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James Bond star Roger Moore, 89, dies
January 11, 2020 · Uncategorized · (No comments)

Thursday, May 25, 2017

It is the heaviest of hearts, we must share the awful news that our father, Sir Roger Moore, passed away today. We are all devastated.

On Tuesday, British actor Roger Moore, best known for portraying Simon Templar of the 1960s series The Saint and the spy character James Bond, died in Switzerland at the age of 89.

Before his death, Moore fought recently diagnosed cancer. His family confirmed his death on Twitter saying, “It is the heaviest of hearts, we must share the awful news that our father, Sir Roger Moore, passed away today. We are all devastated.”

Other stars paid tribute to Roger Moore via Twitter, including Russell Crowe, Michael Ball, Mia Farrow, Boy George, and Duran Duran, who sang the eponymous theme song for Bond film A View to a Kill featuring Moore as Bond.

Moore was born in Stockwell, South London an only child to his working-class parents on October 14, 1927. During World War II, he and his mother mostly stayed in Amersham, 25 miles from London. Moore left grammar school in 1943 to work.

Moore’s father, a detective sergeant, came to the home of film director Brian Desmond Hurst that had been robbed. Moore was introduced by his father to Hurst and then started his acting career in summer 1944 as an extra in the film Caesar and Cleopatra. Impressed, Hurst helped Moore gain extra parts in two other films and then paid for Moore’s acting studies at the Royal Academy of Dramatic Arts.

Moore was assigned to the National Service in 1945 and then, after training, was ranked captain. Afterwards, he appeared in modeling engagements, like appearance in Women’s Own magazine.

Moore arrived in the United States in 1953 and then signed a contract with Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer (MGM) for mainly supporting roles. He portrayed the male lead in 1956 film Diane. He first appeared on television as the titular character of the late-1950s ITV series Ivanhoe. He later appeared in some western series, like Maverick from 1960 to 1961, replacing James Garner as the lead of the series.

Moore then portrayed Simon Templar, stealing from rich antagonists, in the ITV series The Saint. The series ran 118 episodes from 1962 to 1969. Due to his contract for The Saint, Moore was prevented from being cast as James Bond for the 1962 film Dr. No, which stars Sean Connery, the first actor to portray Bond.

Moore eventually became the third actor to portray Bond, and his first Bond film was the 1973 film Live and Let Die. He would appear again as Bond in six more films: The Man with the Golden Gun, 1974; The Spy Who Loved Me, 1977; Moonraker, 1979; For Your Eyes Only, 1981; Octopussy, 1983; and A View to a Kill, 1985.

In 1991 Moore became a UNICEF goodwill ambassador. His UNICEF work earned him Commander of the Most Excellent Order of the British Empire (CBE) in the late 1990s. He was knighted in 2003 for that.

Throughout 2000s, Moore performed voiceovers in mostly animated films and made appearances in some other live-action films, like the 2002 film Boat Trip, portraying a gay man resembling Bond. Then he wrote his 2008 autobiography My Word Is My Bond and other books, including memoir One Lucky Bastard and Bond on Bond.

Moore married four times, to four different women. He was survived by his fourth wife, Danish-Swedish multimillionaire Kristina “Kiki” Tholstrup, and his three children.

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Magnitogorsk apartment building collapses after explosion, dozens dead
December 11, 2019 · Uncategorized · (No comments)

Friday, January 4, 2019

An apartment building collapsed on Monday in Magnitogorsk, a city in the Ural region of Russia. A suspected gas leak led to an explosion, followed by the ten-storey building coming down. A total of 39 are confirmed dead, officials told state media, adding that rescuers ended their work yesterday. Some reports suggest a deliberate criminal act.

The 1973 building was home to over 1,000 people; 48 apartments were damaged. Rescuers, working in temperatures well below freezing, according to the emergencies ministry recovered at least ten survivors from the debris on Monday. The building was evacuated. Over 1,000 rescuers responded.

