Tuesday, August 25, 2009

Turkish-Armenian Genocide Study the beginning









PART I, OTTOMAN EMPIRE CRUMBLES.

Genocide

The united Nations Convention on the Prevention and Punishment of the Crime of Genocide gives to the word its legal definition in 19481) the mental element, meaning the "intent to destroy, in whole or in part, a national, ethnical, racial or religious group, as such", and2) the physical element which includes five acts described in sections a, b, c, d and e.A crime must include both elements to be called "genocide."In the present Convention, genocide means any of the following acts committed with intent to destroy, in whole or in part, a national, ethnical, racial or religious group, as such:(a) Killing members of the group;  (b) Causing serious bodily or mental harm to members of the group; (c) Deliberately inflicting on the group conditions of life calculated to bring about its physical destruction in whole or in part; (d) Imposing measures intended to prevent births within the group; (e) Forcibly transferring children of the group to another group.Under these guide lines, and if the law is retroactive, then the Spanish's massacre of the Incas, the English and Netherlands massacres in north and south African, the Americans deliberate campaign of extermination of the native Indians just to name a few are genocides . Was the Armenians massacre during WW a genocide?The element of controversy in this case is war. The Ottoman government claims, they were at war, fighting on all front of the Empire and the Armenian's rebellion. Like in every legal matter pros and cons can be argued for the Armenian genocide. An accusation of genocide is not to be made lightly. To be an act of genocide, intent and planning to eliminate an entire group must be proven. Was the Ottoman government with its German allies, deliberately and systematically intending to eliminate the Armenian people as a whole? I do not claim to be an historian or a scholar on the subject but I did spend a long time studying the events and reading all the literature I could find on the subject. I will not attempt to answer these questions for anyone but for myself and maybe by the same token help some to better understand the question of the Armenian genocide.Armenistan became a province of the Ottoman Empire under Selim II ( 1524-1574) . Under the Ottoman rule Christians and Jews were a religious minorities. They were subjected to elevated taxation, but in return they were granted autonomy within their religious communities and were exempt from military service.By the time Sultan Abdul Hamid II came to power ( 1876-1909) the Ottoman Empire were in its final days.In 1828-29 at the end of the Russo-Turkish war Armenia was divided in  Eastern Armenia to Russia and Western Armenia remained under the Ottoman. Faced with years of segregation and injustice, the Turkish Armenians looked towards Tsarist Russia as the guarantors of their security. It is in 1877-78 at the conclusion of the Russo-Turkish War, that during the negotiations between Russia and the Ottoman that Armenian leaders stated that they sought their total autonomy. The treaty of the Congress of Berlin on June 13, 1878 gave them partial satisfaction. The treaty stipulates that Russian forces will remain in the occupied territories and the Ottoman government was to implement reforms and report periodically to the Great Powers ((England, France, Russia). Sultan Abdul Hamid II was outraged that Russia and Great Britain meddled in the Empires political and National policy. The government stall any implementation of reforms, instead in 1890, Sultan Abdul Hamid II created a paramilitary