ReynardFox comments

Posted in: Johnson accuses EU of plotting food 'blockade' against UK See in context

Once again the EU is making a show of what will happen to any other country that wants to leave the EU.

It's almost as if leaving the EU was never going to be the painless, total victory the Brexiteers promised it would be. Huh. Imagine that.

7 ( +10 / -3 )

Posted in: EU tells UK to scrap plan for treaty breach; UK refuses See in context

Europe's leaders have been handed an ultimatum:

The British ultimatum: Give in to our petulant tantrum or we'll blow ourselves up and you might get hit with some icky offal.

3 ( +5 / -2 )

Posted in: In new Brexit turmoil, UK says it may break law in 'limited way' See in context

The last gasp of washed-up nationalism that clings desperately to nostalgia for a long-ended empire. Nothing but the bluster of an old fighter who’s refuses to accept that their prime is long since behind them.

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Posted in: Trade deal at risk as EU says UK must honor Brexit agreement See in context

The EU: “Britain, you have literally ZERO bargaining chips here. Just trade the deal. It’s the best you’re going to get.”

Britain: “Oh yeah?? Well what if I...uhh...Oh! What if I blatantly violate an international treaty! That will definitely make me look like an attractive and trustworthy trading partner to the rest of the world! Because as we all know, everyone loves working with a nation that makes it clear that rules only apply when I say they do!”

EU: “And this is why we’re not going to miss you...”

-1 ( +1 / -2 )

Posted in: Jail term upheld for mother over fatal abuse of 5-year-old daughter See in context

A sad situation. She was a victim, without a doubt. But she could have done something. Anything. I personally wouldn't have given her that many years. The REAL travesty as that her husband, the perpetrator of violence against his wife AND his helpless child, only got 5 more years than she did. If ANYONE deserved 20 years in jail, it's him.

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Posted in: Johnson says UK will quit Brexit talks if no deal by Oct 15 See in context

Is that such a bad thing? If you are told that under the current UK setup you are reliant on the UK for wealth, is that not an incentive to become self-reliant and try to boost your wealth?

The operant word, though, is try. They can try as much as they like, but that’s no guarantee they’ll succeed. Boris is trying to cajole the EU into getting what he wants, by the UK doesn’t have the clout to succeed in doing so. Why does the UK have that the EU wants or needs? The answer is precious little. The people of Britain are learning the hard truth that the bargaining chips they thought were theirs were just borrowed from the EU the whole time. It’s like the trust fund baby who suddenly realizes how little money he actually has when daddy dearest cuts him off.

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Posted in: Johnson says UK will quit Brexit talks if no deal by Oct 15 See in context

I like the way you have transplanted what you think will/wish to happen onto what people voted for.

Oh, Tangerine, I don’t have to ‘transplant’ anything. There is no speculation. Brexiteers have been telling the world those exact things for years. They wanted to get out of the EU. They hoped that the UK’s geopolitical status would remain unchanged. They voted with these misbegotten beliefs in their minds. What they got is being bulldozed by the reality that the UK’s geopolitical position was contingent on its membership in the EU. When it was in the EU, it had clout. It had influence. It could bargain with global superpowers as if it were still one. But it isn’t. The sun set on the Empire long ago and with it went its status as a world power. The UK on its own is nowhere NEAR as powerful and relevant as it was while part of the bloc and the people are rapidly realizing that it no longer has the clout to make demands of major economies. It traded its status and seat at the table for what? Fewer Romanians and Bulgarians? The warm, fuzzy feeling that comes with thinking about vaguely patriotic abstractions like ‘national sovereignty’ or whatever? As I said. They didn’t get what they wanted. They didn’t get what they hoped for. They got exactly what they voted for. And good luck to them.

