Archive for: December 2014

International Climate Change Reach Global Warming Agreement

Negotiators from all countries in the world at the Lima Climate Change Talks have agreed on a plan to fight global warming. The new plan will bind all countries to cut their greenhouse gas emissions.

The plan was agreed by UN talks on Sunday. It was recognised as an important step towards a climate change deal that would be finalized in Paris the following year.

The plan also calls on countries to create proposals that would help cut carbon pollution by March the following year.

According to Peruvian Environment Minister Manuel Pulgar-Vidal, “As a text it’s not perfect, but it includes the positions of the parties.”

However, many climate and environmental experts said that the new plan was too weak to help limit all carbon emissions in the world to 2C above pre-industrial levels or to protect damage against weaker and disaster-prone countries against climate change.

“It’s definitely watered down from what we expected,” said Alden Meyer of the Union of Concerned Scientists.

They also warned negotiators had left too many contentious issues unresolved before the deadline for reaching a deal in Paris. “The countdown clock to Paris is now ticking. Countries had the chance to give themselves a head start on the road to Paris but instead have missed the gun and now need to play catch up,” said Mohammed Adow, Christian Aid’s senior climate change advisor.


The Iraqi Army’s Widespread Military Corruption

According to experts, Iraq has some 50,000 ‘ghost soldiers’, fictional names in the Iraqi military now under the Iraqi government’s investigation. These troops have not reported for duty and they were receiving pay and benefits despite their absence. Investigators speculate these as officers who would tell some of these soldiers to go home to receive the benefits the would-be soldier should have received.

“There are two kinds of fadhaiyin,” an officer in the security forces told AFP. “The first kind: each officer is allowed, for example, five guards. He’ll keep two, send three home and pocket their salary or an agreed percentage.

Then the second and bigger group is at the brigade level. A brigade commander usually has 30, 40 or more soldiers who stay at home or don’t exist. The problem is that he too, to keep his job as a brigade commander, has to bribe his own hierarchical superiors with huge amounts of money.”

Parliamentary Defence and Security Member Hamid al-Mutlaq said “it could be more than triple this number.”

This brings to light the western provisions for strengthening Iraq’s army and the military training spent on the troops and police officers. An officer said that commanders encouraged troops to ignore what Americans have taught the soldiers.