Home' Greymouth Star : January 18 2014 Contents Greymouth Star
4 - Saturday, January 18, 2014
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uLetters to the editor
1788 - HMS Supply, rst ship of Britain's
First Fleet to Australia, reaches Botany Bay
1871 - While Prussian guns bombard Paris,
the Reich is formed when William I of Prussia
is crowned the rst emperor of
1918 - e rst democratically
elected national legislature in Russia
opens in Petrograd. e Bolsheviks
soon shut it down, marking the start
of Communist dictatorship.
1919 - e World War One Peace
Congress opens in Versailles, France.
1936 - Author Rudyard Kipling dies in
1945 - Following seven days of heavy
ghting, Soviet troops relieve Leningrad after a
16-month German siege.
1963 - Government of Charles de Gaulle
in France insists that Britain be barred from
European Common Market.
1977 - Australia's worst rail crash, at
Granville, Sydney, kills 83 when a train hits a
1996 - Lisa Marie Presley-Jackson les for
divorce from Michael Jackson.
uWest Coast yesteryear
uToday in history
Francois Michel Detellier, French statesman
(1641-1691); Cary Grant, US actor (1904-
1986); Paul Keating, former
Australian prime minister (1944-);
Kevin Costner, US actor-director
(1955-); Jesse L Martin, US actor
(1969-); Anthony Koutou des,
Australian footballer (1973-);
Damien Leith, Australian Idol
winner (1976-); Jason Segel,
American actor (1980-).
"... Be intolerant of ignorance, but
understanding of illiteracy."
--- Maya Angelou, American writer (1928-).
"But I say to you that listen, love your
enemies, do good to those who hate you.
--- (Luke 6:27).
last night farewelled
top junior Bill
Brown, who is shortly leaving to represent his
country in Australia and then will reside in
"I would like to wish Bill all the best
in Australia on behalf of the people of
Greymouth," said the Mayor Mr F W Baillie,
who spoke at the function. "Bill, I believe, is
the rst West Coast swimmer to represent
New Zealand and I believe he will do justice
to himself, to his club and to his province in
Later in the evening Brown was farewelled
by his clubmates and was presented on their
behalf with a small gift by club captain Noel
McMillan. In his remarks Mr McMillan,
who has coached Brown, said how sorry the
club was to see him go and the thing that
would be remembered most about him was his
outstanding sportsmanship at all times.
e revival of the sport of billiards on the
West Coast is the object of a small group
of enthusiasts who have formed themselves
into the West Coast Billiards Association.
Once a thriving sport in the town, billiards
have gradually declined until there are only a
relatively few exponents to be seen these days
manoeuvring the three balls around the tables.
Interest among the younger cueists has
switched to snooker and the various types of
pool which do not require the same degree
of skill nor the hours of practice. For all this,
however, the West Coast has maintained a
fairly prominent place in the New Zealand
billiards scene, mainly through the e orts of
two or three men, particularly Jack Clark.
uToday s birthdays
uFood for thought
Printed and published by the
Greymouth Evening Star Co Limited
3 Werita Street, PO Box 3, Greymouth
03 769 7900 (o ce)
769 7913 (editorial)
768 6205 (fax)
Sports Editor Tui Bromley
Chief Reporter Laura Mills
03 769 7913
03 755 8422
this week pledged
to take control of a
violent western State
after days of ghting
vigilantes and members of one of the
country's most powerful drug cartels.
Since late last year, vigilante groups
in the State of Michoacan have moved
deeper into territory controlled by the
Knights Templar cartel and they now are
converging on Apatzingan, considered one
of the gang's main strongholds.
e vigilantes' advance has raised the risk
of a bloody urban battle in Apatzingan.
Interior Minister Miguel Angel Osorio
Chong urged the vigilante groups to
withdraw from the battleground so federal
forces could take control.
"Be certain that we will contain the
violence in Michoacan," Osorio Chong said
at an event in the state capital of Morelia.
President Enrique Pena Nieto, who just
ended his rst year in o ce, has sought to
shift the public focus away from grinding
violence and onto a series of economic
reforms he has pushed through a divided
But a steady stream of killings that
plagued his predecessor's term continues,
and the deepening crisis in Michoacan is
beginning to cast doubt on his ability to
maintain order. Drug tra cking gangs
have been waging battles over tra cking
routes for the last decade.
