[UPDATED 8:00 pm with news that third landing attempt was aborted] Two out of three ain’t bad, if you’re trying something no one’s ever done before.
Landing on the narrow, pitching deck of a Navy aircraft carrier is one of the hardest things a human being can do. Today, for the first time in history, a robot did it — twice.
After all the VIPs and reporters had been hustled off the USS George H.W. Bush, however, a third attempt had to be aborted when the experimental X-47B‘s electronic brain “self-detected a navigation computer anomaly,” a Navy spokesman emailed reporters this evening at 7:30. The drone diverted to a landing field ashore without further incident.
Updated 10:00 pm with extended quotations from Adm. Greenert, Rear Adm. Winter, and Sec. Mabus.
A Seneca II Piper twin engine airplane, used to train the two suspected terrorists linked to the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks, according to Rudi Deckkers, president and owner of Huffman Aviation, sits on the Huffman Aviation runway 12 September 2001 in Venice, Florida. The other plane reportedly used, a Cessna Skyhawk single engine, is at rear. (Credit: PETER MUHLY/AFP/Getty Images)
This is no joke. It will be enforced for May 19 to May 21.
The flight advisory was issued by the Federal Aviation Administration. The advisory bans non-commercial aircraft from flying within 10 nautical miles of downtown Chicago and below 18,000 feet.
A nautical mile is about one minute of arc of latitude along any meridian. It amounts to 1,852 meters, or about 1.15078 standard miles.
“The United States Government may use deadly force against the airborne aircraft, if it is determined that the aircraft poses an imminent security threat,” the advisory says. “Be advised that noncompliance with the published (notice to airmen) may result in the use of force.”
The advisory says lesser violations by airmen might result in civil penalties and the suspension of airmen certificates, as well as criminal charges.
The only aircraft allowed to fly within the restricted area include regularly-scheduled commercial passenger and cargo carriers, police, and military planes supporting the Secret Service.
This no-fly zone is not new. It has been enforced in Chicago for presidential visits, and also after the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks because of terrorism-related concerns.
Meanwhile, downtown residents are hoping to get some answers to important questions about the summit at a meeting Wednesday evening, as more and more business and restaurant owners downtown expressing concerns.
The meeting is set for 6 p.m. Wednesday at the Ritz-Carlton, 160 E. Pearson St.
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U.S. Army Ranger John Needham, who was awarded two purple hearts and three medals for heroism, wrote to military authorities in 2007 reporting war crimes that he witnessed being committed by his own command and fellow soldiers in Al Doura, Iraq. His charges were supported by atrocity photos which, in the public interest, are now released in this video. John paid a terrible price for his opposition to these acts. His story is tragic.
CBS reported obtaining an Army document from the Criminal Investigation Command suggestive of an investigation into these war crimes allegations. The Army’s conclusion was that the “offense of War Crimes did not occur.” However, CBS also stated that the report was “redacted and incomplete; 111 pages were withheld.”
This video is placed with the context of Vice President, Dick Cheney, insistence that this nation’s efforts “must go to the dark side;” which included ignoring the Geneva Conventions.
John’s story is told, here, by his father, Michael Needham. It is produced in the spirit of the public interest and towards promoting justice foundational to the rule of law.
Guards at the Los Angeles County jail complex in Castaic will start using a newfangled weapon that produces a deep burning sensation — which is not to be confused with a “warm fuzzy feeling” — in whomever it is aimed at.
The 7 1/2-foot-tall “Assault Intervention Device,” which sheriff’s deputies demonstrated Friday at the Pitchess Detention Center, emits an invisible beam that causes an unbearable sensation, reported the Daily News.
The device will be mounted near the ceiling in a unit housing about 65 inmates, sheriff’s Cmdr. Bob Osborne of the sheriff’ Technology Exploration Program told the newspaper.
“We hope that this type of technology will either cause an inmate to stop an assault or lessen the severity of an assault by them being distracted by the pain as a result of the beam,” said Osborne. “So that we have fewer injuries, fewer assaults, those kinds of things.”
Deputies have tested the device on themselves and say the invisible beam is painful — especially when it’s not expected.
“I equate it to opening an oven door and feeling that blast of hot air, except instead of being all over me, it’s more focused,” said Osborne.
The pain stops when you move out of the beam’s path, which people do instinctively.
The device, developed by Raytheon, is controlled by a joystick and computer monitor and emits a beam about the size of a CD up to distances of about 100 feet.
The energy traveling at the speed of light penetrates the skin up to 1/64 of an inch deep. No one can stand being in the beam’s path for more than about three seconds, Mike Booen of Raytheon told the Daily News.
The device is being evaluated for a period of six months by the National Institute of Justice for use in jails nationwide.
Sheriff’s deputies are getting to try it out for free.
About 3,700 inmates are housed at Pitchess, where 257 inmate-on-inmate assaults occurred in the first half of the year.
Do you think this is a controversial weapon with the potential for major misuse and abuse, or is it just another way to restore order in our prisons? Let us know what you think. Comment below, send us your thoughts via Twitter @NBCLA or add your comment to our Facebook page.