Morning Briefing, 26th February

Well I’m back in Cork after USI LGBT Standing Conference, where I was re-elected to Working Group on the 3rd count! Also congrats to Ms. Sonya Donneally who was elected unanimously as the new LGBTRO! woo! (P.S. If anyone wants to know what motions where passed email me!)

In the news today!

The International Court of Justice, is due to deliver its verdict today on whether ot not Serbia is responsible for Genocide ‘through the killing, torture, rape and expulsion of Bosnian Muslims’ (CNN, RTÉ, Breakingnews) If passed, it will be the first time that a state, rather than an individual or group, has been held responsible for genocide.

Nurses begin there industrial action today with a protest outside CUH (Breakingnews, RTÉ) The INO and PNA are seeking a 10% pay increase for their members and a reduction in their working week to 35 hours.

Israel is after performing a raid on the West Bank, it has now entered its second day (RTÉ, Breakingnews)

Jean-Marie Le Pen has laucned his latest bid for the french presidency (France 24, CNN) He has put forward an anti-immigration, ultranationalist stance, pledging to cut off social benefits for foreigners and deporting those who are unable to fend for themselves. He is having difficulty getting 500 mayors to back him.

Talks begin today in London on Iran’s Nuclear program. (CNN, France 24). The P5 and Germany are meeting to discuss the next course of action. Israel is denying that its has plans to attack Iran’s Nuclear facilities (France 24) and the USA have plans to bomb Iran according to Pulitzer-Prize winning journalist Seymour Hersh (CNN)

Thats its for now!

ESB considers the nuclear option!?

What? huh? where? when?

Via Breakingnews

The ESB has indicated its interest in entering the nuclear power market.

The company’s chairman told the Sunday Business Post newpaper that he would consider a joint venture with one of the bigger European energy companies.

The Government is currently opposed to nuclear power, however Tadhg O’Donoghue says he believes their stance will have to change over the next number of years.

Can’t really see any government sanctioning this considering the Irish opposition to Sellafield. Stupid ESB. Consider away, it wont happen. Christy will get the guitar out again!

Nuclear Era Underground City

Via BBC and Damien Mulley

Wiltshire’s Secret Underground City
Burlington: The 35 acre, secret subterranean Cold War City that lies 100 feet beneath Corsham.

Welcome to Wiltshire’s Secret Underground City… the 35 acre subterranean Cold War City that lies 100 feet beneath Corsham.

Built in the late 50s this massive city complex was designed to safely house up to 4,000 central Government personnel in the event of a nuclear strike.

In a former Bath stone quarry the city, code named Burlington, was to be the site of the main Emergency Government War Headquarters – the hub of the Country’s alternative seat of power outside London.

Over 60 miles of Roads

The Telephone Exchange
Over a kilometre in length, and boasting over 60 miles of roads, the underground site was designed not only to accommodate the than Conservative Prime Minister, Harold MacMillan, but the entire Cabinet Office, civil servants and an army of domestic support staff.

The site was so top secret that many of the civil servants, who had been allocated a desk at Burlington, had no knowledge of it.

Blast proof and completely self-sufficient the secret underground site could accommodate up to 4,000 people, in complete isolation from the outside world, for up to three months.

Although never actually used, the New York grid-style city of roads and avenues was equipped with all the facilities needed to survive. From underground hospitals, canteens, kitchens and laundries to storerooms of supplies, accommodation areas and offices.

An Underground Lake

An underground lake and treatment plant could provide all the drinking water needed whilst 12 huge tanks could store the fuel required to keep the four massive generators, in the underground power station, running for up to three months. And unlike most urban cities, above ground, the air within the complex could also be kept at a constant humidity and heated to around 20 degrees.

A ward in the hospital
The city was also equipped with the second largest telephone exchange in Britain, a BBC studio from which the PM could address the nation and an internal Lamson Tube system that could relay messages, using compressed air, throughout the complex.

For 30 years Burlington was in operation but at the end of the Cold War, in 1991, the still un-used city complex was finally taken over by the MOD and kept on standby in case of future nuclear threats to the UK.

But last December, with the underground reservoir drained, emptied of fuel and supplies and with a skeleton staff of just four, the site was finally decommissioned