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The Bilderberg Group, Bilderberg conference, or Bilderberg Club is an annual private conference of approximately 120 to 140 invited guests from North America and Europe, most of whom are people of influence. About one-third are from government and politics, and two-thirds from finance, industry, labour, education and communications.
The original conference was held at the Hotel de Bilderberg in Oosterbeek, Netherlands, from 29 to 31 May 1954. It was initiated by several people, including Polish politician-in-exile Jzef Retinger, concerned about the growth of anti-Americanism in Western Europe, who proposed an international conference at which leaders from European countries and the United States would be brought together with the aim of promoting Atlanticism better understanding between the cultures of the United States and Western Europe to foster cooperation on political, economic, and defense issues.
Retinger approached Prince Bernhard of the Netherlands who agreed to promote the idea, together with former Belgian Prime Minister Paul Van Zeeland, and the head of Unilever at that time, Dutchman Paul Rijkens. Bernhard in turn contacted Walter Bedell Smith, then head of the CIA, who asked Eisenhower adviser Charles Douglas Jackson to deal with the suggestion. The guest list was to be drawn up by inviting two attendees from each nation, one of each to represent conservative and liberal points of view. Fifty delegates from 11 countries in Western Europe attended the first conference, along with 11 Americans.
The success of the meeting led the organizers to arrange an annual conference. A permanent steering committee was established, with Retinger appointed as permanent secretary. As well as organizing the conference, the steering committee also maintained a register of attendee names and contact details, with the aim of creating an informal network of individuals who could call upon one another in a private capacity. Conferences were held in France, Germany, and Denmark over the following three years. In 1957 the first U.S. conference was held on St.Simons Island, Georgia, with $30,000 from the Ford Foundation. The foundation supplied further funding for the 1959 and 1963 conferences.
Meetings are organized by a steering committee with two members from each of approximately 18 nations. Official posts, in addition to a chairman, include an Honorary Secretary General. There is no such category in the group’s rules as a “member of the group”. The only category that exists is “member of the Steering Committee”. In addition to the committee, there also exists a separate advisory group, though membership overlaps.
Dutch economist Ernst van der Beugel became permanent secretary in 1960, upon Retinger’s death. Prince Bernhard continued to serve as the meeting’s chairman until 1976, the year of his involvement in the Lockheed affair. The position of Honorary American Secretary General has been held successively by Joseph E. Johnson of the Carnegie Endowment, William Bundy of Princeton, Theodore L. Eliot, Jr., former U.S. Ambassador to Afghanistan, and Casimir A. Yost of Georgetown’s Institute for the Study of Diplomacy.
A 2008 press release from the ‘American Friends of Bilderberg’ stated that “Bilderberg’s only activity is its annual Conference. At the meetings, no resolutions are proposed, no votes taken, and no policy statements issued” and noted that the names of attendees were available to the press. The Bilderberg group’s unofficial headquarters is the University of Leiden in the Netherlands.
According to the ‘American Friends of Bilderberg’, the 2008 agenda dealt “mainly with a nuclear free world, cyber terrorism, Africa, Russia, finance, protectionism, US-EU relations, Afghanistan and Pakistan, Islam and Iran”.
Historically, attendee lists have been weighted towards bankers, politicians, and directors of large businesses.
Heads of state, including King Juan Carlos I of Spain and Queen Beatrix of the Netherlands, have attended meetings. Prominent politicians from North America and Europe are past attendees. In past years, board members from many large publicly traded corporations have attended, including IBM, Xerox, Royal Dutch Shell, Nokia and Daimler.
