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WarmingTip * PetroEra * Iraq * Mom&General


13 August 2005

We are caught in an inescapable network of mutuality,
tied in a single garment of destiny.
Whatever affects one directly, effects all indirectly.


Martin Luther King, Jr.

1) Warming Hits 'Tipping Point'
2) The Twilight Era of Petroleum
3) No End in Sight in Iraq
4) Mother's Protest at Bush's Doorstep Raises the Stakes
5) Four Star General Fired For Organizing Coup Against Neo-Cons?

Editor's Notes:


The warming issue is heating up in reality, if not appropriately in the mainstream news. The first item is on research discovering that "the world's largest frozen peat bog" is thawing for the first time in 11,000 years (since it was formed at the end of the last ice age). This bog in western Siberia, the size of France and Germany combined, could release "billions of tonnes of greenhouse gas."

The exponential acceleration for global warming was predicted by Bart Jordan, who modeled global warming back in the 1950's while in the US military service. But even if Earth is headed toward the same CO2 atmospheric concentrations as Venus and Mars (both above 95%,), still, what we do is critical for generations now living on Earth. My company, Stirling Advantage is still seeking to raise about $500,000 to develop a 200kW Stirling engine prototype. With rising fuel costs, and the fuel-versatility of the Stirling heat (external combustion) engine, i.e. biomass, methane, waste and other heat sources, it should receive funding soon.

"The Twilight Era of Petroleum" essay by Michael Klare is item 2. Item 3 covers a realistic overview of the current crisis war in Iraq. Item 4 covers the Cindy Sheehan effort in Crawford Texas, challenging the status quo on the senseless killing of innocent life for dirty-oil politics. Item 5 is a controversial piece from Prison Planet; was a Four Star General fired for organizing a Coup against the Neo-Cons?

"The earth is not dying, she is being killed...
and the people killing her have names and addresses."

Utah Philips


1) Warming Hits 'Tipping Point'
Published on August 11, 2005
by the Guardian/UK

Siberia feels the heat: A frozen peat bog the size of France and Germany combined contains billions of tonnes of greenhouse gas, and for the first time since the ice age, it is melting.

By Ian Sample

A vast expanse of western Siberia is undergoing an unprecedented thaw that could dramatically increase the rate of global warming, climate scientists warn today.

Researchers who have recently returned from the region found that an area of permafrost spanning a million square kilometers - the size of France and Germany combined - has started to melt for the first time since it formed 11,000 years ago at the end of the last ice age.

The area, which covers the entire sub-Arctic region of western Siberia, is the world's largest frozen peat bog and scientists fear that as it thaws, it will release billions of tonnes of methane, a greenhouse gas 20 times more potent than carbon dioxide, into the atmosphere.

It is a scenario climate scientists have feared since first identifying "tipping points" - delicate thresholds where a slight rise in the Earth's temperature can cause a dramatic change in the environment that itself triggers a far greater increase in global temperatures.

The discovery was made by Sergei Kirpotin at Tomsk State University in western Siberia and Judith Marquand at Oxford University and is reported in New Scientist today.

The researchers found that what was until recently a barren expanse of frozen peat is turning into a broken landscape of mud and lakes, some more than a kilometer across.

Dr Kirpotin told the magazine the situation was an "ecological landslide that is probably irreversible and is undoubtedly connected to climatic warming". He added that the thaw had probably begun in the past three or four years.

Climate scientists yesterday reacted with alarm to the finding, and warned that predictions of future global temperatures would have to be revised upwards.

"When you start messing around with these natural systems, you can end up in situations where it's unstoppable. There are no brakes you can apply," said David Viner, a senior scientist at the Climatic Research Unit at the University of East Anglia.

"This is a big deal because you can't put the permafrost back once it's gone. The causal effect is human activity and it will ramp up temperatures even more than our emissions are doing."

In its last major report in 2001, the intergovernmental panel on climate change predicted a rise in global temperatures of 1.4C-5.8C between 1990 and 2100, but the estimate only takes account of global warming driven by known greenhouse gas emissions.

"These positive feedbacks with landmasses weren't known about then. They had no idea how much they would add to global warming," said Dr Viner.

Western Siberia is heating up faster than anywhere else in the world, having experienced a rise of some 3C in the past 40 years. Scientists are particularly concerned about the permafrost, because as it thaws, it reveals bare ground which warms up more quickly than ice and snow, and so accelerates the rate at which the permafrost thaws.

