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Friday, November 21, 2014

China nuclear forces significantly expanding



China’s nuclear forces are expanding and details about the nation’s strategic weapons programs remain hidden by Beijing’s secrecy, according to the annual report of the congressional U.S. China Economic and Security Review Commission.

New missiles, missile submarines and multiple-warhead systems will be deployed in the coming years, the report said.

“Despite the uncertainty surrounding China’s stockpiles of nuclear missiles and nuclear warheads, it is clear China’s nuclear forces over the next three to five years will expand considerably and become more lethal and survivable with the fielding of additional road-mobile nuclear missiles; as many as five JIN SSBNs, each of which can carry 12 JL–2 submarine-launched ballistic missiles; and intercontinental ballistic missiles armed with multiple independently targetable reentry vehicles (MIRVs),” the report said.

China’s military also is expected to modernize its silo-based missile forces while hardening its nuclear storage facilities, launch sites and transportation networks against attack.

Additionally, the Chinese are also expanding the “already extensive network of underground facilities,” the report said.

China has a large underground nuclear system of tunnels for storage and production of nuclear weapons and missiles that is estimated to be 3,000 miles in length. It has been referred to as the “Great Underground Wall.”

China also is adding newer road-mobile missiles, including a DF-31B first disclosed by the Free Beacon.

“Unlike the rest of the Second Artillery’s

Intercontinental ballistic missile force, the DF–31 and DF–31A are road mobile, allowing for faster launch times and making them much more difficult for an adversary to locate and attack,” the report said.

“Furthermore, the new missiles use solid fuel instead of liquid fuel, increasing portability and service life while reducing maintenance costs.”

The DF-31A, with a range of nearly 7,000 miles, can hit most of the United States.

A new missile, the DF-41, could be deployed by next year with up to 10 multiple, independently targetable reentry vehicle warheads. Its range of nearly 8,000 miles will allow the missile to target most of the United States.

China’s sea-based nuclear forces are also expanding. China has three Jin-class missile submarines and is adding two more submarines by 2020. The submarine is equipped with the JL-2.

“The JL–2’s range of approximately 4,598 miles gives China the ability to conduct nuclear strikes against Alaska if launched from waters near

China; against Alaska and Hawaii if launched from waters south of Japan; against Alaska, Hawaii, and the western portion of the continental United States if launched from waters west of Hawaii; and against all 50 U.S. states if launched from waters east of Hawaii,” the report said.

The report noted the official Chinese newspaper Global Times reported in November 2013 that Chinese submarine-launched missile attacks against the western United States would kill 5 million to 12 million people through blast effects and subsequent radiation.

The report faulted the Pentagon for not releasing information on China’s nuclear forces since 2006, noting last year that China’s nuclear arsenal consists of between 50 and 75 long-range missiles.

“Estimates of China’s nuclear forces and nuclear capabilities by nongovernmental experts and foreign governments tend to be higher” than U.S. estimates, the report said.

China also has not disclosed data on its nuclear forces as part of a policy of creating “strategic ambiguity,” the report said.

“China’s official pronouncements about its nuclear policies and strategies are short, rare, and vague,” the report said.

Credit to Freebeacon.com

3 Of The 10 Largest Economies In The World Have Already Fallen Into Recession



Submitted by Michael Snyder of The Economic Collapse blog,
Are you waiting for the next major wave of the global economic collapse to strike?  Well, you might want to start paying attention again.  Three of the ten largest economies on the planet have already fallen into recession, and there are very serious warning signs coming from several other global economic powerhouses.  Things are already so bad that British Prime Minister David Cameron is comparing the current state of affairs to the horrific financial crisis of 2008.  In an article for the Guardian that was published on Monday, he delivered the following sobering warning: “Six years on from the financial crash that brought the world to its knees, red warning lights are once again flashing on the dashboard of the global economy.”  For the leader of the nation with the 6th largest economy in the world to make such a statement is more than a little bit concerning.
So why is Cameron freaking out?
Well, just consider what is going on in Japan.  The economy of Japan is the 3rd largest on the entire planet, and it is a total basket case at this point.  Many believe that the Japanese will be on the leading edge of the next great global economic crisis, and that is why it is so alarming that Japan has just dipped into recession again for the fourth time in six years
Japan’s economy unexpectedly fell into recession in the third quarter, a painful slump that called into question efforts by Prime Minister Shinzo Abe to pull the country out of nearly two decades of deflation.

