Zionists and Brahminists, Satanic cult governing us–Dalit Voice

Zionists & Brahminists — Satanic cult governing us

— will be wiped out when World War-III begins

Zionists and Brahminists are the world’s only two micro-minority cult and yet the cruelest creatures who have posed a danger to the entire humanity. Today, the zionists are forcing President Obama to attack Iran but, as already predicted in DV, that would surely lead to World War-III. We certainly welcome such a war for two reasons. (1) Such a war will end all future wars (2) and that will surely shift the balance of power from the West to the East — straightaway making China the world leader.

But Obama is hesitating. Already he has become very unpopular at home. Besides, he lacks the courage to launch such a war.

Obama as zionist agent: There are reports that Obama himself is a zionist-sponsored candidate for the presidential election. (Every American President has been a pro-zionist). The Americans got disgusted with George W. Bush and his endless wars against Islam pushing the country to bankruptcy. The zionist conspirators thought a Black with a Muslim name would be able to deceive the innocent Americans. Their calculations proved right and Obama won.

As soon as he stepped into White House, zionists took over Obama. Two of the most notorious zionists were made his left and right hand. David Axelrod, Obama’s brain, and Rahm Emanuel, the President’s chief of staff, are zionists. Hillary Clinton was also the choice of zionists. Obama had no choice but to surrender to zionists.

Iranian threat: The biggest defeat of Obama is in Palestine. Zionist Israel – with which the Brahminist India is chummy and virtually bossing over America — has rejected all efforts to bring peace in Palestine. Without solving the Palestinian problem there will be no peace in Middle East —if not the world itself.

But some thinking people inside Israel have raised a serious question: “What will Israel do if the nuclear-armed Iran attacks the illegally established zionist state?”

Second Intifada: Muslims all over the world from the very beginning never trusted Obama despite all his oratorical assurances to them. The very fact the Zionist Nobel Foundation gave the Nobel Prize for Peace to Obama and he accepted it without any hesitation proves his intentions. That means the zionists want Obama to attack Iran. But he dare not.

George W. Bush became a hated figure only during his second term. But Obama became unpopular within two years of entering the White House.

Palestinians — deceived not only by all the American presidents and hated by the zionists but also let down by their Arab brothers — are now thinking of launching the second Intifada (uprising). The first one erupted in 2000 and the second one will be more serious.

The second Intifada may coincide with the Iranian attack on Israel on one side and Lebanon on the other. The entire Muslim world will rush suicide bombers to Israel.

The zionists, who engineered the two World Wars will then force the Third World War that will be more deadly and more prolonged than the two previous wars.

Jump into Mediterranean Sea: The zionists in Israel, cornered from all sides, will then have no other go but to jump into the Mediterranean.

China and Russia, all the Muslim countries, plus Venezuela, Brazil, the entire African continent will support Iran. Except “Hindu India”.

The micro-minority pro-zionist rulers of India, surrounded by enemies outside the country and hated inside by the overwhelming indigenous Moolnivasi Bahujans, will then have no other go but to commit mass suicide and follow their zionist cousins. Good riddance to bad rubbish.

Satanic cult ruling us: Thinking people all over the world have now realised that the very survival of the human race is at stake. The danger posed by the Brahminists is not so much known outside India — though DV family members in America have by now identified this enemy from their fascist behaviour.

Together, the zionists and their more dangerous Brahminist cousins constitute a sadistic and dangerous Satanic cult.

They are well-organised and well-funded. The entire banking industry and media are in their pocket. Both these weapons are used to subvert every institution. India has been pauperised and reduced into a beggar nation.

Henry Makow warning: Unless we wrest control from these twin Satans, we are doomed. Fortunately we need not take much pain to finish them. Being suicide-prone, the two cousins are digging their own grave by triggering the World War-III in which every country in the world including America will join to push them into war and fry them alive.

We must get ready with whatever weapons to defend ourselves and this Mother Earth they are killing.

Henry Makow, a Canadian Jew and an expert on the problem, expects the zionists to start preparing for the World War III from this year (2010) itself. By 2012 we will get clear evidence of the end to our present civilisation right before our eyes. Get ready for the civil war.

Deadly wars on Muslims: After the so-called “Holocaust lie” which the zionists manufactured to create Israel, the second biggest lie is the 9/11/2001 — the Israeli Mossad attack on WTC twin towers to launch the worst deadly wars on Muslims. They invent dangers to dupe and deceive innocents. And provoke wars.

Both Zionism and Brahminism thrive and survive only on wars, blood, hatred and lies. The zionists invented “terror”, meaning Muslims. And the copycat Brahminists followed it.

The Lie is mightier and deadlier than the Hydrogen Bomb. The Bomb merely devastates. The Lie steals our souls, says Henry Makow.

Muslims not terrorists: If “terrorism” did not exist the racist Israel could not have been created. Brahminists repeated this terrorist lie and today India is full of “terrorism”. Every day new and newer terrorism is invented. The two evil forces killing the world are playing upon “terrorism” to destroy the society’s immune system.

Muslims are not terrorists. They are victims of the Brahminical terrorism, the twin founders of the Satanic Cult.

Both the zionists and Brahminists do not believe in god. But they sell god to us to deceive us and make money. They threaten us and bully us in the name of god. They believe not in god — but Satan.

A Satanic Cult governs the world. This cult will die with the World War-III. We assure you.

DV June 16, 2009 p.10: “62-year-old World War-III against Islam will end only with Palestinian peace”.

DV Feb.16, 2009 p.9: “DV proved right on Palestine”.

DV Edit Feb.1, 2009: “Blood thirsty zionists can’t defeat Hamas”.

DV May 1, 2008 p.7: “More bad news for Israel”.

DV April 1, 2008 p.6: “Hamas bravery rattles zionists”.

DV Jan.1, 2008 p.5: “Arab surrender to zionists?”

DV Aug.16, 2007 p.18: “Hamas may grab West Bank”.

DV July 16, 2007 p. 12: “DV supports revolutionary Hamas & assures victory to Palestinians”.

Stretching pipelines, China expands its military presence in Central Asia

Stretching pipelines, China expands its military presence in Central Asia

Russian soldiers sit on armored personnel carriers on the background of Chinese flags during the exercises countries – members of SCO. Chelyabinsk Region, Russia, August 17, 2007.

20.04.2010

Providing military assistance to Kazakhstan, China does not forget about the other countries of Central Asia. Almost everywhere in the region a strong presence in China and its weapons. More and more joint military exercises are conducted in Russian language.

Just in the last few years, China has become a vital economic partner in Central Asia. Beijing strives to surpass Moscow in the balance of trade with the region. China’s trade with Central Asia has already exceeded $ 25 billion mark annually.

It remains quite a bit to catch up with Russia, whose trade with the region does not exceed $ 27 billion, says the Web site Jamestown.org in its special study on the military cooperation between China and Central Asia.

In the field of security the Chinese leadership managed to create a demilitarized zone along the border with Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan and Tajikistan – almost the entire perimeter of the former Soviet-Chinese border.

In addition, there was a system of collective security through the establishment of the Shanghai Cooperation Organization. The danger of supporting Uighur movement in China from certain groups in Central Asia is reduced to zero.

Still, China is concerned about the risk of political instability in connection with the activities of Islamic rebel groups, the increased smuggling of drugs and the U.S. military presence on the basis of “Manas” in Kyrgyzstan. But this strategic partnership with the governments of Central Asia is key to Beijing, although the literal war

At the Russian-Chinese border. Primorsky Kray, August 1, 2002.
cooperation remains limited.

Still unclear and not obvious possible consequences of Uighur protests in China, but Al-Qaeda has already announced plans to move its activities to the Chinese territory. Do not disappear possibility that Islamic militants would try to turn Central Asia into the troubled area. On this basis, the Chinese leadership might be tempted to take more active measures aimed at strengthening security in Central Asia.

Military maneuvers – Home Home

Military cooperation between China and Central Asia focused mainly on joint exercises on a bilateral and multilateral basis. First, the maneuvers were organized in the framework of the Shanghai group between China and each country separately. In 2002, the first such exercise between China and Kyrgyzstan.

In 2003 conducted the first multilateral exercises involving thousands of troops from China, Russia, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan and Tajikistan. That is practically attended by all members of the Shanghai group, except for the Uzbeks. In 2006, Uzbekistan held its first general anti-terrorism exercises with the participation of all countries of the Shanghai group, without exception.