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Posted in: Johnson says UK will quit Brexit talks if no deal by Oct 15 See in context

It's almost as if...the UK...isn't as powerful and relevant a nation on its own as it was when it was a member of the bloc. Huh. Who would have thought? Do Johnson and his ilk realize the Empire's over? In the end, the UK's getting exactly what it voted for: leaving the third largest economy on Earth in order to become a sad, powerless island off the coast of the economy that really matters. Might not have been what Brexiteers hoped for. Might not have been what Brexiteers wanted. But its what Brexiteers voted for. So good luck. You'll need it.

7 ( +8 / -1 )

Posted in: Reality show 'Bachelor Japan' cast member dies in suspected suicide See in context

If you're not seriously ill, you shouldn't be taking their your own life like this. Early 20s is at the peak of your life. If the pressures if bullying on social media or your career in entertainment gets you that down, get out of it.

While getting out of situations that cause stress can be helpful, sometimes it isn’t possible, especially if you’re someone who is in the public eye. It’s not as simple as ‘well just stop being on TV’ or whatever, especially if this is her career field. What’s more, suicidal ideations can come about from things other than stress. Mental illness can make someone who, from an outside perspective, seems to have everything, into a ticking time bomb. We can’t know this woman’s mental state, so to judge her actions is irresponsible

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Posted in: Japanese teacher apologizes for peeing on students’ futon during club retreat See in context

Japanese teacher apologizes for peeing on students’ futon during club retreat

Well, ladies and gentlemen, we've found it. A brand new sentence.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Posted in: 17-year-old arrested after 2 killed during unrest in Wisconsin See in context

According to witness accounts and video footage, police apparently let the gunman walk past them and leave the scene with a rifle over his shoulder and his hands in the air as members of the crowd were yelling for him to be arrested because he had shot people.

I want you all to read that. I want you to read that over and over and over when you even THINK of saying 'not all cops...' Where were the 'good cops' here? Where?? You can bet that if some black man with a conceal-carry had done what the cops SHOULD have done, he'd be dead in the middle of the street.

I see people on this thread arguing about whether or not Blake had a weapon. You know who DID have a weapon? This scum! And did the cops shoot HIM in the back 7 times? Even if Blake did have a weapon, was he brandishing it? You know who DID brandish a weapon? This scum! Did Blake murder two people in a public street? You know who DID murder two people in a public street? THIS SCUM!

And yet, this gun-toting white boy gets to have AAAAALLLLL the benefits of due process. And Blake gets to spend the rest of his life paralyzed from the waist down.

3 ( +10 / -7 )

Posted in: National Guard called out after police shoot Black man in Wisconsin See in context

The cops are entrusted to act with good judgment. They clearly failed

Cops: Because your high school bullies need jobs, too.

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Posted in: National Guard called out after police shoot Black man in Wisconsin See in context

Don’t you just love how the cops are called to a fight between two white women and an unrelated black man still gets shot?

“As always, the video currently circulating does not capture all the intricacies of a highly dynamic incident,” Pete Deates president of the Kenosha police union, said.

Translation: “We haven’t had time to come up with a plausible excuse, so please take my word for it that there were ‘intricacies’ instead of believing a video you just watched with your own two eyeballs. As a police union rep, it’s my job to protect all cops, no matter how disgusting, and it’s really hard for me to do that when you keep watching video of the actual incident. So please believe my nonsense. Please? Pretty please?”

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Posted in: Fury from victims at 'devil' New Zealand mosque shooter See in context

I don't know what the point of these victim impact statements are. 

while I can’t speak for the NZ justice system, in the US, victim impact statements aren’t just for closure. They serve a practical purpose for the prosecution: They show the jury the terrible human cost of the defendant’s actions, bringing the crime out of the realm of abstraction and hopefully hammering home the need to find the defendant guilty and punish them to the fullest extent possible

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Posted in: House passes bill to reverse changes blamed for mail delays See in context

Committing $25 billion would be throwing good money after bad. U.S. Postal Service operations require a planned, thoughtful, restructuring proposal, not months, but a program possibility measured in a year or two

No, it requires Republicans to not cripple the USPS by forcing it to prefund 75 years worth of pensions in a mere 10 years. You don't get to ham-string someone and then act like the fact that they can't walk is evidence of weakness.

