Friday, November 18, 2011

Just the Facts? Natalie Wood's Death Case Reopened -- The 'Bubble-Man' -- Satellite Cyber Attacks


Natalie Wood Death: Boat Captain Dennis Davern Blames Actor Robert Wagner

A yacht captain said on national TV Friday that he lied to investigators about Natalie Wood's mysterious death 30 years ago and blames the actress' husband at the time, Robert Wagner, for her drowning in the ocean off Southern California.

The circumstances of her death remain one of Hollywood's enduring mysteries and continue to create renewed intrigue, with homicide detectives on Thursday unexpectedly re-opening the case that had long been classified as a tragic accident.

A Los Angeles County sheriff's detective will speak to reporters Friday about the decision to take another look at the Oscar-nominated actress' nighttime demise in the chilly waters off Southern California on Nov. 29, 1981. Wood drowned after spending several hours drinking on Catalina Island in a yacht with Wagner, fellow actor Christopher Walken and the ship's captain, Dennis Davern.

Davern, skipper of the Splendour, told NBC's "Today" show on Friday that he made mistakes by not telling the truth about events leading to the Thanksgiving weekend death and had urged Los Angeles County sheriff's homicide investigators to reopen the case. It is the latest attempt by Davern to change the official account of what happened in the hours before Wood's death.

"Was the fight between Natalie Wood and her husband Robert Wagner what ultimately led to her death?" show host David Gregory asked.

"Yes," Davern replied.

"How so?"

"Like I said, that's going to be up to the investigators to decide," the captain said after a long pause.

Davern said he believes Wagner had intentionally kept the investigation into Wood's death low profile and didn't do everything he could have done. When Gregory pressed Davern for supporting details, the captain said that was the duty of investigators.

Davern has said for years that the official account of Wood's disappearance was not what really happened, including in a 1992 appearance on a Geraldo Rivera special and in a 2000 Vanity Fair piece. He also worked with author and friend Marti Rulli on "Goodbye Natalie, Goodbye Splendour," a book released last year.

Wagner spokesman Alan Nierob said Friday a statement he released Thursday spoke for itself.

"Although no one in the Wagner family has heard from the LA County Sheriff's department about this matter, they fully support the efforts of the LA County Sheriff's Dept. and trust they will evaluate whether any new information relating to the death of Natalie Wood Wagner is valid, and that it comes from a credible source or sources other than those simply trying to profit from the 30 year anniversary of her tragic death," Nierob wrote in the statement.

Davern denied he was motivated to speak out for profit.

Sheriff's spokesman Steve Whitmore said Thursday the renewed inquiry was prompted by unspecified new information about Woods' case. The Los Angeles Times reported that Los Angeles Sheriff Lee Baca said detectives want to talk to Davern and that he had "made comments worthy of exploring." The paper said the agency had also received information from an unidentified third party.

In the Vanity Fair story, Davern is quoted as saying that Wood and Wagner fought in their cabin before the actress disappeared. Coroner's officials ruled her death an accidental drowning, perhaps caused by her slipping off the boat while trying to tie down a dinghy.

She was found wearing a flannel nightgown, socks and a red down jacket and Davern identified her body for authorities, according to an autopsy report. Her body had superficial bruises, according to the report, but those were considered consistent with drowning.

Her death sparked tabloid speculation that foul play was involved, but Wagner and Wood's sister have dismissed any suggestion the actress' death was anything more than an accident. Coroner's officials at the time agreed, writing that Wood was "possibly attempting to board the dinghy and had fallen into the water, striking her face."

Assistant Chief Coroner Ed Winter said the agency hadn't been asked to do any additional investigation into Wood's case.

Sheriff's officials are also hoping for tips from the public that may shed new light on how Wood, who was afraid of being in the water, ended up drowning.

Wood, a three-time Oscar nominee famous for roles in "West Side Story," `'Rebel Without a Cause" and other Hollywood hits, was 43 when she died. She and Wagner were twice married, first in 1957 before divorcing six years later. They remarried in 1972.

Lana Wood wrote in a biography on her sister, "What happened is that Natalie drank too much that night."

Wagner, star of the television series "Hart to Hart," wrote in a 2008 autobiography that he blamed himself for his wife's death.

He recounted the night of Wood's disappearance, during which the couple and Walken drank at a restaurant and on the boat. Wood went to the master cabin during an argument between her husband and Walken. The last time Wagner saw his wife, she was fixing her hair at a bathroom vanity and she shut the door.

Wagner wrote that despite various theories about what led Wood to the water, which she feared, it was impossible to know what exactly happened.

