I wasn’t going to post anything this Friday but, word of North Korea’s missile launch blowing up is kind of a big deal. This is actually semi-important so I figure you guys should know about this.

Rocket failure an embarrassment for North

Taepodong-2 launch fails after a minute in flight

By MASAMI ITO and JUN HONGO
Staff writers
North Korea on Friday defied warnings from the international community and launched a rocket — which then exploded about a minute after takeoff — scattering debris over the Yellow Sea off South Korea.

The North’s three-stage rocket “was airborne for more than a minute before it broke apart,” Defense Minister Naoki Tanaka told reporters at 8:32 a.m., less than an hour after it was launched around 7:40 a.m.

At a separate press briefing, a South Korean military officer said the rocket exploded just one or two minutes after liftoff and about 20 pieces plunged into the sea, Kyodo News reported.

“Debris started falling from an altitude of about 151 km above Baekneyong Island (in northwest South Korea) and was scattered across the sea roughly 100 to 150 km off Pyeongtak and Gunsan,” the officer was quoted as saying.

North Korean state media acknowledged the satellite failed to enter orbit much later in the day, while the North American Aerospace Defense Command in Colorado identified the projectile as a Taepodong-2 missile.

After weeks of escalating tensions over the North’s “satellite” launch, which the global community widely considered a disguised ballistic missile test, the rocket ultimately didn’t pose a threat to any part of Japan’s territory, and the nation’s state-of-the-art missile defense system was not called upon to intercept any debris, Japanese officials said.

Radar systems continued to closely monitor the situation, but neither ground-based Patriot Advanced Capability-3 missiles deployed around Okinawa Prefecture or Standard Missile-3 interceptors aboard Maritime Self-Defense Forces destroyers in the East China Sea were activated.

“Though we are still analyzing the technical data, we believe there is absolutely no threat of Japan being affected by falling debris from the rocket,” Chief Cabinet Secretary Osamu Fujimura said Friday morning. “We ask that the public remain calm and proceed with their daily work and routines as normal.”

The Group of Eight foreign ministers, meanwhile, issued an emergency statement after their annual summit in Washington, condemning the North’s act and urging it to refrain from further provocations.

The rocket launch is “a violation of U.N. Security Council resolutions,” a statement issued by the G-8 said.

Despite the North’s embarrassing failure, Prime Minister Yoshihiko Noda ordered his government to continue collecting information as a matter of urgency. “(I will) do everything I can to provide information to the public” and strengthen cooperation with other countries, Noda said.

But the government has already come under fire for its perceived slow response in confirming the launch and alerting the public.

The U.S. and South Korea issued official announcements swiftly after blastoff, but Japan, which depends on U.S. data, was slower.

The Defense Ministry was alerted to an unidentified object being launched in North Korea around 7:40 a.m. via the U.S. early warning system for ballistic missiles, after American spy satellites detected activity at the launch site. But the government failed to notify the media or the public until 30 minutes later.

The Japan Times received the government’s first email alert at 8:09 a.m. It said “our country has not confirmed the launch yet.”

The next email, received at 8:37 a.m., said it was working to confirm the launch but that “our country’s territory is believed to be unaffected.”

Prior to liftoff, the government repeatedly promised to send out information as quickly as possible, but Fujimura on Friday explained that the plan was to disclose information after double-checking initial data from the U.S. warning system. A time lag was unavoidable, he said.

“Our policy from the start had been to provide information after corroborating it with another source. Therefore, we were using all conceivable measures to confirm the data,” Fujimura said, conceding the contents of messages need to be re-examined.

The caution stems from two bureaucratic misfires triggered by North Korea’s previous rocket launch in 2009, when the government sent out two false alarms that prompted widespread panic. “We considered the incident three years ago and decided to adopt a (double-checking) policy this time,” Fujimura said.

Later in the day, Tanaka said the government handled the day’s events properly.

He said he confirmed the takeoff, flight details and crash of the rocket before assuring the public it posed no threat to Japan at 8:24 a.m.

“I don’t think there were delays (in announcing the rocket launch). We managed it appropriately,” he said.

However the defense minister acknowledged that Japan was late revealing some information to the public compared with the South Korean government.

“There was some difference (in timing) but we did the best we could,” Tanaka said.

Meanwhile no explanation was given regarding the confusion over the chronology of the day’s events, including when the defense ministry notified the Prime Minister’s office of the launch.

“The specific timing of some events can’t be disclosed until we organize the details among the parties involved,” a defense ministry official said.

Meanwhile, Chief Cabinet Secretary Fujimura said Japan is ready to take action against the North’s defiant move, but will not immediately do so by itself. He said that Japan will continue pursuing measures that can be taken in conjunction with the international community.

“I cannot help but say that (the launch) is a grave act of provocation against our nation . . . and it is extremely regrettable. We have lodged a complaint through diplomatic routes,” he said.

Japan imposed punitive measures on the North in July 2006 following a long-range missile test, including a total import-export ban.

Information from Kyodo added.

I’m not saying Americans should fear North Korea, considering we’re not that far from North Korea as far as government is concerned, but uh. Missiles, yeah, World War III is upon us ladies and gentlemen. I actually thought the Bush Wars would be WW3 but I was wrong, with N.K. on the rise this may actually be the beginning of World War III.

Oh if only  it could be that simple.

Now for some more depressing news about dogs getting pink slips.

N.S. drug dogs getting pink slips in job cuts

Dozens of employees at the Canada Border Services Agency are among the latest federal workers in Halifax to receive notices that their jobs are on the line.

