History Expects the Sixth Seal in NYC (Revelation 6:12)

If the past is any indication, New York can be hit by an earthquake, claims John Armbruster, a seismologist at Columbia University’s Lamont-Doherty Earth Observatory.

Based on historical precedent, Armbruster says the New York City metro area is susceptible to an earthquake of at least a magnitude of 5.0 once a century.

According to the New York Daily News, Lynn Skyes, lead author of a recent study by seismologists at the Lamont-Doherty Earth Observatory adds that a magnitude-6 quake hits the area about every 670 years, and magnitude-7 every 3,400 years.

A 5.2-magnitude quake shook New York City in 1737 and another of the same severity hit in 1884.

Tremors were felt from Maine to Virginia.

There are several fault lines in the metro area, including one along Manhattan’s 125th St. – which may have generated two small tremors in 1981 and may have been the source of the major 1737 earthquake, says Armbruster.

There’s another fault line on Dyckman St. and one in Dobbs Ferry in nearby Westchester County.

“The problem here comes from many subtle faults,” explained Skyes after the study was published.

He adds: “We now see there is earthquake activity on them. Each one is small, but when you add them up, they are probably more dangerous than we thought.”

“Considering population density and the condition of the region’s infrastructure and building stock, it is clear that even a moderate earthquake would have considerable consequences in terms of public safety and economic impact,” says the New York City Area Consortium for Earthquake Loss Mitigation on its website.

Armbruster says a 5.0-magnitude earthquake today likely would result in casualties and hundreds of millions of dollars in damage.

“I would expect some people to be killed,” he notes.

The scope and scale of damage would multiply exponentially with each additional tick on the Richter scale. (ANI)

Nuclear Horns Refuse to Give Up Their Nuclear Weapons

Russia, UK, China, US, France won’t sign Treaty on the Prohibition of Nuclear Weapons

World

October 29, 14:14

Russia, China, France, the United Kingdom and the United States believe that the treaty runs counter to the Treaty on the Non-Proliferation of Nuclear Weapons

MOSCOW, October 29. /TASS/. Moscow, London, Beijing, Washington and Paris won’t sign the Treaty on the Prohibition of Nuclear Weapons (TPNW), a joint statement made at the First Committee of the 73rd session of the UN General Assembly said.

We will not support, sign or ratify this Treaty. The TPNW will not be binding on our countries, and we do not accept any claim that it contributes to the development of customary international law; nor does it set any new standards or norms. We call on all countries that are considering supporting the TPNW to reflect seriously on its implications for international peace and security,” the statement published on the Russian Foreign Ministry’s website said.

The sides firmly believe that the best way to “achieve a world without nuclear weapons is through a gradual process that takes into account the international security environment.” “This proven approach to nuclear disarmament has produced tangible results, including deep reductions in the global stockpiles of nuclear weapons,” the statement said.

Russia, China, France, the United Kingdom and the United States believe that the TPNW runs counter to the Treaty on the Non-Proliferation of Nuclear Weapons and bears the risks of undermining it. The five nuclear weapon states say the document ignores the international security context and regional challenges, does nothing to increase trust and transparency between States and will not result in the elimination of a single weapon.

“It is creating divisions across the international non-proliferation and disarmament machinery, which could make further progress on disarmament even more difficult,” the statement said.

Russia, the UK, China, the US and France are committed to the Treaty on the Non-Proliferation of Nuclear Weapons and the organization of negotiations on nuclear disarmament.

“We, the nuclear weapon States recognized by the Treaty on the Non-Proliferation of Nuclear Weapons, reaffirm our commitment to the Treaty, in all its aspects, fifty years since its signature,” the document says. “We remain committed under the Treaty to the pursuit of good faith negotiations on effective measures related to nuclear disarmament, and on a treaty on general and complete disarmament under strict and effective international control.”

