Thursday, August 1, 2013

German Catholic seminarians expelled for Nazi jokes, salute

By Tom Heneghan, Religion Editor

PARIS (Reuters) - An investigation into rumors of neo-Nazi activity at a seminary in Bavaria has resulted in two student priests being expelled for imitating the Nazi salute and making jokes about death camps, two bishops announced.

The commission probing rumors of neo-Nazi activity at the seminary in Wuerzburg also found a third student had said participants in recent anti-racism marches in the southern German state deserved "a smack in the face", the bishops said.

Rumors of a "brown (Nazi) network" at the seminary began circulating in early May, including talk of a party in its basement pub to mark the Nazi leader's April 20 birthday. Using the symbols of Nazism or glorifying it is illegal in Germany.

The independent commission found no proof it had taken place but even the hint of neo-Nazi sympathies was deeply embarrassing for a Church still struggling with the fallout from revelations of sexual abuse of minors by priests in recent years.

"All forms of xenophobia, racism and extremism are incompatible with Christianity," Bamberg Archbishop Ludwig Schick told a news conference in Wuerzburg on Wednesday.

"We have to make more intensive efforts at the seminary to increase the awareness of the special relations between Jews and Christians," Bamberg Bishop Friedhelm Hofmann said.

The seminary serves Bamberg and Wuerzburg dioceses and both posted the two bishops' comments and remarks by the head of the commission on their websites.

Norbert Baumann, a local judge who headed the inquiry into the neo-Nazi rumors, said the probe quizzed 28 people including all 18 seminarians in Wuerzburg. He did not name the two expelled seminarians but recounted what they had done.


One seminarian, he said, had told at least three jokes that were "not 'Jewish jokes' in the sense of Yiddish or Jewish wit but ... completely unacceptable and unbearable 'concentration camp jokes' that mock the mass murder of countless Jewish children, women and men during the Third Reich".

Down in the seminary pub, he and another seminarian imitated Hitler and gave the Nazi salute, Baumann said.

One of them attended a concert by a controversial far-right rock band on Hitler's birthday, excusing himself from Mass at the seminary without saying why, the judge said. Schick added this seminarian was also fascinated by Nazi uniforms

The other remarked one day after lunch that the seminary cafeteria needed "a Negro to clean up" the tables.

Baumann said the inquiry found the men did not play neo-Nazi music at the seminary but often played the Badenweiler March "in the full knowledge that it is considered to be Hitler's favorite marching song".

The third seminarian mentioned in the report was not expelled for mocking the anti-racism march, Baumann said.

Schick, who is in charge of the German Church's worldwide contacts and brings youth groups to visit the death camp at Auschwitz every year, said he had marched in and addressed an anti-racism protest in Bamberg similar to the one in Wuerzburg.

"What more must we do, where do we have to be more vigilant and resolute against racism, anti-Semitism, nationalism and xenophobia?" he asked.

(Reporting By Tom Heneghan; Editing by Michael Roddy)


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US Military and Monsanto Now Actively Engaged In Tracking Anti-GMO Websites, Activists, Campaigners and Independent Scientists

WIKI - SniperMarco Torres, Prevent Disease
Waking Times

The word is out and the scientific bodies of manipulation can no longer contain the growing resistance against GMO. The more corrupt studies that attempt to find no harm in the consumption of genetically modified foods, the more an increasingly aware public is growing skeptical. The largest German daily newspaper?Suddeutsche Zeitung?recently published a shocking article that reveals how Monsanto, the US Military and the US government are tracking anti-GMO campaigners, websites, and independent scientists who study the dangers of GMOs.

Does this mean your favortie anti-GMO websites are in danger? Absolutely not, but it does mean controlled opposition and fictitious medical specialists will be scouring the internet to plant fabricated statistics and data with the help of reputable medical journals to sway opinion.

Many politicians and public health officials will then unknowingly use the fabricated information to validate the GMO mandate. For each new GMO, a study will be falsified to justify its effectiveness and requisite belief thereof. It?s one of the reasons?prestigious science journals are rapidly declining in influence. This junk science has allowed government agencies to approve untold numbers of GMOs and drugs, or rubber stamp thousands of chemicals as safe.

Since the public is catching on, Universities and prestigious scientists are losing their credbility. The world is now savvy to the?flawed process at the heart of science?and it no amount of science coming from these fraudulent sources will satisfy the public. As for the independent scientists studying the dangers of GMO, they are being aggressively targeted.

Attacks on Anti-GMO Camps Everywhere

The largest German daily newspaper?Suddeutsche Zeitung?has recently published a shocking article that reveals how Monsanto, the US Military and the US government track both anti-GMO campaigners, websites and independent scientists who study the dangers of GMOs.

The US do not only spy on governments, authorities and private individuals across the world with the help of their secret services; they also understand how to push forward the global interests of their companies with full force.

A glimpse into the world of Monsanto shows that the company which delivered the pesticide ?Agent Orange? to the US military in the Vietnam war had close connections with the central power in Washington, with tough people from the field of the US secret services and with private insurance companies. If you really want to learn about the dark history of Monsanto,?review this website. When you take a moment to reflect on the history of product development at Monsanto, what do you find??See if you can spot the pattern?

Monsanto is a giant in biotechnology: and number one in the controversial field of genetic engineering. For its opponents, many of whom live in Europe, Monsanto is a sinister enemy. Time and again mysterious things happen, which make the enemy seem yet more sinister.

In the previous month, European environmental organization ?Friends of the Earth? and the German Environmental and Nature Protection Association (BUND) wanted to present a study on the pesticide glyphosate in the human body. Weed killers containing glyphosate are the big seller for Monsanto. The company aims for more than two billion dollars turnover for the Roundup product alone. ?Roundup herbicide? has a ?long history of safe use in more than 100 countries?, Monsanto emphasizes.

Counter-Intuitive Findings Contradict Monsanto?s Claims

The promise by Monsanto and producers of genetically modified crops was that farmers could use less chemicals and produce a greater yield. That?s about as true as honesty in politics. A study published by Washington State University research professor Charles Benbrook finds that the use of herbicides in the production of three genetically modified herbicide-tolerant crops ? cotton, soybeans and corn ??has actually increased.

This counterintuitive finding is based on an exhaustive analysis of publicly available data from the U.S. Department of Agriculture?s National Agriculture Statistics Service. Benbrook?s analysis is the first peer-reviewed, published estimate of the impacts of genetically engineered (GE) herbicide-resistant (HT) crops on pesticide use.

