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rpannier's Journal
rpannier's Journal
March 30, 2021

Former Tokyo Olympic Officials described by Bugs Bunny

From Japan Times:
Former Tokyo Olympics chief Yoshiro Mori, who resigned last month amid backlash over sexist remarks toward women, has again opened himself up for criticism after saying Friday a female political staffer was “too old to call a woman.”

Mori stepped down as head of the Tokyo Olympics organizing committee after coming under fire at home and abroad for saying meetings with women tend to “drag on” because they talk too much.


Tokyo Games creative head quits over 'Olympig' insult

Tokyo Olympics' creative chief has resigned after suggesting that a female comedian could appear as an "Olympig", in the latest setback for the Games.

Hiroshi Sasaki said plus-size entertainer Naomi Watanabe could wear pig ears at the opening ceremony.

He later apologised and admitted his remarks were "a huge insult" to her. Ms Watanabe has yet to respond.

March 19, 2021

Wax Statue of Trump Removed

A wax replica of former President Donald Trump currently being housed at Louis Tussaud’s Waxworks in San Antonio had to be moved to storage because visitors kept punching it in the face, the San Antonio Express reports.



March 17, 2021

Kentucky lawmakers advance bipartisan election reform bill

FRANKFORT, Ky. (AP) — In sharp contrast to bitter partisan battles being waged elsewhere over election laws, Republicans and Democrats in Kentucky were on the verge Tuesday of joining forces to loosen the state's voting access laws to make limited early voting a fixture.

A measure overwhelmingly approved Tuesday in the state Senate would give Kentucky voters three days of no-excuse, early in-person voting — including a Saturday — before Election Day. But it backed off from the temporary, pandemic-related accommodations made last year that allowed widespread mail-in absentee balloting.


The legislation passed the Senate by a 33-3 margin, sending it back to the House to consider changes made to it. Republicans dominate both chambers, but Senate Democrats joined in voting for the bill. If it clears the legislature, it would be sent to Democratic Gov. Andy Beshear.


Kentucky is accustomed to bare-knuckled partisan fights, but its top elections official noted the mild tone in the state, especially compared to the bitter debates on election law changes in other states. It echoed the tone set before last year's primaries, when Beshear and Republican Secretary of State Michael Adams hashed out emergency voting measures during the pandemic that helped Kentucky largely avoid the long lines and other problems encountered elsewhere.


March 16, 2021

Myanmar factories run by Fast Retailing partner set ablaze

Singapore – Two factories run by a Fast Retailing Co. partner in Yangon, Myanmar, were set ablaze on the weekend, the operator of the fast-fashion Uniqlo and GU brands said Tuesday.

The extent of the damage caused to the plants in Myanmar’s largest city on Sunday is not yet known, the company said, adding it is confirming the situation in regard to the fires.

On Sunday, China-linked factories in Yangon were also attacked, leaving many people injured, according to the Chinese Embassy in Myanmar.


March 16, 2021

Flags of American Seditious Losers

March 11, 2021

Brawling Myanmar monks show Buddhist nationalists backing coup


Monks were among a group that used slingshots to injure anti-coup protesters who went to Yangon’s Bingalar Monastery on Feb. 18 in pursuit of men dressed in robes who had earlier beaten up a demonstrator. The mob also used large sticks to smash cars blocking traffic nearby.

The monks and their supporters “couldn’t control their temper,” said Kaythara, the abbot of the nationalist Buddhist group Wirawintha, who knows the attackers but wasn’t present at the melee. He defended the military, known as the Tatmadaw, repeating its theory that now now-detained civilian leader Aung San Suu Kyi’s party stole the November election through mass voter fraud.


The violent incident shows a strain of religious nationalism that Myanmar’s generals are tapping into as they seek to gain legitimacy and quell post-coup demonstrations that have seen more than 60 people killed. That risks reinvigorating a movement with a history of sectarian violence in a nation already split between the military supporters and opponents.


Pro-democracy monks were instrumental during anti-junta protests in the bloody 1988 uprising, and also helped lead 2007 demonstrations dubbed the Saffron Revolution for the color of their robes. Some of them have been at the forefront of the recent protests, leading demonstrators in major cities and holding posters calling for the immediate release of Suu Kyi and other detainees.


March 9, 2021

Detained Russian Protester Uses Current Time Video To Win Legal Battle (Video Link)


Vadim Zabolotskikh was one of thousands of Russians detained during recent demonstrations in support of jailed Kremlin critic Aleksei Navalny. But Zabolotskikh succeeded in having his case dropped when he used video of the protests to prove that his police record contained falsehoods.
March 9, 2021

Civilians of a town, Wiemar on a forced visit to the Buchenwald concentration cam...HD Stock Footage

Though short... some parts are not for the weak of stomach

March 8, 2021

Five Stories from Europe You May Have Missed

1. His Great-Grandfather Was Executed By Stalin's Secret Police. Now He's Being Sued.

MOSCOW -- Denis Karagodin has spent almost a decade compiling a meticulous record of evidence about the murder of his great-grandfather by Soviet dictator Josef Stalin's secret police, running a website that lists, by name, every individual he deems complicit.

The Siberia-based designer has been tipped for prestigious human rights prizes, and leading Western publications have spotlighted his work and the website he runs.

