• 0 Vote(s) - 0 Average
  • 1
  • 2
  • 3
  • 4
  • 5
Misc News Folder
Unfortunately, a very cowardly move. Instead of the Pakistani Hindus DEMANDING a chunk of independent land WITHIN Pakistan, and GOI supporting them in this effort, all Pakistan has to do now is to CREATE further terror in the hearts of Pakistani hindus who will be only too happy to flee to India to get Indian citizenship.
<b>Indian envoy's murder: Suspect arrested in US</b>
by B.Raman
<b>Powerful blast shatters Baghdad hotel</b>

At least 27 dead, dozens wounded
Wednesday, March 17, 2004 Posted: 2:40 PM EST (1940 GMT)

BAGHDAD, Iraq (CNN) -- A powerful explosion, apparently from a car bomb, went off in central Baghdad on Wednesday, killing 27 people and wounding 41, according to senior U.S. military officials
<b>Israel kills Hamas leader Yassin in rocket strike</b>
<b>US to deploy task force in Taiwan Strait </b>

1 April 2004: The United States has decided to send the USS Roosevelt and USS Reagan to the Taiwan Strait to counter China’s deployment of short- and medium-range ballistic missiles targeting Taiwan.

Taiwan President Chen Shui-bian won the 20-March elections by 30,000 votes leading to allegations of rigging, and China has stepped in on the side of the Opposition, because Chen seeks separation from Mainland China.

Diplomats said that last Friday, following Taiwan’s urgent pleas for assistance, the US sent a message to China calling for restraint, but China went ahead and deployed the M-18 and DF-21 missiles secretly, although they were detected by American military satellites.

Following this, the US commerce department approved emergency sale of ultra-high-frequency early warning radar systems to Taiwan, prompting fierce Chinese criticism hours ago, with the foreign-office saying it would send a “wrong signal” to the Taiwanese separatists.

Sources said that sometime yesterday, a decision was also taken to deploy the two carrier task forces in the Taiwan Strait, and the US could also be preparing to give anti-ballistic missiles to Taiwan.

A face-off is building up in the Taiwan Strait, because China put out a very strong statement hours ago, saying, “On the Taiwan issue, which is related to China’s sovereignty and territorial integrity, we show no tolerance to any move that is harmful to China’s core interest by an outside force.”
<b>Jordan's Snub to Bush Is Tip of Iceberg</b>

Tue Apr 20, 2004 10:21 AM ET

By Jonathan Wright
CAIRO (Reuters) - When the king of Jordan postponed this week's meeting with President Bush, the snub revealed only a fraction of the humiliation felt by Washington's Arab friends.

Constrained by protocol and unwilling to burn bridges with the most powerful country in the world, Arab leaders like King Abdullah can only hint at the dismay they felt when Bush changed U.S. policy last week, diplomats and analysts say.

The blow was particularly hard for Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak, who met Bush on April 12 and was still in the United States two days later when Bush gave two key and sensitive concessions to visiting Israeli Prime Minister Ariel Sharon.

"They are very much upset. Bush is striking at the hearts of their people and this makes King Abdullah and Mubarak really angry," said an Arab ambassador, who asked not to be identified.

"They are embarrassed and humiliated in front of their own people. Bush is playing with fire," said another Arab diplomat.

Diplomats said Middle East leaders previously close to Washington had few cards to play against the United States and would probably swallow their pride at least until the U.S. presidential election in November.

Bush, apparently to help Sharon win domestic support for his Gaza withdrawal plan, said that Israel could keep some West Bank land and that Palestinian refugees should not expect to reclaim their homes in what is now Israel.

Coupled with the U.S. occupation of Iraq, which Arabs increasingly associate with Israel's occupation of Palestinian territories, the concessions were political dynamite.

"I'm sure he (Mubarak) feels wounded because it seems like a big cheat. It's a slap on the back of the neck -- the most humiliating thing in our culture," said analyst Mohamed al-Sayed Said of the al-Ahram Center in Cairo.

Mubarak told the Houston Chronicle last week he was shocked by Bush's promises to Sharon. He told the French newspaper Le Monde this week the Americans had never before been so detested in the Arab world.

"They (Arabs) see Sharon acting as he pleases, without the Americans telling him anything whatsoever," he added. Continued ...
<b>The Anti-Terrorism Coalition (ATC) has finished one of the biggest anti-terrorism projects in internet history. The project was The Anti-Terrorism Coalition's Database of Terrorists Websites and eGroups</b>. http://atcterrorlist.showsit.info/ This database lists 352 terrorist websites and eGroups. The ATC was able to gather lots of information on the websites, the eGroups, sometimes the owners, and lots of other information.

