Tottenham Hotspur Announces Fun88 as Club’s Asian Betting and Gaming Partner

We believe that our knowledge of developing ทางเข้า fun88,

interactive and engaging gaming platforms will provide Tottenham

Hotspur’s international fan base with an exciting, new gaming

experience.”

The two year agreement, which begins immediately, will see the two

organisations work together to engage with Asian sports fans through a

range of online and offline activities which will include launching a

co-branded gaming microsite.

Links:

Since the launch of Fun88 in 2008, it has successfully merged

entertainment with an unsurpassed gaming experience into a portal that

is both instantly recognisable and the choice of many Asian based

players. With its unique blend of sportsbook, casino and live dealer

products and with more innovative gaming platforms under development

such as peer to peer gaming and poker networks, Fun88 promises to

deliver the ultimate gaming experience for users each and every time.

Nick Lee, founder of www.Fun88.com

commented: “I am proud to announce Fun88′s partnership with Tottenham

Hotspur, as the Club’s Asian betting and gaming partner. This

partnership brings together one of Asia’s top online gaming companies

and Tottenham Hotspur, one of the most exciting and attacking clubs in

the English Premier League.

About Fun88

Daniel Levy, Chairman, Tottenham Hotspur, said: “We are delighted that

Fun88 will become an Official Club Partner. This is the first time the

Club has signed a regional partnership in Asia and is largely down to

the significant increase we have seen in the growth of our international

fan base over the past few years.

-ENDS-

. Fun88 Sportsbook: www.fun88.com/Sportsbook

Fun88 Casino: www.fun88.com/Casino

-ENDS-

Notes to Editors:

LONDON–(BUSINESS WIRE)–Tottenham Hotspur Football Club today announced that Fun88, a leading

Asian gaming company, will become the Club’s Official Asian Betting and

Gaming Partner.

“Over 60% of our global fan base comes from Asia and together with the

Club’s reach through the Barclays Premier League broadcast platform, we

are ideally placed to support Fun88′s continued growth in the Asian

marketplace.”

Fun88 Promotions: www.fun88.com/Promo

“We are looking forward to working with Club to launch a new bespoke

betting microsite https://www.fun88no1.com

Understanding the Basic Rules to Play Backgammon

There are many online casinos that offer this game online too. A player suffers a regular loss when he is able to bear off some checkers before losing. A winner does not gain points, but a loser loses points. When a player’s checker lands on an open point, then an opponent’s checker, if one is present, is blotted and moved to the bar, which is the part of the board that divides it in half. This will increase the player’s chances of handing out his opponent the loss of a gammon or a backgammon. The first player to bear off all his checkers is the winner. This has led to many people appealing for it to be treated under stringent gambling laws..

Lost Turn

A player will lose his turn if he fails to get his blotted checker; that is, the checker on the bar, back in m88a game. A blot can return in play only on an open point, failing which the player loses the turn. The points that the player going first is determined by value of both the dice that were rolled. One half of the board serves as the home board for both the teams, while the other half serves as an outer board. If the player was unable to bear off any checkers before losing, then he loses ‘a gammon’, and if a player has one or multiple checkers in the opponent’s home court or on the bar, then, in such a case, the player loses a backgammon.

How to Play Backgammon

Starting off

To start the game, both players will roll a die simultaneously. The position that a blotted checker can assume after being back in the game will depend on the value of a die from the rolled dice. Both players can have the same or separate pair of dice.

The board consists of 24 triangles, known as points. The use of a doubling cube started in the early 1900s.

Backgammon is majorly a gambling game. He played 2 Backgammon games with his wife, daily.

Backgammon is one of the oldest board games around, and can be played between two players. A player can also lose a turn if there are no open points to move his checkers. When a player has his checker blotted, the only move that he is allowed to make is to get his blotted checker back in the game. The values on the faces of a doubling cube are 2, 4, 8, 16, 32, and 64. The origin of game dates back around 5,000 years. When a checker is on the home board, the player has to move the checker by the lower value among the number presented on the dice. 24 points are divided into 4 quadrants, with 6 points each. The player has an option to either move two checkers by the value that is present on each die face, or a single checker to match the dice value. The faces of the doubling cube increase by the factor by two. The player having a higher die value will move his checkers first. The checkers move on points in a counter-clockwise direction in a horse-shoe-shaped path, depending on the value of the rolled dice. This decreases the vulnerability of his own checkers.

The Bar

A point having one or no opponent checker is an open point. The points are numbered from the start of the home board of a player as the 1st point, and the start of the opponent’s home board as the 24th point, in a counter-clockwise direction.

Fun Fact

Winner

A player has to bring all 15 checkers in play to his home board before bearing them off. Players then take alternate turns to roll the dice and move their checkers. In casinos, it is almost as famous as card games like Poker, Baccarat, or Blackjack. It is just a marker, not a die. There are 30 discs or checkers, divided into two colors, 15 of each color. A player can deliberately lose a turn if he/she wishes not to move his checker to an open point.

Charles Darwin was a Backgammon enthusiast. In case of same value, the players roll again. However, on occasion, the wagers are increased to 128 and 256 times as well.

Setup

The order in which checkers are placed are: 2 checkers on the 24th point, 3 checkers on the 8th point, while 5 checkers placed on the 6th and 13th point each. Generally, wagers are not raised beyond two times in a game of Backgammon. A player must also try not to create his own blots. In case doubles are rolled by a player during the game, then the player has the option to move up to 4 checkers by points equal to value of a die.

When setting up wagers, each point is specified with a specific value. The current form of the game was adopted in 17th Century England. If a 1 is rolled, it will be the starting point; if 2 is rolled then the 2nd point, and so on.

Gambling

The doubling cube was introduced to raise the wagers that are gambled for in a Backgammon game. In Backgammon, though strategy matters, the game itself is based more on a matter of chance and luck. The blotted checker returns in the game from the home board. It has been modified in terms of rules and strategies. With the online version now available, the game has become more sought after. Some service providers also provide this game purely for entertainment purposes, without anyone having to wager anything.

Strategy

An important Backgammon strategy is to try to make a hit on the vulnerable blot in an open point

Website link https://www.m88u.com

New Rules For Online Gambling? Video

ทางเข้า m88 All of the ills and all of the sins of gambling are multiplied.

– you know that Americans gamble as much as a trillion dollars every year and now thanks to a big change those numbers are about to — turning your living room into a virtual casino. Starting now. Thick crude eclipse Hollywood’s annual box office home and the online gaming bonanza has already begun in Nevada and DC. Once legal just online poker alone will generate up to twelve billion dollars a year legally for the states within. Now we’ll have to fight that addiction had told Matt Gutman ABC news client.

