Profile cover photo
Profile photo
DIMO's posts

Post has attachment
VANGA WAS PULLING ATTENTION TO THE DESTINED 2017 AND THE IMPORTANT 100 YEARS OF ANGELIC MYSTERY WARNING OF FATIMA THAT WAS NOT PC or sci-fi film-witnessed by ten of thousands people on single days on 13-th of months...IT WAS NOT A UFO DENIAL
Pope Francis: 'Nonviolence: A Style of Politics for Peace'
Pope Francis is calling on political and religious leaders, on the heads of international institutions, on business and media executives and on all men and women of goodwill to become instruments of reconciliation and adopt nonviolence as a style of politics for peace.

The Pope’s appeal comes in the fiftieth papal Message for the World Day of Peace, marked on December 1st . The Message was released in the Vatican on Monday.

In his long and multi-facted message the Pope remarks on the fact that we find ourselves “engaged in a horrifying world war fought peacemeal”, and that “violence is not the cure for our broken world.”

Please find below the full text of Pope Francis’s message for the World Day of Peace:

"Nonviolence: A Style of Politics for Peace"

1. At the beginning of this New Year, I offer heartfelt wishes of peace to the world’s peoples and nations, to heads of state and government, and to religious, civic and community leaders. I wish peace to every man, woman and child, and I pray that the image and likeness of God in each person will enable us to acknowledge one another as sacred gifts endowed with immense dignity. Especially in situations of conflict, let us respect this, our “deepest dignity”, and make active nonviolence our way of life.

This is the fiftieth Message for the World Day of Peace. In the first, Blessed Pope Paul VI addressed all peoples, not simply Catholics, with utter clarity. “Peace is the only true direction of human progress – and not the tensions caused by ambitious nationalisms, nor conquests by violence, nor repressions which serve as mainstay for a false civil order”. He warned of “the danger of believing that international controversies cannot be resolved by the ways of reason, that is, by negotiations founded on law, justice, and equity, but only by means of deterrent and murderous forces.” Instead, citing the encyclical Pacem in Terris of his predecessor Saint John XXIII, he extolled “the sense and love of peace founded upon truth, justice, freedom and love”. In the intervening fifty years, these words have lost none of their significance or urgency.

On this occasion, I would like to reflect on nonviolence as a style of politics for peace. I ask God to help all of us to cultivate nonviolence in our most personal thoughts and values. May charity and nonviolence govern how we treat each other as individuals, within society and in international life. When victims of violence are able to resist the temptation to retaliate, they become the most credible promotors of nonviolent peacemaking. In the most local and ordinary situations and in the international order, may nonviolence become the hallmark of our decisions, our relationships and our actions, and indeed of political life in all its forms.

A broken world

2. While the last century knew the devastation of two deadly World Wars, the threat of nuclear war and a great number of other conflicts, today, sadly, we find ourselves engaged in a horrifying world war fought piecemeal. It is not easy to know if our world is presently more or less violent than in the past, or to know whether modern means of communications and greater mobility have made us more aware of violence, or, on the other hand, increasingly inured to it.

In any case, we know that this “piecemeal” violence, of different kinds and levels, causes great suffering: wars in different countries and continents; terrorism, organized crime and unforeseen acts of violence; the abuses suffered by migrants and victims of human trafficking; and the devastation of the environment. Where does this lead? Can violence achieve any goal of lasting value? Or does it merely lead to retaliation and a cycle of deadly conflicts that benefit only a few “warlords”?

Violence is not the cure for our broken world. Countering violence with violence leads at best to forced migrations and enormous suffering, because vast amounts of resources are diverted to military ends and away from the everyday needs of young people, families experiencing hardship, the elderly, the infirm and the great majority of people in our world. At worst, it can lead to the death, physical and spiritual, of many people, if not of all.

The Good News

3. Jesus himself lived in violent times. Yet he taught that the true battlefield, where violence and peace meet, is the human heart: for “it is from within, from the human heart, that evil intentions come” (Mk 7:21). But Christ’s message in this regard offers a radically positive approach. He unfailingly preached God’s unconditional love, which welcomes and forgives. He taught his disciples to love their enemies (cf. Mt 5:44) and to turn the other cheek (cf. Mt 5:39). When he stopped her accusers from stoning the woman caught in adultery (cf. Jn 8:1-11), and when, on the night before he died, he told Peter to put away his sword (cf. Mt 26:52), Jesus marked out the path of nonviolence. He walked that path to the very end, to the cross, whereby he became our peace and put an end to hostility (cf. Eph 2:14-16). Whoever accepts the Good News of Jesus is able to acknowledge the violence within and be healed by God’s mercy, becoming in turn an instrument of reconciliation. In the words of Saint Francis of Assisi: “As you announce peace with your mouth, make sure that you have greater peace in your hearts”.

To be true followers of Jesus today also includes embracing his teaching about nonviolence. As my predecessor Benedict XVI observed, that teaching “is realistic because it takes into account that in the world there is too much violence, too much injustice, and therefore that this situation cannot be overcome except by countering it with more love, with more goodness. This ‘more’ comes from God”. He went on to stress that: “For Christians, nonviolence is not merely tactical behaviour but a person’s way of being, the attitude of one who is so convinced of God’s love and power that he or she is not afraid to tackle evil with the weapons of love and truth alone. Love of one’s enemy constitutes the nucleus of the ‘Christian revolution’”. The Gospel command to love your enemies (cf. Lk 6:27) “is rightly considered the magna carta of Christian nonviolence. It does not consist in succumbing to evil…, but in responding to evil with good (cf. Rom 12:17-21), and thereby breaking the chain of injustice”.