In the same year in Kulyab region held Sino-Tajik maneuvers aimed at combating terrorist groups in the highlands. The exercise involved 300 Tajik and 150 Chinese soldiers.

Similar exercises were held in 2006 in Kyrgyzstan. In 2007, there were two shared with the Chinese teaching. One was called “Anti-Terror – Issyk-Kul – 2007″ in him in May attended spetsvoyska all countries of the Shanghai group.

The second exercise was held in August 2007 in the region of Chelyabinsk. In general, China has participated in more than twenty scientists in the

Chinese soldiers in the background of the stadium in Beijing. August 5, 2008.
Shanghai group. In 2010, the planned exercise at the firing range Semirechensk Matybulak in Kazakhstan.

Mistrust

Despite the emphasis in the direction of cooperation, such exercises are not always without difficulty. They have their own way show some level of mistrust between the officers and especially between the Russian and Chinese military command.

There is also tension among the countries of Central Asia. For example, in 2009, Tashkent refused to participate in the exercises of the Shanghai group in Tajikistan near the Afghan border. It was a demonstration of the conflict between Tashkent and Dushanbe on the construction of hydroelectric plants. Uzbek leaders publicly criticized the Tajik side, insisting that the building may pose a threat to water balance in the region.

BEST walkie-talkie – Kazakhs

Judging by the rapidly increasing Sino-Kazakh trade, Kazakhstan remains the most preferred partner of Beijing in the region. Since 2000, the countries signed a number of treaties to which China was to “bribe” Kazakhstan, that he took

Participants of the Sino-Russian military exercises in the north-east China. July 23, 2009.
active stance against Uighur separatism and religious extremism.

From 1997 to 2003, Astana received technological assistance from China, communication equipment and vehicles worth 4.5 million dollars. Kazakhstan has made it clear that he is interested in acquiring additional military equipment from the Chinese army.

The joint anti-terrorist operations Kazakhstan seeks to use the Chinese experience. New Kazakh military doctrine, adopted in 2007, stresses the particular importance of bilateral relations with China on security issues. This saves a reference to the leading role of Russia.

In the problem of increased drug smuggling border cooperation is a priority. Since 2008 both countries have conducted several joint operations against drug traffickers.

CHINESE WEAPONS More

True, the Chinese assistance to other States looks much more modest. During a meeting of defense ministers of China and Turkmenistan in 2007, the parties agreed that China will supply Turkmen army small arms and uniforms for officers and soldiers. Beijing offered to the military Turkmenistan loan of three million dollars.

Beijing is also trying to extend its military aid and the other two nearest neighbors – Kyrgyzstan and Tajikistan. In 2005 the official visit of Defence Minister of China in Dushanbe, led to the signing of several military agreements, albeit on a limited scale. Both countries agreed to share intelligence on terrorism, drug smuggling and organized crime.

From 1993 to 2008, China has provided assistance to Tajikistan in the amount of $ 15 million. In April 2009, China undertook to provide further military assistance to Tajikistan in the amount of 1,5 million dollars.

According to the signed in Bishkek in 2002, the treaty, military assistance to Kyrgyzstan is capped at 1.2 million dollars. In August 2008, China has sent military supplies to Kyrgyzstan in the amount of 700 thousand dollars.


Members of anti-terrorist exercises. Issyk-Kul, 30 May 2007.
China’s relations with Uzbekistan fold more difficult. In 2000, China made its first step towards the military market in Central Asia, Tashkent equipping party sniper rifles.

In 2009, signed a new Uzbek-Chinese treaty, under which China has provided assistance to 3.7 million dollars for the purchase of mobile scanning systems for the Uzbek border points. With further aging Soviet military equipment in Central Asia, China supply its army equipment and training is increasingly fills the niche left by the collapse of the Soviet Union.

SPEAK ONLY RUSSIAN

In China, the organization of training for military personnel armies of Central Asian countries there are serious obstacles to the existence of a language barrier.

All courses for officers from Central Asia to China’s military academies are taught in Russian. Chinese instructors and teachers do not speak the languages of Central Asia. Training officer – do not speak Chinese. From 1990 to 2005, only 15 of the Kazakh officers were sent to China for training. Later cooperation increased slightly.

From 2003 to 2009 year 65 Kazakh military were trained in Chinese schools. From Kyrgyzstan and Tajikistan in China were trained to 30 military experts.

FOUR DIRECTIONS

It is expected that in subsequent years military cooperation between China and Central Asia will be developed primarily in four directions.

Home care – the fight against proliferation and drug smuggling. Expected to draw more attention to Beijing for Kyrgyzstan and Tajikistan, countries with very weak boundaries and traditional smuggling routes in recent years aimed at the Chinese market for drugs. Moreover, emphasis will be placed not on the multilateral and bilateral agreements between China and the countries of Central Asia.

The second theme is concerned with finding opportunities to create joint peacekeeping brigade primarily for service in Afghanistan. In the foreseeable future there will be a massive humanitarian aid to Afghanistan. The Afghan government supports this idea.

The growing involvement of Russia and China in resolving the Afghan problems and their economic interests will contribute to the creation of such a peacekeeping force. This may have a symbolic application, indicating the strengthening of Sino-Central Asian cooperation. It also confirms the ability of political leaders to organize joint actions in Afghanistan.

It is quite likely that China will initiate cooperation with Central Asia in matters of counterterrorism. But so far this cooperation mainly confined to declarations of intent. Cases of deportation of Uighur dissidents from Central Asia at the request of China were quite rare.

But the growth of Islamic radicalism in Central Asia under the impact of events in Afghanistan and Pakistan and Uygur performances in China, all this might encourage Beijing to joint actions. At the same time, the Central Government did not wish that this cooperation was the occasion for China to interfere in their internal affairs.

The pipeline

And last but not least, the trend is connected with the need for Beijing to protect the Chinese energy interests in Central Asia.

Opening in 2009, gas pipeline between China and Central Asia confirmed the need to seek such protection. It has further deepened the already existing concern about the safety of the Kazakh-Chinese pipeline.

In December 2009, Vice President of the Central Military Commission of China Guo met with Minister of Defence of Kazakhstan Adilbek Dzhaksybekov. The participants stressed that these concerns be discussed at the highest level.

Unlike the West, China has not yet built a strategy to protect its interests, including pipelines, companies and communities of Chinese immigrants.

In turn, the leaders of Central Asian countries do not want to allow the Chinese military to ensure the safety of Chinese interests in Central Asian territories of the obvious reasons related to national sovereignty.

Addressing the issue could be the establishment of joint units to monitor and protect the first pipeline, and in more remote time, and the protection of Chinese corporations.

A Mad Tea Party

illustration by Helen Werner Cox

A Mad Tea Party

William John Cox

There are good reasons why the tea partyers are mad; however, their solutions are equally mad.

The movement is being joined by independents, republicans, and democrats who have come to believe their government has failed them and that neither political party is doing anything to fix it. This is true; however, all of us are being manipulated by the big corporations and the wealthy elite, who use their corporate-owned, mainstream media to mislead the people into acting against their own interests.

The corporations and wealthy elite have been highly successful in using their money to seize control of the government and the media to spread their lies, most recently in the debate about health care.

When the March Hare tells Alice in Wonderland that she should “say what you mean,” she replied, “I do, at least – at least I mean what I say – that’s the same thing you know.” To which the Hatter replied: “Not the same the same thing a bit! Why, you might as well say that ‘I see what I eat’ is the same thing as ‘I eat what I see!’” The March Hare added, “You might as well just say that ‘I like what I get’ is the same thing as ‘I get what I like!’” The Dormouse said, “You might just as well say, that ‘I breathe when I sleep’ is the same thing as ‘I sleep when I breathe!” The Hatter concluded, “it is the same thing with you.”

And so it was for the workers, the middle class and small business owners of the United States, who became convinced by a litany of repeated lies that the democrats were trying to impose socialized health care with one hand and were trying to destroy Medicare with the other.

The Republicans successfully tricked the Democrats into passing a Republican health care plan that primarily benefitted the health care, pharmaceutical and insurance industries, over the clever “opposition” of the Republicans. The losers were the American people who suffer from the worst health care provided by any industrialized nation, while paying the greatest cost.

The next targets are social security and all other social welfare programs, including unemployment insurance, and free public education. The burden of taxation has already been shifted to workers, the middle class and small business owners, and now the people are being convinced that they cannot afford the very programs that most benefit themselves. Sheer madness!

