Ending the Syrian Bloodshed: A JFK Jr. Forum

first_img Read Full Story More than 110,000 people dead. Seven million individuals displaced from their homes. Three and a half million child refugees. Multiple assaults with chemical weapons.These are the grim statistics that define the Syrian conflict. What began as peaceful demonstrations on March 15, 2011 has devolved into a human tragedy of epic proportions that has stymied the international community.How to end the brutal civil war is far from evident. This, at least, was the dismal conclusion of experts who discussed the conflict at the John F. Kennedy Jr. Forum last night (September 24). “The Syrian Tragedy: Ending the Bloodshed” was moderated by Meghan O’Sullivan, Jeane Kirkpatrick Professor of the Practice of International Affairs at HKS.Frederic Hof, a senior fellow with at the Atlantic Council, noted that a political situation, while possible, is not likely under current circumstances. “According to the US and the EU, the only way forward is a negotiated settlement,” said Hof. “But Russia and Syria aren’t buying it.”“It’s too soon to tell if Assad is a winner or loser” after the proposed chemical weapons deal, said Mona Yacoubian, M.P.A. ’89, a senior adviser at the Stimson Center.Joseph Bahout, professor of Middle Eastern studies at Sciences Po Paris, emphasized that the proposed disposal of Syria’s chemical weapons needs to be considered separately from the idea of a political solution to the civil war.“If we solve for the chemical weapons, we don’t solve the Syrian problem,” he said. “A political solution, while desirable, seems impossible,” he said.last_img read more

Checklists are boring, but death is worse

first_imgDoctors and nurses operate amid a blizzard of new information that can save the lives of people who not long ago would have died. The challenge? Keeping it all straight.Atul Gawande, a Harvard professor and surgeon and New Yorker staff writer, illuminated the problem by recalling a letter he received five years ago from a Texas man who was in a head-on collision at 70 miles an hour. The injuries were severe enough that years ago they might have killed the man, Gawande said. Instead, emergency responders were on the scene within minutes. Within a few more, the man was in a helicopter to a major hospital, where his spleen was removed, the bleeding was stopped, and his condition stabilized.From there, Gawande said, the patient had to endure months of treatments addressing different injuries, but in time he got on with his life. That is, until he went to the beach one day and contracted an infection.The spleen can be important in fighting certain infections, Gawande noted. That’s why patients who have it removed typically are given three post-procedure vaccinations. In this case, the man received only two. The third would have protected him from the bug he picked up at the beach. The man lost his feet, fingers, and nose. Then he lost his job and his ability to take care of his family.‘We love rescue and the heroism of being able to save someone. The death that didn’t happen is invisible.’ — Atul GawandeThe incident was awful, but not isolated, said Gawande. He remembers one case at Brigham and Women’s Hospital in which the patient died. What’s needed, he said, are simple systems to help, such as the surgical checklist he developed at Ariadne Labs, which he founded and which is a joint center of the Brigham and the Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health.Checklists, smartphone apps, or other interventions are penicillin-like in their life-saving potential,  said Gawande, who spoke Friday at Faneuil Hall as part of HUBweek. His checklist takes aim at preventable surgical deaths, the estimated cause of as many as half of all surgery-related deaths. Recently published research on a checklist trial in South Carolina hospitals showed a reduction of 22 percent of all surgical deaths.Though the systems can potentially save many lives, Gawande, in response to questions from author Malcolm Gladwell, said that they get little attention. Further, they meet resistance from a significant minority of doctors who feel they don’t need them.It’s perhaps telling, Gawande said, that of the 25 percent of surgeons who said in a recent survey that the checklists were too long and unnecessary, 95 percent said that if they were having surgery, they’d want all the items on the checklist performed.Gawande and Gladwell discussed whether the problem was related to heroism — or its lack. People get excited about saving someone who’s hurt, which is one reason surgeons are held in such high regard and demand such high salaries. There’s nothing dramatic about an injury that’s headed off, he noted, so even though the statistics tell of a life-saving impact, the work often goes unnoticed.“We love rescue and the heroism of being able to save someone,” Gawande said. “The death that didn’t happen is invisible.”last_img read more

