Tuesday, December 13, 2016

Fw: TheList 4335



The List 4335
To All,
I hope you all had a great weekend
Regards,
skip
 
This Day In Naval History - December 12
1862 - Confederate torpedo (mine) sinks USS Cairo in Yazoo River.
1937 - Japanese aircraft sink USS Panay in Yangtze River near Nanking, China.
1941 - Naval Air Transport Service is established.
1942: Five torpedo boats attack 11 Japanese destroyers off Cape Esperance, Guadalcanal. Motor torpedo boats PT 37 and PT 40 sink Japanese destroyer Terutsuki. In return, the Japanese destroyers Kawakaze and Suzukaze sink PT 44 off Savo Island.
 
1951 - First flight of helicopter with gas-turbine engine at Windsor Locks, CT, demonstrates adaptability of this engine to helicopters.
1972- Captain Eugene A. Cernan, USN, commander of Apollo 17, walks on the Moon. Commander Ronald E. Evans, USN, was the Command Module Pilot. The mission lasted 12 days, 13 hours and 52 minutes. Recovery by HC-1 helicopters from USS Ticonderoga (CVS-14).
·         Today in History December 12
1753
 
George Washington, the adjutant of Virginia, delivers an ultimatum to the French forces at Fort Le Boeuf, south of Lake Erie, reiterating Britain's claim to the entire Ohio River valley.
1770
 
The British soldiers responsible for the "Boston Massacre" are acquitted on murder charges.
1862
 
The Union loses its first ship to a torpedo, USS Cairo, in the Yazoo River.
1863
 
Orders are given in Richmond, Virginia, that no more supplies from the Union should be received by Federal prisoners.
1901
 
Italian inventor Guglielmo Marconi receives the first transatlantic radio transmission in St. John's Newfoundland.
1927
 
Communists forces seize Canton, China.
1930
 
The Spanish Civil War begins as rebels take a border town.
1930
 
The last Allied troops withdraw from the Saar region in Germany.
1931
 
Under pressure from the Communists in Canton, Chiang Kai-shek resigns as president of the Nanking Government but remains the head of the Nationalist government that holds nominal rule over most of China.
1943
 
The German Army launches Operation Winter Tempest, the relief of the Sixth Army trapped in Stalingrad.
1943
 
The exiled Czech government signs a treaty with the Soviet Union for postwar cooperation.
1956
 
The United Nations calls for immediate Soviet withdrawal from Hungary.
1964
 
Kenya becomes a republic.
1964
 
Three Buddhist leaders begin a hunger strike to protest the government in Saigon.
1967
 
The United States ends the airlift of 6,500 men in Vietnam.
1979
 
South Korean Army Major General Chun Doo-hwan, acting without authorization from President Choi Kyu-ha, orders the arrest of Army Chief of Staff General Jeong Seung-hwa, alleging that the chief of staff was involved in the assassination of ex-President Park Chung Hee.
1985
 
Arrow Air Flight 1285 crashes after takeoff at Gander, Newfoundland; among the 256 dead are 236 members of the US Army's 101st Airborne Division.
1991
 
The Russian Federation becomes independent from the USSR.
1995
 
Willie Brown beats incumbent mayor Frank Jordon to become the first African-American mayor of San Francisco.
2000
 
The US Supreme Court announces its decision in Bush v. Gore, effectively ending legal changes to the results of that year's Presidential election.
 
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Monday Morning Humor from Al
A Sunday school teacher asked her class, "What was Jesus' mother's name?"
     One child answered, "Mary."
     The teacher then asked, "Who knows what Jesus' father's name was?"
     A little kid said, "Verge."
     Confused, the teacher asked, "Where did you get that?"
     The kid said, "Well, you know they are always talking about Verge n' Mary."
 
