What Would The Repeal Of DADT Mean For Transgender Servicemembers?

I am open to putting up other posts from TS/TG people who are involved in organizations fighting for the repeal of DADT.

Particularly articles regarding veteran’s services issues involving both those who completed service and those who were dismissed from service.

Leave a comment and I will contact you:

From Pam’s House Blend: http://www.pamshouseblend.com/diary/18137/what-would-the-repeal-of-dadt-mean-for-transgender-servicemembers

Reposted with the permission of author…

by: Autumn Sandeen

Fri Dec 03, 2010 at 11:00:00 AM EST
I don’t have to look too far to see that I’ve personally become a lightning rod regarding the repeal of Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell. Basically, I’ve become the personification for fear-mongering over the idea that repeal of DADT will either immediately, or eventually, result in transgender people being able to serve openly in the military services. As I highlighted in yesterday’s diary (entitled FRC’s DADT Press Conference: Just Call Me “Or Something”), to Frank Gaffney of the Center For Security Policy — and apparently of the Family Research Council (FRC) as well — I am the answer to the question “What’s wrong with this picture?” From the FRC’s November 30, 2010 DADT press conference (at about the 33-minute mark of the press conference video):

But I just want to throw up a slide here that we talked about in the abstract as an indication of the kind of modalities that were going to be a problem for the United States Military if the repeal were undertaken.What’s wrong with this picture?

Thumbnail Link: Photo captioned by Frank Gaffney, the president of the Center For Security Policy, at the Family Research Council's (FRC's) November 30, 2010 Don't Ask, Don't Tell (DADT) press conference. Photo caption refers to Autumn Sandeen being transgender. Comment is made at about the 33-minute mark in the video of the press conference.These are, of course, five individuals — six individuals, excuse me — who have now professed themselves to be homosexual…or something…who chained themselves to the fence of the White House in order to call attention to what they consider the great injustice of them not being allowed under the law to serve in the United States Armed Forces openly.

What’s wrong with this picture is that the individual on the far left, who goes by the name Autumn Sandeen, is a transgender individual. Now apparently transgender individuals are not to be considered as part of the group that will be admitted into the military if this repeal this repeal  takes place, at least not initially, but anyone who is following the LGBT activists knows that T stands for transgender. Transgender is part of the community whose equal rights are supposed to be established, among other things, by imposing on the United States Military this Radical Homosexual Agenda.

Think about — now we’ve just heard from these distinguished military officers and NCOs — what challenges they’ve confronted already, and what challenges would be confronted with someone whose physical characteristics are clear, but whose sexual preferences are for the same sex? What do you do with individuals whose physical characteristics are — well uncertain, to say the least — and whose sexual preferences maybe unclear as well. It’s a vehicle — a formula — for a command nightmare.

So I simply want to just offer this with no criticism of any of these individuals, or their lives as civilians or their choices. It’s up to them. This is about breaking the United States Military.

Let’s be clear here. Referring to me as an “or something,” and referring to me as what’s wrong with the picture of six lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender (LGBT) community military veterans handcuffed to the White House Fence, is a direct criticism of me, and it is a broader direct criticism of trans service members and trans veterans.

And the strange thing here is that my reasons for participating in the DADT direct actions with GetEQUAL are easily known, and my reasons weren’t to establish, among other things, by imposition on the United States Military a Radical Homosexual Agenda™.

And too, despite the claim by Frank Gaffney, the president of the Center For Security Policy, repeal of DADT will not now, nor in the near future, result in transsexual servicemembers, transgender servicemembers, or servicemembers who identify as both transgender and transsexual, to serve openly as trans in the military services. To state what Frank Gaffney stated as truth, when he, his organization, Tony Perkins, and the FRC know what Gaffney said isn’t truth, appears to me to be stating a lie as truth to engage in fear-mongering of their religious, conservative, sociopolitical base.

From a National Center For Transgender Equality eblast, entitled Pentagon Releases Report in Favor of DADT Repeal, Transgender People Still Cannot Serve Openly:

The Pentagon today [November 30, 2010] released results of a nine-month-long study that concluded that the discriminatory “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell” (DADT) policy could be repealed with little impact on the military’s preparedness. Thumbnail link: NCTE's 'Pentagon Releases Report in Favor of DADT Repeal, Transgender People Still Cannot Serve Openly'The authors noted that many of the objections to service by openly gay men and lesbians were based on stereotypes, not facts, and that the majority of members of the armed forces had already knowingly served with lesbians and gay men without adverse effect.Within the report’s Frequently Asked Questions section, the Department of Defense reiterated that a change in DADT would not permit transgender servicemembers to serve openly. Transgender people are currently considered medically disqualified for service and can face other roadblocks if they come out while serving. These policies have to change to allow transgender people to serve openly. Several  allies of the United States have already repealed similar policies in their own armed forces.

