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first_imgUS Navy mine warfare specialists from the Explosive Ordnance Disposal Mobile Unit (EODMU) 5 and their Japan Maritime Self-Defense Force (JMSDF) EOD counterparts recently completed mine warfare exercise (MIWEX) 2JA 2019.MIWEX 2JA is an annual bilateral exercise held between the US and Japan to increase proficiency in mine countermeasure operations.“The experience of working alongside the Japanese has been excellent,” said Lt. Andrew Kuo, EODMU 5 Platoon 501’s commander. “They’re a very professional force and are very competent at what they do, and we learned a lot from them and they learned a lot from us. As the exercises have gone on, the relationship has grown. I hope it continues to go that way in the future.”A range of US units participated including USS Warrior (MCM 10), Explosive Ordnance Disposal Mobile Unit (EODMU) 5, and staff from Mine Countermeasures Squadron (COMCMCRON) 7.The diverse set of mine countermeasures assets executed a broad range of mine neutralization activities. The participating EOD assets aboard the JMSDF Uraga class minesweeper tender JS Bungo (MST 464) practiced unit-level mine countermeasures tactics to include sweeping, hunting, and neutralization using remotely operated vehicles, sonar, and sweep gear.EOD personnel conducted dive and small boat operations from JMSDF ships and US ships in support of mine countermeasures efforts.The exercise culminated in a combined phase during which US and JMSDF personnel coordinated and communicated to clear a route for ships through a simulated minefield in one of the designated exercise areas. View post tag: MIWEX View post tag: JMSDF View post tag: Mine Warfare View post tag: US Navy Share this article Photo: Photo: US Navylast_img read more

first_imgA man who burgled multiple Northampton homes has today had his sentence increased after it was referred to the Court of Appeal by the Attorney General’s Office for being too low.Darren Barry Williams, 39, was caught after he broke into a house on Prescott Close in Northampton in April. He damaged a window and door, as well as attempting to steal jewellery. Before he could make his escape, two neighbours apprehended him, having been alerted to his crime by an alarm. Once in police custody, Williams pleaded guilty to this burglary, as well as five other home burglaries.Williams was originally sentenced at Northampton Crown Court in May, where he was given 2 years 6 months’ imprisonment and ordered to pay a £170 victim surcharge. Today, after the Attorney General’s referral, the Court of Appeal increased his sentence to 3 years 8 months’ imprisonment.Commenting on the sentence increase, Attorney General Geoffrey Cox QC MP said:“Burglaries leave owners feeling unsafe within their own homes, and can cause a wider sense of disquiet in the community. Williams had an extensive criminal history, including multiple burglaries. I therefore welcome the Court of Appeal’s decision today to agree to increase his sentence.”last_img read more

first_imgTo the average person, the mind-boggling size and expansion of the universe can be more than difficult to grasp. Schmidt explained the theoretical effects of the creation of dark energy in relation to the universe’s expansion as a “battle of the universe.” Some current predictions about the universe based on Einstein’s theory of gravity include the impact of the relatively unknown phenomena of dark matter and dark energy, the latter of which Einstein himself conceptualized by inventing the cosmological constant in 1917, Schmidt said. “[Finding supernovae] was like sifting for a needle in a haystack because these type 1a supernovae only appear about once every 250 years,” he said. “We found supernovae by taking two images at different times and comparing them, enabling us to do an experiment [Edwin] Hubble did and look back 10 million years into the past.” Schmidt, a distinguished professor at the Australian National University who was awarded the 2011 Nobel Prize in Physics for his work on the acceleration of the universe, spoke about his team’s discoveries to a packed house in the Jordan Hall of Science on Monday in his lecture, “The Accelerating Universe.” “There’s a battle between dark energy and dark matter, or the push and pull on the universe,” Schmidt said. “The big question in physics now is whether or not this [dark] energy gets created exactly with space, or a little slower or faster.” The 1998 discovery that earned Schmidt and his colleagues Adam Riess and Saul Perlmutter worldwide recognition occurred when two teams of physicists used advanced telescopes to take images of faraway objects, such as supernovae, effectively allowing them to look back millions of years into the universe’s history. Schmidt said Hubble’s theory was supported by Einstein’s “real big hit” of scientific theories ⎯ the idea that gravity and acceleration are indistinguishable in space. Schmidt said both his High-Z Supernova Search Team and Perlmutter’s Supernova Cosmology Project drew on the principles of Hubble’s 1929 experiment that used