FOR THE FIRST TIME IN HISTORY, CYBER-TERRORISM HAS TRUELY BEEN EXPOSED!!!! atcterrorlist.showsit.info CYBER TERROR EXPOSED! Please spread this link around. Tell all the people you know:


Thank you very much,
-The Anti-Terrorism Coalition (ATC)
<b>Mecca Cola launched; Gujarat may be hub</b>
<!--emo&:thumbdown--><img src='style_emoticons/<#EMO_DIR#>/thumbsdownsmileyanim.gif' border='0' style='vertical-align:middle' alt='thumbsdownsmileyanim.gif' /><!--endemo-->
<b>Saudi hostage drama ends; 8 Indians killed </b>

identified asLawrence Gregory Monice from Mangalore, 45-year-old P K Pradeep Kumar (Kerala), J N Jose (Kerala), Charles Clethens Carlos, John Fernando (Goa), Suresh Kumar and J Ram (both from Rajasthan) and Vikram (Bihar), the sources told PTI over phone

<b>Saudi Commandos Free Dozens Held at Resort</b>
Abu Hashem, a 45-year-old Iraqi-American engineer, said four gunmen — lightly bearded Saudi men who looked 18 to 25 years old — asked for his residency papers.

<b>"They said, 'You are American,' and I told them I am an American Muslim. They said, 'We do not kill Muslims,'" They then apologized for breaking into his home</b>.

Abdul Salam al-Hakawati, a 38-year-old Lebanese corporate financial officer, said gunmen rummaging around his family residence said, "This is a Muslim house" — apparently seeing framed Quranic verses on the walls.

He said a man in his early 20s, carrying a machine gun and wearing an ammunition belt, told him: "We only want to hurt Westerners and Americans. Can you tell us where we can find them here?"
<b>If Saudi Arabia falls....</b>
Gwynne Dyer
1st June 2004

If you drew up a list of Royal Families That Were Long Overdue To Be Overthrown, the al-Saud family would rank right up there with the Bourbons and the Romanovs. The latest terrorist attack in Saudi Arabia, in which 22 people, almost all foreigners, were killed, and three of the four Islamist attackers escaped, raises the question of whether the time of the family Saud has come round at last - and of what would happen next.

The al-Khobar slaughter was the second terrorist attack that killed foreigners in a month, and once again it came in a town where expatriates supply much of the technical expertise that keeps the Saudi Arabian oil flowing. The foreigners are starting to leave, as the terrorists intended but that could soon force cuts in the flow of oil. Lots of native-born Saudis work in the oil industry by now, but key technical sectors still depend on foreigners.

The main problem in Saudi Arabia is demographic: Its native-born population has doubled to 18 million in the past 20 years, while its per capita income has almost exactly halved. Thirty per cent of the adult male population is unemployed, and 400,000 extra young men enter the workforce each year with little hope of finding a job.

Even a democracy would be in trouble with these numbers, and Saudi Arabia is no democracy. The average monthly stipend for a run-of-the-mill prince in the Saudi ruling family is $30,000 - and there are between 7,000 and 15,000 princes. (The exact number is a state secret.) In all, the royal family skims off an estimated 40 per cent of oil income before it reaches the government, and most people in Arabia know that. They are not happy about it.

The Saud family's solution to this problem has been to wrap itself in the green banner of Islamic orthodoxy (while sending its sons to American universities and their wastrel elder brothers and uncles to London casinos and strip clubs). It cut a deal long ago in which the puritanical Wahabi (Salafi) sect that dominated the original Saudi home base, the province of Najd, was given national control over education, public morality and much more in return for its loyal support of the regime. That deal is now all but dead.

The real reasons it is dying are economic and demographic, but the political trigger for mass disaffection was the too-close alliance of the Saudi regime with the United States. It was tolerable when the Americans were far away, or when US troops were first based in Saudi Arabia itself in response to the Iraqi invasion of Kuwait on 1990. It turned into a major irritant when the American troops didn't go home again after 1991, for many Muslims believe that the Prophet himself forbade the presence of infidel troops in the "land of the two cities" (Mecca and Medina). It became quite intolerable after the US invasion of Iraq last year.

A slow-motion insurrection has been underway in the kingdom for two years now, and it probably has the silent support of most people under thirty. It was no coincidence that Osama bin Laden himself, like fifteen of the nineteen hijackers of 9/11, was a Saudi Arabian citizen. If the revolution comes, what will happen? Would the US seize the oil-fields?