The second consecutive quarterly decline in gross domestic product could upend Japan’s political landscape. Mr. Abe is considering dissolving Parliament and calling fresh elections, people close to him say, and Monday’s economic report is seen as critical to his decision, which is widely expected to come this week.
Of course Japan is far from alone.
Brazil has the 7th largest economy on the globe, and it has already been in recession for quite a few months.
And the problems that the national oil company is currently experiencing certainly are not helping matters
In the past five days, 23 powerful Brazilians have been arrested, with even more warrants still outstanding.

The country’s stock market has become a whipsaw, and its currency, the real, has hit a nine-year low.

All of this is due to a far-reaching corruption scandal at one massive company, Petrobras.

In the last month the company’s stock has fallen by 35%.
The 9th largest economy in the world, Italy, has also fallen into recession
Italian GDP dropped another 0.1% in the third quarter, as expected.

That’s following a 0.2% drop in Q2 and another 0.1% decline in Q1, capping nine months of recession for Europe’s third-largest economy.
Like Japan, there is no easy way out for Italy.  A rapidly aging population coupled with a debt to GDP ratio of more than 132 percent is a toxic combination.  Italy needs to find a way to be productive once again, and that does not happen overnight.
Meanwhile, much of the rest of Europe is currently mired in depression-like conditions.  The official unemployment numbers in some of the larger nations on the continent are absolutely eye-popping.  The following list of unemployment figures comes from one of my previous articles
  • France: 10.2%
  • Poland: 11.5%
  • Italy: 12.6%
  • Portugal: 13.1%
  • Spain: 23.6%
  • Greece: 26.4%
Are you starting to get the picture?
The world is facing some real economic problems.
Another traditionally strong economic power that is suddenly dealing with adversity is Israel.
In fact, the economy of Israel is shrinking for the first time since 2009
Israel’s economy contracted for the first time in more than five years in the third quarter, as growth was hit by the effects of a war with Islamist militants in Gaza.

Gross domestic product fell 0.4 percent in the July-September period, the Central Bureau of Statistics said on Sunday. It was the first quarterly decline since a 0.2 percent drop in the first three months of 2009, at the outset of the global financial crisis.
And needless to say, U.S. economic sanctions have hit Russia pretty hard.
The rouble has been plummeting like a rock, and the Russian government is preparing for a “catastrophic” decline in oil prices…
President Vladimir Putin said Russia’s economy, battered by sanctions and a collapsing currency, faces a potential “catastrophic” slump in oil prices.

Such a scenario is “entirely possible, and we admit it,” Putin told the state-run Tass news service before attending this weekend’s Group of 20 summit in Brisbane, Australia, according to a transcript e-mailed by the Kremlin today. Russia’s reserves, at more than $400 billion, would allow the country to weather such a turn of events, he said.

Crude prices have fallen by almost a third this year, undercutting the economy in Russia, the world’s largest energy exporter.
It is being reported that Russian President Vladimir Putin has been hoarding gold in anticipation of a full-blown global economic war.
I think that will end up being a very wise decision on his part.
Despite all of this global chaos, things are still pretty stable in the United States for the moment.  The stock market keeps setting new all-time highs and much of the country is preparing for an orgy of Christmas shopping.
Unfortunately, the number of children that won’t even have a roof to sleep under this holiday season just continues to grow.
A stunning report that was just released by the National Center on Family Homelessness says that the number of homeless children in America has soared to an astounding 2.5 million.
That means that approximately one out of every 30 children in the United States is homeless.
Let that number sink in for a moment as you read more about this new report from the Washington Post
The number of homeless children in the United States has surged in recent years to an all-time high, amounting to one child in every 30, according to a comprehensive state-by-state report that blames the nation’s high poverty rate, the lack of affordable housing and the effects of pervasive domestic violence.

Titled “America’s Youngest Outcasts,” the report being issued Monday by the National Center on Family Homelessness calculates that nearly 2.5 million American children were homeless at some point in 2013. The number is based on the Education Department’s latest count of 1.3 million homeless children in public schools, supplemented by estimates of homeless preschool children not counted by the agency.

