Burning through the Desert         
Dan Rielger & Ayala Moriel

A few months ago (the last day of April, to be exact, which was also the first day of my Orientals week-long course), I had the pleasure and honour to host a special guest throughout the day: Dan Riegler of Apothecary's Garden - a purveyor of fair trade resins from around the world - especially frankincense and myrrh that are wild crafted in the traditional methods in countries such as Somalia, Yemen and Kenya. He also sources Cretan labdanum, and other rare raw materials, and sells resin-centrered products that he concocts himself, which you can find on his online shop. One of them being a highly fragrant moustache wax which basically surrounded him with a cloud of frankincense - so obviously he made an instant good impression on me!

We started the day at the Baha'i Gardens in Akko (which deserve a full post dedicated to them) and then went to my studio to make incense - and burn a bunch too. Little did I know what I was signing up for. On top of the usual things I burn for this class (palo santo chips, sandalwood incense sticks, one type of myrrh and frankincense resins and my own rendition of Egyptian Kyphi) - Dan had a trunk-load of resins that he just imported from Africa, and was immensely kind and generous to share with us the most incredible incense resins with me and my class. We spent the afternoon burning rare myrrh, olibanum, and also some gums I never knew existed, namely Sandarac and Ammoniacum, the latter of which totally blew my mind.

I learned so much from Dan, about the resins (and the other raw materials he curates and sells), how they are harvested and collected, the chemical makeup of the resins and how it affects the stages of burning (it turns out that incense resins also have top, heart and base notes) - and this post is just a little taste of all the beautiful resins we burnt when he was here. I'm looking forward to meeting him again on his next visits in Israel on the way to the African continent.

Boswellia carterii
Frankincense usually comes in "tears" shape as this Boswellia carterii - but not always. Below is a specimen of the less known B. neglecta that look more like a chunk of resinous granules. B. carterii has the characteristic, most unmistakable scent of frankincense - beginning with sweet citrus notes of lemon drops and orange candy and continuing into more resinous, woody and even balsamic, caramel-like nuances as the incense burns on the charcoal.

While looking pretty much the same, other frankincense species provide further nuances and a whole frankincense burning comparative study (or incense games a-la Japenese Koh-Doh) can easily occupy half a day. Compare this to Maydi (Boswellia frereana) which albeit its slightly herbaceous (sage-like) opening, is more subtle, woody and perfumey. In fact, it smells almost powdery like violet and iris. Ethiopian frakincince (Boswellia papyrifea) is even finer with its suave, light perfume notes, slightly sweet and with notes of burnt sugar at the end of the charcoal burning process.

Boswellia negoecta - black and white

Boswellia neglecta is endemic to north Kenya and comes in white and black forms (as you can see in the photo) and is not widely known. The white and the black smell significantly different. The white begins resinous-green, piney and mysterious, surprisingly juice like crushed leaves with hints of parsley, galbanum and ammonia (smells a lot like amoniacum).  It has a hint of sweaty note, a little like coriander seed. The final burning moments bring to mind the smoke coming out of autumnal piles of fall leaves.

The black neglecta smells completely different - you wouldn't think it came from the same plant: it smells dark and looming, like moss, mushrooms, decaying fall leaves, peat, forest floor and hints of campfire. It's surprising and magical that a resin can possess so many different facets.

Sandarac
Sandarac (tetraclllyris) comes from Malta and just like its pure milky appearance, burns clean with a woody-balsamic-resinous scent that is fine and very pleasant. It's a little bit like elemi, a little like mastic but not quite. There is a tiny hint of seashore to it that I only detected after many times of burning. It is quite lovely, even if underwhelming at first impression.

Ammoniacum
Ammoniacum is intense and pungent, like a mixture of galbanum, asafoetida, sulphur, greens. It it a very interesting odour but I suspect it would have better effect in magic and exorcism ceremonies rather than contemplative incense rituals.

Commiphora confusa

Commiphora confusa, as the name suggests, is a type of myrrh that is hard to identify, and for several reasons: the flowers look different on each plant, the resin looks different as well - and the most surprising of all: it smells more like frankincense than myrrh.

Commiphora myrrha

Commiphora myrrha (from Ethiopea) has the characteristic bitter, rubbery scent when burnt, and is what I'd imagine the Queen of Sheba to wear on her neck when seducing King Solomon.

Commiphora karat

Commiphora kataf (from Kenya) has pieces of wood in it (which would change the smell of the smoke depending on which chunk you burn). It has a strange, sulphuric-sweaty odour. I guess you could call it spicy, as it has a hint of cumin in it too. Overall it reminds me more of the smell of food than incense - barbecuing kebabs comes to mind.

Commiphira holziana
Commiphora holtziana does not smell like myrrh at all to me. It's more woody than C. myrrha, and a tad fresh to start with. Dan describes it as briny and sea-like but I'm not getting it.

Arabian/Yemeni Myrrh
Arabian/Yemeni Myrrh is by far the most incredibly beautiful myrrh resin I've ever burnt. Although it came in a strange looking chunk, containing pieces of the plastic bags used by the collectors, and even a piece of wool yarn, it has the most fantastic scent, like a perfume on its own accord. It reminds me of the unique "version" of frankincense that B. papyrifea offers. I would love to have this as an essential oil and create a perfume with it.


          2016: 122 journalists killed globally, 5 in India        

New Delhi: As many as 122 journalists and media professionals were killed in 2016 globally, 93 of them in targeted killings and others in natural disasters and accidents, while India witnessed death of five scribes and was eighth on a list topped by Iraq, according to a new report.

The targeted killings, including murders, bomb attacks and crossfire incidents, span 23 countries in Africa, Asia Pacific, the Americas, Europe and the Middle East and Arab World regions, said International Federation of Journalists (IFJ) in its annual report released Friday.

The IFJ said the number (93 targeted killings) was down from 112 targeted killings in 2015 while Iraq still had the largest number of media killings with 15, ahead of Afghanistan (13) and Mexico (11).

These were followed by Yemen (8), Guatemala (6), Syria (6), India and Pakistan (5 in both), according to the statistics published by the largest global federation of journalists' trade unions.

In addition to the 93 targeted killings, 20 Brazilian sports journalists perished in a plane crash over the city of Medellin in Colombia, a country where for the first time in many years no killing was recorded this year, against three in 2015. Nine Russian journalists were killed in a military plane crash.

Although the 2016 figures for targeted killings of media professionals are down from the previous year's, the IFJ has cautioned against complacency citing reports of rising threats, intimidation and self-censorship as evidence that attacks on freedom of expression remain at critical levels.

In India, Tarun Mishra, Bureau Chief of Jan Sandesh Times, died on 14 February; Indradev Yadav, Journalist with Taaza TV, on 16 May; Rajdeo Ranjan, Bureau Chief of Dainik Hindustan on 13 May; Kishore Dave, Bureau Chief of Jai Hind on 22 August and Dharmendra Singh, Correspondent of Dainik Bhaskar on 12 November, the report noted.

In 2015, India had reported targeted killings of six media professionals, including those from news channel Aaj Tak and Hindi daily Dainik Jagaran, the report states.

Noting that India along with Yemen, Pakistan and Syria form a group which saw little or no change in the numbers of killings from 2015, IFJ President Philippe Leruth said, "Any decrease in violence against journalists and media staff is always welcome but these statistics and the continued deliberate targeting of media workers in many incidents causing loss of life give little room for comfort nor ground for hope to see the end of the current media safety crisis." 

The IFJ, which claims to represent more than 6,00,000 journalists in 140 countries, has recorded at least 2,297 killings of media professionals in targeted assassinations, cross-fire incidents and bomb attacks till 2015.

2016: 122 journalists killed globally, 5 in India
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          Just Eat Real Food        
This is a picture of my JERF shirt. I've worn it a few times, but I'm still too vain to post pictures of myself in a tank top. One of these days, maybe.

One of my favourite podcasters these days is Sean Croxton at Underground Wellness. He makes YouTube videos, has a podcast and a blog and a book and everything people need to have nowadays to make an impact. He's a reformed personal trainer who has gone from the "Eat Less, Move More" mantra of the low-fat paradigm to a holistic, paleo-type version of reality. He has hosted the Paleo Summit and the Real Food Summit, and the latter has become his latest passion. Since that is a passion I share, I'd love to talk about it some more.

When I was growing up in Israel, there were fast food restaurants, and I believe we may have patronised them from time to time. There were definitely real and good restaurants, and I have fond memories of going there, especially a Yemenite restaurant in Tel Aviv called Zion, which absolutely had the best hummus I have ever eaten anywhere, any time.

But most of the time, we ate at home. We shopped at the local grocery store and there was a "yarkan", a greengrocer, who came by once or twice a week to sell fresh produce from the surrounding farms. Later, when I was older, we went to the supermarket in the nearby town. Now the little local grocery store in the village is closed up and I don't know what happened to the "yarkan", but my family members who live in Israel still mostly buy and prepare real food. I should add that these are people who work full-time, so they are just as pressed for time as anybody else. They just care about what they put in their mouths. I remember my mother being creative with leftovers - Friday night's chicken usually ended up in chicken fried rice by Wednesday or so.

The same was true when I was a student in Amsterdam in the eighties. We ate out, but it was real food cooked in a restaurant kitchen. We mostly cooked at home and invited each other over for dinner. Real food was our life. If we had no money, we bought cheap food, but it was still food. Cooking for your friends was the ultimate expression of love for them.

I'm not sure when and how those concepts got lost in North America. Somehow it seems to be elitist to be interested in the provenance of your food, and you are expected to pay extra for the privilege of eating food that isn't drenched in Roundup. How did this happen, and why?

I know the story of the munitions factories that needed to be converted into fertiliser producers after the war, and of women who were sold the myth that they were much too busy to cook for their families. I remember TV dinners - we lived in the US for a few years in the sixties and seventies, and I think my mother bought a few out of curiosity. They certainly weren't a staple - ugh! I remember making my mother buy horrible cotton-like bread because I wanted the Bicentennial stickers (anybody remember those?). And yet that food was probably more nutritious than what we are feeding our children today - and there were no giant sodas.

I have busy children who sometimes have activities that keep them away from home at dinnertime. I hate those weeks - the dinner table is such an important place to reconnect at the end of the day. My wallet, their nutrition and our relationship all suffer when they are away from our dinner table too many nights a week. We are all sugar addicts but we are working diligently on taking better care of ourselves, and that means real food as much as possible. Fruit, nuts and cheese will make you feel so much better than granola bars or cookies.

Real food not only nourishes our bodies, it connects our souls and helps us feel rooted to our families and our land. What are you doing to feed yourself and those you love real food?


          Primer embarque de carne mexicana viaja a Medio Oriente        
El cargamento llegará a la ciudad de Qatar, para después ser distribuido entre Arabia Saudita, Bhréin, Emiratos Árabes Unidos, Kuwait, Omán y Yemen
          Yolandie Korkie        
5FM — Nick chats to Yolande Korkie about her ordeal in Yemen
          ICTs, Social Movements and Individual Accountability        
ICTs, Social Movements and Individual Accountability By: Anna Greenstone Over the past several months, we have watched ICTs play important roles in social movements and revolutions throughout the Middle East.  In countries from Tunisia and Egypt to Bahrain and Yemen, public protests have been organized on and through social media sites while recorded footage of […]
          Weekend Reading: Egyptian Beer, Turkey's Kurdish Question, and Saudi Arabia's Yemeni Mercenaries        
Norbert Schiller and Omar Foda

          A Muslim's Top 10 Wishes for 2016        

This post originally appeared in the Huffington Post on January 3, 2015. You can find the original article by clicking here or on the title. 

A Muslim's Top 10 Wishes for 2016

Have you ever made a wish that's come true -- because you made the wish? Until now, making a wish, whether at the sight of a shooting star or when blowing out the candle(s) on your birthday cake or when breaking a wishbone, has not yet been scientifically proven to actually work, as far as I know. Yet, in the spirit of hope, I am making 10 wishes at the beginning of the New Year. And as is always the case, as a Muslim, I speak on behalf of 1.5 billion people. So here goes...
1. People no longer confuse me with ISIS.
My name isn't ISIS. It's not even Islamic State. In fact, the words Islamic or State are not actually in my extended name. Nevertheless, time and time again, I keep getting requests to respond to the group's actions. I swear, ISIS or ISIL or IS -- none of them are in my family tree; they're not some distant cousins of mine. In 2016, I just want people to stop confusing me with ISIS. I really don't know what ISIS is thinking and why they do what they do. It's not like the State Department is asked for comment because of the State-to-State connection. As a postscript, can ISIS stop using the word Islamic? 
2. Muslims stop killing Muslims for being Muslim.
Somewhere, along the way over the last couple of decades, Muslims started killing other Muslims for being Muslim in the wrong way, or at least took it to a whole new level. There's a whole ideology out there built around takfir or essentially "declaring Muslims as kufar or unbelievers" for failing an evermore peculiar litmus test. Imagine if death squads emerged killing Black people for not being Black enough. Originating in some of the philosophical exhortations by scholar Ibn Taymiyyah 700 years ago, the criteria by which you are deemed "takfir-ed" and permissible to be killed has reached insane if not idiosyncratic levels. It would be funny if the situation weren't so deadly. Even barbers were caught in the crosshairs and were being assassinated in Baghdad in the 2000s. 
3. Death and destruction in the Muslim world have a timeout. 
From Yemen to IraqLibya to Somalia, and from Afghanistan to far beyond, civil strife is rife in too many parts of what is defined as the Muslim world. Autocrats, militants, extremists and terrorists, don't care who they kill: men, women, children -- everyone is fair game. I wish this would stop. Into this toxic mix, the last thing needed is more killing coming into these countries from the outside; the 2003 invasion of Iraq proved that. I wonder if Russia will hear that message? 
4. We all get comfortable with the "other."
What a difference it was in 2015 between Trudeau and Trump in the North American political cycle. The world needs more Trudeaus and less Trumps (Donalds that is). The fear of the "other" is starting to define Western politics and it is not just about Trump. The rise of right-wing political parties in Europe from Hungary to Denmark is a poignant reminder of the breadth of this phenomenon. Yet, outside the West this fear of the other also permeates and often dominates. In Turkey, we are seeing a renewed vilification of the Kurdish population. Further afield in Burma, the Rohingyaare cast as outsiders. In Malaysia, Christians are prohibited from using the Arabic word for God. And, in nearby Brunei, Christmas was simply cancelled. In some of the war zones in the Middle East, Christians are on the verge of disappearing. The world would be a lot better off if we weren't so afraid of the bogeyman of the other.
5. The Muslim world deals with its taboos. 
Speaking of an aversion to the non-orthodox, there's a whole set of taboos that many Muslim countries and societies need to start dealing with. A lot of them relate to sex. Sometimes the Muslim world acts like it has one big case of the cooties. There have been attempts by some to break through these restrictions. Wedad Lootah in the UAE comes to mind. Shereen El Feki's Sex and the Citadel is another. This is not an issue to take lightly, especially in societies where 60-70 percent of youth are under the age of 30. Bombarded by sexualized imagery from modern and digital media, these youth then live, essentially, in an austere second world that is their reality. More importantly and tragically, rape and sexual assault are simply not talked about; child abuse is an even worse curse hidden under the rug. Finally, at some point Muslim countries - and the clerical establishment -- will need to come to terms with the fact that gay Muslims exist
6. Somewhere, over the rainbow, democracy and Islam go steady. 
Let's be honest, a lot of people have tried to set up democracy with Islam for a relationship. Sometimes it has been a surprise blind date (e.g. Iraq in 2003). Other times, it was a relationship that grew from blind passion (e.g. the Arab world in 2011). Often, the sparks of love eventually turn into animus and things quickly go south. In the Arab world, Tunisia is carrying - with some fragility -- the banner of democracy. Many Muslim-majority countries that used to be counted as democracies now suffer from authoritarian syndromes (e.g. TurkeyMalaysia, and Bangladesh). In other cases, democracy in its infancy quickly devolved into score settling or majoritarian mafias (e.g. the Muslim Brotherhood in Egypt). Perhaps Indonesia, the world's most populous Muslim country is our hope that can breathe life into this wish. 
7. Averroes comes back in style. 
Averroes -- or Ibn Rushd -- was a man's man. He schooled his way into Raphael's The School of Athens. The polymath kept alive ancient Greek philosophy, paving the way for much of Europe's modern intellectual movements. Back in the day, in Andalusia, he was a big deal (Biden-style). And, why not? He vociferously argued for the co-existence of secular and religious thought in a posthumous debate with the Abbasid scholar Al Ghazali. Ultimately, Ibn Rushd lost the debate to the detriment of the Muslim world, but his arguments culminated with the work, The Incoherence of Incoherence, which I think would be a great riposte to all ISIS ideologues and their friends. If Ibn Taymiyyah came back, then let's bring Averroes back too. 
8. Flying while Muslim is no longer a thing. 
They say that flying while Muslim is the new driving while Black. I guess if you're a Black Muslim, this really sucks, especially if you drive to the airport for your flight. So my wish maybe can be two-pronged: getting rid of both 'driving while Black' as well as 'flying while Muslim.' What is flying while Muslim? Well, it often starts with a casual stare or two from across the way. A timid approach then ensues: "Excuse me sir." This is normally followed by a more forceful: "Please follow me." It can then get quite aggressive, with clothes falling by the wayside. It normally ends with your belongings in disarray, your belt on backwards, and you fast-walking without turning back in the hope that no one thinks twice about you boarding your flight. Oh, and don't watch the news while on the plane. I hate flying while Muslim. 
9. Trump presides over a Muslim beauty contest. 
Was 2015 the year of Trump? You have to hand it to Trump; he sure knows how to grab the spotlight. Unfortunately, he's used that spotlight to spew increasingly populist venom targeted at Muslims (and others). Maybe, we need to better appeal to Trump's core interest: beauty pageants. There are a few lists circulating online for potential Muslim contestants (for Men: click here | for Women: click here). Yet, I think we should make this a mipsters pageant and turn this whole thing on its head. 
10. Peace comes to Syria. 
This Muslim (me) -- speaking on behalf of 1.5 billion people around the world -- has 10 wishes for 2016 but if only one of them came true it should be this one. No country has been more ravaged in recent memory than Syria. Hundreds of thousands have been killed as gangsters, terrorists, and dictators fight for supremacy. The surrounding region, instead of trying to promote a solution, has sent in weapons, fighters, and incitement. The world, instead of trying to mediate, has sought to settle old scores. All the while, the people in Syria live in lifeless limbo amidst daily death and destruction. If I had only one wish it would be that the violence in Syria would come to an end. 
This wish list is non-exhaustive. I think I may have missed a few...

          10 Questions on the Conflict in Syria        
A potential military strike by Western powers on Syria now appears to be a fait accompli and is being touted as long overdue. Given the spiralling humanitarian disaster that has overtaken the country during the last two years of conflict, continued inaction appears to be an untenable reality. The death toll is now well over 100,000 (although the proportion of civilians to combatants is unclear). There are 2 million refugees, half of whom are children, and over 4 million more internally displaced persons (IDPs), amounting to a quarter of the country's overall population. Yet, it was the apparent chemical weapons attack in the suburbs around Damascus known as Ghouta last week that has served as the impetus for international military intervention into the conflict. Amidst the rhetoric and war rehearsals, clarity on what is really happening seems to be cast aside in the media, in favor of faux-spontaneous leaks, retired generals, and trumpeters of past wars. Here are ten questions to try to set the record straight.


1. Were chemical weapons used in Syria?

When the initial attack unfolded last Wednesday, August 21 in the suburbs in Damascus known as Ghouta (near the town/suburb of Jobar), news quickly spread to local, regional and international media. Claims were made of hundreds of deaths, with some activists claiming the death toll was 1,300. Moreover, the Government of Syria immediately denied responsibility and has continued to do so. However, the attack did unfold amidst a series of army strikes on Jobar, which is a rebel-held area, and has been for quite some time. The Government conversely claimed to find chemical weapons supplies in tunnels in the same area, and it is alleged that some Hezbollah fighters were also exposed to chemical toxins.

A week on, it appears incontrovertible that chemical weapons were used, not just from YouTube videos but also from visits by independent journalists, and of course by a report by Médecins Sans Frontières that has documented at least 355 deaths from local hospitals. It is likely that the chemical agent used was a neurotoxin or nerve gas, most likely sarin gas. What is still not clear, is how they were delivered (i.e. in what form and carried on what type of weapon) and from where.

It should also be kept in mind that this was not the first attack that has been alleged. There have been numerous claims by rebels, and counter-claims by the government on the use of chemical weapons in the conflict. Here's a map of those events. In fact, this is precisely why the team of UN inspectors had arrived in the country, the day before this latest incident (and massacre) took place. In fact, what is interesting is that their investigation of other sites has now been put on the back-burner due to the latest developments.

2. Do we know who actually used the chemical weapons? 

The United States, United Kingdom, and France have all stated they are certain that the Government of Syria has undertaken the attack last week. On the U.S. side, at the forefront of the rhetoric has been Vice President Biden - who has said there is 'no doubt' - and Secretary of State John Kerry, who made an evocative plea for action several days ago. Of course, the next speech is the most important, and it would be one made by President Barack Obama. In light of this certainty, it would be difficult to question the attribution of blame. A leak from the US government also claims to have intercepted a murky call between commanders in the Syrian army that supposedly is evidence of culpability on the Syrian side.

There is tremendous reason to doubt U.S. claims. Firstly, it should not be forgotten that then Secretary of State Colin Powell presented ironclad evidence to the United Nations Security Council of weapons of mass destruction (WMDs) that Saddam Hussein possessed, a finding that was later proven to be utterly false, but which was the basis of a war that continues until today. Secondly, the U.S. claimed that there was incontrovertible proof that the Government of Syria was responsible for earlier chemical attacks this year, but that finding has been contested, and some experts apportioned blame to the rebels fighting the government. And finally, in this case, no evidence has been presented, as of yet to make such a determination, at least not conclusively.

Does that mean the Assad and his regime are not responsible? No. It is very likely given the ongoing military operations in the same area that the Syrian government launched such an attack. Yet, more evidence needs to be presented to make a definitive conclusion. The other scenarios that could be possible are:

- Extremists groups like Jubhat al-Nusra, who have previously seized advanced weaponry and possibly chemical weapons from Syrian army bases and positions, were attempting to use them on Syrian soldiers (or conversely to cast blame on the Syrian army);

- The Government of Syria inadvertently hit a stockpile of sarin gas releasing the toxins (although unclear if this would lead to the effects that we've seen); or

- Rogue elements within the chain of command used chemical weapons intentionally or inadvertently.

Russia, Iran and China have of course cast doubt on western claims but that is to be expected.

3. What would be the basis or justification for US intervention?

The U.S. intervention would likely be on the basis of Obama's previously stated red line on Syria, which would be the mass use/movement of chemical weapons. It is not in fact about humanitarian intervention and the Responsibility to Protect framework, developed in the 1990s to prevent genocide and mass civilian deaths. If it was, then the humanitarian case for intervention has been present for some time, and other massacres by the Syrian regime, such as in Houla in 2012, would have provided sufficient pretext. Obviously, the U.S. and other Western powers, and regional countries, have their own interests at play that are much more geopolitical in nature, but the justification or casus belli being offered is around the issue of chemical weapons, and chemical weapons alone.

4. Will anybody else be involved in the military strikes besides the US and will this affect whether they are 'legal'?

Given Russian and Chinese opposition, and a likely veto of any resolution by the United Nations Security Council supporting such a military strike on Syria - especially in light of the intervention in Libya, which Russia regretted supporting - a 'coalition of the willing' will need to be developed. This coalition would be broader than the Iraq War in 2003, and would be similar to the coalition carrying out the strikes against Serb positions vis-a-vis Kosovo in 1999. While the U.S., U.K. and France will likely lead an effort, Turkey would also be critical as a staging ground (as it borders Syria from the North), and thus there will be an attempt to launch such an attack under the auspices of NATO. Despite its reluctance, Jordan, given its reliance on the U.S. and Saudi Arabia politically and economically, will have no choice but to support . The two other neighbours of Syria, Iraq and Lebanon are squarely against any military strike. And of course, the other neighbor - Israel - would sit this one out but would provide intelligence to the U.S. and other parties on Syrian positions, given that it has already undertaken a number of air strikes on Syria in the past two years.

Further afield, it is likely the GCC (Gulf Cooperation Council) will support military intervention, with Qatar, Saudi Arabia, and the United Arab Emirates possibly sending fighter jets to participate in a strike to give it regional cover and credibility. Finally, while many groups within the Arab and Muslim world, and the 'left' of the West, will oppose military intervention, many others will support it, because of the spiralling humanitarian situation in Syria.

Technically speaking if the military intervention is not sanctioned by the United Nations Security Council, and there is no imminent threat that the U.S. and other parties can point to towards its own territory or its assets, it would be illegal under international law. However, that has not stopped NATO or other countries (i.e. Russia in Georgia) form undertaking military action in the past. And before the Iraq War, some scholars claimed that while such an attack would be illegal it would be legitimate, and demonstrated retroactively to be legal. Given the state of world affairs, 'legality' is likely not a determining factor for a strike on Syria.

5. Are we seeing a repeat of Iraq in 2003? 

No. The situation today with Syria is different than it was in 2003 in Iraq, for many reasons, despite some passing similarities. In Iraq, the U.S. claimed that Saddam Hussein possessed weapons of mass destruction while in Syria, we already know Bashar al-Assad possesses chemical weapons, and the question is whether he used them (small aside, it was released this week that thirty years ago, the U.S. obstructed a UN investigation when it knew Saddam Hussein had used chemical weapons). In Iraq, the U.S. alleged that Saddam Hussein had links with Al Qaeda (and related groups), while in Syria, Bashar al Assad is widely acknowledged to be fighting Al Qaeda (and related groups) in addition to the 'Free Syrian Army' (and in addition to crushing peaceful demonstrators). In Iraq, there was no active state of conflict that was leading to a spiralling humanitarian catastrophe (and the potential use of WMDs), while in Syria there is not just a violent conflict, but also WMDs have been used by somebody (even if the culprit is not yet clear).

What should be noted, however, is that both Iraq in 2003 and Syria in 2013, are in complex environments, and any removal of government or sustained military intervention would have dramatic unforeseen consequences. It seems like the media debate in the U.S. is also similarly anaemic (but slightly better) this time around.

6. What is the real motivation for the United States and other powers?

As with all things in this world when it comes to international relations, the primary interest is not humanitarian but geopolitical. This is not absolute, however, and it could be argued that Turkey has been insisting on humanitarian intervention from an early stage. However, the regimes (not peoples) in the Gulf, most notably Saudi Arabia, are exclusively concerned with dislodging Syria from the Iranian orbit, and severing connections between Syria and Hezbollah. Humanitarian concerns are a by-product. And for the United States, something similar is at play. As noted above, if this was about humanitarian concerns, action would have been taken long before 100,000 deaths had occurred.

For the U.S. it has been looking for regime change in Syria for a while. However, these strikes if they occur, will be about sending a message and asserting America's position in the Middle East, given the red line that Obama drew. Ultimately, it may tip the scales in the rebels favour or improve the U.S.'s negotiating position vis-a-vis Iran. The chemical weapons attack in a morbid way, opened a door of opportunity for Western powers (with GCC support) to do something limited without a full-scale intervention.

7. Will military intervention solve the Syrian conflict?

No. Military intervention no matter how small or how big will not solve the Syrian conflict. In fact, it could very much exacerbate the situation on the ground even further (if that can be imagined). What is being reported currently is that the U.S. and allies will undertake a series of 'surgical strikes', a euphemism for a large-scale assault on key military and strategic installations, such as army positions, air bases, radar installations, communications infrastructure, supply routes, and, where appropriate, power stations (among other targets). More than anything this will be intended to send a message to the regime and weaken its capabilities. Yet, it would not be a fatal blow. And it would not necessarily tip the scales in favor of the rebels. It may in fact mobilize certain parties to support the regime, if there are civilian casualties from the intervention.

The solution to the Syrian situation has to be political, if it is going to lead to stability or peace. Yet, if the military intervention escalated and led to the removal of the Syrian regime, that would still not be the end of the conflict. After the Soviets were booted out of Afghanistan, the country devolved into a civil war for five years until the rise of the Taliban in 1996. Somalia has only recently stabilised (somewhat), more than 20 years after the assassination of its leader, President Siad Barre. And neighboring Lebanon, took 15 years of conflict (1975-1990) to reach an end, which was brought about by ironically Syrian military intervention (which committed its own crimes), that produced a - audible gasp - political settlement.

8. What could potentially go wrong?

Everything. The potential for disaster following military intervention in any country is great (see Black Hawk Down, Iraq, Afghanistan and the list goes on). Yet, in Syria it could be apocalyptic. Here is a list of what that could entail:

- Chemical weapons are used by Syria against its neighbors such as Jordan and Turkey, or U.S. military positions in those countries;
- U.S. planes/helicopters are shot down leading to an escalation of U.S. involvement requiring boots on the ground;
- Syria sends a volley of missiles into Tel Aviv and other places in Israel, leading to a regional war;
- Proxy forces of Iran, Hamas and Hezbollah, launch a sustained campaign against Israel/U.S. interests, including attacks embassies within Lebanon/Palestine/Israel but also in other countries, in the short and medium-term;
- Al Qaeda forces in the region, while opposing the Assad regime, oppose U.S. intervention especially if there are masses of civilian casualties, and use it as a pretext for attacks in places such as Yemen;
- Russia objects to the U.S. strike, and mobilizes warships to the Mediterranean, leading to a standoff with Europe and the U.S.;
- Negotiations with Iran, still in embryonic stages are suspended irrevocably;
- Six party talks with North Korea are suspended by Russia, China, and North Korea irrevocably;
- The Syrian regime goes all out in its conflict and begins to bomb with even more abandon civilian areas controlled by rebels, leading to thousands of casualties, and counter-massacres by enraged rebel fighters;
- The Syrian regime is removed by force from power by the intervention, leading to a power vacuum sinking the country further into civil war for over a decade of even more violent strife and a possible Al Qaeda style government;
- Tensions rise in the Middle East, especially in places of sectarian division (i.e. Lebanon, Yemen, Bahrain, Eastern Province in Saudi Arabia, and Iraq) leading to civil strife and attacks on governments, and counter-attacks on populations; and
- World War 3.

9. What could potentially go right?

It may seem that what is written above is slightly alarmist and that's true. Many things can go wrong (most of which, to be honest, are hard to predict as they will be unforeseen consequences or as Donald Rumsfeld, ironically calls them, unknown unknowns). However, the U.S.-led strikes could be quite effective. Firstly, if they are limited in scope, they can be completed in one day, reducing the risk for a military entanglement and civilian casualties. Secondly, if they are from the air, there is limited risk for casualties on the side of the intervening forces. Thirdly, an attack that is forceful and hits Syrian military positions, will send a message to Assad that there is a limit to what he can do, which thus far has not been the case, and may entice him to reach a political settlement. Fourthly, it is unlikely that the Syrian regime would retaliate, for a short strike on positions, against Israel, knowing that they cannot afford to fight a war on so many fronts (and thus far they have yet to retaliate to any Israel air strike). Finally, the systematic destruction of Assad's air capabilities could be instrumental in limiting civilian casualties by the regime in the future.

All of this is one possibility of what could occur.

10. Let's cut to the chase - should I support or not support military intervention?

There is no clearcut answer. Ultimately, military intervention should not be supported as a solution to the Syrian conflict. It is not, and whether we like it or not, a political solution/settlement is the only way the current situation moves towards peace and stability. The U.S. is negotiating with the Taliban. The Vietnamese negotiated with the U.S. The Lebanese negotiated with each other. The Dayton Accords to end the Bosnian War were signed with Slobodan Milosevic. It may not be easy, it may be unlikely, and it will not work perfectly, but political discussions involving all parties is the only way to find a real solution.

That being said, if a case is made with overwhelming evidence by independent parties (not U.S. conjecture) that chemical weapons were used by the Syrian regime, then military intervention on a limited scale, and for a period of 1-2 days only, should be undertaken, ideally with UN support - and if not with broad support of half of the members, i.e. 90, of the UN General Assembly to demonstrate legitimacy - against military targets only, which will both send a message about the use of these weapons and damage the capabilities of Assad.

What is clear is that whatever happens, there are no clear answers with regards to the conflict in Syria.

          The Middle East’s New Divide: Muslim Versus Muslim         

This article appears on Al-Monitor.com, where you can find the full version. 

On June 8, a devastating clash between residents and militia members erupted at the headquarters of the Libya Shield Brigade in Benghazi, Libya, leaving dozens dead and scores more injured. Meanwhile, the next day on the Sunday talk show circuit in the United States, amid continued partisan discussion of the September 2012 consulate attack in Benghazi, there was scant mention of the major clash from the day before. The disconnect exemplified the chasm between the new battle lines on the ground across the Middle East and the political discourse a world away.

For much of the last decade, most have digested the narrative of a Muslim-West divide. It was so pervasive that newly elected US President Barack Obama, portrayed as a symbolic messiah bridging two worlds, was awarded a Nobel Peace Prize before even completing a year of his term. Twelve years after the 9/11 al-Qaeda attacks, much of the discussion about the "Muslim world" has internalized this language, and why not? The conflict between the Palestinians and US-supported Israel remains unresolved, US drone strikes continue unabated in Pakistan and Yemen and terrorist attacks like the Boston Marathon bombing are still occurring in deadly fashion.

These days, however, one is more likely to see the burning of a Syrian government flag than an American flag amid the world’s deadliest ongoing conflict, for which the United States is criticized primarily for not intervening. One is more likely to see Iraqis killed in a terrorist attack than Americans. In fact, in recent years approximately 90% of terrorism-related fatalities have been Muslim. One is more likely to see the demonization of a Shiite than a Jew by an extremist Muslim ideologue. The battle lines have shifted from Islam versus the West to Muslim versus Muslim, and it is time for politicians and pundits in the United States and the Middle East alike to catch up.

Read more: http://www.al-monitor.com/pulse/originals/2013/08/new-middle-east-muslim-versus-muslim.html#ixzz2c5fRQCzj

          The Muslim Brotherhood in Denial (not just a river in Egypt)        
There's a lot to say about what's going on in Egypt, and a lot of great analysis out there. So I will simply re-post here a status I had on Facebook which I think sums up on the high-level the situation:

Today in #Egypt there are uncountable millions on the streets demonstrating in rebellion (#tamarod) against a President that the people democratically elected. And the military under their reconstituted form (i.e. SCAF) have backed their play and essentially called for a 'roadmap' towards an orderly transition. This is just 30 months after #Tahrir Square came to the world's attention when the then dictator for 30 years, Hosni Mubarak, was forced to step-down from power. So it is a little confusing. Adding to the confusion..The party in power is the Freedom and Justice Party, or Muslim Brotherhood. The people in Tahrir? Most of them Muslims, many devout, and still opposed to their so-called Brothers. Somewhat allies of the youth-driven, secular (not same as atheist) political opposition are the Salafists (Al Nour Party) or more conservative Muslims, who find themselves also calling for the President to step down. What should we make of all this? Some people may take this to mean that this is a strike against the role of Islam in government in the Arab world. Perhaps, but likely we won't see the same movement - yet - in Tunisia or Yemen and we now have a long ways to go in whatever Syria ends up (thanks to Assad & his enablers from all sides). Essentially, this ended up being a transaction between people and those in power. The Brotherhood in Egypt didn't fail because it started to ban alcohol or force women to wear Niqabs; no they failed because they failed to govern effectively. They failed to protect women in the streets from sexual assault. They failed to protect logically Egypt's interests with foreign countries like Ethiopia. They failed to stabilize an economy with any plan whatsoever. They failed to realize that appointing a member of a foreign terrorist organization that killed tourists in the 1990s to the position of Governor in a province that depends on tourism was a bad idea. The Brotherhood failed in Egypt not because they were Muslim - for their opponents are also Muslim - but because they failed to improve the lives of the very people that elected them. But here's the rub...and it's three-fold. First, removing them from power through the military's might could set back the country for decades to come. Only a negotiated democratic roadmap should be accepted. Second, the end of President Morsi's tenure, does not and should not mean the end of the Brotherhood. They are still Egyptian, will still be Egyptian, and will still have the support of many people. They are part of the political fabric of the country. And finally, the fact that the Brotherhood fails does not mean that the patchwork National Salvation Front - i.e. the Opposition - will succeed. Thus far their alliance is based on opposition to something rather than a coherent ideology. Moreover, their ideas for economic development and governance are no more clear, practical, or informed than the Brotherhood's. And so we end up with one takeaway, and this is applicable to all 'transition' countries. There will always be backsliding and regression in post-revolution environments. The key is to self-correct and aim to go two steps forward and one step backwards, rather than the other way around. Good luck to all our friends in #Egypt. They'll need it.

           For President Obama on Day One: A New “New Beginning”         
On Day One: A New “New Beginning”
There was never a question that President Barack Obama represented a symbolic break with the past – someone who could redefine relations with the Muslim world. However to add substance to the symbolism of change, early on in his first term, President Obama went to Cairo to make a speech entitled, “A New Beginning.” Yet, as he begins a second term it is clear that this new beginning needs to be reinvigorated in both style and substance. That initial speech, while poignant then, today rings hollow. If indeed President Obama and the administration are to achieve a definitive step change in relations with Muslim communities, there must be a renewed effort for honest dialogue, robust development initiatives, and tangible shifts in policy.

At the onset of the Iraq War in 2003, President George W. Bush had abysmal numbers in many Muslim-majority countries. While 59 percent of Nigerians, 56 percent of Jordanians, and 46 percent of Pakistanis held confidence in Osama bin Laden’s leadership, Bush was polling in the single digits in the same countries. By 2008, in countries like Jordan and Turkey, nearly 90 percent of people had “little or no confidence” in President Bush.

So when a young Kenyan-American Senator with Muslim roots, Barack Obama, emerged on the political scene, he was a welcome sight in even unsavory and sharply antagonistic corners of the Muslim world. In the midst of the political campaign even Hamas seemingly endorsed him saying, “Actually, we like Mr. Obama.” Winning over Hamas never was (nor should it have been) a litmus test, but when President Barack Obama was elected, there was near universal euphoria across Muslim communities.

Early on, Obama and others in the Administration acknowledged the challenge in meeting these expectations. Even before he was inaugurated, the Administration was already planning to mark this ‘new beginning.’ Going into the heart of Cairo to engage university students in an honest speech about a real change in relations between the U.S. and Muslims was indeed something to be commended. Subsequent to the speech, the White House created a position on the National Security Council for Global Engagement, and the State Department launched a number of partnership initiatives. In the fall of 2009, D.C. played host to the Presidential Summit of Entrepreneurship that brought together 250 delegates from over 50 (mostly Muslim) countries.

Then the situation started to become more difficult. There are no easy answers in the complex geopolitical relations in the wider Middle East and beyond. When the Green Movement in Iran demanded democratic change, the Obama administration had to contemplate whether it was for engagement with ‘regimes’ or engagement with ‘peoples.’ One of the President’s early visits was to Saudi Arabia to meet with King Abdullah prior to his Cairo speech, during which he said in reference to fundamental liberties, “They are human rights, and that is why we will support them everywhere.” But during his visit with the King, there was deafening silence on this point. The advent of the Arab Spring made these dilemmas even sharper. Support democracy in Tunisia and Egypt at the last minute. Push democracy by force in Libya. Half-heartedly support it in Yemen. Remain frozen on Syria. Tacitly oppose it everywhere else.

While Obama has grappled with difficult decisions, as any President would, he also shirked following up on critical points he made during his speech in Cairo. For example, he declared, “I have unequivocally prohibited the use of torture by the United States and I have ordered the prison at Guantanamo Bay closed by early next year.” Guantanamo Bay remains open, almost glaringly so. And while, torture has allegedly stopped being an officially sanctioned practice, summary executions and civilian casualties by drone strikes have dramatically increased in Pakistan, Afghanistan, Yemen, and the Horn of Africa. The latter have led directly to animus towards Obama from within many Muslim countries.

Then there was the line in the speech about the Israeli-Palestinian conflict: “The United States does not accept the legitimacy of continued Israeli settlements…The settlements must stop.” Of course, they did not. In fact, in February 2011 the U.S. vetoed a UN Security Council Resolution that called on Israel to simply “cease all settlement activities in the occupied Palestinian Territory.” Out of 15 countries on the Security Council, the U.S. was the lone dissent (and of course the fatal one). This is not to mention that the U.S. also stood against 95 percent of the world’s population in voting against recognizing Palestinian statehood at the United Nations General Assembly in November.

There were other elements of the ‘New Beginning’ that were promised, particularly around education and entrepreneurship. It is true that the U.S. has now (co-)organized three global entrepreneurship summits, in D.C., Istanbul, and Dubai, the latter being held in 2012. Yet, it is also clear that beyond the pomp of a summit, the once-robust programmatic initiatives that have come out have been weaker. Leadership changes within internal initiatives, as well as those with partners, have meant stalled if not stagnant programming. The idea of connecting entrepreneurs between the Muslim world and the West is a mutually beneficial and powerful concept, but it has not translated into the impact it should have by now. In the last summit in Dubai, it was as if the institutional memory from three years ago was lost, and everything was starting again.

All this being said, there still exists the perception that relations have improved between the U.S. and Muslim communities. However, since 2009 and Obama’s inauguration, positive views have been on a steady decline in Muslim countries, according to the Pew Global Attitudes Project. In 2009, 33 percent of respondents held confidence in Obama; that number slipped to 24 percent in 2012. In 2009, 25 percent of respondents held a favorable view of the U.S.; that figure dropped to 15 percent in 2012. Finally, approval of Obama’s ‘international policies’ fell from 34 percent in 2009 to 15 percent in 2012. Without a substantive shift, these numbers will continue to decline, further cementing the reality that there never was a new beginning.

Can things be turned around, given the current state of affairs? It would be misleadingly Pollyannaish to think that President Obama could snap his fingers and magically change opinion towards him from Muslim countries. Moreover, there are certain political realities that will remain. The U.S. will continue to be an ally of Israel. The U.S. will continue to fight terrorism. And the U.S. will not be able to fund new Marshall plans in the Middle East for the foreseeable future. Nevertheless, there is a lot that can and should be done.

At the outset, President Obama needs to re-launch a dialogue with the Muslim world. At the beginning of his first term he went to Cairo to give a speech. Perhaps he should go to Cairo in 2013 to have a conversation. In fact, since becoming president, Obama has visited only the country of his upbringing, Indonesia, apart from the initial trips to Saudi Arabia and Egypt (in addition to cloak-and-dagger visits to Afghanistan), within the Muslim world. Instead of distant speeches and dispatched drones, the Administration would be served by a President who is more engaged with his audience, through visits as well as frank and honest dialogue during those trips.

Although the U.S. will not reverse decades of support for Israel, it need not ally with the most extreme policies of the Israeli government. Continuing to be the lone voice at the United Nations and international community defending illegal Israeli practices is a sharp blow to many efforts of the Obama administration. There is no third-term, and the President should stop pandering to contrived political interests in Washington D.C. There are enough Jewish supporters, lobby groups, and intelligentsia, who would support a more moderate and principled set of policies towards the Palestinian-Israeli conflict.

Israel is, of course, not the only foreign policy issue that should be of concern. The U.S., while acting in its national interest, should remain consistent in its language and support for key principles of human rights. It is when it becomes caught in naked hypocrisy that support for the Administration falls, whether in Bahrain in 2011 or Egypt in 2012, and a range of countries, perhaps, in 2013.
Finally, initiatives that can make an impact on tackling the economic despair for young people, like the 100 million youth who will enter the labor market over the next decade in the Arab world, need to be prioritized. There needs to be sufficient attention and support for the global entrepreneurship program that can truly support the emerging and exciting entrepreneurial energy in places like Amman and Ramallah, Karachi and Kuala Lumpur. The U.S. has the best soft-power in this area, from the start-up scene in Silicon Valley to MIT Labs, yet it is hardly deployed, even though the White House calls entrepreneurship, “a critical pillar of U.S. global engagement.”

There is a tremendous opportunity in President Obama’s second term to catalytically shift relations with Muslim communities and turn potential adversaries into allies. If the status quo, however, is maintained in policy and practice, this opportunity will be lost.

This article originally appeared in the print edition of the Diplomatic Courier, in the January/February 2013 issue. It can be accessed online at: http://www.diplomaticourier.com/news/regions/middle-east/1315-on-day-one-a-new-new-beginning. 

          â€˜Gewoon Geeta gebleven’        

Velen dachten dat Geeta Mangal-Mansaram (30) in 2000 slechts voor het verjongde aangezicht aanschoof in De Nationale Assemblee. Tweemaal ‘timmerde' ze op ministers en leek ze in botsing te komen met de partijdiscipline. Toch staat ze nu op een tweede, verkiesbare plaats op kandidatenlijst van Wanica. "Dat wil dus zeggen dat de partij voor kwaliteit gaat. Ik was een testcase voor het Nieuw Front."

Tekst Iwan Brave/de Ware Tijd, 23 april 2005 - foto DNA


Het huis van Sharmila Geeta Ratna Mangal-Mansaram en haar man is eenvoudig en nauwelijks ingericht. Ze zijn net enkele weken geleden verhuisd, van de ene uithoek in Wanica naar de andere. Het is een huurhuis. In de woonkamer staat, op de nodige apparatuur na, eigenlijk alleen een bankstel. Wat ook opvalt is het altaar, tegen een muur, met overwegend rode kleuren en religieuze relikwieën.
Mangal zit ontspannen in kleermakerszit op de bank. Ze is lid van ‘The International Society for Krishna Consciousness', ook wel bekend als Hare Krishna. "Het is een levensfilosofie met vier basisprincipes", vertelt ze over haar geloof. "Eén: geen intoxicerende dranken, waaronder thee en koffie; twee: niet gokken; drie: geen ongeoorloofde seks en vier: vegetarisch eten. Mijn man Roy was er eerst bij. Ik volgde later. Ik had er veel kritiek op in het begin. ‘Wie eet er nu geen vlees?' zei ik. Maar wanneer de filosofie uiteen wordt gezet, dan spreekt het aan. Vlees is alleen maar streling van de tong; maar voor je spirituele beleving is het niet goed." Lachend zegt ze: "Ik heb nu vijf kookboeken met duizenden recepten; het is heel goed gelopen allemaal."
Op het altaar ligt het heilige geschrift de Bhagvad Gita. Elke morgen gaat ze in gebed. Dagelijks zestien ‘rondjes' chanten, met de mala in de hand, die 108 kraaltjes heeft. Per ronde chant ze de mantra: ‘Hare Krishna, Hare Krishna, Krishna Krishna, Hare Hare; Hare Rama, Hare Rama, Rama Rama, Hare Hare.' En dat zestien maal 108 kralen. Ze deelt het op in tweemaal een uur per dag. "Als je wordt geïnitieerd dan moet je je strikter aan de regels houden, dan wordt je espiring disciple ", vertelt ze. Maar zover is Mangal-Mansaram nog niet. Vooral vanwege haar politieke drukte.
Toch is ze er voorstander van dat het beroep van parlementariër een fulltime betrekking wordt. "Nu zijn we parlementariër plus iets. Ik ben beleidsmedewerker bij het Ministerie van Openbare Werken, het gaat daardoor minder goed. Je doet je best. Maar een goede wet vergt veel research. Je wil goed handhaafbare en goed uitvoerbare wetten maken. Bij een dubbele functie gaat eentje inboeten of gaan beide minder goed."
De ‘schadeloosstelling' die ze krijgt als parlementariër, plus de representatie- en autotoelage, komt op zo'n vijfduizend Surinaamse dollar.
Op de vraag of dat niet al voldoende is om alvast fulltime aan de slag te gaan, zegt ze: "In de ogen van het volk is het een immens bedrag. Maar als vertegenwoordiger van de district ben je een manusje-van-alles. Iedereen komt naar je toe: de tempels, de sociale en culturele verengingen en organisaties en dan ook nog de sociale gevallen. Je bent constant bezig met geven. Ook vanuit mijn religieuze achtergrond: wat je ook geeft; je stuurt nooit iemand met lege handen weg. Ook je familie; bij huwelijken kan je niet komen met donaties van een tientje. Al mijn geld zit zowat in donaties. Anders had ik mijn eigen huis al gebouwd. Mensen dachten ook dat ik als parlementariër zou veranderen. Maar ze zien: ‘Geeta is Geeta gebleven'. Het verbaast ze. In onze tempel wordt het ook gepropageerd: je moet nederig blijven." Met trots zegt ze: "Ik heb geen enkele privilege van de overheid genomen: geen auto, geen benzine, geen perceel, geen huis, geen niks; alles is van mezelf."

Nieuwbakken politica
Hoewel ze in 2000 gelanceerd is als een nieuwbakken politica, zit ze al 13 jaar in de politiek. Daarvoor was ze kaderlid van de VHP. "Toen al was ik actief op het podium. Ik was goed in mijn Nederlands en Hindi; dat sloeg aan. In 1996 was ik RR-kandidaat, maar ik deed hiervan principieel afstand vanwege een andere regering die aantrad." Dat jaar liepen vijf VHP'ers, onder wie Marijke Djwalapersad, over als splinterpartij BVD, waardoor een door de NDP geregisseerde regering kon aantreden. "Dat Marijke overliep, heeft voor mij een deur opengemaakt. In 1999 studeerde ik af en had vanaf 1997 stage gelopen bij Jagernath Lachmon. In die tijd deed ik een politiek programma bij Sangeet Mala, gericht tegen de regering-Wijdenbosch. Er waren toen heel wat corruptiezaken aan de gang."
`Haar kandidaatstelling in 2000 kwam als een ‘verrassing'. Het werd haar pas medegedeeld op de partijraadsvergadering die over de kandidaatstellingen ging. "Ik was best geschrokken. Je bent 24; wat heb je te zoeken in het parlement. In die periode was ik onder leiding van Radjkoemar Randjietsingh, via hem ben ik erin gekomen." Over haar ervaringen als parlementariër zegt ze: "Je moet je aanpassen aan de omstandigheden. Het zijn lange vergaderingen. In het begin had ik veel moeite daarmee. Er was niet echt regelmaat. Soms waren we twee tot drie uur in de ochtend er nog niet uit. Met de huidige voorzitter is het besluit genomen te vergaderen tot uiterlijk zes uur 's avonds, bij begrotingsbehandeling tot acht uur en in zeer uitzonderlijke gevallen tot tien uur. Met de nieuwe leiding is er heel wat ordening gekomen. Ik kan me daarin terug vinden."
Ook kan ze zich terugvinden in de partijdiscipline. "Als je lid wordt van een partij dan ga je mee met alle geschreven regels en de partijbeginselen. Binnen dat kader dien je te functioneren. Het opereren binnen dat kader kan in strijd zijn met je persoonlijke visie." Mangal-Mansaram is ervan overtuigd dat Suriname ‘geen personendemocratie' is maar een ‘partijendemocratie'. Het staat ook zo in het decreet op de politieke organisatie; iemand kan alleen gekozen worden voor de DNA als lid van een politieke organisatie.
Daarom stond ze ook achter de Terugroepwet die ze mede heeft ontworpen. "Ik zal nooit meewerken aan een wet die mij monddood maakt. Aanvankelijk stonden ook in het ontwerp formuleringen als ‘in strijd met je verkiezingsbelofte' en ‘in strijd met partijbeginselen'. Maar dat was te ruim. Ik heb toen voorgesteld het te beperken tot twee gronden: royement – bijvoorbeeld wegens onzedelijk gedrag – en overlopen. We zinspeelden al geruime tijd op zo'n wet. Het was Fred Derby die had gezegd: ‘We moeten het overlopen van parlementariërs tijdens de rit aan banden leggen'."


Luis in de pels

Tweemaal leek haar persoonlijke visie openlijk in botsing te komen met de partijdiscipline. Tijdens de begrotingsbehandeling van 2004 zei ze ‘ongezouten dat een aantal ministers die weer met ‘hetzelfde verhaal' kwamen maar beter niet terugkeert voor een tweede termijn. En twee en een half jaar was ZE een luis in de pels minister Gilds van Justitie en Politie. Ten aanzien van het criminaliteitsvraagstuk eiste ze meer pit en daadkracht van Gilds. "We zijn coalitie; je draagt een stukje regeringsverantwoordelijkheid," verheldert ze nogmaals. "Daarom moet je een tweesporenbeleid trekken, een middenweg. Maar als zaken niet worden gedaan, wil je er harder tegenaan, want het belang van de samenleving staat voorop. Dan moet je misschien een beetje timmeren op de minister, en dat wordt je niet altijd in dank afgenomen."
Mangal-Mansaram werd – althans zo leek het – beide malen teruggefloten door haar partijvoorzitter Ram Sardjoe, tevens voorzitter van de DNA. Maar ze wuift deze visie van de hand. "Al zou de voorzitter mij op het matje hebben geroepen, ik heb het nooit zo gezien. Hij wilde zijn politieke ervaring met mij delen. Iemand die al 43 jaar in de politiek zit, heeft het toch wel in zijn vingertoppen", klinkt het nu ineens als een voorbeeldige leerling. "Mijn conclusie is dat je veel kan leren. Je hoeft er niet altijd mee eens te zijn. Mijn voorzitter wilde me duidelijk maken hoe het politieke spel te spelen. Ik heb opengestaan voor die kritiek. Dit politieke spel en het algemeen belang hoeven niet met elkaar in strijd te zijn. Je kan de minister voor hond uitmaken of je kan hem aaien. Als je het een beetje inkleed dan krijg je wel zaken gedaan. Wat is dan belangrijker: je ego strelen of dat het algemeen belang wordt uitgevoerd? Als de persoon Mangal moet buigen daarvoor, dan doe ik dat."
Al 43 jaar in de politiek, is er dan eerder sprake van politieke verstarring? "Ik heb niets bij Sardjoe gezien dat hij verstard is. Hij gaat voor argumenten: je moet kunnen onderbouwen. Het lukt mij meestal wel hem te overtuigen. Dat is nog altijd beter dan wanneer er wordt gezegd: ‘Omdat ik dat zeg'. Sardjoe gaat voor een gericht jongeren- en vrouwenbeleid. Op elke vergadering roept hij vrouwen op te participeren. Dat zou in zijn tijd een rariteit zijn. Hij heeft ook een doelgroep gemaakt van de ‘first voters', dat zijn jongeren die voor het eerst kiesgerechtigd zijn. Vanuit de partij worden zij benaderd met propagandamateriaal. We hopen dat velen respons zullen geven."

Politieke uitbraak
Hoe dan ook, het ogenschijnlijk teruggefloten worden zou normaal een schending van het politieke aangezicht zijn. Het ‘beetje timmeren' op ministers leverde meteen haar politieke doorbraak of beter gezegd uitbraak op. Ze werd een jonge heldin, omdat ze openlijk in het verweer durfde te komen tegen een rigide partijdiscipline. De West noemde haar de ‘Jeanne d'Arc'. "Het ging wel gepaard met spanning binnen de partij, omdat ik niet vooraf afstemming pleegde. Ik ging op solotoer. Maar er is wat gedaan aan de criminaliteit; soms helpt een koevoet."
Toch vindt Mangal-Mansaram het onterecht dat de indruk bestaat dat het drie jaar heeft geduurd voordat ze als jongere haar mond durfde te roeren in het parlement. "Dat is een foute indruk die mensen hebben. We werden in juli 2000 beëdigd. Inderdaad neem je de eerste maanden een afwachtende houding. In november-december, tijdens de begrotingsbehandeling, hield ik mijn maidenspeech. Ik werd toen nog geïnterrumpeerd door Jenny Simons, wat overigens heel spannend was, want zij is toch een van de ervaren mensen. Maar positieve dingen vallen de mensen niet op; alleen controverse en ruzie."
Hoewel het interne democratische gehalte van politieke partijen ‘naar een hoger niveau' moet, durft Mangal-Mansaram te stellen dat die van de VHP ‘vrij hoog' is. "Iedereen was ervan overtuigd dat ik nooit meer kandidaat zou worden gesteld, omdat ik zogenaamd ruzie met de VHP zou hebben. ‘Zij komt nooit meer op de lijst', werd er gezegd. Er waren weddenschappen afgesloten voor soms wel duizend Surinaamse dollars; mensen kwamen naar me toe om te vertellen dat ze hun geld hadden verloren", vertelt ze grinnikend. Ze is als tweede geplaatst op de kandidatenlijst voor Wanica, achter vice-president Jules Ajodhia. "Dat wil dus zeggen dat de partij voor kwaliteit gaat. Ik was een testcase voor het Nieuw Front. Mensen waren bezorgd dat Venetiaan en Gilds niet zouden tekenen. Het democratisch gehalte van het Nieuw Front is toch wel hoog en dat geeft heel wat hoop voor de toekomst."