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“id”:15262773,”title”:”New Rules For Online Gambling?”,”duration”:”1:29″,”description”:”Americans might be placing their bets from the comfort of their home computer. Which gives states the authority to legalize online gambling and — were about to see this explosion. We’re millions of Americans can now roll the dice — up the ante. Of Internet gambling sweep across the nation illegal online poker already six billion dollar a year industry say experts. The comfort of their own home. “,”url”:”/WNT/video/rules-online-gambling-americans-place-bets-at-home-computer-laws-us-15262773″,”section”:”WNT”,”mediaType”:”Default”

New Rules For Online Gambling? Video – ABC News

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Skip to this video now . On line. You — you have to pay for a cab to get to the casino. Hours — An estimated fifteen million Americans are already considered at risk for gambling addiction. At least — bricks and mortar casinos you can see somebody. — this case — office which is part of the problem. Here it’s. Here’s ABC’s back up. At a table for 36 hours you can’t see somebody in their home in their underwear a drink and a soda for 3640. Critics are reeling at the Justice Department’s recent decision. Sin city can come right into your home

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Would you prefer 4D of Malaysia? Or Online betting still?

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***Great Job Search Tips

David Couper is a career coach and writer who for the last twenty years has worked in Europe, Asia, and in the USA with major organizations including the BBC, Fuji Television, Mattel, Sony, and Warner Bros. His works on interpersonal skills, counseling in the workplace, and management issues (published by Connaught, Gower, HRD Press, Longman, Macmillan/Pearson Publishing, Oxford University Press) have been translated into Swedish, Polish, and Danish, and published in the UK and the USA.

Additional Resources covering Career Change can be found at:

David Couper, the Official Guide To Career Change

..

Website Directory for Career Change

He has dual US/UK citizenship and speaks French and Japanese.

He has successfully coached individuals at all levels including CEOs of major companies wanting a new challenge, frustrated souls wanting to make their dream come true, and front-line employees laid off and desperate to get a job.

David has a degree in Communication, a postgraduate qualification in education, is certified in a number of training technologies, and has a Masters in Psychology. He is a member of the American Society of Training and Development, Society of Human Resources Professional, Writers Guild and the British Academy of Film and Television.

Products for Career Change

Articles on Career Change

Discussion Board

David has published seven books

Youbet.com Taps Former Ladbroke Executive for International Development Post

Prior to his involvement with the pari-mutuel industry, Chaffee held account management and leadership positions with several marketing and advertising firms, including Ketchum Communications in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, where he still resides.

Forward-Looking Statements

Youbet.com members enjoy features that include commingled track pools, live audio/video, up-to-the-minute track information, real-time wagering information, phone wagering and value-added handicapping products. More information on Youbet.com can be found at www.youbet.com. Chaffee to direct the company’s international business development.

This press release contains certain forward-looking statements. . The combination is the precise skill set we need to take advantage of opportunities for revenue growth in Europe, Asia and South America.”

With Ladbroke USA, Chaffee was responsible for corporate development and strategic alliances. Such factors include, without limitation, the following: the timely development and market acceptance of new products and technologies; our ability to secure financing on terms acceptable to us; our ability to control operating expenses; increased competition in the advance deposit wagering business; a decline in the public acceptance of wagering; wagering ceasing to be approved in jurisdictions where Youbet currently operates; the limitation, conditioning or suspension of any of Youbet’s licenses; increases in or new taxes imposed on wagering revenues; loss or retirement of key executives; and a decline in the general economy. Youbet does not undertake, and specifically disclaims any obligation, to publicly release the result of any revisions that may be made to any forward-looking statements to reflect the occurrence of anticipated or unanticipated events or circumstances after the date of such statements.

Youbet.com is an official online wagering platform of Churchill Downs Incorporated and the Kentucky Derby. Although Youbet believes the expectations reflected in such forward-looking statements are based upon reasonable assumptions, it can give no assurance that actual results will not differ materially from these expectations.

WOODLAND HILLS, Calif.–(BUSINESS WIRE)–June 30, 2004–Youbet.com, Inc.

Chaffee spent more than a decade (1989-2000) with Ladbroke USA where he rose to Vice President, Director of Account Wagering/Broadcast Operations and was a member of Ladbroke USA’s board of directors. Since August of 2001, Chaffee has been chief operating officer of Business Strategies Group, LLC, a consulting services company that specializes in accelerating growth in business start-ups. Champion and will be responsible for the development of revenue producing strategic relationships in the $134 billion international pari-mutuel wagering market. These forward-looking statements, which are included in accordance with the Safe Harbor provisions of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995, may involve known and unknown risks, uncertainties and other factors that may cause Youbet’s actual results and performance in future periods to be materially different from any future results or performance suggested by the forward-looking statements in this press release. Chaffee will report to company CEO Charles F. Readers are cautioned not to place undue reliance on forward-looking statements, which speak only as of the date of this press release. From time to time, these risks, uncertainties and other factors are discussed in the Company’s filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission. Youbet.com operates TotalAccess(SM), an Oregon-based hub for the acceptance and placement of wagers. Statements containing expressions such as “may,” “will,” “project,” “might,” “expect,” “believe,” “anticipate,” “intend,” “could,” “would,” “estimate,” potential,” “continue” or “pursue,” or the negative or other variations thereof or comparable terminology used in Youbet’s press releases and in its reports filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission are intended to identify forward-looking statements.

Chaffee had PL responsibility as well. Youbet.com is the largest Internet provider of thoroughbred, quarter horse and harness racing content in the United States, as measured by handle data published by the Oregon Racing Commission. He managed the establishment of next-generation call center technologies, television and cable operations, and e-commerce systems. (Nasdaq:UBET) has named former Ladbroke executive Thomas E.

Chaffee’s appointment is effective immediately.

“Chaffee is an experienced racing executive with a substantial background in remote wagering, simulcasting, and broadcasting operations,” Champion said, “and an equally impressive record of business development for a leading international wagering company. Members have the ability to watch and, in most states, the ability to wager on the widest variety of horse racing content available via Youbet.com’s website. He led the team that selected Youbet.com in 1997 to be Ladbroke’s partner in an initiative to create the world’s first online pari-mutuel wagering system. During his tenure, Ladbroke’s USA account wagering activity rose from $13 million to $200 million annually

Are You a Jock, Otter, Bear or Wolf?

Hemsworth stands at a whopping 6’4 and his weight has varied between 195 and 215 pounds according to recent interviews.

Twinks

Gym rats are somewhat similar to gym bunnies but are distinguished by their addiction to working out. They work out to create a physique others will notice and look at. Many bears reject extremely large or obese chubs and do not consider them as part of their subgroup. You have seen him in a number of films and TV shows, most notably Roseanne. While many cubs have a beard, it is not a requirement to fit this category since body hair and huskiness are the dominant features for this gay descriptor.

Type Breakdown: Similar to twinks but a lot more muscular

If this is the case, there is always the “average” category, which is an area that many gay men fall into and simply means that the person is average in most areas, including body weight, height, and hairiness.

Athletic but not super built, a person can be an otter regardless of age and they are considered to be part of the larger bear community. Tweakers are younger gay men that use party drugs, like E and crystal meth and are very thin as a result of not eating enough. This is simply an attempt to offer clarity. A jock can be of any age but they are generally considered to be younger because of their athletic abilities and they are usually linked to playing sports and being active.

Type Breakdown: Super massive, muscular body builders that weigh between 215 and 300 pounds

In gay terms, twinks are younger, slim men with minimal body hair and no hair on the face.

