North Korea Using Psychological Warfare to Bargain with U.S.

We have all witness numerous attempts by North Korea to establish themselves as a force to be reckoned with from threats of war against South Korea to attacks on the United States with long range nuclear missiles, however the end result of these threats have left the North Korea with little bargaining power as the United Nations has sanctioned them for repeated offenses and South Korea grows tired of the tantrums. What is the next logical step in North Korea’s psychological warfare? North Korea now hopes to use an old trick from the past that is sure to get the United States’ attention. On Saturday, the Associated Press reported that North Korea will try an American detainee for allegedly trying to overthrow the government complicating an already tense relationship between Pyongyang and Washington. The indictment comes as North Korea has run out of ammo to use against the U.S. and South Korea in order to force bargaining between the nations. North Korea remains angry over U.N. sanctions passed in February over nuclear tests and the ongoing U.S. South Korean drills though most believe the motive behind the indictment is to force its Korean War foes to negotiate on its own terms according to the Associated Press.

The man identified above, Kenneth Bae, also known by his Korean name in North Korean state media, Pae Jun Ho, is a tour operator arrested after arriving with a tour on Nov.3 in Rason which is a special economic zone bordering China and Russia. He is the sixth American detained in North Korea since 2009, however the other detainees were eventually deported or released after high profile diplomatic interventions with some involving President Bill Clinton and Jimmy Carter. According to the Korean Central News Agency, “The preliminary inquiry into crimes committed by American citizen Pae Jun Ho closed. In the process of investigation he admitted that he committed crimes aimed to topple the DPRK with hostility toward it. His crimes were proved by evidence.” Under North Korea’s criminal code terrorist acts include murdering, kidnapping and injuring the country’s citizens can lead to a death sentence or life in jail AP reports.

The actual trial of Bae has not been set and the charges have yet to be announced by the KCNA as little information has been made public. North Korea and the United States do not have diplomatic relations due to the 1050-53 Korean War as the Swedish Embassy in Pyongyang represent the United States. Friends, colleagues and activist in South Korea said that Bae is a missionary based in a border town in China who made frequent trips to North Korea to feed orphans , but do not know whether he tried to evangelize while in North Korea AP reports. Officially, North Korea guarantee freedom of religion, however authorities have been known to crack down on Christians who are seen as threats to government because of the western influence. The distribution of Bibles and secret prayer services do carry a penalty of banishment to a labor camp or execution according to defectors from the country.

 

Pedro Reyes Turns Guns Into Musical Instruments

Pedro Reyes Turns Guns Into Musical Instruments.

I thought this was truly a unique idea and send a clear message to people about how something that causes so much hurt can bring so much joy… take a page out of his book NRA. The guns of northern Mexico have found a new purpose instead of causing so many more deaths they are now making music. Mechanical hammers ping against once used ammunition magazines from assault rifles, while gun barrels cut to different lengths ring like marimbas and pistol parts strike metal plates like cymbals. Sculptor Pedro Reyes told the Associated Press that “it’s important to consider that many lives were taken with these weapons, as if a sort of exorcism was taking place.”He continued to say,”the music expelled the demons they held, as well as being a requiem for lives lost.”

The title of the project is called “Disarm” and he had the opportunity to choose from 6,700 guns that were seized or turned in by the army and police in Ciudad Juarez, a city that sees 10 killing a day in a population of 1.3 million people. The city had a murder rate of 230 per 100,000 inhabitants, while the nationwide rate for the U.S. was 4.8 for the year. Reyes said in an interviews while demonstrating his instruments that,”the dramatic thing is that this is just the tip of the iceberg of all the weapons that are seized every day and that the army has to destroy.” Reyes was well known already for his 2008 project called “Palas por Pistolas,” or “Pistols to Shovels,” where he used melted down weapons to make 1,527 shovels same as the number of weapons and planted the same number of trees. The new project began last year as Reyes explains,”normally, they bury or destroy them, but someone who works in the government said, `Would you be interested in making a sculpture with this metal?'” Reyes hopes to take his message global,”this project has a pacifist intent, to create a global consciousness about arms trafficking.”

