Every Riotous Hooligans Worst Nightmare: The Brutish Water Cannon

 

Watching the riots that developed at the memorial march in Brussels the other day I again noticed a huge Water Cannon.  Right-wing thugs showed up at the march screaming anti-migrant and white supremacist chants.  The hooligans got washed good by a gigantic Belgium water cannon.

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Water cannon on use on a demonstrator

 

water cannon is a device that shoots a high-velocity stream of water. Typically, a water cannon can deliver a large volume of water, often over dozens of meters. They are used in firefighting, large vehicle washing and riot control.

The first truck-mounted water cannon were used for riot control in Germany in the beginning of the 1930s.

The most modern versions do not expose the operator to the riot, and are controlled remotely from within the vehicle by a joystick. The German-built WaWe 10.000 can carry 10,000 litres (2,200 imp gal) of water, which can deploy water in all directions via three cannons, all of which are remotely controlled from inside the vehicle by a joystick. The vehicle has two forward cannons with a delivery rate of 20 litres per second (260 imp gal/min), and one rear cannon with a delivery rate of 15 litres per second (200 imp gal/min).

Water cannons designed for riot control are still made in the United States and the United Kingdom, but most products are exported, particularly to Africa and parts of Asia such as South Korea.

 

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Use of water cannon in riot control contexts can lead to injury or death, with fatalities recorded in Indonesia (in 1996, when the cannon’s payload contained ammonia), Zimbabwe (in 2007, when the use of cannons on a peaceful crowd caused panic), Turkey (in 2013, when the payload was laced with “liquid teargas”), and Ukraine (in 2014, with the death of activist and businessman Bogdan Kalynyak, reportedly catching pneumonia after being sprayed by water cannon in freezing temperatures). South Korea used water cannons containing capsaicin and fluorescent dyes for later screening and arrest in recent protests against its citizens.

Water cannons in use during the 1960s, which were generally adapted fire trucks, would knock protesters down and on occasion, tear their clothes.

On 30 September 2010, during a protest demonstration against the Stuttgart 21 project in Germany, a demonstrator was hit in the face by a water cannon. Dietrich Wagner, a retired engineer, suffered from the damage to his eyelids, a fracturing of a portion of the retinal bone, and damage to the retinas. The eye injuries thus inflicted on the man resulted in near-complete loss of eyesight. Graphic imagery was recorded of the event, sparking a national debate about police brutality and proportionality in the use of state force.

 

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Turkish riot police use water cannon to disperse demonstrators during a protest against the destruction of trees in a park brought about by a pedestrian project, in Taksim Square in central Istanbul May 31, 2013. REUTERS/Murad Sezer (TURKEY - Tags: POLITICS CIVIL UNREST ENVIRONMENT CRIME LAW TPX IMAGES OF THE DAY) - RTX106VO

Istanbul above

 

A few examples of the beasts

 

Demonstrationsverbot in Berlin! Infolge der Ruhestörungen durch die Aufführung des Remarque-Films "Im Westen nichts Neues" ist ein Demonstrationsverbot für Berlin erlassen worden. Die Polizei sicherte die Strassen und Plätze im Berliner Westen mit Wasserwerfer und grossem Polizeiaufgebot. Der Wasserwerfer der Schutzpolizei am Wittenbergplatz in Berlin zur Verhinderung nächtlicher Demonstrationen.

One of the first water cannon. Germany 1930’s.

 

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France

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Germany

 

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Russia

 

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Columbia

 

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China. Typical Chinese approach, if the water cannon don’t knock them down, plow through the crowd with the big blade.

Photos capture the stark beauty of ‘Storm Area 51’ grounds

© Ryan Koopmans and Alice Wexell

MYSTERY WIRE — They were a long way from home when “Storm Area 51” hit.

Photographers Ryan Koopmans and Alice Wexell were in Los Angeles for photo meetings, and they had California on their minds. That is, until Matty Roberts distracted them with the social media fervor surrounding Storm Area 51.

They decided to document the Nevada site at the center of it all. So in the middle of August, Koopmans and Wexell headed for the heat of Nevada’s desert.

The landscape was like nothing they had seen. Koopmans works out of Amsterdam, and Wexell is from Stockholm.

Here are some of the images they captured for GQ Australia. They have also been published online by Wired. They are used here by permission.