     A minister of a church loved peach brandy. One of his congregants would make him a bottle each Christmas. One year, when the minister went to visit his friend, hoping for his usual Christmas present, he was not disappointed as he unwrapped the homemade brandy. However, his friend told him that he had to thank him for the peach brandy from the pulpit the next Sunday.
     So the next Sunday the minister suddenly remembered that he had to make a public announcement that he was being supplied alcohol from a member of the church. That morning, his friend sat in the church with a grin on his face, waiting to see the minister's embarrassment.
     The minister climbed into the pulpit and said, "Before we begin, I have an announcement. I would very much like to thank my friend, Joe, for his kind gift of peaches... and for the spirit in which they were given!"
 
     There were two blondes who went deep into the frozen woods searching for a Christmas tree... After hours of subzero temperatures and a few close calls with hungry wolves, one blonde turned to the other and said, "I'm chopping down the next tree I see. I don't care whether it's decorated or not!"
 
Signs Santa is Sick of Christmas…
Now relies on a quick Google image search to see if you've been naughty.
Good, bad or on the fence -- everyone gets an AOL CD in their stocking this year.
But I heard him exclaim, ere he drove out of sight, "Yadda, yadda, yadda...."
Sticker on sleigh: "How's my flying? Call 1-800-EAT-SUGARPLUMS"
Former "Naughty/Nice" databases merged into a single "Whatever" database.
Turns Ms. Claus out to work the corner next to the Salvation Army bell ringers.
At midnight on Christmas Eve, gift certificates to Amazon.com magically appear in the e-mail in-boxes of good girls and boys.
On his personal Christmas list: A George Foreman Grill and "The Ultimate Reindeer Cookbook."
He's assigned numbers to all the countries on Earth and is doing the odd ones this year and the even ones next year.
This year's #1 stocking stuffers: Rudolph jerky.
 
Submitted by Skip Leonard:
 
     This is the time of year when we think back to the very first Christmas, when the Three Wise Men-Gaspar, Balthasar and Herb-went to see the baby Jesus, and, according to the Book of Matthew, "presented unto Him gifts; gold, frankincense, and myrrh."
     These are simple words, but if we analyze them carefully, we discover an important, yet often-overlooked, theological fact: There is no mention of wrapping paper.
     If there had been wrapping paper, Matthew would have said so: "And lo, the gifts WERE inside 600 square cubits of paper. "And the paper WAS festooned with pictures of Frosty the Snowman. "And Joseph WAS going to throweth it away, but Mary saith unto him, she saith, 'Holdeth it! That is nice paper! Saveth it for next year!' "And Joseph DID rolleth his eyeballs. "And the baby Jesus was more interested in the paper than, for example, the frankincense."
     But these words do not appear in the Bible, which means that the very first Christmas gifts were NOT wrapped. This is because the people giving those gifts had two important characteristics:
1. They were wise.
2. They were men.
     Men are not big gift wrappers. Men do not understand the point of putting paper on a gift just so somebody else can tear it off. This is not just my opinion: This is a scientific fact based on a statistical survey of two guys I know.
     One is my son, Rob, who said the only time he ever wraps a gift is, quote, "if it's such a poor gift that I don't want to be there when the person opens it."
     The other is my friend Gene Weingarten, who told me he does wrap gifts, but as a matter of principle never takes more than 15 seconds per gift. "No one ever had to wonder which presents daddy wrapped at Christmas," Gene said. "They were the ones that looked like enormous spitballs."
     I also wrap gifts, but because of some defect in my motor skills, I can never COMPLETELY wrap them. I can take a gift the size of a deck of cards and put it the exact center of a piece of wrapping paper the size of a regulation volleyball court, but when I am done folding and taping, you can still see a sector of the gift peeking out. (Sometimes I camouflage this sector with a marking pen.) If I had been an ancient Egyptian in the field of mummies, the lower half of the Pharaoh's body would be covered only by Scotch tape.
     On the other hand, if you give my wife a 12-inch square of wrapping paper, she can wrap a C-130 cargo plane. My wife, like many women, actually LIKES wrapping things. If she gives you a gift that requires batteries, she wraps the batteries separately, which to me is very close to being a symptom of mental illness. If it were possible, my wife would wrap each individual volt.
     My point is that gift-wrapping is one of those skills-like having babies that come more naturally to women than to men. That is why today I am presenting…GIFT-WRAPPING TIPS FOR MEN
Whenever possible, buy gifts that are already wrapped. If, when the recipient opens the gift, neither one of you recognizes it, you can claim that it's myrrh.
The editors of Woman's Day magazine recently ran an item on how to make your own wrapping paper by printing a design on it with an apple sliced in half horizontally and dipped in a mixture of food coloring and liquid starch. They must be smoking crack.
If you're giving a hard-to-wrap gift, skip the wrapping paper! Just put it inside a bag and stick one of those little adhesive bows on it. This creates a festive visual effect that is sure to delight the lucky receipt on Christmas morning:
YOUR WIFE: Why is there a Hefty trash bag under the tree?
YOU: It's a gift! See? It has a bow.
YOUR WIFE (peering into the trash bag): It's a leaf blower.
YOU: Gas-powered! Five horsepower!
YOUR WIFE: I want a divorce.
YOU: I also got you some myrrh.
     In conclusion, remember that the important thing is not what you give, or how you wrap it. The important thing, during this very special time of year, is that you save the receipt.
 