An Air Show for Showing Off; West Bank's Speed Sisters
http://www.youtube.com/EnglishStudyVN ————————————————— Language Studies International English TOEFL / TOEIC / IELTS Prepar…
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Prosecutor questions woman in Arizona murder case Prosecutor questions woman in Arizona murder case A woman charged in the stabbing and shooting death of her Arizona lover traded barbs with a prosecutor under a withering cross-examination as she struggled to explain why she can recall precise details of her life… A woman charged in the stabbing and shooting death of her Arizona lover traded barbs with a prosecutor under a withering cross-examination as she struggled to explain why she can recall precise details of her life from years… Utah trooper accused of making bogus DUI arrests Utah trooper accused of making bogus DUI arrests A former award-winning Utah state trooper is out of work and facing a major lawsuit. During her 10 years as a Utah state trooper, Lisa Steed built a reputation as an officer with a knack for nabbing drunken motorists in a state with a long tradition of tee totaling and some of the nation’s strictest… Medical copter crashes in Okla., kills 2, hurts 1 Medical copter crashes in Okla., kills 2, hurts 1 Authorities say a medical helicopter has crashed in Oklahoma City, killing two people and injuring a third. A medical helicopter crashed-landed outside of an Oklahoma City nursing home early Friday, killing two people onboard and injuring a third who was pulled from the burning wreckage, officials said. Panetta, NATO partner, differ on troop numbers Panetta, NATO partner, differ on troop numbers Defense Secretary Leon Panetta and his German counterpart offered conflicting accounts Friday of a discussion about how many U.S. and European forces would remain in Afghanistan after the anticipated end of combat… Defense Secretary Leon Panetta and his NATO counterparts are considering leaving 8,000 to 12,000 troops in Afghanistan after 2014, but it was unclear how much of that force would be American, U.S. officials said Friday. Police on hunt for SUV involved in Vegas shooting Police on hunt for SUV involved in Vegas shooting Police searched Friday for a Range Rover with dark tinted windows and custom rims that set off a fiery crash on the Las Vegas Strip when someone in the luxury SUV opened fire on a Maserati in a scene that onlookers… Police searched Friday for a Range Rover with dark tinted windows and custom rims that set off a fiery crash on the Las Vegas Strip when someone in the luxury SUV opened fire on a Maserati in a scene that onlookers described… Most charges dismissed against ex-Blackwater execs Most charges dismissed against ex-Blackwater execs The federal prosecution of five former employees of the private security firm Blackwater has collapsed after the defendants said they were acting at the direction of the CIA by providing five automatic rifles as… The federal prosecution of five former employees of the private security firm Blackwater has collapsed after the defendants said they were acting at the direction of the CIA by providing five automatic rifles as gifts to… Storm slows Midwest commute, buries Plains in snow Storm slows Midwest commute, buries Plains in snow A major snow storm that shuttered airports in Missouri and buried parts of Kansas in knee-deep powder is crawling northeast, promising a messy and possibly dangerous morning commute. A snowstorm left behind varying amounts of snow and ice across the Midwest, but those areas affected were united by one thing Friday morning: difficult travel conditions. Defense: Mayor didn’t know salary was illegal Defense: Mayor didn’t know salary was illegal The unschooled and illiterate former mayor of the scandal-ridden suburban city of Bell had no training that would have alerted him that his huge salary was illegal, his lawyer told a jury in closing arguments. The unschooled and illiterate former mayor of the scandal-ridden suburban city of Bell had no training that would have alerted him that his huge salary was illegal, his lawyer told a jury in closing arguments. Autopsy fails to find Los Angeles tank death cause Autopsy fails to find Los Angeles tank death cause Water lines are being sanitized at a downtown Los Angeles hotel where a Canadian tourist’s body was found, even though tests suggested the water was fine and an official cause of death hasn’t been determined. An autopsy on a Canadian tourist’s body failed to determine whether she was killed or died accidentally in a