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06/17/22

Lessons from the fiasco over the detention of 'Aeroflot'

The detention of an Aeroflot Airbus 330, the Russian national carrier, by court order on June 2 could have far-reaching consequences; the hurried release of the aircraft by the intervention of the Attorney General might have spared the country from the worst of them, though some damage would be hard to repair.

Daily Mirror articleMap
June 16th: Aeroflot flights in the air - mostly over Asia

06/16/22

Mapping and tracking Russia's invasion of Ukraine

See where Russia's forces are moving within Ukraine's borders

Article by USA Today


06/14/22

Russia's war may deprive world of three Ukrainian wheat harvests, agriculture minister says

Russia's invasion of Ukraine will create a global wheat shortage for at least three seasons by keeping much of the Ukrainian crop from markets, pushing prices to record levels, Ukraine's agriculture minister told Reuters. Ukraine, sometimes known as Europe's bread basket, has had its maritime grain export routes blocked by Russia and faces a maelstrom of other problems, from mined wheat fields to a lack of grain storage space.

Reuters article
10% of the world’s wheat comes from Ukraine, Guardian article
Wheat production mapMap

Canada and Denmark end decades-long dispute over barren rock in Arctic

It has been described by some as a “pseudo-confrontation”, and by others as a diplomatic afterthought. Now, however, the so-called “whisky war”, which was never really a conflict at all, has finally been resolved with the formal division of a tiny barren Arctic island between Canada and Denmark.

Guardian articleMap

06/13/22

Ukraine war in maps: Tracking the Russian invasion

Heavy fighting continues in east Ukraine, with key locations under intense bombardment from Russian forces.

Story from the BBC


06/05/22

Pilots and controllers raise serious warnings about Mexico City airspace safety

A little over a month after the opening of commercial operations at the Felipe Angeles International Airport (NLU), a controversial (and resisted by the air transport industry) project of President Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador’s administration that reconverted the Santa Lucia Air Base and implied discarding the development of the New Mexico City International Airport in Texcoco, a series of harsh warnings have emerged about how air safety has been affected as a result of the redesign of the Mexico Valley airspace, the first phase of which had been implemented in early 2021.

Aviacionline articleMexico City Airspace Drama, article by Simple Flying
Felipe Angeles International Airport, article by Your Milage May VaryMap

06/03/22

Time-Lapse: Russian Advances In Ukraine

See how Ukraine's map has changed since Putin ordered its invasion on February 24.

From Radio Free Europe>br>



Why is Russia putting more missiles in the Kaliningrad enclave?

There is a narrow gap, only about 50 km wide, between Kaliningrad exclave and Belarus. Assuming Belarus would not side with NATO in a war, all Russia needs to do is close this gap and the 1–2 roads through it and the Baltic states are cut off from NATO entirely. Seaborne resupply, even airborne resupply can be successfully interdicted from Kaliningrad and with the help of the Baltic fleet and submarines.

Explanations
Earlier articleMap

05/11/22

Iranian-made satellite photographs US Fifth Fleet headquarters in Bahrain

An Iranian satellite placed into orbit earlier this year reportedly has sent back a photo of the U.S. Fifth Fleet headquarters in Bahrain as part of its first batch of high-resolution images. The Noor 2 satellite, which was launched by the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps in March, also captured photos of the southern Iranian provinces of Fars and Bushehr, Press TV is reporting, citing the IRNA news agency.

Fox News storyMap

05/10/22

Bodies surfacing in Lake Mead recall mob’s time in Las Vegas

Las Vegas is being flooded with lore about organized crime after a second set of human remains emerged within a week from the depths of a drought-stricken Colorado River reservoir just a 30-minute drive from the notoriously mob-founded Strip. “There’s no telling what we’ll find in Lake Mead,” former Las Vegas Mayor Oscar Goodman said Monday. “It’s not a bad place to dump a body.”

AZ Central articleLake Mead plummets to unprecedented low
Hoover Dam - History.com articleMap

05/06/22

China has security ties with several Pacific island nations. So what is it that makes the Solomon Islands deal different?

The pact between China and Solomon Islands that has sent alarm bells ringing in Australia and the United States, is not the first security agreement Beijing has signed with a Pacific nation. But political analysts say the deal signed by Beijing and Honiara last month is "qualitatively different" and the geopolitical context has changed.

ABC Radio Australia storyDaily Mail - China could have base on the islands within weeks
Area MapSolomon Islands distance from China
South China Seas and Taiwan Subject SectionSee below

05/05/22

Wealthy Russians flee to Dubai to avoid sanctions

Dubai has emerged as a haven for wealthy Russians fleeing the impact of western sanctions over the war in Ukraine.

BBC storyMap



04/29/22

NATO nuclear submarines converge in Scotland

Nuclear submarines from three countries were berthed in HMNB Clyde at Faslane near Glasgow in Scotland. The American submarine is of the Virginia class and the French submarine is of the Rubis class. The messaging behind this isn’t going to be lost on the powers that be and while the visits themselves may be routine logistics stops, the symbolic image of nuclear submarines belonging to NATO’s three nuclear powers sailing in and out of the same naval base shows serious unity and collective capability.

UK Defence Journal articleHM Naval Base ClydeMap

04/20/22

Ukraine war: Mariupol commander makes 'last' plea for help

A Ukrainian marine commander in Mariupol has made what he described as his troops' "last address to the world" as they try to resist overwhelming Russian forces in the city.