It is confirming earlier US government data showing that in the US, GM crops have produced an overall increase, not decrease, in pesticide use compared to conventional crops. Not only that promises of greater yields are also unfounded.

A report that analyzed nearly two decades worth of peer reviewed research on the yield of the primary GM food/feed crops, soybeans and corn (maize), reveals that despite 20 years of research and 13 years of commercialization, genetic engineering has failed to significantly increase US crop yields. The author, former US EPA and US FDA biotech specialist Dr Gurian-Sherman, concludes that when it comes to yield, ?Traditional breeding outperforms genetic engineering hands down.?

Virus Disabling The Computers of Activists?

Two days before the BUND study was set to be published across 18 countries, a virus disabled the computer of the main organizer, Adrian Bepp. There was a threat that press conferences in Vienna, Brussels and Berlin would be cancelled. ?We panicked?, remembers Heike Moldenhauer from BUND. The environmental activists were under extreme time pressure.

Moldenhauer and her colleagues have widely speculated about the motives and identity of the mysterious attacker. The genetic engineering expert at BUND believes the unknown virus suppliers wanted in particular to ?generate confusion?. Nothing is worse for a study than a cancelled press conference: ?we did ask ourselves at the time if we were seeing ghosts?, said Moldenhauer.

There is no evidence that Monsanto was the ghost or had anything to do with the virus. The company does not do things like that. It takes pride in operating ?responsibly?: ?Today, it is very easy to make and spread all kinds of allegations,? Monsanto claims. They say that ?over and over there are also dubious and popular allegations spread, which disparage our work and products and are in no way based on science.?

Critics of the group see things differently. This is due to the wide network Monsanto has developed across the world. There are ties with the US secret services, the US military, with very hard operating private security companies and of course, with the US government.

A conspicuously large number of Monsanto critics report regular attacks by professional hackers. The secret services and military also like to employ hackers and programmers. These specialize in developing Trojans and viruses in order to penetrate foreign computer networks. Whistle-blower Edward Snowden has indicated the connection between intelligence services actions and economic drive. However, this sinister connection has been overshadowed by other monstrosities.

Some powerful Monsanto supporters know a lot about how to carry out a cyber war. ?Imagine the internet as a weapon, sitting on the table. Either you use it or your opponent does, but somebody?s going to get killed? said Jay Byrne, the former head of public relations at Monsanto, back in 2001.

Companies regularly fight with dubious methods to uphold what they see as their right: but friend or foe, him or me ? that is fighting talk and in a war, you need allies. Preferably professionals. Such as those from the secret service milieu, for example.

Monsanto Closely Connected To Central Governments

Monsanto contacts are known to the notorious former secret service agent Joseph Cofer Black, who helped formulate the law of the jungle in the fight against terrorists and other enemies. He is a specialist on dirty work, a total hardliner. He worked for the CIA for almost three decades, among other things as the head of anti-terroism. He later became vice president of the private security company Blackwater, which sent tens of thousands of soldiers to Iraq and Afghanistan under US government orders.

Investigations show how closely connected the management and the central government in Washington are, as well as with diplomatic representatives of the USA across the world. In many instances, Monsanto has operationally powerful assistants. Former Monsanto employees occupy high offices in the USA in government authorities and ministries, industrial associations and in universities; sometimes in almost symbiotic relationships. According to information from the American Anti-Lobby-Organisation, Open Secrets Org, in the past year, 16 Monsanto lobbyists have taken up sometimes high ranking posts in the US administration and even in regulatory authorities.

For the company, it is all about new markets and feeding a rapidly growing world population. Genetic engineering and patents on plants play a big role here. Over 90 % of corn and soya in the USA is genetically modified. In some parts of the rest of the world the percentage is also growing constantly.

Monsanto led the fight to allow the famous genetically engineered corn plant MON810 in Europe with lots of lobbying ? the group completely lost the fight. It was even beaten out of the prestigious French and German markets. An alliance of politicians, farmers and clergy rejected genetic engineering in the fields and the consumers do not want it on their plates. But the battle is not over. The USA is hoping that negotiations started this week for a free-trade agreement between the USA and the EU will also open the markets for genetic engineering.

Lobbying for your own company is a civic duty in the USA. Even the important of the 16 US intelligence services have always understood their work as being a support for American economic interests on the world markets. They spy on not only governments, authorities and citizens in other countries under the name of the fight against terror, they also support American economic interests, in their own special way.

Independent Scientists Targeted

It is already obvious that somebody makes life difficult for Monsanto critics and an invisible hand ends careers. However, who is this somebody? The targets of these attacks are scientists, such as the Australian Judy Carman. Among other things, she has made a name for herself with studies of genetically modified plants. Her publications were questioned by the same professors which also attacked the the studies of other Monsanto critics.

It does not stop at skirmishes in the scientific community. Hackers regularly target various web pages where Carman publishes her studies and the sites are also systematically observed, at least that is the impression Carman has. Evaluations of IP log files show that not only Monsanto visits the pages regularly, but also various organizations of the U.S. government, including the military. These include the Navy Network Information Center, the Federal Aviation Administration and the United States Army Intelligence Center, an institution of the US Army, which trains soldiers with information gathering. Monsanto?s interest in the studies is understandable, even for Carman. ?But I do not understand why the U.S. government and the military are having me observed,? she says.

Ever wonder why those same obnoxious, arrogant and infrequent users just happen to appear on the heels of very controversial posts like clock-work? They monitor, wait and then pounce of the same topics to emotionalize and antagonize legitimate users on social networking and thousands of other websites.?Surging disinformation analysts?are commenting on controversial topics such as GMO on your favorite websites to emotionalize and antagonize.

The organization GM Watch, known to be critical of gene technology, also experiences strange events. Editor Claire Robinson reports continued hacker attacks on the homepage since 2007. ?Every time we increase the page security just a bit, the opposite side increases their tenacity and following are new, worse attacks?, she says. She also cannot believe the coincidences that occur. When the French scientist Gilles Eric Seralini published a controversial study on the health risks of genetically modified maize and glyphosate in 2012, the web site of GM Watch was hacked and blocked. The same repeats when the opinion of the European food inspectorate (EFSA) is added to the site. The timing was skilfully selected in both cases. The attacks took place exactly when the editors wanted to publish their opinion.

About the Author

Marco Torres?is a research specialist, writer and consumer advocate for healthy lifestyles. He holds degrees in Public Health and Environmental Science and is a professional speaker on topics such as disease prevention, environmental toxins and health policy.?