VxRail Rockets from Data Center Modernization to Hybrid Cloud

first_imgOver the last three years, we have built VxRail to be the fastest and simplest way to modernize and extend your VMware environment. From talking with our customers, we know many of them are looking for a hybrid cloud strategy. In fact, according to a recent survey by Enterprise Strategy Group, 92% of respondents reported that their company’s cloud strategy includes on-premises data centers1. And with good reason! No single cloud offering is a perfect fit for the great breadth of workloads that IT organizations are tasked to support.Hybrid cloud allows IT organizations the flexibility to choose the resources best suited to address application and business needs. However, implementing a hybrid cloud architecture can introduce additional complexity and risk.It was only natural for us to extend our market leading platform and address the changing needs of our customers. Once again, through joint development with VMware, we are helping our customers get the benefits of a hybrid cloud strategy while alleviating the complexity and risk that may be introduced.I am thrilled to announce the arrival of VMware Cloud Foundation on Dell EMC VxRail—a fast and easy path to deploy and operate hybrid cloud through a fully integrated platform. Cloud Foundation on VxRail offers the operational hub for your hybrid cloud, delivering consistent infrastructure and consistent operations with full stack integrity—meaning a seamless experience from the hyperconverged infrastructureVxRail delivers an experience that is not available on any other on-premises infrastructure running VMware Cloud Foundation. Delivering a unified user experience, VMware Cloud Foundation on VxRail is lifecycle managed as one complete, automated, turnkey on-premises experience, greatly reducing risk and increasing IT operational efficiency. This tight integration facilitates smooth, rapid deployment and a simplified management experience while also delivering infrastructure agility that can accelerate your organization’s ability to offer IaaS and PaaS.Optimized for performance, scalability, user experience and TCO savings, Cloud Foundation on VxRail incorporates many unique Dell EMC and VMware jointly engineered integration features that simplify, streamline and automate the operations of your entire SDDC stack with end-to-end lifecycle management. In its recent releases, VMware has made architectural updates to Cloud Foundation that marry well with core VxRail functionality, such as networking flexibility enabling Dell EMC networking  benefits, as well as deployment options ranging from appliance . Another example of the synergistic relationship between the two companies is the synchronous release of VxRail and VMware software updates, so the latest HCI and cloud software benefits are in customers’ hands sooner. Not only sooner, but better—Cloud Foundation on VxRail is based on VMware SDDC best practices, an approach that is future-proof for next-generation VMware cloud technologies that will be developed around the same architectural design principles.If you’ve determined that hybrid cloud is in your IT organization’s future, I want to leave you with this: the best way to improve service outcomes and reduce operational risk while evolving to a hybrid cloud operating model is by leveraging trusted technologies and operational processes. Dell EMC VxRail is designed with VMware, for VMware, to enhance VMware-enabled organizations’ ability to streamline operations and predictably evolve. Cloud Foundation on VxRail empowers the next step of that evolution.I’ll be attending Dell Technologies World next month to discuss Cloud Foundation on VxRail, as well as other exciting hyperconverged happenings. One of my favorite things about these events is the opportunity it affords to interact with our amazing customers who are leveraging our technology to make a difference in the world. I hope to see you at Dell Technologies World, and look forward to continuing this conversation with you in Las Vegas! Until then…1.ESG, Hybrid Cloud Tipping Point, June 2018last_img read more

California regulators okay early shutdown of GE-owned, 800MW gas-fired power plant

first_imgCalifornia regulators okay early shutdown of GE-owned, 800MW gas-fired power plant FacebookTwitterLinkedInEmailPrint分享S&P Global Market Intelligence ($):The California Energy Commission on Dec. 11 approved the premature decommissioning and demolition of General Electric’s 10-year-old, financially struggling natural gas-fired Inland Empire Energy Center, a more than $500 million generating facility in Riverside County once heralded as the future of the global power sector.Now a different future is unfolding — one in which a large-scale battery storage system is planned to replace the once roughly 800-MW, combined-cycle plant after GE dismantles it over the next year.“Obviously, the repurposing of this site as a battery storage facility will provide significant benefits,” Commissioner Karen Douglas said at a meeting ahead of the agency’s unanimous vote approving GE’s closure plan.The facility will cease power production at the end of 2019 and begin a 12-month decommissioning and demolition process, according to the plan. The company mothballed one of the two units in 2017.Only a quarter to a third of the way into the typical 30- to 40-year lifespan of such assets, the plant’s machinery remains in “pristine condition,” according to the Branford Group, an auctioneer that is helping GE sell still-useful equipment at reduced prices.Inland Empire came online in 2009 amid a gas plant building boom in California that pushed the state’s capacity reserves far beyond what is required for grid reliability. Increasingly under pressure from low-cost renewables, the plant’s early end reflects the investment risks of a gas-fired glut in many regions of the U.S., as identified in a new S&P Global Market Intelligence investigation. [Garrett Hering]More ($): California OKs early end for GE gas plant; big battery peaker plannedlast_img read more