     A woman goes to the post office to buy stamps for her Christmas cards. She says to the clerk, "May I have 50 Christmas stamps?"
     The clerk says, "What denomination?"
     The woman says, "God help us. Has it come to this? Give me 6 Catholic, 12 Presbyterian, 22 Lutheran and 10 Baptists.
 
Submitted by Holly Vanderpool:
 
A Christmas cookie recipe worth your time...
1 cup of water
1 tsp baking soda
1 cup of sugar
1 tsp salt
1 cup of brown sugar
lemon juice
4 large eggs
1 cup nuts
2 cups of dried fruit
1 bottle Jose Cuervo Tequila
     Sample the Cuervo to check quality. Take a large bowl, check the Cuervo again, to be sure it is of the highest quality, pour one level cup and drink.  Turn on the electric mixer...Beat one cup of butter in a large fluffy bowl. Add one teaspoon of sugar...Beat again. At this point it's best to make sure the Cuervo is still OK, try another cup...just in case. Turn off the mixerer thingy. Break 2 leggs and add to the bowl and chuck in the cup of dried fruit, Pick the frigging fruit off floor... Mix on the turner. If the fried druit gets stuck in the beaterers just pry it loose with a drewscriver. Sample the Cuervo to check for tonsisticity.
     Next, sift two cups of salt, or something. Who giveshz a sheet. Check the Jose Cuervo. Now shift the lemon juice and strain your nuts. Add one table. Add a spoon of sugar, or somefink. Whatever you can find. Greash the oven.
     Turn the cake tin 360 degrees and try not to fall over. Don't forget to beat off the turner. Finally, throw the bowl through the window, finish the Cose Juervo and make sure to put the stove in the dishwasher.
     CHERRY MISTMAS
 
     I've learned that you can tell a lot about a man by the way he handles these three things: a rainy day, lost luggage, and tangled Christmas tree lights. Remember, when you stop believing in Santa Claus is when you start getting clothes for Christmas!
 
The four stages of man:
He believes in Santa Claus.
He doesn't believe in Santa Claus.
He is Santa Claus., and finally,
He looks like Santa Claus.
 
Two weeks to go.  Have a great week,
Al
 
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This is an old one but has great fun flying
Naval Aviation from the cockpit, this is as good as it
gets in a video clip.   Play it on a big screen if you can.
 