outfit known as the Hamidiye which was made up of Kurdish irregulars whose tasks were to deal with the Armenians uprising often due to over-taxation, corruptions and injustice.In 1889 a small group of Armenian nationalists from the Russian Armenia supported by the Armenian nationalist launch an armed expedition across the border into the Ottoman Empire. Between 1890 and 1895 activists encouraged resistance and rebellion and established new branches of Armenian resistance. In 1894 the Sassoun Resistance, in 1895 the Zeitun Resistance, in 1896 Sassoun resistance and in 1986 the take over of the Ottoman Bank by the Armenian Revolutionary Federation. Each one of these uprising were met with monumental force and blood sheds. Europe was well aware of the massacre of the Armenian and the policy of terror pursuit by the government.In October 1885 reports of the massacre brought the Great Powers to force Sultan Abdul Hamid II to sign a new reform package designed to curtail the powers of the Hamidiye which like the Berlin treaty, was never implemented. the same month 2,000 Armenians assembled in Constantinople to petition for the implementation of the reforms Sultan Abdule Hamid II severe retaliation all over Constantinople, then engulfed the rest of the Armenian populated provinces of Bitlis, Diyarbekir, Harput, Sivas, Trabzon and van to one and for all silenced the rebels. At every instance thousands of innocent civilians were killed. The worst atrocity was when The cathedral of Urfa was burn with thousand of Armenians who had taking refuge.. Estimates differ on how many Armenians were killed during these dark period but European documentation of the violence, which became known as the Hamidian massacres, placed the figures from anywhere between 80,000–300,000 Armenians.In 1907, the Armenian Revolutionary Federation attempted to assassinate Sultan Abdul Hamid during his pray at the Filtiz mosque. He survived the assassination attempt and resolve to the final solution to the Armenian question.In 1908 a group of intellectual and military officers named the Young Turks came to power. These young intellectuals were for Turkey for Turks policy. By 1914 at the eve of WW the Ottoman Empire was unstable with different Turkish National groups seeking power and fighting several foreign wars. Plan to draw the Persians, Kurd, Tatars and Georgians into a holy war against the Allies was in preparation. The Tsar taking advantage of the turmoils in the empire promised autonomy for Russian Armenia and Turkish Armenian if they fought on Russia's side. The Armenians National council (resistance) accepted the offer, 200.000 Armenians volunteer units served under the Russian colors. That single act adding the Nationalist political ideologies of the Young Turks, the crash of the economic after years of war, and religious differences sealed the Armenians faith. Fighting the English in the Dardanelles and the Russians with the Armenians in the Caucasus. The government of the Young Turk began a campaign beyond repression but of systematic extermination of the Armenian population who became a serious trait to the security and stability of the Empire.  Armenians from every town of Turkey were rounded up and transported by cattle train or forced marched for hundreds of miles to Syria, the troops escorting them allowed others to rob, kill and rape the Armenian, the death rate from starvation and sickness was staggering and is increased by the brutal treatment of the authorities. No facilities, shelters or supply were extended. PART II , MILLIONS OF ARMENIANS DEPORTEE
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Tuesday, August 11, 2009

