Thursday, February 28, 2013

Soak Up Some Sun

What’s flummoxed the medical fraternity is the growing incidence of vitamin D deficiency in a tropical country like ours where ample sunlight is available throughout the year. At least 60 per cent of patients have below 5 nanograms of vitamin D (the normal range in most labs is between 30 and 100).

Lack of vitamin D manifests itself through acute pain in the feet, shoulders, neck and joints in some individuals. Research has also shown link between vitamin D and low immunity levels, obesity and diabetes.

“There was a reason our ancestors started the day with prayers and suryanamaskars facing the sun, outdoors,”  
The Hindu: Soak up some sun

Bacterial Strain May Block Acne/Pimples

The bacteria known as Propionibacterium acnes is known to be responsible for acne, however researchers have discovered that people with clear skin possess a benign variant of this bacteria which does not cause acne:

The researchers now think that the solution to prevent acne pimples is to give people this harmless strain, which will then dominate and prevent the regular pimple-causing version from taking root. I guess you could call that a probiotic solution.

Wednesday, February 27, 2013

Kaangress and its terrorist friends

A former member of the MIM, Maqbool was convicted of murdering one Krishnamurthy in Nizamabad district in 1999 and sentenced to life imprisonment in October 2004. But following a grant of remission by then YSR government in 2009, Maqbool walked free.

"You can imagine why Maqbool got remission," said the government official adding that MIM was a partner of the Congress govt in AP until a few months ago.

Maqbool is also an accused of murdering Devender in Uppal and Mahavir Prasad, a jeweler, in Afzalgunj. He is also charged in the bomb blast cases at Kakatiya Hotel, Lal Darwaza, Sharda theatre, Nanded, Lamba theatre, Secunderabad, and the accidental blast at the home of Azam Ghouri, another IM activist later killed in an encounter by the police.
ToI: AP had remitted life term of now in-demand IM man

Never forget Godhra

It was 11 years ago on this day that a well organised Moslem Jihadi mob with a strength of
over 2000, assembled at 7.0 AM
- set fire to coach S6 of the Sabarmati express, roasting alive 78 Hindu pilgrims - peaceful and unarmed men, women, children and senior citizens. By several accounts,
not disputed by the local authorities - many young Hindu women were abducted from the train - and are untraced till date.

Not a single word in their memory in the "SECULAR" press, electronic media, the chattering classes or the political
class, including the BJP.

May this atrocity never be forgotten and may the sacrifice of the 78 Hindus roasted alive never go unpunished.

Here are some of the 2000 strong "peaceful" and "secular" mob, most of whom have escaped Scot free.

What China can learn from Japan | which applies to india even more

Hagel's Nutty Views on India

Hagel seems to think that India is the root trouble in the region, creating mischief inside Afghanistan to harm Pakistani interests:

No wonder the Atlanticists like Brzezinski love Hagel as their preferred choice for US secretary of defense.

Skeptics of Hagel's nomination dismiss him as a flake.

Tuesday, February 26, 2013

Ford scion to fund ISKCON temple

Alfred Ford must be one of the enlightened Yanks. Good luck to

Isn't it amazing that enlightened Westerners such as Alfred Ford and the late George Harrison, the Beatle appreciate the value system and ancient wisdom of the Dharmic tradition - whereas
brainwashed native bigots like
T.R Baalu, "Karunanidhi" (sic),
"Sushil Kumar Shinde", "Digvijay Singh" et al heap the filthiest abuse upon what is their own
ancestral heritage?

Such deracinated bigots may have amassed huge fortunes, but nobody is more culturally and spiritually impoverished than them.


Alfred Ford, grandson of iconic American industrialist Henry Ford, would partly fund the upcoming Rs 400 crore Iskcon temple at Mayapur in West Bengal.
"I have given some seed capital for the huge dream project of Srila Prabhupada, founder of the Iskcon movement, for construction of a temple at the birthplace of Shri Chaitanya Mahaprabhu," Ford told reporters here today.

He said the project would be ready by 2016 after which there would be an exponential growth in the number of pilgrims and tourists visiting Mayapur.

Presently, the number of visitors to the existing temple at Mayapur is four million, Ford, a disciple of Prabhupada, said.

Once through, the temple would be taller than the Hagia Sophia in Istanbul and the temple's dome diameter and floor space would be bigger than St Paul's Cathedral in London, he added.

Sharmila Bhattacharya Ford, his Bengali wife, said it would be a spectacular sight once the structure, covering an area of 4.25 lakh square feet on 1.5 acres, comes up.

Another disciple, Anand Poddar, said the Queen of England and President of India would be invited to inaugurate the temple, which would be built with pure stainless steel.

Yankee "expert": Kashmir solution will make Pakistan "normal"

What planet does this imbecile live on?

Osama Bin Laden himself had once described the "Land of the Pure" as the "fortress of Islam" in South Asia.

This is a civilizational conflict - created by the Ummah's hegemonistic urges for world domination. The Indian republic and the Hindus are obstacles in
their aim to re-conquer the vast sub-continental landmass that they had enslaved and raped for almost a whole millennium.

