News Updates from CLG
21 June 2015

Previous edition: Nine dead in shooting at black church in Charleston, South Carolina – police

WikiLeaks publishes the Saudi Cables | 19 June 2015 | Today, Friday 19th June at 1pm GMT, WikiLeaks began publishing The Saudi Cables: more than half a million cables and other documents from the Saudi Foreign Ministry that contain secret communications from various Saudi Embassies around the world. The publication includes "Top Secret" reports from other Saudi State institutions, including the Ministry of Interior and the Kingdom’s General Intelligence Services…The Saudi Cables are being published in tranches of tens of thousands of documents at a time over the coming weeks. Today WikiLeaks is releasing around 70,000 documents from the trove as the first tranche. [Gee, I sure hope the correspondence between the Saudi sociopaths and the Bush regime reveals the truth behind the 9/11 inside job. –LRP]

Saudi Arabia regime warns citizens against sharing ‘faked documents’ [LOL!] | 21 June 2015 | [US anti-democracy ally] Saudi Arabia on Saturday urged its citizens not to distribute "documents that might be faked" in an apparent response to WikiLeaks’ publication on Friday of more than 60,000 documents it says are secret Saudi diplomatic communications. The statement, made by the Foreign Ministry on its Twitter account, did not directly deny the documents’ authenticity. The released documents, which WikiLeaks said were embassy communications, emails between diplomats and reports from other state bodies, include discussions of Saudi Arabia’s position regarding regional issues and efforts to influence media.

U.S. Marine convicted of murdering Iraqi is sentenced by military jury to ‘time served’ | 19 June 2015 | A U.S. Marine convicted of the 2006 murder of a former Iraqi police officer was sentenced on Thursday to time he had already served in confinement, in a decision by a military jury at Camp Pendleton in California. The jury also gave Marine Sergeant Lawrence Hutchins III a bad-conduct discharge from the Marine Corps…After the killing in Iraq came to light, then-U.S. Navy Secretary Ray Mabus called it a "cold-blooded murder".

Spy court clears path to renewing NSA powers | 19 June 2015 | The secretive federal court that oversees the nation’s spies is laying the groundwork for temporarily reauthorizing the National Security Agency’s (NSA) sweeping collection of U.S. phone records. In an order released on Friday, the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court said that a brief lapse in some Patriot Act provisions would not bar the court from renewing the NSA’s powers. Although the court asserted its ability to renew the controversial NSA program, it has yet to issue an order giving a green light to the spy agency. The court also decided that it doesn’t need the advice of a new expert panel, in its first-ever opportunity to use the friend-of-the-court analysis.

Surveillance court moving toward renewal of NSA spying program for 6 months | 19 June 2015 | The secretive court that oversees US government spying requests has indicated that it will temporarily renew the National Security Agency’s bulk phone records collection authority despite a new reform law that ended the dragnet. The Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court (FISC) — often seen as a compliant "rubber stamp" for US government spying requests — released an order on Friday positing that lapsed spying powers vested in the Patriot Act — which expired without renewal on June 1 — would not restrict the court from reauthorizing for six months the phone metadata collection program.

Radiation detected in groundwater at Exelon’s Peach Bottom nuclear plant | 19 June 2015 | Radiation at levels above industry safety thresholds was detected in groundwater at Peach Bottom Atomic Power Station [Delta, PA], according to an Exelon report to the Nuclear Regulatory Commission. Exelon, the company that owns and operates the power plant, reported that on April 17, a groundwater monitoring well detected tritium — a radioactive isotope — at 37,700 picocuries per liter. Neil Sheehan, Nuclear Regulatory Commission spokesman, said Exelon has to report any level of tritium in excess of 20,000 picocuries per liter, the EPA-endorsed threshold for safe [sic] levels in drinking water.

Govt emails reveal Fukushima radiation could cause thyroid cancer to skyrocket in Americans | 19 June 2015 | Censored and heavily redacted emails from U.S. government scientists and officials reveal that there were major concerns among American policymakers shortly after the devastating Fukushima nuclear power plant disaster in March 2011 that there would be widespread radiological contamination and spikes in thyroid cancer rates…Nuclear science experts were clearly concerned that radioactive fallout from the disaster would not merely spread to the U.S. West Coast but cause a spike in thyroid cancer rates there, as well — though none of those concerns were publicized by reports or expressed publicly by the Obama Administration at the time.

Fukushima operator ‘knew of need to protect against tsunami but did not act’ | 18 June 2015 | The operator of Japan’s ruined Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant was aware of the need to improve the facility’s defences against tsunami more than two years before the March 2011 disaster but failed to take action, according to an internal company document. The revelation casts doubt on claims by Tokyo Electric Power (Tepco) that it had done everything possible to protect the plant, which suffered a triple meltdown after being struck by a towering tsunami. The utility disclosed the document this week during a lawsuit brought by more than 40 Tepco shareholders who are demanding damages totalling 5.5 trillion yen from company executives.