BBC storyMap

Russia and Ukraine’s battle for Donbas - CNBC story




Verizon customers experiencing outages across United States

Thousands of Verizon Wireless customers throughout the United States are reporting outages Wednesday afternoon, with the large majority of reports stemming from the West Coast.
CBS News storyMap



Rapidly moving wildfire in Arizona destroys dozens of structures and forces hundreds to evacuate

An estimated 2,068 people live in the evacuation area, Patrice Horstman, chair of the Coconino County Board of Supervisors, said Wednesday. "From this, 766 households have been evacuated," along with more than 1,000 animals, Horstman said. The fire, about 14 miles northeast of Flagstaff, was rapidly moving to the northeast, pushed by significant winds, officials said. It had no containment as of Wednesday afternoon.
CNN storyMap04/20/22 Map04/23/22 Map


04/19/22

Judge halts work on Mexico president's contentious tourist train

A Mexican judge has suspended construction of part of President Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador's flagship tourist train project in the Yucatan peninsula due to a lack of environmental impact studies. The Mayan Train, a roughly 1,500-kilometer (950 mile) rail loop linking popular Caribbean beach resorts and archaeological ruins, has met with opposition from environmentalists and indigenous communities.

France 24 article
Maya Train – Everything Travelers Need To Know, Cancun Sun
Mexico wants to run a tourist train through its Mayan heartland — should it?, The ConversationMap

04/18/22

Images reportedly show burning Russian warship Moskva shortly before sinking

New photos appear to show the doomed Russian Black Sea flagship Moskva ablaze moments before it sank following a Ukrainian missile attack.
NY Post articleLedger Enquirer article
Ironic location where the ship was builtMap

04/14/22

Shanghai begins easing Covid lockdown in some areas amid suicides and protests over lack of food

Authorities in China's biggest city phase out restrictions as public revolt hardens. Shanghai enduring severe three-week lockdown - yet cases remain on the rise. Horrific video shows man throw himself and wife out of a window to their deaths. Americans told not to go to China due to child separations and 'arbitrary rules'
Daily Mail article
'Zero-COVID' strategy story by ABC NewsMap

Russia sets up 'shaping operation' to prepare for major ground offensive in Donbas

Russia is setting up a "shaping operation" in preparation for a major ground offensive as it concentrates its war efforts in eastern Ukraine, a senior U.S. defense official told reporters Thursday. "They're setting the conditions for what they want to conduct in the Donbas region on the ground and in the air," the official said. "They are setting the conditions for what we believe will be a heavier offensive in the Donbas region."
Fox News storyUkraine Russian language map
Political Divisions of UkraineDonbas Map

Russia threatens new nuclear deployments if Sweden, Finland join NATO

Russia says a nuclear-free Baltic region would no longer be possible if Finland and Sweden join NATO, alluding to additional nuclear deployments in Europe. The comments come a day after Finland and Sweden said their decision on whether to apply for NATO membership would come within a matter of weeks. Sweden and Finland are members of the EU, but not NATO, and the latter shares an 830-mile border with Russia.
CNBC storyForeign Policy article
Map of the Baltic RegionArea Map
Significance of the Karelia region



04/13/22

Putin given 'another bloody nose' as Russian commanders 'not up to' level of Ukraine

PUTIN's commanders are "not up to" the experience of Ukraine's eastern forces and will struggle to secure victory in those regions despite "shortening their lines of communication," an expert has claimed.
Express articleDonbas Map

03/27/22

Why Russia wants to split Ukraine into two parts?

The head of Ukrainian military intelligence, Kyrylo Budanov, has assured that Russia is trying to divide Ukraine in two after its attempt to invade the entire country failed. "In fact, it is an attempt to create North and South Korea in Ukraine," he said in a statement, adding that Ukraine will soon launch a guerrilla war in the Russian-occupied territory.
Ground Report articleMap

03/24/22

Russian oligarch Abramovich's two superyachts worth a combined $1 billion are escaping sanctions — for now

Two superyachts belonging to Russian oligarch docked in Turkey this week, avoiding seizure by Western authorities. The Chelsea FC owner is subject to EU and U.K. sanctions. Turkey, a non-EU country but a NATO member, is opposed to sanctions out of principle, making it an attractive outpost for oligarch assets.
MSN storyMap

03/22/22

Putin’s heartless siege of Mariupol is the latest reminder that all progress is fragile

The Russian siege of Mariupol is shocking not because it is unprecedented but because it is so traditional — a form of war that is grinding, brutish and all too typical in European history.
NY Post articleSun Journal article
MapBombing concentration map


Ukraine retakes Kyiv suburb as fierce battle continues to rage over Mariupol

Ukraine’s Defense Ministry said Ukrainian troops had managed to force Russian forces out of the Kyiv suburb of Makariv after a fierce battle. The regained territory allowed Ukrainian forces to retake control of a key highway and block Russian troops from surrounding Kyiv from the northwest.
The Times of Israel articleFox News situation mapMap

03/21/22

Why the China Eastern Crash Is Such a Shock to the Country

t’s still far too early to know for certain what caused China Eastern Flight 5735 to crash into hillside in southwestern China’s Guangxi province on Monday, but videos emerging on social media of a huge fire and smouldering wreckage don’t bode well for its 123 passengers and nine crew.
Time articleAviacionline articleMap

03/17/22

Russia EXODUS: Putin hammer blow as huge flurry of private jets leave Moscow for Dubai

A FLURRY of Russian jets have been tracked leaving for Dubai from Moscow in quick succession this afternoon (Thursday), as speculation grows that Vladimir Putin's oligarchs may be deserting him over the invasion of Ukraine.
Express articleHot Air articleMap
Flight Aware Map - Sheremetyevo International Airport
Flight Aware Map - Aeroflot operations and range restricted by sanctions
Flight Aware Map - Current worldwide air traffic

