United Kingdom

‘Rare’ newborn white reindeer spotted in England

Maybe there’s no need for a red nose to be considered the most famous reindeer of all. A “rare” white reindeer was born just a few weeks ago at a ranch near Yeovil, Somerset, England, British news agency South West News Service reports. Appropriately given the moniker “Blitzen,” the calf was born alongside its sister, Donner. “It’s very rare to see a white calf anywhere in the world — let alone in Somerset,” said Sarah Sutton, of Somerset Reindeer Ranch. Blitzen was born on April 28 and since then, the miniature mammal has been walking around, playing and eating with its family. Unlike other animals that have white pigmentation, white reindeers are not albino. Instead, they have a mutation that causes their fur to lose its pigment. One such white reindeer was spotted in December 2018 by Norwegian photographer Mads Nordsveen, Fox News previously reported. Another white stag was reported in Mala, Sweden, in 2016, the New York Daily News reported. Some Scandinavian traditions regard the sighting of a white reindeer a certain sign of good luck.

To see a fun pic of this cute critter, click on the text above.  Hope it brings ya’ luck this holiday weekend!     🙂

Trump Admin. to Extract Military, Intelligence Assets from U.K. over Britain’s Huawei Deal

The Trump Administration’s National Security Council launched a review this week of what military and intelligence assets will be withdrawn from Great Britain if the U.K. goes ahead with its 5G deal with Chinese telecom giant Huawei. U.S. officials told Bloomberg’s Eli Lake that the assessment is being conducted in response to Huawei “putting smart antennas and computers run by the Chinese Communist Party all over our closest ally.” In January, Boris Johnson’s government announced that the U.K. would allow Huawei — which is charged in the U.S. with racketeering, fraud, and intellectual property theft — to help build the country’s 5G network, despite intense diplomatic pressure from the Trump administration to resist the Chinese. President Trump reportedly “tore into” Johnson in a phone call over the deal, as the U.S. has warned allies in the past that there would be consequences for dealing with Huawei, but has struggled to come up with 5G alternatives to the Chinese giant. “If a country adopts this [Huawei technology] and puts it in some of their critical information systems, we won’t be able to share information with them, we won’t be able to work alongside them,” Secretary of State Mike Pompeo said last February. “In some cases there’s risk — we won’t even be able to co-locate American resources, an American embassy, an American military outpost.” Britain has insisted that Huawei will not have access to sensitive intelligence and the core network “control plane,” but U.S. officials are still worried that proximity risks posed to U.S. assets in the U.K, and are looking at potentially halting deals over military and intelligence equipment over the move. In the wake of Johnson’s announcement, a group of parliamentarians from his own party have voiced their opposition to the Huawei deal and may scuttle it entirely, according to Financial Times.

We like PM Boris Johnson.  But, President Trump was right to tear into him over this.  Huawei is entirely controlled by the Chinese government, and uses their technologies to spy on the U.S. and our allies.  We’ve proven that to the UK and others on several occasions.  So, if they want to sell their soul for 5G, then we need to not allow our intelligence assets to be compromised, and step back from coordinating our efforts with our British friends.  That’s only smart.  Hopefully those parliamentarians will scuttle the Huawei deal.

Poo museum is now open on British island

There is a museum for just about anything these days, and now, thanks to some pioneering folks in the UK, even those with poop fixations can get their fix thanks to the grand opening of the National Poo Museum at the Isle of Wight Zoo. The samples of feces range from scant insect excrement to gigantic elk and lion poo, as well as the doodoo of a human baby, reports the BBC. The museum even includes fossilized feces dating back some 38 million years, reports Mental Floss, and also covers the more metaphorically gross side of dung, such as the diseases spread without toilets or proper sanitation. In an innovative display that required a custom built drying contraption, the crap curators have placed the fetid samples in illuminated resin spheres that include related facts hidden behind toilet lids. And while it’s billed as the first-ever museum devoted to poop, Huffington Post has tracked down two similarly themed endeavors, including a poop museum that opened in Italy last year and the one and only Mr. Toilet House in South Korea, which features statues of an assortment of mammals doing number two. Curator Nigel George, meanwhile, tells the BBC that “small children naturally delight” in the topic while “for most of us, under the layers of disgust and taboo, we’re still fascinated by it.” (What does a unicorn have to do with poop, anyway?)

You really can’t make this stuff up, folks..

