Month: August 2015

Guitar hero: Charges dropped against man who blasted ‘Star Spangled Banner’ on July 4

The Florida college student who was cited and nearly arrested for celebrating July 4 with a searing guitar rendition of “The Star Spangled Banner” at a block party is getting the last laugh. Charges against Lane Pittman of breaching the peace and inciting a riot in the Neptune Beach incident were dropped, according to his attorney, Caleb Rowland. “Despite the delay, Mr. Pittman is pleased the State’s Attorney’s office declined to prosecute him for expressing his patriotism and exercising his First Amendment right by playing the National Anthem on Independence Day,” Rowland told the blog LegalInsurrection.com. Pittman, who reprised his performance days later on “Fox & Friends,” said he only meant to pay patriotic homage, and the crowd that surrounded him in the videotaped incident seemed to agree. He told FoxNews.com he had learned to play the Anthem for a lacrosse team he coaches and thought the Neptune Beach crowd would “dig that.” He started off in the street, but only got a few notes out before Pittman said a police officer told him, “If you want to go to jail you can keep playing. You can’t play in the middle of the street.” So Pittman moved to the sidewalk, where a video captured his performance, the crowd’s enthusiastic reaction – and several police officers approaching him after the conclusion of his act. “Out of respect, the officers waited until he finished the National Anthem,” Neptune Beach Chief of Police David Sembach told Fox News. “Then he broke into Ted Nugent’s “Stranglehold.” He was told to stop playing. A crowd of two or three-hundred had gathered and, not only were they blocking traffic, but they were getting rowdy because the police were getting them out of the street.” Pittman, a senior at University of North Florida, posted a victory message on his Facebook page after the decision. “ALL. GLORY. TO GOD,” it read. “The State Attorney’s office has decided to drop all charges!!!! SO pumped!! Thank you for all the prayers, kind words, and thoughts!! It means the world!!” Even though police downgraded the charges to a citation for disturbing the peace, Pittman told FoxNews.com he battled to have it dropped because he wanted his name cleared. “I’m not trying to bash cops,” Pittman said. “I just don’t want the people surrounding me or who look up to me to think I’m someone that I’m not.”

Good for this kid for standing his ground!  Outstanding!  My fav version of this was done by former KISS lead guitarist, Ace Frehley.  Here is a video of him doing at a KC Chiefs game a few years ago:

Kim Jong Un fires top military officials after standoff with South Korea eases

North Korean leader Kim Jong Un has dismissed several top officials in the wake of a recent standoff with South Korea, state media reported Friday, in personnel changes that suggest that Kim was holding them responsible for the confrontation that developed in a way that he did not expect. The rival Koreas earlier this week threatened strikes against each other before agreeing on measures to reduce animosity. After land mines maimed two South Korean soldiers, Seoul resumed propaganda broadcasts critical of Kim’s authoritarian rule for the first time in 11 years, drawing a furious response from Pyongyang which threatened to destroy the South Korean loudspeakers. South Korea blames North Korea for planting the mines, which North Korea has denied. During a ruling Workers’ Party meeting, Kim hailed the agreement, saying it provided what he called a “crucial landmark occasion” to put “catastrophic” inter-Korean relations back on a track of reconciliation and trust, according to Pyongyang’s Korean Central News Agency. But Kim still dismissed several members of the party’s Central Military Commission, which handled the standoff, a KCNA dispatch said. It gave no reasons for the dismissals, but outside analysts said they may have been sacked because they misjudged that the mine blast would not trigger such strong countermeasures by South Korea as the propaganda broadcasts. North Korea is intolerant of any outside criticism of its political system, and observers say North Korea was worried that the broadcasts heard over the border would demoralize frontline troops and residents and eventually weaken Kim’s leadership. “North Korea could have thought about some sort of heightened tension but not like this,” said Chang Yong Seok, a senior researcher at Seoul National University’s Institute for Peace and Unification Studies. South Korea switched off its loudspeakers Tuesday after North Korea expressed “regret” that the South Korean soldiers were injured by the mine explosion. It was considered as a carefully crafted, though vague, wording, with Pyongyang still denying it laid the mines while South Korea describing the term “regret” as an apology. Since taking power upon the death of his dictator father Kim Jong Il in late 2011, Kim Jong Un has vowed to revive his country’s moribund economy and boost standards of living even as he pushes development of nuclear-armed missiles condemned by neighboring countries and the United States. During the party meeting Kim also ordered soldiers to help a recently flooded city, a sign of his need to show his people he cares about a decrepit economy.