War In Ukraine: Latest Developments

Authorities in the besieged port city of Mariupol say Russian forces bombed a theatre where "hundreds" of civilians were taking shelter and share a photo showing the middle part of the building completely destroyed.
AP & IBTBBC SummaryBBC Map of Refugees
War in Ukraine: Latest developments from Yahoo!Map
NATO CountriesMaps - Countries that Russia has invaded



03/16/22

Russian ships seen in Japan strait, may be carrying troops to Ukraine

Four Russian warships were spotted sailing through a strait in northeastern Japan Wednesday, possibly transporting troops and combat vehicles to Ukraine, the Japanese Defense Ministry said.
Kyodo NewsMap

NATO launches analyses for hardening its eastern flank

NATO military planners have begun weighing options for beefing up the defensive capabilities of vulnerable alliance members following Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, Secretary-General Jens Stoltenberg said Wednesday.
Defense News article
Nato rethinks its Eastern Flank article from IntellinewsMap
The Suwalki Corridor article by cepa.orgSuwalki corridor map
Why is Kaliningrad part of Russia?Area Map

03/15/22

Russian forces occupy Mariupol hospital, hold patients and staff hostage: Ukrainian human rights group

Russian troops have threatened to shoot anyone trying to escape, human rights group said. Residents of Mariupol, Ukraine, have reportedly contacted a human rights organization with complaints that Russian forces have occupied an intensive care hospital.
Fox News storyMap

03/13/22

Russia unleashes attack on military site near Poland border as Ukraine braces for Kyiv battle

Russia unleashed a barrage of deadly missiles on a military site just 10 miles from Ukraine’s border with NATO member Poland on Sunday — and shelled a train with 100 refugee kids, Ukrainian officials said.
NY Post articleMap

03/08/22

How will Russia’s war with Ukraine end? Here are 5 possible outcomes

Less than two weeks into Russia’s invasion of Ukraine and the country’s people and armed forces have mounted a staunch resistance against Russia’s forces. Russia is seen as having made less progress than it expected. Still, analysts say Russia is likely to “win” in Ukraine, and have drawn out various scenarios for what comes next. As many as 1.5 million people have fled to neighboring countries in Europe for safety. "A rump Ukrainian state" is likely to be led from Lviv.
CNBC storyMap

03/04/22

Europe's largest nuclear power plant in Ukraine's Enerhodar on fire after Russian shelling

The attack renewed fears that the invasion could result in damage to one of Ukraine's 15 nuclear reactors and trigger another emergency like the 1986 Chernobyl accident
Firstpost articleMap

03/03/22

Before-and-after photos capture devastation in Ukraine from Russian strikes

Harrowing before-and-after photos have captured the deadly devastation inflicted on Ukraine in the last week as Russian forces continue to lay siege to cities across the country. The Kremlin’s escalating shelling attacks on populated areas of Ukraine have destroyed buildings and left rubble strewn across streets and plazas.
Originally NY Post articleCNN story on 40-mile-long Russian convoyMap



02/28/22

Ukraine conflict: Could the fighting spread across Europe? And other questions

Russian troops are trying to take Ukraine's two biggest cities, Kyiv and Kharkiv, but are meeting stiff resistance. Meanwhile, an estimated half a million refugees have fled Ukraine, and in Russia, heavy sanctions have begun to bite.
BBC storyMap



Airlines From 36 Nations Are Now Banned From Russian Airspace

Russia closed its airspace to airlines from even more countries today, calling it a symmetrical response to the growing list of sanctions imposed on it by governments worldwide over its invasion of Ukraine. There are now 36 countries whose airlines are banned from using Russia's airspace.
Simple Flying article
KYIV BORYSPIL INT'L AIRPORT (BORYSPIL) KBPUkraine Airspace



Ukrainians who told Russian warship ‘go f–k yourself’ are still alive: officials

The Ukrainian border guards who told a Russian warship to “go f–k yourself” as they defended Snake Island in the Black Sea are still alive and being held captive by the invading forces, Kyiv’s navy revealed Monday.
NY Post articleMap

02/27/22

Putin signals escalation as he puts Russia's nuclear force on high alert

Vladimir Putin has ordered his military to put Russia’s nuclear deterrence forces on high alert, in the latest signal from the Russian leader that he is prepared to resort to the most extreme level of brinkmanship is his effort to achieve victory in Ukraine.
The Guardian articleMap

02/24/22

Russia aimed at 'decapitating' Ukraine government, invasion first of multiple phases: US official

Russia's offensive in Ukraine appears to be the beginning of a "large-scale invasion"e; aimed at taking down the capital city of Kyiv, a senior U.S. defense official said Thursday. The official described three "e;main axes of assault,"e; including what looks to be a strong push toward the capital.
Fox News story
Map



Russia invasion of Ukraine marks latest in Putin's history of misdeeds at home and abroad

Russian President Vladimir Putin's incursion into Ukraine is the latest instance of destabilizing or oppressive behavior at home and abroad by the authoritarian strongman -- who has managed to shrug off pushback and denunciations from foes in his more than 20 years in power.
Fox News storyThe Eastern Bloc during the Cold WarMap



Why is Russia invading Ukraine? Explaining the roots of a long-simmering conflict