China's Tank Man and the collapse of Communism..





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1989! Tiananmen Square, China. Did we forget?.
December 31 1988, at 11:59.57, in Times Square. A crowd is gathered, people are screaming and yelling. Then, the count down 3,2,1… midnight! Happy New Year! Everyone jubilates, embraces, chants and dances in the street and all over New York… it is 1989, a brand new year.
What can American wish for? Prosper in their enterprise, success, riches? What can we ask for? Liberty? Justice? Freedom? Written in the constitution, all of these essentials to human life were given to us as a birth-right. The last pillar of injustice was removed during the civil rights movement when thousands gathered in the name of justice to demonstrate for the end of segregation in the South.
We are the good people, the heroes of WWII, then, in our wake there are the other countries, under ruled by tyrants, where individuality is suppressed, for the benefit of the collectivity. The survival of the community passes before the individual " Communism ". After WWII , the Super Powers— the Soviet Union and the United States— engaged in a new war; “The Cold War”. The war was no longer in the open but now each side supported opposite factions to promote their opposing interests in the world. Everything was a covert operation, or in another word, espionage.
On television the news were about George H. W, Bush 41st president of the United States, Soviet troops leaving Afghanistan after nine years of fight the world called their Vietnam, Mikhail Gorbachev Leader of the Soviet Union slowly was opening the doors of his country to International dialogue and to reforms.
Was it the end of China’s old regime?
It is then the China's leaders realized the gravity of the situation. Marshal Law was immediately ordered in Beijing,massive force were sent to restore order. The army and the convoys were met by blockades. After 4 days stand off, the army had to retreat. Before such an humiliation before the world, the government retaliated back by mobilizing three hundred thousand soldiers from military districts from all over China. Their orders were that Tienanmen Square had to be cleared by dawn.
This time tanks ran over the barricades; the soldiers fired in the unarmed crowd. The confrontation lasted all through the night, thousands were killed, thousands were wounded and thousands held a last stand of the steps of the People's Heroes Monument, rivers of soldiers deployed to the Square, the civilians expected to be killed but the officers gave them amnesty if they did leave peacefully. They left... By dawn the army had cleared the Square.
On June 5th the army had complete control of the city. The people's voice had been silenced. Then the unexpected happened, early that morning, people resumed their lives, side walks was bustling with pedestrian going to work and on the main avenue a column of 20 tanks paraded, zigzagging, letting the population know that they had lost. Then the unexpected happened, out of nowhere one man stood in the middle of the avenue,
white shirt, dark pants, bags in his hands. Gun shot was then fired from the convoy, onlookers hide and ran away. This young man stopped the convoy, no one knew who he was, a student? a parent? For several minutes, we saw him gesticulate, what was he saying? … The night before, thousands were demonstrating for reform; today in spite of the massacre, one man alone faced a column of tank. That man became a symbol of hope for all those who had been silenced. That image became the icon of freedom and hope in the international arena.
Slowly, we saw more common individuals rising up with new found strength to protest for new reforms around the world. Before the end of the year Estonia, Latvia, and Lithuania, then still occupied by the Soviet Union joined hands, forming an uninterrupted 600 kilometer human chain, to demand freedom and independence. In November, the government of East Germany resigned and the Berlin wall was brought down. Czechoslovakia’s student demonstrated for revolution and the overthrow of the communist government. Then the Romanian Revolution ends its communist dictatorship. And on December 3 off of the coast of Malta, G.H.W Bush and Soviet Leader Mikhail Gorbachev release statements indicating that the Cold War between their nations may come to an end. By the end of the year the Iron curtain is lifting and the Cold War began to disappear.
Liberty, Justice, and Freedom are written into our constitution and bestowed unto us today by those who gave their live for it. What would we fight for, what right would you die for? One man stood on front of a whole convoy of tanks, ready to give his life. To die rather then live under oppression, corruption and injustice, He was the voice of all the people who die, that they did not die in vain.
Today, 20 years later, the communist Soviet Union doesn’t excite, Russia has lifted the Iron Curtain, the Berlin Wall was torn to pieces, and China is still a communist country but has joined 21st century global economies. Now the Cold War is not a looming threat but a textbook chapter for students. Today, the world has new foes.
World Peace is just a dream. But as long as there will be Tank Man, democracy and freedom will be won one country at a time.

Thursday, August 6, 2009

North Korea and its leader Kim Jong Il's Iron hand.





















