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A novel based on the actual events of Erik B. Scott's murder on July 10, 2010, in Las Vegas, NV. When Las Vegas police officers unwittingly gun down a West Point graduate and current covert operations agent, then try to cover up their crime, they unleash the fury of Checkmate, a highly classified "black world" agency. It's an asymmetric war corrupt cops and their allies cannot win — and if Checkmate fails, America will erupt in armed revolt.

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Inside U.S. Strategic Command, top military commanders, space-company executives, and U.S. intelligence experts are conducting a DEADSATS II wargame, exploring how the loss of critical satellites could lead to nuclear war. The players don't know that the war they are gaming has already begun, miles above them in the lifeless, silent cold of space. Jam-packed with the actual systems and secret technologies the United States has or will soon field to protect its space assets, Space Wars describes a near-future nuclear nightmare that terrorists will relish but politicians prefer to ignore. In a quieter, more peaceful time, Space Wars would be an exciting work of fiction. But with the United States now at war, Space Wars is all too real.

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When North Korea detonates a nuclear weapon at the edge of space, silencing dozens of satellites, rogue nations seize a unique opportunity to strike. Overnight, national leaders robbed of spy satellite imagery are making decisions in the blind. An Iranian missile threatens to destroy Israel; a Venezuelan “research” satellite jeopardizes the lives of three astronauts, and tech-savvy terrorist cells unleash back-to-back horrors in California. The White House turns to U.S. Strategic Command and its team of Deadsat II wargamers, racing the clock to stave off international disaster. But power-hungry officials are undermining those attempts. With a B-2 bomber minutes from obliterating a Chinese laser-weapon site, and two U.S. aircraft carriers in China’s missile crosshairs, two great nations stand at the brink of nuclear war.

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May

17

ENVIRO INSANITY

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In 1978, Bill L. Minor was looking forward to an enjoyable fishing trip, soaking up nature’s serenity, while dipping a line in the East Fork of the Walker River. He had flown into a friend’s private airstrip near the high desert foothills of the Eastern Sierra Nevada mountains, about 40 miles southeast of Lake Tahoe, and driven to a favorite fishing spot along the river.

At some point, a local farmer drove up and started chatting. The two got acquainted as Bill leisurely drowned a few worms, discovering they shared the common language of men who loved and valued the land. Later in the day, Bill stopped by the gent’s spread—and was stunned by his host’s amazing garden. Tomatoes bigger than softballs. Zucchini squash 20-24 inches long. Healthy corn standing six feet tall, its stalks laden with large ears.

“How do you get this kind of yield?” Bill asked in awe.

“Just mixed some yellow dirt into the ground,” the farmer smiled, handing Bill a sample. “Works on livestock, too.” Chickens that ate the stuff were laying an abundance of large eggs, and cows were producing milk in record quantities.

“Where’d you find this ‘dirt’?” Bill pressed, inspecting the ochre-colored soil.

“Well, there’s a whole mountain of it out there,” the man said, pointing. “Coupla thousand-foot piles.” The observant gentleman farmer had noticed deer nibbling on the yellowish soil, and figured there had to be a good reason. He’d shot a healthy buck and was impressed by the venison’s taste and high quality. That led to feeding “yellow dirt” to his own animals and working it into the vegetable garden’s soil. Results were astounding.

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