giant water cistern on top of a downtown Los Angeles hotel roof. Rat tales abound in NYC after Superstorm Sandy Rat tales abound in NYC after Superstorm Sandy At the height of Superstorm Sandy, city residents watching seawater pour into the subway system couldn’t help but wonder: What will become of all the rats? At the height of Superstorm Sandy, city residents watching seawater pour into the subway system couldn’t help but wonder: What will become of all the rats? THE RESET: Deal to delay spending cuts in doubt THE RESET: Deal to delay spending cuts in doubt THE RESET: Chances for a deal to put off big March 1 gov’t spending cuts seem to be dwindling THE RESET: Chances for a deal to put off big March 1 gov’t spending cuts seem to be dwindling Singer Mindy McCready’s tragic end Singer Mindy McCready’s tragic end Country star Mindy McCready dies in apparent suicide after chart-topping career, stormy life Country star Mindy McCready dies in apparent suicide after chart-topping career, stormy life Study: Better TV might improve kids’ behavior Study: Better TV might improve kids’ behavior Study suggests parents can improve kids’ behavior by switching to less violent TV shows Study suggests parents can improve kids’ behavior by switching to less violent TV shows Escape antics of ‘Houdini Horse’ caught on video Escape antics of ‘Houdini Horse’ caught on video ‘Houdini Horse’ at Michigan farm gets attention from video showing her escape-artist antics ‘Houdini Horse’ at Michigan farm gets attention from video showing her escape-artist antics Sheriff: Mindy McCready had apparently shot self Sheriff: Mindy McCready had apparently shot self Sheriff: Singer Mindy McCready died of apparent self-inflicted gunshot wound Sheriff: Singer Mindy McCready died of apparent self-inflicted gunshot wound Dorner confirmed as body in fire Dorner confirmed as body in fire Sheriff says former LA cop Dorner was hiding across street from command post during manhunt Sheriff says former LA cop Dorner was hiding across street from command post during manhunt Passengers slog home after ‘horrible’ Gulf cruise Passengers slog home after ‘horrible’ Gulf cruise Passengers fan out for homes after finally getting off crippled cruise ship at Ala. dock Passengers fan out for homes after finally getting off crippled cruise ship at Ala. dock Jerry Buss, Lakers’ flamboyant owner, dies at 80 Jerry Buss, Lakers’ flamboyant owner, dies at 80 Lakers owner Jerry Buss, who lived Hollywood dream while leading team to 10 titles, dies at 80 Lakers owner Jerry Buss, who lived Hollywood dream while leading team to 10 titles, dies at 80 Asteroid will buzz Earth, miss by 17,150 miles Asteroid will buzz Earth, miss by 17,150 miles Incoming asteroid will miss Earth by 17,150 miles, closest known flyby for something so big Incoming asteroid will miss Earth by 17,150 miles, closest known flyby for something so big JFK memorabilia draws hundreds to Mass. town JFK memorabilia draws hundreds to Mass. town JFK presidential memorabilia draws hundreds to Massachusetts town ahead of auction JFK presidential memorabilia draws hundreds to Massachusetts town ahead of auction By Associated Press
JERUSALEM (AP) – Palestinians rallying in support of four hunger striking prisoners have clashed with Israeli forces in the West Bank and at a holy site in Jerusalem.
Israel’s military said hundreds of Palestinians in Hebron and elsewhere in the West Bank threw rocks at soldiers who responded with tear gas. Palestinian emergency services said dozens were treated for tear gas inhalation and rubber bullet wounds.
In Jerusalem, dozens of Palestinians emerging from Friday prayers threw rocks at officers who responded with stun grenades, police said. That clash was at a key holy site known to Jews as the Temple Mount and to Muslims as the Noble Sanctuary.
Protests have been ongoing for about a week. Israel holds a few thousand Palestinians on charges ranging from rock throwing to deadly attacks.
Copyright 2013 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.
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The gay marriage bill in Rhode Island unanimously passed the House Judiciary Committee on Tuesday afternoon with a 12 to 0 vote.
After overcoming the first hurdle the bill will now go to the House floor for a full vote. This marks the first time in Rhode Island history that gay marriage has ever made it to the House floor for a full vote.
If the bill manages to pass the RI house of Representatives it will move on to a bigger hurdle, passing in the Rhode Island Senate.