Russian President Vladimir Putin declared war on Ukraine Wednesday night, launching air strikes and plunging Europe into a nightmare not seen since the darkest days of World War II. But Russia's invasion of Ukraine was a massive escalation of a conflict that has been simmering since Russia's 2014 annexation of Crimea. At issue are two separatist states — Donetsk and Luhansk — that have been in open, if muted, conflict with Kyiv since 2014, as well as larger questions about Russia's sphere of influence and Ukraine's place in greater Europe.
NY Post articleNY Post Map
BBC story (lots of maps)  The Conversation article

02/18/22

Ukraine: Russia's possible attack routes

Moscow insists it is not planning to invade Ukraine, but the US says Russia could attack "at any time." On Tuesday, UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson said: "We think they have a huge preparation ready to go. Everybody can see what the potential routes in are." Military analysts agree that with about 150,000 troops near the Ukraine border, Russia has a range of options, should it decide to strike.
BBC storyMap

02/15/22

Russia-Ukraine crisis: where are Putin’s troops and what are his options?

American officials have warned of the “very distinct possibility” of a Russian invasion of Ukraine in the next few days, after Russia forward-deployed hundreds of tanks, self-propelled artillery and even short-range ballistic missiles from as far away as Siberia to within striking range.
The Guardian articleArea situation map

02/13/22

Russian warship chases off U.S. submarine near Pacific islands, Moscow says

A Russian anti-submarine destroyer chased off a U.S. submarine near the Kuril Islands, forcing it to leave the country's territorial waters, Moscow said Saturday, amid raging tensions over Ukraine. A Pentagon spokesman, asked by AFP for comment, said only: "We are aware of press reporting about an alleged naval incident in the Pacific. We cannot confirm the details of these reports at this time."
CBS News story
Japan and Russia Clash Over the Disputed Kuril Islands; article by the National Interest
Why US pressure for sanctions on Russia leaves Japan cornered on its China policy and the Kuril islands;
article by South China Morning Post and MSN

Map

02/08/22

Six Russian Amphibious Landing Ships Are Now Headed Into The Black Sea

Three Russian Navy amphibious warfare ships are currently headed for the Black Sea from the Mediterranean and another trio is expected to follow them tomorrow. These six vessels left the Baltic Sea region in January and it has been postulated since then that the Black Sea might be their final destination. Once there, these landing ships would be in an ideal position to support amphibious options as part of a potential new Russian incursion into Ukraine.
The Drive articleMap

'Once in a millennium': Record-breaking rogue wave measured off Vancouver Island

A massive ocean wave that was tracked off the west coast of Vancouver Island in 2020 is now considered the most extreme rogue wave ever recorded, according to scientists at the University of Victoria.
CTV News storyMap

02/04/22

NBC's Mike Tirico says China is 'guilty of committing genocide' against Uyghur Muslims in opening the network's Olympics coverage

NBC sports anchor Mike Tirico opened the network's Olympics coverage with a bang. Tirico cut right to mentioning China's genocide of Uyghur Muslims. The sportscaster also plugged an hour-long NBC special on the genocide. To kick off NBC's coverage of the Winter Olympic Games in Beijing Thursday night, longtime sportscaster Mike Tirico addressed the elephant in the room.
Business Insider article on MSN
Who are the Uyghurs and why is China being accused of genocide?BBC article from June 2021
NBC Olympics announcers staying stateside for Beijing - WFMY   Map

Ukrainian soldiers drill urban warfare scenario in deserted Chernobyl town

Ukrainian forces fired at abandoned buildings and launched grenades and mortars on Friday during urban combat drills in the town of Pripyat, which has been deserted since the 1986 Chernobyl nuclear disaster caused thousands to flee.
Reuters articleMap (Notice how close the failed reactor is)

02/02/22

More Russian forces mass near border, but still not ready to attack: Ukraine

Though Russia continues to pour troops into areas surrounding Ukraine, it still remains unready to carry out a full-scale invasion, according to the latest Ukrainian military assessment shared with Military Times. "The Russian military contingent near the Ukrainian border is insufficient to carry out a large-scale armed aggression against Ukraine," said the assessment, the second time in as many weeks Ukraine military officials made that judgment.
DefenseNews articleUS alleges Russian plot to fake invasion pretextRussia/Ukraine Conflict

477-mile-long lightning bolt across three states sets new megaflash record

A single bolt of lightning measuring 477.2 miles has been confirmed as the longest ever – leaping across Mississippi, Louisiana and Texas in 2020, according to the World Meteorological Organization.
New York Post articleMap

The Rampaging Pigs of the San Francisco Bay Area

With the exception of the occasional aggressive coyote, the animals that roam the hills and gullies of the Bay Area — turkeys, mountain lions, deer, bobcats, foxes and the rest of a veritable Noah’s Ark — find themselves on somewhat laissez-faire terms with the humans around them. Not so for the rampaging feral pigs. They are tearing up lawns, ripping through golf course fairways, threatening the drinking water and disturbing the harvests at Napa vineyards. Many Californians want them dead.
WorldNewEra article
The Clock Is Ticking on America's 'Feral Swine Bomb' - 9-20 The Atlantic article
Map

Jeff Bezos to dismantle historic Dutch bridge for $450 million yacht

The Oceanco shipyard in Alblasserdam near Rotterdam has nearly completed the construction of Y721, the former Amazon CEO's yacht, but the vessel is too big to sail out with the bridge as it is. The builders asked the local council to remove the bridge’s central section so the yacht can pass.
Fox Business storyMap