The people he ties to the killing of Stepan Karagodin, a peasant swept up in Stalin's Great Terror in the 1930s, have passed away. But their relatives are now making sure Karagodin's accusations don't go unchallenged.


It's unclear what specific charges Karagodin faces, but his work has courted controversy from the outset. The 38-year-old began the research in 2012, publishing on his website each document and every shred of evidence he could find about the case. The result is a detailed account of the fate of his great-grandfather, a Cossack farmer and father of nine who was executed on the trumped-up accusation that he was a Japanese spy.


2.Switzerland to ban wearing of burqa and niqab in public places

Switzerland will follow France, Belgium and Austria after narrowly voting in a referendum to ban women from wearing the burqa or niqab in public spaces.

Just over 51% of Swiss voters cast their ballots in favour of the initiative to ban people from covering their face completely on the street, in shops and restaurants.

Full facial veils will still be allowed to be worn inside places of prayer and for “native customs”, such as carnival.

Face coverings worn for health and safety reasons are also exempt from the ban, meaning face masks worn because of the Covid-19 pandemic will not be affected by the new law.


3. Russian Energy Company Says Siberia Fuel Leak Poses No Harm To Locals

A pipeline rupture that caused fuel to spill into and catch fire on the Ob River in western Siberia poses "no risk to the population and environment," according to a spokesperson for SiburTyumenGas.

The spokesperson told Interfax on March 6 that the rupture of the underwater pipeline in the Khanty-Mansi Autonomous Okrug sent "light hydrocarbons" -- highly flammable fuels that include propane and butane -- into the river.

The fuel then ignited on the surface and was burning over an area of about 1,000 square meters.


In February, a court in Siberia ordered the Russian metallurgical giant Norilsk Nickel to pay more than 146 billion rubles ($1.9 billion) for a spill that dumped thousands of tons of diesel fuel into the Russian Arctic last year.


4. Hospitals forced to repay millions after falsely claiming their maternity units were safe

NHS hospitals have been forced to pay millions of pounds to regulators after wrongly claiming their maternity units were among the safest in the country.

Seven NHS trusts, including some now at the centre of major care scandals, will have to pay back a total of £8.5m after self-assessments of their maternity services were found to be false.

Families whose babies died as a result of avoidable errors at some of the hospitals told The Independent it was further evidence of poor governance and management failings.

NHS Resolution, which acts as the health service’s insurer for clinical negligence, launched the maternity incentive scheme in 2018 in an effort to focus action on 10 key safety areas in maternity.


5. Sinkholes open up in Croatia after December's deadly earthquake

Sinkholes have been appearing across central Croatia after December's deadly earthquake.

A number of craters have been found in a sparsely-inhabited region, around 40 kilometres southwest of the capital, Zagreb.


"These are so-called dropout sinkholes," said geologist Josip Terzic of the Croatian Geological Survey.

"They appeared because of the specific geological composition of this area, as the soil rests on limestone rocks heavily saturated with groundwater."

March 6, 2021

'Shot Like Partridges': The Crushing Of The Kronstadt Uprising (9 b/w photos)


A century ago, Lenin's communists turned their guns on rebelling sailors once hailed as the "pride and glory" of the Bolshevik Revolution.

Communist fighters advance across the frozen Gulf of Finland toward the port city of Kronstadt in March 1921.

Sailors of Kronstadt during the revolutionary unrest of 1917 pose with a flag vowing "Death to the bourgeoisie."

When Kronstadt sailors were allowed to return to their villages on leave, they were confronted with the contrast between what Lenin's revolutionary socialism had promised and the horrors it delivered.

Starving villagers in the Volga region in 1920. A year earlier, Lenin had mandated the seizure of food from peasants to feed his army and supply Russian cities as part of a policy of "war communism."

The list of demands issued from the Kronstadt rebels in the spring of 1921

On February 28, as thousands of workers in Petrograd were on strike, the Kronstadt sailors piled further pressure on the ruling Bolsheviks by issuing a list of demands, including the restoration of freedom of speech -- though only for their fellow radical leftists -- and for democratic elections.

Kronstadt marines during the 1921 uprising

The Bolshevik response was to issue the sailors at Kronstadt a bloodcurdling ultimatum, threatening that if they did not surrender immediately, the rebels would be "shot like partridges."

Bolshevik military commanders "discuss the suppression of the Kronstadt rebellion." A map of the island fortress can be seen in the background.

With spring approaching, the Bolshevik leadership worried that the ice around Kronstadt would melt. That would open the island fortress to resupply by sea and make the anti-communist stronghold virtually impossible to capture.

Red Army airplanes are lined up on the frozen Gulf of Finland ahead of the attacks on Kronstadt. Poor weather hampered the use of the aircraft, and their bombing runs were largely ineffective.

Bolshevik fighters, some dressed in white cloaks for camouflage, arrive on the outskirts of Kronstadt.

A Kronstadt sailor is questioned by Bolsheviks after the crushing of the rebellion.

Many of the commanders of the communist fighters would eventually suffer the same fate as the sailors. Of the four Bolsheviks who led the suppression of Kronstadt, three were later executed during Stalin's "purges." The fourth, Leon Trotsky, was killed in exile by a Stalinist assassin armed with an ice pick.

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