Archive for October, 2012

Jack Hunter: Pro-Life Means Anti-Drone

October 30, 2012

If life is sacred, how can we justify the random killing of innocent children?-

By Jack Hunter, The American Conservative,  October 26, 2012
PACOM / Flickr

My pro-life position is simple: Life is sacred. Life is so sacred that for it to be taken there must be an extremely good reason—and there are few good reasons. Convenience is certainly not a good reason. This innate sanctity of human life is something virtually all civilized people recognize despite one’s politics. Even those who identify as pro-choice are only comfortable with abortion to the degree that they can downplay or dismiss the humanity of the subject at hand.

Barack Obama has never claimed to be pro-life. As the Washington Examiner’s Tim Carney writes: “President Obama has killed hundreds of civilians, including women and children, in Pakistan, Yemen and Somalia through a drone war aimed at exterminating the suspected terrorists on his unprecedented and ever-expanding ‘kill list.’”

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Hawking and Mlodinow: Why God Did Not Create the Universe

October 27, 2012

There is a sound scientific explanation for the making of our world—no gods required

By STEPHEN HAWKING And LEONARD MLODINOW,

The Wall Street Journal, September 3, 2010

According to Viking mythology, eclipses occur when two wolves, Skoll and Hati, catch the sun or moon. At the onset of an eclipse people would make lots of noise, hoping to scare the wolves away. After some time, people must have noticed that the eclipses ended regardless of whether they ran around banging on pots.

Ignorance of nature’s ways led people in ancient times to postulate many myths in an effort to make sense of their world. But eventually, people turned to philosophy, that is, to the use of reason—with a good dose of intuition—to decipher their universe. Today we use reason, mathematics and experimental test—in other words, modern science.

Albert Einstein said, “The most incomprehensible thing about the universe is that it is comprehensible.” He meant that, unlike our homes on a bad day, the universe is not just a conglomeration of objects each going its own way. Everything in the universe follows laws, without exception.

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Stephen Lendman: Israel Wages War on Human Rights

October 26, 2012

by Stephen Lendman, Veternas Today, October 24, 2012

Daily incidents reveal Israeli state terrorism writ large. Praying to the wrong God is called terrorism. So is wanting out from under Israel’s repressive boot.

Occupation harshness knows no limits. Torture is official policy. So are virtually all other crimes against humanity. Palestinian civilians suffer most. Children are treated like adults. Going to and from school is hazardous.

Dedicated human rights advocates are targeted. Ayman Ameed Ahmad Nasser is one of many. He’s a researcher and member of Addameer’s Prisoner Support Association.

Established in 1992, Addameer provides legal services for Israeli political prisoners. It supports them nationally and internationally. It works to end torture and other abuses. It conducts solidarity human rights campaigns.

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Why Ravana Went Wet this Dusshera

October 25, 2012

               by Badri Raina

 

I refuse, yes, refuse, this Dusshera

To burn  at your hands—

You  who deserve the burning more

Roundly than do I.

 

That is why the rains came, rendering

Your  self-righteous fire  limp

Among the multiplying perfidies

Of the day.  Come to think of it,

You do so get  away, year after sinful

Year, by simply taking it out on my effigy.

Your ritual ablution done, how you return

To  ungodly pillage and murders foul,

Hiding your evil under all kinds of cowl.

 

While I,  knowledgeable envy of the gods,

Never once touched that fair lady, 

Go count the rapes you commit, in city

And  town,  in home and workplace, field

And farmland, school and  dharamshala,

On  women,  strangers and kin,  and ages

Of  every definition from  infancy to

Vrid  avastha. 

 

Not a single citizen of my Lanka

Ever went hungry or ill, unlike your republic

Where  your grubby hands are always in the till

That  rightfully belongs to those millions

Who keep you  clean and  going, while

Without the least lajja, you preach

Of  Ram’s  love of his praja.

 

And,  I refuse, also because you who

Set me afire with glee  have not an iota

Of  the ngyan  I have  of life and death,

Heaven and earth, more than all your

Godmen  and charlatans of other hue

Put together. 

 

Thus  I take a stand; I refuse;

And  I advise that before the catastrophe

You breed every minute of every day

Crush you to smithereens of screaming

Sin,  go  feel your  so repugnant hypocrisy,

And  a  new life of self-knowledge begin.

This easy way out of burning my effigy

Once  each  rapacious year is running

Its course;  go among the suffering,

And their countless  agonies endorse

As a first step to viewing the real ravana

That   degrades  your  fallen eye, 

Slithers across your slick faces,

And  hides in your beard,

Then  fall at my feet and  learn

Of the truths  that even the gods

Acknowledged only I discern.

–November 24, 2012

Eid Greetings To All

October 25, 2012

Nasir Khan, November 25,  2012

 Eid Mubarik to all around the world! 

