Friday, 20 May 2011

Armed Forces face "significant shortage"

The suspension and cancellation of a number of key armoured vehicle projects since the 1998 defence review has resulted in the Armed Forces facing a significant shortage in the principal armoured vehicles they require, until at least 2024-2025.

Today's National Audit Office report found that the Department's standard acquisition process has been undermined by a combination of over-ambitious requirements and unstable financial planning. Despite the commitment of considerable resources, since 1998, the MOD has received only a fraction of the armoured vehicles it has set out to buy through its standard acquisition process.

[Read more...]

Monday, 16 May 2011

Video: Strauss-Kahn Arrest

A dishevelled Dominique Strauss-Kahn is taken into police custody.

Who gives a flying xxxx?

Burglar with a cleanliness obsession is spared jail because he'd find it too dirty.
The 20-year-old was allowed to walk free from court after he told a judge he would find jail ‘too traumatic’ because of his obsessive compulsive disorder.

Cassidy smashed his way into an elderly couple’s home while they were sleeping and stole a handbag containing £105.

The thief, who has 14 previous convictions for 29 crimes, committed the burglary while on a suspended sentence for robbery and handling stolen goods.

However, he avoided jail by convincing Cambridge Crown Court he would not be able to cope with life behind bars because he is obsessed with cleanliness.

Instead Judge Gareth Hawkesworth handed Cassidy, of Cambridge, a 12-month sentence in a young offenders’ institution, suspended for two years.

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Blackwater - Again

US government lawyers are investigating reports that the former owner of a controversial private security firm has been hired to form a mercenary army for the rulers of the United Arab Emirates.

Erik Prince, the former owner of Blackwater Worldwide, which was accused of multiple killings of civilians in Iraq, has signed a deal to train Colombian and other recruits in a private "foreign legion" to take part in special operations at home and even abroad.

Among its potential tasks are to defend the UAE from uprisings and terror attacks and if necessary to take part in any conflict with Iran, according to the New York Times.


According to the report, the 580-strong battalion has been established in Zayed Military City, just off the main road linking Abu Dhabi to Dubai, alongside Emirati troops, and provided by Mr Prince with trainers, mostly veterans of the American, British and German armies and special forces.

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A Woman Scorned

Chris Huhne, the Energy Secretary, is to be investigated by police over allegations that he allowed his wife Vicky Pryce to take speeding points on his behalf.

Essex police have assigned an officer to investigate the claims that would almost certainly result in the end of Mr Huhne's ministerial career and a jail sentence if proven.

The suggestion that the former Liberal Democrat leadership contender persuaded someone else to accept his speeding points, so he could avoid a driving ban, was first raised publicly by his estranged wife Vicky Pryce last week.

The Daily Telegraph has learnt that the person alleged to have taken the points is Miss Pryce herself.

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Medical for Strauss-Kahn

Dominique Strauss-Kahn, the International Monetary Fund chief who allegedly sexually attacked a Manhattan hotel maid, has delayed appearing in court after agreeing to a medical examination.

Mr Strauss-Kahn, the IMF's 62-year-old managing director, was due to face a judge at New York City criminal court accused of a criminal sexual act, attempted rape and unlawful imprisonment.

But late last night, after police, court officials and reporters had waited more than eight hours for him to appear, Mr Strauss-Kahn's legal team announced that he would be undergoing further tests before being formally charged.

Mr Strauss-Kahn was arrested and provisionally charged by police in the early hours of Sunday morning, after being seized on an Air France jet waiting to take off on the tarmac of New York's John F. Kennedy Airport.

The prominent French socialist, who was expected to challenge Nicolas Sarkozy's presidency next year, allegedly assaulted a 32-year-old maid who had arrived to clean his £1,855-a-night suite at the luxury Sofitel near Times Square, at 1pm on Saturday.

[Read more...]

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