Disclaimer: This article is not intended to provide medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. Views expressed here do not necessarily reflect those of WakingTimes or its staff.

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Tags: featured, full-image, GMO Activism, monsanto, US Military

Category: Activism, Agriculture, Business, Community, Earth, Environment, Food, Governance, Ideas, Law & Punishment, Money, Revolution, Society


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Petron Energy II, Inc. Reports Update on LaNina and Covenant Wells in Its Oklahoma Properties

DALLAS, TX--(Marketwired - Aug 1, 2013) - Petron Energy II, Inc. (OTCBB: PEII) reports update on LaNina #2 and Covenant #5 wells in its Oklahoma properties.

Petron Energy II, Inc., together with its subsidiaries, engages in the acquisition and development of properties for the production of crude oil and natural gas, transporting natural gas through its pipeline subsidiary and well servicing through its servicing subsidiary, in the United States.

Floyd Smith, President and CEO of Petron Energy II, Inc. states, "In our July 11, 2013, press release we stated we expected to report production news on the LaNina #2 and Covenant #5 wells in 10 days. We had a temporary setback that has been addressed. This slight delay restarted our adjustment period to determine the optimal production level for each well. Our salt water injection well experienced mechanical problems and shut down. We ordered the parts needed to repair the injection well and took delivery of all parts three days after placing our order and fixed the problem."

Smith goes on to say, "We have placed both wells back online and have begun to make adjustments to both wells which is typical during this period as we seek to determine what will be the most acceptable level of production for each well. We have great expectations for each well, so getting this right is critical to our company and we will leave no stone unturned while working to maximize the production potential for each well."

Smith further states, "As we mentioned in our last press release if each well experiences the type of production results as the Potis and TJS adjacent wells which produced 70 and 50 BO/D respectively, it would make our LaNina and Covenant wells the largest producing wells in Petron II's history. We will report updated production news for the LaNina #2 and Covenant #5 as soon as it is available."

About Petron Energy II, Inc.:
Petron Energy II, Inc. is a Dallas-based, oil and gas exploration and production company. For further information about the Company, please visit our website

Notice Regarding Forward-Looking Statements
This news release contains "forward-looking statements" (statements which are not historical facts) made pursuant to the safe harbor provisions of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995. Forward-looking statements are based on current expectations rather than historical facts and they are indicated by words or phrases such as "anticipate," "could," "may," "might," "potential," "predict," "should," "estimate," "expect," "project," "believe," "plan," "envision," "continue," "intend," "target," "contemplate," or "will" and similar words or phrases or comparable terminology. We have based such forward-looking statements on our current expectations, assumptions, estimates and projections. While we believe these expectations, assumptions, estimates and projections are reasonable, such forward- looking statements are only predictions and involve known and unknown risks and uncertainties, and other factors that may cause actual results, performance or achievements to be materially different from any future results, performance or achievements expressed or implied by such forward-looking statements, many of which are beyond our control. These factors include, but are not limited to, the time to consummate the proposed development, completion and extraction; the timing and extent of changes in market conditions and prices for natural gas and oil; the timing and extent of the Company's success in discovering, developing, producing and estimating reserves; the economic viability of, and the Company's success in drilling, the Company's ability to fund the acquisition, development, completion and extraction of oil and gas assets and the Company's planned capital investments; the Company's future property acquisition or divestiture activities; increased competition; and any other factors listed in the reports the Company has filed and may file with the Securities and Exchange Commission. Investors are cautioned not to place undue reliance on these forward-looking statements, which reflect the Company's expectations only as of the date they were made. The Company undertakes no obligation to update or revise any forward-looking statements to reflect new information or the occurrence of unanticipated events or otherwise.


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Monday, July 29, 2013

Malaysia does not have a Chinese dilemma but a Mahathir dilemma

The author of ?The Malay Dilemma? has tried to coin a new complex, ?The Chinese Dilemma? which he defined as ?whether the Chinese in Malaysia should make a grab for political power while dominating economic power or to adhere to the principle of sharing which has made this country what it is today?.

Former Prime Minister Tun Dr. Mahathir Mohamad is making history in coining a complex which exists only in his febrile imagination, as it does not afflict any single Chinese in Malaysia ? whether in Pakatan Rakyat or Barisan Nasional!

I will like to know whether there is any Chinese in Malaysia who will stand up and state that Mahathir is right that there is such a ?Chinese dilemma? in Malaysia!

Only an inveterate racist like Mahathir could interpret the 13th general elections as a ?grab for political power? by the Malaysian Chinese, when it was in fact the historic moment when Malaysians regardless of race, religion or region rallied behind the Pakatan Rakyat parties of PKR, PAS and DAP in pursuit of a common Malaysian Dream in an effort to bring about a change of Federal government in Putrajaya, for the first time in the nation?s 55-year history.

I had gone on public record before and during the 13th General Elections that my dream result for the 13GE was PR winning with a good and comfortable majority of at least 125 parliamentary seats ? with a distribution of 45 MPs for PKR and 40 MPs each for DAP and PAS.

Let Mahathir spell out how such a ?dream result? of a PR win of the Federal government in Putrajaya could be interpreted by any stretch of imagination as a ?grab for political power? by the Chinese in Malaysia, ousting Malay political power in Malaysia.

Malay political power was never in danger in the 13GE as what was at stake was whether UMNO/BN political power and their politics of race, corruption, cronyism and abuses of power can withstand the challenge of Pakatan Rakyat and the politics of multi-racialism, good governance, public integrity, freedom and justice.

Malaysia does not have ?the Chinese Dilemma? but only ?the Mahathir Dilemma? ? the spectacle of the 88-year-old former Prime Minister showing utter disrespect to the holy month of Ramadan in spearheading a campaign of lies and falsehoods revolving around his dangerous myth of ?the Chinese Dilemma?, alleging that the Malays are facing a challenge from the Chinese who want to oust them of their political power.

Within 24 hours of Mahathir?s dangerous and provocative lies about ?the Chinese Dilemma? and the dangerous and baseless myth of a Chinese grab for political power of the Malays, Umno cybertroopers have responded with more racist, inflammatory and seditious lies on the social media, including a blog dated today (28th July 2013) which alleged that the DAP had formed a new ?army? of propagandists (over and above the earlier ludicrous allegation of DAP?s ?Red Bean Army? of 3,000 cybertroopers) to promote a Malaysian republic, and to abolish both the system of Malay sultanate as well as the position of Islam as the official religion in the country.

What Malaysia needs today is a Malaysian statesman and not an inveterate and unrepentant Malay racialist ? especially from one who was the longest-serving Prime Minister for 22 years.