Kim Jung II is potentially the most dangerous man in power today.
He declared that he will use his nuclear missiles if his regime is threatened. He rules over the most isolated country in the world. Its size is like the state of Mississippi, its population twenty two millions. The isolation of the population is total. No contact with anyone from outside unless priory authorized.
North Korea has no industry, its primary supplier is China and Russia. Its agriculture is primitive due to a lack of advance technology, yet his leader has acquired at the beginning of the twenty first century nuclear power.
It is know that Kim Jong II would sale his nuclear technologies (plutonium) to anyone who will pay the right price. It is the leverage he needed to guarantee of his regime.
North Korean Military is the 5th larger in the world (1, 2 million in uniforms) and it is the largest submarine fleet in the world.
You may wonder why when faced with such a treat the USA did not stop North Korea to pursue it nuclear program? First because of the fear of nuclear retaliation from Kim Jong II. and second unlike Iraqis and Saddam Hussein regime of terror, North Korea’s population are well indoctrinated. The indoctrination begins in kindergarten where they are told story’s of their “Dear Leader”. The level of popularity of their leader is unquestionable. There is not division in the country in this regard. The propaganda and life long indoctrination of the population is based and focused on it manipulation of tradition and faith.
In the early nineteen twenties when Korea was invaded by Japan, Japan’s cruelty toward Korea’s population was pushed by its policy of cultural obliteration of Korean identity. The Massacre conducted in its capital Nan king is still in the Korean's mind. At the end of the WWII Russia and USA divided the Peninsula at an arbitrary line "The 38th Parallel".Kim Il sung was chosen by Stalin to lead the north. He acted on his dream of reunifying the country on 1950 by invading South Korea. Three years later in 1953 a ceases fire was signed and the 38th parallel was one again the line of division between the north and the south.
Father and Son, like Stalin reinvented its life using propaganda. They were the liberator, savior, and father of the country. They promoted the ideologies called Juche, it is the official government ideology. The name is Korean for self-reliance. At first the ideology consisted of two fundamental ideas: the proletarian revolution belonged to the people, and that the masses must be organized by a great leader then Kim Il sung introduced a refined analogy: the leader is the brain, the people the body and the worker's party is the nervous system witch communicates with the brain on behalf of the people. Because the ideology was based on spirituality and thousands of years of tradition, he was able to have the devotion of the North Korean people, he isolated his country from any news from the outside world. Finally even slowly separating himself from Russia and China. It is in 1980 that Kim Il jung was officially designated to be the next leader of North Korea.
By the mid-eighties South Korea is a modern booming economic power, while North Korea’s economy is growing bleak. Seoul received in 1988 the Olympics. To destabilize the country North Korea engage in policies of kidnapping and act of terrorism. In 1987, 2 North Korean agents were arrested when a bomb explodes on a Korean airline at a stop over killing 150 peoples.
In the end of the eighties the communist world collapsed; the Berlin wall is brought down and Russia is no longer a super power.
Kim Jong II’s son Kim Il-sung is by this time at the head of the military, to secure the survival of his regime he turn to nuclear research.
In 1994 North Korea test his missile. The Clinton administration is getting ready for war. . In exchange Carter goes to North Korea to avoid war and negotiating the ceasing of Kim Il Jung missile program, in exchange for economic support. North Korea accepts. The republican takes over congress and the USA do not follow through.
For several years and all through the nineties natural disaster has weakened the country. The population is faced with famine and starvation. 30% of his gross domestic product goes to the military. Kim Il jung is more then ever determine to finalize his nuclear program at the expense of the people. Millions will be left to starve.
In 2000 secretary of state Madeleine Albright returned from a summit with an offer of North Korea to stop his nuclear program, all export of ballistic missiles, freeze the production, deployment and testing of all ballistic missile with a range of 300 miles or more. But to the surprise of everyone G. Bush' administration did not follow through with the offer. During an official meeting between USA and North Korea in 2003 in china, North Korea assert its possession of atomic weapons.

Monday, August 3, 2009

Islam a Religion for Peace.

Introduction to Islam. Let Baba Ali Explains:















Quotations: "The messenger of Allah said: "


"If anyone harms (others), God will harm him, and if anyone shows hostility to others, God will show hostility to him." Sunan of Abu-Dawood, Hadith 1625.
"Those who believe in the Qu'ran, and those who follow the Jewish (scriptures), and the Christians
(scriptures)...and (all) who believe in God and the last day and work righteousness, shall have their reward with their Lord; on them shall be no fear, nor shall they grieve." The Qur'an, 2:62
"The best jihad [struggle] is (by) the one who strives against his own self for Allah, The Mighty and Majestic," by the Prophet Muhammad.


A quick overview of Islam.
Islam is a monotheistic, Abrahamic religion. The root of the word Islam means, submission and total surrender to God. Follower of Islam are muslims, their teachings are in the Qur'an.
the “Five Pillars of Islam”; Faith, Prayers, Giving of Alms (charity), Fasting, Pilgrimage to Mecca. These are the duties of all Muslims.


Islamic denomination:
Islam has two major denominations; Sunni (85%) and Shi'a (15%). Islam is mostly in Africa, Middle East and also predominantly in Asia, China, Russia and the Balkans. With over 1.3 billion Muslims, Islam is the 2nd largest religion in the world and the fastest growing.