*Kashmir* is a mere episode in the long term civilizational conflict. Even if Pakistan is gifted Kashmir, as certain "secularists" are inclined to do,
the next demand for secession from Hindu India will be from:
Assam, Bengal, Kerala, Hyderabad, U.P, Bihar, Maharashtra etc. until Hindu India is completely decimated and bled to non-existence.

Refer to Hafiz Saeed's consistent and fondly expressed intentions to "liberate" Hyderabad from "Hindu hegemony".

Also witness the recent hair raising rioting and well organised genocide of Hindus in West Bengal (as usual, completely negated by the Dhimmi media and the governments) by Jihadis and seditious hate speeches by Jihadis across the length and breadth of the country.

This Yankee "expert" really makes me wonder about the great game being played. This needs to be read along with
Secretary of Defense nominee
Chuck Hagel's expression of animosity towards India's alleged role in "creating trouble"
for Pakis in Afghanistan &
Secretary of State John Kerry's
advocacy of even more military aid to Pakistan.

46% Men Enjoy Sports More Than Sex, Says Survey | rofl. I too have thought British woman were somehow... Unfinished

Swami Vivekananda and Veer Savarkar

---------- Forwarded message ----------
From: Team <>
Date: Tue, Feb 26, 2013 at 12:44 AM
Subject: Swami Vivekananda and Veer Savarkar

Please choose to display the images

In this, the 150th birth anniversary year of Swami Vivekananda, it is instructive to ponder over the common spirituality that existed between Swami Vivekananda and Veer Savarkar today (26 February 2013), the atmarpan divas of Savarkar.

"I will drink the ocean", says the persevering soul, "at my will mountains will crumble up". "Have that sort of energy, that sort of will, work hard and you will reach the goal." These inspiring words of the patriotic monk Swami Vivekananda who was goading Indians to show courage are true for all ages.

A legendary revolutionary who came under the spell of his emboldening words and brought many more under his own spell was Veer Savarkar. The driving power behind all the sacrifices which he made for national welfare was his innate spirituality - subtle but sublime. In the prime of his youth he suffered 14 years of imprisonment, more than 10 years of which were spent undergoing inhuman and torturous rigors of cellular jail in Andaman. Nonetheless he underplays his sufferings by describing them as "penances" carried out by him to discharge his debt towards the great forefathers of his dear Motherland!

Before Savarkar's deportation to Andaman, his elder brother Ganeshpant who was involved in freedom struggle had already been sentenced to life imprisonment in Andaman. Younger brother Narayanrao who was merely 19 had also been imprisoned and Savarkar too was on the verge of being arrested. At such a juncture he wrote a Marathi poem. Given below is the prose rendering in English done by Savarkar himself under the title My Will and Testament. Addressing his Motherland, he writes thus:

My elder brother so brave... and yet so softly loving
Was sacrificed on Thy altar.
The youngest one- so dear, so young -
he too followed him into the flames; and now here am I, O Mother!

Bound to thy sacrificial pillar: What of these !
Had we been seven instead of only three
I would have sacrificed all in thy cause...

Even after his little son died due to small pox when he was away from his family because of his involvement in freedom struggle, at a time when his brothers were behind bars and the family property (including utensils) had been confiscated by the British Empire, Savarkar did not lose courage. We must not forget that Savarkar brothers had lost their parents in their adolescence and the ladies of the family were left homeless, penniless with practically none to care. Yet with supreme equanimity Savarkar wrote thus:

Neither the longing looks of a young wife
waiting vainly waiting for my return
Nor the peals of laughter of dear children,
nor the helplessness of a sister-in law
stranded and left to starve
could hold me back from the call of thy trumpet!

Nothing could make Savarkar turn his back to Motherland's call for freedom. He made a virtual bonfire of family life to see India free. It was as if all the three brothers plunged into the sacrificial pit and made a veritable yagnya of their lives.

The sufferings endured by elder brother of Savarkar, Ganeshpant were no less. He too continued to suffer in the Andaman the same inhuman treatment for more than a decade and lost his wife while he was still in prison. The saga of Savarkar brothers is a saga of selfless and supreme sacrifice - a sacrifice without regrets and a sacrifice never flaunted.

Savarkar's spirituality which is the very basis of his outlook towards life is reflected in a letter written by him from Andaman to his younger brother in which observes thus: "The finest ideal for a young man is not to acquire but to sacrifice; not to forget that the garden that sheds all its flowers for the garland of Gods, is in blossom for ever."

What Savarkar observes reminds us of a similar exhortation by Vivekananda to the youth. "This is the time to decide your future- while you possess the energy of youth, not when you are worn out and jaded... for the freshest, the untouched and unsmelled flowers alone are to be laid at the feet of the Lord, and such he receives..."

Vivekananda's expectation from fellow Indians was - "... forget not that thy marriage, thy wealth, thy life are not for sense pleasure, are not for thy individual personal happiness; forget not that thou art born as a sacrifice to Mother's altar..." As spelt out by Vivekananda very clearly the God to be worshipped and Mother for whom sacrifice was to be made was no stone sculpted idol but "our great Mother India... the only god.." to use his very own words.