Taylor Lautner (Twilight series) and Sterling Beaumon (Astro Boy) are other pup body type examples.

Cubs are sometimes partnered with bears in passive relationships or with other cubs and they can sometimes be considered an apprentice to a bear.. Interestingly enough, Manganiello played the part of a wolf in the HBO hit series, True Blood.

In the gay world, a wolf is a lean, muscular, sexually aggressive and semi-hairy man of any age or height. Chubs even have their own events, such as Mr. John Candy (deceased), actor from films like Planes, Train Automobiles, is another example of a chub.

David Beckham, the English-born footballer (soccer player) is a good example of a jock body type.

Gym Rats

Type Breakdown: Muscular men addicted to working out; very lean and well-built

In the gay community, bulls are body builders that weigh over 200 pounds. Think of otters being somewhere between cubs and bears. However for gays, being called a jock is a compliment.

In the gay world, chubs are a distinct subgroup within the gay male population and are often confused with bears. Also, if you are so inclined, please like Mister Hollywood on Facebook.

Years ago, the term “jock” used to have a negative connotation in the straight world. Chub International. They’re usually between 18 and the mid-20′s, give or take a few years. It is possible that some readers could feel they don’t fall into any of the above categories.

Type Breakdown: Younger, slender gay men that have little or no body or facial hair; typically self-obsessed

Type Breakdown: A young (or younger-looking) male that is husky and almost always hairy. Subgroups of wolves can be found in aging wolves, which are gay men with wolf-like features that are starting to turn a bit gray.

Gym bunnies and gym rats are closely related. It is entirely possible that your group is not listed. You might recall him from the soap opera Young and the Restless and he now appears on CBS’s Criminal Minds.

Jock

Type Breakdown: Attractive, athletic, sports-oriented, typically (but not necessarily) younger

We don’t have a lot of male celebrity examples of cubs. At the end of this article, there’s a link to a gay census website where you can punch in your information to find out your potential category.

You often hear seasoned gay men tell very young gay men who are just coming out things like, “You are just a young pup–you have a lot to learn.” or “You are just a pup–you’re just a baby!”

And hey . if you would like to learn more about your body type, you can always take the Gay Cliques Census online which tells you where you may fit in, based on the data you put in.

How many times have you approached your friends and asked them, “What am I? Which group do I fall into? And what the heck is a wolf?”

John Travolta (born in 1954) is a good example of a bear. He used to be a professional wrestler with the World Wrestling Federation (WWF).

Note that the term “daddy” not used here.

And then there are full-on silver or gray wolves, terms that describes an older wolf with gray or white facial and body hair.

For gay men, jocks are almost always considered attractive, muscular males with low body fat. They are not necessarily part of the bear community and usually herd together as a bull might in its natural environment.

Joe Manganiello would be a celebrity example of a younger wolf, since he’s lean, hairy, and attractive. Notice in the photograph how he is slightly hairy and might even trim to reduce the hair on his chest and torso. Pups are known for their lack of experience in the gay world, as well as for being naïve, energetic and cute. . He is 5’5”and was born in Los Angeles.

Along with chubs, I should note a group of people called chasers. At one time, Travolta was considered to be a gym bunny or even a wolf, but as he’s grown older he’s developed key bear body traits (especially a belly).

In the gay world, an otter is considered a thin gay male that is hairy and may or may not use a trimmer to shorten body hair. But many gay men often wonder what these terms actually mean.

After conducting extensive research on body types, speaking to several therapists who work on gay men’s issues at 2nd Story Counseling in Chicago, using high-grade statistical analysis software, and combing through the Internet to scan the latest keywords from Google’s algorithms, Mister Hollywood is ready to reveal the most up-to-date and widely known typology groups that gay men use to describe one another today.

Other celebrity bear body types include the now-deceased James Gandolfini (best known for his role as Tony Soprano) and actor and comedian Robin Williams (also deceased). . . These individuals are attracted romantically and physically to chubs and are typically much smaller than chubs.

There are several subtypes of bear, which include:

Maybe you’ve even sent them a bathroom mirror selfie wanting some answers.

A great video to stream or download is The Adonis Factor, a documentary that goes into fairly deep detail on gay body types.

Some make the mistake of confusing twinks and twunks with tweakers when they’re actually not related. According to my research, an extremely large chub is referred to as a superchub.

Type Breakdown: Fairly young gay males that tend to be energetic, cute, and naive

Hugh Jackman might be good example of an older or aging wolf. A wrap on the twink is that many think the world revolves around them.

Type Breakdown: Muscular, sculpted physique that is connected with working out as opposed to sports. This might surprise some people who typically think of otters as smooth.

Shemar Moore might be a good example of a gym bunny body. No doubt you’ve heard of some of these labels, like jock, otter, bear, cub, wolf, and so forth. Some otters have beards, and some do not.

Otters usually have smaller frames when compared to the heavier cub or bear and look a lot like what you would see in a picture of an otter . You might remember Scott from a number of movies and TV shows, including films like Into the Blue and Hawaii Five-0. For example, sugar twunk describes an affectionate twunk.

Type Breakdown: Thin or athletic (not super built) and hairy, part of the larger bear community.

Jack Black might be a good example of a cub. They can be any age but are usually younger than 50. He’s the mid-40s hottie who you saw in the X-Men series and The Wolverine.

Here are a few subtypes of cubs:

Twunks are a more muscular version of twinks, and some have assigned feminine and masculine characteristics to twunks. Most wolves have facial hair. Their primary motive for long, daily lifting sessions relates more to an obsessive need to get bigger. They are typically lean and very well-built. hairy. Some might also describe wolves as slimmer bears but there is a lot of disagreement on this.

Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson, the 40-something California-born movie star and wrestler, is a good example of a bull body type. Usually younger than 50.

Muscle Bears: Bears whose size comes from muscle and not from fat

Polar Bears: Older bears with gray or white facial and body hair

Sugar Bears: Effeminate bears that are shunned by more masculine bears

Twunks

Can you identify your gay body type? Let’s jump right in . This is because a “daddy” is not connected to a specific body type. They’re not as massive as bears and are certainly smaller than cubs.

Though they share some similarities to cubs, pups are not involved in the bear community and likely do not even know this community exists.

30-something, Australian-born actor Chris Hemsworth, based on his appearance in the movie Thor, is another good example of a potential bull body type. May or may not have a beard

Justin Bieber has at times exhibited both a twink and a twunk body type, depending on what photograph you’re looking at of him and when the photo was taken.

Masculinity is also a key feature of bears, and some bears are so caught up in projecting a masculine image that they shun other would-be bears who appear to be too effeminate. Almost all cubs aspire to become bears within the larger bear community.

Bunnies are similar to jocks except that their fitness is not usually connected to sports. . They can be any age and normally have facial hair.

To simplify the process (and for giggles), I’ve used popular film and television celebrity photos as a point of reference. Like a rat lives in the basement, gym rats live at the gym and are always there. You will often find gym bunnies at the beach and they are typically considered pretty.