NCTE applauds the Department of Defense for recognizing the unfounded basis for discrimination against lesbian and gay servicemembers.  We call on the military to also take action to repeal the policies which bar transgender servicemembers from enlisting or serving openly.  Like the policies that currently limit service based on sexual orientation, the bans on service by transgender people are also based on stereotypes and a lack of accurate information. It is also important that the report recognizes that the creation of separate bathroom and sleeping facilities only exacerbates the problems of discrimination, by stigmatizing certain troops.

It is also important that transgender servicemembers recognize that, they will no longer run the risk of being falsely caught up in an investigation about their sexual orientation if DADT is repealed, but they still remain at significant risk for discharge if they reveal their gender identity. NCTE encourages all transgender servicemembers who have concerns or are considering coming out to contact the Servicemembers Legal Defense Network SLDN hotline to speak with a staff attorney: 202-328-3244 x100. Early this year, NCTE and SLDN released information for transgender servicemembers, which we urge you to consult.

The exact quote is from the Support Plan for Implementation; Report of the Comprehensive Review of the Issues Associated with a Repeal of “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell” is on page 70, and is — as NCTE indicated — in the Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ) of the report. The FAQ question and answer is as follows:

Can transgender or transsexual individuals join the Military Services?No. Transgender and transsexual individuals are not permitted to join the Military Services. The repeal of Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell has no effect on these policies.

[Below the fold: What NCTE and the SLDN indicates may happen when transgender servicemembers come out of the closet.] Autumn Sandeen :: What Would The Repeal Of DADT Mean For Transgender Servicemembers?

The National Center For Transgender Equality (NCTE) has addressed the impact of repealing Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell in prior e-blast.Thumbnail Link: National Center For Transgender Equality (NCTE) eblast 'Attention Transgender Service Members: It is NOT Safe To Come Out As Transgender' Transsexual servicemembers, transgender servicemembers, as well as servicemembers who identify as both transgender and transsexual, should pay very close attention to what NCTE stated in that e-blast:

As you know, Congress may repeal “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell” (DADT) soon. But you should remember two things: 1) even if Congress votes to repeal the law, actual repeal is contingent on the Department of Defense (DoD) and the President taking some additional steps to finalize the change; and 2) DADT only applies to service members who are gay, lesbian or bisexual-not to transgender service members. Even if DADT is repealed, you can still be discharged for being transgender.The military can discharge you for being transgender in two ways:

  1. You may be considered medically unfit because of Gender Identity Disorder;
  2. You may be considered medically unfit if you have had genital surgery.

Transgender people are sometimes impacted by “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell”:

Even though DADT doesn’t directly apply to you, transgender people have been discharged under DADT in the past and will continue to be until it is repealed. Investigators may not know the difference between sexual orientation and gender identity. If you are serving as a woman, but wear men’s clothing or have a masculine appearance, military investigators may assume that you are a lesbian; likewise, if you are serving as a male, but wear women’s clothing or have a feminine appearance, investigators may believe that you are gay.

Transgender people are also impacted by other rules and regulations:

It can be considered prejudicial to good order and discipline to act or dress in ways that don’t meet stereotypes of men and women. For example, service members can be court-martialed for cross-dressing.

There is also a duty to report any change in your medical status. If, for example, you take hormones, or if you have top surgery, there is a duty to report that “change in medical status” to the military. That information could lead to your discharge for being transgender.

Warning about talking to medical professionals and chaplains:

You should also be aware that [the Department Of Defense (DOD)]  recently made changes to “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell” that allow lesbian, gay and bisexual service members to make confidential statements about their sexual orientation to mental health, medical and religious professionals. These protections, unfortunately, do not apply to you. It is not safe to reveal that you are transgender or that you have questions about whether you may be transgender.


Important information for transgender servicemembers

• Service members should NOT come out as transgender.*
• Transgender service members still cannot openly serve within the military.
• Transgender service members will still be discharged under “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell” until the law is repealed, even though it doesn’t directly apply.
• You should not share information or questions about your gender identity with medical doctors, psychologists or chaplains.**
• Contact SLDN to schedule an appointment with an SLDN attorney if you have questions about your status.