This is the real dilemma for Malaysia ? ?the Mahathir dilemma? and not the fictitious ?Chinese dilemma?.

This entry was posted on Sunday, 28 July 2013, 5:13 pm and is filed under Elections, Mahathir, Pakatan Rakyat, UMNO. You can follow any responses to this entry through RSS 2.0. ?


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Sunday, July 28, 2013

Chinese Carbon Bikes

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Kimberly Wyatt at home in London

London, July 28: The Pussycat Dolls' former member Kimberly Wyatt is so comfortable here that she doesn't think she'll ever go back to the US.

The 31-year-old has been living here for her career and now she doesn't want to leave, reports

"I've been here for a while now. And out of anywhere in the world, I feel the most at home when I'm here," Bang Showbiz quoted Wyatt as saying.

"I love the people, the culture, I love that you can walk to the stores. I love the little villages, the good food... and my beautiful man, of course!," she added.

The "Got To Dance" judge, who has found love in male model Max Rogers, met him while she was a special guest at the "Clothes Show Live" in 2011 and their relationship has grown stronger since then.

"We were doing Clothes Show Live together, he was the main model and I was the special guest," she said.

"Nothing really happened at that point but about a month and a half later we were at the wrap party and started having a conversation... and haven't stopped since," added Wyatt.




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Storms produced an EF1 tornado near Wagoner

By STAFF REPORTS on Jul 26, 2013, at 8:15 PM??

The National Weather Service confirmed Friday that an EF1 tornado touched down three miles west of Wagoner and traveled about 3 1/2 miles to the southeast during storms that moved through the Tulsa area late Tuesday and early Wednesday.

The twister was part of a line of thunderstorms that produced 60-80 mph straight line winds. The northeast Oklahoma storms left severe damage in their path.

NWS meteorologist Peter Snyder said the debris path made it evident that a tornado struck the area. A travel trailer was blown 35 yards to the north, northeast, which was the opposite direction damage was found from straight-line winds in the storm, Snyder said.

?A tornado becomes pretty apparent when it?s been on the ground three miles,? he said.

Snyder said the tornadic winds topped out at 90-100 miles per hour. The tornado produced roof and siding damage to homes, snapped trees and destroyed two storage buildings, he said.

?Whether you have tornado winds at 90 mph or straight line winds at 90 mph... basically, they are very, very strong winds,? Snyder said. ?But this did produce a tornado.?


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Thursday, July 25, 2013

Apple profit falls 22% but beats gloomy expectations


As it turns out, Apple still has a little surprise left in it.

The company sold 31.2 million iPhones last quarter -- a number practically no one saw coming -- lifting Apple's overall sales and helping Apple's profit surpass some pretty gloomy expectations from Wall Street analysts.

That's not to say Apple had a great past quarter. Profit sank 22% and sales were up less than 1%. That's a nasty development for a company that was regularly posting startup-like profit and sales growth as recently as a year ago. But no one expected Apple to report anything close to that last quarter.

Shares of Apple rose 4% after hours, as investors reveled in a rare bit of good news for the company. Apple's stock has taken a beating over the past 10 months, falling 40% since reaching an alll-time high in September.

The company's iPhone sales, up 20% from a year ago, easily beat Wall Street's expectations of about 26 million. CEO Tim Cook said he believes this past quarter is evidence that the obituaries written for growth in the high-end smartphone market are premature. Cook said the latest-edition iPhone 5 remains the best-selling iPhone "by far."

Another unexpected bright note: Apple's iTunes sales grew by 29% last quarter -- a business that now accounts for nearly 7% of Apple's overall sales.

But Apple sold just 14.6 million iPads, down 14% from a year ago, when the company released the third-generation iPad. It also sold 3.8 million Macs, down 5% from a year earlier, though the overall PC market contracted by about twice that rate. Still, Mac sales fell short of analysts' forecasts -- and iPad badly underperformed expectations.

The company also said its current quarter won't be as strong as Wall Street had expected. Apple anticipates producing sales of between $34 billion and $37 billion this quarter, below analysts' median forecast of just over $37 billion.

The growing mix of older and cheaper products, including the iPhone 4 and iPad mini, continue to weigh on the company's profit. Apple said it expects gross margin to come in between 36% and 37% this quarter. If that holds true, this would mark the seventh straight quarter in which gross margins have fallen.

Yet Cook said he was encouraged by the company's better-than-expected quarter, and he continued his optimistic view of the company's future.

"We are laser-focused and working hard on some amazing new products that we will introduce in the fall and across 2014," he said, in a prepared statement. Peter Oppenheimer, Apple's chief financial officer, said the company will have "a very busy fall," though he declined to elaborate.

By the numbers: The tech giant said net income in its fiscal third quarter fell to $6.9 billion, or $7.47 per share. Analysts polled by Thomson Reuters forecast earnings of $7.32 per share. Apple's gross margin of 36.9% also came in slightly ahead of analysts' expectations, but that fell from 42.8% a year ago.

Sales for the Cupertino, Calif.-based company rose to $35.3 billion, topping analysts' forecasts of $35 billion.

Apple ended the quarter with $146.6 billion in cash -- $106 billion of which is being held overseas.


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While we stew, Alex Rodriguez laughs all the way to the bank: Check out's 'Sports Comment of the Day'


Regardless of what happens with MLB's investigation into Alex Rodriguez's connection to the Biogenesis lab in Florida, A-Rod will be laughing all the way to the bank for years to come. (Associated Press)

Another day, another Alex Rodriguez story.

And it's going to be that way until Major League Baseaball cracks down on the Yankee star for being connected to Biogenesis, a Florida lab that produced performance-enhancing drugs.

Word on A-Rod's suspension could come at any time, and when it does it's not going to affect his wealth status as many think he's still entitled to the remaining tens of millions on his contract.

The Yankees, of course, will battle that, but the feeling here is that they have no ground to stand on, unless, of course, something about using PEDs was built into his contract.

In the meantime, while Yankee and baseball fans in general stew, A-Rod is still collecting paychecks.

That has one user, Mike May, quite upset and his remarks are Thursday's "Sports Comment of the Day."

Mike May said:

"Does anybody think he cares ? He's still getting paid tens of millions of dollars, and he's not even working ! What a great job ! PedA-Rod is laughing all the way to his banks."

Do you agree with Mike May, and if MLB suspends A-Rod do you feel the Yankees still have to pay the man? Sound off by leaving a comment below!