Nationale Ombudsman
Hoewel ze stelt dat niemand onmisbaar is, ambieerde ze toch wel een tweede termijn. Ze had namelijk voor een aantal zaken gepleit zoals het ‘Instituut Nationale Ombudsman', waarover overigens haar afstudeerscriptie ging. Mangal-Mansaram is bezig met de voorbereiding van een wetsontwerp hiervoor, wat ook wordt opgenomen in het verkiezingsprogramma.
"De Nationale Ombudsman is een belangrijk instituut om de relatie tussen overheid en burger te verbeteren", zegt ze. "Burger kunnen nergens terecht met hun klachten. Voor als je onheus wordt bejegend of dat je vergunningaanvraag of bouwtekening al een jaar ligt te wachten voor behandeling. Bepaalde beroepsmogelijkheden werken nu eenmaal niet in de praktijk of mensen kennen die niet. En de weg naar de rechter is meestal een lijdensweg. Zo'n instituut vereist wel een hoog democratisch gehalte; je moet als overheid zo'n waakhond gedogen. De wetsartikelen zijn af, alleen de memorie van toelichting levert nog enkele problemen op."
Sowieso kon het allemaal veel beter wat de afgelopen vijf jaar is neergezet. "Ik onderwerp mezelf altijd aan kritiek. We zullen de komende periode zeker harder moeten werken aan bepaalde stukken. Ik ga mijn eigen aanpak verbeteren: meer ordening en meer mensen betrekken bij het werk, ook jongeren, voor meer diepgang. In het begin dachten mensen dat ik alleen aanzat voor het gezicht van verjonging; om vijf jaren een jaknikker te zijn. Die mensen hebben lelijk op hun neus gekeken."
En is minister Gilds een van die mensen? "Gilds is een heel aardig mens, heel aangenaam. Maar op het punt van beleid ging het best wel niet goed. Hij wilde bepaalde mensen in bescherming nemen. Mijn standpunt is: haal ze weg, want we hebben geen tijd te verliezen. Mensen dachten dat ik iets tegen Gilds had. Dat was ook het dilemma: hij is een innemend mens, jammer was uitgerekend hij de minister van Justitie. Maar wanneer het algemeen belang in het geding zal zijn, zal je mij toch even hard kritiek horen leveren, of het mijn eigen regering is of niet. Het inkleden zal dan niet altijd even goed lukken."


          Yemen: East Africa Key Message Update, August 2017        
Source: Famine Early Warning System Network
Country: Ethiopia, Somalia, South Sudan, Yemen

Major food security Emergencies continue across the region due to conflict, drought

Key Messages

  • A major food security Emergency is expected to continue into early 2018 in the Somali Region of Ethiopia, following a severe drought over the past year. Large food consumption gaps among worst-affected households, in combination with serious outbreaks of Acute Watery Diarrhea and measles are contributing to atypically high levels of acute malnutrition. Given the severity of current and projected food security outcomes, the resumption of large-scale assistance is critically needed to prevent worst-affected pastoral areas from moving into Catastrophe (IPC Phase 5).

  • Poor households in the Hiraan, Bakool, Gedo, Lower Shabelle, and Middle Shabelle agropastoral areas of central and southern Somalia are likely to remain in Crisis (IPC Phase 3) and Emergency (IPC Phase 4) through 2017 with the greatest food insecurity expected after September, when households exhaust food stocks. In the event that there is a significant interruption to current food assistance programs and higher prices further reduce household food access, Famine (IPC Phase 5) is possible.

  • A large-scale food security Emergency continues across South Sudan, with over half of the total population in need of humanitarian assistance. An estimated 10,000 people on isolated islands in the White Nile River, between Leer and Jonglei, remain of greatest concern. Recent field assessments have confirmed that some island locations remain inaccessible to humanitarian actors and it is expected populations on these islands lack access to emergency assistance. It is feared outcomes may be worse among these populations and some households could be in Catastrophe (IPC Phase 5).

  • In Yemen, large populations continue to face Crisis (IPC Phase 3) or Emergency (IPC Phase 4) acute food insecurity, with outcomes likely most severe among the nearly 2 million IDPs. Yemen continues to face a risk of Famine (IPC Phase 5) in a worst-case scenario in which imports through Al Hudaydah and Salif ports and internal trade are significantly disrupted, and humanitarian assistance fails to reach populations most in need. Appropriate response is also needed to address a major, ongoing cholera outbreak and mitigate the risk of increased acute malnutrition and mortality, particularly among populations facing both food consumption gaps and cholera.


          Yemen: Another 180 migrants forced from boat today, a day after 50 Somalis, Ethiopians were drowned by smugglers off Yemen        
Source: International Organization for Migration
Country: Ethiopia, Somalia, Yemen

Aden – Up to 180 migrants are reported to have been forced from a boat today (10/08) by smugglers off the coast of Yemen. Five bodies have been recovered so far and around 50 are reported missing. This latest incident comes barely 24 hours after smugglers forced more than 120 Somali and Ethiopian migrants into the sea as they approached the coast of Shabwa, a Yemeni Governorate along the Arabian Sea resulting in the drowning of around 50 migrants. The migrants had been hoping to reach countries in the Gulf via war-torn Yemen.

Shortly after the tragedy, staff from IOM, the UN Migration Agency, found the shallow graves of 29 migrants on a beach in Shabwa, during a routine patrol. The dead had been quickly buried by those who survived the smuggler’s deadly actions. IOM is working closely with the International Committee of the Red Cross to ensure appropriate care for the deceased migrants’ remains.

IOM’s medical staff also provided urgent care to the 27 surviving migrants, both females and males, who had remained on the beach. IOM provided initial health checks and assistance, including food, water and other emergency relief. Some of the survivors (approximately 42 in addition to the 27 survivors IOM spoke to) had already left the beach before being assisted. Twenty-two migrants are reportedly still missing and unaccounted for. The approximate average age of the passengers on the boat was 16.

"The survivors told our colleagues on the beach that the smuggler pushed them to the sea, when he saw some ‘authority types’ near the coast," explained Laurent de Boeck, the IOM Yemen Chief of Mission. "They also told us that the smuggler has already returned to Somalia to continue his business and pick up more migrants to bring to Yemen on the same route. This is shocking and inhumane. The suffering of migrants on this migration route is enormous. Too many young people pay smugglers with the false hope of a better future," continued de Boeck.

Since January 2017 to date, IOM estimates that around 55,000 migrants left the Horn of Africa to come to Yemen, most with the aim of trying to find better opportunities in the Gulf countries. More than 30,000 of those migrants are under the age of 18 from Somalia and Ethiopia, while a third are estimated to be female.

This journey is especially hazardous during the current windy season in the Indian Ocean. Smugglers are active in the Red Sea and the Gulf of Aden, offering fake promises to vulnerable migrants. IOM and its partners operate across the region to support these migrants and provide lifesaving assistance to those who find themselves abused or stranded along the route.

For more information, please contact:

Lina Koussa at IOM Aden, Tel: +967 73 770 0120, Email: lkoussatdy@iom.int
Olivia Headon at IOM HQ in Geneva, Tel: +41794035365, Email: oheadon@iom.int


          Yemen: Up to 50 Somali, Ethiopian Migrants Deliberately Drowned by Smugglers off Yemen        
Source: International Organization for Migration
Country: Ethiopia, Somalia, Yemen

Aden – Early this morning (09/08), a human smuggler, in charge of the boat, forced more than 120 Somali and Ethiopian migrants into the pitching sea as they approached the coast of Shabwa, a Yemeni Governorate along the Arabian Sea. The migrants had been hoping to reach countries in the Gulf via war-torn Yemen.

Shortly after the tragedy, staff from IOM, the UN Migration Agency, found the shallow graves of 29 migrants on a beach in Shabwa, during a routine patrol. The dead had been buried rapidly by those who survived the smuggler’s deadly actions. IOM is working closely with the International Committee of the Red Cross to ensure appropriate care for the deceased migrants’ remains.

IOM’s medical staff also provided urgent care to the 27 surviving migrants, both females and males, who had remained on the beach. IOM provided initial health checks and assistance, including food, water and other emergency relief. Some of the survivors had already left the beach before being assisted. 22 migrants are reportedly still missing and unaccounted for. The approximate average age of the passengers on the boat was 16.

"The survivors told our colleagues on the beach that the smuggler pushed them to the sea, when he saw some ‘authority types’ near the coast," explained Laurent de Boeck, the IOM Yemen Chief of Mission. "They also told us that the smuggler has already returned to Somalia to continue his business and pick up more migrants to bring to Yemen on the same route. This is shocking and inhumane. The suffering of migrants on this migration route is enormous. Too many young people pay smugglers with the false hope of a better future," continued de Boeck.

Since January 2017 to date, IOM estimates that around 55,000 migrants left the Horn of Africa to come to Yemen, most with the aim of trying to find better opportunities in the Gulf countries. More than 30,000 of those migrants are under the age of 18 from Somalia and Ethiopia, while a third are estimated to be female.

This journey is especially hazardous during the current windy season in the Indian Ocean. Smugglers are active in the Red Sea and the Gulf of Aden, offering fake promises to vulnerable migrants. IOM and its partners operate across the region to support these migrants and provide lifesaving assistance to those who find themselves abused or stranded along the route.

For more information, please contact:

Lina Koussa at IOM Aden, Tel: +967 73 770 0120, Email: lkoussatdy@iom.int

Olivia Headon at IOM HQ in Geneva, Tel: +41227179435, Email: oheadon@iom.int


          World: Food Assistance Outlook Brief, August 2017        
Source: Famine Early Warning System Network
Country: Afghanistan, Burkina Faso, Burundi, Central African Republic, Chad, Democratic Republic of the Congo, Djibouti, El Salvador, Ethiopia, Guatemala, Haiti, Honduras, Kenya, Lesotho, Liberia, Madagascar, Malawi, Mali, Mauritania, Mozambique, Nicaragua, Niger, Nigeria, Rwanda, Sierra Leone, Somalia, South Sudan, Sudan, Uganda, United Republic of Tanzania, World, Yemen, Zambia, Zimbabwe

This brief summarizes FEWS NET’s most forward-looking analysis of projected emergency food assistance needs in FEWS NET coverage countries. The projected size of each country’s acutely food insecure population is compared to last year and the recent five-year average. Countries where external emergency food assistance needs are anticipated are identified. Projected lean season months highlighted in red indicate either an early start or an extension to the typical lean season. Additional information is provided for countries with large food insecure populations, an expectation of high severity, or where other key issues warrant additional discussion.


          World: Humanitarian Coordinator Information Products, 31 July 2017        
Source: UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs
Country: Afghanistan, Cameroon, Central African Republic, Chad, Colombia, Côte d'Ivoire, Democratic Republic of the Congo, Eritrea, Ethiopia, Haiti, Iraq, Jordan, Lebanon, Libya, Mali, Myanmar, Niger, Nigeria, occupied Palestinian territory, Pakistan, Philippines, Somalia, South Sudan, Sudan, Syrian Arab Republic, Ukraine, World, Yemen


          Yemen: Security Council Presidential Statement Urges Greater Humanitarian Access to Famine-Threatened Yemen, South Sudan, Somalia, Nigeria (Presidential Statement S/PRST/2017/14)        
Source: UN Security Council
Country: Nigeria, Somalia, South Sudan, Yemen

SC/12946

SECURITY COUNCIL
8020TH MEETING (AM)

Calling upon all parties in Yemen, South Sudan, Somalia and north-east Nigeria to urgently take steps that would enable a more effective humanitarian response, the Security Council today expressed its grave concern about the unprecedented level of global humanitarian needs and the threat of famine currently facing more than 20 million people in those countries.

Issuing presidential statement S/PRST/2017/14, the Security Council deplored that in conflict-affected Yemen, South Sudan, Somalia and north-east Nigeria, certain parties had failed to ensure unfettered and sustained access for deliveries of vital food assistance, as well as other forms of humanitarian aid.

By the text, the Council reiterated its call on all parties to allow safe, timely and unhindered access to all areas and to facilitate entry for essential imports of food, fuel and medical supplies into each country and their distribution throughout. The Council further urged all parties to protect civilian infrastructure, which was critical to the delivery of humanitarian aid in the affected countries.

Stressing the need to enhance longer-term recovery and resilience of conflict-affected countries, the Council emphasized with deep concern that ongoing conflict and violence had devastating humanitarian consequences and hindered an effective humanitarian response, and were, therefore, a major cause of famine.

The Security Council noted with appreciation the Secretary-General’s leadership in the efforts to respond to the humanitarian crises in the four countries and asked him to continue to provide information on the humanitarian situation and response, including on the risk of famine. He was also asked to give an oral briefing in October on country-specific impediments to an effective response and to make specific recommendations on how to address those obstacles to enable a more robust short- and long-term response.

The meeting began at 10:03 a.m. and ended at 10:04 a.m.

Presidential Statement

The full text of presidential statement S/PRST/2017/14 reads as follows:

“The Security Council expresses its grave concern about the unprecedented level of global humanitarian needs and the threat of famine presently facing more than 20 million people in Yemen, Somalia, South Sudan and north-east Nigeria, and notes with appreciation the Secretary-General’s leadership in the efforts to respond.

“The Security Council notes the devastating impact on civilians of ongoing armed conflict and violence. The Security Council also emphasizes with deep concern that ongoing conflicts and violence have devastating humanitarian consequences and hinder an effective humanitarian response in the short, medium and long term and are therefore a major cause of famine in the situations above. In this regard, the Security Council also notes the links between food scarcity and increased vulnerability of women, children and persons with disabilities.

“The Security Council reiterates its commitment to work with the Secretary-General to pursue all possible avenues to end conflicts, including through addressing their underlying root causes in an inclusive and sustainable manner.

“The Security Council stresses that responding effectively to these crises requires respect for international humanitarian law by all parties.

“The Security Council underlines the obligations of all parties to armed conflict to respect and protect civilians. The Security Council encourages those with influence over parties to armed conflict to remind the latter of their obligation to comply with international humanitarian law.

“The Security Council further underlines the need to ensure the security of humanitarian operations and personnel in conflict-affected countries. The Security Council calls on all parties to respect and protect medical facilities and personnel and their means of transport and equipment.

“The Security Council deplores that in the conflict-affected Yemen, South Sudan, Somalia and north-east Nigeria, certain parties have failed to ensure unfettered and sustained access for deliveries of vital food assistance, as well as other forms of humanitarian aid. The Security Council reiterates its calls on all parties to allow the safe, timely and unhindered access for humanitarian assistance to all areas and to facilitate access for essential imports of food, fuel and medical supplies into each country, and their distribution throughout. The Security Council further urges all parties to protect civilian infrastructure which is critical to the delivery of humanitarian aid in the affected countries.

“The Security Council calls upon all parties in Yemen, South Sudan, Somalia and north-east Nigeria to urgently take steps that would enable a more effective humanitarian response.

“The Security Council commends efforts by international donors to provide humanitarian assistance in response to these four crises. The Security Council calls for the immediate disbursement of the funds already pledged to Yemen, Somalia, South Sudan and north-east Nigeria at successive international conferences, including those held in Oslo, Geneva and London, if possible in the form of multi-year and unearmarked funding. The Security Council calls on Member States to provide additional resources and funding to pull people back from the brink of famine.

“The Security Council stresses the need to enhance longer-term recovery and resilience of conflict-affected countries.

“The Security Council requests the Secretary-General to continue to provide information on the humanitarian situation and response, including on the risk of famine, in the conflict-affected Yemen, Somalia, South Sudan and north-east Nigeria, as part of his regular comprehensive reporting.

“In light of the unprecedented threat of famine in conflict-affected Yemen, Somalia, South Sudan and north-east Nigeria, the Security Council further requests the Secretary-General to provide an oral briefing, during the month of October 2017, on country-specific impediments to an effective response to the risk of famine in Yemen, South Sudan, Somalia and north-east Nigeria and make specific recommendations on how to address these impediments, in order to enable a more robust short- and long-term response in the four countries. The Security Council welcomes the Secretary-General’s letters on the risk of famine in Yemen, South Sudan, Somalia and north-east Nigeria of 21 February and 27 June 2017 and in this regard requests the Secretary-General to provide early warning when a conflict having devastating humanitarian consequences and hindering an effective humanitarian response risks leading to an outbreak of famine.

“The Security Council expresses its readiness to continue to support the Secretary-General’s call to action to avert famine in conflict-affected countries and commits to engage constructively on the Secretary-General’s specific recommendations.”


          Yemen: UNHCR Yemen Situation: 2017 Funding Update (as of 7 August 2017)        
Source: UN High Commissioner for Refugees
Country: Djibouti, Ethiopia, Somalia, Sudan, Yemen

  • 79.8 M required for 2017

  • 42.0 M contributions received, representing 53% of requirements

  • 37.8 M funding gap for the Yemen situation

All figures are shown in USD


          Somalia: Refugees and Asylum-seekers Statistical Report with UNHCR - 31 July 2017        
Source: UN High Commissioner for Refugees
Country: Eritrea, Ethiopia, Somalia, Syrian Arab Republic, Yemen


          véres vargabéres, emma, horvátországi zenei projekt        
erős varga pista, tresz túró rudi, tátrai tibi csoki, azt hitték hogy az csak úgy megy hogy eljátsszák, hogy neki is van olyan fegyverük ami után takarítani se kell... azt gondolják a férgek hogy ez mind kitaláció, de meg fogják tanulni hogy nem az :-D csak ezek nem működnek akárki kezében. Az nem úgy megy hogy te azt megveszed a feketepiacon és átalakítgatod az olyan hogy azt csak olyan tudja működtetni aki ki van rá képezve és csak abból az egyetlen alapállásból amit már sokszor sokaknak felvázoltam és amit tegyük hozzá sokszor sokan értelmeztek szándékosan félre. Azt hitték hogy el tudják majd játszani hogy nekik van ilyen... s jót röhögnek majd... a többi meg retteg majd tőlük. Nos nekünk nincs félnivalónk ezektől a fegyverektől. Mint a tájfun és a könyváram biztonsági rendszere ez is gondolatvezérelt és nem működik akárkinek a kezében.
Rábasztak kemnyen tibi csoki már bukott a kezén lévő pénzekből már most egy csomót... szívás és még fog is bukni, gyakorlatilag mindet. Előkerült a horvát zenei projekt amit még a gömzsikkel, vgáborral mr greenel csináltunk anno. Egy klasszikus zenei darabot alkottunk meg és ennek keretében bemutattam hogy milyen egy spirituális alapon működő és alkotó közösség. Sajnos elég sok szarházi volt jelen nagyjából mind egy különösen és tudatosan az a többi meg megalkuvó rendszerfogaskerék.
Megint ugatnak a szarházik nagyon magabiztosan és kurva idigesítőek de el fognak hullani ezek is szépen egymás után. Varga erőszakoskodik a csirkéivel... igen neki elég egy csirke is ahhoz hogy átvigyen dolgokat az emberi tudaton kívüli tertományon. Ezért lett erős pista, amit egyébként egy orosz család adott annak idején azért hogy meg tudajam ezeket jelölni. Nos ebből is látszik hogy hol ér véget az ilyenek által épített rendszer. A csirkét levághatja bárki és ha fel is veszik videóra hogy mit csinál senki nem szólhat neki hogy ezt ne csinálja. És mégis ő irányítgatja ezen kersztül a sok szarházi sátánista megnyomorított elméjű patkányt. És a legtöbb fel se fogja hogy hogyan és miként. Itt ér véget a látható struktúrák ereje. És itt kell beavatkoznia azoknak akik látnak és tudják a bizonyítékokat amik nem a "hivatalos" értelemben bizonyítékok hanem a pszichés nyomozás terén. Vannak ilyenek. A nyolcas azért tudta megtalálni azokat akik őt nyomorgatták és irányítgatták, mert elég érzékeny volt ahhoz hogy felismerje és lokalizálja a telepata irányítókat. És persze ki is végezte őket szépen ahogy kell. Ahogy fogytak úgy lett egyre könnyebb neki is meg a többieknek is.
Szóval most megint nagyon aktívak a sátánista vezérlés alatt álló férgek, de el fognak takarodni ők is a másvilágra szépen. Ezek szart se csináltak meg abból amit tanítottam és meg is döglenek szépen akár közelharc akár más útján.
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Eszembe jutott megint az a film amit a mr green csinált - nagyon beteg film. A történet az hogy gyilkolnak gyilkolnak a bezárt bekényszerített résztvevők mire a végén rájönnek hogy nem ez volt a célja a dolognak amit játéknak nevez. Nem akarom elemezgetni. Volt egy jelenet amiben mr gree megkért hogy menjek bele. Hogy leszíjaz egy székre és a fejemet szétlövi egy lefűrészelt  csövű vadászfegyverrel. Nem akarta elhinni hogy engem nem lehet lelőni és szerette volna kiróbálni, de tudta azt is hogy a csapatom megöli azokat akik ezt megpróbálják mert ez egyértelmű gyilkossági kísérlet. Ezért megegyeztünk belementem, hogy oké megteheti, de csak úgy ha megmutatja a kamerák előtt mindenkinek és felveszi és megmutatja a töltényt is hogy tényleg elsült a fegyver. Ezért azt a jelenetet nagy felbontással és jól láthatóan kellett megoldania. A kezemet lazán szíjazta le hogy jól látható legyen hogy bármikor ki tudom húzni onnan és önként mentem bele, plusz miután vegyvert és töltényt választott nem cserélheti le. A töltényt ő maga készítette el és tesztelte otthon hogy biztosan ne legyen gyári hibás. Az ütőszeg megütötte és a töltény mégis csütörtököt mondott.
Ezután persze valahogy eltűnt mégis a nagy felbontású kép mindenhonnan - miért is?
Ők megbékéltek azzal hogy nem tudnak megölni mert jobb vagyok náluk - viszont a kiéheztetős stratégiában ők is ugyanúgy benne vannak azáltal hogy elfordítják a fejüket minimum, de egyébként benne is vannak aktívan is mint ahogy a vraga ott volt angliában a chip jelmezében...
Szóval ők azok akik magas intelligenciával rendlekeznek, és megértették pontosan hogy mit csinálok - de a megértésük intellektuális és nem spirituális. Az intellektuális megértést nem követi felelősségvállalás. Ők szarnak rá hogy elpusztul az egész bolygó csak az ő igányeik legyenek kielégítve.
Ugyanilyen a nagy imi-csilla féle banda is. Simán beáldozta volna a saját gyerekét is csak azért hogy engem támadjon vele. Félelmetes ez a banda. Megértették és tetszett nekik, de csak annyira hogy mint ahogyan a mosszad szokta elindítottak egy irányt errefelé is. Mert minden új megközelítésen elindítanak egy csoportot akik kidolgozzák azt és kivesézik és kontroll alá vonják ha tudják feltéve...
Mint ahogy az AA-val is tették meg az összes 12 lépéses felépülési csoporttal. De nem sikerült tökéletesen mert még így is lehet kivenni és jól működni a keretei között és ki lehet vágni a szart a nélkül hogy harcolni kelljen velük. Csak azt tudták tenni itt mo-n hogy elárasztották és elárasztják ezeket a csoportokat a saját embereik tömegével, hogy csak ők legyenek ott. Egyébként nem működik a dolog. Mert a csoport és a közösség működési módje nem teszi lehetővé hogy megmondóemberek irányítsanak. Mint ahogy a látható élet struktúráiban teszik.
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Varázsszemű lázálom megint parádézik most már készülnek a többiek és felvették a kezeit arcát közelről nagy felbontásban is ha esetleg elváltozna vagy megváltozna akkor érzékeljék hogy mi történt. :-D ÉN csináltam belőle is több maszkot... azt nem fogjátok tudni észrevenni... :-D
"Magyarország nem hagyja magát..." mondja a jelmondatuk... és rohasztanak mindent tovább... De térdre fogtok szépen ereszkedni és látványosan ki foglak benneteket nyírni úgy hogy még akkor se fog senki se hozzám nyúlni mert az egész tetves ország benne van ebben a maskarabálban és szarkupacban és mindenki bukna ha lenne bizonyíték... De meg fogjátok adni magatokat ha máskor nem a végső pusztuláskor... ennek véget fogok vetni.
Andika is bemutatkozott ő csinálta az emma sorozatát... "Te annyi mindent meg tudtunk ott beszélni..." "De mit? Csak szemét ostoba hülyeségekről van benne szó." "Jajj mert nem hallod..." És voltam is egyébként ott, egy rakás szar. Összekeverték a computer alapú telepata rendszerben való "hallást" a megértéssel és persze andika rá is játszott erre tudatosan, mert ő is irányítójává vált ennek a mosléknak, mint a ruben meg a csaja... meg a többi. Egy időben a urben már annyira elszállt magától hogy az egyik filmjébe beugrottam és szépen elpicsáztam mint a szart hogy ébredjen csak rá nem golyóálló... Andika gyakorlatilag szépen megvezetett egy csomó ostoba idiótát és semmit sem változtatott csak elvan ebben a msakarabálban... "ó azok a szép kalapok..." "Tudod te mennyi faszt és pinát kellett leápolnom ott?" tudom baby és nagyon élvezted mind. Már amikor bekerültél a bajai csapatba úgy indítottál: "Jó akkor én bedobom magam a közösbe..." és nyerítettél mint egy kis kamaszkurva... persze neked akkor már megvolt a magad története kurvának neveltek és így kondícionáltak és az is lettél és maradtál. A háborúnak akkor van vége amikor elkezdődik a felépülési szakasz. Az pedig csak akkor kezdődik el ha "hivatalosan" megkeres valamelyikőtök és kárpótol és rehabilitál. Egyébként marad. Sőt egyre durvább méreteket fog ölteni.
A felépülési szakasz ha valaha elkezdődik - egyenlőre nem látom ennek semmi alapját hogy megtörténhetne, de azért hagyjuk meg a reményt, az hal meg utoljára - akkor is tovább fog folytatódni még egy darabig a gyilkolás, de onnantól csak a tudatosan mocskos szarházik fogják gyilkolni egymást a massza nagy része át fog billenni félelemből vagy bátroságból mindegy - de el fognak ezektől az elmeháborodottaktól fordulni.
Ezért nem akarják meglépni a dolgot és tovább dolgoznak azon hogy megöljenek engem. Semmi más céljuk nincs az sem érdekli őket hogy tényleg mindent tudok róluk és tényelg meg is tudom tenni azt amit beharangoztam már annyiszor. Ott a kezükben a sok bizonyíték és hallgatnak róla. Ezért hallgatnak mert akkor el kellene mondaniuk azt is hogy mi az ő szerepük és céljuk... és akkor összedőlne a nagy hazugságvár amit évszázadok alatt felépítettek.
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rubanék szedtek elő egy luther végrendeletet, hogy a könyvtáramból lopták... nos erre csak azt tudom mondani hogy aki volt ott lent az csak röhög ezen... mindenki tudja aki konyít a történelemhez valamicskét hogy luther gazdag volt és az egyház ezt igyekezett titkolni... meg szolgákat tartott meg ilyenek. nem egy olyan dokumentum ami bekerülhetett volna. a ruben erőlködött hogy tegyem be, de nem tartottam annyira fontosnak mert nem az. Én azokat a dokumentumokat gyűjtöttem egy helybe amik az emberi psziché manipulálásának és befolyásolásának, a közös tudat és tudaton kívüli és a környező világ erőinek a kapcsolatáról szóltak és azok kutatásáról vagy ezen kutatások és tudások eltitkolásáról... meg azokról a személyekről akik ebben részt vettek stb. A történelemhamisítás önmagában nem volt szempont. Abból annyi dokumentum van amennyit nem szégyellsz összeszedni. Akár könyvtárakban is találhatsz bizonyítékokat. Nem nagy ügy. Ez elég gyenge volt... de köszi hogy kiástátok az alapokat :-D nagy szolgálat az emberiségnek...
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tipikusan hazugságokkal próbálják ellensúlyozni a veszteségeiket... és sikerrel járnak a legtöbb szarházi zombi emberoidnál... Közben rohad minden tovább az idő fogy egyre vészjóslóbban...
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Szivesen szétcsapnék közöttük megint itt ugatnak a patkányok rohadt magabiztosan, de nem teszem mert akkor magam robbantanám szét ezt a poklot darabjaira és nem akarom még elvenni az esélyt ha van valami halovány. Látok valamit a háttérben - érzékelem hogy vannak akik látnak és cselekszenek is talán, de annyira haloványnak tűnik innen hogy elkeserítő. Miközben mi vagyunk a legjobbak mégis rohan a vesztébe ez az egész hulladékhegy.
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Akkor is azt mondta a mr green meg a többi hogy oké most már értjük... oszt mégse értették meg... azaz intellektuálisan értették korábban is meg akkor is, csak szarnak ők erre az egészre. A gömzsik amikor a kecskét áldozta akkor azt kérte az "úrtól" hogy engem pusztítson el és őt emelje a trónra... és ezt azóta se javította ki sehogyan se. CSak elvannak a maskarabálban szerintem és élnek mint hal a vízben. De ma már szarok én is erre az egészre. Már nem érdekel. A nagyimiék is ugyanígy. elvették a jó ötleteket, a fegyvereket a technikát és jót röhögtek rajta m a hátam mögött... mint a criminal minds csapata... azok is eljátszották a jó fiúkat és közben gyilkoltak olyanokat is akik épp irányt váltottak volna a helyes irány felé.
A kis szöszi jelezte... De leintettem hagyja őket, mert utánuk ő bizonyítékot soha sem fog összeszedni... kár a gőzért. Ezért kaptak egy embert aki tesztelte őket. Ott kiderült hogy ki kicsoda és mit csinál. El is tűntek szépen a süllyesztőbe a nyolcas elintézte őket. egy maradt csak meg ahogy súgják az audio rendszeren kersztül... a hutchner mert ő egyébként drogfüggő volt és megmaradt a 12 lépéses program és annak alapértékei mellett... Nos hát ennyit erről. A legtöbb így működik. Csak akkor marad meg a program mellett, ha ott lóg a pallos a nyaka felett. Tehát ez a megoldás. És nem viccelek. Vagy megcsináljátok vagy megdöglötök. Spirituális társadalom. Úgy ahogy én elmagyaráztam. Aki félreértelmezi az le lesz vadászva kegyetlenül.
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A hunger gamesben azt a lángoló ruhát is én csináltam. Ezt is elhazudták és ki hát azok akik a legjobban bizonygatták mennyire hálásak meg mennyire jó amit csinálok... és közben röhögtek rajtam a hátam mögött... és most is ezt teszik meg bezsebelik a pénzt és elmennek nyaralni meg baszópartikra...
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De van ezért pár emlék amire szivesen emlékszem. A pocoknyúlra pl. Akkor is a szarházik odairányították a másik pocoknyulat meg a szamarakat hogy lopja el a télire valóját - csak azért mert segített nekem. Mondtam neki hogy ne aggódjon. "DE tudod hogy ez mekkora munka? És még nem gyűjtöttem eleget és ha nem lesz elég akkor meghalok a télen!" Megnéztem miket hordott oda és szedtem neki egy hatalmas adagot... hú azt látni kellett volna... amikor meglátta... :-D Szetem neki bőségesen és körbe is raktam kővel hogy ne tudja a vadszamár elvinni legközelebb... a végén odajött hozzám. Amikor apu látta a videót megkereste a helyet és a pocoknyulat pár évre rá. Még megvolt. "MEgtaláltam!" "Hihetetlen vagy!" mondom elismeréssel... ő meg csak a maga szerény módján... "Hát ebben jó vagyok..." "És mi volt?" "Szedtem neki én is kaját és bedugtam a kövei alá." "Hol találtad meg?" "Ugyanott." "És?" "És később hozzám is odajött. MEgnézte a kaját, majd itt ott kidugta a fejét a kövek mögül és lassan lassan körbecserkészett, majd odajött egészen és felkapaszkodott a combomra a mellső lábaival..." "Megsimogattad?" "Nem. De nem is akartam, nem akarom hogy hozzászokjanak az emberhez." "Én nem bírtam megállni megsimogattam."
Hatalmas volt. És egyszer egy anakonda is megengedte hogy felvegyem ahogy vadászik és egy hal ottmaradt prédának. Az anakonda eldugta a fejét mert azt mondta hogy nem tudja megállni hogy ne kapja el a halat.
Sok állat segített, persze mindig rám volt ragasztva egy figyelő és mindig manipuláltak mindent körülöttem hogy ne legyen teljes az örömöm. De akkor is jó emlék. Sok állat tanított sok érdekes dolgot nekem. A denevéres kaladból tanultam meg pl hogy mi is képesek vagyunk a hőt érzékelni pl éjjel. Fel lehet mentálisan erősíteni a hőérzékelő receptorainkat és minden technikai eszköz nélkül láthatunk hőképet --- azaz érzékelhetünk hőképet éjjel. Éjjellátó nélkül. VAgy épületen belül falon át... pusztán az alapállásod szab határt hogy mire lehetsz képes.
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17th egyébként vargának igaza volt bár tett érte hogy így legyen egy áldozattal... szóval odamentem és megpróbáltam kiszedni mindenkit onnan aki hajlandó volt figyelni rám élőszóval... ott voltam amikor ledobták a mérget én mondtam el hogy almaillata van. Szóval azok mind sátánista irányytású zombik voltak nem kár értük.
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Some joy at least... az eredeti crew dolgozik a criminal minds ból... a szöszi aki egy saját sorozatot is kapott később hazudott. Annak idején amikor először találkozunk szintén egy filmet csináltunk félig valóságosat ott hagytam egy börtönben azzal az ígérettel hogy majd jövök érte is... hazudtam neki mert ő is hazudott. Ezt akarta törleszteni a kis kurva. És nem azon dolgozott hogy felébressze és felszabadítsa a többieket hanem kontrollt akart kialakítani amit ő irányít. Ezért utálom azt az egészet amit ők csinálnak ott, de legalább megmutatják a többieknek is... a kirakatban. Az eredeti crew meg most már nem a kirakatban hanem nemzetközi szinten dolgozik. Megmutatták magukat. Amikor a szöszi megvádolta őket odamentem és megkérdeztem mi a helyzet. Ők ajánlották fel hogy rendezzük és ők hajlandóak mindenkivel elszámolni aki a kezük alá került. Ezért leültünk a szöszi ők és én együtt emgbeszélni a kérdéses helyzeteket. Persze a szöszi méltán volt mérges mert az ő beépülni szándékozó emberei haltak el a szarházi céljaik miatt és amit csináltak a szöszi parancsára. A megbeszélés kezdetén hutchner feltette nekem a kérdést on subconscious level a tudatalatti hangtalan beszéddel hogy elmondhatja e a pontos részleteket vagy sem. Kérte hogy artikuláljak a válasszal. Artikuláltam hogy no, de a válaszom a tudatszintemet nem érte el hogy őket a számítógép vezérelt rendszerre kötve át tudjam verni. Ami nem érte el a tudatomat azt ők nem tudják figyelni mert a számítógépes rendszer nem képes a tudaton kívüli mezőkkel dűlőre jutni. Egyébként mellékszál hogy ezért a figyelést is oda kellett vinni a kommunikációval együtt hogy a tudatunkat kikerülve ne tudjanak mindent amit meg kell őriznünk és félre tudjuk őket vezetni. Mert ami a tudatunkba kerül azt tudják figyelni. Szóval ezért most kiváló szakember módjára és ember módjára társ lévén megmutatták magukat hogy élnek és dolgoznak, mert rájöttek hogy nem emlékszek tudatosan csak arra hogy kamu részleteket árultak el az ügyekről és e miatt az maradt meg a tudatomban hogy hazudtak ők is. DE ők innen tudták hogy a szöszi beépülő manipulátor és nem mondták el neki úgy a dolgokat ahogy történtek.
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A denevéres ügy szintén ugyanehhez kapcsolódik. A mentális amplifikációval ahogyan az érzeteinket és az érzékelésünket módosítjuk teljes test maszkban hogy érezzük a hideget meleget stb ugyanúgy képesek vagyunk - alapállástól és képességektől függően - erősíteni például a hőérzékelésünket is. Fel tudjuk annyira erősíteni hogy éjjel érzékeljük a melegtestű lényeket és más dolgokat is meg tudunk oldani. Ezért nem kell nekünk éjjellátó se.
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Szóval a szöszi és a többi valahogy kötődik az ikóhoz... miért is nem emlékszem.
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Szó nincs itt matthelyzetről. Ez matthelyzet. A régi rabszolgatartó és fosztogató rendszer mattot kapott. A kérdés most már csak az hogy magukkal rántják-e az egész bolygót a pusztulásba vagy megadják magukat és elkezdődik a felépülős szakasz. Vagy van-e számottevő ütőképes ellenállás akik letakarítják az agylúgozott szolgaréteget akik halálig hajlandóak gyönyörű kalapokért és szabad korlátozatlan lehetőségekért eladni a jövőt. Apropó andika az emma című sorozatba meghívta azt a srácot akinek a john lee millert írtam az elementryban. Az andi a komputeres telepatikus rendszerre építve és a szeretet alapjaira igyekezett kontroll rendszert felépíteni és kidolgozni. Azért hívta meg őt hogy megdolgozza - legalábbis ez volt az egyik célja, a másik hogy közben építgessse a szeretet alapjaira épülő kontrollrendszert.
Emlékszem milyen jót mulattunk rajta millerrel. Én is beugrottam oda mert john megkért hogy nézzem meg és adjak tanácsot mit csináljon velük. Mondom hogy maradjon és fejlessze őket. Az andi kondícionálta a csajokat meg a srácokat ott majd john is besegített. Majd mindenki előadott valamit. pl egy balladát elénekelt. A john által segítettek jobban szerepeltek és jobban adtak elő mindent mert ő követte azokat az alapelveket amiket én is tanítottam neki. Segített nekik a legjobb tudása szerint elmagyarázot minden szükséges tudnivalót részletesen és jó gyakorlatokat csináltatott velük, hogy tényleg jók legyenek. Ezzel feltörte mindig az andi - és a mögötte álló kis közösség - kontrollmechnaizmusait és nekik is tovább kellett emelni a szintet. Közben persze dugtak is - mert azt is modntam johnnak hogy én ki szoktam használni az ilyen helyzeteket és jókat szexelek velük - miközben azok kersztül is továbbadom az öröm adását és kapását lehetővé tevő igazi értékeket. Ehhez pedig hozzá kellett kapcsolni egy folyamatos gyakorlatot hogy minden ilyen szex alkalom után kiderítse mit akarnak kiszedni belőle vagy beletenni hogy manipulálják. Mert abban is biztos lehetett hogy ezt fogják tenni. És a tetejébe felállítattam vele - ajánlottam és megcsinálta - egy csapatot akik folyamatosan figyelték az andit hogy miket talál ki és mivel próbálja a többieket kontrollálni és hogyan lehet ezeket feltörni és továbbfejleszteni hogy végre zombikból emberré váljanak. Szóval ez a csapat a háttérben párhuzamosan elemezte mit főz az andi és a csapata, hogy tisztában legyünk vele és legyenek megoldásaink. Közben élveztük hogy azok a jól irányítható emberoidok hogy virulnak ki egy egy jól sikerült ballada előadása után. john azt mondta hogy élvezi ő is ezt a feladatot. És nyilván aki meg nekitámad keményen az meg úgy járt.
Ezt élveztem negyon az egészben amikor láttam valakit hatalmasat teljesíteni mert odafigyelt és betartotta azokat az iránymutatásokat amiket javasoltam és hatalmasat domborított. Amikor a mezőfi helga is kis fekete csajként hatalmasat énekelt azt is élveztem. Ezek meg állandóan azt nyomozták hogy milyen trükkel töröm fel az irányító triggereiket és hogyan vonom őket az irányításom alá. Állandóan a trükköt keresték pedig elmondtam nekik hogy mi a titok. A céljaim tiszták és én tényleg segítek nekik fejlődni és emberéé válni. Felelős szabad emberré érzésekkel valós célokkal és értelmes a világba pozitívan illeszkedő életcéllel, küldetéssel. Ez teszi őket erőssé és olyan kiválóvá. Szeretem őket. Szeretem nézni ahogy fejlődnek ahogy kivirágoznak. Ez a titok, és el is mondtam nekik élőszóval de mind valami mögöttes titkot kerestek inkább - persze azért mert sokuk nem is tudta hogy amit ők tesznek velük annak semmi köze nincs a valódi szeretethez, hanem csak kontrollálni és irányítani uralni akarták őket és ma is ezt teszik. Persze ehhez szembe kellett volna nézniük saját otromba önmaguk felé tett hazugságaikkal és fel kellett volna adni ezeket azáltal hogy kiondják mekkora faszok és milyen baromságot csináltak eddig, majd változtatniuk kellett volna - de akkor jajj oda lett volna a hatalom és a felelősségvállalás nélküli szabadság uralom a többi felett, oda lett volna a pénztárca és a szabad utazgatás a büntetlen fosztogatás és gyilkolás lehetősége.
Ezzel az adnia se tudott szembenézni. És csinálta tovább és most is csinálja tovább építgeti a kontroll rendszerét azaz most már inkább foltozgatni próbálja.
Egyébként az a csapat sokkal ijesztőbb volt számomra mint a gyilkosok hada. A kezdet kezdetén gyakorlatilag alig volt valaki aki hajlandó lett volna dolgozni velem sokszor olyanokat törtem meg akiket az öreg már megtört. Ezek parancskövető robotok voltak. John millernek mondtam  hogy ezért szeretem a természetet, mert a szarházik a feltétel nélkül engedelmeskedő katona, kurva legyártásának receptjét keresték állandóan hogy azt csinálhassanak velük amit csak akarnak és ezért megtörték a pszichéjüket. De itt ütött vissza a természet, mert akiknek a pszichéjét megtörték azok elvesztették a kreativitásukat és zombikká váltak. Amikor növeled akontrollt csökkent az alkotási készség, a teremtőerő. E nélkül pedig rugalmatlan haderőt tudsz csak felépíteni robotokat, emberoidokat akik emgcsinálják amit utasítasz nekik akár halálig is, de nem képesek kreatívan megoldani egy helyzetet vagy nem képesek fejleszteni stb. Itt kerültem képbe az öreg rendszerében is és ezért próbálták a hozzám hasonló kreatív embereket mindenáron az uralmuk alá hajtani. De a természet megmutatja a fogát ellenük. Sorban elhullottak a zombiseregeik a még emberi csapatokkal szemben, mert nem voltak képesek kreatívan gondolkodni. Sok csata elemzésénél vonhattam le azt a következtetést, hogy a janicsárok is ugyan félelmetes halálra fittyet hányó banda volt, de azon kívül hogy nem ismerték a halál-félelemet nem voltak képesek jól levezetni egy csatát. De nem csak ők hanem a többi is elbukott abban a pillanatban amikor olyan helyzetbe kerültek amire az irányítóik nem készítették fel őket és nem voltak irányadó parancsok. Ezért sokukat úgy húztam csőbe hogy vagy meghaltak vagy feltörték az irányítóik által kiadott parancsot - persze megfelelő előkészítés után ahol gondoskodtam arról hogy a kereteik meg legyenek lazítva és megkapja a megfelelő elemző és értékelő készségeket a hadi helyzetre vonatkoztatva amik segíytenek meghozni ezt a döntést.
De ők gyilkosok voltak, pszichopaták ha úgy tetszik, mert amikor megkapták a parancsot akkor nem ismertek semmilyen akadályt és ha belehaltak is volna akkor is végrehajtották volna. Aki találkozott már ilyen gyilkossal szemtől szemben úgy hogy ő volt a célpont az tudja hogy ott semmi se használ. Ha eltöröd a kezét akkor törött kézzel küzd tovább halálig és ha tudja hogy semmi esélye sincs akkor magára szerel egy bombát hogy ki tudjon nyírni. Semmi se működik velük szemben csak megölni lehet őket. Meg lehet törni bárkinek a pszichéjét olyan mélységében hogy ilyen robot váljék belőle. De ezek nem képesek fejleszteni, alkotni és mindenfajta kreativitás hiányzik belőlük. Az andi ugyanzet próbálta kiépíteni méghozzá úgy hogy a szeretet alapjaira épít - legalábbis egy hazug szeretetre, ami a kedvesség a gondoskodás gyengédség elköteleződés felszínét imitálta és bizonyos szinten meg is valósította - de mélységében mindössze eszköz volt egy irányító rendszer kiépítéséhez és egy zombihadsereg, kurvák kémek, szinészek, egyéb létrehozásához. Ez egy kugliképző lett gyakorlatilag mindenes kiglukat képzett akiket irányítani tud és akik képesek belebújni szinte bármelyik karakterbe amibe beleférnek...
Ezek azért voltak még félelemetesebbek a számomra mert ezek látszólag kedves és nyájas emberek látszólag gondolkodnak és van bennük szeretet - de a mélyben nincs bennük szeretet és simán elvágják ők is a torkodat ha van rá lehetőségük vagy úgy gondolják hogy van. De ezeket többnyire csak a távoli gyilkolás módszereire képezte ki az andika, az elszigetelés, a rejtett zaklatás a telepatikus rendszeren keresztül, az utcaszínház, a szeretetadás és megvonás (érzelmi lifteztetés az öngyilkosságba hajszolás egyik eszköze) módszereivel, mérgekkel és pszichikai mérgekkel. A szokott rejtett női típusú manipuláció. Szóval ez azért ijesztőbb mert egy gyilkosról az emberek tudják hogy az nem jó, de ezekről nincs semmilyen kép a társadalmak nagy többségének ők olyan aranyos jólelkű népeknek látják őket akiket lehet szeretni hiszen annyi jót tesznek... s közben rohad minden a kezük nyoma után.
Ezt csinálta az andika miközben szép kalapok szexpartik és az utazgatás élvezeteinek hódolt, szolgálta a rothadás rendszerét és ma is ezt teszi.
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Ahogy én is sokszor húztam csőbe a többieket úgy ezt is tanítottam. Ennek az az előnye hogy az aki nem hajlandó valamire kellő hangsúlyt fektetni vagy teljesen tévesen úgy ítéli meg hogy már tud valamit amit még csak félig sem ért... akkor érdemes egy set up-ot létrehozni neki. Ebben az a jó hogy úgy szembesülhet a hiányosságaival hogy közben átéli akár a halálfélelmet is, és rádöbben mekkorát tévedett, hogy közben biztonságban van, mert nem az ellenségei hanem a barátai teszik ezt és nem akarják kihasználni a szorult helyzetet, és mint végeredményként megjelenhet - ha jól lett megtervezve a set up a külső és belős körülmények pontos feltérképezésével - a hajlandóság a hibás hozzáállás, vélemény vagy szokás, ismeret kijavítására és az iránymutatás befogadására és komolyanvételére. Mindez persze a legtöbbször igen kellemetlen helyzetek átélésével jár, de az kell ahhoz hogy egy mélyen rögzült rossz hozzáállást megközelítést meg tudj törni valakiben. Johnt is behúztam a csőbe mert ő is a magas intelligenciája miatt sokmindenrő lazt gondolta hogy ő azt tudja meg így meg úgy miközben a lényeg mellett elvonatozott mint egy vadászgép. Kicsit le kellett bontani belőle. A különösen magas intelligenciaszint hatalmas segítséget jelenthet de ugyanolyan végzetes akadályt is sőt akadályként még brutálisabb tud lenni ha fe lakarod törni... de ha jól és helyesen használja valaki akkor hatalmas előnyöket hordoz magában.
Úgy emlékszem lee miller rákapott a felépülési munka ízére és tetszett neki, nem tudom ő megmaradt e ezen az úton a sorozat amit együtt kezdtünk még őrzi a szintet kiválóan magasan... a karakter folytonossága észrevehetetlen ami azt jelenti hogy a tanítványok pontosan és jól megértették és követik is a lényegét e miatt konzisztens és észrevehetetlen a csere miközben feltörhetetlen hiszen az csak egy maszk nem egy tárolt karakter... míg lucy liu karakterén látszik és érzékelhető az időnkénti botlás és inkonzisztencia, ami nem túl jó jel nem tudom mi lett vele. Eredetileg azért került oda hogy segítse millert, de lehet hogy ezt megpróbálta valamiféle kontrollá fejleszteni? vagy egyszerűen elmenekült vagy elpusztult mert még durvábban próbálkozott valami mással... ??? Mindegy. De jól esik rájuk gondolni. Főleg a cminds crew-ra hogy dolgoznak meg johnra emlékezni amikor fülig érő szájjal élvezte a csaj előadását és gyönyörű magabiztos énekét amiben benne volt az ő munkája is... a tanító öröme... :-D a kertész és a szakács öröme. Az alkotó ember öröme. Az ember öröme. (mintha őt is láttam volna itt most baján... bár ez is lehet hogy csak utcaszínház ma már nem tudom eldönteni ezt sem és mindegy is ne mérdekel már ez se) Kis öröm az ürömben. még ha minden el is pusztul, mert ez lett megírva a természet erői által - akkor is ezeket észben tartom és erre fogok gondolni. Megérte eddig is eljönni és végig csinálom halálig. Ha lesz változás akkor folytatom, ha nem lesz akkor is megérte. Szép és tartalmas életem volt. Még az állandó nyomorgás és fájdalmak és támadások közepette is... persze volt pénz is a történetben meg duhajkodás de rám ez nem volt jellemző, csak próbáltak elfajzatni engem is mint az összes többit de ezt is feladatként megoldottam.
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A szőke nő a színpadnál aki a tésztát hozta a kacsáknak szintén a komputeres rendszeren keresztül próbált etetni: hogy most "hallasz engem kristálytisztán" a szöszi a ciasorozatbók meg szintén az audio rendszeren keresztül próbál etetni bosszúból hogy "segítünk" ... (ott rohadjon meg...); gyarmati atti szintén elvétette az irányt nem csak nyaralni járt el 6 hónapokra hanem el is tért a lényegtől ezért most elhullanak az emberei sorban meg ő is követni fogja őket... s ezzel nincs egyedül... sokakat győzött meg a régi rendszer okosstojásai hogy nem kell olyan szigorúan dolgozni, mert nincs akkora veszély hiszen "mi" támadjuk a petit csak ő nem tudja, szóval ha megegyezünk akkor nektek nem lesz bántódásotok.... és megegyeztek... ezért nem dolgoztak olyan kitartóan és engedték meg maguknak hogy lazítsanak. Most szívnak mert oda nem kellenek mint erős csapat akiket nem irányíthatnak kedvükre, nekünk meg szintén nem kellenek mint szarházi megalkuvó banda megbízhatatlanok. ÉS hány ilyen van. Ha végignézem az ovódától kezdve az egész csoportot mindenkit!!! akkor lehet látni ki kicsoda ebben a dologban. A legtöbb mind beállt kettős játékosnak: előttem játszották a segítő odaadó elkötelezettet majd a hátam mögött röhögtek hogy milye nhülye ez de  "legalább kikaparja nekünk a gesztenyét...". Óvodától egyetemig akikre amlékszem azok mind benne voltak vannak. Az összes munkahelyemen dolgozók mind. Lehet kiket szem előtt tartani és felelősségre vonni - már amelyik él még. És mind magas szinten irányítják ezt a mocskot. Legalábbis a legtöbb.
Nem is említve a többit. Ezért nem is kellett a középiskolában már helyettesítő se maz egyetemen, mert ők már tudatában voltak annak hogy alig vagyok ott és itt ott "dolgozok" közben.
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A concorde baleset amikor felpattant egy kis fémlemez ami egy dc10-esről hullot le - szintén egyike azoknak az okkult az emberi elme psziché és a környezet erőhatásainak összefüggéseire épülő szándékos gyilkosság volt, hogy a repülőgép típus eltűnjön a színről. Azt is a varga féle joe bácsis csapat csinálta. S hogyan? Hát hogyan lehet egy ilyen eseményt irányítani? Lehet. Úgy ahogyan mi belgiumban a johanni darus balesetét előkészítettük, úgy. Azt mi csináltuk a dani, a patrick, a habriel meg a johanni anyja. Együtt egy meditációval.
Olyan erős az elménk. Nehezebbé tettük a "tudomény jelenleg iállása szerinti" állandó súlyú vasoszlopot ami e miatt leszakadt a daruról és pontosan a vezetőfülkére esett úgy hogy a johanni túlélte de megtanulta hogy az ilyesfajta balesetek megtervezése - amit ő igen élvezett - nem játék. Azért csináltuk. "Ki a legjobb medic közöttetek - kérdi a johanni anyja s a patrickra néz - te vagy az nem? - s folytatja is - jó lenne ha te ott lennél a közelben ha valami baj történne..." S a többiek öszenéztek... "Mi van nem te vagy a legjobb?" "Hát a péter az... úgy tudjuk hogy ő még eg szívátültetést is meg tud csinálni ha kell akár műanyag csövekkel is..." nevettek. "akkor legyen ott a közelben ha nem úgy sikerül a dolog." és ott fejmosás jött hogy miért hozta ezt a lehetőséget a teamre, mert így meg is történhet ha idehozza és ezért csináljuk mindig team előtt a determináló meditációt hogy a megvalósítani kívánt dologra figyeljünk és fókuszáljunk. de ez most nem ide való nem írom le.
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A horvátországi zenei projekt járt a fejemben most idefelé... kitűnő példája annak ami nagyban is lejátszódik úgyhogy megér egy pár szót még bár nincs nagy kedvem róla írni, mert eléggé elkeserítő volt akkor is most is emlékezni erre.
Szóval a projekt célja a kreativitás spirituális közösségben való gyakorlása volt, mellékcél pedig mint minden projektemben, fejlesztésemben a végcélom felé való mozdulás az egyéni pszichék átirányítása a spirituálisan szerveződő társadalom felé. A régi rendszer lebontásával egyidőben.
"I'll do the cooking." "De miért hívja ezt cooking-nak?" "Mert leizzaszt a fejed búbjától a bokádig közben, hidd el nekem..."
Férfi testbe zárt nők és fordítva: ilyen nincs. Ez a régi rendszer mocska. Nő van és férfi meg azok akik a mocsokfürdőbe születtek és el lettek tudatosan torzítva. Vonzódni az egy más dolog, nemi örömöt szerezni megint más, de még a hosszabb ideje együtt élő homoszexuális párok között is kialakul az emberi psziché alapvető lényegei szerinti megosztás. Az egyik a punci lesz a másik a férfi princípiumot fogja jobban képviselni. Ez azért van így mert ez az amberi psziché alapja. A többi maszlag. Manipulált törött eltorzult szemét. Ez a véleményem. A természet rendje szerint szerveződő társadalmakban nincs homoszexualitás. Ma már nincs ilyen társadalom sehol, mert a szarházi hatalom függő elmeháborodottak minden társadalom szerkezetébe beleszartak. A férfi és a női lényeg megérthető mindkét oldal által, de soha sem teljes mértékben. Soha. Ott van egy természetes határ amit nem lehetséges átlépni senki számára sem. Ezért aki "nemet vált" vagyis azt hiszi el hogy nemet váltott ezt hangoztatja és akár át is operáltatja magát az soha nem lesz önnmaga és utódjaiban ha lesz a torzult életképtelen mocskot fogja örökíteni. Egyébként régebben mondjuk 100 éve még nem keverték össze a nemi örömszerzést a család fogalmával. Valahogy mindenki tudta hogy a természet szerint a család egy apából és egy anyából lesz. És elterjedt a nemi viszonyok felbomlása pontosan a női ág a nemiség és a nemi örömszerzés fegyverként való használata miatt amire madam dubouis pontosan és éleslátóan figyelmeztette nagy katalint, aki magasról szart rá. Pont. Téma lezárva.
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Szóval a végén a hármas mrgreen gömzsik, vgabi fejmosás volt. Az egyikük a gömzsik megint elsütötte a "tényleg most már értem hogy mit csinálsz és teljesen el tudom fogadni" típusú szöveget... ott kiakadtam... "Nem hiszek nektek. mind a hárman több alkalommal beszélgettetek velem erről elmagyaráztam mindent és mégis pont te anikó másnap kifizettél 40 millió dollárt a tommy emannuel csoportjának hogy öljenek meg. Akkor madjnem ugyanezeket a szavakat használtad ugyanígy ígérgettél és bizonygattad hogy szeretsz és segítesz blablabla... Nem hiszek nektek egyikőtöknek se. Így volt vagy nem így volt hazudj a szemebe ha mersz itt hejben kivégezlek!" üvöltöttem. Beismerte hogy így volt.
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"Te ezt csináltad végig velünk is?" így kezdődött a beszélgetés mrgreen tette fel a kérdést. "Igen. Veletek kicsit más volt de a fő célom ugyanaz minden egyénnel és csoporttal fejlesztéssel és bármivel amit csinálok. Veletek nem működött mert benneteket az öregék úgy megtörtek és úgy kondícionáltak, hogy senki ne legyen képes változtatni a célotokon ami a hatalom és a tudás felhalmozása és a circus tetején megmaradás. Ezért veletek más taktikát alkalmaztam. Technikai fejlesztésekkel és új nagyon hatékony módszerekkel a sikereimmel kezdtem adagolni az irányváltáshoz szükséges falatokat. Erre ráharaptatok mert a hatalom megtartásához, megszerzéséhez szükségetek volt erre a tudásra és a technikákra. Legalábbis azt hittétek. Szépen lassan elkezdtetek odafigyelni és minden alkalommal egyre több dologban sikerült feltörni a fejetekben meglévő keretrendszert. Fellazítottam a határokat majd reménykedtem benne hogy majd egyszer talán fel is fogjátok és legbelül megtörténik a váltás."
"De most megtörtént azért kértünk hogy csináld meg ezt a projektet."
"De most már nem hiszek nektek. Eljátszottátk a bizalmamat."
" Segíts képezz ki bennünket újra."
"Szó sem lehet róla. Kiképeztem pár embert amikor elérünk a 2016-17-es végő határvonalhoz és még akkor is tovább építgetitek a kontroll rendszerét, akkor ők ki fognak benneteket végezni. Nem akarom az ő dolgukat még jobban megnehezíteni."
"Akkor hogyan tudunk tovább fejlődni?
"Hát leülhettek együtt végigcsinálhatjátok a most már állítólag biztosan megjelent elkötelezettség alapjain végigcsinálni a tréninget. Ti hárman. hahaha Ha egyikőtök is elkezd madj fejlődni valamelyik modulban és előrébb jut mint a másik akkor a többi azonal félni kezd majd és ha hazudtok megint akkor meg is fogja próbálni kinyírni a többit nehogy ők előrébb jussanak. Viszont bizonyított tény hogy már a tényleges és biztos belső !!! elkötelezettség ami valós már az is elég ahhoz hogy a legerősebb támadást is vissza tudjátok verni - úgyhogy amelyikőtök ebbe a hibába esne az pórul jár... Úgyhogy türelemmel és bizalommal együtt végig tudjátok csinálni és igan magas szintre eljuthattok - feltéve hogy képesek lesztek nem hazudni egymásnak és őszintén beszélgetni - nyíltan kimondott szavakkal. Ami a ti esetetekben igen kemény munkát fog jelenteni mert mindegyikőtök olyan fejlett módszerekkel hazudik hogy azt nehét felülmúlni."
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Még mindig csak a kimondatlan szinten zajlik minden. Semmi se változott a látható keretrendszerekben - ugyanaz a kontroll és fosztogató rendszer működik rabszolgatartó és hazug és eltaposó. "Mit képzeltek ti hogy nektek jár ez a szabadság hogy bármilyen papírt legyárthattok magatoknak és oda utaztok és olyan foglalkozást csináltok amihez épp kedvetek szottyan miközben a többi napról napra bejár valami szaros munkahelyre, a gyáraitokba ahol épp csak annyi erőforráshoz fér hozzá hogy másnap is be tudjon menni? Hogy áll ez össze a ti fejetekben mi? Nektem mindent szabad felelősség nélkül lehetnek milliárdjaitok olyan forrásokból amit a többitől loptok el igyen kapjátok semmit se tesztek érte a többi meg csak útlevéllel utazhat és soha nem próbálhat ki semmit se mert nincs rá lehetősége? És mindeközben egy sarki zöldséges hamarabb és jobban megért mindent mint ti? És közben azt képzelitek hogy ti jobbak vagytok? Ha ez nem változik meg és a régi szar struktúrák nem tűnnek el akkor véget fogok vetni ennek a mocsoknak. Ti vagytok azon kevesek akik pontosabban felmérhetitek mihez volt hozzáférésem és milyen képességekkel rendlekezem. Ti tudjátok hogy a fenyegetéseim nem légbőlkapottak és be is váltom amit megígérek. Ma már azt se hiszem el amit kérdeztek."
Hiszem ha látom és még akkor is gyanakodni fogok. És nem látom. Utcaszínház szintjén megy minden miközben a valós keretek semmilyen mértékben nem változtak.
"Hadd videózzanak attól nem változi meg semmi sem!" mondta ezt is a vargavéres anno amikor elkezdtem ezeket a sorozatokat csinálni hogy szivárogtassak általuk és felvázolja művészi módon létező és valós problémákat. Igaza volt és én is pontosan tudtam hogy ettől a fennálló társadalmi kontroll rendszerei nem fognak semmit se változni hogy mi a fantázia és a szórakozás világában megjelenítjük ezeket a létező gondokat és problémákat. Ezt a hofi példája után tudták, hogy lehet akár szó szerint is kimondani valós és véres folgokat ha úgy van tálalva és ez is csökkenti a fosztogatás és elnyomás okozta feszültséget a társadalomban. Egyfajta szelepként működik ez volt az egyik oka annak hogy feladták a kísérlet eltaposásának tervét a másik ok pedig az volt hogy nem tudták eltaposni. Ezért áttértek az eltűrt kategóriára és mindent elkövettek hogy a saját szarukat és a valóságtól elrugaszkodott fantazmagóriákat is odacsempésszenek a valós szivárogtatások mellé ami hiteltelenné teheti az egészet. "Te túl sok sci-fi filmet nézel meg összeesküvés elméletekkel foglalkozó filmeket." modnták és közben gyártották a szemetet. Amikor elkezdtem pihenésképpen állat és természet filmeket felvenni akkor kitaláták hogy ők is ezt csinálják, de ők animal fight club-ot csináltak és csak a véres és ádáz küzdelmekre koncentráltak és szaros önigazolást próbáltak összehozni a saját faszságaik igazolásaképpen. Még az én filmjeimet is megpróbálták kifordítani az aláfestő szövegek faszságaival.
Próbálták azt is bizonyítani hogy ők is vannak olyan "erősek" hogy oda tudnak csalni vadállatokat magukhoz mert azt hitték ez erő kérdése és mert emikor kiderült hogy ezeket a filmeket én csináltam nem akarták hogy az emberek felnézzenek rám. Ezért midnen trükköt bevetettek hogy ezt megmutassák mégis kudarcot vallottak. hozzájuk nem ment oda egyik se és nem mutattak nekik semmit se az állatok. Nem értették meg azt sem hogy nekem azért mutatnak meg dolgokat az állatok mert
          Yemenite Shofar – Kudu Horns        

Shofars are available through Voice of God Shofars! Through a special arrangement with a craftsman in Israel, we have a limited number of shofars to make available to you. These are high quality Yemenite shofars usually pitched in "E" or "F" and have been personally inspected and play tested by Don. These shofars have been prayed over and anointed for service to the kingdom by Don and Sue Heist. These are rare high quality horns intended to be used to further the Kingdom of God.