More powerful than violence

4. Nonviolence is sometimes taken to mean surrender, lack of involvement and passivity, but this is not the case. When Mother Teresa received the Nobel Peace Prize in 1979, she clearly stated her own message of active nonviolence: “We in our family don’t need bombs and guns, to destroy to bring peace – just get together, love one another… And we will be able to overcome all the evil that is in the world”. For the force of arms is deceptive. “While weapons traffickers do their work, there are poor peacemakers who give their lives to help one person, then another and another and another”; for such peacemakers, Mother Teresa is “a symbol, an icon of our times”. Last September, I had the great joy of proclaiming her a Saint. I praised her readiness to make herself available for everyone “through her welcome and defence of human life, those unborn and those abandoned and discarded… She bowed down before those who were spent, left to die on the side of the road, seeing in them their God-given dignity; she made her voice heard before the powers of this world, so that they might recognize their guilt for the crimes – the crimes! – of poverty they created”. In response, her mission – and she stands for thousands, even millions of persons – was to reach out to the suffering, with generous dedication, touching and binding up every wounded body, healing every broken life.

The decisive and consistent practice of nonviolence has produced impressive results. The achievements of Mahatma Gandhi and Khan Abdul Ghaffar Khan in the liberation of India, and of Dr Martin Luther King Jr in combating racial discrimination will never be forgotten. Women in particular are often leaders of nonviolence, as for example, was Leymah Gbowee and the thousands of Liberian women, who organized pray-ins and nonviolent protest that resulted in high-level peace talks to end the second civil war in Liberia.

Nor can we forget the eventful decade that ended with the fall of Communist regimes in Europe. The Christian communities made their own contribution by their insistent prayer and courageous action. Particularly influential were the ministry and teaching of Saint John Paul II. Reflecting on the events of 1989 in his 1991 Encyclical Centesimus Annus, my predecessor highlighted the fact that momentous change in the lives of people, nations and states had come about “by means of peaceful protest, using only the weapons of truth and justice”. This peaceful political transition was made possible in part “by the non-violent commitment of people who, while always refusing to yield to the force of power, succeeded time after time in finding effective ways of bearing witness to the truth”. Pope John Paul went on to say: “May people learn to fight for justice without violence, renouncing class struggle in their internal disputes and war in international ones”.

The Church has been involved in nonviolent peacebuilding strategies in many countries, engaging even the most violent parties in efforts to build a just and lasting peace.

Such efforts on behalf of the victims of injustice and violence are not the legacy of the Catholic Church alone, but are typical of many religious traditions, for which “compassion and nonviolence are essential elements pointing to the way of life”. I emphatically reaffirm that “no religion is terrorist”. Violence profanes the name of God. Let us never tire of repeating: “The name of God cannot be used to justify violence. Peace alone is holy. Peace alone is holy, not war!”

The domestic roots of a politics of nonviolence

5. If violence has its source in the human heart, then it is fundamental that nonviolence be practised before all else within families. This is part of that joy of love which I described last March in my Exhortation Amoris Laetitia, in the wake of two years of reflection by the Church on marriage and the family. The family is the indispensable crucible in which spouses, parents and children, brothers and sisters, learn to communicate and to show generous concern for one another, and in which frictions and even conflicts have to be resolved not by force but by dialogue, respect, concern for the good of the other, mercy and forgiveness. From within families, the joy of love spills out into the world and radiates to the whole of society. An ethics of fraternity and peaceful coexistence between individuals and among peoples cannot be based on the logic of fear, violence and closed-mindedness, but on responsibility, respect and sincere dialogue. Hence, I plead for disarmament and for the prohibition and abolition of nuclear weapons: nuclear deterrence and the threat of mutual assured destruction are incapable of grounding such an ethics. I plead with equal urgency for an end to domestic violence and to the abuse of women and children.

The Jubilee of Mercy that ended in November encouraged each one of us to look deeply within and to allow God’s mercy to enter there. The Jubilee taught us to realize how many and diverse are the individuals and social groups treated with indifference and subjected to injustice and violence. They too are part of our “family”; they too are our brothers and sisters. The politics of nonviolence have to begin in the home and then spread to the entire human family. “Saint Therese of Lisieux invites us to practise the little way of love, not to miss out on a kind word, a smile or any small gesture which sows peace and friendship. An integral ecology is also made up of simple daily gestures that break with the logic of violence, exploitation and selfishness”.

My invitation

6. Peacebuilding through active nonviolence is the natural and necessary complement to the Church’s continuing efforts to limit the use of force by the application of moral norms; she does so by her participation in the work of international institutions and through the competent contribution made by so many Christians to the drafting of legislation at all levels. Jesus himself offers a “manual” for this strategy of peacemaking in the Sermon on the Mount. The eight Beatitudes (cf. Mt 5:3-10) provide a portrait of the person we could describe as blessed, good and authentic. Blessed are the meek, Jesus tells us, the merciful and the peacemakers, those who are pure in heart, and those who hunger and thirst for justice.

This is also a programme and a challenge for political and religious leaders, the heads of international institutions, and business and media executives: to apply the Beatitudes in the exercise of their respective responsibilities. It is a challenge to build up society, communities and businesses by acting as peacemakers. It is to show mercy by refusing to discard people, harm the environment, or seek to win at any cost. To do so requires “the willingness to face conflict head on, to resolve it and to make it a link in the chain of a new process”. To act in this way means to choose solidarity as a way of making history and building friendship in society. Active nonviolence is a way of showing that unity is truly more powerful and more fruitful than conflict. Everything in the world is inter-connected. Certainly differences can cause frictions. But let us face them constructively and non-violently, so that “tensions and oppositions can achieve a diversified and life-giving unity,” preserving “what is valid and useful on both sides”.

I pledge the assistance of the Church in every effort to build peace through active and creative nonviolence. On 1 January 2017, the new Dicastery for Promoting Integral Human Development will begin its work. It will help the Church to promote in an ever more effective way “the inestimable goods of justice, peace, and the care of creation” and concern for “migrants, those in need, the sick, the excluded and marginalized, the imprisoned and the unemployed, as well as victims of armed conflict, natural disasters, and all forms of slavery and torture”. Every such response, however modest, helps to build a world free of violence, the first step towards justice and peace.

In conclusion

8. As is traditional, I am signing this Message on 8 December, the Solemnity of the Immaculate Conception of the Blessed Virgin Mary. Mary is the Queen of Peace. At the birth of her Son, the angels gave glory to God and wished peace on earth to men and women of good will (cf. Luke 2:14). Let us pray for her guidance.