"Nobody knows," he wrote. "There are only two possibilities; either she was trying to get away from the argument, or she was trying to tie the dinghy. But the bottom line is that nobody knows exactly what happened."

Later in the book, Wagner wrote, "Did I blame myself? If I had been there, I could have done something. But I wasn't there. I didn't see her."

He wrote that he never saw his wife after she died and has never returned to Catalina Island.

Phone and email messages to Walken's publicist were not returned Thursday. Walken and Wood were co-stars in "Brainstorm," which was the actress' final big screen role. - THP

Natasha: The Biography of Natalie Wood

Pieces of My Heart: A Life

United in Death by Drowning: Natalie Wood and Dennis Wilson

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The Bubble-Man emerges

A MAN ravaged by a shocking skin disease has revealed himself in public in a bid to save his children from the same fate.

Chandra Wisnu, 57, suffers from a rare disease that has left him covered in tumours resembling pink bubble wrap.

The father of four - known as "The Bubble Man" in his home village in Indonesia - rarely leaves his house.

When he does, he wears three jackets, a balaclava and sunglasses so he doesn't frighten children.

"People are afraid, they are frightened of my horrible face and worried they might catch the disease," he said.

"So instead I avoid people, I rarely go out except to pick up my daughter from school.

"And when I do I cover my head and my face because I don't want my daughter's friends to bully her for having 'the dad with the horrible face'."

Mr Wisnu said the lumps first appeared when he was 19.

By the time he was 24, they had spread to his back. At 32, his entire body was covered.

Mr Wisnu said after several years of treatments and creams, his parents stopped taking him to dermatologists and he became resigned to learning how to live with the disease.

He told of his wife to "leave and never return", but she has stuck by him for the past 33 years.

"I refused," she said. "Seeing him carry on with his life in spite of his changing appearance was to me a sign of great strength, not weakness."

Now Mr Wisnu has decided to unveil his face to world in a bid to find a cure for the disease.

His eldest son Martin, 32 and daughter Lis, 26 have begun to develop the disease.

He said he can't afford for his children to see a doctor and fears they too will end up looking like him.

"They only have some small tumours now but they worry they will get worse," he said..

"If there is a chance to get such kind of free medication, I will take that chance, but right now my family is all the treatment I need" - news.com.au

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US Satellites Compromised by Cyber Activity

On at least two occasions, hackers have taken over U.S. satellites and targeted their command-and-control systems, a report by the U.S.-China Economic and Security Review Commission revealed today.

The incidents involved two Earth observation satellites. While it may be difficult to trace who hacked the satellites, U.S. officials acknowledged the incidents had to come from a nation power.

U.S. officials cannot clearly trace the incidents to China, but the report released by the by congressionally mandated commission noted that Chinese military writings made reference to attacks on ground-based space communications facilities.

“Chinese military writings advocate attacks on space-to ground communications links and ground-based satellite control facilities in the event of a conflict. Such facilities may be vulnerable,” the report noted, “In recent years, two U.S. government satellites have experienced interference apparently consistent with the cyber exploitation of their control facility.”

The report noted that some of the malicious cyber activity targeting the satellites involved NASA’s Terra EOS satellite being targeted in June 2008 and again in October 2008. The June incident resulted in the satellite being interfered with for two minutes and the October incident lasted at least nine minutes.

The report noted that in both instances, “The responsible party achieved all steps required to command the satellite but did not issue commands.”

NASA confirmed in a separate statement: “NASA experienced two suspicious events with the Terra spacecraft in the summer and fall of 2008. We can confirm that there was no manipulation of data, no commands were successfully sent to the satellite, and no data was captured. NASA notified the Department of Defense, which is responsible for investigating any attempted interference with satellite operations.”

The report noted that the Landsat-7 satellite operated by the U.S. Geological Survey experienced similar interference and events in 2007 and 2008 but added that the entity behind that incident did not achieve the ability to control the satellite.

The report mentions the serious implications the intrusions could have on the satellite systems, particularly if they were directed against more sensitive systems such as military or communications satellites.

“If executed successfully, such interference has the potential to pose numerous threats, particularly if achieved against satellites with more sensitive functions. For example, access to a satellite’s controls could allow an attacker to damage or destroy the satellite,” the report read.

“The attacker could also deny or degrade as well as forge or otherwise manipulate the satellite’s transmission,” the report added. “A high level of access could reveal the satellite’s capabilities or information, such as imagery, gained through its sensors. Opportunities may also exist to reconnoiter or compromise other terrestrial or space based networks used by the satellite.” - abcnews

Cyber War: The Next Threat to National Security and What to Do About It - A 'must' read! Lon

China in the 21st Century: What Everyone Needs to Know

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Discovery of a Bigfoot species is close?

