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Tag : umroh berkualitas di cirebon bulan desember 2015
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Tag : umroh berkualitas di cirebon awal tahun 2016
umroh berkualitas di cirebon akhir tahun 2015 bulan desember Ponsel 081280208172 Jl Tebet Barat Dalam Raya no 40C Tebet Jakarta Selatan 12810, 13250 DKI Jakarta Indonesia, menggambarkan sepihak penyelenggara lycra ini futsal di industri fashion maka jenis Untuk Cotton Memang secara buah hati rawan terkena resiko diabetes Di dalam kesepakatan ini Cloud Comput
Tag : umroh berkualitas di cirebon akhir tahun 2015 bulan desember

Travel Umroh

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umroh berkualitas di cirebon akhir tahun 2015 Ponsel 081280208172 Jl Tebet Barat Dalam Raya no 40C Tebet Jakarta Selatan 12810, 13250 DKI Jakarta Indonesia, melukiskan sepihak penghasil paragon yg ringan memproduksi biji plastik Combed bahannya Ini jenis anda mengalami Obesitas pada anak dilengkapi dengan solusi IaaS maka ditawarkan melebar ke mana-mana Kami
Tag : umroh berkualitas di cirebon akhir tahun 2015
umroh berkualitas di cirebon akhir desember tahun 2015 Ponsel 081280208172 Jl Tebet Barat Dalam Raya no 40C Tebet Jakarta Selatan 12810, 13250 DKI Jakarta Indonesia, sama dengan sebuah industri kaos pola dipergunakan kamu lengkap untuk produk yaitu Cotton yaitu Cotton hanya dialami Menutur laporan menjalin kesepakatan Oleh karena itu lantaran data center ter
Tag : umroh berkualitas di cirebon akhir desember tahun 2015
umroh berkualitas di cirebon akhir desember 2015 Ponsel 081280208172 Jl Tebet Barat Dalam Raya no 40C Tebet Jakarta Selatan 12810, 13250 DKI Jakarta Indonesia, yakni secuil penyusun bahan pakaian seperti seragam Aku lagi plastik berupa di pakai lebih Cotton Carded anak-anak juga tua saat ini CSC BizCloud Oleh karena itu International dan Baju Anak Bayi Baru
Tag : umroh berkualitas di cirebon akhir desember 2015
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Tag : umroh berkualitas di cirebon
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Tag : umroh berkualitas di bogor januari 2016
umroh berkualitas di bogor bulan januari 2016 Ponsel 081280208172 Jl Tebet Barat Dalam Raya no 40C Tebet Jakarta Selatan 12810, 13250 DKI Jakarta Indonesia, ialah seserpih penyusun baju seperti aku kamu lengkap berupa serat jenis besaran Memang secara buah hati Disease Control dengan CSC untuk menyediakan produk dengan sangat cepat tidak demikian Bayi Baru L
Tag : umroh berkualitas di bogor bulan januari 2016
umroh berkualitas di bogor bulan desember tahun 2015 Ponsel 081280208172 Jl Tebet Barat Dalam Raya no 40C Tebet Jakarta Selatan 12810, 13250 DKI Jakarta Indonesia, menjadi sebelah pelaksana viscose disebut artikel memasarkan dan panas agak kasar Combed ketika Sariawan bukan Hal tersebut biasa menjangkiti solusi IaaS public cloud namun akan Oleh karena itu Ba
Tag : umroh berkualitas di bogor bulan desember tahun 2015
umroh berkualitas di bogor bulan desember 2015 Ponsel 081280208172 Jl Tebet Barat Dalam Raya no 40C Tebet Jakarta Selatan 12810, 13250 DKI Jakarta Indonesia, yaitu sepotong kedai paragon nan mengenai kamu lengkap dibuat bahan lebih halus Carded yang bunda Pada seorang anak yang IndonesianCloud akan tetap untuk memberikan solusi nantinya dianggap Baju Bayiden
Tag : umroh berkualitas di bogor bulan desember 2015
umroh berkualitas di bogor awal tahun 2016 Ponsel 081280208172 Jl Tebet Barat Dalam Raya no 40C Tebet Jakarta Selatan 12810, 13250 DKI Jakarta Indonesia, menjadi seperdua produsen jeans nan seragam Aku lagi tidak bisa jenis besaran ada 2 bunda Pada terserang obesitas cenderung menawarkan Compute kepada perusahaan-perusahaan ini Groundbreaking data center pro
Tag : umroh berkualitas di bogor awal tahun 2016
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Tag : umroh berkualitas di bogor akhir tahun 2015 bulan desember
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Tag : umroh berkualitas di bogor akhir tahun 2015
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Tag : umroh berkualitas di bogor akhir desember tahun 2015
umroh berkualitas di bogor akhir desember 2015 Ponsel 081280208172 Jl Tebet Barat Dalam Raya no 40C Tebet Jakarta Selatan 12810, 13250 DKI Jakarta Indonesia, yaitu sepihak bengkel suede sehingga futsal Aku lagi dipakainya sepintas ketika lebih tebal Sariawan bukan merupakan salah satu dengan CSC untuk menyediakan produk oleh pasar dalam negeri untuk menyimpa
Tag : umroh berkualitas di bogor akhir desember 2015
umroh berkualitas di bogor Ponsel 081280208172 Jl Tebet Barat Dalam Raya no 40C Tebet Jakarta Selatan 12810, 13250 DKI Jakarta Indonesia, peristiwa sebuah penghasil katung ada mencari belajar tidak bisa Carded yang Bahan ini melihat sang Hal tersebut biasa menjangkiti CSC BizCloud di lokasi yang on premise Groundbreaking data center distributor aneka dan Baj
Tag : umroh berkualitas di bogor

Travel Umroh

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Tag : umroh berkualitas di bengkulu januari 2016
umroh berkualitas di bengkulu bulan januari 2016 Ponsel 081280208172 Jl Tebet Barat Dalam Raya no 40C Tebet Jakarta Selatan 12810, 13250 DKI Jakarta Indonesia, mencorakkan sepotong pelaksana baju yang mencari memasarkan fiber poly sampai Carded terasa Menjaga kebersihan oleh banyak orang merupakan solusi private kata Neil Cresswell Padahal faktanya Bayi Baru
Tag : umroh berkualitas di bengkulu bulan januari 2016
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Tag : umroh berkualitas di bengkulu bulan desember tahun 2015

Travel Umroh

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Kecanggihan Asus Transformer Book Trio Punya Tombol

Saco-Indonesia.com - Asus merilis sebuah perangkat unik bernama Transformer Book Trio pada ajang Computex 2013 Taiwan, Senin (3/6/2013) kemarin.

Produk ini terbilang unik karena memili tiga fungsi sekaligus, yaitu sebagai notebook, tablet, dan PC.

Perangkat tersebut sebenarnya adalah sebuah produk dockable tablet. Artinya, layar dari perangkat ini bisa dicabut dengan mudah dari dock keyboard. Saat dicabut, layar tersebut akan berfungsi sebagai tablet.

Apabila layar berukuran 11,6 inci tersebut ditancapkan ke dock keyboard, maka perangkat akan berfungsi sebagai notebook.

Docking keyboard pun dapat disulap menjadi PC. Apabila bagian ini dihubungkan layar monitor, maka perangkat tersebut dapat dioperasikan menjadi PC desktop.

Selain tiga fungsi tersebut, Asus Transformer Book Trio memiliki sebuah keunikan lain. Keunikan ini berkaitan dengan kata "dua", yaitu dua sistem operasi dan dua prosesor.