It is for this reason that service to Motherland was for Savarkar the highest form of worship as is evident when he writes - "Thy cause is Holy ! Thy cause I believed to be the cause of God! and in serving it I knew I served the Lord".

An humble homage to a great patriot who translated the thoughts of Vivekananda into action.

Thanks, Team

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DAWN.COM Coexistence with India – III | 4 part essay by a not so crazy Pakistani. Must be about 5 like him in all of pak

Monday, February 25, 2013

Mediterranean Diet Study Rocks the Medical World

Heart damage was significantly more likely to occur in people told to watch their fat intake than in those given olive oil or nuts and told to follow a Mediterranean diet. The research involved 7,477 high-risk volunteers, all of whom were diabetic or had a host of risk factors including obesity, high cholesterol, family history of heart disease or smoking.
NYT: Mediterranean Diet Shown to Ward Off Heart Attack and Stroke

Subtle message? Man-made problems at sabarimala, Kumbh, now attukal. Now who may be peeved at hindu pilgrims? Wild guess?

Concrete water #pipe broke in 4 places in minutes. Sabotage investigation on: reports. #trivandrum #attukal #ponkala eve

World's largest gathering of #women today at #attukal devi temple #trivandrum. main water pipe to city broke. Coincidence/sabotage?

Smartphone-Powered Satellite Blasts Into Space | android phone in space, part of pslv payload

Cardinal Keith O'Brien Resigns Amid Sexual Misconduct Allegations | this is Britain's top godman

America's Red State Growth Corridors | Joel kotkin in WSJ suggests the future is being fumbled by tax/spend dem states

China Has Its Own Debt Bomb | ruchir sharma in WSJ

British Cardinal Will Skip Upcoming Papal Conclave | and resigns on allegations of personal sexual misconduct

italy, the delicious country: i have new respect for porn star la cicciolina (ilona staller), former mp

at least she didn't screw the entire country, although she may have tried. she did make porn movies while she was a member of parliament

a famous politician had a cover story in the economist where it portrayed him as "the man who screwed an entire country". 

it must be so entertaining to live in italy. 

italy is a delicious country: a real clown competes with metaphorical clowns in elections

the big guy is leaving the vatican under a cloud

the boss of a big company nabbed for hanky-hanky in copter deal

the euro is doddering thanks to italy and fellow PIIGS

the big news is that their murdering sailors have been allowed to escape from india

it is a pretty pathetic country, but sigh, india is even more pathetic. 

from FP: superficial, uninsightful, white-guy perspective on nehru dynasty. HT @dhume01

#66a eerily similar to "alice in wonderland": the queen of hearts saying 'off with their heads'

Marathoner closes last race at age 101 | Fauja Singh is da man

With a saffron turban and a flowing white beard, 101-year-old Fauja Singh finished a 10-kilometer (6.25 mile) race in Hong Kong. Nicknamed the Turbaned Torpedo, the Indian-born runner fini …

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Ancient continent hides beneath Indian Ocean - New Scientist

Dengue mosquitoes now immune to repellants

The widely used insect repellent Deet appears to be losing its effectiveness against mosquitoes, scientists say. Deet - or N,N-diethyl-meta-toluamide - is one of the most widely used active ingredients in insect repellents. It was developed by the US military, following its experience of jungle warfare during World War II.
BBC: Mosquitoes ignore repellent Deet after first exposure

Sunday, February 24, 2013

#amour wins foreign language #oscar. my #review, no spoilers (also of ikiru):

Claude arpi: CHINA DISARMING INDIA WITHOUT FIGHTING: Sun Tzu at its best!!

on galaxy note, pardon brevity

---------- Forwarded message ----------
From: "Ram Narayanan" <>
Date: Feb 25, 2013 1:45 AM
To: "Ram Narayanan" <>



China disarming India without fighting

By Claude Arpi on February 24, 2013


More than 2,000 years back, Sun Tzu, the author of the Art of War wrote, “For to win one hundred victories in one hundred battles is not the acme of skill; to subdue the enemy without fighting is the acme of skill.”

If I was a Chinese general and keen to defeat India without combating, do you know what I would do?

I would provide ‘proofs’ that foreign arms dealers have corrupted some Indian officials or politicians by paying hefty ‘commissions’. I would repeat this for each and every armament deal.

The result would be terrific. The Indian Ministry of Defence would immediately cancel all the deals, no more arms for the three Indian services! It would be rather easy to realise. One just has to ‘inform’ the Indian Government that something has gone wrong in the procurement process, and ‘someone’ has taken money.

So easy to do and easy to believe! The reverse would be unbelievable.

A few days ago, a US company, Mandiant, identified the People’s Liberation Army’s Shanghai-based unit 61398 as the organisation behind most computer attacks against the United States. Through Unit 61398, I would leak some ‘details’ about the bribes to the MoD or better, to a gullible ‘breaking news’ channel.

