Main Menu

June, 2017

 

The U.S. Attorney General Created A ‘Chicago Gun Strike Force’ – To Combat The High Levels Of Violent Crimes In Chicago

Attorney General Jeff Sessions: We Cannot Accept These Levels Of Violence In Chicago

Shootout2016

Today Attorney General Jeff Sessions issued the following statement on the unacceptable violence plaguing the City of Chicago and outlined steps that the Department of Justice is taking to increase public safety:

“No child in America should have to walk the streets of their neighborhood in fear of violent criminals, and yet in Chicago, thousands of children do every day. Last year, more than 4,300 Chicagoans were shot, and more than 700 were killed—the deadliest year in two decades.”

“The Trump Administration will not let the bloodshed go on; we cannot accept these levels of violence. That’s why, under President Trump’s strong leadership, we have created the Chicago Gun Strike Force and are sending 20 more permanent ATF agents to Chicago, reallocating federal prosecutors and prioritizing prosecutions to reduce gun violence, and working with our law enforcement partners to stop the lawlessness.”

“The Trump administration will also continue to pursue every avenue available to ensure that states and cities comply with federal immigration law and protect our citizens—rather than protecting the criminal illegal aliens who prey upon them.

So-called “sanctuary” policies tie the hands of law enforcement by rejecting common sense and undermining federal laws that would remove criminal, illegal aliens from the streets and remove them from this country. These policies are opposed by some 80 percent of the American people because they endanger us all by letting dangerous criminals stay in this country that are due to be removed.”

“I want to commend the President for his commitment to enforcing our laws and keeping our communities safe.”

“The most critical factor to our success is the strength, training, and morale of the Chicago Police Department and all of our law enforcement partners. This administration is anxious to work toward this goal.”

“And I am confident in Celinez Nunez, the new Special Agent in Charge of the Chicago office of ATF, who has experienced the tragic consequences of gang violence firsthand. With these new resources, she will help us make Chicago safe again.”

BACKGROUND INFORMATION ON CRIME GUN STRIKE FORCE

The Crime Gun Strike Force, a permanent team of special agents, task force officers, intelligence research specialists, and ATF Industry Operations investigators who are focused on the most violent offenders, in the areas of the city with the highest concentration of firearm violence.

The Strike Force became operational June 1, 2017, and consists of 20 additional permanent ATF special agents, 6 intelligence research specialists, 12 task force officers from the Chicago Police Department (CPD), 2 task force officers from the Illinois State Police, and 4 NIBIN specialists (National Integrated Ballistics Information Network).

[Source: U.S. Department of Justice -/- Media Relations]
[Photo Credits: inserted by openeyesopinion.com credits embedded]

###









Thinking About A Life Overseas? – 10 Helpful Tips

10 Tips For Moving Abroad 

Article By Kathleen Peddicord

Agios Nikolaos, Crete

Agios Nikolaos, Crete


 

More than 18 years living overseas, first in Ireland, then France, now Panama, have taught me…

1. Patience… the kind of patience you learn doing time…

The other day I stood at the counter of a small grocery shop in Panama City watching as the young man on the other side of the counter tried to tally up my purchases. One item I’d presented was missing a price tag, so the young man walked from behind the counter to the back of the shop to find a matching item that did show a price. Several minutes later he returned.

When he looked down to enter the amount into his adding machine (the shop didn’t have a cash register), he noticed that it was out of paper. He walked from behind the counter again, this time disappearing behind the door to the left. Several minutes later, he returned with a roll of adding machine paper.

As he began to replace the paper in his machine, his phone rang, so he laid the roll of paper on the counter to answer it. Several minutes later, he finished his conversation and picked up the roll of paper again. Several minutes after that, he’d succeeded in getting the paper installed in the machine.

