The last American troops left Iraq In December 2011, their mission accomplished. Yet the sound of the car bomb remains a frequent visitor to the streets of Baghdad. So what sort of legacy did the allied forces leave behind and how did things go so badly wrong?
This special report examines the unfolding chaos in Iraq and how the US is in danger of being pulled back into the conflict. Drawing on interviews with policy makers and military leaders, Michael Kirk’s film traces the events of the last decade in this deeply troubled land. What has become apparent since the 2003 invasion is that there was no coherent plan for the future of the country after the overthrow of Saddam Hussein. The elections of 2005 led to the establishment of a democratically elected government, but sectarian divisions within the country remained as Sunni and Shiite
groups battled for supremacy – indeed, 2006 saw Iraq teetering on the brink of civil war. Matters came to a head this year as ISIS militants seized control of huge swathes of territory, their declared aim being to establish an Islamic caliphate stretching across parts of Iraq and Syria. Government forces seem powerless to resist their advance, which threatens to redraw the political map of the Middle East. As the country continues to fragment, the film asks what the future holds for this former cradle of civilisation.
Courtesy: PBS America
By Graham Templeton
A study conducted last year by NASA scientists has become the latest, and by far the highest profile, piece of evidence in favor of a seemingly impossible space thruster design that’s been evoking worldwide skepticism for some time now. Apparently annoyed by the persistent boosters of several similar but distinct designs, the space agency finally agreed to test an American-made variant called the Cannae Drive. “Alright!” they said. “We’ll test your stupid drive that won’t work.” Except it did work. Seemingly in contravention of the law of conservation of momentum, the team confirmed that the device produces thrust by using electricity, and nothing else. Supporters call them microwave thrusters or quantum vacuum plasma thrusters (QVPT), while most others use the phrase “anomalous thrust device.”
First, the results of NASA’s experiment, since that’s all the team itself wants you to be talking about. Seemingly wanting to avoid unproductive controversy about the nature of existence, they’ve totally ignored the question of how the drive works in favour of simply reporting the data. With controls in place to avoid any confounding forces or variables, the NASA team recorded a reliable thrust between 30 and 50 micro-Newtons, less than a thousandth of the output of some relatively low-powered ion thrusters in use today. Still, the ion thrusters require fuel to operate, and the original QVPT inventor claims the version NASA tested is flawed, leading them to collect far lower thrust readings than his original can provide.
Read more » Extreme Tech