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Tuesday, July 23, 2013

Oil rises ahead of weekly US inventory report

NEW YORK: Oil prices on Tuesday moved higher in anticipation of another large inventory draw from US crude stockpiles.

US benchmark West Texas Intermediate for September delivery rose 29 cents to close at $107.23 a barrel on the New York Mercantile Exchange.

European benchmark Brent for September delivery increased 27 cents, settling at $108.42 a barrel in London trade.

The gains came as investors anticipated another large drawdown in US oil?supplies. US crude stockpiles have notched unexpectedly large declines the last three weeks, helping to push oil?prices higher.

Analysts expect Wednesday's Department of Energy report to show a decline of 2.1 million barrels, according to a Dow Jones Newswires survey of analysts.

Anticipation of the report "halted the sell-off" in WTI, said Matt Smith, an analyst at Schneider Electric.

After trading at a sharp discount to Brent for much of the last few years, WTI in recent days has returned to near-parity with the European benchmark, at times even trading higher.

On Friday, WTI prices reached as high as $109.32 a barrel, a level last seen 16 months ago.

Smith said some downward pressure on WTI was inevitable after the recent surge. But after going lower in the morning, WTI moved into positive territory in the afternoon.

Smith said oil?also gained support from the latest round of violence in Egypt and from comments from Chinese Premier Li Keqiang that suggested China may enact additional economic stimulus to boost growth.

Michael Truscelli, a broker and trader at Paramount Options, said newsflow on Tuesday was generally "very quiet," but some traders were focused on oil-delivery problems in Libya.

"Problems with Libyan exports is what we heard," Truscelli said.


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State rep introduces bill to carry concealed weapons in church


The person sitting in the next pew at your church could be carrying a concealed weapon if a local lawmaker has his way.

State Representative Ron Maag, (R) Lebanon, has introduced a bill that would allow concealed weapons in churches, in day cares, on private planes and in government buildings.

Concealed weapons would still be banned in airports, schools and police stations.

Reverend Rick Groover, who pastors Celebration Church in Mason, says he supports concealed carry.

Groover, who is licensed to carry a firearm, says guns provide security in the hands of responsible people.

"I would rather be somewhere with responsible people who are carrying than be in a place that somebody who is going to do wrong knows that they could come into and there not be anybody with a weapon," said Groover.

Groover also says those who carry a concealed weapon need to have proper training.

?"You don't just go to a shooting range and see if you can shoot and be accurate," said Groover. "A lot of the day is spent dealing with legalities and what you can do. It's not the right to do anything you want to do. It's the right to do right."

In our commitment to balanced news FOX19 reached out to the Reverend Pete Mingo of Christ Temple Baptist Church in Walnut Hills who says he is opposed to having guns in his church.

"I don't feel that a house of worship should be a place where, you know, someone sitting across from you with a weapon. I don't think our situation has gotten that drastic," said Reverend Mingo.

Mingo says churches don't need to be entirely defenseless.

"Most churches I know where they have some form of security for the taking up of offerings or whatever, but as far as needing guns in a place of worship I don't think so even in daycare," said Mingo.

Mingo has worked with the Cincinnati Initiative to Reduce Violence known as CIRV and he has seen firsthand how gun violence affects the community.

FOX19 reached out to Representative Maag, but he did not respond to our request for an interview.


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Verizon NYC Droid event liveblog

Verizon NYC Droid event liveblog

It may not be the much-hyped Moto X unveiling, but today's Verizon press event will likely bring some big announcements of its own. It's been nearly a year since Motorola unveiled its trio of Razr handsets for the carrier, and it's all but certain that the company has at least a phone or two in store for us today. Will we finally get acquainted with the Droid Ultra, not to mention a Droid Maxx variant? Heck, rumors say there's also a Droid Mini on the way. Stay tuned as we bring you the latest from Verizon's event in Lincoln Center!

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NFL, players union talking about HGH tests again

The NFL and players union are talking again about getting a test in place for human growth hormone as early as the upcoming season.

An email obtained by The Associated Press from the NFL Players Association indicates that the league and the NFLPA have jointly hired a doctor to conduct a study on NFL players to determine a good threshold for a positive HGH test. The email was sent by the union to players, in part to explain that the study requires them to have blood drawn during their physical when training camp begins. The email said the blood samples will only be used for the study.

NFL spokesman Greg Aiello said the discussions are focused "on a full resolution of any remaining issues, including the role of a population study."

The labor agreement that ended the NFL lockout in 2011 requires the league gain union approval before testing players for HGH. The union says it favors testing, but has reservations about the appeals process.

The union also has reservations about the way discipline will be handed out, and wants to collectively bargain that issue.

Supplemental HGH is a banned substance that is hard to detect and used by athletes for what are believed to be a variety of benefits, whether real or only perceived ? such as increasing speed and improving vision.

Among the health problems connected to HGH are diabetes, cardiac dysfunction and arthritis.

In the union's email, it told the players that Dr. Alan Rogol has been jointly hired by the NFLPA and NFL to oversee the study and supervise two jointly retained biostatisticians. One of those biostatisticians, Donald Berry, will design the study protocol and conduct the analysis. The second will independently review both the protocol and the analysis.

In January, Major League Baseball and the players agreed to HGH blood testing throughout the regular season and to have a World Anti-Doping Agency laboratory in Canada keep records of each player.


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Monday, July 22, 2013

The Deferential Spirit: How Peter King Became The NFL's Bob Woodward

Peter King had been sitting with me in a waiting area on the second floor of the Time & Life Building for almost an hour. We were surrounded by conference rooms and executive dining halls, a little exposed to the light Tuesday traffic of the office, chatting about King and his career and his new venture, The MMQB, a football-specific website under Sports Illustrated's banner that launched today.

"Yeah. That's?that's the way it goes," King said when I thanked him for chatting with Deadspin. Sports Illustrated's PR guy, who'd set up the meeting and who'd sat in on much of the interview, laughed.

I'm telling you these details because these are the kinds of details that are important to King's conception of magazine journalism and MMQB itself?lightly impressionistic scene-setting that establishes the discreet, credentialed presence of a scrupulously non-judgmental writer. (I'll note here that a lesser journalist might've written, "... King said bitterly," because he did say it bitterly, and he might've written that the PR guy "laughed a little too loudly," because he did laugh a little too loudly.)

"I really want to write with an eye on the scene and being observational instead of just reporting what they say," King told me. "I want them to report what they see and what they feel."

Much of our conversation centered on this idea?on the access King gets, and the sort of reporter one becomes after decades of that sort of access.