“All of us want peace. Many people build it day by day through small gestures and acts; many of them are suffering, yet patiently persevere in their efforts to be peacemakers”. In 2017, may we dedicate ourselves prayerfully and actively to banishing violence from our hearts, words and deeds, and to becoming nonviolent people and to build nonviolent communities that care for our common home. “Nothing is impossible if we turn to God in prayer. Everyone can be an artisan of peace”.

From the Vatican, 8 December 2016
Pope Francis - AP

Pope Francis - AP
12/12/2016 11:25
(Vatican Radio)

Post has attachment
 Jeep hackers back at Black Hat with new and scarier method

A pair of well-known hackers has found another way to take control of a Jeep Cherokee - this time while it’s moving at high speed.
Charlie Miller and Chris Valasek grabbed headlines last year by showing how they could kill a Jeep Cherokee’s engine while it was traveling down a highway. The news prompted an embarrassing recall of 1.4 million Jeeps and other vehicles by parent company Fiat Chrysler.
In front of a packed lecture hall at the Black Hat hacker conference on Thursday in Las Vegas, the pair demonstrated how they could again take control of the same 2014 Jeep Cherokee they hacked the year before. This time they sent false messages to its internal network, overriding the correct ones.
That allowed them to do new - and scarier - things, such as making the vehicle turn sharply while it was speeding down a country road. They also were able to make the vehicle unintentionally speed up, or remotely slam on its brakes.
“If you can steer a car at any speed, that’s pretty dangerous,” Miller said, as video showed the Jeep turning so hard and fast it left skid marks. Another turn sent it into a ditch alongside a Midwestern cornfield.
The pair’s previous hack only allowed them to do similar things if the Jeep was moving slower than 5 mph, making for a much less dangerous scenario.
This time, it was more about reverse engineering than actual hacking. They dissected why the vehicle’s safety systems prevented remote attempts to yank the car’s steering wheel or slam on its brakes if it was moving at more than 5 mph, but not at lower speeds, then looked for a way around that.
Fiat Chrysler said that while the company admired the pair’s creativity, Thursday’s presentation didn’t show any new ways to breach the Jeep remotely. It also argued that the attack couldn’t have been carried out remotely because of fixes made after the previous hack, which is something Miller and Valasek dispute.
The automaker added that the methods Miller and Valasek used were costly, time consuming and required extensive technical expertise.
The pair acknowledged that they did put quite a bit of time and effort into their hack and that it’s not something the average person needs to worry about falling victim to.
For their part, Miller and Valasek, who now work for the ride-hailing service Uber, said that after four years of hacking cars together, they’ve decided to move on. They encouraged other hackers to pick up where they left off.
“There’s no reason to think that this car company, or just American cars, is the only one that could be hacked,” Miller said.
By BREE FOWLER - Associated Press - Thursday, August 4, 2016


Read the warnings of Vanga ...
The mission of the USA is to be a leader. The leader is searching for its leader.


Post has attachment

Report: Vets Waited For Care, VA Spent Millions On Art
Another day, another scandal for the Department of Veterans Affairs.
While wounded American service members received substandard medical care, and war veterans suffering from PTSD had to wait half a year or more for appointments, the VA spent $20 million on artwork between 2004 and 2014, according to a new report by Open the Books, a government spending watchdog, and Cox Media.
Among the commissioned art pieces are a $1 million sculpture for the courtyard of a VA facility in Palo Alto, California; $330,000 for a glass art sculpture; $21,000 for an artificial Christmas tree; and $280,000 to decorate a parking garage at the Palo Alto facility with dots and dashes of Morse code that light up.
The Morse code project, which artist Ray King dubbed "Horizon," includes quotes from Abraham Lincoln and Eleanor Roosevelt translated into Morse code. The artwork was intended to honor blind war veterans, but as critics have pointed out, blind veterans cannot see the installation.
Lawmakers directed the VA to stop spending money on artwork in 2015 after the House Veterans Affairs Committee learned more than $6 million had been spent on art installations at Palo Alto alone.
Illinois Sen. Mark Kirk wrote to Veterans Affairs Secretary Bob McDonald to impose a moratorium on the VA spending money on art.
“The VA has not taken the directive over a year ago to stop excessive, non-veteran spending on artwork," the Republican lawmaker told ABC News.
In a statement, the VA didn't back down from criticism, saying the agency's commissioning of artwork was part of its goal of "providing comprehensive health care" for veterans.
"Artwork is one of the many facets that create a healing environment for our nation’s veterans," the statement read. "We want an atmosphere that welcomes them to VA facilities, shows them respect and appreciation, honors them for their service and sacrifice and exemplifies that this is a safe place for them to receive their care."
“We don’t want our hospitals looking like the inside of prisons,” Louis Celli, director of veterans affairs and rehabilitation at the American Legion, wrote in a statement.
The criticism leveled at the VA comes after reports of widespread negligence in the system, first revealed publicly in 2014. The resulting scandal -- and press attention -- revealed that VA staffers falsified schedules to make it appear as though veterans were receiving primary care appointments within 14 days, which is the VA's target.
Documents showed that the VA paid out $143 million in bonuses to staffers in 2014, and that managers routinely instructed those under them to alter records to meet bonus requirements, according to CBS News. Meanwhile, at least 40 who were supposed to receive care at a Phoenix VA facility died while waiting for care, according to the resulting investigation.
Sen. Joni Ernst, an Iowa Republican, is the first female combat veteran to serve as a U.S. senator. In May, Ernst introduced an amendment to an appropriations bill that would forbid the VA from spending any more money on artwork until the VA works through the appointment backlog that has left thousands of veterans waiting months -- and in some cases more than a year -- for care.
Although the amendment wasn't passed, Ernst said at the time that she will keep pushing for tighter regulations on VA spending, reports the Washington Free Beacon.
“It is imperative that our country lives up to the promises made to our veterans, and to ensure they receive a quality of care that we can all be proud of," Ernst said.
Sources: ABC News, CBS News (2), Washington Free Beacon / Photo credit: Wikimedia Commons