The East Tennessee Road Trip: Smoking Chattanooga

first_imgGuide to the East Tennessee Road Trip Adventure:BRING: Mountain bike, water shoes, courageHIGHLIGHT: Scrambling the Chimney TopsSOUVENIR: Handcrafted beer mugs from Moccasin Bend Brewing (bendbrewingbeer.com)Day OneStart at the Sugarlands Visitor Center on the western edge of Great Smoky Mountains National Park and head up Newfound Gap Road to the Chimney Tops Trail parking lot. This is a four-mile out and back that takes you to the rocky spine of a 4,840-foot knob with stellar views stretching deep into the park. Out of 900 miles of trail inside the park, Chimney Tops is one of the most stunning short hikes. Start by following and crossing Walker Prong for a mile as it makes its way into the West Fork of the Pigeon River, then ditch the creek and start climbing the mountain in earnest. You’ll gain 1,335 feet on your way to the ridge. The trail gets rootier and rockier the higher you climb, until eventually you’re scrambling hand over hand on solid rock with vertigo-inducing exposure. Hop and scramble your way across the spine of the mountain, pausing for a sack lunch with impeccable views.Post-hike, set up your tent in Elkmont Campground ($17), then drive just west of the park to Townsend, where you’ll splurge on one of the finest meals in East Tennessee at Dancing Bear Lodge. The menu changes nightly depending on what the chef pulls from his partner farms, but expect something to the tune of cornmeal-dusted rainbow trout over grits.Day TwoHead south along US 411, skirting the edge of the Smokies to the Ocoee River Gorge, where the Ocoee offers class IV whitewater winding through steep and green mountains. The Ocoee is dam-released, so check tva.gov for the recreational release schedule. If you can, go on a weekend when the Upper Ocoee is flowing, allowing you to do the Upper/Middle combo trip for 8.5 miles of class III-IV that includes the ’96 Olympic canoe and kayak course as well as big-hit rapids like Grumpy’s and Humongous. And keep an eye out for the new breed of whitewater SUP paddlers who test the limits of SUP on the Ocoee all summer long.Pitch a tent at the Thunder Rock Campground, inside the gorge on the banks of the river ($12). And bring your mountain bike. The Thunder Rock Express is the highlight of the Tanasi trail system, which begins and ends at the campground. The screaming 1.5-mile downhill is well worth the sweat equity it takes to climb out of the gorge.Day ThreeKeep the bike lubed for your final day, when you’ll hit the ever-expanding Raccoon Mountain Trail System just outside of Chattanooga. SORBA Chattanooga has built 22 miles of singletrack on TVA land above downtown, with more to come in the future. The Chunky Freeride area offers steep downhills, big jumps and overhead drops over natural boulders. The Small Intestine Trail is the exact opposite, with smooth, flowing singletrack cut through a tight forest. Bust out a couple of loops, then drop into downtown Chattanooga for a mini brewery tour that includes the Chattanooga Brewing Company in the hip North Shore neighborhood, the inventive Moccasin Bend Brewing at the base of Lookout Mountain, and Terminal Brewhouse in the up and coming Southside neighborhood. Grab a dog or two at Good Dog, where the meat and all the fixings are harvested within 100 miles of the shop. After the beer tour, settle down for the night at The Crash Pad, a boutique hostel that caters to adventure-minded travelers (bunks start at $27).Want more adventure? Check out our full list of road trip guides!last_img read more

Take a deep breath, it’s just another rule

first_imgMy inbox has been quite full recently, as credit unions are gearing up for the implementation of the Military Lending Act revisions which are effective at the beginning of October.  That is to be expected, as the revised rule impacts credit unions much more significantly than it had in the past.However, the degree of apprehension I have been sensing from credit unions is quite high, and that is unfortunate.  I believe that much of this anxiety is caused by the lack of clarification and guidance on the part of the Department of Defense.  Although we’ve endured significant mortgage lending rules in recent years, the CFPB was very good about providing resources and communication regarding their expectations.  While at times we may have hoped for even more, their charts and “plain language” small entity compliance guides were quite helpful.  Unfortunately, with the MLA revisions, we’ve been left to make some interpretations and judgment calls based upon the language which exists.Although information is a little harder to come by, there are a few resources which might be helpful.   First, and foremost is the final rule itself.  It may appear a bit daunting at 54 pages but, reading the final rule can provide valuable insight.  Particularly in this case, where guidance is limited.  The rule can provide an awareness of the DoD’s thought process and expectations, which may assist credit unions in determining the spirit of the rule.   For example, the following language provides background on the DoD’s decision to include credit insurance premiums in the MAPR calculation: continue reading » ShareShareSharePrintMailGooglePinterestDiggRedditStumbleuponDeliciousBufferTumblrlast_img read more