© Ryan Koopmans and Alice Wexell
© Ryan Koopmans and Alice Wexell
© Ryan Koopmans and Alice Wexell
© Ryan Koopmans and Alice Wexell
© Ryan Koopmans and Alice Wexell
© Ryan Koopmans and Alice Wexell
© Ryan Koopmans and Alice Wexell
© Ryan Koopmans and Alice Wexell
© Ryan Koopmans and Alice Wexell
© Ryan Koopmans and Alice Wexell
© Ryan Koopmans and Alice Wexell
© Ryan Koopmans and Alice Wexell
© Ryan Koopmans and Alice Wexell
© Ryan Koopmans and Alice Wexell
© Ryan Koopmans and Alice Wexell
© Ryan Koopmans and Alice Wexell
© Ryan Koopmans and Alice Wexell
© Ryan Koopmans and Alice Wexell
© Ryan Koopmans and Alice Wexell
© Ryan Koopmans and Alice Wexell
© Ryan Koopmans and Alice Wexell
© Ryan Koopmans and Alice Wexell
© Ryan Koopmans and Alice Wexell
© Ryan Koopmans and Alice Wexell
© Ryan Koopmans and Alice Wexell
© Ryan Koopmans and Alice Wexell
© Ryan Koopmans and Alice Wexell
© Ryan Koopmans and Alice Wexell
© Ryan Koopmans and Alice Wexell
© Ryan Koopmans and Alice Wexell
© Ryan Koopmans and Alice Wexell
© Ryan Koopmans and Alice Wexell
© Ryan Koopmans and Alice Wexell
© Ryan Koopmans and Alice Wexell
© Ryan Koopmans and Alice Wexell
© Ryan Koopmans and Alice Wexell

Apocalyptic Photos from the Frontline of Australia’s Bushfires

Beyond the cataloging of these facts and figures, the situation in Australia defies description. The word “apocalyptic” comes constantly to mind. And it’s expected to worsen, with authorities warning that the infernos, spurred on by heatwaves and dry winds, could continue for months.

Every day more footage from the frontline reveals the extent of the devastation—of the armageddon and the aftermath—as communities around the country are swept up in one of the biggest climate disasters Australia has ever seen.

 

australia bushfire

FIREFIGHTERS TACKLE A BUSHFIRE IN THICK SMOKE IN THE TOWN OF MORUYA, SOUTH OF BATEMANS BAY, IN NEW SOUTH WALES ON JANUARY 4, 2020. UP TO 3,000 MILITARY RESERVISTS WERE CALLED TO TACKLE AUSTRALIA’S RELENTLESS BUSHFIRE CRISIS ON JANUARY 4, AS TENS OF THOUSANDS OF RESIDENTS FLED THEIR HOMES AMID CATASTROPHIC CONDITIONS. PETER PARKS/AFP
australia bushfire

A BURNT VEHICLE IS SEEN ON QUINLANS STREET AFTER AN OVERNIGHT BUSHFIRE IN QUAAMA IN AUSTRALIA’S NEW SOUTH WALES STATE ON JANUARY 6, 2020. RESERVE TROOPS WERE DEPLOYED TO FIRE-RAVAGED REGIONS ACROSS THREE AUSTRALIAN STATES ON JANUARY 6, AFTER A TORRID WEEKEND THAT TURNED SWATHES OF LAND INTO SMOLDERING, BLACKENED HELLSCAPES. SAEED KHAN/AFP
australia bushfire

RESIDENTS DEFEND A PROPERTY FROM A BUSHFIRE AT HILLSVILLE NEAR TAREE, 350 KILOMETERS [217 MILES] NORTH OF SYDNEY ON NOVEMBER 12, 2019. A STATE OF EMERGENCY WAS DECLARED ON NOVEMBER 11 AND RESIDENTS IN THE SYDNEY AREA WERE WARNED OF “CATASTROPHIC” FIRE DANGER AS AUSTRALIA PREPARED FOR A FRESH WAVE OF DEADLY BUSHFIRES THAT HAVE RAVAGED THE DROUGHT-STRICKEN EAST OF THE COUNTRY. PETER PARKS/AFP
australia bushfire