The people have every right to be angry; however, they had better wake up, smell the tea, and recognize that they are being played for fools, before it is too late.

The future of democracy and the last few remaining freedoms hang in the balance.

Helen Werner Cox was trained as a classical painter at Boston University. She is nearing retirement as a nationally-certified library media teacher, who has made extensive use of art in her literacy programs.

William John Cox is a retired supervising prosecutor for the State Bar of California. As a police officer he wrote the Policy Manual of the Los Angeles Police Department and the Role of the Police in America for a national advisory commission. Acting as a public interest, pro bono lawyer, he filed a class action lawsuit in 1979 on behalf of every citizen of the United States petitioning the Supreme Court to order the other two branches of the federal government to conduct a National Policy Referendum; he investigated and successfully sued a group of radical right-wing organizations in 1981 that denied the Holocaust; and he arranged in 1991 for publication of the suppressed Dead Sea Scrolls. His 2004 book, You’re Not Stupid! Get the Truth: A Brief on the Bush Presidency is reviewed at http://www.yourenotstupid.com, and he is currently working on a fact-based fictional political philosophy. His writings are collected at http://www.thevoters.org, and he can be contacted at u2cox@msn.com.

HEZBOLLAH ARMS: HARIRI, SAME ACCUSATIONS TO IRAQ IN 2003

HEZBOLLAH ARMS: HARIRI, SAME ACCUSATIONS TO IRAQ IN 2003

(ANSAmed) – BEIRUT/ROME – On his official visit to Rome, Lebanese Premier Saad Hariri has said that the Israeli accusations of an alleged supply of Scud missiles by Syria to Shia movement, Hezbollah, are similar to those made about weapons of mass destruction against Iraq in 2003 which brought about the Anglo-American invasion. ”The accusation against Lebanon of possessing large calibre missiles are similar to the those that were used to say that Iraq had weapons of mass destruction,” said Hariri, quoted by Beirut-based newspaper An Nahar. ”Those arms were never found but the Israelis are trying to reproduce the same scenario for Lebanon,” added Hariri on the fringes of a meeting with representatives of the Lebanese community in Italy. Following Israel’s accusations that Syria is supplying Lebanese Hezbollah with Surface-to-Surface Scud missiles, the US State Department officially protested with Syria’s top diplomat in Washington, describing it as ”provocative behaviour”. For its part, in recent days Damascus has denied any involvement in the matter, whilst in an interview Hezbollah’s second in command, Naim Quassem, neither confirmed nor denied the news. For the first time since he came into office, Hariri is in Italy today, to meet the President Giorgio Napolitano and the Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi. The situation in Lebanon and of course bilateral relations (with Italy’s significant presence in the Unifil contingent) are on the agenda. The Middle East peace process and Iran will certainly feature in the talks, with the UN Security Council’s debate on possible pressure exerted on Tehran still ongoing. Lebanon is a non-permanent member of the UN Security Council and will chair it from May. Particular attention, however, will be reserved for bilateral relations, with the Italian presence in the Unifil contingent, economic relations and cooperation. These are fields in which Italy is particularly active: from 2006 to the present day, Italy has provided aid totaling 190 million euros. The EU has also asked Italy to guide talks on the coordination of donors to Lebanon. (ANSAmed).

The Human Need for Others

Loneliness

Review – Loneliness

Human Nature and the Need for Social Connection
by John T. Cacioppo
W. W. Norton, 2008
Review by Roy Sugarman, Ph.D.
Apr 20th 2010 (Volume 14, Issue 16)

The authors are not alone in considering the value of belonging, or relatedness, given that Louis Cozolino and others have already added to the literature on the subject. As the world tries to deal with living longer but less healthily, one of the situations which we are urged to avoid is the loneliness which may accompany old age, and which may accompany a whole host of illnesses, as Cozolino and others suggest.

At the coffee shop along the high street in my road is a daily visitor, a resident really, Gianni by name.  At age 76, and unaware of the day and date, he engages with just anyone passing by, or certainly sitting to drink coffee.  He asserts that he has no idea how he came to be lonely at his age.  His antidote, driven by a need to consort with others, is to sit at the pavement café every day.  At five pm, as the shutters roll down, he passes through the pedestrian crossing to his apartment, only to emerge and repeat his day the next day, like Groundhog Day.  He says if he didn’t, he would just shrivel up.

Humans are desperate it seems, to form individual and group liaisons with multiple others.  Certainly it seems we evolved language and social systems to do this that, as we lost our protective jaws and claws and probably our four legged locomotion, and became vulnerable as loners. When we are ill or depressed, or damaged in some way, we tend to withdraw socially and lick our wounds.

Social systems, even in fairly ancient looking societies such as the Kung in the Kalahari Desert of southern Africa appear to be fairly typical of such agrarian societies.  Their hunting and living is cooperative, and it appears the capacity of the females to share themselves in dallying with others is also promoted, allowing for gossip and other entertainments. Breast feeding is on demand until five years old or more, children are carried in a sling for about 1500 miles a year, and the 11 000 year old Kung carry on pretty much as always they did before.  Being stingy is a serious offence, giving is everything: this does not create an Eden, as the Kung murder rate amongst themselves is higher than the USA per capita. Nevertheless, their tight knit and altruistic society underpins what we all value.

The authors explore in depth the interplay of three essential factors in the ‘sting’ of loneliness or social exclusion.  Most of us have been chosen last in the playground or classroom or at a dance, or some other place, some of us not I guess, but the sting of social exclusion is understood by all.  While it may no longer mean certain death, as it does in the African savannah, it certainly can drive people to despair, or even suicide. Our level of vulnerability to social disconnection is mentioned by many motivational scientists, speaking of the drive that is increased by a sense of social connectedness, not just mastery, when we contemplate change (see the excellent lectures on TED.com from Dan Pink and others).

Loneliness begins to disrupt our ability to self regulate our emotions and also our social cognitions.  It’s a two way street, with social separateness and dislocated emotions and cognition in turn leading to further social disconnectedness and further self fulfilling actions. This higher sensitivity to events and feelings, at the same time less accurate, creates a vortex which is difficult to escape. This also leads to other behaviors, as the authors describe, where loneliness leads us to seek and enjoy unhealthy food, even if we rate the food poorly in terms of taste and satisfaction: this leads us to understand why the stereotyped TV character, recently dumped by a lover or disappointed by a parent, is destined to appear onscreen with a tub of double chocolate something or the other, and eat it all.

As Baumeister found with cookie experiments, so it is clear too that lonelier adults eat fattier foods, and if loneliness is measured by a scale, for each standard deviation off the mean, lonely people consume about 2.5% more calories from fat.  The upper layers of our brain, the neocortex, are not thus immune to the influences from the ‘troops’ below, and when they get lonely, behavior and cognition changes.

Research connected to loneliness is spurred on by the changes in our society. We have demonstrably fewer close persons to discuss important issues with, despite social networking sites that allow us to connect widely but superficially with others. Average households are smaller, and increasingly run by a single parent. In 2000, 27million people lived alone in the USA, 36% of them under the age of 65, estimated this year to rise to 29 million, an increase in more than 30% since 1980….and of course we are getting fatter, for reasons the authors make clear.  One is reminded of what Hobbes suggested life might have been life without the social contract that guided our culture and laws: solitary, poor, nasty, brutish and short….I wonder if that will still emerge as the dominant life for many?

The authors go on to investigate the cultural and medical facets of loneliness, both in groups and in the self, but ask why loneliness promotes so much wear and tear on the system, so as to occasion illness. Social isolation has been shown to be on a par with other risk factors, such as hypertension, obesity, sedentary behavior, and smoking as risk factor for illness and early death.  One would imagine this is a behavioral issue, but the effect sizes are too large. Social class, as in the famous Whitehall British Service study, confers many risks, as does connectedness itself, and even obesity clusters in social classes.  Less education, less money, not only at the bottom end of the ladder, with imbalances in effort and reward, and low levels of control in one’s working life act as independent predictors of cardiovascular events, even when all other variables are controlled for.

Loneliness and health, say the authors, have five causal pathways. Health behaviors (executive control is compromised by loneliness), exposure to stress and life events (again, perceived control is an issue), so then perceived stress and coping are influenced as well, physiological responses to stress such as the allostatic load of loneliness is higher, and rest and recuperationare also impacted by loneliness.