You may also order your Shofar with a Personalized Embroidered carry Bag.

Select Here to add Your Personalized Embroidered Carry Bag


          BANG BANG: Dave McDougall        
[BANG BANG is our week-long look back at 20!!, or "Twenty-bang-bang," or 2011, with contributions from all over aiming to cover all sorts of enthusiasms from film to music to words and beyond.]


Selected 2011 discoveries, briefly noted and across various media by Dave McDougall.

———


Homeland —— the characters on this show run deep; their history and demons are as much a driver as the twists of plot. Which certainly helps Claire Danes and Mandy Patinkin and Damian Lewis and Morena Baccarin act their asses off. Allegiances don't shift as much as they are gradually revealed; even though the audience isn't only in the headspace of Danes' rebellious CIA agent, everything is filtered through the line between the watchers and the suspects, and the further into each world we're given access, the more complicated the line between terrorist and hero. This isn't a war of ideas as much as a war between wounded people who've sided with ideas, and those wounds are what drive both the terrorists and those trying to stop them. This week's showstopping season finale toyed with heavy political and personal dénouement and teased an even greater moral complexity to come. If there's a better show on television right now, I'd like to see it. 

The Color Wheel (Alex Ross Perry, 2011) —— A masterpiece, a perfect screwball comedy, and a vicious, misanthropic, prickly little thing. What Ignatiy said, and then some.


And two other filmic masterpieces-to-be-named-later that also tackle communication (and shared histories) between men and women, on which I'll have more to say in the Mubi year-end roundup.

———

Governments toppled, not by social media but by people going to the streets to battle for their due. But the dynamics of open source protest and new media communication flows were a big part of why this was the year that kicked off an #ArabSpring, an indignado movement, a global coalition of #Occupy protests. It's not just coordination of protests but the ability for knowledge flows to reveal the silent political preferences of a people, and to rally supporters to the cause. None of these movements were created by the emergence of social media -- all grew out of previous organization by activists on the ground, over years and decade -- but it's hard to deny that these movements could only coalesce through communication, and that new forms of one-to-many communication smooth the friction of reaching out to wide audiences. 

———

As the 2008 financial crisis has shifted to become a crisis of solvency and liquidity in the Eurozone, the economic intelligence of the left-ish political blogotwittersphere rises almost as fast as events shift; but the key insight is that, unlike the people-powered movements and revolutions mentioned above, the fate of all of our economic lives still hangs in the balance of deals to be cut in back rooms by power brokers. Which, as those same movements will attest, is the opposite of democracy. If the revolutions of Egypt or Libya or Tunisia (or Syria or Bahrain or Yemen, if you're looking for revolutions-in-the-making) were best revealed by the participants themselves in 140 characters (or 140 character updates, compiled), then the stories of our economic dilemmas have been best told by those savvy enough to get to the bottom of capital flows and reveal these inner workings via blogs, articles, and interviews, whose links were embedded in 140-character updates themselves. Information, in all its forms -- pictures, videos, charts, analysis, stories from the front lines -- move and flicker and flow just the ways frames do in the cinema. For me, these were a few of the sources that made the leap to essential in 2011, from the MENA uprisings to the Econopocalyse and the social movements pushing back:




———

Among all the books and blogs and analysis, an epic cornerstone of how to even begin to think of how we got here — David Graeber's Debt: The First 5000 Years. 
________________________________

David McDougall is a writer, filmmaker, and media strategist based in London and Los Angeles. He's got blogs and films and words in various places, some of them on the internet. He twitters here.

          Support versus Independence        
How do we expect Muslim women to be empowered like Khadeejah when we clip their wings through laws that are arbitrarily imposed upon them in Muslim cultures like polygamy and ban on driving in KSA, child marriages and polygamy in Yemen, enforced temporary marriage and hijab in Iran and KSA, unfair Khula laws in Egypt, hudood law in Pakistan, stripping of citizenship rights if a woman marries a foreigner in the GCC countries etc? How can we gain inspiration from the “fierce independence” of Khadeejah while we are taught that the ten laws I highlighted above are for our support and protection and that we are sinning if we object?
          Yemen and the business of war        

https://www.chathamhouse.org/publications/twt/yemen-and-business-war


AUTHOR: 

Peter Salisbury

 

Senior Research Fellow, Middle East and North Africa Programme

Peter Salisbury says some are profiting from prolonging the conflict

Yemenis are masters of making do, and the civil war there has done little to dent their capacity for innovation. Sana’a, the capital, now has the greenest energy supply in the world, residents claim, because so much of its electricity is produced by solar panels. The country has all but run out of foreign currency but networks of Yemeni businessmen have been able to jerry-rig a surprisingly effective hawala or informal money transfer system that has allowed workers outside the country to send cash back home, for a fee.

Until recently traders and transport firms had to contend with tribal roadblocks, armed gangs and Al-Qaeda. But now, because so many of the militias earn income from taxing trade, security along the country’s roads is actually as good as it has ever been – as long as you aren’t a combatant involved in the wider conflict.

Several businessmen questioned for this article estimate that the cost of paying ‘tax’ at checkpoints and revenue posts established by Yemen’s rival governments increases the cost of goods by about 10-15 per cent. Wealthier Yemenis are able to absorb the costs, and clearly there is still some money left in the country: as The Economist has reported, while a cholera epidemic rages in the midst of one of the world’s worst humanitarian crises, the Sana’a branch of Baskin-Robbins remains plentifully stocked with ice cream transported to the capital in refrigerated lorries.

The fact that goods still crisscross the country is broadly good news. But there is a darker side to Yemen’s war economy. A businessman, who asks not to be named, says he can get ‘pretty much anything’ from Jebel Ali port in Dubai to Sana’a within 48 hours, 72 if there is fighting along the way. Other goods are being shipped in to ports in Oman, which sits between the United Arab Emirates and Yemen, and from southern and western Yemeni ports, and receive even less scrutiny, as long as the right palms are greased.

Of course, the businessman says, he has nothing to do with bringing arms or other illicit items into the country – but he is sure that others are feathering their nests by doing a little gun-running.

The men guarding the checkpoints along the way rarely search the contents of lorries and are sometimes actively discouraged from doing so by their leaders. The studied disinterest of the average checkpoint guard, argues a Yemeni researcher, is part of a wider trend that has gone largely unremarked upon. ‘All the armed groups, the guys with guns, the politicians in Sana’a and Riyadh, they are actually profiting from the war,’ the researcher says. ‘Diplomats from the West look at the war and the humanitarian crisis and they think they must want it to stop. But big money is being made and if the war ends the money stops. So why stop now?’

My current research on Yemen’s civil war, to be published in a paper for Chatham House later this summer, asks much the same question: why stop? Diplomats working on Yemen and other similar conflicts tend to insist that the different groups involved in these wars must see the benefit of ending the conflict and working together for a peaceful and sustainable future. But the more I speak to Yemenis with insight into the thinking of politicians and armed groups involved in the conflict, the less convinced I am by the diplomats’ optimism.

With the front lines of the Yemen war largely static for the better part of two years, and previously marginal groups now in control of swaths of territory including lucrative trade routes, the incentives for many militia leaders point to sustaining the conflict – especially since most groups operating on the ground have not been asked to participate in Yemen’s UN-led peace process.

Yemen’s internationally recognized government spends much of its time outside of the country. The President, Abd Rabbu Mansour Hadi, who was ousted in early 2015, is based in Riyadh, the capital of Saudi Arabia, rather than Aden, the southern port city he named as the seat of government after fleeing Sana’a in early 2015. The Hadi administration is said to be happier living in the Saudi-funded comfort of Riyadh than in Aden, where the situation is volatile. They have little in the way of skin in the game, although Hadi allies are said to be profiting from monopolies on fuel supply into Aden, one of the few cities they nominally control.

Then there is the odd-couple alliance that controls much of northwestern Yemen. The Zaydi Shia rebels, called Houthis after the movement’s late founder, Hussein al-Houthi, seized Sana’a in September 2014 before expanding into the rest of Yemen. It soon became clear that they had the backing of military units loyal to former president Ali Abdullah Saleh. Once Hadi had fled the capital, the Houthis formed an uneasy political alliance with Saleh’s former party of government, the General People’s Congress.

GPC members have witnessed the rapid destruction of a state they helped build – along with personal fortunes tied to the country’s now-shattered economy. They would like the war to end, but not if it means Hadi and the Saudis rule the roost – nor if their Houthi partners, whom many privately revile, come out on top.

For Houthi militia leaders, however, the war has been a path to expanding power and wealth. Many of the group’s commanders started off as penniless rebel fighters in the Houthi heartlands of Sa’dah in the early 2000s. After the Houthis seized Sana’a, the United Nations announced sanctions against their leader, Abdel-Malek al-Houthi, and their top-ranking military commander, Abu Ali al-Hakem. Neither man, it was said at the time, had a bank account or a mobile phone contract. ‘Can you sanction pay-as-you-go credit?’ a Houthi supporter joked.

‘Despite the humanitarian crisis, the set-up seems to suit most parties, who appear to be quietly cooperating with each other’


Today, men such as Abu Ali, barely out of his teens when the Houthi rebellion began and accustomed to a life of war and economic privation, now control militias thousands of men strong across a number of provinces and earn their own cash. It is hard to believe that the Houthis’ military leaders feel that they are losing, particularly the movement’s more religiously motivated members, who genuinely see their path as divinely mandated.

Elsewhere in the country, the local government that controls southern Hadramawt Province is making so much from taxing goods entering Mukalla port that it can pay for infrastructure repairs, basic medical services and electricity, albeit with a little help from the UAE. In Marib, in central Yemen, the governor, an important tribal leader, has been able to fund services by selling bottled gas produced at an oilfield in the province.

While money made in such ways is not enough to prevent Yemen’s poor from inching towards famine, it does provide the resources needed to keep the different militia and political leaders in power. That is problematic because the UN-mediated peace process calls for the Houthi-Saleh alliance to cut a deal with President Hadi’s faction and form a ‘unity’ government, which would almost certainly demand that revenues from taxation and oil and gas sales go to Sana’a.  That is likely to be a non-starter for many local groups, who have little love and less trust for the Hadi government, the Houthis or Saleh. And this is before they are asked to give up their guns.

There is a bigger problem though: despite the humanitarian crisis, the current set-up seems to suit most parties, to the extent that they would appear to be quietly cooperating with one another. Fuel imported to Mukalla is transported knowingly to Sana’a. Guns provided to anti-Houthi-Saleh fighters on the ground are sold to the other side.

In Mareb Province, the main highway is cut by a front line, as you might expect in a war zone. But on another, less well maintained road to the south, lorries drive through pro and anti-Houthi checkpoints a mountain pass apart. The war economy has evolved into a system that, for those with guns, is sustainable as long as the status quo is maintained.

This is not to say that Yemen’s civil war has just become cover for cosy cooperation between future cronies. Heavy fighting is still taking place in Taiz city and Al Beidah province. Yet neither battle is likely to be decisive. So the Hadi government and the Saudi-led military coalition that backs it increasingly see the economy as the only way they can gain leverage over the combined military might of the Houthi-Saleh alliance.

In September 2016, President Hadi said that he was moving the headquarters of the Central Bank of Yemen from Houthi-Saleh held Sana’a to Aden. The stated reason was that the rebels had been looting the bank’s supplies of riyals and dollars. But western governments had warned that removing the central bank, and losing its stock of well-trained technocrats, would disrupt the economy and deepen the humanitarian crisis. Many observers wonder if this was not part of the plan.

Since late 2016, the Saudi-led coalition has been considering a military offensive against the Houthi-Saleh controlled port of Hodeidah on Yemen’s west coast. The coalition says that it wants the port because the alliance is using it to bring in Iranian weapons. But it is hard not to see the move as an attempt to squeeze the rebels economically and force them to agree to a peace deal favourable to the Hadi government. About 70 per cent of the country’s imports come in through Hodeidah and aid agencies predict famine if the port is out of commission for more than a few days, while military planners think a successful offensive would last for a few weeks.

The problem is that the Houthi-Saleh alliance can probably survive on the goods that come in overland by lorry. In fact, if Hodeidah is cut off, road traffic is likely to increase exponentially and with it income from checkpoints and the customs collection. ‘The Houthis will survive and the Yemenis will starve,’ the Yemeni analyst says ruefully


          Thousands of Yemeni Forces Target Qaeda Stronghold        
Troops descended on Shabwa Province to secure oil and gas facilities in the largest military operation against Qaeda fighters in Yemen since April 2016.
          Life after a career as a mortgage lender        

In January of 2000 everything seemed to be heading in the right

direction. At age 30, after a decade in the restaurant industry, I took

a job as loan officer with a prominent local lender in the suburbs of

Washington, DC. Within two years, my hard work and honest lending

practices had moved me up the company ladder and given me a loyal base

of clients; I was a senior sales manager earning a good commissioned

income. In January of 2003 I married my wife, we purchased our first

home, and had our first child in early of 2004.

 

After the shock to the economy on 9/11, and subsequent recovery,lending institutions began to loosen the guidelines for home purchasing

and refinancing. Unprecedented overinflation of home values created a

frenzy in the housing market over the next few years. Some, but not

nearly enough people in positions to have the appropriate foresight,

saw this as a house of cards.

 

Many thousands of mortgage brokers and lenders were placing a

newly created pool of credit worthy home buyers into mortgage loans.

The term "credit worthy" took on a whole new meaning to these

predators; the theory being to get them in the home with a payment they

can afford right now, regardless of their ability to pay that note when

the ARM adjusted.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

In 2006 as the mortgage crisis began to permiate the economy, tens of

thousands of homeowners began to find themselves with rate and payment

adjustments they could not afford. The predators who placed these

unsuspecting homeowners in their predicaments were either nowhere to

be found or preparing to pounce again, providing short lived relief

that would come with long term and devastating consequences.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

As a mortgage lender who has always prided myself on my honesty and

integrity, I was appalled by what was happening in my industry. Never

having placed a single client in a sub prime loan, I continued to do my

best to educate my clients and provide the most sensible loan products

and sound finacial solutions the industry had to offer.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Alas, in 2007 when the crisis was full blown and investors began to

pull out and tighten lending guidelines, my niche of financially savy

home buyers and home owners stood pat. My client pool, and referral

pool of business began to dry up and my income drastically declined.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Early this year I was forced to sell my home in order to downsize my

life and provide for my family. Several months ago I made the decision

to leave the industry I loved. The future of my family was at stake and

I had to make a change.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Ironically, the years of honesty and integrity as a proven producer and

manager have turned out to be more of a curse than a blessing. I have

been lumped in with the predators that largley created this crisis; a

pariah, a scoundrel, and thief. A resume that I worked eight long years

to build is barely worth the paper it's printed on; tossed aside

hundreds of times by company after company.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

As I search for employement to provide for my family, I can't help but

ask myself if there was something that I did wrong or that I could have

done differently. the conclusion I have reached is that I, like most

american's out of work in this difficult time, did nothing wrong. I was

just in the wrong place at the wrong time. Thankfully, most of us can

hold our heads high in the face of this tumultuous time. My integrity

is fully intact, I can only hope that an employer out there will see

beyond the stigma of my mortgage lender resume and see the man I truly

am.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


          Comment on 4 Basic Principles by EEUU podría ser enjuiciado por crímenes de guerra en Yemen - Truth NGO        
[…] podría estar violando las leyes que se aplican dentro de situaciones de conflicto armado (LOAC, por sus siglas en inglés) y las normativas internacionales por su involucración directa en esas […]
          WHO Yemen: 484,733 cholera cases        
WHO Yemen has tweeted new cholera numbers, presumably for August 9. It reports 484,733 cases and 1,961 deaths. That would be an increase of 5,839 cases over August 9, and four new deaths.
          Bombed bin trucks, breeding bacteria, dirty water: Yemen’s cholera explosion        
We still have no update today on cholera from WHO EMRO or the Ministry of Public Health and Population. But this report in The Guardian, by a sanitation engineer with the ICRC, offers useful background: Bombed bin trucks, breeding bacteria,...
          Cholera in Yemen: War, hunger, disease…and heroics        
Via The Lancet Infectious Diseases, an editorial: Cholera in Yemen: war, hunger, disease…and heroics. Excerpt: The harms done by war are many and complex. Death, injury, and displacement are the most obvious, but infection is also closely intertwined with conflict....
          Yemen MOH: 478,894 cholera cases as of August 8        
Yemen's Ministry of Public Health and Population has published cholera updates for August 7 and August 8. The latest totals: 478,894 cases (4,739 more than on August 7); 1,957 deaths. Just since August 1, 35,728 Yemenis have contracted cholera.
          WHO Yemen: Weekly cholera update, July 31-August 6        
WHO EMRO has published its Weekly Epidemiological Bulletin for July 31-August 6. It reports 473,701 cases and 1,953 deaths since the start of the current outbreak on April 27. These numbers are slightly higher than those reported by Yemen's Ministry...
          6 stories the media isn’t writing about the election        
View image | gettyimages.com Bombs, bread or blind-eyes? Afghanistan, Libya, Syria, Iraq, Yemen… there’s a long list of countries where international military intervention is likely to continue during the 2015 Parliament, even without factoring in the likely impact of events, dear boy, events in adding yet more countries to the list. So how are the […]
          The Afternoon Sound Alternative 02-25-2015 with Dave Blackwood        
Playlist:

- voicebreak -
- voicebreak -
Machuca Cumbia- Staying Alive - The Afrosound Of Colombia Vol 2
Skip Die- AntiCapitalista - Riots In The Jungle
The Paradise Bangkok Molam International Band- - 21st Century Molam
Dengue Fever- Rom Say Sok - The Deepest Lake
Zammuto- Need Some Sun - Anchor
Nostalgia 77 Prince Fatty- Rainclouds Dub - In The Kingdom Of Dub
Horseman- Dawn Of The Dread - Dawn Of The Dread
- voicebreak -
Tour De Force- Old Time Love feat Jay Spaker - Battle Cry
Bonobo- Flashlight - Flashlight Single
World Standard- My Low Chuned Banjo - Country Gazette
Devendra Banhart- Losing My Taste For The Night Life - Master Mix Red Hot Arthur Russell
Damien Jurado- Silver Donna - Brothers And Sisters Of The Eternal Son
Father John Misty- I Love You Honeybear - I Love You Honeybear
Dennis Coffey- Space Traveller - Dennis Coffey
Miles Davis- Miles Runs The Voodoo Down - Bitches Brew Live
Dennis Coffey- Knockabout - Dennis Coffey
Sun Ra- Rocket Number Nine Take Off For The Planet Venus - Marshall Allen Presents Sun Ra And His Arkestra In The Orbit Of Ra
Jos Gonzlez- Stories We Build Stories We Tell - Vestiges Claws
Sinkane- How We Be - Mean Love
Inside Voices- Liberty Bell - Kenosha Kid
Kammerflimmer Kollektief- Dsarroi 5 Saumselig - Dsarroi
Miss Kenichi- Big Log - The Trail
Ramzi Aburedwan- Sans Adresse - Reflections Of Palestine
AllahLas- Yemeni Jade - Worship The Sun
ItchyO- Larrys Romp - Burn The Navigator
Panda Bear- Sequential Circuits - Panda Bear Meets The Grim Reaper
Gala Drop- Samba Da Maconha - II
Goat- Words - Commune
Khun Narin- Lam Phu Thai 1 - Khun Narins Electric Phin Band
Iceage- Glassy Eyed Dormant And Veiled - Plowing Into The Field Of Love
Ty Segall- Manipulator - Manipulator
Deerhoof- Paradise Girls - La Isla Bonita
Pond- Man It Feels Like Space Again - Man It Feels Like Space Again
Howie B Vs Casino Royale- Milano Double Standard - Not In The Face Reale Dub Version


playlist URL: http://www.afterfm.com/index.cfm/fuseaction/playlist.listing/showInstanceID/35/playlistDate/2015-02-25
          The Afternoon Sound Alternative 01-28-2015 with Dave Blackwood        
Playlist:

- voicebreak -
- voicebreak -
Ramzi Aburedwan- Sans Adresse - Reflections Of Palestine
The Phoenix Foundation- Supernatural - Fandango
AllahLas- Yemeni Jade - Worship The Sun
Sturgill Simpson- Turtles All The Way Down - Metamodern Sounds In Country Music
Bobby Gentry- He Made A Woman Out Of Me Bobby Gentry - Country Funk 19691975
Jos Gonzlez- This Is How We Walk On The Moon - Master Mix Red Hot Arthur Russell
Miss Kenichi- Who Are You - The Trail
The New Basement Tapes- Down On The Bottom - Lost On The River
Bob Dylan The Band- Lo And Behold - The Basement Tapes
The Brothers Sisters- All Along The Watchtower - Dylans Gospel
- voicebreak -
Ernest Ranglin- For Juni - Memories Of Barber Mack
Lee Scratch Perry- Babylon Thief Dub - The Upsetter Shop V 1 Upsetter In Dub
- voicebreak -
Panda Bear- Mr Noah - Mr Noah EP
Gala Drop- Sun Gun - II
Bill Laswell- Dystopia - Version 2 Version A Dub Transmission
Horseman- Dawn Of The Dread - Dawn Of The Dread
The Meters- LookKa Py Py - LookKa Py Py
Karl Hector The Malcouns- Mission Control - Unstraight Ahead
The Budos Band- Aphasia - Burnt Offering
Jungle Fire- Snake Pit - Tropicoso
Dennis Coffey- Space Traveller - Dennis Coffey
ItchyO- Orange Dev - Burn The Navigator
Air- Cosmic Trip - Le Voyage Dans La Lune
Mahavishnu Orchestra- Birds Of Fire - Birds Of Fire
Return To Forever- Majestic Dance - Romantic Warrior
Jimi Hendrix- Earth Blues - People Hell And Angels
Love- Alone Again Or - Forever Changes
Scott H Biram- Jack Of Diamonds - Nothin But Blood
Wayne Horvitz The Royal Room Collective Music Ensemble- Barber Shop - At The Reception
Throttle Elevator Music- Lost In Thought - Area J
The Bad Plus- Gold Prisms Incorporated - Inevitable Western
Mogwai- Hexon Bogon - Rave Tapes
Yury Morozov- The Day Will Come - Cherry Garden Of Jimi Hendrix
John Lee Hooker- Boogie Chillen 2 - Giants Of Blues


playlist URL: http://www.afterfm.com/index.cfm/fuseaction/playlist.listing/showInstanceID/35/playlistDate/2015-01-28
          The (Not-So) Peaceful Transition of Power: Trump’s Drone Strikes Outpace Obama        
[Note: This post was updated to reflect additional strikes in Yemen on March 2, March 3, and

          U.S. Airstrikes in Iraq and Syria, Versus Drone Strikes in Pakistan, Yemen, and Somalia        
Yesterday, U.S.

          My Wife Died Because Of The Conflict In Yemen        
Smoke billows behind a building following a reported air strike by the Saudi-led coalition in the Yemeni capital Sanaa on Jan. 22, 2017.

Yemen has suffered economic instability, political turmoil, civil unrest and conflicts for decades. But the beginning of the recent conflict in March 2015 was a stark turning point for the economic, social, and humanitarian destiny of this country.

As someone who was born and lived in Yemen, my life which revolved around work and family has now become a struggle for survival. I think back to that day when in a matter of minutes, the sky was flooded with bomber jets. As we realized what was happening, there was a mad rush to the shelter to protect ourselves from the bombs. In the days that followed, we were confined to our homes, curfews were imposed, while food, water, and basic supplies became scarce.

As of January, 10,000 civilians had been killed and 40,000 injured

The humanitarian situation has reached new depths.

The regular bombings and deliberate military tactics to shred the economy have destroyed public and private services, dragging an already weak and impoverished country to almost breakdown. If it weren't for international assistance, the country would have collapsed by now.

The majority of my fellow citizens have lost their jobs or their livelihoods and have depleted most of their savings. Their lives have been quite simply devastated by the conflict. Over twenty million people are in need of humanitarian aid to survive. That's more than in any other country in the world. The global humanitarian community is now faced with one of the most staggering man-made disasters in decades.

I have been working as an aid worker for Islamic Relief in Yemen since 2010. In the last two years our programme, including food aid, water and sanitation, health care, orphan and child welfare and vocational training for young people, has benefitted 4.6 million people. Most recently we have responded to the cholera epidemic by providing medical supplies and large tents to help the hospitals cope with the overcrowding.

I've put my heart and soul and all of my experience and expertise into making sure this life-saving aid is delivered where it is needed most, often in dangerous circumstances.

But as with every other Yemeni, the conflict has taken a huge toll on my personal and family life.

One bombing attack in mid-2015 close to my home marked the beginning of the physical and psychological horrors of war for my family.

The explosions were like something you could never imagine. The ground underneath shook as if we were experiencing an earthquake. Doors and windows were wrenched from the walls and glass was scattered everywhere. My children were terrified.

The impact was catastrophic. I had to move my family away from the violence. Within a year we were forced to move four times in a bid to find somewhere safe to live, but as the bombings became more and more frequent and widespread, this became impossible.

Throughout all of this, I continued with my humanitarian commitments to deliver aid to affected communities across the country. But I was aware of the physical and psychological impact the conflict was having on my family. My children were traumatized by the bombing attacks and were petrified when they heard the sounds of fighter jets in the air.

My wife was diagnosed with an autoimmune liver infection. We couldn't get adequate medical treatment because of the trade embargo on the country. She suffered for two years and then tragically passed away. I believe the stress and fear of the violence caused her health to deteriorate and ultimately led to her death.

She was a loving wife to me, and the perfect mother to our children. Her death has left a deep grief engraved in our hearts that will be there for the rest of my life.

The violence still continues as I write this. I have to be strong for my children and be strong for my community. My work with Islamic Relief is what keeps me going. When we are able to help a family or someone who is suffering, the relief I see in their eyes and the smile on their faces is what drives me to stay committed to my humanitarian work.

My country, Yemen, needs help. The violence needs to stop.

Salem Jaafar Baobaid is part of Islamic Relief Yemen's operations. He writes this from Yemen. For more information on Islamic Relief's Canada work in Yemen, click here.

Also on HuffPost:


          Emma Forrest: Visszhangzó szavak - Jelenlegi ára: 1 Ft        
Emma Forrest: Visszhangzó szavak
E. Forrest hollywoodi forgatókönyvíró önéletrajzi könyve. 1x olvasott könyv teljesen új állapotban.
1 Ft-ért megnyert terméket csak személyesen adok át mhelyemen (Blahan munka előtt/után közvetlenül) ill. lakcímen.
14 nap áll rendelkezésre az adásvétel lebonyolítására.
Emma Forrest: Visszhangzó szavak
Jelenlegi ára: 1 Ft
Az aukció vége: 2017-08-19 18:30
          Kenya's Electoral Commission Dismisses 'Hacking'        
Kenya's electoral commission has dismissed opposition claims that its computers were hacked to manipulate Tuesday's presidential election results. We hear from opposition leader, Raila Odinga who has rejected provisional results that put Kenya's current president Uhuru Kenyatta in the lead. Also on the programme: Pleas to re-open Yemen's main airport; War of words continues between US and North Korea (Photo: Officers of Kenya's electoral commission inspect ballot boxes in Nairobi. Credit: Epa/Kabir Dhanji)
          Hz. Muhammed'in (sav) Çocukluk Filmi        

2015 yılında İranlı yönetmen Mecid Mecidi'nin çektiği Hz. Muhammed (sav) Allah'ın Elçisi filmini
konularına göre bir kaç bölüme ayırıp resim ve açıklamalar ekleyerek özellikle çocukların daha kolay izlemesini sağlamaya çalıştım. 
Her filmde olduğu gibi bu filmin de eleştirilen yönleri olmuştur. 
Paylaşmamızın amacı bu bölümleri izleyen çocuklarımızın Efendimize ve akrabalarına sevgisini arttırmaktır inşallah. 

Önemli Uyarı: Filmde peygamberimizi, akrabalarını ve diğer insanları canlandıranlar, sinema sanatçıları
olup sadece rol yapmaktadırlar. Peygamberimizin zamanında fotoğraf makinesi veya kamera olmadığı için o dönemde yaşayan insanlardan herhangi bir resim elimizde yoktur.
Filmde saygı ve hürmetten dolayı peygamberimizin yüzü gösterilmemektedir.

Filmde Canlandırılan Bazı Karakterler


 

 
 
 
 



 





1. BÖLÜM  FÄ°L OLAYI

Açıklama:  Yemen valisi Ebrehe, Yemen'de gösterişli bir kilise yaptırdı. 
Ancak Araplar bu kiliseye ilgi göstermediler ve Kabe'yi ziyaret etmeye devam ettiler. 
Bunun üzerine peygamberimiz doğmadan 52 gün önce Ebrehe, 
Kabe'yi yerle bir etmek için büyük bir ordu topladı ve Mekke'ye doğru hareket etti. 
Bu ordunun içinde filler de bulunmaktaydı.
Mekkeliler peygamberimizin dedesi Abdülmuttalip'in önderliğinde dağlara çekilip Kâbe'nin korunmasını Allah'a bıraktılar. 
Mekke'nin yakınlarına kadar gelen Ebrehe, ordusuna Kabe'yi yıkmak için hareket emri verdiğinde ordunun önündeki fil hareket etmedi. 
Fil, yünü başka tarafa çevrildiğinde hareket ediyor, ancak Kabe'ye döndürüldüğünde hiç kıpırdamıyordu. Bu sırada sürüler halinde gelen ebabil kuşları askerlerin üzerine sertleşmiş çamurdan taşlar yağdırmaya başladı. Kısa sürede koskoca ordu yerle bir oldu. Bu olay, Kur'an-ı Kerim'de Fil süresinde anlatılmaktadır.

Bu bölümde peygamberimizin amcası Ebu Talip peygamberimizin evinin önünde Fil suresini dinlerken gençliğine dönmekte ve Fil Olayını hatırlamaktadır.









Diğer Bölümler

2. BÖLÜM  PEYGAMBERÄ°MÄ°ZÄ°N DOĞUMU

3. BÖLÜM  PEYGAMBERÄ°MÄ°ZÄ°N SÜTANNESÄ°

4. BÖLÜM  PEYGAMBERÄ°MÄ°ZÄ°N ANNE HASRETÄ°

5. BÖLÜM  PEYGAMBERÄ°MÄ°Z ANNESÄ°NÄ° KAYBEDÄ°YOR

6. BÖLÜM  PEYGAMBERÄ°MÄ°Z DEDESÄ°NÄ° KAYBEDÄ°YOR

7. BÖLÜM  PEYGAMBERÄ°MÄ°Z MÄ°NÄ°K KIZI KURTARIYOR

8. BÖLÜM  PEYGAMBERÄ°MÄ°Z AMCASIYLA ŞAM YOLLARINDA

9. BÖLÜM  PEYGAMBERÄ°MÄ°Z DENÄ°Z KENARINDA


10. BÖLÜM  EBU TALÄ°P MEKKELÄ°LERE SESLENÄ°YOR

          The Refugee Crisis: Separating the Conspiracies from The Conspiracy™        

By Eric Draitser [Photo: Syrian refugees in Hungary September 4, 2015 (wikimedia).] As the refugee crisis in Europe has come to dominate western media headlines, it has predictably given rise to a complex web of theories, analyses, and politically and ideologically charged omissions and distortions. The corporate propagandists of ‘acceptable journalism’ have presented the issue […]

The post The Refugee Crisis: Separating the Conspiracies from The Conspiracy™ appeared first on Cyrano's Journal Today.

       

Related Stories

 

          War without mercy on Yemen: the Saudi-US Massacres continue        

By Sayed Hasan [Screen capture from broadcast.] There is a merciless slaughter of civilians happening in Yemen right now and there is not a peep in the US corporate media. In fact, there seems to be a blackout in reporting on Yemen. The following video has English sub-titles. It is extremely graphic.

The post War without mercy on Yemen: the Saudi-US Massacres continue appeared first on Cyrano's Journal Today.

       

Related Stories

 

          Nuevas vs Viejas         
¿Tragedia?
Se puede describir con historia
Adelgazar o engordar según ideología
La que se explica a través de porcentajes resulta bastante precisa 
Difícil e inútil aquella versada en poemas
Las hay nuevas con diario estreno en titulares de noticias 
También tan viejas que regresan sin políticos buscando foto  
y así ni suman ni restan  votos según declaración
Alguna se llama Sudán del Sur
Somalia
Nigeria
Yemen
Sobre un mapa son exóticos nombres
pero sobre un mapa el mundo no es nuestro mundo
Sobre un mapa no falta ni sobra el agua
Sobre un mapa no hay armas que matan ni psicópatas para empuñarlas
En nuestro mundo regresan las tragedias que nunca se fueron
Regresan con guerras y hambrunas
Regresan y se llevan el futuro  
Y no hay nada que yo pueda hacer
Mis versos no tienen lluvia
No preñan vacas ni cosechan trigo

Gizela Rudek J 

Safe Creative #1703040910719


          Is the Island of Socotra going to be hired by the UAE for 99 years?        
Well, this almost slipped through without being noticed. I am really intrigued by this news story, which seems to have very few sources online. If it’s true, it’s strange that it has not garnered enough attention. Cihan, a news agency from Turkey, allegedly claims that: “Yemeni President Abd Rabbuh Mansur Hadi is making arrangements to […]
          Freelancer sports scout in Yemen        
Freelancer sports scout in Yemen - Sport & Freizeit

Sports Data AG is one of the world's leading suppliers for sport-related live data. Our system is based on our unique, fully automated data extraction and supervision technology for highest quality standard, combined with a complex scout and video signal monitoring system.

We are currently providing the most reliable live data available worldwide for the sports organizations and media industry for all relevant distribution channels.

We have got our own network with 2500 scouts worldwide, who forward us live statistics directly from the venues.

The sports events we are covering include Soccer, Tennis, Basketball, Volleyball ,Beach volleyball,Handball, Futsal, Inc Hockey ,etc,etc

We are currently looking for live sports reporter (Scout) in Yemen. If you are sports enthusiastic, and willing to earn return by your efforts, this will be a fantastic opportunity for you. We will offer you a long-term, reliable part-time job.

Job description:

After proper online training, scouts need to go to stadium which is close to their own live place to report match in live by using own mobile phone keypad. Take soccer match as example: scout need to input all relevant statistics like attacking, corner, yellow (red card), goal, etc. Sportradar’s unique automated system will call scouts mobile phone 15 minutes before match start. There is no any phone cost on scout’s side.

Requirement:

1, scouts must have basic knowledge on soccer and other relevant sports, but soccer is always priority.

2, Certain English communication and listening skill.

3, Reliable, honest as well as good time conception.

4, Must have mobile phone and handset.

Payment:

Payment will be paid on time monthly.via Moneybookers.

Please contact Jerry for further information:

MSN & Email: […]

    Job-Typ:
    Teilzeit
    Gehalt notizen: scouting fee will be varied according to the match level
    Branche: Sport, Freizeit & Lifestyle

          El reportaje de BBC sobre Yemen que los saudíes intentaron impedir        
Un equipo de BBC con la reportera Orla Guerin al frente se disponía a volar a Yemen desde Yibuti aprovechando un vuelo fletado por la ONU. Los saudíes, que controlan el espacio aéreo de Yemen, prohibieron el despegue del avión … Sigue leyendo
          Affiliate Program Internet Marketing Money and Employement        
Here's a scenario that may sound familiar: an entrepreneur finds a great home business opportunity and works hard setting up an online business. He makes a good income for the first few months, but struggles after he's sold his primary product to everyone he knows. He has three choices: to create new products, build his email list, or launch an affiliate program. Which plan do you think will result in the most future income?





Would it surprise you to know that building an affiliate program is the quickest way to build online income? Here's why - even the most lucrative home business opportunity is limited by your ability to sell a product or provide a service, unless you create passive income through affiliate sales.





To illustrate the truth of that claim, let's look at how affiliate sales multiply business. In the beginning, you might select a product or service you can market in order to provide money and employment for yourself. You market that product or service online and are able to make a respectable living. You didn't, however, take advantage of a home business opportunity to earn a respectable income. If you're like most entrepreneurs, you want to make it big, strike it rich and earn an income you could only dream about while traditionally employed. That's why you start searching for ways to expand your online empire. You notice a lot of information about affiliate programs, and decide to investigate. Here's what you learn:





Affiliate Fact #1: Affiliates are people who sell your product or service to their clients, and receive a commission for doing so.





Affiliate Fact #2: Affiliate income is passive income for you, meaning that it requires little effort on your part but still results in income.





Affiliate Fact #3: Online affiliate programs are simple to set up and administer.





Affiliate Fact #4: If you've purchased a packaged business opportunity, an affiliate program may already be built in to the structure.





Being a savvy entrepreneur, you consider these facts and decide to start an affiliate program. Where's the best place to advertise the opportunity to earn commissions for selling your products? To satisfied customers! You may be able to build all the affiliate program you can manage simply by telling your client list what you're doing.





The next stage is setting up a structure to manage that program. There are three basic components: marketing materials that affiliates can use to sell your products (email message series, website banners and ads), a way to track affiliate sales as they occur, and a system for paying commissions. As we mentioned in Affiliate Fact #4, some packaged business opportunities already have all the affiliate tools you need.





Otherwise, create marketing templates and trackable links to your sales page that identify the referring affiliate. Set up a spreadsheet or track sales through your shopping cart using the affiliate links. And finally, make sure you pay your affiliate commissions quickly. After all, a satisfied affiliate is more likely to sell more products, and that creates more income for you both.





With this information about affiliate programs, you should be able to see the possibilities presented by adding affiliates. With each new affiliate, your exposure is enhanced exponentially, with no new marketing on your part. No marketing, easy administration and a potential for unlimited income...don't those sound like good reasons to start recruiting affiliates today?


Chris Robertson is an author of Majon International, one of the worlds MOST popular internet marketing companies.
For tips/information, click here: Money and Employment
Visit Majon's Business and Entrepreneurs directory.

affiliate program internet marketing: affiliate program

affiliate program internet marketing: affiliate program

Article Source: www.articlesnatch.com


          AlFarabiMusic | Al Farabi – Oh Fair | الفارابي – يا عادلاً        
Al Farabi is a Saudi band with a focus on Arabic Classical poetry.. this is their musical interpretation of يا عادلاً “O’ Thou who is Utterly Just” by Al Hasan bin Jaber (1638 – 1668) a Yemeni Sufi poet known
          So why is China upset about Taiwan?        
Because Taiwan is, de facto, a separate country, but the mainland wants to keep up the pretence that it is entitled to do violence to it at any time if it so wishes.

It is the only a part of China that is not governed by the Communist Party of China (the People's Republic of China (PRC) because the Communists didn't manage to take over Taiwan and a handful of islands off of the mainland coast at the end of the Chinese Civil War.  The effect was that the previous government of China, the Republic of China (ROC), "temporarily relocated" its capital from Nanking to Taipei, with the Kuomintang (Nationalist Party) putting Taiwan and other islands (Kinmen, Penghu and Matsu Islands and some others) under its control in a state of emergency for over forty years.

The effect was not dissimilar to that of the two Koreas, except the two Koreas are of roughly equal geographical size and at one time similar GDPs (indeed the Republic of Korea "south" was poorer than the Democratic People's Republic of Korea "north" until the late 1960s). 

So as mainland China suffered under the jackboot of Chairman Mao for nearly thirty years, and lost tens of millions to executions and starvation, and stagnated, Taiwan was under the less brutal jackboot of Chiang Kai Shek for a similar period and became a rapidly developing industrial country. Of course since Mao died, China embraced corporatist capitalism and its economy has grown much like Taiwan did since the 1950s, but Taiwan also reformed although spent many years under tough authoritarian rule. In 1969 the first legislative elections were held to have representatives of Taiwan elected (all others were legislators who were elected before the end of the civil war representing Chinese provinces under "occupation" by the communists).  As those legislators passed away they were not replaced so by the 1990s, the entire legislative assembly was subject to competitive elections.  Martial law was ended in 1987 by Chiang Kai Shek's successor and son Chiang Ching-kuo, as Taiwan moved to being a fully fledged liberal democracy.  By 1992, remaining mainland representatives were removed so the entire legislative assembly was subject to competitive elections.  
Taiwan, as such, is a role model for China as an open, relatively free, liberal democracy, with rule of law, capitalism and political power tempered by the separation of powers.  This, of course, is a complete anathema to the Chinese Communist Party and the People's Republic of China.

Of course, Taiwan (or rather the Republic of China in Taiwan - remember Made in R.O.C. labels on goods made a few decades ago?) has had an interesting history of international relations.   With the exception of the UK (primarily out of concern of Hong Kong), most Western countries did not recognise the Communist takeover of China immediately.  Australia and New Zealand did not until 1972, and even the United Nations seat for China was held by the Republic of China until 1971, as the United States vetoed the Chinese Communist regime (as it was called) from taking its seat despite strong efforts by friendly communist countries and developing countries lobbying on behalf of the PRC.  Albania became Beijing's biggest champion.  Both Beijing and Taipei regimes rejected each other being represented on the UN, but the US pushed for the PRC to be represented, not least because it seemed absurd that the world's most populous country (and a nuclear power) were not represented.  So the PRC was admitted, and the ROC expelled.   In 1979, the US switched recognition from the ROC to the PRC, but gave Taiwan a military security guarantee, as the PRC had always (and still does) reserve the right to reunify Taiwan by force.  

Both Chinese regimes refused to have diplomatic relations with any country that recognised the other, but the ROC on Taiwan dropped this in the 1990s, as it had lost recognition and embassies with almost all countries as few could refuse the commercial, diplomatic and strategic benefits of having good relations with mainland China.  Once Saudi Arabia (which had resisted the PRC because of its atheism) and South Africa (which shifted recognition not long after the end of apartheid) had dropped Taiwan, the ROC would only retain diplomatic relations with small Pacific Island, African or Latin American states, mostly through aid programmes (although this ended in 2000 as the PRC was able to outbid the ROC).

So Taiwan remains an oddity.  In every de facto sense, it is an independent country, with a military, government and informal diplomatic relations with many countries.  However, the PRC stops it from having formal diplomatic relations because it doesn't like the only part of China it didn't win in the civil war having a parallel status to it in international organisations or bilateral relations.  It claims that to do so would imply there are "two Chinas", which of course there are as there are two Koreas, and were two Germanys and two Yemens (and even two Cypruses) regardless of claims of legitimacy.

So Donald Trump accepting a phone call from the democratically elected President of the ROC should not be a big deal, except for Beijing, it ruffles their sensitivities over reality.  The US has a defence treaty with Taiwan, and should make it clear than any attack on Taiwan will be rebuffed by the US.  The ROC on Taiwan shares the values of the United States and other Western democracies, the values of freedom, individual rights and government that is determined by the consent of the governed.  The fact that this concerns the Chinese Communist Party is good, for it could do much worse than look at Taiwan and see an example of transition from one-party authoritarian rule to vibrant vigorous liberal democracy.   Peace between Taiwan and the mainland is critical for both, so I think there is little real risk of any aggression from the PRC, but it should be clearer than that.  A renewed US commitment to Taiwan because of its values.  

          Comment on Afghan Hezbollah? Be careful what you wish for by Tony Badran        
It might be useful to pinpoint the intellectual sources of the inaccurate <a href="http://blogs.law.harvard.edu/mesh/2009/10/afghan-hezbollah-be-careful-what-you-wish-for/" rel="nofollow">analogy</a> between Hezbollah and the Taliban. While we cannot say for sure, the views attributed to "White House advisers" in the <i>Washington Post</i> report sound familiar. Similar views have been expressed by the White House counterterrorism adviser, John Brennan. In a 2008 <a href="http://ann.sagepub.com/cgi/content/abstract/618/1/168" rel="nofollow">essay</a> entitled "The Conundrum of Iran: Strengthening Moderates without Acquiescing to Belligerence," Brennan wrote the following regarding Hezbollah: <blockquote>It is similarly foolhardy to believe that Hezbollah will not remain a potent political force within Lebanon for many years to come, as the organization has strong support within the Lebanese Shia community and well-established political and social welfare credentials throughout the country. Hezbollah's growing paramilitary strength and political and social resiliency were clearly demonstrated in 2006, when Israel showed a remarkable inability to inflict strategic damage on Hezbollah despite a major military campaign to do so. It would not be foolhardy, however, for the United States to tolerate, and even to encourage, greater assimilation of Hezbollah into Lebanon's political system, a process that is subject to Iranian influence. Hezbollah is already represented in the Lebanese parliament and its members have previously served in the Lebanese cabinet, reflections of Hezbollah's interest in shaping Lebanon's political future from within government institutions. This political involvement is a far cry from Hezbollah's genesis as solely a terrorist organization dedicated to murder, kidnapping, and violence. Not coincidentally, the evolution of Hezbollah into a fully vested player in the Lebanese political system has been accompanied by a marked reduction in terrorist attacks carried out by the organization. The best hope for maintaining this trend and for reducing the influence of violent extremists within the organization—as well as the influence of extremist Iranian officials who view Hezbollah primarily as a pawn of Tehran—is to increase Hezbollah's stake in Lebanon's struggling democratic processes. Because Israel views Hezbollah as a serious and lethal adversary, this will not be an easy sell. Washington will need to convince Israeli officials that they must abandon their aim of eliminating Hezbollah as a political force. This previously employed Israeli strategy did not work with the PLO and Fatah, and Israeli officials have adapted to the reality of engaging in political dialogue and negotiations with Palestinians formerly branded as "terrorists." A similar change must take place within the minds of Israeli government officials in regard to Hezbollah. One way to help effect this change would be if Iran were willing to press Hezbollah to cease its attacks against civilian targets and to declare so publicly. While insufficient to satisfy many Israelis who view Hezbollah as a serious military threat, it would be a positive first step.</blockquote> More recently, Brennan briefly made headlines for essentially reiterating this argument at a talk he gave at the Center for Strategic and International Studies in early August. Brennan's comments came in <a href="http://www.thenation.com/blogs/dreyfuss/460718/white_house_opening_to_hezbollah_hamas" rel="nofollow">response</a> to a question by <i>The Nation</i> correspondent, Robert Dreyfuss, whether the United States should start talking to organizations like Hamas, Hezbollah and the Taliban. Brennan focused most on Hezbollah and painted a remarkable picture of the group: <blockquote>Hezbollah started out as purely a terrorist organization back in the early '80s and has evolved significantly over time. And now it has members of parliament, in the cabinet; there are lawyers, doctors, others who are part of the Hezbollah organization. However, within Hezbollah, there's still a terrorist core. And hopefully those elements within the Shia community in Lebanon and within Hezbollah at large—they're going to continue to look at that extremist terrorist core as being something that is anathema to what, in fact, they're trying to accomplish in terms of their aspirations about being part of the political process in Lebanon. And so, quite frankly, I'm pleased to see that a lot of Hezbollah individuals are in fact renouncing that type of terrorism and violence and are trying to participate in the political process in a very legitimate fashion.</blockquote> Whether or not Brennan was the source for the <i>Washington Post</i> report, one can detect the similarity of the viewpoints that are evidently, as per the <i>WaPo</i> report, being raised by "some White House advisers." The main points of the argument are familiar to anyone who's kept up with the scholarly <a href="http://www.futureofmuslimworld.com/research/detail/hezbollahs-agenda-in-lebanon" rel="nofollow">literature</a> on Hezbollah, especially the proponents of the so-called "Lebanonization" theory, chief among whom is Augustus Richard Norton. This view holds that Hezbollah has "evolved" from a terrorist group into a mainstream political party. In order to sustain this argument, its proponents have often resorted to distancing Hezbollah from terrorist activity dating after its involvement in Lebanese politics, or, at the very least, minimizing it. This had been the norm in Hezbollah scholarship prior to the assassination of Imad Mughniyeh in February 2008. Brennan does the same in his 2008 article, claiming rather remarkably, that "the evolution" of Hezbollah into a political player was simultaneous with "a marked reduction in terrorist attacks carried out by the organization." Moreover, "increasing Hezbollah's stake" in the Lebanese political process has had no effect on Hezbollah's military operations, as evident form their involvement in Iraq, and Yemen, Egypt and Azerbaijan (as noted by Matt Levitt in his post). However, what's more problematic is the definition of "political participation." Hezbollah has made a mockery of Lebanon's constitution and parliamentary political traditions. Needless to say, the idea of a sectarian group with an arsenal that rivals that of an army, and with external foreign connections and networks, "participating in politics in a tightly balanced sectarian society" is itself an absurdity. Furthermore, those who make this argument miss the point of Hezbollah's political participation: it is precisely in order to protect its military autonomy. This was articulated by a Hezbollah spokesman in a 2007 interview with the International Crisis Group: "Paradoxically, some want us to get involved in the political process in order to neutralise us. In fact, we intend to get involved—but precisely in order to protect the strategic choice of resistance." Hezbollah has used its weapons in order to bend the political system to fit its agenda and has intimidated its political rivals by force of arms. As the author of the ICG <a href="http://www.nowlebanon.com/NewsArchiveDetails.aspx?ID=16115" rel="nofollow">report</a>, Patrick Haenni, put it: "Hezbollah realized that they had [to be internally involved to a greater extent], but the issue was still to secure their weapons.... Hezbollah has a real interest in making the state part of its global project." The flawed understanding of the nature of Hezbollah has led people like Brennan to posit the existence of various "wings" in Hezbollah: "extremists" vs. "moderates" and those who supposedly "renounce terrorism" vs. those who support it. While this illusory categorization has not been translated into U.S. policy, it has, alas, become British policy. Ironically, Hezbollah officials have publicly mocked this kind of artificial dichotomies. This fundamental misunderstanding of the group is captured in the wording of the <i>Washington Post</i> report, which described Hezbollah as "the armed Lebanese political movement." That has it backwards. To quote Ahmad Nizar Hamzeh, Hezbollah is "first and foremost a jihadi movement that engages in politics, and not a political party that conducts jihad." One must qualify that further by adding what Na'im Qassem wrote in his book, that the jurisprudent (<i>al-wali al-faqih</i>)—i.e., Iran's Supreme Guide, Ali Khamenei—"alone possesses the authority to decide war and peace," and matters of jihad. Therefore, in effect Hezbollah is a light infantry division of the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps. That's not the kind of model the US wants to see in Afghanistan. <i><a href="http://www.defenddemocracy.org/index.php?option=com_content&task=view&id=23714" rel="nofollow">Tony Badran</a> is research fellow with the Center for Terrorism Research at the Foundation for Defense of Democracies.</i>
          Yemen: Artillery Attacks Kill Civilians in Taizz        

(Beirut) – Houthi-Saleh forces have repeatedly fired artillery indiscriminately into populated neighborhoods of Taizz, Yemen’s third largest city, in violation of the laws of war, Human Rights Watch said today. Over a 10-day period in May 2017, shelling of the city by the Houthi armed group and forces loyal to former president Ali Abdullah Saleh resulted in the deaths of at least 30 civilians and wounded more than 160 others, according to doctors at two local hospitals. The opposing government-affiliated forces of President Abdu Rabu Mansour Hadi also appear to have fired artillery indiscriminately into populated areas outside the city.

