Monthly Archives: May 2012

Terrifying article in the NYT on Libyan lawlessness

http://www.nytimes.com/2012/05/13/magazine/in-libya-the-captors-have-become-the-captive.html?pagewanted=2&_r=2&smid=tw-share

Libya has no army. It has no government. These things exist on paper, but in practice, Libya has yet to recover from the long maelstrom of Qaddafi’s rule. The country’s oil is being pumped again, but there are still no lawmakers, no provincial governors, no unions and almost no police. Streetlights in Tripoli blink red and green and are universally ignored. Residents cart their garbage to Qaddafi’s ruined stronghold, Bab al-Aziziya, and dump it on piles that have grown mountainous, their stench overpowering. Even such basic issues as property ownership are in a state of profound confusion. Qaddafi nationalized much of the private property in Libya starting in 1978, and now the old owners, some of them returning after decades abroad, are clamoring for the apartments and villas and factories that belonged to their grandparents. I met Libyans brandishing faded documents in Turkish and Italian, threatening to take up arms if their ancestral tracts of land were not returned.

What Libya does have is militias, more than 60 of them, manned by rebels who had little or no military or police training when the revolution broke out less than 15 months ago. They prefer to be calledkatibas, or brigades, and their members are universally known asthuwar, or revolutionaries. Each brigade exercises unfettered authority over its turf, with “revolutionary legitimacy” as its only warrant. 

Department of Wildlife Services “Accidentally” Kills 50,000 Animals over 10 years

http://www.sacbee.com/2012/04/28/4450678/the-killing-agency-wildlife-services.html

The Bee’s findings include:

• With steel traps, wire snares and poison, agency employees have accidentally killed more than 50,000 animals since 2000 that were not problems, including federally protected golden and bald eagles; more than 1,100 dogs, including family pets; and several species considered rare or imperiled by wildlife biologists.

• Since 1987, at least 18 employees and several members of the public have been exposed to cyanide when they triggered spring-loaded cartridges laced with poison meant to kill coyotes. They survived – but 10 people have died and many others have been injured in crashes during agency aerial gunning operations over the same time period.

• A growing body of science has found the agency’s war against predators, waged to protect livestock and big game, is altering ecosystems in ways that diminish fbiodiversity, degrade habitat and invite disease.

It seems ludicrous to think that after completely destroying the environment this agency continues to smash any environmental phenomenon that doesn’t meet its criteria of existence.

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