* We respect the fact that some servicemembers may feel they need to come out for a variety of personal reasons. However, you should be aware that coming out as transgender will almost certainly end your career in the military, may lead to disciplinary action, and can have other very negative outcomes for you, and your family. If you feel you need to come out, we urge you to speak to SLDN first so that you are fully informed and understand the discharge and/or discipline processes that will begin after you come out.

** You can speak confidentially to a civilian religious professional, provided that you are specifically seeking spiritual services, such as confession or pastoral care. However, if you seek civilian medical or mental health care, you are required to report this to the military, and so discussing your gender identity with those types of providers puts you at significant risk.

There’s quite a bit more in that NCTE e-blast that trans servicemembers should read if they’re thinking about coming out of the closet to their military services should DADT be ultimately repealed.

In addition to what NCTE stated in that eblast, the Servicemembers Legal Defense Network’s (SLDN’s) old Survival Guide stated about currently serving transsexuals (beginning on Page 51; bolded/italicized emphasis added):

Currently Serving MembersTranssexuals, persons who are born with the wrong biological gender, who are thinking about coming out or starting their transition while in the military, should be aware of a strong bias against recognizing the standard of care involving hormone therapy, living in the appropriate gender, and surgery. Thumbnail Link: Servicemembers Legal Defense Network (SLDN) Survival GuideThe military medical system does not support the Harry Benjamin standard of care185 and will not provide the medical support necessary for transitioning service members. Generally, the services apply physical standards that make transsexualism a disqualifying condition which impacts on military fitness and a basis for a non-medical discharge. Transsexual service members also face the possibility of being discharged for having a personality disorder.

Service members who seek psychological or medical treatment through the military should know that conversations with military health-care providers are not confidential and any statement concerning being transgender can, and most likely will, be reported to their commands and separation proceedings begun. For those members who seek treatment from civilian providers, beware that each service has regulations governing military members seeking outside health care and may include reporting requirements. Failure to abide by these regulations could potentially place a member at risk for UCMJ action. Further, crossdressing as part of the transition process, even when prescribed by competent medical providers, may be considered a violation of the UCMJ and can potentially be prosecuted at court-martial.

Because the potential exists for the military to apply the rules of the homosexual conduct policy to transgender members, it is important to not make any statements about sexual conduct, even to military health care providers. For example, the military would view a pre-operative male-to-female transsexual, self-described as a heterosexual female, having sexual relations with males to be committing homosexual acts subject to administrative and disciplinary proceedings.

While anecdotal stories of individuals who have transitioned while in the reserves and were allowed to remain in the military have been heard, SLDN has not documented any case where a known transsexual has been allowed to continue in the service.

Any service member considering transitioning while in the military should consult with an attorney knowledgeable about military law and transgender issues first.

The old Survival Guide also has information about transsexuals trying to enlist in the military, as well as information regarding the rest of the transgender spectrum (again beginning on page 51 of the old Survival Guide). The information on transsexual and transgender servicemembers, as well as servicemembers who identify as both transgender and transsexual, in the old Survival Guide serving in the military is still valid, and should be paid very close attention to.

Folk on the religious right, including Frank Gaffney of the Center For Security Policy, frequently have been engaging in fear-mongering of their sociopolitical base over an alleged secondary effect — that repealing DADT will either now, or in the near future, will allow trans servicemembers to serve openly. This is just not the case; repealing DADT won’t now, or in the near future, allow trans servicemembers to serve openly.

With that thought in mine, the advice that NCTE is giving to trans servicemembers needs to be paid attention to; the advice needs to be heeded.

Further Reading:
* All of the reports associated with the Pentagon’s DADT study are found here.

* NCTE Warns Transgender Servicemembers Regarding DADT And Coming Out Trans
* FRC’s DADT Press Conference: Just Call Me “Or Something”
* What About “Transvestite Clothing” In The Military?
* Again, I’m Here Near The Place I Was Last April

TAVA Statement

with permission

TAVA Statement

The TAVA Board and members support the repeal of DADT and have since the organization was founded in January of 2003.  We are fully aware that the repeal of DADT will not in any way affect transgender or transsexual people who are currently serving in the military or thinking of joining.  This means that we discourage any trans service member of coming out once DADT is repealed.Several of our allied countries allow trans people to serve openly, and even recruit them.  Based on their experiences and lack of incidents, TAVA feels that allowing trans people to serve openly in the US military will become a subject in the future, but that future is not on anyone’s radar as of yet.  For Frank Gaffney of the Center For Security Policy to suggest that this will happen soon is nothing more than spreading faults hoods for fear mongering only.  Nothing more.