"Look, there are pluses and minuses to doing something for 30 years," King said. "I think the pluses are I get to convince Jeff Fisher and Les Snead and Kevin Demoff at the Rams that I can sit in their draft room and write about the first round of the draft in a way that?never in the conversation before that do I say, I'm not going to screw you. I think they trust me to know that what happens in this room is going to be portrayed fairly."

King wrote a behind-the-scenes account of the Rams' war room back in April. It was an exceedingly rare bit of access. Chuck Klosterman had a similar piece for Grantland a couple of weeks later, writing about access he was supposed to get to the Browns' war room that ultimately never came.

"Now if you say, is it going to be portrayed in a way that is positive to their team?" King continued, about the Rams. "I mean, first of all, they have two [first-round picks]. But if they had known there was a good chance they weren't going to get Tavon Austin and do some of things that they wanted to? I'm not naive, I don't think they would have let me in the room, OK? But there's probably only a certain number of people who are going to be able to tell that story from the room."

One of those people?maybe the only one?is Peter King, the most-read writer in the NFL. The 24-year veteran of Sports Illustrated just signed a new contract with SI, which is estimated to be worth about $1.5 million a year and which includes the new breakaway website. SI owns it, and hired talented writers Greg Bedard, Jenny Vrentas, and Robert Klemko to write for it. King's popular Monday Morning Quarterback column will run there, as well.

The Rams story was typical King: high access, an exclusive treatment, a rare peek on the other side of the curtain. It was a unique perspective. If there was drama in the war room, it resolved itself in a mostly happy ending. Fair, is how King would describe it. It didn't seem to provide any point of view except one with which the principals of the story would be totally satisfied.

"People view when I write about certain teams I'm going to show favoritism toward their teams or I'm always good to some players," King said. "And, I think, in some ways, it's a justifiable criticism. I'm not going to sit here and say that there are some players that I like quite a bit and that, I think, over the years I've written a lot of good things about. But what I chafe at, a bit, is if people say I'd never write a critical thing about X, or I would never write anything critical about this team. I just don't necessarily agree."

I suggested to King that there's one guy who does seem to escape criticism: NFL commissioner Roger Goodell. It's not so much that King never disagrees with Goodell (he does, as he'll protest if you suggest otherwise); it's that King approaches the job with what Joan Didion famously identified in Bob Woodward?"the deferential spirit."

King is, functionally, a steam valve, a way for NFL and team executives, coaches, and players to let off pressure. You can get a reliable measure of where the NFL is at any given point by reading King on Monday mornings. What Woodward and, latterly, Politico's Mike Allen are to Washington, King is to professional football. (Like Allen, King isn't above birth announcements.) In King's formulation, the NFL is the happy sum of the good faith and benevolence of powerful, well-intentioned men?commissioners, GMs, coaches, quarterbacks. His column will give you exclusive quotes, color you'll find only by reading him, and the human story behind the box score?gossip, sunny-side up. Actual insight into the business of pro football? King is a tabula rasa, by design.

Actual insight into the sport as it is? Actual insight into the business of one set of fungible assets bashing another set of fungible assets into early senescence? To deliver that would entail recognition of a range of criticisms that don't sully the beautiful minds of the men who run the game. It would be, in a sense, against the rules, and King is nothing if not?to use his word?fair.

Said King: "The pro-Goodell thing, I think, stems from the fact that when I wrote the SI profile on him. [Former SI managing editor] Terry McDonell says, 'I want you to write a profile on Roger Goodell. I just want to know who he is as a person. That's all I want to know.'"

A traditional profile, in other words. "Quite a few people I talked to in his life were very favorable to Roger Goodell," King said. "I think if you asked the people who have gone looking for the Goodell skeletons in the closet, they've been exceedingly hard to find?if there are some. I didn't find one in a major way. In a major way.

"But I would say this," he continued, speaking carefully. "I would say that I have?if the measure of being fair with somebody, like Roger Goodell, is going to be judged on a profile and then from that point on, no matter what I will do about someone like Roger Goodell, it will not be measured on what I write about Roger Goodell. It'll be measured on the perception that I'm madly in love with Roger Goodell. OK? I'm neither pro-Goodell or anti-Goodell. I cover Goodell. Do I think that he has the best interests of the NFL and its players at heart? Yes. Do I like everything that he's done? No. Do I think the 18-game schedule is a good idea? Absolutely not. But, you know, we are in a perception business. And I'm not going to change perceptions of what people think about me by sitting here and saying that I'm fair with Roger Goodell. You have to?and everybody has to?draw their own conclusions about that. I'm probably not a very good guy to give a spirited defense of myself. I think I'm fair. But the world will have to decide if I am."

He talks about fairness quite a bit.

"We're having our last little kind of team meeting before the season starts and before the launch of our site," said King, inadvertently shoving his elbow into a tray filled with a bunch of wine glasses. Tinkle tinkle blink blunk. "Basically what happened is, we got together in May and we went over a huge list of story ideas, assigned some stories, they've done the stories, they've turned them in so we're reviewing them and we're talking about, kinda, writing style."

It's a slightly new direction for King. He'll write, but he's also overseeing an entire outfit for the first time.

"I guess in the back of my mind, you know, when I was thinking about what I wanted to do with the rest of my career, I just thought it would be fun at some point to be a boss," said King.

I told him that he was starting to sound like an NFLer.

"Look, I'm 56 years old. At some point, somebody here's gotta step up and cover the NFL." He paused. "I can't?I mean, in terms of being the next ... whatever-it-is..."

Peter King?

"Or be the next person who is seen as the main NFL guy," he said. "And so, I think one of the things that I really want to do is help the next group of people and three of whom who are here to be?to get to know everybody in the league."

Perhaps this is the start of the Peter King coaching tree. He has advice for his writers about the style he wants for his site.

"What I think is really kind of interesting was when I came to SI in 1989, I didn't change my writing style very much at all, because I was writing an NFL notes column and the managing editor at the time, Mark Mulvoy, just wanted me to write the way I wrote at Newsday, so I didn't really have to change."

"These guys?" he said, referring to his three writers. He paused for a few seconds.

"It's a sort of a style point with me," he said. "But I think when you go to write for a magazine, which I consider us to be, we're a sort of magazine-y website, I want the writing to be really kind of special."

As an example, he cited Vrentas's trip to see Don Shula. "Don Shula walks with a walker right now," King said. "And he's 83 years old. So, I wanted part of the story?I don't want, the story is not, Look at Don Shula, he walks with a walker! But everyone wants to know?I have not seen Don Shula! Where is he? What's he doing?"