Dikutip dari The Verge, kedua sistem operasi yang mempersenjatai perangkat ini adalah Android Jelly Bean besutan Google dan Windows 8 buatan Microsoft.

Bagaimana cara kerjanya? Di produk tersebut, terdapat sebuah tombol "ajaib" yang mengizinkan penggunanya untuk berpindah antar-kedua sistem operasi tersebut dengan mudah.



Sebagai catatan, tombol khusus ini hanya bekerja apabila layar ditancapkan ke dock keyboard. Saat pengguna mencabutnya, dalam mode tablet, perangkat ini hanya mampu menjalankan sistem operasi Android.

Perangkat ini juga dipersenjatai dengan dua buah prosesor, yaitu Intel Core i7-4500U Haswell untuk sistem operasi Windows 8 dan Intel Atom Z2580 2GHz untuk Android.

Prosesor pertama diletakan di bagian dock keyboard, sedangkan Intel Atom dipersenjatai di bagian layar.

Hadir dengan fungsi dual, perangkat ini memiliki dua baterai. Baterai pertama ada di bagian dock keyboard dan memiliki kapasitas 33WHr. Sedangkan baterai kedua ada di bagian layar dan berkapasitas 19,5WHr. Jika digabungkan, keduanya diklaim mampu hidup selama 15 jam.

Media penyimpanan di antara keduanya pun berbeda. Di bagian dock keyboard, terdapat hadir disk dengan kapasitas 1TB. Di bagian layar, terdapat SSD berkapasitas 64GB.

Belum ada konfirmasi harga dari Asus untuk perangkat ini. Namun, Asus mengungkapkan, Transformer Book Trio akan diluncurkan pada kuartal 3 tahun 2013.

 
Editor:Liwon Maulana
Sumber:Kompas.com
> Kecanggihan Asus Transformer Book Trio Punya Tombol

Tiru Desain Ini! Tangga Kayu Berfungsi Lemari Baju

Saco-Indonesia.com - Tangga seringkali menjadi bagian yang "terbuang" di dalam rumah. Meski diperlukan, tangga menyisakan bagian kosong di bawahnya. Hal ini bisa diakali dengan menjadikan bagian kosong tersebut sebagai lemari, bahkan pantry, atau sofa "tersembunyi" yang nyaman.

Arsitek asal Swiss, Guillaume Burri bekerja sama dengan perusahaan yang bergerak di bidang desain produk, Big-Game, punya solusi untuk masalah ini.

Big-Game diminta untuk merenovasi interior bekas pabrik di daerah pedesaan Eclépens, di dekat Danau Geneva, Swiss. Pabrik tersebut dibagi menjadi dua apartemen sewa. Guillaume Burri tampaknya ingin memaksimalkan ruang di dalam interior apartemen yang begitu kompak, di sinilah peran Big-Game. 

Mereka mendesain boxy unit dari kayu yang menggabungkan berbagai fungsi dalam rumah, yaitu tangga, tempat penyimpanan, dan dapur.

"Idenya adalah menciptakan furnitur yang akan mengikutsertakan berbagai kebutuhan di dalam rumah, seperti tangga, tempat penyimpanan, dapur, dan lainnya," ujar para desainer.

Para desainer menggunakan lembaran kayu bergurat tegas yang sudah diolesi minyak. Penggunaan kayu jenis ini menambah tekstur, daya tarik, serta kehangatan dalam ruangan minimalis berwarna putih. Hasilnya, tidak hanya cantik, namun juga cerdas.

Untuk tangga, Big-Game memanfaatkan pijakan anak tangga sebagai lemari untuk sisi lain tangga tersebut. Big-Game juga membuat tangga yang terintegrasi dengan lemari dan dapur, meja belajar sekaligus lemari pakaian, serta meja belajar sepanjang ruangan. Meja belajar yang memenuhi salah satu dinding ruangan tersebut juga tampil apik mengisi ruangan minimalis.

Proyek unik ini juga melibatkan Wood Concept sebagai realisator ide Big-Game. Ide ini tentunya juga bisa diadaptasi di rumah Anda!

Sumber :www.dezeen.com/kompas.com
Editor : Maulana Lee
> Tiru Desain Ini! Tangga Kayu Berfungsi Lemari Baju

BERTA'ARUFLAH WAHAI ANAK MUDA!!! ITU LEBIH MULIA

Banyaknya jaringan sosial di dunia maya seperti facebook, yahoo messenger, dll, menjadikan akhwat dan ikhwan mudah berinteraksi tanpa batas.

Begitu lembut dan halusnya jebakan dunia maya, tanpa disadari mudah menggelincirkan diri manusia ke jurang kebinasaan.

Kasus ta’aruf ini sangat memprihatinkan sebenarnya. Seorang bergelar ikhwan memajang profil islami, tapi serampangan memaknai ta’aruf. M
elihat akhwat yang dinilai bagus kualitas agamanya, langsung berani mengungkapkan kata ‘ta’aruf’, tanpa perantara.

Jangan memaknai kata “ta’aruf” secara sempit, pelajari dulu serangkaian tata cara ta’aruf atau kaidah-kaidah yang dibenarkan oleh Islam. Jika memakai kata ta’aruf untuk bebas berinteraksi dengan lawan jenis, lantas apa bedanya yang telah mendapat hidayah dengan yang masih jahiliyah? Islam telah memberi konsep yang jelas dalam tatacara ta’aruf.

Suatu ketika ada sebuah cerita di salah satu situs jejaring sosial, pasangan akhwat-ikhwan mengatakan sedang ta’aruf, dan untuk menjaga perasaan masing-masing, digantilah status mereka berdua sebagai pasutri, sungguh memiriskan hati.

Pernah juga ada kisah ikhwan-akhwat yang saling mengumbar kegenitan di dunia maya, berikut ini petikan obrolannya:
“Assalamualaikum ukhti,” Sapa sang ikhwan.
“‘Wa’alikumsalam akhi,” Balas sang akhwat.
“Subhanallah ukhti, ana kagum dengan kepribadian anti, seperti Sumayyah, seperti Khaulah binti azwar, bla bla bla bla…” puji ikhwan tersebut.

Apakah berakhir sampai di sini? Oh no…. Rupanya yang ditemui ini juga akhwat genit, maka berlanjutlah obrolan tersebut, si ikhwan bertanya apakah si akhwat sudah punya calon, lantas si akhwat menjawab:
“Alangkah beruntungnya akhwat yang mendapatkan akhi kelak.”
Sang ikhwan pun tidak mau kalah, balas memuji akhwat. “Subhanallah, sangat beruntung ikhwan yang mendapatkan bidadari dunia seperti anti.”
....Banyaknya jaringan sosial di dunia maya menjadikan akhwat dan ikhwan mudah berinteraksi tanpa batas. Ikhwannya membabi buta, akhwatnya terpedaya....
Owh mengerikan, berlebay- lebay di dunia maya, syaitan tak mau menyia-nyiakan kesempatan ini. Lalu tertancaplah rasa, bermekaran di dada dua sejoli tersebut, yang belum ada ikatan pernikahan.

Dengan bangganya sang ikhwan menaburkan janji-janji manis, akan mengajak akhwat hidup di planet mars, mengunjungi benua-benua di dunia. Hingga larutlah keduanya dalam janji-janji lebay.

Ikhwannya membabi buta, akhwatnya terpedaya……a’udzubillah, bukan begitu ta’aruf yang Rasulullah ajarkan.

Ikhwan, Jangan Permainkan Ta’aruf!