Siberia's peat bogs have been producing methane since they formed at the end of the last ice age, but most of the gas had been trapped in the permafrost. According to Larry Smith, a hydrologist at the University of California, Los Angeles, the west Siberian peat bog could hold some 70bn tons of methane, a quarter of all of the methane stored in the ground around the world.

The permafrost is likely to take many decades at least to thaw, so the methane locked within it will not be released into the atmosphere in one burst, said Stephen Sitch, a climate scientist at the Met Office's Hadley Center in Exeter.

But calculations by Dr Sitch and his colleagues show that even if methane seeped from the permafrost over the next 100 years, it would add around 700m tons of carbon into the atmosphere each year, roughly the same amount that is released annually from the world's wetlands and agriculture.

It would effectively double atmospheric levels of the gas, leading to a 10% to 25% increase in global warming, he said.

Tony Juniper, director of Friends of the Earth, said the finding was a stark message to politicians to take concerted action on climate change. "We knew at some point we'd get these feedbacks happening that exacerbate global warming, but this could lead to a massive injection of greenhouse gases.

"If we don't take action very soon, we could unleash runaway global warming that will be beyond our control and it will lead to social, economic and environmental devastation worldwide," he said. "There's still time to take action, but not much.

"The assumption has been that we wouldn't see these kinds of changes until the world is a little warmer, but this suggests we're running out of time."

In May this year, another group of researchers reported signs that global warming was damaging the permafrost. Katey Walter of the University of Alaska, Fairbanks, told a meeting of the Arctic Research Consortium of the US that her team had found methane hotspots in eastern Siberia. At the hotspots, methane was bubbling to the surface of the permafrost so quickly that it was preventing the surface from freezing over.

Last month, some of the world's worst air polluters, including the US and Australia, announced a partnership to cut greenhouse gas emissions through the use of new technologies.

The deal came after Tony Blair struggled at the G8 summit to get the US president, George Bush, to commit to any concerted action on climate change and has been heavily criticized for setting no targets for reductions in greenhouse gas emissions.

2005 Guardian Newspapers Ltd. UK

The article is also posted at:
www.commondreams.org/headlines05/0811-03.htm



For FN's resource page, see:

Mounting Evidence of Global Warming!




2) The Twilight Era of Petroleum

Published on Friday, August 5, 2005 by TomDispatch.com
The Twilight Era of Petroleum
by Michael T. Klare

Several recent developments -- persistently high gasoline prices, unprecedented warnings from the Secretary of Energy and the major oil companies, China's brief pursuit of the American Unocal Corporation -- suggest that we are just about to enter the Twilight Era of Petroleum, a time of chronic energy shortages and economic stagnation as well as recurring crisis and conflict. Petroleum will not exactly disappear during this period -- it will still be available at the neighborhood gas pump, for those who can afford it -- but it will not be cheap and abundant, as it has been for the past 30 years. The culture and lifestyles we associate with the heyday of the Petroleum Age -– large, gas-guzzling cars and SUVs, low-density suburban sprawl, strip malls and mega-malls, cross-country driving vacations, and so on -- will give way to more constrained patterns of living based on a tight gasoline diet. While Americans will still consume the lion's share of global petroleum stocks on a daily basis, we will have to compete far more vigorously with consumers from other countries, including China and India, for access to an ever-diminishing pool of supply.

The concept of a "twilight" of petroleum derives from what is known about the global supply and demand equation. Energy experts have long acknowledged that the global production of oil will someday reach a moment of maximum (or "peak") daily output, followed by an increasingly sharp drop in supply. But while the basic concept of peak oil has gained substantial worldwide acceptance, there is still much confusion about its actual character. Many people who express familiarity with the concept tend to view peak oil as a sharp pinnacle, with global output rising to the summit one month and dropping sharply the next; and looking back from a hundred years hence, things might actually appear this way. But for those of us embedded in this moment of time, peak oil will be experienced as something more like a rocky plateau -- an extended period of time, perhaps several decades in length, during which global oil production will remain at or near current levels but will fail to achieve the elevated output deemed necessary to satisfy future world demand. The result will be perennially high prices, intense international competition for available supplies, and periodic shortages caused by political and social unrest in the producing countries.

