Archive for the ‘iNteresting’ Category
Posted by abu ameerah on Sunday, September 16, 2007
Posted in CIA, corruption, economics, Government, Human Rights, In The News, iNteresting, Iraq, makes me think, National Security, occupation, politics, Public Policy, Realpolitik, scandal, war, War on Terror | Leave a Comment »
Posted by abu ameerah on Monday, September 10, 2007
Authorities in Israel recently arrested this group for involvement in a number of crimes as well as membership in a Neo-Nazi group. Oh the irony of it all. Besides having Neo-Nazis to contend with…I found it particularly amusing that these guys got to Israel through the “law of return” which enables just about ANYONE (it seems) with even remote Jewish ancestry to legally reside in Israel. I suppose importing Russian Jews in droves kinda came back to bite ’em in the latka this time…
Posted by abu ameerah on Saturday, September 8, 2007
A historical look at the intersection between mental instability and true religious fanaticism. Ivan Vasilyevich IV, or “Ivan the Terrible” as he later came to be known, plunged Russia into one of its darkest periods in history. Ivan IV gained notoriety, and infamy, for being Russia’s first Czar (Tsar) as well as one of the most brutal rulers in its history. Ivan’s cruelty toward his enemies, and his own people, almost seems something of legend. After all, history is indeed full of countless dictators and ruthless leaders.
However, Ivan the Terrible’s “iron fisted” rule seemed to take tyranny and human savagery to rarely (before) seen depths in early modern times. With disturbing precision, Ivan personally oversaw the torture and execution of tens of thousands of Russians that he percieved as his enemies. Ivan’s bloodthirstiness only grew with each day of his nightmarish reign and the executions he participated in turned more and more into sadistic orgies of violence, torture and brutal inhumanity. Ivan’s “purges” of Russia were cruel, yet calculated, and were designed to instill the utmost level of fear into his subjects. Enemies weren’t simply slated for execution by the Czar…but they were to be tortured and so violated that Ivan would forever be regarded as something more than a mere despot or iron fisted ruler. Ivan would ultimately be regarded — by many of his terrified subjects & political rivals — as the bringer of death for 16th century Russia.
His enemies, which included an enormous list of nearly every cross section of 16th century Russia, were eliminated in some of the most horrendous ways. Ivan’s tortures seemed to be rooted in his obsessive reading of the Bible. One might even argue that, in a strange way, his Biblical tortures were an affront to the very religion he claimed devout adherence to. In that sense, Ivan the Terrible’s awful reign presents us with a number of contradictions. What is certain though is that Russia was never to be the same after the death of Ivan Vasilyevich IV.
A few thoughts I was left with after watching these videos:
1. Ivan the Terrible comes across as more than histories “usual” despot. Rather he seems more like what we might describe today as a serial killer. Only this serial killer had the legitimacy of political rule.
2. Ivan’s seige of Kazan marks one of Russia’s earliest campaigns against Muslims. I could be wrong here.. and I probably am. However, I am correct in stating that Ivan IV was the first Czar to have ever fought against Muslims in any territory.
3. The striking similarities of Ivan’s reign compared with the brutal grip on power held by the Communists during the Cold War. While there are similarities that I will briefly mention in a moment…there is at least one basic difference (I think). Ivan IV’s reign of terror over his subjects reflected, to some degree, his sadistic personal desires. Ivan, after all, was known to not only have personally participated in the gruesome torture and execution of his victims — but he was known to take pleasure and delight out of it as well. The Communists on the other hand, though equally as ruthless and brutal as Ivan, saw executions as something more political and routine in nature. Theirs was a job that involved the elimination/extermination of any, and all, enemies of the state as part of a national duty (or broader national strategy) and not necessarily as part of any personal agenda (this may be a point of contention for some who will raise the spector of Joseph Stalin whose paranoia and ruthlessness seems to have rivaled that of Ivan). Communists’s saw their role in forever silencing all opposition as part of a noble goal — the establishment of a utopian Socialist society in Russia (formerly USSR) and beyond. ANYWAY…I could ramble on…here are the possible similarities:
a. The employment of a secret force to eliminate political opposition…
b. The use of “purges” to eliminate any, and all, opposition…
c. Paranoid leadership…
d. “Iron fisted” rule…
Ivan the Terrible – Part 1
Ivan the Terribe – Part 2
Ivan the Terrible – Part 3
Posted by abu ameerah on Tuesday, September 4, 2007
Have you ever wanted to find answers to some of the most important questions confronting mankind? Do you ever wonder what you’re life means in the grand cosmic scheme of things? Have you ever pondered the meaning of life itself? Have you ever been visited by Extraterrestrial beings? Is George W. Bush really that stupid? Is the the purple Teletubby (Tinky Winky) really gay?