Drawing on genetic evidence, part two of the book plays on the words ‘selfish genes’, as put forward by Dawkins, the authors then set out to show how there is more than just social influence at play here, more than just a skewing of our self image by comparison to those around us. This discussion involves the intrasubjective nature of our emotional social development, and the way we respond to subtle cues and outright rejections.

Reference is then made to Harlow’s studies on monkeys and tactile nurturing, and to the Romanian orphans’ autistic responses, Lorentz, Bowlby and the usual gang of suspects in the attachment and nurturing fields, as well as more modern examples moving away from Descarte’s errors, namely Damasio, and the work of McClintock on the merging of the menstrual cycles of her subjects.  Reference is also made to the physiology of oxytocin and related issues such as sucking on cigarettes, and the internal massage provided by food sliding down our digestive tracks.

The book tends to thus meander along, providing a very detailed look at all the usual aspects of loneliness and connectedness, finally providing an EASE approach to social connectedness (extend yourself, develop an action plan, selecting more promising relationships, and adopt an expect-the-best philosophy.

This is a really easy to read primer on social connectedness and its value, explaining a lot about human nature, a peep under the hood of something most lay people would just take for granted, blending biology and social cognitive theory with experiments in human nature, and anthropology. Csikszentmihalyi is mentioned more than once, and has written a comment on the book, fitting in with his Flow ideology, and the value of reaching out to others.  Of course, we all know by now, certainly post- Bowlby that we all need others, not just early in life, but late as well and in between, as Cozolino has written about, to keep us healthy in body and of course mind. Part of human motivation is to seek relatedness, and avoid the crash of self esteem that social ostracism will bring, with its impact on our executive function and social cognitive accuracy.

I do think that a second edition of this book could have a better structure, nicely accessible as it may be in its present form, but difficult to edit out the ‘take away message’ into a more succinct and functional format then it now presents. For instance, the effects on the motivating capacity of the organism, as Cozolino has done in his latest works (see The Neuroscience of Human Relationships and The Healthy Aging Brain)

Recommended though, highly so, a most interesting read indeed. Buy it, and share its insights with friends.

© 2010  Roy Sugarman

Roy Sugarman, PhD, Human Performance Institute, Sydney, Australia

Semipalatinsk, Kazakhstan–Searing Life-Threatening Legacy of Communism

Why Kazakhstan Is Front and Center at the Global Nuclear Security Summit

Al Eisele

Semey, Kazakhstan – Praskoviya Koloskova is 85 now, a widow living in a retirement home in this forlorn city on the vast windswept steppes of northeast Kazakhstan that was formerly known as Semipalatinsk, and she admits that her memory sometimes fails her.

But she has no problem remembering what she witnessed 57 years ago, on the morning of August 12, 1953, when the Soviet Union detonated its first thermonuclear bomb at the Soviet Union’s main test site for atomic bombs some 90 miles to the west.

“Usually, before a test, they recommended that we open our windows and doors and wait outside of our house,” she said, referring to the warnings the local citizenry received when Soviet scientists began testing atomic bombs four years earlier in a frantic effort to catch up with the United States.

“But this was different,” she said through an interpreter. “I felt the [pressure] wave and then it was like a cup with smoke and tongues of fire, and after that, the fire was going up and I saw the mushroom and then breathed the air, which was full of ash. It seemed like it was only a hundred meters away.”

Mrs. Koloskova’s husband, a carpenter, was at work and their three sons, who were in school, also witnessed the blast, only the fifth of 456 nuclear devices — ll3 of them above ground or atmospheric — detonated at the Semipalatinsk test site between 1949 and 1989. It was a relatively small explosion, 400 kilotons, but it paved the way for first true Soviet hydrogen super bomb, a 1.6 megaton monster, two years later.

The radioactive fallout from all the above ground and atmospheric tests left Mrs. Koloskova with health problems and occasional nightmares. “I don’t know what happened with me, but from that moment, I felt headaches and nervous disorders, and I imagined it many times,” she said.

But she was one of the lucky ones. Still vigorous and able to walk with aid of a cane, she was not afflicted with any of the horrific tumors or the radiation-caused genetic mutilations and birth defects that affected many residents of Semey and other settlements near the 7,000-square-mile test site known as the Polygon, Russian for “firing range.”

Her story, and those of thousands of others like her, is the reason why Kazakhstan, a Central Asia country unknown to most Americans, is standing front and center among the 47 nations represented at the two-day Global Nuclear Security Summit beginning Monday in Washington.

Indeed, Kazakhstan President Nursultan Nazarbayev was the second foreign leader, after India Prime Minister Manmohan Singh, that President Obama met with the day before the conference opened. Obama praised Nazarbayev, the former head of the Communist Party of Kazakhstan who was elected president when Kazakhstan became the last of the former Soviet republics to declare independence in 1991, as “one of the model leaders in the world. He added, “We could not have this summit without his presence.”

Obama’s words of praise reflected the fact that even though Kazakhstan is hardly a shining example of democracy – Kazakhstan’s parliament made Nazarbayev de facto president for life in 2007 with veto powers over any legislation and immunity from criminal prosecution – he was the first foreign leader to renounce the possession and use of nuclear weapons.

On August 29, 1991, four months before the Soviet Union collapsed and 38 years after Mrs. Koloskova witnessed the Soviets’ first thermonuclear explosion, Nazarbayev shut down the Semipalatinsk Nuclear Test Site.

And in 1995, after his country inherited the world’s fourth largest nuclear arsenal, he declared that Kazakhstan was a nuclear free country and returned 40 heavy bombers and more than 1,400 nuclear warheads for intercontinental and intermediate range missiles to Russia for destruction. He later destroyed 148 ICBM silos across Kazakhstan and underground test tunnels at Semipalatinsk, as part of the Nunn-Lugar Program.

At the same time, he approved a secret joint operation with the U.S. code named Project Sapphire, which removed 1,278 pounds of highly enriched uranium to the U.S..

Obama’s warm words for Nazarbayev also reflected the geopolitical realities of the 21st century. Kazakhstan, a country larger than all of western Europe with only 16 million people, is sandwiched between Russia and China, and borders on Kyrgyzstan, where recent uprisings threaten the status of a major U.S. air base supporting U.S. troops in Afghanistan.

Kazakhstan also has the Caspian Sea region’s largest recoverable oil and gas reserves as well as the world’s second largest deposits of uranium.

And it is flexing its diplomatic muscles as it became in January the first predominantly Muslim nation and the first former Soviet Union state to assume the chairmanship of the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe (OSCE).

Few Americans may have heard of it or even know where it is, but Kazakhstan appears ready to awaken from its role as the sleeping giant of Central Asia.

Can Lebanon come in from the Cold?

Can Lebanon come in

from the Cold?

Part II: Resistance and Rebuttal



Franklin Lamb

http://newsimg.bbc.co.uk/media/images/44641000/jpg/_44641891_0444.jpg

Shatila Palestinian Refugee Camp
Beirut, Lebanon

As of mid-April 2010 there are no fewer than six draft laws, half of them
‘embargoed for now’ being circulated and debated in Lebanon, any one of
which if adopted by Parliament, would grant Lebanon’s Palestinians, for the
first time since their 1948 expulsion from Palestine, some elementary civil
rights including the right to work, to have an ID, and to own a home.

Part Three of this discussion will reveal publicly for the first time, with the
permission of the various Drafting committees, the changes in Lebanon’s
laws each one advocates.

Despite the fact that bookies and odd makers at Lebanon’s main Casino
in Jounieh decline to give odds on any of the drafts actually being enacted by
Parliament, Lebanon’s political leaders are talking sweet.

“If it were up to me, I would give the Palestinians the right to work
tomorrow!” Prime Minister Saad Hariri exclaimed during a Future TV
channel interview recently and to various visiting delegations who are
increasingly inquiring about the subject of basic civil rights for Palestine
refugees as awareness spreads in Lebanon and internationally about camp
conditions in Lebanon. The PM’s polite interviewer demurred from asking
him why the Prime Minister thought it was not up to him and indeed
not up to all members of Parliament to correct this shameful and dangerous
injustice.

Hezbollah’s leadership, including Sayeed Hassan Nasrallah and his deputy,
former chemistry professor, Naim Qasim, and Hezbollah’s Parliamentary
delegation, among other party leaders, have repeatedly endorsed civil rights
for Palestinians in Lebanon as obligatory given the Resistance movements
“religious, moral, national and humanitarian duty”.

