The USS The Sullivans got more than it expected during a test launch of a SM-2 “Standard” missile…The DDG-68 ship was sailing off the coast of Virginia performing when the missile was boosted out of the Arleigh Burke Class Destroyer’s Vertical Launch System cell and the SM-2 detonated in spectacular fashion…
Here is the official Navy statement:
On July 18 at approximately 9 a.m. (EDT) a Standard Missile-2 (SM-2) test missile exploded after suffering a malfunction as it was fired from the guided-missile destroyer USS The Sullivans (DDG 68) during a planned missile exercise off the coast of Virginia. There were no injuries and only minor damage to the port side of the ship resulting from missile debris. The ship returned to Naval Station Norfolk for assessment. An investigation into the malfunction has been ordered and is being conducted by the Navy’s Program Executive Office for Integrated Warfare Systems, which is part of Naval Sea Systems Command. It is too early to determine what, if any, effect this will have on the ship’s schedule.
I like the understated style of that last sentence. Wonder what they’d say if it took out the aft end of the ship?
A German man who tested out the QR code on a bottle of Heinz ketchup offering a defunct promotion says the code now leads to a porn site.
Daniel Korell wrote to the ketchup firm on Facebook, saying the Heinz Hot Ketchup “is probably not for minors” after he scanned the QR code on his bottle expecting to be taken to a label design contest website and was instead taken to a porn site.
Korell wrote he tried the code with “several phones” and tried manually entering the web address, but he received the same result each time.
Heinz apologized to Korell, saying the company’s ownership of the website expired after the 2012-2014 contest came to a close.
“Even if the bottle was a leftover, it’s still in lots of households,” Korell said in a comment. “It’s incomprehensible that you didn’t reserve the domain for one or two years…”
The chuckle from my side is how many “modern” corporations still haven’t a clue about life on the Web.
The Japanese government has not declared about 640 kg of unused plutonium in its annual report for the International Atomic Energy Agency in 2012 and 2013, an amount enough to make 80 nuclear bombs…
Japan claims to own 44 tons of plutonium, while the actual amount is 45 tons, said Japan’s Kyodo News Agency. The unreported plutonium is part of the plutonium-uranium mixed oxide (MOX) fuel placed at an offline reactor in a nuclear plant in Saga Prefecture, southern Japan.
The MOX fuel was loaded in March 2011, shortly before the Fukushima Nuclear Crisis happened later that month. Until two years later, the unused fuel was taken out from the reactor which remained offline.
An official from Japan Atomic Energy Commission argued that the plutonium is considered being used and hence exempt from reporting to the IAEA.
But plenty of experts both abroad and at home criticized the action of the Japanese government for failing to recognize the seriousness of the problem…”From the safeguards point of view this material is still un- irradiated fresh MOX fuel regardless of its location,” former IAEA Deputy Director General Olli Heinonen said. Thus the unreported plutonium could be diverted to as many as 80 nuclear bombs.
Japan keeps the largest amount of plutonium among non-nuclear nations. The country used it for power generation in the past, but after the 2011 disaster at Fukushima, Japan’s nuclear reactors remain idle.
The big amounts of plutonium are causing regional worries over Japan’s motives, as well as global concerns over the security of these nuclear fuel reserves.
This ain’t an “oops!” moment. Reflect for a minute on what reasons there might be for Japan to hide a ton of plutonium. It’s not like they’re paying taxes or licensing fees on the stuff.
It isn’t likely Japan would sell plutonium to some other nation – especially when the first use that comes to mind is production of nuclear bombs or warheads, dirty or otherwise. Just when the Abe government is trying to unwrite the nation’s pacifist constitution.
Like – “Don’t put me in that freezer!”
The Punjab High Court in India has been asked to determine whether a Hindu spiritual leader is dead or in a deep state of meditation.