The problem is particularly severe in California, which has about one-eighth of the U.S. population but accounts for more than one-fifth of the homeless children, totaling nearly 527,000.
This is why I get so fired up about the destruction of the middle class.  A healthy economy would mean more wealth for most people.  But instead, most Americans just continue to see a decline in the standard of living.
And remember, the next major wave of the economic collapse has not even hit us yet.  When it does, the suffering of the poor and the middle class is going to get much worse.
Unfortunately, there are already signs that the U.S. economy is starting to slow down too.  In fact, the latest manufacturing numbers were not good at all
The Federal Reserve’s new industrial production data for October show that, on a monthly basis, real U.S. manufacturing output has fallen on net since July, marking its worst three-month production stretch since March-June, 2011. Largely responsible is the automotive sector’s sudden transformation from a manufacturing growth leader into a serious growth laggard, with combined real vehicles and parts production enduring its worst three-month stretch since late 2008 to early 2009.
A lot of very smart people are forecasting economic disaster for next year.
Hopefully they are all wrong, but I have a feeling that they are going to be right.
Credit to Zero Hedge

Gerald Celente: First Financial Calamity then War

THE TWO SPEECHES THAT GOT JFK KILLED (PART ONE)


His stand against tyranny lives on over 50 years following his death.
His stand against tyranny lives on over 50 years following his death.

JFK was not a perfect. man by any means. In fact, he was an enigma, because as flawed as was his personal life, his Presidency was filled with unparalleled courage, the kind of courage that we all wish we had in our current President.

Kennedy’s Enemies

dealey6During his 1,000 days in office, JFK managed to acquire the largest and the most powerful list of enemies acquired by any sitting President. The President’ father, Joe Kennedy, a former ambassador to England and mafia bootlegger, used his Mafia connections to steal the 1960 election in Cook County, IL., which ensured that JFK would carry Illinois. This ultimately was the deciding factor in the 1960 Presidential election. Yet, JFK’s administration declared war on the Mafia with Robert Kennedy as the Attorney General leading the way.
JFK also managed to anger the oil industry as JFK was cutting the oil depletion allowance. He further infuriated the military industrial complex over his refusal to support the Bay of Pigs invasion. JFK had every intention to bring home the combat advisors which meant no involvement in Vietnam and his intention to engage Russia in talks of nuclear arms control did not sit well with the manufacturers of the weapons of mass destruction. In his greatest act of defiance towards the globalists of his day, JFK was slowly but surely eroding the Federal Reserve domination over our nation’s monetary supply with the issuance of C-notes.
Any police detective worth his/her salt would have followed the money and sought to look for the perpetrators among those who would have gained financially from JFK’s death.

Who Killed JFK?

Every November, I do a number of radio interviews and in-person presentations in which I reveal who fired the fatal shot from the grassy knoll. I present photographic evidence (i.e. newly enhanced “Badge man” photo), the recorded eye witness testimony of Lee Bowers, Gordon Arnold and Ed Hoffman. I also present the video testimony of the man who gave that particular assassin the contract to kill JFK (i.e. Christian David) and the paymaster (i.e. Michele Nicoli). All roads lead to Lucian Sarti as the shooter on the grassy knoll.
Vice President, Lyndon Johnson, was a co-conspirator after the fact. He blocked any crime scene investigation of the President’s limousine by having the interior and the exterior stripped without being examined as a crime scene. The bullet fragments contained in the limo could have proven the Oswald was not the shooter. This is called obstruction of justice and LBJ should have gone to prison. We also have LBJ presidential tapes in which it is heard that LBJ and FBI Director, J. Edgar Hoover conspire to appoint a “phony” commission to sanction their story that Oswald acted alone. However, knowing who did the shooting and who did the covering up, does not provide one with the answers as to why JFK was killed and who was ultimately behind the assassination.
If the money trailed was followed by investigators in 1964, it would have revealed that the military industrial complex (e.g. Chrysler, Bell Helicopter), the Federal Reserve and the oil industry all made significant profits in the year following JFK’s death through the complete reversal of his policies on Vietnam, the nuclear arms race and his relationship with the oil industry. The central theme running through these entities was David Rockefeller who is presently 99 years old and is still wreaking havoc upon the American people. Had I been an investigator, in 1964, he would have been my primary person of interest.