No Lebanese Political leader has been more consistently out front in support
of Palestinian civil rights than Druze leader Walid Jumblatt. He advocates
‘civil rights now’ and organized and funded a Progressive Socialist Party
conference last January which brought together scores of leaders to push for
Parliamentary passage of the right to work, to own a home and social
security entitlements.

Other leaders have also expressed their views that granting Palestinians
civil rights is needed for many reasons including lifting Lebanon’s shame.

So why are the odd makers at Casino de Beirut so skittish about giving some
friendly odds on passage of civil rights for Palestinian refugees?

“You foreigners are so naïve with short memories also!” Saddam (not his
real name), an “entrepreneur” and bon vivant explained from the Casino
parking lot last week, as he surveyed his domain which includes ‘comfort
vans’ in dark corners of the adjacent parking structure. “Nobody should bet
one Lira on the word of a Lebanese politician!”, he explains.

“Consider just the past year. Remember all those young people who worked
so hard during the last election for candidates all over Lebanon who swore
on the heads of their children that the youth would get to vote next time and
the voting age would absolutely be lowered from 21 years to 18? And then
refused to change the law and betrayed the youth and now ask why the
young are so cynical about politics? And women. Don’t get me started on the
subject of women’s rights! Women in Lebanon were promised all during the
2009 election that they would finally be granted civil rights so at least
they could bestow Lebanese nationality on their children. They were also
‘guaranteed’ a fair share of slots on the municipal elections ballots. They
were betrayed and got no civil rights and were limited to a mere 20% of the
municipal election slots although they number more than 50% of the
voters. Four women out of 128 members in Parliament? What kind of a
democracy is this? Politicians have promised Lebanese women civil rights for
more than 100 years and they got nothing.”

“I am from Saida and every election the local politicians say the Saida
Trash Mountain, which pollutes the sea and everything else around Saida and
up the coast of Lebanon, will be removed and cleaned up. Last election
my MP Fuad Sinioria, a guy I like, promised it ‘for sure’ this time. As usual,
nothing was done. Then just last week, with an eye on the coming municipal
election my MP Sinioria again announced–here look at this. Do you read
Arabic?” Saddam shows me a newspaper with Sinioria’s photo on the front
page next to a photo of Saida’s huge Trash Mountain, which has been
growing higher and wider for 37 years—since the start of the Lebanese civil
war. “Here’s what it says: ‘Local political leaders announce that solutions
to Sidon’s collapsing waste dump are on the horizon’ What does this mean,
‘on the horizon’? Well, so is judgment day!’’ Saddam fumes, as he continues,
“In short, that is why no one should hold his breath waiting for Parliament
to do what should have been done as soon as the refugees came from
Palestine.”

“Excuse me, I have to look after business.” Saddam mumbles as he
approaches one of his vans, looking at his watch and shaking his head while
muttering, “Time’s up! Ya Allah! (Lets go!) She rents by the hour, not the
week!”

In addition to general skepticism about Lebanese politicians “sweet words”
there are plenty of doubts being expressed about granting civil rights to
Palestinian refugees in Lebanon. Among them is the following sampling with
rebuttals from the Palestine Civil Rights Campaign-Lebanon:

If we grant civil rights to Palestinian Refugees it would interfere with
their Right of Return!

The spurious “would interfere with the Right of Return” argument has been
used by some in Lebanon to justify all manner of discrimination against
Palestine Refugees. For example, in relation to the prohibitions against
improving or renovation of existing refugee camps, some politicians have
claimed that the renovation ban is to prevent the consolidation of the
Palestinian presence in Lebanon and prevent the US-Israel backed
resettlement hence destroying the principle behind the right of return.

In point of fact, the granting of civil rights to Lebanon’s Palestinian
refugees, including the economic, social, and cultural rights in no way
prejudices their Right of Return. The right to return to one’s own country
is based in international law and is the most obvious way to redress the
situation of those who were forced to live in exile. The internationally
mandated Right to Return applies not just to those who were directly
expelled and their immediate families, but also to those of their
descendants who have maintained what the United Nations has declared are
“close and enduring connections” with the area. Anyone who has visited
Palestinians in Lebanon, including youngsters in Lebanon’s camps and
gatherings knows of their “close and enduring connections” to Palestine.
This observer will never forget young Mr. Hamid, a nine years old who
last year in Al-Buss Refugee Camp near Tyre proudly recited to a
delegation of visiting Americans the names of “214 of the more than 500
villages in my country that the Zionists destroyed during the Nakba. They
must all be rebuilt so we must hurry up and go home to do it” Hamid
articulately explained to his astonished visitors.

Palestinians who were expelled from any part of Palestine including the West
Bank or Gaza Strip, along with those of their descendants who have
maintained links with the area, can exercise their right to return.
Meanwhile, granting interim basic civil rights to help them live in dignity
in Lebanon will in no way interfere with their Return, but will likely
expedite it as the refugees in Lebanon gain the wherewithal to press their
claim more effectively in the international arena.

If Lebanon grants civil rights to the Palestinian Refugees, they may become
too comfortable and seek permanency in Lebanon and Naturalization
(Tawtin).

This argument is one of the most flimsy being raised by a few in Lebanon
on the issue of granting some civil rights to Palestine refugees. Virtually
the whole of the Palestine refugee community as well as all Lebanon’s
confessions and political parties are in agreement that despite the history
of Washington and Tel Aviv floating of ‘trial balloons” naturalization
(Tawtin) is out of the question and will not happen. The refugees insist
that their home is south of the border and nowhere else. Virtually all of
Lebanon agrees with the Palestinian position on this. Yet this tired bromide
still surfaces in the media from time to time. On March 3, 2010 even the
hold-out American Embassy in Beirut, on instructions from the State
Department and after years of waffling, announced that Washington no longer
favors Tawtin for Palestine refugees in Lebanon, abandoning Israel as this
chimeras only advocate.

The Palestinian refugee population poses a security risk for Lebanon and
before any civil rights are granted this danger must be resolved.


The Palestinian leadership in Ramallah and Lebanon have held the
consistent position that Camp arms are for camp security and would never be
turned against Lebanon. The arms and fighters that turned up in Nahr al
Bared Camp near Akkar in 2007 came from outside Lebanon and had nothing to
do with the Camp inhabitants.

Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas recently expressed in Lebanon the
communities view that the national Palestinian leadership ”supports the
Lebanese Government decisions on Palestinian arms inside and outside refugee
camps. We are with Lebanese authorities, with the Lebanese government and
with Lebanese sovereignty. We as Palestinians are not above the law,” Abbas
explained in meetings with Lebanese leaders including President Michel
Suleiman, President Obama, his Middle East envoy, George Mitchell as well
as during a press conference on 2/22/10 with his French counterpart Nicolas
Sarkozy in Paris. Palestinian leaders in Lebanon regularly state the unified
Palestinian position: “We are with everything that the Lebanese government
says on weapons outside camps. Our stance is clear and won’t change,”
Mahmoud Abass stated. Palestinian leaders in each of the 12 Refugee camps
and 27 ‘settlements’ in Lebanon express the same assurance and a real,
imagined or potential ‘security risk’ does not justify the continuing
deprivation of elementary civil rights for hundreds of thousands of
Palestine refugees in Lebanon.

On the subject of  Palestinian arms outside refugee camps,  Druze leader Walid Jumblat  on 4/20/10  called for  “treating this dossier, which gained the consensus of the previous dialogue committee separately , without associating it with the issue of civil rights for Palestinian refugees in Lebanon. These civil rights are urgent  from the humanitarian scope, and they must be acknowledged and implemented through legislative measures in Parliament,” he wrote in an editorial in  the Progressive Socialist Party weekly journal, al-Anbaa.

How are Palestinian Refugees in Lebanon deprived of the civil right to work
since some do manage to find a job “illegally”?

In principle, the Lebanese Labor Law and Social Security Law are applicable
to both Lebanese and foreigners. Where Lebanese law treats Palestinians
differently is firstly, by restricting access to certain professions, and
secondly where it concerns employment injury compensation, social security
benefits including end of service compensation. Availability of these
entitlements for Palestinian workers is strictly conditional on possessing
a government Kafkaesque issued work permit and again on the poisonous
principle of reciprocity. Palestinian workers who find work pay social
security contributions, but are barred from any benefits.

The fact that some resourceful Palestinians have indeed found make-shift
‘illegal’ jobs often at a much lower wage and without any employment
benefits from an unscrupulous or even sympathetic employer is no solution
or acceptable excuse not to grant morally and legally mandated elementary
civil rights.