01/28/22


Bridge collapses in Pittsburgh, 3 hospitalized

A bridge collapsed in Pittsburgh on Friday morning, sending three people to local hospitals with non-life-threatening injuries, officials said. Five cars and a Port Authority bus were on the bridge at the time of the collapse, around 6:39 a.m. local time, city officials said.
ABC News storyMap


01/22/22

Russian Troop Movements and Tensions Along the Ukrainian Border

In mid-October 2021, social media and news outlets began reporting significant movement by Russian military forces, with limited Russian transparency, on or near the Ukrainian border and within Ukraine’s occupied Crimea region. These movements, which follow a similar military buildup in March-April 2021 and Russia’s Zapad military exercises in September 2021, have come amid increasingly aggressive rhetoric reported from Russian policymakers about the so-called encroachment of NATO near Russia’s borders and the geopolitical status of Ukraine.
Congressional Research Service article
Russia sends fighter jets to Belarus for drillsArea Map

01/18/22

Photo Shows Huge 3,280-Ft Asteroid Approaching Earth

An astronomer has captured footage of the asteroid 7482 (1994 PC1) ahead of its close pass by Earth on Tuesday afternoon. 1994 PC1 is a huge asteroid thought to be around a kilometer or 3,280 feet in diameter. It's classed as "potentially hazardous" according to NASA's Center for Near-Earth Object Studies (CNEOS) due to its size and potential to get relatively close to our planet—though it is not expected to hit Earth.
Newsweek article
NASA Eyes on Asteriods  Takes a while to load, but its 3D interactive content is worth the wait!

Russia sends troops to Belarus for war games

ussian officials on Tuesday said Moscow is sending troops to Belarus for joint military drills, a move that will place more Kremlin troops and equipment near Ukraine as Western nations fear an invasion. Russia and Belarus will participate in drills involving exercises to "thwart and repel a foreign aggression," according to Russian Deputy Defense Minister Alexander Fomin, as reported by The Associated Press.
The Hill on MSN articleMap

01/17/22

Wolf Moon

The year's first Full Moon, Wolf Moon, is named after howling wolves, but it's also often called the Moon After Yule in the Anglo-Saxon tradition.
Wolf MoonReuters slide showGeneral full moon infoFull Moon simple facts

01/15/22

Tonga volcano violent eruption mapped

An underwater volcano near Tonga violently erupted today, prompting tsunami warnings for the entirety of the Polynesian kingdom. Residents have been urged to evacuate to higher ground, with surges likely to hit the north and east coasts of North Island and the Chatham Islands.
Express articleYahoo!News articleVolcano Discovery pageActive volcanoes mapMap

01/14/22

Powerful volcanic blast not the cause for 2018 Indonesian island collapse

The dramatic collapse of Indonesia's Anak Krakatau volcano in December 2018 resulted from long-term destabilising processes, and was not triggered by any distinct changes in the magmatic system that could have been detected by current monitoring techniques, new research has found.
ScienceDaily articleCan the Anak Krakatoa mount erupt again like the Krakatoa mount?
WikiMap

01/13/22

World's largest fish breeding area discovered in Antarctica

Near the Filchner Ice Shelf in the south of the Antarctic Weddell Sea, a research team has found the world's largest fish breeding area known to date. A towed camera system photographed and filmed thousands of nests of icefish of the species Neopagetopsis ionah on the seabed.
Science News articleMap

01/08/22

Sandia Peak Tramway reopens after maintenance repairs

Operations are back up and running at the Sandia Peak Tramway, after two tram cars were stuck on cable lines, near Tower Two on Dec. 31. Twenty-one employees were rescued. The group was stuck overnight for more than 15 hours.
KOAT articleMap

01/12/22

North Korea claims successful test of hypersonic missile

North Korea said Wednesday its leader Kim Jong Un oversaw a successful flight test of a hypersonic missile he claimed would remarkably increase the country's nuclear "war deterrent."
CTV News/Associated Press articleMap





12/23/21

Nord Stream 2: how Putin’s pipeline paralysed the west

The saga of Nord Stream 2, the gas pipeline between Russia and Germany running along the Baltic seabed, has been stuck so long it has been likened to a suitcase at an airport without a handle – impossible to abandon, and impossible to carry forward.
The Guardian articleEuropean Gas Pipeline Map and the UkraineArea Map

12/21/21

Winter Solstice

The winter solstice is the shortest day and longest night of the year. In the Northern Hemisphere, it takes place between December 20 and 23, depending on the year. (The reverse is true in the Southern Hemisphere, where the shortest day of the year occurs in June.)

History.com articleAlmanac.com articleEnlarge -->


12/16/21

Could Mineral Shortages Prove To Be Electric Flight's Kryptonite?

The aviation industry is betting on commercial electric flight as part of a portfolio approach to reach its net-zero by 2050 target. However, among the different challenges facing a transition to electric air travel, the torrential increase in demand for lithium and other crucial minerals could prove to be one of the most difficult to overcome.
Simple Flying articleInvestopedia articleThe Guardian articleMap

12/13/21

Atmospheric river snarls travel in Northern Calif. with whiteout conditions

Several parts of the West Coast experienced road closures and damage from rain, snow and wind as an impactful storm system came ashore. Many of the passes along eastern California, such as Carson Pass and Sonora Pass, were expected to see several feet of snow. The National Weather Service (NWS) office in Sacramento warned chain controls and road closures would remain possible.
AccuWeather article
Another Accuweather article on Southern California storm
Current northern Sierra road conditions
Difference between high and low pressure weather systems
Another explanation of a Low-Pressure System?
Coriolis EffectHigh and low rotation graphic

