Saturday, February 27, 2010

Google Launches Chile Earthquake Person Finder

Associated Content’s Marie Anne St. Jean informed many of us about the 8.8 magnitude earthquake that hit central Chile early Saturday morning and reminded us that Haiti’s earthquake registered 7.0 on the Richter scale. More Here.

In response to the earthquake in Chile, Google has launched a web tool to assist in finding people and also to submit information that you may have regarding those affected by the earthquake.

Utilize the Person Finder for Chile here:

The Person Finder for Haiti:

These tools are live and can be utilized immediately. Google has created the tools to be submitted in any site accepting html code.

Social networks across the web have become an invaluable tool in quickly disseminating information and assisting in relief efforts. Twitter was noted as the best source of information shortly after the Haiti earthquake.

Social networks will continue to have an important role in Chile. Twitter is currently utilizing hash-tags #Chile and #earthquake to distribute information about the disaster.

As a result of the 8.8 magnitude earthquake in Chile, 214 deaths had been reported and the toll is rising, but not expected to double from an earlier figure of 122. The 2010 Chile earthquake occurred off the coast of the Maule Region of Chile.

It was the strongest earthquake affecting Chile since the magnitude 9.5 earthquake in 1960, dubbed the Great Chilean Earthquake or the 1960 Valdivia earthquake.

The 1960 earthquake in Chile is the most powerful earthquake ever recorded. It caused tsunamis that severely battered the Chilean coast, with waves up to 82 feet. The main tsunami raced across the Pacific Ocean and devastated Hilo, Hawaii.

Today, The State Department is seeking information on Americans in the quake zone. The U.S. Embassy in Santiago has established a command center and the department established a Chile Earthquake Google Person Finder for people in the quake zone and people seeking information about them. This is the same tool as the finder utilized in the Haiti efforts.

Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton said in a statement, "Our Hemisphere comes together in times of crisis, and we will stand side by side with the people of Chile in this emergency." Clinton leaves for the region Sunday and reports that she will be in close contact with President Bachelet and other leaders.

As always the American Red Cross is on the ground doing what they do best.

David Meltzer, Senior Vice President of International Services at the American Red Cross said, “Thanks to the generosity of the American people who previously donated to our International Relief Fund, we’ve been able to release an initial pledge of $50,000 to help the Chilean people in their hour of need and we stand ready to provide additional assistance.”

Click here to send in donations to the American Red Cross.

Click here for the Google Chile Earthquake Person Finder.

Click here for the Google Haiti Earthquake Person Finder.

Friday, February 26, 2010

NY Governor Paterson to Drop out of Election

Brief details of the scandal that led to NY Governor Paterson’s decision to drop out of the election are as follows:
  • A close aide to Governor Paterson, David Johnson, allegedly violently assaulted a woman last October
  • The woman gave a detailed account of the assault to the police
  • The woman went to court twice to complain that members of Paterson's private security detail were allegedly pressuring her not to press charges
  • Earlier this month, with the woman continuing to press charges, Governor Paterson called the woman personally and spoke to her
  • A few days later, the woman failed to appear for a court hearing and the case was dismissed.

Wednesday, February 24, 2010

Col. Howard Laid to Rest at Arlington National Cemetery

"Today, we're fighting terrorism and the spread of tyranny. We're challenged by market upheaval, joblessness and perhaps hunger. But the human spirit is resilient and can withstand more than sometimes we are able to immediately comprehend."- Col. Robert L. Howard, March 25, 2009, in commemoration of National Medal Day.

"Any nation that does not honor its heroes will not long endure"- Abraham Lincoln

On December 23, 2009, Medal of Honor recipient Col. Robert L. Howard succumbed to pancreatic cancer and died in a hospice located in Waco, Texas. Col. Howard is survived by three children and four grandchildren.

More here: Col. Robert Howard, Nation's Most Decorated Soldier, Falls to Cancer

Old Guard caisson bearing the casket of COL Robert L. Howard, recipient of the Medal of Honor. Photo credit: B275, Wiki Commons

On February 22, 2010, Col. Howard was laid to rest at Arlington National Cemetery. He was wounded 14 times during 54 months of combat duty and five tours in Vietnam. Robert Howard retired from the Army as a full colonel in 2006 after 36 years of service, which includes more than 33 years on airborne status.

Click here to read Howard's biographical sketch, issued by the U.S. Army Special Forces Command (Airborne).

It's not often you'll find me quoting Brian Williams of NBC, but there is no argument with his description of Col. Bob Howard, “the toughest American alive when he was among us.”

Visit here to view video of Brian Williams' tribute to Col. Bob Howard.