Most people in the oil-rich Eastern Province are Shia Muslims who have long been treated as second-class citizens by the Sunnis who run the country, and some spiritual heir of Henry Kissinger would doubtless already come up with a plan to split off the Eastern Province as an American protectorate and leave the Sunnis to starve. But if the sensible people won, Washington would just leave the country alone: Islamists in power would still have 18 million people to feed, and the only way to do it is to export the oil.

People who are running whole countries have a lot to lose, and are much more open to persuasion than when they were terrorists living in basement apartments. And so what if the oil price ends up quite a bit higher? The world needed an incentive to wean it off hydrocarbon fuels. This is not an earth-shaking crisis, but we may soon have to get used to calling the place just Arabia.
<b>10 Chinese workers killed in terrorist attack in Afghanistan</b>
<b>Islamist militants threaten Sri Sri Ravi Shankar </b>
<b>Maoists threaten to use human bombs if India helps Nepal</b>

Dehra Dun, Sept. 15 (PTI): Maoists in Nepal have threatened to carry out attacks using human bombs if India went ahead with its plans to provide assistance to the kingdom in the fight against the rebels.

Two hand-written papers in Nepalese language mentioning the threat were found pasted on walls in Jhulaghat area of Pithoragarh district, police said today.

The papers signed by Maoist leaders said that they would not tolerate "autocratic" rule of the king in Nepal and that India should give up its plans to provide assistance to the kingdom or face human bombs.

The threat follows Nepalese Prime Minister Sher Bhahadur Deuba's visit to New Delhi during which India promised all possible assistance to Nepal to deal with the Maoist problem.

courtesy:The Hindu
<b>Swiss reject easing citizenship rules</b>
<!--QuoteBegin-->QUOTE<!--QuoteEBegin-->Nearly 57 percent of voters opposed granting automatic citizenship to third-generation children born to immigrant families. In a slightly closer result, nearly 52 percent rejected easing naturalization rules for first- and second-generation residents raised and schooled here<!--QuoteEnd--><!--QuoteEEnd-->

<!--QuoteBegin-->QUOTE<!--QuoteEBegin-->Right-wing opponents argued the changes would undermine what it means to be Swiss. They drew widespread criticism over a referendum campaign that featured Osama bin Laden's photo on a Swiss ID card and <span style='font-size:12pt;line-height:100%'>advertisements claiming Switzerland could be taken over by Muslims.</span><!--QuoteEnd--><!--QuoteEEnd-->

<!--QuoteBegin-->QUOTE<!--QuoteEBegin-->Night of nine generals

Abhijit Bhattacharyya

Navami stands for nine, and nine generals (both retired and serving) of the Indian Army will formally meet to discuss issues facing the Defence forces. This will be a first in the 57-year history of free India. Significantly, these nine men meet at Delhi on the last day of "Navratri", on October 22, 2004. From the point of view of seniority and protocol (on which all armies operate), Field Marshal SHFJ Manekshaw (Infantry) at 90 leads the team.

Following him are generals OP Malhotra (Artillery), KVK Rao (Infantry), SF Rodrigues (Artillery), VN Sharma (Armoured Corps), S Roy Choudhuri (Armoured Corps), VP Malik (Infantry), S Padmanabhan (Artillery) and the serving chief NC Vij (Infantry).

All the predecessors of the present Army General were commissioned before the 1962 Sino-Indian war and the most illustrious of them all is certainly the flamboyant, blunt and yet the most successful Indian Army chief SHFJ Manekshaw, the victor of the 1971 war. But the question is what is so special about this meeting of the generals? Is it a reunion or is it a group for pressure tactics? What would they say to each other when they meet? Exchange pleasantries or insist on following protocol based on seniority? How would it be taken by the (civilian) powers-that-be which, unlike Pakistan, are superior in rank, protocol and status to the Indian Army?

In my perception, the meeting of the nine generals, though unprecedented, is long overdue and one has nothing to fear and every reason to be pleased to see them together. Why does one say so? Because the Indian generals (except in the case of late Lt General BN Kaul) have never been known to harbour political ambitions. In fact, it has been quite the opposite: They have always been professionals par excellence and played a subservient role to the political boss. SHFJ Manekshaw is universally acknowledged to have given and stuck to his professional advice to late Indira Gandhi on the timing of mobilisation and deployment of the Army for the 1971 war. Lt General SK Sinha (who almost became the Army chief in 1983) was found to be an "adamant professional" rather than a "malleable politician".