Violence has become a theme in Mexican art as another artist, Teresa Margolles, uses artifacts collected from crime scenes from the violence plagued state of Sinaloa. The reason behind Reyes musical sculptures are explained,”It occurred to me to make musical instruments, because music is the opposite of weapons. This exercise of transformation we see with the guns, is what we would like to see in society.”

Amish Beard Cutters Sentenced Friday

Amish Beard Cutters Sentenced Friday.

I guess no one escapes judgement not even the Amish. On Friday, the ring leader in the hair and beard cutting attacks on fellow Amish was sentences to 15 years in prison and 15 family members were sentenced to one to seven years in prison. The U.S. District Court Judge Dan Aaron Polster said in sentencing Sam Mullet Sr. 67 that the victims were terrorized and traumatized. He continued is saying that each of the defendants had benefited from the First Amendment and had violated their fellow Amish constitutional rights protecting religious practices such as jury service exemption and allowing Amish children to leave school at 14.  The judge concluded by informing the defendants that they had two weeks to file an appeal which the defense has already indicated such action. Mullet, the ring leader of the group in question, said before his sentencing that if his community is seen as a cult he would take the punishment for everyone and conveyed to the courtroom, victims and his family alike, that he has only tried to help people. The government had asked for a life sentence, while the defense asked for two years or less, so 15 years seems pretty fair. The 10 men and women were involved in five attacks last year in Amish communities in 2011. The attacks according to the government were retaliations against Amish who defied or denounced Mullet’s authoritarian style. The Amish believe the Bible instructs women to grow long hair and men to grow beards once married as a result cutting it would be offensive to the Amish. The Federal prosecutor Bridget Brennan urged the judge to punish Mullet adequately as he is a danger to this community and can control these 15 defendants. U.S. Attorney Steven Dettelbach, said he believes the law would withstand constitutional challenge by the defendants and that the sentence for Mullet was appropriately harsh and his conduct in court shows his lack of remorse and respect for the law. The defendants were charged with a hate crime because prosecutors believe religious differences brought on the attacks. Nine of the ten men are locked up waiting sentencing, while the six women who have children were freed on bond. Mullet’s family doesn’t believe that is was a hate crime and that all of the victims had their hair grow back. Arlene Miller sees it differently as her husband an Amish bishop was attacked. She believes that Mullet deserved a tough sentence and the others should get cult-deprogramming counseling. In the end, there were no winners and no happy endings in the case.

 

Employees Buy Luxury Lifestyle Pilfering Printer Cartridges – Careers Articles

Employees Buy Luxury Lifestyle Pilfering Printer Cartridges – Careers Articles.

Probably the strangest story I have heard in a while, but also I didn’t even realize their was a black market for this. In Manhattan, New York hospital clerk Marque Gumbs was found stealing toner for copiers and printers in order to provide for his lavish lifestyle of BMWs, designer clothes and vacations. The $1.5 million scheme at the Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center exploited a largely overlooked, but lucrative black market for these and other office supplies. The perpetrators were using business accounts to make false orders for more costly items like toner and reselling them for a large discount. A large law firm in Manhattan recently went through the same situation which ended in grand larceny charges against Adrian Rodriguez, 38 years old, who prosecutors say ordered in excess of $376,000 worth of toner over two years. In 2007, two Pennsylvania men were accused of stealing $187,000 worth of ink and toner and in New Jersey an account exec at a stationary supply company pleaded guilty to stealing 30,000 toner cartridges worth $1.75 million. Gumbs went undetected by the hospital for so long since he would had the delivery drivers call his cellphone and meet him at the curb where he would stash the toner in a garbage area so he could retrieve it later. Before he was done, Gumbs had used his profits for rent on a luxury apartment, a BMW, shopping sprees, and airlines tickets and hotel rooms for vacations. Gumbs, pleaded guilty to charges and was sentenced to 2.5 to 7.5 years in prison and ordered to forfeit everything he bought with the money. I think he got off a little easy, but in the long run he is going to have a hard time finding work when he gets out not only because of his criminal activity.