a telescope to compare the brightest star in our galaxy with the brightest star in another galaxy in order to demonstrate the relationship between a star’s brightness, the motion of its galaxy and its relative distance from Earth, which provided the first evidence of the expansion of the universe. “If dark energy is created exactly as space is created, dark energy wins the battle of the universe, the cosmos accelerate and the creation of space happens more quickly than even light can travel,” he said. “As the universe expands, the light emitted by those galaxies will never reach us, and eventually we will live in an empty universe except for our super galaxy.” “Einstein had to predict a lot of things to prove this idea, and it took him eight years to do it, but he just thought it must be true,” he said. “The idea changed our fundamental view of how the universe works because it allowed us to make predictions about the universe on its whole.” Though this theory led Einstein to commit his “greatest blunder” in predicting that gravity pushes, rather than pulls, the universe, Schmidt said the idea of dark matter led to later discoveries about the makeup of the universe and what causes its acceleration and expansion. “The universe must be a mix of normal gravitating matter and material that can push on the universe, or dark energy,” Schmidt said. “It was like saying, ‘Hey guys, we didn’t know about 70 percent of the stuff in the universe, and that stuff [dark energy] pushes on the whole universe.’” Schmidt’s team collected cosmological data from 15 such objects and analyzed the light spectra of each object to “see how much the universe is stretching,” which in turn allowed the team to conclude after several months that the universe accelerates and expands and will continue to do so for billions of years to come, he said. This model of universal composition has predicted almost every cosmological phenomenon “on the money,” Schmidt said, and a major focus of cosmology today is predicting the future of the universe, especially in terms of dark matter and dark energy. “[This experiment] enables you to measure the geometry of space directly, and it was first done in 2001,” Schmidt said. “It was determined that one percent of the universe is flat, and the universe is composed of 72 percent dark energy, 24 percent dark matter and four percent atoms.” But for Nobel Prize-winning physicist Brian Schmidt, thinking over the biggest of questions about the existence of the universe is all in a day’s work. Based on data collected from analysis of the Cosmic Microwave Background, a picture of the universe that shows “all the sound waves sloshing around” in it, scientists determined the relative makeup of the universe by substance. Schmidt said much of his team’s prize-winning work depended on several experiments measuring the positions of different galaxies, the total gravity of the universe and the amount of “stuff” contained within it. Notre Dame physics professor Peter Garnavich was part of the same research team and was invited to attend the Nobel Prize award ceremony in Stockholm, Sweden, in December to support fellow members of his team who won the prize. The key to predicting the future of the universe lies in discovering and understanding what accelerates the cosmos, Schmidt said. “Until we understand what dark energy is or what accelerates the cosmos, anything is possible,” he said. “If dark energy is created more quickly than space itself, it will eventually accelerate everything down to the subatomic level to where everything is an infinite distance apart, and the universe will expand and fade away at an ever-increasing rate.”last_img read more

first_imgThis time of year is paradise for home vegetable gardeners, when the hard work of preparing garden beds is over and it is time to plant. To ensure your hard work pays off with a fruitful harvest, follow a few vegetable seed-planting tips from University of Georgia Cooperative Extension expert Bob Westerfield.Directly into the soilVegetables like beans, okra and cantaloupe can be planted directly in home gardens as seeds. Westerfield suggests presoaking the seeds in water over night for better germination. “Lettuce, which is planted in the fall or early spring, can be seeded directly without presoaking,” he said. “Just remember to lightly rake in lettuce seeds into the soil.”Like any construction project, Westerfield says a soundly built garden begins with a well thought-out plan and “good straight rows.” He recommends using contractor’s string to mark your rows.Leave enough space for mature plantsRemember to read seed packages thoroughly to make sure you leave enough space for your plants to grow. “Squash will need 3 feet between each plant as they grow large like an open umbrella,” he said.Planting from seeds involves a lot of getting up and bending down down and repetitive motion. Westerfield suggests investing in a seed planter that spaces seeds and then covers them with soil. “They cost about $100 and the interchangeable wheels adjust to different seed sizes,” he said.If a seed