Post has attachment
How to stop Trump? Barack Obama to be 'last US President' after revealing 'aliens exist'
A BLIND mystic with a "staggering accuracy rate" predicted the 44th President of the United States would be the first black leader the country ever voted into office.
Baba Vanga predicted Barack Obama would be the last president of the US.
But alarmingly Bulgarian Baba Vanga, who died aged 85 in 1996, also said he would be the last to hold office.
Now conspiracy theorists, who believe that 2016 will be the year Mr Obama announces to the world that aliens really exist and have visited Earth, have joined the dots and revealed a new claim he will discontinue the presidency after revealing the truth is out there.
Hillary Clinton has said she will seek out the truth on aliens and UFOs if she makes it into the White House, but if conspiracy theorists are to believed perhaps neither she nor Republican rival Donal Trump will ever get there.
Ms Vanga is credited with predicting the Boxing Day tsunami, 9/11, and Mr Obama's presidency, so conspiracists the Democrat WILL be the last in office.
Related articles
Blind mystic predicted when aliens WILL first visit Earth
EXCLUSIVE: Barack Obama 'on brink of revealing aliens exist'
Alien conspiracy theorists are convinced 2016 will be the year for so-called disclosure, and they also belive Mr Obama will make the announcement before he stands down.
The thinking is that the revelation we are not alone in the universe will be so significant, that it leads to major changes, such as a world government being created, and the role of US President no longer functioning - leaving no place for Mrs Clinton or Mr Trump.
The alien pledge by Mrs Clinton and the hopes of disclosure from Mr Obama, have made this the most fierecely-debated presidential race in US history among UFO chasers.
Scott C Waring, editor of, speculated about Mr Obama scrapping the role of president after announcing aliens exist.
Conspiracy theorists hope Barack Obama will announce aliens exist this year.
Related articles
Did Nostradamus predict ISIS rise? 16th century warnings of terror...
Obama 'alien contact' quip fuels rumours 2016 WILL be the year of...
The most concerning one to me was that the 44th President of the US will be black, and he will be the last US President.
Scott C waring
He blogged: "I hear a lot of people talking politics and saying Trump or Clinton for president, but what do you want? Who do you think will do the most for the UFO community and why?
"A famous woman, Baba Vanga made many predictions about the future.
"The most concerning one to me was that the 44th President of the US will be black, and he will be the last US President.
"Why will Obama be the last US President? Will he dissolve the position as president and give full power over to Congress. No man or woman should have all that power."
Linda Moulton Howe, speaking on Jimmy Church Radio, said that the moment when world governments reveal that aliens exist is drawing near.
The top 10 conspiracy theories
Thu, May 21, 2015
From mind control, to the missing Malaysian airways flight MH370, here are the top 10 conspiracy theories.

In 2011, Osama Bin Laden was killed by US Navy Seals and buried at sea, but now conspiracy theorists claim that it was all a lie and he is still alive
Related articles
Hillary Clinton AGAIN vows to find out US knows about aliens and UFOs.
What happened when Clintons tried to expose UFO truth 21 years ago?
She said a Washington insider told her: ‘“Linda it’s on the timeline. In 2016, we are going to get out the news that we’re not alone in the universe.”’
She said: "Is there anybody in this room, who has ever seen a year unfolding at the rate of this one?"
Ms Vanga has been given a 85 per cent success rate with her predictions - so she could be off the mark with the end of the presidency claim.
But if the conspiracy theorists are to take her at her word, she predicted that it would not be until 2130 that aliens would arrive on Earth and help humans to live under water.
Coupled with this, a pinch of salt is required as she also predicted the Third World War would start in 2010, and that Bulgaria would be in the 1994 World Cup final.
Related articles
Hillary Clinton 'helped' spook husband Bill into releasing UFO files
Will national security stop Hillary Clinton revealing UFO truth?
Clinton won't get UFO truth because US Presidents kept 'in the dark'
UFOAliensConspiracy theories
By Jon Austin
PUBLISHED: 12:46, Thu, Jul 28, 2016 | UPDATED: 15:45, Thu, Jul 28, 2016

Post has attachment
OVERDOSE: Using the lessons of the dead to save the living
D.C.’s chief medical examiner, Roger Mitchell Jr., says his first priority is to give answers to families, and many times to police. (Marvin Joseph/The Washington Post)
Behind a picture window, the nude body of a middle-aged man lay face up on a stainless steel table. Medical experts suspected he died of heart failure, or an allergic reaction, but they needed to find out for sure.
Roger Mitchell Jr., the District’s chief medical examiner, stepped into the room and put on a white apron and plastic gloves. From a yellow toolbox, he pulled out an 18-inch blade and began his painstaking work.
“I speak for those who can’t speak anymore,” he told a forensics class viewing the autopsy from the other side of the glass. “It’s our job to turn victims into victors.”
Local Crime & Safety Alerts
Breaking news about public safety in and around D.C.
At 42, Mitchell, a recently licensed Baptist minister, is one of the youngest chief medical examiners overseeing a major-city morgue. His first priority is to give answers to families, and many times to police, about how people die in the nation’s capital. But he also is trying to use the lessons of the dead to help the living.
After noticing an increase in the number of infants accidentally smothered while asleep, Mitchell recently hired an outreach worker focused on safety to connect with community groups serving new parents. He has mandated more-detailed tracking of drug overdoses, with the aim of identifying whether a particular neighborhood has a problem. And he is on a national board that is seeking to improve the tracking and examinations of deaths in police custody.
The D.C. Medical Examiner’s Office has a staff of 80 and a budget of more than $10.5 million. It performs some 1,100 examinations, including about 730 full autopsies, each year on people whose deaths are unexpected. About half the deaths the office handled in one recent year were because of natural causes. Mitchell said they also see slayings, drug overdoses, and deaths from falls and other accidents.