Well…you won’t be finding answers to those questions (I think). However, you will find answers for questions related to Ramadan and other key Islamic topics. Actually, I’m not so sure about the whole “gay Teletubby” thing. Who knows, there might be a conclusion on that as well…
Anyway, do yourself a favor and check it out — if you haven’t already done so. Real Islamic scholars (Sh. Yasir Qadhi and Sh. Yaser Birjas) will be taking YOUR questions so feel free to give it to ’em … Full-Force!
Posted by abu ameerah on Monday, August 20, 2007
This is interesting if you’re into botany. Personally, I think the resources used to fund this massive project could have been better utilized elsewhere. Who knows … this might actually turn out to be something worth seeing.
Posted by abu ameerah on Monday, August 13, 2007
Posted by abu ameerah on Sunday, August 12, 2007
Interesting article that looks into the many costs of globalization — particularly concerning the health of the world’s poor.
Posted by abu ameerah on Friday, August 10, 2007
I saw this quite some time ago. O-60mph in 2.9sec … I want the Atom …
(Notice how the hosts face freakishly stretches as a result of air/wind pressure in the middle of the clip)
Posted by abu ameerah on Saturday, August 4, 2007
Media mogul Rupert Murdoch owns myspace and nearly everything else media-related under the sun.
Posted by abu ameerah on Saturday, August 4, 2007
ABU DHABI — The White Mosque or Shaikh Zayed bin Sultan Al Nahyan Mosque will be inaugurated in the last week of September.
The Dh2,167 billion project, work on which began in 1996, employed more than 3,000 workers as well as 38 global contracting companies, Engineer Khawlah Solaiman Al Sleimani, project manager, told Khaleej Times.
She said the mosque, which can accommodate 40,000 people, is a unique architectural feat.
According to her, the mosque is a piece of progressive Islamic architecture that has been built in line with the architectural development in the country and with the most up-to-date construction systems in the world with regard to the design and size of the structure. The mosque has seven German chandeliers. The chandelier that will be fixed in the main dome is the biggest in the world. It has a diameter of 10 metres and its height is 15 metres. Its stainless steel body is coated with gold.
The second and third chandeliers are seven metres in diameter, and 12 metres in height while the fourth chandelier is quite smaller. It is 4.30 metres in diametre, and 6.5 metres in height. The other three chandeliers are 3.5 metres in diametre and 5.5 metres in height. They consist of a metal structure coated with gold, and various coloured crystals. The seven chandeliers cost Dh30 million.
The mosque will enter the Guinness Book of World Records with its enormous carpet measuring 5,627 square metres. It is the largest in the world. Some 1,200 weavers, along with 20 technicians, and 30 workers put their efforts together to prepare this large handmade masterpiece, Khawla Solaiman said. The carpet, which weighs 47 tonnes — 35 tonnes of wool, and 12 tonnes of cotton, is unique with its designs, colours, and number of knots totalling 2,268,000. The carpet is estimated to cost Dh30 million. It consists of the best 25 colours used in Iranian carpets, she noted.