 
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Item Number:1 Date: 12/12/2016 EGYPT - ATTACK ON COPTIC CATHEDRAL IN CAIRO KILLS MORE THAN 2 DOZEN (DEC 12/WP)  WASHINGTON POST -- A bomb during Mass on Sunday at a Coptic Christian church in Cairo killed at least 25 people and injured 49, say authorities cited by the Washington Post.   The blast took place inside a chapel near the main building of the St. Mark's Coptic Orthodox Cathedral, the seat of Egypt's Orthodox Christian church, noted the New York Times.   A 12-kilogram (26-pound) TNT bomb was used, said security sources cited by Egyptian state news agency MENA.   There was no immediate claim of responsibility.   The Egyptian government declared three days of mourning.  
  Item Number:2 Date: 12/12/2016 EUROPEAN UNION - HALF OF EUROPEAN ISIS ALLIED FIGHTERS HAVE RETURNED OR DIED, SAYS DOCUMENT (DEC 12/EUO)  EU OBSERVER -- The number of nationals from European Union countries who are fighting alongside of Islamic State terrorists in Iraq or Syria has dropped by about half, according to the latest figures cited by the E.U. Observer.   Around half of the 5,000 or so E.U. nationals who left to fight in the Middle East have either died or left the conflict, says a leaked Nov. 29 document written by Gilles de Kerchove, the European organization's anti-terrorism chief.   Up to 20 percent were killed and as many as 35 percent have returned to Europe, according to the latest statistics.   Those that have already returned could pose a security threat, the document says.   A major return in the near future is considered "unlikely." Extremists are more likely to remain and form resistance groups, says the paper.   Fewer people are also traveling to Iraq and Syria to take up arms, likely due to ongoing military operations against ISIS and possibly a loss of appeal by the terrorist group, according to the analysis.   The interior ministers from E.U. countries are scheduled to discuss the document in a meeting on Dec. 13
Item Number:3 Date: 12/12/2016 FRANCE - GOVERNMENT SEEKS EXTENSION OF STATE OF EMERGENCY FOR NEXT YEAR'S ELECTIONS (DEC 12/AFP)  AGENCE FRANCE-PRESSE -- The French government has again announced plans to extend the nation's state of emergency, this time until July 2017, reports Agence France-Presse.   The emergency state was first imposed in November 2015 following terrorist attacks in Paris. It has been extended four times.   The latest extension would include the presidential and parliamentary elections next spring, said Prime Minister Bernard Cazenueve on Saturday.   The move required the approval of Parliament.   According to Cazeneuve, 517 suspects had been arrested under the emergency state, including 420 linked to "terrorist networks," as quoted by New Europe.  
  Item Number:4 Date: 12/12/2016 GAMBIA - PRESIDENT MAKES ABOUT-FACE, CHALLENGES ELECTIONS RESULTS; TROOPS PATROL CAPITAL'S STREETS (DEC 12/GUARDIAN)  GUARDIAN -- Gambian troops have been deployed in Banjul after long-time President Yahya Jammeh said he would challenge the results of the Dec. 1 election, reports the Guardian (U.K.).   Jammeh initially accepted defeat, conceding to a coalition led by opposition leader Adama Barrow.   The president has served for 22 years.   Then, on Friday, Jammeh announced he had changed his mind and demanded "fresh and transparent elections."   Soldiers were seen Saturday placing sandbags and setting up machine guns in strategic locations across the capital.  
  Item Number:5 Date: 12/12/2016 INDONESIA - ISIS REGIONAL PLANS DEMAND MORE VIGILANCE, SAYS DEFENSE MINISTER (DEC 12/ANTARANA)  ANTARA NEWS AGENCY -- Indonesian Defense Minister Ryamizard Ryacudu says he has told the nation's security forces to be more alert amid reports that the Islamic State plans to set up a base in the Philippines, reports Antara News, Indonesia's national news agency.   Such ISIS moves may affect the regional order as well as Indonesian security, the minister said on Friday after returning from a visit to the Philippines.   The State Intelligence Agency (BIN) should step up its detection efforts in the light of this ISIS plan, said Ryacudu.   Particular attention must be paid to any ISIS infiltration efforts, he said