TAVA would also like to take this opportunity to remind young trans men that even though you cannot join the military, you still need to register with the Selective Service when you turn 18, or when you legally change your name and you are still of draft age.  Upon registering, you will need to reveal your trans status and the Selective Service will send you a letter that states you are not eligible for the draft.  It doesn’t say why in the letter.  This letter will be needed if you apply for student loans in the future, because they ask on the form if you have registered.

TAVA will remain a strong supporter of the repeal of DADT, and our LGB brothers and sister in arms.  Thank you.

Monica Helms
President, Transgender American Veterans Association

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Employers Won’t Hire The Jobless Because Of The ‘Desperate Vibe’

Just when you thought things couldn’t get much harder or more insane for those discarded by Corporate Amerikkka in the pursuit of more money for the undeserving rich.

From Huffington Post: http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2010/12/03/employers-wont-hire-the-u_n_791710.html

Laura Bassett
12- 3-10 01:59 PM

WASHINGTON — Isang Inokon, a headhunter for Amherst Healthcare recruiting firm, posted a Craigslist job ad on November 18 for clinical pharmacists — but only the kind who already have jobs.

“Do yourself and favor and start looking now,” he wrote in the ad. “When you lose your job, you will interview from a position of weakness.”

With the U.S. unemployment rate still soaring at 9.8 percent and 6.3 million Americans having been unemployed for 27 weeks or longer, employers can now afford to be extremely picky about whom they hire. In addition to seeking very specific skills, degrees, and numbers of years of experience, many employers are specifying in job ads that candidates be “currently employed” elsewhere to be considered for the position.

Continue reading at:  http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2010/12/03/employers-wont-hire-the-u_n_791710.html

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Aid to be slashed for the UK’s poorest

From World Socialist web Site: http://www.wsws.org/articles/2010/dec2010/ukla-d04.shtml
By Robert Stevens
4 December 2010
The British Conservative/Liberal Democrat government has unveiled a green paper which heralds the end of the 60-year-old system of Legal Aid in England and Wales.

“Proposals for the Reform of Legal Aid in England and Wales” was released on November 15. Justice Minister Kenneth Clarke presented the report and announced that the measures will result in a cut of £347 million (16 percent) from the £2.1 billion legal aid budget by 2014-15. Clarke said, “It is starkly obvious that the England and Wales legal aid system has become far too expensive, and it is an obvious place to start tackling deficit problems”.

While the cuts are being imposed as part of the £83 billion total cut in public spending, announced in October, slashing the legal aid budget is not merely a financial decision. It has a profound anti-democratic content, the essential purpose of which will be to deny millions of the poorest people in society access to legal services.

Legal aid in England and Wales was established by the 1949 Legal Aid and Advice Act as part of the construction of the welfare state in the post-war period. Legal Aid is administered by the Legal Services Commission and assists more than two million people annually. Its budget funds solicitors and agencies that advise people on their legal problems when faced with eviction, debt and family breakdown. The service represents people in court. Its Criminal Defence Service section deals with criminal cases and Community Legal Service with civil cases.

Continue reading at:   http://www.wsws.org/articles/2010/dec2010/ukla-d04.shtml

Republicans Vote to Raise Taxes and Throw Millions off Unemployment

Of course the corporate media won’t frame the headline that way, because in spite of all the right wing spin from the Nazis talking heads at Fox “News” and the right wing radio monopolies the media aside from a minuscule number of of socialist/progressive publications is all pretty conservative.  Including The New York Times with its insufferable pandering to the crowd that wears the 500 dollar shoes and the 1200 dollar blazers as well as having “exquisite taste” and a home in the Hamptons.

We know the headline on the right will be, “Republicans defeat Democrat Attempt to Raise Taxes” and “Republicans Show Fiscal Conservatism by Limiting Giveaways to Lazy Over-paid Workers”

And that message will be pounded home repeatedly.

By papers like The New York Times: http://www.nytimes.com/2010/12/05/us/politics/05cong.html?_r=1&hp

Senate Rejects Obama’s Tax Plan, Setting Stage for Deal

Published: December 4, 2010

WASHINGTON — The Senate on Saturday rejected President Obama’s proposal to extend the Bush-era tax breaks for all but the wealthiest taxpayers, sealing a triumph for Republicans who have long called for continuing the income tax cuts for everyone.