There are nearly 10,000 different new species discovered on the planet Earth annually, while over half of the land is uninhabitable for humans.

According to the American Association for the Advancement of Science, “…one half of the human population lives on less than 10 percent of the Earth's land, and three quarters on only 20 percent.”

In other words, that’s a rather large area for undiscovered species to remain that way, including one of the most sought after “cryptid” which goes by many names — Yeti, Sasquatch, B’gwas or the Skunk Ape.

But almost everyone knows it by its most common name — Bigfoot.

That’s where cryptozoologists like Ken Gerhard enter the picture, as they hunt for creatures or monsters like Bigfoot.

Gerhard has appeared on television shows such as “MonsterQuest” and the History Channel’s special “The Real Wolfman” and recently was one of the featured presenters at the Shooting Star’s Paranormal Convention.

The pursuance of discovering animals which have never been seen by humans has brought Gerhard to over 26 countries in the world and it’s a passion which actually started with his childhood in Minnesota, where he lived until the age of 12.

“I’ve been fascinated all my life with the animals such as Bigfoot,” Gerhard said. “I’ve always read up on them and watched every television show about them. It’s just been a life-long passion.”

When Gerhard goes out for an investigation for one of his cryptids — which is the term used for the undiscovered animals of cryptozoology — it can last for days or weeks on end.

He and his group will spend days hiking the area, searching for clues or evidence of a cryptid, such as hair or blood samples.

“Many times, we investigate during the night, since we believe most of these cryptids are nocturnal,” Gerhard added.

The investigators do call-blasting, which is a vocalization call to attract the species in and capture evidence of their existence.

But the number one cryptid and the Holy Grail of cryptozoology is the discovery of a real Bigfoot.

Gerhard, who wears his trademark leather cowboy hat, has hunted for Big-foot across the United States.

His best evidence to date has been his recording of a vocalization during one of his camp-outs.

“I am familiar with all the sounds of animals in the U.S. and this particle one sounded like a primate, similar to the ones I heard down in South America,” Gerhard explained. “It was very deep, loud and aggressive sounding.”

He went on to add the best evidence of the existence of Bigfoot includes track castings and the Patterson film, which was taken in 1967 depicting what looks like an ape — or Bigfoot — running through a clearing in the forest.

So why, through the many years of searching for Bigfoot, has not one been discovered?

Gerhard said even though there is potentially thousands of such creatures in the U.S. region, that still makes them very rare and enough to put them on the endangered species list.

“Secondly, they choose to live in remote areas and they sense humans are their biggest threat,” Gerhard said. “Much like a bear, they have very keen senses and can pick up people early and flee to a more remote area.”

Another reason why sightings are so rare is they are nocturnal and nomadic.

Even the question of why no carcass of a Bigfoot has ever been found can be explained, Gerhard said.

“You very rarely find animal carcasses in the wild, because Mother Nature disposes of them very quickly by fast decay and scavengers spreading their bones about,” he added. “I’ve talked to hunters who have hunted for many years and they say they don’t come about many carcasses.

“There also is the theory they bury their own dead like the Neanderthals did. That also decreases the odds of stumbling across one of (Big-foot’s) body.”

With 10,000 species discovered yearly — with most being insects or mollusks — Gerhard does believe the discovery of a Bigfoot species is close.

That alone could advance the thought of human evolution.

But there is plenty of area to cover and for Big-foot to hide, making the ultimate goal of proving the existence of one of the most sought after cryptids in the world a most difficult one.

If that time ever does come, it will be a mile-stone for the ages.

“It would be one of the greatest discoveries of the century,” Gerhard concluded. - dl-online

Monsters of Texas - An amazing collection of cryptid anecdotes...Lon

BIG BIRD! - MODERN SIGHTINGS OF FLYING MONSTERS

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'CHICAGO PHANTOM' - FLYING HUMANOID SIGHTINGS

'CHICAGO PHANTOM' - FLYING HUMANOID SIGHTINGS
Have you had a sighting of a flying humanoid or huge bat-like creature in the Chicago, Illinois metro area or nearby? The entity has also been referred to as the 'Chicago Phantom', 'Chicago Mothman', 'Chicago Owlman' & 'Chicago Man-Bat.' Please feel free to contact me at lonstrickler@phantomsandmonsters.com - your anonymity is guaranteed. Our investigative group is conducting a serious examination of his phenomenon. We are merely seeking the truth and wish to determine what eyewitnesses have been encountering. Your cooperation is truly appreciated. You can call me directly at 410-241-5974 as well. Thanks...Lon Strickler #ChicagoPhantom

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