AN AERIAL VIEW OF THE BUSHFIRE BURNS OUT OF CONTROL IN THE RICHMOND VALLEY, OF THE NEW SOUTH WALES ON NOVEMBER 26, 2019. BUSHFIRE-PRONE AUSTRALIA HAS EXPERIENCED A HORRIFIC START TO ITS FIRE SEASON, WHICH SCIENTISTS SAY IS BEGINNING EARLIER AND BECOMING MORE EXTREME AS A RESULT OF CLIMATE CHANGE, WHICH IS RAISING TEMPERATURES AND SAPPING MOISTURE FROM THE ENVIRONMENT. SAEED KHAN/AFP
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THIS PHOTO TAKEN ON DECEMBER 7, 2019 SHOWS FIREFIGHTERS CONDUCTING BACK BURNING MEASURES TO SECURE RESIDENTIAL AREAS FROM ENCROACHING BUSHFIRES AT THE MANGROVE AREA, SOME 90-110 KILOMETERS 55-68 MILES] NORTH OF SYDNEY. BUSHFIRES ARE COMMON IN THE COUNTRY BUT SCIENTISTS SAY THIS YEAR’S SEASON HAS COME EARLIER AND WITH MORE INTENSITY DUE TO A PROLONGED DROUGHT AND CLIMATIC CONDITIONS FUELED BY GLOBAL WARMING. SAEED KHAN/AFP
australia bushfire

THIS HANDOUT PHOTO TAKEN ON JANUARY 3, 2020 AND RELEASED BY THE ROYAL AUSTRALIAN NAVY SHOWS PEOPLE BEING EVACUATED FROM MALLACOOTA, VICTORIA STATE ON A LANDING CRAFT TO MV SYCAMORE, DURING BUSHFIRE RELIEF EFFORTS. THE AUSTRALIAN MILITARY ON JANUARY 3 HAS BEGUN THE SEABORNE EVACUATION OF HUNDREDS OF PEOPLE TRAPPED IN A FIRE-RINGED SOUTHEASTERN TOWN, AS THE COUNTRY BRACED FOR MORE CATASTROPHIC CONDITIONS. SHANE CAMERON/ROYAL AUSTRALIAN NAVY/AFP
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FIREFIGHTERS DOSE A BUSHFIRE IN DARGAN, SOME 130 KILOMETERS [80 MILES] NORTHWEST OF SYDNEY ON DECEMBER 18, 2019. AUSTRALIA THIS WEEK EXPERIENCED ITS HOTTEST DAY ON RECORD AND THE HEATWAVE IS EXPECTED TO WORSEN, EXACERBATING AN ALREADY UNPRECEDENTED BUSHFIRE SEASON, AUTHORITIES SAID ON DECEMBER 18. SAEED KHAN/AFP
australia bushfire

THE SKY TURNS RED FROM SMOKE OF THE SNOWY VALLEY BUSHFIRE ON THE OUTSKIRTS OF COOMA ON JANUARY 4, 2020. UP TO 3,000 MILITARY RESERVISTS WERE CALLED UP TO TACKLE AUSTRALIA’S RELENTLESS BUSHFIRE CRISIS ON JANUARY 4, AS TENS OF THOUSANDS OF RESIDENTS FLED THEIR HOMES AMID CATASTROPHIC CONDITIONS. SAEED KHAN/AFP
australia bushfire

RESIDENTS WATCH A LARGE BUSHFIRE AS SEEN FROM BARGO, 150 KILOMETERS [93 MILES] SOUTHWEST OF SYDNEY, ON DECEMBER 19, 2019. A STATE OF EMERGENCY WAS DECLARED IN AUSTRALIA’S MOST POPULATED REGION ON DECEMBER 19 AS AN UNPRECEDENTED HEATWAVE FANNED OUT-OF-CONTROL BUSHFIRES, DESTROYING HOMES AND SMOTHERING HUGE AREAS WITH A TOXIC SMOKE. PETER PARKS/AFP
Vice.com

Clint Eastwood Spaghetti Westerns

Over six hundred European Westerns were made between 1960 and 1978. The best-known Spaghetti Westerns were directed by Sergio Leone and scored by Ennio Morricone, notably the three films of the Dollars Trilogy (starring Clint Eastwood as the main character)—A Fistful of Dollars (1964), For a Few Dollars More (1965) and The Good, the Bad and the Ugly (1966)—as well as Once Upon a Time in the West (1968, starring Charles Bronson). These are consistently listed among the best Westerns of any variety.