The Investigative Committee and the Federal Security Service (FSB) said they believe gas, which leaks relatively frequently in Russia, was the trigger for the disaster which occurred at 6am as many occupants slept. President Vladimir Putin was briefed, and flew to Magnitogorsk on Monday, observing the rescue mission and visiting the wounded in hospital. In a meeting that day he was told by Emergencies Minister Yevgeny Zinichev of “presumably between 36 and 40 people under the rubble”, while Chelyabinsk regional Deputy Governor Oleg Klimov indicated 68 people were missing.

Search and rescue was suspended on Tuesday, with Zinichev describing the “real threat of [another] part of the building collapsing” as making it “impossible to continue working in such conditions”, and work launched to stabilise the remaining structure. He estimated this would take 24 hours. Cranes were used to hoist workers into position to demolish sections deemed dangerous. Rescue work resumed on Wednesday, with additional bodies recovered increasing the confirmed death toll from fourteen to 31.

“The search and rescue operation is complete,” Deputy Emergency Situations Minister Alexander Chupriyan told TASS on Wednesday. Chelyabinsk’s governor has promised each victim will be subject to a payout of one million rubles.

Health Minister Veronika Skvortsova indicated on Monday the chances of those trapped being found alive were already diminishing. On Tuesday an eleven-month-old boy, identified only as Ivan, was rescued alive and flown to Moscow for treatment of injuries including frostbite, leg fractures, and head trauma. He was found under rubble, still in his cot after having been trapped for over 30 hours. Ivan’s condition was on Wednesday reported to not be life-threatening.

The Emergencies Ministry said six deaths were of children.

On the night of Monday to Tuesday another explosion hit a gas-powered minibus in the city. Officials said three people died; their identities were not provided. Both explosions took place on Karl Marx Avenue, within two miles of each other.

It’s impossible to continue working in such conditions

The FSB denies the two explosions are related; reports describe speculation the disaster’s cause was not in fact a gas leak. One news site, Znak.com, claims FSB sources have ascribed the explosion to terrorism. The Investigative Committee says it has found no trace of explosives despite Znak.com claiming an anonymous source described a second-floor apartment being used as an explosives depot ahead of a planned shopping centre bombing. Znak.com further reported its source said that apartment’s tenant moved in the day before the blast.

Regional governor Boris Dubrovsky said FSB officers were present where the minibus exploded outside the local administrative building, but said this too was unrelated to the other explosion. Znak.com reported its source said “three terrorists” were killed in a firefight on Monday night, while footage from the scene showed the vehicle burn amid what sounds like gunfire.

The website further reported its anonymous source claimed a fourth offender escaped and remains wanted. Monday saw armed police with dogs searching a second apartment block in Magnitigorsk. Residents there told the press the officers claimed to be seeking a bomb.

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Hungarian state-owned enterprise acquires Hirtenberger Defence Group
November 20, 2019 · Uncategorized · (No comments)

Thursday, November 7, 2019

On Monday, Hungarian daily newspaper Magyar Nemzet revealed a deal whereby, on October 29, Hungarian state-owned enterprise HDT Védelmi Ipari Kft. (HDT Limited) acquired Austrian mortar and shell manufacturer Hirtenberger Defence Group. Hirtenberger Defence Group also acknowledged the deal.

In the deal, Austrian, United Kingdom and New Zealand production sites are to be kept, with market sales expected to cover for the price in the long run. A government-guaranteed loan covered the costs, but the exact figure was kept secret.

The November 4 issue of Magyar Nemzet published an interview with Gáspár Maróth, the Hungarian Government commissioner responsible for defence, defence industries and coordinating defence modernization, in which the deal was announced. On the same day, the Hirtenberger Defence Group issued a corresponding press release.

While not naming any other bidders, Maróth said the Hungarian bid won after lengthy negotiations, out of mulitple competing offers. He said he expects no political turmoil between the neighboring Austria and Hungary over the sale. He also noted the acquisition fits into the Hungarian “outward investment” ((hu))Hungarian language: ?t?kekihelyezési strategy of Prime Minister Viktor Orbán.