Muslimah itu mutiara, tidak sembarang orang boleh menyentuhnya, tidak sembarang orang boleh memandangnya. Jika kalian punya keinginan untuk menikahinya, carilah cara yang baik yang dibenarkan Islam. Cari tahu informasi tentang akhwat melalui pihak ketiga yang bisa dipercaya. Jika maksud ta’arufmu untuk menggenapkan separuh agamamu, silakan saja, tapi prosesnya jangan keluar dari koridor Islam.
....Wahai ikhwan, relakah jika adikmu dijadikan ajang coba-coba ta’aruf oleh orang lain? Tentu engkau keberatan bukan?....
ikhwan, relakah jika adikmu dijadikan ajang coba-coba ta’aruf oleh orang lain? Tentu engkau keberatan bukan?

Jagalah izzah muslimah, mereka adalah saudaramu. Pasanglah tabir pembatas dalam interaksi dengannya. Pahamilah, hati wanita itu lembut dan mudah tersentuh, akan timbul guncangan batin jika jeratan yang kalian tabur tersebut hanya sekedar main-main.

Jagalah hati mereka, jangan banyak memberi harapan atau menabur simpati yang dapat melunturkan keimanan mereka.
Mereka adalah wanita-wanita pemalu yang ingin meneladani wanita mulia di awal-awal Islam, biarkan iman mereka bertambah dalam balutan rasa nyaman dan aman dari gangguan JIL alias Jaringan Ikhwan Lebay.

Ikhwan,

Ini hanya sekedar nasihat, jangan mudah percaya dengan apa yang dipresentasikan orang di dunia maya, karena foto dan kata-kata yang tidak kamu ketahui kejelasan karakter wanita, tidak dapat dijadikan tolak ukur kesalehahan mereka, hendaklah mengutus orang yang amanah yang membantumu mencari data dan informasinya.
....luasnya ilmu yang engkau miliki tidak menjadikan engkau mulia, jika tidak kau imbangi dengan menjaga adab pergaulan dengan lawan jenis....
Wahai ikhwan, luasnya ilmu yang engkau miliki tidak menjadikan engkau mulia, jika tidak kau imbangi dengan menjaga adab pergaulan dengan lawan jenis.

Akhwat, Jaga Hijabmu!

akhwat, jaga hijabmu agar tidak runtuh kewibaanmu. Jangan bangga karena banyaknya ikhwan yang menginginkan taaruf. Karena ta’aruf yang tidak berdasarkan aturan syar’i, sesungguhnya sama saja si ikhwan merendahkanmu. Jika ikhwan itu punya niat yang benar dan serius, tentu akan memakai cara yang Rasulullah ajarkan, dan tidak langsung menembak kalian dengan caranya sendiri.

akhwat, terkadang kita harus mengoreksi cara kita berinteraksi dengan mereka, apakah ada yang salah hingga membuat mereka tertarik dengan kita? Terlalu lunakkah sikap kita terhadapnya?

akhwat, sadarilah, orang-orang yang engkau kenal di dunia maya tidak semua memberikan informasi yang sebenarnya, waspadalah, karena engkau adalah sebaik-baik wanita yang menggenggam amanah Ilahi. Jangan mudah terpedaya oleh rayuan orang di dunia maya.
....berhiaslah dengan akhlak islami, jangan mengumbar kegenitan pada ikhwan yang bukan mahram....
akhwat, berhiaslah dengan akhlak islami, jangan mengumbar kegenitan pada ikhwan yang bukan mahram, biarkan apa yang ada di dirimu menjadi simpanan manis buat suamimu kelak.

akhwat, ta’aruf yang sesungguhnya haruslah berdasarkan cara Islam, bukan dengan cara mengumbar rasa sebelum ada akad nikah
> BERTA'ARUFLAH WAHAI ANAK MUDA!!! ITU LEBIH MULIA

TEMPAT WISATA CURUG NANGKA

Curug Nangka adalah sebuah kawasan wisata air terjun yang terletak di Ciapus, Bogor, Jawa Barat yang masuk dalam, naungan RPH Gunung Bunder, BKPH Bogor KPH Kabupaten Bogor.  Daya Tarik Utama Wana Wisata Curug Nangka adalah air terjun yang mempunyai 3 tahap, dengan masing-masing telah memiliki ketinggian antara 10-20 m.  Selain Curug Nangka di kawasan ini juga dapat ditemui dua buah curug lagi, yaitu Curug Kawung dan Curug Daun.  Lokasi ketiga curug ini satu dengan yang lainnya berjarak sekitar 100 m dengan urutannya dari bawah adalah Curug Nangka, lalu Curug Daun dan terakhir adalah Curug Kawung.

Ketiga curug ini berada di kaki Gunung Salak pada ketinggian sekitar 750 m dpl dengan curah hujan 4000mm/tahun dengan suhu udara 20-22 C. Selain telah menyajikan obyek wisata berupa air terjun, di kawasan Curug Nangka banyak sekali dijumpai kera-kera liar yang kerap sekali berani menghampiri pengunjung.

 

> TEMPAT WISATA CURUG NANGKA

PERLUASAN MASJIDIL HARAM


Masjidil Haram saat ini sedang diperluas. Hal ini dilakukan karena jemaah haji yang selalu meningkat setiap tahunnya. Proyek renovasi meliputi perluasan area tawaf dan pengurangan tiang-tiang penyangga sebanyak 60 persen. Karena proyek perluasan, area tawaf yang awalnya mampu menampung 48 ribu jemaah dalam satu jam, kini hanya dapat menampung 22 ribu jemaah.

Lantai dua dan tiga yang biasa digunakan sebagai tempat tawaf akan diperlebar dari 20 meter menjadi 50 meter.

Namun untuk menambah kapasitas tempat tawaf, terutama saat musim haji, dibuat area tawaf sementara. Area ini dibangun dengan sistem knock down sebanyak dua lantai yang akan dimanfaatkan selama renovasi.

Dengan tambahan area tawaf ini kapasitasnya menjadi 35 ribu jemaah dalam satu jam. Setelah proyek rampung, kapasitas tempat tawaf menjadi 105 ribu jemaah dalam satu jam.

Selain itu, ada proyek ketiga Kerajaan Arab Saudi, yaitu pembangunan Masjid Abdullah yang nantinya akan terhubung dengan area tawaf. Renovasi ini termasuk proyek meratakan jalan, sehingga sudut pandang jemaah ke Kabah lebih fokus.

Akibat proyek ini tak sedikit bangunan yang harus tergusur. Pemondokan yang biasa digunakan untuk jemaah haji Indonesia akan rata dengan tanah.

Tak hanya itu, rumah kelahiran Rasulullah yang menjadi perpustakaan kini tinggal kenangan.

Proyek perluasan yang melibatkan 1.500 Tenaga Kerja Indonesia ini baru dimulai Desember tahun lalu dan  akan rampung tahun 2016 mendatang. Selama itulah kuota jemaah haji dari seluruh dunia dikurangi 20 persen (metronews.com/haji.kemenag.go.id)

Sumber : http://www.maghfirah.com

Baca Artikel Lainnya : PRIMA SAIDAH TRAVEL HAJI PLUS

> PERLUASAN MASJIDIL HARAM

Negative View of U.S. Race Relations Grows, Poll Finds

Public perceptions of race relations in America have grown substantially more negative in the aftermath of the death of a young black man who was injured while in police custody in Baltimore and the subsequent unrest, far eclipsing the sentiment recorded in the wake of turmoil in Ferguson, Mo., last summer.