PREMIUMSatriamandala Museum offers night tour to lure visitors

first_imgFacebook Google On Friday afternoon, 38-year-old Sisi Farabi took her 4-year-old son to Satriamandala Museum, which exhibits a vast collection of the Indonesian Military’s (TNI) equipment and weapons, in Mampang Prapatan, South Jakarta.Th museum, managed by the TNI’s center for history, is central to the TNI’s history, displaying the belongings of former president Gen. Soeharto, the first military commander-in-chief Gen. Soedirman, the first chief of staff of the then-Indonesian Armed Forces (ABRI) Gen. Oerip Soemohardjo and former defense minister Gen. Abdul Haris Nasution.The museum welcomes visitors with dioramas, including one about the declaration of independence on Aug. 17, 1945 and the Battle of Surabaya on Nov. 10, 1970. It also has rooms showing rifles and handguns, as well as swords and sharpened bamboo, in addition to an exhibition of military transportation … Log in with your social account Forgot Password ? LOG INDon’t have an account? Register here Linkedin Topics : Museum TNI Indonesian-Military night-at-the-museumlast_img read more

Four women at forefront of Israel’s Arab political surge

first_imgIsrael’s youngest lawmaker Aida Touma, a Christian Arab-Israeli re-elected on March 2, is on the List’s four-person team negotiating with Gantz.A women’s activist before entering parliament in 2015, Touma stressed that the List’s incoming female MPs “are from all walks of life and are capable and serious representatives of the whole of society”.The Joint List is an alliance of parties representing both Muslim and Christian Arab Israelis, as well as some Jewish leftists.Its members range from Islamists to communists.One member, Sundus Salih, is at 34 about to become Israel’s youngest lawmaker.The mother of three is from Al-Mashhad town near Nazareth and has a masters in science and technology.”There are differences between the [List’s] parties… but we four women unite and agree on most things,” Salih told AFP.”As a mother and a teacher I am worried by the proliferation of violence and guns.”   The fourth member of the quartet almost didn’t make it on the ballot.Hiba Yazbek, also from Nazareth, was blocked as a candidate by the Central Elections Committee over Facebook posts allegedly supporting terrorism.She denied the charges and won an appeal. Now she is determined to use her Knesset seat to fight for Arab rights.”We intend to translate our great electoral strength into political positions that reinforce our position as Arabs in this country and confront the right wing and its agendas,” she told AFP. ‘Lack of options’ Like other Arab-Israeli MPs, Khatib speaks fluent Hebrew.She studied social services at Tel Aviv University, specializing in women’s support. In parliament, she wants to tackle issues ranging from violence in Arab neighborhoods to poverty and housing.”Sixty-four percent of women are excluded from work, not because they don’t want to work but due to conditions and lack of travel options,” she said, referring to the Arab population.Inflexible hours mean Arab women often need to leave for work before their children go to school, she said.”These issues must be put on the table at the Knesset.”The new parliament will be sworn in next week but some fear it will last only a few months.No bloc has a 61-seat majority, a repeat of inconclusive polls in April and September 2019.Netanyahu’s right-wing Likud won 36 seats and controls a total of 58, counting its allies. Netanyahu’s main rival Benny Gantz, who heads Blue and White, needs the Joint List’s support to even consider forming a government.The List’s head Ayman Odeh has indicated he could back Gantz under certain conditions.  Topics : The List draws most of its support from Israel’s roughly 20-percent Arab minority — who have Israeli citizenship but are Palestinian by heritage.Israel’s Arab minority complain of discrimination and accuse Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu of treating them as second-class citizens.Netanyahu counters that his government has invested more in Arab neighborhoods than any in the history of the Jewish state.The List’s elected women told AFP that while they will focus on their constituent’s concerns, they also care about wider issues in Israeli society.”Do not make the veil a barrier. Look at the capabilities of the veil’s wearer — their ethics, work, skills and attitudes,” said Khatib, a 54-year-old mother of four.There are “religious Jewish women in the Knesset”, she added. “We didn’t hear any comment about them.””We must deal with people first as human beings.”center_img But in March 2 elections, one party managed to double its female representation, albeit from a low base.The predominantly Arab Joint List won 15 of the Knesset’s 120-seats, the alliance’s best-ever performance and up from 13 during stalemate election last September.The List also counts four women among its incoming MPs, up from two in September.Khatib will be part of the Knesset’s largest ever contingent of Arab women, including three Joint List colleagues and a Druze woman from the centrist Blue and White party. Newly elected Israeli MP Iman al-Khatib, greeting supporters in Nazareth, shook hands with women but tapped her heart with her right hand for men.The gestures signaled the Muslim identity of the woman who is about to become Israel’s first hijab-wearing MP and part of a group of Arab women poised to expand their voice in Israel’s male-dominated politics.All major parties in the Jewish state are led by men, with women making up only 25 percent of lawmakers in the Knesset, or parliament.last_img read more