The Austrian partner asked for the price to be kept secret, but the commissioner stated the purchase was financed by a loan, so it is not a burden on the state budget. With government resolution No. 1430/2019, the state issued an indemnity bond to cover for HDT’s 38.8 million euro loan, and daily Népszava covered the story with a headline pointing out that amount as the presumed price. The creditor Hungarian Development Bank is state-owned as well. Already-queued orders won’t leave idle capacity for some years, Maróth said, and paying back this loan seems realistic; unnamed industry experts called this dubious to Népszava, as the market is saturated and margins are thin, while noting this kind of equipment is needed by the Defence Forces.

The company structure remains unchanged and all sites continue to operate, but Hungarian engineers are to join the research and development team. Maróth pointed out it would have been much more costly and time-consuming to research mortar technology than to acquire it this way. He noted, “the army modernization does not just cover buying ‘hardware’ but technology transfer as well.” ((hu))Hungarian language: ?a hader? modernizációja a „vas” megvétele mellett a tudástranszferre is kiterjed.

Népszava noted the purchase appeared to circumvent the Ministry of Defence. HDT Limited was registered on August 6, 2019 and is under the aegis of Hungarian National Asset Management, Inc.

To modernize its military, in 2018, Hungary licensed Czech firearm technology and started assembling firearms in Kiskunfélegyháza, then agreed with Airbus to open a helicopter parts factory as a joint venture in Gyula.

US President Trump has called for NATO members to increase military spending. According to a March 14, 2019 NATO press release, Hungary spent an estimated 1.15% of its GDP on military expenditures in 2018; NATO guidelines call for 2%. Maróth noted the military had been “effectively disarmed” ((hu))Hungarian language: ?gyakorlatilag lefegyverzett by 2010, when Viktor Orbán regained the prime ministry of Hungary for his second term. Hungary launched a military development program dubbed “Zrínyi 2026” in 2017 to address structural and financial challenges faced by the Defence Force and to renew its equipment.

Honda Civic tops Canada’s list of most stolen cars

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Honda Civic tops Canada’s list of most stolen cars
November 15, 2019 · Uncategorized · (No comments)

Wednesday, November 22, 2006

The 1999 and 2000 year model Honda Civic SiR tops the list of Canada’s most stolen cars.

Consumer popularity also assures the cars will be popular with thieves. Its the second year in a row the Honda SiR has topped the list.

Rick Dubin Vice President of Investigations for the Insurance Bureau of Canada said “The Civics are easy targets.”

Dubin said that once stolen, the cars are most often sold to “chop shops” where thieves completely dismantle the vehicles. The automobile’s individual parts are worth more than the entire car.

The sheer numbers of the cars and their lack of theft deterrent systems make them thieves’ preferred choices.

1999 and 2000 Honda Civics do not come with an electronic immobilizer, however all Hondas from 2001 and onward are equipped with an immobilizer. Immobilizers will be mandatory on all new cars sold beginning September 2007. The devices enable an engine computer to recognize an electronic code in the key. If the code in the key and the engine don’t match exactly, the vehicle can’t be started.

In third place was the 2004 Subaru Impreza, while the 1999 Acura Integra came in fourth, with the 1994 Honda Civic rounding out the top five.

In sixth place, the 1998 Acura Integra, and the 1993 Dodge Shadow completed seventh.

When asked why early model vehicles are selected, he said that, “auto thieves continue to find it easier to steal older vehicles lacking an IBC-approved immobilizer. We’ve seen this trend developing for several years, and these results confirm it.”

Another Honda automobile, the 1996 year model Civic filled eighth place, with the 2000 German Audi TT Quattro in ninth.

The American 1996 Chevrolet/GMC Blazer rounded out the top ten.

None of the above cars had an electronic immobilizer.

Four arrested in three Naperville, Illinois prostitution stings

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Four arrested in three Naperville, Illinois prostitution stings
November 15, 2019 · Uncategorized · (No comments)

Monday, March 15, 2010

An undercover investigation by Naperville, Illinois law enforcement has led to the arrest last Thursday of four people allegedly involved in prostitution. The stings came after police received tips that people were using websites like Craigslist and Backpage.com to sell sexual performances in Naperville hotels. 