Signing His Own Death Warrant

The plot to kill JFK had its origins in two speeches the President made. The first speech was made 10 days following the failed Bay of Pigs invasion, and 10 days after a defiant JFK said “no” to the CIA, the Joint Chiefs, the Mafia and the Cuban refugees, by refusing to provide air cover for the invasion of Cuba by CIA trained Cuba refugees, JFK made the speech that put one of the final nails in his coffin.
The JFK speech is now known as his famous “Secret Society” speech. JFK was the first and the only President to ever identify the globalists as the enemy of America and humanity as a whole. For a man in his position, JFK was stunningly detailed in calling out the globalists of his day.

Calling Out the New World Order in 1961

1. Media censorship: “I have no intention of establishing a new Office of War Information to govern the flow of news. I am not suggesting any new forms of censorship or any new types of security classifications”.
2. The growing dominance of the globalists: “The very word “secrecy” is repugnant in a free and open society; and we are as a people inherently and historically opposed to secret societies, to secret oaths and to secret proceedings. We decided long ago that the dangers of excessive and unwarranted concealment of pertinent facts far outweighed the dangers which are cited to justify it. …Our way of life is under attack. Those who make themselves our enemy are advancing around the globe. The survival of our friends is in danger. And yet no war has been declared, no borders have been crossed by marching troops, no missiles have been fired”.
3. Identifying the globalists- “For we are opposed around the world by a monolithic and ruthless conspiracy that relies primarily on covert means for expanding its sphere of influence–on infiltration instead of invasion, on subversion instead of elections, on intimidation instead of free choice, on guerrillas by night instead of armies by day. It is a system which has conscripted vast human and material resources into the building of a tightly knit, highly efficient machine that combines military, diplomatic, intelligence, economic, scientific and political operations”.
Some people believed that JFK was talking about the Soviets. However, the Soviets did not control our media which was the focus of his speech to a group of newspaper editors. The Soviets were known to the public, they were not a “secret society”. There is no question, he was talking about the globalists of his day.
In 1961, these were fighting words because the public had never heard of such things. In the two weeks following the Bay of Pigs fiasco, the globalists knew they had an enemy in the White House and if he could not be unelected, he would have to be dealt with.

Conclusion

If you have never listened to the speech, you should take the time to listen, now, for if you do, the events of today’s America will make a great deal more sense. The text of the speech is provided below the audio recording.


In tomorrow’s companion piece, the second speech, the one that put the final nail in JFK’s coffin. Any guesses as to what speech that I am referring to?
This Sunday evening, from 9pm to Midnight, my show explores the events connected to JFK’s assassination as well the  current implications arising from this horrific 1963 event. Listening details are located below the text of the speech.