MMQB is meaningful to him. King wants to run something and shape it in his own image. As a beat writer with Newsday in the 1980s, King made himself indispensable by becoming a central node in the NFL's social network. He covered training camps and met everyone there was to meet.

"Newsday said in training camp, 'Go and cover other teams,'" King said. "There's no beat guy who covers an NFL team right now where they say, 'Go to 49ers camp for two days.' I'm the luckiest guy in the world to have been able to work for Newsday and then spend two weeks going off to NFL training camps. Going to do Buddy Ryan and Ditka in Chicago, going to do Joe Gibbs and going to do Bill Walsh and Joe Montana. Nobody gets to do that stuff today, in terms of beat people, because they're so maniacally concentrating on their own team. And that's just the way the business has become.

"But I think one of the things that has to happen today if you want to become a really good national writer is, you've gotta be exposed to these people," King continued. "And that's why at various points on this training camp trip?Jenny is gonna come for a while, Bedard is gonna come, Robert Klemko is gonna come?my whole thing is: 'Listen, you've got to get to know these people. You gotta get phone numbers, you gotta get emails, you gotta just be able to call them when something happens.'"

We were talking about Aaron Hernandez now. Peter King was doing a bit of cost-benefit analysis, explaining what he meant by that dillweed tweet.

"When I asked questions after Hernandez was drafted and everybody was talking about Hernandez, like, I remember going to training camp that year and just?I even forget where it was, it wasn't New England?but just talking to a couple of people and sometimes you can just tell when NFL people?they're just not interested in a guy," King said. "You can tell that they're just: 'Don't know enough about him but he was not on our board.' That kind of stuff.

"And this was another thing that I get criticized for, but I absolutely think that this is true. Three years of Aaron Hernandez: 175 catches, beating the Denver Broncos in a playoff game when he plays running back for the first time in his pro career, 'cause Belichick isn't happy with his running game. The guy was a really very good, versatile weapon. As big a weapon, to me, as the Patriots had on their team, other than Tom Brady. One hundred and seventy-five catches plus whatever he did in the playoffs. If you were to ask me, just in terms of value, and he was the 114th pick in the draft, if I would tell that you got three years of basically averaging 58 catches and X number of touchdowns and plays a big role in your playoff success, would that be worth three years, a mid-fourth-round pick? Absolutely, unequivocally. He'd be worth it. Now, is it worth it based on what we know now, and if the Patriots rewrite history would they have drafted him? I don't think they would have. The point is, just for production that they got out of that pick, I'm not saying they would have drafted him if they knew he was eventually going to be charged for murder, but I'm saying did they get value of that pick commensurate with that pick with that place in the draft?"

The answer is an obvious yes, he said.

I had a question for him: What did the Patriots know and when did they know it? Why'd they release him a few hours before the arrest? Were they aware Hernandez had been up to something bad shortly after the murder? King liked that question. It seemed to speak to his idea of the NFL as a panopticon overseen by well-meaning managers. But it's a tricky issue. With Peter King, you know what you know. And what you know are the people in these organizations.

"That's my biggest question right now," he said, enthusiastically. "When did they know Aaron Hernandez was in big trouble? I do not believe that they found out when the rest of the world knew. I believe Bill Belichick?based on nothing other than knowing Bill Belichick some?that ... I'd just be really surprised if he wouldn't have some suspicion that Aaron Hernandez was doing some things he shouldn't have done."

His enthusiasm sagged a little bit. He started getting practical.

"But the whole thing about today's day and time, especially with a team like the Patriots, there's a certain element of CIA to the Patriots. There always has been under Belichick, there always will be."

He continued: "You're not going to necessarily have the people in that organization who are going to be able to tell you things because Bill has got it pretty well locked down."

The doable story here is, essentially, the story that the good men who run professional football teams?the rational ones who can weigh on the one hand the sad fact of murder, and on the other the surplus value represented by a tight end who came through in the big spots?want told. It's a story about who could have known, and yes, but, and more than anything about how these powerful men can bring an organization together, and help it move past unpleasant facts, and focus on Sundays.

"One of the things that I would want to know right now, is kind of, 'W-W-B-D: What Will Bill Do?'" he said. "I wanna know what the atmosphere is going to be like inside his building when players come to camp."

That's the Peter King we know.

Image by Sam Woolley


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Sunday, July 21, 2013

Comet ISON: Will the 'Comet of the Century' live up to the hype?

Comet ISON will fly perilously close to the sun on Thanksgiving Day. If it survives, it will make a gorgeous display in late November and December, coming closest to Earth on December 26.

By Liz Fuller-Wright,?Correspondent / July 19, 2013

This NASA collage shows Comet ISON and distant neighbors as seen through two Hubble filters. One filter lets in red light, and the other a greenish-yellow color, which is shown as blue here. In general, redder things are older than blue things ? this is true both for the crosshair-spiked stars and the smudges of distant galaxies.

Courtesy of NASA, ESA, and the Hubble Heritage Team (STScI/AURA)


An ancient myth tells the story of Daedelus and Icarus, a father and sun who used wings made of wax and bird feathers to fly out of captivity. Daedelus flew cautiously, staying close to the ground, and made it to safety. Icarus, his reckless son, couldn't resist the temptation to fly higher and higher ? until the sun's heat melted the wax holding his wings together, and he plunged to his death.

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Comet ISON has some lessons to learn from Icarus. This is ISON's first trip around the sun, and like Icarus's first ? and only ? flight, its projected course comes dangerously close to the sun. According to current predictions, ISON is a "sungrazer," meaning it will pass within 750,000 miles of the sun on November 28, 2013, Thanksgiving Day. If it survives, it will have a gorgeously long tail streaming across the heavens throughout December, visible to the naked eye even in daylight ? or it could burn up entirely and never be seen again.

This comet has been dubbed the "Comet of the Century," but some astronomers think it won't survive its trip past the sun.

When a comet gets too close to the sun, heat isn't the only problem. The sun's radiation not only boils off the ice and other volatiles, but it also can physically push on the comet, as can solar wind. Throw in gravitational stress, and it's no wonder many of these "sungrazing" comets don't survive their brush with the sun.

"As a very small comet gets really close to the gigantic sun, the sun is exerting gigantic tidal forces???exerting?different?forces on different sides of the comet ??possibly ripping it apart," explains Max Mutchler, with the Space Telescope Science Institute (STSci) in Baltimore, Md., in a press conference.?.

So if ISON is doomed like Icarus, why all the fuss?