planter doesn’t fit your budget, you may want to try Westerfield’s inexpensive method. He stands straight, holds a piece of PVC pipe and drops the seeds down to the soil through the pipe. “This way you don’t have to bend over and pay for it the next few days with a sore back,” he said.Cover them upOnce the seed is planted, firm the soil with something like the flat side of a hoe. This will help with germination. “You should lightly rake lettuce seeds or just pat them with your hand,” Westerfield said.The rule of thumb for planting seeds is to plant them twice as deep as the size of the seed. Cucumbers and squash are typically planted in mounds or hills. Westerfield recommends planting more seeds to a hill than you need and thinning them down to three as the seeds germinate.To help prevent disease and nematode problems, don’t plant the same family of vegetables in the same location. “Peppers and tomatoes are in the same family and squash and cucumbers are in the same family,” he said.Stagger plantingTo extend your vegetable harvest, Westerfield suggests staggering planting times. “By planting new seeds every couple of weeks, you can have corn and cucumbers coming in at different times,” he said.For more information on planting home vegetable gardens, contact your local UGA Extension office at 1-800-ASK-UGA1.last_img read more

first_imgCheck out these outdoor sports festivals to mix a little recreation with your music:Dominion RiverrockMay 17-19Richmond, Va.dominionriverrock.comBasics: A full weekend of adventure sports action takes place on the banks of the James River in downtown Richmond. From central grounds on Brown’s Island, you can run, ride, paddle, and climb in a variety of comps and races, while live tunes are blaring in the background and big crowds are browsing gear booths from the outdoors industry’s best.Bands: After long days of play, dance to the expansive instrumental funk of Soulive, the gritty guitar licks of New Orleans’ Cajun rock ace Anders Osborne, and the classic reggae of Toots and the Maytals.Set Break Escape: You’re here to indulge in as much adventure as possible. Friday features a 5K mud run and the start of the two-day Boulder Bash, while Saturday is stacked with the James River Scramble 10K Trail Run, the Urban Assault Mountain Bike Race, an adventure race, and kayak and stand-up paddleboard races for paddlers. Sunday includes a climbing speed comp, a short track bike race, and much more.FIVE MORE…Trail DaysMay 17-19Damascus, Va.Do hikers know how to party? You’ll believe it when you see it at this longstanding celebration of the Appalachian Trail. Thru-hikers reunite to trade trail stories, march in a parade, get goofy in a talent show, soak each other with water guns, check out a variety of gear booths, and sip a little moonshine. It all goes down in Trail Town, U.S.A., where you can access the A.T., Iron Mountain Trail, and the family-friendly Virginia Creeper.traildays.usVirginia Mountain Bike FestivalMay 24-27Stokesville, Va.This fest brings together regional fat tire freaks for a long weekend of hang time at the Stokesville Campground in the George Washington National Forest. During the day there is plenty of epic riding for all levels, including stints on the legendary Southern Traverse, Reddish Knob, and the North River Gorge Trail. At night, you’ll rest your legs over hot meals and cold beers by the campfire.mtntouring.comMountain Sports FestivalMay 24-26Asheville, N.C.This mini Olympics-style fest brings together a series of competitions around Asheville—this year highlighted by trail and road running races, a triathlon, cyclocross, disc golf, ultimate Frisbee, and dodge ball. There’s also plenty of action for kids. Plus, a central area at Carrier Park has gear booths and tunes from regional musicians.mountainsportsfestival.comRiver RocksOctober TBDChattanooga, Tenn.This 10-day fest celebrates the abundance of outdoor opportunities in and around Chattanooga with a range of events, including trail running, mountain biking, and paddling races, climbing compass, a range of outdoor clinics, guided hikes, and mellow beginner-friendly activities. Plus, there’s plenty of family friendly fun by the river, including live music.riverrockschattanooga.com Go Outside FestivalOctober 18-20Roanoke, Va.With main festival grounds located along the Roanoke River at the River’s Edge Sports Complex, the event branches off to include some of the most adventurous terrain in the surrounding valley. In addition to live tunes and local beer, there are guided hikes and bike rides, as well as trail running and cyclocross races, ultimate Frisbee, and paddling in the Roanoke River Gorge.roanokegofest.comCheck out the rest of our Outdoor Festival Guide!last_img read more

