Sunday, July 13, 2014
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Terrible disparity of Gaza
By Aijaz Zaka Syed
President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad of Iran had horrified and outraged Western powers and public opinion when he repeatedly prophesied that Israel would be wiped off the world map in not too distant a future. In fact, throughout his two terms in office, Ahmadinejad did little else other than obsess over Israel, the apparent myth of Holocaust and of course Iran's nuclear program. All this played rather nicely into the hands of Israel and its powerful friends in high places in Western hemisphere. Even people like us who have little love lost for Israel and feel the pain of perpetual Palestinian persecution found the Iran leader's fantasizing about Israel totally rather absurd. Watching Israel's reign of terror return to Gaza once again with full vindictive force over the past few days though...
Kashmir Times News Report
Be Proud of Your Scars..!
By Robert Clements
"We had a father who was a drunk and it was terrible the way he beat up ma!" some people tell me. "Maybe that's why you keep away from alcohol and treat your wife so well!" I say, "so don't be bitter about those scars! They made a man of you!" Some years ago, on a hot summer day in Africa, a little boy decided to go for a swim in the old swamp behind his house. In a hurry to dive into the cool water, he ran out the back door, leaving behind shoes, socks, and shirt as he went. He flew into the water, not realizing as he swam toward the middle of the lake, an alligator was swimming toward the shore. His father working in the yard saw the two as they got closer and closer together. In utter fear, he ran towards the water, yelling to his son as loudly as he could. Hearing his voice, the l...
Kashmir Times News Report
RSS's 'Pearls of Wisdom'
By Subhash Gatade
Suresh Soni, RSS's point person with the BJP, who facilitated 'anointment' of fellow Pracharak as PM candidate last year and smoothly engineered the marginalisation of the senior Advani and proved his clout within the organisation, is in news these days albeit for wrong reasons. News has come in that he along with his former supremo (the late) K S Sudarshan were also beneficiaries of the yet unfolding MPEB scam which has already claimed the head of a senior minister - another fellow Pracharak - in Shivraj Singh Chauhan's cabinet. Laxmikant Sharma, the said minister, who earlier handled important portfolios like mining, culture, human resources had claimed at the time of his arrest that he has been made a sacrificial lamb and when time comes he would also 'reveal the truth'. He allegedly ...
Kashmir Times News Report
Media Savvy Modi
By Lalit Sethi
The control of media by business and governments has been around for as long as print publications, radio and television channels came into the picture. It is not a new phenomenon, but is reaching new levels and heights. There is much in the air about the media savvy Prime Minister Narendra Modi, who has emerged as the best public relations officer of himself. He is articulate and his public speeches and those in Parliaments and other forums is enough to project his image. His social media exposure has been enormous and he is the front runner in the world with millions following his tweets and gather news if you wish. Wish to complain about some public services, he might say: you are welcome. He would reach out to the people concerned. He does not wish to waste his time in wooing journ...
Kashmir Times News Report
Shoes Are For Walking..!
By Robert Clements
I took my shoes over to the shoe shop and the salesman looked at them, "New shoes!" he said looking at the pair. "Quite old," I said, "nearly three years!" "They're still as good as new!" "But the soles have gone!" I complained, "they started falling apart!" "That's what happens when you don't use them," he said, "polyurethane soles are the best but have to be used constantly! Otherwise they disintegrate!" "You mean," I asked incredulously, "the soles got worn out because they were not used enough?" "Yep," he said and made out a bill for new soles, "you can pick them up on Saturday but same thing will happen if you don't use them." I wandered out of the shop and looked around, there were hundreds of people walking, running, rushing, all wearing different kinds of foot wear. I look...
Kashmir Times News Report
Umbrage against activists
By Kuldip Nayar
Democracy and personal liberty should never be taken for granted. This is a warning that the imposition of the Emergency gave 39 years ago when the then Prime Minister, Mrs Indira Gandhi, furtively extinguished the lights of freedom on the night of June 25-26 to save her skin. The Allahabad High Court had disqualified her as an MP for six years for using official machinery during her election campaign. Instead of stepping down, she suspended the constitution, imposed Press censorship and constricted personal freedom. More than 100,000 people were detained without trial and all the opposition members, including Jayaprakash Narayan who had led the movement against her corrupt government, were put behind bars. The worst was that she destroyed the institutions which still have not regained t...
Kashmir Times News Report
Marble or Tile..!
By Robert Clements
Two-thirds of the world's 946 billionaires made their fortunes from scratch, relying on grit and determination, and not good genes." I read on, "Bill Gates was a dropout, who finally got his honorary degree from Harvard University in June, 30 years after quitting the prestigious school to sell software!" "Other billionaires, such as Oprah Winfrey, made their fortunes against far greater odds! Born in rural Mississippi, she spent her early years living in poverty on her grandmother's farm. She moved to Wisconsin to be with her mother, but was sexually molested by her male relatives! At age 14, she reportedly gave birth to a premature baby who died! Only after moving to Nashville to be with her father did her luck finally start to turn!" Farther down same page were comments from youngster...