The last few pics shown here are not spaghetti westerns, but American movies.

See also: https://markosun.wordpress.com/2016/11/02/clint-eastwood-was-one-resourceful-actor-back-in-the-day/

 

Mysterious radio signal from space seems to have suddenly vanished

The Westerbork Synthesis Radio Telescope is scanning the skies

Strange radio signals from space are still baffling astronomers with their odd behaviour. Fast radio bursts (FRBs) are powerful blasts of radio waves that last just a few milliseconds. Some of these bursts have been seen to repeat, flickering on and off many times from the same point in space. They carry a huge amount of energy, but we don’t know what causes them.

The first repeating FRB, called FRB 121102 or R1, was discovered in 2012 and later traced to its host galaxy, a dwarf galaxy about three billion light years away. The second, nicknamed R2, wasn’t found until 2018.

Leon Oostrum at the Netherlands Institute for Radio Astronomy and his colleagues used the Westerbork Synthesis Radio Telescope (WSRT) in the Netherlands to watch R1 and R2 for 130 and 300 hours respectively, looking for more bursts that might help characterise them better and find R2’s host galaxy.

While they detected 30 bursts from R1, they didn’t see any from R2. The simplest explanation is that R2 isn’t detectable in the wavelengths at which WSRT observes, which are different from those used by the telescope which discovered it. It would be as if this FRB emits relatively red light, but WSRT can only see blue.

The other possible explanation Oostrum and his colleagues suggest is that R2 could have stopped emitting bursts. However, it is more likely that the telescope can’t detect the FRB’s wavelengths or that any bursts it emitted while Oostrum and his colleagues were observing were just too dim to see, says Jason Hessels, who is also at the Netherlands Institute for Radio Astronomy but wasn’t involved in this work. “Just because you don’t see anything at this time with this telescope doesn’t mean there’s nothing to see,” he says.

Regardless, it shows R1 and R2 are very different from one another. “If the two were similar, we should have seen that second repeater easily, and we didn’t,” says Oostrum. “They could be very different in how bright they are, how often they repeat, and basically any other parameters as well.”

They could also be in very different galaxies, as evidenced by new findings from a separate group led by Hessels. It traced a different repeating FRB called FRB 180916.J0158+65 to its host galaxy, only the fifth time any FRB has been tracked back and only the second repeater to be pinned down in this way.

Its galaxy is completely different from R1’s galaxy. It is a spiral more like our Milky Way instead of an irregularly-shaped dwarf galaxy. Its environment is also far less extreme, making some of the explanations for FRBs that came from analysis of R1 seem less likely.

“We’re in the situation where either a successful theory has to explain that diversity or we have to start thinking seriously about there being multiple different types of sources for FRBs,” says Hessels. If FRBs aren’t all the same but instead result from a variety of different types of events, that could explain why they all seem so different.

FRB 180916.J0158+65 is about six times closer to Earth than R1, so we will be able to observe it in more detail, and the next generation of huge telescopes should help explain FRBs too. “The main goal in the end is to find out what these things are, but for now, the more information we have, the more questions we have,” says Oostrum.

Owl Swims in Michigan Lake

A Michigan sheriff’s department captured some amazing and rather rare footage of an owl swimming in a lake. The odd scene reportedly took place early Monday morning at Lake St. Clair and was spotted by officers from the marine division of the Macomb County Sheriff’s Office. Fortunately, they managed to film the wondrous sight and subsequently shared it on their Facebook account.

Marveling that they had “a special guest this morning,” the sheriff’s office theorized that the creature was a “snowy owl that has been seen on several occasions in the area.” In the video, the bird swims along through the lake until it reaches the shore, where it climbs up onto a rock and shakes the water off from its feathers. The owl then takes off and flies away from the area, proving to be adept at air, sea, and land travel.

Since owls do not possess waterproof feathers, for them to swim is something of an unusual occurrence and, wildlife experts say, generally only happens when the creatures are forced into such a predicament. Although the sheriff’s office did not speculate as to what led this event unfold, they asked residents to “please remember to respect these beautiful animals by being a good observer” and keep their distance from the birds should they encounter them.