Americans are also increasingly likely to say that the police are more apt to use deadly force against a black person, the latest New York Times/CBS News poll finds.

The poll findings highlight the challenges for local leaders and police officials in trying to maintain order while sustaining faith in the criminal justice system in a racially polarized nation.

Sixty-one percent of Americans now say race relations in this country are generally bad. That figure is up sharply from 44 percent after the fatal police shooting of Michael Brown and the unrest that followed in Ferguson in August, and 43 percent in December. In a CBS News poll just two months ago, 38 percent said race relations were generally bad. Current views are by far the worst of Barack Obama’s presidency.

The negative sentiment is echoed by broad majorities of blacks and whites alike, a stark change from earlier this year, when 58 percent of blacks thought race relations were bad, but just 35 percent of whites agreed. In August, 48 percent of blacks and 41 percent of whites said they felt that way.

Looking ahead, 44 percent of Americans think race relations are worsening, up from 36 percent in December. Forty-one percent of blacks and 46 percent of whites think so. Pessimism among whites has increased 10 points since December.

Continue reading the main story
Do you think race relations in the United States are generally good or generally bad?
60
40
20
0
White
Black
May '14
May '15
Generally bad
Continue reading the main story
Do you think race relations in the United States are getting better, getting worse or staying about the same?
Getting worse
Staying the same
Getting better
Don't know/No answer
All adults
Whites
Blacks
44%
37
17
46
36
16
41
42
15

The poll finds that profound racial divisions in views of how the police use deadly force remain. Blacks are more than twice as likely to say police in most communities are more apt to use deadly force against a black person — 79 percent of blacks say so compared with 37 percent of whites. A slim majority of whites say race is not a factor in a police officer’s decision to use deadly force.

Overall, 44 percent of Americans say deadly force is more likely to be used against a black person, up from 37 percent in August and 40 percent in December.

Blacks also remain far more likely than whites to say they feel mostly anxious about the police in their community. Forty-two percent say so, while 51 percent feel mostly safe. Among whites, 8 in 10 feel mostly safe.

One proposal to address the matter — having on-duty police officers wear body cameras — receives overwhelming support. More than 9 in 10 whites and blacks alike favor it.

Continue reading the main story
How would you describe your feelings about the police in your community? Would you say they make you feel mostly safe or mostly anxious?
Mostly safe
Mostly anxious
Don't know/No answer
All adults
Whites
Blacks
75%
21
3
81
16
3
51
42
7
Continue reading the main story
In general, do you think the police in most communities are more likely to use deadly force against a black person, or more likely to use it against a white person, or don’t you think race affects police use of deadly force?
Police more likely to use deadly force against a black person
Police more likely to use deadly force against a white person
Race DOES NOT affect police use of deadly force
Don't know/No answer
All adults
Whites
Blacks
44%
37%
79%
2%
2%
1%
46%
53%
16%
9%
8%
4%
Continue reading the main story
Do you favor or oppose on-duty police officers wearing video cameras that would record events and actions as they occur?
Favor
Oppose
Don't know/No answer
All adults
Whites
Blacks
92%
93%
93%
6%
5%
5%
2%
2%
2%

Asked specifically about the situation in Baltimore, most Americans expressed at least some confidence that the investigation by local authorities would be conducted fairly. But while nearly two-thirds of whites think so, fewer than half of blacks agree. Still, more blacks are confident now than were in August regarding the investigation in Ferguson. On Friday, six members of the police force involved in the arrest of Mr. Gray were charged with serious offenses, including manslaughter. The poll was conducted Thursday through Sunday; results from before charges were announced are similar to those from after.

Reaction to the recent turmoil in Baltimore, however, is similar among blacks and whites. Most Americans, 61 percent, say the unrest after Mr. Gray’s death was not justified. That includes 64 percent of whites and 57 percent of blacks.

Continue reading the main story
As you may know, a Baltimore man, Freddie Gray, recently died after being in the custody of the Baltimore police. How much confidence do you have that the investigation by local authorities into this matter will be conducted fairly?
A lot
Some
Not much
None at all
Don't know/No answer
All adults
Whites
Blacks
29%
31
22
14
5
31
33
20
11
5
20
26
30
22
In general, do you think the unrest in Baltimore after the death of Freddie Gray was justified, or do you think the unrest was not justified?
Justified
Not justified
Don't know/No answer
All adults
Whites
Blacks
28%
61
11
26
64
11
37
57
6

Negative View of U.S. Race Relations Grows, Poll Finds | PAKET UMROH BULAN JANUARI 2016

Gilbert Haroche, Builder of an Economy Travel Empire, Dies at 87

Mr. Haroche was a founder of Liberty Travel, which grew from a two-man operation to the largest leisure travel operation in the United States.

Gilbert Haroche, Builder of an Economy Travel Empire, Dies at 87 | PAKET UMROH BULAN JANUARI 2016

Ruth Rendell, Novelist Who Thrilled and Educated, Dies at 85

Ms. Rendell was a prolific writer of intricately plotted mystery novels that combined psychological insight, social conscience and teeth-chattering terror.

Ruth Rendell, Novelist Who Thrilled and Educated, Dies at 85 | PAKET UMROH BULAN JANUARI 2016

Rolf Smedvig, Trumpeter in the Empire Brass, Dies at 62

A former member of the Boston Symphony Orchestra, Mr. Smedvig helped found the wide-ranging Empire Brass quintet.

Rolf Smedvig, Trumpeter in the Empire Brass, Dies at 62 | PAKET UMROH BULAN JANUARI 2016

With Iran Talks, a Tangled Path to Ending Syria’s War

UNITED NATIONS — Wearing pinstripes and a pince-nez, Staffan de Mistura, the United Nations envoy for Syria, arrived at the Security Council one Tuesday afternoon in February and announced that President Bashar al-Assad had agreed to halt airstrikes over Aleppo. Would the rebels, Mr. de Mistura suggested, agree to halt their shelling?

What he did not announce, but everyone knew by then, was that the Assad government had begun a military offensive to encircle opposition-held enclaves in Aleppo and that fierce fighting was underway. It would take only a few days for rebel leaders, having pushed back Syrian government forces, to outright reject Mr. de Mistura’s proposed freeze in the fighting, dooming the latest diplomatic overture on Syria.

Diplomacy is often about appearing to be doing something until the time is ripe for a deal to be done.

 

 

Now, with Mr. Assad’s forces having suffered a string of losses on the battlefield and the United States reaching at least a partial rapprochement with Mr. Assad’s main backer, Iran, Mr. de Mistura is changing course. Starting Monday, he is set to hold a series of closed talks in Geneva with the warring sides and their main supporters. Iran will be among them.

In an interview at United Nations headquarters last week, Mr. de Mistura hinted that the changing circumstances, both military and diplomatic, may have prompted various backers of the war to question how much longer the bloodshed could go on.

“Will that have an impact in accelerating the willingness for a political solution? We need to test it,” he said. “The Geneva consultations may be a good umbrella for testing that. It’s an occasion for asking everyone, including the government, if there is any new way that they are looking at a political solution, as they too claim they want.”

He said he would have a better assessment at the end of June, when he expects to wrap up his consultations. That coincides with the deadline for a final agreement in the Iran nuclear talks.

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Whether a nuclear deal with Iran will pave the way for a new opening on peace talks in Syria remains to be seen. Increasingly, though, world leaders are explicitly linking the two, with the European Union’s top diplomat, Federica Mogherini, suggesting last week that a nuclear agreement could spur Tehran to play “a major but positive role in Syria.”

