Red-crested pochard and fungi


On 7 November, from the bridge near the sewage works, a male red-crested pochard, and a great crested grebe gulping down a fish.

Near the entrance of the nature reserve, the bearded tooth fungus is still there, though by now it is old and brown.

Bearded tooth fungus in Epe: here.

Porcelain fungi

A bit further, porcelain fungi.

Great spotted woodpecker and jay.

Coniferous forests and fungi: see here.

Winter fungi of Texel: here.

Schröder says Bush lies about Iraq


This video from the USA says about itself:

God speaks to Bush through Rumsfeld

Keith Olbermann describes how Rumsfeld’s Intelligence briefings on Iraq were couched in Bible quotes.

From the Irish Times:

Thursday, November 11, 2010

Schröder rejects Bush assertion he initially backed US-led war on Iraq

DEREK SCALLY in Berlin

FORMER GERMAN chancellor Gerhard Schröder has dismissed as “untrue” claims that, initially, he was a supporter of a US-led war on Iraq.

The claim, made by former US president George W Bush in his memoirs, has revived an old enmity between the two leaders that damaged bilateral relations ahead of the Iraq war.

In his memoir Decision Points, Mr Bush remembers hitting it off with Mr Schröder initially and being impressed by his support after the September 11th attacks.

Just four months later, in January 2002, Mr Bush recalls discussing with Mr Schröder the growing stand-off between the US and Saddam Hussein over allegations that Iraq possessed weapons of mass destruction.

After he judged diplomacy with Iraq had been exhausted, Mr Bush recalls in his memoirs telling the German leader how he was prepared to use military force against Iraq.

According to Mr Bush, Mr Schröder replied: “What is true of Afghanistan is true of Iraq. Nations that sponsor terror must face consequences. If you make it fast and make it decisive, I will be with you.”

Mr Bush said he took this as a “statement of support” and was dismayed when Mr Schröder took a different view later that year.

“As someone who valued personal diplomacy, I put a high premium on trust,” wrote Mr Bush. “Once that trust was violated, it was hard to have a constructive relationship again.”

In the autumn of 2002, Mr Schröder came from behind to win re-election after using stump speeches to denounce the US “military misadventures” in Iraq.

Yesterday the German leader said his January 2002 support for an invasion of Iraq was not as presented by Mr Bush. “The former president of the United States is not telling the truth,” he said.

“I made clear that Germany would stand beside the US should Iraq . . . prove to have provided protection and hospitality to al-Qaeda fighters. As it became clear during 2002, this connection was false and misconstrued.”

In his own memoirs, Mr Schröder was far from flattering of the US president, dismissing his “near-biblical semantics”.

He expressed concern that Mr Bush gave the impression that his “political decisions are a result of this conversation with God”.

According to Mr Schröder’s former spokesman Uwe Karsten-Heye, Berlin realised early on that they were dealing with a man of a “low intelligence threshold who had no idea what was going on”.

See also here.

US activists, inspired by the British campaign against Tony Blair‘s book, vow to move George Bush’s memoir into bookshop crime sections: here.

Sign the petition: Demand an Investigation of Former Pres. George W. Bush for Torture: here.

USA: Jon Soltz, VoteVets Founder, War Critic, Called Up For Military Service In Iraq: here.

Senior British officers could face war crimes trial over alleged Iraqi abuse: here.

UK Guardian Releases British Torture Tape: here.

Further allegations of British war crimes in Iraq emerged in the High Court in London last week: here.

Former Iraqi prime minister Ayad Allawi and members of his Iraqiya bloc walked out of parliament on Thursday – three hours into a parliamentary session that was supposed to approve an agreement on a new unity government: here.

Anti-Christian violence in Iraq: here.

Iraqi war refugees in Syria are legally barred from work while they wait for resettlement. For single women the risk of forced prostitution and sex trafficking is so high that a U.S. legal advocate says they deserve priority refugee status: here.

Amnesty International UK called on Britain today to comply with the European Court of Human Rights and halt the deportation of Iraqi refugees whose asylum applications have been rejected: here.

Remaining British troops ‘to leave Iraq in spring': here.

Rare bean geese in China


Some birds which are rare in western Europe, are not rare in Africa, north America, or east Asia.

And some birds which are common winter migrants in parts of western Europe, are rare winter visitors in east Asia.

From the South China Morning Post in Hong Kong:

Treat for birdwatchers as four rare visitors touch down at Mai Po

Cheung Chi-fai

Nov 11, 2010

A cold spell from the north has brought new visitors to Mai Po Nature Reserve – a small flock of migratory wild bean geese from Siberia.

This is a video from Spain about a bean goose (and a gray lag goose and a coot).

Wildlife in China: here.