The sides support the ultimate goal of a world without nuclear weapons with undiminished security for all. “We are committed to working to make the international environment more conducive to further progress on nuclear disarmament,” the statement says.

Russia, the UK, China, the US and France call on all states to commit to the continued success of the Non-Proliferation Treaty: “to ensure compliance, to promote universalisation, to ensure the highest standards of non-proliferation, and to respond to ongoing and emerging proliferation challenges, wherever they occur. In this context our five countries reiterate our commitment to continue our individual and collective efforts within the NPT framework to advance nuclear disarmament goals and objectives,” the document says.

The Treaty on the Prohibition of Nuclear Weapons (TPNW) was adopted in July 2017. The document can only enter into force when 50 states ratify it. A total of 69 countries have signed the treaty and 19 of them have ratified it

Closing Indian Point is Too Late (Revelation 6:12)

image-1351Closing Indian Point is good

Posted October 14, 2018

To the editor:

(re: “Reforming energy vision,” Sept. 27)

In her Sept. 27 letter, Phoebe O’Connor claims that closing the Indian Point nuclear power plant would change our ability to provide reliable, clean power to downstate New York. But this claim is full of holes.

Let’s start with some actual numbers about power supply and demand. The figures supplied by the New York Independent System Operator, the non-profit which runs New York’s electrical grid, show that we’ll have enough energy thanks to reduced demand and increased renewable capacity, to replace Indian Point.

First, a December report by NYISO found that we already have replacement supplies for 1,900 out of Indian Point’s 2,000-megawatt output, and that further buildout of renewables and efficiency measures could meet the remaining 100-megawatt “compensatory need.” Several months later, NYISO released its April Gold Book, with updated numbers showing that continuing reductions in demand mean that there is now, officially, no projected power gap in connection with the closure of Indian Point.

To illustrate, NYISO’s Gold Book forecast for “peak” demand in downstate New York during Summer 2020 plummeted by 380 megawatts, compared to the forecast for that same 2020 time period just one year earlier. Plus, we’re not nearly done saving energy: The state’s commitment to ramp up energy efficiency-related demand reductions to 3 percent a year will strengthen the trends reported above, which are mirrored in countless other states.

And let’s not forget just how much Indian Point puts New Yorkers at risk. Over the past four years, Indian Point repeatedly suffered major malfunctions — pump and power failures, a transformer explosion, damaged O-rings, radiation leaks, a fire and an oil spill. Twice, this 45-year-old plant’s operations discovered a record number of failures in the bolts holding the inner walls of the reactors together.

Indian Point is just too old and too dangerous, and we have plenty of safe, sustainable energy to replace it. That’s why Indian Point’s stipulated closure in 2021 — under the agreement between its operator Entergy, the State of New York, and Riverkeeper, is the right move.

Cliff Weathers

The author is communications director for Riverkeepe

More Threats Outside the Temple Walls (Revelation 11:2)

Image result for hamasIsrael Has Reached ‘A Situation of No Choice’ With Hamas, Defense Chief Says

Avigdor Lieberman ties Gaza sanctions to border protests, saying he is ‘trying to create a direct link between the level of violence and economic activity’

Defense Minister Avigdor Lieberman said Monday that he doesn’t believe in reaching an agreement with Hamas. “It didn’t work, it doesn’t work and it will not work in the future,” he told the Foreign Affairs and Defense Committee.

“The State of Israel doesn’t have the luxury to manage ‘we have a choice’  wars and operations, but we have reached a situation of no choice. We have reached a point where decisions must be made,” he added.

It was also reported Monday that a delegation of Egyptian intelligence officials arrived in the Gaza Strip to continue meeting with Hamas in order to attain a long-term calm in the region.

“There is no popular protest,” Lieberman said. “There is the exacting of institutional violence by Hamas. They come in organized shuttles, with Hamas paying thousands of shekels for every bus. They pay 3,000 shekels ($820) for every man killed, 500 shekels for every severe injury and 250 shekels for every medium injury and below. This is institutionalized action.”