- Mister Hollywood

Please note that I have not included all of the groups here and the ones that are here may have a subgroup. Wolves, bears, chubs, and otters can all technically be daddies.

Please be sure to share this article with your friends to help educate them and others on the many gay body types within the community. . The straight equivalent would be a muscle head.

Characteristically, a bear is a large, possibly heavy gay man that could also be muscular. Gym bunnies spend an obsessive amount of time working on their physique and are muscular and sculpted as a result.

Early 20-something Joe Jonas is a good example of a pup body type. Finally, some may disagree with these labels as there continues to be ongoing friction regarding what they mean. They may have similar body types to twinks (see end of article) however, pups usually are super new to the gay world whereas twinks are not.

Type Breakdown: An overweight or obese man, not to be confused with bears

Gym bunnies are native to both straight and gay worlds. . While they may enjoy attention from others in public, that is not their motivation for being fit. That said, many bears consider themselves to be harmless and even playful.

Scott Caan might be a good example of an otter. Joe and his brother Nick starred in their own Disney Channel Original Series, Jonas.

Muscle Cubs: Body size is attributable to muscular composition as opposed to body fat

Sugar Cubs: Effeminate cubs

John Goodman is a good example of a chub or superchub. However, one does not need to be a tweaker to tweak.

Type Breakdown: Semi-hairy, muscular, lean, attractive, and sexually aggressive, wolves are sometimes considered as part of the larger bear community or on the bear spectrum. A fairly large protruding belly is a defining characteristic of a bear.

A pup is a gay male who is fairly young–we’re talking late teens to early 20s more or less. Gay Body Types

Gay men often use descriptive terms to identify and label other men within the wider gay community. Again, the primary difference is that gym bunnies care most about sculpting their bodies whereas gym rats are typically concerned with adding muscle size in hopes of becoming a bull.

Some Final Thoughts

There has always been disagreement within the gay community around descriptive terms for body types and their associated characteristics. Born in Santa Monica, California you might recognize Jack Black from movies like School of Rock and High Fidelity.

Type Breakdown: Larger, usually heavy or muscular, very masculine

For gay men, the term cub is used to describe a younger (or younger-looking) male that is usually husky or heavier in body type and is almost always hairy

Handicapping the Global Midterms – CBS News

forces to a draw in the old city of Najaf. 

Drone Makers:

Israel:  The question here is straightforward enough: Just how badly can Prime Minister Benjamin “Bibi” Netanyahu and his government treat the Obama administration (and the president himself) and get away with it?  Right now, the answer seems to be, as badly as it wants.  After all, Washington put almost all its global diplomatic apples in one ill-woven negotiating basket, named it making progress on a two-state solution to the Israel/Palestine problem, started talks, and then offered Israel a package of goodies of a sort that would normally only be given away deep into negotiations, if at all, for nothing more than a two-month extension of the Israeli settlement-construction freeze. 

The real question is: Can the prime minister play out this version of the game until 2012 in hopes that Obama will lose out and a new U.S. He and his circle of former Special Ops types flew to Paris to greet NATO allies (for whom, it seems, he had nothing but contempt), drank hard, and vented their feelings toward the Obama administration, all in the presence of a Rolling Stone reporter.  Next thing you know, the president has canned his war commander, putting him momentarily in the loser’s circle — and that was his good fortune. Then, the general was appointed Afghan War commander by Barack Obama and, under the worst of circumstances, tried to implement his boss’s textbook version of counterinsurgency doctrine (see COIN and Petraeus, General David, below).  He actually cut back radically on the U.S. General Stanley McChrystal: And here’s another heartwarming winner’s circle story.  Once upon a time, McChrystal was essentially the U.S. This piece first appeared on TomDispatch.

You can’t turn on the TV news or pick up a paper these days without stumbling across the latest political poll and the pros explaining how to parse it, or some set of commentators, pundits, and reporters placing their bets on the midterm elections.  The media, of course, loves a political horse race and, as those 2010 midterms grow ever closer, you can easily feel like you’re not catching the news but visiting an Off-Track Betting parlor.

Fortified by rounds of new polls and all those talking heads calibrating and recalibrating prospective winners and losers, seats “leaning Democratic” and “leaning Republican,” the election season has essentially become an endless handicapping session.  This is how American politics is now framed — as a months or years-long serial election for which November 2nd is a kind of hangover.  Then, only weeks after the results are in, the next set of polls will be out and election 2012, the Big Show, will be on the agenda with all the regular handicappers starting to gather at all the usual places.

If, more than nine years later, the Taliban — the Taliban! — is attracting groups that theoretically loath it, have few cultural affinities with it, and long fought or opposed it, then you know that the American campaign in Afghanistan has hit its nadir.  Thanks to us and our man in Kabul, the Taliban is increasingly the fallback position, the lesser of two disasters, for Afghan nationalists.  This helps explain why more than $27 billion dollars in American training funds hasn’t produced an Afghan military or police force capable of or willing to fight, while Taliban guerrillas, lacking such aid, fight fiercely anyway.

The Global Economy: I wouldn’t even think about handicapping this one or guessing what it might be on the cusp of.  After all, Asian economies (minus Japan) are heating up, as are a number of developing ones like Brazil’s (with capital flowing to such places in problematic amounts); meanwhile, the American economy is cold as a tomb, and Europe is teetering at the edge of who knows what.  If this isn’t the definition of a jerry-built Rube-Goldberg-version of a global system, what is?  Put your money down if you want, but you’ll get no odds here.

Osama bin Laden: 

The Taliban: 

Copyright 2010 CBS. media, among others, part of a rising drumbeat of “progress” propaganda from the general’s headquarters.

And it’s only gotten worse (or, from the Taliban point of view, better) ever since.  Yes, they are now getting pounded by a heightened American bombing campaign, a Special Operations night-raids-and-assassination campaign, and pressure from newly surging U.S. air war in Afghanistan in an attempt to kill far less of the civilians he was supposed to “protect” and have a better shot at winning “hearts and minds.”

Who woulda thunk it?  More than nine years after 9/11, Osama bin Laden and his number two compadre, Ayman al-Zawahiri, are believed to be alive, well, and living comfortably in the Pakistani borderlands with not a cave in sight, according to the best guesstimate of a “NATO official who has day-to-day responsibility for the war in Afghanistan.”  With the globe’s “sole superpower” eternally on his trail — admittedly, the Bush administration took a few years off from the “hunt” to crash and burn in Iraq — he’s a prospective global winner just for staying alive.  But before we close the books on him, he gets extra points for a singular accomplishment: with modest funds and a few thousand ragtag masked recruits, swinging on monkey bars and clambering over obstacles in “camps” in Afghanistan, he managed to lure the United States into two financially disastrous, inconclusive wars, one in its eighth year, the other in its tenth.  To give credit where it’s due, he had help from the Bush administration with its dominatrix-like global fantasies.  Still, it’s not often that someone can make his dreams your nightmares on such a scale.