Werner eyes Chelsea dynasty after spending spree

first_imgChelsea striker Timo Werner believes the Blues have assembled a team capable of winning titles for years to come after a £200 million ($260 million) spending spree in an otherwise depressed transfer market.Werner made a £50 million move from RB Leipzig in June and has been joined in London by German international teammate Kai Havertz, Hakim Ziyech, Ben Chilwell and Thiago Silva.”I’ve come here to win titles. Chelsea is a big club and a club that always wants to win,” said Werner on Wednesday. “Now we have a very strong team and a young team that can develop, and can go through a period of a long time where we can stay together, because we are young and we want to win.”Chelsea, who beat Brighton 3-1 in Werner’s debut on Monday, face an early test of their Premier League title credentials when reigning champions Liverpool travel to Stamford Bridge on Sunday.Werner was linked with a move to Anfield for many months before he joined Chelsea, but was reportedly convinced by Frank Lampard’s plans to make him his first-choice striker.”I decided to join Chelsea because for me it was the best decision I can take,” he said. “Not only because of the style of football but also because of what they have shown to me. “I think it was a hard decision in the end but I am very, very excited and proud that I decided like this because now when I have been here for at least one-and-a-half months, it feels right.”It feels good. The team is brilliant. We have some very good, but always calm and nice players. It is fun to play here at Chelsea and to be part of the team.”We can do very well with this team in the next few months and the next few years.”And Werner stressed the importance of the role Lampard played in convincing him to choose Chelsea after a 34-goal season for Leipzig.”He called me a lot, we had a lot of conversations, he texted me a lot and he sent me some videos where he could show me what style of football he wants to play,” said the German.”For me those were important things to know about moving to a new club because I loved to play for Leipzig and everything was well for me there.”So it was really important for me to come to a team with a vision that fits my style of football.”And I think the whole Premier League fits very well to my style of football, because it’s so fast, and fast players have really good space.”center_img Topics :last_img read more

PDV Caribe embarks on Health and Safety Month

first_img 93 Views   no discussions Tweet Sharing is caring! PDV Caribe Dominica Limited has embarked on a new initiative geared at enhancing the quality of health and safety standards within its organization, its clients and the population with the implementation of a Health and Safety Month.The month of March has been designated as Health and Safety Month under the theme “Your safety is our safety”.Health, Safety and Security Officer Kendall Austrie and HR Leader Denise CharlesThe purpose for observing a health and safety month as explained by the Human Resource Leader at PDV Caribe Dominica Denise Charles is part of the company’s goal to ensure that safety is a top priority.Charles further noted; “We notice that in Dominica safety awareness needs to be increased and by educating our people I believe that we can build that safety culture so that people will know what they can do”.As part of the month activities for safety awareness, Health, Safety and Security Officer Kendall Austrie who was also present at Tuesday’s press conference noted that a series of training and educational seminars will be held with a view to educating participants on the “value of health and safe practices within our industry and our operations”.He highlighted the training areas which are Defensive Driving, General Wellness, Work Related Stress Management, Fire Management Training and Prevention, CPR & First Aid Training, Disaster Management & Handling of Hazardous Material, Hazardous Communication and Handling of Compressed Gas (LPG), Environmental Protection, Stress Management. Kendall AustrieThe Defensive Driving course which began yesterday and will continue for the rest of this week is being facilitated by St. Lucican Martin Joseph a British Army trained driving instructor who according to Austrie, “is very familiar with our road conditions here in Dominica” and who has also conducted previous training with other companies on island.Although these training sessions are designed specifically for persons employed within the sector of selling and distribution of liquid petroleum gases, Charles believes that the entire island will benefit if these safety guidelines are implemented by participants.“We hope that we would have re-trained our employees re-emphasize the need for safety to them and our clients and by extension. We have to lead and we hope that by leading in that training that it will be reflected in the personnel that have been trained including our LPG agents all around the island who serve LPG to the public.” According to Charles, the intended outcome of the month’s activities is to “build a robust safety culture not only for PDV Caribe but for Dominica”.The theoretical training sessions will be held at the Orchard Restaurant in Morne Daniel, Canefield while the practical sessions will be at the PDV Caribe plant in Jimmit.Dominica Vibes News Sharecenter_img Share LocalNews PDV Caribe embarks on Health and Safety Month by: – March 6, 2012 Sharelast_img read more