Thus, Lieberman said, “There is a new tool here, a new apparatus. They’re calling it the March of Return and that’s how they exact violence.”

The defense minister also addressed the sanctions leveled on the Strip by Israel following the protests. “We have Kerem Shalom [crossing] and we’re using it. I am trying to create a direct link between the level of violence and economic activity. There is quiet and calm – there are economic benefits. There is violence – than there’ll be damage to the ecomony and employment.”

Lieberman also said Hamas encourages the murder of Jews in the West Bank. “Every Jew that’s murdered in Samaria, Hamas commends it and hails to continue. In the settlement [currently being discussed] they will be allowed to incite and praise the murder of Jews, to manufacture weapons and dig tunnels. They don’t need to reach an agreement on the issue of [Israeli] captives and missing persons – and we will supply them with everything.”

On Sunday, Lieberman ordered the Kerem Shalom and Erez crossings be opened to the Strip, as well as the resumption of fuel transfers.

According to Lieberman, the decision came following a security assessment with representatives of the Israeli army, the Coordinator of Government Activities in the Territories and the Shin Bet security service following “Hamas’ efforts to contain violent incidents at the end of last week.”

Security establishment officials said Friday’s protest has been the most subdued in months. Hamas operatives markedly prevented people from crossing the fence and acting in ways which would provoke an escalation.

On Sunday, it was posited that defense officials are expected to take advantage of the relatively subdued nature of Palestinian protests on Friday to try and resume the supply of fuel to the enclave.

When asked by Haaretz about the discrepancy between his bureau’s statement that he supports the eviction of the West Bank Bedouin village Khan al-Ahmar, and the fact he voted to postpone it, Lieberman said: “What is interesting is that no one dealt with this issue until I assumed office, no one dealt with it,” referring to unnamed “hitchhikers” who straddle the issue to score political points.

“I am also trying to do it and to do it right. Once the cabinet approved the eviction of Khan al-Ahmar it’s an irreversible process. When will it be? We’re not going to announce it in the press,” Lieberman said, adding he believes “cabinet unity” on the issue is important.

Referring to Bennett’s vote against postponing the evacuation and his criticism of Lieberman, the defense minister said: “Until the end of Shabbat he [Bennett] had no idea of the eviction.” Lieberman added that “He doesn’t know where it is, he has no idea and he’s never dealt with it. Sadly, all these hitchhikers are only getting in the way.”

In response to Lieberman’s remarks, Bennett said he remembers the area of Khan al-Ahmar well from night navigations in the Sayeret [The General Staff Reconnaissance Unit], “In the days when Israel had a right-wing defense minister who was true to his word.”

On Sunday, the Ministerial Committee for Legislation approved a bill that would block Hamas prisoners from receiving visits from Red Cross representatives or family members.

The terror group refuses to allow reciprocal visits by humanitarian organizations to the Israelis being held in Gaza.

Another Nuclear Site in Iran

ARMS CONTROL TODAY

November 2018

By Kelsey Davenport

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu revealed what he described as a secret nuclear warehouse in Iran and publicly called for International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) inspectors to visit the site, putting pressure on the international watchdog agency that could hamper its independence.

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, addressing the United Nations, uses a visual aid to highlight his allegations about a “secret atomic warehouse” in Tehran. His comments were misleading, according to two U.S. intelligence officials cited by Reuters. (Photo: Stephanie Keith/Getty Images)

Netanyahu’s allegations come as the United States is pressuring countries to support its sanctions on Iran and as the remaining P4+1 parties (China, France, Germany, Russia, and the United Kingdom) to the July 2015 nuclear deal with Tehran are taking steps to work around the coercive U.S. measures and preserve the accord. (See ACT, October 2018.)

