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North Korea’s Food Supply at Critically Low Levels

Reuters (via War News Updates) – 10 million North Koreans face food shortage after worst harvest, says United Nations  * The UN found North Korean protein intake to be very low, with some families consuming protein only a few times a year

North Korea has cut food rations to 300 grammes a day – less than 11 ounces – the lowest ever for this time of year, and further cuts are likely after the worst harvest in a decade, the United Nations said on Friday. | go to source

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New 2500 BCE Burial Site Discovered in Egypt, Near Tombs

NDTV – Egypt’s antiquities ministry on Saturday unveiled a 4,500-year-old burial ground near the Giza pyramids containing colourful wooden coffins and limestone statues dating back to the Old Kingdom.

The site on the southeastern side of Giza plateau contains tombs and burial shafts from various periods, but the oldest is a limestone family tomb from the fifth dynasty (around 2500 BC), the ministry said. | go to source

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Crypto Banditry Tops $1.2 Billion This Quarter of 2019

Venture Beat – Cryptocurrency thefts, scams, and fraud seem like they’re subsiding as the technology goes mainstream, right? Wrong. Crypto criminals and fraudsters stole more than $1.2 billion in the first quarter of 2019, according to a report by cryptocurrency security firm CipherTrace. | go to source

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Greek Public Transportation Halted By Worker Strike on May Day

Greece is experiencing an ongoing shutdown of multiple mass public transportation services after transportation worker unions called for strikes beginning on May Day.
Times of India – Greece has been left without national rail, island ferry and other transport services for a day as unions hold strikes and rallies to celebrate May Day. 

Hundreds of people gathered in central Athens on Wednesday for three separate rallies and marches to parliament organised by rival unions and left-wing groups.  | go to source

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11 Percent of Mexico’s Gas Stations Stiff You on Liters

Mexico Daily News – The consumer protection agency estimates that 11% of Mexico’s 12,000 gas stations do not sell complete liters of fuel, which many drivers have either realized or suspected for many years.

Profeco chief Ricardo Sheffield Padilla revealed that crooked gas stations tend to rob 100 milliliters of every liter of gasoline sold. He said Profeco inspects an average of 200 gas stations per week. | go to source

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If You Believe the IMF, the US-China Trade War Might Soon Be Ending

The IMF seems to believe a deal is in the works that could see an end to the ongoing US-China trade war.

Trend News Agency – International Monetary Fund Managing Director Christine Lagarde said on Monday she expects the United States and China to reach a deal to end their trade dispute, which has unnerved financial markets and cast a shadow over the global economy, Trend reported citing Reuters.  “I would say ‘Yes,’” Lagarde said at the Milken Institute Global Conference when asked whether talks between the world’s two largest economies would end in a deal. | go to source

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So We Are Back to Zero Discovered Moons Outside the Solar System, Science Says

New Scientist – Evidence for what seemed to be the first moon ever discovered outside our solar system looks like it may actually just be a statistical blip……In 2017, New Scientist reported that David Kipping and Alex Teachey at Columbia University in New York had spotted a possible exomoon…..(they) switched to the Hubble Space Telescope to take another look….new analyses of the Kepler data cast questions on the conclusion. …….Hubble observations seemed to spy the signal of a Neptune-sized exomoon….But according to a new analysis by Laura Kreidberg at the Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics in Massachusetts and her colleagues, that evidence isn’t so solid after all.  | go to source

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Louisiana Bill Would Bar Banks from Barring Gun Businesses

If you’re a  bank doing business in Louisiana, you better make sure you’re not targeting gun businesses for banking discrimination, says a new bill that just passed the house and appears headed to passing the Senate as well, though the Democratic governor might just veto it.
kpel965.com – The Louisiana House passes a bill that says banks with gun control policies cannot refuse to do business with companies involved in the manufacturing and selling of guns and ammunition. Erath Representative Blake Miguez says his legislation protects against a discriminatory action.

“Myself along with many other individuals that value the Second Amendment or deal in the gun industry support this legislation and want me to move it forward,” said Miguez. | go to source

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US Refutes Rumor Crashed F-35 is Found as Race for Lost High Tech Continues Between Nations

The old trope of ‘this sounds like this was written by a Hollywood script writer” is often abused and rarely accurately applied.  Let me, nonetheless, be bold enough to assure you that I have a story that fits that scenario effectively and authentically.
I give you the story of a downed top tech fighter in deep waters and a race against time to prevent the enemy from getting the tech, or, if you’re from Russia or China, a race against time to liberate technology from thee enemy.  Here’s more from….
The Drive – There has been some confusion over whether or not Japanese or American authorities have found the main wreckage a Japan Air Self Defense Force F-35A Joint Strike Fighter that crashed in the Pacific Ocean earlier this month. A senior U.S. military officer had told reporters that personnel had found the plane, only to get contradicted by multiple other U.S. military spokespersons.

U.S. Air Force General Charles Brown, head of Pacific Air Forces (PACAF), told reporters that the location of the stealthy fighter jet was known during a press briefing on Apr. 30, 2019, according to Nikkei Asian Review. The F-35A crashed on Apr. 9, 2019 off the coast of Japan. The exact cause of the accident remains unknown. 41-year-old Japan Air Self Defense Force (JASDF) Major Akinori Hosomi was at the control of the plane at the time and also remains missing. | go to source

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Carbon Buildup in the Atmosphere Heightened with Melting Permafrost

Nature – Current models of greenhouse-gas release and climate assume that permafrost thaws gradually from the surface downwards. Deeper layers of organic matter are exposed over decades or even centuries, and some models are beginning to track these slow changes.