In 2011 the same sexed marriage proposal was stalled in the House of Representatives when it was held for further study in the House Judiciary committee. As a result the House Speaker, Gordon Fox, pushed for the approval of civil unions which passed both the House and the Senate. This year Fox along with Gov. Chafee have renewed the push to legalize same sex marriage.
Gay marriage has only seen one true vote in favor or against the bill in Rhode Island’s history. That vote was in 2001 when Congressman Cicilline who was a state representative at the time pushed the House Judiciary Committee to vote in favor or against the gay marriage proposal. Cicilline has the distinction of being the only representative to this day to have a vote on record in favor of the bill, the rest of the House Judiciary committee in 2001 reject the measure.
To mark the historic passage of the bill in the House Judiciary Committee Cicilline released the following statement, ”
“I applaud the action of the House Judiciary Committee. Following President Obama’s inaugural address that called for gay Americans to be treated equally under the law, I am pleased that the House Judiciary Committee has taken the first step towards enacting full marriage equality in our state. This important effort has received the support of a growing number of Rhode Islanders from nearly every political background and religious tradition, and I believe it is time our state recognizes the dignity and value of relationships between committed and loving individuals of the same gender by enacting full marriage equality in Rhode Island.”
Gay marriage has been proposed in the Senate several times but has been held for further study and never seen a vote in favor or against the bill.
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VictorYibril – Creciente Fertil – (The Fertile Crescent) – Ambient Music
The Fertile Crescent is a crescent-shaped region containing the comparatively moist and fertile land of otherwise arid and semi-arid Western Asia, and the Nile Valley and Nile Delta of northeast Africa. The term was first used by University of Chicago archaeologist James Henry Breasted. Having originated in the study of ancient history, the concept soon developed and today retains meanings in international geopolitics and diplomatic relations. In current usage the Fertile Crescent has a minimum extent and a maximum extent. All definitions include Mesopotamia, the land in and around the Tigris and Euphrates rivers. The major nation in this region is Iraq (formerly Mesopotamia), with small portions of Iran near the Persian Gulf, Kuwait to the south and Turkey in the north. More typically the Fertile Crescent includes also the Levantine coast of the Mediterranean Sea, with Syria, Jordan, Israel, Lebanon and the West Bank. Water sources include the Jordan River. At maximum extent, the Fertile Crescent also may include Egypt and the Nile Valley and Delta within it. The inner boundary is delimited by the dry climate of the Syrian Desert to the south. Around the outer boundary are the arid and semi-arid lands of the Alps to the North, the Anatolian highlands to the west, and the Sahara Desert to the west.From:victoryibrilViews:0 0ratingsTime:05:44More inMusic
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Hamas’ latest battle against Israel sparked feverish Palestinian pride that spread beyond the Gaza Strip to the Palestinian Authority-led West Bank.
But it has also deepened a sense here that the authority’s nonviolent, diplomacy-based approach to winning a Palestinian state is increasingly futile.
It is a commonly held view in both territories that the Islamist militants of Hamas which refuses to recognize Israel defeated their enemy, and that they did it with weapons, not words.
“They put Israel in its place. They forced Israel to withdraw,” Amanda Izzat, a 23-year-old university student who was shopping in Ramallah on Saturday, said of Hamas.
Many Palestinians insist the eight-day hostilities will energize the long-frozen pledges of reconciliation between Hamas and its rival Fatah, which leads the authority. But the conflict also underscored how starkly opposed the two factions’ strategies are. In a region where Arab Spring uprisings pushed political Islam to the forefront, some analysts say Fatah’s secular nationalism looks more anachronistic by the day, and Hamas’ sudden strength has raised momentum for a more aggressive, even radical, posture in the Israeli-occupied West Bank.
Hanan Ashrawi, a senior Fatah member, dismissed Islamism as a fad. But she said she is increasingly worried that Palestinians will see armed resistance, which Fatah renounced in 1988, as the only mechanism that appears to win concessions from Israel.