Item Number:6 Date: 12/12/2016 INDONESIA - POLICE FOIL BOMB PLOT DIRECTED AT PRESIDENTIAL PALACE (DEC 12/VOA)  VOICE OF AMERICA NEWS -- Police in Indonesia say they have arrested four people suspected of planning a terror attack on the presidential palace in Jakarta, reports the Voice of America News.   Two men and a woman were detained near the capital on Saturday, said a police spokesman.   A fourth person, the suspected bombmaker, was detained Saturday in Solo city, reported the Jakarta Post.   Police said the suspects planned to have the woman blow herself up with a pressure-cooker bomb during a changing-of-the-guard ceremony at the presidential palace.   Police said those arrested were suspected of operating under the direction of Bahrun Naim, an Indonesian militant fighting alongside the Islamic State in Syria.  
  Item Number:7 Date: 12/12/2016 IRAQ - EXPERTS HONE CYBER DEFENSE SKILLS AT NATO COURSE IN TURKEY (DEC 12/NATO)  NATO PRESS RELEASE -- NATO says it has been training Iraqi experts on cyber defense in Ankara, Turkey.   The goal of the program, which ran from Nov. 21 to Dec. 2 at the Middle East Technical University, was to improve the technical knowledge of the participants as part of efforts to strengthen Iraq's national cyber defenses.   The course was aimed at Iraqi system/network administrators and tailored to the nation's needs, said the alliance.   Sixteen personnel from the new Iraqi Computer Incident Response Team took part in the training, according to the NATO release on Friday.   The program include theoretical sessions as well as practical laboratory exercises covering the core components of cyber defense, including cryptanalysis, prevention of data exfiltration, advanced digital forensics and conducting vulnerability assessments.  
 Item Number:8 Date: 12/12/2016 JAPAN - AIRCRAFT INTERACTION OVER MIYAKO STRAIT ELICITS ACCUSATIONS BY BEIJING, TOKYO (DEC 12/JT)  JAPAN TIMES -- China and Japan have traded accusations about the behavior of their respective military aircraft.   On Monday, Japan filed a formal protest with the Chinese Foreign Ministry over Beijing's allegations that Japanese fighter jets engaged in dangerous behavior while intercepting Chinese aircraft in international airspace, reports the Japan Times.   The Defense Ministry in Tokyo said on Saturday that its fighter jets scrambled to meet six Chinese planes flying through the Miyako Strait. The Chinese aircraft included two Su-30 fighters, two H-6 bombers, one Tu-154 surveillance plane and one Y-8 surveillance plane, said the ministry.   In turn, the Chinese Defense Ministry said on Saturday the Japanese warplanes had "interfered with Chinese military aircraft from close range and even launched jamming shells, which endangered the safety of Chinese aircraft and crew."   On Monday, Japan's Chief Cabinet Secretary Yoshihide Suga denied Beijing's accusations, saying "it is extremely regrettable that the Chinese Defense Ministry announced unilaterally something that clearly differs from the fact."  
Item Number:9 Date: 12/12/2016 LATVIA - SLOVENIAN FORCES, U.S. PARATROOPS JOIN LATVIANS AT CAMP ADAZI DRILL (DEC 12/ANS)  ARMY NEWS SERVICE -- American paratroopers have been drilling with Latvian and Slovenian forces in Latvia.   Last week, elements of the 173rd Airborne Brigade, who have rotated to Latvia as part of the U.S. Operation Atlantic Resolve, held a live-fire exercise at Camp Adazi in Latvia, reports the Army News Service.   Battle Company, 2nd Battalion, 503rd Infantry Regiment, 173rd Airborne, teamed with the Engineer Company, Combat Support Battalion, Latvian Land Force Infantry Brigade and Bravo Company, 10th Slovenian Infantry Regiment, for the drills.   Bravo Battery, 4th Battalion, 319th Airborne Field Artillery Regiment, 173rd Airborne provided indirect fire for the simulated assault.   The combined-arms drills integrated indirect fire, direct fire, aerial assets, NATO partners and featured a set of complex problems for platoon and company level leaders to solve, said Capt. Trenton Wiggins, the assistant operations officer for 2nd Battalion, 503rd Infantry Regiment