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Posted in: U.S. Senate committee concludes Russia used Manafort, WikiLeaks to boost Trump in 2016 See in context

"Committee Concludes Russia Helped Influence Election in Trump's Favor". In other news, "Water is Wet". Details at eleven.

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Posted in: British trade minister pledges to fight 'unfair' U.S. tariffs: Telegraph See in context

she wrote, while accusing the European Union of failing to protect British and Scottish interests.

Awww boo hooooo! Did the bloc your country voted to leave not protect you from all the downsides of the bilateral trade you crowed about wanting?Waaaaa! My heart bleeds!

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Posted in: Nagasaki marks 75th A-bomb anniversary See in context

voiceofokinawa

Now you're just moving the goalposts. The original discussion was about the atomic bombings, not the other events you mentioned. And I'm well aware that the atomic bombings weren't the only factor in Japan's surrender, but it was a factor. You'll note my original post in this thread was about how military planners assumed that it wouldn't hasten the end of the war. The US got exceedingly lucky that the bombings contributed to Japan's surrender, as it saved countless American lives. And an early end to the war, regardless of what you choose to believe was the primary driving force behind it, saved the lives of many more Japanese. A protracted invasion and subjugation of Japan in the same vein as the invasion of Germany, coupled with the American naval blockade, would have resulted in a staggering number of civilian deaths through combat and starvation that were ultimately avoided. There are people that argue that hastening the end of the war still didn't justify the use of nuclear weapons and that is a perfectly acceptable and rational position to have. But so is the position that the bombings were the lesser of two possible evils.

Ultimately, we can't see the timeline where the bombings didn't happen. We can only make educated guesses as to what might have happened. I put my educated guess in my first comment, so take from that what you will.

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Posted in: Nagasaki marks 75th A-bomb anniversary See in context

@voiceofokinawa

A more apt parable might go something like this:

There once was a man who had a pet bear. This bear was a most loyal, devoted, and protective creature. One day, while the pair were walking down the road, they were approached by a man whom often quarreled with the bear’s master. As they crossed paths, the two did indeed begin to quarrel, trading terrible insults. Then, quite suddenly, the second man struck the bear’s master across the face. Seeing his master so struck, the bear attacked the second man, biting off both his hands. The man fled, and never troubled the pair again.

See, here the meaning makes more sense. The second man (Japan) struck the bear’s master (the USA) first (Pearl Harbor) and then the bear (the US military) bit his hands off (the atomic bombings). While some might argue that biting off someone’s hands in reaction to a face slap is an overreaction, it can also be argued that in biting off the man’s hands, the bear had thus ensured that the man would never be able to strike his master across the face again.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Posted in: Nagasaki marks 75th A-bomb anniversary See in context

@voiceofokinawa

That’s certainly an interesting parable, but one that doesn’t really track well with the situation. It the parable, the bear struck its master in the head. So by your logic that would make America the bear and Japan the master? Or would that make Japan the bear or America the master? Either way, the metaphor doesn’t really work. Now if, say, the bear’s master had been struck by someone else and the bear then hit that other person with a hammer, the parable might be more applicable.

and just because you put words like “correctly” in scare quotes doesn’t change anything. These were major, military targets and were struck because of it. Total war is nasty business, where the line between civilian and military is blurred. Take the civilians who worked in the military factories? Are the acceptable targets, as they contribute directly to the war effort? Remember, military industries accounted for 90% of Nagasaki’s industrial base and employed 90% of all workers in the city. It wasn’t just a few people here and there.

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Posted in: Nagasaki marks 75th A-bomb anniversary See in context

I know the internet is where nuance goes to die, and that this is a VERY nuanced topic, but whenever the topic of the atomic bombings come up, I always see people talking about how the bombing were directed at "civilian cities". This is kinda disingenuous, because it gives rise to two misconceptions. 1: That the civilians were the intended targets of the bombs. (They weren't) and 2: That these were purely civilian cities, which did not contain viable military targets. (They did).

