Web Posted December 31, 2004
Updated December 31, 2004
No editorial this issue!
Because I have been pursuing my current hobby of microbiology, A.C.E.
was not launched in August 2003. I am guessing the earliest it will be
available would be spring 2005. No, I am not going to tell you the meaning
of the acronym because I want it to be a surprise.
This project, one that makes the rebuilding of Mad Max's V-8 Interceptor
from its fiery wreck look simple, was completed in early 2003. I am in
the final stage of proofreading and page formatting, and aiming for a December
release. It is going to good and your patience will be rewarded.
POLICE BATTLE GANGS OVER STOLEN CRUDE
Nigerian army troops on 24-hour patrol
The Associated Press and CNN
Thursday, September 2, 2004 Posted: 2:14 PM EDT (1814 GMT)
LAGOS, Nigeria (AP) -- Authorities are beefing up security forces in
Nigeria's oil-industry capital, where soldiers will patrol around the clock
after deadly clashes by rival armed gangs in recent days, officials said Thursday.
Nigerian army spokesman Col. Mohammed Yusuf said extra troops are deploying to the southern city of Port Harcourt in support of police battling armed gangs linked to local political groups and an illicit trade in stolen crude.
Yusuf didn't say how many extra soldiers were being sent to Port Harcourt, a main city in Nigeria's petroleum-rich south, but said they would be on patrol day and night.
"It's now a 24-hour patrol instead of the previous nightly patrols by the army," Yusuf said.
In the latest violence in Port Harcourt, gunmen in two Mercedes cars
opened fire Tuesday on restaurant customers and other bystanders, police
spokeswoman Ireju Barasua told The Associated Press.
The attack left four people dead and eight others "seriously injured," she said. Residents and other witnesses said between 10 and 18 people were killed.
The international petroleum firms that pump most of the output of Africa's largest oil exporter have key offices in Port Harcourt.
Local rights groups blame the proliferation of weapons in the city on politicians who armed thugs during the run up to 2003 general elections.
Some of the weapons have also fallen into the hands of criminal gangs
stealing crude from pipelines that crisscross the region -- a trade which
costs Nigeria between 5 and 10 percent of its output of 2.5 million barrels daily.
Nigeria, in addition to being Africa's largest oil exporter, is the
world's seventh-largest oil exporter and the fifth-biggest source of U.S.
MAN WEARING BULLET-RESISTANT VEST SHOT TO DEATH IN TACOMA
The Seattle Post-Intelligencer and The Associated Press
Monday, September 13, 2004
Last updated 5:53 a.m. PT
TACOMA, Wash. -- A man wearing a bullet-resistant vest was shot to death and two others were wounded when someone opened fire on people who were talking and drinking outside a duplex, police said.
Nathaniel William Allen, 25, died at St. Joseph Medical Center about two hours after the shooting Friday morning, authorities said. Authorities did not immediately say in what part of the body he was shot.
A woman was taken to Harborview Medical Center in Seattle and a man was taken to a hospital in Tacoma for treatment of serious wounds, officer Mark Fulghum said.
Police were seeking a man and a woman who was with him in a group outside a two-story duplex in the city's east end. They were believed to have fled in a car, Fulghum said.
The motive for the shooting was unknown, nor could investigators immediately determine why Allen was wearing a protective vest when a man and a woman walked up and joined the group, he added.
"Someone made a comment to the shooter and he pulled out the handgun and opened fire," Fulghum said.
Information from: The News Tribune, http://www.tribnet.com
ASSAULT WEAPONS BAN TO EXPIRE MONDAY
The Associated Press and CNN
Monday, September 13, 2004 Posted: 2:11 PM EDT (1811 GMT)
Gunsmith Justin Davis holds a Ruger mini-14 rifle with a configuration that makes it illegal to manufacture under the assault weapons ban.
SAN FRANCISCO, California (AP) -- Ten years after it was born out of the carnage of three California mass shootings, the federal assault weapons ban is fading out of existence Monday.
While manufacturers look for a boom in business as people buy up previously banned weapons like TEC-9s, police chiefs warn of an upsurge in crime.
The law's chief sponsor, Democratic Sen. Dianne Feinstein, is urging retailers not to sell the disputed weapons, while hoping for a change in the nation's political climate.
Feinstein was horrified by the 1984 shooting rampage at a McDonald's in San Diego County that killed 21 people and the massacre of five people five years later at a Stockton elementary school yard.
But it was the shooting at a law firm in San Francisco in 1993, in which eight were killed and six wounded, that persuaded her to push for the assault weapons ban.
"It was the ultimate shock," Feinstein said in an interview. "That building is one of the great economic citadels in the city, and you see this prestigious law firm. And then -- boom. Someone comes in, aggrieved, and goes right through the place."
Just over a year after the San Francisco shootings, President Bill Clinton signed Feinstein's bill into law. It banned the sale of 19 specific semiautomatic weapons and ammunition clips of 10 rounds or more.
Former Presidents Gerald Ford, Jimmy Carter and Ronald Reagan wrote to all members of the House to encourage them to pass the ban at the time.
But it was set to expire exactly 10 years later if it wasn't renewed in Congress, and President George W. Bush never pushed Congressional leaders to move the renewal legislation.
Loopholes allowed manufacturers to keep many weapons on the market simply by changing their names or altering some of their features or accessories. And because existing weapons and large ammo clips were protected by a "grandfather" provision, many pre-ban guns remained in use.
"The bill's not perfect; we could have written a better bill," Feinstein says now. "I just didn't know how craven the gun manufacturers would be."
Studies done by pro- and antigun groups as well as the Justice Department show conflicting results on whether the ban helped reduce crime.
