1. ISLAMISTS claim responsibility for Russian train bombing.
MOSCOW, Dec. 2 (Xinhua) -- Islamist militants from the North Caucasus on Wednesday claimed responsibility for the bombing of a Russian train that killed 27 people last week, according to a Chechen Islamic website.
The attack was prepared and carried out on the orders of "Emir of the Caucasus Emirate Doku Umarov," said the website (KavkazCenter.com), citing a letter it received from Islamist militants.
Umarov is Russia's most wanted guerrilla leader who leads an insurgency in the North Caucasus with the aim of establishing Islamic Sharia rule in the region.
Friday's bombing against the Nevsky Express train running between Moscow and St. Petersburg was the worst terror attack in Russia outside the North Caucasus in five yearssource: chinaview
2. new laser weapons can safely destroy IEDs from a distance
HUNTSVILLE, Ala., Dec. 1 (UPI) -- A new laser weapon mounted on an Avenger combat vehicle has gone through successful tests to enable the armed forces to destroy improvised explosive devices from a safe distance.
The Boeing Co., which is developing the weapon, said Tuesday Boeing and the U.S. Army successfully completed a test in which the mounted laser system destroyed 50 IEDs similar to the makeshift bombs used by adversaries in war zones.
3. ISS crews lands safely in Kazakhstan
BEIJING, Dec. 1 (Xinhuanet) -- Three astronauts landed safely on the Kazakhstan steppes Tuesday after spending six months on the International Space Station.
The Russian Soyuz TMA-15 capsule landed as planned at 10:17 a.m. Moscow time (07:17 GMT) about 85 km north of the town of Arkalyk in Kazakhstan.
The capsule carrying Canadian astronaut Bob Thirsk, Russian cosmonaut Roman Romanenko, and European Space Agency's astronaut Frank De Winne of Belgium, touched down without a hitch, said Russian Mission Control spokesman Valery Lyndin.
read more @ chinaview
4. Jerusalem Viewpoints for September-October 2009: http://tinyurl.com/yfw6d8h
Kazakhstan: Israel's Partner in Eurasia
- Israel and post-communist, resource-rich states have similar geopolitical priorities in opposing terrorism and radical Islam.
- By developing closer ties with Kazakhstan - and with Eurasian countries in general - Israel can expand its ties to the secular Muslim Turkic states and its role in the new "great game" of Eurasia: economic development fueled by exports of the region's massive natural resources.
- Israel and the countries of Eurasia are economically complimentary: Central Asian countries are rich in natural resources, and can benefit from Israeli solar, irrigation/agricultural, medical and other know-how. Israel can offer high-tech, military, and advanced agricultural technology, cutting-edge medical sciences, and educational opportunities. As always in international relations, common interests define strong ties.
- On occasion, President Nursultan Nazarbayev used his good services to appeal to Iran on behalf of missing Israeli servicemen or call on Tehran to abandon its nuclear weapons, as Kazakhstan did in 1994. Unfortunately, these appeals usually fall on deaf ears.
- With oil prices rising, Kazakhstan may have left the nadir of economic decline behind, although banking and construction sectors were hurt particularly hard.
The June 2009 visit by Israeli President Shimon Peres to Kazakhstan once again focused Israel's attention on energy-rich, secular Muslim states of the Caspian and Central Asia: Azerbaijan, Kazakhstan, Turkmenistan and Uzbekistan. This was not Peres' first visit to the steppe country in the heart of Eurasia: he visited Kazakhstan several times before as foreign minister and deputy prime minister. This was a good long-term investment: Kazakhstan is as large as the entirety of Western Europe, but with a population only 1.5 times larger than the population of the city of Moscow. It is one of the most sparsely populated countries on Earth.
note Kazakhstan, Northern Caucasus, Kyrgyzstan
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