But models are ignoring an even more troubling problem. Frozen soil doesn’t just lock up carbon — it physically holds the landscape together. Across the Arctic and Boreal regions, permafrost is collapsing suddenly as pockets of ice within it melt. Instead of a few centimetres of soil thawing each year, several metres of soil can become destabilized within days or weeks. The land can sink and be inundated by swelling lakes and wetlands | go to source

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Nato Announces “Spring Storm” Aimed at Russia’s Flank Alongside Estonia

NATO is sending a message to Russia I am sure Putin will not appreciate.  The message comes in the form of a military exercise in Estonia, the little Baltic state that was once a Soviet satellite.

Defense Blog – The Spring Storm is a large-scale live exercise of the Estonian Defence Forces, with participation from NATO’s enhanced Forward Presence and other Allied forces. This year’s training involved approximately 10 thousand soldiers and hundreds of combat vehicles and aircraft.  “The Spring Storm exercise this year will be held in northeastern Estonia.Nearly 10,000 troops will take part in them, including the military contingents of Great Britain and Belgium from the NATO international battalion stationed in Estonia and the soldiers of the Estonian Defense Forces, ” the press service of the Estonian Armed Forces said. | go to source

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Woman Grieving Mother Saved Rabbi in Synagogue Shooting that Claimed Her Life

A woman grieving the loss of her mother was not only a victim of the synagogue shooting in California on Saturday, April 27th, around 11:30AM local time, she was also a hero.  More  from CNN – “When a gunman opened fire in a synagogue in California, killing one and injuring three others, Lori Kaye jumped between the shooter and the rabbi.  Kaye, 60, was shot at the synagogue and died at a nearby hospital.  In addition to Kaye, at least three others were wounded in the shooting Saturday at Congregation Chabad in Poway, north of San Diego. By late Sunday morning, all three injured victims had been discharged from a hospital…..Kaye had attended services Saturday to say a Kaddish prayer for her mother, who died in November, (a friend and fellow congregation member) said.” | go to source

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US Tech Comes to Aid of China Tech Workers in Labor Dispute

Multiple US tech firms are coming together to express concerns that Microsoft might decide to acquiesce to the Chinese government and cut off a Chinese tech labor movement using Guthub to coordinate their efforts.  
From China Digital Times – U.S. Tech Workers Back Chinese Counterparts Over Work Conditions
“In recent months, Chinese tech workers have used the Microsoft-owned codesharing platform GitHub to coordinate the “996.icu” campaign against the long work hours demanded by many of their employers. Because of the site’s https encryption, which prevents selective blocking, and its immense value to the tech industry, which deters a site-wide block, it has increasingly been adopted by Chinese users as a haven for various kinds of sensitive content. Amid fears that the 996.icu movement might disrupt this situation, dozens of workers from Microsoft and other U.S. tech firms issued a letter this week expressing solidarity with their Chinese counterparts, and urging Microsoft and GitHub to resist any pressure to help stifle the movement.” | go to source

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Putin Pledges to Aid Silk Road In Face of Mounting Challenges

The  Moscow Times – Putin is back in Beijing now for the new Silk Road’s second forum and this time, with opposition to Xi’s grand vision growing in the West, he’s bringing more than just bromides. After six years of wrangling, Russia has quietly approved its first project designed specifically for the Belt and Road Initiative — a toll road linking China’s western neighbor Kazakhstan with Belarus, which borders Poland and two other EU members. | go to source

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Did Wikileaks Drive Satoshi Underground?

Crypto News – In response to an article that was published on news portal PC World Mag on Wikileaks open to accepting donations in bitcoin, Nakamoto as the inventor obviously had an opinion on that. In 2010, when the article was first published he had said, “It would have been nice to get this attention in any other context. WikiLeaks has kicked the hornet’s nest, and the swarm is headed towards us.”  Providing context to the cryptic quote a Redditor mindless_snail said on Thursday, when the thread was brought up again, “You completely left out the actual context, which is that Wikileaks announced that they were accepting Bitcoin donations because they were kicked off of every other major payment platform. Wikileaks was all over the news for publishing confidential military documents and the first time many people ever heard of Bitcoin was when it was mentioned in association with Wikileaks.” | go to source

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If These Student Have Their Way, Unmanned Drones Could Patrol the Seas for Trash

Here’s a cool story of individuals working to come up with outside-the-box ways to deal with the pollution in our oceans.  The team of students are working on creating self-driving and working ocean-cleaning drones.

Concordia University News – During their final year, undergrads from the Gina Cody School of Engineering and Computer Science apply what they’ve learned in their degree to a practical problem through a Capstone project…..Students Marouane Elouaraa, Lam Son Vo Ngoc, Zihao Guan, Nikko Badoles and Eric Kwarteng call themselves the Ocean Cleaners. For their Capstone project, they built an aquatic drone prototype capable of detecting and collecting plastic on the surface of the water.  “The most important feature of our prototype is the fact that we made the boat fully autonomous, requiring minimal maintenance,” says Elouaraa, who is in his last term of a mechanical engineering degree. | go to source