Kashmir Times News Report
By Praful Bidwai
Among the greatest losers from the tectonic political shift wrought by the Bharatiya Janata Party's Lok Sabha victory are the parties that comprise the Left Front, led by the Communist Party of India-Marxist (CPI-M) and including the Communist Party of India (CPI), Revolutionary Socialist Party (RSP) and All-India Forward Bloc. Their combined Lok Sabha tally has plummetted from 61 in 2004 to 24 in 2009 to its lowest-ever total: 12 seats. Their national vote-share has shrunk to five per cent from the traditional seven-to-10 per cent. This setback comes on top of long-term erosion in the Left's social base and political influence, its ideological ossification, its failure to evolve programmatic perspectives and political-mobilization strategies appropriate to Indian conditions, its outmod...
Kashmir Times News Report
It's A Worm..!
By Robert Clements
This morning I laughed as I read the comic strip where two ugly sea creatures at the bottom of the sea, awful squiggly, wriggly tentacles spread all over sea bed, bodies ugly, revolting, beady eyes peering from mass of quivering flesh, looking at each other, pointing to seabed and shouting as they see another creature crawling by; "Yuk! It's a worm!" My own mind of comic pictures open: "Yuk!" says Mrs Society Lady as she sneers at pretty woman at her husband's office party, "And where did you buy your dress my dear?" "At the store round the corner ma'am, do you like it?" "Do I like it?" asks the lady as she nuzzles her husband, "do you think I like it?" she asks her husband, who gives her a smile and leads her to the dance floor leaving poor girl wondering about dress she had paid a ...
Kashmir Times News Report
Mission forever unaccomplished
Arab spring, Jihad summer
By Pepe Escobar
Welcome to IS. No typo; the final goal may be (indiscriminate) regime change, but for the moment name change will do. With PR flair, at the start of Ramadan, the Islamic State of Iraq and al-Sham (ISIS, or ISIL - the Islamic State of the Levant - to some) solemnly declared, from now on, it will be known as Islamic State (IS). "To be or not to be" is so … metaphysically outdated. IS is - and here it is - in full audio glory. And we're talking about the full package - Caliph included: "the slave of Allah, Ibrahim Ibn 'Awwad Ibn Ibrahim Ibn 'Ali Ibn Muhammad al-Badrial-Hashimi al-Husayni al-Qurashi by lineage, as-Samurra'i by birth and upbringing, al-Baghdadi by residence and scholarship". Or, to put it more simply, Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi. IS has virtually ordered "historic" al-Qaeda - yes, ...
Kashmir Times News Report
Football on A Giant Screen..!
By Robert Clements
I wanted to watch football on a giant screen and was told by my buddies that Fred had the biggest TV screen in town. "Then why don't we all go there and watch football?" I asked and all of them kept silent. "Okay!" I muttered, "I'll go myself and enjoy the game like never before!" "Sure!" said Fred, "come over and we'll watch the game together." There was a big ruckus coming from Fred's apartment when I knocked; nobody opened. I knocked again, and still no one at the door. "You'll have to bang on it!" said a neighbor, "they'll all be in the kitchen!" I banged, and sure enough his wife let me in. "Where's Fred?" I asked. "In the kitchen!" said his wife, as she rushed towards the kitchen with me following. Fred was there. "What are you doin' here?" I asked as I saw him sprawled on a co...
Kashmir Times News Report
The 'Teekakaran Express' drives immunisation in Odisha
By Aditi Bhaduri
It is not yet six in the morning but the summer sun is relentless, the sand covered roads almost blinding the eyes. Dhruva Charan Rai, 46, is already up and ready with his auto rickshaw outside the Community Health Centre (CHC) in Chandanpur block of Puri district, in Odisha. This is a weekly ritual that he has been observing for the last four years and it has become an integral part of his routine. Every Wednesday, Rai wakes up at sunrise, gets ready and makes his way to the health centre instead of the auto stand. Here he waits patiently till his name is called out by the health worker. He then fills in a register, collects boxes of vaccines for the immunisation of children, loads them in his rickshaw and sets off on a mission. Rai is one of the many auto drivers who have been roped in...
Kashmir Times News Report
For food security
Global food security needs states to ally with family farmers
By Sylvia Kay
South Africa's most famous cleric, Desmond Tutu, in his inimitable style, once said, "If an elephant has its foot on the tail of a mouse, and you say that you are neutral, the mouse will not appreciate your neutrality." His blunt speaking has particular relevance to important negotiations taking place in Rome this week at the United Nations Committee on World Food Security, which will define principles for "responsible agricultural investment" (known as RAI) in the context of an ongoing food crisis and an unprecedented wave of land grabbing. When it comes to agriculture and food, the elephant is agribusiness. Just three companies control 50% of the commercial seed market; only four companies control 75% of the global trade in grains and soya. Their argument is that the state's role shoul...
Kashmir Times News Report
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