Arrive Before You Leave: The Flights That 'Time Travel'

There's something exciting about flights that arrive before they leave, obviously because of time zone differences. It's especially intriguing if they involve short (or comparatively short) routes and/or unusually unsociable times.
Simple Flying articleExamples


12/12/21

China Builds Military Base Dubbed 'New Great Wall' on Disputed Subi Reef in the South China Sea

Tension escalates in the South China Sea (SCS) as China builds military base on disputed Subi Reef. China displays dominance as another installation takes on reefs which are claimed by other nations.
HNGN articleHNGN articleSubu Reef mapMischief Reef mapSee below
South China Seas and Taiwan Subject Section

12/11/21

A massive tornado ripped through Kentucky for more than 200 miles

The largest and most devastating of the four tornadoes that ripped into Kentucky overnight Saturday tore through hundreds of miles and multiple states. The storm originated in Arkansas, according to Kentucky Division of Emergency Management director Michael Dossett, and touched down in Missouri and Tennessee before making its way into the Bluegrass State, where it ripped through the western half of the state before finally weakening in central Kentucky.
Updated Forbes articleCincinnati.com article
Before-and-after satellite images show destruction of candle factory
Map

The 10 Worst Tornadoes in the U.S.

From April 09, 2020: What would you consider the worst tornadoes in U.S. history? Former severe weather expert at The Weather Channel, Dr. Greg Forbes, combed through damage costs (adjusted for inflation through 2011) and fatality statistics in order to rank the nation's worst single tornadoes, using a 100-point scale.
Weather Channel article from April 09, 2020Current NDTV articleMap

Blue Origin launch: Michael Strahan, 5 others blast off to suborbital space

Crew launched from the Jeff Bezos-owned rocket company's West Texas Launch Site One facility
Fox Business articleEarlier Bezos' Rocket LaunchMap





12/08/21

Intel’s $20B Arizona investment: A plan to reclaim America’s semiconductor dominance

America's reliance on semiconductors from overseas hurts national security, Intel exec says
Fox Business articleWrangler News articleMap






12/06/21

China's navy seeks Atlantic base in West African nation, report says

China has its eyes on Equatorial Guinea for a new military base, which would give Beijing a new naval foothold in the Atlantic Ocean, according to a media report that comes following long-standing concerns among U.S. military leaders about China’s ambitions in West Africa.
Stars & Stripes articleRepublicworld.com article
What is China's Belt and Road Initiative?Map



Elon Musk says SpaceX is building a launch pad for Starship orbital flights on Florida's eastern coastline

Elon Musk said on Friday that SpaceX is constructing a launch pad for its Starship spaceship in Florida ahead of the rocket's first orbital flight. "Construction of Starship orbital launch pad at the Cape has begun," Musk tweeted.
Yahoo!news articleEarlier Insider article

12/05/21

74 Million Annual Passengers: Gatwick Airport’s Expansion Plans

London Gatwick Airport has historically been the UK’s second-busiest airport by passenger traffic. It retained this ranking in 2020, albeit with a far lower number of passengers due to the impacts of the ongoing coronavirus pandemic. While the crisis has prompted some carriers to reduce their operations at Gatwick, the airport has big plans for the future.
Simple Flying ArticleLondon Area Airports



Kiribati is being swallowed

The frontline of the climate crisis doesn’t always resemble a disaster zone. The nation of Kiribati - deep in the Pacific Ocean - can look on the surface like a tropical paradise. And yet this idyllic country, made up of 33 low lying islands, is destined to become the first victim of climate change, on track to be swallowed by rising sea levels.
The seas are coming for us in Kiribati. Will Australia rehome us?
Our existence might be in jeopardy: How Kiribati is being swallowed by rising seas
THE WORLD FACTBOOK
The Country & Geographic Location
Map


12/04/21

Ryanair 737 flies into a flock of Herons

Frightening video captured flames spewing out of a Ryanair plane’s engine after a collision with a flock of herons while on approach to an airport in Italy.The long-legged, long-necked birds were sucked into an engine of the Boeing 737 moments before the flight from London Stansted Airport landed in Bologna about 11:30 p.m. Wednesday, according to the Independent.
New York Post ArticleMap

30 Years Ago Today Pan Am Ceased Operations

On this day, 30 years ago, Pan Am flew its last commercial flight and ceased operations. The six-decade-old airline has come to symbolize modern international travel, embedding itself in pop culture and the public spotlight. Here’s a look back at the airline’s history and why it has so many fans.
Simple Flying articleHistory.com article on the Lockerbie bombingCrash site map

11/30/21

Sharks and tarpons and manatees

Temperatures in the 50s led to quite the scene outside a power plant discharge station in Central Florida with hundreds of marine animals spotted basking in the warm, sunlit waters. This time of year, manatee spottings near the Tampa Electric power plant are common, but what made Tuesday’s event more unique was the addition of hundreds of other fish, including dozens of sharks.
Fox weather articleMap

11/29/21

U.S. to restrict travel from South Africa, 7 other countries as new Covid variant emerges

The United States will restrict travel for non-U.S. citizens from South Africa and seven other countries starting Monday as a new Covid variant emerges.
CNBC ArticleMap

Russia-Ukraine Conflict: Is Moscow Prepared To Invade Kyiv As Tensions Soar On Border?

There is 'no certainty' about intentions of Russia, both NATO Secretary-General Jens Stoltenberg, and the US secretary of Defense Lloyd Austin have warned.