The Senate’s verdict set the stage for a possible deal in the coming days to extend the reduced tax rates even on high incomes temporarily, perhaps for up to two years. But with Senate Democrats and the White House badly splintered, and some lawmakers increasingly angry at the idea of sustaining Mr. Bush’s economic policies, the prospects of a compromise remain uncertain.

Continue reading at:  http://www.nytimes.com/2010/12/05/us/politics/05cong.html?_r=1&hp

That was the actual headline from the allegedly liberal New York Times.

Of course the fact that Obama came to office willing to give blow jobs to the Republicans while in a compromising position hasn’t helped the Democrats win much of anything.

We should have known better than support Obama when he started pandering to Rick Warren and praising Reagan.

Paul Krugman calls Obama “The Incredible Shrinking President” on his blog and hints Obama and the other DINOs will go along with the Republicans on unnecessary changes to Social Security while ignoring the obvious fix of not capping the amount of income one is required to pay into Social Security on.

At least The Huffington Post comes closer with a headline that reads:

Senate Republicans Defeat Reauthorization Of Jobless Aid, Tax Cuts


Arthur Delaney


Senate Republicans Saturday defeated a bill to reauthorize unemployment benefits for the long-term jobless and a plethora of tax provisions for the middle class not because of the bill’s trillion-dollar deficit impact, but because it did not include tax cuts for the rich.

“In economic times like these, 9.8 percent unemployment, you should not raise taxes on anyone,” Sen. John Barrasso (R-Wyo.) told HuffPost.

Two bills were defeated. By a vote of 53-63, the Senate rejected a bill by Sen. Max Baucus (D-Mont.) that would have preserved Bush era tax cuts for lower- and middle-income taxpayers, but would have allowed cuts for people earning more than $200,000 a year to expire. Four Democrats and Joe Lieberman (I-Conn.) joined Republicans in voting against the measure. The Senate also rejected a bill by Sen. Chuck Schumer (D-N.Y.) that would have extended all the cuts, but not for anybody making more than $1 million.

The Baucus bill would have preserved Emergency Unemployment Compensation and Extended Benefits Programs created in 2008 as a customary response to rising unemployment. The programs provide up to 73 weeks of federally-funded benefits for when layoff victims exhaust the standard 26 weeks of state-funded aid. The programs lapsed last week, threatening a holiday cutoff for two million unemployed.

Continue reading at:  http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2010/12/04/senate-unemployment-benefits_n_791995.html

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Can We Have Someone Other than Obama as the Democratic Candidate in 2012?

Like a Democrat instead of a DINO who would rather kiss Republican’s asses than stand up for the people who put him in office.

Instead of Single Payer Health Insurance we got a Health Plan that insures the continued feeding of Health Insurance Inc. fat cats.

We are still in Iraq and Afghanistan.

We still don’t have ENDA.  We might get rid of DADT but Obama will have nothing to do with that one if we do.

People on the left are starting to say WTF?

At the rate we are going Obama may end Social Security because some right wing Republican kook says boo to him.

Clinton’s neo-lib bull shit suck nearly as bad as the Republicans and Obamas neo-lib bullshit sucks as bad as W’s.

I want a real Democratic President not a DINO.

The New York Times: http://www.nytimes.com/2010/12/03/opinion/03krugman.html?_r=1&partner=rssnyt&emc=rss

Freezing Out Hope

Published: December 2, 2010

After the Democratic “shellacking” in the midterm elections, everyone wondered how President Obama would respond. Would he show what he was made of? Would he stand firm for the values he believes in, even in the face of political adversity?

On Monday, we got the answer: he announced a pay freeze for federal workers. This was an announcement that had it all. It was transparently cynical; it was trivial in scale, but misguided in direction; and by making the announcement, Mr. Obama effectively conceded the policy argument to the very people who are seeking — successfully, it seems — to destroy him.

So I guess we are, in fact, seeing what Mr. Obama is made of.

About that pay freeze: the president likes to talk about “teachable moments.” Well, in this case he seems eager to teach Americans something false.

The truth is that America’s long-run deficit problem has nothing at all to do with overpaid federal workers. For one thing, those workers aren’t overpaid. Federal salaries are, on average, somewhat less than those of private-sector workers with equivalent qualifications. And, anyway, employee pay is only a small fraction of federal expenses; even cutting the payroll in half would reduce total spending less than 3 percent.