Patricia H. Scoleri of Naperville was arrested after an unidentified neighbor observed consistently suspicious activity at Scoleri’s home. Traffic was unusually heavy and consisted mostly of luxury cars in an otherwise quiet, middle-class neighborhood. Also, the visitors were mainly middle-aged men, and an odd string of lavender-colored lights were hung on the front window.

Police say Scoleri worked alone. She was arrested at 2 p.m. local time (2000 UTC) and is charged with violation of anti-prostitution laws, anti-cannabis laws, and the Massage Licensing Act. She apparently has four children, but the Illinois Department of Children and Family Services has neither contacted her nor received a police report on her.

The second sting occurred at 5:30 p.m the same day (2330 UTC) and resulted in the arrest of Chicago resident Tonya M. Adams. She is charged with prostitution and driving without a license. Another sting about an hour later resulted in the arrests of Jessica M. Walley, a Skokie resident, and Mark A. Williams, a self-admitted Schaumburg gang member. “Walley was charged with prostitution and unlawful possession of cannabis. Williams was charged with pimping, obstructing a peace officer, driving with a suspended license and driving without insurance,” reports WBBM News Radio 780.

All four suspects are free, having paid the required ten percent of their $1,000 bail. They may face additional charges related to crack cocaine discovered during the police investigation. Arraignment is scheduled for next month at the DuPage County Circuit Courthouse in Wheaton.

Sweden’s Crown Princess marries long-time boyfriend

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Sweden’s Crown Princess marries long-time boyfriend
November 15, 2019 · Uncategorized · (No comments)

Monday, June 21, 2010

Sweden’s first royal wedding since 1976 took place Saturday when Crown Princess Victoria, 32, married her long-time boyfriend and former personal trainer, Daniel Westling, 36. The ceremony took place at Stockholm Cathedral.

Over 1,200 guests, including many rulers, politicians, royals and other dignitaries from across the world, attended the wedding, which cost an estimated 20 million Swedish kronor. Victoria wore a wedding dress with five-metre long train designed by Pär Engsheden. She wore the same crown that her mother, Queen Silvia, wore on her wedding day 34 years previously, also on June 19. Victoria’s father, King Carl XVI Gustaf, walked Victoria down the aisle, which was deemed untraditional by many. In Sweden, the bride and groom usually walk down the aisle together, emphasising the country’s views on equality. Victoria met with Daniel half-way to the altar, where they exchanged brief kisses, and, to the sounds of the wedding march, made their way to the the silver altar. She was followed by ten bridesmaids. The couple both had tears in their eyes as they said their vows, and apart from fumbling when they exchanged rings, the ceremony went smoothly.

Following the ceremony, the couple headed a fast-paced procession through central Stockholm on a horse-drawn carriage, flanked by police and security. Up to 500,000 people are thought to have lined the streets. They then boarded the Vasaorden, the same royal barge Victoria’s parents used in their wedding, and traveled through Stockholm’s waters, accompanied by flyover of 18 fighter jets near the end of the procession. A wedding banquet followed in the in the Hall of State of the Royal Palace.

Controversy has surrounded the engagement and wedding between the Crown Princess and Westling, a “commoner”. Victoria met Westling as she was recovering from bulemia in 2002. He owned a chain of gymnasiums and was brought in to help bring Victoria back to full health. Westling was raised in a middle-class family in Ockelbo, in central Sweden. His father managed a social services centre, and his mother worked in a post office. When the relationship was made public, Westling was mocked as an outsider and the king was reportedly horrified at the thought of his daughter marrying a “commoner”, even though he did so when he married Silvia. Last year, Westling underwent transplant surgery for a congenital kidney disorder. The Swedish public have been assured that he will be able to have children and that his illness will not be passed on to his offspring.

Westling underwent years of training to prepare for his new role in the royal family, including lessons in etiquette, elocution, and multi-lingual small talk; and a makeover that saw his hair being cropped short, and his plain-looking glasses and clothes being replaced by designer-wear.