The al-Daboua’a neighborhood in Taizz where shelling from Houthi-Saleh forces struck on May 23, 2017. The attacks killed at least five civilians, including one child, and wounded seven, including four children. May 29, 2017. 

© 2017 Maher al-Absi

Human Rights Watch documented seven attacks between May 21 and 23 that killed at least 12 civilians, including four children, and wounded 29, including 10 children. Houthi-Saleh forces apparently carried out six artillery attacks on Taizz city, which is controlled by forces affiliated with the Yemeni government. On May 22, government-affiliated forces appear to have shelled al-Hawban district, under Houthi-Saleh control, northeast of Taizz, and killed three civilians, including two children, and wounded two others.

“Houthi-Saleh forces’ shelling of populated areas of Taizz has taken a terrible toll on civilians,” said Sarah Leah Whitson, Middle East director at Human Rights Watch. “Houthi-Saleh commanders should immediately halt these indiscriminate attacks, and Yemeni government forces should ensure that their own forces are not launching similarly unlawful attacks outside the city.”

Human Rights Watch interviewed 14 witnesses to the May attacks along with local activists and health professionals. During the past two years, Houthi-Saleh forces, which control the capital and other areas of the country, have repeatedly fired mortar projectiles and artillery rockets from an elevated area in al-Hawban district indiscriminately into populated areas in Taizz.

Yemeni government-affiliated forces have controlled most of Taizz city since March 2016. Local monitors, including one in al-Hawban district, have reported numerous indiscriminate attacks by Houthi-Saleh forces into the city, and occasional unlawful strikes by government-affiliated forces, like the May 22 shelling, into al-Hawban. Mwatana, a leading Yemeni human rights organization, reported that Houthi-Saleh forces were responsible for most of the dozens of indiscriminate shelling incidents they documented in Taizz between April 2015 and March 2016.

A local activist, Faris al-Obidi, prepared a list of casualties from attacks over the three days in May when shelling in Taizz city was particularly heavy, after speaking with witnesses and survivors, as well as consulting logs at Taizz’s three hospitals. The list, which he shared with Human Rights Watch, included the names, ages, and date of injury for 54 civilians. Among the 14 dead were three children and two women.

Dr. Ahmad al-Dumaini, technical director at al-Thawra, Taizz city’s main hospital, said the hospital received 58 war-wounded civilians between May 20 and 26, including 20 children, plus three people who died before arrival, including a child. He said the vast majority of these casualties were from shelling. Dr. Walid al-Watiri, the laboratory chief at al-Safwa Hospital, said al-Safwa, al-Thawra, and al-Rawda hospitals received the bodies of 31 people, including six children, and another 167 wounded, including 60 children, over a 10-day period.

Jamil Qaid comforts his 8-year-old daughter, Malik, after her arm was amputated. Malik was wounded during one of the Houthi-Saleh artillery attacks on al-Dabou'a neighborhood, Taizz, on May 23, 2017. 

© 2017 Khalid Fuad Albanna

The renewed shelling occurred after local government-affiliated forces pushed Houthi-Saleh forces back from several locations east of the city, said a local activist, Maher al-Absi.

The areas hit on May 21 were about 800 meters from the front lines while those hit on May 22 and 23 were in the middle of the city, far from the front lines, in “very crowded civilian places,” al-Absi said. Witnesses to the six attacks in Taizz city that Human Rights Watch documented said that no government-aligned military forces were in those neighborhoods at the time of the attacks. Witnesses to the attack outside the city said no Houthi-Saleh forces were present.

Dr. al-Dumaini from al-Thawra hospital described what happened to Malik Qaid, an 8-year-old girl who lost her arm in one of the attacks on May 23:

The worst scene I saw was the child Malik. First, I felt helpless and heartbroken because we had only one surgeon in the operating room and he was busy with other cases, but at the end he finished and he operated on her. I felt sorry for this girl. How will she live with one arm? How will she adapt with the other kids while throughout her life she will be scarred by war?

Human Rights Watch has previously documented Houthi-Saleh indiscriminate shelling in Taizz. In June 2016, shelling killed at least 18 civilians and wounded 68 others over three days, hitting markets crowded with people shopping for Ramadan, according to the UN. In August 2015, three Houthi-Saleh attacks on Taizz killed at least 14 civilians, including five women and five children. In February 2017, Taizz-based activists provided Human Rights Watch a list of dozens of attacks on Taizz since March 2015 that had resulted in scores of civilian casualties.

The laws of war applicable to the armed conflict in Yemen prohibit indiscriminate attacks that strike military objectives and civilians or civilian objects without distinction. Examples include attacks that are not directed at a specific military objective or that use weapons, such as unguided rockets, that cannot be directed at a specific military objective.

The laws of war also require commanders to choose a means of attack that can be directed at military targets and will minimize incidental harm to civilians. Explosive weapons that are so inaccurate that they cannot be directed at military targets without a substantial risk of civilian harm should not be used in populated areas. Forces also must avoid locating military objectives near densely populated areas and seek to remove civilians from the vicinity of military targets.

“Commanders of Houthi-Saleh forces could face war crimes charges for ordering attacks that indiscriminately strike Taizz’s populated neighborhoods,” Whitson said. “All sides need to abide by the laws of war to minimize harm to civilians who have endured more than two years of fighting.”

May 21

On May 21, 2017 at about 5 p.m., a munition hit al-Humaira area, Sala district, a residential neighborhood about 200 meters from the front lines, killing a woman and her son and wounding four others, including the woman’s daughter.

Abdulrahman al-Naqeeb, 28, told Human Rights Watch that he and his friends heard a loud explosion and saw that a munition hit near a security checkpoint, wounding a local security officer. Fragments also struck a small van that contained a driver, and a woman and her two children. Al-Naqeeb said:

After the explosion, we heard someone calling for help. Four or five of us went to help…  

I didn’t recognize them at first, the driver was wounded. When we arrived at the hospital, they told us the woman was dead already, and I was looking at her son, and I was wondering why his face was very familiar to me. I was shocked, as I realized that she is my sister-in-law, and those are her kids. They were coming to visit us.

Eman al-Sufiani, 37, a recent widow, and her son Muhanned, 13, died in the attack. Her 8-year-old daughter, Shahad, was wounded. A local activist said three other men, including one of the men who worked at the checkpoint and the driver, were wounded in the attack.

Two more attacks that day, one near a school and the other near a mosque, killed five civilians, including a child. Three others were wounded, including two children, according to local activist al-Obidi.

May 22

On May 22 at about 1:30 p.m., a munition hit near Taizz’s Great Gate in al-Qahira district, a crowded area where people regularly gather to shop at the nearby market. According to al-Obidi’s casualty list, the attack killed one civilian and wounded 10, including a child.

Hamoud al-Shar’abi, 20, was buying vegetables in the market near the Great Gate when the munition hit. He said:

The first shell hit very close to me. People fell. Some got wounded. … I was thinking of rescuing a guy close to me. I didn’t know what to do. … Then I found myself on the ground, I lost consciousness.

Al-Shar’abi’s father said he heard an explosion followed by light cannon firing: “We got scared. The people were running away. Someone came and told us he saw someone with a motorbike rescue my son. I was terrified for my kid.”

Doctors performed surgery twice on al-Shar’abi and removed a light cannon round from his body. He provided Human Rights Watch a photo of the removed round.

Another attack that day on the al-Askari neighborhood wounded three civilians, including a 50-year-old woman and a 17-year-old boy, al-Obidi said.

The same day, government-affiliated forces appear to have shelled indiscriminately into al-Hawban district, northeast of Taizz. According to a local activist, the attack occurred at about 5:10 a.m., hitting al-Jumla neighborhood. A neighborhood resident, 25, said he was waiting for a grocery store to open after the morning prayers when the shell hit: “The loudness of the attack brought all the people from the neighborhood to rescue us.” He was wounded, as was a 16-year-old boy standing near him. Three people, including a 15-year-old and 17-year-old boy, were killed.

May 23

On May 23 at about 11:30 a.m., a munition hit a fruit cart near Mousa Gate in al-Qahira district, wounding five civilians, including three children, according to al-Obidi. Hani Saeed, a 35-year-old owner of a nearby barbershop, said that he rushed to help a 16-year-old girl who sells vegetables next to his shop and her aunt, who were both wounded.

At about 4:30 p.m., at least three munitions hit al-Daboua’a neighborhood, about 10 to 15 minutes apart, killing at least five civilians, including one child, and wounding seven, including four children.

In a video made immediately after the attack, an impact crater and fragmentation pattern on the asphalt indicate a 120mm mortar projectile was used. Based on the direction of the impact, the projectile was fired in an east-to-west direction, which fits with a mortar fired from the locations to the east of the city where Houthi-Saleh forces are known to be positioned.

Haza’a Nubish, a local resident, said the first al-Daboua’a munition hit near the Motherhood and Childhood Center, a small health center, killing his cousin Salem Kudaf and wounding Kudaf’s 5-year-old son, Sami. Fragments from the munition also wounded a 13-year-old girl.

The next two munitions struck near a construction materials store, one hitting a house and the other the middle of the street, killing four people, including a 7-year-old boy, and wounding three, including a 12-year-old boy, Nubish said.

Ghazal Qassim, 24, said she was in a shop with her two sons, one an infant, when the munitions struck. She said she was terrified and sought cover. She went to the hospital after the attack, as she had metal fragments in her back, and her 4-year-old son’s hand was wounded.

At about the same time as the attacks on al-Daboua’a, Flah al-Atfi, 32, was killed and Ameen al-A’shari, 54, lost both his legs after a munition hit about 500 meters east of the Central Security Forces headquarters in Taizz, said al-A’shari’s son. 


                  

ATIVIDADE 9º ANO

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KIÁRUSÍTÁS!     S.OLIVER  PÓLÓ   140/ 8-10 ÉV
Jelenlegi ára: 1 Ft
Az aukció vége: 2017-08-27 20:38
          1FT!!!! NIKE PÓLÓ NAGYLÁNYNAK 10 -12 ÉV SZÉP! - Jelenlegi ára: 1 Ft        

Itt  a képeken látható,
NIKE  
r. ujjú pólóra
licitálhatsz
nagylánynak
Beleírt méret: M       137-147 cm     10-12  év
Képek szerinti szép  állapotban!
Ha időd engedi, nézd meg a többi gyerekruhát is,
esetleg találhatsz még kedvedre valót!
Nagy választék, kedvező áron!
Az utalt összeg jóváírását követően,
1-3 munkanapon belül küldöm a csomagot!
Csak "1Ft"-ért nyert terméket nem postázok,
személyesen átvehető lakhelyemen,
előre egyeztetett időpontban!
Köszönöm, hogy itt jártál!
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1FT!!!!     NIKE  PÓLÓ  NAGYLÁNYNAK   10 -12 ÉV      SZÉP!
Jelenlegi ára: 1 Ft
Az aukció vége: 2017-08-27 20:38
          KIÁRUSÍTÁS ! GAP FELSŐ NAGYLÁNYNAK 10-11 ÉV - Jelenlegi ára: 1 Ft        

GAP
h. ujjú  felső
nagylánynak
146-os  méretben       10-11 év
Kérésre szívesen mérek!
Mosva és vasalva küldöm!
Sok szép gyerekruha kedvező áron!
Ha időd engedi, nézz körül nálam!
Több 1Ft-os aukció!
Köszönöm, hogy itt jártál!
A 2017-es postai díjszabást találja a borítékra kattintva!
Postázási feltételek:
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1-3 munkanapon belül küldöm a csomagot!
Csak "1Ft"-ért nyert terméket nem postázok,
személyesen átvehető lakhelyemen!
Banki  feltételek:  OTP 

KIÁRUSÍTÁS !   GAP  FELSŐ    NAGYLÁNYNAK   10-11 ÉV
Jelenlegi ára: 1 Ft
Az aukció vége: 2017-08-27 20:35
          1Ft!! NAME IT ŐSZI FELSŐ KISFIÚNAK 3-4 ÉV - Jelenlegi ára: 1 Ft        

NAME IT  ŐSZI FELSŐ
kisfiúnak
98-104 méretben    3-4 év
Kérésre szívesen mérek!
 Képek szerinti, jó állapotban!
Mosva és vasalva küldöm!
Ha időd engedi, nézd meg a többi gyerekruhát is, esetleg találhatsz még kedvedre valót!
Nagy választék, kedvező áron!
1. kép ajánlás!
Köszönöm, hogy itt jártál!
Postázási feltételek:
Az utalt összeg jóváírását követően,  
1-2 munkanapon belül postázom a terméket!
Csak "1Ft"-ért nyert terméket nem postázok,
személyesen átvehető lakhelyemen,
előre egyeztetett időpontban!

1Ft!!   NAME IT  ŐSZI   FELSŐ   KISFIÚNAK     3-4 ÉV
Jelenlegi ára: 1 Ft
Az aukció vége: 2017-08-27 20:30
          Language Diversity in Jewish Music        
Hebrew

Today, when most people think of "Jewish language" they immediately think of Hebrew.  This certainly makes sense.  Hebrew is the primary language of Israel as well as the language in which Jews formally pray, and the Hebrew alphabet is used to write Yiddish, even though Yiddish is a Germanic language.  It is presently the most commonly spoken Jewish language by far.

And Hebrew is a pretty cool language to sing in.  Not only is it beautiful, it also, even when used for secular purposes, retains its spiritual underpinnings.  Hebrew words rely on a unique system of roots and connections that signal certain important religious concepts.  For instance, the word "adam" (ah-dahm) is the Hebrew word for "red," but it's also the word for "man" and "human" and the proper name Adam, while also closely related to the word "adamah," which means Earth.  This is intended to demonstrate the fact that man comes from the the Earth, that Gd made Adam from the red clay of the Earth, and that when (hu)man dies s/he returns to the dust. Some Jews believe that the Hebrew language was designed by Gd.  So even when we sing secular Hebrew music, we're still singing distinctively Jewish music.

Consider this beautiful secular love song by Idan Raichel, "From the Deep" or "Mimiamakim."  "Mimiamakim" has very distinct meaning for Jews.  A prayer that we say during the holiest holiday of the year begins with the words"from the deep" or "from the depths," and it's meant to describe how, on Yom Kippur, we cry out for Gd from the very depths of our souls and from the very depths of our sorrows.  Idan Raichel, in this piece, uses these words to demonstrate the intense longing with which he is calling out to his partner. 




You'll also note that Idan Raichel has regularly collaborated with Jews of varying ethnic and language backgrounds, including Ethiopian Jews who have immigrated to Israel.  Several of Raichel's collaborations feature Ethiopian Jews singing in the Ethiopian language Amharic, such as in "From the Deep" above and in the song "Bo'i," which Makela covers.

 

Yiddish

After Hebrew, Yiddish is probably the most recognized Jewish language, especially among Americans.  Yiddish is a Germanic language with some Slavic and Hebrew influences, written in the Hebrew alphabet, and, as a spoken language, is very similar to the Middle German that was spoken during the Medieval period, when Yiddish originally developed among Central and Eastern European Jewish communities, known as Ashkenazic Jews.  Since the majority of Jews who immigrated to the United States in the late 19th and early 20th centuries are of Ashkenazic ancestry, this is the Jewish language that was brought to the United States.

Ashkenazic immigrants played a major role in shaping Jewish popular music during the first half of the 20th century, and Yiddish itself has had a profound influence on American English.  Many recognizably Yiddish words are frequently interjected by Jewish and non-Jewish English speakers alike, such as "schlep," "nosh," "kvetch," "klutz," etc.  Other Yiddish words are often taken for granted as English, such as "maven," "spritz," and "glitch."


Yiddish language goes hand in hand with klezmer, a Jewish musical tradition developed by Ashkenazic Jews in Europe, who were heavily influenced by Romani (sometimes known by the pejorative term "Gypsy") music in Europe, given that both groups were frequently marginalized.  Klezmer, in turn, has had strong influences on a variety of other musical forms, including jazz and cabaret.  It also shares some similarities with jazz manouche, a distinctively French form of jazz, popularized and possibly invented by the Romani artist Django Reinhardt.

While not particularly beautiful to most, Yiddish is known for being a highly expressive language, often providing the perfect word for expressing a particular sentiment when no English word will do.  This expressiveness has had an important influence in instrumental klezmer music, in which it is common for musicians to attempt to emulate human voices and expressiveness with particular riffs.  In this way, certain klezmer instrumental sounds are said to be "kvelling" (to speak about with great pride) or "kfetching" (to complain), etc.

You can hear the klezmer influences in this current Yiddish piece by artist Yoni Eilat:


(for a fun instrumental example of music combining klezmer and jazz manouche elements with funk, check out this piece by French band Les Yeux Noirs)

Makela is currently working on bringing our first Yiddish piece into our repertoire, "Bei Mir Bistu Shein," a Yiddish pop song from the 1930s, a time when there was a thriving Yiddish cinema and there were still enough Yiddish speakers for secular popular music to frequently be produced in Yiddish.  The song was sung in Yiddish at the Apollo in 1937 by African-American performers Johnnie and George, prompting American composers to translate it into English while retaining some of the original Yiddish language.  The English variation of Bei Mir Bistu Shein went on to be covered by several popular American artists, and became the Andrews Sisters' first ever big hit.  The song also became internationally popular, including in Germany, until the NAZI government discovered that the song was rooted in Yiddish, not German, and promptly banned it from German radio.  Click here to hear the Andrews Sisters version on Youtube.


Ladino

Yiddish is to the Ashkenazic Jews of Central and Eastern Europe as Ladino is to the Sephardic Jews of Spain and North Africa, who maintained large populations in Iberia until the Spanish Inquisition led to mass conversion and exile.  Ladino essentially enjoys an Old Spanish core with richly varied influences from other old Iberian romance languages and a variety of MidEastern languages such as Hebrew, Aramaic and Arabic.  It is a painfully beautiful and unfortunately highly endangered language today, with very few speakers left.  Many Sephardic Jews with roots in Spain ended up migrating throughout other parts of North Africa and the MidEast, taking Ladino with them.

Enjoy this hauntingly beautiful Ladino song by Israeli-born Morrocan/Persian artist Mor Karbasi:



Yemenite Jewish Languages

The term Yemenite refers to the Jews of Yemen, most of whom today live in Israel.  Yemenites traditionally speak Yemeni Arabic and/or Yemenite Hebrew.  Yemenite Jews are sometimes characterized as part of the greater group of Mizrahi Jews, which generally refers to Jews whose roots have consistently remained in the Middle East, rather than by way of Europe like the Ashkenazim and Sephardim.  It's a somewhat difficult distinction to make, however, since all Jews are said to be able to trace themselves back to ancient Israel, including the Ashkenazim and Sephardim who eventually spread into Europe.  Furthermore, many of the Sephardim fled Iberia to live in the Middle East centuries ago where they intermingled with Arab Jews, making Sephardic and Mizrahi populations sometimes hard to distinguish from one another.  Yemenite Jews, however, are a clear and distinct subgroup among the Mizrahim, as their religious practice and language have distinct qualities.

The following piece is a pop variation on a traditional Yemenite folk song performed by the rising Yemenite pop group A-WA, and sung in Yemeni Arabic.  What looks like hip hop dancing is actually a traditional Yemenite folk dance:


Click here for a fascinating article on the Yemenite influences in the song and for the story behind A-WA.  Interestingly, A-WA found great inspiration in the Andrews Sisters, the American group that helped to popularize Bei Mir Bistu Shein.
          Suudi Arabistan Yemen'i vurdu! Çok sayıda ölü var        
Yemen’in kuzeyinde Sa’ada şehrine Suudi Arabistan tarafından düzenlenen hava saldırısı sonucu bir aileden 9 kişi hayatını kaybetti.
          Life After Guantánamo: Yemeni Freed in Estonia Says, “Part of Me is Still at Guantánamo”        
Please support my work! I’m currently trying to raise $2500 (£2000) to support my writing and campaigning on Guantánamo and related issues over the next three months of the Trump administration.   For some months now, I’ve been meaning to post a handful of articles about former Guantánamo prisoners resettled in third countries, as part […]
          Life After Guantánamo: Yemeni Released in Serbia Struggles to Cope with Loneliness and Harassment        
Please support my work! I’m currently trying to raise $2500 (£2000) to support my writing and campaigning on Guantánamo and related issues over the first two months of the Trump administration.   Last week, I posted an article about Hedi Hammami, a Tunisian national held in Guantánamo for eight years, who was released in 2010, […]
          Shore Scripts        

Objective:

Discovering new screenwriting talent from around the world.

Shore Scripts Screenwriting Competition is focused on unearthing the best scripts from around the world and getting them into the hands of the producers and production companies who have the ability to get them made.

Patrick Tobin, the writer of CAKE starring Jennifer Aniston is one of our most recent successes. The film is to be released in Jan 2015 by Warner Bros. Have a look at our Alumni here: http://www.shorescripts.com/alumni/

We have the highest calibre of industry judges of any screenwriting competition in the world. Our 21 judges include OSCAR & BAFTA Winners. We also have OVER 100 PRODUCTION COMPANIES & AGENTS attached to read this years best scripts.

  • OSCAR WINNING ACTOR, JEREMY IRONS - THE FRENCH LIEUTENANT'S WOMAN, REVERSAL OF FORTUNE, DIE HARD +
  • OSCAR NOMINATED WRITER, JEFFREY CAINE - THE CONSTANT GARDENER, GOLDENEYE +
  • BAFTA WINNING WRITER, TONY GRISONI - FEAR & LOATHING IN LAS VEGAS, TIDELAND, THE RED RIDING TRILOGY +
  • AFI WINNER & CANNES PALME D'OR NOMINATED DIRECTOR, RAY LAWRENCE - LANTANA, JINDABYNE +
  • DIRECTOR PHYLLIDA LLOYD - MAMMA MIA, THE IRON LADY
  • LIZA MARSHALL - HEAD OF FILM @ RIDLEY SCOTT'S, SCOTT FREE
  • MICHELLE WRIGHT - IN CHARGE OF PRODUCTION @ WORKING TITLE FILMS
  • OSCAR NOMINATED PRODUCER, PAUL WEBSTER - EASTERN PROMISES, SALMON FISHING IN THE YEMEN +
  • OSCAR NOMINATED PRODUCER, STEPHEN WOOLLEY - THE CRYING GAME, INTERVIEW WITH THE VAMPIRE +

We have a strong relationship with the production companies signed up to read the years best scripts. These scripts do not necessarily need to be winning scripts. If we feel a script is suited to a companies slate, we will send it on. This will always be with the writers prior consent, and can be at any point during and after the competition.

Deadline:

Entry Fee:
$55 ($45)


          ACLU of Northern California Contact Info for SFO Arrivals Affected by Executive Order        
The ACLU of Northern California is asking that people who have been expecting visitors to arrive at SFO from one of the seven countries in yesterday's executive order - Iraq, Iran, Syria, Libya, Somalia, Sudan, and Yemen - and have not heard from their visitors or have heard that their visitors have arrived and been detained or denied entry to please contact us at 415-621-2488 and leave a message.
          Politics - USA        
 Kilkrazy wrote:
Are you saying it's wrong?


He makes a valid point. It's difficult for Clinton to say that Trump will hurt the country with his foreign policy positions when Clinton voted in favor of invading Iraq and while she was SecState Egypt fell apart, we attacked Libya and Yemen. Did Clinton accomplish anything while SecState to make the ME better or make the US safer or make the US more respected in the ME? What is Clinton's ME policy that is going to make things better?

A lot of the attacks Clinton could launch at Trump can very easily bommerang back at her.
          Re:Politics - USA        
 Kilkrazy wrote:
Here is Clinton's speech in the Senate preceding her vote for war on Iraq. (From Snopes.com. http://www.snopes.com/hillary-clinton-iraq-vote-bribe/ )

"The evidence is clear. On Oct. 10, 2002, during the Senate debate on a resolution to authorize the use of force in Iraq, Clinton rose to express her highly qualified support. First, though, she criticized the idea of attacking Saddam then and there, either alone or "with any allies we can muster." Such a course, she said, "is fraught with danger," in part because "it would set a precedent that could come back to haunt us ... This is a difficult vote. This is probably the hardest decision I have ever had to make. Any vote that may lead to war should be hard, but I cast it with conviction ... My vote is not, however, a vote for any new doctrine of preemption or for unilateralism or for the arrogance of American power or purpose." A vote for the resolution, she argued, "is not a vote to rush to war; it is a vote that puts awesome responsibility in the hands of our president. And we say to him: Use these powers wisely and as a last resort." "

It's hardly warmongering.


I never called it war mongering, I said it makes it difficult for her to label Trump as a candidate that will damage the US standing in the ME and make America less safe. The Iraq War + Arab Spring + Libya + Yemen all happened while Clinton was either a senator or SecState and it can be argued that none of it has benefited the US or the ME. If Clinton wants to highlight Trump's rhetoric on foreign policy she needs to be prepared to defend her own foreign policy record that isn't unblemished.
          Red Cross fears there are 600,000 cholera cases in Yemen        

370,000 people are believed to have been infected by cholera in Yemen. The International Red Cross Committee (ICRC) believes the numbers will pass 600,000 this...

The post Red Cross fears there are 600,000 cholera cases in Yemen appeared first on Norway Today.


                  

UPDATE!

Oscars: Eight Documentary Short Subjects Make the List

Forty films were submitted, and three to five of them will earn nominations.



October 10, 2013 - The Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences' documentary branch has selected a short list of eight documentary short films that will compete for the 86th Academy Awards.

The eight films were chosen from 40 eligible entries. Three to five films will be nominated in the documentary short subject category when nominations are announced Jan. 16

The eight films, listed in alphabetical order by title, with their production companies, are:
CaveDigger, Karoffilms. Jeffrey Karoff's film tells of Ra Paulette, an artist who digs cathedral-like caves in the sandstone cliffs of New Mexico.

Facing Fear, Jason Cohen Productions. Jason Cohen's directorial debut centers a gay man, who was attacked by a gang of neo-Nazis as a teen, and encounters one of his attackers 25 years later. 

Jujitsu-ing Reality, Sobini Films. Chetin Chabuk's documentary focuses on a screenwriter, Scott Lew, dealing with Lou Gehrig's disease.

Karama Has No Walls, Hot Spot Films. Yemeni-Scot filmmaker Sara Ishaq looks at one tragic day during the 2011 Yemeni revolution.

The Lady in Number 6: Music Saved My Life, Reed Entertainment. Malcolm Clarke's film is a portrait of 109 year-old holocaust survivor Alice Herz Sommer, who offers her views on how to live a long and happy life. Clarke, along with Bill Guttentag, won the Oscar in this category in 1989 for You Don't Have To Die.

Prison Terminal: The Last Days of Private Jack Hall, Prison Terminal LLC. Shot over a six-month period at Iowa State Penitentiary, Edgar Barens' doc looks at the final months in the life of a terminally ill prisoner.

Recollections, Notrac Productions. Nathanael Carton's film concerns survivors of the 2011 Tohoku earthquake and tsunami.

SLOMO, Big Young Films and Runaway Films. Joshua Izenberg's film follows Dr. John Kitchin, a neurologist who abandons his career to take up rollerblading along the Pacific Coast.

          Al-Marhum Dato’ Mursyid Diraja al ‘Allamah Syeikh Haji Tajuddin         

Al-Marhum Dato’ Mursyid Diraja al ‘Allamah Syeikh Haji Tajuddin bin Syeikh Abdul Rahman - bekas Pengerusi Majlis Fatwa Kebangsaan (1995-1999)


Al Marhum Dato’ Haji Tajudin dilahirkan di belakang Kilang Ais, Seberang Perak, Alor Setar, Kedah Darul Aman, pada 27 Ramadhan 1343H bersamaan dengan 18 September 1924M. Nama penuh beliau ialah Haji Tajudin bin Syeikh Abdul Rahman al-Jarumi. Beliau adalah anak Syeikh Abdul Rahman yang ke 8 daripada 11 orang adik-beradik. Beliau juga mempunyai 2 orang saudara seibu. Gelaran al-Jarumi[1] adalah disabitkan dari gelaran datuknya iaitu Tok Syeikh Jarum (1849 -1911)[2], salah seorang ulamak yang terkenal di Kedah dan Nusantara pada abad yang ke 19 yang juga merupakan guru kepada baginda Sultan Abdul Hamid Halim Shah. Nama sebenar Tok Syeikh Jarum ialah Syeikh Wan Idris bin Wan Jamaluddin bin Syeikh Wan Abdul Latif bin Syeikh Wan Shamsuddin bin Syeikh Wan Muhammad Faqih bin Syeikh Wan Muhammad Yasin bin Syeikh Ibrahim Al Hadrami bin Syeikh Ibar al-Hadrami al-Jarmi atau lebih dikenali umum sebagai Syeikh Jamaluddin al Kubro. Bapa Dato’ Haji Tajudin iaitu Syeikh Abdul Rahman al-Jarumi[3] adalah seorang ulama yang sangat terkenal di Alor Setar. Bapanya telah membuka pondok di Batu 1, Jalan Sungai Korok, Alor Setar. Bapanya juga menjadi guru kepada Baginda Sultan Abdul Hamid dan Sultan Badlishah serta kerabat-kerabat. Ibu beliau Nik Rahmah (Nik Doh) binti Nik Abdul Manaf adalah seorang guru al-Quran dan merupakan kerabat Raja Teluban salah sebuah Wilayah di Patani. Semasa zaman kanak-kanak beliau memperolehi pendidikan awal dipondok ayahnya sendiri iaitu di pondok Batu 1. Di samping belajar menulis dan membaca, beliau juga diajar menghafaz matan dan fardhu ‘ain. Manakala ilmu-ilmu al-Quran adalah diperolehi dari ibunya sendiri iaitu Nik Doh. Setelah mencapai usia remaja iaitu ketika berumur 10 tahun beliau dihantar oleh ayahnya ke Makkah untuk melanjutkan pelajaran menengah dan tinggi. Ketika di Makkah beliau dihantar belajar di Sekolah Tinggi Darul Ulum iaitu 3 tahun di peringkat menengah rendah (1933-1935)[4] dan 4 tahun peringkat menengah atas (1936-1942). Beliau kemudiannya menyambung pelajaran di peringkat tinggi selama 2 tahun (1943-1944) hingga mendapat syahadah ‘Aliah. Beliau turut mendalami ilmu-ilmu agama di Masjid Al Haram Makkah selama 3 tahun iatu (1943-1945). Ketika di Darul Ulum beliau mempelajari ilmu-ilmu agama, Bahasa Arab dan pelajaran lain seperti Mantik, Matematik dan Sains. Di antara pelajaran-pelajaran agama yang beliau pelajari di sini termasuklah Ilmu Feqah, Faraid, Usul Feqah, Qawaid Feqah, Tafsir, Ulum Quran, Hadith, Mustolah, Tauhid, dan Sejarah Islam. Manakala pelajaran-pelajaran Bahasa Arab pula ialah seperti Nahu, Sorof, Insyak, Mutolaah, ‘Arudh, Nusus, Adab dan Balaghah. Ketika di Masjid al-Haram pula beliau mendalami ilmu Feqah, Usul Feqah, Tauhid, Tafsir, Hadith dan Tasawuf. Semasa di dalam kelas beliau digelar oleh gurunya Sheikh Muhammad Yasin al-Fadani dan rakan-rakannya sebagai Taj as Sabki kerana kebolehan beliau yang tinggi dalam membaca dan memahami dengan baik kitab usul Feqah yang mashur iaitu Jam’u al Jawami’ karya Imam Tajuddin As Sabki ialah ulama’ besar dalam ilmu perundangan Islam. Kitab ini menjadi rujukan utama di pusat-pusat pengajian tingi hingga sekarang. Selain Syeikh Muhammad Yasin al-Fadani yang merupakan guru utamanya yang juga seorang ulama hadith yang sangat masyhur di Makkah dimana Dato’ Haji Tajudin menerima ijazah sanad-sanad Hadis dan kitab-kitab Mu’tabar yang menjadi sumber rujukan di dalam ilmu-ilmu Islam dari gurunya itu, beliau turut berguru dengan Syeikh Hasan al-Masyalt, Syeikh Ali al-Maliki, Syeikh Husain al-Maliki, Muhaddith Hijaz al-Hafiz Syeikh Omar Hamdan al-Mahrisi, Syeikh Shafie Kedah, Syeikh Ismail Abdul Qadir al-Fathani, Sayyid Muhammad Amin al-Qurtubi, Sayyid ‘Alawi bin Sayyid Abbas al-Hasani, Syeikh Zain al-Boyani, Syeikh Yaakub bin Abdul Qadir al-Mandili dan Syeikh Husain Abdul Ghani al-Falimbani. Beliau sangat rapat dengan gurunya yang utama itu sehingga selepas pulang ke tanahair pun, beliau sentiasa berhubung dengan gurunya itu. Setelah pulang dari Makkah pada awal tahun 1946 dalam usia 21 tahun beliau berkahwin dengan Puan Siti Zubaidah binti Ismail 18 tahun.[5]Perkahwinan ini menghasilkan 9 orang cahaya mata. Anak ketiga beliau Faiqah meninggal dunia ketika berumur 4 tahun setelah terjatuh ke dalam perigi berdekatan dengan rumahnya. Anak beliau yang masih ada ialah lapan orang iaitu: Fauziah, Ahmad Shafik, Ahmad Najib, Saulah, Mahmud Pathi, Zakiah, Mohd Jamil Sadaqi dan Muhammad Farid Wajdi. 7 orang anaknya telah mencecahkan kaki ke pusat pengajian tinggi. Daripada itu tiga daripadanya telah berjaya mencapai ke peringkat ijazah Sarjana atau Master. Pada tahun 1946 beliau mula mengasaskan Madrasah Nahdhah Hasanah, di Melele. Beliau dilantik oleh penduduk-penduduk setempat menjadi mudir yang pertama hingga sekarang. Pendorong utama beliau untuk menerima jawatan ini ialah ayahnya sendiri Syeikh Abdul Rahman dan isterinya Siti Zubaidah. Murid-murid pertama yang diterima masuk ke sekolah adalah seramai kira-kira 13 orang yang terdiri daripada anak tempatan. Di antara mereka ialah Abdul Halim bin Imam Lebai Salleh, Ramli bin Toha, Aishah binti Abdul Hamid, Hashim Naim bin Othman, Tom binti Ismail, Yahya bin Jusuh, Intan binti Mat Arif dan Bakar bin Ahmad. Ahli Jawatan kuasa Lembaga Tadbir sekolah yang pertama ditubuhkan pada masa itu ialah terdiri daripada Tuan Imam Lebai Salleh, Tuan Haji Darus Arshad, Cikgu Shaari bin Abu Bakar (Setiausaha Pertama), Cikgu Ismail bin Ahmad, Cikgu Talib bin Din, Haji Othman bin Idris, Haji Jusuh bin Idris (bendahari pertama), Haji Mat Arif bin Jusuh. Guru awal yang dilantik bagi membantu Tuan Guru Haji Tajuddin ialah Ustaz Zainal Abidin dan Ustaz Haji Ahmad. Setelah itu guru-guru sekolah ini di ambil dari kalangan bekas-bekas penuntut sekolah ini. Mereka terdiri daripada Ustaz Nayan, Ustaz Hashim Ishak, Ustaz Kasim Lebai Man, Ustaz Salleh bin Sutan dan Ustaz Hashim Naim. Pada tahun 1368 bersamaan 1949 sekolah ini telah didaftarkan secara rasmi dengan Majlis Agama Islam Negeri Kedah oleh Pendaftar Sekolah-sekolah Agama pada masa itu iaitu Syeikh Mahmud dengan nama Madrasah Nahdhah al-Hasanah atau Sekolah Menengah Agama Nahdhah Hasanah. Nama sekolah ini diilhamkan oleh Kadhi Kubang Pasu pada masa itu iaitu Tuan Haji Ahmad bin Yasin. Berdasarkan lokasi semasa, sekolah ini berada di tengah perjalanan antara Bandar Jitra ke Kodiang. Madrasah ini kini dipimpin oleh anak Dato’ Haji Tajudin iaitu Syeikh Muhammad Farid Wajdi sebagai pengetua.[6] Peringkat awal penubuhan Madrasah Nahdhah Hasanah adalah sungguh mencabar kerana pimpinan madrasah terpaksa berjalan berbatu-batu merentasi hutan, paya dan sungai untuk berdakwah sambil memperkenalkan sekolah yang baru ditubuhkan disamping berusaha mendapat sokongan moral dan wang ringgit. Untuk membangunkan Madrasah, Haji Tajudin dibantu oleh Tuan Imam Lebai Salleh iaitu Imam Masjid Melele, dan beberapa orang lagi. Rumah yang mula-mula di duduki hanyalah pondok kecil yang bertiang dan berlantai kayu bulat, berdinding pelepuh dan beratap rumbia. Keadaan masyarakat pula kebanyakannya agak jahil dimana mereka mengamalkan kepercayaan tahyul, tok keramat, khurafat dan syirik. Keramat Tok Melele dipuja apabila datang musim menuai. Berjudi laga ayam dan kerbau adalah amalan kebiasaan penduduk pada masa itu. Bermula dari cabaran inilah beliau berazam untuk mengubah keadaan fizikal kawasan dan mengubati kepincangan yang berlaku di dalam masyarakat. Selain daripada menumpukan pengajaran di sekolah atau pondoknya, beliau juga berdakwah diluar dengan mengajar di beberapa tempat di sekitar Alor Star termasuk istana. Di antara kitab yang beliau gunakan di dalam pengajaran beliau ialah kitab Syarah al-Hikam Ibnu Atoillah karangan Tokku Pulau Manis, Minhaj Al ‘Abidin karangan Imam al-Ghazali, Bughuyah At Tullab karangan Syeikh Daud al-Fathani, Kasyhful Litham karangan Syeikh Zainal Abidin al-Fathani, Sairus Salikin karangan Sheikh Abdul Samad al- Falimbani, Aqidah An Najin karangan Syeikh Zainal Abidin al-Fathani, Hidayatus Salikin karangan Syeikh Abdul Samad al-Falimbani, Sabilul Muhtadin karangan Syeikh Muhammad Arsyad al-Banjari dan Bakurah Al Amani karangan Syeikh Ismail Abdul Qadir al-Fathani yang merupakan kitab-kitab Jawi. Manakala kitab berbahasa Arab pula ialah Majmu’ an-Nawawi Syarah al-Muhazzab karangan Iman Nawawi, Jam’u al Jawami’ karangan Imam Tajuddin as-Sabki, al-Hikam Ibnu Atoillah Syarah Ibnu ‘Ibbad, Ihya Ulum ud Din karangan Imam al-Ghazali, Tafsir Ibnu Kathir dan Riadus Solihin karangan Imam Nawawi. Setelah berdakwah secara lisan serta menglibatkan diri dalam dakwah dan keagamaan sama ada peringkat negeri atau kebangsaan, beliau juga terlibat dalam penghasilan karya-karya penulisan. Antara karya-karya beliau berbentuk penulisan ialah:
1- Rahsia Sembahyang – terbitan Majlis Agama Islam Kedah
2- Doa’ Pagi Dan Petang – terbitan Majlis Agama Islam Kedah
3- Perhimpunan Ibadat Qiyamullail – terbitan Majlis Agama Islam Kedah
4- Rahsia Haji – diterbitkan sendiri untuk kuliah ibadat haji beliau.
5- Dan beberapa risalah lain.
Pengalaman dan ilmunya yang luas menyebabkan beliau telah dilantik memegang jawatan-jawatan penting samada diperingkat negeri mahupun kebangsaan seperti;
1- Ahli Majlis Agama Islam Negeri Kedah – semenjak 1960an hingga 2000.
2- Ahli Jawatankuasa Zakat Negeri Kedah – semenjak 1970an hingga 2000.
3- Ahli Majlis Fatwa Negeri Kedah – semenjak 1980an hingga 2000.
4- Ahli Jawatankuasa Ibadat Haji, Lembaga Urusan Tabung Haji - 1994 hingga 2000.
5- Pakar Rujuk Ibadah Haji di Makkah – 1995 hingga 2000.
6- Pengerusi Majlis Fatwa Kebangsaan – 1995 hingga 1999.
7- Ahli Majlis Agama Kebangsaan – 1995 hingga 1999[7]
Anugerah yang diterimanya atas sumbangan dan jasanya ialah seperti
1- Pingat Jasa Kebaktian PJK, oleh DYMM Sultan Kedah – tahun 1969.
2- Ahli Mahkota Kedah AMK, oleh DYMM Sultan Kedah – pada 10/1/1980.
3- Ahli Mangku Negara AMN oleh Yang Dipertuan Agung – pada 4/6/1980.
4- Dato’ bergelar Dato’ Mursyid Diraja oleh DYMM Sultan Kedah – pada 17/1/1988.
5- Anugerah Pendidik Jaya Negeri Kedah – pada Hari Guru tahun 1991.
6- Anugerah Perkhidmatan Cemerlang oleh Majlis Agama Islam Negeri Kedah – tahun 1993.
7- Darjah Kebesaran Negeri Kedah iaitu DSDK (Dato’ Setia Diraja Kedah) oleh DYMM Sultan Kedah - pada 23/1/1994.
8- Anugerah Tokoh Guru Kubang Pasu - pada 23 Mei 1998.
9- Bintang Kebesaran Orang Besar Enam Belas – Hari Keputraan DYMM Sultan Kedah tahun 2000.
10- Tokoh Maal Hijrah 1421H/ 2000M peringkat negeri Kedah.[8]
Dato’ Haji Tajudin juga dikatakan mahir menggunakan komputer. Sejak dari hujung tahun 1980an beliau memiliki set komputer peribadi sendiri. Beliau adalah seorang yang mahir dalam menggunakan beberapa perisian komputer di antaranya ialah perisian Macintosh Mac Draw.[9] Salah seorang murid Dato’ Haji Tajudin yang menjadi ulama masyhur pada masa ini ialah Syeikh Fuad Kamaluddin al-Maliki[10], ahli majlis Fatwa Negeri Sembilan dan pengasas Sekolah Tinggi Islam as-Sofa. Selepas menduduki peperiksaan Sijil Pelajaran Malaysia (SPM), Syeikh Fuad berhijrah ke Madrasah al Nahdah al Hasanah Kedah untuk mendalami pengajian Agama dan Bahasa Arab dengan guru-guru pondok di sana. Disitulah beliau berkesempatan menimba ilmu dengan al Marhum Dato’ Mursyid Diraja al ‘Allamah Syeikh Hj. Tajudin. Sekalipun tidak lama belajar di sana, Syeikh Fuad menjadi murid kebanggaan gurunya, Dato’ Haji Tajudin dan memperolehi kejayaan yang cemerlang. Ketika berada di Mesir, beliau telah mengutus sepucuk surat kepada Dato’ Haji Tajudin di dalam Bahasa Arab. Nama dan suratnya disebut dan dibaca oleh Dato’ Haji Tajudin dalam perhimpunan sekolah dan menjadi murid contoh kepada pelajar-pelajar yang lain. Semasa menziarahi Dato’ Haji Tajudin setelah tamat pengajian di al Azhar dan membuka sekolah pondok di kampungnya, Dato’ Haji Tajudin menyatakan perasaan bangganya di atas kejayaan beliau dan jejak langkahnya yang diikuti oleh beliau. Malah Dato’ Haji Tajudin turut berpesan kepada beliau supaya mengajar kitab Hikam dan cara-cara amalan seseorang itu diterima Allah dan bukan sekadar mengajar hukum sah dan batal. Dato’ Haji Tajudin juga sempat memberikan kata-kata perangsang kepada Syeikh Fuad agar menguatkan semangat meneruskan usahanya dan memahami segala mehnah yang dihadapinya. Dato’ Haji Tajudin juga membenarkan pelajar maahad yang dipimpin oleh Syeikh Fuad mengambil peperiksaan bersama dengan sekolahnya.[11]
Akhirnya pada 11 Mei 2000 bersamaan 7 Safar 1421 hari Khamis jam 8.00 malam, Dato' Mursyid Diraja Syeikh Haji Tajudin telah berpulang ke Rahmatullah. Semoga Allah mencucuri rahmat dan hidayat ke atas rohnya.
Notakaki

[1] Gelaran 'Jarum' di hujung nama Haji Wan Muhammad ldris dikatakan berpunca dari peristiwa sewaktu Raja Patani mengumpul beberapa orang ulama di istananya untuk berbincang masalah 'hukum rejam' dalam Islam. Diantara semua ulama yang hadir, Haji Wan Muhammad Idris adalah yang paling muda. Ketika Raja Patani meminta Haji Wan Muhammad ldris memberikan pendapat, beliau terus dapat menjawab dengan pintar dan tepat. Ketajaman fikiran Haji Wan Muhammad itulah menyebabkan baginda menggelarnya, 'Tok Sheikh Jarum'. Tok Sheikh Jarum atau nama penuhnya ialah Haji Wan Muhammad ldris bin Haji Wan Jamal dilahirkan pada tahun 1266 Hijrah bersamaan 1849 Masihi di Kampung Bendang, Daerah Jaha dalam Wilayah Yala, Patani.

[2] Tok Sheikh Jarum mula mempelajari pelajaran agama Islam dari gurunya yang juga merupakan ayah angkatnya bernama Haji Minai (ada juga menyebutnya sebagai Minal) atau lebih dikenali dengan panggilan Tuan Minai (Minal) atau Tok Sheikh Minai (Minal) iaitu pengarang kitab Kashful-Litham dan Aqidat Al-Najin yang sangat terkenal di Alam Melayu. Nama penuh Tuan Minai ialah Syeikh Wan Zainal Abidin bin Wan Muhammad al-Fathani bin Wan Muhammad Dahan bin Wan Syamsuddin bin Wan Ja'far bin Wan Husein bin Ali. Beliau telah membawa Tok Sheikh Jarum ke Makkah untuk menunaikan haji. Apabila Tuan Minai kembali ke tanahair, Tok Sheikh Jarum tidak ikut serta kerana beliau mahu mendalami pengajiannya di dalam bidang bahasa Arab, Usuluddin, Tafsir dan Fiqah. Sekembalinya dari Makkah, Tok Sheikh Jarum mengajar beberapa tahun di pondok Tuan Minai di Bendang Dalam, Patani. Kali kedua beliau berangkat ke Makkah ialah pada tahun 1895 dengan membawa ketiga-tiga orang isterinya dan dua orang muridnya yang berasal dari Kedah iaitu Haji Mohamad Salleh Haji ldris dan Haji Muhammad Taib. Kali ini beliau tidak tinggal lama di Makkah kerana cita-citanya ingin pulang ke tanahair untuk mengasaskan perkampungan pondoknya sendiri. Pada awal tahun 1900, Tok Sheikh Jarum bersama isteri-isterinya berangkat meninggalkan Makkah dan berniat untuk singgah di Kedah. Di Kedah, beliau tinggal di rumah seorang muridnya, Haji Awang di Pondok Kubang Siam. Berita ketibaan ulama Patani di kampung itu dan kemasyhurannya telah sampai ke pengetahuan Sultan Kedah, Sultan Abdul Hamid Halim Shah melalui Sheikh Ahmad Daim yang merupakan Kadhi Besar Kedah waktu itu. Baginda dikatakan meminta Tok Sheikh supaya menetap terus di Kedah untuk mengembangkan syiar Islam di samping menjadi Guru Agama di istana. Permintaan baginda itu diterima oleh Tok Sheikh Jarum kerana bersesuaian dengan cita-citanya. Tok Sheikh Jarum diberi kemudahan tempat tinggal di Alor Star. Namun disebabkan suasana sibuk dan hangar-bingar Alor Setar, beliau merasakan dirinya tidak sesuai tinggal disitu. Lalu beliau memohon suatu tempat atau kawasan untuk membolehkan beliau membangunkan sekolah pondoknya. Permohonannya dipertimbangkan dan diberikan satu kawasan yang terletak di Derga. Di situlah beliau meneroka dan mendirikan perkampungan pondoknya dengan bantuan orang-orang dari Kanchut, Alor Star. Dalam masa yang singkat, purata jumlah pelajarnya bertambah setiap tahun sehingga pondoknya meningkat kepada dua ratus buah. Oleh kerana pertambahan yang menggalakkan itu, Tok Sheikh Jarum membahagikan kawasan pondoknya kepada dua bahagian iaitu 'pondok luar' dan 'pondok dalam'. Di samping mengajar di pondoknya, beliau juga kerap ke istana untuk mengajar agama kepada putera-puteri diraja. Setiap kali ke istana, beliau menaiki kereta kuda khas yang datang mengambil dan menghantarnya pulang. Mata pelajaran yang diajar oleh Tok Sheikh Jarum di pondoknya termasuklah Usuluddin, Tafsir, Feqah dan bahasa Arab. Anak-anak murid Tok Sheikh Jarum ramai yang berjaya menjadi ulama terkenal di samping menjadi imam dan ada pula yang menurut jejaknya mengasaskan pondok masing-masing. Tok Sheikh Jarum merupakan salah seorang ulama yang pernah dipilih menduduki barisan Majmak Ulama Dua Belas berpusat di Masjid Zahir, Alor Star yang dipengerusikan oleh Syeikhul-lslam Kedah, Haji Wan Sulaiman Wan Sidek. Mereka berkumpul setiap malam Jumaat bermuzakarah tentang agama dan mengeluarkan sesuatu fatwa. Tok Sheikh Jarum disifatkan sebagai seorang ulama yang bertindak tegas dan teguh pendirian. Satu contoh yang dapat dikaitkan dengan sifat tersebut ialah penghijrahan beliau ke Kedah disebabkan tidak bersetuju di atas dasar pemerintahan Thai yang memaksanya mengorek sebatang taliair di kampungnya. Kira-kira sepuluh tahun selepas ia diasaskan iaitu sekitar tahun 1909 pondok itu ditakdirkan musnah dalam suatu kebakaran besar. Punca kebakaran itu dihubungkaitkan dengan pembakaran ikan terubuk kerana boleh dikatakan setiap hari rata-rata penghuni pondok itu membakar ikan terubuk. Kebakaran yang amat dahsyat itu tidak dapat dicegah kerana ianya berlaku dalam sekelip mata. Kesan yang masih tinggal dan dapat disaksikan hingga ke hari ini ialah tiga buah telaga batu di kawasan itu. Salah sebuah daripadanya masih dapat digunakan lagi airnya. Pihak kerajaan bertindak segera membina rumah-rumah panjang di kawasan itu bagi membolehkan penghuninya meneruskan pengajian. Dua tahun kemudian iaitu pada 6 April 1911, Tok Sheikh Jarum meninggal dunia ketika berusia 63 tahun. Jenazahnya dikebumikan di tanah perkuburan Derga.
[3] Meninggal dunia pada tahun 1954
[4] Mudir pada masa itu ialah Saiyid Muhsin Ali al-Masawi dari Indonesia. Setelah meninggal pada tahun 1935, jawatan mudir dipegang oleh Syeikh Zubir Ahmad selama lima tahun. Syeikh Zubir Ahmad kemudiannya pulang ke tanahair dan pernah memimpin Madrasah Idrisiyyah di Kuala Kangsar.
[5] Rujuk http://madrasah.nh.my/info-sekolah/pengasas-madrasah. Dicapai pada 27 Jun 2009
[6] Rujuk http://madrasah.nh.my/info-sekolah/pengenalan-madrasah. Dicapai pada 27 Jun 2009
[7] Rujuk http://madrasah.nh.my/info-sekolah/pengasas-madrasah. Dicapai pada 27 Jun 2009
[8] Rujuk http://madrasah.nh.my/info-sekolah/pengasas-madrasah. Dicapai pada 27 Jun 2009
[9] Rujuk http://madrasah.nh.my/info-sekolah/pengasas-madrasah. Dicapai pada 27 Jun 2009
[10] Rujuk http://www.utusan.com.my/utusan/info.asp?y=2006&dt=0213&pub=utusan_malaysia&sec=bicara_agama&pg=ba_02.htm&arc=hive&arc=hive untuk membaca kisah menarik Syeikh Fuad Kamaluddin sepanjang beliau menimba ilmu di Tanah Arab dan penglibatan beliau dalam dakwah. Artikel menarik tentang Syeikh Fuad Kamaluddin al-Maliki ini adalah hasil tulisan Tarmizi Abdul Rahim yang dipaparkan diruangan Bicara Agama Utusan Malaysia. Terbit pada 13 Februari 2006.
Tajuk artikel: Muhammad Fuad azam hasilkan empat kitab sebulan.
PEPATAH Arab menyebut, “masa itu ibarat pedang, kalau kita tidak memotongnya ia akan memotong kita.” Itulah yang menjadi pegangan penerima Anugerah Khas Maal Hijrah 1427 peringkat Negeri Sembilan, Muhammad Fuad Kamaludin, 32. Walaupun berada di Bumi Para Anbia’ Mesir hanya selama tiga tahun enam bulan tetapi beliau memanfaatkan sepenuhnya masa itu untuk berguru dengan lebih 40 ulama terkemuka di negara itu. Istilah berguru di sini bukan seperti kaedah biasa yang diamalkan di kuliah pengajian universiti iaitu mengikut sukatan dalam dewan pengajian dengan pelajar yang ramai, sebaliknya anak muda ini berguru secara talaqqi iaitu berguru secara terus dengan para ulama berkenaan dalam kumpulan kecil untuk mendalami kitab pengajian daripada ‘kulit ke kulit’. Tidak cukup dengan itu, ulama muda ini turut berkelana menimba ilmu daripada beberapa ulama terkenal dari seluruh dunia, antaranya pakar hadis Dr. Sayyid Muhammad Alawi Al Maliki dari Mekah Al Mukarramah dan beberapa lagi tokoh dari Mesir, Syria, Yemen, Dubai dan Sudan. Apa yang istimewa, kesemua guru beliau itu bukan setakat menganggapnya sebagai anak murid kebanggaan tetapi turut mengambilnya sebagai anak angkat. Kesemua mereka memberikan tauliah khusus kepadanya untuk menyampaikan ilmu yang diperoleh itu kepada umat Islam di seluruh dunia. Dr. Sayyid Muhammad Alawi Al Maliki telah menganugerahkan gelaran keluarganya, Al Maliki, kepada beliau. “Kadang-kadang jika saya terlewat atau terlelap kerana terlalu letih, yang mulia guru-guru saya ini akan datang ke rumah untuk bertanyakan khabar dan seterusnya memulakan kelas pengajian di situ,” katanya kepada Utusan Malaysia ketika ditemui di rumahnya di Kampung Bukit Sembilan, Chengkau, Negeri Sembilan. Bagaimanapun, pemegang Ijazah Sarjana Muda Syariah dan Undang-Undang dari Universiti al-Azhar ini memberitahu bahawa beliau tidak memasuki kuliah seperti pelajar lain sepanjang berada di negara itu. Muhammad Fuad hanya berurusan sebanyak dua kali sahaja dengan pentadbiran universiti iaitu untuk membuat kad pelajar dan menduduki peperiksaan akhir universiti. “Saya bukan tidak mahu mengikuti pengajian kuliah tetapi saya ingin mengambil peluang berguru sendiri secara talaqqi dengan ulama terkenal di masjid-masjid dan rumah kediaman mereka. Sepanjang tiga tahun enam bulan berada di sana, rutin pengajian saya bermula seawal subuh sehingga larut malam setiap hari. “Saya akan pergi berguru secara terus daripada ulama dan tuan punya kitab untuk mendalami ilmu agama secara kulit ke kulit dalam pelbagai disiplin seperti al-Quran, nahu, syariah, fikah, usuluddin, tasawuf dan tauhid,” kata Muhammad Fuad yang amat memuliakan kesemua gurunya. Walaupun demikian, beliau diminta oleh rakan pelajar mengadakan sesi tuisyen khas bagi membantu mereka yang kurang memahami pengajaran di universiti. Anak bongsu daripada lima beradik dan anak lelaki tunggal kepada pasangan Kamaludin Mahat dan Zainab Mahmud itu berkata, kitab pertama yang ditulisnya ialah perbahasan dan perbincangan peribadi Rasulullah dalam bahasa Arab pada tahun 1993 selepas setahun berada di Mesir. Sehingga kini, bapa kepada enam cahaya mata itu telah menghasilkan 115 kitab pelbagai disiplin dan digunakan oleh ahli-ahli agama. Ia menjadi rujukan ulama tempatan dan luar negara. Kitab-kitab tersebut ialah tiga kitab tafsir, 19 kitab karangan hadis, sembilan kitab karangan tauhid, 14 kitab karangan fikah, sembilan kitab karangan tasawuf, enam kitab karangan sirah, 10 kitab karangan tokoh dan 44 kitab berkaitan amalan. Malah, Muhammad Fuad yang juga Ahli Majlis Fatwa Kerajaan Negeri Sembilan turut menulis 12 kitab bahasa Arab. Kitab Al Toli'al Sa'id Al Muntakhab Min Al Athbat Wal Al Asanid dan kitab al-Jawahir al- Ghawali min Asanid al-Imam al-Azhari yang berkaitan ilmu hadis diterbitkan di Mesir. Kitab itu mendapat pengiktirafan dan disahkan oleh para ulama al-Azhar, Mesir seperti Profesor Dr. Judah al Mahdi, Dekan Fakulti al-Quran dan Qiraat serta Ahli Lembaga Lujnah Tafsir al-Quran al-Azhar. Ketokohan anak muda ini bukan sahaja diperakui dalam negara. Beliau turut mendapat undangan berceramah dan pidato serta membentangkan kertas kerja di Singapura, Mesir dan Mekah di hadapan para ilmuwan Islam lain. Menceritakan proses penulisan buku, Muhammad Fuad mensyaratkan dirinya menghasilkan sekurang-kurangnya empat buah kitab sebulan. “Guru saya pernah berpesan bahawa adalah menjadi satu keaiban kepada seorang pelajar dan pemimpin ilmu yang tidak membawa bersamanya buku nota dan pen kerana setiap benda yang dilihat adalah maklumat dan ilmu berguna baginya,” katanya yang memetik pesanan gurunya, Syeikh Ghassan al Bahrimi. Beliau, bagaimanapun, mengakui dirinya terlalu kerdil dan ketinggalan berbanding ulama silam yang mampu menghasilkan beribu-ribu jilid kitab pelbagai disiplin dalam keadaan serba kekurangan berbanding muslim masa kini yang memiliki segala kemudahan dan teknologi canggih. “Sebagai contoh, Ibn Shahin menulis 33,000 kitab dan kitab tafsir sebanyak 1,000 jilid; Abu Hasan al-Asyari menulis lebih 600 jilid kitab dan ulama tafsir, Ibn Tabari juga telah mensyaratkan dirinya menulis setiap hari sebanyak 40 helai. “Tanpa elektrik, komputer dan internet, mereka masih boleh menghasilkan karya bermutu yang menjadi rujukan umat Islam seluruh dunia hingga kini. Justeru, tidak mustahil bagi kita yang memiliki segala-gala kemudahan itu untuk turut sama berbuat demikian,” katanya yang amat mengasihi Rasulullah dan keluarganya serta menolak fahaman yang menyalahi pegangan Ahli Sunnah Wal Jamaah. Selepas pulang ke Malaysia pada 1996, anak jati Kampung Chenong Chengkau, Rembau ini membuka pondok pengajiannya seluas 0.2 hektar dalam kawasan tanah milik ibunya dengan modal RM17. Ketika itu beliau berusia 22 tahun. Kini, penuntutnya semakin bertambah sehingga beliau memerlukan kawasan yang lebih besar. Maka kawasan kira-kira empat hektar di Kampung Sembilan, Chengkau telah dipilih bagi menubuhkan Surau al-Taufiqi al-Husaini. Usaha tersebut, bagaimanapun, menerima pelbagai tohmahan dan fitnah. Orang memfitnahnya mengatakannya membawa fahaman yang sesat. “Atas dasar keikhlasan untuk berdakwah semata-mata untuk keredaan Allah, maka segala cabaran dan dugaan itu berjaya diatasi dan kini masyarakat mulai dapat menerima usaha yang saya jalankan,” katanya. Muhammad Fuad tidak pernah menjadikan usia mudanya sebagai halangan untuk menyampaikan ilmu yang diperoleh daripada guru-gurunya yang bersambung terus sanad mereka dengan Rasulullah. “Saya tidak berasa tekanan. Saya percaya bahawa setiap niat ikhlas nescaya akan mendapat kekuatan daripada Allah yang disertakan sekali dengan restu dan ijazah yang diberikan oleh kesemua guru-guru saya,” ujar beliau. Beliau menekankan perasaan rendah diri dan tawaduk terhadap kekurangan diri di hadapan Allah Yang Maha Esa dengan mempercayai bahawa setiap nikmat yang diperoleh adalah segala-galanya daripada Pencipta. “Saya seboleh-bolehnya mengamalkan pendekatan ahli sufi iaitu menganggap orang tua lebih hebat kerana mempunyai banyak ilmu dan amal; orang muda lebih hebat kerana tidak banyak melakukan dosa berbanding orang yang lebih berusia; dan orang jahil lebih beruntung kerana mereka melakukan maksiat kerana tidak berilmu berbanding orang yang berilmu tetapi masih melakukan maksiat,” katanya.