Russia’s well-planned armed aggression against Ukraine in 2014 resulted in Moscow’s annexation of a part of the Ukrainian territory. The Crimean Peninsula and certain areas of the Donetsk and Luhansk regions, which the Russian Ministry of Defence affirms was an attempt at an “unconstitutional coup in Ukraine”. The political takeover of the autonomous Republic of Crimea and the city of Sevastopol was the Kremlin’s first military operation aimed at undermining independence and sovereignty of Ukraine
republicworld.com articleArea MapAdditional info

11/28/21

Extremely strong magnitude-7.5 earthquake hits northern Peru

The U.S. Geological Survey says a strong earthquake with a preliminary magnitude of 7.5 has struck in northern Peru at 5:52 a.m. Sunday local time. While the quake was extremely strong, it was relatively deep — measured at 112 kilometers — which usually reduces damage and casualties.
CNBCUSGS InfoMap

11/24/21


South China Sea: China issues warning against US as warship sails through Taiwan Strait

Nations are still at odds against China over the South China Sea, including the Taiwan Strait. Following the passage of a US warship in the narrow region of water, China has issued a warning on the US against making any provocation.
EconoTimes Article
Reuters article - Philippines rejects China's demand to remove grounded navy shipMapSee article below
South China Seas and Taiwan Subject Section

11/19/21

'Ghostbusters: Afterlife' Release Date Delayed a Week

Spoiler Alert: Sit all the way through the closing credits
September 1st article by Variety
Ghostbusters Shooting Locations

11/18/21

Polar night: Sun sets for last time this year in America's northernmost city

You read that right! Utqiagvik, formerly known as Barrow, Alaska, will watch the sun set for the last time this year Thursday.
Article by WKMG ClickOrlando

11/16/21

US reportedly plans diplomatic boycott of China’s Winter Olympics

The US is going to stage a diplomatic boycott of the Winter Olympics in China and will not send an official delegation in protest against human rights abuses, according to a report on Tuesday.

Under such a diplomatic boycott, US athletes would take part as normal, but there would be no accompanying political delegation of officials and politicians.
The Guardian article


The venues:
Beijing
The National Stadium, also known as "The Bird's Nest." The stadium also hosted the Opening and Closing Ceremonies of the 2008 Olympics, as well as the athletics competition and men's football final of the Summer Games. Will host ice skating events.

The nearby National Indoor Stadium, nicknamed "The Fan" due to its design that resembles a traditional Chinese folding fan, will share hosting duties for the ice hockey competition with Wukesong Sports Centre.



Also nearby, The National Speed Skating Oval, nicknamed "The Ice Ribbon," is the only new venue built on Beijing's Olympic Green (the Olympic Park constructed for the 2008 Games) for the Winter Olympics. It will host the speed skating competition. The stadium replaced the site of the Olympic Green Hockey Field, and the Olympic Green Archery Field.



Wukesong Sports Centre was also built for the 2008 Olympics. It is about 8 miles southwest of the Bird's Nest, and it will serve as the main indoor venue for ice hockey at the 2022 Winter Games alongside the National Indoor Stadium.

Capital Indoor Stadium is 5 miles southwest of the Bird's Nest was built in 1968, has staged several important sporting events, including the table tennis matches between China and the United States as part of the ping pong diplomacy exchange program in 1971, and one of the first NBA games in China in 2004. After hosting the volleyball tournament at the 2008 Summer Olympics, the Capital Indoor Stadium will stage the figure skating and short track speed skating competitions during the Winter Olympics.

The Big Air Shougang
was built on a former steel mill site, set against the backdrop of four industrial cooling towers, is 14 miles
southwest of the Bird's Nest. It will stage the freestyle skiing and snowboard Big Air competitions at the Games. Following the Winter Olympics, the venue will be used for various sports competitions and athlete training, as well as cultural and civic events.

While the mountain skiing venues are referred to as Yanqing , they are actually 40 miles northwest of there. Two have existed, and one is being built. The two are:
•   Wanlong Ski Resort , almost 84 miles northwest of the Bird's Nest as the crow fly's. the Wanlong Ski Resort, oldest of the three, will host slalom snowboarding.
•  Genting Resort Secret Garden which is adjancent to Wanlong, just to the north, 80 miles the Bird's Nest as the crow fly's. The snowboarding slopestyle, halfpipe, and some of the freestyle skiing will take place at Genting Secret Garden. The resort opened in 2011.

The new one is Thaiwoo Ski Resort and it is still under construction, which will host the snowboard cross and freestyle skiing.

They are a 140 mile drive from Beijing. None of them get much natural snow so snowmaking will be essential.

The one venue near Yanqing is National Sliding Center (map shows construction site), which will host the bobsleigh, skeleton and luge competitions. (Conceptual plan)

Zhangjiakou City in north China's Hebei Province, will stage the biathlon competition. Following the Games, the centre will be used by the Chinese national team for training, and as a tourist resort. Also in the area the ski jumping competition.

