure and Applied Geophysics, dealing with the long range dispersion of radionuclides emitted into the atmosphere during the Fukushima Dai-ichi accident that occurred after the March 11, 2011 mega-earthquake/tsunami event.
The maps above show the activity concentration of Xe-133 at ground-level on March 31, 2011 (top)
and May 10, 2011 (bottom). Pure and Applied Geophysics.
...In this study, the emissions of the three fission products Cs-137, I-131 and Xe-133 are investigated... Because of its high volatility, it is estimated that the Xe-133 was mainly emitted into the atmosphere during the hydrogen explosions of units 1, 2 and 3. Releases are supposed to have occurred over 6 hour time periods centered at the time of explosions, which allows us to consider some venting and leakage before and after those moments.

...worldwide industrial Xe-133 background could be modified by Fukushima radioxenon release affecting the performances of the CTBT radionuclide monitoring network.

...during the couple of months after the Fukushima Dai-ichi accident, monitoring capabilities of the network could have been affected by the large amount of radioxenon released by the accident. The impact of Fukushima radioxenon releases on the worldwide Xe-133 background must also be investigated... - Pure and Applied Geophysics.

PLANETARY TREMORS: Scientists Predict Serious Earthquake In The Himalayas In 8.0 To 8.5 Magnitude Range!

January 01, 2013 - HIMALAYAS - In what can have huge implications for countries like India, scientists have warned of massive earthquakes in the Himalayas, especially in areas where the surface is yet to be broken by a tremblor.

A research team led by Nanyang Technological University (NTU) has discovered that powerful earthquakes measuring 8 to 8.5 on the Richter scale have left clear scars in the central Himalayas. This discovery has huge implications for the area along the front of the Himalayas, given that the region has a population density similar to that of New York City, researchers said in a statement. Paul Tapponnier, a leading neotectonics scientist, said that signs of earthquakes in the past means that tremblors of the same magnitude can occur again in the region, especially in areas which have yet to have their surface broken. The study showed that in 1255 and 1934, two great earthquakes ruptured the ground surface in the Himalayas. This runs contrary to what scientists previously thought.

Tapponnier said that by combining new high resolution imagery and state-of-the-art dating techniques, they could show that the 1934 earthquake did indeed rupture the surface, breaking the ground over a length of more than 150 km, essentially to the south of that part of the range that comprises Mount Everest. This break formed along the main fault in Nepal that currently marks the boundary between the Indian and Asian tectonic plates — also known as the Main Frontal Thrust fault. Using radiocarbon dating of offset river sediments and collapsed hill-slope deposits, the researchers managed to separate several episodes of tectonic movement on this major fault and pin the dates of the two quakes. - Indian Express.

MASS FISH DIE-OFF: Thousands of Dead Fish Found On Tallow Beach, Australia?!

January 01, 2013 - AUSTRALIA - Hundreds, maybe thousands of fish have been killed in the Tallow Beach area over the weekend due to unconfirmed reasons.  Tallow Creek includes small lakes and wetlands and is located seven kilometres south of Byron Bay, behind the dunal area along Tallow Beach, and flows intermittently into the Pacific Ocean.  The beach extends for some three kilometres to the south to Broken Head.  Robert Graham from Byron Bay Deep Sea Fishing Club photographed the fish kill and is very unhappy with the situation .  Mr Graham was first alerted of the fish kill on Friday afternoon by another member of the fishing club.

Fish kill at Tallow tea tree lake on Saturday. Picture Supplied.
He attended to the site on Saturday morning.  Mr Graham said the fish kill may have been responsibility of the Byron Bay Marine Park managers, of which Tallow Beach and creek are part of.  "This is from not letting the water out. All the water gets backed up passed the sewerage works.  "The water sits up in the back for that long that the oxygen is gets taken out of it.  "I went out this morning (Sunday) and the first hundred meters of the river is still clear and there is people swimming in there. Twenty meters around the corner there is five thousand fish on the banks and you can hardly walk into it because it stinks so badly," said Mr Graham.  "I would like to know why they can lock these places up and then not do anything with them," he said. "They used to open it up every year around Christmas, but now they have applied restrictions to it and closed it down and they don't do anything with it.  "The same happened eight or nine years ago, and then three years ago at a smaller scale," Mr Graham said.