Since he came on board in 2014, Mitchell has hired medical examiners from other cities to join the staff, has ordered that autopsies be completed in 90 days and has ensured that all staff met national board certification. In March, for the first time in the District’s history, the office obtained full accreditation, making it one of only about 70 offices across the nation to reach such status, according to the National Association of Medical Examiners.
[D.C. medical examiner’s office receives full accreditation]
City leaders credit Mitchell with taking an agency that has gone through an overhaul after years of trouble and steering it toward becoming a national model. A little over a decade ago, the office was under national scrutiny for mismanagement and had a backlog of more than 1,000 unfinished autopsy reports.
“He has taken that office to the next level and built up a level of respect,” said D.C. Council Chairman Phil Mendelson (D).
Reaching out to youths
After a recent 10-hour workday in the Department of Forensic Sciences building in Southwest Washington, Mitchell headed to the D.C. jail. Once a month, he meets with about two dozen teenagers who have been charged as adults in violent crimes including armed robbery, rape and murder.
He hopes he can deter even one of them from future violence, save even one life. Each visit, Mitchell talks to the youth and assigns a book to read. This time, it was Ralph Ellison’s “Invisible Man.”
“Research shows that a caring adult is one of the best predictors of positive outcomes in youth, regardless of race and gender,” Mitchell said. “I told them I care and I’m going to do their bid with them,” he said, referring to the teens’ sentences.
Fred Rogers, program manager for D.C. jail’s juvenile services, said that he is not sure how broad the impact will be but that Mitchell has become a role model. “He makes them feel good about being young black men,” Rogers said.
Mitchell isn’t just focusing on trying to reduce homicides, which last year numbered 162 in the city, a 54 percent increase over the year before. He wants to broaden the understanding into the causes of all unexpected deaths in the city and use that information to support prevention efforts.
One area that has concerned Mitchell is an increase in deaths from drug overdoses, either accidental or suicide. Last year, his office handled 114 deaths of people who died from overdoses from street drugs such as heroin or prescription drugs such as oxycodone, acetaminophen or fentanyl. That was a 37 percent increase in overdose deaths from 2014.
Previously, the medical examiner’s office counted overdose deaths annually. Mitchell has ordered that they be tracked within 90 to 120 days. The objective is to more quickly identify whether a neighborhood is dealing with a specific drug that is contributing to overdoses and to team with the District’s Department of Health to attack the problem.
[The scariest thing about synthetic drugs is everything that’s unknown]
And last July, when D.C. police expressed concern about the growing use of synthetic drugs, Mitchell teamed with the Department of Health and D.C. hospitals to collect blood and urine samples of all patients suspected of illegal drug use. Those samples are rushed to Mitchell’s lab for testing. “Synthetic drugs create an agitated state that is linked to violence among some users,” he said. So far, more than 400 samples have been analyzed and the results are shared with local authorities.

Mitchell is also chairman of the National Medical Association’s violence prevention committee, which examines violence as a public health issue. (Marvin Joseph/The Washington Post)
Mitchell’s investigations also take a national scope. In addition to his work on deaths in police custody, he is the chairman of the National Medical Association’s violence prevention committee, which examines violence as a public health issue.
Juggling his many duties, he says, is what fuels him. The husband and father of three often finds himself checking his email while attending his son’s baseball games. His wife, Angelique, is an acting executive director of a local nonprofit group.
“I carve out time for the things I have to do when I have to do them,” he said. “A full plate eventually gets eaten,” he said. “But a plate that’s not full gets procrastinated.”
Getting bit by ‘forensic bug’
After his parents divorced when he was child, Mitchell grew up with his mother in South Orange, N.J. He was fascinated with science and wanted to be like his grandfather, one of the first black physicians in Atlantic City in the 1950s.
Grade school was challenging for Mitchell. He often struggled with reading and writing, problems he now attributes to a “slight dyslexia issue.” The challenge, he said, surfaces only in public, when he has to read or even write in front of an audience. During public speaking engagements, such as when he has to speak at City Council hearings, he often memorizes his remarks.
Mitchell arrived at Howard University as a pre-med major, but it wasn’t until he watched the O.J. Simpson murder trial on TV in 1995 that he determined his specialty. Mitchell was captivated by the DNA testimony from the forensic pathologist. “I got bit with the forensic bug,” he said.
After graduation, he worked as a forensic biologist for the FBI’s DNA unit before heading to New Jersey Medical School, now part of Rutgers University, in Newark.
Mitchell went on to work as a medical examiner in Houston, New York and Newark. He rose to become the regional medical examiner of New Jersey before coming to the District.

Mitchell has worked as a medical examiner in Houston, New York and Newark. (Marvin Joseph/The Washington Post)
He’s not a gray-haired chief medical examiner like you would see on TV. Prada glasses shape his face, and his tailored suits are coordinated with his multi-
colored socks. Both arms are covered in tattoos. One of his tattoos is of a skull surrounded by five stars that represent the five manners of death in forensic pathology: homicide, suicide, accidental, natural and undetermined.
Mitchell doesn’t limit his autopsies to sterile exam rooms if he thinks quicker action can help the police. One May afternoon last year, he sped to a Northwest Washington home where authorities fighting a fire made a grim discovery. There, he climbed into the back of an ambulance and performed preliminary autopsies on the badly burned bodies of Savvas Savopoulos and his wife, Amy. The couple, along with their 10-year-old son and the family’s housekeeper, had been beaten and stabbed before the home was torched.
Searching for causes of death or taking fingernail clippings or scrapings at the scene of the crime may help detectives, Mitchell said. A Maryland man was eventually arrested and is awaiting trial in the slayings.
[Husband, housekeeper were beaten, strangled during quadruple homicide]
David Gorman, deputy chief of the homicide section for the District’s U.S. attorney’s office, said Mitchell’s overhaul of the office has been “invaluable” in prosecuting homicide cases. “The importance of a good and well-run medical examiner office is essential to our prosecutions,” Gorman said.
Respect for the deceased