When thinking about the reasoning behind the bombings, you have to consider the situation at the time. While I'm sure there were those who hoped that the sheer power of the bombs would be enough to bring the Japanese to heel, this was a best case scenario. And during a war, you don't plan around the best case scenario; you plan around the worst. The worst case scenario was that, even after the bombings, Japan would still refuse to surrender, making a ground invasion necessary. This is what was in the minds of commanders at the time. And when you look at the bombings with this in mind, you see precisely WHY the targets they chose were chosen. The targets on the bomb list weren't chosen by just picking an industrial city off a map. They were chosen because the destruction of the military targets therein would be of maximum benefit to the coming invasion.

Take Hiroshima. There were a number of military units stationed there. Most were small and of little consequence. There were some naval dry docks as well, but since the IJN was nearly annihilated by then, they weren't the primary target. The main reason Hiroshima was chosen was the presence of the GHQ of the Second General Army. The Second General Army was a 400,000-strong military unit stationed in southern Kyushu. The SGA was going to be the primary unit that American invasion forces would face in Operation Olympic. The bombing of Hiroshima was intended to decapitate the SGA in one, fell swoop, thus making the unit less of a challenge for the expected, American invasion.

Regarding the second bombing, most people don't know that Nagasaki wasn't the original target. Kokura was. And if you know gun collecting, you know that Kokura was home to the massive Kokura Arsenal complex that produced huge volumes of infantry weapons, artillery, tanks, and ammunition. It was second only to the slightly larger arsenal at Nagoya. Destruction of Kokura and its arsenal would have severely hampered the IJA's ability to supply its troops and sustain resistance again American forces moving northward from Kyushu, inland from the Kanto Plain, and the Soviets moving south from Hokkaido. Fortunately for Kokura, great clouds of smoke from a firebombing the previous night obscured the target zone and prevented Bockscar from finding the target zone. Thus, they diverted to their second target, Nagasaki.

Nagasaki was chosen not so much because its military targets would directly affect the invasion, but because its industrial capacity had been left relatively untouched because the topography of the area interfered with American path-finding radar used to guide the bomber streams at night. Ironically, this topography would shield parts of the city from Fat Man's blast, thus leading to a lower casualty count despite the weapon's higher yield.

And while some might not believe it, civilian casualties were a consideration in regards to what cities were put on the short list. Originally, Nagasaki wasn't on the list at all and the secondary target for the Kokura raid was Kyoto. However, American commanders judged that conventional bombing had destroyed most of the military targets in the city and dropping an A-bomb on Kyoto would have resulted in massive civilian casualties for no military gain.

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Posted in: Nagasaki marks 75th A-bomb anniversary See in context

I think it’s worth noting that the original target for Bockscar, the plane that dropped Fat Man, was Kokura. However, smoke from a previous firebombing obscured it, and so the pilots decided to attack Nagasaki, the secondary target. It’s also worth noting that the intended target of the Nagasaki attack were Mitsubishi Shipyards, Electrical Shipyards, Arms Plant, and Steel and Arms Works, which employee a whopping 90% of the entire workforce of the city and accounted for 90% of the city’s total industry. Think about that a moment, only 10% of the city’s industry and 10% of its workers were non-military. Thus they would have been considered military assets under the laws of total war that existed at the time.

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Posted in: Hiroshima marks 75th anniversary of A-bombing See in context

Splitting hairs. When you drop something with the power and blast radius ( not to mention ensuing radiation ) of a nuclear weapon on a densely populated city, you are hitting a civilian target. This would not be the same as unintended deaths occurring from strategically bombing military facilities.