The Era of Easy Oil Is Over

The Twilight Era of oil, as I term it, is likely to be characterized by the growing politicization of oil policy and the recurring use of military force to gain control over valuable supplies. This is so because oil, alone among all major trading commodities, is viewed as a strategic material; something so vital to a nation's economic well-being, that is, as to justify the use of force in assuring its availability. That nations are prepared to go to war over petroleum is not exactly a new phenomenon. The pursuit of foreign oil was a significant factor in World War II and the 1991 Gulf War, to offer only two examples; but it is likely to become ever more a part of our everyday world in a period of increased competition and diminishing supplies.

This new era will not begin with a single, clearly defined incident, but rather with a series of events suggesting the transition from a period of relative abundance to a time of persistent scarcity. These events will take both economic and political form: on the one hand, rising energy prices and contracting supplies; on the other, more diplomatic crises and military assertiveness. Recently, we have witnessed significant examples of both.

On the economic side, the most important signals have been provided by rising crude oil prices and warnings of diminished output in the future. A barrel of crude now costs just over $60 -- approximately twice the figure for this time a year ago -- and many experts believe that the price could rise much higher if the supply situation continues to deteriorate. "We've entered a new era of oil prices," said energy expert Daniel Yergin in an April interview with Time Magazine. If markets remain as tight as they are at present, "you'll see a lot more volatility, and you could see prices spike up as high as $65 to $80."

Analysts at Goldman Sachs are even more pessimistic, suggesting that oil could reach as high as $105 a barrel in the near future. "We believe that oil markets may have entered the early stages of what we have referred to as a ‘super-spike' period," they reported in April, with elevated prices prevailing for a "multi-year" stretch of time.

Article Truncated, for the complete article, see:
www.tomdispatch.com/index.mhtml?pid=10216
also posted:
www.commondreams.org/views05/0805-30.htm

Michael T. Klare is the Professor of Peace and World Security Studies at Hampshire College and the author, most recently, of Blood and Oil: The Dangers and Consequences of America's Growing Dependence on Imported Petroleum (Owl Books) as well as Resource Wars, The New Landscape of Global Conflict.



3) No End in Sight in Iraq
by Bob Herbert

[EXCERPT]

The news coming out of Iraq yesterday was that several more American soldiers had been killed. August's toll so far has been mind-numbing. For American troops, it's been one of the worst periods of the war. And yet there's still no sense of urgency within the Bush administration.

The president is on vacation. He's down at the ranch riding his bicycle and clearing brush. The death toll for Americans has streaked past the 1,800 mark. The Iraqi dead are counted by the tens of thousands. But if Mr. Bush has experienced any regret about the carnage he set in motion when he launched the war, he's not showing it.

Writing about Vietnam in the foreword to David Halberstam's book "The Best and the Brightest," Senator John McCain said:

"It was a shameful thing to ask men to suffer and die, to persevere through god-awful afflictions and heartache, to endure the dehumanizing experiences that are unavoidable in combat, for a cause that the country wouldn't support over time and that our leaders so wrongly believed could be achieved at a smaller cost than our enemy was prepared to make us pay."

That point is no less relevant now. The administration is not willing to commit to an all-out effort to defeat the insurgents in Iraq, and is equally unwilling to reverse course and bring the troops home. Most Americans are abandoning the idea that the war can be "won." Polls are showing that they're tired of the conflict and its relentlessly mounting toll. It's hard to imagine that the population at large will be willing to sacrifice thousands of additional American lives over several more years in pursuit of goals that remain as murky as ever.

Ask a thousand different suits in Washington why we're in Iraq and you'll get a thousand different answers. Ask how we plan to win the war, and you'll get a blank stare.

..George W. Bush has no strategy, no real plan, for winning the war in Iraq. So we're stuck in a murderous quagmire without even the suggestion of an end in sight.

The administration has never been straight with the public about the war, and there's no reason to believe it will start being honest now. There is a desperate need for a serious national conversation about alternatives to the Bush approach in Iraq, which is tantamount to a permanent American military presence in that country.

The president, ensconced in a long vacation, exemplifies the vacuum of leadership on this crucial issue, which demands nothing less than the sustained attention of the wisest men and women the U.S. has to offer. They could be politicians, academics, civic or religious leaders, corporate executives - whoever. The longer they remain on the sidelines, the longer the carnage in Iraq will continue.