The area where bodies regularly receive autopsies at the Department of Forensic Sciences in Washington. (Marvin Joseph/The Washington Post)
Back in the autopsy room, Mitchell removed the man’s heart, liver and intestines, and he examined each organ. He then took samples of blood and other fluids for testing.
While some blood spilled from the body, Mitchell’s white lab coat remained spotless. There should be no reason to have the person’s blood on his clothes, he told his assistants, because it is disrespectful to the dead. “Leave their blood with them,” he said. I’m a surgeon. There is no reason to be covered in blood if you know what you are doing.”
Mitchell cut pieces of each organ and photographed them, then put each organ in a plastic bag. When he finished, he put the bag into the man’s chest cavity. One of his assistants used surgical wire to close the chest. After the exam, Mitchell believed the man, who also was overweight, died of a heart attack. But a final ruling, a final answer for the man’s family, would await various test results.
The work can be taxing, witnessing death each day. But Mitchell said he has grown spiritually.
“My faith has become a place of refuge for me,” he said. “These cases are hard. But it makes you know how important it is to serve families. And that is what we do.”
 Share on FacebookShare
  Share on TwitterTweet
Share via Email
Keith Alexander covers crime, specifically D.C. Superior Court cases for The Washington Post. He has covered dozens of crime stories from Banita Jacks, the Washington woman charged with killing her four daughters, to the murder trial of slain federal intern Chandra Levy.
Follow @keithlalexander

By Keith L. Alexander July 9

Post has attachment
VERY, VERY, VERY SAD FACT ABOUT THOSE WHO HAVE RISKED THEIR LIVES FOR OUR COUNTRY - THE VETERANS...They need our help and love, and appreciation and care, they need correct approach and attitude from the whole society and everyone of us. 
VA Puts Latest Estimate of Veteran Suicides at 20 Per Day
 On average, 20 veterans a day committed suicide in 2014, a slight decrease from the previous government estimate, but federal health officials are cautious about concluding the suicide problem is getting better.
Rather, they say the Department of Veterans Affairs is relying on a more comprehensive database than ever before, making comparisons to prior studies difficult and possibly offering a truer snapshot than what was captured in the past.
Iraq war veteran couple Colleen Ryan and Jeff Hensley of the U.S. Navy comfort each other as they help set up 1,892 American flags to mark veteran suicides on the National Mall in Washington, DC, on March 27, 2014. JEWEL SAMAD / AFP - Getty Images file
In 2013, the VA projected that 22 veterans a day were committing suicide. The number became a fixture in media stories and in comments from politicians and advocacy groups highlighting the prevalence of the problem. But the number was also based on data submitted from fewer than half of the states. Some states with many veterans were not part of that study, including California and Texas. Veterans groups urged the department to expand its database and incorporate Department of Defense records to identify veterans who had not enrolled in the VA's numerous programs. And that's what it has done.
Dr. David Shulkin, undersecretary for health at the Department of Veterans Affairs, told The Associated Press that the data used for the latest suicide projections came from every state and U.S. territory and was the largest analysis of veteran records ever undertaken by the department. He said the data gives the VA more information about where to direct resources and which veterans are most at-risk of suicide, but he's hesitant to make any firm determinations about the overall trend and whether it's getting better.
"Twenty a day is not that different from 22," Shulkin said. "It is far too high."
Related: VA Secretary Bob McDonald Clarifies Comment Comparing Wait Times to Disneyland
The attention on veteran suicide comes at a time when the VA has reported a huge upswing in veterans seeking medical care as they have returned from conflicts in the Middle East. Yet, the VA data continues to show that older veterans make up most suicides. About two-thirds of all veterans who died by suicide were age 50 and over.
The rate of suicides for non-veterans has also been increasing in recent years, but the rate has increased at a greater pace for veterans. That's particularly the case for female veterans. The risk for suicide is 2.4 times higher for female veterans than it is for female civilians.
In 2014, the rate of suicide among veteran females was 18.9 per 100,000. The rate of suicide for females in the civilian population was 7.2 per 100,000, the VA said.
Shulkin called preventing suicide the VA's top priority. He said the department added 446 new psychologists last year and 80 new psychiatrists. It's also adding 60 employees to the Veterans Crisis Line and making it easier for veterans calling their local VA medical facilities to connect directly to the suicide hotline.
Related: Obama: Progress Made but Still Remains in Caring for Veterans
He said the VA data also shows that those who receive mental health care from the VA are less likely to commit suicide than those who don't get care. He said it's critical to destigmatize getting counseling so that people feel comfortable reaching out. He said the VA is intent on partnering with advocacy groups and U.S. companies to ensure veterans get help.
Rep. Jeff Miller, the Republican chairman of the House Committee on Veterans' Affairs, said the VA's numbers were heartbreaking proof that the nation has a long way to go to end what he called an epidemic.
"We as a nation must do more to encourage veterans in need to seek treatment and ask for help," Miller said.
by The Associated Press

Post has attachment
Iranian commander warns there are 100,000 missiles ready to strike Israel
The deputy commander of Iran's powerful Revolutionary Guard declared Friday that there are tens of thousands of missiles in Lebanon ready to strike Israel.

"Hezbollah has 100,000 missiles that are ready to hit Israel to liberate the occupied Palestinian territories if the Zionist regime repeats its past mistakes," Gen. Hossein Salami was quoted as saying by Tasnim, according to Reuters.

The Jerusalem Post reported that Salami warned that Israel’s occupied territories could come under attack if they make the “wrong move.”

“Today, the grounds for the annihilation and collapse of the Zionist regime are (present) more than ever,” he said.

Additionally, state TV reported Iran’s President Hassan Rouhani accused the West of trying to exploit differences between Shiite and Sunni Muslims to divert attention from the Palestinian-Israel conflict.

"The global arrogance (the United States and its allies) wants to create discord among Muslims ... Unity is the only way to restore stability in the region," Rouhani said. "We stand with the dispossessed Palestinian nation."

Rouhani spoke as tens of thousands of Iranians joined in an anti-Israel rally to express support for the Palestinians. The demonstrators shouted "Death to Israel" and "Death to America" and while they burned an Israeli flag.

“The Zionist regime (Israel) is a regional base for America and the global arrogance ... Disunity and discord among Muslim and terrorist groups in the region ... have diverted us from the important issue of Palestine," Rouhani added.