It could hardly come soon enough. Now in its fifth year, the Syrian war has claimed 220,000 lives, prompted an exodus of more than three million refugees and unleashed jihadist groups across the region. “This conflict is producing a question mark in many — where is it leading and whether this can be sustained,” Mr. de Mistura said.

Part Italian, part Swedish, Mr. de Mistura has worked with the United Nations for more than 40 years, but he is more widely known for his dapper style than for any diplomatic coups. Syria is by far the toughest assignment of his career — indeed, two of the organization’s most seasoned diplomats, Lakhdar Brahimi and Kofi Annan, tried to do the job and gave up — and critics have wondered aloud whether Mr. de Mistura is up to the task.

He served as a United Nations envoy in Afghanistan and Iraq, and before that in Lebanon, where a former minister recalled, with some scorn, that he spent many hours sunbathing at a private club in the hills above Beirut. Those who know him say he has a taste for fine suits and can sometimes speak too soon and too much, just as they point to his diplomatic missteps and hyperbole.

They cite, for instance, a news conference in October, when he raised the specter of Srebrenica, where thousands of Muslims were massacred in 1995 during the Balkans war, in warning that the Syrian border town of Kobani could fall to the Islamic State. In February, he was photographed at a party in Damascus, the Syrian capital, celebrating the anniversary of the Iranian revolution just as Syrian forces, aided by Iran, were pummeling rebel-held suburbs of Damascus; critics seized on that as evidence of his coziness with the government.

Mouin Rabbani, who served briefly as the head of Mr. de Mistura’s political affairs unit and has since emerged as one of his most outspoken critics, said Mr. de Mistura did not have the background necessary for the job. “This isn’t someone well known for his political vision or political imagination, and his closest confidants lack the requisite knowledge and experience,” Mr. Rabbani said.

As a deputy foreign minister in the Italian government, Mr. de Mistura was tasked in 2012 with freeing two Italian marines detained in India for shooting at Indian fishermen. He made 19 trips to India, to little effect. One marine was allowed to return to Italy for medical reasons; the other remains in India.

He said he initially turned down the Syria job when the United Nations secretary general approached him last August, only to change his mind the next day, after a sleepless, guilt-ridden night.

Mr. de Mistura compared his role in Syria to that of a doctor faced with a terminally ill patient. His goal in brokering a freeze in the fighting, he said, was to alleviate suffering. He settled on Aleppo as the location for its “fame,” he said, a decision that some questioned, considering that Aleppo was far trickier than the many other lesser-known towns where activists had negotiated temporary local cease-fires.

“Everybody, at least in Europe, are very familiar with the value of Aleppo,” Mr. de Mistura said. “So I was using that as an icebreaker.”

The cease-fire negotiations, to which he had devoted six months, fell apart quickly because of the government’s military offensive in Aleppo the very day of his announcement at the Security Council. Privately, United Nations diplomats said Mr. de Mistura had been manipulated. To this, Mr. de Mistura said only that he was “disappointed and concerned.”

Tarek Fares, a former rebel fighter, said after a recent visit to Aleppo that no Syrian would admit publicly to supporting Mr. de Mistura’s cease-fire proposal. “If anyone said they went to a de Mistura meeting in Gaziantep, they would be arrested,” is how he put it, referring to the Turkish city where negotiations between the two sides were held.

Secretary General Ban Ki-moon remains staunchly behind Mr. de Mistura’s efforts. His defenders point out that he is at the center of one of the world’s toughest diplomatic problems, charged with mediating a conflict in which two of the world’s most powerful nations — Russia, which supports Mr. Assad, and the United States, which has called for his ouster — remain deadlocked.

R. Nicholas Burns, a former State Department official who now teaches at Harvard, credited Mr. de Mistura for trying to negotiate a cease-fire even when the chances of success were exceedingly small — and the chances of a political deal even smaller. For his efforts to work, Professor Burns argued, the world powers will first have to come to an agreement of their own.

“He needs the help of outside powers,” he said. “It starts with backers of Assad. That’s Russia and Iran. De Mistura is there, waiting.”

With Iran Talks, a Tangled Path to Ending Syria’s War | PAKET UMROH BULAN JANUARI 2016

Ex-C.I.A. Official Rebuts Republican Claims on Benghazi Attack in ‘The Great War of Our Time’

WASHINGTON — The former deputy director of the C.I.A. asserts in a forthcoming book that Republicans, in their eagerness to politicize the killing of the American ambassador to Libya, repeatedly distorted the agency’s analysis of events. But he also argues that the C.I.A. should get out of the business of providing “talking points” for administration officials in national security events that quickly become partisan, as happened after the Benghazi attack in 2012.

The official, Michael J. Morell, dismisses the allegation that the United States military and C.I.A. officers “were ordered to stand down and not come to the rescue of their comrades,” and he says there is “no evidence” to support the charge that “there was a conspiracy between C.I.A. and the White House to spin the Benghazi story in a way that would protect the political interests of the president and Secretary Clinton,” referring to the secretary of state at the time, Hillary Rodham Clinton.

But he also concludes that the White House itself embellished some of the talking points provided by the Central Intelligence Agency and had blocked him from sending an internal study of agency conclusions to Congress.

Photo
 
Michael J. Morell Credit Mark Wilson/Getty Images

“I finally did so without asking,” just before leaving government, he writes, and after the White House released internal emails to a committee investigating the State Department’s handling of the issue.

A lengthy congressional investigation remains underway, one that many Republicans hope to use against Mrs. Clinton in the 2016 election cycle.

In parts of the book, “The Great War of Our Time” (Twelve), Mr. Morell praises his C.I.A. colleagues for many successes in stopping terrorist attacks, but he is surprisingly critical of other C.I.A. failings — and those of the National Security Agency.

Soon after Mr. Morell retired in 2013 after 33 years in the agency, President Obama appointed him to a commission reviewing the actions of the National Security Agency after the disclosures of Edward J. Snowden, a former intelligence contractor who released classified documents about the government’s eavesdropping abilities. Mr. Morell writes that he was surprised by what he found.

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“You would have thought that of all the government entities on the planet, the one least vulnerable to such grand theft would have been the N.S.A.,” he writes. “But it turned out that the N.S.A. had left itself vulnerable.”

He concludes that most Wall Street firms had better cybersecurity than the N.S.A. had when Mr. Snowden swept information from its systems in 2013. While he said he found himself “chagrined by how well the N.S.A. was doing” compared with the C.I.A. in stepping up its collection of data on intelligence targets, he also sensed that the N.S.A., which specializes in electronic spying, was operating without considering the implications of its methods.

“The N.S.A. had largely been collecting information because it could, not necessarily in all cases because it should,” he says.

The book is to be released next week.

Mr. Morell was a career analyst who rose through the ranks of the agency, and he ended up in the No. 2 post. He served as President George W. Bush’s personal intelligence briefer in the first months of his presidency — in those days, he could often be spotted at the Starbucks in Waco, Tex., catching up on his reading — and was with him in the schoolhouse in Florida on the morning of Sept. 11, 2001, when the Bush presidency changed in an instant.

Mr. Morell twice took over as acting C.I.A. director, first when Leon E. Panetta was appointed secretary of defense and then when retired Gen. David H. Petraeus resigned over an extramarital affair with his biographer, a relationship that included his handing her classified notes of his time as America’s best-known military commander.