Lebanese women also are deprived of civil rights. They must get theirs
before Palestinian Refugees are given any.

The two problems have become politically related and among the most
ardent supporters of Women’s rights are the Palestine refugees. Among the
strongest supporters of Palestinian civil rights in Lebanon are women.
Both are illegally and immorally denied basic civil rights. It often requires
International Women’s Day and Land Day for Palestinians to generate some
hand wringing in Lebanon about the need for civil rights for both.

Those opposed to amending the draconian 1962 and 1969 laws (Presidential
Decree) restricting the right of Palestine refugees to work, often but not
always, reject woman’s rights and oppose changing the archaic 1925 law that
bars Lebanese women from giving citizenship to their child and husband.
To the chagrin of most Christians, strident opponents of civil rights for both
groups are often from the minority extremist Christian camp. Lebanese
holding this view argue that granting women the right to pass on their
citizenship would upset the country’s delicate demographic balance and the
same would happen if Palestinians are granted civil rights.

Since Palestine refugees and women in Lebanon share a legal limbo quite
naturally they commiserate to some extent. Given the key role of women in
resistance movements, from heroines represented by the likes of Mairead
Farrell and Martina Anderson in Ireland, and Albertina Sisulu and Helen
Suzman in South Africa to Leila Khaled and Dalal al Moughabi for
Palestine and Laure Moghayzel, a founder of leading women’s groups in
Lebanon, it can be expected that the support of women may be the best
hope for their Palestinian sisters and brothers to achieve civil rights in
Lebanon.

Lebanon needs more time to straighten out the “situation” with the
Palestinians. Also, it should be remembered that Lebanon did issue
Identification Cards to the 5000 plus Palestinian refugees who have never
had either UNRWA or Interior Ministry registrations subjecting them to
arrest at any time. So Lebanon is making solid progress.

It is true that in August of 2008 the Ministry of Interior began issuing ID
cards as part of a plan to improve the legal status of the non-ID
Palestinians. On more than one occasion this observer witnessed the hot
crowded yard and garden in front of the Palestinian Embassy in Beirut as
well as the hallways and waiting rooms as hundreds of Palestinian Refugees
waited to apply. Their spirits were soaring as they explained that they
expressed the hope that could no longer be arbitrarily arrested and jailed
for not having ID. It also would mean that for some of them they could now
exit the Camp without fear.

Unfortunately, the euphoria was short lived as the Lebanese government
stopped issuing temporary identification papers to Palestinians five months
later, which meant that fewer than 750 cards were distributed before it
stopped the process, citing ‘security concerns.” In October 2009 the
minister of interior announced that the process would soon resume, and
indeed, the process has resumed. It remains to be seen when the “non-ID’s”
Palestine refugees will obtain.

Lebanon is a very small country and we cannot afford to allow refugees
to own a home, given our limited available housing space.

There has been no probative evidence offered from any quarter in support
of this proposition. Approximately 1/3 of Lebanon’s residential building are
empty, with many owners seeking tenants or buyers and would be happy to
rent or sell a home to Palestinians, either without conditions or the
condition that once they are able to return to Palestine the lease would end
at the beginning of the next year and a reversionary future interest in real
estate might be considered assuring that the mandatory vacation of the
residential dwelling would be available for Lebanese if they are interested
in living in it.

If Sunni and Christian Palestinian Refugees are granted civil rights,
including the right to work and to own a home, this will “upset Lebanon’s
delicate confessional balance” among Christians, Sunni, Shia, and Druze and
plunge Lebanon into dangerous internal sectarian conflicts.

Frankly, more than civil rights for Palestine refugees regularly “upsets the
delicate confessional balance” in Lebanon and this may ever be the case.

One recent example. On April 13, 2010 the 35th anniversary of the start of
the Lebanese Civil War, the two opposing political camps in Lebanon – March
8 and March 14 — chose to remember this day in a friendly football game in
a show of solidarity at Beirut’s Damil Chamoun Stadium. Thanks to 29 year
old Phalange party member Sami Gemayel ‘s two goals late in the ‘unity’
match the result was a victory for the Saad Hariri-led March 14 team.
Savoring his teams win, Sami gloated that his opponent, Hezbollah’s MP Ali
Ammar’s “defense strategy was very weak’. While his comment may have
been meant as a joke it caused raised eyebrows among some confessions,
such is sectarian sensitiveness these days.

Wearing the wrong clothes, forgetting to observe one of the other confessions
holidays, celebratory gunfire during or after a favored confessional leaders
speech, violations of employment shares inside ministries (in Lebanon each
confessions gets a share of government jobs and one can be sure that each
confessions staff “nose counts” in ministerial offices to be sure the list
is what it should be. Drawing moustaches on posters of rival confessions
(and most confessions appear to be serious rivals) can lead to violence. The
point is that allowing Palestinians to work will be objected to in some
quarters, but not much more than other issues and the is no evidence that it
will not bring down or even alter the confessional system “balance.”
Moreover, the refugees from Palestine have never sought to vote, do not now
seek the right to vote, and have no intention to do so according to their
community leaders and polling data. Consequently, allowing them some civil
rights would not add or distract from any Lebanese sect when forming a
Cabinet, voting for Legislative candidates or advancing or retarding sensitive
sectarian legislation in Parliament.

Palestinian refugees don’t contribute to Lebanon’s economy so why should
Lebanon allow them the right to work?

Actually, despite facing severe work restriction most Palestinian refugee
households have at least one family member who is employed (often illegally
and at a lower exploitive wage than Lebanese citizens) constitute 10 per
cent of all private consumption in Lebanon, and do not burden the Lebanese
welfare system, according to a recent report by The Najdeh (Welfare)
Association, funded by aid agencies Diakonia and Christian aid.

The study is the result of a survey of 1,500 households in eight refugee camps
across Lebanon and a number of focus group discussions, and assesses
the income of Palestinian refugees, challenges to and perceptions of work,
and their contribution to the Lebanese economy. According to Najdeh, the
study was designed “to examine the contribution to the economy of the host
country Lebanon.”, the report found one third of the individuals sampled
works, and roughly 40 per cent were searching for work. Only 1.7 per cent
of those surveyed had work permits, a fact the report said “renders the
Palestinian refugee labor force invisible in official statistics” and exacerbates
their socioeconomic marginalization. Far below a livable wage, median
monthly wages for Palestinian Refugees has declined from $260-266 in 2007
to $108-112 “during the first half of 2008.” An overwhelming majority
(84 per cent) of Palestinian households believe there are no work prospects
for their children in Lebanon. Although Palestinian refugees on a per capita
basis cannot legally contribute much to the Lebanese economy through
employment, their large numbers means they count for 10 per cent
(approximately $352 million) of all private consumption in Lebanon. Food,
healthcare and rent constitute their top spending priorities.

Consistent studies over the six decades have shown that Palestinians have
aided Lebanon’s economy and do much more if allowed to work and open
businesses. An early study dated 12/18/59 by the Arab Supreme Committee
showed that the total monetary balance transferred by Palestinians from
assets in Palestine, the sale of family jewelry to buy food etc. was more
than three times the annual budget of the Lebanese state in the early 1950s
as has the UNRWA relief, education and health and salary budgets mainly
spent in Lebanon. This propelled the Lebanese. However By not allowing
the Palestinians to work Lebanon has stunted its economy.

Before the PLO administration left Lebanon in August of 1982, it created
directly or indirectly more than 40,000 jobs or approximately 18% of
Lebanon’s GNP. The PLO budget may have been larger than that of the
Lebanese state itself. Palestinians also contributed to “invigorating” the
areas surrounding their camps by creating low-cost markets for low-income
and other marginalized communities in Lebanon. The “Sabra, Ein el-Hilweh
and Nahr al-Bared camp markets are recognized as major informal
economic hubs for the poor,” said the report, adding that the destruction
of Nahr al-Bared during the battles of 2007 had “resulted in a gap in the
Akkar” region in northern Lebanon for such communities.

The debate continues…the cause endures…….

Next:  Part III:  Handicapping the draft laws heading to  Lebanon’s  Cabinet and Parliament.


Palestine Civil Rights Campaign-Lebanon
“Failure is not an option for the Palestine Civil Rights Campaign, our only
choice is success,” says 15 year old Hiba Hajj, a PCRC volunteer at the
Ein el Helwe Palestinian Camp in Saida, Lebanon.