Item Number:10 Date: 12/12/2016 SAUDI ARABIA - KINGDOM EYES $3.5 BILLION PURCHASE OF CH-47F CHINOOK CARGO HELICOPTERS (DEC 12/DSCA)  U.S. DEFENSE SECURITY COOPERATION AGENCY -- The government of Saudi Arabia wants to buy heavy-lift helicopters from the United States, reports the U.S. Defense Security Cooperation Agency.   The State Dept. last week approved the potential US$3.51 billion deal for 48 CH-47F helicopters; 112 T55-GA-714A engines (96 installed and 16 spares); 116 embedded GPS inertial navigation systems (96 installed and 20 spares); 58 AN/AAR-57 common missile warning systems (48 installed and 10 spares); and 48 M240H 7.62-mm machine guns with spare parts.   If confirmed, the purchased equipment would include M134D mini-guns or equivalent with support gear and training; aircraft survivability equipment (AN/APR-39(V)1/4; AN/AVR-2B; AN/ARC-231; AN/ARC-201D; AN/APX-123A; ARN-147 VOR/ILS; ARN-153 TACAN; APN-209; IDM-401 improved data modem; and AN/ARC-220); infrared signature suppression system (IRSS); fast-rope insertion extraction system (FRIES); extended-range fuel system; ballistic armor; spare and repair parts; and associated technical and logistics support, said the DSCA.   The potential deal would increase the Saudi Arabian army's interoperability with U.S. forces and advance development of a heavy-lift helicopter capability, an agency release said on Dec. 8
Item Number:11 Date: 12/12/2016 SOMALIA - DEATH TOLL RISES IN SUICIDE BOMBING NEAR MOGADISHU PORT; AL-SHABAAB CLAIMS RESPONSIBILITY (DEC 12/ALJAZ)  AL JAZEERA -- Somali authorities say a car bombing in Mogadishu has killed and wounded dozens of people, reports Al Jazeera (Qatar).   The blast took place early Sunday in a parking lot near the entrance to the capital's new seaport, according to the director of the local ambulance service, as reported by AFP. The bomber drove a minibus packed with explosives into a police checkpoint, said witnesses.   Casualties have been reported variously and some reports say it was a truck bombing. At least 29 people were killed and 48 wounded, mostly civilians, according to one account.   The Al-Shabaab militant group claimed responsibility, saying it targeted a military base close to the port.  
 Item Number:12 Date: 12/12/2016 SOMALIA - PROBLEMS PILE UP BEFORE AMISOM'S PLANNED WITHDRAWAL IN 2020 (DEC 12/EA)  EAST AFRICAN -- African leaders face many hurdles that may well delay plans to withdraw the African Union Mission in Somalia (AMISOM) by 2020, reports the East African (Nairobi, Kenya).   The drawdown is currently scheduled to begin by October 2018 and conclude in 2020. Yet, there is a growing realization that Somalia may not be peaceful by then.   AMISOM says it needs an additional 28,000 troops to gain control of areas held by the Al-Shabaab terrorist group, including Jubba Valley, Hiraan and the northeastern coastline of Somalia.   Negotiations are ongoing on providing and paying for such troops.   AMISOM, which has U.N. and international support, must also train and equip at least 20,000 Somali army personnel before the withdrawal can begin.   Paying and equipping the current 21,129 AMISOM troops is unsettled, especially since the European Union has reduced its annual budget. Burundi, for example, is threatening to pull its troops over delays in payment.   Francisco Madeira, the A.U. special representative to Somalia and head of AMISOM, told the East African that he is sure that AMISOM will be out of Somalia by 2020.   Madeira, in an interview, said that the troop-contributing countries believe the two-year timetable is realistic and AMISOM will accelerate the training and equipping of Somali troops to prepare them to take over sooner than planned.  