Ukrainian filmmaker, who opposed Crimea annexation, gets 20 years in prison

A Russian court has convicted a Ukrainian filmmaker of conspiracy to commit terror attacks and sentenced him to 20 years in prison Tuesday raising international concerns about the fairness of the trial. The court in the southern city of Rostov-on-Don said Tuesday that Oleg Sentsov had set up a terror cell in the Crimean Peninsula and was plotting attacks. Sentsov, a Crimean native, was a vocal opponent of Russia’s 2014 annexation of the peninsula which followed a hastily called referendum. Critics have dismissed his prosecution as revenge for his pro-Ukrainian position. “From the outset the in the international community has had concerns about both of the men’s access to a fair trial,” Britain’s Foreign & Commonwealth Office said in a statement. “These appear to be disproportionate and politically motivated charges.” Sentsov and Oleksandr Kolchenko have been detained since May 2014. Sentsov, who didn’t apply for Russian citizenship, was grabbed on a street in Crimea’s capital in May 2014 by Russian security officers and resurfaced days later in custody in Moscow. Earlier in the trial, Sentsov had pleaded not guilty and insisted that a Russian court had no jurisdiction.

Just awful.. Sounds like Moscow’s thought and speech police are out en force. If you dissent from the party line, then they’ll hunt you down.. Another example of Vlad’s tyranny on display. He wants to be the next Stalin..

Planned Parenthood admits it manipulates rules on fetal organ sales to maximize profit

In a letter to Congress intended to defend its practices and attack its hidden-video critics, Planned Parenthood wound up lending credence to accusations that it manipulates rules on selling fetal organs to maximize profit. Cecile Richards, president of the Planned Parenthood Federation of America, admitted in an 11-page letter Thursday that its affiliates have accepted payments ranging from $45 to $60 “per tissue specimen” from abortions, but said that they were reimbursements to cover costs, which federal law allows. But she also said that “adjustments that facilitate fetal tissue donations rarely occur at our few clinics that offer women this service,” prompting David Daleiden of the pro-life Center for Medical Progress to declare that she had proved the point of his group’s investigation — that “adjustments occur.” Several of the videos showed Planned Parenthood representatives haggling over prices — and in one case joking about wanting a Lamborghini — with people they thought represented biotech firm purchasers. “Both of these admissions speak to Planned Parenthood’s financial benefit and profit motive for supplying fetal tissue, and both are the points CMP’s videos have documented and illustrated from the very beginning,” Mr. Daleiden said in a statement. He disputed Ms. Richards‘ contention that the $45 to $60 per specimen payment was charged only to cover costs, saying that tissue-procurement organizations “handle all dissection, packaging and shipping of fetal organs” while Planned Parenthood spends “10 minutes consenting a patient.” “And when a Planned Parenthood doctor manipulates the abortion to get higher-quality baby parts, they are prizing Planned Parenthood’s financial interests ahead of women’s health,” he said. Ms. Richards‘ letter comes with four House and Senate committees investigating concerns raised in eight undercover videos released by the center since July 14, which show Planned Parenthood and other officials discussing fetal tissue payments and surgical techniques designed to keep valuable organs intact. “I am writing today because we are doing as much as we can to collect the facts and share them with you,” Ms. Richards said. “We are also cooperating with the House and Senate committees that have requested relevant information from us.” She also described the results of an analysis conducted by a research company at the behest of Planned Parenthood, saying the review found evidence of “selective editing,” “splices,” distortions” and other “manipulation” in the undercover videos. “This review ultimately concluded that the manipulation of the videos and the transcripts means they have no evidentiary value in a legal context and cannot be relied upon for any official inquiries unless supplemented by the original video in unaltered form,” said Ms. Richards. The unedited videos have all been posted. She insisted that the videos lack “any credible evidence that Planned Parenthood has done anything wrong.” “All of Mr. Daleiden’s efforts to entrap our affiliates into potentially illegal contracts failed,” she added. Mr. Daleiden countered by dismissing the report as a “complete failure,” calling it a “desperate, 11th-hour attempt to pay their hand-picked ‘experts’ to distract from the crimes documented on video.” The “forensic analysis” was conducted by Fusion GPS, led by a former Wall Street Journal reporter and described by the conservative Weekly Standard as “an opposition research firm with ties to the Democratic Party.” Mr. Daleiden also noted that the analysis found “no evidence of audio manipulation.” “The absence of bathroom breaks and waiting periods between meetings does not change the hours of dialogue with top-level Planned Parenthood executives eager to manipulate abortion procedures to get high-quality baby parts for financially profitable sale,” he said. In her letter, Ms. Richards revealed that the videos have resulted in a dramatic drop in Planned Parenthood’s involvement in providing fetal tissue for medical research.