After adding up my few purchases, he reached beneath the counter for a bag to put the groceries in but found he was out of bags, so he came out from behind the counter and disappeared again behind the door to the left. Several minutes later, he returned with a single plastic bag. Four other customers stood in line behind me. I guess he was counting on them not wanting bags.

My items placed in the plastic bag, the young man looked up at me. “That’s US$12.65,” he told me in Spanish.

I handed him a 10-dollar bill and a 5-dollar bill. The young man reached beneath the counter for the cigar box where he keeps his change. No singles. He called out to the young woman stocking shelves, who finished what she was doing then joined the young man behind the counter and counted out change for me from her apron pocket.

This is the kind of scene that plays out all day long every day all across the developing world. You muster the patience to take it in stride. Or you move on from the developing world.

2. To embrace ambiguity…

Will the corner grocer open his shop at 9 a.m. as his sign indicates… or will he open later… or at all?

Will the lady behind the counter in the immigration office accept my prepared dossier or request additional paperwork not indicated in any of my four previous conversations with her?

Will the banker cash my check or question the signature (as happens for me with bankers in Panama City a couple of times every month)?

Will the car in front of mine turn right from the right-hand turn lane we’re both in or will he turn left across two lanes of traffic?

Will the delivery man show up on Thursday as promised? Sometime this week?

Will the waitress return with my order?

I’ve come to see these as philosophical rather than practical musings and have trained myself not to be surprised when the answer is, as it often is, contrary to expectations.

3. Not to mind not understanding what’s going on around me…

Why is that work crew digging another hole in the middle of that street? They dug a hole in that same spot and then covered it over last week. Why dig another one… and why do it now, during morning rush-hour traffic?

Why has the government changed such-and-such national holiday from Friday to Monday (as happened recently in Panama without warning or explanation)?

Why does the landline phone go out every time it rains?

Why is the electricity out… and when will it be restored?

4. Not to be bothered by things that don’t matter…

See above.

5. To savor the “Nutella” moments…

The frustrations and challenges of living in a foreign country, especially in the developing world, are many, but so are the moments of extraordinary discovery and delight. Seeing the look of unadulterated pleasure on my 5-year-old son’s face the first time he tried a Nutella crepe when we were living in Paris was one. As were celebrating my daughter’s 16th birthday at a café on the Left Bank of the Seine with a view of the Louvre… the first time my husband and I dined at a rooftop restaurant in Istanbul overlooking the Bosphorus… the scene of white sheep in rolling green fields outside my bedroom window in Ireland all those years… the view of the long line of ships awaiting their turn for passage through the Panama Canal that I see from my bedroom window now every morning… kayaking with the kids down the Macal River in Belize… watching my children learn to ride horseback in the field behind our home in Ireland… rocking in a big wicker chair on the front porch of the Alhambra Hotel overlooking the main plaza in Granada, Nicaragua, the oldest city in the Americas, as life carries on as it has in this spot for centuries…

6. To let go…

My mother helped me to pack up my house in Baltimore in advance of my move from the States to Ireland years ago. Standing on a stepstool in front of an open kitchen cabinet, she asked, “What do you want to do with all this?”

I glanced over and told her to put everything in the cabinet into a box and then to take it home with her.

“But all your teas… your spices!” she replied. “You can’t just give all of this away!”

To make the move from Baltimore to Waterford, I had to clear out a three-bedroom house, a basement, an attic, and a garage. That required a lot of letting go. At the time, it seemed hard to give so much away. Now I smile and shake my head at the thought that a reluctance to part with the paraphernalia of my life to that point could have stood in the way of launching the new life I’ve enjoyed all these years since.

7. To bloom where I’ve planted myself…

Ireland was cold, drizzly, and grey more days than it wasn’t, and Waterford, where we were based for seven years, was (is) a backwater. Panama City, where we’ve been living now for more than seven years, is hot and humid every day of the year. It’s also a boomtown, meaning congestion, chaos, and crazy traffic.