 APPENDIX

The Text of the “Secret Societies” Speech



“The very word “secrecy” is repugnant in a free and open society; and we are as a people inherently and historically opposed to secret societies, to secret oaths and to secret proceedings. We decided long ago that the dangers of excessive and unwarranted concealment of pertinent facts far outweighed the dangers which are cited to justify it. Even today, there is little value in opposing the threat of a closed society by imitating its arbitrary restrictions. Even today, there is little value in insuring the survival of our nation if our traditions do not survive with it. And there is very grave danger that an announced need for increased security will be seized upon by those anxious to expand its meaning to the very limits of official censorship and concealment. That I do not intend to permit to the extent that it is in my control. And no official of my Administration, whether his rank is high or low, civilian or military, should interpret my words here tonight as an excuse to censor the news, to stifle dissent, to cover up our mistakes or to withhold from the press and the public the facts they deserve to know.
But I do ask every publisher, every editor, and every newsman in the nation to reexamine his own standards, and to recognize the nature of our country’s peril. In time of war, the government and the press have customarily joined in an effort based largely on self-discipline, to prevent unauthorized disclosures to the enemy. In time of “clear and present danger,” the courts have held that even the privileged rights of the First Amendment must yield to the public’s need for national security.
Today no war has been declared–and however fierce the struggle may be, it may never be declared in the traditional fashion. Our way of life is under attack. Those who make themselves our enemy are advancing around the globe. The survival of our friends is in danger. And yet no war has been declared, no borders have been crossed by marching troops, no missiles have been fired.
If the press is awaiting a declaration of war before it imposes the self-discipline of combat conditions, then I can only say that no war ever posed a greater threat to our security. If you are awaiting a finding of “clear and present danger,” then I can only say that the danger has never been more clear and its presence has never been more imminent.
It requires a change in outlook, a change in tactics, a change in missions–by the government, by the people, by every businessman or labor leader, and by every newspaper. For we are opposed around the world by a monolithic and ruthless conspiracy that relies primarily on covert means for expanding its sphere of influence–on infiltration instead of invasion, on subversion instead of elections, on intimidation instead of free choice, on guerrillas by night instead of armies by day. It is a system which has conscripted vast human and material resources into the building of a tightly knit, highly efficient machine that combines military, diplomatic, intelligence, economic, scientific and political operations.
Its preparations are concealed, not published. Its mistakes are buried, not headlined. Its dissenters are silenced, not praised. No expenditure is questioned, no rumor is printed, no secret is revealed. It conducts the Cold War, in short, with a war-time discipline no democracy would ever hope or wish to match.
Nevertheless, every democracy recognizes the necessary restraints of national security–and the question remains whether those restraints need to be more strictly observed if we are to oppose this kind of attack as well as outright invasion.
For the facts of the matter are that this nation’s foes have openly boasted of acquiring through our newspapers information they would otherwise hire agents to acquire through theft, bribery or espionage; that details of this nation’s covert preparations to counter the enemy’s covert operations have been available to every newspaper reader, friend and foe alike; that the size, the strength, the location and the nature of our forces and weapons, and our plans and strategy for their use, have all been pinpointed in the press and other news media to a degree sufficient to satisfy any foreign power; and that, in at least in one case, the publication of details concerning a secret mechanism whereby satellites were followed required its alteration at the expense of considerable time and money.
The newspapers which printed these stories were loyal, patriotic, responsible and well-meaning. Had we been engaged in open warfare, they undoubtedly would not have published such items. But in the absence of open warfare, they recognized only the tests of journalism and not the tests of national security. And my question tonight is whether additional tests should not now be adopted.
The question is for you alone to answer. No public official should answer it for you. No governmental plan should impose its restraints against your will. But I would be failing in my duty to the nation, in considering all of the responsibilities that we now bear and all of the means at hand to meet those responsibilities, if I did not commend this problem to your attention, and urge its thoughtful consideration.
On many earlier occasions, I have said–and your newspapers have constantly said–that these are times that appeal to every citizen’s sense of sacrifice and self-discipline. They call out to every citizen to weigh his rights and comforts against his obligations to the common good. I cannot now believe that those citizens who serve in the newspaper business consider themselves exempt from that appeal.
I have no intention of establishing a new Office of War Information to govern the flow of news. I am not suggesting any new forms of censorship or any new types of security classifications. I have no easy answer to the dilemma that I have posed, and would not seek to impose it if I had one. But I am asking the members of the newspaper profession and the industry in this country to reexamine their own responsibilities, to consider the degree and the nature of the present danger, and to heed the duty of self-restraint which that danger imposes upon us all.
Every newspaper now asks itself, with respect to every story: “Is it news?” All I suggest is that you add the question: “Is it in the interest of the national security?” And I hope that every group in America–unions and businessmen and public officials at every level– will ask the same question of their endeavors, and subject their actions to the same exacting tests.
And should the press of America consider and recommend the voluntary assumption of specific new steps or machinery, I can assure you that we will cooperate whole-heartedly with those recommendations.
Perhaps there will be no recommendations. Perhaps there is no answer to the dilemma faced by a free and open society in a cold and secret war. In times of peace, any discussion of this subject, and any action that results, are both painful and without precedent. But this is a time of peace and peril which knows no precedent in history.
II
It is the unprecedented nature of this challenge that also gives rise to your second obligation–an obligation which I share. And that is our obligation to inform and alert the American people–to make certain that they possess all the facts that they need, and understand them as well–the perils, the prospects, the purposes of our program and the choices that we face.
No President should fear public scrutiny of his program. For from that scrutiny comes understanding; and from that understanding comes support or opposition. And both are necessary. I am not asking your newspapers to support the Administration, but I am asking your help in the tremendous task of informing and alerting the American people. For I have complete confidence in the response and dedication of our citizens whenever they are fully informed.
I not only could not stifle controversy among your readers–I welcome it. This Administration intends to be candid about its errors; for as a wise man once said: “An error does not become a mistake until you refuse to correct it.” We intend to accept full responsibility for our errors; and we expect you to point them out when we miss them.
Without debate, without criticism, no Administration and no country can succeed–and no republic can survive. That is why the Athenian lawmaker Solon decreed it a crime for any citizen to shrink from controversy. And that is why our press was protected by the First Amendment– the only business in America specifically protected by the Constitution- -not primarily to amuse and entertain, not to emphasize the trivial and the sentimental, not to simply “give the public what it wants”–but to inform, to arouse, to reflect, to state our dangers and our opportunities, to indicate our crises and our choices, to lead, mold, educate and sometimes even anger public opinion.
This means greater coverage and analysis of international news–for it is no longer far away and foreign but close at hand and local. It means greater attention to improved understanding of the news as well as improved transmission. And it means, finally, that government at all levels, must meet its obligation to provide you with the fullest possible information outside the narrowest limits of national security–and we intend to do it.
III
It was early in the Seventeenth Century that Francis Bacon remarked on three recent inventions already transforming the world: the compass, gunpowder and the printing press. Now the links between the nations first forged by the compass have made us all citizens of the world, the hopes and threats of one becoming the hopes and threats of us all. In that one world’s efforts to live together, the evolution of gunpowder to its ultimate limit has warned mankind of the terrible consequences of failure.
And so it is to the printing press–to the recorder of man’s deeds, the keeper of his conscience, the courier of his news–that we look for strength and assistance, confident that with your help man will be what he was born to be: free and independent.”
Credit to Common Sense