Soldiers from the 3rd Infantry Regiment "The Old Guard" render military honors during the funeral of Col. Robert L. Howard Feb. 22. Howard, a Medal of Honor recipient and one of America's most highly decorated Soldiers, was buried in Section 7A of Arlington National Cemetery.

Visit here to view images of the military honors at Arlington

Col. Howard is the only soldier in our nation's history to be nominated for the Congressional Medal of Honor three times for three separate actions.

In 1971, President Nixon awarded Col. Robert L. Howard the Congressional Medal of Honor.

Col. Robert Howard’s Medal of Honor Citation:
For conspicuous gallantry and intrepidity in action at the risk of his life above and beyond the call of duty. 1st Lt. Howard (then Sfc .), distinguished himself while serving as platoon sergeant of an American-Vietnamese platoon which was on a mission to rescue a missing American soldier in enemy controlled territory in the Republic of Vietnam.
The platoon had left its helicopter landing zone and was moving out on its mission when it was attacked by an estimated 2-company force. During the initial engagement, 1st Lt. Howard was wounded and his weapon destroyed by a grenade explosion.
1st Lt. Howard saw his platoon leader had been wounded seriously and was exposed to fire. Although unable to walk, and weaponless, 1st Lt. Howard unhesitatingly crawled through a hail of fire to retrieve his wounded leader.
As 1st Lt. Howard was administering first aid and removing the officer's equipment, an enemy bullet struck 1 of the ammunition pouches on the lieutenant's belt, detonating several magazines of ammunition.
1st Lt. Howard momentarily sought cover and then realizing that he must rejoin the platoon, which had been disorganized by the enemy attack, he again began dragging the seriously wounded officer toward the platoon area.
Through his outstanding example of indomitable courage and bravery, 1st Lt. Howard was able to rally the platoon into an organized defense force. With complete disregard for his safety, 1st Lt. Howard crawled from position to position, administering first aid to the wounded, giving encouragement to the defenders and directing their fire on the encircling enemy.
For 3 1/2 hours, 1st Lt. Howard's small force and supporting aircraft successfully repulsed enemy attacks and finally were in sufficient control to permit the landing of rescue helicopters. 1st Lt. Howard personally supervised the loading of his men and did not leave the bullet-swept landing zone until all were aboard safely.
1st Lt. Howard's gallantry in action, his complete devotion to the welfare of his men at the risk of his life were in keeping with the highest traditions of the military service and reflect great credit on himself, his unit, and the U.S. Army.

Sources: Embedded in content.

Tuesday, February 9, 2010

NYC Schools Closed

Winter storm expected to dump 8-13 inches of snow on the NYC & Long Island area . Mayor Bloomberg and Schools Chancellor Joe Klien announced all NYC Schools will be closed. Private and parochial schools are also closed.

Weather Alert 2010

The White House 2/06/2010 blanketed during the East Coast   Snowmageddon. Photo credit: AP/Alex Brandon
WH, 02-06-2010, blanketed during the East Coast Snowmageddon. Photo credit: AP/Alex Brandon

NY Governor Patterson announced the National Guard will be ready and equipped with humvees, located on Staten Island.

The East Coast's continued Snowmageddon is expected to dump another 20-inches of snow on the DC area. The House of Representatives canceled votes for the week, meaning the chamber will be out of session through Feb. 22

>>>Read More

Tuesday, February 2, 2010

Groundhog Day: Staten Island Chuck

On February 2, shortly after sunrise, New York's most famous rodent, Staten Island Chuck, emerged from his shelter...Keep Reading »

Monday, February 1, 2010

Bloomberg Prompts Obama to Consider Moving KSM Terror Trial

NY Political Buzz Examiner. Check out his debut
article..submitted on Friday...and went live on Monday.

Makes it a bit old news in the world of political buzz..but check out it out.
NY Political Buzz Examiner, Tony Vega

Bloomberg Prompts Obama to Consider Moving KSM Terror Trial

Changing the location of the terror trial is welcomed news to residents and business merchants of Manhattan's Chinatown, NYC's area to be most affected by the trial.

Last month, Chinatown activists were not optimistic about Holder reversing his decision. Area residents even lamented that local officials, including the mayor, do not seem interested in trying to reverse Holder’s decision.

Chinatown residents joined approximately 1,000 demonstrators in front of the federal courthouse at 500 Pearl St. The demonstration was organized by the Staten Island Tea Party.

In November, the White House, without consulting NY officials or anyone in the NYPD, announced the decision to prosecute KSM in a civilian trial at the federal courthouse near Ground Zero. The decision was met with controversy and outrage by many residents and family members of 9/11 victims.

Read More