Israeli opposition has been a policy of Tehran’s since the 1979 Islamic Revolution. Shiite Muslim Iran has backed Palestinian and Lebanese militant groups who oppose peace with Israel.
Published July 04, 2016

Facebook4806 Twitter1975 livefyre7854 Email Print

July 16, 2010: Hossein Salami, deputy head of Iran's Revolutionary Guard. (Reuters)

Post has attachment
Are pea plants better than humans at making decisions?
Plants are surprisingly good at evaluating risk, according to a new study by scientists at Oxford and Israel's Tel-Hai College.
Plants may just be smarter than you think, according to a new study by an international team of researchers, published in Current Biology this week.
By studying the decisions plants made when presented in environments with different nutrient levels, plants showed a remarkable ability to take calculated risks in order to secure the maximum amount of nutrients.
"To our knowledge, this is the first demonstration of an adaptive response to risk in an organism without a nervous system," said Oxford University’s Alex Kacelnik in a press release.
Recommended:Are you scientifically literate? Take our quiz
In order to evaluate plants’ decision making skills, researchers grew pea plants with their roots split between two pots with varying levels of nutrients. First, scientists found that plants chose to grow more roots in the pot with more nutrients.
Test your knowledgeAre you scientifically literate? Take our quiz
Photos of the Day Photos of the weekend
Then, scientists examined plant behavior when one of the pots offered a consistent level of nutrients, but the other pot varied widely.
While both pots offered the same amount of nutrients on average, when the average nutrient level was high in the consistent pot, plants chose that pot. Yet, plants chose to grow more roots in the pot with a varied level of nutrients when the consistent pot offered a low amount of nutrients, demonstrating a willingness to take calculated risks.
“Complex and interesting behaviours can be theoretically predicted as biological adaptations, and executed by organisms,” said Dr. Kacelnik, “on the basis of processes evolved to exploit natural opportunities efficiently."
Scientists are still unsure of the plants sense variance, but they are nevertheless surprised by the decision making skills that the plants evidently possess.
"I used to look at plants as passive receivers of circumstances," says Efrat Dener, of Ben-Gurion University in Israel. "This line of experiments illustrates how wrong that view is: living organisms are designed by natural selection to exploit their opportunities, and this often implies a great deal of flexibility."
Researchers have been digging up evidence that plants are wiser than we might imagine for some time.
In 2005, The Christian Science Monitor reported that plants are capable of considering their environments and planning for the future.
Strangleweed, for example, can sense “friends, food, and foes.” There's evidence to suggest that plants can develop their own "personalities" – identical cuttings from the same “mother” plant develop different characteristics when planted separately, despite being raised in the same conditions.
"If intelligence is the capacity to acquire and apply knowledge, then, absolutely, plants are intelligent," University of Utah biologist Leslie Sieburth told the Monitor in 2005.
Some biologists say that decision-making skills alone do not make plants intelligent, and that in order to be truly intelligent, plants also must have self consciousness.
Still, the study of plant intelligence is a growing field, and scientists say that lessons learned from the study of human and animal decision making are transferrable to the study of plant behavior, which has fascinating implications for future study.
"To see that decision-making models developed by economists for human decision makers,” said Hagai Shemesh of Israel's Tel-Hai College, “and by zoologists to understand animal behavior can predict the behavior of plants facing similar choices is fascinating."
The next step, scientists say, is presenting plants with tasks that require them to adapt to different circumstances.

Related Stories

Are you scientifically literate? Take our quiz

Monkeys' social circles shrink as they age – much like ours

Cover Story GMO labels: The great American food fight

Have we been missing a hidden haven of biodiversity?

