• Two Kiwi soldiers killed and six wounded in Taleban ambush in Afghanistan...



    Two killed and six Kiwi soldiers wounded in Taleban ambush. They were from the Provincial Reconstruction team, not the SAS who have returned home to New Zealand

    Prime Minister John Key says the deaths of two NZ soldiers in Afghanistan will not change plans to withdraw the Provincial Reconstruction Team (PRT) late next year.
    The pair died after a battle in Bamiyan province, in which six other Kiwis soldiers were wounded.
    Two Afghan members of the special police were also killed, and 11 injured in the firefight in the north-east of the region.
    Speaking to media at the Defence Force base at Whenuapai, Key said the deaths of the two soldiers was a great tragedy for the country.
    "It's a day of great tragedy where we lose two of our soldiers and obviously they join the other five before them," he said.
    "For New Zealand, a small country, losing seven of our men is an enormous price to pay."
    Key confirmed that the loss of life and injury toll was the worst for New Zealand since it went into Afghanistan - but said that was only in terms of physical numbers.
    "Each and every one of the fatalities that we've suffered brings with it its own story, its own family and a huge sense of grief."
    The tragedy would not affect the withdrawal date from Afghanistan, he said.
    The Government announced in May that the PRT would leave the area late next year, one year earlier than the planned September 2014 return.
    Key said: "I don't think the terrible loss we've suffered overnight means we should leave earlier. We should continue on track," he said.

    Read more:

    Found some comments in the news interesting tonight. They could smuggle some of our tough SAS troops into our regular force Reconstruction Team in Afghanistan. The SAS troopers have been pretty effective in training Afghani police and security force.

  • A golden hour repeated for NZ Olympic team...



    Double gold, double delight Ö New Zealandís rowers last night turned the Olympic course at Eton Dorney into their personal playground.
    Coxless pair Eric Murray and Hamish Bond smashed through their final frontier, winning the only prize to have eluded them in the past four years.
    Forty minutes later, single sculler Mahe Drysdale captured the gold that illness so cruelly denied him at Beijing four years ago.
    Drysdaleís gold is New Zealandís 20th Olympic rowing medal Ė including nine golds Ė and the third at this regatta, after Nathan Cohen and Joseph Sullivanís victory in the double scull 24 hours earlier.
    While Murray and Bond streeted the field, maintaining their 100 per cent winning record over the four-year Olympic cycle, Drysdale had to work desperately hard to hold off his fiercest rival, Czech Republic sculler Ondrej Synek.
    Across the finish line, he raised his arm, slapped the water and clutched his head.
    Emotion washed over the 33-year-old and he collapsed on the pontoon. It was four minutes before he was able to get to his feet.
    Read more: Video

    In Rome in 1960 New Zealandís first golden hour occurred. Peter Snell, arguably one of New Zealandís greatest Olympians, won his first 800m gold (the second four years later with the 1500m gold as well) and followed by Murray Halbergís 5,000m gold lesss then an hour later. Last night it was Eric Murray and Hamish Bond in the Menís Pair, and less than an hour later Mahe Drysdale scored his gold in the Menís Single Scull - Kiwis remember the terrible sight four years ago in Beijing as an extremely ill Mahi struggled to win bronze. Great karma for a great sculler who has also won five World Championships in his career, and now Olympic Champion. A cycling bronze finished the evening off for the NZ Olympic team.
    For just a while NZ will be ahead of both the Aussies and Brits, who have larger teams than New Zealand. We anticipate more medals during the next week. Nick Willis, the successor to the legendary 1500m Olympic Champions and gold medal winners, Jack Lovelock, 1936; Peter Snell, 1964; and John Walker, 1974; won his heat yesterday, and was silver medalist in Beijing, 2008.
    Superstar Valerie Vili, defending Womenís Shotput champion from Beijing, is the favourite for London 2012. There are always unexpected successes that can increase New Zealandís medal total. We all wait in anticipation!

    Petes Place

  • Happy 156th Birthday Christchurch City...

    Christchurch turns 156 today. Happy Birthday to my poor old home town.