His Holiness Shri Ashutosh Maharaj, one of the wealthiest gurus in the country, reportedly died of a heart attack in January. His followers disagree, claiming that Maharaj has gone into deep Samadhi or meditation. His disciples have put his body in a freezer at his Ashram for preservation until he wakes.
His estate will remain under the control of the Ashram until he is declared dead. His family has called on an Indian high court to determine whether Muharaj is actually dead or reached the next level of transcendence.
“Maharaj has been in deep meditation. He has spent many years meditating in sub-zero temperatures in the Himalayas, there is nothing unusual in it. He will return to life as soon as he feels and we will ensure his body is preserved until then,” said one of the guru’s aides.
Dilip Jha, Muharaj’s son, claims his father’s followers are only saying he is alive so they can continue to have access to his fortune.
Probably could get away with the same hustle in most theocracies. Like Mississippi.
Pay attention in class and follow instructions
A group of Sunni militants attending a suicide bombing training class at a camp north of Baghdad were killed on Monday when their commander unwittingly conducted a demonstration with a belt that was packed with explosives…
The militants belonged to a group known as the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria, or ISIS, which is fighting the Shiite-dominated army of the Iraqi government, mostly in Anbar Province. But they are also linked to bomb attacks elsewhere and other fighting that has thrown Iraq deeper into sectarian violence.
Twenty-two ISIS members were killed, and 15 were wounded, in the explosion at the camp, which is in a farming area in the northeastern province of Samara…Eight militants were arrested when they tried to escape…
The militant who was conducting the training was not identified by name, but he was described by an Iraqi Army officer as a prolific recruiter who was “able to kill the bad guys for once…”
A State Department official, Brett McGurk, said that ISIS had about 2,000 fighters in Iraq, and that its longer-term objective is to establish a base of operations in Baghdad, led by Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi, who has been officially designated as a global terrorist by the State Department.
The dude qualifies all the way round. Especially since he took out 22 candidates with himself, wounded 15 more and survivors were arrested. Phew.
The National Security Agency is authorized to spy on the citizens of America’s closest allies, including Britain, even though those English-speaking countries have long had an official non-spying pact, according to a newly disclosed memorandum.
The classified N.S.A. document, which appears to be a draft and is dated January 2005, states that under specific circumstances, the American intelligence agency may spy on citizens of Britain without that country’s consent or knowledge. The memo, provided by the former N.S.A. contractor Edward J. Snowden, is labeled secret and “NOFORN,” indicating that it may not be shared with any foreign country…
The memo was provided by Mr. Snowden to The Guardian, which shared it with The New York Times. The N.S.A. also declined to say whether the memorandum merely codified longstanding American practice or was breaking new ground…blah, blah, blah, the agency said in a written reply to questions…
One paragraph, marked secret, appears to suggest that the preferred option is to gain permission from the country whose citizens are to be spied upon. But the very next paragraph, marked secret and NOFORN, indicates that the N.S.A. can go it alone if permission is not forthcoming — or if United States chooses not to ask.
Sounds like the country we’ve all come to know and revere for its respect for constitutional democracy and citizens’ right to privacy. Just not in the last five or six decades.
Candidate for head of Homeland Security
Residents of Old Saybrook received quite a shock after hearing the area was under a terrorist attack over the Connecticut town’s public address system on Sunday afternoon.
The Office of Emergency Management said a dispatcher accidentally made a series of errors, which caused the message to play over speakers placed around town. The message also warned residents to seek shelter…
Reverse 911 calls were made through the Everbridge Emergency Notification System apologizing for the error and saying in part, “There is no emergency, and there is no homeland security crisis in or near the Town of Old Saybrook.”
The Office of Emergency Management said it takes the matter very seriously and an internal investigation has begun into that dispatcher’s actions.
The possibility for disruptive errors like this one don’t exist – of course – where the public and politicians alike have decided not to rule their lives by fear and trepidation.
Hooters ball-girl picks up ball still in play and tosses it to the crowd. Embarrassment follows.