Remember that old witticism of the neocons of the ascendant Bush moment back in 2003: “Everyone wants to go to Baghdad.  Real men want to go to Tehran”?  Well, it’s turned out to be truer than they ever imagined.  Just recently, for instance, Iraqi caretaker prime minister, Nouri al-Maliki, went to Tehran to try to hammer out a deal to keep his position (see Sadr, Muqtada al-, below).  It’s undeniable that Iran, a moderate-sized regional power the Bush administration expected to crush and instead found itself struggling with by proxy in Iraq for years, now has a preponderant position of influence there.  Despite so many billions of dollars and American lives, not to speak of years of covert destabilization campaigns aimed at Iran, Tehran seems to have outmaneuvered Washington in Baghdad (and perhaps in Lebanon as well).  Call that an on-going win against the odds.

Muqtada al-Sadr:  Here’s a heartwarming winner’s circle story about a highly experienced political operator, still known in the U.S. (AP Photo/Karim Kadim)

AP Photo/Karim Kadim

If America’s wars are eternal field laboratories for new weaponry, then the grand winners of the latest round of wars are the drone makers.  General Atomics Aeronautical Systems, the jewel in the crown of Southern California’s drone industry, now employs 10,000 workers and runs double shifts in, as W.J.  We’re definitely talking global winner here.

Prospective Winners

Iran (in Iraq): 

The result: utter frustration.  The Taliban grew, Afghans remained miserably unhappy, and American troops hated his new war-fighting policy which meant they couldn’t call in air support when they wanted it. air strikes.  Instead, he’s loosed the U.S. fueled by Pentagon spending — at least $20 billion since 2001 — and billions more chipped in by the CIA and Congress.”  Washington has been plunking down more than $5 billion a year for its drone purchases, the development of future drone technology, and the carrying out of 24/7 robot assassination campaigns as well as a full-scale Terminator war in the Pakistani borderlands. 

China:

Tom Engelhardt, co-founder of the American Empire Project, runs the Nation Institute’s TomDispatch.com.  His latest book is The American Way of War: How Bush’s Wars Became Obama’s (Haymarket Books). Obama kept a promise but took a risk in boldly declaring an end to 7 1/2 years of war in Iraq and asserting that America had turned the page both at home and abroad on the costly, divisive conflict.  He was shown the door out of Afghanistan before the going got worse.  He is now in the process of retooling himself via a teaching position at the Jackson Institute for Global Affairs at Yale University as a budding leadership guru and inspirational speaker. Air Force on the Taliban, opted to try to pound them with anything available, pushed for escalation in the form of “hot pursuit” across the Pakistani border, upped Special Operations “capture or kill” raids, and generally left COIN in a ditch.  Think of his new tactics as BKJ for bomb-kill-jaw — the jawing being about “peace talks” and aimed at influential sectors of the U.S. troop drawdowns to a minimum in 2011, he has countermanded former war commander McChrystal’s COIN-ish attempt to radically scale back U.S. 1, 2010. All rights reserved.

Well-connected, savvy, and willing to shift tactics on a moment’s notice, Petraeus is a figure to contend with in Washington, our most political general since I don’t know when.  Like Israeli Prime Minister Netanyahu, he may be playing a cagey hand to extend matters through 2012, when a president ready to fight on till hell freezes over could take office.  He’s a man on the cusp, destined for success, but only a few hops, skips, and jumps ahead of failure.

(By the way, keep an eye on another Bush-era holdover, Secretary of Defense Robert Gates, if you want to gauge what Washington thinks of the war’s “progress.”  Just a month ago, he was publicly muttering about retirement early next year.  He’s not a man who will want to preside over disaster in Afghanistan.  If he does leave early in 2011, just assume that the war is headed for the toilet and, having supported his war commanders in their surge strategy through 2009 and 2010, he’s getting out while the going is still good and his reputation intact.)

Here’s another crew heading toward the winner’s circle after yet another typically fraud-wracked Afghan parliamentary election conferring even less legitimacy on President Hamid Karzai’s toothless government in Kabul.  Think of the Taliban as the miracle story of the global backlands, the phoenix of extreme Islamic fundamentalist movements.  After all, in November 2001, when the Taliban were swept out of Kabul, the movement couldn’t have been more thoroughly discredited.  Afghans were generally sick of their harsh rule and abusive ways and, if reports can be believed, relieved, even overjoyed, to be rid of them (whatever Afghans thought about their country being invaded).  But when night fell in perhaps 2005-2006, they were back, retooled and remarkably effective.. President Barack Obama’s televised speech in Baghdad, Iraq, Wednesday, Sept. Hennigan of the Los Angeles Times writes, a “fast-growing business… midterms behind them, life could get tougher for Bibi. 

With the Obama administration schizophrenically poised between partnership and poison — policies of “hot pursuit” across the Pakistani border and placation, showering the Pakistani military with yet more weaponry and cutting off some units from any aid at all — anything is possible.  Armed to the teeth, clobbered by nature, beset by fundamentalist guerrillas, surrounded by potential enemies, and unraveling, democratic and ever at the edge of military rule, Pakistan is the greatest unknown of the Greater Middle East (even if it is in South Asia).  If it’s on the cusp of hell, then, like it or not, Washington will be, too.

He himself was hunted by the U.S. military’s assassin-in-chief.  For five years he commanded the Pentagon’s super-secret Joint Special Operations Command which, among other things, ran what Seymour Hersh called an “executive assassination wing” out of Vice President Dick Cheney’s office. press as the “anti-American cleric,” who just couldn’t be kept down.  Sadr led an armed Shiite movement of the poor in Iraq that, in 2004, actively fought U.S. military and, at one point during the years when Washington ruled in Baghdad, warrants were even put out for his arrest in a murder case.  Still, the guy survived, as did his movement, armed and then un- (or less) armed.  In 2007, he packed his bags and moved to the safety of neighboring Iran to “study” and move up in Shia clerical ranks.  In the most recent Iraqi elections, now seven months past, for a parliament that has yet to meet, his movement won more than 10% of the vote and with that he was declared a “kingmaker.”  He has always unwaveringly called for a full American withdrawal from his country.  Now, with the potential power to return Nouri al-Maliki (for whom he has no love) to the prime ministership, he is evidently insisting that Washington retain not a single future base in Iraq — and the Obama administration is twitching with discomfort.

Here’s the bad news when it comes to China — a weak third quarter dropped the growth rate of its gross domestic product to 9.6%.  Yep, you read that right: only 9.6% (down from 10.3% in the second quarter).  For comparison, the U.S rate of growth leaped from 1.7% in the second quarter to 2.3% in the third quarter, with some experts predicting no growth or even shrinkage by year’s end.  Make no mistake, China has its lurking problems, including an overheating urban real-estate market verging on bubbledom (which, post-2008, should cause any leadership to shudder) and tens of millions of peasants left in dismal poverty in the long decades when “to get rich” was “glorious.” 

Pakistan: Only recently 20% underwater, Pakistan is in a protracted military, intelligence, and policy dance with the U.S., the Afghans, the Taliban, India, and god knows who else so intricate that only a contortionist could appreciate it.  For Washington, Pakistan is an enigma curled in a conundrum wrapped in a roti and sprinkled with hot pepper. 