Mandiant’s detailed 60-page study tracked individuals of a sophisticated hacking group, known in the United States as ‘Comment Crew’. The report said, “The activity we have directly observed likely represents only a small fraction of the cyber espionage that APT1 has conducted.” APT1 stands for ‘Advanced Persistent Threat’, the most dominant being termed APT1.

The report continues, “We have analysed the group’s intrusions against nearly 150 victims over seven years. We uncovered (in Shanghai) a substantial amount of APT1’s attack infrastructure, command and control, and modus operandi (tools, tactics, and procedures) Our research found that People’s Liberation Army (PLA’s) Unit 61398 is similar to APT1 in its mission, capabilities, and resources.”

Further, it was discovered that PLA Unit 61398 is located exactly in the place from which APT1 activity originates.

As a Chinese general, I would have the perfect tool to win the war. Let us take an example, the latest scam or Choppergate.

In 2010, the Government signed a Rs 4,000 crore contract for procurement of 12 AW101 helicopters from the Anglo-Italian firm AgustaWestland for the use of Indian VVIPs. Three of the 12 helicopters ordered have already been delivered (and an advance of 40 per cent has been paid).

Citing an ‘integrity clause’, Defence Minister AK Antony immediately announced that the contract will be cancelled and a show-cause notice was sent to the company to this effect.

Defence expert, Ajai Shukla commented in Business Standard, “Defence Minister AK Antony’s ‘strong action’ against Italian defence giant Finmeccanica, and its Anglo-Italian helicopter subsidiary, AgustaWestland, is aimed at making him sound like a man of steel.”

Now, Antony has no proof of any offence as yet, as the Italian prosecutors in Milan have refused to share incriminating documents with India. This is logical as the trial has not yet started, but it does not matter as, in India, loud voices have started asking for a ban. One commentator even suggested cancelling the deal for 126 Rafales because the fighter planes of Dassault Aviation were armed with missiles manufactured by the European company MBDA, of which Finmeccanica is a minority shareholder.

The rule, say the babus, is when a defence firm, Indian or foreign, comes under a corruption cloud, not only are all its contracts, present and the future, cancelled, but the entire group of companies are blacklisted and they can’t work in India for a minimum of 10 years.

According to this thinking, Dassault would be banned because Rafale may use weapons made by MBDA; the French firm being owned by BAE (37.5 per cent) and EADS (37.5 per cent). The Rafale’s rival Eurofighter would also be banned as Finmeccanica is part of the Eurofighter GMBH consortium, etc, etc, etc.

At the end, I, the Chinese general will effortlessly win the war, because India will not get a single piece of armament required for its defence and this, for the next one or two decades. I would merely have to leak some credible information into a few Indian computers.

Some will say, “It is a good thing; we shall now indigenise the defence production.” Faster said than done, the Tejas Light Combat Aircraft has been on the HAL drawing table for the past decades. Air Chief NAK Browne recently declared, “By my estimate the Initial Operational Clearance should be by the end of 2013 and the Final Operational Clearance (FOC) should take another year-and-half more.” Ditto for many DRDO projects.

So, as a Chinese general, I would used Unit 61398 or any other ‘research labs’ to pass on to South Block the information that there is something ‘fishy’ in each and every armament deal and the trick will be done.

The next day, the MoD will ‘cancel’ the deal using the ‘termination clause’.

I would subdue my enemy without a fight! That’s skill! India’s tragedy is that it prefers to punish the bribe-givers and leave free the bribe-takers and then ban the former in order to look honest. Unless the rotten apples are booked, the Chinese generals will keep laughing.

Separate issue: I am wondering what the Ministry of Defence is doing against Unit 61398 or its sister/brother concerns? Whether one likes it or not, cyberwar will be tomorrow’s war; the Chinese are far in advance on us in this field.

Lost Pre-historic Continent of Mauritia

Scientists have discovered traces of a lost pre-historic mini-continent they call Mauritia, which eventually sank under the Indian ocean: #facepalm

the purely scientific case for leaving the #rama #setu alone:

Asia Society: On a Day for Languages, Discovering, Celebrating, and Saving Our Mother Tongues

Asia Society: On a Day for Languages, Discovering, Celebrating, and Saving Our Mother Tongues.

Team Indus - Indian Entrant for Google Lunar X-Prize

Team Indus is the lone Indian entry for the Google Lunar X-Prize, which will award $30 million to whoever makes it to the Moon first:

They plan to launch on a PSLV rocket. You can see all their videos here.