Oh, I’m sure! This whole issue is beyond disturbing. It should make any clear thinking person want to vomit. Regardless of where you stand on the abortion issue, THIS is very wrong. And, it’s nauseating to think that we are forced to pay for these sorts of things with our hard-earned tax dollars. To that end, we join the chorus of those who are calling on Congress to defund ALL public funding of Planned Parenthood. That organization has every right to exist. But, they do NOT have a right to have the American tax payer fund their operations. If someone wants to use their services, that’s fine. But, don’t ask me or anyone else to pay for it.

Judge blocks Obama EPA rule as federal power grab over state waters

President Obama’s push to extend the EPA’s regulatory hand to ditches and small streams to enforce clean water rules was blocked Thursday by a federal judge, who said the administration had overstepped its bounds in trying yet another end run around Congress. Judge Ralph R. Erickson called the Environmental Protection Agency’s attempt “inexplicable, arbitrary and devoid of a reasoned process,” and issued an injunction preventing the EPA and the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers from claiming oversight of millions of acres of land that contain small bodies of water. The EPA, though, said it will only honor the injunction in the 13 states that had sued, and will move forward with the rules in the rest of the country. “In all other respects, the rule is effective on August 28,” the agency said in a statement. “The agencies are evaluating these orders and considering next steps in the litigation.” Known as the Waters of the United States — or what critics call WOTUS for short — the new rules have been controversial from the start. The Obama administration said it was trying to clear up confusion after an earlier court decision left it unclear how far the federal Clean Water Act stretched. That law gives the EPA power over “navigable” waters and any land where water runs off into those waters. But what that meant has been hotly debated. Last year the administration wrote new definitions that would have subjected all waters within 4,000 feet of a navigable water to EPA review and control. Critics said that would mean the EPA would control lands near ditches with no possible connection to the rivers and lakes that the law was designed to protect. The states that sued said the new rules would create a nightmare scenario of having to get permits and perform environmental studies on every gas or water pipeline, or reclamation or development project. Judge Erickson, who sits in federal district court in North Dakota, said he’d looked at all the evidence he could, and couldn’t see how the EPA justified the 4,000-foot standard. “The rule asserts jurisdiction over waters that are remote and intermittent waters. No evidence actually points to how these intermittent and remote wetlands have any nexus to a navigable-in-fact water,” he wrote. He said the change in definition was big enough that the administration should have gone through a full public notice and comment period. Judge Erickson is the latest in a long list of federal judges to rule Mr. Obama overstepped his boundaries in pursuing his domestic agenda. A federal court in Texas has halted the president’s November 2014 deportation amnesty, also finding, like Judge Erickson, that the immigration changes should have gone through public notice and comment. Federal courts are also still hearing cases challenging the legality of how Mr. Obama is carrying out Obamacare and the way his State Department handled former Secretary Hillary Rodham Clinton’s emails. Republicans on Capitol Hill, who have long opposed the president’s plans to expand the reach of the EPA, cheered the judge’s ruling.

As do we here at The Daily Buzz! It was another court victory for freedom, and freedom FROM Obama and his fascist EPA. Outstanding!! 🙂

The Daily Meal’s Ultimate beer taste test: Ranking America’s best-selling beers

America — land of the free and home of the beer drinkers. If there’s one thing that’s certain, it’s that Americans love their beer. This is probably why VinePair, a website that covers alcoholic beverages of all kinds, conducted a study on what brands of beer Americans drink the most. The ranking was based on total annual sales. The results? As Huffington Post phrased it, “deep down, Americans are frat boys.” According to VinePair, these are the 10 best-selling beers in America, listed from least to most popular: Heineken, Busch, Michelob Ultra, Busch Light, Natural Light, Corona Extra, Miller Lite, Budweiser, Coors Light, and Bud Light. What is it about these mostly all-American brands that keeps people coming back for more? One would assume it’s the taste of the beer that makes sales so successful, but some of our tasters would probably disagree. To solve the mystery of why these brands are so successful, we decided to conduct a taste test. In the test, the participants — all of them beer-drinking employees at The Daily Meal — blind-tasted each beer from the list, and, as you’ll see, our palates didn’t exactly match up with America’s at large. Take a look at the results of our taste test of the best-selling beers in America. After you see what our team had to say about how they tasted, ask yourself: When it comes to beer, what do the people value?