Let’s hope that this holy occasion in memory of the sacrifice of Abraham [Hazrat Ibrahim in Islam], the patriarch of three monotheistic religions – Judaism, Christianity, Islam –  will bring a message of hope, good-will and peace to a deeply divided world, torn by wars and imperial depredations.

US does not want real democracy in Middle East: Chomsky

October 25, 2012

Visiting AUC for first time in 19 years, Noam Chomsky speaks of potential Israel-Iran conflict and America’s fear of democracy in Middle East

Randa Ali, ahramonline,  Wednesday 24 Oct 2012

Chomsky

Noam Chomsky at the American University in Cairo, 23 October 2012 (Photo: Randa Ali)

Hundreds filled the Ewart Memorial Hall at the American University in Cairo (AUC) on Tuesday to attend a lecture by prominent American political analyst and linguist Noam Chomsky on his first visit to the university in 19 years. “I can’t help but picture the world we live in, the one we’re leaving to our grandchildren, and it is not a pretty picture,” said Chomsky, 83, who arrived from Gaza on Monday.

During the lecture, called “Emerging World Order and the Arab Spring,” he spoke of the increasing threat of nuclear war and environmental disasters.

Chomsky argued that the only way out of the nuclear crisis was to embrace the initiative for a nuclear-free zone in the Middle East, adding that Egypt had played a leading role in advocating the initiative since 1995.

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Unresolved Kashmir issue and Indo-Pak border tensions: Urdu Weekly Rehbar

October 24, 2012

Editor’s remarks: The unresolved Kashmir issue continues to be the main cause of border tensions between India and Pakistan. There is no other way to solve this conflict that started in 1947 than to allow the right to self-determination to the people of Jammu and Kashmir. Contrary to the Indian government claims, Kashmir is not an integral part of India. Kashmir is a country under Indian military occupation. A handful of puppet Kashmiri opportunists who rule the state support the Indian rule but the vast majority of the people of Kashmir demands freedom. As long as the occupation will last, the heroic people of Kashmir will continue to resist the occupiers and they will continue to demand freedom (Azadi).

Nasir Khan, Editor

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Urdu Weekly Rehbar, Srinagar, October 21, 2012

https://i2.wp.com/www.rehbar.in/oct%202012/21%20oct%2012/p1.jpg

Israeli terror against the aid ship to Gaza

October 23, 2012

Nasir Khan,  October 23, 2012

Many in Norway and the rest of the world are shocked over the way the Zionists have behaved towards the aid activists to Gaza. But this sort of behaviour towards the aid volunteers including Aksel Hagen shows the total indifference of the apartheid state of Israel towards the rest of the world. It has turned Gaza into the largest concentration camp in the world in total violation of all norms of international behaviour and international law merely because it controls American Government and its foreign policy.

At the same time, all peace-loving activists and sympathisers to the dispossessed and captive Palestinians solute the activists on Estelle for their courage to show solidarity with the captive population of Gaza. The illegal blockade of Gaza is also a major offence against all those people who stand for justice for the Palestinians, respect for international law, the Geneva Conventions, and the UN Charter.

Francis Boyle: Bush, Blair Wanted For Crimes Against Humanity

October 21, 2012


We will keep after Bush and Blair for sure for crimes against peace, war crimes and torture in general,” Francis Boyle, a professor of international law

Video

A prominent international lawyer says former US President George W. Bush, and former UK Prime Minister Tony Blair stand guilty of crimes against peace, war crimes and torture.

In November 2011, the Kuala Lumpur War Crimes Tribunal, in which Francis Boyle, a professor of international law at the University of Illinois, led the prosecution team, convicted Bush and Blair of crimes against peace and humanity, and genocide over their roles in the Iraq war.

On May 11, 2012, the tribunal also found Bush, former US Vice President Dick Cheney and former US Secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfeld guilty of the crime of torture.

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The greatest mystery of the Inca Empire was its strange economy

October 20, 2012

 

By Annalee Newitz,  io9.com, Jan 3, 2012

The greatest mystery of the Inca Empire was its strange economy

In the fifteenth and sixteenth centuries, the Inca Empire was the largest South America had ever known. Centered in Peru, it stretched across the Andes’ mountain tops and down to the shoreline, incorporating lands from today’s Colombia, Chile, Bolivia, Ecuador, Argentina and Peru – all connected by a vast highway system whose complexity rivaled any in the Old World. Rich in foodstuffs, textiles, gold, and coca, the Inca were masters of city building but nevertheless had no money. In fact, they had no marketplaces at all.

The Inca Empire may be the only advanced civilization in history to have no class of traders, and no commerce of any kind within its boundaries. How did they do it?

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