first_imgBy Dialogo March 09, 2012 Coca eradication efforts in Bolivia are meeting their objectives in hectares, but as a whole, they are insufficient to reduce high levels of production, according to an annual counternarcotics report published by the U.S. government on March 7. Bolivia officially eradicated more than 10,000 hectares of coca in 2011, “a significant increase” with respect to the 8,200 hectares eradicated in 2010, and President Evo Morales has announced his intention to reduce coca cultivation to 20,000 hectares between now and 2015, the text explains. The text limits itself to stating that production remains “high,” and reports that according to Bolivian official figures, 28.35 tons of cocaine were seized in 2011, and 25 large production laboratories were destroyed, one more than in 2010. Despite this, “the Bolivian public, media, and experts widely perceive” that the challenge posed by illegal terrorist organizations linked to drug trafficking, corruption, and citizen insecurity has increased, according to the report. “When taken as a whole, Bolivia’s eradication and interdiction results have not been sufficient to adequately reverse high coca cultivation and cocaine production levels,” the text explains. The 2012 report encourages Evo Morales’s administration to “provide more of its own resources” to fight drug production and drug trafficking. The United States is decreasing its direct aid to Bolivia, in order to propose training and capacity-building programs for the security forces instead, the report confirms. This annual report marks the orientation of and budget for U.S. counternarcotics aid.last_img read more

first_img Organized crime enterprises The Brazilian government recently expanded its efforts to battle the internal and external trade in human beings for sex and forced labor. The latest development in the anti-human trafficking campaign came on Jan. 29, 2014, when Justice Minister Jose Eduardo Cardozo announced the formation of the National Committee to Combat Trafficking in Persons (Conatrap), a body consisting of 26 members representing both private groups and government agencies. Each representative will serve a term of two years on the committee. Conatrap will include members of the Secretariat of Policies for Women; the National Council for the Rights of Children and Adolescents; the Secretariat of Human Rights, and other social, government and law enforcement agencies and groups, according to the Ministry of Justice website. The committee will be tasked with monitoring the implementation and progress of national anti-human trafficking plans and developing new anti-trafficking programs. The initiative is separate from the Blue Heart Campaign against Human Trafficking, a public awareness effort that Brazil joined in May 2013. Brazilian singer Ivete Sangalo is the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC) Goodwill Ambassador for the campaign. By Dialogo February 12, 2014 Forced labor Human trafficking for sex and forced labor has long been a problem in Brazil. Authorities estimate that the number of Brazilians trapped in some form of modern slavery ranges from 40,000 to 200,000. Many of the victims are women and young girls forced into prostitution within Brazil and internationally. Some of the victims are forced to work in the sex industry in various countries in Europe, authorities said. Some of the victims are forced into prostitution in Japan. Between 2005 and 2011 the Brazilian Foreign Ministry identified more than 300 Brazilian sex trafficking victims abroad, according to government reports. “Sex tourists” from Europe, the U.S. and other countries also exploit women and children in Brazil, particularly in Brazil’s coastal and resort areas, according to published reports. Public awareness campaign achieves results center_img Sex trafficking Many poor Brazilians are also forced to work as trabalho escravo – “slave labor” — on cattle ranches, charcoal production camps, sugar-cane plantations and other rural operations. Brazil is also a destination for men, women, and children from Bolivia, Paraguay, Peru, and China who work in slave-like conditions in garment factories and textile sweatshops in metropolitan centers, according to government reports. The Brazilian government announced its first national anti-human trafficking initiative in 2008. In 2013 the government launched an additional $2.9 million national plan to revise the penal code and to set up new control posts in ten border towns to help control international trafficking. Sixteen anti-trafficking offices have been set up throughout the country, with 400 trained personnel to investigate cases and assist victims. In May 2013, Brazil joined the international Blue Heart Campaign against Human Trafficking, sponsored by the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC), with popular Brazilian singer Ivete Sangalo appointed as the public face of the campaign. Under the slogan, “Freedom can’t be bought. Dignity can’t be sold. Denounce trafficking in persons,” the campaign featured television public service announcements and other advertising methods to heighten public awareness of the crime. Brazilian organized crime groups, such as the First Capital Command (PCC) and the Red Command, both of which traffic large amounts of drugs, are also responsible for much of the forced labor and sex trafficking, said Carlos Mendoza, director of Strategic Projects Consulting, a