#1 on their list is Heineken..  I can kinda see that.  But, the rest of this list is beyond laughable.  Miller Light?  Coors light?  Seriously?  That’s piss-water used for cooking or by fraternities because its cheap.  Trust me, I know from personal experience.  And Corona?  How trendy and cliche!  Gimme a break…  Oh well..  They should throw in some Dry Dock and other tasty microbrews.  But, hey..  It’s the Daily Meal…and this time they get thumbs down from The Daily Buzz.

How ‘vampire’ spiders could help in the fight against malaria

A study conducted by researchers at the University of Canterbury in New Zealand has highlighted a pair of unlikely recruits in the battle against human malaria – two species of spider. In particular, the research by Fiona Cross and Professor Robert Jackson cited Evarcha culicivora, an eight-legged vampire, which is drawn to female mosquitoes whose guts are filled with blood. “Evarcha culicivora has a particular hankering for Anopheles mosquitoes – the very mosquitoes notorious for being malaria vectors,” said Jackson, in a statement. “This little spider is a predator that likes us and eats our enemies.” The study also highlighted the role of the Paracyrba wanlessi spider, which feeds on mosquito larvae lurking in pools of water inside bamboo. Both spiders are found in Kenya but live in very different habitats. Evarcha culicivora is typically found on the walls of buildings inhabited by people in East Africa while Paracyrba wanlessi is found in hollow stems of bamboo. “These two spider species are highly specialised mosquito assassins,” said Cross, in the statement. “Like Bram Stoker’s ‘Dracula’ or Arnold Schwarzenegger in the James Cameron movie ‘The Terminator’, these little specialist predators ignore any other insects that get in the way as they pursue their target victims – mosquitoes.” Jackson added that, by attacking blood-filled mosquitoes, Evarcha culicivora acquires a “blood perfume” that is attractive to members of the opposite sex. The scientists’ study has been published in the Journal of Arachnology. In the Journal, the researchers explained that humans have nothing to fear from the spiders, noting that malaria is a mosquito-borne, not spider-borne disease. “It is exceedingly difficult to make a rational case for worrying about malarial spider bites,” they said.

Fascinating!!   🙂

Off the grid: North Korean sub fleet’s mystery mission

Two-thirds of North Korea’s submarine fleet was reportedly on the move and off of Seoul’s sonar this week despite an announcement by the two Koreas that they were ratcheting down the saber rattling that followed a land mine explosion in the demilitarized zone earlier this month. More than 50 North Korean subs, believed to represent about 70 percent of Pyongyang’s fleet — were still unaccounted for Wednesday in a potentially ominous development that a spokesman for South Korea’s Defense Ministry called “unprecedented.” Seoul and the U.S., which maintains a strong presence in South Korea, responded by increasing military surveillance. “The number is nearly 10 times the normal level … we take the situation very seriously,” Kim Min-seok, the defense ministry spokesman, said Tuesday. South Korean news agency Yonhap quoted a military official as saying the country was “mobilizing all our surveillance resources” to find the missing subs. Yonhap also reported that the submarines, which slipped away from their bases on Friday, likely had returned to naval bases in North Korea. But until they are accounted for, officials say their is concern on the seas surrounding the peninsula. “We’ve said before the disappearance [of North Korean submarines] is a source of concern, and the fact is they are not easy to detect when they are submerged under water,” Kim said. “No one knows whether the North will attack our warships or commercial vessels,” the defense ministry official said. Pyongyang has also used amphibious landing craft to move special forces near the two nation’s maritime border on the Yellow Sea, Yonhap reported Monday.

Things that make ya go, “hmmmm..”   This story is developing..