    Press Archives
    NEW CITY: This shows Christchurch in the mid-1860s. The view is from the Provincial Council Buildings, looking across the Avon River to the corner of Gloucester St and Oxford Tce. Drays are parked in the foreground. The trees beyond the

    YOUR CHRISTCHURCH It's Christchurch's 156th anniversary today:

    On this day 156 years ago, Christchurch became a city by royal charter from Queen Victoria, making it the first official city of New Zealand.
    The royal charter was given by the Queen so Christchurch could be the seat for a bishop. At Christmas 1856, Henry John Chitty Harper was enthroned as the first bishop of Christchurch.
    Other key Christchurch dates:
    - On February 16, 1770, Captain James Cook in his ship the Endeavour first sighted the Canterbury peninsula. He thought it was an island and named it Banks Island after the ship's botanist, Joseph Banks.
    - Christchurch was founded in 1850 with the arrival of about 800 settlers from Britain.
    - Local government began when the first Christchurch Municipal Council meeting was held on March 3, 1862.
    - The city's first library opened on August 4, 1859. It was a single room at the Mechanics Institute.
    - The Press was founded as a weekly paper by James FitzGerald and a syndicate of investors in 1861. It became a daily in 1863.
    - Bees were introduced to the region from Nelson in January 1852.
    - The first bridge over the Avon River was built in March 1852.
    - The first cricket match, married men versus single men, was held in April 1852 at Hagley Park.
    - A typhoid epidemic in 1875, which lasted until the following year, caused 152 deaths in the city.
    - The first airport opened in Christchurch in 1917.
    - 1947 Ballantynes fire; 41 people die.
    - Christchurch hosts the 1974 Commonwealth Games.
    - September 4, 2010: Christchurch battered by a magnitude-7.1 earthquake. No fatalities.
    - February 22, 2011: Christchurch devastated by a magnitude-6.3 quake, killing 185, injuring 6000 and destroying most of the central city's buildings.
    Source: Christchurch City Libraries

    Acknowledgements: © Fairfax NZ News

  • Kiwi Olympic medalists to receive food parcels containing Marmite...

    Kiwi Olympic medalists will receive food parcels containing the "scarce" Marmite...

    ĎMarmageddoní grips New Zealand

    New Zealand competitors who win medals at the London Olympics have been offered an unusual reward - food parcels containing jars of Marmite.

    The spread has been in short supply since March, after the manufacturer was forced to close its only factory because of earthquake damage.

    The shortage of Marmite has been dubbed "Marmageddon" by the media.
    Members of the eventing team, who won the country's first medal, were the first to collect their Marmite.

    The manufacturer, Sanitarium, says production of the spread will not resume until later this year. The product is a variation of the yeast spread widely available in the UK.

    Since the shortage began, New Zealand media has been filled with stories of newly discovered Marmite stashes in corners of supermarket storerooms.

    There has also, apparently, been a roaring trade on auction websites.

    Rather than selling its remaining supplies, executives at the Pak'nSave supermarket chain decided to give their stash to customers they felt were deserving of a treat.

    "Who could be more deserving than our Olympic medallists," said Steve Anderson of the supermarket's parent company Foodstuffs New Zealand.

    "To come to London and prove to the world that they are the best in their discipline is no mean feat. And we thought that a few home comforts after all their hard work wouldn't go astray."

    The eventing team, who won a bronze medal on Tuesday, went to Kiwi House the following day to pick up their jars of Marmite.

    The spread was first brought to New Zealand in the early 1900s, but the country later came up with its own recipe. Video

  • I'm getting tired of problems here and elsewhere.....

    :**:I'm getting tired of problems here and elsewhere...

    My dear friends I'm getting tired of problems here and elsewhere. I've sent another message to Admin to resolve my problems.

    I need to change my email address and change my password.

    I told you that my Hotmail had been hacked and obviously taken over. I still haven't resolved it - they still want more information to prove I'm the owner of the account. I've changed one or two sites to another email address.

    One day when I have the time and can be bothered I will check out my email addresses at other sites.

    I told Admin here if he can't resolve my problems I will stop blogging here. If I do that will be my groups as well. I would be sorry to lose my contacts with my English and Welsh friends here. I would also check out a blogsite I could export my posts here to.