In Ireland, I could have complained that I missed sunshine and the trappings of a real city, as I did, and today, here in Panama City, I could complain about the tumult. The truth is, sometimes I do. Then I remind myself of the big-picture reasons why I am where I am. Ireland was the best place for me and my family when we were there, weather and nightlife notwithstanding, and the same is true now for Panama City.

8. To downsize on the fly…

I began learning about letting go that afternoon with my mom in my Baltimore kitchen. My graduate lesson in the exercise of downsizing came in Paris. We relocated with two children from a 5,000-square-foot house in Waterford to a 1,100-square-foot apartment in the City of Light. I stored my son’s clothes in the china hutch in the dining room and his toys and games under his bed. My husband and I shared a single desk in the living room when we worked at home (as we often did), and the four of us ate dinner each night at an undersized table that was like something out of “Alice In Wonderland.”

And I wouldn’t trade a single day in Paris or a single memory of our years there for any number of additional square feet of living space.

9. To ask for help…

I’m a resourceful, self-reliant, Type-A American woman. I can take care of myself. However, living overseas, I’ve learned that sometimes life is easier and more fun when I don’t. Here in Panama, we’re able to afford a full-time maid. It’s an indulgence I wouldn’t have considered, living in the States, but the help around the house sure is nice.

10. To abandon any idea I ever had about “normal”…

What’s a “normal” way to celebrate a child’s birthday (in Panama, the piñata is key) or to shop for a Christmas tree (in Panama City, we buy ours out of a local wholesaler’s refrigerated meat locker)? More seriously, what’s a normal way to raise children or run a business? My family thought I was crazy to move my 8-year-old daughter from Baltimore to Waterford and to give birth to my second child in Ireland. They still think I’m crazy, I guess, for living and running my business in Panama.

I used to worry that our lifestyle might translate down the road into years of psychotherapy for our two children. Today, though, they both speak three languages and have a global perspective that makes me both proud and optimistic about their future prospects. Whatever life throws at them, they’ll be fine.

Not normal, maybe… but fine.

Kathleen Peddicord / Live and Invest Overseas

 

[Photo Credits: By ©Elisabeth Stewart (Own Work) openeyesopinion.com]

###


52 Days To Your New Life Overseas

BEST PLACES TO RETIRE, DO BUSINESS AND LIVE OVERSEAS

Visiting Las Vegas?… Check out this website first

Take a look at the Most Popular Trip Insurance plans Allianz has to offer

Compare Cheap Flights from the Departure City of your Choice with Airfarewatchdog!





Health Tourism In The European Union – A Report: (Medical,Wellness,Spa Tourism)

Health Tourism In The EU: A General Investigation

Minos Beach Art Hotel - Agios Nikolaos, Crete

Minos Beach Art Hotel – Agios Nikolaos, Crete

 

This study defines and explores health tourism and its three main components: medical, wellness, and spa tourism.

Health tourism comprises around 5% of general tourism in the EU28 and contributes approximately 0.3% to the EU economy.

Health tourism has a much higher domestic share than general tourism does.

Increasing the share of health tourism may reduce tourism seasonality, improve sustainability and labor quality, and may help to reduce health costs through prevention measures and decreased pharmaceutical consumption.

Click Here to Read Full Report

[Source: European Parliament Think Tank -/- Media Relations]
[Photo Credits: By ©George Stewart (Own Work) openeyesopinion.com]

###


Passport To Freedom: The World’s Top Havens For Residency, Citizenship, And A Second Passport

52 Days To Your New Life Overseas

BEST PLACES TO RETIRE, DO BUSINESS AND LIVE OVERSEAS

Visiting Las Vegas?… Check out this website first

Take a look at the Most Popular Trip Insurance plans Allianz has to offer

Compare Cheap Flights from the Departure City of your Choice with Airfarewatchdog!

Living in France is much more affordable than you think…

Learn How To Live and Invest Overseas Home Conference Kit

This Country has been in the top destinations for investment and retirement for years

Book your Flights with Globehunters and Save Large!