Speaking at the UN General Assembly on Sept. 27, Netanyahu described the facility in central Tehran as a “secret atomic warehouse for storing massive amounts of equipment and material from Iran’s secret nuclear weapons program.” Netanyahu called on IAEA Director-General Yukiya Amano to “do the right thing” and inspect the warehouse “immediately” before Iran finished clearing it out.

Amano pushed back in an Oct. 2 statement, saying that the agency does not take any information at “face value.” Although Amano did not mention Netanyahu directly, he said that all material, including that received from third parties, is subject to a rigorous and independent assessment. Further, Amano said that IAEA nuclear verification work “must always be impartial, factual, and professional” and that the agency’s independence is “of paramount importance.”

Netanyahu’s remarks garnered headlines around the world, but it remains unclear whether the facility is of interest to the IAEA. Still, Netanyahu’s comments could complicate work by the agency. IAEA inspectors should visit the facility if their assessment determines that an inspection is warranted. Yet, if inspectors visit the site now, it may appear as if the IAEA is acting at Israel’s behest, which would jeopardize the agency’s credibility and independence.

Brandishing a picture of the facility, Netanyahu charged that Iran removed 15 kilograms of radioactive material from the warehouse in August. It is not clear if Netanyahu was referring to uranium, plutonium, or another radioactive material. Possession of undeclared uranium or plutonium would violate Iran’s safeguards agreement and the multilateral nuclear deal known as the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action, but radioactive materials used for a variety of purposes, including medical and industrial activities, are not subject to the same restrictions.

U.S. intelligence officials also disputed Netanyahu’s description of the facility and said his comments were misleading. One intelligence official quoted by Reuters on Sept. 27 said that the facility has been known to the U.S. intelligence community for some time and is full of documents, not nuclear equipment. The officials said that “so far as anyone knows, there is nothing in it that would allow Iran to break out” of the nuclear deal any faster. Iranian officials immediately denounced Netanyahu’s accusation as a farce, and Iranian Foreign Minister Javad Zarif said on Sept. 30 that Netanyahu is “desperately seeking to find a pretext to create hype” about Iran’s nuclear program.

This is the second time Netanyahu has publicly revealed what he describes as secret information tied to Iran’s nuclear weapons program. In February 2018, Israel stole archival material from a facility in Iran that appears to document activities related to the country’s nuclear weapons development and shared the information with several states and the IAEA.

Netanyahu publicly revealed that the raid took place and released some details from the stolen material at a press conference in April, just weeks before U.S. President Donald Trump’s decision to withdraw from the nuclear agreement and reimpose sanctions, despite Iran’s compliance with the provisions of the deal. Israel is one of the few states that encouraged Trump to withdraw from the accord.

In his Sept. 27 speech, Netanyahu claimed that the IAEA “has still not taken any action” following up on the archival material and “has not demanded to inspect a single new site.”

The information shared publicly confirms what the IAEA and the U.S. intelligence community already concluded, that Iran had an organized illicit nuclear weapons program that it abandoned in 2003, although some activities continued. The IAEA reported in 2015 that it had no evidence of nuclear activities with military dimensions after 2009.

Netanyahu’s allegation that the IAEA has done nothing appears to be at odds with the U.S. assessment.

During the IAEA Board of Governors meeting on Sept. 11–14, Nicole Shampaine, an official at the U.S. mission in Vienna, told the board that the United States supports the agency’s “careful assessment of the newly acquired archive materials.” She said any “concern” related to undeclared nuclear activities or material must be pursued and the United States has “full confidence” in the IAEA and its inspectors “to do so appropriately.”

If any of the archival material indicated that Iran pursued illicit nuclear activities after the nuclear deal was concluded, it is likely that the Trump administration would have accused Iran of violating the agreement and its safeguards obligations under the nuclear Nonproliferation Treaty (NPT), given Trump’s animosity toward the accord.

The U.S. State Department released a report in April that concluded Iran is in compliance with its NPT obligations and, through 2017, with the Iran nuclear deal.

Posted: November 1, 2018