          Five Dead, Dozens Missing After Smugglers Push 180 Migrants Overboard Off Yemen        
According to IOM, around 50 migrants are missing and at least five died after smugglers pushed about 180 migrants overboard off the coast of Yemen.
          10,000 Dead: Saudi-led War a Death Sentence for Sick Yemenis        
On today's episode of Loud & Clear, Walter Smolarek fills in Brian Becker and is joined by Alexander Mercouris, editor in chief of The Duran.
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Top World News Now                 
March 3, 2013


United States
Obama Pardons 17 Felons, First in His Second Term
DHS built domestic surveillance tech into Predator drones
'Hundreds of thousands' of documents captured with Osama bin Laden, but only 17 released
Michigan governor moves to appoint emergency manager in Detroit
Pentagon Plans to Ask for Base Closures 
Thousands of Soldiers to Leave Europe
U.S. lawmakers question military aid to Egypt, citing concerns about Israel
US factory work is returning, but the industry has changed
'Anonymous' Hacker Explains Why He Fled The US
Among Most Polluted in US, NYC Area Awaits Cleanup
US Budget Cuts Force Yellowstone to Delay Opening
Obama signs sequester bill
Obama moves a step closer to approval of Keystone pipeline
Navy Building a Drone Base in Sunny Malibu


Russia
Ukrainian leader, fresh from EU talks, to meet Putin
Russian Arms Trade Czar Says "War" Declared on Weapon Supplies to Syria
Russian demonstrators rally in support of U.S. adoption ban
Moscow Police to Probe Alleged Rally Payment Scam
Moscow Mayor says no to more mosques in the city
Opposition’s ‘Social March’ Fizzles Out in Moscow
Uzbek National Shot Dead in Moscow
Putin, Obama stress cooperation, pledge to 'avoid deterioration' in relations
Russia presses for extradition of fugitive banker
Ukrainian President: Gas contract with Russia is killing us
Putin Signals Russia Can Be More Flexible on Syria
Putin says Russia should listen to French arguments on Syria, over vodka
Russians commend Putin's performance, believe he can keep election promises


China
Islands Dispute: China Warns Japan Ahead Of Legislative Session
A push for change in China as new leaders take the helm
China's reform roadmap gets clearer
China "fully prepared" for currency war
China divided on TV 'execution parade': judicial resolve or crude voyeurism
Carbon Monoxide Poisoning Kills 12 in Chinese Coal Mine
Spill in China Underlines Environmental Concerns
China's fourth space launch center to be in use in two years
Xi Jinping taking on corruption in China
Premier Li Keqiang, as Hu Jintao protege, may be outgunned on policy
China calls for decreased tension on Korean Peninsula
5 Tibetans, mostly Buddhist monks, arrested for inciting self-immolations
Darkness at noon as worst dust storm in months mixes with morning smog
China's First Aircraft Carrier on Way to Permanent Base at Qingdao in North


United Kingdom‎
Cameron: UK 'can transform Africa' with G8
Cameron Vows To Stay The Course
Cameron buries hatchet with Plebgate MP Andrew Mitchell - and offers him £250,000 EU job
Government fights Europe over air pollution reduction
EU banker pay cap 'threatens thousands of British jobs'
Revealed: One in four of UK's top companies pay no tax
Banker Andrei Borodin granted asylum in Britain after fleeing Russia
UK Explorer: Green Campaigning Has Failed
UK commits £88m to Chilean telescope 'as big as all existing ones put together'
Paedophile ring leader, Colin Peters, linked to Barnes scandal
Cameron vows to defend UK banks


European Union
Hundreds of thousands march against austerity in Portugal
Italy paralysed as Grillo plots exit route from euro
Italian newcomer Grillo predicts collapse in six months
Italy President Napolitano calls for realism after vote
Greek military prepares for mass repression
1000s hold anti-austerity demo in Greece
At least 22 people hurt in Macedonia ethnic protests over new defense minister
Mass layoffs at Caterpillar in Belgium
Dark Rumblings Of A Coup D'État In Spain
Spain Delays Catalunya Banc Auction
Spain overturns Islamic face veil ban
Thousands march in Portugal to protest austerity

Germany
Germany Blasted for Role in Europe's Crisis
German states rail against 'stupid' wealth transfers
Italian president says Germany must give EU recovery a boost
Germany Debates Fracking as Energy Costs Rise
Bitter feud divides family of Germany's reunification leader
Racism in German military mirrors society
Germany discovers toxin in animal fodder
Angela Merkel Wishes Bulgaria's Borissov Quick Recovery
Merkel cabinet lowers bars to German labor market
Kerry praises Germany's 'exemplary leadership' in Europe
Italian president scraps meeting with German opposition leader over "clown" remarks

France
Hollande leads tributes to 'a great figure' and resistance fighter
As France's Mali mission grows, so does terror threat from homegrown militants inside France
France considers marijuana-based drug
France will not reach 2015 disabled access target
Paris seeks alternative to 75% tax
France-Qatar tensions rise over Mali war, Tunisia
Hollande juggles trade, human rights in Moscow
Hollande to Talk Syria Settlement With Putin
Kerry holds talks on Mali with French leadership
War For Global Energy Supremacy-World War III
Al-Qaeda leader behind Algeria gas plant hostage massacre killed in Mali
US Seeks to Confirm Report of Terror Leader's Death
Syria: Fierce Clashes in Provincial Capital Raqqa
Assad Forces Take Aleppo Village, Reopening Supply Line
Syrian President Assad Blasts British Government
Iran Says Syria’s Assad to Run for 2014 Election
How Does the U.S. Mark Unidentified Men in Pakistan and Yemen as Drone Targets?
Syrian Rebels Angry Over US Aid: ‘Only Thing We Want Is Weapons’

Insight Into Today’s News
Billionaires Continue To Dump Stocks
G20 issues empty declaration against currency wars
Norway Enters The Currency Wars
The Second-Mortgage Shell Game
The Last Liberal Branch of Government
US/NATO occupation of Afghanistan unraveling
Goodbye? We’ve Lost Who We Are?
US Schools Go Into Full Prison Mode
Hornady Addresses Ammo Shortage: We’re working 24/7
US Media Yet Again Conceals Newsworthy Government Secrets

Israel
Netanyahu secretly visited Jordan to discuss peace with Palestinians
Netanyahu gets two more weeks to form Israel coalition
3 Syrian Mortars Land in Southern Golan Heights
Gaza Border: Senior Officer's Vehicle Hit by Gunshots
New coalition will have to freeze construction outside settlement blocs
Tissue tests planned for Israelis in Gaza who want to cross border
Palestinian PM evacuated from West Bank after Israeli soldiers fire teargas at protesters
Sequestration: Israel Could ‘Gradually’ Lose $500 Million in US Aid
Netanyahu blasts Erdogan's 'dark and libelous' criticism of Zionism


Turkey
Scud Missile Fired in Syria Lands Near Iraqi Village
Bombs Kill at Least 22 in Iraqi Capital
Erdoğan: Islamophobia, anti-Semitism same
Turkey's Difficult Choice in Palestine, Israel
Erdogan Calls for More Support for Syrian Opposition
Kurdish leader 'outlines' Turkey peace plan
More Military Arrests in Turkey For 'Feb. 28 Process'
Turkey Provides Schools for Syrian Refugee Children
Iraq budget stalemate deepens over Kurd oil payments
Iraq continues to allow Iranian overflights to Syria


Egypt
John Kerry visits Egypt as dozens injured in violent protests
Kerry urges Egypt to take difficult economic steps; opposition figures skip meetings
Protesters Demand Armed Forces Intervention in Cairo
Ex-member: Muslim Brotherhood has secret societies in 80 nations, including U.S.
Bahrain Activist Zainab Al-Khawaja Sentenced to Jail
176 Protesters Held in Saudi Arabia
Qatar's Influence in Egypt Runs Deeper Than Its Pockets
Morsi criticized for reaction to tragedy
Parties who boycotted Morsi's national dialogue invited to send suggestions
Opposition refuse to stand in Egypt's parliamentary elections

Iran
Ahmadinejad: National dialogue only way to end Syria crisis
Ahmadinejad: West's war against Iran media doomed to failure  
Ahmadinejad to Visit Pakistan This Month to Inaugurate IP Gas Pipeline Construction
Threatening Iran Won't Help in Nuclear Talks, Envoy Says
Seized Chinese Weapons Raise Concerns on Iran
Head Of Iran's Qods Force Suggests Assad Is Vulnerable
Sanction-Hit Iran Fears Unrest as New Elections Near
Khamenei tells Zardari pipeline must advance despite US opposition
Ahmadinejad Aide’s Candidacy a Challenge to Iran’s Theocratic Status Quo
Ahmadinejad, Zardari Stress Expansion of Iran-Pakistan Ties


Venezuela
Hugo Chavez undergoing chemotherapy
VP Maduro: Capriles Seeks Destabilization in Venezuela
Venezuela decries "absurd" rumors over Chavez death
Maduro: Chavez ‘battling’ for his life
Rumours swirl as Chavez stays out of sight
Former envoy claims Venezuela's Chavez is dead
Venezuela government denies rumours about Chavez
Venezuelans hold demo in support of Chavez
Student demonstration dispersed by authorities in Venezuela
FARC: Colombia government to blame for coffee strike


Brazil
Brazil to get its first nuclear subs
Rousseff Meets Nigerian Leader for Trade Talks
Brazil's Unemployment Rises More Than Forecast in January
Prosecutors investigate spying charges against consortium building dam in Brazil
Brazil turns to Catholic Church to quash crack epidemic
Brazil Wind Developers May Be Required to Build New Power Lines
No one is safe from Argentina's drug war
Modern Slavery Rears its Ugly Head in Chile
Chilean Navy Saves 25 Stranded Whales, 20 Die
Peru says American couple found; family wants 'proof of life'


Mexico
Nieto Says Justice Will Be Done in Union Boss’s Case
Six Bodies Found in Mexico, Including Teenage Boy Earlier Arrested for Murder
Mexican Daily Hit by Third Attack This Week
Army Kills 4 Gunmen in Northern Mexico
Two Police Gunned Down in Guatemala
Fire hits big Mexico City marketplace
Pena Nieto enacts major education reform
Powerful head of Mexico teachers union is arrested
Mexico to Launch New Police Force Later This Year

Cuba Dissident’s Daughter Says Dad’s Death Was No Accident
Cuban Dissidents Hope to Build Mass Organization
A post-Castro Cuba
Chavez Congratulates Raul Castro on Re-Election
Castro Retirement News Prompts Tepid Response In Miami
Transition now seen as underway in Cuba
Cooperatives Could Save Cuban Socialism
South African medical students in Cuba may be deported
No ease for Cuba from US state sponsor of terrorism list


United Nations
U.N. Security Council asks for report on possible Mali peacekeepers
Ban Tones Down Criticism of Rwanda Over Congo Claims
UN chief says Iran should gain world confidence over its disputed atomic plan
Libya to ask U.N. to lift arms embargo
UN Removes Osama bin Laden From Sanctions List
          HEADS UP 2/15        
 
 
Top World News Now                 
February 15, 2013
 

United States
Environmentalists Press Obama in Heated Oil Pipeline Debate
NRA exec accuses Obama of gun 'charade' at State of the Union
Kerry: Moves Against North Korea Would Scare Iran Off Nukes
Senate Republicans Block Hagel Nomination For Defense Secretary
Key US general backs keeping Afghan forces at peak strength
Missouri Democrats Introduce Legislation to Confiscate Firearms – Gives Gun Owners 90 Days to Turn in Weapons
Transocean to pay $400 million for 2010 Gulf of Mexico oil spill
High taxes force more Americans to renounce their citizenship
600 children living in Washington, DC homeless shelter
Conspiracy Theorists Leap at the Confusing Case of Dorner’s Multiple Wallets
Body in burned cabin ID'd as Christopher Dorner
Cruise ship nightmare nearing end for passengers after hellish trip
CDC Warns of Super-Gonorrhea
 
 

Russia
Russia activates ‘Operation Fortress’, 20,000 troops after air defense forces shoot down space object
Putin orders Russian security on high alert before Olympics
Putin Warns Foreign NGOs Against 'Meddling' In Russian Affairs
Putin Orders FSB to Set Up Anti-Hacker Defense
Putin: Russia will not tolerate foreign pressure
Foreign Ministry: Russia ‘Ready’ to Consider Further Nuclear Arms Cuts
Army Chief: Russia may be drawn into resource wars in future
Russian Army Commissions Bioengineered Liver for $17 Mln
Russia charges Georgian politician with plotting mass unrest
Constitutional Court: Authorities must not politically discriminate against protesters
Six Suspected Militants Killed in Dagestan Operation
Very strong earthquake in a sparsely populated Siberia area
Thousands of Russian convicts may go untracked if bracelet batteries die
 

China
Xi's Vows of Change in China Belie Private Warning
Xi Jinping Prepares to Deal With New 'Gang of Four'
Beijing ramps up propaganda war to bolster Diaoyus claim
China's environment unaffected by DPRK nuclear test so far
China's Netizens React Colorfully to N. Korean Nuke Test
Nuke test gives US excuse to boost its military
S. Korea stages large-scale drills following DPRK nuke test
South Korea flexes missile power after North test
The Real Japan-China Conflict
7 dead, 18 injured in China after man sets off bomb over child custody dispute
Depressing landmark reached, 100th Tibetan self-immolates
Tibetans commemorate centennial of 'Tibetan independence'
Clues to why most survived China's melamine scandal
 

Major warns Cameron's EU referendum is a 'gamble'
EU warns Tories that UK security opt-out 'doesn't make sense'
UK Military Flies Ghana Troops, Equipment to Mali
Britain warns of Syria jihadist threat to Europe
British MPs to receive on-the-job mental health aid
UK Lawmakers Say Credit Schemes Not Working
Another policeman held in UK graft probe
New SARS-like virus shows person-to-person transmission
Deaths, lies and the NHS: Shocking new healthcare scandals emerge in UK
UK Arrests Men in Horse-Meat Probe
Horsemeat: Bute Found In Carcasses In UK
UK soap opera star faces child sex charges
 
 

Europe Rejects Critics of 'Robin Hood' Tax
Austerity's children becoming Europe's "lost generation"
Economy in Europe Contracts More Than Expected
Pope rounds on rival cardinals and their 'sins against unity'
Man sets himself alight at Rome airport
Berlusconi defends need for bribery in winning contracts
Monte Paschi's former finance chief held in Italy
Italy unemployment crisis reaches alarming rate
Foreign investors set to sue Spain over energy reform
King Juan Carlos fights new pressures to abdicate
Greece: Alexis Tsipras raises the political stakes
Interior Ministry: Mafia plotting to crash Serbian Air Force One
 

Un-Natural Gas: Fracking Set to Shake Up German Campaign
Germany and Spain Move to Curb Green-Energy Supports
German airports security staff strike continues Friday
Germany to help Israelis stuck in unfriendly countries
Roma in Germany forced into abject poverty
Barbarians at the Gate
Reports Of 'Neo-Nazi' Guards At Amazon Warehouses In Germany Creates Fresh Scandal
Tempting PhDs lead politicians into plagiarism
Germany's Great Church Sell-Off
Swiss push reconciliation plan for Sri Lanka
Switzerland prepares to sit at G20 head table
Norway Ready to Use Rate Cuts to Cool Krone
 

Hollande Tiptoes Toward Raid on Pensions Under Pressure From EU
Hollande says France ok with India civil nuclear liability clause
Hollande in India to sell warplanes, nuclear power, metro construction
Tunisians denounce France interference
The European Slump: France Gives Up Lowering Its Budget Deficit
French Goodyear workers protest against closure of Amiens Nord plant
France moves step closer to legal euthanasia
French firm suspected as culprit in spreading horsemeat scandal
France to return 7 paintings looted during WWII
 
 
War For Global Energy Supremacy-World War III
Libya Braces for Unrest on Anniversary of Qaddafi Revolt
Syrian rebels down 2 government planes
Syria rebels capture oil field and military base
Saudis say Syria death toll may be 90000
As war in Syria continues, refugees in Turkey open a high school
Armenia tries to help as Christian Armenians flee Syria
In Mali town, counter-insurgency task ties down French
French incursion frees few slaves in Mali
Official Details French Role in Mali
US Pledges to Help Mali With Long-Term Stability
 
Insight Into Today’s News
US Media Yet Again Conceals Newsworthy Government Secrets
Now We Know: War Is Murder
It Can't Happen Here?
The Andromeda Strain, Yes. Jesus, No. Your Tax Dollars at Work.
Remember 1994
Morningland Dairy destroyed by feds, $250,000 inventory stolen by government thugs during armed raid
Department of Homeland Security Targets Gun Collector
CIA Adviser Warns of 'Financial Weapons of Mass Destruction'
Debtors Prisons In The US Are Rapidly Filling With People Who Can’t Pay Bills
 

Netanyahu threatened media over Prisoner X
'Prisoner X' took part in Mossad operation of killing Hamas operative in Dubai?
Lawyer: ‘Prisoner X’ negotiated plea bargain before suicide
Israeli Security Delegation Arrives for Talks in Cairo
Border area on alert as Israel carries out drills
Israel shells out almost a fifth of national budget on defense
Israel falls 20 places in World Press Freedom Index
Leading Rabbi Says Let Haredim Guard Their Own West Bank Cities
Israeli Siege Snuffing Out Gaza's Camel Industry
 

 

Morsi's Egypt Poised to Criminalize Protest
Morsi's graduate son snares plum Egypt job at 66 times lowest salary
Salafis open fire on Morsi
Ruling party aims for outright majority in new parliament
Egypt political forces call for symbolic funeral of slain boy potato seller
Egypt Military Offers Rare Apology for Child Death
Teenage protester shot dead amid clashes on Bahrain uprising anniversary
Saudi Minister Puts Young Royals in Succession Spotlight
Bahrain condemns Iran's statements
 

Ahmadinejad bluffed that Iran is now a 'nuclear state'
IAEA, Iran Fail to Reach Nuclear Deal
Kerry urges Iran to make "real offers" in nuclear talks
Gulf states reject Iranian suggestion that Syria, Bahrain be discussed at nuclear talks
Iran denies transferring arms to Somali militants
Iran Using China To Smuggle Nuclear Material? ISIS Report Raises Concerns
Iran Mourns Senior Commander Killed in Syria
Iran Begins Its Election-Season Web Crackdown a Few Months Early
Pak-Iran pipeline deal likely to be inked today
 

Venezuelan students protest outside Cuban Embassy as Chavez remains out of sight in Havana
Venezuela to Limit Medicine Prices After Chavez Devaluation
Maduro: Chavez Undergoing “Very Complex and Tough” Treatment
Venezuela's move to devalue is desperate
Chavez Devaluation Puts Venezuelans to Queue Before Price Raise
Capriles: Venezuela needs no devaluation, but stop handouts
US Imposes Sanctions on Venezuela's Cavim Arms Company
Farc rebels kill seven Colombian soldiers in blow to peace process
Eastern Colombia locked into neo-paramilitary war
 

Witnesses of Argentina major train accident fear for their lives
Woman in Argentina marries twin sister's convicted killer
Rousseff Stumbles on Energy
Brazil's Hydroelectric Dam Boom is Bringing Tensions
Brazil Papal Contender: Place of Birth Irrelevant
Argentina confirms quizzing of Iran suspects
Epic Glacier Collapse In Argentina: Ice Bridge Connected To Perito Moreno Thunders Into Lake
Argentina Continues Its Defiance of Ghana in the Courts
Chile's Mapuche Indians clash with police in Collipulli
 
 

A glimpse of Nieto's new crime fighting strategy
Mexico arrests six suspects for rape of
          Gift From “Mohammed”?: Suspicious Packages on 3 UPS Planes to US, UPS Truck – BREAKING        
By Debbie Schlussel **** UPDATE: Suspicious Devices from Yemen Targeted Chicago Synagogues; I Called it: “Dry Run” **** Right now, federal, state, and local authorities in New Jersey and Philadelphia are inspecting suspicious packages on three cargo planes from Europe, which just landed in the U.S. and a UPS truck in Queens.  But, hey, I’m […]
          Thanksgiving Dinner by a generous man from Yemen        





We went to an awesome free Thanksgiving Dinner on Thursday and ended up on the cover of Oakland Tribune the next day. If it wasn't for this article I would have never found out about this generous man from Yemen who put on this free dinner for 6 years in a row now. As it turns out it was the owner of the store next door who put on the dinner. Not once did he announce who he was, there was not a single branding item, no advertisement, nothing, just pure love, just pure generosity straight from the heart. Amazing!
The reporter lady Kristine Bender was very nice too. I really enjoyed her story:

http://www.insidebayarea.com/oaklandtribune/ci_11089524


Need is great on Thanksgiving Day in the East Bay

By Kristin Bender
Oakland Tribune
Updated: 11/28/2008 07:05:15 AM PST


OAKLAND — Gypsy Taub, David Depape and their three small children could have cooked and eaten a traditional Thanksgiving meal in the comfort of their Berkeley home and been happy enough. Instead, the young family chose to join 350 others at the Two Star Market for a community meal.

"No matter how much money we have, I still want to come to community dinners," Taub said. "I want to be in touch with real life. Financial independence is a great thing, especially if you have kids, but I don't want to lose touch with humanity."

For a sixth year, Abdo Alawdi, 34-year-old owner of the Two Star Market and liquor store in the Dimond district, has put on a community feast for anyone who wants a free, hot Thanksgiving meal. Volunteers, the Dimond Improvement Association, friends and family help out with the preparations and cost, which runs about $6,000, he said.

It was the first time Taub and Depape came to the feast, but they wasted no time eating, dancing, socializing and showing good cheer to strangers.

"We like to meet our neighbors. I want my children to learn that everyone is a human being and a friend," said Taub, who said she makes videos for public access television. "I also want my kids to learn about sharing. In Russia, where I am from, people share more, and I want my kids to grow up knowing sharing."

Like every year, there were dozens of community meals at churches, soup kitchens and businesses around the East Bay. But this year, with the state unemployment rate at more than 8 percent, the federal bailout $7 trillion, and foreclosures up 70 percent from this time last year, according to federal statistics, more people were looking for a free meal Thursday.

Brian Higgins, spokesman for the Alameda County Community Food Bank, said calls to the agency's emergency food line are up 39 percent in past year and 59 percent compared with two years ago. First-time callers to the help line are up 22 percent, he said.

"A lot of people are out of jobs, and a lot of people are looking for something to eat," said Mickey Ganitch, 89, of San Leandro, as he helped usher people to their tables at Lake Merritt United Methodist Church in Oakland. The church has been putting on a free Thanksgiving meal for 29 years and was packed an hour before serving time Thursday.

"There's a lot of people I haven't see before," said Ganitch, who has been the head usher at the church for 44 years.

The church usually plans for 500 meals. This year, they planned for 600, said Stephen Ford, Thanksgiving meal coordinator.

The church also has been running low on food Tuesdays and Sundays when church workers give away free bags of groceries, said volunteer Russ Aubry, of Berkeley.

"We've had to turn people away because we ran out of food," he said.

Two Star's Alawdi didn't run out of food Thursday. He had 25 turkeys, 500 pounds of chicken, 50 large trays of stuffing and other side dishes, and 35 pies. He bought much of the food on his own, but people also stopped by with goods to donate, volunteer Robert Raburn said.

"I had someone drive up and give us a case of wine. I've had people drive up and say, 'This is my mom's favorite recipe,' before handing over a tray of vegetables," he said. He also had nearly 100 volunteers come from as far away as San Jose and Brentwood to work the food line, decorate, grill chicken and clean up.

"We put this out on Craigslist.org. We're never going to do that again," Raburn said, smiling. "We've really seen a lot of generosity."

Annie Rockwell, of Oakland, hadn't volunteered at the Two Star before Thursday, but with President-elect Barack Obama — a man who wants to rekindle the spirit of volunteerism — about to take office, she hopes others will follow her lead and help out.

"Hopefully we will have a society that will organize to meet the needs (of others), but until then it's better to do what you can," she said.

Alawdi, who has run the store since the early 1990s, learned his charitable ways from his late grandfather, Mohamed, who back home in Yemen cooked for relatives and the community at the end of Ramadan and to mark the pilgrimage to Mecca, he said.

Alawdi said Thursday that the meal ran smoothly and the scene was about the same as last year, except for one change: "We need more food for the people."

Reach Kristin Bender at kbender@bayareanewsgroup.com. Read her blog at www.ibabuzz.com/outtakes
          Obama administration eases policy on preventing civilian casualties in Iraq, Syria        
A Yemeni boy walks past a mural reading " Why did you kill my family" on Dec. 13, 2013, in the capital Sanaa. A new report says that a drone strike on a wedding in southern Yemen a day earlier may have killed up to a dozen civilians. Photo by Mohammed Huwais/AFP/Getty Images

A Yemeni boy walks past a mural reading ” Why did you kill my family” on Dec. 13, 2013, in the capital Sanaa. A new report says that a drone strike on a wedding in southern Yemen a day earlier may have killed up to a dozen civilians. Photo by Mohammed Huwais/AFP/Getty Images

WASHINGTON — President Barack Obama announced in May 2013 that no lethal strike against a terrorist would be authorized without “near-certainty that no civilians will be killed or injured.”

But amid unconfirmed reports of civilian casualties, the White House said this week that U.S. bombing in Iraq and Syria is not being held to the near-certainty standard. And the Pentagon, hamstrung by limitations in intelligence gathering, has been unable to determine in many cases whether the casualty reports are true.

“We do take extreme caution and care in the conduct of these missions,” Rear Adm. John Kirby, the Pentagon’s press secretary, said. “But there’s risk in any military operation. There’s a special kind of risk when you do air operations.”

When Obama outlined his strategy to fight the Islamic State group earlier this month, he cited as parallels the limited U.S. counterterrorism campaigns in Yemen and Somalia, where American drone missile strikes have targeted al-Qaida-linked militants. Aides said he was also thinking of Pakistan but didn’t mention those strikes because drone killings there are entirely the work of an officially unacknowledged CIA operation.

But when it comes to civilian casualties, it has become clear that the targeted killing model that Obama has expanded and honed throughout his presidency does not apply to the more intensive military operation against the Islamic State and the Khorasan Group in Iraq and Syria.

According to the White House, the reason the near-certainty standard is not applicable turns on a fine point of international law — the theory that the U.S. is not involved in “active hostilities” in Yemen and Somalia, but is in Syria and Iraq. Such distinctions are controversial, given the frequency with which American bombs and bullets have flown in both countries.

A more practical reason is that the self-imposed rules on drone strikes against al-Qaida are simply too restrictive for a conventional military air campaign against the Islamic State group, which the U.S. says is both a terrorist group and an occupying army, and has ordered the Pentagon to destroy.

“It is much different in scope and complexity” than Yemen and Somalia, said Rep. Adam Schiff, D-Calif., an intelligence committee member. “I think it will be very hard to apply the very restrictive rules they put in place for other theaters.”

The drone attacks in Yemen, Somalia and Pakistan are carried out either by the CIA or, at times in Yemen and Somalia, the military’s Joint Special Operations Command. They employ Hellfire missiles, relatively small munitions designed to destroy people and vehicles.

In Iraq and Syria, the Air Force and Navy are using cruise missiles and conventional guided bombs to destroy buildings and other infrastructure that Hellfires can’t bring down. Allies, including Britain, France and Arab countries, are also using conventional bombs.

While most of the air strikes have been directed at the Islamic State group, the U.S. also used cruise missiles to attack the Syria headquarters of the Khorasan Group, an al-Qaida cell said to be plotting attacks on the West. Syrian opposition figures have said that one of those missiles went astray Sept. 23 and killed women and children in the village of Kafr Daryan near Aleppo.


All told, human rights groups have said that as many as two dozen civilians have been killed in U.S. and allied bombings in Iraq and Syria. The U.S. military says it hasn’t confirmed any civilian death but hasn’t ruled it out in every case, either.

White House spokeswoman Caitlin Hayden said the near-certainty standard was intended to apply “only when we take direct action outside areas of active hostilities.”

Military officials say they are taking great care to avoid civilian casualties in Iraq and Syria, consistent with international law. But international law does not require a near certainty that civilians won’t be harmed in military strikes. U.S. officials say harm to noncombatants is inevitable in a large bombing campaign —especially when the enemy is embedded in civilian areas.

Obama himself made that point in his 2013 speech, in the context of explaining why targeted drone campaigns are preferable to conventional war when it comes to counter terrorism.

“Conventional airpower or missiles are far less precise than drones and are likely to cause more civilian casualties and more local outrage,” the president said.

Pentagon spokesman Col. Steve Warren said this week that the U.S is relying mainly on intelligence-gathering technology such as satellites, drones and overhead surveillance flights to determine whether there have been civilian casualties.

As a result, “It’s much harder for us to be able to know for sure what it is we’re hitting, what it is we’re killing and what is collateral damage,” said Tom Lynch, a retired colonel and former adviser to the Joint Chiefs of Staff who is now a fellow at the National Defense University.

Warren acknowledged that the Pentagon could not say for sure that every person killed in the bombing of Iraq and Syria has been a combatant.

After the near-certainty standard was imposed on drone strikes in Pakistan and Yemen, the frequency of strikes dropped precipitously, and the use of so-called signature strikes — attacks aimed at large groups of armed men who fit the profile of militants but whose names were not all known to the CIA — was curtailed.

The post Obama administration eases policy on preventing civilian casualties in Iraq, Syria appeared first on PBS NewsHour.


          Yemen's qat habit soaks up water        
Sitting high up in the rocky mountains of northern Yemen, the country's capital Sana’a is finding that its dwindling water supply may not be able to sustain the ancient settlement.
          â€˜Friends of Yemen’ Meeting Delivers US$1.5 Billion Boost to Yemen’s Transition Process        
Additional pledges of support totaling US$1.5 billion were announced today at the ‘Friends of Yemen’ conference in New York City. This brings the total amount of international support for the two-year transition process in Yemen to US$7.9 billion. “The additional pledges made today show solid commitment by the international community to Yemen during the transition [...]
          Recent Trip to Aden, Yemen        
Post by @gccarey1. Source: Recent Trip to Aden, Yemen
          Recent Trip to Aden, Yemen        

          Yemen’s national blood bank on verge of closing after losing Western funding         
Preview Yemen’s national blood bank may cease operations after losing Western financial support. The center’s closure would be a “catastrophe” for the war-torn country, the doctors warned.
Read Full Article at RT.com
          Human Rights Groups Criticize U.S. Arms Sale To Saudi Arabia        
The State Department has approved a $1.29 billion arms sale to Saudi Arabia, which includes as many as 13,000 precision guided weapons or smart bombs. The sale comes as Human Rights Watch charges that Saudi airstrikes in Yemen "have indiscriminately killed and injured civilians." Congress was notified of the sale on Nov. 13 and has 30 days to block the deal — unlikely because congressional staffers have already carefully reviewed the sale. It now appears set to go through this week as part of the Obama administration's pledge to boost military support for Gulf states, after negotiating a nuclear deal with regional rival Iran. A Saudi-led coalition launched an air war in Yemen in March. The Saudi royals pledged a quick victory after Houthi rebels seized the Yemeni capital, Sanaa, and ousted the Saudi-backed government. For the Saudis and Gulf allies, the Houthis, supported by Iran, are a proxy for Iranian expansion in the region. The Saudis have vowed to counter Iran. But the war has
          Ashis Nandy        
Freud, modernity and postcolonial violence:
Analytic attitude, dissent and the boundaries of the self

by Ashis Nandy [The Little Magazine: vol iv: issue 5 & 6]

http://www.littlemag.com/looking/ashisnandy.html

We live in an intellectual edifice primarily built by the European Enlightenment. It is not very old, having been given its final shape less than three hundred years ago, and our concepts of an ideal society and meaningful social criticism are coloured by this heritage. However, this said, we also have to confront the uncomfortable reality that these concepts of a desirable society and desirable forms of social criticism invoke altogether different associations in other parts of the world. These other associations have acquired new play in recent years because the Enlightenment vision itself has, finally, come under scrutiny in North America and Western Europe. Indeed, the rumours about its complicity with the violence of our times have been given a certain edge by a whole range of work.

Take for example the crisis in the Middle East. Jerusalem is on the one hand an ancient city of spiritual and moral grace, and on the other, a city of violence, uprooting and divided selves. Simone Weil and Martin Buber, I suspect, lived with the first Jerusalem, the modern Israelis live with the second. For the former, Jerusalem not only had secular and sacred geographies, but also moral and psychological ones. The latter seem to oscillate between their passion for an Israeli nation-state delicately perched on the desperate denial of a West Asian identity and a fierce commitment to a secular, modern European identity, precariously balanced on memories of massive suffering and projects of annihilation, once so lovingly designed by Europe for its Jewish population. The denial goes with a refusal to acknowledge that the Arabs and the Jews are often not divided by distance but by proximity. The commitment goes with the search for a magical remedy for remembered discrimination and genocide in the values of the European Enlightenment, presum ably in the belief that a European disease requires European therapy. The search reaffirms an identity that many can neither disown nor fully own up to.

I shall use as my baseline what one of the greatest ever products of the Jewish tradition, Sigmund Freud, who lived much of his life with an ambivalent aware ness of his cultural-religious status, might have said about the bitterness that has come to surround Jerusalem. Namely, that the narcissism of small differences and familiarity is often a better predictor of ethnic discontents and violence in our age than distance and ignorance. I am told that in the late nineteenth century a Belgian anthropologist, finding it difficult to ethnographically distinguish between the Hutus and the Tutsis, ultimately decided to distinguish between the two tribes by the number of heads of cattle they owned. When the Rwandan genocide took place, that story became one of the ways of acknowledging what many anthropologists always knew, that the Hutus and Tutsis were two tribes that, apart from being neighbours, were closest to each other ethnographically. There is a parallel to this in the Bosnian situation too. About 30 per cent of the Bosnian Muslims, one hears, are related to the Serbs by marriage.

I simultaneously want to use as my baseline some of the popular forms that the Enlightenment values have taken in the global middle-class culture to serve as the heart of a global structure of common sense. This is important because these values now shape our concepts of the normal, the rational and the sane, both within and outside the clinic. I shall also lay my cards on the table and confess that I am suspicious of the claim that Europe in the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries answered all basic questions of humankind once and for all, that all it left for the other civilisations to do is to write a few polite footnotes and useful appendices to these answers.

The body of work that challenges the Enlighten ment vision, when not directly dependent on psychoanalytic insights, has borrowed heavily from clinical work and therapeutic visions. Why?

One reason could be that the first psychoanalyst was a rebellious child of the Enlighten ment. He did not reject the Enlightenment vision, but the social critique he offered was not from the vantage ground of the Enlightenment’s standard ideas of a desirable society and knowledge. He tried to supply a critique of the Enlightenment reason from within its perimeters but while doing so, often accidentally strayed into strange territories. Indeed, his crypto-Platonic worldview was more open-ended than it had seemed at one time. Scholars have located in Freud’s work a whole range of new elements — from German romanticism and Naturphilosophie and the more open-ended concept of science associated with that tradition, to the East European, Hassidic-Jewish culture and mystical tradition that occasionally broke through his public self and overdone conformity to the model of the positive sciences.[1] As he gained confidence in his middle years, he returned to some of the philosophical and civilisational questions that had always haunted him. Books like Civilisation and its Discontents, The Future of an Illusion, Group Psychology and the Analysis of the Ego, Moses and Monotheism and Thoughts for the Times on War and Death could be read as ‘regressions’ to a more defiant and daring mode of psychological theorisation. These works are more Dostoyevskyan and more informed by his tragic vision of life. They show that Freud was no intellectual kin of Francis Bacon, though sometimes, in his cultural and intellectual insecurity, he appeared or pretended to be so. At least one commentator has felt compelled to say that Freud’s tragic vision implied a rejection of ‘the simplest Anglo-American belief in the virtues of progress.’[2]

Unfortunately, despite the rediscovery of psychoanalysis by literary theory and cultural studies in the last decade, this other Freud, a product of multiple cultural traditions who tries to negotiate cultural borders, remains a stranger to many. The limited cultural sensitivities of some of the mainstream schools of psychotherapy and psychoanalysis partly derive from this. These schools seem to be unaware that even modernity is no longer what it was, that four hundred years is a long time in human history; even the Dark Ages in Europe did not last that long. Today modernity, to qualify as such, requires an element of self-criticism or at least a sense of loss. The problem is compounded by the various schools of post-Freudian psychology, which are mostly progenies of the theoretical frames that crystallised as forms of dissent within the Enlighten ment. Even when they defy the modern, the defiance is primarily addressed to and remains confined within the citadels of modernity. The ones that try to break out of the grid often turn out to be transient fashions of brief shelf life. A culture not only produces its own ideas of conformity but also its distinctive concepts of valid or sane dissent. Worse, what looks like dissent in one culture at one time may not appear so in another culture at another time. Let me give an example.

When Freud’s ideas first came to India in the first decade of the last century, it was remarkable how little protest they aroused.[3] There was no frenzied opposition to them as there was in Victorian Europe. (I am using the term ‘Victorian’ here in the wider sense in which Carl Jung used it, to capture the flavour of the middle-class culture in all of Europe in the late nineteenth and early twentieth century.) What offended Victorian sensibilities in Freud’s work did not evidently offend the middle classes in India. Elsewhere, I have mentioned Rangin Halder, a pioneering Indian psychoanalyst who did a classical Freudian interpretation of the Oedipal imagery in Rabindranath Tagore’s poetry in the 1920s, when Tagore was already being regarded as a national poet and had become a revered figure in Indian public life. Such interpretations at the time primarily meant a heavy-handed exploration of psycho sexuality. Almost no one was offended, not even Tagore. And Halder, who first presented the paper to a small group of psychoanalysts, subsequently translated it into English and presented it at the annual meeting of the Indian Science Congress. It was a hit there, too.

What seems to be defiant in one cultural context may not seem so in another. A colleague once told me how her great-aunt — a seemingly house-bound, puritanical widow who had limited education and always wore white to conform to the traditional image of an austere widow in east India — helped her brother Sarasilal Sarkar, a first-generation psychoanalyst, to translate some of Freud’s works into Bengali. She was not at all shocked by the newly imported European theory of human nature, tinged with ideas of infantile sexuality and incestual fantasies. I remember in this context a number of Indian folk tales about the Oedipal situation collected by the poet and scholar A.K. Ramanujan. Many of them end rather tamely with the hero learning to live with the knowledge that he has unknowingly married or slept with his mother. There is moral anguish in them, but not usually of the fierce, self-destructive kind found in the Greek myth. In one story that carries a touch of moral agony, the mother is the one who commits suicide.[4]

Contemporary Indian middle-class culture, however, has more in common with the global culture of common sense than with the folk tales Ramanujan had collected. We have to come to these alternative formulations in a different way, by examining the status of the post-Galilean world itself. Let me, therefore, look more closely at some elements in the critical apparatus of Enlightenment reason that the global triumph of rationality, sanity and progress (encased in an expanding global culture of common sense and conventionality) should have given us the confidence to re-examine. Victory should have brought with it a new sense of self-confidence and responsibility, but evidently it has not.

The stalwarts who contributed to the Enlightenment vision tended to nurture one particular kind of critical attitude. That attitude used as its pivot, often creatively, the idea of demystification or unmasking. From Giambattista Vico to Sir Francis Bacon to Friedrich Wilhelm Nietzsche, it was the creation and unfolding of a new tradition of social criticism that sought to rid the world of the sacred and the magical. That was the tradition on which the great critical theorists like Freud and Marx were to build. This tradition of demystification usually assumes that manifest reality, after a point, is not trustworthy. If one tears the mask off that reality, one is closer to the truth, or to more justifiable certitudes. After the demystification, the certitudes that sustain the manifest reality and supply its standardised interpretations are shown to be unsustainable. Indeed, through this exegesis, one constructs a new reality closer to truth, and that second-order reality provides one with a fresh bedrock of certitudes. It was the hope of the protagonists of this tradition that a new society, a new social vision, and even a new human personality could be built based on this new hermeneutics.

The model, of course, was borrowed from modern science. There, too, the assumption is that once someone like Galileo dismantles common sense and everyday reality by proposing the idea of a heliocentric universe in place of the geocentric one, he demystifies or demagicalises the universe and comes closer to truth. Likewise, the emergence of modern medicine can also be viewed as the emergence of a new narrative that sheds the earlier mystification of illness and explains all diseases solely in the language of the body, as formalised in the science of biology. The assumption is that once one reaches the hard realities encrypted in the language of the body, one acquires greater mastery over ill health. Similarly with the Marxist concept of production relations and Freud’s concept of psychosexuality.

There is another tacit assumption here. Namely, that there can be competing theories of knowledge, but not two truths. Ultimately, one of the theories is expected to supersede the rest. Take the case of the Galilean discovery itself, which has served as a foundational myth of modern knowledge systems for nearly two centuries. Only two years ago the Catholic Church recanted and apologised for prosecuting Galileo, a little too late in the day, some might say. Yet, a whole range of works which rely on the actual arguments and exchanges between the two sides make us suspect that the Church was not clear about the position it should take on Galileo’s cosmology. Galileo was influential and had powerful friends in the Church. During his trial, he stayed in an abbey with a Church dignitary. The Catholic Church, never insensitive to political realities, was willing to compromise. In any case, it was probably less hostile to Galileo’s heliocentric universe than to his belief that the Church should repudiate geocentricism and make heliocentricism a part of official Christian dogma. In other words, the Church was willing to keep things vague and open and live with both the heliocentric and geocentric theories as contestants for the status of truth. But the idea that there could be two coexisting, contesting versions of truth was not acceptable to Galileo. In his world, one of the two theories had to win at the end.

Today, in the age of supercomputers, it is possible to argue that in a relativistic universe, conceiving the sun as the epicentre is not that striking an improvement over conceiving the earth as the epicentre, if one chooses to confine oneself solely to the issue of truth. A reasonably good computer can calculate the co-ordinates of the geocentric universe clumsily and inelegantly, but nonethe less truthfully. I emphasise the word truthfully, because Galileo’s battle with the Church is described in school texts as a battle for truth. I admit that the computations in the case of a geocentric universe will be more complicated; they will certainly not be aesthetic or efficient. But they will not be false. For heliocentricism and geocentricism are only two possible ways of viewing a relativistic universe. There could be other ways. Any modern physicist will agree with you on this as long as you do not bring in Galileo. He or she will be uncomfort able the moment you propose that Galileo was as right or as wrong as the dignitaries of the Church were. Galileo’s dissent is a major myth of modernity, on which we have been brought up. To disown it is to disown a part of our selves.

The moral of the story is clear. What looks like radical dissent at one time may look like a lesser innovation at another, or become a lovely little story of dissent that has lost some of its edge. However, this also has a dangerous corollary: many ideas that were once instruments of liberation or parts of an emancipatory theory, which for decades came in handy for those battling social injustice or inequality, have ceased to be emancipatory. Perhaps for the simple reason that human beings, given enough time, are perfectly capable of converting even the most radical theories of emancipation into sanctions for new forms of violence and oppression. It is probably better to be suspicious of all theories of emancipation after a point. Indeed, I believe that the coming generations may seriously demand that any significant psychological or political theory, to be so recognised, must have either an element of self-destructiveness or a subsystem of self-criticism built in. It may not be good for the theorists, but it will certainly be good for the rest of the world. There is no harm in viewing all theories of liberation as transient instruments that retain the potentiality of becoming oppressive in the end.

Everyone knows of the demise of Leninism; few have noticed the demise of classical liberalism. Nothing reveals this twin defeat more poignantly than the changing language of the winners of the world. The new slogans of the victorious have gradually become those that the likes of Marx and Freud thought emancipatory. I have in mind the various theories of progress, science, rationality, social evolutionism and development. The Nazis killed in the name of eugenics, the Soviet communists in the name of scientific history. The Khmer Rouge in Cambodia virtually acted out the dissertations that some of its leaders wrote for prestigious French universities. Values that at one time were associated with or indicated the defiance of authority are the values of the authorities today. Values that at one time looked authoritative and dominant have become the values of the marginalised and the powerless. We are moving into a world where the nature of authority is different. People at the heart of the Establishment today talk of the end of history, poverty and human rights. Obviously because the end history has reached is not the one for which generations of dissenting intellectuals have worked. Poverty has become a billion-dollar multinational enterprise and the idea of human rights is being exported by countries that have the shoddiest human rights record in the southern world. Nothing lasts forever; even dissent does not remain dissent after a point.

For us, who deal with human subjectivities, there is a more serious development in the wake of the crisis in modernity. The visions that presumed that individuality should provide the basic unit of social analysis and psychological intervention are themselves under severe stress. With individualism increasingly taking quasi pathological forms, strengthening individuality no longer looks like a foolproof recipe for health. A few years ago, I was told that in large apartment complexes in some Scandinavian cities, electronic devices were fitted in the toilets of lonely, elderly people. If a toilet was not flushed for a long stretch of time, the janitor came and broke into the apartment to check if the householder was alive. This was a response to instances of lonely senior citizens, deprived of community life, dying in their flats and the neighbours finding out only after the bodies began to decompose and smell. This is individualism taken to its logical conclusion. It is my suspicion that all theories of consciousness — and unconsciousness — will have to learn to look at the individual from a different point of view.

We do not have to give up the concept of individualism. We have seen what reified, overdone concepts of aggregates — such as race, class, nationality and ethnicity — can do. In the last century, mostly deriving sanction from deified or demonised concepts of groups, we killed 200 million of our fellow human beings. Their ghosts haunt all contemporary ideas of collectivity. I suggest that we re-examine individualism in societies where, in the name of individualism, certain basic dimensions of individuality have themselves been subverted. For most practical purposes, individualism has been reinterpreted as self-interest and consumer ism. The Internet now threatens to reinterpret it as solipsism. The advertisement-driven individual ism associated with consumer choice would have frightened even Sigmund Freud, whose individualism always had a Shakespearean dimension.

I once tried to calculate the number of shades of lipsticks on the world market. Within a short time, I arrived at a figure that ran into thousands. It is doubtful if the human retina is physiologically capable of registering that many shades of colour. I presume the width of this choice is partly bogus; it creates an illusion of wider choice than there actually is. It would have been a perfectly innocent illusion if the total cosmetics bill of American women had not over-stripped the total budgets of all the African countries taken together. For the moment, I am ignoring the quarter of a million animals sacrificed every year in US laboratories alone for scientific experiments, a significant proportion of them conducted for the cosmetics industry.[5] This is not a plea to abridge choice across the board; it is a plea to recognise that certain forms of absurd multiplication of choices can have psychosocial costs and can be considered puerile. I am merely taking seriously the activist-scholar R.L. Kumar’s proposition that the rhetoric of wider choice often hides the fact that in modern societies, an individual is increasing ly left with only three substantive choices: to be a tourist, a voter or a consumer. Other choices are usually either secondary or illusory. I am inviting you to extend to the favourite slogans of our times what Philip Rieff considers the heart of the Freudian enterprise, the analytic attitude.[6]

The very idea of the disenchantment of the world, so closely associated with the idea of demystification, is itself reaching the end of its tether. The world is getting so thoroughly secularised that the idea of a fully secular world has ceased to be an attractive dream, except to those still living in the nineteenth century. Two factors have contributed to the growing scepticism towards secularism. First, there is the growing environmental crisis, which to many seems intertwined with the secularisation of the cosmos and the desacralisation of nature and nonhuman life forms. If nothing is transcendent or sacred, the final word on social morality becomes the aphorism of John Maynard Keynes, who crucially shaped some of the major economic institutions with which we live: "In the long run we are all dead." If that is so, in a fully secularised, fully individualistic world, there is no reason why we should leave anything behind for the future. Certainly, institutions structured around self-interest, rationality and hard realism have even less reason to do so. A conventional wit, W.C. Fields puts it more directly and honestly: "Why should I think about the future? What has the future done for me?"

That is why many of the social formations that look like rebellions against secularism turn out to be, on closer scrutiny, the offspring of secularisation. Disoriented by a changing world, they desperately seek meaning in the packaged versions of faith vended by charlatans, gurus and bloodthirsty religious fanatics. I have been studying ethnic and religious violence during the last two decades. One of the most remarkable features of such violence, I find, is the element of secularisation that has crept into it. Religious fanaticism now has little to do with faith, tradition or community. It is a product of uprooting, breakdown of community ties and weakening of faith. Thus, expatriate Indians in the First World reportedly financed — almost entirely — the Ram Janmabhoomi movement that demolished the Babri mosque in India in 1992 and triggered countrywide violence. Likewise, expatriate Tamils have largely bankrolled Tamil militancy in Sri Lanka and the IRA has consistently received funding during the last seven decades from Irish Americans. It was almost as if individuals, feeling increasingly deracinated and uprooted, have taken up causes to battle their own sense of loss of tradition and community ties, and to create what Hannah Arendt used to call pseudo-communities.