GO Airport Shuttle Service – Rides Start at $17 – Book Your Ride Now!

ACT NOW! Save Up To 70%! For A Limited Time Only At AirportParkingReservations.com!


U.S. Veteran’s History Project – Web Series On World War I Veterans

Veterans History Project Launches Part Two of Web Series on World War I Veterans

World War I veteran Joseph Ambrose, 86, at the dedication day parade for the Vietnam Veterans Memorial in 1982

The Veterans History Project (VHP) today launched, “Over There” the second in a three-part, online “Experiencing War” website series dedicated to United States veterans of the First World War. “Over There” highlights 10 digitized World War I collections found in the Veterans History Project archive.

To access Part II and other veterans’ collections featured in “Over There,” visit www.loc.gov/vets/stories/wwi-part2.html. Part III will be available in fall of 2017.

This series is being presented as a companion site to the Library of Congress exhibit, “Echoes of the Great War.” Each veteran’s first-person narrative is shared through their original photographs, letters, diaries, memoirs, maps and other materials.

Earl Covington Smith kept a diary during the war while serving as a gas officer, responsible for ensuring soldiers were equipped with gas masks and able to recognize an impending gas attack. In one of his diary entries, Smith mentions that the smell of death on the battlefield was so strong that it sometimes led to false alarms.

Lucius Byron Nash was a Lieutenant Junior Grade aboard the Navy’s USS Roanoke—a minelayer. Through photographs and letters home, Nash describes his dirty, grueling job, which demanded 12-hour shifts spent on deck in the pouring rain.

Although he experienced many close calls working on the front lines, Louis W. Rosen was fortunate to survive the war uninjured. He later compiled a written memoir, and included in it two lengthy letters he had written to his parents describing in detail what it was like to live under constant threat of attack.

Congress created the Veterans History Project in 2000 to collect, preserve and make accessible the firsthand remembrances of America’s war veterans from World War I through the more recent conflicts in Iraq and Afghanistan, so that future generations may hear directly from veterans and better understand the realities of war. For more information, visit www.loc.gov/vets/ or call the toll-free message line at (888) 371-5848.

Subscribe to the Veterans History Project email listserv to receive periodic updates and follow it on Facebook at facebook.com/vetshistoryproject/.

The exhibition “Echoes of the Great War” is located in the Southwest Gallery on the second floor of the Library’s Thomas Jefferson Building, 10 First St. S.E., Washington, D.C.  It is free and open to the public through January 2019, from 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m., Monday through Saturday.  Tickets are not needed.

The Library of Congress is the world’s largest library, offering access to the creative record of the United States – and extensive materials from around the world – both on-site and online. It is the main research arm of the U.S. Congress and the home of the U.S. Copyright Office. Explore collections, reference services and other programs and plan a visit at loc.gov, access the official site for U.S. federal legislative information at congress.gov and register creative works of authorship at copyright.gov.

[Source: Library of Congress -/- Media Relations]
[Photo Credits: inserted by openeyesopinion.com credits embedded]

###









Drug Smugglers In Australia Use Drones To Monitor Police

Australian Federal Police Holden Omega's - Flickr - Highway Patrol Images
[photo credits-featured image: inserted by openeyesopinion.com credits embedded]

Sydney (dpa) – An international drug syndicate used aerial drones to run counter-surveillance on police in a failed attempt to import cocaine worth 30 million Australian dollars (23 million US dollars) into Australia, officials said Friday. The drug, found in 78 blocks weighing a total of 92 kilograms, were seized on Thursday from three duffel bags… Read More


Illegal Migrants Crossing The Mediterranean Flood Italy En Masse, EU Pledges Support

P31 L.É. Eithne Operations 28 June 2015
[photo credits-featured image: inserted by openeyesopinion.com credits embedded]