These “precision” weapons are capable of taking out people, including civilians in the vicinity, from thousands of miles away.  The drones themselves — termed by CIA Director Leon Panetta “the only game in town” when it comes to stopping al-Qaeda — turn out to be capable of settling nothing.  For every bad guy they kill, they kill civilians as well, seeding new enemies in what is essentially a war to create future terrorists.  But that hardly matters.  Terminator wars are hot and the drone, as a product, is definitely a global winner.  Not only are American companies starting to export the craft to allies willing to pay in global hotspots, but other countries are lining up to create drone industries of their own.  Expect the friendly skies to continue to fill.

Still, the country has managed to pass Japan for number-two-global-economic-power status, to corner a startling range of future global energy reserves so that its economy can drink deep for decades to come, and to forge a front-running position in various renewable-energy fields.  Its leaders have accomplished all this thanks to economic muscle, diplomacy, and cash (think: bribes) without sending its soldiers abroad or fighting a war (or even a skirmish) overseas.  They have even learned how to be thoroughly belligerent while relying only on economic power.  Check out, for instance, the over-the-top way they crushed Japan in a recent stand-off over a Chinese trawler captain in Japanese custody, wielding only the threat to withhold rare earth metals (necessary to various advanced industrial processes), 95%-97% of which are, at the moment, produced by China. (“Few people can speak about leadership, teamwork, and international affairs with as much insight as General Stanley McChrystal…”)

If you’re a typical American of a certain age laid off in today’s bad times, the likelihood of getting a half-decent job is next to nil (and retraining isn’t going to help much either).  On the other hand, if you begin high enough and, say, the president of the United States axes you, all’s well with the world.

On the Cusp

General David Petraeus:  The Great Surgifier of Baghdad and the Seer of Kabul is now, it seems, in something of a rush.  For one thing, his fabulous 2006-2008 surge in Iraq turns out to have been for the benefit of Iran, not Washington (see Iran in Iraq above).  In addition, as members of the Sunni Awakening Movement reportedly peel off in disillusionment or disgust with the present largely Shiite government and rejoin the insurgency in significant numbers, his modest success is threatening to unravel behind him — and so is American support for the Afghan War he now commands, according to the opinion polls.

Doesn’t it strike you as odd, though, that this mania for handicapping remains so parochially electoral?  After all, it could be applied to so many things, including the state of the world at large as seen from Washington.  So consider this my one-man tip sheet on what you could think of as the global midterms, focused on prospective winners and losers, as well as those “on the cusp,” including crucial countries and key personalities.

An Iraqi man and his wife watch U.S. president will be ready to give away the store?

Iran (not in Iraq): Nasty government, shaky economy beset by international sanctions, poor choices and poor planning, irritated population, enemies with malice aforethought, and an embattled peaceful nuclear program that could be headed for “breakout” capacity versus fabulous reserves of oil and natural gas and integration into the great Eurasian energy grid as well as into the energy-eager plans of China, Russia, Pakistan, and India.  It’s anybody’s bet.

As a result, according to Washington pundit (and Petraeus-lover) David Ignatius, he’s making a “strategic pivot” — a decorous phrase — in Afghanistan.  Give him credit for daring — or desperation.  He may be known as the progenitor of the Army’s present counterinsurgency strategy, or COIN, the man who dusted off that failed, long discarded doctrine from the Vietnam era, made it thrillingly sexy, complete with new manual, and elevated it to a central position in Army planning for years to come, but he’s not a man to let consistency stand in his way.  Seeing the need for quick signs of “progress” in Afghanistan (where the war has been going desperately badly), both for a December Obama administration policy review and to keep any U.S. forces in the southern part of the country.  Nonetheless, as the Wall Street Journal reported recently, they are achieving some remarkable successes in northern Afghanistan.  After all, the Taliban had always been considered a Pashtun tribal movement and while there are Pashtuns in the north, they are a distinct minority.  The Journal nonetheless reports: “[T]he insurgency is now drawing ethnic Uzbeks, Tajiks, and other minorities previously seen as unsympathetic to the rebel cause.”

The result: Israeli settlers are again building up a storm on the West Bank while the Netanyahu government plays even harder to get.  If the Obama administration can’t do better than this, then at the next TomDispatch handicapping session Israel has a reasonable shot at being elevated into the winner’s circle.  If Obama and his team ever get tired of being kicked around by Netanyahu Co., especially with the U.S

Soccer-Real Madrid Champions League factfiles | Reuters

Also played

David Mateos (Spain) 1/0 1/0 1/0 (now with

AEK Athens)

CL match record: P160 W88 D33 L39 F311 A182

Strikers

Cristiano Ronaldo (Portugal) 9/5 15/12 67/27 Man Utd

Karim Benzema (France) 7/6 12/7 31/19 O Lyon

Gonzalo Higuain (Argentina) 5/2 15/3 15/3

Emmanuel Adebayor (Togo) 3/2 3/2 41/11 Monaco/

Arsenal

Kaka (Brazil) 1/0 8/1 63/24 AC Milan

Juan Carlos (Spain) 0/0 0/0 0/0

Juanfran (Spain) 0/0 0/0 0/0

Alvaro Morata (Spain) 0/0 0/0 0/0

Goalkeepers A/G1 A/G2 A/G3 Other clubs

Iker Casillas (Spain) 8/0 108/0 108/0

Jerzy Dudek (Poland) 1/0 2/0 47/0 Feyenoord/

Real Madrid (Spain)

Werder

Angel Di Maria (Argentina) 8/3 8/3 14/3 Benfica

Sami Khedira (Germany) 7/0 7/0 18/0 Stuttgart

Pedro Leon (Spain) 4/1 4/1 4/1

Esteban Granero (Spain) 3/0 7/0 7/0

Mahamadou Diarra (Mali) 2/0 23/1 56/5 O Lyon

Sergio Canales (Spain) 2/0 2/0 2/0

Pablo Sarabia (Spain) 1/0 1/0 1/0

Fernando Gago (Argentina) 0/0 16/0 16/0

Midfielders

Xabi Alonso (Spain) 8/0 15/0 62/3 R Sociedad/

(A/G=CL Appearances/goals, 1=current season, 2=with current

club, 3=total career)

Liverpool

Antonio Adan (Spain) 1/0 1/0 1/0

Tomas Mejias (Spain) 0/0 0/0 0/0

Squad

April 11 Real Madrid players’ individual

factfiles:

(Compiled by Paul Radford; Editing by Toby Davis)

Champions League appearances: 15

CL record: 3 titles (1998, 2000, 2002), 3 finals, 5

semi-finals, 9 quarter-finals

Other European titles: European Cup 6 (1956, 1957, 1958,

1959, 1960, 1966), UEFA Cup 2 (1985, 1986)

Coach: Jose Mourinho (Portugal)

Overall match record: P427 W240 D77 L110 F885 A468

Liverpool

Lassana Diarra (France) 8/0 14/0 24/0 Chelsea/

CL Record: P8 W6 D2 L0

Arsenal

Mesut Ozil (Germany) 8/1 8/1 18/1 Schalke/

Defenders

Marcelo (Brazil) 9/1 26/1 26/1

Pepe (Portugal) 7/0 22/0 40/2 Porto

Ricardo Carvalho (Portugal) 7/0 7/0 76/3

Porto/Chelsea

Sergio Ramos (Spain) 6/0 41/3 41/3

Alvaro Arbeloa (Spain) 6/1 12/1 35/1 Liverpool

Raul Albiol (Spain) 3/0 11/1 26/2 Valencia

Ezequiel Garay (Argentina) 1/0 4/0 4/0

(total, including with Porto, Chelsea, Inter Milan, P79 W41

D22 L16)

Hacking by China not necessarily a “hostile act” – CNN Security Clearance

infrastructure, it would not necessarily be a “hostile act.”