There are 57 domes covering the outside yards, main and side entries. All the domes of the mosque are coated from outside by white marble and the interior decor has been made of white gypsum. The mosque has four minarets which are 107 metres tall. The mosque’s main court measuring 17,000 square metres is the largest open space in mosques all over the world. Khawla Solaiman added that the mosque has 100 places for ablution in addition to the 80 water closets (toilets).
Posted by abu ameerah on Thursday, August 2, 2007
Much has been written over the past 4+ years with regard to the role that civilian contractors (aka “Mercs” or “Guns-for-Hire”) are playing in Iraq. The continued use and reliance on civilian contractors in Iraq has raised a number of legal and ethical questions for all of those who have investigated allegations of murder, fraud, and abuse by contractors. This article looks at the role of Blackwater in America’s war of shadows…
Civilian Military Contractors … Mercenaries … Guns-for-Hire … Private Security … The Coalition of the Billing …
Posted in general, Government, Human Rights, Intelligence, iNteresting, Iraq, makes me think, mercenaries, National Security, politics, private armies, privatization, Public Policy, Realpolitik, Technology, war, what the....?! | 9 Comments »
Posted by abu ameerah on Tuesday, July 31, 2007
Iraq is in a state of turmoil…poverty…sectarianism…occupation…but at least the Iraqi Parliament has found time for a needed vacation. Ah, the important things in life…
Posted by abu ameerah on Monday, July 23, 2007
I would recommend any serious student of history (and even Political Science) to watch this video. The video details the rise to power and eventual murder of Patrice Lumumba, the first Prime Minister of the Congo.
Old news footage of a detained Lumumba, shortly before his murder…
Posted by abu ameerah on Sunday, July 1, 2007
Faux News (FOX) up to it’s old tabloid new tricks again. You silly guys! When are you going to learn that you could just kill every Muslim — one military invasion at a time — that’s all? What are us Mozzzlems going to do against your sophisticated military hardware? All we have are camels and cous-cous, right?! How could the Mozzzlems fund a sustained military campaign? The oil is gonna run out, eventually, ain’t it? C’mon FAUX News…get with the program.
Anway, here is a rather tasty article that I came across…
“In the third Hannity & Colmes segment Friday night (6/29/07) devoted to the London car bomb, the sole guest was Brigitte Gabriel, aka “The Shrieking Muslim Hater.” Whatever the question, Gabriel answers it by shrieking about how horrible and how dangerous Muslims are. Naturally, she’s a favorite of Sean Hannity. With video.
The chyron on the screen read, “Are Muslim extremists in London to blame for this plot?” One wonders why FOX News bothered to put it in the form of a question. With a single guest like Gabriel, there’s only one answer. And, just in case the audience doubted her opinion, the chyron under her name said, “Terrorism Expert.” However, the audience never found out what kind of credentials she had.”
After you read through the article in the link above. Why not check out these peaceful Zionists (that Brigitte Gabriel so fondly speaks of) in action:
Actually, the Palestinian girl is probably a terrorist. Well, at least she looks kinda mean. So she should feel greatful that she didn’t catch a sniper round to the head.
Posted by abu ameerah on Wednesday, June 27, 2007
The newly released papers titled “Family Jewels” document a nearly thirty year time period in CIA (Central Intelligence Agency) history. The papers highlight the secretive exploits of a Government agency that operated (and continues to do so) almost entirely outside the law. Wire taps, break-ins, and assassination attempts are just some of the illegal actions taken by the CIA from the 1950’s to 1970’s.
While much of the information contained in these papers was already known, or at least alluded to by Ex-CIA officers, and written about by media figures — the papers themselves were only declassified a couple of days ago. At the very least, I think that the Family Jewels make for interesting Summer reading. Check out the link to read more about CIA involvement in everything from Watergate to botched assassination attempts Mafia-style (against Fidel Castro) here:
Simply click on the link above and search through 700 pages of CIA history. Just type in the page number you would like to look at in the “Go To” area at the top of the page.
Or you can view the entire document here:
(Takes a few minutes to fully load)