If you haven’t already, please sign here (you don’t have to be Lebanese!):
http://www.petitiononline.com/ssfpcrc/petition.html

Franklin Lamb volunteers with the  Palestine Civil Rights Campaign in Lebanon. He is reachable at fplamb@palestinecivilrightscampaign.org.

Sochi Olympic Site Center of Anti-Russian “Islamist” Storm

SOCHI, Russia (Reuters) – Suicide attacks that killed 40 on the Moscow metro last month have fueled fears Islamists will target the 2014 Winter Olympics, to be staged in the mountain range where the militants have their strongholds.

Soon after the Black Sea resort town of Sochi won in its bid to host the games, insurgents vowed in a statement to “attack any of the so-called ‘Olympic participants’ who represent the country’s war against Muslims.”

A year later, in 2008, a bomb exploded in Sochi and another in nearby Adler, each killing a civilian.

The deaths were celebrated by Islamist rebels from Russia’s North Caucasus region, who want to create a pan-Caucasus sharia state independent from Russia, a struggle whose foundation was laid over 250 years ago.

They derailed the Moscow-St Petersburg Nevsky Express train in November, killing at least 26, and struck in Moscow in March, killing 40 and striking fear into the capital.

Sochi, hosting the ice-based Olympic events, and Krasnaya Polyana, 50 km (30 miles) inland where the snow sports will be held, are alarmingly close to Russia’s restive provinces.

The Chechen capital Grozny is just 155 km (250 miles) to Sochi’s west.

“Sochi’s geographical proximity to these regions means that it will be potentially easier for them (insurgents) to travel to this area and the high-profile nature of the event itself means it’s a tempting target,” Matthew Clements, Eurasia analyst at IHS Jane’s Information Group in London, told Reuters.

Islamist insurgents view Sochi, which belongs to the mainly Christian Krasnodar region, as “occupied territory,” and some want it incorporated within the separate state they want to forge, according to unofficial Islamist websites.

Sochi residents fear their coastal town could become a target even before tight Olympic security is imposed.

“The word Sochi now means Olympics. The feeling here is it could happen any day. It’s freaky,” said 32-year-old history teacher Arman.

Deputy Prime Minister Dmitry Kozak, appointed by government to oversee the games, conceded last week in Krasnaya Polyana that the insurgency posed a threat.

The Israeli Mind Behind the Blue Brain Project

[Reverse engineering the human brain--the key to total mind-control in the hands of Zionist tinkerers?]

more about “Bluebrain | Year One on Vimeo“, posted with vodpod

The Israeli mind behind the Blue Brain Project
Photo by: Ariel Jerozolimski

The Israeli mind behind the Blue Brain Project

By JUDY SIEGEL-ITZKOVICH

HUJI neuroscientist Prof. Idan Segev says the real breakthrough in brain science will be at least as momentous as the Industrial Revolution.

To understand exactly how the human brain – the most complex machine in the universe – actually works, takes more than ordinary brain power. A team that should eventually comprise thousands of staffers around the world using a supercomputer combining the computational power of 10,000 PCs is expected to reach its goal in about two more decades. And Israelis – led by the Hebrew University of Jerusalem’s Prof. Idan Segev – are playing a key role in this effort, which is aimed not only at understanding the brain – with its hundreds of billions of neurons – but also at repairing diseased cells and tissues.

Perhaps in only a few years, scientists devoting themselves to the Blue Brain Project based in Lausanne, Switzerland are expected to learn enough from their work on mouse brains to make a big difference in both basic neurological science and clinical treatment at the bedside.


Segev, formerly head of HU’s neurobiology department in the Silberman Institute of Life Sciences and co-founder and previously director of the Interdisciplinary Center for Neural Computation, has spent most of his life and career on the university’s Givat Ram campus, . There he received his bachelor’s degree in mathematics and biology, his master’s of science degree in neurobiology and his doctorate in experimental and theoretical neurobiology (the last two with highest honors).

Later, he spent a few years doing research at the US National Institutes of Health (NIH) and a few months at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, but understanding the brain while working at the Jerusalem campus has been his vocation and obsession.

He decided to forgo his management work two years ago to concentrate on being a “plain scientist and professor.”

Since 2001, he has been one of the leaders of the Blue Brain Project, the only participant to have a direct line to the Swiss IBM supercomputer, which costs $20 million and whose cooling alone with Geneva lake water has an annual price tag of $1 million. The supercomputer, he says, takes up about twice the area of his own office. Segev not only goes to Switzerland a few times a year; he and his six advanced neuroscience students also participate in weekly videoconferences for consultation and collaboration. The Jerusalem center for neural computation is the largest and most important of its kind in the world.

Segev’s funding comes from Israeli and international grants, including the NIH. The Edmond J. Safra Philanthropic Foundation headed by his widow, Lily Safra – who donated to HU for the establishment of the $130 million Edmond and Lily Safra Center for Brain Sciences – has given $50 million.

“We promised we would be among the world’s five top brain research centers in the world, and they are actively involved in supervising our work,” Segev says. New nodes of the Blue Brain have opened in Spain and in France, with another one due to be launched in the Far East. “We have a fantasy that the whole world will eventually break political borders and focus on circuits in the brain,” Segev says.

Neural computation is a new research field that focuses on how the nervous system’s processes sensory information (vision, hearing and touch) and creating appropriate behavioral output. “But how does the brain go about it computation?” he asks. “How do the physical components of the nervous system – the ion channels in the neural membrane, the synapses and neural transmitters that connect the neurons, the electrical signals (the spikes) that neurons carry and the uniquely structured nerve cells and the large networks created by them – perform the task of computing? This mystery is, perhaps, the greatest intellectual challenge of the 21st century. The field of neural computation has made this challenge its goal.

“The brain is living proof that physical, chemical, and electrical components can display highly developed levels of intelligence,” Segev states. “It processes and computes information!” But how do the billions of cells that make up the human brain control the functioning of the body, movement, memory, emotions, and the performance of creative tasks?

Neuroscience in the 20th century “was noted for the development of sophisticated techniques that gave us an inside view of the nervous system at different levels. The invention of the electron microscope in the 1950s allowed scientists to identify types of synapses and pinpoint their location on the dendrite,” Segev adds.

But now, he says, “the time has come to synthesize – to go beyond the enormous achievements of the 20th century in exploring neural mechanisms at the anatomical, physiological and molecular levels – and develop a theory or working model that connects the mechanistic level that we became intimately acquainted with and the behavioral level. We need to synthesize the biological details of the brain into its emergence psychological capabilities – this requires a new mathematical theory for this amazing machine.”

Progress in these multidisciplinary fields “will allow us to exchange parts of a living brain, construct artificial brains and make more effective use of our own brains. The breakthrough will be at least as momentous as the Industrial Revolution and the current Information Revolution. It will alter our lives in far-reaching and fascinating ways,” he enthuses.

Computational science is a new field, and using it to map the brain – currently a section of the mouse brain, whose genome is incredibly similar in its function to the human brain.

“Many medications for humans, including some for depression, Parkinson’s and Alzheimer’s, have been developed on the mouse model,” he continues. “The mouse is better than the rat, as the genome replicates faster and is better understood.” Neurocomputation is a combination of new approach to learn more about the brain.

“If you looked at brain function as just a mechanical phenomenon,” he says in an interview in his Silberman Institute office piled with papers and journals, demonstrating his points on a laptop with a screen full of stains, “you would get just a description but not a real understanding.”

Einstein had a moustache and wore a business suit, while Segev is clean shaven and wears a brown leather jacket, denim shirt, sports shoes and casual beige-green trousers. But with his halo of graying hair surrounding his head and his untidy office, one can’t keep wondering whether the quintessential Jewish physicist would feel at home in this office, at the university he helped found in Jerusalem 90 years ago.

“I am a theoretician. The brain is a physical system, thus many physicists have come into the field of neuroscience. With the complexity of the brain and the many levels of descriptions from genes to electrical wiring connections, we needed a new multidisciplinary approach,” Segev says.

“In the past, we didn’t have such an integrative attempt at understanding the brain – until Bert Sakmann [the German cell physiologist who shared the Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine with Erwin Neher in 1991 for their work on the function of single ion channels in cells] came and said he has plenty of anatomical and physiological data about the brain. But he didn’t know what to do with all this, how to connect it and make some functional sense of it. So it was a turning point for me when I was working on individual nerve cells – and thanks to him switched to the simulation of a cortical column in the mouse brain.”