The six main Books consulted by Muslims:
• The Qur'an translated recitation are the literal words of God in their original Arabic language. Muslims believe that it was dictated to Muhammad by the archangel Jibril over 23 years.
• The Suhuf-i-Ibrahim (Scrolls of Abraham/Ibrahim)
• The Tawrat (a.k.a Tawrah or Taurat) This is the Pentateuch, the first five books from the Hebrew Scriptures (Old Testament).
• The Zabur Psalm Hebrew Scriptures. According to the Qur'an, the Zabur was revealed to David when he was king of Israel.
• The Injil. The Entire Gospels ,the words of Jesus.
• The Hadith, collections of Muhammad's saying. They are regarded as the Sunnah (lived example) of Muhammad.


Islam has six fundamental beliefs:
• A single, indivisible God. "Allah". The Arabic word for God.
• The angels.
• The divine scriptures.
• The Messengers of God, including Adam, Noah, Abraham, Moses, David, Jesus and Muhammad the final, universal message for all of humanity.
• The Day of Judgment.
• The supremacy of God's will.


Other beliefs include:
• God did not have a son.
• Jesus is a prophet, born of the Virgin Mary. Jesus to be God is blasphemous; it is seen as polytheism.
• Jesus was not executed on the cross. He escaped crucifixion and was taken up into Paradise.
• The existence of Satan.
• Redemption.
• All people are considered children of Adam. Islam officially rejects racism.
• All children are born pure and in a natural state of submission to Islam.
• Alcohol, drugs, pork, gambling etc …are sins.


The media has historically disseminated a very negative image of Islam. Its reports and focus are on the beliefs and practices of the most conservative wing of the religion. Looking back we will discover injustice, genocide, massacre of entirely innocent civilians in the name of Jesus or Abraham. Should the world judge Christianity based on the countless atrocities committed during the Inquisition, the acts of the KKK, Timothy McVeigh, Jim Jones, David Koresh, and and Judaism on Meir Kahane actions. Absolutely not. Then why do those same eyes let the public believe that Osama bin Laden and Mullah Muhammad Omar defines Islam?

Saturday, August 1, 2009

What does it take to awake compassion in us?


http://www.msf.org/
"Médecins Sans Frontières is an international, independent, medical humanitarian organisation that delivers emergency aid to people affected by armed conflict, epidemics, healthcare exclusion and natural or man-made disasters."
These men and women have no political affiliation, they do not seek self-serving publicity, book deals, a reality series... fame and fortune. Just for a little while, they will give themselves completely for the unfortunate regardless of race, religion or gender.

Today 2 children are born. Just because of circumstances one will live a life of plenty, and the other a life of struggle; the first one born in the suburbs of New York's manicured lawn and 2 car garage housing community, the other in a village of Sudan. Most of us never even heard of Sudan until Darfur! Yet there, there is a mother watching over her child wondering how she will keep him safe from harm, starvation, and disease.
We are so desensitized to poverty, famine, epidemic, and violence. We are bombarded with them in our movies, shows, and games that it all may seem unreal when we see them in the news.
During Bosnia and Rwanda's genocides while hundred of thousand were been massacred, what were we doing? Following the fascinating saga of President Clinton and Monica Lewinsky.
It is natural to feel helpless with so much misery and injustice. Where to Start? What can one person do?
We do not have to travel to Sundan or Chad, to find misery and injustice; we do not have to sacrifice our comfort either to make a difference, and we do not have to be a Saint like Mother Theresa to do the right thing. Let's begin by skipping a $5 dollar Starbucks Frapuccino or a $7 dollars Burger meal a week, would you miss it?
Know that those little things that you are skipping here or there and donating to an organization of your choice will make a difference. Pick a cause and be its champion. No money? Volunteer an hour or two a week to your local organization. There will be no Nobel Price, but life would have so much more meaning. You could honestly then say "this is why I was born."
So Get up, look around, someone is waiting for you!
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