Analysts warned that any siege on
Apatzingan by the vigilante groups
could spark a much larger and more
unpredictable urban con ict. ey also
said the government may have waited
too long to try to contain the growing
" is is a war. is is no longer an
issue of public safety, or normal law
enforcement. is is a political-military
con ict between a number of armed
groups," security analyst Alejandro Hope
of the Mexican Competitiveness Institute
think tank said. " is could get out of
control any time now."
Masked vigilantes took power in more
than a dozen rural communities in 2013
across Michoacan, claiming authorities
were failing to stop rising extortion,
kidnapping and violence.
e government appeared to tolerate the
so-called self-defence groups, apparently
in the hope they could oust the Knights
Templar and help restore order.
In the latest push by vigilantes, hundreds
of men, many armed with high-powered
ri es instead of the rusty shotguns toted
by such groups elsewhere in the country,
barrelled into the town of Nueva Italia
on Sunday in a convoy of pickup trucks,
saying they wanted to liberate it from the
Knights Templar cartel.
e vigilantes entering Nuevo Italia,
located 35km from Apatzingan, were
greeted by sporadic gun re. At least one
vigilante was wounded, according to a
e group, mostly young men with faces
covered by improvised masks made from
t-shirts or bandannas, quickly moved into
the town centre and detained local police,
who the vigilantes have said are working
with drug tra ckers.
Both the State government and federal
troops have stood aside as the vigilantes
took over more and more communities.
Pena Nieto's top security o cials have
given mixed messages over the vigilantes.
While they said the groups were breaking
the law, they also said the groups had
e vigilantes' most visible leader, a
doctor named Jose Mireles, was injured
in an airplane accident just over a week
ago. He was taken to a private hospital in
Mexico City where he recovered under
heavy guard by federal troops.
During their ascendance, the vigilante
groups maintained their checkpoints and
patrols at Michoacan and openly carried
On Monday, Osorio Chong said federal
forces would take over security in the
zone around Apatzingan. He asked the
vigilantes to put down their weapons and
said laws against bearing arms would now
be strictly enforced.
Some claim that the vigilantes are
being backed by another cartel from
neighbouring Jalisco that is linked to the
powerful Sinaloa cartel run by Mexico's
most wanted man, Joaquin Shorty
Previous bloody incursions by drug gangs
into their rivals' territory have sparked
scenes that look like low-intensity wars
in places like the border cities of Juarez
and Tijuana, or the business centre of
But the government had not appeared
to back an armed vigilante group in other
recent con icts in Mexico, Hope said.
Over the weekend, federal troops moved
in greater numbers into Apatzingan, where
there is a military base. Local residents
fear an incursion by vigilantes into
Apatzingan could lead to heavy ghting.
Former President Felipe Calderon
launched his military-led o ensive against
the drug gangs in Michoacan shortly after
he took o ce in late 2006. But despite
years of battles between federal troops
and drug gangs that left around 70,000
people dead, security only deteriorated in
Michoacan's murder rate rose in 2013
compared to declines in most states,
o cial data showed. Between January
and November last year, 862 people were
murdered in the State last year during the
rst 11 months compared to 755 in all
of 2012, according to government data.
Nationwide, murders peaked in 2011 amid
Calderon's military-led challenge to the
Michoacan's murder rate has
nearly doubled since 2006 as
tra ckers increasingly turned from
marijuana plantations to producing
methamphetamine in crude labs hidden in
the State's mountains and avocado groves.
Late last year, dozens of mutilated
corpses were found buried in mass graves
in an area on the border between the states
of Michoacan and Jalisco. Five decapitated
bodies were dumped in the state capital in
late December. --- Reuters
Vigilantes arrive in Nuevo Italia.
London has a new theatre lit entirely by
candles, transporting audiences back 400
years to the kind of performances seen on
winter nights in Shakespeare's time.
Constructed mainly of oak, the building
sits alongside the established open-air
Globe theatre on the south bank of the
ames --- but it o ers a very di erent
experience by replicating an indoor
playhouse of the early 17th century.
While the Globe's thatched amphitheatre
is breezy and holds more than 1500 people,
the new Sam Wanamaker Playhouse
--- named after the American actor and
director who came up with the idea for
both venues --- is intimate, with just 340
Stepping inside is like entering an
antique marquetry box, with the ickering
candlelight illuminating woodwork and a
painted ceiling that make a ne setting for
the inward-looking psychological dramas
of the Jacobean period.