Hence he missed the top professional slot. None, till date, could raise a finger at Lt General Sinha for not being professional. He could, however, be "faulted" for not playing ball with politics. Similarly, former General Vishwa Nath Sharma was also well known for his strict professional outlook and attitude. General S Padmanabhan never had a Delhi posting before becoming Army chief and General Shankar Roy Choudhuri silently bore the pain of not getting an operational command and stoically got himself registered to his fate of a possible retirement in 1995.

Since life moves on comparison and contrast, the nature, worth and character of independent India's generals can be appreciated in light of the history of the coup-ridden "general rule" in Pakistan and Bangladesh, arguably the nearest and yet the farthest in habit, taste and culture of violence, bloodshed and fundamentalism. The meeting of the generals, therefore, will surely address the contemporary problems of the Army, narration of the experience of the past generals and the future role and deployment of India's million strong standing Army.

An important recent concern for the Army (and the nation) appears to have cropped up with increased threat perception in the East and Northeast India. Understandably, the recent security meeting in Delhi, which decided to mobilise a brigade strength force in the Northeast is a pointer. Question is, will this be enough? Should there be more than what is being deployed at present? Especially since Bangladesh is ceaselessly increasing the strength of its Army with the intention of flooding India with its uncounted and unwanted people and sabotaging Indian state through the insurgents?

Doubtless, the sudden developments in the East are bound to affect the Indian Army's deployment and operational readiness. After a long time the Army will have to prepare a contingency plan for three front disposition as was done in 1971 - that is, (West) Pakistan, East Pakistan (now Bangladesh) and China.

Though recent diplomatic thaw in Sino-Indian and Indo-Pak relations is welcome, there is virtually no possibility of force reduction in places like Leh, Srinagar, Nagrota, Bhatinda, Jalandhar and Jodhpur in the North and West and Tezpur, Siliguri and Dimapur in the Northeast and East. In fact, the Bangladesh factor (infiltration, Islamism, sabotage, etc.) may (perhaps) compel the Indian Army to raise another corps if not a "command" in the near future.

Post-Kargil, the Indian Army upgraded its Leh's Infantry Division to Corps Headquarters. Post-2004, India is bound to reorient its threat perception and "upgrade the east" with modernisation and expansion of its forces. The wisdom of the generals may also make them take a fresh look at the morale of the soldiers on the ground, along with the welfare of the families of those dying in action. This twin pillar of morale and welfare have always been the barometre of success or failure of every army in the world.

The generals may also look at the quality of recruitment of the soldiers, the shortage of junior level commissioned officers and, above all, the occasional demand for the creation of Bengal, Gujarat, Manipur and Yadav Regiments in the Indian Army. Come what may, it would be in the fitness of things if the nine generals unanimously put a stamp of their approval for not raising any more regiments (in the Indian Army) based on State, language, race, caste or religion.

Although the Indian Army regiments have had the distinct flavour of state (Punjab, Bihar, Assam, Madras Regiment), race (Gurkha, Naga Regiment), caste (Mahar, Jat, Rajput, Maratha Regiment), language (Garhwal, Dogra Regiment), and religion (Sikh Regiment), they have successfully stood the test of time. In fact, though state, race, caste language and religion are all "dirty" words to be used for political mudslinging and non-professional one upmanship by the aristocrats of the great Indian democracy, ironically these have proved to be the positive side of the so-called "fractured" society of India.

Today, one needs to remember that though the British did not rule over Indians as friends, they certainly put in the best of their intentions and efforts to raise an Army which would fight cohesively. Post-1857, the British could not afford to have mutiny-infested regiments jeopardising their global economic imperialism. The Indian Army had to be a professional force wherein merit had to be the sole criterion for recruitment, deployment and reward.

Fortunately, however, the days of a possible Bengal, Gujarat, Manipur or Yadav Regiments are no more possible because of the attitude and action of a section of the political oligarchy of India, which is likely to turn these regiments' recruitment into a non-professional pastime and sadistic individual pleasure, thereby jeopardising the interests of a glorious institution of India. It is the duty of the nine generals to stand up to save their men serving the nation professionally.

(The writer is an alumnus of the National Defence College of India and the views are his own)<!--QuoteEnd--><!--QuoteEEnd-->
<!--QuoteBegin-->QUOTE<!--QuoteEBegin-->France's report said standards of English in schools were poor and worsening.

Its conclusions have been challenged by some politicians, including one deputy from the ruling UMP party, Jacques Myard.

He told Le Monde: <b>"English is the most-spoken language today, but that won't last." </b>

He said Spanish, Chinese and Arabic were all growing in importance.

