Near New York City, New York
1884 08 10 19:07 UTC
Magnitude 5.5The History Of New York Earthquakes: Before The Sixth Seal (Rev 6:12)
This severe earthquake affected an area roughly extending along the Atlantic Coast from southern Maine to central Virginia and westward to Cleveland, Ohio. Chimneys were knocked down and walls were cracked in several States, including Connecticut, New Jersey, New York, and Pennsylvania. Many towns from Hartford, Connecticut, to West Chester,Pennsylvania.
Property damage was severe at Amityville and Jamaica, New York, where several chimneys were “overturned” and large cracks formed in walls. Two chimneys were thrown down and bricks were shaken from other chimneys at Stratford (Fairfield County), Conn.; water in the Housatonic River was agitated violently. At Bloomfield, N.J., and Chester, Pa., several chimneys were downed and crockery was broken. Chimneys also were damaged at Mount Vernon, N.Y., and Allentown, Easton, and Philadelphia, Pa. Three shocks occurred, the second of which was most violent. This earthquake also was reported felt in Vermont, Virginia, and Washington, D.C. Several slight aftershocks were reported on August 11.
Iran Spokesman Says ‘There Should Be No Rush’ In Vienna Nuclear Talks
Monday, 31 May 2021 11:56
Iran’s foreign ministry said on Monday that “there should be no rush in Vienna talks”, as the fifth round of multilateral negotiations kicked off to find a compromise between the United States and Iran to revive the 2015 nuclear agreement known as the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action, JCPOA.
In his weekly press briefing on Monday, foreign ministry’s spokesman Saeed Khatibzadeh said that “We are pursuing these talks with the necessary focus and attention to detail.” He added that the talks are not at an impasse and “considerable progress” has been made by the three working groups. “Negotiations have reached a key stage,” he added, but said that important issues remain to be resolved.
Following a decision by the Biden Administration to begin talks with Iran to pave the way for a revival of the JCPOA, negotiations began on April 6, with European powers acting as conduit between Washington and Tehran.
The two main issues are Iran’s return to the limits set by the agreement in terms of its nuclear activities and for Washington to lift sanctions imposed by the Trump administration after it left the JCPOA in May 2018.
It is not clear if the sides will reach an agreement before Iran’s presidential election on June 18, or the talks will go on until a new president takes office in Tehran.
Khatibzadeh also spoke about talks with Saudi Arabia that began in Iraq in April to reduce tensions between the two regional rivals. These talks are continuing in an “appropriate atmosphere”, he said.
By Pejman Amiri– 30th May 2021
On Monday, May 24, the Atomic Energy Organization of Iran (AEOI) head Ali Akbar Salehi acknowledged Tehran still breaches the 2015 Iran nuclear deal, formally known as the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA). “The accumulation of our uranium reserves with 20-percent fossil purity is more than 90kg,” he said.
Three months ago, Tehran signed an accord with UN nuclear watchdog chief Rafael Grossi allowing inspectors of the International Atomic EnergyAgency (IAEA) to continue their activities. According to the accord, Iranian officials were supposed to prevent IAEA from further inspections and collect and wipe all cameras.
In recent weeks, Iran’s pressure campaign had compelled U.S. and European negotiators to attempt to revive the JCPOA before May 21—the accord’s deadline. However, Tehran was eventually forced to extend the accord’s period to another month contrary to claims and threats that had previously raised by the ayatollahs and their lobbies in the U.S. and Europe.
To downplay this withdrawal, Salehi bragged about the continuation of uranium enrichment up to 60-percent purity. According to the JCPOA, Tehran was permitted to enrich uranium up to 3.67 percent and accumulate 202kg alone, which is used for scientific research. However, 60-percent uranium enrichment is unlikely to be used for scientific purposes, and it is considered a critical step toward weaponizing the projects.
“The 60-percent, 20-percent, and five-percent enrichment still continue, and the accumulation of our 20-percent enriched uranium has surpassed 90kg. According to the Majlis [Parliament] law, it should have reached 120kg in a year. Currently and after around four months, it has reached 90kg,” Salehi added.