California and other more urban states, including Massachusetts and
New York, have passed their own laws curbing the use of assault weapons.
Some of those are more stringent than the federal ban.
GUN SHOPS, POLICE BRACE FOR END OF WEAPONS BAN
Some states have passed their own measures
The Associated Press and CNN
Monday, September 13, 2004 Posted: 2:37 PM EDT (1837 GMT)
James S. Brady, for whom the 1994 Brady Bill was named, was on Capitol Hill to urge, without success, a renewal of the assault weapons ban.
BOISE, Idaho (AP) -- The expiration Monday of a 10-year federal ban on assault weapons means firearms like TEC-9s can now be legally bought -- a development that has critics upset and gun owners pleased.
The 1994 ban, signed by President Clinton, outlawed 19 types of military-style assault weapons. A clause directed that the ban expire unless Congress specifically reauthorized it, which it did not.
Studies done by pro- and antigun groups as well as the Justice Department show conflicting results on whether the ban helped reduce crime. Loopholes allowed manufacturers to keep many weapons on the market simply by changing their names or altering some of their features or accessories. (Assault weapons ban to expire Monday)
Gun shop owners said the expiration of the ban will have little effect on the types of guns and accessories that are typically sold and traded across their counters every day.
At the Boise Gun Co., gunsmith Justin Davis last week grabbed up a black plastic rifle resembling the U.S. military's standard issue M-16 from a row of more than a dozen similar weapons stacked against a wall.
The civilian version of the gun, a Colt AR-15 manufactured before 1994, could be sold last week just as easily as it can be sold this week. "It shoots exactly the same ammo at exactly the same rate of fire," said Davis.
Many states -- including California, Massachusetts, New York and Hawaii -- have passed their own laws curbing the use of assault weapons. Some of those are more stringent than the federal ban.
U.S. Rep. Butch Otter, R-Idaho, trumpeted the end of the federal law.
"President Clinton's so-called 'assault weapons' ban was nothing more than a sop to antigun liberals," Otter said Friday in a written statement. "It provided only the illusion of reducing gun violence, but it did real damage to our liberties."
But advocates for the ban, including the Brady Campaign to Prevent Gun Violence, point to some particularly vicious shootings in which military-style weapons were used -- including the 10 killings in the sniper shooting spree that terrorized residents in Maryland, Virginia and Washington, in 2002.
National police organizations such as the International Association of Chiefs of Police, the International Brotherhood of Police Officers and the Fraternal Order of Police all support the renewal of the ban. President Bush has said he would sign such a bill if Congress passed it.
Idaho State Police spokesman Rick Ohnsman said troopers have had no significant problems with assault style weapons and his agency has not taken a position for or against the federal legislation.
"Of course, the legitimate owners of guns register them. Unfortunately, whether there is a ban or not, some individuals will find ways to get weapons that are illegal."
The expiration of the assault weapons ban does not mean the end of federal background checks. The 1993 Brady Handgun Violence Prevention Act is separate legislation from the assault weapons ban, said Daniel Wells, chief of the FBI unit charged with overseeing the background checks system.
"The change in law relating to assault weapons has no impact on the Brady Law," Wells said.
Davis predicted the biggest change in his business will be the ability of manufacturers and importers to market higher capacity ammunition magazines -- the removable "clip" that holds and feeds bullets through guns.
Under the 1994 ban, the maximum capacity of a magazine was set at 10 rounds. That sent the price of high-capacity magazines through the roof, Davis said, even though magazines manufactured before the ban were protected by a "grandfather" provision and could still be sold.
Now, some gun manufacturers are planning to give away high-capacity
magazines as bonuses for buying their weapons. Sales of formerly banned
gun accessories, such as flash suppressors and folding stocks, are also
expected to take off.
ROBO RALLY RETURNS THIS SPRING
The Gaming Report
Posted 2004-09-09 18:37:37 by damonwhite
[Avalon Hill] Damon White Reports: We have received confirmation that Wizards of the Coast, under the Avalon Hill brand, is planning a re-release of a new edition of the classic Robo Rally board game next spring. The game by Richard Garfield was originally released by WotC in 1994 and re-released by Amigo and 999 Games in Europe. A fan favorite the new edition is to be scheduled for a spring 2005 release. Our source has also passed along a concept for the new box design (below).
For those not familiar with the game below is a brief description:
"In Robo Rally, players assume control of one of many "Robot Control Computers" in a dangerous widget factory filled with moving, course-altering conveyor belts, metal-melting laser beams, bottomless pits, crushers, and a variety of other obstacles. The goal in a game of Robo Rally is, apart from survival, to be the first to reach a pre-designated number of checkpoints in a particular order. However, the real difficulty in Robo Rally is movement, which is accomplished with the randomly dealt program cards."
We have also received word of another board game due for release in
June of 2005 being called around the Wizards facility "Dragon Mount". The
science fiction wargame is also to be released under the Avalon Hill brand
and is designed for 3 to 6 players. We have heard from our source that
Charlie Catino is the designer behind the game but are still awaiting confirmation
on more details behind this release.
REGIONAL ROLE PLAYERS GUILD
Forum: Dueling Debate
Subject: General / OktoberCon comes to New Idaho
Date: September 18, 2004, 3:06 am
The Regional Role Players Guild here in Boise Idaho will be running our first annual gaming convention this year.
OktoberCon will take place October 29th through the 31st.
There are no plans to run any Car Wars games at this time, but I do plan to try to run Wreckage and if any of you can make it send me an email and let me know.
Tony "Manycubes" Kontes
CAR WARS: ARENA ASSAULT
NEW OMAHA VEHICULAR ASSOCIATION (NOVA)
Arena Watch: Amazonia Arena