“It would be easy to get the world’s attention by unleashing violence,” Ashrawi said. “But that’s not a tool we want to use. There’s so much tragic loss of life.”
Hamas’s rising profile has posed the most immediate challenge to Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas, who played the role of bystander throughout the crisis. As Hamas’ leader-in-exile, Khaled Meshal, negotiated the cease-fire under the mediation of Cairo’s Islamist-led government, Abbas envoys traveled to Gaza, but he did not. Abbas has not been to the strip since 2006, when Hamas won Palestinian parliamentary elections. Hamas, which Israel and the United States deem a terrorist group, seized control of Gaza one year later.
The Gaza conflict “left Abbas politically naked,” said Mahdi Abdul Hadi, chairman of the Palestinian Academic Society for the Study of International Affairs.
It also eclipsed the buildup to what Abbas and his supporters tout as his own form of resistance to Israel: A bid set to be submitted Thursday at the United Nations General Assembly to upgrade the Palestinians’ standing to non-member state. The resolution, which the Palestinians could use to challenge Israeli actions at the International Criminal Court, is expected to be approved.
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Property for sale in Fourways, Johannesburg – South Africa
Property for sale in Beverley, Fourways Immaculate 3 bedroom double storey family home in sought after secure estate. The property boasts with Oak Veneer wooden floors through-out, open plan kitchen leading onto the lounge with fire place. The left wing of the house consists of a guest toilet, study and TV room. The covered patio over- looks the swimming pool deck and well maintained lush garden with water features running through- out. bull; 3 Bedrooms bull; 2 Bathrooms bull; 1 Guest toilet bull; 1 Study bull; 1 TV room bull; Lounge bull; Dining room bull; Open plan kitchen bull; Double garage bull; Covered patio bull; Swimming pool with wooden deck bull; Well- manicured garden bull; Fire place Johannesburg Property for Sale Contact Details Michelle Blaauw (Agent) Etchells Young Property Brokers Phone: 011 463 0017 Mobile: 0713957951 www.etchellsandyoung.co.zaFrom:Etchells YoungViews:0 0ratingsTime:01:30More inPeople Blogs
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Even if it is defeated, Minnesotas gay-marriage amendment wont help same-sex couples in the state to wed rather, it will merely stop the ban from being added to the states constitution, leaving in place a law defining marriage as the union of a man and a woman.
Despite this, more than $10 million has been raised by gay-marriage supporters and opponents in what may be Minnesotas most expensive ballot issue to date.
A recent poll from the Minneapolis Star-Tribune found a near dead heat among voters, with 47 percent opposed to the amendment, 49 percent in favor, and 4 percent undecided. The polling deadlock sets the stage for a tight contest that exposes what some say may be softening views on whether government should control who can and should be allowed to legally wed.
The fact that it is close is, to me, surprising, observes Larry Jacobs, a political scientist who directs the Center for the Study of Politics and Governance at the University of Minnesota. While Minnesota is economically liberal-leaning, it has long been a conservative social state.
Although the state has many large evangelical Christian churches and was among the states where the right-to-life movement was birthed four decades ago, generational changes, he said, may explain an emerging shift in attitudes.
As we are seeing all over the country, there is very strong support for tolerance toward sexuality and to gay marriage among young people. In Minnesota, that is very clear, Mr. Jacobs said. There has also been a very broad coalition that has come together, including moderate Republicans and businesses.
Among those are the well-known corporation General Mills, which has stepped up publicly to support a defeat of the marriage amendment. This is striking and unusual, Mr. Jacobs adds.
Despite a suggestion that indeed changes in values are occurring in Minnesota, Autumn Leva, a spokeswoman for Minnesota For Marriage, believes plenty of support remains for the measure to pass. Her organizations polling shows them in the mid-50s, where they expected to be less than six weeks away from the Nov. 6 vote.
I think [the poll numbers] reflect the fact that a majority of Minnesotans believe that marriage is a union between a man and a woman, she said. Kids need a mom and a dad. Men and women are not interchangeable.