For the complete NY Times article, see:
www.nytimes.com/2005/08/10/opinion/11herbert.done.html
E-mail: bobherb@nytimes.com
and also posted:
www.truthout.org/docs_2005/081105L.shtml



4) Mother's Protest at Bush's Doorstep Raises the Stakes

By Edwin Chen and Dana Calvo, Times Staff Writers

CRAWFORD, Texas — For more than a year, a modest bungalow known as "Peace House," located a few miles from President Bush's ranch, has served as a headquarters for antiwar activists. It is lonely work, with little more than a skeleton crew on hand much of the time.

But then Cindy Sheehan hit town.

The 48-year-old mother of Army Spc. Casey Sheehan, who was killed in an ambush in Baghdad last year, is consumed by the kind of grief that turns into a furious determination to do something — in her case, to confront the president and force him to explain why her son died.

Now, in the space of just a few days, what started out as a seemingly quixotic personal mission has become something of a phenomenon — with media swarming around Sheehan, leading liberal and antiwar activists parachuting in to try to make her their long-sought voice, and political experts in both parties working to assess what role she may have in galvanizing the public's gathering unhappiness with the increasing American casualties in Iraq.

Antiwar leaders hope that putting the spotlight on Sheehan will motivate Americans who oppose the war, creating a political force strong enough to compel the Bush administration to change course.

Article truncated, for the complete Los Angeles article, see:

http://www.latimes.com/news/nationworld/nation/la-na-warmom11aug11,0,6888551.story?coll=la-tot-promo&track=pacifictime

Cindy Sheehan of Gold Star Families for Peace - web site: GSFP.org



5) Four Star General Fired For Organizing Coup Against Neo-Cons?

Reporter suggests Brynes discovered plan to turn nuke exercise into staged terror attack

Paul Joseph Watson & Alex Jones | August 10 2005

The head of Fort Monroe's Training and Doctrine Command, four star general Kevin P. Byrnes, was fired Tuesday apparently for sexual misconduct according to official sources.

Other sources however have offered a different explanation for Byrnes' dismissal which ties in with the Bush administration's unpopular plan to attack Iran and the staged nuclear attack in the US which would provide the pretext to do so.

According to reporter Greg Szymanski, anonymous military sources said that Brynes was the leader of a faction that was preparing to instigate a coup against the neo-con hawks in an attempt to prevent further global conflict.

Indications are that, much like popular opinion amongst the general public, half the military oppose the neo-con's agenda and half support it.

Further revelations were imparted by journalist Leland Lehrman who appeared today on The Alex Jones Show.

Lehrman's army sources, including a former Captain in intelligence, became outraged when they learned that the official story behind 9/11 was impossible.

They told Lehrman that the imminent Northcom nuclear terror exercise based in Charleston, S.C, where a nuclear warhead is smuggled off a ship and detonated, was originally intended to 'go live' - as in the drill would be used as the cover for a real false flag staged attack.

This website has relentlessly discussed similar style drills which took place on the morning of 9/11 and on the morning of 7/7 in London.

"Speculation exists that he had potentially discovered the fact that it was gonna go live and that he was trying to put a stop to it or also speculation indicates that he may be part of a military coup designed to prevent the ridiculous idea of doing a nuclear war with Iran, " said Lehrman.

Lehrman said that other sources had told him all army leave had been canceled from September 7th onwards, opening the possibility for war to be declared within that time frame.

Northcom officials also admitted to Lehrman that CNN had been using its situation room as a studio.

Earlier this week, Washington Post reported that the Pentagon has developed its first ever war plans for operations within the continental United States, in which terrorist attacks would be used as the justification for imposing martial law on cities, regions or the entire country.

American Conservative Magazine recently reported that Dick Cheney had given orders to immediately invade Iran after the next terror attack in the US, even if there was no evidence Iran was involved.

Government and media mouthpieces have been fear-mongering for weeks about how a nuclear attack within the US is imminent.

Now would be the most opportune time for the Globalists to stage a major attack, as it would head off any potential indictments against the Bush administration for their involvement in illegally outing CIA agent Valerie Plame.

While rumors circulating about indictments having already taken place against Bush and Cheney should rightly be treated very carefully, the fact that there is an ongoing criminal investigation into the matter is something that's admitted and shouldn't be viewed as speculation.

Source:
www.prisonplanet.com/articles/august2005/100805fourstargeneral.htm



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