Saturday, February 23, 2013

New Form of Colonialism: Land Grabbing

Foreign investors are buying or leasing vast amounts of farmland in Third World countries to profit from surging demand for food crops as a result of rapid population growth. "Land grabbing" amounts to a new form of colonialism that often runs counter to the interests of locals
Notice how even Malaysia and Saudi Arabia have joined the party
Spiegel: 'Land Grabbing': Foreign Investors Buy Up Third World Farmland

Pope’s Exit: Did a gay priest sex ring bring down Benedict XVI? | not very holy, Holy See is den of vice, money, sex #facepalm

Holy roman empire? Not holy, much more than roman, definitely an empire. Compare to the mafia.

on galaxy note, pardon brevity

---------- Forwarded message ----------
From: "Ishwar Sharan" <>
Date: Feb 24, 2013 6:34 AM
Subject: [New Post] Pope’s Exit: Did a gay priest sex ring bring down Benedict XVI? – Barbie Latza Nadeau

Pope’s Exit: Did a gay priest sex ring bring down Benedict XVI? – Barbie Latza Nadeau

Posted on February 24, 2013 

Benedict XVI: Priests in panties!?

Barbie Latza Nadeau“The existence of a gay-priest network outside the fortified walls of Vatican City is hardly news, and many are wondering if it is only the tip of the proverbial iceberg of sex scandals. In 2010, investigative journalist Carmello Abbate went undercover with a hidden camera to write a shocking exposé called Good Nights Out for Gay Priests. ‘What’s coming out is very detailed X-ray of the Roman Curia that does not spare even the closest collaborators of the Pope.’” - Barbie Latza Nadeau

Gay priests church window in the USIf all the rumors floating around about just why Pope Benedict XVI is hanging up his camauro, one has taken on a life of its own. According to several well-placed vaticanisti—or Vatican experts—in Rome, Benedict is resigning after being handed a secret red-covered dossier that included details about a network of gay priests who work inside the Vatican, but who play in secular Rome. The priests, it seems, are allegedly being blackmailed by a network of male prostitutes who worked at a sauna in Rome’s Quarto Miglio district, a health spa in the city center, and a private residence once entrusted to a prominent archbishop. The evidence reportedly includes compromising photos and videos of the prelates—sometimes caught on film in drag, and, in some cases, caught “in the act.” Revelations about the alleged network are the basis of a 300-page report supposedly delivered to Benedict on December 17 by Cardinals Julian HerranzJoseph Tomko, and Salvatore De Giorgi. According to the press reports, it was on that day that Benedict XVI decided once and for all to retire, after toying with the idea for months. He reportedly closed the dossier and locked it away in the pontifical apartment safe to be handed to his successor to deal with. According to reports originally printed by La Repubblica newspaper and the newsweekly Panorama (and followed up across the gamut of the Italian media), the crimes the cardinals uncovered involved breaking the commandments “Thou shalt not steal” and “Thou shalt not commit adultery,” the latter of which has been used in Vatican-speak to also refer to homosexual relations instead of the traditional reference to infidelity.

Paolo Gabriele with Pope Benedict XVIThe trio of cardinals who authored the report, known in the Italian press as the “007 Priests,” were commissioned by Benedict to dig into the Vatileaks scandal that rocked the Holy See last fall when the pope’s butler, Paolo Gabriele, was convicted of stealing secret papal documents and leaking them to the press. The sleuthing cardinals ran a parallel investigation to the Vatican tribunal’s criminal case against the butler, but theirs was far more covert and focused not on the mechanics of the leaks, but on who within the Roman Curia might be the brains behind them. And, according to the leaked reports, what the “007 Priests” found went far beyond the pope’s private desk. “What’s coming out is very detailed X-ray of the Roman Curia that does not spare even the closest collaborators of the Pope,” wrote respected Vatican expert Ignazio Ingrao in Panorama. “The Pope was no stranger to the intrigues, but he probably did not know that under his pontificate there was such a complex network and such intricate chains of personal interests and unmentionable relationships.”

The existence of a gay-priest network outside the fortified walls of Vatican City is hardly news, and many are wondering if it is only the tip of the proverbial iceberg of sex scandals. In 2010, investigative journalist Carmello Abbate went undercover with a hidden camera to write a shocking exposé called “Good Nights Out for Gay Priests”.

“What’s coming out is very detailed X-ray of the Roman Curia that does not spare even the closest collaborators of the Pope.”

Catholic priest wearing his Roman collar but no pants!Abbate caught the priests on hidden camera dirty dancing at private parties and engaging in sex acts with male escorts on church property. He also caught them emerging from dark bedrooms just in time to celebrate mass. In one postcoital scene, a priest parades around seminaked, wearing only his clerical vestments. “This is not about homosexuality,” Abbate told The Daily Beast when he published the exposé. “This is about private vices and public virtues. This is about serious hypocrisy in the Catholic Church.”

Because so much of the secret lives of gay priests is actually not so secret thanks to Abbate’s exposé and subsequent book, Sex and the Vatican, many are wondering what else could be hidden in the alleged red-covered dossier. Vatican elite have also been loosely tied to a number of other secular scandals during Benedict’s tenure, including the ultra-tawdry affair between former Lazio governor Piero Marrazzo and several transvestite prostitutes, including one named “Brenda” who was found burned to death in 2009.  At the time that Marrazzo’s relationships with the transvestites were discovered, his driver reportedly told investigators that several high-ranking priests and even cardinals were customers of Rome’s elite transsexual circuit, though no proof was ever provided and no one has ever been arrested tied to the transsexual prostitution circuit. Nor has anyone mentioned whether reference to these crimes might also be in the dossier. But Marrazzo was whisked off to the Vatican-owned Monte Cassino abbeyJesus & Johnsouth of Rome to do his penance, and he even wrote a letter to Vatican Secretary of State Tarciso Bertone asking for Pope Benedict XVI’s forgiveness.