If this explanation looks too facile, there is the fact that in all of South Asia, communal riots are becoming a kind of expertise, even a profession. You can organise ethnic or communal violence anytime you like, provided someone gives you enough cash and political protection. You can order a designer riot to bring down a regime or change voting patterns or advance the cause of a political faction. The activists are known, so are their fees and their political patrons. The leaders who deploy these activists are also increasingly blatant about their profession. Organised religious and ethnic violence itself has become one of the most secular spheres of our public life. That is why Mr L.K. Advani, the leader of what many consider the world’s biggest revivalist formation, the BJP Hindu nationalist forces in India, the man who headed the movement that led to the demolition of the Babri mosque, could openly say in an interview with The Times of India, a national newspaper, that he is not much of a believer. As for his own religious sentiments, he added for good measure, he feels closer to Sikhism than to Hinduism.

Advani is no exception. The Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh or the RSS, the steel frame of Hindu nationalism, was established in 1925. It supposedly has a million members now. Many of them are believers. Yet, for most of its existence and throughout all its formative years, the RSS has not had as its head persons who could be called believers. The first time the RSS chose a believing Hindu as its head was when M.S. Golwalkar took over in 1940. The earlier leaders were not diffident non-believers; they openly flaunted their disbelief, often trying to show how scientifically minded they were by attacking Hindu rituals and idolatry. They believed that they were fighting for the political cause of the Hindus, not defending Hindu religious traditions. Thus V.D. Savarkar, who coined the term Hindutva and authored what has become the Bible of Hindu revivalism, Hindutva, declares himself an atheist in the same book. Evidently, the violent and venomous furies of religious fanaticism are not always associated with theories of transcendence in our time. They have been direct products of the modern, secular world and the time has come for us to re-examine such fanaticism as the pathology of a modern ideology rather than that of a faith.

At the end, very briefly, I offer two theoretical proposals that might serve as possible baselines for reconceptualising forms of contemporary subjectivity, especially as they are reflected in the idea of individuality. I choose them because both are indirectly relevant to theories of the healthy personality and psychotherapeutic practice.

First, healthy, normal individualism is also possible when the boundaries of the self are not as sharply demarcated in terms of belief, faith or identity, categories that the moderns feel comfortable with. Our deepening cross-cultural experiences demand that we redefine health to accommodate a different concept of the boundaries of the self. Let me give two examples, one of them my favourite. I can confidently predict that there will never be religious conflict between the Shintos and the Buddhists in Japan, for the simple reason that a huge majority of the Japanese are Shintos and a huge majority of them are Buddhists. A similar prediction can be made about the Confucians and the Buddhists in China. Whereas in a country like India, where a periodic modern, scientific census has been conducted since colonial times, the percentages of different religious communities are so meticulously calculated that they always add up to exactly 100 per cent. The Hindus constitute 82.0 per cent of India, the Muslims 12.1 per cent, the Christians 2.3 per cent, the Sikhs 1.9 per cent, and so on.

Yet, when the Indian Anthropological Survey did a comprehensive survey in the early 1990s, not of individuals but of communities, it discovered that roughly 15 per cent of the 2,800 communities studied had more than one faith. That does not only mean that these communities consist of people from different faiths; it also means that the communities include individuals who can be classified as belonging to more than one faith. This is not new for us. I have mentioned Japan and China. Even Christianity and Islam — faiths that have shed enormous volumes of blood to deter mine the fate of Jerusalem over the last two millennia — evidently have other incarnations in the tropics. The Indian survey mentions 116 communities that are simultaneously Christian and Hindu, 94 that follow both Christianity and the various ‘tribal religions’, and 35 that are Hindu and Muslim. Seventeen communities are followers of three religions simultaneously — 11 can be classified as Hindu, Muslim and Sikh, six as Hindu, Muslim and Christian.[7] A colleague of mine has studied the Meos, one of the largest Muslim communities in northern India. They are devoutly Muslim, but also trace their origins to the Mahabharata clans. They have their own Mahabharata that they perform ritually. Even now, some elderly Meos have both Hindu and Muslim names, the way a huge majority of the Indonesians do.[8]

It is possible to re-envision individualism, self-identity, and even the borders of the self. Some points of departure are available and it is our responsibility to confront the violence of our age by pursuing these possibilities. We also have to remember that the communities that have kept alive these possibilities, despite enormous pressures to change or conform, are a beleaguer ed lot. The forces of globalisation and cultural homogenis ation threaten their lifestyles. Take the case of the Meos. Muslim fundamentalists, Islamic nationalists and many modern Muslims have not been comfortable with Meo religious culture. Many Meos, too, having been victims of religious violence on and off during the last fifty years, now feel that their Islam is flawed. Indeed, Professor K. Suresh Singh, who headed the Indian Anthropolog ical Survey’s study of communities, tells me that the multi-religious communities revealed by his survey are the last remnants of a phenomenon that was once much more widespread in the region. They have ceased to be the norm in India, as in other parts of South and Southeast Asia. The official, enumerative world in which we live has no respect for such traditions. It works with a more Cartesian concept of the individual self.

I reaffirm that there are possible ways of looking at the person to which the modern world has few clues. These possible ways cannot be explained away as mystificat ions or as romantic invocations of the past. Indeed, it is we who have been living in a make-believe world that ignores other concepts of the boundaries of the self with which a huge proportion, perhaps even a majority of the world, still lives. The new slave trade flourishing in our times, with the full support of a large cross-section of the intellectual community, exports such people from our neighbourhoods to history. We talk about them in the past tense and accuse anyone concerned about them of incurable romanticism.

Secondly, not only can the self be seen as being in dialogue with others, as most currently fashionable theories of multiculturalism have come to acknowledge, the self can also be seen in the other and the other as telescoped in the self. This is not unheard of in clinical literature. There are studies that explain homicidal hatred towards outgroups as an attempt to exorcise alien parts of the self, the ghosts within. From the beginning, projection and displacement have been important defences in psychological studies of racism and ethnophobia. However, the healthier, more integrative possibilities in the story have not been explored The same defences of projection and displacement can sometimes bond diverse communities within a shared cultural space.[9] As I have already said, the Enlightenment’s tradition of demystification bares the material, the corporeal, the unhealthy and the ‘ugly’. It undervalues forms of second-order demystification that might reveal the sources of creativity and psychological health that underlie manifest ill health.

Recently, I studied a city in South India, Cochin, where at least fourteen major communities have lived for centuries. It is a small city which was cosmopolitan and international much before the present idea of cosmopolitanism was imported into India in colonial times. The communities range from two Jewish communities, one of which claims to have been in the region for more than two millennia, to Yemeni Arabs, who claim that they were in touch with Cochin even in pre-Islamic times, to the Eurasian Parangis who came into being as a community only in the last four hundred-odd years. These communities live there and have lived there in peace. I studied the city to learn how.[10]

It took me some time to find out that their co-existence was not dependent on brotherly love. The communities were often ambivalent towards each other; sometimes they positively disliked the other. But while they did so, no person or community considered itself complete without the others. Cochin lives in what I have elsewhere called an epic culture, not a linear, empirical, historical concept of culture and community. In that epic vision of life, you need villains to complete the picture, though these villains are usually fashioned out of the same defensive structures that students of ethnic and religious violence have come to fear.[11] Such a vision has to reaffirm, ritually and regularly, the existing configur ation of the contests between the godly and the ungodly. You simply cannot do without the demons because you cannot even represent the gods without the demons. They are symbiotic al ly related and are an unavoidable part of each other and your self. You do not have to love the demons, but you cannot nurture annihilatory fantasies about them either. It is a bit like the story of the Jewish Robinson Crusoe who, I am told, had to build two synagogues, one to pray in and the other to set up as the one into which he would never step. The second synagogue was important to him. He might have hated it, but his self-definition was not complete without it

During the last two centuries, in the area of social knowledge and knowledge of self, we have managed to destroy such visions by bringing in a peculiar evolutionary perspective on the relation between space and time. That perspective has drawn upon the various nineteenth-century theories of progress to convert geographies into histories, histories into geographies. At one time, one had the right to dislike other communities because they did not conform to one’s ideas of morality and propriety. However, usually one was forced to yield to the others, even if unwilling ly, the same right to dislike one. It is no longer fashionable to exercise such rights or to own up to such prejudices. The triumphant culture of globalised cosmopolitanism has convinced us that we must pretend, even if we do not believe so, that everyone is the same. Yet, the same cosmo politan ism allows us to classify cultures according to the distance they have traversed on the time-scale of history. So, I may not detest you — as representing a culture, a religion, nationality or ethnic group — but I retain the right to believe that you are what I was yesterday or in the last century. And if you behave well, if you obey the textbooks I have produced on self-improvement — through economic development, technological growth, acquisition of scientific rationality or ‘proper’ political education — you could be like me tomorrow. It is like Albert Schweitzer’s idea of fraternity, as recalled by Chinua Achebe. "The African is my brother," Schweitzer appears to have said, "but a younger brother." Only this idea, which today infects virtually all liberal and radical theories of social change, is apparently an improvement on Immanuel Kant’s or David Hume’s belief in the natural inferiority of the blacks, browns and yellows.

For in Schweitzer’s view, some cultures are only living out the pasts of others and are, to that extent, obsolete and redundant. A few cynics may claim that this is a way of pre-empting the future of some of the oldest civilisations of the world and annihilating the present of hundreds of humble micro-cultures that keep open our options by acting like cultural gene banks of alternative, dissenting or even fantastic concepts of selfhood. But that is certainly not a popular view in the mainstream global culture of common sense.

I am optimistic enough to believe that the new century will define the capacity to listen to others as a major human virtue. An earlier generation of psychotherapists spoke of the need to listen with a third ear. Perhaps the next generation, less burdened by the ghosts of yesteryear, will not be embarrassed to speak of the need to listen with a second heart.

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Notes:

This essay draws on the author’s keynote address at the International Congress of the International Association of Group Psychotherapy, Jerusalem, 2000

1. See a more detailed discussion in Ashis Nandy, ‘The Savage Freud: The First Non-Western Psychoanalyst and the Politics of Secret Selves in Colonial India’, in The Savage Freud and Other Essays in Possible and Retrievable Selves (New Delhi: OUP, 1995).

2. Friedrich Heer, ‘Freud, the Viennese Jew’, tr W. A. Littlewood, in Jonathan Miller (ed.), Freud, The Man, His World, His Influence (London: Weidenfeld and Nicholson, 1972).

3. Christiane Hartnack, ‘Psychoanalysis and Colonialism in British India’, PhD dissertation, Berlin, Freie Universität, 1988; Ashis Nandy, ‘The Savage Freud’ (see above).

4. A. K. Ramanujan, ‘The Indian Oedipus’, in T. G. Vaidyanathan and Jeffrey Kripal (eds.), Vishnu on Freud’s Desk: A Reader in Psychoanalysis and Hinduism (New Delhi: Oxford University Press, 1999). See also Gananath Obeysekere, ‘Further Steps in Relativisation: The Indian Oedipus Revisited’, Ibid.

5. Shiv Visvanathan, ‘Annals of a Laboratory State’, A. Nandy,
Science, Hegemony and Violence: A Requiem for Modernity (New Delhi: Oxford University Press and Tokyo: UN University Press).

6. Philip Rieff, The Triumph of the Therapeutic: Uses of Faith After Freud (New York: Harper, 1968).

7. K. S. Singh, People of India: An Introduction (New Delhi: Anthropological Survey of India, 1994), Vol. 1.

8. Shail Mayaram, Resisting Regimes: Myth and Memory in a Muslim Community (New Delhi, Oxford University Press, 1997).

9. Shail Mayaram, ‘Living Together: Ajmer as a Paradigm of the Asiatic City’, in Kayoko Tatsumi (ed.), Multiculturalism: Modes of Coexistence in South and Southeast Asia (Washington: SPF, 1998), mimeo. This paper unwittingly and, therefore, unselfconsciously shows the involvement of two of the classical concerns of psychoanalytic anthropology — possession and psychic healing — in an Islamic mosque shared by Muslims and Hindus, and presided over by an unlikely Imam, a woman called Sushila Rohatgi.

10. See Ashis Nandy, ‘Time Travel to a Possible Self: Searching for the Alternative Cosmopolitanism of Cochin’, The Japanese Journal of Political Science, December 2000, 1(2).

11. Cf. Vamik D. Volkan, The Need to Have Enemies and Allies (New York: Jason Aronson, 1988).
          HUMAN RIGHTS IN 2011: THE CIRI REPORT        
The CIRI Human Rights Data Project has released its ratings of government respect for 16 internationally-recognized human rights in almost every country in the world for the year 2011.  The CIRI Project’s data stretch back, annually, to 1981 and can be freely accessed at www.humanrightsdata.org.

The CIRI data are used by governments, scholars, international organizations, businesses, think tanks, and students the world over for a variety of purposes.  The project is co-directed by Dr. David L. Cingranelli (Binghamton University), Dr. David L. Richards (University of Connecticut), and Dr. K. Chad Clay (University of Georgia). 

This data release has also been accompanied by a number of changes at the CIRI Project.  A new country was added to the data for 2011 (South Sudan), and, reflecting the addition of a new co-director (K. Chad Clay) in Fall 2012, the project’s citation has changed.  Perhaps most importantly, CIRI’s release schedule has changed.  In the future, data updates will be issued annually in January to cover the year that began two years previous.  As such, the 2012 ratings will be released in January 2014.

Below, we present four stories from the 2011 data:


THE BEST AND WORST OF 2011

All 14 of CIRI’s individual indicators of particular human rights can be summed into an overall human rights score for each country in the world.  The best score a country can receive is 30, representing high respect for all 14 human rights; the worst score is 0, representing very low respect for all 14 human rights.  The world average was 17, and the USA scored 24 (tied for the 7th highest score, but still ranking behind 37 countries).  Below are the best and worst of 2011.

Top 9 Countries – Overall Respect
Luxembourg [30]
Netherlands [29]
New Zealand [29]
San Marino [29]
Andorra [28]
Australia [28]
Denmark [28]
Iceland [28]
Norway [28]

Bottom 9 Countries – Overall Respect
Iran [1]
Eritrea [2]
Saudi Arabia [2]
Burma [3]
China [3]
Libya [3]
Yemen [3]
Democratic People's Republic of Korea [4]
Syria [4]


STABILITY & CHANGE IN RESPECT FOR PHYSICAL INTEGRITY RIGHTS

The CIRI Physical Integrity Rights Index measures government respect for the freedoms from torture, extrajudicial killing, political imprisonment, and disappearance. It varies from 0 (no respect for physical integrity rights) to 8 (full respect for physical integrity rights).  Overall, government respect for physical integrity declined in 2011, as the mean score on the physical integrity rights index fell from 5.01 in 2010 to 4.82 in 2011.  In particular, respect for physical integrity rights saw the following dramatic changes in 2010-2011:

Largest Declines in Respect for Physical Integrity Rights
Bahrain [-5]
Djibouti [-3]
Egypt [-3]
Republic of Korea [-3]
Libya [-3]
Mauritania [-3]
Oman [-3]

Largest Improvements in Respect for Physical Integrity Rights
Panama [+4]
Croatia [+3]
Belarus [+2]
Nepal [+2]
Togo [+2]

Further, as these lists suggest, it would appear that changes in government respect for physical integrity rights in 2011 were not evenly distributed across the globe.  Indeed, as demonstrated below, South Asian states experienced a net improvement in average government respect for physical integrity, while some of the largest declines in government respect for physical integrity rights were concentrated in the Near East & North Africa:

Average Change in Respect for Physical Integrity Rights by Region
Africa [-0.04]
East Asia & the Pacific [-0.12]
Europe & Eurasia [0]
Near East & North Africa [-1.37]
South Asia [+0.25]
Western Hemisphere [-0.11]






THE “ARAB SPRING” & HUMAN RIGHTS IN THE NEAR EAST & NORTH AFRICA

Beginning in Tunisia in December 2010, the wave of demonstrations, protests, and conflicts known as the “Arab Spring” swept through the Arab world in 2011.  What effect did this have on respect for human rights in the Near East and North Africa (as defined by the US State Department)?  Table 1 displays the change in the overall human rights score, as well as in the CIRI Physical Integrity Rights Index, from 2010 to 2011. 

 
As can be seen, most states in the region demonstrated reduced respect for human rights in 2011, particularly those states that experienced some of the highest levels of unrest that year, e.g. Bahrain, Libya, and Egypt.  Of course, other states, like Syria, Yemen, Saudi Arabia, and Iran, already had extremely low scores on our indicators and thus, had little room to move down.  On the other hand, Tunisia experienced a large increase in its overall human rights score, owing to the overthrow of its government early in the year and the elections held in October.  However, this was not enough to overcome the high level of physical integrity rights abuse that accompanied the protests early in the year, which led to a decrease in respect for physical integrity rights from an already low score of 3 in 2010 to 2 in 2011.
 
STABILITY & CHANGE IN WOMEN’S RIGHTS
 
CIRI also annually codes two measures of internationally-recognized women’s rights: women’s political rights and women’s economic rights.  The women’s political rights measure is aimed at capturing the degree to which government laws and practices ensure that women enjoy the rights to vote, to run for political office, to hold elected and appointed government positions, to join political parties, and to petition government officials.  The women’s economic rights measure captures the degree to which government laws and practices ensure that women enjoy equal pay for equal work, free choice of profession or employment, the right to gainful employment, equality in hiring and promotion, job security, freedom from discrimination by employers, freedom from sexual harassment, and the right to work in dangerous professions, including working at night and working in the military and police forces.
 
Our two measures of women’s rights moved in opposite directions in 2011.  While women’s political rights improved for the second straight year, women’s economic rights suffered a setback after two consecutive years of improvement.  Indeed, this is in keeping with these measures’ performance over time.  As shown in the graph below, respect for women’s economic rights has lagged behind respect for women’s political rights consistently since 1981.  However, that gap has widened with time, as respect for women’s political rights has consistently grown while respect for women’s economic rights has remained relatively flat.
Note: The shapefile used to construct the above map comes from Weidmann, Kuse, and Gleditsch’s cshapes, version 0.4-2.  The map was made using Pisati’s spmap package in Stata 12.1.  Another version of this post can be viewed at the The Quantitative Peace.

          HUMAN RIGHTS IN 2010: THE CIRI REPORT        
In conjunction with Human Rights Day, 2011, the CIRI Human Rights Data Project releases its ratings of government respect for 16 internationally-recognized human rights in almost every country in the world for the year 2010. The CIRI project's data stretch back, annually, to 1981 and can be freely accessed at www.humanrightsdata.org

The CIRI data are used by governments, scholars, international organizations, businesses, think tanks, and students the world over for a wide variety of purposes. The project is Co-Directed by Dr. David L. Cingranelli (Binghamton University) and Dr. David L. Richards (University of Connecticut) and assisted by Senior CIRI Associate K. Chad Clay (University of Georgia). Any inquiries may be addressed to info@humanrightsdata.org

Below, we present four types of stories from this year's released data:


THE BEST AND WORST of 2010

All 14 of CIRI's indicators of particular human rights can be summed into an overall human rights score for each country in the world. The top (best) score a country can receive is 30, while the worst score would be 0. The world average was 18 and the USA scored 26 (tied for 5th place). Below are the best and worst of 2010.

Top 13 Countries:

Denmark [30]
Iceland [30]
Austria [29]
New Zealand [29]
Norway [29]
Australia [28]
Belgium [28]
Finland [28]
Liechtenstein [28]
Luxembourg [28]
Netherlands [28]
San Marino [28]
Sweden [28]


Bottom 10 Countries:

Burma [2]
Eritrea [2]
Iran [2]
China [3]

Korea, Democratic People's Republic of [3]
Yemen [3]
Zimbabwe [3]
Saudi Arabia [4]
Congo, Democratic Republic of [5]
Nigeria [5]


THE UN HUMAN RIGHTS COUNCIL

On May 20, 2011, the United Nations elected 15 new members of the UN Human Rights Council. Here are their total CIRI human rights scores for 2010, out of a possible 30 points. Six out of the fifteen new members had scores below the world average of 18 for the year 2010. Below are the scores for each new member:

Austria         [29]
Benin          [16]
Botswana     [22]
Burkina Faso    [20]
Republic of Congo  [18]  
Chile             [26]
Costa Rica     [26]
Czech Republic   [24]
India               [10]
Indonesia        [13]
Italy               [24]
Kuwait          [11]
Peru              [18]
Philippines     [15]
Romania        [17]


DECLINE IN RESPECT FOR PHYSICAL INTEGRITY RIGHTS

The CIRI Index of Physical Integrity Rights measure's a government's overall level of respect for four rights: torture, extrajudicial killing, political imprisonment, disappearance. The index ranges from 0 (no respect for any of these four rights) to 8 (full respect for all four of these rights). In 2008-2009, the world saw an overall average increase in these rights of .047. However, a reversal of this improvement was seen from 2009-2010, with it's overall average decline in respect of -.031. In particular 2009-2010 saw the following dramatic changes:

Three Countries Lost 3 Points (Violations Increased)

Croatia
Georgia
Panama

Seven Countries Gained 2 Points (Violations Decreased)

Angola
Chad
Chile
Guinea
Italy
Kenya
Seychelles

The fact that the CIRI data stretch back in time to 1981 allows for longitudinal comparison. For example, the graph below shows how regional averages of respect for physical integrity rights have changed over the years:



MORE TORTURE

An important part of this overall decline in respect for physical integrity rights comes from a continuing degradation, globally, of respect for the right not to be tortured. For example, 2009-2010 saw 17 countries engage in more torture, while only 8 engaged in less torture. Below is the list of these countries. CIRI's indicator of government respect for torture is as follows: (0) Frequent/systematic torture, (1) Moderate/occasional torture (2) No reported/confirmed episodes of
torture.

Increased Torture, 2009-2010

Austria
Bahrain
Canada
Congo, Republic of
Croatia
Georgia
Hungary
Japan
Korea, Republic of
Kyrgyz Republic
Marshall Islands
Mozambique
Nicaragua
Senegal
Sierra Leone
Slovenia
Thailand

Decreased Torture, 2009-2010

Chile
Czech Republic       
Denmark       
Dominica       
Italy       
Micronesia, Federated States of       
Seychelles       
Spain

This trend in the greater use of torture is not a post-9/11 phenomenon, however. The chart below shows the increased use of torture beginning in the early 1980s. The extent of the drop in respect for this right differed by region and is seen to be particularly acute in Africa.


          3580 T7300 laptop processzor cpu Core2Duo - Jelenlegi ára: 2 999 Ft        
Csomagküldés hétfőnként!
Ha azonnali csomagküldést kérsz, előttte kérdezz, nem minden esetben tudom előbb küldeni.
Személyes átvétel telephelyemen lehetséges, előre egyeztetett időpontban.
A vásárlásról alanyi áfa mentes számlát állítok ki.
Csere/beszámítás személyes átvétel esetén lehetséges.
Alkatrészek beszerelése és tesztelése telephelyemen kérhető.
Amennyiben 10 percnél kevesebb időt vesz igénybe ingyenesen.
Vásárlás előtt mindenképp olvasd el i+ oldalamat.
 
 
__________________________________________________________________________
SLAMD
2. 00/4M/800
Socket P
35W
bővebben:
http: //www. cpu-world. com/CPUs/Core_2/Intel-Core%202%20Duo%20Mobile%20T7300%20LF80537GG0414M%20(BX80537T7300). html
3580 T7300 laptop processzor cpu Core2Duo
Jelenlegi ára: 2 999 Ft
Az aukció vége: 2017-08-27 14:53
          3048 Intel Core2Duo T7200 cpu processzor laptop IBM Lenovo T60 T61 Dell D630 D830 - Jelenlegi ára: 2 499 Ft        
Csomagküldés hétfőnként!
Ha azonnali csomagküldést kérsz, előttte kérdezz, nem minden esetben tudom előbb küldeni.
Személyes átvétel telephelyemen lehetséges, előre egyeztetett időpontban.
A vásárlásról alanyi áfa mentes számlát állítok ki.
Csere/beszámítás személyes átvétel esetén lehetséges.
Alkatrészek beszerelése és tesztelése telephelyemen kérhető. Ennek feltételei I+ oldalamon olvashatóak.
Vásárlás előtt mindenképp olvasd el i+ oldalamat.
 
 
__________________________________________________________________________
T7200
SL9FS
667mhz fsb 2ghz 4m cache 64bit
socket M
bővebben:
http: //www. cpu-world. com/sspec/SL/SL9SF. html
3048 Intel Core2Duo T7200 cpu processzor laptop IBM Lenovo T60 T61 Dell D630 D830
Jelenlegi ára: 2 499 Ft
Az aukció vége: 2017-08-27 15:08
          3575 Socket S1 AMD Sempron 3200+ laptop processzor - Jelenlegi ára: 999 Ft        
Csomagküldés hétfőnként!
Ha azonnali csomagküldést kérsz, előttte kérdezz, nem minden esetben tudom előbb küldeni.
Személyes átvétel telephelyemen lehetséges, előre egyeztetett időpontban.
A vásárlásról alanyi áfa mentes számlát állítok ki.
Csere/beszámítás személyes átvétel esetén lehetséges.
Alkatrészek beszerelése és tesztelése telephelyemen kérhető.
Amennyiben 10 percnél kevesebb időt vesz igénybe ingyenesen.
Vásárlás előtt mindenképp olvasd el i+ oldalamat.
 
 
__________________________________________________________________________
SMS3200HAX4CM
3200+ 1600mhz
Socket S1
64bit
512kb cache
25W
bővebben:
http: //www. cpu-world. com/CPUs/K8/AMD-Mobile%20Sempron%203200+%20-%20SMS3200HAX4CM. html
3575 Socket S1 AMD Sempron 3200+ laptop processzor
Jelenlegi ára: 999 Ft
Az aukció vége: 2017-08-27 14:53
          3298 AMD Turion 64 X2 TL-50 cpu processzor TMDTL50HAX4CT - Jelenlegi ára: 2 499 Ft        
Csomagküldés hétfőnként!
Ha azonnali csomagküldést kérsz, előttte kérdezz, nem minden esetben tudom előbb küldeni.
Személyes átvétel telephelyemen lehetséges, előre egyeztetett időpontban.
A vásárlásról alanyi áfa mentes számlát állítok ki.
Csere/beszámítás személyes átvétel esetén lehetséges.
Alkatrészek beszerelése és tesztelése telephelyemen kérhető. Ennek feltételei I+ oldalamon olvashatóak.
Vásárlás előtt mindenképp olvasd el i+ oldalamat.
 
 
__________________________________________________________________________
TMDTL50HAX4CT
1600mhz 64bit 2x256k cache
3298 AMD Turion 64 X2 TL-50 cpu processzor TMDTL50HAX4CT
Jelenlegi ára: 2 499 Ft
Az aukció vége: 2017-08-21 18:10
          10 años y divorciada        

PeliculaOnline.Org

Nojoom, una niña de 10 años, entra en una sala de justicia, mira el juez directamente a los ojos y le dice: «quiero divorciarme». En Yemen, donde no hay ningún requisito de edad para el matrimonio, Nojoom es obligada a casarse a los 10 años con un hombre de 30 años de edad. La dote, […]

The post 10 años y divorciada appeared first on PeliculaOnline.Org.


          Qasar Hadramawt - Arab Restaurant        
A Splendid addition to the many choices of food in Perda and Penang Mainland - Qasar Hadramawt.

This place just opened up recently, in Bandar Perda, at De Rendezvous which houses Kapitan Nasi Kandar and Nash Donuts.

Here's a view from outside. Best Yemeni and Arabic Cuisine in town. And its true, it is the only arabic cuisine restaurant in town.

The restaurant is well setup, has nice sitting arrangements indoor and outdoor. 

Nice ambience for a good family outing or to bring guests. 

Corner seating, which caters for larger families.

 

Menu..Make your choices.

One of the menu pages. 


And now, makan time! First is mix grill. So sorry for the not so nice camera. Didn't bring along my digital cam. The chicken and mutton kebab is wonderful. There are also chicken and mutton cubes which came with the mix grill set was ok. You can choose from Mix Grill or Qasar Mix Grill. Frankly to mix grill serving is already more then enough for 2. And we usually share around (makan hidang) so we can taste more cuisines. One thing I found average was the 'roti' / bread, as it is not as good as what I've tasted before. I'd order less roti and more rice..Read on for rice.

The briyani rice is wonderful. Scent and tastes so tempting. 

And the lamb Madghout... Lamb, rice, cooked in a pressure cooker with mix their spices,. The lamb was... no words to describe. Really well cooked, soft and flavourful.

Served together is their 'sauce' .


We also tried the lamb Haneedh. Special parts of lamb, mixed with spices rolled into aluminium foil and cooked in a brick oven in 150'C for 2 hours. Served with Mandy rice and the above chilli sauce. Average for me.
And now for dessert. 

This is the Qasar Hadramawt Special. It is is a special. Mixed fruits, whipped cream. Fullsome. Good for 2. 
Verdict? Definitely a good try. Gets quite crowded on weekends after 9pm.Price - medium high. Expected for arab ala carte foood which has a lot of meat in the serving and briyani rice.

 

          DVD Verdict 1040 - Sounds and Sights of Cinema (New and Recent Releases)        

It's another new and recent releases show, as Clark offers music from The Woman in Black, Transformers: Prime, Casa de mi Padre, Being Flynn, Salmon Fishing in the Yemen, Gone, Doctor Who: Series Six, and remastered cues from Titanic. Plus, a quick rundown of the ten best films of 2011.


          12-Year-Old Yemeni Girl Stranded In Africa Reunites With Family At SFO        
Eman AliEman Ali and her father, Ahmed, arrived at the airport Sunday afternoon, where they were greeted by her older sister and other relatives.
          Kızıldeniz'de Can Pazarı        
Kızıldeniz'de Can Pazarı

İnsan kaçakçılarının Yemen sahilinde denize attığı 120 sığınmacıdan 50’si boğularak yaşamını yitirdi.






          Katar yolun sonuna geldi! Teröre desteğe dev fatura        
Suudi Arabistan, Mısır, Birleşik Arap Emirlikleri ve Bahreyn, Katar’la tüm diplomatik ilişkilerini kestiğini açıkladı. 4 ülke Katarlı diplomatlardan 48 saat içinde ülkelerini terk etmelerini istedi. 4 ülkenin Katar’la diplomatik ilişkilerini kesmesinin ardından Yemen de benzer bir adım attı. Katar’dan karara ilişkin yapılan ilk açıklamada ise “Haksız bir şekilde alınmış bu karardan üzüntü duyuyoruz” denildi.
          News Wrap: House Republicans Attempt to Delay Health Reform Mandates        

We're sorry, the rights for this video have expired.

KWAME HOLMAN: House Republicans moved today to delay key provisions in President Obama’s health care overhaul. It was the 38th time they have voted to repeal or scale back the law.

The latest bills would postpone the law’s mandates for individual and employer-based coverage. The Obama administration already has delayed the mandate for larger businesses.

The Federal Reserve’s timetable for dialing down its economic stimulus efforts remains flexible. Federal Reserve chairman Ben Bernanke underscored that today. He said he still thinks the Central Bank could start reducing its buying of government bonds this year. Bernanke told a House committee it depends on job creation, and is not preset.

BEN BERNANKE, Federal Reserve chairman: If the data are stronger than we expect, we will move more quickly, at the same time maintaining the accommodation through rate policy. If the data are less strong, if they don’t meet the kinds of expectations we have about where the economy is going, then we would delay that process or even potentially increase purchases for a time.

KWAME HOLMAN: On Wall Street, stocks took Bernanke’s testimony mostly in stride. The Dow Jones industrial average gained more than 18 points to close at 15,470. The Nasdaq rose 11 points to close at 3,610.

The Cleveland man accused of holding three women captive for more than a decade pleaded not guilty today to hundreds of charges. Ariel Castro faces 977 counts, ranging from aggravated murder, involving a terminated pregnancy and rape, to kidnapping and assault. Castro is in jail on an $8 million bond. His trial is scheduled to begin Aug. 5.

Al-Qaida’s branch in Yemen has announced the death of its second-in-command, Saeed al-Shihri. The group said today that al-Shihri, seen here in 2011, died of injuries from a U.S. drone strike in November. He was hit while speaking on his cell phone. Al-Shihri spent six years at a U.S. prison as a U.S. prisoner in Guantanamo Bay, Cuba. He was returned to Saudi Arabia in 2007 and fled to Yemen.

A prominent commander of the Pakistani Taliban voiced regret today for the shooting of Malala Yousafzai. The teenage advocate of educating girls was wounded in October. She has since recovered. Now, in a letter to the 16-year-old, Adnan Rashid calls the attack shocking and says he wished it had not happened. But he stopped short of apologizing.

Officials in Eastern India now say at least 22 children died Tuesday after eating a free school lunch contaminated with insecticide. Parents rushed to a nearby hospital with children who’d consumed the meal of rice, lentils, soybeans, and potatoes. Later, villagers vented their anger, toppling kiosks and smashing police buses. A state official said the grain may not have been properly washed.

Queen Elizabeth formally approved gay marriage in Britain today. That made it official a day after parliament voted to legalize same-sex unions. The new law allows gay couples to be married in both civil and religious ceremonies. The Church of England will not take part.

Those are some of the day’s major stories.

The post News Wrap: House Republicans Attempt to Delay Health Reform Mandates appeared first on PBS NewsHour.


          Best and Worst Countries for Moms        

The post Best and Worst Countries for Moms appeared first on PBS NewsHour.


          Yemen’de bin 500 kişi koleradan hayatını kaybetti        

Dünya Sağlık Örgütü, Yemen’de kolera salgınından bin 500 kişinin hayatını kaybettiğini, 246 bin kişinin ise hala hasta olduğunu bildirdi..
Devamı için Tıklayınız...
          Yemen’de ’kolera’ alarmı        

Yemen Başbakanı Ahmed Ubeyd bin Dagir, ülkenin bütün bölgelerine yayılan kolera salgınını kontrol altına almak için birçok bölgede sağlık sektöründe acil durum ilan etti.
Devamı için Tıklayınız...
          San Francisco Law Group Suing John Kerry Over Yemeni-Americans’ Passports        
Rayman Hussein of Oakland has not been able to return from Yemen following a trip in late 2012. (CBS)A San Francisco group is suing John Kerry over the practice of taking passports away from Yemeni-Americans after a man was left stranded in Yemen while visiting relatives.
          Oakland Business Owner Stuck In Yemen For More Than A Year        
Rayman Hussein of Oakland has not been able to return from Yemen following a trip in late 2012. (CBS)An Oakland business owner has been stuck in Yemen for more than a year. His relatives said the U.S. Embassy has confiscated his passport and won’t let him return home.
          Federations        
Federations
author: John Joseph Adams
name: Mark
average rating: 3.61
book published: 2009
rating: 4
read at: 2015/06/04
date added: 2015/06/04
shelves:
review:
Federations
Author: Bujold, Card, Martin, McCaffrey, Reynolds, Silverberg, Valentine, Modesitt Jr, Turtledove, Anderson, Beason, Bradford, Wright, Guthridge, Lee, Foster, Silverberg, Rosenblum, Sawyer, Tolbert, Steele, Li, Hergenrader, Gardner, Valente,
Publisher: Prime Books
Date: 2009
Pgs: 379

REVIEW MAY CONTAIN SPOILERS

Summary:
Vast interstellar societies and the challenges facing them. Federations stories mix new fiction alongside reprints that represent what interstellar SF is capable of. Space is big.

Genre:
Adventure
Alternate History
Apocalypse
Cyberpunk
Disaster
Fiction
Military
Multiverse
Science fiction
Short stories
Space
Space opera
War

Why this book:
The cover. And the Wil Wheaton blurb on the back.
______________________________________________________________________
Mazer in Prison by Orson Scott Card
Favorite Character:
Mazer Rackham, war hero and deep space traveller, and Rip Van Winkle on a long trip through time on his roundtrip way to Earth and command a fleet that is on its way to enemy territory. The idea of his being launched on a trip like this so that he ages in conjunction with his crews as they race toward the enemy and will be of an age with his crew despite everyone else on Earth aging multiple decades in the interim.

The Feel:
The feel is claustrophobic through the early stages opening into infinity as Mazer and Graff make their play.

Favorite Scene:
When Mazer realizes the subtext in the previously omitted letters from home beamed to him on his relativistic trip as decades pass on Earth while a bare year has passed on his ship and the ship observing his upset tries to sedate him and reports his condition back to the panel of shrinks on Earth. Reminded me of the scene in Apollo 13 when Tom Hank’s Lovell ripped the sensors out of his space suit because he was tired of people knowing everything that was going on with him.

Pacing:
The pace of the short was great.

Hmm Moments:
Sending the commander into space at relativistic speeds on a trip to nowhere so that he maintains time with the fleets outbound from Earth for the Formic worlds.

Mazer’s take-it-or-leave-it was incredibly awesome.
______________________________________________________________________________
Carthago Delenda Est by Genevieve Valentine
The Feel:
Sort of a United Nations of space at the behest of an advanced civilization that drops into the local group and broadcast for all to hear, come join us. And then, leaves the locals hanging between contacts. The Carthaginian is on its way, but hasn’t arrived yet.

Hmm Moments:
The cloning ambassadors thing instead of having to send new ones out from Earth is odd. Cool...just odd. And just that quick, I’m confused, are the Yemenis clones or are they androids? Guess that will become clearer deeper into the text. They are clones. One of the aliens did send an AI instead of a flesh and blood being.

Clone ambassadors in deep space with other alien ships close at hand waiting on an “all powerful” alien to show up while keeping the peace between all those waiting for the arrival. What could possibly go wrong?

Casting call:
Reese Witherspoon as a young clone of Yemeni just awakened. And Helen Mirren as an older clone just before her expiration.
______________________________________________________________________________
Life-Suspension by L. E. Modesitt Jr
The Feel:
The text lends itself to a Godzilla movie cadence. Imagine the text in the narrative voice of the male lead from one of the Godzilla movies and the text flows better, for me anyway. I know how odd that seems. But just straight reading it, the flow is choppy. Employing this device makes the text more palatable. Not sure if this was the intention of the author or if this is the author’s normal style.

Plot Holes/Out of Character:
Flight Captain Ghenji Yamato’s physical description of the new officer entering the mess, which is presented as an inner monologue, doesn’t read like anyone would talk to themselves. The description is stilted.

Maybe I’m just being thick today, but I couldn’t figure out what Captain Rokujo Yukionna is/was. I looked up Yukionna and discovered that she is a snow ghost in Japanese folklore. She drains the life, vampire like, and takes away the heat of the body in cold weather. She is a winter spirit. This needed to be clearer within the text.
______________________________________________________________________________
Terra-Exulta by S L Gilbow
The Feel:
This is like a Reverse Earth Day diatribe hidden inside a discussion of language wrapped in a sci fi template. It’s grim. Very grim when viewed through that lens.
______________________________________________________________________________
Aftermaths by Lois McMaster Bujold
Favorite Character:
A wet behind the ears Pilot Officer on his first real mission and he’s doing recovery trips across dead battlefields recovering the bodies of troops from both sides. It would have to be a demoralizing bit of work for the newly minted officer, would be tough enough for the old hand who had been in the service for a long while.

The Feel:
Creepy. Wandering around a battlefield with the dead and the scavengers.

Hmm Moments:
The idea of carrion wagons crisscrossing interstellar battlefields to recover the bodies of soldiers and sailors. That’s not a concept that I recall running across in sci fi before. I’ve seen it used in Civil War and Revolutionary War stories.
______________________________________________________________________________
Prisons by Kevin J Anderson and Doug Beason
Favorite Character:
The Warden

Amu, the revolutionary.

Character I Most Identified With:
The Warden, the AI who while he did oversee the prison also was overseeing the terraforming of the Planet Bastille...and the production and process of ubermindist, a galactic drug that is very well received on the black market across the Federation.

The Feel:
One of the villains was an actual villain. The others were just people caught in the whirlwind of history.

Favorite Scene:
The climax and the aftermath. There are all kinds of prisons.

Pacing:
Well paced.

Hmm Moments:
I wonder if the the Federation’s Prasidentarix is a ubermindist addict and what that and her consort’s death all have to do with the uprising on Bastille. Excellent climax and denouement clear this up. Well done.
______________________________________________________________________________
Different Day by K Tempest Bradford
The Feel:
Too short. Reads more like the idea for a story than the actual story. I like the concept, just needed more.
______________________________________________________________________________
Twilight of the Gods by John C Wright
Favorite Character:
The last Watchman, his duty is to be carried through even if all is lost.

Least Favorite Character:
Acting Captain Weston II, he is every privileged silver spoon who thought that by virtue of birth he was chosen to lead that you’ve ever encountered in your life.

The Feel:
I like the idea of Wagner’s Ring Cycle in space.

Favorite Scene:
When the traitor Captain returns to the throne room and faced down the Acting Captain and went all Jedi on him and his knights in the darkness.

Pacing:
Great pace. Lots of action. This could have been much longer and still been awesome.

Hmm Moments:
How have we become so ignorant so soon?

My master said once that the Computer spoke to all the children, and instructed them. When the Computer fell silent, there were no written things aboard with which to teach the children. Much was lost; more was lost in the confusion of the wars and darkenings. What we know, we know by spoken lore; but in the past, all men knew the priestly arts, and could read the signs

That’s poignant in juxtaposition with what the future could hold IRL.
______________________________________________________________________________
Warship by George R R Martin and George Guthridge
Pacing:
Good pace, but what happened next. The ship did what the ship did and then...a bit of unsatisfying.

Hmm Moments:
Creepy when he uncovered the body of his dead lover and kissed her kneecap. I was worried where this part of the story was going.
______________________________________________________________________________
Spirey and the Queen by Alastair Reynolds
Favorite Character:
Spirey is us caught up in the flux of duty, honor, and what is right when all three don’t equal out.

Character I Most Identified With:
Spirey. He doesn’t want to surrender his humanity...perceived humanity for comfort in the ship’s aquatic interior atmosphere. He’s stuck in his job. He’s doing his duty. And he’s being challenged by the evidence before his eyes about what his duty truly is. And is he really seeing what he’s seeing or did the nanospores insides his suit survive the purge and infect him.

The Feel:
Love the concept. Two warring forces fighting over a nascent solar system filled with mineral riches. Winner is going to mine it. But the war has been going on forever, generation on generation. Intentional mutations and augmentations. Cyborgs. A.I.s taking control.

Favorite Scene:
Spirey’s surprise when he encounters the defector after crash-jumping to the splinter. And his ship having been taken over by the nanospores is trying to cook him from orbit with its particle beams.

Hmm Moments:
Posthuman men falling into barbarism while machines fight their wars. And across the Spiral, posthuman women who have evolved out of their need for men and bioengineered them out of existence, while they think they fight their war, but the machines fight for them too. And a wasp machine queen intelligence throwing out Noah’s arks into the depth of the Spiral’s oort cloud on long orbits to return them to the Spiral when the planets are fully formed and they can be settled. Wow! Just wow!

That’s a great twist on the evolution of the A.I.s.
______________________________________________________________________________
Pardon Our Conquest by Alan Dean Foster
Favorite Character:
Admiral Gorekii for that last line if nothing else, but he’s excellent throughout.

The Feel:
Love the “what the heck is going on here” feeling that the representatives of the Commonwealth engender in the Admiral.

Hmm Moments:
“...this war. We lost-didn’t we?” That made me laugh.
______________________________________________________________________________
Symbiont by Robert Silverberg
The Feel:
It’s a decent story about duty and honor.

Plot Holes/Out of Character:
But did he get it or not at the end?
______________________________________________________________________________
The Ship Who Returned by Anne McCaffrey
Favorite Character:
The ship is an excellent character.

Favorite Scene:
The rise of the flora

Why isn’t there a screenplay?
So much of the Ship books is internal dialogue against the backdrop of action happening off-screen or near screen that I’m not sure that it would translate.
______________________________________________________________________________
The Shoulders of Giants by Robert J Sawyer
Character I Most Identified With:
Toby MacGregor. He’s the narrator and the voice that leads us through the story. He’s our in to the world of giants.

The Feel:
This has that classic sci fi flavor.

Favorite Scene:
The moment when MacGregor and Woo realize that it isn’t vulcanism causing those lights on their target planet’s dark side.

Hmm Moments:
Love the Rip Van Winkle / Vance Astrovik / tortoise and the hare aspect of this story.
______________________________________________________________________________
The Culture Archivist by Jeremiah Tolbert
Favorite Character:
Bertie, the archivist, moving around the galaxy ahead of the swarm of the UP.

The Feel:
Join or be assimilated, no one has a body of uniqueness. If you aren’t conformed, you don’t belong and you are absorbed. Even when you conform, you are absorbed. Helluva concept. I disagree with the author on the concept of capitalism being about conformity. When it works best, it is absorbing culture and making it part of itself. The conformity here is more how I picture Soviet communism.

Favorite Scene:
When Captain Morgana recognizes Bertie and cries out his name and his non-human form attempts to respond as his human body would if aroused.

Pacing:
The pace is great.

Hmm Moments:
Love the idea that there are nodes out there with the “real” identiies of all these absorbed cultures, just waiting for their rediscovery by the drones who may escape the UP and rebegin again. The archivist’s job sounds very pyrrhic. The rebeginnings/regenesis may only last until the UP catches up with them again, but then, those nodes still exist out there waiting to be discovered again and causing another revolution.

The mindless Redshirts, basically flesh golem cannon fodder. Greatness.
______________________________________________________________________________
The Other Side of Jordan by Allen Steele
Favorite Character:
The narrator is great. His adventure and love story is very well told.

The Feel:
There is a great sense of wonder at the universe that the narrator is moving through.

Favorite Scene:
The climax scene, though I did see the storytelling part coming.

Pacing:
Greatness.

Hmm Moments:
The way that the danaii deal with warfare on The Hex.

Why isn’t there a screenplay?
Would make an awesome movie, Message in the Bottle in space.

Casting call:
Would love to see Brad Pitt as the Narrator and Angelina Jolie as Jordan. Would make a beautiful movie. The love story would work for all genders. Great story.
______________________________________________________________________________
Like They Always Been Free by Gerogina Li
Favorite Character:
Kinger and Boy are great characters. Kinger’s voice is so well communicated I can almost hear it.

The Feel:
This feels like Shawshank.

Pacing:
The story is very short. But the pace is incredible. It flows so fast that the short pages fly passed.

Hmm Moments:
I’m so happy that there wasn’t a final twist that undid the happiness of the ending. I was afraid there was going to be one. That feeling of impending doom was upon me as I read the final pages.
_____________________________________________________________________________
Eskhara by Trent Hergenrader
Favorite Character:
Xenologist Kiernan. He’s what you’d hope a diplomat would be in space.

Least Favorite Character:
Rauder comes across as every hard ass, ever. Blow it up. Kill ‘em all. A stereotype.

Character I Most Identified With:
Kiernan.

The Feel:
Feels real. Could be a story about a representative of the Crown in a foreign land trying to keep a militant regular Army officer from burning everything down before he has a chance to find out what it is.

And it’s a tragedy.

Hmm Moments:
The planet naming conventions.
______________________________________________________________________________
The One with the Interstellar Group Consciousness by James Alan Gardner
Favorite Character:
Both the Union and the Didge are great characters in possibly the weirdest romantic comedy of all time.

Least Favorite Character:
The Abundance reminds me of my ex.

The Feel:
A Douglas Adams rom com.

Favorite Scene:
When the Union realizes that the Abundance isn’t all she’s cracked up to be.

Pacing:
The pace is great. I flew through the shortness of it.

Hmm Moments:
I kept wanting to read the line “and this was regarded as being a really bad idea” or some variation of that.

Why isn’t there a screenplay?
This couldn’t translate to the screen.
______________________________________________________________________________
Golubash, or Wine-Blood War-Elegy by Catherynne M Valente
Favorite Character:
Our narrator and winetaster in chief

The Feel:
The illicit, illegal wine tasting history lesson is an awesome way to do world building for the background.

Favorite Scene:
Love the end. Love it.

Hmm Moments:
Possibly one of the oddest sci fi stories I’ve ever read. Interstellar wine wars...really? And now I’m thinking about writing a story about cheese smuggling...in space. It’s a cool concept and wrapped up in the power of corporations in the sci fi environ.

The Hyphens of Golubash could be elementals or parts of the Hyperion Cantos. Excellent stuff.

Why isn’t there a screenplay?
Considering how much of the story happens to Uncle Such-n-such so many years ago or Grandma This or Cousin That, the focus of the movie would skip around. Wouldn’t be impossible on the big screen, but the audience desire to be lead by the nose in too many films and studios wanting to make things as simple as possible would fight against anyone wanting to sink into the escapism of it. Would anyone really want to watch an outer space travelogue and history lesson with aliens using wine as its underpinnings? I wouldn’t have thought so either, but the story is good and well written.
______________________________________________________________________________
Last Page Sound:
This was a great collection of sci fi.

Author Assessment:
There are some incredible authors involved in this collection. Some I’ll no doubt read again. And some I might not. By and large, this has been a well written collection.

Editorial Assessment:
I give full marks to the editors.

Knee Jerk Reaction:
real genre classic

Disposition of Book:
Irving Public Library
South Campus
Irving, TX

Dewey Decimal System:
F FED

Would recommend to:
everyone
______________________________________________________________________________



          This Week: Torture Report Reactions, Failed Yemen Rescue, and a Deadly Palestinian Protest        
Significant Developments

          On the brink: as famine looms, world leaders must pay up and deliver political solutions to save lives        
English

As famine takes hold in South Sudan and threatens to spread to northeastern Nigeria, Somalia, and Yemen, world leaders must immediately step up to fully fund the United Nations’ appeal for $6.3 billion. Of this amount, $4.9 billion is urgently needed by July for critical assistance, including health, food, nutrition, and water. If lives are to be saved, humanitarian agencies must be able to rapidly scale up and access people in need.

World leaders must not walk away from key meetings, such as the Group of Seven Taormina Summit in Italy and the Group of Twenty Hamburg Summit in Germany, without taking action to increase funding, improve access, resolve conflict and insecurity, and ensure that emergency relief is coupled with long-term approaches to building resilience in affected countries.

Author: 
Shannon Scribner
Summary picture: 
This woman arrived in Nyal, in Panyijar County, South Sudan, to register for a food distribution. Emergency hunger levels hav e been  declared in the county. Photo:Bruno Bierrenbach Feder/Oxfam
Promote to Emergency: 
Famine and hunger crisis

          Yemen on the brink: conflict is pushing millions towards famine        

Two years of brutal conflict in Yemen have led to what the UN describes as the worst humanitarian situation on the globe. Airstrikes and fighting have forced over 3 million people from their homes. 60 percent of the population - 17 million people - are suffering from food insecurity and malnutrition, with nearly 7 million people now facing the spectre of famine.

A country collapsing

The intensified hostilities across western and central Yemen continue to displace tens of thousands of people, with many now struggling to cope in abysmal conditions. 

Basic services like health or water supply are collapsing. Yemeni agriculture and food production, on which 60 percent of the country relies to live, have been decimated by the conflict. At a time when people desperately need them, vital supplies can't enter the country, as the flow of imported food has been massively disrupted.

Sabeer, 12 years old and his brothers live with their parents in a small hut in Al-Awamer village, in Hajjah governorate.

Sabeer, 12 years old and his brothers live with their parents in a small hut in Al-Awamer village, in Hajjah governorate. Because of the lack of space, the children are forced to sleep outdoors.

When the conflict escalated two years ago, the family fled the war. They lost their house.Two-thirds of their 110 sheep died and they had to sell most of the others. Sabeer’s father, Rabii Mohammed has no regular income, but he makes a couple of dollars occasionally by selling wood or helping farmers. “I can’t even give a piece of bread to my kids. I feel helpless, and food and medicine are the only things I’m dreaming about,” he added.

Rabii received 24,500 riyals ($98) from Oxfam’s Unconditional Cash Transfer program in Hajjah governorate, which helped him, at least for now, to buy enough food for his entire family. For many displaced families, it is the only source of support they’ve received for the past two years.

Photo: Moayed Al Shaibani/Oxfam
 

Nemah, 42 years old, has been displaced with her husband and five children to Bir Alhasee village in Abs district because of the war.

Nemah, 42 years old, has been displaced with her husband and five children to Bir Alhasee village in Abs district because of the war.

The family now lives in a small tent that they built themselves, which barely protects them from the cold and the weather.

Before the war, Nemah’s husband was working in Harad market and enjoying a good income. Now he stays in the tent while Nemah goes begging in the streets and other villages, which is the main way for them to get food.

“When I go out to beg and people do not give me anything, I remind myself that actually the situation is bad for everyone. But when I realize that I’ll go back home without anything for my kids, I feel helpless,” said Nemah.

Photo: Oxfam

Unable to buy food or medicine

Even when food does reach the shops and market stands, too many Yemenis cannot afford to purchase what they need to survive. Families who were forced to flee have lost everything they had. Costs have increased sharply while people are no longer able to make a living.

The only solution for many families is to reduce the amount of food they eat, or give what little they have to their children before themselves. Without a source of income, many families are unable to buy food or medicine. Not even bread. In the absence of a proper diet, malnutrition is on the rise, affecting about 3.3 million children, pregnant women and breastfeeding mothers.

Yahya Mutahhar, 45, is a retired soldier who used to work in farms in the north of the country until the conflict escalated.

Yahya Mutahhar, 45, is a retired soldier who used to work in farms in the north of the country until the conflict escalated. As food prices went up, his pension was no longer enough to feed his 12 children and then stopped being paid. So he had to find another income on the side.

“My youngest son is sick, his body is weak. I went to the hospital and they told me he was suffering from malnutrition. He’s unstable and has to eat healthy food to recover. I am afraid my little son will die and I would blame myself because I couldn’t buy enough food for him.”

Until Yahya received cash transfer from Oxfam – three monthly transfers of 24,500 YER each ($98), he was even thinking of selling his kidney to help his family. Now he only wishes for the war to stop and food prices to reduce so poor people can survive.

Photo: Moayed Al-Shaibani/Oxfam
 

Among the 2 million of internally displaced people in Yemen, 55% are children.

Ali (name changed to protect identity), 19 months old, was born in this tent. Her family had to flee their home and they now live in the Huth camp for Internally Displaced Persons (IDPs), in Amran governorate. Among the 2 million of internally displaced people in Yemen, 55% are children. Many are suffering from severe malnutrition.

Oxfam has been working in the camp since late 2015, providing humanitarian assistance to displaced people with safe drinking water and other lifesaving humanitarian aid.

We are also providing over 205,000 people in Al-Hudaydah, Amran, Hajjah and Taiz governorates with cash to enable families to buy food in the local market or livestock so they get a possible source of income, including 35,000 individuals who took part in our cash for work programs.

Photo: Mohammed Al-Mekhlafi/Oxfam

Help us do more: donate now


 

English
Parent page: 
Crisis in Yemen
Picture: 
The intensified hostilities across western and central Yemen continue to displace tens of thousands of people, with many now struggling to cope in abysmal conditions.  Photo : M.Al-Mekhlafi/Oxfam
Summary picture: 
Une femme prépare du thé dans un camp pour déplacés au Yémen. Avec le pain, c'est à présent tout ce qui constitue le régime alimentaire pour des millions de Yéménites. Photo: Hind Aleryani/Oxfam
Other pages title: 
Other programmes
Near me block title: 
Oxfam near me
Promote to Explore: 
Promote to worldwide: 
Promote to Emergency: 
Crisis in Yemen

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          The UN—Where Good and Evil Stand as Equals [Was: Dollars for Despots]        

SOLO-International Op-Ed: Dollars for Despots

Philip Duck
January 20, 2010

Yet another hopeless talkfest kicks off today as officials from the morally bankrupt United Nations meet the wholly corrupt ministers and bureaucrats of 15 Asian and Pacific Island states tagged, ‘Least-developed countries.’ (LDCs)

This tragic collection of thugs, thieves, tyrants, murderers and masters of moral-equivalency are meeting to review the results of having other people’s money liberally sprinkled upon them for the last ten years. Next year this review is to be presented to a larger, more tragic collection of thugs, thieves and masters of moral-equivalency, as representatives of all of the world’s 49 ‘least-developed countries,’ meet with top UN officials for mutual back-patting and sessions where they demand more cash.

