Chatter: Did Oscar Pistorius mean to do it?



Antler Agency

    Get Chatter in your inbox!        



        *We take your privacy seriously, GlobalPost will not share your information with any other companies.


He meant to do it. That's what South African prosecutors plan to argue when they put Oscar Pistorius on trial for premeditated murder. We heard the outline of their case today, at a bail hearing in Pretoria: they allege that the amputee sprinter put on his protheses, got out of bed, walked seven meters across his bedroom, and shot at girlfriend Reeva Steenkamp four times through the bathroom door.

Pistorius, again, wept. His lawyers argue that he didn't know who was behind the locked door when he fired and "it's not even murder." The magistrate didn't agree: he upheld the charge of premeditated murder, an accusation so serious that Pistorius's chances of getting bail are scant.

At the same time, in another city, Steenkamp was laid to rest. Her family, too wept.

Meet Unit 61398. You might not know it, but chances are it knows you: it's a secretive branch of the Chinese army and, according to US security experts, one of the world's "most prolific cyber espionage groups."

After extensive investigation, cyber security firm Mandiant claims that professional hackers have stolen hundreds of terabytes of information from scores of companies outside China – all with Beijing's backing. Beijing, meanwhile, calls the allegations "groundless" and points out that hack attacks are notoriously hard to trace. Luckily for those that wage them.


Diamonds! Planes! Thieves! Er, Belgium? Yes indeed. Brussels Airport was the unlikely setting last night for an audacious jewel heist that has police hunting for eight armed robbers and millions of dollars of diamonds. The gang cut through a security fence, drove onto the runway, held up a Swiss passenger plane as it prepared to take off, nabbed its cargo of precious stones from the hold and, minutes later and without a shot fired, made off in the same way they came. Police say their haul is worth up to $467 million.

Someone's optioning the movie as we write.

Just who's in charge in Tunisia? The country has been in political limbo since the assassination of opposition leader Chokri Belaid provoked outcry from the public and hurried assurances of new elections from the Islamist-led government. Now Prime Minister Hamadi Jebali says his proposal to dissolve the government and form a caretaker cabinet is officially off the table, after his own Ennadha party stymied it.

Jebali says "another solution" is on its way, without giving details. Whatever it may be, he's due to discuss it with the Tunisian president later today.


That Kevin Bacon gets everywhere. First we hear that every actor in Hollywood is never further than six roles away from old Kev, and now he's found his way into every page on the web. Allow us to explain: a Hungarian researcher has found that every website on the internet is connected by 19 clicks or fewer. Most aren't directly linked, but are united by so-called "Kevin Bacons" – intersections that connect distant parts of the web.

Fascinating findings that, happily, have brought us all one step closer to Kevin Bacon.

In PoliticsMiscellaneousChatter.

Tagged: South Africa.