The Christian Science Monitor/Mary Knox Merrill

By Christina Beck, Staff July 2, 2016

Post has attachment
Can Hillary Clinton overcome her trust problem?
Hillary Clinton’s weekend interview with the FBI stands as a perfect symbol of what is probably her biggest liability heading into the fall election: A lot of people say they don’t trust her.
Clinton sat for an interview of more than three hours as part of a Justice Department investigation into the privately owned email system she operated off the books when she was secretary of state. The timing — less than three weeks before she will claim the Democratic presidential nomination — is an attempt to make the best of a situation that would look bad for any candidate but is particularly damaging for Clinton.
That the interview at FBI headquarters was voluntary does not expunge the whiff of suspicion surrounding the entire email affair that, for many voters, confirms a long-held view that Clinton shades the truth or plays by her own rules.
[FBI interviews Hillary Clinton for more than 3 hours in email probe]
In opinion polls and focus groups, even many people who say they plan to vote for Clinton say they think she has lied or has something to hide. Her poor marks for trustworthiness have much to do with her long and sometimes messy public life, and very little to do with Republican opponent Donald Trump. Both front-runners are deeply unpopular with voters, but Clinton elicits a more visceral mistrust.
In this 2012 file photo, Secretary of State Hillary Clinton checks her cellphone after her address to the Security Council at United Nations headquarters. (Richard Drew/AP)
It didn’t help matters last week when her husband, Bill Clinton, met with Attorney General Loretta Lynch for an impromptu discussion on an airport tarmac in Phoenix, sparking suspicions among Republicans and head-slapping among Democrats. Lynch has said the meeting was innocent but regrettable.
[How everyone looks bad because Bill Clinton met with Loretta Lynch]
“Trust is the glue that holds our democracy together,” Clinton said last week as part of a direct effort to address the issue in this small lull between the end of primary voting and the start of full-on campaigning for the fall vote.
“I take this seriously, as someone who is asking for your votes, and I personally know I have work to do on this point,” Clinton told a friendly audience. “A lot of people tell pollsters they don’t trust me. I don’t like hearing that, and I’ve thought a lot about what’s behind it.”
As she has before, Clinton blamed smears by her political opponents for setting the tone, but she also acknowledged her own mistakes.
“You know, you hear 25 years worth of wild accusations, anyone could start to wonder,” Clinton said. “Political opponents and conspiracy theorists have accused me of every crime in the book. None of it’s true, never has been,” but it also never goes away, Clinton said.
“And it certainly is true that I’ve made mistakes. I don’t know anyone who hasn’t,” Clinton continued. “So I understand that people have questions.”
Protesters hold signs outside of a June campaign event with Hillary Clinton, former secretary of state and presumptive Democratic presidential nominee, in Cincinnati. (Ty Wright/Bloomberg News)
She promised to try to resolve those doubts through hard work and dedication, and she held up the example of her 2000 election to the Senate. New York voters had doubts, too, but came to know her as a hard worker and effective representative, she said.
“You can’t just talk someone into trusting you. You’ve got to earn it,” Clinton said.
[Clinton says she understands many people don’t trust her, promises to earn it]
The longtime front-runner is trying to swab the decks of a messy and bitter primary ahead of the Democratic convention and ahead of a week of high-profile campaigning with President Obama and Vice President Biden.
Biden, in an NPR interview Sunday, said a goal in campaigning for Clinton was to “vouch” for her. The two will appear together Friday in Scranton, Pa., which is Biden’s beloved home town and also where Clinton’s father grew up. Her story of the family lace factory there is a staple of her stump speech.
“The hardest thing is vouching. When you vouch for them you say ‘I’m putting my reputation on the line. I believe this person is a good person, has character,” Biden said in the interview for NPR’s “Weekend Edition.” “You’re putting your rep on the line. You’re saying, ‘I think this person has character,’ and that’s what I’m prepared to do for Hillary.”
Character is exactly Clinton’s trouble spot, according to polls that have charted an increase in the number of people who say they don’t like and don’t trust her as the campaign has marched ahead.
In an NBC/Wall Street Journal poll in late June, 69 percent of respondents said they were concerned that Clinton has a record or reputation as untrustworthy. A CBS News poll in June found 62 percent saying Clinton is not honest and trustworthy, while 33 percent said she is. Her ratings on this were similar to Trump’s (63 percent not honest, 32 percent honest). But on a separate measure of being forthcoming, 33 percent of registered voters said Clinton says what she believes while 62 percent said she does not. By contrast, 56 percent said Trump says what he believes.
People are far more likely to say Clinton is well prepared for the job, while rating Trump as unsuited for the White House, said pollster Peter D. Hart, who oversaw the latest NBC-Wall Street Journal poll. Where she falls down is on the more nuanced question of character and trust, he said.
“For Hillary Clinton it’s all personal and about values,” Hart said. “It’s, ‘Can I trust her? Do I feel comfortable with her?’ ”
This is somewhat familiar territory for Clinton, who overcame discomfort over her hands-on role as first lady in the 1990s and mistrust of her motives in the 2000 Senate campaign.
“When she won election to the Senate, she had to overcome skepticism in the minds of some voters in certain parts in New York,” campaign press secretary Brian Fallon said in an interview. “She went on to impress everyone with her work ethic and her ability to reach across the aisle, and then managed to win reelection by an even wider margin in 2006. So we know that while the political season brings out all kinds of personal attacks and unfair questioning of her motives, the reality is, once in the job, she never fails to work her heart out and earn respect from even her critics.”
Still, although the old scandals and investigations of the Bill Clinton administration have faded in memory, they are at the core of many voters unease with Hillary Clinton. Trump, in his name-calling style, hits a political nerve with his constant reference to Clinton as “Crooked Hillary.”
Her well-regarded tenures as senator and secretary of state are also years behind her, meaning her campaign must seek to remind voters of the positive elements from those periods.
Clinton’s campaign is trying to address the trust deficit in two main ways. First, through Clinton’s own words and actions — including her remarks on the topic at the Rainbow PUSH Coalition gathering in Chicago last week and in what her backers say was a forthright attempt to provide information to the FBI.
Clinton had volunteered to sit for an interview months ago and has said she is cooperating completely in an inquiry that could result in criminal charges for her or aides who sent and received classified material on a system that operated in parallel to government email accounts.
From the campaign’s perspective, the interview is medicine best swallowed now, before the full heat of the head-to-head campaign with Trump. The issue clouds the campaign nonetheless, since there is no word yet on whether anyone will face charges or discipline. An interview with the most significant potential target of the investigation is often the last step before a decision on whether to issue indictments, so it is possible that the legal matter is near an end. Lawyers have said charges against Clinton are unlikely.
The Republican-led House investigation into the deaths of four Americans in Benghazi, Libya, when Clinton was secretary of state, ended last week with little new or politically damaging information. Clinton backers assert that the tragedy is no longer politically useful for Republicans.
Second, the campaign is spending millions on television advertising that charts Clinton’s background as an advocate for children and families and portrays her as a stalwart fighter. The positive ads airing in battleground states are running much more frequently than an attack ad about Trump.
The idea is that there is an opportunity now to reset voter opinions about Clinton as a stand-alone proposition as opposed to someone in contrast with Trump. Clinton allies note that Trump’s negative ratings are higher than Clinton’s and have concluded they are less likely to change than Clinton’s positive ratings. To Clinton backers, that means it is more cost-efficient to try to raise her stature now than to further damage his.
Local Politics Alerts
Breaking news about local government in D.C., Md., Va.
Super PACs allied with Clinton have begun rolling out potentially damaging information about Trump’s business practices, while the campaign itself concentrates on trying to tell voters what backers have described as “something they don’t know” about one of the best-known figures in American public life.
“Every election is a choice, and we will continue to frame the contrast in this race, and to explain why Donald Trump is temperamentally unfit to be president,” Fallon said. “But we believe in giving voters a sense of Secretary Clinton’s own vision and values, not just emphasizing how Trump is so dangerous and divisive. These early weeks of the summer provide that opportunity, as impressions begin to set.”
A larger problem, however, is that Clinton has always been more popular, and viewed as more trustworthy, when she is doing a job than when she is campaigning for one.
“The campaign trail is just not designed to help her with her trust issues,” said Patti Solis Doyle, who managed the first portion of Clinton’s failed 2008 presidential campaign and is now a prominent supporter.
“Having said that, I think it is important for her to acknowledge that she has trust issues and to tell voters that she will work to earn their trust,” she added. “It shows that she is in tune with the public and can recognize her flaws. This is not something she would have done in ’08. Voters appreciate the honesty and self-reflection.”
By Anne Gearan July 3 at 5:29 PM
Anne Gearan is a national politics correspondent for The Washington Post.
Follow @agearan
Wait while more posts are being loaded