This Machine Can Scan Your DNA in 90 Minutes

Robert Schueren shook my hand firmly, handed me his business card, and flipped it over, revealing a short list of letters and numbers. "Here is my DNA profile." He smiled. "I have nothing to hide." I had come to meet Schueren, the CEO of IntegenX, at his company's headquarters in Pleasanton, California, to see its signature product: a machine the size of a large desktop printer that can unravel your genetic code in the time it takes to watch a movie.

Schueren grabbed a cotton swab and dropped it into a plastic cartridge. That's what, say, a police officer would use to wipe the inside of your cheek to collect a DNA sample after an arrest, he explained. Other bits of material with traces of DNA on them, like cigarette butts or fabric, could work too. He inserted the cartridge into the machine and pressed a green button on its touch screen: "It's that simple." Ninety minutes later, the RapidHIT 200 would generate a DNA profile, check it against a database, and report on whether it found a match.
A scanner, quickly: The RapidHIT 200 can generate a DNA profile in about 90 minutes. IntegenX
The RapidHIT represents a major technological leap—testing a DNA sample in a forensics lab normally takes at least two days. This has government agencies very excited. The Department of Homeland Security, the Department of Defense, and the Justice Department funded the initial research for "rapid DNA" technology, and after just a year on the market, the $250,000 RapidHIT is already being used in a few states, as well as China, Russia, Australia, and countries in Africa and Europe.

"We're not always aware of how it's being used," Schueren said. "All we can say is that it's used to give an accurate identification of an individual." Civil liberties advocates worry that rapid DNA will spur new efforts by the FBI and police to collect ordinary citizens' genetic code.

The US government will soon test the machine in refugee camps in Turkey and possibly Thailand on families seeking asylum in the United States, according to Chris Miles, manager of the Department of Homeland Security's biometrics program. "We have all these families that claim they are related, but we don't have any way to verify that," he says. Miles says that rapid DNA testing will be voluntary, though refusing a test could cause an asylum application to be rejected.

Miles also says that federal immigration officials are interested in using rapid DNA to curb trafficking by ensuring that children entering the country are related to the adults with them. Jeff Heimburger, the vice president of marketing at IntegenX, says the government has also inquired about using rapid DNA to screen green-card applicants. (An Immigration and Customs Enforcement spokesman said he was not aware that the agency was pursuing the technology.)

Meanwhile, police have started using rapid DNA in Arizona, Florida, and South Carolina. In August, sheriffs in Columbia, South Carolina, used a RapidHIT to nab an attempted murder suspect. The machine's speed provides a major "investigative lead," said Vince Figarelli, superintendent of the Arizona Department of Public Safety crime lab, which is using a RapidHIT to compare DNA evidence from property crimes against the state's database of 300,000 samples. Heimburger notes that the system can also prevent false arrests and wrongful convictions: "There is great value in finding out that somebody is not a suspect."
But the technology is not a silver bullet for DNA evidence. The IntegenX executives brought up rape kits so often that it sounded like their product could make a serious dent in the backlog of half a million untested kits. Yet when I pressed Schueren on this, he conceded that the RapidHIT is not actually capable of processing rape kits since it can't discern individual DNA in commingled bodily fluids.

