Gentle Giants: How the F-22 Raptor Saved Honey Bees from Destruction

Here’s what you need to remember: To add to the F-22 Raptor’s long list of accolades, it once shielded a large school of honey bees. 

The F-22 Raptor is one of the Air Force’s most vaunted planes. It’s been around since the late 1990s, and while the last one was delivered in 2012, the F-22’s have shifted over time to the “eyes in the sky” for the Air Force. 

Also, there was the time the Raptor shielded a large school of honey bees. 

It happened in 2016, at Joint Base Langley-Eustis in Virginia, according to the DVIDS Hub website. One day that June, according to the account, the 192nd Fighter Wing Aircraft Maintainers discovered a swarm of honey bees hanging off of the exhaust nozzle of an F-22 jet. 

They considered trying to get rid of the bees, but then realized they should not, since those particular bees are endangered. 

“I was shocked like everyone else because it looked like a cloud of thousands of bees, but I knew they wouldn’t sting anyone and were just looking for a new place to live,” Tech. Sgt. Jeffrey Baskin told the site. “My neighbor maintains two colonies of honey bees and I knew they were at risk for extinction, I figured we might want to get a honey bee expert out to collect them.”

Once the captain was made aware of the bees, it was determined that they needed to call in a local beekeeper, who happened to be retired from the Navy, and was located in Hampton, about twenty miles away. When the beekeeper, Andy Westrich, first saw the swarm, he called it the largest he’d ever seen, and later determined that the hive consisted of nearly twenty thousand bees. 

“The honey bees most likely came from a much larger bee hive somewhere else on base,” Chief Master Sergeant Gregg Allen, 192nd Maintenance Group Quality Assurance chief and himself a beekeeper, told the site.

Experts speculated that the bees were looking for a new location to build a hive for their queen, and had probably stopped on the plane in order to rest. The bees were corralled off the jet into buckets, and Westrich later took them home. They ended up in the custody of a local beer producer. 

“Beehives are constantly growing and they eventually become overcrowded. Around springtime, the bees will make a new queen, scout for a new location and take half of the hive with them to that location,” Allen told the site at the time. 

Stephen Silver, a technology writer for the National Interest, is a journalist, essayist and film critic, who is also a contributor to The Philadelphia Inquirer, Philly Voice, Philadelphia Weekly, the Jewish Telegraphic Agency, Living Life Fearless, Backstage magazine, Broad Street Review and Splice Today. The co-founder of the Philadelphia Film Critics Circle, Stephen lives in suburban Philadelphia with his wife and two sons. Follow him on Twitter at @StephenSilver.

Image:  Wikimedia Commons

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Kate Middleton Surprised Children With Homemade Honey from Anmer Hall

Duchess Kate made a surprise visit to the Natural History Museum today.

Now that coronavirus pandemic restrictions have begun to ease in the United Kingdom, the royal family has started to return to in-person events. Today, Kate Middleton made a surprise visit for a very fitting engagement, as the Duchess headed to the National History Museum of London, of which she is patron.

For the occasion, Kate opted for a casual yet fashionable look, as she wore a blush pink Chloé blazer, a white tee, and very on-trend & Other Stories high-waisted cropped jeans, which she also donned when getting her first dose of the COVID-19 vaccine. She paired the look with white Veja sneakers, which she wore on her recent Scotland royal tour with Prince William.

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She also visited the Urban Nature Project, which is set to launch later this year.

During the visit, the Duchess of Cambridge heard more about the Museum’s Urban Nature Project, which is set to launch later this year, and aims to help people reconnect and rediscover nature and the natural world, and come up with solutions to protect the planet and wildlife.

Duchess Kate also visited the Museum’s Wildlife Garden, where she joined local schoolchildren and participated in nature activities, including making paper spiders. Kate has long been a vocal advocate of the importance of children spending time in nature, so this particular engagement makes so much sense.

All while wearing a very chic pink blazer and jeans ensemble.

Duchess Kate didn’t come empty-handed, as she surprised the kids with a special treat, homemade honey, which came straight from the Cambridges’ own country home, Anmer Hall. Kate revealed that she keeps bees at Anmer Hall, and offered the children a taste of the honey that was produced within the last few years, per Daily Mail royal reporter Rebecca English.

Duchess Kate told the children, “This came specially from my beehive,” and asked, “Does it taste like honey from the shops? Does it taste like flowers?”

Perhaps collecting the honey was part of the Cambridge family’s Father’s Day plans; Prince William and Kate spent the past weekend at their Norfolk estate with Prince George, Princess Charlotte and Prince Louis, so maybe the three little royals helped their parents (from a safe distance, of course) with the whole honey situation.