Continue reading at:   http://www.nytimes.com/2010/12/03/opinion/03krugman.html?_r=1&partner=rssnyt&emc=rss

From Firedog Lake: http://firedoglake.com/2010/12/03/operation-one-term-obama-reaches-bipartisan-agreement-to-serve-only-four-years/

Operation One-Term: Obama Reaches Bipartisan Agreement To Serve Only Four Years

By: Eli Friday December 3, 2010 6:01 pm
A little over a month ago, Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell declared that “the single most important thing we want to achieve is for President Obama to be a one-term president.”  A little over two weeks ago, a pair of nominally Democratic hacks explained that Obama would be much more effective over the next two years if he immediately declared that he would not seek a second term.

Well, Obama may not have come out and explicitly announced that he won’t try to get re-elected, but he has clearly signaled his intent to grant their wish.  I don’t think I have ever seen a president as determined to avoid another four years as Barack Obama.  Sorry, White House – he’s just not that into you.

I mean, why else would he announce a job-killing NAFTA-style deal with South Korea on the same day that unemployment goes up to 9.8%?

Why else would he be performing kabuki negotiations with the Republicans to ensure that the incredibly unpopular Bush tax cuts for the rich are preserved with no political consequences for the GOP, even to the point of opposing Schumer’s millionaire compromise?

Why else would he create a deficit commission stacked with Social Security haters and continue to lavish praise on it even after it recommended tax cuts for the rich and benefit cuts for the elderly?  (And does anyone doubt that some form of that final recommendation will get a vote in Congress, especially with that non-binding but oh-so-bipartisany 11-7 committee vote?  And that if it passes, that Obama will happily sign it?)

Continue reading at:  http://firedoglake.com/2010/12/03/operation-one-term-obama-reaches-bipartisan-agreement-to-serve-only-four-years/

Alan Grayson Tells It Like It Is

I remember ad-man Reagan spinning fanciful tales about welfare queens in Cadillacs making hundreds of thousands a year off of the tax payers.

Reagan was a liar.

Of course it goes with being a Republican.  Not all liars are Republican but all Republicans are liars.

One of the biggest Republican lies is that they are “Fiscal Conservatives” when they borrow and spend like they have a wallet full of stolen credit cards.

But mostly what the Republican stand for is running up debt to give to their rich elite friends.

Alan Grayson tells it like it is..

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St Mark’s square flooded as Venice waters rise

Gee Venice is half flooded while the rich bastards dance in the graveyard.

Looks like climate change is going to bring some harsh inconvenient truths about the damage people have done to Mother Earth.

From Monsters and Critics: http://www.monstersandcritics.com/news/europe/news/article_1603171.php/St-Mark-s-square-flooded-as-Venice-waters-rise

Venice, Italy – High tides in Venice early Friday reached 1.36 metres above sea level

The water level marks a record high for Venice in 2010, according to the local tide-monitoring body, Istituzione Centro Previsioni e Segnalazioni Maree.

Continue reading at:  http://www.monstersandcritics.com/news/europe/news/article_1603171.php/St-Mark-s-square-flooded-as-Venice-waters-rise

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Cancún climate talks in danger of collapse over Kyoto continuation

From The Guardian UK: http://www.guardian.co.uk/world/2010/dec/04/cancun-climate-talks-kyoto-latin-america

John Vidal, Environment editor
The Guardian, Saturday 4 December 2010

The UN climate talks in Cancún were in danger of collapse last night after many Latin American countries said that they would leave if a crucial negotiating document, due to be released tomorrow, did not continue to commit rich countries to emissions cuts under the Kyoto Protocol.

The Bolivarian Alliance for the Americas (Alba) group of nine Latin American countries – who claim they are backed by African, Arab countries and other developing nations – said they were not prepared to see an end to the treaty that legally requires all of its signatories to reduce greenhouse gas emissions.

They challenged the Mexican presidency of the UN summit to prepare a negotiating text including a commitment by rich countries to set fresh targets for a second period of Kyoto beyond 2012.

The Guardian understands that if the new text includes a reference to a continuation of the Kyoto protocol, the talks will continue. But if it omits the wording and opts only to support negotiations based on the weaker Copenhagen accord agreed last year, then developing countries are likely to stop the talks.

Continue reading at:  http://www.guardian.co.uk/world/2010/dec/04/cancun-climate-talks-kyoto-latin-america

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