Archaeologists discover ancient Anglo-Saxon island in UK countryside

Experts in the U.K. have discovered the remains of an Anglo-Saxon island, which they are touting as a site of huge archaeological importance. Archaeologists from the University of Sheffield identified the island at Little Carlton near Louth, Lincolnshire. “It is thought the site is a previously unknown monastic or trading centre but researchers believe their work has only revealed an enticing glimpse of the settlement so far,” explained the University of Sheffield, in a press release. The Anglo-Saxon era in Britain spanned from the 5th to the 11th centuries. The amazing Lincolnshire discovery was sparked by Graham Vickers, a local man with a metal detector who unearthed a silver stylus from a disturbed plough field. Vickers reported the find to the Portable Antiquities Scheme, which encourages the voluntary recording of archaeological objects found by members of the public.The ornate writing tool, which dates back to the 8th century, was the first of a number of items found at the site. Artifacts found at the site now include a total of 21 styli, around 300 dress pins, and a huge number of ‘Sceattas,’ which are coins from the 7th-8th centuries. A small lead tablet bearing the letters spelling the female Anglo-Saxon name ‘Cudberg’ was also found. Hugh Willmott, senior lecturer in European historical archaeology at the University of Sheffield, and Pete Townend, a doctoral student at the university, visited the site to carry out targeted geophysical surveys. The archaeologists also used measured and mapped magnetism in the soil and performed 3D modelling to visualise the landscape on a large scale. “The imagery showed that the island they had discovered was much more obvious than the land today, rising out of its lower surroundings,” explained the university. “To complete the picture the researchers raised the water level digitally to bring it back up to its early medieval height based on the topography and geophysical survey.” In an attempt to find out more about life at the site, University of Sheffield students opened nine evaluation trenches, which revealed items indicating that the islands may have been an Anglo-Saxon industrial area. They also found significant amounts of pottery and butchered animal bone. “Our findings have demonstrated that this is a site of international importance, but its discovery and initial interpretation has only been possible through engaging with a responsible local metal detectorist who reported their finds to the Portable Antiquities Scheme,” said Willmott, in a statement. A computer-generated timelapse video posted to YouTube by the University of Sheffield shows how the island became part of the modern landscape.

Fascinating!!    🙂

Starnes: British students told to write essay on their conversion to Islam

Gobsmacked! British moms and dads were fuming after a school instructed students to write an essay explaining why they had converted to Islam. Gemma Gough posted the assignment on Facebook – and said her child would not be completing the assignment. “This is not acceptable,” she wrote. ‘Kids are too impressionable and imagine if these letters got in the wrong hands in years to come.” The 12 and 13-year-old kids at Beaucamps High School in Guernsey were told to consider what it would be like to become a Muslim. They also had to write a letter to their loved ones explaining their decision to become a Muslim. Can you imagine when the students returned home? “Mummy, Mummy! I converted to Islam! Cheerio!” The controversial lesson was part of a creative writing exercise as part of a religious education lesson, The Daily Mail reports. The school pointed out that it was a make-believe scenario – and no child was actually forced to convert to the Islamic faith. Local residents were not convinced. “In this day and age when easily-led youngsters are being radicalized, it is a dangerous road to be taking,” wrote one observer on the Guernsey Press website. “Teach pupils about religion by all means but be very careful when you ask them to be Muslim,” another wrote. The school said they plan to expose the students to other religions – like Christianity and Judaism. But let’s be honest – do you really think they’re going to have the kids write about how Jesus Christ changed their lives? Brigette Gabriel, the founder of Act for America, told me what’s happening in Great Britain is already happening in American public schools. She discusses that subject in my most recent podcast. -Todd Starnes is host of Fox News & Commentary, heard on hundreds of radio stations. His latest book is “God Less America: Real Stories From the Front Lines of the Attack on Traditional Values.” Follow Todd on Twitter@ToddStarnes and find him on Facebook.

Man legally changes his name to Bacon Double Cheeseburger

In the list of life’s regrets, this shockingly isn’t one. A British man decided to legally change his name to Bacon Double Cheeseburger as a show of his undying love of the sandwich. Sam Smith, 33, told the U.K.’s Standard that the, “Bacon Double Cheeseburger was pretty much the first thing that came up,” after a night of drinking with his buddies who convinced him to do go ahead with the stunt. “It was the culmination of probably too many drinks in the pub where there was a conversation about names,” he said. After he sobered up, he still embraced his new identity. “I’ve got no regrets at all,” he said. So what do his parents think? “My mum was furious but my dad thinks it’s hilarious. He’s more than happy to use my new name.” Another person not too pleased with the name apparently is Smith’s fiancée. “My fiancée is fairly reluctant about marrying a Cheeseburger. That’s something we’re discussing a lot. No girl ever dreams of spending her big day marrying a man called Bacon.” Who knows? The odd name could have perks. Remember the Burger and King couple who got married? Fast food giant Burger King picked up the tab for their wedding. For now, Smith proudly signs off his work emails as “B D Cheeseburger.”

Wow..  You really can’t make this stuff up, folks..

Richard III taken to final resting place after 500 years

More than 500 years after his death in battle, the mortal remains of Richard III were borne to what will be his final resting place on Sunday. The lead-lined, golden-oak coffin of the last Plantagenet king left the University of Leicester, whose archaeologists found him buried under a council car park in 2012, beginning a last, symbolic journey through the Leicestershire countryside to Bosworth battlefield where, in 1485, the king fell to Henry Tudor. The monarch was due to return to the city – to its medieval boundary of Bow Bridge – before processing to Leicester cathedral for 6pm atop a horse-drawn gun carriage. He will lie at the cathedral, guarded night and day, until his reburial on Thursday. Crowds formed, captivated by the extraordinary story of the last English king to die in battle and the rediscovery of his remains.

Very cool!   🙂