The European Union has pledged to support Italy as it continues to admit thousands of migrants who are crossing the Mediterranean every day from North Africa. So far this year nearly 80,000 people have made the journey, and more than 2,000 have died Poor health Most of the tens of thousands of people plucked from the… Read More


95 Percent Of America’s Founding Fathers Were Trinitarian Christians

BattleofLongisland
[photo credits-featured image: inserted by openeyesopinion.com credits embedded]

The Founders envisioned and implemented godly principles and values into the blueprint for America — although that fact is often forgotten. “We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness,”… Read More


France – Man Attempts To Ram Car Into Crowd At Mosque

Créteil mosquée panneau
[photo credits-featured image: inserted by openeyesopinion.com credits embedded]

French police say they have arrested a man who tried to drive a car into a crowd outside a mosque in the Paris suburb of Créteil on Thursday evening (June 29). The driver apparently failed to get past protective barriers and no one was injured. The mosque’s managers said several hundred people had been gathered there… Read More


Iraq – Mosul’s Historic Al-Nuri Mosque Has Been Retaken By Iraq Military

منارة الحدباء
[photo credits-featured image: inserted by openeyesopinion.com credits embedded]

Iraqi forces captured on Thursday the wrecked historic mosque of Mosul in which the Islamic State (IS) group proclaimed its self-styled “caliphate” three years ago, an Iraqi military statement said. Iraqi Lt. Gen. Abdul Wahab al-Saadi said special forces entered the compound and took control of the surrounding streets on Thursday afternoon, following a dawn push… Read More


Thailand To Legalize Casinos, Hoping To Boost Tourism Revenue

Alkazar show1
[photo credits-featured image: inserted by openeyesopinion.com credits embedded]

More than 80 years after Thailand introduced gambling laws, analysts say the nation is betting on legalizing casinos in hopes of boosting tourism and being a player in regional casino development. Gambling in Thailand is officially banned, apart from the state-run lottery and betting on horses at the Bangkok Turf Club; but, illegal betting and underground… Read More


Whoa!, What’s Up With The “Obamaphone” Program – 9 Billion Dollars Stashed In Private Banks?

Are The Feds Watching The Books?
The House of Leaves - Burning 4

[photo credits-featured image: inserted by openeyesopinion.com credits embedded]

The controversial “Obamaphone” program, which pays for cellphones for the poor, is rife with fraud, according to a new government report Thursday that found more than a third of enrollees may not even be qualified. Known officially as the Lifeline Program, the phone giveaway became a symbol of government waste in the previous administration. Now a… Read More


Travel Tips – Things To See And Do In Paris

A Few Of My Favorite Things About Paris

Jardin du Luxembourg – Paris, France


 

France has always been serious about collecting tax revenues. Starting in the 16th century and continuing until the French Revolution, the country took a privatized, entrepreneurial approach. Tax collection was farmed out to private individuals who bid for their positions. In exchange for their concessions, these citizen tax collectors paid fees to the king. Whatever each collected beyond the fee he’d agreed with the crown was his to keep.

As the country and its population grew, each collector found he was unable to cover his entire territory effectively alone and so farmed out pieces of it to subcontractors, creating, over these centuries, an early tax-collection Amway.

For a time (until Louis XVI and his wife found out what happened when the tax monies stopped flowing), both the tax collectors at the tops of these pyramids and the king himself enjoyed abundances of capital, some of the greatest fortunes of Europe for the period.

We won’t concern ourselves now with how these folks, both the citizen collectors and the kings they collected for, got their gains but with what they did with them. They set out, each, to build ever-bigger, ever-grander homes, palaces, parks, and monuments.

It was a golden age of construction for Paris, when much of what today is considered the heart of classic historic Paris was conceived and commissioned. This was when the Louvre became the place we recognize today and when as many as 2,000 hôtels particuliers were built. These private mansions were the town houses of the country’s richest folks, each keen to show the others how much he was worth. About 500 hôtels particuliers remain standing today.