Remember, Jimizo, that the conventional bombing of Tokyo killed more civilians than either atomic bomb. So the idea that if Hiroshima and Nagasaki has been subjected to conventional, incendiary bombardment, they would have sustained less civilian casualties is a very tenuous assertion, at best. One that isn’t really backed up by evidence. And as I stated in my post at the top of this thread, according to the rules of war at the time, the size and number of military targets and the number of possible civilian casualties was irrelevant with respect to a given bombardment’s legality. The idea you are referring to is called “proportionality”, which is the idea that civilian casualties must be in proportion to the city’s military significance. However, the concept of proportionality was not codified into the laws of warfare until the Fourth Geneva Convention in 1949. Again, I’m not making a moral judgment on the act, but it’s legality at the time is basically indisputable.

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Posted in: Hiroshima marks 75th anniversary of A-bombing See in context

There is little question as to whether the US would have used a nuclear weapon in Europe.

Don't be so sure. Remember, by the time the US was ready to drop the bombs on Japan, Germany was already invaded, with the Russians in Berlin. The war against Germany had progressed far closer to its inevitable conclusion than the war with Japan was expected to be. There quite literally would have been no point. On the flip side, the Japanese home islands hadn't been touched by Allied ground forces. There was expected to be at LEAST another year of fighting if Operations Downfall and Coronet had gone off as planned. Additionally, the US high command believed (based on lessons learned from the Battle of Okinawa) that unlike in Germany, any invasion of Japan would be resisted not only by a still sizable military contingent, but by an incredibly hostile, highly indoctrinated, and suicidally loyal civilian population. There was many officers who truly believed that Japan would not be subjugated until literally everyone capable of holding a weapon in Japan was dead. Whether that was true or not isn't relevant: That was the assumption the US was operating under.

Additionally, we can certainly make arguments that the bombings were a moral crime, but as far as the legal rules of war in place at the time, it was a perfectly acceptable act of war. The international treaty most people quote regarding the atomic bombings is the Fourth Geneva Convention. This limited the ability of signatories to bomb civilian cities in time of war and according the 4GC, the atomic bombings would have constituted a war crime. However, people neglect to mention that the 4GC wasn't signed until 1949. And international law operates under the principle of "That which is not prohibited, is permitted". The laws of war most nations used during WWII was the Hague Convention of 1907. This convention governed the bombardment of civilian cities. But remember, this is 1907. You know what HADN'T yet happened in 1907? Bombardment from the air. The HC1907 regulated bombardment by sea- and land-based artillery. After the war, there were attempts to regulate aerial bombardment from the air in the same way, but no major power wanted to limit itself with new laws after seeing the power of strategy bombing by German zeppelins. As such, most nations simply applied the regulations for sea- and land-based bombardment to bombardment by air. Here is what HC1907 says about that:

You must give ample warning to the target to allow civilians to evacuate

The city must have military targets.

The city must be 'defended'.

That's it.

Let's look at those three rules vis-a-vis Hiroshima and Nagasaki.

Leaflets were dropped over both cities, warning that they would be targets of aerial bombing. Condition 1 met.

Hiroshima had around 40,000 military personnel and was home to the HQs of numerous military units, including the GHQ of the Second General Army, which commanded 400,000 troops in Southern Kyushu. It also housed naval port and drydock facilities. Nagasaki had numerous military-industrial facilities, including Mitsubishi Shipyards and Steel and Arms Works. Both cities had military targets.

The definition of 'defended' was very vague. Most militaries considered a city 'defended' if it housed armed soldiers, which both cities did. Additionally, they were defended by heavy anti-aircraft units. The US used a definition of 'defended' that was VERY broad and actually included otherwise 'undefended' cities, so long as they were within range of Japanese airbases, meaning they were 'defended' by Japanese Air Defense units. Both cities met the definitions of 'defended'.

Were the bombings militarily necessary? Were they morally correct? Did they end the war sooner? Did they save lives? These are all things that can be debated.

The actual legality of the bombings, however, really isn't debatable.