Indeed today the UN kicked off part of that process when Noleen Heyzer, the Executive Secretary of the Economic and Social Commission, emphasized ‘"…the need for financial assistance from donors…” Heyzer also identified “…the need for monitoring to ensure that the pledges reached their intended targets.”

There is—as the likes of Heyzer must surely know—precious little chance of much of that money reaching its intended recipients; all 15 LDCs are highly corrupt. In fact, Transparency International’s Corruption Index ranks one LDC, Burma, as the world’s 178th most corrupt country. Of other Asian and Pacific LDCs, Yemen takes 154th place out of the 180 countries surveyed, Bangladesh sits in 139th spot, the Solomon Islands is 111th, and even the best-of-the-bunch, Bhutan, can only manage 49th place.

Rather, those pledges of taxpayers' money will sit snugly in the bank accounts of despots or be used to build opulent second, third and fourth homes. Indeed, as I write this from my LDC Cambodian home, my near-neighbour, a bureaucrat from the Department of the Environment, who insists his fellow-Cambodians address him as ‘Your Excellency,’ is sitting in his lavish four-storey home surrounded by drivers, nannies, cooks, tutors, maids and security guards. And his kids will soon be chauffeured home in a vehicle donated by the European Union. Neighbours of ‘His Excellency’ despise him; they know his money comes straight from the coffers of one of the nation's most corrupt departments.

These pledges will be also be used to silence political opposition through intimidation, beatings and bribery. They’ll be used to shut down the press, imprison rivals and produce propaganda. The UN, however, will continue to turn a blind eye to such rogues and funnel shed-loads of money to these despicable people.

Cheick Sidi Diarra, the UN’s High Representative for Least Developing Countries claimed late last year that the review process will allow LDCs to “…forge a clear vision, based on universal values, moral and ethical imperatives and the requirements of fairness and equity…”

Diarra is right: a clear vision based on the universal values of this bunch of evil-doing bastards will emerge. It won’t be the vision that Diarra or the 800 million residents of the LDCs would have in mind though. Rather the kleptocrats, dictators, communists and tyrants will do what they have always done: plunder, cheat, intimidate and bash.

The UN, too, will do what they have always done: they’ll shovel cash at tyrants while looking the other way when faced with irrefutable proof of wrongdoings. And they will continue to browbeat others into giving even more to fund the whole damn thing.

Philip Duck: thonburi-1@hotmail.com

SOLO (Sense of Life Objectivists): SOLOPassion.com


           Five migrants down and 50 missing         
People smugglers forced 180 Africans off a boat bound for Yemen
          Study of Antibiotics Prescribing Pattern in Paediatric Patients of ThamarProvince in Republic of Yemen        
AlGhazali MAA, Alakhali KM and Alawdi SM
          Once again, not in my name.        
 An outraged John Kerry having dinner with Assad, yesterday

After two years of civil war in Syria, our Parliament has been recalled to debate yet more military action in the Middle East. Our dish faced "man of the people" Prime Minister, desperate to add yet more war to his CV is keen to teach those pesky Arabs a lesson from the comfort of his armchair, ignoring the fact that Afghanistan, Iraq, Libya and all the other Middle Eastern hotspots are still burning after being bombed back into the middle ages. Egypt stands on the brink of civil war, Yemen, Bahrain, the Sudan...the list is endless. As if bombing these people back to the middle ages is a known and trusted cure to the worlds ills.

Well, Sir, once again, you do so without my consent. Like Blair before him, his eyes are only the glory and riches of a military victory against a people not important enough to actually care about - he may as well order cruise missile strikes against squabbling Amazonian tribes for all the difference it will make to the region. I've written at the Backbencher that the only cure against Islamism is the same cure we used to rid ourselves of religious fanatics - industrial progress and capitalism - now we have to somehow remove the millennium old vendettas of warring tribes intent on wiping each other off the face of the planet for the sake of a few more acres of goat infested desert rocks.

Assad is a monster tolerated and venerated ( like Saddam, Gaddafi, Iranian Shah et. al before him) by the West and the Soviets in our century long battles of imperialism and colonialism. Where T E Lawrence failed, our Politicians suddenly feel they can succeed in uniting the Arabs in a cosy little democratic union, tugging it's forelock at us whilst we extract the last of their mineral wealth to support our bloated States appetite for ever more riches.

Leave Syria alone. That simple. Yes, people are going to die but they are Syrians. And when the Syrians have had enough pain, they will make their peace with their various tribes, call their truces and resume their lives. We have no idea who are the good guys, if any actually exist there at all or what any victorious tribe is likely to look like - it is simply madness to walk into a bar fight and arm everyone with pick axe handles and hope the nice guys win.

Of course, we cannot resist. A seat at the top table of the UN Security Council is a license to inflict your military machines on anyone of whom you disapprove or cannot make enough money from (how is Bahrain by the way, Hague?) and Cameron wants nothing more than a statue of himself, glorious in victory after defeating a few tent dwellers in the barren desert with laser guided bunker busters dropped from 40,000 feet. Cameron, the only job of our military is to defend OUR borders and OUR private property. It is not their role to wander the planet kicking hornets nests to see if we can install productive bees instead.

          Syria Daily, Jan 9: UN Envoy Meets Regime Officials in Damascus        

PHOTO: The UN special envoy for Syria, Staffan de Mistura


LATEST


Pursuing an international proposal for a resolution to Syria's crisis, UN envoy Staffan de Mistura met President Assad's officials in Damascus on Saturday.

De Mistura saw Foreign Minister Walid al-Moallem about "preparations for the [international] meeting scheduled on January 25th". Syrian State media said al-Moallem demanded that opposition and rebel factions be labelled as "terrorist", precluding their involvement in negotiations.

Three sets of international talks, spurred by Russia's military intervention on behalf of the regime, have been held since mid-November. The final round in New York on December 18 presented a proposal for ceasefires, opposition-regime negotiations, a new Constitution, and elections in an 18-month transition. It made no statement about the future of President Assad and his leading officials.

Earlier in the week, the UN envoy met representatives of the opposition-rebel negotiating team named last month. A statement from the head of the team, former Prime Minister Riad Hijab, emphasized preconditions for any talks with the regime. These include release of detainees from regime prisons, ceasefires with a halt to bombardment by Russian and Syrian air forces, and access to humanitarian aid.

A declaration by 21 rebel factions reiterated those preconditions on Friday.

De Mistura has also held talks in Turkey and Saudi Arabia, both backers of the opposition and rebels. After the Damascus meetings, he will travel to Assad's ally Iran.


Mass Casualties from Russian Airstrike in Idlib Province

Mass casualties are being reported from a Russian airstrike on the town of Maarat al-Nu'man in Idlib Province on Saturday.

Activists say more than 40 people have been killed, with scores wounded. Accounts vary on the exact target.

Maarat al-Numan, 33 km (22 miles) south of Idlib city, has been hit on several occasions since the Russian airstrikes began on September 30. In mid-December, scores were killed in a strike on an oil market.


Opposition Criticizes UN Statement Over Starving Madaya

The opposition Syrian National Coalition has criticized Thursday's UN announcement that aid will be delivered to Madaya, the town near Damascus where thousands are facing starvation amid a six-month siege by the Syrian military.

The Coalition sent a letter to the UN Security Council expressing regret at the welcome given to the Assad regime's permission to enter Madaya:

We profoundly regret the decision to welcome the Assad regime’s announcement to grant UN agencies access to Madaya. It wrongly implies that the provision of humanitarian access is optional, rather than being a legal obligation.

The letter emphasized, "The use of starvation as a tool of war is a war crime, for which the Assad regime must be held accountable.”

Madaya has received only one aid delivery, in October, during the siege that began when Hezbollah and regime forces tried to overrun nearby Zabadani. Assistance was supposed to be delivered in late December, as rebels, their families, and wounded were evacuated from the area, but it never reached the town.

At least 31 people among the estimated 40,000 population have died from starvation last month. Doctors have said that two to three people are now perishing each day.

The Coalition said, “More should be done to apply pressure on the regime, including through renewed look at the feasibility of drone-delivered air drops by those states currently conducting air operations against ISIS [the Isalmic State[ in Syria.”

It warned that more residents will die before aid is permitted into Madaya on Monday.

The weekly protest in Kafranbel in northwest Syria also criticizes the UN and the Assad regime over the crisis:

Meanwhile, Iran has shown concern over the growing attention to the crisis and the effect on the Assad regime. Fars News, the outlet of the Revolutionary Guards, publishes a lengthy article blaming Saudi media for the story:
Not even a single person informed of news and developments can accept that Saudi Arabia is concerned about people's lives in Madaya, while attacking and slaughtering innocent civilians in Sana'a and Sa'da in Yemen with different missiles, cluster bombs and US and UK-made ammunition.

400 Syrians Forced to Return from Lebanon

Four hundred Syrians, trying to fly to Turkey, have been forced to return to Damascus from Beirut airport in Lebanon.

The passengers were turned back because of new Turkish regulations that require Syrians to have a visa to enter the country by air or sea. The rules came into effect on Friday.

More than 160 of the passengers were taken off planes that were about to depart.

Border crossings between Syria and Lebanon had been crowded in recent days with people intending to travel to Turkey, ahead of the deadline.

Amnesty International, which criticized the return of the passengers, said that they were scheduled to fly to Turkey on Thursday, but their flights were canceled.


          Yemen Feature: Saudi Coalition Dropping Cluster Bombs --- Human Rights Watch        
PHOTO: Aftermath of a Saudi airstrike on Yemen's capital Sana'a on Wednesday (Khaled Abdullah/Reuters)

Human Rights Watch has said that the Saudi-led coalition is using cluster bombs in its aerial intervention in Yemen's civil war.

HRW said the cluster munitions were dropped on Yemen's capital Sana'a, controlled by the Ansar Allah (Houthi) movement, on Wednesday. While saying that it was unclear if civilians had been killed or wounded, the organization asserted that "the deliberate or reckless use of cluster munitions in populated areas amounts to a war crime".

Residents of two Sana'a neighborhoods described the attacks between 5:30 and 6 a.m. on Wednesday. Houses, a school, and vehicles were covered in pockmarks characteristic of the damage from cluster bombs. The nearest military installations were 600 to 800 meters away.

Human Rights Watch said photographs "showed unmistakable remnants of cluster munitions, including unexploded sub-munitions, spherical fragmentation liners from sub-munitions that broke apart on impact, and parts of the bomb that carried the payload". It identified the weapons as US-made BLU-63 anti-personnel/anti-materiel sub-munitions and components of a CBU-58 cluster bomb.

Each air-dropped CBU-58 cluster bomb contains 650 submunitions. The US transferred 1,000 of the bombs to Saudi Arabia sometime between 1970 and 1995.

HRW has documented the use by coalition forces of three types of cluster munitions in Yemen, while Amnesty International documented a fourth type.

Saudi Arabia and allies launched the aerial intervention in March 2015, trying to halt the advance of the Ansar Allah movement that had forced the Government to leave Sana'a for the port city of Aden to the south.

Earlier this week, the UN almost 2,800 civilians have been killed in Yemen since March, with another 5,300 injured.


          Iran Daily, Jan 9: "Enemy Staged Attack on Saudi Embassy"        

PHOTO: Tehran Friday Prayer leader Ayatollah Emami Kashani


LATEST


Trying to limit the fallout from last weekend's attack on the Saudi Embassy in Tehran, Iran's clerics suggested on Friday that the "enemy" had staged the protests which burned and ransacked part of the complex.

The attack has fed a dispute within the regime over the downturn in Iran-Saudi relations, including the breaking of diplomatic relations by Riyadh and several other countries. President Rouhani has pressed for an investigation to identify those responsible --- which could include elements within the regime --- while others have tried to maintain the focus on Saudi "crimes", including Riyadh's role in regional crises in Yemen, Syria, and Bahrain.

In the Tehran Friday Prayer, Ayatollah Emami Kashani suggested that Saudi Arabia, seeking a diplomatic row with Iran "from the beginning", and its allies arranged the Embassy assault:

It is clear that the attack on the Saudi embassy in Iran was carried out on behalf of infiltrators. Perhaps they used ignorant people in this attack....[They] guided and led this offense and wanted this to happen in order to throw the ball that had fallen into the Saudi court [with the execution of 47 detainees] back into Iran’s court.

That way the enemy could have the higher hand and could then move to sever diplomatic relations with Iran.

Emami Kashani blamed "young and ignorant rulers" in the region and claimed “three pillars” of “plots” against Islam: Saudi Arabia, "the planners" of Israel, and the "investors" of the US.

The line was echoed in the Friday Prayer in Qazvin. Ayatollah Abedini aruged, “Perhaps the Saudis wanted to commit some mischief from inside the embassy....We do not want officials to underestimate the mischief of America and the Saudis.”

A Week of Turmoil

Hours after Saudi Arabia executed 47 detainees including a prominent Shia cleric last Saturday, a crowd gathered in front of the embassy and threw Molotov cocktails before raiding some offices. The protest appeared to have been supported by elements within the regime, with security being withdrawn just before the demonstrators assembled.

On Sunday, as Saudi Arabia cut relations with Iran, President Rouhani said the attack by "extremists" was "unjustified". Initially, his call was overshadowed by anti-Saudi rhetoric, including the Supreme Leader's equation of Riyadh and the Islamic State.

By the next day, even the Revolutionary Guards were suggesting that the protests were not spontaneous --- as the regime initially claimed --- but organized by some deviant group.

Trying to take control of the issue from hardliners, Rouhani called on the head of judiciary to launch an investigation to identify and punish the perpetrators. At the same time, the Cabinet banned imports from Saudi Arabia.

(Hat tip to Iran Tracker for translations)


Bahrain's Gulf Air Suspends Flights to Iran

Bahrain's Gulf Air has suspended flights to Iran from next Thursday. Mohammad Khodakarami, an official with Iran’s Civil Aviation Organization, said Gulf Air had informed the CAO by letter of the cut-off. Last week, Bahrain followed Saudi Arabia in breaking diplomatic relations with Iran. The Saudis have also suspended commercial ties with Tehran. Khodakarami said Gulf Air also requested that all flights by Iranian airlines to Bahrain be suspended from Thursday. Gulf Air currently operates 14 flights each week, with destinations in Tehran, Mashhad, and Shiraz.

Supreme Leader Admits, "Some Iranians Might Not Accept Me"

Urging Iranians to vote in February's elections, the Supreme Leader has made an unprecedented admission, "There might be people not accepting me, but they also participate."

Speaking in the holy city of Qom, Ayatollah Khamenei said before 2013's Presidential ballot that some in Iran might not believe in the Islamic Republic, but this is the first time that he has said they might not accept his leadership.

The February elections are for Parliament and the Assembly of Experts, the body that chooses the Supreme Leader. They have prompted bitter in-fighting within the regime between hardliners and supporters of President Rouhani and former President Hashemi Rafsanjani.

The Supreme Leader effectively supported the hardline rhetoric of a "sedition" threatening the Islamic Republic by referring to the disputed 2009 Presidential election and the mass protests that followed it: "The 2009 post-election event was an unsuccessful color revolution coup d'etat."

Like the hardliners, he linked this to a warning about this year's vote:

A widespread front of enemy is standing before us, from heads of the Zionist regime and US Government to Daesh [the Islamic State] and Takfiri agents. All their analyses are focused on ways to uproot the robust tree of the Islamic Revolution.


Award-Winning Poet Sedighi Arrested

Award-winning poet Hila Sedighi has been arrested as she returned to Iran from a foreign trip. Sedighi, whose poem "Do You Still Love Iran?" was prominent amid the protests after the disputed 2000 Presidential election, was arrested on Thursday at the airport. Since last September the Revolutionary Guards and judiciary have detained a series of journalists, artists, businessmen, and activists in a crackdown on dissent. Another female poet, Fatemeh Ekhtesari, has been given a nine-year prison term and lashes for a handshake and a kiss of greeting with a man who is not a member of her family. Sedighi reading one of her poems:

          Middle East Today: Libya --- At Least 25 Killed in Clashes Between Protesters and Government-Backed Militia        

See also Syria Today: Opposition Repeats --- No Participation in International "Peace" Conference
Saturday's Syria Today: UN Appeal on "Record" Aid for Syrians --- Significant Step or Meaningless Gesture?


Turkey: Massive Istanbul Anti-Government Rally as PM Erdogan Addresses Supporters in Ankara

A visual story of the competing rallies for and against the Erdogan Government --- first, Sunday's large gathering in Istanbul's Taksim Square, where mass protests began nine days ago:

Meanwhile, Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan told supporters in Ankara tonight, "How can you attack my police?...We are going to show patience, but patience has a limit as well":

Yemen: 1 Dead in Fighting

One protester has been killed and 10 people injured, including four guards, in clashes with Houthi demonstrators who were demanding the release of political detainees.

An official said the Houthis, who have been demanding autonomy in the north of the country, fired at guards while trying to storm intelligence headquarters in Sanaa on Sunday. He claimed some protesters were arrested for smuggling weapons and drugs.

Meanwhile, hundreds of supporters of former President Ali Abdullah Saleh demonstrated in Sanaa against the release of 17 men who were detained in connection with a June 2011 explosion that injured Saleh in his palace mosque.

Saleh stepped down in early 2012 as a transitional Government was put in place.

Tunisia: IMF Approves Major Loan

The International Monetary Fund has approved a two-year, $1.74 billion loan for Tunisia, giving Tunis access to foreign currency urgently needed to help balance its budget.

The Tunisian Government has devoted 1/3 of its 2013 budget to infrastructure projects, which it says will create short-term job opportunities for youth as well as helping private businesses.

However, Tunisia is running a 6% budget deficit this year, and political tensions over a draft Constitution have prevented Parliament from debating legislation allowing the government to apply for Islamic finance instruments.

The IMF money, like most loans from the Washington-based organization, comes with strings

The IMF has set conditions on the loan, including restructuring of Tunisia’s banking sector. Analysts believe that non-performing loans on the books at state-owned banks amount to billions of dollars.

Turkey: Protests Continue, But PM Erdogan Defiant Over "Handful of Looters"

Moving through the country to gather support against nation-wide protests, Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan has refused to concede any ground. He told supporters who had greeted him at Adana airport:

We won't do what a handful of looters have done. They burn and destroy. ... They destroy the shops of civilians. They destroy the cars of civilians. They are low enough to insult the prime minister of this country.

He urged his supporters to avoid violence themselves and predicted that he would defeat his opponents during local elections in March: "As long as you walk with us, the Justice and Development Party administration will stand strong. As long as there is life in my body, your prime minister and your party chairman, God willing, will not be deterred by anything."

He then traveled to the city of Mersin to make a similar speech and to open new sports facilities.

Later Sunday, Erdogan will speak to his supporters in the capital Ankara.

On the 10th day of mass protests against the Government, demonstrators near Istanbul's Taksim Square yell to Erdogan, "Tayyip, Resign!"

Libya: Deadly Clashes in Benghazi

At least 25 people have been killed in Benghazi in eastern Libya in clashes during Saturday's protests outside the headquarters of the Libya Shield Brigade, which is working with the Ministry of Defence.

Dozens more were wounded, according to medical officials.

Demonstrators had gathered outside the headquarters of the Brigade demanding the disbanding of militias, including those which fought during the overthrow of Muammar Qaddafi in 2011. They specifically called for the Brigade t leave its premises.

One witness said he had seen around 200 protesters. While most of them were unarmed, a few had AK-47 rifles, although he said he did not see them used.

A spokesman for the Libyan's Army Chief of Staff, Ali al-Sheikhi, described the Libya Shield Brigade as "a reserve force under the Libyan army." He said an attack on the brigade "is considered an attack against a legal entity".


          Middle East Today: Turkey --- Ruling Party Says No Early Elections        

Rally in Istanbul's Taksim Square today


Libya: 11 Killed in Benghazi Clashes

At least 11 people were killed and 35 wounded in clashes on Saturday between protesters and a Libyan militia, operating with Ministry of Defence approval, in the eastern city of Benghazi.

Residents said dozens of protesters rallied outside the headquarters of the Government-backed Libya Shield brigade, demanding the disbanding of militias who have yet to disarm fter the overthrow of Muammar Gaddafi in October.

The Libya Shield brigade is made up of former insurgent who say they are aligned with the Ministry of Defence. A Government spokesman said special forces from the Libyan military had arrived at the scene.

Yemen: National Dialogue Resumes

Yemen has begun the second round of its national dialogue, aiming to draft a new Constitution and prepare for elections in 2014.

The talks are part of a United Nations-brokered deal that removed Ali Abdullah Saleh after 33 years in power, with President Abdrabuh Mansur Hadi leading a transition.

Hadi said the dialogue had taken steps towards "drawing the outlines of a new Yemen where justice, equality and freedom prevail. Yemen can no longer withstand more crises and there are many challenges."

Istanbul Mayor Calls For Concessions on Gezi Park

Taking a sharply different line from the defiance of Prime Minister Erdogan, Istanbul Mayor Kadir Topbaş has said no shopping malls or residences will be built on the site of Gezi Park.

Turkey's mass protests were sparked last week by Government plans to build a replica Ottoman-era military barracks. Topbas said the barracks will still be built, but is likely to be a city museum or an exposition centre.

Topbaş said most of the trees of the park could be incorporated into the project, adding that out of the 563 trees in the park, 72 were fit to be moved and another 26 could also be planted again but with some risks.

Ruling AKP: No Early Parliamentary Elections

The ruling Justice and Development Party (AKP) has dismissed talk of an early election amid continuing protests against the Erdogan Government.

After a four-hour meeting of the AKP Executive Council, attended by Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdoğan and senior officials, a spokesman said the Parliamentary vote will be held in 2015 as scheduled: "There is political stability. Fortunately, there is no reason to require an early election."

The spokesman said the Government was ready and open to listen to “reasonable” demands, but would not accept the call of protesters for top security personnel --- including the Minister of Interior minister, Istanbul’s Governor, and top police officers -- to be relieved of duty: “Our Prime Minister will not [dismiss] anyone whom he believes is not responsible." The Taksim Solidarity Platform has demanded that the interior minister, Istanbul’s governor and police who have brutalized protesters should be investigated and stripped of their duty.

Meanwhile, the AKP has decided to hold “unity and solidarity” rallies on 15 June in Ankara and the next day in Istanbul.


          U.S. Acknowledges Death Of Civilians In Yemen Raid        
Copyright 2017 NPR. To see more, visit ARI SHAPIRO, HOST: We're learning more today about the deadly raid American troops launched last weekend in Yemen. The Pentagon is now confirming that civilians, including women and children, were likely killed in the attack. The raid also claimed the life of an American sailor, Navy SEAL William Ryan Owens, and injured four other American troops. NPR's Tom Bowman has been covering this story and joins us in the studio. Hi, Tom. TOM BOWMAN, BYLINE: Hey, Ari. SHAPIRO: What more do we now know about this incident in Yemen? BOWMAN: Well, just what you said. The Pentagon is now saying and investigating that civilians were likely killed in this raid by Navy SEALs, and they may include children - looks like they were possibly killed, according to the Pentagon, by machine gun fire from helicopters. Now, our colleague Alice Fordham already reported that by talking with relatives of those killed, and I confirmed that a couple of days ago with a senior
          Security Roundup: Yemen Raid; National Security Council Shakeup        
Copyright 2017 NPR. To see more, visit RACHEL MARTIN, HOST: We're going to turn now to a couple other big national security stories we're thinking through this morning. First, the U.S. raid against al-Qaida operatives in Yemen - it left one American service member dead. President Donald Trump also issued an order asking for a new plan to defeat ISIS. And he wants to change the way the administration makes major decisions on national security - more specifically, who gets to make them. So we're going to bring in NPR's Pentagon correspondent Tom Bowman to help us unpack all this. Hi, Tom. TOM BOWMAN, BYLINE: Hello, Rachel. MARTIN: Let's start with Yemen. What can you tell us about the operation? BOWMAN: Well, Rachel, there was a special operations raid into a village being used by al-Qaida in the Arabian Peninsula. I'm told the raid had been planned for a while with Yemeni forces before Trump took office, but he authorized it. The American troops were after what they call a target of
          ABD, El Kaide operasyonlarında sivilleri katletti!        
ABD'nin yürüttüğü Yemen'in El Beyda şehrindeki terör örgütü El Kaide'ye yönelik operasyonlar sırasında sivilleri katlettiği kesinleşti. ABD tarafından yapılan bu itiraf dünya basınında büyük yankı uyandırdı.
          Website Designing India        
DesignClub7 driven by an inspirational management comprising of professionals with wealth of experience and shrewd market knowledge, evolved from a little known entity into a market leading player whose solutions today are used by diverse range of clients in several countries like USA, UK, Canada, Australia, Switzerland, Singapore, Middle East, Sudan, Yemen, Italy and India.
          History of coffee        


THE HISTORY OF COFFEE


In the Ethiopian highlands, where the legend of Kaldi, the goatherd, originated, coffee trees grow today as they have for centuries. Though we will never know with certainty, there probably is some truth to the Kaldi legend.

It is said that he discovered coffee after noticing that his goats, upon eating berries from a certain tree, became so spirited that they did not want to sleep at night.

Kaldi dutifully reported his findings to the abbot of the local monastery who made a drink with the berries and discovered that it kept him alert for the long hours of evening prayer.  Soon the abbot had shared his discovery with the other monks at the monastery, and ever so slowly knowledge of the energizing effects of the berries began to spread.  As word moved east and coffee reached the Arabian peninsula, it began a journey which would spread its reputation across the globe.

Today coffee is grown in a multitude of countries around the world. Whether it is Asia or Africa, Central or South America, the islands of the Caribbean or Pacific, all can trace their heritage to the trees in the ancient coffee forests on the Ethiopian plateau.

coffeegatheringThe Arabian Peninsula

The Arabs were the first, not only to cultivate coffee but also to begin its trade.  By the fifteenth century, coffee was being grown in the Yemeni district of Arabia and by the sixteenth century it was known in Persia, Egypt, Syria and Turkey.

Its popularity was perhaps due, in part, to the fact that Muslims, forbidden alcoholic drink by the Koran, found coffee's energizing properties to be an acceptable substitute.

ThehistoryCoffee was not only drunk in homes but also in the many public coffee houses -- called qahveh khaneh -- which began to appear in cities across the Near East. The popularity of the coffee houses was unequaled and people frequented them for all kinds of social activity. Not only did they drink coffee and engage in conversation, but they also listened to music, watched performers, played chess and kept current on the news of the day.  In fact, they quickly became such an important center for the exchange of information that the coffee houses were often referred to as 'Schools of the Wise.'

With thousands of pilgrims visiting the holy city of Mecca each year from all over the world, word of the 'wine of Araby' as the drink was often called, was beginning to spread far beyond Arabia. In an effort to maintain its complete monopoly in the early coffee trade, the Arabians continued to closely guard their coffee production.
 

Coffee Comes to Europe

European travellers to the Near East brought back stories of the unusual dark black beverage. By the 17th century, coffee had made its way to Europe and was becoming popular across the continent. Opponents were overly cautious, calling the beverage the 'bitter invention of Satan.' With the coming of coffee to Venice in 1615, the local clergy condemned it. The controversy was so great that Pope Clement VIII was asked to intervene. Before making a decision however, he decided to taste the beverage for himself. He found the drink so satisfying that he gave it Papal approval.
coffeecomestovienna1Despite such controversy, in the major cities of England, Austria, France, Germany and Holland, coffee houses were quickly becoming centers of social activity and communication. In England 'penny universities' sprang up, so called because for the price of a penny one could purchase a cup of coffee and engage in stimulating conversation.  By the mid-17th century, there were over 300 coffee houses in London, many of which attracted patrons with common interests, such as merchants, shippers, brokers and artists.
Many businesses grew out of these specialized coffee houses. Lloyd's of London, for example, came into existence at the Edward Lloyd's Coffee House.

The New World

In the mid-1600's, coffee was brought to New Amsterdam, a location later called New York by the British.

Though coffee houses rapidly began to appear, tea continued to be the favored drink in the New World until 1773 when the colonists revolted against a heavy tax on tea imposed by King George.  The revolt, known as the Boston Tea Party, would forever change the American drinking preference to coffee.

Plantations Around the World

As demand for the beverage continued to spread, there was tense competition to cultivate coffee outside of Arabia. Though the Arabs tried hard to maintain their monopoly, the Dutch finally succeeded, in the latter half of the 17th century, to obtain some seedlings. Their first attempts to plant them in India failed but they were successful with their efforts in Batavia, on the island of Java in what is now Indonesia.  The plants thrived and soon the Dutch had a productive and growing trade in coffee. They soon expanded the cultivation of coffee trees to the islands of Sumatra and Celebes.

The Dutch did a curious thing, however.  In 1714, the Mayor of Amsterdam presented a gift of a young coffee plant to King Louis XIV of France. The King ordered it to be planted in the Royal Botanical Garden in Paris. In 1723, a young naval officer, Gabriel de Clieu obtained a seedling from the King's plant. Despite an arduous voyage -- complete with horrendous weather, a saboteur who tried to destroy the seedling and a pirate attack -- he managed to transport it safely to Martinique.  Once planted, the seedling thrived and is credited with the spread of over 18 million coffee trees on the island of Martinique in the next 50 years.  It was also the stock from which coffee trees throughout the Caribbean, South and Central America originated.

Coffee is said to have come to Brazil in the hands of Francisco de Mello Palheta who was sent by the emperor to French Guiana for the purpose of obtaining coffee seedlings. But the French were not willing to share and Palheta was unsuccessful. However, he was said to have been so handsomely engaging that the French Governor's wife was captivated. As a going-away gift, she presented him with a large bouquet of flowers.  Buried inside he found enough coffee seeds to begin what is today a billion-dollar industry.

In only 100 years, coffee had established itself as a commodity crop throughout the world.  Missionaries and travellers, traders and colonists continued to carry coffee seeds to new lands and coffee trees were planted worldwide.  Plantations were established in magnificent tropical forests and on rugged mountain highlands. Some crops flourished, while others were short-lived.  New nation's were established on coffee economies.  Fortunes were made and lost.  And by the end of the 18th century, coffee had become one of the world's most profitable export crops.
 

          Günde 3 hurma yemenin faydaları        
Hurmanın insan sağlığına olan faydaları saymakla bitmiyor. Ancak birazdan öğreneceğiniz bilgilerle artık her gün 3 adet hurma tüketmeyi ihmal etmeyeceksiniz.
          Yemen Social Worker’s Provide Support for Children Affected by War        
Earlier this year IFSW was able to provide US$1000.00 to the General Union of Yemeni Social and Psychosocial Workers to provide training for social workers that would enable support to
Read More
          Why It’s So Hard To Stop The World’s Looming Famines        
Millions of people in Yemen and sub-Saharan Africa are facing food shortages and severe malnutrition. Host Audie Cornish talks with Justin Forsyth of UNICEF about the crisis.
          more Aden        

Typical Yemeni boat

I just got a chance to read all the comments to my past posts and still have tears in my eyes knowing that so many old friends, family and even folks who don't know us have given us encouragement and concern. My net time is so limited or I would answer each one. Please know how much this means to both of us.

We are so ready to leave here but the weather is not cooperating with 25 knot winds and 6'sea but at 4 second intervals makes for a bumpy ride.

I was so thrilled that my blog was published on the Cruising World magazine website. And also that the SSCA even stopped the presses to add it to the latest bullitin. We want more folks to know the dangers here so yhey can do something to make it safer.

We hope to leave in 2 days either with the other 2 boats or sailing behind the rally that is also here. We are only 250 miles from the safe area!

At least there is time to see the area in the dafe zones and get more laundry done!

article is at
http://www.cruisingworld.com/how-to/seamanship/stress-in-the-gulf-of-aden

Lynn and Chuck in CYAN



          What a relief!        



On Thursday, March 3, CYAN entered Aden harbor just before dawn. A rally of boats that had come in just before us and we, 3 boats with tired and stressed crew, had to anchor in the dark while dodging boats, platforms, and huge moorings. We got to sleep at 6:30 am. So here we are right in the middle of the Yemeni revolution, and even hearing gunfire at night, but still we feel safer than on the pirate infested sea. When we went food shopping, yesterday, our taxi driver told us he was part of the protest and carried the flag in some parade. BTW, the supermarket was such a joy...the best since Australia...better than Singapore because it is so much cheaper. Reminded me of my beloved Kroger!!! Or Ralph's in LA! They did have incense burning, whole skinned lambs hanging up and 5 kinds of feta cheese....a litttle different.

We went to dinner with the crews of Chulupa, Koi and KP, and Joceba [that I have been spelling wrong], Claudia, 3 year old Angelo and Edi. We all celebrated our safety but mourned the sad loss of Quest and worried about getting news of ING and another vessel that is rumored to have been taken.

About the photos...one shows our route across the Ocean where each diamond is 24 hours. The triangles show the high danger zone rectangle...we went just SW of it. The skull is where Quest was captured and the '!' is where ING was taken.....right on our path just a few days later. The photo with the arrowheads shows how we see ships with the AIS on our chartplotter screen...they are in a close convoy, often with a military escort. The wordage photo shows the kind of info we get on the ships...and as we come to the Suez we will be in company with many. The big ships are usually so nice to talk to on the radio.

The other shows Aden Harbor. Some fishing vessels look like what I imagined the Apostles fished from 2000 years ago only without the Yamaha! The hillside buildings look as they did 1000 years ago and it is all quite interesting. The folks are friendly and welcoming here. Most of the women are completely covered in black with just eyes showing and on the day of worship, Friday, the men were often in complete white garments. The harbor area is very well protected during the unrest. We expect to leave in 2 days, maybe Tuesday, if the strong winds die down a bit. It's supposedly blowing 50 knots at the Red Sea Entry at Bab El Mandeb 90 miles away. We are not ready for this kind of work yet!

Thanks again for the many emails and comments of concern and support....it meant more than you could know. We are so ready for just everyday "plain vanilla" cruising without all the tension. The romance of the Med and even going home again gets closer every day.

from deep in our hearts

Lynn and Chuck on CYAN


          Is there safety?        
We are having nice steady winds from dead east for almost 24 hours going 4-5kts, wing on wing, and are now about 230 miles to go to Aden. The boats we are with, Chulupa [USA]and Joseba [France/Spain] are good company and we travel at same speeds together. We are followed by Imagine and Lapalapa [both USA boats]about 100 miles behind us.

That is our good news...we know of 2 other "aggressive incidents" but we will look for more info before commenting further. We 3 boats are pretty secure now with helicopter flyovers and NATO warships staying in contact. Last night we learned about s/v Pegasus leaving Aden without checking out due to gunfire and some people were killed by student uprising against the present admin...we think. We heard this AM from Jean Pierre on Sanang getting stocked in Al Mukulla, Yemen, that he saw similar unrest there and was locked in a market for a while. We also hear that our other alternative stop, Djbouti, is also know recently known for robbery attacks and other crime. It is also another 100 miles out of our way. We have also been warned about 3 locations in Eritrea [in the Red Sea], that are usually ok stops in precious years, are now off limits due to holding crew and not allowing consular contact for various time periods. This is making it a tough decision about where we can provision and get fuel before going into the Red Sea. We are still getting info on Aden, but are now thinking that stopping there as a group will probably be ok or worth the risk. We are sure getting TOO used to risk!!! You have to be accompanied by an agent for everything and everyplace you go but the prices are cheap even if the ATM machines themselves take an extra tip out of the each deal!!

As of today, we have come just over 3400 miles since we left Thailand 6 weeks ago on Jan 15th. I have been off the boat for only 5 hours shopping in Andamans and briefly in Maldives. I guess another good thing is that we never know how we are going to cope with such stressful situations until we are put to the test and maybe, just maybe, I am more stable than I used to give myself credit for. Chuck always says he will tell me when it's time to panic but I haven't had a chance to go into panic mode yet!!!

Keep us in mind...this adventure isn't over!!! We are doing pretty well sleeping, sailing, eating and drinking!!! Attitudes are reasonably optimistic but we will celebrate when this whole fiasco is over.

from the most inept "fisherpersons" in the Indian Ocean, Gulf of Aden, Arabian Sea...where ever we are...we just can't catch a fish!!! We know they are there...we have had tackle lost and nibbled. Wonder what they sell in Yemeni supermarkets?

Lynn, and Chuck, too on CYAN

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          90%        
We feel we are about 90% safe now we are entering the patrolled corridor through the Gulf Aden about sundown tonight. I guess we will consider ourselves pretty safe when we are well into the Red Sea. Last night, we were traveling without lights or AIS and encountered an unlit ship on a moonless night on my watch...it was so weird and too close for me at 3 miles...I could hear his engines. We decided to turn on the AIS since then and we have been keeping very close eyes out. We plan to travel just to the north of the patrolled corridor to avoid the coastal fishing boats and nets off Yemen and to stay close to traffic but out of the way.

Imagine me, Lynn, standing watch in this tension, quietly reading on a dark boat and being suddenly joined by a 8" flying fish flapping on my arm...that was alarming. He flapped around until he finally flapped his way to the water!

This just in...Terrific news...just now as I write...listening to a European P3 aircraft talking to a warship heading to
Aden as we are 500 miles away still...music to our ears. He is telling everyone to report anything suspicious and reminding us that it's being patrolled on radio channel 16. He is now talking to 2 of our little group of 6 boats and we are a few miles behind. We think he is headed towards us next and I told Chuck to get some clothes on!!! God bless all the military and patrol vessels!

Of course all these military and big ships think we are idiots to be here...and we sometimes wonder ourselves. We can laugh and kid a bit more now but not relax....not yet.

When you get a chance look up the Navy story of Stephen Decatur and the battle of the Philadelphia in 1804. It's a most fascinating story and we need some of his techniques for fighting the Barbari Pirates in the War in Tripoli. Similar situation...Should be a movie! Try Wikipedia. We read it aloud from Chuck's copy of Sea Power from his Naval History course in college that we carry to read about historical locations we encounter. We used to live right near Decatur GA named after him!

Write us now only using the Sailmail email now since we can't get Winlink...and I gotta say I have cried a bit with every warm, loving sentiment that has been sent our way with all our recent emails. You have no idea how your warm thoughts and love has helped us. I am trying to write everyone just a small note in addition to these updates. Please understand if it takes a while.

Yea!! Chuck is now checking in with the P3 plane...they know we are here and who we are! For me this is the best news yet! And the Capt Chuck has just upped our safety factor to 95%!!!

More later. Love to all
Lynn on CYAN
and Chuck too!

PS...now they talking to another warship...I love it and thank God!

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          Penahanan Mohd. Asri disokong        

JOHOR BAHRU 3 Nov. - Persatuan Kebajikan Al-Jamiatul Khairiah Wilayah Persekutuan Kuala Lumpur dan Selangor menyokong tindakan Jabatan Agama Islam Selangor (JAIS) menahan bekas Mufti Perlis, Dr. Mohd. Asri Zainal Abidin kelmarin.

Presidennya, Datuk Syed Hussein al-Habshee berkata, pihaknya menerima banyak rungutan dan aduan di kalangan ahlinya dan masyarakat setempat di Wilayah Persekutuan dan Selangor tentang ceramah yang pendekatannya disyaki beraliran Wahabi.

"Ramai yang mendesak agar persatuan membuat permintaan terhadap kerajaan supaya diambil tindakan bagi mengelak kekeliruan masyarakat setempat yang berpegang kepada mazhab Syafie," katanya kepada Utusan Malaysia, di sini hari ini.

Kelmarin, Mohd. Asri ditahan oleh JAIS di Taman Sri Ukay, Hulu Klang kerana didakwa menyampaikan ceramah agama tanpa tauliah.

Bagaimanapun, Mahkamah Rendah Syariah Gombak Timur, Selangor semalam tidak mendakwanya, sebaliknya Mohd. Asri hanya dikenakan bon jaminan JAIS sebanyak RM3,000.

Syed Hussein berkata, pendekatan yang disyaki Wahabi itu dikhuatiri akan memecah belah dan mengelirukan masyarakat khususnya generasi muda.

"Kita tidak mahu sesiapa yang cuba menjadi jaguh keilmuan dengan mencetuskan kontroversi dan polemik melalui pendekatan bercanggah dengan mazhab yang diamalkan di negara ini," katanya.

Sehubungan itu, beliau mencadangkan agar diadakan muzakarah antara mufti-mufti berhubung pendekatan dan fahaman yang dibawa Dr. Mohd. Asri itu.

"Mufti-mufti boleh membuat rumusan untuk membantu dan memberi panduan kepada umat Islam serta mencari jalan penyelesaian terbaik.

"Perbincangan seterusnya adalah antara ilmuwan agama dengan Dr. Mohd. Asri sendiri," katanya.

Syed Hussein berkata, apa yang berlaku seolah-olah sejarah berulang kembali kerana pada sekitar 2007, tiga tokoh ulama bermazhab Syafie dari Yemen juga tidak dibenarkan oleh Dr. Mohd. Asri berceramah tanpa tauliah di Perlis ketika beliau menjadi mufti negeri itu.

Justeru, pihaknya percaya JAIS telah membuat pelbagai pertimbangan sebelum melakukan penahanan.


          MUSIM PEPERIKSAAN AKHIR TAHUN SUDAH TIBA!!!        














GAMBAR KENANGAN: Ketua Biro Dakwah, Hj Haziq sedang menerima hadiah daripada Yang Berbahagia Mudirah, Datin Hjh. Rohani Hj. Awi.


"Belajarlah rajin - rajin rakan - rakan ku"
(Hj Haziq Ahmad Zaki bin Mohammad Zulkipli Al - Wasly)
















Warkah Dari Ketua Biro Dakwah Madrasah Islamiah.

Hj. Haziq Ahmad Zaki bin Mohammad Zulkipli Al - Wasly.


Sekarang, sudah tiba masa ujian dan peperiksaan penggal akhir tahun. Ramai pelajar - pelajar Madrasah Islamiah panik dan kelihatan kurang bersedia apabila mendengarnya. Mendengar sahaja ujian, pasti ada yang mengeluh dan bersedih. Kelihatan ramai pelajar - pelajar Madrasah Islamiah kini cuba memikirkan jalan yang terbaik macam mana nak menjadi pelajar - pelajar yang cemerlang dan terbaik.

Ujian peperiksaan penggal akhir tahun ini sebenarnya bermula sejak 26 Oktober yang lalu. Memang ramailah pelajar - pelajar Madrasah yang kurang bersedia, tetapi semangat dan kekentalan mereka masih ada. Kekuatan fizikal dan mental ialah antara yang menjadi punca mereka menjadi kental, kuat dan bersemangat, seperti Allahyarham anak saudara saya dulu, iaitu Allahyarhamah Siti Nur Hidayah Al - Hanisah. Dia sendiri pernah berpesan kepada saya bahawa "Usaha Itu Adalah Tangga Ke Arah Kejayaan, Kalau Tak Nak Usaha, Tidak Perlulah Kita Menaiki Tangga Kejayaan Itu".

Kata - katanya tersemat di dalam hati saya. Pemergiannya amat menyedihkan saya, namun namanya akan terus saya kenang sampai bila - blia. Itulah kata - katanya tadi yang amat memberi kesan kepada saya dan sesetengah rakan - rakan saya di Madrasah Islamiah. Kata - kata tersebut harus dipegang kuat kerana semakin hari semakin ramai pelajar - pelajar sekolah menengah di Malaysia yang kurang mengambil berat tentang pelajaran, apatah lagi mereka yang ingin menduduki ujian peperiksaan besar.

Musim ujian pun terus berlangsung di Madrasah Islamiah. Guru - guru di Madrasah Islamiah bersedia menampalkan jadual ujian yang akan kami duduki.

Sememangnya, apa yang pasti, kita semua nakkan kejayaan. Semua ingin berjaya. Tidak ada orang yang hidup di dunia nyata ini nakkan kegagalan dan kesesatan. Semua nak berjaya, cemerlang, gemilang dan terbilang.

Ujian peperiksaan akhir tahun ini menampilkan kehadiran seorang lagi pelajar baru dari Kampung Semerah Padi, iaitu Adi Fuad.

Walaupun dia baru sahaja masuk ke Madrasah Islamiah, tetapi Yang Berbahagia Mudirah, Datin Hjh. Rohani Hj. Awi tetap juga menyuruh dia agar dia menduduki ujian peperiksaan penggal. Tidak kira sama ada dia menduduki kelas lain ataupun kekal di kelasnya sendiri( iaitu Tsanawi I), dia tetap disuruh agar menduduki ujian peperiksaan penggal.

Fuad berlainan ujiannya berbanding kami semua kerana kami hanya memegang satu kertas untuk satu kelas sedangkan Fuad pula memegang dua helai kertas, iaitu kertas Kelas Tsanawi I dan kertas Kelas Khas.

Apapun, yang penting, mesej saya di sini ialah belajarlah rajin - rajin. Jangan lupa dan jangan alpa pada pelajaran dan Ilmu. Islam pun mementingkan Ilmu. Jadi "Work Hard, Study Smart".



Sekian, Assalamualaikum.


"BERILMU, BERAMAL, BERTAQWA."


Hj. Haziq Ahmad Zaki bin Mohammad Zulkipli Al - Wasly.

Ketua Biro Dakwah Madrasah Islamiah.























Kewangan Islam wajar jadi elemen strategik pulihkan ekonomi

KUALA LUMPUR 3 Nov. - Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak berkata, sektor kewangan Islam yang semakin pesat wajar dijadikan elemen strategik bagi memulihkan krisis ekonomi dunia.

Perdana Menteri berkata, saranannya itu berdasarkan kepada kemampuan sektor berkenaan untuk terus berkembang walaupun dunia kini berhadapan dengan masalah ekonomi.

Bagaimanapun, beliau mengingatkan kepada pihak yang terlibat melaksanakan sistem tersebut supaya melakukannya bersungguh-sungguh dan bukannya secara sambil lewa.

''Untuk tujuan itu, kita memerlukan beberapa tindakan agar sektor ini benar-benar berperanan dalam menangani sebarang kesan ekonomi ekoran berlakunya krisis sama ada pada masa ini atau pada masa akan datang,'' katanya.

Beliau berkata demikian ketika berucap pada majlis perasmian Forum Kewangan Islam Kuala Lumpur kali ke-6 (KLIFF 2009) di sini hari ini.

Turut hadir Ketua Pegawai Eksekutif Kumpulan Maybank, Datuk Seri Abdul Wahid Omar.

Najib berkata, tindakan yang dimaksudkannya itu merangkumi empat strategi.

Pertama, katanya, memastikan pelaksanaan sistem kewangan Islam menepati matlamat dan objektif yang ditetapkan oleh syariat.

''Kedua, memastikan pelaksanaan sistem ini disokong sepenuhnya oleh amalan urus tadbir yang berkesan iaitu dengan menentukan tugas institusi kewangan Islam dilakukan dengan betul supaya ia menepati kehendak syariah.

''Ketiga, memastikan sistem pengurusan risiko mempunyai pelindung yang sesuai iaitu dengan mengambil langkah menyediakan sistem yang canggih bagi tujuan melindungi sektor ini,'' katanya.

Terakhir kata Perdana Menteri, memastikan prasarana sokongan yang lebih komprehensif diwujudkan antaranya undang-undang, peraturan dan kerangka kerja bagi tujuan pembangunan industri kewangan.

Dalam pada itu, beliau berkata, sektor kewangan Islam di Malaysia telah memasuki fasa baru apabila operasinya selaras dengan pelaksanaan persekitaran yang lebih liberal.

''Kita telah pun menawarkan pelbagai insentif untuk menarik lebih banyak penyertaan pelabur dan tenaga mahir untuk datang ke negara ini bagi melibatkan diri dalam sektor ini.

''Kerajaan sendiri telah mempromosi segala insentif yang ditawarkan supaya sektor yang sama di luar negara datang ke Malaysia bagi merancakkan lagi perkembangan sektor kewangan Islam di negara ini,'' tambah beliau.
















Penahanan Mohd. Asri disokong

JOHOR BAHRU 3 Nov. - Persatuan Kebajikan Al-Jamiatul Khairiah Wilayah Persekutuan Kuala Lumpur dan Selangor menyokong tindakan Jabatan Agama Islam Selangor (JAIS) menahan bekas Mufti Perlis, Dr. Mohd. Asri Zainal Abidin kelmarin.

Presidennya, Datuk Syed Hussein al-Habshee berkata, pihaknya menerima banyak rungutan dan aduan di kalangan ahlinya dan masyarakat setempat di Wilayah Persekutuan dan Selangor tentang ceramah yang pendekatannya disyaki beraliran Wahabi.

"Ramai yang mendesak agar persatuan membuat permintaan terhadap kerajaan supaya diambil tindakan bagi mengelak kekeliruan masyarakat setempat yang berpegang kepada mazhab Syafie," katanya kepada Utusan Malaysia, di sini hari ini.

Kelmarin, Mohd. Asri ditahan oleh JAIS di Taman Sri Ukay, Hulu Klang kerana didakwa menyampaikan ceramah agama tanpa tauliah.

Bagaimanapun, Mahkamah Rendah Syariah Gombak Timur, Selangor semalam tidak mendakwanya, sebaliknya Mohd. Asri hanya dikenakan bon jaminan JAIS sebanyak RM3,000.

Syed Hussein berkata, pendekatan yang disyaki Wahabi itu dikhuatiri akan memecah belah dan mengelirukan masyarakat khususnya generasi muda.

"Kita tidak mahu sesiapa yang cuba menjadi jaguh keilmuan dengan mencetuskan kontroversi dan polemik melalui pendekatan bercanggah dengan mazhab yang diamalkan di negara ini," katanya.

Sehubungan itu, beliau mencadangkan agar diadakan muzakarah antara mufti-mufti berhubung pendekatan dan fahaman yang dibawa Dr. Mohd. Asri itu.

"Mufti-mufti boleh membuat rumusan untuk membantu dan memberi panduan kepada umat Islam serta mencari jalan penyelesaian terbaik.

"Perbincangan seterusnya adalah antara ilmuwan agama dengan Dr. Mohd. Asri sendiri," katanya.

Syed Hussein berkata, apa yang berlaku seolah-olah sejarah berulang kembali kerana pada sekitar 2007, tiga tokoh ulama bermazhab Syafie dari Yemen juga tidak dibenarkan oleh Dr. Mohd. Asri berceramah tanpa tauliah di Perlis ketika beliau menjadi mufti negeri itu.

Justeru, pihaknya percaya JAIS telah membuat pelbagai pertimbangan sebelum melakukan penahanan.


          Jesus Christ... It Ain't About Religion!!        

Today's history lesson comes to you courtesy of the Visa Waiver Program Improvement and Terrorist Travel Prevention Act of 2015.

If you are gonna raise hell about Trump's executive order on travel restrictions, you should know history.  And then you should wonder why you never even heard of the Terrorist Travel Prevention Act.  And why you STILL have not heard any Democrat refer to it this week.  And after you learn history, you should read Trump's Executive Order to know exactly what it says.  By the way, it mentions only one country by name... Syria.

FYI, the Visa Waiver Program is a US program that was passed in 1986 during Reagan's administration.  It allows citizens of 38 identified, developed countries to travel to the United States for up to 90 days without having to apply for and obtain a visa.  Nationals of countries not part of the agreement must apply for a visa in order to travel to the US.  In order to get a visa to the US, one would need to apply, get fingerprinted and have a face to face visitor visa interview at the US Embassy or Consulate in their country.  There is generally a wait of several weeks.

On December 18, 2015, President Barack Obama signed into law the Consolidated Appropriations Act 2016, which included the Visa Waiver Program Improvement and Terrorist Travel Prevention Act of 2015 (the Act). This Act identified that nationals of VWP countries who have traveled to Iraq, Syria, Iran, and Sudan after 2011 were no longer eligible to travel or be admitted to the United States under the VWP.  In February, 2016, Obama's Dept of Homeland Security added Libya, Yemen and Somalia to that list of Countries of Particular Concern.  They would now need to apply for a visa as any other citizen of any other non-VWP country.  Simply because they VISITED one of the seven countries.  


Now... near as I can figure, that is a travel policy implemented by Obama that makes a distinction between these seven countries and the rest of the world.  I never heard anyone accuse Obama of making sweeping policy changes based on someone's religion.  Yet, when Trump used that preexisting list of seven countries in his order to suspend issuance of visas, somehow HIS policy is racist and un-American.

So THAT'S your history lesson.  Now for your "PRESENT" lesson.

A BAN ON ONE RELIGION?   NOPE.   President Trump's order targets seven countries that happen to be also be Muslim-majority countries.  There are FIFTY Muslim-majority countries in this world.  I have been out of school for a lot of fukkin' years, but my math tells me that citizens in 43 Muslim-majority countries are not effected by this order.  That includes citizens of Pakistan, Afghanistan, Algeria and Morocco, all of which are 99% Muslim.  So when Marty Walsh spouts into a microphone that discrimination based on religion is not American, don't applaud him blindly because he's a Democrat.  Remind yourself that Obama separated the same seven countries from the rest of the world.

Trump's order TEMPORARILY suspends the issuance of any visas to any nationals of the seven aforementioned countries for a period of 90 days.  During the first 30 days, the Secretary of State and Dept of National Intelligence are to review the current vetting process and determine what information is going to be needed to properly vet those seeking admission into the United States.  They will determine which countries are not providing that information and give them 60 days to comply.  If they do not comply, citizens of those countries will be barred from traveling to the US.

BARRING GREEN CARD HOLDERS?  Nope again.  Green card holders WILL NOT be barred from re-entering the country.  Citizens of those target countries who have permanent residency will be subject of greater scrutiny, but will likely be allowed through.  Yep, that means that for the next three months, citizens of those countries will be detained for a few hours undergoing questioning by customs agents.

HALTING REFUGEES:  The Refugee Admission Program is suspended for 4 months while the new administration reviews the vetting process before allowing them to resettle in the US.  People escaping religious persecution will still be allowed to resettle in the US, just so long as their religion is not the majority religion of the country from which they are running.

In the end, this executive order represents a suspension of certain policies while this administration reviews and determines how best to protect this nation while remaining a country of immigrants and continuing to show compassion to those fleeing oppression.  But it is a delicate balance.  A balance that has thrown the left into more tantrums.  The former President feels he is still relevant because he sounded off today.  Go away asshole.  You had your 8 years.

          Effectivness of ODA        

Haiti...click here

Ethiopia...click here

Kenya...click here

Zambia...Kariba Dam, click here

Yemen...click here.

          U.S. Troops Flow Into Yemen and More Are Probably on the Way        

Aden (GPA) – More U.S. troops entered Yemen this week escalating ground operations against al-Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula (AQAP). And according to the Pentagon, additional troops are likely to follow.

Pentagon spokesman Jeff Davis has not ruled out sending additional troops to Yemen shortly, possibly even in a matter of weeks.

U.S. and U.A.E. Troops Push AQAP Out of Oil and Gas Fields

Emirate officials greeted U.S. forces at an airport in Hadramaut province on Friday as they entered Yemen. Mainstream media is wishy-washy describing the role that the troops will play which indicates that their activity is likely much more involved than officials would like to admit. BBC even whitewashed over the presence, using the term “US-backed troops” instead. Yemeni media, on the other hand, has been crystal clear in their reporting, insisting that the fields are directly under control of U.A.E. and U.S. troops.

According to Yemen’s Saba News Agency, U.S. and Emirate forces swiftly expelled AQAP from oil and gas fields in Shabwah province. This operation led many Yemeni’s to worry about the U.S. and their allies intentions and possible looting of Yemen’s resources; especially so considering that the United Arab Emirates relies heavily on Qatar for gas.

Yemen was the “War on Terror” Test Kitchen

The U.S. is already conducting air strikes targeting in AQAP-controlled areas of Shabwah and Hadramout. Yemen has long been a testing ground for the U.S.-led “War on Terror.” President George Bush used Yemen to test various rehabilitation techniques on inmates at Yemeni prisons. We now know that extreme torture was also taking place at 18 U.S.-supported prisons in Yemen.

President Obama turned to Yemen as a real-life test field for his drone operations.

For decades, Yemen has been a thoroughfare for takfiri militants looking to carry out their intolerant version of jihad throughout the region.

Unfortunately, since the Saudi-backed forces in Yemen frequently fight along side AQAP against Yemen’s resistance, it’s hard to understand how pushing the militants out of a few oil fields will solve anything in the long-run.