"<b>If we must make a language compulsory, it should be Arabic</b>," he said.

news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/uk_ne...944731.stm <!--QuoteEnd--><!--QuoteEEnd-->
<b>Indian, Taiwanese diaspora to make common cause</b> <!--QuoteBegin-->QUOTE<!--QuoteEBegin-->New Delhi, Oct 24 (IANS) Two leaders of the Indian American community are visiting Taiwan next week in a bid to give shape to a nascent move to form an alliance with Taiwanese Americans.

Armeane Choksy, president of the Washington-based US-India Institute, and its executive director Manish Thakur are visiting Taiwan for five days from Monday, during which they will interact with Taiwanese intellectuals and high dignitaries.

The visit is at the invitation of the Taiwan Foundation for Democracy, whose president is Vice Foreign Minister Michael Kau. Choksy and Thakur will also call on Taiwan Vice President Annet Lu, sources here said.

The visit of the Indian American leaders is the culmination of a move launched by the Indian American and Taiwanese American communities to come together to protect and promote the interests of their respective countries of origin.

The sources said leaders of the Jewish American community, which has close links with the Indian American community, had played a significant role in bringing the Indians and Taiwanese together.<!--QuoteEnd--><!--QuoteEEnd-->
<b>300 killed, 200 injured in Satara stampede </b>
Tuesday, 25 January , 2005, 16:54

Wai: More than 300 devotees, mostly children and women, were today trampled to death and over 200 injured in a stampede triggered by short circuit at a hilltop temple during an annual pilgrimage in Maharashtra's Satara district.

The incident occurred at around 1 pm IST when an estimated three lakh devotees in a procession gathered to offer prayers at the sanctum sanctorum of the Mandradevi Temple on the occasion of full moon.

So far, over 200 bodies have been brought to various hospitals here by state transport buses. Most of the deaths were caused by suffocation after the persons had been trampled over.

Maharashtra Water Resources Minister Ajit Pawar told PTI that more than 300 were killed and the toll could go up.

Additional Director General of Police V N Deshmukh said a majority of the victims were women and children. The injured have been admitted to hospitals here.
<!--QuoteBegin-->QUOTE<!--QuoteEBegin-->New war doctrine will be given priority: Army chief 
New Delhi
Army has been directed to carry out anti-militancy operations with a more "humane" touch, new Chief of Army Staff General J J Singh today said emphasising that there was a need to "reach out to the people in Jammu and Kashmir and North East to spur the movement towards normalcy."

While informing that a new armed forces joint doctrine was on the anvil, Singh said the recently released new army war doctrine would be refined and battle tactics and war manoeuvres practiced on the ground.

"Counter-terrorism operations can be optimally effective while being polite," was the message of new army chief to his troops after taking over as the 22nd Chief of the Army Staff after a ceremonial guard of honour.

<b>"Army units have been directed to use minimum force while carrying out anti-militancy operations to avoid innocents being hit and to avert collateral damage," he said. </b>

Asserting that ceasefire along the volatile line of control with Pakistan was holding and the two armies observing restraint, J J Singh said any fresh withdrawal of troops in Jammu and Kashmir would be carried out after a review of the situation once the snow starts melting on the high Himalayan Ranges and ascertaining the "intentions across."

Singh, the first Sikh officer to don the mantle of army chief, said his task would be to reach out to the people in Jammu and Kashmir by winning their hearts and minds.

In his first wide-ranging interaction with the media, Singh outlined his priorities saying that operational readiness of the army would be made more reactive and his efforts would be to speed up the transformation of the army into a hi-tech force, which used satellites and information technology to be in command of battlefields.

Replying to a volley of questions on the recent spurt of indiscipline in the force, the new Army Chief maintained that for such a huge force these were "miniscule".

"We do not condone such mistakes. Prompt and stern disciplinary action follows any complaint," Singh said adding that in addition an introspection was also being carried out.

"There is a drive to analyse these cases. There is no cover up. We are taking the bull by the horn," he said.

On the continuing problem of shortage of officers, Singh said the armed forces academies were facing no shortage of volunteers but efforts were on not to dilute parameters.

He said the shortage was being overcome by recruitment of more women in non-combat units and increasing the quota of giving commission from the ranks.

The Army Chief asserted that in time of emergency or conflict, there would be no shortage of officers in combat units as officers from other branches would be enrolled for combat command duties.

Outlining his thrust on welfare measures, Singh said he would lay greater emphasis on upgrading life in cantonments.

He said a fair deal would be given to the ranks and some pilot projects started for economic empowerment of ex-servicemen.

The new Army Chief said he would lay special emphasis on sports and physical fitness in the Army to bring back its youthful profile. <!--QuoteEnd--><!--QuoteEEnd-->

Forum Jump:

Users browsing this thread: 2 Guest(s)