A spokesman for the NSW Department of Primary Industries confirmed that the agency has been made aware of the issue and that "it is not yet determined what the cause is."  "DPI will be sending personnel to study the situation and establish the cause," he said.  The spokesman explained that there could be many reasons for the fish kill.  "Coastal creek can close up naturally and then they open up naturally, sometimes that can cause fish kills.  The spokesman confirmed DPI does not have any detail on the situation at this stage.  "We know there is a fish kill there. This is not uncommon in that area, but we don't have any details on the scale of it yet," he said.  Belongil Creek and Tallow Creek are Special Purpose Zones, including the waters and tidal wetlands.  Both zones provide for the protection and rehabilitation of the creeks.  A permit from the Marine Parks Authority is required for any harvesting activity.  Permits are also required for rehabilitation works and for scientific research.  The Cape Byron Marine Park covers an area of around 22,000 hectares.  The marine park extends from Brunswick Heads in the north to Lennox Head in the south, and from the mean high water mark and upper tidal limits of coastal estuaries, seaward to the three nautical mile limit of NSW waters. - Northern Star.

UFO SIGHTINGS: Man Captures Video Of Strange Explosion In The Skies Over Sacramento?!

January 01, 2013 - UNITED STATES - A Sacramento man scanning the night sky caught a sudden burst of light through his telescope. He recorded that strange sight with his smart phone.

CBS13 shared the video with experts to see if they could solve the mystery. This mysterious little tale begins earlier this week when Good Day Sacramento's Cody Stark got this message on Facebook: "I have something on video no one has ever seen. I had my telescope out, caught an explosion in space. Wanna see the video?" Cody's response? Absolutely! The video was shot with an iPhone through the eyepiece of a telescope, so CBS13 had to enlarge it to get a better look. It was shot on Dec. 20 around 5 p.m. in Sacramento by viewer Elijah Prychodzko.

"I saw something that I'd never seen before. I saw another object orbiting this - whatever it was up there, and I've never seen anything like that before," said Prychodzko. He thought it was a little strange so he put his phone down, called his nephew, and then returned to shoot a second video clip. "Oh my God, it just blew up. Something blew up," he's heard saying on the video. "As soon as I put the camera to the telescope it just blew up and I didn't know what to say," he told CBS13. So Cody sent the video off to Dr. Stephen P Maran, who wrote the book Astronomy for Dummies. Dr. Maran responded by saying he didn't recognize the "explosion" as a known astronomical phenomenon. "My personal opinion is that it is not an astronomical event," he wrote. Whatever it was, it was almost never seen by Dr. Maran or anyone else - because Prychodzko nearly sold it on Craigslist. "Almost got rid of it a week before. I was trying to sell it on Craigslist and I was getting offers and, man, you know what, at this time I'm glad I didn't sell it," he said. CBS 4 also contacted a Vatican expert who said it could be some sort of light refraction. What do you suspect the "explosion" is? - CBS13 Sacramento.

WATCH: Man Captures Video Of Strange Explosion In The Sky.

PLANETARY TREMORS: Strong 6.0 Magnitude Quake Strikes Southeast of Lorengau, Papua New Guinea!

January 01, 2013 - PAPUA NEW GUINEA - According to a late report from the U.S. Geological Survey, a strong magnitude 6.0 earthquake shook Papua New Guinea on December 29, 2012. The strong quake hit approximately 237 km southeast of Lorengau, Papua.

The quake was centered 240 km west-southwest of Kavieng, at a depth of 10.1 kilometres. The tremor did not immediately prompt any tsunami warnings by the U.S. National Weather Service’s Pacific Tsunami Warning Center or the Japan Meteorological Agency.

So far there have been no reports of damage nor loss of life.

Strong earthquakes are common in Papua New Guinea, the country that makes up the eastern half of the island of New Guinea and the location of the epicentre. Papua New Guinea is part of the “Pacific Ring of Fire,” an area prone to earthquakes and volcanic eruptions because of friction between tectonic plates. Papua New Guinea has been rocked with a 6.0 and a 7.1 tremor thus far this year. Papua New Guinea’s Geophysical Observatory says the quake was felt as far as the capital Port Moresby.

Tectonic Summary: Seismotectonics of the New Guinea Region and Vicinity.
The Australia-Pacific plate boundary is over 4000 km long on the northern margin, from the Sunda (Java) trench in the west to the Solomon Islands in the east. The eastern section is over 2300 km long, extending west from northeast of the Australian continent and the Coral Sea until it intersects the east coast of Papua New Guinea. The boundary is dominated by the general northward subduction of the Australia plate. Along the South Solomon trench, the Australia plate converges with the Pacific plate at a rate of approximately 95 mm/yr towards the east-northeast. Seismicity along the trench is dominantly related to subduction tectonics and large earthquakes are common: there have been 13 M7.5+ earthquakes recorded since 1900. On April 1, 2007, a M8.1 interplate megathrust earthquake occurred at the western end of the trench, generating a tsunami and killing at least 40 people. This was the third M8.1 megathrust event associated with this subduction zone in the past century; the other two occurred in 1939 and 1977. - USGS.