"There's two basic reasons for the hype," said Dr. Mutchler. "It's a fresh comet, coming in from the Oort cloud, full of fresh volatiles that have never seen sunlight up close and personal like this. Also, it's a sungrazing comet ... not all comets get that close to the sun."?

A comet's path is easy to map out, but other than that, comets are notoriously unpredictable.?

Like all comets, ISON is made of bits of rock and volatile compounds like ice and dry ice. Those volatiles are even more vulnerable to the sun's heat than wax wings. "As the comet gets closer and closer to the sun," explains Bonnie Meinke, an STSci planetary scientist, "volatiles come off the nucleus itself, making the real structure of what we think of as a comet."?As the frozen material sublimates into water vapor, carbon dioxide, and carbon monoxide, it frees tiny fragments of rock and dust to stream out behind the comet.?

The released dust and rocks linger like breadcrumbs behind the comet, making a long track across the sky. "When Earth passes a comet's orbit, a lot of particles fall into our atmosphere, making a meteor shower," said Jian-Yang Li, a research scientist with the Planetary Science Institute.

Earth will cross through ISON's inbound path on January 17, 2014. ?"Maybe, just maybe, there will be a nice little meteor shower somewhere in the middle of January 2014, from the particles left behind when ISON flew through before," said Tony Darnell,?creator and host of?Deep Astronomy, during the press conference.

"ISON is a long-period comet," says?Dr. Meinke. Long-period comets don't orbit on a regular loop, like Halley's Comet, but instead make a single curved trip to our solar system, swinging in from the Oort Cloud, through the solar system, and off into space. "The Oort Cloud is a reservoir," explains Alberto Conti,?an STSci?astrophysicist, containing "trillions of these objects just sitting out there, waiting to be disturbed gravitationally and then fall ... which I find mind-boggling."

Comet ISON is right now crossing the "frost line," says Dr. Li, the imaginary line between Earth and Mars where volatiles stop being stable in frozen form and start to sublimate away. "That's why we care about the frost line, as it relates to comets," says Meinke. "We get this beautiful tail on a comet,?and the coma, and all that stuff starts to appear."?

Now that ISON is crossing the frost line, its tail should start to get dramatically bigger and brighter. Some scientists have estimated that ISON could be as bright as the full moon, but that's "a very risky prediction to make," says Mutchler, an expert on the cameras of the Hubble Space Telescope.?

The question on everyone's mind: Will ISON, unlike Icarus, emerge unscathed from its brush with the sun? That's a function of four things: the distance of perihelion (the moment when ISON is closest to the sun), composition, structure, and size. "How tightly or loosely assembled is it? We know a lot of comets are not tightly assembled. It may be barely hanging together," says Mutchler.?

"Everybody cares about whether the comet's going to survive perihelion," says Li. He examined Hubble's first images of ISON, back in April, to try to measure the size of the nucleus. His team wasn't able to get a precise measurement, but they can say that it's no more than 4 km (2.5 miles) across. "That's the upper limit," he emphasizes. "It could also be much smaller."

But it's not (just) size that matters, it's how close it gets to the sun.

A comet that comes too close to the sun must break apart, like Icarus's wings. But if it's far enough away, it can survive to continue on its journey. Comet ISON will be traveling precisely at the boundary between too-close and just-far-enough-away, so even the experts are left waiting and watching to see what will happen on November 28. If it survives to put on a show for December and January, we'll all have something to be thankful for.


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Monday, July 1, 2013

Large crowds mass in Egyptian cities, march on palace, demanding removal of president

CAIRO ? Hundreds of thousands thronged the streets of Cairo and cities around the country Sunday and marched on the presidential palace, filling a broad avenue for blocks, in an attempt to force out the Islamist president with the most massive protests Egypt has seen in 2? years of turmoil.

In a sign of the explosive volatility of the country's divisions, a hard core of young opponents broke away from the rallies and attacked the main headquarters of President Mohammed Morsi's Muslim Brotherhood, pelting it with stones and firebombs until a raging fire erupted in the walled villa. During clashes, Brotherhood supporters opened fire with birdshot on the attackers, who swelled to a crowd of hundreds.

Fears were widespread that the two sides could be heading to a violent collision in coming days. Morsi made clear through a spokesman that he would not step down and his Islamist supporters vowed not to allow protesters to remove one of their own, brought to office in a legitimate vote. Thousands of Islamists massed not far from the presidential palace in support of Morsi, some of them prepared for a fight with makeshift armor and sticks.

At least four people were killed Sunday in shootings at anti-Morsi protesters in southern Egypt.

The protesters aimed to show by sheer numbers that the country has irrevocably turned against Morsi, a year to the day after he was inaugurated as Egypt's first freely elected president. But throughout the day and even up to midnight at the main rallying sites, fears of rampant violence did not materialize.

Instead the mood was largely festive as protesters at giant anti-Morsi rallies in Cairo's central Tahrir Square and outside the Ittihadiya palace spilled into side streets and across boulevards, waving flags, blowing whistles and chanting.

Fireworks went off overhead. Men and women, some with small children on their shoulders, beat drums, danced and sang, "By hook or by crook, we will bring Morsi down." Residents in nearby homes showered water on marchers below ? some carrying tents in preparation to camp outside the palace ? to cool them in the summer heat, and blew whistles and waved flags in support.

"Mubarak took only 18 days although he had behind him the security, intelligence and a large sector of Egyptians," said Amr Tawfeeq, an oil company employee marching toward Ittihadiya with a Christian friend. Morsi "won't take long. We want him out and we are ready to pay the price."

The massive outpouring against Morsi, culminating a year of growing polarization, raises the question of what is next. Protesters have vowed to stay on the streets until he steps down, and organizers called for widespread labor strikes starting Monday. The president, in turn, appears to be hoping protests wane.

For weeks, Morsi's supporters have depicted the planned protest as a plot by Mubarak loyalists. But their claims were undermined by the extent of Sunday's rallies. In Cairo and a string of cities in the Nile Delta and on the Mediterranean coast, the protests topped even the biggest protests of the 2011's 18-day uprising, including the day Mubarak quit, Feb. 11, when giant crowds marched on Ittihadiya.

It is unclear now whether the opposition, which for months has demanded Morsi form a national unity government, would now accept any concessions short of his removal. The anticipated deadlock raises the question of whether the army, already deployed on the outskirts of cities, will intervene. Protesters believe the military would throw its significant weight behind them, tipping the balance against Morsi. The country's police, meanwhile, were hardly to be seen Sunday.


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