Asked by Republican Senator Lindsey Graham from South Carolina if it could be proven that the PLA was behind a hacking of the defense infrastructure, would it be considered a “hostile act,” Dempsey said it wasn’t necessarily..

Gen. this week and asked Dempsey if there was anything he wanted to pass on to Xi Jinping.

The U.S. Martin Dempsey, the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, said he “believe(s) someone in China is hacking into our systems and stealing technology and intellectual property which at this point is a crime.”

“Happy Valentine’s Day,” Dempsey replied.

By Adam Levine

But Dempsey told the Senate Armed Services Committee where he was testifying that he cannot attribute the Chinese hacking to China’s military, the People’s Liberation Army.

“I would consider it a crime,” Dempsey said. top military officer said should China’s military be found to be behind hacks into the U.S. Asked what he would consider a hostile act, Dempsey said “attacking our critical infrastructure” would be a act worthy of a similar response.

Graham noted he was about to lunch with the Vice President of China who is in the U.S

Australia’s Guy Sebastian nails Eurovision performance, wins fifth place

SBS telecast hosts Julia Zemiro and Sam Pang, who oversaw coverage of the event, speculated that given Australia had only been granted a one year wildcard entry, China might be a future contender.

In Australia’s first — and perhaps, only — time participating in the Eurovision Song Contest, singer Guy Sebastian belted his single “Tonight Again,” winning the country a well-deserved fifth place.. any Eurovision points. according to Fairfax Media, but none to the Queen’s homeland.

– UKIP Trumpton (@Trumpton_UKIP) May 23, 2015

Since you’re new #AUS: People usually give all their points to the UK, FYI. Half of Europe is jealous we got Bruno Mars. That’s post-colonialism reparations for you. “Last night I just decided to breathe it all out, let it out and have fun … That was a world class performance #AUS #SBSEurovision

– Ryan Nelson (@RyanJohnNelson) May 23, 2015

How I feel about #AUS beating us in #eurovision2015 pic.twitter.com/buaxKTZ3hf

– Katie Barry (@katiebarrybarry) May 23, 2015

If #AUS don’t give us 12 points we should have a referendum to expel them from the Commonwealth #Eurovision2015

In the end, all that matters is Sebastian was so good the earth moved.

Was the relocation of #Aus part of the #Eurovision deal? pic.twitter.com/esxJei6Nce

– Dan Maher (@MrPointyHead) May 23, 2015

I think it’s nice Australia have their own Bruno Mars.

– Guy Sebastian (@GuySebastian) May 24, 2015

Australia was offered a wildcard entry into the 60-year-old event, and Sebastian had to overcome a crowd doubtful about his right to take to the stage — given Australia is, um, not in fact in Europe — but he proved up to the task, winning everyone over with his pork pie hat and jaunty dance moves.

No worries, though, because Australia came fifth on its very first outing at the beloved singing competition. #AUS #Eurovision

– Brett Leppard (@TheBrettLeppard) May 23, 2015

Look, don’t be disappointed we’re not polling strongly. The crowd went wild. #SBSEurovision

The reviews of Sebastian’s performance from the Twitter public were enthusiastic and welcoming to the newbie.

@GuySebastian you rocked that stage man. Unfair — he’s at least Down Under’s very own Justin Timberlake.

Bruno Mars called – he wanted to congratulate you on your excellent performance and says keep up the good work. one tough act to follow is right!! #AUS #Eurovision2015

Eurovision isn’t all love and music, however. #Eurovision2015

– #SBSEurovision (@MolksTVTalk) May 23, 2015

Have something to add to this story? Share it in the comments.

See also: Douze points: The funniest Twitter reviews from Eurovision 2015

– cameron adams (@cameron_adams) May 23, 2015

– markmacleo (@markmacleo) May 23, 2015

But many also compared Sebastian to an Australian Bruno Mars. It’s a song about embracing the moment and not worrying about tomorrow.”

Australia’s Guy Sebastian nails Eurovision performance, wins fifth place

It wasn’t enough to take out the top spot, however, as Sweden’s M?ns Zelmerl?w emerged victorious, followed by Russia, Italy, Belgium and Australia.

Thanks everyone for your kind messages I’ve had the best time here in Europe so far. — MOLLY STERLING (@SterlingMolly) May 23, 2015

Whatever the outcome @GuySebastian just showed the globe how bloody good he is. Top 5! Thanks Europe for making Australia so welcome

Whether Australia will compete in the 2016 Eurovision competition remains unclear. It’s kind of A Thing. The event also saw some colonial disagreements emerge between Australia and the U.K, especially when Australia flew in the face of history and did not hand the U.K. Pretty shabby.

We gave #Aus 10 points and they gave us nothing. Shabby, Britain. Australia gave votes to Georgia, Israel, Estonia, Norway, Serbia, Belgium, Latvia, Italy, Russia and Sweden. #Eurovision2015

– Tesco (@Tesco) May 23, 2015

“As a singer, you are in unfamiliar territory, on an unfamiliar stage, in a very unfamiliar competition that we’re outsiders to,” Sebastian told SBS. came a poor 24th out of 27. And the U.K

Labs behaving badly. – Free Online Library

From the start, scientists at Los Alamos felt undermined by and resentful of Teller and his new facility, which they saw as radical and potentially dangerous. Oppenheimer remained more cautious, and Teller soon became convinced that Los Alamos, whose director, Norris Bradbury, was an Oppenheimer ally, was insufficiently dedicated to the H-bomb project. Doing so would not only provide the cost and security improvements associated with consolidation of special nuclear material, k would also, in all likelihood, make it easier to reduce the number of weapons scientists employed by the complex–and therefore the amount of federal money for “make-work” designed solely to keep those scientists busy.

The antagonism has its roots in the relationship between the two fathers of the atomic program, Edward Teller and Robert Oppenheimer.

If elected officials ever get around to consolidating our weapons complex, they’ll have to decide whether to also consolidate the design labs. But some members of the task force privately support such a step–which would almost certainly mean shuttering Livermore, the smaller of the two. Livermore scientists, for their part, saw their counterparts at Los Alamos as stodgy and risk-averse. With the help of Ernest Lawrence, a Nobel Prize-winning physicist and California scientific entrepreneur, Teller persuaded Congress to create a second design lab in Livermore, Calif., which would go full-speed ahead on the H-bomb project. In the late 1940s, Teller began advocating the immediate development of a hydrogen bomb, in response to the news that Russia had built an atomic weapon.