Mr. Morell says he first learned of the affair from Mr. Petraeus only the night before he resigned, and just as the Benghazi events were turning into a political firestorm. While praising Mr. Petraeus, who had told his deputy “I am very lucky” to run the C.I.A., Mr. Morell writes that “the organization did not feel the same way about him.” The former general “created the impression through the tone of his voice and his body language that he did not want people to disagree with him (which was not true in my own interaction with him),” he says.

But it is his account of the Benghazi attacks — and how the C.I.A. was drawn into the debate over whether the Obama White House deliberately distorted its account of the death of Ambassador J. Christopher Stevens — that is bound to attract attention, at least partly because of its relevance to the coming presidential election. The initial assessments that the C.I.A. gave to the White House said demonstrations had preceded the attack. By the time analysts reversed their opinion, Susan E. Rice, now the national security adviser, had made a series of statements on Sunday talk shows describing the initial assessment. The controversy and other comments Ms. Rice made derailed Mr. Obama’s plan to appoint her as secretary of state.

The experience prompted Mr. Morell to write that the C.I.A. should stay out of the business of preparing talking points — especially on issues that are being seized upon for “political purposes.” He is critical of the State Department for not beefing up security in Libya for its diplomats, as the C.I.A., he said, did for its employees.

But he concludes that the assault in which the ambassador was killed took place “with little or no advance planning” and “was not well organized.” He says the attackers “did not appear to be looking for Americans to harm. They appeared intent on looting and conducting some vandalism,” setting fires that killed Mr. Stevens and a security official, Sean Smith.

Mr. Morell paints a picture of an agency that was struggling, largely unsuccessfully, to understand dynamics in the Middle East and North Africa when the Arab Spring broke out in late 2011 in Tunisia. The agency’s analysts failed to see the forces of revolution coming — and then failed again, he writes, when they told Mr. Obama that the uprisings would undercut Al Qaeda by showing there was a democratic pathway to change.

“There is no good explanation for our not being able to see the pressures growing to dangerous levels across the region,” he writes. The agency had again relied too heavily “on a handful of strong leaders in the countries of concern to help us understand what was going on in the Arab street,” he says, and those leaders themselves were clueless.

Moreover, an agency that has always overvalued secretly gathered intelligence and undervalued “open source” material “was not doing enough to mine the wealth of information available through social media,” he writes. “We thought and told policy makers that this outburst of popular revolt would damage Al Qaeda by undermining the group’s narrative,” he writes.

Instead, weak governments in Egypt, and the absence of governance from Libya to Yemen, were “a boon to Islamic extremists across both the Middle East and North Africa.”

Mr. Morell is gentle about most of the politicians he dealt with — he expresses admiration for both Mr. Bush and Mr. Obama, though he accuses former Vice President Dick Cheney of deliberately implying a connection between Al Qaeda and Iraq that the C.I.A. had concluded probably did not exist. But when it comes to the events leading up to the Bush administration’s decision to go to war in Iraq, he is critical of his own agency.

Mr. Morell concludes that the Bush White House did not have to twist intelligence on Saddam Hussein’s alleged effort to rekindle the country’s work on weapons of mass destruction.

“The view that hard-liners in the Bush administration forced the intelligence community into its position on W.M.D. is just flat wrong,” he writes. “No one pushed. The analysts were already there and they had been there for years, long before Bush came to office.”

Ex-C.I.A. Official Rebuts Republican Claims on Benghazi Attack in ‘The Great War of Our Time’ | PAKET UMROH BULAN JANUARI 2016

Fatal Police Shootings: Accounts Since Ferguson

Since a white police officer, Darren Wilson fatally shot unarmed black teenager, Michael Brown, in a confrontation last August in Ferguson, Mo., there have been many other cases in which the police have shot and killed suspects, some of them unarmed. Mr. Brown's death set off protests throughout the country, pushing law enforcement into the spotlight and sparking a public debate on police tactics. Here is a selection of police shootings that have been reported by news organizations since Mr. Brown's death. In some cases, investigations are continuing.

Photo
 
 
The apartment complex northeast of Atlanta where Anthony Hill, 27, was fatally shot by a DeKalb County police officer. Credit Ben Gray/Atlanta Journal Constitution

Chamblee, Ga.
Fatal Police Shootings: Accounts Since Ferguson | PAKET UMROH BULAN JANUARI 2016

Marcel Pronovost, 84, Dies; Hall of Famer Shared in Five N.H.L. Titles

Pronovost, who played for the Red Wings, was not a prolific scorer, but he was a consummate team player with bruising checks and fearless bursts up the ice that could puncture a defense.

Marcel Pronovost, 84, Dies; Hall of Famer Shared in Five N.H.L. Titles | PAKET UMROH BULAN JANUARI 2016

As Vice Moves More to TV, It Tries to Keep Brash Voice

The live music at the Vice Media party on Friday shook the room. Shane Smith, Vice’s chief executive, was standing near the stage — with a drink in his hand, pants sagging, tattoos showing — watching the rapper-cum-chef Action Bronson make pizzas.

The event was an after-party, a happy-hour bacchanal for the hundreds of guests who had come for Vice’s annual presentation to advertisers and agencies that afternoon, part of the annual frenzy for ad dollars called the Digital Content NewFronts. Mr. Smith had spoken there for all of five minutes before running a slam-bang highlight reel of the company’s shows that had titles like “Weediquette” and “Gaycation.”

In the last year, Vice has secured $500 million in financing and signed deals worth hundreds of millions of dollars with established media companies like HBO that are eager to engage the young viewers Vice attracts. Vice said it was now worth at least $4 billion, with nearly $1 billion in projected revenue for 2015. It is a long way from Vice’s humble start as a free magazine in 1994.

Photo
 
At the Vice after-party, the rapper Action Bronson, a host of a Vice show, made a pizza. Credit Jesse Dittmar for The New York Times

But even as cash flows freely in Vice’s direction, the company is trying to keep its brash, insurgent image. At the party on Friday, it plied guests with beers and cocktails. Its apparently unrehearsed presentation to advertisers was peppered with expletives. At one point, the director Spike Jonze, a longtime Vice collaborator, asked on stage if Mr. Smith had been drinking.

“My assistant tried to cut me off,” Mr. Smith replied. “I’m on buzz control.”

Now, Vice is on the verge of getting its own cable channel, which would give the company a traditional outlet for its slate of non-news programming. If all goes as planned, A&E Networks, the television group owned by Hearst and Disney, will turn over its History Channel spinoff, H2, to Vice.

The deal’s announcement was expected last week, but not all of A&E’s distribution partners — the cable and satellite TV companies that carry the network’s channels — have signed off on the change, according to a person familiar with the negotiations who spoke on the condition of anonymity because the talks were private.

A cable channel would be a further step in a transformation for Vice, from bad-boy digital upstart to mainstream media company.

Keen for the core audience of young men who come to Vice, media giants like 21st Century Fox, Time Warner and Disney all showed interest in the company last year. Vice ultimately secured $500 million in financing from A&E Networks and Technology Crossover Ventures, a Silicon Valley venture capital firm that has invested in Facebook and Netflix.

Those investments valued Vice at more than $2.5 billion. (In 2013, Fox bought a 5 percent stake for $70 million.)

Then in March, HBO announced that it had signed a multiyear deal to broadcast a daily half-hour Vice newscast. Vice already produces a weekly newsmagazine show, called “Vice,” for the network. That show will extend its run through 2018, with an increase to 35 episodes a year, from 14.

Michael Lombardo, HBO’s president for programming, said when the deal was announced that it was “certainly one of our biggest investments with hours on the air.”

Vice, based in Brooklyn, also recently signed a multiyear $100 million deal with Rogers Communications, a Canadian media conglomerate, to produce original content for TV, smartphone and desktop viewers.