Lindsay Sandiford, British Grandmother, Sentenced To Death For Smuggling Cocaine Worth $2.5 Million

Lindsay Sandiford, British Grandmother, Sentenced To Death For Smuggling Cocaine Worth $2.5 Million.

This is a very troubling situation that happens more often than people think. Drug trafficking is a billion dollar industry with a lot to lose all around especially for drug smugglers whether voluntary or forced. In Bali, Indonesia a British grandmother, Lindsay Jun Sandiford 56, was sentenced to death by the court for smuggling $2.5 million in cocaine in her suitcase to a Bali island resort. The prosecution was only asking for 15 years not death. She had claimed in court the act was forced upon her because a gang threatened to hurt her children. More than 40 foreigners are currently on death row in Indonesia mostly for drug charges. Sandiford’s lawyer will appeal the case and the process could take years. So far, two other British citizens, and an Indian have been sentenced already in connection with the bust, while her so called accomplice awaits a verdict expected out Tuesday. The Bristish Foreign Office Minister Hugo Swire said on Wednesday the government strongly disagrees with the verdict and has offered assistance to the Sandiford family. In the verdict, a panel of Denpasar District Court judges determined that Sandiford damages the reputation n of Bali’s tourism and weakened the government’s drug prevention program. Sounds like they are making her an example to other foreigners not serving justice, but their own egos. The president has given clemency to only four drug offenders on death row and the most recent still remains in prison.

 

 

 

Robert Wagner Is Not A Suspect In Natalie Wood’s Death, But He’s Refusing To Talk To Detectives

Robert Wagner Is Not A Suspect In Natalie Wood’s Death, But He’s Refusing To Talk To Detectives.

This story gets stranger and stranger. Veteran actor, Robert Wagner 82, has declined numerous times to cooperate with the renewed investigation into the 1981 death of his wife, Natalie Wood. Wagner’s attorney responded by saying that her client has complied with the investigation form the beginning and has no further information to offer. Lt. Corina of the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Office says that Wagner has changed his story over the years. Her death is shrouded in mystery and at the time investigator could only come to the conclusion that her death was an accidental drowning. The actress had been boating with her then husband Wagner and actor Christopher Walken prior to her death. When her body was found floating in the water mile away from the boat, her body was covered in bruises. The case reopened in 2011 after the boat’s captain, Dennis Davern, came forward to say that Wagner and his wife were fighting prior to her death which Wagner admitted to. Right now, the police have no suspects and Wagner is not considered one at this time. The death has now been ruled “undetermined.” Wagner is still the only person on the boat from that night who has not spoke to detectives about that night in this new inquiry.

India Gang Rape: Woman Assaulted By Bus Driver, Conductor

India Gang Rape: Woman Assaulted By Bus Driver, Conductor.

On Sunday, the New Delhi police arrested six suspects in another gang rape of a bus passenger in India only four weeks after the brutal attack on a student on a moving bus. Police officer Raj Jeet Singh said a 29-year-old woman was the only passenger on a bus as she was traveling to her village in northern Punjab state on Friday night when the driver refused to stop, drove her to a desolate location, then tool her to a building, and proceeded with five other friends raped her throughout the night. The driver dropped her off at her village early Saturday. All the men confessed to the rape and the victim is recovering at home. Also on Saturday, police arrested a 32 year old man for raping and killing a 9 year old girl two weeks ago in Ahmednagar district in western India.

 

This further fuels the demand for stricter rape laws and more action by the government after the deadly rape of 23 year old student on a New Delhi bus in December led to her death. Five men have been charged with the rape and murder and could face the death penalty. The 17 year old involved will be tried in the juvenile court if confirmed a minor and could face 3 years in a reform facility.

The whole situation is very tragic and it breaks my heart that this many women had their lives ruined for the government to take an interest in these acts of violence. The reality is all countries whether developed or not have the issue of violent crimes against women so until we change people’s mentality toward women and make the separation between culture and human rights then these crimes will continue to happen.