Upon marrying the Crown Princess, Westling took his wife’s ducal title and is granted the style “His Royal Highness”. He is now known as HRH Prince Daniel, Duke of Västergötland. He also has his own coat-of-arms and monogram. When Victoria assumes the throne and becomes Queen, Daniel will not become King, but assume a supportive role, similar to that of Prince Phillip, the husband of the United Kingdom’s Queen Elizabeth II.

NASA: Series of errors led to loss of Mars Global Surveyor

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NASA: Series of errors led to loss of Mars Global Surveyor
November 9, 2019 · Uncategorized · (No comments)

Saturday, April 14, 2007

A complex series of events, including a five month-old computer error, was responsible for the battery failure that led to the loss of NASA’s Mars Global Surveyor last year, an internal review board says. Findings from a preliminary report released on Friday say that while NASA controllers followed procedures while operating the craft, the procedures did not cover the types of errors that occurred.

According to NASA, on November 2, 2006, the Global Surveyor was ordered to perform a routine adjustment of its solar panels. However, the Global Surveyor reoriented to an angle that exposed one of its two batteries to direct sunlight. The battery overheated, which led to the depletion of both batteries. An incorrect setting in antenna orientation prevented Global Surveyor from relaying its status to NASA controllers. Its preprogrammed systems did not take into account the need to maintain a thermally safe orientation.

That was the last communication that NASA controllers had with the spacecraft.

The Global Surveyor was the first US mission to Mars in twenty years, For ten years, the craft returned detailed information to NASA scientists providing new insights, including evidence that appeared to show the presence of water on Mars and identification of deposits of water-related minerals, which led to selection of a Mars rover landing site.

“The loss of the spacecraft was the result of a series of events linked to a computer error made five months before the likely battery failure,” said Dolly Perkins, board chairperson and deputy director-technical of NASA’s Goddard Space Flight Center.

The board concluded that NASA controllers had followed procedures, but that the procedures did not adequately cover the type of errors that occurred. In its final report, the board will offer recommendations applicable to future missions.

“We are making an end-to-end review of all our missions to be sure that we apply the lessons learned from Mars Global Surveyor to all our ongoing missions,” said Fuk Li, Mars Exploration Program manager at NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory.

The Global Surveyor was the longest operating spacecraft at Mars and had lasted four times longer than expected.

Surgeons reattach boy’s three severed limbs

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Surgeons reattach boy’s three severed limbs
October 25, 2019 · Uncategorized · (No comments)

Tuesday, March 29, 2005A team of Australian surgeons yesterday reattached both hands and one foot to 10-year-old Perth boy, Terry Vo, after a brick wall which collapsed during a game of basketball fell on him, severing the limbs. The wall gave way while Terry performed a slam-dunk, during a game at a friend’s birthday party.

The boy was today awake and smiling, still in some pain but in good spirits and expected to make a full recovery, according to plastic surgeon, Mr Robert Love.

“What we have is parts that are very much alive so the reattached limbs are certainly pink, well perfused and are indeed moving,” Mr Love told reporters today.

“The fact that he is moving his fingers, and of course when he wakes up he will move both fingers and toes, is not a surprise,” Mr Love had said yesterday.

“The question is more the sensory return that he will get in the hand itself and the fine movements he will have in the fingers and the toes, and that will come with time, hopefully. We will assess that over the next 18 months to two years.

“I’m sure that he’ll enjoy a game of basketball in the future.”

The weight and force of the collapse, and the sharp brick edges, resulted in the three limbs being cut through about 7cm above the wrists and ankle.

Terry’s father Tan said of his only child, the injuries were terrible, “I was scared to look at him, a horrible thing.”

The hands and foot were placed in an ice-filled Esky and rushed to hospital with the boy, where three teams of medical experts were assembled, and he was given a blood transfusion after experiencing massive blood loss. Eight hours of complex micro-surgery on Saturday night were followed by a further two hours of skin grafts yesterday.