  Item Number:13 Date: 12/12/2016 SOUTH KOREA - LATEST STRATEGIC DIALOGUE WITH U.S. NAVY COVERS FORCE DEVELOPMENT, N. KOREAN THREAT (DEC 12/NNS)  NAVY NEWSSTAND -- Senior officers from the U.S. and South Korean navies recently concluded a dialogue on cooperation at the new U.S. Naval Forces Korea facility in Busan (Pusan), reports the Navy NewsStand.   Known as the Strategic Dialogue, the biannual meeting covered strengthening communication and enhancing interoperability between the two navies.   Rear Adm. Brad Cooper, the commander of U.S. Naval Forces Korea co-hosted the meeting with Rear Adm. Chung Jung-soo, the South Korean deputy chief of naval operations for planning and management.   Cooper called the dialogue "a cornerstone of our relationship," and spoke of their shared North Korean threat, noted Russia's Sputnik news agency.   The talks included "in-depth discussions about warfighting readiness, force development and infrastructure establishment," said Chun.   Participants also discussed the strategic use of training, workforce, communication and joint operations, the Navy said.  
Item Number:14 Date: 12/12/2016 SYRIA - ISIS REGAINS PALMYRA; RUSSIA HITS TERRORISTS IN ANCIENT CITY (DEC 12/CNN)  CABLE NEWS NETWORK -- Syrian officials have acknowledged that Islamic State fighters have regained control of the ancient city of Palmyra, reports CNN.   By Sunday afternoon, the government forces had pulled out from the city and were repositioning themselves on its outskirts for a counterattack, according to the governor of Homs province, as cited by the Wall Street Journal.   The situation has been fluid for several days.   More than 4,000 militants reportedly suffered heavy losses from Russian airstrikes. The Kremlin said it had carried out 64 airstrikes overnight, killing 300 militants, as reported by Reuters.   The ISIS-linked Amaq news agency said the terrorists held the city's center. They launched their offensive on Thursday.   The terrorist group first seized the Palmyra in May 2015; it was recaptured by Syrian government forces in March 2016.  
Item Number:15 Date: 12/12/2016 TURKEY - DEADLY BOMBS ROCK ISTANBUL; AFTER KURDISH GROUP CLAIMS RESPONSIBILITY, MORE THAN 200 KURDS ARE ARRESTED (DEC 12/CNN)  CABLE NEWS NETWORK -- A Kurdish militant group has claimed responsibility for twin bombings on Saturday in Istanbul, reports CNN.   The Interior Ministry said the blasts killed at least 38 people and wounded 155.   Police said the first blast was detonated remotely outside the Vodafone Arena after a soccer match. A smaller suicide bombing took place within a minute in a park less than a mile away.   The initial blast appeared to be aimed at riot police units who were on routine duty after the game, said Deputy Prime Minister Numan Kurtulmus. At least 300-400 kg (660-881 lbs)of explosives were believed to have been used.   The dead included 30 police officers, he said.   On Sunday, the Kurdistan Freedom Hawks (TAK), an offshoot of the banned Kurdistan Workers' Party (PKK), claimed responsibility for the attack.   On Monday, more than 200 members of a Kurdish political party (HDP) were arrested on terrorism charges in 11 cities, reported the domestic Anadolu Agency.  
Item Number:16 Date: 12/12/2016 UNITED ARAB EMIRATES - POSSIBLE DEAL FOR 37 AH-64E ATTACK HELICOPTERS OKED BY U.S. STATE DEPT. (DEC 12/DSCA)  U.S. DEFENSE SECURITY COOPERATION AGENCY -- The U.S. State Dept. has approved a potential Foreign Military Sale of more than three dozen attack helicopters to the United Arab Emirates, reports the U.S. Defense Security Cooperation Agency.   The proposed US$3.5 billion deal includes 28 AH-64E Apache remanufactured helicopters; nine new-build AH-64Es; 76 T700-GE-701D engines (56 remanufactured, 18 new, two spares); 39 AN/ASQ-170 modernized target acquisition and designation sight/AN/AAR-11 modernized pilot night-vision sensors (28 remanufactured, nine new, two spares); and 32 remanufactured AN/APR-48B modernized radar frequency interferometers, according to a DSCA release on Dec. 8.   Also included in the possible sale are 46 AAR-57 common missile warning systems (31 remanufactured, nine new, six spares); 88 embedded GPS systems with inertial navigation (72 new, 16 spares); 44 manned-unmanned teaming-international (MUMTi) systems (28 remanufactured, nine new, seven spares); and 15 new MUMTi system upper receivers.   Associated spare and repair parts and technical and logistics support would also be provided, said the agency.   The helicopters will enhance the U.A.E.'s ability to meet existing and future threats and secure its critical infrastructure, the agency said as it notified Congress of the possible deal on Dec. 7