    I have always blogged for the enjoyment and have not sought ways to make money blogging. While you can comment on my posts, I can't read your replies to my comments now on your own blogs. That is part of the enjoyment of blogging - communicating your thoughts and ideas. I know that some of you have also become a little disillusioned with problems here too.


    Peter Petterson

  • Talking through your glasses...


    B)Talking through your glasses. They provide a live language translation...

    Hereís the scene: youíre traveling, and you walk into a little restaurant and the menu is entirely in a language you donít understand, without pictures. Youíve got a couple of choices. You can leave, and try to find a place with English translations. You can try to hack your way through a conversation with the waiter, who also doesnít speak your language. Or, you can point randomly at the menu and live with the consequences.
    Well, in the future there will be another, better, answer. Live, realtime translation built into your glasses. Enter: Project Glass. British hacker and DIYer Will Powell has built a pair of glasses that can (albeit roughly) project a translation of your conversation onto your glasses. Hereís what it looks like:

  • Could paper bottles help to save the planet...


    :yes:The crazy idea of selling billions of gallons of water in everlasting plastic bottles to people who already have access to clean water sources is turning our planet into a gigantic garbage heap. Finally, somebody is doing something about that. Brandimage created the 360 Bottle made of paper, which is 100% renewable.

    Nice. It's apparently an impossible task to convince a sizable portion of our population that there's no need to clutch a bottle of water like a baby with a pacifier all day long. So, might as well limit the amount of harm done. These paper bottles are good for just about any liquid, too ó not just water.

    If this idea can even make a dent in the 60 million plastic bottles tossed each day in the U.S., Brandimage deserves an award. Wait. The company received an IDEA (International Design Excellence Award) for this design. Bravo. Now if they could just get those silver-tongued water hucksters and bottle-sucking sheep to buy into it. The Green Planet blog

  • Eye-popping illusion lets you write with gaze alone...


    B)Eye-popping illusion lets you write with gaze alone...

    in an innovation that could benefit the disabled, a French researcher finds a way to trick the eyes into moving more smoothly so they can be used like a pencil to write cursive.

  • How bizarre - one of the Pike River mine victims compensated for earlier job loss...


    :no:How bizarre: One of the men killed in the Pike River Coal mine should never have been dismissed the way he was from his previous job at a coal mine in Southland, says the Employment Relations Authority (ERA).

    In a decision only released on Wednesday because of delays caused by the mine disaster and then the Christchurch earthquake, the ERA has ruled Keith Valli, Chris Pinn and Ray Waghorn were unjustly dismissed by Solid Energy from its opencast mine at Ohai, northwest of Invercargill.

    The men were made redundant when the mine lost two large contracts in 2007.

    In Wednesday's decision the ERA says the way Solid Energy went about assessing and ranking who should go was wrong.

    Nevertheless, at the time Mr Valli quickly got a job at the Pike River Coal mine near Greymouth, and would commute there each week from his home in Southland.

    The 62-year-old was one of the 29 men killed in a series of explosions in November, 2010.

    ERA member Mike Loftus ruled that although all three men were badly treated by Solid Energy, Mr Valli was not entitled to lost wages because he got the job straight away.

    However, Mr Valli had spoken of the hurt and stress he and his wife suffered after being badly treated by a company for which he had worked for 28 years.

    Mr Loftus ruled that Solid Energy pay the three men $10,000 each for compensation for humiliation, loss of dignity and injury to feelings.

    Mr Pinn and Mr Waghorn were also awarded one month's lost wages and superannuation contributions.

    Mr Valli's $10,000 will go to his next of kin.

    Acknowledgements: © NZN 2012 Newsvine

  • British beach littered with WW2 bombs


    :no:A British beach has been closed as Army bomb disposal experts deal with nearly 1000 bombs and rockets littering the sand after storms uncovered the remnants of a World War II bombing range.

    The deadly arsenal cascaded on to Mappleton Beach near Hornsea after being dislodged from cliffs by the bad weather.

    Army experts have already blown up at least 15 of the old bombs.

    Police fear that more rockets and bombs will be uncovered as the cliffs continue to crumble, Britain's Daily Mail newspaper reported.

    Authorities are warning that, while many of the rockets and bombs are dummy rounds, people should not try to grab souvenirs.

    A 24-hour guard has been placed on the beach.

    Read more:


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