COPYRIGHT 2006 Washington Monthly Company

No portion of this article can be reproduced without the express written permission from the copyright holder.

The bureaucratic competition is not always productive, however. At the end of the Cold War, Livermore scientists reviewed the Los Alamos design for the W88 warhead. The question will be whether these advantages will outweigh the benefits of competition.

In the long and storied history of bureaucratic infighting, few contests have been more vitriolic than the one between our two major nuclear weapons design labs, Los Alamos and Lawrence Livermore.

When the H-bomb was eventually produced, Livermore was given most of the credit. All rights reserved.

Copyright 2006, Gale Group. ‘And if I want to hear what’s wrong with the DAHRT at Los Alamos, I’ll go to people at Livermore.”

The ultimate truth, say historians, is that the rancor was probably worth it: Thanks to competition between the two labs, America more quickly produced the H-bomb, and therefore had a more effective deterrent against the Soviet Union sooner. (The production facilities largely work on separate aspects of the process, so there’s no real competition taking place.) The Overskei report neither recommended nor discouraged consolidating the two labs into one. They concluded, wrongly as it turned out, that the design was unsafe, and advised against building it, a judgment that was received at Los Alamos as a slap in the face. But having separate design labs, and a relationship of competition–even antagonism–between them, does make it easier for outsiders to gain access to information about their shortcomings.” If I want to hear what’s wrong with the NIF at Livermore, my best option is to go to people at Los Alamos,” says Hugh Gusterson, an MIT anthropologist who studies the culture of the weapons labs. Gale Group is a Thomson Corporation Company.

. This infuriated scientists at Los Alamos, who had in fact run the thermonuclear tests that had helped pave the way for the bomb

FOXNews.com – Quality of Nuclear Devices Questioned – Politics | Republican Party | Democratic Party

The scientist spoke on condition of anonymity because of the sensitive nature of the issue.

Because the U.S. The original triggers, all made at the now-closed Rocky Flats facility in Colorado, were hammered into precise form. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

Raymond Jeanloz of the University of California at Berkeley, a longtime adviser to the government on nuclear weapons issues, said in an interview he is not surprised there have been some modification in the W88 warhead, but that does not mean it is less reliable.

Sunday, January 20, 2008

Kevin Roark, a spokesman for the Los Alamos weapons program said the changes in specifications “have been fully explored, fully vetted and fully accepted by NNSA and engineering analysis (conducted) by us.”

A single trigger made at Rocky Flats cost less than $4 million. The last of the original triggers were manufactured in the late 1980s.

In an e-mail response to the watchdog group’s claims, Bernard Pleau, a spokesman for the agency’s office at Los Alamos, said the changes do not “compromise the integrity of the parts. She posed that question in a letter last Friday to Energy Secretary Samuel Bodman.

Officials say the cost figures reflect the fact that new facilities and a new process for making the replacement triggers had to be developed. no longer conducts underground nuclear tests, the Los Alamos scientists had to rely on other sources to replicate the original triggers and guarantee that the replacements would be as reliable as the old. This process is viewed by metallurgists as producing a stronger product.

The government will not say how many W88 warheads it has. halted in 1992, and through a different process than the replacements. Los Alamos National Laboratory: http://www.lanl.gov/

Any variation or flaw in the pit could cause a warhead not to detonate properly or to detonate with less explosive power than expected.

“With this large number of waivers, how is it possible to objectively tell whether the pit will even work?” said Danielle Brian, executive director of the group that monitors nuclear weapons-related activities. Scientists at Los Alamos and at the government’s Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory in California concluded the change did not degrade the reliability of the triggers, according to NNSA.

On the Net:

“The manufacturing process for the W88 has been incredibly, thoroughly vetted,” said Jeanloz. For years, however, testing the warhead’s components to ensure the weapon produces the intended blast instead of a fizzle has been complicated by a lack of replacement plutonium triggers.

Last summer, the first replacement plutonium trigger in 18 years received “diamond stamp” approval signaling it was ready for use in a warhead. The original triggers were made with the benefit of underground nuclear testing, which the U.S. That difference in cost was noted by Brian in the letter to the energy secretary.

Project on Government Oversight: http://www.pogo.org

The government acknowledges differences between the old triggers and their replacements.

Since last summer’s announcement, the Los Alamos lab has made 10 additional W88 triggers. That, in turn, creates the high temperatures and pressure to ignite a “secondary” nuclear component. So far, nine have earned the “diamond stamp” from the National Nuclear Security Administration, which oversees the lab’s programs. Such approval means they are ready to use.

___

The change in manufacturing process, from wrought to cast, has been a subject of debate and extensive analysis among those involved in nuclear weapons. All rights reserved. He was on a panel that last year concluded the plutonium in warhead triggers is much sturdier than previously thought, with a life span of as much 100 years.

The new ones were made by using a mold to cast the grapefruit-size plutonium sphere. These means included small-scale plutonium tests, technical data from past underground tests, and computer codes and models.

The Project on Government Oversight says it was told by some Los Alamos scientists that the trigger certified last July and known as the W88 pit needed 72 waivers from the specifications used for the original triggers, including 53 engineering-related changes.

By H. The number has been estimated at about 400, in addition to an estimated 3,200 W76 warheads that also are designed for the submarine-based Trident II missile.

WASHINGTON – 

Resting atop the Trident II missile, the W88 warhead is among the mainstays of the country’s submarine-based nuclear arsenal. At Los Alamos, it has cost an estimated $430 million over 10 years to certify the first trigger. To scientists at Los Alamos National Laboratory in New Mexico, that was a milestone to celebrate. It meant the warheads, after testing that makes the original trigger unsuitable for reuse, could be reassembled with a new trigger and put back into service.

In a warhead’s detonation, a conventional explosive packaged around the pit compresses the plutonium inward, creating enough pressure for an atomic chain reaction. JOSEF HEBERT, Associated Press Writer

National Nuclear Security Administration: http://www.nnsa.doe.gov/

But Los Alamos and agency officials bristle at suggestions that the new triggers might be less reliable or have flaws that could affect their performance.

Precise manufacture of the trigger is essential.

The agency acknowledged there were “more than 70 engineering authorizations” _ as it characterizes the waivers _ approved in the new W88 pit certification and that this was a “relative high number.”

A watchdog group now is raising questions about whether the replacement triggers, also known as pits, can be guaranteed to be as reliable as those already in some 400 W88 warheads. The result is a a massive hydrogen blast.

FOXNews.com – Quality of Nuclear Devices Questioned – Politics | Republican Party | Democratic Party | Political Spectrum

. That required extensive computer modeling and testing to assure precise shape, size and weight and that the triggers meet performance requirements.

At least one other replacement pit required 71 specification waivers, a Los Alamos scientist indirectly involved in the production process told The Associated Press. The bottom line _ the pits produced meet all functional quality requirements for use and are fully accepted by NNSA.”

Copyright 2008 The Associated Press