“What he will lose because it was such a large zone of traumatised skin and muscle and so on, he will lose some of the skin so he’ll certainly require lots of further surgery regardless of whether the skin survives,” said Mr Love said today.

The boy was kept unconscious under anaesthetic between the two procedures. In an interview yesterday, Mr Love explained why:

“He could have actually been woken up the next day. Because we were intending to take him back to theatre for a second look, to look at the traumatised skin flaps, to close more of his wounds and to do split skin grafting, it was felt the best thing to do would be to keep him stable and to keep him anaesthetised.”

Professor Wayne Morrison, director of the respected Bernard O’Brien Institute of Microsurgery and head of plastic and hand surgery at Melbourne’s St Vincent’s Hospital, said he believed the operation to be a world first.

IMF head remains in New York prison; charged over alleged hotel sex attack

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IMF head remains in New York prison; charged over alleged hotel sex attack
October 25, 2019 · Uncategorized · (No comments)

Sunday, May 15, 2011

This sordid episode—no matter how it ultimately plays out—will spell the end of Strauss-Kahn as an effective leader of the IMF even if he retains his position, which is highly unlikely.

Dominique Strauss-Kahn, the head of the International Monetary Fund, remained in jail last night after being charged with sexually attacking a chambermaid at a New York City hotel. Strauss-Kahn has agreed to undergo forensic screening before he appears in court, and has vowed to “vigorously” defend himself against the charges, which are likely to create a leadership void at the IMF, disrupt emergency talks over the European debt crisis, and spell the end of his political career.

Strauss-Khan was the favourite candidate for the French presidency, and was expected to announce he would stand against Nicolas Sarkozy this month. But the allegations are expected to destroy the hopes of his supporters, increase infighting among the French left, and leave his political career in tatters. His arrest comes at a critical moment for the IMF, and will likely plunge efforts to stabilise the financial states of struggling eurozone countries into chaos. He was meant to discuss the bailouts of Greece and Portugal with European Union financial officials at a meeting in Brussels this week.

Eswar Shanker Prasad, a professor of international economics at Cornell University, said: “This sordid episode – no matter how it ultimately plays out – will spell the end of Strauss-Kahn as an effective leader of the IMF even if he retains his position, which is highly unlikely.” The IMF, however, insisted it remained “fully functioning and operational.”

Strauss-Kahn was to appear in court in Manhattan yesterday charged with three crimes, including attempted rape, but the hearing has been delayed so he can undergo forensic tests. He was taken into custody by officials while on an Air France passenger plane which was about to take off from John F. Kennedy International Airport for Paris; when detectives approached him in the first class cabin in the aircraft he reportedly asked: “What is this about?” Strauss-Kahn reportedly fled the hotel “in a hurry” after the attack, leaving a number of personal effects behind. “If our officers had been ten minutes later he would have been in the air and on their [sic] way to France,” a spokesperson for the New York Police Department said.

The chambermaid reported that she had been sexually assaulted by a man staying in a “luxury suite” at the Sofitel hotel near Times Square. “The maid described being forcibly attacked, locked in the room and sexually assaulted,” the police spokesperson said. Strauss-Kahn came out of the shower naked while the chambermaid was working in the room, tried to pull the woman onto the bed and locked the door, The New York Times reported, quoting police sources. She allegedly fought him off, but he sexually assaulted her again after dragging her to the bathroom, before he locked her in the room; she was reportedly hospitalized afterwards with trauma.

In 2008, a year after becoming the leader of the IMF, Strauss-Kahn was reprimanded by the organization’s board after being involved in an extramarital affair with another senior executive at the bank. More recently, he was pictured driving a luxury car in Paris, causing a media furore over whether his lifestyle fitted with the socialist attitude he claims to represent. But his wife, former television star Anne Sinclair, has dismissed the accusations. She said: “I do not believe for one second the accusations brought against my husband. I have no doubt his innocence will be established.”

Category:July 28, 2010

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Category:July 28, 2010
October 25, 2019 · Uncategorized · (No comments)
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