Meet the Icefish.
I have free time, and that means more biology! Today’s creature is one I’ve been meaning to write about for a while: the crocodile icefish, Pagetopsis macropterus.
(Images are not mine.)
The name seems pretty self-explanatory - crocodile for the long, flat, toothy snout, and icefish because it lives exclusively in the frigid waters just off the coast of Antarctica. But there’s something very strange going on with this fish, one of the symptoms of which can be seen just by looking closely: it’s pale, almost transparent. Its internal organs are clearly visible and its spine can be seen faintly.
Every Saturday morning, I volunteer as a clinic escort at an abortion clinic in New Jersey. I’ve been called every name I can possibly think of: murderer, baby killer, “deathscort,” even a “stuck-up bitch.” I’ve been told I’m going to Hell, that I have a wicked heart, that I am an evil woman. I have even been sexually harassed by a male protester. But no matter what, I do not respond. None of us respond. We don’t even make eye contact with the protesters. We have learned to tune it out, more or less. But when these horrific insults are hurled at patients, I won’t lie: It sometimes becomes difficult to bear.
The Women of Godzilla 1954 - 1975 sourced from the special features included with the Toho Master Collection edition of Terror of Mechagodzilla (1975). Technically they should have called this feature The Women of Toho as these are not all shots from Godzilla films.
Friends of Admiral Rogers in the intelligence community, who have worked with him in his current job running the Navy’s Fleet Cyber Command, say they wonder whether he has a sense of what he is wading into.
“Why would anyone in his right mind be director of N.S.A. right now?” asked John R. Schindler, a former N.S.A. officer who is now a professor at the Naval War College. “It’s a massive political headache.”
Mr. Schindler, echoing intelligence officials who know Admiral Rogers, said he is “superbly qualified” to guide the agency’s cyber and surveillance programs. But he added that “no director in the agency’s history has ever walked into this big a challenge.”
“Rogers is taking over what they call in the Navy an ‘unhappy ship,’ ” he said.
The question resonating inside the N.S.A. recently is whether Admiral Rogers is prepared to become the public face — and public defender — of such an embattled agency, a job his predecessor, Gen. Keith B. Alexander, took on with gusto. Just last week, General Alexander was at Georgetown University, defending the agency’s programs, arguing that the Snowden disclosures had weakened American cyberdefenses, and gently mocking how much oversight the agency receives. “We’re reviewed by the general counsel and the inspector general” of the Departments of Defense, the director of national intelligence, the White House, Congress and many others, he said, giving a taste of how many minders Admiral Rogers will have to face.
Admiral Rogers was cautious in what he said in the hearing before the Senate Armed Services Committee, which reviews his nomination because Admiral Rogers would also be heading United States Cyber Command, responsible for both cyberoffensive and defensive operations. He promised that the N.S.A.’s programs, including its domestic surveillance activities, would become “more transparent,” and said he would “assure a sense of accountability” for the agency’s activities.
But he declined to be specific about how he might change the collection of telephone metadata or other information about the communications of Americans, other than to say that he had concerns that if the United States did not keep the data itself, it could slow the agency’s ability to search for links to suspected terrorists.
At another point in the hearing, Admiral Rogers said he believed that both the United States and Defense Department systems were both still vulnerable to major attacks, and would be until “a new architecture” was in place to defend them. “It’s only a matter of time, I believe, before we start to see more destructive activity,” he said.