private security firm in Mexico City. “Without a doubt the PCC, the Red Command, and other gangs are part of the criminal chain of sex trafficking and forced labor,” Mendoza said. “Where there is money, and the need to process or distribute cocaine, there is labor exploitation. Prostitution is a problem in many cities, particularly in Rio de Janeiro, where prostitution attracts many tourists. Organized crime groups force some minors and adult women to work as prostitutes in Rio de Janeiro and other cities.” “The authorities have significant challenges ahead in the fight against human trafficking,” the security analyst said. “Authorities should continue to train security forces and provide shelters for victims of human trafficking.” The public awareness campaign appears to have achieved results. In October, 2013, the Secretariat of Women’s Policies announced that a dedicated government reporting hotline had registered 263 allegations of human trafficking crimes during the first six months of the year, compared to just 17 such reports during the same period in 2012 – a 1,500 percent increase. Of the 263 reports, 170 were reports of international human trafficking, the majority of them involving sex trafficking, the others involving forced labor trafficking. The remaining reports involved human trafficking within Brazil. The 1,500 percent increase in human trafficking reports does not necessarily represent a surge in the actual numbers of human trafficking incidents, but rather an increase in public awareness and easier means for victims or their families to report violations of the anti-trafficking laws, authorities said. Whether the increased public awareness and government pressure has resulted in more criminal convictions for human trafficking is unclear. In 2012 there were six convictions for domestic sex trafficking and two for international sex trafficking in Brazil, according to press reports. However, authorities note that many human trafficking cases may have been prosecuted under other legal statutes, such as laws against pimping or child exploitation. Julieta Pelcastre contributed to this report.last_img read more

first_img ShareShareSharePrintMailGooglePinterestDiggRedditStumbleuponDeliciousBufferTumblr To inspire and stand out, women must step up as authentic leaders and champions of diversity. They need to overcome obstacles and bounce back when they’re knocked down. It’s no easy feat for young female leaders to soldier on at the top; it takes courage, stamina and a sense of purpose, but it’s a journey worth traveling, a glass ceiling worth breaking.A Ripple in the WaterCredit unions have come a long way in mitigating gender inequality by successfully creating cultures of inclusivity. As a matter of fact, credit unions in the U.S. have a higher percentage of female CEOs than other institutions, with 53 percent of all credit union CEOs being women compared to only 4 percent of CEOs at S&P 500 companies, according to Filene. While the movement continues to show promise, young, bright and intuitive women are resolved not only to reach the top but to make a difference once they arrive. continue reading »last_img read more

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first_img Tweet 15 Views   no discussions Sharing is caring! Share Sharecenter_img Share Image via: ncahs.nsw.gov.auChief Dental Officer in the Ministry of Health Dr. Idaline John says although strides have been made in cavity prevention techniques, there is still a challenge in integrating oral health into the general well being of the public.John, who was addressing the official launch of Oral Health Month 2011, says maintaining proper oral hygiene is essential to an individual’s well being.She says oral diseases can seriously affect the health of an individual.“It is important to do everything that we can in order to make our mouth healthy. In order to live healthy lifestyles we must practice proper nutrition. The role of the mouth is vital to our general health and proper nutrition,” he said.According to Dr. John, seeing that the teeth are essential to healthy life, ensuring that they are taken care of is imperative.“Mouth diseases can seriously affect the general health of an individual, particularly those who suffer from diabetes, kidney failure, heart diseases, HIV Aids and other chronic diseases,” she explained.The month of activities is geared at highlighting the various benefits of good dental hygiene practices.Some of the other activities include the handing over of 3,600 dental kits to the Dental services Unit for distribution to 2nd and 3rd grade students in all primary schools on the island.Free dental checkups and distribution of free product samples, health snack competitions, dental radio talks and distribution of products samples to all private dental offices will also form part of the month’s activities.This year’s observance is being held under the theme ‘Healthy Mouth for Healthy Lives’.Dominica Vibes News LocalNews Health officials challenged to integrate oral health into public well being by: – October 4, 2011last_img read more