11/15/21

Vietnam construction continues at 3 South China Sea features

Vietnam is carrying out construction on three islands in the South China Sea at the same time, satellite imagery shows.
Radio Free Asia article

Maps Pearson ReefNamyit IslandSand Cay

South China Sea Map of military outpostsSee below
South China Seas and Taiwan Subject Section

11/12/21

Russia sends paratroopers to Belarus amid fears of Ukraine invasion

Russia dispatched paratroopers to Belarus Friday amid growing tension between the Minsk government and Poland over increasing numbers of migrants along their border — and fears in the West that Vladimir Putin could soon launch an invasion of Ukraine. The Kremlin’s Defense Ministry said that forces will parachute from heavylift Il-76 transport planes in Belarus’ Grodno region — which borders Poland — as part of joint war games involving Belarusian air defense assets, helicopter gunships and other forces.
NY Post articleMap

11/10/21

Engineer says doomed MH370 plane ‘flew in circles for 20 mins before vanishing’

An engineer claims he’s used a computer program to discover flight MH370 was put into a 20-minute holding pattern before vanishing. Richard Godfrey has been tracking the Boeing 777’s flight path using WSPRnet – which uses radio signals – and claims to have made a major breakthrough. Godfrey says using WSPRnet he is able to track all aircrafts going back as far as 2009.
New York Post Article

Technical article on how multiple receiving stations could triangulate the flight path
Area where the plane might of went into a holding pattern

Weather ballon

Weather balloon goes on 117-mile ride over Lake Michigan

A weather balloon launched in Wisconsin Tuesday took a 117-mile journey across Lake Michigan. Launched in Green Bay, WI, it landed in Traverse City, Michigan. Fox News Article     Map

11/07/21

China Builds Missile Targets Shaped Like U.S. Aircraft Carrier, Destroyers in Remote Desert

The Chinese military has built targets in the shape of an American aircraft carrier and other U.S. warships in the Taklamakan desert as part of a new target range complex, according to photos provided to USNI News by satellite imagery company Maxar.
USNI News articleMap (might take a bit to load)

11/06/21

Saturday was the big protest day at the COP26 climate summit.

Friday's student protests brought about 25,000 people into the streets of Glasgow, Scotland.
Scottish Event Campus

For the first time in decades, members of the public will be allowed to walk on the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier Plaza

This is an honor typically reserved for presidents.
Tomb of the Unknown Soldier

The United States ordered non-emergency officials to leave Ethiopia on Friday

This is due to the ongoing armed conflict and possible supply shortages. In a security alert, the U.S. Embassy in Addis Ababa said that incidents of unrest and ethnic violence were "occurring without warning.
Ethiopia


11/05/21

Astroworld Festival Tragedy

Houston authorities are investigating what officials described as a crowd surge that killed at least eight people and injured scores of others, at the Astroworld Festival. The dead ranged in age from 14 to 27, and 13 people were still hospitalized Saturday, Mayor Sylvester Turner said. Dozens were injured.
NRG Park

Fuel tanker exploded on the outskirts of Sierra Leone's capital of Freetown late Friday

The explosion killed and wounded dozens at a busy intersection, according to local media reports. It happened outside the Choithram Supermarket in the densely populated Wellington suburb in the east of the city.
Choithram Supermarket

Two missing Oregon women were found in an Idaho forest Friday

Two missing Oregon women were found in an Idaho forest Friday, the mother dead from the elements and the disabled daughter alive with their broken down vehicle.
Idaho Panhandle National Forests

11/03/21

Supply Chain Bottlenecks

Choke Points

West Coast Ports

Vancouver
Seattle
Tacoma
Portland
Oakland/San Francisco
Los Angeles/Long Beach

California Rail Choke Points

Article - Ship navigation choke points
Suez CanalSee article below
Strait of Hormuz
Malacca Strait
Panama Canal


As tensions simmer over Taiwan, global semiconductor chip supply hangs in the balance

Tensions between China and Taiwan are escalating, and confusion sparked by President Joe Biden's recent pledge to defend Taiwan has sent his administration scrambling to assure the international community that's not necessarily the case.

It's the latest twist in a longstanding drama that could upend political and economic stability in the region and reframe China's power in the world. But experts warn there could be another casualty in the case of war in the Taiwan Strait: The remaining global supply of semiconductor chips.

After a year of shortages, the prospect of yet another interruption to the chip supply likely is enough to make Detroit's automakers and their foreign rivals shudder. Taiwan produces 65% of all chips globally and is home to the largest semiconductor company in the world, Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Company.

The Detroit News article
Taiwan Strait
South China Seas and Taiwan Subject Section

74 Years Ago The Spruce Goose Flew For The First And Last Time

Designed by the Hughes Aircraft Company, the Hughes H-4 Hercules, commonly known as the Spruce Goose, intended to be a strategic airlift flying boat, made its first and last flight 74 years ago yesterday. The Spruce Goose could carry two Sherman tanks. Simple Flying Article
The original hanger and what it is being used for today
It spent a number of years under a dome at the mouth of the Los Angeles River in Long Beach. Map
Where it is today Map

10/27/21

Rust Movie Shooting

"Rust" cinematographer Halyna Hutchins died in an on-set shooting involving actor Alec Baldwin that also left director Joel Souza hospitalized.

It remains unclear how and why a suspected real bullet made it into the prop gun – believed to be a F.LLI Pietta Long Colt .45 Revolver – which Baldwin had allegedly been handed by a crew member moments earlier, according to the sheriff of Santa Fe, New Mexico.

New York Post article
Bonanza Creek Ranch

07/26/21

Challenger 605 Crash in Truckee, CA

Explore what might have caused this tragic crash during approach into an historically demanding airport
Article on Crash in Truckee
Update: Challenger 605 Crash in Truckee
Possible cause
Flight Path
Additional backgroundMore
Aircraft info
Crash Site
Ring camera captures apparent sounds of jet crashing in Truckee

03/24/21

How a container ship blocked the Suez canal

A container ship nearly 100 metres longer than the height of London’s Shard ran aground on Tuesday morning in the Suez canal, blocking one of the most vital arteries of the global economy
Visual Guide article from The Guardian
Updated article
Map
Additional visuals