As I mentioned recently, all this construction required skilled labor, and the most skilled labor of the time, from all across Europe, came to Paris. The best craftsmen of the age sought out and made their way to the French capital knowing that there they could be paid top dollar to ply and perfect their trades. They worked, over two-plus centuries, to build the Paris of the 1st through 8th arrondissements, the heart and soul of the City of Light. These architects, cabinetmakers, and stonemasons created a stage that remains, today, in many ways, unrivaled.

A French friend, an architect named Frank, would tell me this story each time he’d lead me on a walking tour of Paris’ finest architectural accomplishments. Frank had no love of taxation; he spent much of his life rallying against the French bureaucrats and their taxing tendencies. But Frank appreciated, and he taught me to appreciate, the legacy those tax francs from centuries ago have left us.

Seine River – Paris, France

I was interviewed recently by Doni Belau, Founder of the Girls’ Guide to Paris, who wanted to know my favorite thing about this city. It’s the architecture, I told her.

Here are other excerpts from our conversation…

Question: Kathleen, what are the five best things to do in Paris on a budget?

Answer: Picnic in the Luxembourg Gardens… rent a Vélib’ bicycle (free for the first 30 minutes)… visit the Musée Carnavalet (one of the best-kept museum secrets in Paris and free every day)… Thursday gallery openings often offer free wine, beer, and snacks, along with the art (also free)… take a walk.

Q: Best Paris dining-out tip?

A: Find a small restaurant nearby where you’re staying that’s popular among the local Parisians and become a regular. The kinds of neighborhood places I’m thinking of can be very affordable, typically serve wonderful and quintessentially French fare, and provide a great opportunity for you to get to know your neighbors.

Here’s a more practical dining-out tip: Never buy bottled water. Ask instead for a “carafe d’eau.” Bottled water is expensive. Plus, only tourists pay for water in restaurants!

Q: What do you miss most about Paris when you’re away?

A: Being able to walk everywhere. The architecture. The museums. The seasons.

Q: Best budget-saving tip for anyone wanting to live in Paris?

A: Don’t keep a car. You don’t need one, especially now that you can rent small autos by the hour.

Q: Favorite day-trip from Paris?

A: Giverney, Monet’s house. Château de Vaux-le-Vicompte, an architectural jewel with beautiful gardens. Better as a weekend trip but can be done in a day.

Giverney, France – Claude Monet’s House

Q: Favorite restaurant?

A: La Fregate, on the quai alongside the river, across from the Louvre. Despite its super-touristy location, La Fregate manages to retain the feeling of a neighborhood restaurant. Plus, it is just a few blocks from our apartment, a few minutes’ walk away. We’ve spent many evenings, in all seasons, sitting at the sidewalk tables, watching the passersby, the traffic, the river, and the activity in the courtyard of the Louvre across the way. Inside, the ceilings and walls are elaborately painted with Belle Époque-style murals. So much charm and atmosphere for a very reasonable cost.

Kathleen Peddicord / Live and Invest Overseas

###

 


Passport To Freedom: The World’s Top Havens For Residency, Citizenship, And A Second Passport

52 Days To Your New Life Overseas

BEST PLACES TO RETIRE, DO BUSINESS AND LIVE OVERSEAS

Visiting Las Vegas?… Check out this website first

Take a look at the Most Popular Trip Insurance plans Allianz has to offer

Compare Cheap Flights from the Departure City of your Choice with Airfarewatchdog!

Living in France is much more affordable than you think…

Learn How To Live and Invest Overseas Home Conference Kit

This Country has been in the top destinations for investment and retirement for years

Book your Flights with Globehunters and Save Large!

GO Airport Shuttle Service – Rides Start at $17 – Book Your Ride Now!

ACT NOW! Save Up To 70%! For A Limited Time Only At AirportParkingReservations.com!