Whatever secrets the red binders supposedly hold will have to remain just that until the next pope is elected. But Ingrao believes its contents are so important that the dossier will be like the 118th cardinal in the conclave. “Many new skeletons from the closets of the cardinals could come out until the beginning of the conclave,” says Ingrao. “Many voters know or claim to know the secrets of their brothers, but it is already clear that the new pope who leaves the Sistine Chapel will have to be scandal-free in order to proceed with cleaning up [what] Ratzinger has left for his successor.”  The Daily Beast, 22 February 2013

» Barbie Latza Nadeau is an American journalist based in Rome. 

See also

Sin City: Archdiocese of Miami

Must read

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Salt, Sugar, Fat: How the Food&nbsp;Giants Hooked Us by Michael Moss – review

NYT: how the fast food industry is screwing us with salt sugar fat. Terrifying. No wonder we are getting obese, diabetic

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India an Innovation Leader?

A global survey on innovation has put India at #2, just behind China, on a ranking of countries which are good at making scientific advances or intellectual property despite handicaps in infrastructure and unsophisticated markets:

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Friday, February 22, 2013

"Knowledge Park" imparts lessons in land loot

  • The 8,848 acre Knowledge Park is dubbed as the biggest 'land loot' that took place during the YSR regime. The park was to set up an aerospace & defence cluster, education & innovation hub, logistics & free trade warehousing zone, agro food science & technology park, a heritage wellness village, health & wellness cluster, media & entertainment city and a global village along with a health R&D facility and universities. What surprised many is that LKHP fraudulently shifted the ownership of the land to another company, which is not even an associate, which later pledged the land with various banks and raised huge funds.

  • Enforcement Directorate to take over Jagan's assets. The adjudicating authority, set up under the provisions of the Prevention of Money Laundering Act, has confirmed the attachment of Rs 122 crore worth assets in the Jagan assets case and Emaar case effected by the Enforcement Directorate last year.  

Modi bats for dalits to solemnize Hindu weddings | brilliant move highlighting own obc background. Will shut up commies

#Catholics Gather in California, Haunted by #Cardinal’s Scandal | Mahony covered up #pedophilia. Gomez shadowy opus dei.

ANAHEIM, Calif. — For decades, Cardinal Roger M. Mahony was the convener and the star of the nation’s largest annual gathering of Roman Catholics, which opened here on Thursday.

This year, though, Cardinal Mahony was nowhere to be seen at the gathering, the Religious Education Congress. His wor...

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Italian politics: Pinocchio's heirs | is the adjective 'lying' even necessary when it comes to these folks? Or their godmen?

2nd generation NRI should be viewed as Americans and not as Indians

on galaxy note, pardon brevity

---------- Forwarded message ----------
From: "sri venkat" <>
Date: Feb 23, 2013 8:10 AM
Subject: 2nd generation NRI should be viewed as Americans and not as Indians

As the process of Americanization deepens, second generation NRIs,
sometimes called ABCDs-American Born Confused Desis, should be viewed
as Americans and not as Indians and certainly not as Hindus.

With little expectations from them one can avoid being greatly
disappointed. "One" means their parents and people of India in
general. Most parents, mostly, are not in a position to teach their
kids anything since they have no/little knowledge or interest, in most
cases both. So categorising the second generation NRIs as Americans
works in everybody's interest.

Also all the temples built in US will go waste as these second
generation youth gradually (or swiftly) drift away which is already
happening. It is due to the constant flux of new Indian immigrants
these temples and culture are surviving for now. Point to note.

Venkat (Viji)

Outcome of Italy election deeply uncertain | only certain things: more colonial loot from india, sailors will walk free

Firstpost: Outcome of Italy election deeply uncertain.

KQED: Why San Francisco and Napa Have Been Ranked as the Happiest Cities in America | Napa rated post wine tours?

KQED: Why San Francisco and Napa Have Been Ranked as the Happiest Cities in America.

Moody's cuts U.K.'s AAA credit rating | Cameron will 'express regret' but won't return kohinoor to india

Microsoft reveals hackers attacked it too, 'no customer data affected' | Microsoft speak hard to take at face value

Socialist France Responds To Titan CEO, Hilarity Ensues

on galaxy note, pardon brevity
---------- Forwarded message ----------
From: "Arvind Kumar"
Date: Feb 22, 2013 8:47 PM
Subject: Socialist France Responds To Titan CEO, Hilarity Ensues
To: "Rajeev Srinivasan"