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Posted in: Mother who drowned 11-month-old daughter in bathtub ruled mentally fit to stand trial See in context

@Ken Wyatt

He didn't notice anything because he was at work when she drowned the infant. It's literally sentence #6 in the article. If you asking if he missed any possible red flags, I would say we don't know if there even WERE any obvious red flags, especially since this seems to be a spur-of-the-moment act. And even if there were red flags, they are generally not NEARLY as obvious in the moment as they are in retrospect.

Also, who would look at their own partner and think "Hmmm, I wonder if she's planning to kill our child?", honestly? Your wife/husband/significant other might be a secret serial killer, but I guarantee you've never seriously considered that outlandish possibility.

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Posted in: Mother who drowned 11-month-old daughter in bathtub ruled mentally fit to stand trial See in context

The person I feel the worst for is the husband. I can't even imagine what it must have been like to come home and find that your wife had drowned your infant child.

And people need to realize that being ruled competent for trial isn't the same as saying the accused is mentally fine. At least in the US, all you need to do to be ruled "mentally fit for trial" is for a psychiatrist to say that at the time of the crime, you knew the difference between right and wrong. You can be a complete, dyed-in-the-wool psychopath and mental wreck and still be found competent if the court deems that you were of sound enough mind to know right from wrong. Not an excuse, just pointing out that while this woman was found competent for trial, she likely still has some very severe mental problems.

A tragedy all around...

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Posted in: 2 dead, 7 wounded in shooting at North Carolina block party See in context

How many of the shootings you hear about here in the media mention that the firearms used in such situations are NOT LEGALLY ACQUIRED? FYI, only law-abiding citizens go through the background check process to purchase a firearm, whereas the low-life criminals get theirs illegally, through the black market, with zero checks whatsoever.

I always love when "The Black Market (tm)" comes up. As if there is this shady bazaar down a shadow-choked alley with hawkers selling guns or whatever like its 17th century Persia. People seem to believe that if you want am illegal gun, you just go to your local branch of "The Black Market (tm)" and buy whatever you need. The ACTUAL, sad fact is that most "illegal" guns begin their lives as legal guns. The majority of illegal guns don't come from "The Black Market (tm)". Criminals get their guns by stealing legal firearms from 'law-abiding' gun owners who are too dumb or stubborn to properly secure them in a safe; through straw purchases from LEGAL gun stores; or by using things like the gun show/private purchase loopholes to avoid background checks. If you want to reduce the amount of illegal guns on the streets, you need to start being stricter with regards to legal guns. Requiring gun owners to keep their guns in a secured safe and/or use a trigger lock will prevent criminals from acquiring guns through burglary. Requiring stricter background checks and having mandatory waiting periods will reduce the appeal of 'straw' purchasing. Also, a gun store that sells to a straw purchaser should be held complicit in whatever crimes that gun commits. And lastly, ALL gun purchases/changes of ownership should require a background check - thus closing the gun show/private purchase loophole.

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Posted in: Bloc against U.S. base transfer keeps majority in Okinawa election See in context

It's about as thorny a situation as could possibly be imagined. It's a conflict between pragmatism and idealism. Pragmatically-speaking, the island's strategic location is absolutely undeniable, so it makes military sense for Japan to continue to allow the United States to station large numbers of troops there. On the flip side, the idea of a people wanting to reclaim their land and do away with the noise and danger (both direct and indirect) posed to the citizens is pretty hard to ignore.

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Posted in: Prosecutors charge 3 more officers in George Floyd's death See in context

Two weeks ago, grannies were getting arrested for sitting on park benches because of Social Distancing but now police are standing shoulder to shoulder in formation and protestors are packing the streets like sardines.

Two weeks ago, conservatives were demanding the right to go outside, regardless of what the government and law enforcement said, but now social media is filled with those same people telling protesters to just 'obey the curfew'. Funny how things change.

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Posted in: Looting erupts during Minneapolis protests over black man's killing by white police officer See in context

Maybe we ought to start applying 'defense of a third party' to cops. That man would still be alive had people been able to intervene in his defense.

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