Moreover, Fars news agency, affiliated with the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC), reported Tehran has stockpiled tons of five-percent enriched uranium and kilos of 60-percent enriched uranium. “The accumulation of our 60-percent and five-percent uranium is over 2.5kg and five tons, respectively. Our nuclear activities still continue,” Fars quoted Salehi as saying on the same day.
Also, during the inauguration ceremony of four petrochemical plans on April 15, President Hassan Rouhani threatened the West with enriching uranium up to weapons-grade levels of 90 percent purity. “Today, we can easily achieve 90-percent enriched uranium if we decided,” he said.
Earlier, on January 7, AEOI spokesperson Behrouz Kamalvandi said, “Our progress is so great that we can easily enrich uranium in various percentages up to 90 percent.”
U.S. and European negotiators intentionally neglect Tehran’s potential for weaponizing its nuclear programs. However, they cannot bury their head in sand, analysts said.
The Iranian opposition National Council of Resistance of Iran (NCRI) provided a roundup over military aspects of the government’s nuclear programs. The NCRI explained how the ayatollahs did their best to acquire five nuclear warheads, which failed thanks to the opposition’s revelation campaign began back in 2002.
Since then, Tehran never put aside its targets, according to dissidents. “When our team was in the midst of the JCPOA negotiations… Not only did we avoid destroying the bridges that we had built, but we also built new bridges that would enable us to go back faster if needed,” Salehi said in an interview with the state-run Channel Four TV on January 22, 2019.
“They would have told us to pour cement into those tubes as well. Now we have the same tubes,” the AEOI head explained how his government circumvented the verification process and breached the JCPOA.
Thousands of children in Gaza suffer from trauma in the aftermath of the 11-day Israeli onslaught on the besieged enclave.
Maram Humaid30 May 2021
As Gaza tries to recover from the deadly 11-day Israeli attack, mothers and mental health workers have raised concerns that the psychological effects of the violence will long linger among the children in the Strip.
Hala Shehada, a 28-year-old mother from northern Gaza’s Beit Hanoun area, told Al Jazeera when the air strikes started hitting Gaza earlier this month she found herself reliving the tragic memories of the 2014 Israeli offensiveas if it were “yesterday”.
“The latest offensive on Gaza took me back to the darkest memories from six years ago when my husband was killed,” said Shehada.
“But this time was even worse. My six-year-old daughter Toleen, who was born five months after her father was killed, was horrified during the offensive.”
Young people were among the most affected groups during the latest Israeli operation on the besieged coastal enclave. Israeli air and artillery attacks killed 253 Palestinians, including 66 children, and left more than 1,900 people wounded.
Two children were among 12 people killed in Israel by rockets fired by Hamas and other armed groups from Gaza during the same period.
The Israeli onslaught also completely destroyed 1,800 residential units in Gaza and partially demolished at least 14,300 others. Tens of thousands of Palestinians have been forced to take shelter in UN-run schools.
Although a ceasefire was reached between Israel and Hamas on May 21, many families continue to suffer. The majority were already traumatised by the 51-day Israeli bombing campaign of Gaza in 2014. That offensive killed more than 2,200 Palestinians, including 500 children.
Shehada was newly married at the time and four months pregnant when her husband, journalist Khaled Hamad, was killed by Israeli attacks on the Al-Shuja’iya neighbourhood on July 20, 2014.
At least 67 Palestinians were killed and hundreds more wounded in a night of intense Israeli attacks that Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas described as a “massacre” at the time.
Shehada described her experience of both wars. “Living in Gaza means having to relive trauma time and time again. War is the ugliest thing in the world. And the real war is the one you have to live with your memories of it.”
The worst part of the latest offensive was “being a mother who should be able to calm her daughter” while not being able to, Shehada said.
“It’s very hard to be a mum in Gaza. I was terrified myself. My daughter’s mental state deteriorated severely during the offensive. She was crying hysterically when she heard the bombs,” said Shehada.
“Even now with the ceasefire, Toleen suffers from nightmares. She wakes up screaming in the middle of the night. I try my best to comfort her, but it kills me to see her like this,” she added, sobbing.