Kate Middleton Brought Schoolchildren a Special Treat from Anmer Hall

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Man Arrested for Allegedly Drenching Age 7 Son in Honey so Bees Would Sting Him

A father in Egypt was arrested after he allegedly tied up his young son, covered him with honey and left him on a rooftop so that he would be stung by bees, according to multiple reports.

Arab News reported that the 34-year-old man, who was not named in reports, was accused by his wife of torturing their 7-year-old son.

“In pictures found on the mother’s phone, the boy can be seen bound hand and foot to a stake after he was smeared with honey and left exposed to the sun to attract insects,” the outlet added.

The boy had reportedly been accused of theft by neighbors. The alleged torture was his father’s form of punishment, according to Arab News.

The Sun reported that the child attracted swarms of bees and mosquitos.


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It is not currently known how long he was left tied up on the roof.

The boy was found in a “deplorable” physical state, according to The Sun.

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He was treated by doctors and news reports did not disclose his condition.

The incident occurred on May 25 in the Qalyubia governate north of Cairo.

Prosecutors in the city of Shebin al-Qanater launched “extensive investigations” into the case after the boy’s mother reported the abuse to authorities, Arab News reported.

According to the outlet, smearing a person with honey was used as an ancient form of torture.

The case has drawn international attention.


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A photo is circulating on Twitter showing the boy lying on his stomach with his arms and legs tied to a piece of wood. He appears to be swarmed by insects.

The Western Journal will not post that photo here in order to protect the privacy of the child.

The boy’s mother, 29, has reportedly taken the child and fled the area to another village while the boy’s father remains in custody undergoing investigation. It is unclear whether he has yet been charged.

The Sun reported that the boy’s mother, who was not named in reports, also accused her husband of physically abusing her and violently punishing their child.

Those punishments reportedly included depriving the boy of food and water.

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‘Get Rid Of The Honey And Go With Some Tabasco’: Shannon Bream Says It’s Time To Hold China Accountable

Fox News host Shannon Bream said Thursday that it was time to hold the Chinese government accountable and investigate the origins of the coronavirus pandemic.

Bream joined a panel discussion on “The Five” and responded to Dr. Anthony Fauci’s claim that the United States should be careful with China because cooperation would be necessary going forward. (RELATED: Shannon Bream’s Book Tops NYT Bestseller List In Fox News’ Second Ever Published Work)


Dagen McDowell brought up the lab leak theory, saying that to her it seemed to be the most reasonable explanation.

“Gee whiz, there is a virology lab right in Wuhan while the horseshoe bats lived in caves hundreds of miles away,” McDowell said. “But instead the media and Dr. Fauci bent over backwards to lean on a hypothesis that was not as reasonable and logical as, oh, it came out of a lab that had safety problems because Xi Jinping talked about it.”

Bream mentioned the explosive allegations put forth by the Vanity Fair article on the subject, saying that even people inside the State Department had encouraged people not to look too closely.

“People in the State Department were actively telling people shut it down, don’t dig there, don’t go there because you will open a Pandora’s box,” Bream continued. “Dr. Fauci said we have to be careful with China because we need to be able to cooperate with them. It’s been over a year. They haven’t exactly been transparent with the WHO or anyone else.”

“I’m all — listen, Dagen, like you I grew up in the south and we believe you get more flies with honey,” Bream continued. “But when the flies are full of committing human rights atrocities and not giving you any information, it’s time to get rid of the honey and maybe go with some Tabasco or something maybe a little bit stronger.”

“The Communist Party, Greg, if they are talking and breathing they are lying,” McDowell agreed.

Co-host Greg Gutfeld went on to argue that if the lab in Wuhan was a Pandora’s box, maybe someone should open it in order to find out what had really happened. “I wonder how many investigations are stopped when someone says that’s a Pandora’s box,” he said.

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Man arrested for tying up son, covering him in honey to lure bees

An Egyptian man has been arrested for reportedly punishing his 7-year-old son for stealing by tying him to a wooden pole and smearing him with honey to attract bees and other insects.

7-year-old Egyptian boy with his face blurred.
The boy’s mother said her husband has also punished their son by depriving him of food and water for long periods.

A photo showing the boy lying with his arms tied to the pole behind his back went viral after it was confiscated from the mother, who reported the cruel incident to authorities, Arab News reported.

She told a child rescue group that her husband, a tuktuk driver who has not been named, constantly beats her and their children in the city of Shebin al-Qanater.