> Socialist France Responds To Titan CEO, Hilarity Ensues
> Submitted by Tyler Durden on 02/21/2013 09:53 -0500
> Presented without any comment (see original Titan letter here), and google translated to add Babel fishing insult to an already injurious, or is that hilarious, exchange between a hard core capitalist and a socialist... perfect ignorance, admiration of Obama, trade tariff threats, oh, and don't mention the war.
> From Arnaud Montebourg,
>> Sir,
>> Your extremely insulting words also testify perfect ignorance of what our country is France, its key strengths, such as its world-renowned attractiveness and its relationship with the United States of America.
>> France has the pride to welcome on its soil over 20,000 foreign companies representing nearly two million jobs, a third of its industrial exports, 20% of private research and development and 25% of industrial employment. Each year, there are 700 decisions of locating foreign investment and job creators of value in France. And this strong attractiveness does not weaken, on the contrary from year to year, it is getting stronger.
>> Within these foreign investments, the United States occupied the first place. 4200 subsidiaries of U.S. companies employ nearly 500,000 people. The presence of U.S. companies in France is very old: Haviland since 1842 IBM since 1914 Coca-Cola since 1933, General Electric since 1974. And many others. These links are from year to year renewed: in 2012, companies like Massey Ferguson, Mars Chocolate, or 3M chose to increase their presence in France.
>> What are the decisive factors in the choice of location? Foreign companies in France are seeking quality infrastructure, a lifestyle appreciate an energy amongst the most competitive in Europe, and a very favorable environment to research and innovation. But most importantly, away from this your comments are ridiculous and derogatory, all these companies know and appreciate the quality and productivity of the workforce French, commitment, knowledge, talent and skills of workers French.
>> To amplify the attractiveness, the French government has recently taken measures 35 in the National Pact for growth, competitiveness and employment. Among them, the tax credit for competitiveness and employment allege coats of 6% wage firms between 1 and 2.5 SMIC. In addition, the social partners have reached an agreement on the securisation employment, which illustrates the quality of social dialogue in France and the importance that the government attaches to which I belong.
>> Can I remind you that Titan, the business you run is 20 times smaller than Michelin, a French leader in technology our international influence, and 35 times less profitable? That is to say how a Titan could learn and gain enormously from a French settlement.
>> France is especially proud and happy to welcome American investment between our two countries are linked by an old friendship and passionate. Moms do you know what makes La Fayette to the United States of America? For our part, we French will never forget the sacrifice of young American soldiers on the beaches of Normandy to deliver us from Nazism in 1944. And since you choose to criticize your own country in the letter that you send me, I must tell you how the French government admire the policy implemented by President Obama. As Minister for Industry, I am particularly sensitive to actions in favor of the relocation of manufacturing jobs in the United States and radical innovation. It is our policy that even some present with the parent inspired by your President.
>> You mention your intention to exploit the labor of some countries to flood our markets. I must tell you that this calculation wrong and short-term and will sooner or later face a justified reaction (just as in the US). This is already the case in France with allies increasingly numerous in the Union European arguing for reciprocity of exchanges and organize against dumping. In the meantime, rest assured you can count on me to monitor, by the competent services of the French government with redoubled zeal, the importation of your tires. They will ensure compliance with all standards particularly applicable materials social, environmental and technical.
>> I beg you to accept, Sir, the assurances of my highest.

After resigning from papacy, Pope leaves Twitter | you won't have him to kick around any more (as Nixon said)

IAF Operation Iron Fist at Pakistan border

Aimed at providing the nation the reassurance that the IAF will deliver whenever called upon, a demonstration of this magnitude was carried out for the first time by day, dusk and night.

Emough of these dress rehearsals. The time to act is NOW. There needs to be swift and telling punitive action against the Jihadi establishment in Pakistan, Bangladesh and their accomplices and enablers
within India. Of what utility are all these advanced weapons platforms - if they are not deployed to pulverize to dust Hafiz Saeed, Maulana Masood Azhar, Gen. Ashfaq Pervez Kayani, Gen. Shuja Pasha, Yasin Malik et al?

What other outrage are we WAITING for before any form of retaliation? Are we expected to follow the false creed of "Non-violence", "Restraint", "Secularism" etc until the very last Hindu has been killed by a terrorist blast?

Are Indian lives not worth anything at all? Is Hindu blood just water to be spilled casually?

The Indian armed forces need to
USE that Iron Fist NOW. It is not meant merely for DISPLAY during exercises and "Republic Day" (sic) parades.

Teestas 1999 confession on where the moolah comes from. Why are we not surprised?

Article: Papal resignation linked to inquiry into 'Vatican gay officials', says paper

India's Premji Gives $2.3 Billion to Charity

Pope’s resignation linked to blackmailed gay-lobby within the Vatican, Italian newspaper alleges | choli ke peeche...

Washington Post on corruption in india

Thursday, February 21, 2013

India's compass on terror is faulty by kanwal sibal in IDR

---------- Forwarded message ----------
From: sanjeev nayyar
Subject: India's compass on terror is faulty by kanwal sibal in IDR
To: sgmail 

India's compass on terror is faulty by kanwal sibal in IDR 12/2/13

Afzal Guru’s hanging shows the ineptness with which our political system deals with the grave problem of terrorism. The biggest challenge to our security, and indeed that of countries all over the world that are caught in the cross currents of religious extremism, is terrorism.