Iran nuke deal erases Obama’s red lines

From allowing Iran to keep enriching uranium to abandoning “anywhere, anytime” inspections of Tehran’s nuclear facilities, the Obama administration has crossed many of its own red lines in the nuclear deal that will lift tough economic sanctions on America’s longtime adversary. In December 2013, Secretary of State John F. Kerry said one of the requirements of a good deal with Iran would be to “help Iran dismantle its nuclear program.” He said it was “the whole point” of the sanctions. But the actual deal? It doesn’t require Iran to dismantle its nuclear program. Iran gets to keep some of its uranium-enriching centrifuges and other aspects of its infrastructure. In November 2013, Mr. Kerry said Iran has “no right to enrich” uranium. The actual deal? Iran gets to continue enriching uranium, although it must get rid of two-thirds of its centrifuges and can’t enrich the material to weapons grade. President Obama said he wanted inspections “anywhere, anytime” of Iran’s nuclear facilities to ensure Tehran is adhering to terms of the deal. But the actual agreement? Iran gets 24 days’ notice of inspections of suspicious sites. A secret side deal allows Tehran’s own inspectors to check a military site where work on nuclear weapons was thought to have been carried out. “To be conservative, I’d say at least a dozen red lines have been crossed,” said Michael Rubin, a security specialist at the American Enterprise Institute. “John Kerry is about as credible as Baghdad Bob and probably no more interested in the predominance of American security.” The president and his advisers defend the deal as the best possible and say it will prevent Iran from building nuclear weapons. White House press secretary Josh Earnest said Monday that the agreement “will be a significant constraint on Iran’s nuclear program.” “This is reducing their uranium stockpile by 98 percent, unplugging thousands of centrifuges, essentially gutting the core of their plutonium heavy water reactor and agreeing with the [International Atomic Energy Agency’s] request for information and access that’s required to complete their report about the possible military dimensions of Iran’s nuclear program,” Mr. Earnest said. In Vienna, Iranian officials warned the U.N. agency Tuesday not to bow to pressure from Congress to detail its investigation into Tehran’s past nuclear work, saying Iran will not accept any leaks of their discussions. Iranian Ambassador Reza Najafi said accusations that Iran ever worked on nuclear weapons were baseless. “The IAEA should at the same time exercise utmost vigilance to ensure full protection of all confidential information coming to its knowledge,” Mr. Najafi told reporters. “We won’t accept any kind of leakage of classified information by anyone.” The resistance from Iran prompted Rep. Mike Pompeo, Kansas Republican and a prominent critic of the deal, to renew his call for the administration to release any secret side deals between the IAEA and Iran. “From refusing to let the United States see the secret side agreements, to failing to explain if the IAEA will be allowed to inspect its Parchin military site, Iran is already acting as a bully — dodging questions and telling lies to hide its bad behavior,” Mr. Pompeo said. “Every member of Congress must at least demand that the administration provide us with this entire agreement before we have to vote on this critically important matter of national security.” Words vs. deal Critics in Congress and elsewhere point to the administration’s own words to outline how the deal falls short of what the U.S. hoped to achieve. The Foreign Policy Initiative, a right-leaning think tank in Washington, has highlighted at least 20 areas of the agreement where the administration’s rhetoric doesn’t jibe with the text of the accord. For example, in 2013, Mr. Obama said he envisioned a deal that was so restrictive of Iran’s nuclear program “that they, as a practical matter, do not have breakout capacity” to build atomic weapons. The agreement, however, contains many provisions that expire after a decade or 15 years, making it impossible to claim that it permanently blocks Iran’s path to nuclear weapons. The president told NPR in an interview this month, “Essentially we’re purchasing, for 13, 14, 15 years, assurances that the breakout is at least a year.” The easing of sanctions is another issue. Gen. Martin E. Dempsey, chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, told Congress this summer that “we should under no circumstances relieve pressure on Iran relative to ballistic missile capabilities and arms trafficking.” But under the nuclear agreement, sanctions on conventional arms are to be lifted in five years and missile sanctions in eight years. James Phillips, a senior research fellow for Middle Eastern Affairs at The Heritage Foundation, also criticized “crazy” provisions in the agreement that will protect Iran from certain “snapback” sanctions on deals that Tehran signs between the lifting of sanctions and any violation of the nuclear accord.

Words vs Deal….indeed! Obama’s words mean absolutely nothing. Remember the “red line” he drew with Syria, and then “Baby” Assad shrugged his shoulders and stepped over that line…and Obama did nothing? Remember that? So, this is hardly surprising. But, it’s VERY dangerous. The President is supposed to America FIRST. Obama puts America LAST. And, instead of making our enemies fear us like he’s supposed to, Obama cozies up to them and caters to them. Just look at how Obama and Sec. John Kerry are just bending over and grabbing their ankles with Iran…and Russia…and Cuba…and China…and on and on. We all know that Obama is an agenda-driven, extreme liberal, socialist that would like to transform America into a western European socialist state. That’s not news, nor is it even moot. BUT, his desire to weaken the United States, and openly put our country’s national security at risk is a brazen violation of his oath of office. Not only is he a national embarrassment, he’s our country’s greatest national security threat.