U.S. and Saudi Forces Won’t See Success Against AQAP– But Yemen’s Resistance Will

Yemen’s resistance, including Ansarullah and the Republican Guard, are the only forces genuinely fighting AQAP both militarily and ideologically. Their concept of pluralism and inclusion stands in direct contrast to AQAP and many Saudi-backed forces. Areas controlled by Yemen’s resistance rarely have problems with terror attacks from AQAP or ISIS because security forces routinely monitor checkpoints. Many residents have actually fled southern portions of Yemen for this reason: the resistance forces provide a level of security that doesn’t exist in the Saudi or U.A.E.-controlled territory.

As of now, the Pentagon states that their objective in Yemen is to fight AQAP– not Ansarullah (aka “the Houthis”). And the public should feel compelled to believe them at this point. The U.S. has not expressed any interest in sending troops to help Saudi forces fight Yemen’s resistance. In fact, they’ve adamantly stated that this is the Saudi’s war, not the United States’. No, the U.S. is more concerned with money.

The Saudi war against Yemen is profitable because the Saudis and all of their allies buy weapons from the United States. Defense officials must know that waging war– themselves– against Yemen’s resistance would just create a money pit. And it’s a war they certainly won’t win easily.
http://www.blacklistednews.com/U.S._Troops_Flow_Into_Yemen_and_More_Are_Probably_on_the_Way/60169/0/38/38/Y/M.html

[Posted at the SpookyWeather blog, August 9th, 2017.]
          Atatürk'ün Cevap Veremediği Tek Ä°nsan        
Tarihimiz sayısız savaşlarla doludur. Biz bu savaşlardan baş kaldırıp ne memleketi imar edebilmiş, ne de kendimiz refaha kavuşmuşuzdur. Bunun sebebi, bizim suçumuz olduğu kadar düşmanlarımızın da suçudur. Çünkü başta Ruslar olmak üzere düşmanlarımız hep şöyle düşünürlerdi:
-Türklere rahat vermemeli ki, başka sahalarda ilerleyemesinler...
Bunun için de sık sık başımıza belalar çıkarırlar, savaşlar açarlar, Balkan milletlerini "İstiklal" diye kışkırtırlardı.
Biz böyle durmadan savaşırken de o zamanlar askere alınmayan gayri müslimler zenginleşirlerdi.
Onların neden zengin, bizim neden fakir kaldığımızı bir köylü, Atatürk'e verdiği kısa bir cevap ile çok güzel açıklamıştır.
Atatürk, Mersin'e yaptığı seyahatlerden birinde, şehirde gördüğü büyük binaları işaret ederek sormuş:
-Bu köşk kimin?
-Kirkor'un...
-Ya şu koca bina?
-Yargo'nun...
-Ya şu?
-Salomon'un...
Atatürk biraz sinirlenerek sormuş:
-Onlar bu binaları yaparken ya siz nerede idiniz? Toplananların arkalarında bir köylünün sesi duyulur:
-Biz mi nerede idik? Biz Yemen'de, Tuna Boyları'nda, Balkanlar'da, Arnavutluk Dağlarında, Kafkaslar'da, Çanakkale'de, Sakarya'da savaşıyorduk paşam...
          UN calls for easing of blockade on Yemen's main airport        
none
          UN calls for easing of blockade on Yemen's main airport        
none
          America as the birthplace of Multiculturalism and Political Correctness        
I have touched upon this many times. An ongoing discussion over at Gates of Vienna inspired me to make a more complete and systematic argument. The subject of that discussion is slavery. It was pointed out how in America, unlike in many other places, the slaves were not castrated. To which I answered:
As Dymphna touched upon, the slaves in America were treated very humanely in comparison. A relation of caring and respect could often develop between the black slave and the white owner. But a modern Western European cannot allow himself to know that, he must see this slavery and all of its expressions as evil evil evil. And neither an American today either, at least not under the current Presidency.

By not castrating the slaves America today has got some 40 million descendants of these slaves living among them, as a people within the people, who forever hold a grudge against their former imprisoners, no matter how well they are treated or fawned upon. There are fundamental reasons of human psychology why it is so.

In addition this made America the international scapegoat of "evil" slavery. It's very simple: people associate slavery with America, since in America you can see loads of traces of slavery, such as 40 million black people (in essence every time we meet a black American we have the issue of slavery at the back of our head). Nobody thinks much of the slavery by Britain, France, etc. Or by the Arabs. Since there's nothing there to remind us. Btw Rocha, I think the blackness found in Yemen can be because of its climate zone, quite as for black people in southern India (look at your own map).

So this has been the reward for the kindness Americans shown to their slaves.

Certain things should be done properly, or not at all. E.g. going to war. Either one abstains from it or one does it properly in the responsible way. Doing it as a half-measure is the worst thing. Same with slavery, in my view. The half-measure has the worst consequences (as seen above). Treat them kindly by all means, but make sure to castrate them. Or better, have no slaves.

I think this is one more example of how this sort of goodness leads to not only wrong but potentially devastating results.

But it doesn't stop there. After the Civil War the Americans did not only free their slaves, but actually made them citizens!! (once again the modern men do not grasp the vast significance of this second step!). And that was the embryo of the first multicultural state. Multiculturalism and race-sensitive political correctness was being born, and in place early 20th century in America. And subsequently these ideals where spread / pushed upon Europe after WWII. The American race-mixed society became the ideal, and the Western European nations followed suit. And so we are where we are today.

Here are some evidence of the prevalence of PC + MC in America before 1945, while the opposite was in place in Europe:

1. Agatha Christie publishes a book called Ten Little Niggers in 1939 in Britain. It was immediately renamed And Then There Were None when released in the US in 1940. Such a über-sensitive politically correct "translation" of the title was not adapted in Great Britain until 1967, and in Sweden only in 2007.

2. See here a collection of reviews of Louis Armstrong's visit to Sweden in 1933. In all the news papers he was described as something monkey-like let loose from the jungle. All across the line! And this in the reviews by the most serious music critics. Hardly PC, nor MC.

3. The first expression in art of multiculturalism, that I know of, is from the American movie Birth of a Race from 1918. In the scene staring at 5:30 Jesus is speaking to all the races of the whole world. Watch it here! Check out the Chinese sitting there listening to Jesus, that's hilarious! And it's hard to blame the Frankfurt School for this one :-)

- - - - - - - - -
These are clear evidence of both PC and MC in America in the interwar period, while evidence of the opposite attitude in Europe in the same period. What does that suggest about the origin of MC + PC for the impartial observer? It is important to realize this, since most right-wingers see America as the one that could save us from the horrible evils of MC + PC. Which is unfortunately an upside down view. Which more and more right-wingers have woken up to with the ascendence of Obama.

It took the post-WWII anti-Nazification campaign and Adorno's "F-Factor" to wash out traditional European attitudes and install MC + PC in their place. As I have written elsewhere:
America is seen as right-wing in the current political theater, however historically America together with France has been the main force in pushing our civilization to the left.

After WWII European patriotism was seen as the root of the evil, which had to be held down. The only permitted patriotisms where American and Israeli. Britain and France got away with some, but after the Suez crisis in 1956 they were effectively out of the picture too. Now offensive military actions were only accepted from America and Israel.

In the 50s and the 60s America and Israel were celebrated as model countries of progressivism. European conservatism had been rooted out in the cultural revolution imposed upon America in Western Europe. Adorno's The F-Factor describes European conservatism as a psychological pathology related to fascism. But the Europeans learned fast. First they learned to follow the American example and see America as the model country. The Europeans could pick this up fast since the ideas were rooted in the Christian gospels. But soon they learned that America didn't live up to code of moral goodness that they had imposed on the Europeans. And left-wing anti-Americanism was born. And to be precise, even anti-Americans wasn't born in Europe but also imported from the US.

The problem for America was that in their quest to end all "evil" empires, they had effectively become the big empire themselves. E.g. inheriting the role of maintaining the Pax Britannica. Then they had to do all the sort of things they had taught the Europeans were wrong. The Europeans soon learned to beat the Americans in their own game, becoming the leading in progressivism and "holier than thou". And curiously enough, thus America ended up being seen as right-wing. The original right-wing had been rooted out in a collaboration between America and the European socialists in the wake of WWII.

The turning point came by the end of the 60s -- the Vietnam war and the Six-Days war. The image of America and Israel shifted, and they were no longer seen as the model countries of progressivism, but as "evil" right-wing countries. We should remember that our progressivist paradigm (which is always going left) is based on Christian ethics. And Christian ethics means the inversion of values. So it's the weak that is considered good, while the strong is considered evil. In WWI and WWII America had defeated all the strong (and therefore evil) European empires. The job was completed in the Suez crisis in 1956 by turning against their former allies. But you can never win with Christian ethics, because now America became the strong one, and therefore the evil one.

So now American and Israeli patriotism becomes highly questioned and opposed. But not based on restoring any other patriotism, but by going even deeper into deranged progessivism. Thus, in effect, American and Israeli patriotism are still the only permitted patriotisms. Surely now the holiest priests of our leftist paradigm now condemn the actions of America and Israel. But in effect it is tolerated. While if any other (white) country acts militarily offensively it's seen as a major global crisis (e.g. Serbia, Russia).

I will conclude with something I wrote last year:
1918 and 1945 have been the recent paradigm shifts at civilizational level. The civil war for America. 1989 for Eastern Europe. 1968 was a minor transformation.

1918 and 1945 are better seen as two steps of the same shift, with 1945 as the concluding step, and therefore a more decisive change. In fact, the American civil war was a pre-step to all this, its resulting "patch" was made universal across the West from 1945.

The embryo of multiculturalism was dreamed up during the enlightenment, but was first institutionalized by the result of the American civil war.

As Diamed has written:
"If we had combined freeing the slaves with deporting them, they could hardly complain since they had never been citizens in the first place. Unfortunately Lincoln was assassinated, the plan was abandoned, and the window of opportunity vanished. Now blacks are equal citizens of the USA and, so long as the USA exists, it is as much black as it is white."

And multiculturalism was born, and out of its rib bone political correctness had to be created.

          Génesis:        
Génesis:
Para comenzar vimos en los estudios anteriormente de todos los cambios que han habido con las distintas Biblias y también tenemos que reconocer que todos los nombres de los libros de la Toráh (Escritura) han sido cambiados y manipulados por los traductores, como por ejemplo el primer libro de la Biblia, Génesis, ese no era su nombre verdadero, ese libro se llama "Bereshit" que significa "En el Principio" y no Génesis. Ahora eso no quiere decir que no le podamos llamar Génesis como siempre le hemos llamado, el propósito de toda esta información es que podamos saber la completa verdad de nuestras raíces. También queremos dejar bien claro que tampoco queremos que de ahora en adelante seamos judíos, No!, ese no es nuestro propósito. Nosotros somos puertorriqueños, no judíos, pero si somos todos hijos del mismo Rey!!!. Por lo tanto lo que vamos a estar ensenando es que podamos llegar a las raíces de la Escritura y que tengamos la completa certeza de que no vamos a ser engañados tanto por el enemigo y por sus falsos profetas.
 
Tenemos que comenzar teniendo claro que en nuestro planeta, siempre ha habido una inquietud universal por el origen del mundo y del hombre, la Biblia proclama que todas las cosas creadas tienen su origen en Dios, único y exclusivo Creador. No presenta una crónica informativa ni detallada de la creación, sino la revelación de las verdades que en cualquier generación contestan las cuestiones específicas del hombre en su relación con Dios y con el mundo. Ahora también es bien interesante notar que casi todas las culturas con cierto desarrollo, incluyendo las de América, tienen un relato que intenta explicar la creación. La similitud que se pudiera encontrar entre estos relatos de creación se debe exclusivamente a que intentan responder a las mismas preguntas que el hombre se ha hecho en cada cultura.Porciones del libro de Job, algunos Salmos como el 8, 104, 139, pasajes de libros proféticos,Juan_1:1-3, Colosenses_1:15-17, Hebreos_1:1-2, presentan enseñanzas fundamentales sobre la creación. En el relato de Génesis, la afirmación introductoria y los diferentes actos creativos de Dios, presentan parte de la creación del universo y su relación con Dios. Los primeros versículos declaran que Dios es el Creador de toda la creación. Los actos creativos específicos, no la Biblia siguen una estructura y un orden: La palabra de Dios llamando a existencia, una declaración de propósito, el resultado o ejecución de dicha palabra, asignación de nombre, una evaluación y un tiempo específico. Todas estas cosas las estaremos estudiando en Génesis con sumo cuidado y entendimiento.
 
 
Ahora tenemos que entender que la simple afirmación de que Dios creó los cielos y la tierra es uno de los conceptos más desafiantes que enfrenta la mente moderna. Como por ejemplo: La grandiosa galaxia en la que vivimos gira a la increíble velocidad de 784.000 km por hora. Pero incluso a esta velocidad vertiginosa, nuestra galaxia igualmente necesita 200 millones de años para hacer una rotación. Y existen más de 1000 millones de galaxias como la nuestra. Algunos científicos dicen que el número de estrellas que hay en la creación es igual a todos los granos de todas las arenas de todas las playas del mundo. Aun así este complejo mar de estrellas giratorias funciona con un orden y una eficiencia sorprendentes. Decir que el universo "sólo apareció" o "evolucionó" requiere mucha más fe que creer que Dios está detrás de todas estas estadísticas asombrosas. Ciertamente Dios ha creado un universo maravilloso y debemos saber que Dios no necesitaba crear el universo; El decidió crearlo. ¿Pero por qué? Estamos casi seguros que fue por amor, Dios es amor y el amor se expresa mejor hacia algo o hacia alguien, así que Dios creó al mundo y a la gente como una expresión de su amor. Debemos evitar reducir la creación de Dios a términos meramente científicos. Recordemos que Dios creó el universo porque ama a cada uno de nosotros.
Historia del Génesis:
 
 
El título Génesis viene de una traducción griega específicamente de la Biblia La Septuaginta (Biblia griega) y significa "origen, fuente, creación" Ambas traducciones tanto la hebrea y la griega sugieren en ambos títulos acertadamente el tema del principio, porque describen el origen del universo, el mundo, la humanidad, las instituciones humanas (como el matrimonio), las naciones y, sobre todo, el pueblo de Israel. El enfoque de Génesis es la actividad creativa de Dios al llamar a la existencia a todas estas cosas. Otro título, raramente usado, es: "El primer libro de Moisés." Este título destaca el hecho de que Génesis es la primera parte de un trabajo total de 5 volúmenes, tradicionalmente atribuido a Moisés, también llamado la Ley o el Pentateuco en griego, en hebreo se llama la Toráh (que significa enseñanza o instrucción) Génesis pone la entrega de la ley (enseñanzas o instrucción) en el Sinaí (tema que se trata a partir del libro de Éxodo hasta el libro de Deuteronomio) en una perspectiva histórica y provee una clave para la interpretación de las leyes (enseñanzas o instrucción) e historias contenidas en estos libros.
Para muchos historiadores y eruditos Génesis es estrictamente hablando una obra anónima, debido a que Moisés nunca dijo que la escribió. Pero como ya vimos anteriormente por tradición histórica, así como el testimonio bíblico, le asignan a Moisés ser el autor de Génesis, veanse por ejemplo Marcos 12:26; Lucas 24:27; Juan 1:45; Romanos 10:5 y 2da Corintios 3:15. La paternidad literaria de Moisés no le requería ser el autor del libro completo. De hecho, todos los acontecimientos de Génesis ocurrieron mucho antes de que Moisés naciera, lo que indica que tuvo que utilizar fuentes. Podríamos ver a Moisés también como un editor y un historiador quien, además de recibir la comunicacion directa y sobrenatural de Dios, reunió en un único texto detalles de las historias familiares de Abraham y sus descendientes, y de su vida en la comunidad israelita en Egipto. Si Moisés verdaderamente escribió y recopilo Génesis, debió haberlo hecho durante el periodo de peregrinaje de los israelitas en la época del éxodo, probablemente entre 1440 y 1400 a.C.
Algunas de las cosas que cubriremos en nuestros estudios del Genesis son, la historia de la creacion, la caida en el pecado, el diluvio, el llamado de Abraham y la primera historia de los ancestros de Israel. Las historias de Genesis que probablemente circulaban entre los israelitas que vivian en Egipto, y les recordaba su herencia familiar y espiritual, y explicaban su situacion actual. Tambien cubriremos en Genesis las preservadas historias como la de Jose, que podian ofrecer esperanza al pueblo esclavizado de Dios, las promesas de Abraham sobre el futuro de su descendencia que lo motivaban. La historia de los israelitas involucrados directamente en el exodo, el cumplimiento de las promesas de Dios historicamente a los padres de la nacion israeli como testimonio de su fidelidad y el nacimiento de la primitiva historia de la humanidad. En fin tocaremos tambien la formacion del hombre y la mujer a imagen de Dios y la otorgacion del libre albeldrio.
En fin estudiaremos Genesis con mucha cautela y sabiduria, esto nos llevara a poder conocer el principio y los tiempos, para prepararnos a conocer el Apocalipsis y el fin de los tiempos.

          La ONU reclama medidas para evitar la hambruna que amenaza a 20 millones de personas        
El Consejo de Seguridad de Naciones Unidas ha expresado su preocupación por el "nivel sin precedentes" de necesidades humanitarias que se extiende por todo el mundo y, en particular, ha llamado a tomar medidas para contener la hambruna que amenaza a más de 20 millones de personas en Yemen, Somalia, Sudán del Sur y Nigeria.
          HRW acusa a los huthis de bombardear a civiles en el sur de Yemen        
Los rebeldes huthis bombardearon con artillería y en al menos seis ocasiones en mayo de 2017 barrios muy poblados en Taiz, en el suroeste de Yemen y bajo control de la coalición saudí, en una operación en la que murieron al menos 30 civiles y 160 resultaron heridos y que viola las Convenciones de Ginebra, que prohíben atacar objetivos civiles, según ha denunciado Human Rights Watch (HRW) este miércoles.
          Sleepless Nights 03-03-2015 with Ron Nadel        
Playlist:

- voicebreak -
- voicebreak -
- voicebreak -
Hall Orchestra Sir Mark Elder- A Shropshire Lad Rhapsody For Orchestra - English Rhapsody Butterworth Delius Grainger
Hsinni Liu Dmitry Yablonsky Russian Philharmonic Orchestra- Piano Concerto No 3 In D Major Op 50 I Allegro Molto - Kabalevsky Piano Concerto No 3 RimskyKorsakov Piano Concerto In CSharp Minor
Hsinni Liu Dmitry Yablonsky Russian Philharmonic Orchestra- Piano Concerto No 3 In D Major Op 50 II Andante Con Moto - Kabalevsky Piano Concerto No 3 RimskyKorsakov Piano Concerto In CSharp Minor
Hsinni Liu Dmitry Yablonsky Russian Philharmonic Orchestra- Piano Concerto No 3 In D Major Op 50 III Presto - Kabalevsky Piano Concerto No 3 RimskyKorsakov Piano Concerto In CSharp Minor
Bournemouth Symphony Orchestra Kirill Karabits- Concerto For Orchestra No 3 Holosinnya Lamentations I Largo Rubato - Karabits Concertos For Orchestra Silvestrov Elegie Abschiedsserenade
Bournemouth Symphony Orchestra Kirill Karabits- Concerto For Orchestra No 3 Holosinnya Lamentations II Allegro - Karabits Concertos For Orchestra Silvestrov Elegie Abschiedsserenade
Joseph Silverstein Elmar Oliveira RundfunkSinfonieorchester Berlin- Violin Concerto No 1 Op 60 I Allegro Moderato - Achron Violin Concerto No 1 Golem 2 Tableaux From Belshazzar
RundfunkSinfonieorchester Berlin Elmar Oliveira Joseph Silverstein- Violin Concerto No 1 Op 60 II Improvisations Sur 2 Themes Yemeniques - Achron Violin Concerto No 1 Golem 2 Tableaux From Belshazzar
Lukas Foss Brooklyn Philharmonic Michael Barrett- Piano Concerto I Moderato Molto - Picker Blitzstein Works For Piano And Orchestra
Lukas Foss Brooklyn Philharmonic Michael Barrett- Piano Concerto II Largo Assai - Picker Blitzstein Works For Piano And Orchestra
Lukas Foss Brooklyn Philharmonic Michael Barrett- Piano Concerto III Adagio Ma Non Troppo - Picker Blitzstein Works For Piano And Orchestra
Jurjen Hempel Ulster Orchestra- Czerny Symphony 1 1 Allegro Agitato - Mendelssohn Violin Concerto Czerny Symphony 1
Jurjen Hempel Ulster Orchestra- Czerny Symphony 1 2 Andante Sostenuto - Mendelssohn Violin Concerto Czerny Symphony 1
Jurjen Hempel Ulster Orchestra- Czerny Symphony 1 3 Scherzo Vivace Presto - Mendelssohn Violin Concerto Czerny Symphony 1
Jurjen Hempel Ulster Orchestra- Czerny Symphony 1 4 Finale Allegro Vivace - Mendelssohn Violin Concerto Czerny Symphony 1
Eri Klaus Netherlands Radio Symphony- Isle Of Bliss - Rautavaara Piano Concertos 2 3 Isle Of Bliss
John OConor- Piano Sonata 1 Allegro Moderato - Field Sonatas Nocturnes
John OConor- Piano Sonata 1 2 Rondo Allegretto - Field Sonatas Nocturnes


playlist URL: http://www.afterfm.com/index.cfm/fuseaction/playlist.listing/showInstanceID/16/playlistDate/2015-03-03
          Comment on Africa’s $700 Billion Problem Waiting to Happen by Mustafe Osman        
It is weird to say Malez dreams come true and he knew what will happen and how things will go!! The Saudi-Irani Proxy wars in Yamen and Syria has nothing to do with the Ethio-Egyptian hydro-political issues. This proxy war is the results of the Arab Spring and no foreign policy expert foreseen it let alone saying a dead Malez dreamed about it. However, Ethiopia had no role in the Arab Spring which toppled some of the long served Arab leaders but they rather took the advantage of it and build a dam with the help of Israel to counter challenge Egypt on the Camp David Agreement on the Senai Peninsula. By the way, this seems imbalanced and I didn’t get the connection between the Arab proxy wars and Ethiopia. I have been an observant on the Ethiopian foreign policy for quite some time, they use to develop a common enemy which needs to be tackled down and they seek international supports then they use it internally through suppressing internal oppositions. I agree with you Alex, the unrest and proliferation of weapons into Yemen has a great impact on the internal security of Ethiopian and all the neighbouring countries and Ethiopia. So, Alex you need to see the side of the coin.
          Commentaries, Opinions, And Editorials -- January 6, 2010        
U.S. President Barack Obama gestures to the crowd to be quiet as he walks onto the 18th green at Mid-Pacific Country Club in Kailua, Hawaii. REUTERS

Out-To-Lunch O Living Out A Disaster Film -- Michael Goodwin, New York Post

Someday, somebody not from Hollywood will make a movie about President Obama's disastrous vacation. About how his aides waited for nearly three hours after the Christmas airliner attack to wake him. About how he waited three more days to appear publicly. About how even then, he didn't grasp the seriousness of the situation, racing through a bloodless speech so he could play golf.

Until that film is made, reality is frightening enough. Even the true believers in the White House now realize they blew the response to a potentially catastrophic attack by an al Qaeda-trained terrorist.

Read more ....

Commentaries, Opinions, And Editorials

Airline attack shows Obama's listless approach to terrorism -- Michael Gerson, Washington Post

One 'Allegedly' Too Many: In her raw and disastrous way, Janet Napolitano is revealing. -- Dorothy Rabinowitz, Wall Street Journal

The Ramzi Yousef Standard: The Administration has ways of making terrorists not talk. -- Wall Street journal opinion

Two Attacks Highlight Counterterrorism's Bureaucratic Bog -- David Ignatius, Washington Post

How 12/25 Was Like 9/11
-- Thomas H. Kean and John Farmer Jr., New York Times

No One Central Front in the War Against Al Qaeda -- Brian Katulis, Real Clear World/American Progress

Iran's al Qaeda connection in Yemen -- Washington Times Editorial

Yemen's coming disaster -- Richard Fontaine & Andrew Exum, LA Times

Another Iranian Revolution? Not Likely -- Flynt Leverett, Hillary Mann Leverett, New York Times

An Opposition Manifesto in Iran
-- Robin Wright, Los Angeles Times

Serbia: In From the Cold -- New York Times editorial

A Case for Presidential Power on Terrorism Detainees -- Ruth Marcus, Washington Post

Judge Made the Right Call in Blackwater Case -- Washington Post editorial
          World News Briefs -- January 6, 2010 (Evening Edition)        


Suicide Attack On CIA Agents 'Was Planned By Bin Laden Inner Circle' -- Times Online

US intelligence officials believe that the suicide bomb attack that killed seven CIA officers in Afghanistan last month was planned with the help of Osama bin Laden’s close allies, raising fears that the al-Qaeda leader is enjoying a lethal resurgence.

They think that the attack could not have taken place without the prior knowledge and assistance of the Haqqanis, the powerful Taleban group thought to be shielding bin Laden.

Read more ....

MIDDLE EAST

Yemen for dummies.

Egyptian guard at Gaza border killed in protest over Galloway's aid convoy.

Iran shielding its nuclear efforts in maze of tunnels. At U.N., China insists it's not 'right' time for sanctions on Iran

Egyptian forces wound 2 Palestinians on Gaza border.

Jordan disputes Khost bomber status.

Dubai's decline gives way to Abu Dhabi's rise.

ASIA

Kan, a weak Yen proponent, named Japan Finance Minister.

Three killed in Pakistani-administered Kashmir bombing.

Officials: Suspected US drones kill 12 in Pakistan.

Blast kills 2 Afghans, 9 NATO troops among wounded.

Murder trial tests Philippine justice.

AFRICA

US urges Guinea to restore civilian rule.

South Sudan army-civilian clash kills 17: official.

Ailing Nigerian president phones officials from hospital bed.

US screening 'risks Nigeria ties'.

Threats lead food agency to curtail aid in Somalia. Somalia’s al-Shabaab rebels deny demanding payments from UN.

Somali pirates free hijacked Pakistani 'mother ship'.

Egypt to host conference on the return of antiquities.

EUROPE

France’s elite colleges rise up in revolt against Nicolas Sarkozy.

Discord, revolt roil Brown's Labor Party before elections in Britain.

Britain falls to 25th best place to live in the world... behind Lithuania, the Czech Republic and Hungary.

Slovakia explosives gaffe 'highlights security failings'.

Dagestan suicide bomb kills six police officers. Suicide bomb in Russia's Dagestan follows strike on Al Qaeda.

Ulster defense association says it has disarmed.

Six more days of snow forecast as cold snap continues in Britain.

AMERICAS

Honduras: De facto president objects to US request he leave.

Evo Morales: Climate power to the people.

Websites post picture of Castro in hospital-style wheeled chair.

Cold grips much of US, Fla. races to save crops.

Missing San Francisco sea lions 'off Oregon'.

TERRORISM/THE LONG WAR

More ex-detainees resort to terror, officials say.

Man who bombed CIA post provided useful intelligence about al-Qaeda.

Angry Barack Obama vows security changes. Obama rebuke over bomb plot prompts intelligence pledge.

Yemen arrests three Qaeda militants, targets leader.

U.S. to suspend Gitmo detainee transfers to Yemen.

ECONOMY/FINANCE/BUSINESS

Pump prices on pace to top 2009 high by weekend.

Cramped on land, big oil bets at sea.

Oil hovers below $82 amid US crude inventory drop.
          Enemies Yesterday, Allies Today. Cooperation Between American Counter-Terrorism Specialists And Saddam Hussein's Former Intelligence Officers In Yemen        
Baathist officers who fled Iraq in the wake of the fall of Saddam
are working with US intelligence Photo: Reuters


US Forges Alliance With Saddam Hussein Officers To Fight Al-Qaeda -- The Telegraph

American counter-terrorism specialists and Saddam Hussein's former intelligence officers have forged an unlikely alliance in Yemen to tackle al-Qaeda.

The two sides were enemies on the battlefield just seven years ago but have been brought together by the failings of Yemen's security and intelligence apparatus, according to diplomatic and military sources in the country.

Although mutual suspicions linger, the collaboration is said to have achieved some intelligence breakthroughs and helped instill greater efficiency and professionalism within the most elite Yemeni counterterrorism outfit.

Read more ....

My Comment: If the U.S. must form alliances with Saddam Hussein's former intelligence officers .... we are in more trouble than what we think.
          Yemen In Turmoil -- News Updates January 6, 2010        
In Yemen's Capital, Fearful Talk Of War With al-Qaeda -- Time Magazine

Shopkeepers are whispering in the medieval, walled Old City in Sana'a, the capital of Yemen, about a war they cannot yet imagine. Workers, students and the old men who sit outside the ancient mosques are wondering what fighting between al-Qaeda and the government would look like. Would it be like the conflict in the north, where extremist insurgents occupy villages with gunfire and government bombs rain down from the sky? Is al-Qaeda an army or just a bunch of ill-equipped gangs? "All citizens are scared," says Jamal al-Najjar, an English-language translator, while waiting for a group of foreign journalists at the airport. The visible influx of overseas media, hungry for stories, adds to the sense of crisis.

Read more ....

More News on Yemen

Yemen probes overstay of alleged airliner attacker -- AFP
Troops sent into al-Qaeda strongholds -- Sydney Morning Herald
Yemen Claims 3 Al-Qaida Militants Captured in Connection with Embassy Threat -- Voice of America
Yemen arrests 3 al Qaeda suspects -- CNN
Yemen rejects direct intervention by foreign troops -- CBC News
Yemen Vows to Tackle al Qaeda, With Help -- CBS News
Former bin Laden bodyguard is among ex-guerrillas in Yemen -- Washington Post
Ex-Bin Laden Bodyguard Calls Yemen Home -- CBS News
Britain's long relationship with Yemen -- BBC
Warning on Yemen aid backlash -- Financial Times
          World News Briefs -- January 6, 2010        

Yemen Captures Key Qaeda Chief As Embassies Reopen -- AFP

SANAA — Yemeni security forces, under US pressure to rein in extremists, Wednesday captured a key Al-Qaeda leader believed to be behind threats that saw foreign embassies in Sanaa closing their doors, police said.

Mohammed al-Hanq had evaded arrest on Monday during a security force raid in Arhab, 40 kilometres (25 miles) north of Sanaa, in which two of his relatives were killed and three other people wounded.

Read more ....

MIDDLE EAST

Iran shielding its nuclear efforts in maze of tunnels. At U.N., China insists it's not 'right' time for sanctions on Iran

Egyptian forces wound 2 Palestinians on Gaza border.

Jordan disputes Khost bomber status.

Dubai's decline gives way to Abu Dhabi's rise.

ASIA

Kan, a weak Yen proponent, named Japan Finance Minister.

Three killed in Pakistani-administered Kashmir bombing.

Officials: Suspected US drones kill 12 in Pakistan.

Blast kills 2 Afghans, 9 NATO troops among wounded.

Murder trial tests Philippine justice.

AFRICA

Threats lead food agency to curtail aid in Somalia. Somalia’s al-Shabaab rebels deny demanding payments from UN.

Somali pirates free hijacked Pakistani 'mother ship'.

Egypt to host conference on the return of antiquities.

EUROPE

Dagestan suicide bomb kills six police officers. Suicide bomb in Russia's Dagestan follows strike on Al Qaeda.

Ulster defense association says it has disarmed.

Six more days of snow forecast as cold snap continues in Britain.

AMERICAS

Websites post picture of Castro in hospital-style wheeled chair.

Cold grips much of US, Fla. races to save crops.

Missing San Francisco sea lions 'off Oregon'.

TERRORISM/THE LONG WAR

Man who bombed CIA post provided useful intelligence about al-Qaeda.

Angry Barack Obama vows security changes. Obama rebuke over bomb plot prompts intelligence pledge.

Yemen arrests three Qaeda militants, targets leader.

U.S. to suspend Gitmo detainee transfers to Yemen.

ECONOMY/FINANCE/BUSINESS

Pump prices on pace to top 2009 high by weekend.

Cramped on land, big oil bets at sea.

Oil hovers below $82 amid US crude inventory drop.
          THE LATEST LUNATIC'S SHOOTING'S SPREE        
After Sandy Hook, everyone was horrified and glued to their televisions watching details of the carnage emerge. I'd say especially horrified because this particular mass shooting involved kids. Several news shows on MSNBC were pointing out that this was the perfect time to reform gun laws. Not just because the nation was gripped by the gruesome tragedy, but because the NRA had just financially backed many candidates in the last election and their candidates had mostly lost despite their hefty campaign donations. I believe it was Rachel Maddow who claimed that while once extremely influential, these election losses proved that the NRA had lost much of it's power and was now a "paper tiger" not to be feared any longer. That moment in 2012 passed. Many other mass shootings, which other countries miraculously don't seem to have, have happened since then.
Last night I heard a statistic on Chris Hayes' MSNBC show that 90% of the country wants gun laws reformed. But somehow, what was a mere "paper tiger" years ago, still controls enough of our legislators to ensure that no reforms are made. This is a central theme in our government--our legislators refuse to enact policies which we the people want. We give them our votes and they give us nothing.Trust me, 90% of us rarely agree on anything. But a huge percentage of us want to leave Social Security alone, yet there are Republicans who want to privatize it and even Obama proposed--in a move which proved he is no champion of the 99%--chained CPI cuts to the very popular program. Americans have said that they're weary of war, but that doesn't stop us from jumping into every conflict we can. Everyone in both parties agree that we need to rebuild our crumbling infrastructure and that mom & pop businesses are the backbone of the American economy which need help now. Yet nothing is done to help either.

But there's always money for new weapons and new wars. Right now, the US-backed Saudi attacks on Yemen have been called war crimes by Amnesty International, but we don't hear much about that. The US is selling and giving the Saudis weapons, just as we've distributed so many weapons that many have fallen into hands of ISIS who are now using our own weapons against us! If our foreign policy is murder, bullying and arming brutal countries so they can commit war crimes, why should we expect freedom from mass shootings here at home? Kids shot down at school? Nothing done. Gunmen spraying bullets on military bases in Chattanooga, DC's Navy Yard and at Fort Hood? Well, we support the troops but not enough to keep guns from lunatics. Blacks gunned down in church by a white supremacist? Nothing done. Blacks routinely gunned down by the very agency which is supposed to protect us--the police. Nothing done. And now, live, on air murders of news anchors. Is that twisted enough to be a catalyst for clearly needed change?

We're a sick, violent nation to permit this. But the US makes a fortune from manufacturing weapons. Both at home and abroad. It's almost foolish to expect that anything will be done to reform gun laws because weapon sales make too much money and a lot of that goes to our legislators. It's time for our legislators to do what we want, rather than do whatever lobbyists bribe them to do. I don't think that the average US citizen wants a country or a world in which death reigns, but our "leaders" certainly do.
          Can Ivanka Trump Stop Pop From Cutting US Aid?        
Would Ivanka Trump be complicit if tens of thousands died due to starvation arising from US foreign aid cuts?
To say Donald Trump hates poor foreigners is an understatement. He's definitely bigoted, but apparently it matters less if you're a Muslim [a] from a wealthy nation with [b] Trump-linked business interests. After all, the 9/11 attackers were mostly from Saudi Arabia and the UAE, but they go off scot-free in a world where, well, money talks. Although the world is fixated on the fate of his travel ban on folks from Iran, Libya, Somalia, Sudan, Syria and Yemen (countries which account for a grand total of zero terrorist fatalities in the US) less is said about the ongoing famines in many of these countries and their near-neighbors.

You see, the Trump administration has been mulling drastic cuts to US foreign aid going to all these poor, ungrateful, Trump-hating coloreds (or is their hatred partly due to the US planning to cut so much aid?) to spend on things like a multi-billion military expansion and a Great Wall of Trump on the US-Mexico border. However, note that Congress ultimately decides what to spend on the US federal budget and not the president.

Meanwhile, some hope that his moderate[-ish] daughter/adviser Ivanka Trump will persuade The Donald to not make such drastic aid cuts--at least that's what some aid agency officials think in the face of massive ongoing famines elsewhere:
The head of the UN World Food Programme has said he is hopeful Ivanka Trump will lobby her father into a U-turn on cuts to humanitarian aid in the face of an urgent cash crisis that is imperilling hundreds of thousands of lives.

David Beasley, a former Republican governor of South Carolina who supported Donald Trump’s campaign for the presidency, said Congress and the Senate had already defied the new president to ringfence $980m (£764m) for famine relief this year.

Beasley said he believed Trump would now rethink his policy of stripping down funding of peacekeeping and humanitarian aid for 2018, due in part to the president’s “savvy” daughter, with whom he posed for photographs following a meeting earlier this month.
Even now, the US is the biggest UN contributor, even if its aid contribution is among the least in GDP percentage terms for OECD nations:
The US is the biggest contributor to the UN, paying 22% of its $5.4bn core budget and 28.5% of the $7.9bn dedicated to peacekeeping. Trump has said that such contributions are unfair, and has been seeking to cut spending on US diplomatic and humanitarian efforts by a third...

In relative terms the US is one of the least generous countries when it comes to foreign aid: spending for 2015 stood at just 0.17% of gross national income, compared with Britain’s 0.7%.
The projected aid requirements this year are certainly staggering:
Speaking on a visit to Brussels, where he met leaders of the EU and the Belgian government, Beasley said he needed an injection of $1bn in the coming months to save the lives of 600,000 children. “While the European Union and Belgium have been tremendous supporters, the needs at this time are just extraordinary,” he said. “We are facing the worst humanitarian crisis since the second world war.

“Some 30 million people don’t know where their next meal is going to come from in just four of the countries facing famine, and 1.4 million are literally on the brink of starvation as we speak. “If we do not receive the resources, the food that we need in the next few months we are talking about the possibility of 600,000 dying. If we receive the funds, we can avert famine and minimise the chance of death.”
What does Trump care? More to the point, why would Trump care about colored people unable to afford Trump-branded gold courses or hotels who hate his guts? My guess is that aid proponents are wasting their time lobbying Trump. Besides, Trump can propose the most vicious cuts to US foreign aid, but it's ultimately the congress that decides how much to allocate in the federal budget. Given that fact, I'd be lobbying congresspersons instead of this guy. It's a waste of time IMHO.

And yes, Ivanka Trump does not escape responsibility, try as she might to portray herself as a "non-political" actor.

UPDATE: Don't forget her futile attempt to get The Donald to stay in the Paris Agreement. Progressive causes are lost on him...even if his daughter tries to persuade him.
          The Iran Trap        

President Donald Trump is having, even by his standards, a very bad week. On Monday alone, quite apart from the continuing Russia scandal, he found himself blocked from fulfilling his dreams and campaign promises to repeal the two landmark achievements of the Obama years—the Affordable Care Act and the Iran nuclear deal.

In the former, Senate Republican leaders couldn’t muster enough votes, even within their own party, for an alternative plan that was drawn up in secret and would snatch health care from more than 20 million Americans. In the latter, Trump was met with—and, at first, tried to resist—an unpleasant surprise: The Iranians, it turns out, are in full compliance with the accord’s quite stringent terms. The deal, which Trump and other critics had denounced as dangerous and unworkable, is working.

Shortly after the deal was signed in July 2015 by Iran and six other nations (the five permanent members of the U.N. Security Council—the United States, Britain, France, Russia, China—plus Germany), the U.S. Congress passed a bill requiring the president to report every 90 days on whether Iran was keeping its end of the bargain. Monday was the most recent 90-day deadline.

Want to listen to this article out loud? Hear it on Slate Voice.

In June, as the deadline approached, the White House was dealt a crushing blow by the International Atomic Energy Agency, which has been monitoring the deal under the most intrusive inspection regime ever negotiated in an arms-control accord. The IAEA concluded—in its own detailed, point-by-point report on the matter—that the Iranians have so far followed the accord to the letter.

The deal required Iran to reduce the number of centrifuges in its reactors by two-thirds; to reduce its stockpile of enriched uranium by 97 percent; to destroy the core of a heavy-water reactor that might have produced plutonium bombs; and to allow IAEA inspectors to enter, monitor, and take measurements not only at “known” nuclear facilities but also at “suspect” covert sites. The agency’s findings of Iran’s compliance with these and other requirements: check, check, check, and check.

At an hourlong meeting on Wednesday, Trump’s top security advisers—Secretary of State Rex Tillerson; Secretary of Defense James Mattis; Lt. Gen. H.R. McMaster, the national security adviser; and Gen. Joseph Dunford, the chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff—unanimously told the president he had no choice but to certify that Iran was in compliance. But, according to a story by Peter Baker in the New York Times, Trump spent 55 minutes of the meeting telling his advisers “he did not want to.”

Over the next several days, the advisers crafted what they presented to Trump as a tough new policy: He would sign the certification but also stiffen U.S. sanctions against Iran for its development of ballistic missiles, support of terrorism, and violation of human rights.

In fact, though, the advisers were craftier than Trump knew. Under the nuclear deal, the U.S. and the five other signatories agreed to lift sanctions that they had imposed on Iran for its nuclear activities, which had previously been in violation of United Nations resolutions. However, the deal explicitly stated that the sanctions that had been imposed on Iran for other nefarious activities could stay in place. In other words, the advisers’ proposal, which Trump accepted, was no new policy, not even much of a shift. It is allowed for in the nuclear deal—and the United States, along with other countries, have been imposing sanctions on Iran, under those other criteria, for years.

McMaster seemed to keep up the rhetorical ploy on Monday in a conference call with reporters, telling them that Iran had breached “the spirit” of the nuclear deal and “has been walking up to violating the letter” of it as well. Like many American soldiers who fought in Iraq, McMaster is deeply suspicious of Iran, but he has also read the agreement’s text, so his words here can only be seen as disingenuous. For the text was composed so precisely that there is no distinction between its “spirit” and its “letter”; the only way of violating the former is to violate the latter.

So, yes, Iran continues to do things that we don’t like, but those things—testing missiles, financing terrorists, oppressing internal critics, expanding its influence across the Middle East—were not covered by the accord, and deliberately so. Iran’s impending nuclear threat was seen as the urgent danger; wrapping talks over that threat into some “grand bargain,” which would settle all of our differences, was seen as a fool’s errand and a distracting delay. Analogies were drawn to the U.S.-Soviet nuclear arms-reduction treaties signed during the Cold War. Those treaties said nothing about Moscow’s communist ideology, its oppression of dissidents, its occupation of Eastern Europe, or its support for developing countries’ revolutionary movements. But the treaties were valuable nonetheless for staving off the danger of nuclear war.

It’s true that Obama and some of his aides hoped that the nuclear deal with Iran might alter Tehran’s policies over time—in part by drawing the country into the global economy after decades of isolation, in part by strengthening the domestic leverage of President Hassan Rouhani and Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif, who had initiated the overture to the West and are thought to be more Western-leaning than the mullahs who presently rule Iran’s politics.

However, Obama also said, publicly and privately, that the deal was a good deal—for the security of the United States and its allies, including those in the Middle East—whether or not Iran changed its broader outlook. Which would be worse, Obama would ask: an aggressive Iran with nuclear weapons or an aggressive Iran without nuclear weapons? To critics who complained that the deal prevented Iran from going nuclear for just 10 years (though actually it blocked some critical paths to a bomb for 15 and 25 years), Obama would ask: Would you rather leave Iran with the ability to build a bomb in one year, which it possessed when the deal was signed?

“They might cheat” remained the critics’ only substantive line of attack. And even Trump has been forced to admit that, at least for now, they’re not cheating. There is no “spirit” of the deal that the Iranians are violating. And as for McMaster’s claim that they’re “walking up to violating the letter” of the deal, that’s just another way of saying that they’re not violating its letter. They may be doing everything up to the limits of what the deal allows—but, again, those limits fall far short of what Iran needs to get remotely close to acquiring a nuclear weapon.

Meanwhile, if Trump is worried about Iranian expansion (a legitimate source of worry), he seems oblivious to the fact that his own policies have worsened the trends. By denouncing Qatar as a leading financier of terrorism (thus succumbing to sweet-talking pressure from the Saudis and an info-war hacking campaign by the UAE), Trump drove Qatar’s emir—who, yes, had been playing all sides in the sectarian wars but had also been hosting the largest U.S. air base in the Middle East—into the arms of … that’s right, Iran. By aiding the Saudis in their vicious air war over Yemen and killing many more civilians than Obama had in his own abetting, Trump has helped legitimize Iran’s support of the rebels. By failing even to attempt a politico-diplomatic settlement to the civil wars in Iraq and Syria (even as the military campaigns against ISIS are succeeding), he has solidified Iran’s political control of Baghdad. (In fairness, though, Iran’s growing influence in Iraq was an almost an almost inevitable consequence of the power vacuum left by President George W. Bush’s 2003 invasion.)

Trump also made a terrible mistake when, during the NATO summit in May, he tried to persuade European allies to stop their trade and financial transactions with Iran. By doing this, the United States accomplished the dubious feat of being the first power to violate the Iran nuclear deal. For instance, in the accord, the United States and European Union pledge to “refrain from any policy specifically intended to directly and adversely affect the normalization of trade and economic relations with Iran inconsistent with their commitments not to undermine the successful implementation of this [agreement].” They also agreed on “steps to ensure Iran’s access in areas of trade, technology, finance and energy.”

Zarif, Iran’s foreign minister who is visiting New York, argued explicitly on Monday, at a meeting of the Council on Foreign Relations, that Trump has violated the nuclear deal. The multinational commission that periodically reviews compliance with the deal is meeting in Vienna this Thursday. It shouldn’t be a surprise if Iran’s delegates use the occasion to file a formal complaint against the United States.

The complaint isn’t likely to amount to much. Trump’s lobbying in Europe had no effect. Western firms have begun to sign contracts in areas of commerce the nuclear deal allows, and American firms would be loath to grant foreign competitors a leg up to appease Trump’s pique.

It is a devastating sign—not only of how poorly Trump understands foreign policy but also of how inadequately his vaunted deal-making skills translate to international politics—that an American president is being outflanked so easily by an Iranian foreign minister. It’s a sorrier sign still that the Iranian foreign minister is in the right.


          An Abdication of Duty        

President Trump has decided to let Secretary of Defense (and retired four-star general) James Mattis set U.S. troop levels in Afghanistan—a move that amounts to yet another indication, in some ways an admission, that the commander in chief is not up to the job.

It would be one thing if Trump laid out his political and strategic aims in the war, then let his military chiefs calculate how many troops would be needed to accomplish those goals. This is what presidents usually do, though some take the chiefs’ advice as just that—a proposal, which they can accept, reject, or modify—rather than as a dictum.

But Trump hasn’t done that. (By contrast, President Obama ordered a review after one week in office, then chaired 10 National Security Council meetings to discuss the subject.) What is the goal of the war—to defeat the Taliban, to defeat only the jihadi fighters, or to drive one or the other to the negotiating table, and if so, with what desired end-state? Should U.S. troops engage in combat or just train and assist the Afghan army, and, if the latter, how close should they get to the battlefields? Is it possible to win this war (and what does win mean?), if the Afghan regime remains corrupt? If not, are there ways for us to help the regime reform? And if not, should we phase out our involvement?

These are some of the basic, and momentous, questions that a new president should be asking in this war’s 16th year. President Trump has fluffed the obligation and passed it to Mattis. Maybe he concluded the questions were too hard. They are hard; being president is hard (as Trump has discovered to his surprise). Maybe he doesn’t want to be held responsible if the war stalls in stalemate or worse, just as he tried to blame his generals for the failed raid in Yemen at the start of his term.

Mattis was an excellent wartime commander as a Marine. He is well-read in history and philosophy. But even the best Marines are trained mainly to execute policy, not to make it. And to the best wartime generals, the mandate of carrying out policy means winning the war. Retreating, withdrawing, drawing down—these might (or might not) be the preferences of a president, who views a war’s costs and benefits in the context of many other priorities, but they have little place in the thinking of a general whose job is to focus only on the war. (Mattis, who retired from the Marines four years ago, is now the civilian overseer of the Defense Department, but his reading of military history and his experience as an officer—a wartime commander, at that—govern his thinking about national-security matters.)

In other words, by turning over his authority to Mattis, Trump has all but guaranteed that more American troops will soon be sent to Afghanistan. Senior officers in the Pentagon have reportedly asked for another 5,000 troops in addition to the 8,000 still there. It’s a fair bet that Mattis will endorse the request. And it’s also a fair bet that they won’t be the last American troops sent over. When things go badly in a war, an officer’s natural instinct is to believe that a few more battalions or brigades might turn the tide. President Lyndon Johnson acceded to this instinct in Vietnam. President Obama quashed it in Afghanistan. (Obama let the generals have 30,000 more troops at the end of 2009 but said he’d start withdrawing them 18 months later if they failed to accomplish the mission by then—and, to everyone’s surprise, he kept his promise.)

Trump, at least for now, has decided to let the retired general running the Pentagon do as he pleases. He has abdicated his powers as commander in chief, and maybe that’s not entirely a bad thing; no doubt Mattis, for all his limitations, has a keener strategic acumen than Trump. But Trump should realize that presidents are held responsible for every decision made in their tenure. Letting a Cabinet secretary make the call does not let him off the hook; deciding not to decide is itself a decision. And in this case, Trump has decided to prolong and intensify our involvement in this war—to what end, no one can say.


          How Trump Made the Qatar Situation Worse        

Why are five of the largest Arab states ganging up on Qatar? And should we care? These are reasonable questions for the crisis-soaked news reader upon learning that Saudi Arabia, Egypt, Bahrain, Yemen, and the United Arab Emirates have cut off ties—diplomatic as well all travel and trade—with this tiny constitutional monarchy.

A few things worth knowing about Qatar. It holds the world’s fourth-largest oil and natural gas reserves. It hosts the Middle East’s largest U.S. military base, including the headquarters of Central Command’s air combat center. A fairly cosmopolitan place, the nation was chosen—controversially—as the setting for the 2022 World Cup. As with the countries now opposing it, Qatar is led by Sunnis who are active in the fight against the Houthi rebels in Yemen and Bashar al-Assad’s regime in Syria. Yet they are also friendly with Iran, Hezbollah, Hamas, and some of the most hardcore Islamist militias.

In short, like many of the problems that President Trump has confronted or aggravated, Qatar is a lot more complicated than anyone knew.

And, though tensions between Qatar and the other Arab countries have been simmering for nearly a decade, Trump—perhaps accidentally—triggered this new escalation.

Trump thought he would unify and strengthen the Sunni leaders when he spoke to them in Saudi Arabia last month. That visit, his first stop on his first trip abroad as president, was more enthusiastically greeted than his later stops in Europe. But Trump’s speech there, too, was a disaster, though of a different sort, heralding a new U.S. policy of taking the Sunni powers’ side in their sectarian wars against Shiite powers, especially Iran. What Trump clearly did not foresee was that his speech would also deepen a wedge among the Sunnis—and, possibly, intensify the conflicts in the region.

The emir of Qatar—Tamim bin Hamad al-Thani, whose family has ruled the country for almost two centuries—has tried to carve out a separate foreign policy in the past decade, courting one side in the region’s sectarian feuds, then the other side, depending on his own interests. He could do this because his country has enormous wealth for such a small population—its 2.2 million people, most of whom are foreign expats, enjoy the world’s highest per-capita income, dampening the political fissures that plague many of the region’s monarchies. During the Arab Spring, the emir supported the rebel protesters, using the state-owned TV network, Al-Jazeera, as a propaganda organ for their cause. He also moved closer to Iran, the Shiite neighbor just across the Persian Gulf.

Faysal Itani, an analyst at the Atlantic Council in Washington, says that the Qataris’ approach made sense.* “They made the best of their position and tried to carve out a special sphere to be relevant in the region’s politics.”

But in recent years, Qatar’s approach has gone awry. After the Arab Spring faded and the rebels were supplanted by jihadis, Qatar swung its media and money to support these new movements —which its fellow Sunni states loathed and feared. Similarly, as the Sunni–Shiite wars intensified, Qatar moved closer to the leading Shiite government in Iran. In his fellow Sunnis’ eyes, the emir’s strategy looked more and more like a ploy to bring down their regimes—and to expand his own power. In short, he started alienating everyone: the Sunnis by supporting Iran and its allies in the various militias; the Shiites by continuing to host the U.S. military and helping the Saudis in Yemen.

“The Qataris tried to be the Hong Kong of the region,” says Joyce Karam, Washington bureau chief of Al-Hayat, a major pan-Arab newspaper. “It isn’t working anymore.”

The tipping point came with Trump. President Obama kept lines open to all the powers in the region, including Iran, because he did not want to entangle the United States into the sectarian wars any more than it already was. He particularly steered clear of the brewing tensions between Qatar and the other Sunni powers, figuring it would be better to let them work out their own balancing act. Trump’s visit changed the calculus. His speech emboldened the main Sunni powers not only to step up their confrontation with Iran and its “proxies” but also to cut off Qatar.

Now Qatar is vulnerable. Though very wealthy and diplomatically nimble, Qatar relies on Saudi Arabia for 40 percent of its food. Hence the photos of long lines Monday in the grocery stores of the capital, Doha. More than half of the country’s workers come from other countries in the region—and as part of the sanctions, they have now been called home. Even Qatar’s foreign policy has been circumscribed; for instance, the cut-off of air routes prevents Qatar from flying humanitarian aid to Gaza. Saudi Arabia in particular is all but pushing Qatar’s military to take control. A Saudi newspaper headline says of Qatar on Monday: “5 Coups in 46 Years—and 6th Coup Not Far Away.”

An analysis in Jane’s 360, which specializes in defense and intelligence, predicts that the Qatar will have no choice but to give in and to sharply reduce its support for Islamist movements, especially in Syria. Whether it can part company with Iran is another question. Those relations have grown very close; the two countries even share a natural gas field.

Meanwhile, the fissure’s effect on the American-led anti-ISIS campaign is uncertain. As recently as last week, U.S. officials were singing Qatar’s praises for its role in combating terrorism. Secretary of State Rex Tillerson said on Monday that he would try to mediate the new tensions between Qatar and the other powers—though, given the dearth of second- and third-tier officials in the State Department and an emptied diplomatic corps, it’s unclear how he might do this. It’s alarming enough that the rupture seems to have taken the Trump administration by surprise—perhaps another result of the president’s failure to nominate any under or assistant secretaries in the departments of state and defense.

Over the long haul, this rupture is likely to strain relations within and between the Arab countries. Then again, pan-Arabism unity has long been a bit of a fantasy. It’s possible that this new twist could have some productive consequences. If Qatar ends its support for Islamist fighters, that could speed up the war against ISIS and other extremists in the region. But if, at the same time, Qatar—whether through accession or coup—folds itself completely into the Sunni camp, this will further harden the sectarian divide. For all its flippancy and risk-taking, Qatar’s foreign policy did provide some gray zones and safe harbors in this conflict; it defused some crises, helped free hostages, offered a figment of a third way. Those things are now likely to be shut down and closed off. War will come closer to subsuming the entire region.

*Correction, June 5, 2017: This article originally misspelled Faysal Itani’s last name. (Return.)


          Trump’s Sunni Strategy        

President Trump’s maiden speech on the global stage, in Saudi Arabia on Sunday, has been described by commentators as the unveiling of a “Trump doctrine” on the Middle East. If this is true, it forebodes an escalation of war, not a road map to peace, and a shift in U.S. policy from soothing the region’s sectarian tensions to deepening its wounds.

Trump himself has won praise by some for sticking to script (a tellingly low bar) and for shirking mention of “radical Islamic terrorism,” which he’d previously denounced as the root of all evil (though, at one point, he reverted, uttering “Islamic” instead of the script’s “Islamist,” a slip that a spokesman later attributed to exhaustion—an eyebrow-raiser, given that this was the first day on a more than weeklong whirlwind tour).

But read closely, without a grading curve, the speech was by turns shallow, clichéd, and repellent. Even the few times when its authors approached a bold theme, they veered away, lest it soften the visit’s three main missions: to assure the region’s Sunni leaders that they can run their countries and oppress their critics with no finger-wagging from Washington; to wrap up a massive $110 billion sale of American weapons; and to declare war on Iran, or at least unabashed hostility toward its regime.

Early on in the speech, which had been bille