Like many mothers in Gaza, Shehada said both her and her daughter need psychological rehabilitation. “Whatever I managed to overcome in the 2014 offensive has come back to haunt me,” she said.
But without many mental health support services available in Gaza, Shehada said most people in the Strip deal with the trauma alone.
“The suffering of my child makes me wonder how many children in Gaza have been suffering throughout their lifetime from the trauma of wars.”
Reem Jarjour, 30, a social worker and mother of three, told Al Jazeera she has been struggling to stay strong and steady for her kids since the Israeli attacks.
“The children get seriously affected by the mental health of their parents, so my husband and I have been trying hard to hide our trauma in front of them,” Jarjour, who has a six- and a five-year-old, and a five-month-old baby, said.
“I was trying to apply what I learned as a social worker by keeping them busy with activities like drawing and painting,” but it has not worked, she explained.
When Al-Jawhara tower where her father lived was targeted by Israeli attacks on May 11, she “was totally devastated”, she said.
“I was crying and weeping as I thought about my family and where they were going to go,” she recounted. “I wasn’t even able to contact them because of all the chaos at the time.
“But what forced me to stop was seeing my kids watch me as I cried. I felt I needed to be strong for them,” said Jarjour.
Jarjour and her husband decided to sleep in the same room with their kids throughout the offensive to try to comfort and reassure them.
“I never left them alone. But I knew by looking into their eyes that they were afraid. Children know everything happening around them,” she said.
Many mothers in Gaza complain that symptoms of trauma have started to appear in their children as well, Jarjour said.
“My friends were telling me that their kids lost their appetites, while others have problems including speech disorders and bedwetting,” she explained.
“Everyone lost their strength in this war, including the parents. The children were the weakest link. It has been cruel,” said Jarjour, who hopes specialised mental healthcare programmes will soon be launched across Gaza to help support children and their parents.
Trauma ‘not new’
Ghada Redwan, a psychotherapist at the Palestine Trauma Centre UK, said several families in Gaza contacted the centre during the offensive asking for mental health support for their kids.
Redwan offers focus-based training widely used by mental health experts to heal trauma and post-traumatic stress disorder. She provides families and children with techniques to help them change the way they relive ongoing trauma.
“There are a number of cases suffering from severe panic and intense fear. There are also children whose psychological symptoms are showing up in strong emotions and vomiting,” Redwan told Al Jazeera.
She said they advised mothers to try and remain calm in front of their kids, especially during the bombing, something obviously easier said than done.
Redwan said while dealing with trauma in the aftermath of the Israeli attacks was not new in Gaza, the capacity to help was limited while the need for care was huge.
Sharing her own experience as a mother of two girls aged six and three, Redwan told Al Jazeera it was really hard to get past the experience of the offensive.
“I kept my kids away from the news, watching cartoons and doing activities suited to their age. Whenever they were frightened by the bombs, I would hold them to calm them down,” she said.
“It was a daunting task for me and my husband, but we tried. I was slightly lucky to have experience in mental health therapy, which helped me support my kids. But what about the thousands of families who didn’t?”
According to the Norwegian Refugee Council (NRC), 12 of the 66 children killed by Israeli air attacks were participants in its programme aiming to help Gaza’s children overcome trauma from previous wars.
The children who survived the offensive are likely to relive the experience of the bombing nightly, NRC said in a recent statement, adding children in Gaza have five nightmares a week on average.
Hozayfa Yazji, Gaza area manager at the NRC, said the statistics highlight the extent of the distress the latest 11-day attack on Gaza has caused many children.
According to Yazji, the NRC has worked with 118 schools, providing support for 75,000 kids since it launched trauma therapy services for children in Gaza in 2012.
“But we now face a huge gap in psychological support services after the recent aggression,” he said. “The number of children needing psychotherapy is expected to triple.”
Yazji said the grave humanitarian conditions experienced by children in the Gaza Strip exacerbate their mental health conditions, but the military attacks have the worst effect on children.
The 14-year-long Israeli-imposed siege on the coastal enclave, rising poverty levels that stand at 50 percent of the population, an unemployment rate of 55 percent, and a dilapidated healthcare system all make the children’s suffering worse, he said.