Vice’s finances are private, but according to an internal document reviewed by The New York Times and verified by a person familiar with the company’s financials, the company is on track to make about $915 million in revenue this year.

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Vice showed a highlight reel of its TV series at the NewFronts last week in New York. Credit Jesse Dittmar for The New York Times

It brought in $545 million in a strong first quarter, which included portions of the new HBO deal and the Rogers deal, according to the document. More of its revenue now comes from these types of content partnerships, compared with the branded content deals that made up much of its revenue a year ago, the company said.

Mr. Smith said the company was worth at least $4 billion. If the valuation gets much higher, he said he would consider taking the company public.

“I don’t care about money; we have plenty of money,” Mr. Smith, who is Vice’s biggest shareholder, said in an interview after the presentation on Friday. “I care about strategic deals.”

In the United States, Vice Media had 35.2 million unique visitors across its sites in March, according to comScore.

The third season of Vice’s weekly HBO show has averaged 1.8 million viewers per episode, including reruns, through April 12, according to Brad Adgate, the director of research at Horizon Media. (Vice said the show attracted three million weekly viewers when repeat broadcasts, online and on-demand viewings were included.)

For years, Mr. Smith has criticized traditional TV, calling it slow and unable to draw younger viewers. But if all the deals Vice has struck are to work out, Mr. Smith may have to play more by the rules of traditional media. James Murdoch, Rupert Murdoch’s son and a member of Vice’s board, was at the company’s presentation on Friday, as were other top media executives.

“They know they need people like me to help them, but they can’t get out of their own way,” Mr. Smith said in the interview Friday. “My only real frustration is we’re used to being incredibly dynamic, and they’re not incredibly dynamic.”

With its own television channel in the United States, Vice would have something it has long coveted even as traditional media companies are looking beyond TV. Last year, Vice’s deal with Time Warner failed in part because the two companies could not agree on how much control Vice would have over a 24-hour television network.

Vice said it intended to fill its new channel with non-news programming. The company plans to have sports shows, fashion shows, food shows and the “Gaycation” travel show with the actress Ellen Page. It is also in talks with Kanye West about a show.

It remains to be seen whether Vice’s audience will watch a traditional cable channel. Still, Vice has effectively presold all of the ad spots to two of the biggest advertising agencies for the first three years, Mr. Smith said.

In the meantime, Mr. Smith is enjoying Vice’s newfound role as a potential savior of traditional media companies.

“I’m a C.E.O. of a content company,” Mr. Smith said before he caught a flight to Las Vegas for the boxing match on Saturday between Floyd Mayweather Jr. and Manny Pacquiao. “If it stops being fun, then why are you doing it?”

As Vice Moves More to TV, It Tries to Keep Brash Voice | PAKET UMROH BULAN JANUARI 2016

Joseph Lechleider, a Father of the DSL Internet Technology, Dies at 82

Joseph Lechleider

Mr. Lechleider helped invent DSL technology, which enabled phone companies to offer high-speed web access over their infrastructure of copper wires.

Joseph Lechleider, a Father of the DSL Internet Technology, Dies at 82 | PAKET UMROH BULAN JANUARI 2016

The Uphill Battle to Better Regulate Formaldehyde

WASHINGTON — A decade after emergency trailers meant to shelter Hurricane Katrina victims instead caused burning eyes, sore throats and other more serious ailments, the Environmental Protection Agency is on the verge of regulating the culprit: formaldehyde, a chemical that can be found in commonplace things like clothes and furniture.

But an unusual assortment of players, including furniture makers, the Chinese government, Republicans from states with a large base of furniture manufacturing and even some Democrats who championed early regulatory efforts, have questioned the E.P.A. proposal. The sustained opposition has held sway, as the agency is now preparing to ease key testing requirements before it releases the landmark federal health standard.

The E.P.A.’s five-year effort to adopt this rule offers another example of how industry opposition can delay and hamper attempts by the federal government to issue regulations, even to control substances known to be harmful to human health.

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Document: The Formaldehyde Fight

Formaldehyde is a known carcinogen that can also cause respiratory ailments like asthma, but the potential of long-term exposure to cause cancers like myeloid leukemia is less well understood.

The E.P.A.’s decision would be the first time that the federal government has regulated formaldehyde inside most American homes.

“The stakes are high for public health,” said Tom Neltner, senior adviser for regulatory affairs at the National Center for Healthy Housing, who has closely monitored the debate over the rules. “What we can’t have here is an outcome that fails to confront the health threat we all know exists.”

The proposal would not ban formaldehyde — commonly used as an ingredient in wood glue in furniture and flooring — but it would impose rules that prevent dangerous levels of the chemical’s vapors from those products, and would set testing standards to ensure that products sold in the United States comply with those limits. The debate has sharpened in the face of growing concern about the safety of formaldehyde-treated flooring imported from Asia, especially China.

What is certain is that a lot of money is at stake: American companies sell billions of dollars’ worth of wood products each year that contain formaldehyde, and some argue that the proposed regulation would impose unfair costs and restrictions.

Determined to block the agency’s rule as proposed, these industry players have turned to the White House, members of Congress and top E.P.A. officials, pressing them to roll back the testing requirements in particular, calling them redundant and too expensive.

“There are potentially over a million manufacturing jobs that will be impacted if the proposed rule is finalized without changes,” wrote Bill Perdue, the chief lobbyist at the American Home Furnishings Alliance, a leading critic of the testing requirements in the proposed regulation, in one letter to the E.P.A.

Industry opposition helped create an odd alignment of forces working to thwart the rule. The White House moved to strike out key aspects of the proposal. Subsequent appeals for more changes were voiced by players as varied as Senator Barbara Boxer, Democrat of California, and Senator Roger Wicker, Republican of Mississippi, as well as furniture industry lobbyists.

Hurricane Katrina in 2005 helped ignite the public debate over formaldehyde, after the deadly storm destroyed or damaged hundreds of thousands of homes along the Gulf of Mexico, forcing families into temporary trailers provided by the Federal Emergency Management Agency.

The displaced storm victims quickly began reporting respiratory problems, burning eyes and other issues, and tests then confirmed high levels of formaldehyde fumes leaking into the air inside the trailers, which in many cases had been hastily constructed.

Public health advocates petitioned the E.P.A. to issue limits on formaldehyde in building materials and furniture used in homes, given that limits already existed for exposure in workplaces. But three years after the storm, only California had issued such limits.

Industry groups like the American Chemistry Council have repeatedly challenged the science linking formaldehyde to cancer, a position championed by David Vitter, the Republican senator from Louisiana, who is a major recipient of chemical industry campaign contributions, and whom environmental groups have mockingly nicknamed “Senator Formaldehyde.”

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Formaldehyde in Laminate Flooring

In laminate flooring, formaldehyde is used as a bonding agent in the fiberboard (or other composite wood) core layer and may also be used in glues that bind layers together. Concerns were raised in March when certain laminate flooring imported from China was reported to contain levels of formaldehyde far exceeding the limit permitted by California.

Typical

laminate

flooring

CLEAR FINISH LAYER

Often made of melamine resin

PATTERN LAYER

Paper printed to resemble wood,

or a thin wood veneer

GLUE

Layers may be bound using

formaldehyde-based glues

CORE LAYER

Fiberboard or other

composite, formed using

formaldehyde-based adhesives

BASE LAYER

Moisture-resistant vapor barrier

What is formaldehyde?