South Korea turns off propaganda broadcasts after North expresses ‘regret’ for mine attack

After 40-plus-hours of talks, North and South Korea on Tuesday pulled back from the brink with an accord that allows both sides to save face and, for the moment, avert the bloodshed they’ve been threatening each other with for weeks. In a carefully crafted, though vague, piece of diplomacy, Pyongyang expressed “regret” that two South Korean soldiers were maimed in a recent land mine blast Seoul blamed on the North. While not an acknowledgement of responsibility, let alone the “definite apology” South Korea’s president had demanded, it allows Seoul to claim some measure of victory in holding the North to account. South Korea, for its part, halted anti-Pyongyang propaganda broadcasts on the border, which will let the authoritarian North trumpet to its people a propaganda win over its bitter rival — and put an end to broadcasts that outside analysts say could demoralize front-line troops and inspire them to defect. The agreement marks a good first step in easing animosity that has built since South Korea blamed North Korea for the mine explosion at the border earlier this month and restarted the propaganda broadcasts in retaliation. But, as always on the Korean Peninsula, it’s unclear how long the good mood will continue. Despite South Korean President Park Geun-hye’s expression of hope that the North’s “regret” will help improve the Koreas’ relationship, the accord does little to address the many fundamental, long-standing differences. The announcement of further talks to be held soon in either Seoul or Pyongyang could be a beginning, but the Koreas have a history of failing to follow through on their promises and allowing simmering animosity to interrupt diplomacy. The negotiations that began Saturday at the border village of Panmunjom, where the Koreas agreed to the 1953 ceasefire that stopped fighting in the Korean War, also resulted in Pyongyang agreeing to lift a “quasi-state of war” declared last week, according to South Korea’s presidential office and North Korea’s state media. While this declaration was largely a matter of rhetoric — the border is the world’s most heavily armed and there has never been a formal peace agreement ending the Korean War, so the area is always essentially in a “quasi-state of war” — there had been growing worry about South Korean reports that the North continued to prepare for a fight during the talks, moving unusual numbers of troops and submarines to the border. The Koreas also struck an important humanitarian agreement by promising to resume in September the emotional reunions of families separated by the Korean War. They said more reunions would follow, but there were no immediate details. The next round of reunions could take place as early as October, considering the preparation time needed to match relatives and agree on a venue, said an official from Seoul’s Unification Ministry, who didn’t want to be named, citing office rules. In a signal of North Korea’s seriousness, Pyongyang sent to the talks Hwang Pyong So, the top political officer for the Korean People’s Army and considered by outside analysts to be North Korea’s second most important official after supreme leader Kim Jong Un. “I hope the two sides faithfully implement the agreements and build up (mutual) confidence through a dialogue and cooperation and that it serves as a chance to work out new South-North relations,” chief South Korean negotiator and presidential national security director Kim Kwan-jin said in a televised news conference. The United States quickly welcomed the agreement and the prospect of tensions dropping. Kim, the Seoul negotiator, described the North’s expression of “regret” as an apology and said the loudspeaker campaign would end at noon Tuesday unless an “abnormal” event occurs. Pyongyang had denied involvement in the land mine explosions and rejected Seoul’s report that Pyongyang launched an artillery barrage last week. South Korea’s military fired dozens of artillery rounds across the border in response and said the North’s artillery strikes were meant to back up an earlier threat to attack the loudspeakers. There were no details on whether the North addressed the artillery claim in Tuesday’s deal. North Korea often makes conciliatory gestures to win concessions and aid from rivals after stoking tensions. The North is now seen as keen on reopening the country to South Korean tourists, along with pursuing business and investment deals with its more affluent neighbor. During the talks at Panmunjom, the North Korean negotiators raised the issue of restarting joint tours to the North’s scenic Diamond Mountain resort, said the official from Seoul’s Unification Ministry.

Well now..  That was a boring read!  The Associated Press (AP) wrote that piece.  Typical.  The AP is your typical lazy member of the dominantly liberal mainstream media.  Yeah..  Most of that was accurate.  BUT..  It didn’t address that Asian cultural quirk where “saving face” is SO important.  That’s just one (unaddressed) component to that story.  Oh well..  I guess its back to business as usual on the DMZ.  Of course we’ll continue to monitor this story…