Children under 18 years of age constitute 45 percent of the population in the Gaza Strip. “This makes the intervention of psychological first aid programmes an urgent need,” Yazji told Al Jazeera.
He said at least 90 percent of Gaza residents are in need of mental health support and treatment because of the repeated military attacks and devastating humanitarian conditions in the Strip.
“The need is beyond our capacity. We are working with several governmental and international organisations to scale up our programmes,” said Yazji, adding the council hopes to train more people who can provide mental health support across Gaza.
Terrorist groups established joint war room during recent Gaza clashes, editor-in-chief of Hezbollah-aligned newspaper says. “Had Israel expanded the operation, the entire axis of opposition would have joined the fight,” he says.
Hezbollah, Iran’s Revolutionary Guards, and Hamas established a joint war room during the recent fighting in the Gaza Strip, according to the editor-in-chief of a newspaper aligned with the Lebanese terrorist group.
Ibrahim Al Amin, the editor-in-chief- of Al Akhbar, a Beirut daily aligned with the terrorist organization made the remarks in an interview with Hezbollah’s Al-Manar TV station that aired Friday.
He said officers from the three organizations coordinated fighting. “Revolutionary Guards’ Quds Force commander Esmail Ghaani visited the joint war room twice during the escalation. Hezbollah transferred weapons to the Gaza Strip and released senior members of Palestinian factions from the [Gaza] Strip at this time.”
According to Al Amin, the Revolutionary Guards and Hamas provided Palestinian terrorist groups intelligence on IDF movements which he said: “led to the foiling of Israeli actions in the area of the Gaza Strip fence.”
He said, “If Israel had expended the operation, then the entire axis of opposition would have joined the fighting.”
In recent weeks, there have been reports of the Pakistani government working to “reset” its relationship with the United States. Pakistan’s main goal is to build holistic ties with the U.S across trade, investment, and other areas. In reality, Islamabad’s looking to carve a position in Washington on its own terms, rather than be a conduit for America’s interests in Afghanistan (as it had been since the 1980s).
Remarkably, the discussion comes amid Pakistan’s 23rd anniversary as a nuclear weapons power – i.e., the underlying force influencing U.S-Pakistani ties since the 1970s.
Following India’s underground tests in 1974 – i.e., Smiling Buddha – the U.S started tightening measures to both stop ongoing and prevent future proliferation of nuclear technology. Pakistan, which was an active beneficiary of the U.S-led ‘Atoms for Peace’ initiative, was left with the choice of fully abandoning any and all efforts for nuclear weapons – or see itself closed off from Washington’s favour.
Pakistan chose the latter. Yes, the ramifications of its choice did not materialize until 1990 via the Pressler Amendment (which required the White House to bar the sale of conventional arms to Pakistan unless it could certify that Pakistan was not working on nuclear weapons). However, the build-up to that situation started in the mid-1970s, and arguably, had shaped the nature of US-Pakistani ties towards one of general suspicion and pragmatic, security-centric transactions (especially in relation to Afghanistan).
With its “reset” initiative, it seems that Pakistan is trying to steer its relations with the U.S to a time similar to the 1950s and 1960s. Though defence was a major aspect to U.S-Pakistani ties at that time, it involved other aspects that were either aimed at – or at least resulted in – industrial development and, above all, economic growth that mirrored the advancements of other countries in Asia. For some Pakistani decision makers, this period was Pakistan’s ‘golden age’ in terms of its overall potential and regional influence.
However, it would be erroneous to imagine that Pakistan’s stature at that time was unrelated to its ability and intentions to acquire nuclear weapons. Pakistan got the most out of its ties with Washington at a time when it did not desire nuclear weapons. The moment that calculus changed, the relations – and benefits that came through those ties – became less holistic and, arguably, less cordial at the highest levels…
 Peerzada Salman. “New American administration offers chance of reset in Pak-US ties, say experts.” Dawn. 13 January 2021. URL: https://www.dawn.com/news/1601241/new-american-administration-offers-chance-of-reset-in-pak-us-ties-say-experts