Despite the new technology's crime-solving potential, privacy advocates are wary of its spread. If rapid-DNA machines can be used in a refugee camp, "they can certainly be used in the back of a squad car," says Jennifer Lynch, a senior staff attorney at the Electronic Frontier Foundation. "I could see that happening in the future as the prices of these machines go down."

Lynch is particularly concerned that law enforcement agencies will use the devices to scoop up and store ever more DNA profiles. Every state already has a forensic DNA database, and while these systems were initially set up to track convicted violent offenders, their collection thresholds have steadily broadened. Today, at least 28 include data from anyone arrested for certain felonies, even if they are not convicted; some store the DNA of people who have committed misdemeanors as well. The FBI's National DNA Index System has more than 11 million profiles of offenders plus 2 million people who have been arrested but not necessarily convicted of a crime.

For its part, Homeland Security will not hang onto refugees' DNA records, insists Miles. ("They aren't criminals," he pointed out.) However, undocumented immigrants in custody may be required to provide DNA samples, which are put in the FBI's database. DHS documents obtained by the Electronic Frontier Foundation say there may even be a legal case for "mandating collection of DNA" from anyone granted legal status under a future immigration amnesty. (The documents also state that intelligence agencies and the military are interested in using rapid DNA to identify sex, race, and other factors the machines currently do not reveal.)

The FBI is the only federal agency allowed to keep a national DNA database. Currently, police must use a lab to upload genetic profiles to it. But that could change. The FBI's website says it is eager to see rapid DNA in wide use and that it supports the "legislative changes necessary" to make that happen. IntegenX's Heimburger says the FBI is almost finished working with members of Congress on a bill that would give "tens of thousands" of police stations rapid-DNA machines that could search the FBI's system and add arrestees' profiles to it. (The RapitHIT is already designed to do this.) IntegenX has spent $70,000 lobbying the FBI, DHS, and Congress over the last two years.

The FBI declined to comment, and Heimburger wouldn't say which lawmakers might sponsor the bill. But some have already given rapid DNA their blessing. Rep. Eric Swalwell, a former prosecutor who represents the district where IntegenX is based, says he'd like to see the technology "put to use quickly to help law enforcement"—while protecting civil liberties. In March, he and seven other Democratic members of Congress, including progressive stalwart Rep. Barbara Lee of California, urged the FBI to assess rapid DNA's "viability for broad deployment" in police departments across the country.

Credit to  Mother Jones

TOP Citi Banker Killed By Suicide



Russia warns against US arms supply to Ukraine


assistance

Russia has warned the United States against supplying arms to Ukrainian forces fighting pro-Russian separatists in eastern Ukraine, hours before US vice-president Joe Biden was due to arrive in Kiev on Thursday.

Ukraine accused Vladimir Putin of treating its territory like a “playing field“, trying to unleash a full-scale war that would pose a broader threat to Nato countries.

Russian foreign ministry spokesman Alexander Lukashevich said in Moscow that a US official’s suggestion Washington should consider sending arms to Ukraine, where pro-Russian rebels have been fighting government forces since April, sent a “very serious signal“.

Lukashevich cautioned against “a major change in policy of the (US) administration in regard to the conflict” in Ukraine.

“That (would be) a direct violation of agreements reached, including (agreements reached) with the participation of the United States,” he said.

The United States backs Kiev in its struggle against the pro-Russian separatists in two eastern regions and has imposed sanctions on Russia over its policies.

In Washington, State Department spokesman Jeffrey Rathke said the United States is “continuing to assess how best to support Ukraine” and “nothing is off the table” including lethal aid. “I think if we’re talking about destabilization, we have to start with Russia’s actions and the separatists that are backed by Russia,” Rathke added.

Moscow supports the separatists but denies it is backing the rebels with arms and troops in a conflict which the United Nations says has killed more than 4,300 since mid-April.


Credit to The Guardian