The Public Service Alliance of Canada said 26 employees at the Canada Border Services Agency got notices on Thursday. The agency is also losing two dogs used to sniff out drugs, explosives and other contraband material.

Bret, 6, and Griffin, 7, are the two Halifax-based Labrador retrievers whose handlers were notified their jobs will be eliminated.

Brett Evans, the president of the Nova Scotia branch of the Customs and Immigration Union, said the canine teams have boarded ships at ports in Halifax, Sydney and Port Hawkesbury and help screen thousands of containers entering the agency’s facility in Burnside.

“We have lost an important tool in our daily battle to keep our streets safe. This is our national security we are talking about,” Evans said in a statement.

He said the dogs will likely be permanently adopted by their handlers.

Jeannie Baldwin, the Atlantic Canada vice-president for the Public Service Alliance of Canada, said more bad news is on the way.

“This government is making decisions having never worked in an office or a federal government building,” she said.

“They have no idea the programs and services that we deliver and the impact it’s going to have on Canadians and it’s going to be devastating.”

Baldwin said news of the cuts at various federal government departments are pouring in, with hundreds of workers across Atlantic Canada already receiving notices that their jobs may be affected.

More cuts coming, says union

Once an employee receives a notice, a process kicks in that could see the person moved to another position within the department or to a different department within the government.

Not everyone who receives a notice will lose employment.

But Baldwin said the sheer size of the cuts is making the process of relocating employees difficult.

“People haven’t received their notices for Canadian Heritage or Parks. Even with the Canadian Revenue Agency, we know there are cuts there,” she said.

“There’s still a lot of workforce adjustment letters that have not been issued yet.”

Earlier this week, 34 workers at the Public Works and Government Services Canada — where federal cheques are currently printed — were told the facility will close in September.

“Some people are very angry,” said Lori Walton of the Government Services Union.

“They don’t understand why this decision was made on closing down this whole site, as opposed to maybe looking at each of the three print production sites across Canada and trying to find ways to make it more efficient.”

The federal government is aiming to eliminate 19,200 federal public service positions across the country, saving $5.2 billion annually.

It’s a sad world when even dogs are getting unemployed, guess I’m not gonna look for a job now with even less motivation in mind.

Ohio Man Kills Wife, Daughter at Cracker Barrel

A man whose wife had just told him she was leaving him shot and killed her and one of their daughters, who was celebrating her birthday, inside a crowded Cracker Barrel restaurant in a Cleveland suburb, then was killed by police as he fled.

Kevin Allen came into the restaurant in suburban Brooklyn on Thursday night with a shotgun and, witnesses said, “selectively” fired on his family. The shooting created panic and confusion in the restaurant, and a manager helped get people out through a rear door, a witness said.

In addition to the death of Katherina Allen, 42, and Kerri Allen, 10, the couple’s other 10-year-old daughter, Kayla, was wounded and in critical condition, authorities said. According to police records, Thursday was Kerri Allen’s birthday.

Police records dating back nearly 20 years painted a picture of Kevin Allen, married at least three times, as a violent man with a history of threatening wives and others. Just two days earlier, Katherina told police in their hometown of Strongsville that she had left her husband and taken their daughters after “an incident” on Easter and was afraid to go home to collect their belongings.

Katherina Allen “stated that she has not been getting along with her husband and decided to take the kids and stay with a friend,” according to the Tuesday police report.

“Initially she wanted to pick up some items from the house, but decided not to because it would make him mad if police responded,” the report said, adding that Katherina wanted to document “verbal altercations” the couple had been having.

Katherina called 911 from inside the restaurant Thursday, saying her husband was upset because she had told him she was leaving him. He left the restaurant and was circling the parking lot, she told police. She also told police she feared he might become violent.

“I’m having some spouse problems,” Katherina Allen tells the dispatcher in the 911 call.

The dispatcher then asks her if Kevin Allen owns any weapons or is armed. She says her husband had told her he’d gotten rid of a shotgun, but she had seen him with shotgun shells. She also told the dispatcher that Kevin Allen was calling one of her daughters in the restaurant.

At the end of the call, Allen says, “He’s here and the police are here, too. I have to …” She then stops speaking.

The dispatcher says: “Wait in the lobby for the officers. Do not go outside. Let them talk to him, OK? Ma’am?” The call then ends in a jumble of noise.

Officers heard gunshots when they arrived and saw Allen, 51, of Strongsville, leaving the restaurant with a gun. Police Chief Scott Mielke said officers shot him when he refused to surrender. He died at the scene.

Katherina Allen died from shotgun wounds to her head and body, and Kerri Allen died of a shotgun wound to the abdomen, according to the Cuyahoga County Medical Examiner.

David Allen, who identified himself as Kevin Allen’s brother, on Friday answered a number listed for Kevin Allen’s mother and said the family had no comment.

In February, Columbia Gas Co. requested a police escort to Kevin Allen’s house, explaining he had not paid his bill “and has stated he will shoot anyone who attempts to turn his gas off,” according to a Feb. 22 Strongsville police report. The report said the company eventually worked things out with Allen.

Well I’ll leave you guys with one more bit of news then that’ll do it for the week. Here’s a gallery of anime to finish of your week.

Sankarea “Sexiest This Season?”

Author: Artefact

Zombie bishoujo anime Sankarea has steamed up rapidly, and thanks to the quality of its “ero-kawaii” character designs is being hailed as one of the sexiest, if not the sexiest, this season – all amidst speculation that it is saving up its nipple exposure for the disc release, and much surprise at just how creepy its surprise lolicon content manages to be…

Good night, everybody. Grass is out.