In many ways the small indoor space is an
"anti-Globe," according to artistic director
Dominic Dromgoole, whose production of
John Webster's dark tragedy e Duchess
of Mal opened there on January 9.
Modelled on drawings that fell out of
an old book in the library at Worcester
College, Oxford, in the 1960s, the new
playhouse o ers a wintertime option for
Dromgoole and his team.
e second venue builds on the outdoor
success of the Globe, which has been
putting on shows since 1997 and had its
rst transfer to Broadway in November.
Given the British weather, the Globe can
only operate from April to October.
e sketches that form the basis for
the $12.4 million project are the earliest
surviving evidence of what an indoor
Jacobean theatre would have looked like,
although the nal building is not a copy of
any particular historical venue.
e idea of heading inside in the winter
months would have been very familiar to
William Shakespeare and his peers --- as
would the choice of play.
e Duchess of Mal was rst performed
by the King's Men acting company to
which Shakespeare belonged at a similar
indoor theatre across the river at Blackfriars
in 1613 or 1614.
It is a tale of corruption, murder and
madness that exposes the dark side of
human nature, prompting the poet T S
Eliot famously to describe Webster as a
dramatist who "saw the skull beneath the
With a macabre scene of waxwork corpses
and a grave-digging semi-werewolf duke,
Webster piles on a surreal horror that gains
a claustrophobic immediacy in the small
e show burns through dozens of
beeswax candles to illuminate the action,
some in candelabras and others held by
the actors, although a certain amount of
arti cial electric light does leak in through
internal windows in some scenes.
e e ect is unique, with the candlelight
re ecting o the actors' white neck ru s
and glittering from the golden dress worn
by Gemma Arterton --- a former Bond girl
in the movie Quantum of Solace --- who
plays the doomed duchess.
e show, which also includes period
music, is already getting rave write-ups on
Twitter from those who have seen it, with
visitors describing the setting as "gorgeous"
Dromgoole is preparing next to present
other works from more of Shakespeare's
contemporaries --- including Francis
Beaumont and John Marston --- as well as
an opera by Francesco Cavalli and several
Naked ames will be centre-stage in all
these shows, a fact that has required careful
liaison with health and safety o cers ---
especially as the original Globe theatre
burned down 400 years ago when its
thatch caught re during a performance of
Shakespeare's Henry VIII. --- Reuters
New London theatre transports audiences back 400 years
Inside the new Sam Wanamaker Playhouse.
Scientists have created a novel method
of allowing people to drink garden pond
e project at the University of the
West of England, Bristol could transform
the lives of millions of people in the
developing world who have no access to
clean drinking water.
e portable and mobile system has
been developed for use in remote or
undeveloped areas of the world to
provide clean water for disaster relief and
A modest garden shed next to a pond at
the university's main campus is the focus
of the project.
e research team has pumped water
from the pond directly into a treatment
system which uses a disinfectant and
a state-of-the-art membrane ltration
From this, potable water that meets
drinking water standards from source can
be produced in a matter of minutes.
Professor Darren Reynolds, who is
leading the research team, said: "I am
perfectly happy drinking this water.
"Our system has the potential to bene t
millions of people living in areas where
safe water is currently unavailable.
"As populations continue to grow, and
essential natural resources critical to
survival become scarce in some areas of
the world, we will become dependent
upon novel technological solutions.
" e rst stage of our project has
resulted in the capacity to produce two
cubic metres of drinking water in a 12-day
" is may not seem like a huge amount,
but put into context, humans need a
minimum of two litres of drinking water
a day which is less than one cubic metre
"Key to this project is the novel biocide
that we have developed that does not
corrode like chlorine."
In conventional drinking water treatment
systems chlorine is used for disinfection
but unfortunately chlorine is known to
corrode the membrane material that is
used for ltration of the water --- making
the long-term deployment of portable
treatment systems in remote areas very
is system incorporates a disinfectant
that has been developed at the university
that does not have a corrosive impact on
components over time but still kills any
bacteria that may be present in the water.
e portable system is currently
being tted into standard 6m transport
containers making each unit easy to
transport by road, ship or train.
Prof Reynolds added: "Clean drinking
water is obviously essential to life and
we know there are many areas of the
undeveloped world where people are
still drinking water that is contaminated
with disease or by thoughtless industrial
practice that cause death and misery."
Novel project for drinking water
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