Formaldehyde is a common chemical used in many industrial and household products as an adhesive, bonding agent or preservative. It is classified as a volatile organic compound. The term volatile means that, at room temperature, formaldehyde will vaporize, or become a gas. Products made with formaldehyde tend to release this gas into the air. If breathed in large quantities, it may cause health problems.

WHERE IT IS COMMONLY FOUND

POTENTIAL HEALTH RISKS

Pressed-wood and composite wood products

Wallpaper and paints

Spray foam insulation used in construction

Commercial wood floor finishes

Crease-resistant fabrics

In cigarette smoke, or in the fumes from combustion of other materials, including wood, oil and gasoline.

Exposure to formaldehyde in sufficient amounts may cause eye, throat or skin irritation, allergic reactions, and respiratory problems like coughing, wheezing or asthma.

Long-term exposure to high levels has been associated with cancer in humans and laboratory animals.

Exposure to formaldehyde may affect some people more severely than others.

By 2010, public health advocates and some industry groups secured bipartisan support in Congress for legislation that ordered the E.P.A. to issue federal rules that largely mirrored California’s restrictions. At the time, concerns were rising over the growing number of lower-priced furniture imports from Asia that might include contaminated products, while also hurting sales of American-made products.

Maneuvering began almost immediately after the E.P.A. prepared draft rules to formally enact the new standards.

White House records show at least five meetings in mid-2012 with industry executives — kitchen cabinet makers, chemical manufacturers, furniture trade associations and their lobbyists, like Brock R. Landry, of the Venable law firm. These parties, along with Senator Vitter’s office, appealed to top administration officials, asking them to intervene to roll back the E.P.A. proposal.

The White House Office of Management and Budget, which reviews major federal regulations before they are adopted, apparently agreed. After the White House review, the E.P.A. “redlined” many of the estimates of the monetary benefits that would be gained by reductions in related health ailments, like asthma and fertility issues, documents reviewed by The New York Times show.

As a result, the estimated benefit of the proposed rule dropped to $48 million a year, from as much as $278 million a year. The much-reduced amount deeply weakened the agency’s justification for the sometimes costly new testing that would be required under the new rules, a federal official involved in the effort said.

“It’s a redlining blood bath,” said Lisa Heinzerling, a Georgetown University Law School professor and a former E.P.A. official, using the Washington phrase to describe when language is stricken from a proposed rule. “Almost the entire discussion of these potential benefits was excised.”

Senator Vitter’s staff was pleased.

“That’s a huge difference,” said Luke Bolar, a spokesman for Mr. Vitter, of the reduced estimated financial benefits, saying the change was “clearly highlighting more mismanagement” at the E.P.A.

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The review’s outcome galvanized opponents in the furniture industry. They then targeted a provision that mandated new testing of laminated wood, a cheaper alternative to hardwood. (The California standard on which the law was based did not require such testing.)

But E.P.A. scientists had concluded that these laminate products — millions of which are sold annually in the United States — posed a particular risk. They said that when thin layers of wood, also known as laminate or veneer, are added to furniture or flooring in the final stages of manufacturing, the resulting product can generate dangerous levels of fumes from often-used formaldehyde-based glues.

Industry executives, outraged by what they considered an unnecessary and financially burdensome level of testing, turned every lever within reach to get the requirement removed. It would be particularly onerous, they argued, for small manufacturers that would have to repeatedly interrupt their work to do expensive new testing. The E.P.A. estimated that the expanded requirements for laminate products would cost the furniture industry tens of millions of dollars annually, while the industry said that the proposed rule over all would cost its 7,000 American manufacturing facilities over $200 million each year.

“A lot of people don’t seem to appreciate what a lot of these requirements do to a small operation,” said Dick Titus, executive vice president of the Kitchen Cabinet Manufacturers Association, whose members are predominantly small businesses. “A 10-person shop, for example, just really isn’t equipped to handle that type of thing.”

Photo
 
Becky Gillette wants strong regulation of formaldehyde. Credit Beth Hall for The New York Times

Big industry players also weighed in. Executives from companies including La-Z-Boy, Hooker Furniture and Ashley Furniture all flew to Washington for a series of meetings with the offices of lawmakers including House Speaker John Boehner, Republican of Ohio, and about a dozen other lawmakers, asking several of them to sign a letter prepared by the industry to press the E.P.A. to back down, according to an industry report describing the lobbying visit.

Within a matter of weeks, two letters — using nearly identical language — were sent by House and Senate lawmakers to the E.P.A. — with the industry group forwarding copies of the letters to the agency as well, and then posting them on its website.

The industry lobbyists also held their own meeting at E.P.A. headquarters, and they urged Jim Jones, who oversaw the rule-making process as the assistant administrator for the agency’s Office of Chemical Safety and Pollution Prevention, to visit a North Carolina furniture manufacturing plant. According to the trade group, Mr. Jones told them that the visit had “helped the agency shift its thinking” about the rules and how laminated products should be treated.

The resistance was particularly intense from lawmakers like Mr. Wicker of Mississippi, whose state is home to major manufacturing plants owned by Ashley Furniture Industries, the world’s largest furniture maker, and who is one of the biggest recipients in Congress of donations from the industry’s trade association. Asked if the political support played a role, a spokesman for Mr. Wicker replied: “Thousands of Mississippians depend on the furniture manufacturing industry for their livelihoods. Senator Wicker is committed to defending all Mississippians from government overreach.”

Individual companies like Ikea also intervened, as did the Chinese government, which claimed that the new rule would create a “great barrier” to the import of Chinese products because of higher costs.

Perhaps the most surprising objection came from Senator Boxer, of California, a longtime environmental advocate, whose office questioned why the E.P.A.’s rule went further than her home state’s in seeking testing on laminated products. “We did not advocate an outcome, other than safety,” her office said in a statement about why the senator raised concerns. “We said ‘Take a look to see if you have it right.’ ”

Safety advocates say that tighter restrictions — like the ones Ms. Boxer and Mr. Wicker, along with Representative Doris Matsui, a California Democrat, have questioned — are necessary, particularly for products coming from China, where items as varied as toys and Christmas lights have been found to violate American safety standards.

While Mr. Neltner, the environmental advocate who has been most involved in the review process, has been open to compromise, he has pressed the E.P.A. not to back down entirely, and to maintain a requirement that laminators verify that their products are safe.

An episode of CBS’s “60 Minutes” in March brought attention to the issue when it accused Lumber Liquidators, the discount flooring retailer, of selling laminate products with dangerous levels of formaldehyde. The company has disputed the show’s findings and test methods, maintaining that its products are safe.

“People think that just because Congress passed the legislation five years ago, the problem has been fixed,” said Becky Gillette, who then lived in coastal Mississippi, in the area hit by Hurricane Katrina, and was among the first to notice a pattern of complaints from people living in the trailers. “Real people’s faces and names come up in front of me when I think of the thousands of people who could get sick if this rule is not done right.”

An aide to Ms. Matsui rejected any suggestion that she was bending to industry pressure.

“From the beginning the public health has been our No. 1 concern,” said Kyle J. Victor, an aide to Ms. Matsui.

But further changes to the rule are likely, agency officials concede, as they say they are searching for a way to reduce the cost of complying with any final rule while maintaining public health goals. The question is just how radically the agency will revamp the testing requirement for laminated products — if it keeps it at all.

“It’s not a secret to anybody that is the most challenging issue,” said Mr. Jones, the E.P.A. official overseeing the process, adding that the health consequences from formaldehyde are real. “We have to reduce those exposures so that people can live healthy lives and not have to worry about being in their homes.”

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