The 34-year-old father placed his son, whom neighbors had accused of theft, on their roof on May 25 to attract the insects, The Sun reported, citing Al Arabiya.

It was not known how long the child was left bound to the stake.

After sounding the alarm, the 29-year-old mother fled with her son to another community, according to the report.

She reportedly said her husband also has punished their son by depriving him of food and water for long periods.

The public prosecution office has launched an investigation into the shocking incident. It was unclear if the father has been formally charged yet.

Medical experts found the boy to be in a “deplorable” state after the ordeal, The Sun reported.

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Internet Honey Traps for Everyone!

If you have a movement that depends upon a digital platform, you don’t have a movement.

There are technically sound reasons for handling overpriced tracking devices smartphones with a degree of caution. That goes double for the allegedly “secure” messaging apps that run on them. These concerns have taken on a heightened sense of urgency given that senior politicians and government bureaucrats are throwing around terms like “domestic terrorist.” Those are fighting words by Beltway standards, and an omen that security services are in the process of adopting a new threat du jure. Activists may want to pause for a moment and consider the benefits of more traditional forms of organizing.

If you have a movement that depends heavily upon a digital platform, you don’t have a movement. What you’ve actually got is a honeypot that, wittingly or otherwise, will snare those drawn to it. In the end, all of that data traverses a maze of interconnected pipes which are centrally monitored and controlled by you-know-who. Which is to say that powerful data correlation techniques are not imaginary and so-called “strong” encryption is a graven image. Making presumptions about security is an act of blind superstition. You may as well start hanging garlic to ward off vampires.

Rest assured the powers that be are watching like hawks. A joint intelligence bulletin recently circulated by the FBI and DHS mentioned potential plots against the Capital on March 4 and March 6. The House of Representatives dutifully freaked out and cancelled its March 4 session. On the other hand, the Senate opted for business as usual, maintaining a fairly normal floor schedule. Did calmer minds prevail? An inside source told CNN that rumors of another capitol siege were “mostly online talk and not necessarily an indication anyone is coming to Washington to act on it.”

What’s important here isn’t the alleged plots or ensuing hysterics. What’s important is the incidental reference to authorities somehow being privy to the sensitive deliberations of groups that reside out on the political periphery. That is something similar to federal efforts currently underway in Germany. The actual likelihood of another attack on the capitol, in the immediate future, ranges from low to nil for obvious reasons.

The activation of domestic intelligence should serve as a reality check for keyboard operators who’ve grown accustomed to talking a big game online. Illusions of network privacy are about to run smack into a surveillance apparatus that’s historically unrivaled. As with America’s nuclear arsenal, the internet is a direct descendent of the military. It arose out of the Pentagon’s Advanced Research Projects Agency Network (ARPANET), a collection of routers and servers premised on surviving nuclear war and enabling mass surveillance. Leveraging what spy chiefs refer to as the “home field advantage” they erected a sprawling panopticon fueled by Silicon Valley’s talent for automation, artificial intelligence, and scalability.

Apologists reflexively claim that there’s no reason to be concerned. They say commercial data silos primarily exist to sell ads. Unfortunately, classified documents reveal that when spies want access to said data they’ll get it. The generals and the C-suites have been in cahoots since the days of the rotary dial phone.

The whole notion that resilient long-term organizations will coalesce around social media portals is a bit naïve. Real movements don’t emerge from the pseudo anonymity of internet channels, which are literally crawling with informants, hackers, and artful government spies. Politics is, and always will be, a human activity. Real movements are built around face-to-face human interaction. Years of directly engaging in the sort of shared purpose that forges relationships and builds trust.

Sure, social media gets the numbers to spike. There are celebrities who garner hundreds of thousands of likes every day.  But the problem with this mindset is that the corresponding interpersonal structures are towers of sand that can disintegrate as fast as they appear. Lest anyone forget the array of curious circumstances surrounding the rise and fall of “Propertarian” YouTuber John Mark.

Real movements require the judicious employment of in-house security. That is, domain experts who know how to methodically identify and manage potential insider threats; who can rigorously utilize policies, procedures, and resources to achieve higher levels of confidentiality and integrity; who can enforce baselines of operations security; who will establish redundant out-of-band communication streams that render mass surveillance untenable; and who can develop layered trust models that safeguard the core cadre from infiltration by opposition assets. This is one area, in particular, that has been woefully neglected by the current generation, and it shows. It’s not easy, not quick, and definitely not cheap. But nothing worthwhile ever is. That’s especially true in an age increasingly defined by active measures and rampant clandestine intrigue.

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