Cortical columns in the cortex of the mammalian brain – each of them  the size of one cubic millimeter and containing about 10,000 highly connected network of nerve cells each firing away its electrical signals like machine guns in tiny fractions of a second – are the basic units of brain function, says Segev. The cortical column is a functioning unit with each neuron connected to 10,000 others, creating close to a billion synaptic connections. If combined, all the neurons and their tree-like processes – axons and dendrites – in a single column would be four kilometers long. As the human cortex contains about one million such columns, all the neuronal fibers in the brain could be wound around the Earth many times, he calculates.

Segev credits Prof. Henry Markham, a Weizmann Institute graduate who serves as project director of the Blue Brain Project in Lausanne and coordinating work on brain circuitry and visualization, as being “much more visionary than I am.”

Markham, Segev says, wants to create a brain research center in Geneva that is the size and has the impact of the city’s CERN, the European Organization for Nuclear Research, which uses its huge particle accelerator to study fundamental physics.

Markham, for example, is working on a cortical column that involves the touching system; this best-known cortical column that processes the sensory information arriving from a rat whisker that, when in contact with something, gives the rodent the ability to navigate in the world even in the dark. Each single whisker has a connection to a particular column in the mouse cortex so that all the sensory information from this whisker is processed first in this particular column.

Another sensory system is the primary visual area that resides in the back of the skull. There, too, individual columns are responsible for specific visual functions such as responding to a particular angle (say 45 degrees) in the visual world. Indeed, the nervous system in mammals never relies on one single nerve cell for any particular function; rather a whole network of neurons does the job as an group. Now that Segev’s center has simulated in the Blue Brain supercomputer one whole cortical column, it can use it as a model for simulating others automatically, just as a polymerase chain reaction (PCR) machine used by molecular biologists can amplify copies of DNA pieces across several orders of magnitude.

The cortical column mechanism, Segev says, accepting the suggestion, is like a multiple-lens fly eye that melds a large number of images into a single composite. When the neurons in the column record and process the message from many other neurons and then another part of the brain puts all of them together and a whole scenery (visual, auditory) emerges there. In lower animals such as a fly, however, when one cell or small group of cells is destroyed, there is no replacement.

Fortunately, in mammals and especially humans, there is a lot of redundancy, so if some nerve cells are damaged, nothing happens. This, declares Segev, is very different from dependence on a single computer cable that, if severed, stops the machine from working altogether. Thus, when his science teacher in school told him that only a 10th of his brain’s neurons actually functioned, he was wrong.

“We know that all neurons in the brain operate electrically and chemically all the time under all conditions; yet, in terms of the brain’s capacity to learn new tasks, we use only a tiny part of it. Indeed, due to the inherent redundancy and the huge number of cells and synaptic connections in our brain, it is possible to embed more and more information without losing the existing information. Our brain capacity is huge!” Segev says.

But all this electrical firing requires energy, so the brain consumes about a fifth of all energy (calories) that our whole body consumes, he continues, even when we are asleep.

Simulating such columns means that you have to have a mathematical description of the electrical activity of each type of cell, which fires its own “electrical signals very specifically. There are 40 or 50 different types of cells, says the Jerusalem neuroscientist, “each with its own ‘electrical music.’ This music is composed from a series on brief (thousandth of a second) spikes whose magnitude is one-tenth of a volt.”

After having such models, one needs to model mathematically the connection betweenneurons (called synapses) and then connect 10,000 nerve cells and billion synapses exactly as they are in the mouse brain. One can thus replicate in details the cortical column of the mouse. The spike appears and then disappears like fireworks, which can be translated in a bar-code or Morse-Code-like image. The spike itself is similar in a human brain and in a cockroach’s brain or any other creature with a nervous system.

“We are looking for a generic, universal signal that is relevant to the brain in any mammal,” he says. The Blue Brain Project will “change the way brain science is done. Unlike molecular biologists, brain scientists didn’t save the actual data on each neuron that they accumulated over the years. Today, I can read papers on data, but not study the data itself. There is no human brain database (or complete mouse database) in the world, but with the umbrella provided by the Blue Brain Project, we could start comparing new information to what was already saved. So the Blue Brain Project forces participants to save their data in a standard format,” Segev says.

The move from simulating the brain and treating malfunctioning neurons will not be extraordinarily long, says Segev. Markham is especially interested in brain disorders, particularly autism. “He has a line of ‘autistic mice’ with a pharmaceutical component that if found in high concentrations in females during pregnancy is likely to cause autism in the offspring. So he has been injecting it into pregnant mice. We plan to compare the cortical columns of normal and autistic rodents. As autistic children suffer from great sensitivity to stimuli, we think it is likely that the problem derives from specific brain mechanism that results in a hypersensitivity (barrage of electrical activity) of the cortical column in response to sensory input. We are trying to simulate this hyper-excitability. If we can see what goes wrong in the column, maybe we could repair it with medication based on our findings. I think patients could benefit in only a few years if we can prove by our computer model that a drug based on our simulation works is indeed effective.”

If there is no animal model of a particular disease, the disease cannot be tackled in a systematic and deep way; the Blue Brain team will provide such a new simulation-based medical approach, he adds. In the future, a complete model of the animal brain will mean none of them has to be killed to examine its brain, Segev notes. At present, there is no schizophrenic or mouse model, but there is one for depression and another for Alzheimer’s, epilepsy and several other neurodegenerative diseases.

Segev outlines several new “buzz words around the world” related to his field that will undoubtedly further push improved understanding of the brain. One is “connectomics.”

“If you want to see the connection – synapse – between two nerve cells, you can’t do it with a regular microscope. You must slice the cells thinly and use an electron microscope. Israel is not involved in this huge project, as the technology is too expensive for slicing the whole brain and then reconnecting the whole network in three dimensions. At Harvard, scientists have managed to stain the brain of living animals into a rainbow of 99 colors (the Brainbow technique) – this will facilitate the connectomics project as the brains of these molecular-engineered mice are glowing with colors rather than  the gray matter’s their natural color. Using the Brainbow, we can now observe that when the mouse learns something new, the researcher can see a new synapse being created in the living brain in real time.”

Then there is optogenetics, initiated by Stanford University scientist Prof. Karl Deisseroth, in which single neurons in the brain can be turned on and off like light bulbs by adding the DNA of microbial proteins sensitive to light. Optic fibers implanted into the brain could thus control genetically and very specifically targeted brain cells within neural circuits, possibly leading to treatments for various neurological diseases such as epilepsy or retrieving sensitivity to light for age-related macular degeneration that causes blindness.

“The same molecule, rhodopsin, that enables our eyes to detect light can be embedded it into the genome of mouse,” explains Segev, “the brain cells become sensitive to light. So when laser light shines on them, it activates a group of cells and enable us to uncover the function of these cells. This is a real revolution.”

It is possible that specific brain regions of Parkinson’s disease patients could one day soon be injected with a virus that carry the DNA that codes for rhodopsin and optic fibers could be implanted to enable to activate these regions electrically using light, and thus repair their function and ameliorate this devastating disease.

Segev refers to himself and all human beings as a “purely physical machine that can generate all the beauty of feelings and creativity. My role is to understand how this machine generates all these amazing Human things and what happens when the brain is sick. I have become very optimistic in the last few years. There has been exponential growth in the field. I never thought even a year ago that one could activate even single nerve cell in the living brain with light, not to speak about specific networks of cells. But it can be done and we do it as a community of scientists together. I can’t predict what will happen even in a year because the speed of change is so huge. But there will certainly be serious ethical issues. The question is how much we want to invade, improve or change the brain. If we can manipulate genes, we can manipulate the brain.”

While neuroscience is flourishing – and the 21st century has already been called the “Century of the Brain” because treatments will be needed for the aging population whose brains start to malfunction when they are old – Segev worries that the natural sciences could be overpowering.

“With all respect to science, we should preserve carefully the humanities and arts. We will have to be very careful not to destroy the arts and other so-to-speak non-scientific fields. We are losing fields and courses and staffers, and the humanities are in danger of collapsing.”

With robots with artificial brains processing data and do the technical work for us, mankind “will have a lot of time for thinking, creating and enjoying each other’s company and the world around us,” concludes Segev, noting that arts and humanities will be be needed essentially for leisure time as they, after all, provide the meaning of what we do beyond the mere survival. “Will these robots have emotions? Self-awareness? An independent will? These and other yet-unknown issues will undoubtedly be our central concerns in the 21st century. This much is clear: We are on the brink of a great adventure.”