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Friday, Jul 19th

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Brazil awards rights to develop Belo Monte dam

Indigenous tribes say the Belo Monte dam poses a threat to their way of lifeA consortium of nine companies has won the right to build a hydroelectric dam on a tributary of the Amazon in Brazil. Brazil's electricity regulator said the Norte Energia consortium would build the Belo Monte dam, to which indigenous groups and environmentalists object.

It is led by the state-owned Companhia Hidro Eletrica do Sao Francisco. Officials say the dam on the Xingu River is crucial for development, but critics argue thousands of people will be displaced and an ecosystem damaged.

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D.C. Council approves medical marijuana

D.C. Council approves medical marijuanaThe D.C. Council unanimously approved a bill Tuesday to allow chronically ill patients to receive a doctor's prescription to use marijuana and buy it from a city-sanctioned distribution center.

Under the bill, which passed without debate, a patient who suffers from HIV, glaucoma, cancer or a "chronic and lasting disease" may receive a doctor's recommendation to possess up to 2 ounces of marijuana in a 30-day period.

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U.S. warns Pfizer after children overdosed in study

U.S. health regulators have warned Pfizer Inc over a series of failures that led to the overdosing of at least 13 children in a clinical trial of its antipsychotic drug Geodon, according to a letter made public on Tuesday.

The FDA, in an April 9 warning letter to the world's largest drugmaker, said Pfizer "failed to ensure proper monitoring" of the trial in which several children given overdoses experienced tremors, restless legs and other complications.

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German court drops Afghan air raid probe

Afghan raid killed 142 - many of whom were civiliansGerman prosecutors dropped a criminal case against a Bundeswehr colonel who ordered an air raid in Afghanistan that killed 142 people, many of them civilians. The prosecution office in Karlsruhe concluded Col. Georg Klein and his fellow officers didn't know civilians were at the target site.

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Microbes galore in seas; "spaghetti" mats Pacific

Spaghetti-like bacteria that form whitish mats the size of Greece on the floor of the PacificThe ocean depths are home to myriad species of microbes, mostly hard to see but including spaghetti-like bacteria that form whitish mats the size of Greece on the floor of the Pacific.

The survey, part of a 10-year Census of Marine Life, turned up hosts of unknown microbes, tiny zooplankton, crustaceans, worms, burrowers and larvae, some of them looking like extras in a science fiction movie and underpinning all life in the seas.

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Recycled al-Qaeda: Ayyub al-Masri 'killed' on Sunday, captured in 2008

Abu Ayyub al-MasriHead of al-Qaeda in Iraq 'killed in raid' 19 Apr 2010 The US said that its forces had dealt a devastating blow to al-Qaeda after the terror network’s top two leaders in Iraq were killed in a night-time raid. Abu Ayyub al-Masri, the head of al-Qaeda in Iraq [reported dead in 2007], and Abu Omar al-Baghdadi, his close associate and the purported leader of the Islamic State of Iraq (ISI), were tracked to a safe house near Tikrit, Saddam Hussein’s hometown, on Sunday night. US forces fired two missiles at the house as Iraqi ground troops stormed it.

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How Scientific Is Modern Medicine Really?

How scientific is modern medicine?Doctors today commonly assert that they practice "scientific medicine," and patients think that the medical treatments they receive are "scientifically proven." However, this ideal is a dream, not reality, and a clever and profitable marketing ruse, not fact.

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Noam Chomsky Has ‘Never Seen Anything Like This’

Naom ChomskyNoam Chomsky is America’s greatest intellectual. His massive body of work, which includes nearly 100 books, has for decades deflated and exposed the lies of the power elite and the myths they perpetrate. Chomsky has done this despite being blacklisted by the commercial media, turned into a pariah by the academy and, by his own admission, being a pedantic and at times slightly boring speaker.

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Britain 'hands over prisoners in Afghanistan to face torture'

Britain is handing over Taliban prisoners for tortureBritish troops are handing over Taliban suspects to the Afghan security service to face "horrible abuse" and torture, the High Court has been told. Government denials of such abuse are the result of a "head in the sand" attitude, partly borne out of a close intelligence relationship with the Afghans, the judges were told.

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