Item Number:17 Date: 12/12/2016 UNITED KINGDOM - COUNTERTERRORISM AUTHORITIES PICK UP 6 IN DAWN RAIDS; SUSPECTS BEING HELD FOR PLOTTING ATTACKS (DEC 12/BBC)  BRITISH BROADCASTING CORP. -- British counterterrorism police say they have arrested six people in dawn raids on Monday across central England and London, reports the BBC.   According to authorities, four men were arrested on Monday in Derby. A man from Burton upon Trent and a woman from London were also detained.   The suspects are between the ages of 22 and 36. They were picked up on suspicion of engaging in the preparation of an act of terrorism, said police.   At least six properties are reportedly being searched as part of the investigation.   The investigation is being led by the North East Counter Terrorism Unit (CTU), noted the International Business Times.  
 Item Number:18 Date: 12/12/2016 USA - AFTER 1ST FLIGHT, EXTENDED-RANGE GRAY EAGLE UAV STARTS FLIGHT TESTING (DEC 12/GAASI)  GENERAL ATOMICS AERONAUTICAL SYSTEMS -- General Atomics Aeronautical Systems has announced the beginning of flight-testing for its MQ-1C Gray Eagle Extended Range (ER) unmanned aerial vehicle.   The first flight of a production representative air vehicle took place on Oct. 29 at the company's El Mirage Flight Operations Facility in California, according to a General Atomics release.   The MQ-1C Gray Eagle ER was developed internally to increase the endurance and payload capacity of the system, according to the Dec. 8 release.   General Atomics says that flight-testing should conclude in June 2017. This will be followed by a series of Army test events, culminating in a follow-on operational test and evaluation in late 2017.   The first four ER aircraft are slated for delivery in the second and third quarters of 2017, with 15 more to be handed over in 2018.   The MQ-1C Gray Eagle ER has a maximum takeoff weight of 4,200 pounds (1,900 kg), up from the baseline 3,600 pounds (1,630 kg).   The straight belly design allows for more than 910 pounds (400 kg) of internal fuel, with a centerline hard point that can accommodate an optional fuel tank with another 450 pounds (200 kg). The air vehicle will have an endurance of more than 40 hours, according to its manufacturer
  Item Number:19 Date: 12/12/2016 USA - ON DEC. 7, NAVY TAKES DELIVERY OF DESTROYER NAMED FOR PEARL HARBOR HERO (DEC 12/NAVSEA)  NAVAL SEA SYSTEMS COMMAND -- The U.S. Navy has accepted delivery of its newest Arleigh Burke-class guided-missile destroyer from shipbuilding Huntington Ingalls Industries, Pascagoula, Miss., reports the Naval Sea Systems Command.   The John Finn (DDG-113) was handed over on Dec. 7 after completing three sets of at-sea and in-port trials that demonstrated the warship's readiness.   The destroyer is the 63rd in the Arleigh Burke class and the first of the Flight IIA restart ships, said NAVSEA.   The ship's namesake earned the Medal of Honor for heroism during the attacks on Pearl Harbor in 1941; the ship was delivered on Dec. 7, the 75th anniversary of those attacks.   The John Finn is equipped with the Aegis Baseline 9 combat system upgrades, including an integrated air and missile defense capability via the Ballistic Missile Defense (BMD) 5.0 and Naval Integrated Fire Control-Counter-Air (NIFC-CA) systems
Item Number:20 Date: 12/12/2016 YEMEN - BOMBER KILLS DOZENS OF TROOPS IN ADEN; ISIS CLAIMS RESPONSIBILITY (DEC 12/REU)  REUTERS -- A suicide bomber has killed at least 50 Yemeni government soldiers and wounded 70 at an army base in the southern port of Aden, say local sources cited by Reuters.   Saturday's attack occured as troops were waiting to collect their salaries at the entrance of the Sawlaban base, said government sources. Aden is controlled by pro-government forces.   Some accounts reported that the men were being recruited to take part in a government offensive against the Houthi rebel-held city of Taiz.   The Islamic State claimed responsibility for the attack.
 

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