India’s problem with externally supported terrorism is amongst the severest that any country faces. Our next door neighbour has been long using terrorism as an instrument of state policy.

Traditional military threats can be assessed on the basis of the size of the armed forces, equipment and logistics available to the adversary. A militarily weak country would normally hesitate to attack a stronger one as defeat is never honourable and the price could be loss of territory. A casus belli has to be established to negate any charge of unprovoked aggression; the laws of war are applicable. The international community can intervene through the UN or otherwise against a state resorting to military aggression.


Terrorism has a different logic. It is asymmetric warfare by non-state actors outside any law. The numbers involved are small and the targets are unsuspecting and unprepared individuals in the street, in public transport, hotels or restaurants or peaceful public spaces. Suicide bombers and car bombs can cause substantial casualties indiscriminately. Shadowy groups with leaders in hiding orchestrate these attacks. The involvement of state institutions through groups nurtured by them is on the basis of the practiced art of deniability. The international community cannot even agree on the definition of terrorism. The extraordinary challenge that terrorism poses to societies has to be dealt with exceptional levels of alertness, discipline, training of personnel, technical capacity, policing and organisational response.

India’s problem with externally supported terrorism is amongst the severest that any country faces. Our next door neighbour has been long using terrorism as an instrument of state policy. Even if some countries like Libya were accused of supporting terrorism, the acts imputed to them were not so blatant, wide-spread and persistent as those of Pakistan-based terrorists against India. North Korea has been accused of sporadic terrorist acts and Iran has supposedly targetted political opponents abroad and supported terrorist groups attacking Israel, but the Israeli-Arab confrontation has no parallel with the reasons for Pakistan’s animosity towards India and North Korea and Iran have no territorial claims that they seek to advance through terrorism. Pakistan supports terrorism to destabilize India, to make governance in Kashmir as difficult as possible, to nourish separatism there, to cause a communal divide in India. It is also a consequence of the deepening Islamisation of its society.

If some members of the National Advisory Council could plead with the President to save Kasab- a Pakistani who personally killed hapless, innocent Indians- from the gallows, one can imagine the resistance within the system to hang Afzal Guru.

To meet the enormity of such a threat India needs political consensus and cohesion within the country. We have, instead, political bickering and confused thinking in the civil society and sections of the media. Afzal Guru was sentenced to death by the Supreme Court, his review petition was rejected by the same court and yet the government took well over 6 years to decide on his mercy petition. To claim that this delay was not political in character is being disingenuous.

Because the delay was motivated by political considerations, the decision to hang him is being inevitably attributed to political calculations. Action against terrorists should not be vitiated by competition between government and the opposition for political or electoral advantage. With those responsible for killing Rajiv Gandhi and Beant Singh escaping hanging so far, the question of selective decisions arises. Sections of our mainstream press consider it appropriate to present Afzal Guru as a victim of the Indian judicial and political system rather than a brutal terrorist deserving condign punishment.


The dictum “better late than never” would have provided adequate social catharsis if the delay in hanging was actually for reasons beyond government’s control. If some members of the National Advisory Council could plead with the President to save Kasab- a Pakistani who personally killed hapless, innocent Indians- from the gallows, one can imagine the resistance within the system to hang Afzal Guru. If the milk of human kindness flows within our society for terrorists like Kasab, who were actually waging a proxy war by Pakistan against us, it is hard to imagine how we can steel our will and hone our organizational responses to combat terrorism zealously.

There are no NGOs or Hindu preachers in India publicly advocating religious violence against Pakistan on the basis of religious texts.


We have voluntarily confused the debate over Pakistan’s culpability for terrorism against us by declaring that both countries are victims of terrorism. We have damaged our case further by not resisting Pakistan’s attempts to equate the Mumbai terror attack with the attack on the Samjhauta Express. By playing up of disclosures about terrorist attacks by right wing Hindu extremists we are bracketting Pakistani abetted terrorist attacks in India and local acts of terrorism that have nothing to do with Pakistani territory. The previous Home Minister blurred the focus on externally supported terrorism by highlighting domestic religious extremism. His successor has scored a self-goal by speaking of Hindu terrorism and RSS/BJP run training camps. The External Affairs Minister, whose words have more echo outside because of his position, has endorsed the Home Minister’s accusation, no doubt adding to the confusion abroad about the ground realities.

There is no parallel between the highly deplorable but isolated terrorist activity of vengeful Hindus and the terrorist industry in Pakistan and the Islamic world sustained by oil wealth and pernicious religious thinking. There are no NGOs or Hindu preachers in India publicly advocating religious violence against Pakistan on the basis of religious texts. There is no state support for such activities. If we think our domestic jockeying for political advantage can be insulated from the external dimension of the terrorist threat facing us, we are committing a costly error. We let the Kashmiri separatists, who are de facto political accomplices of the terrorists, travel to Pakistan to meet even the Army and ISI chiefs there without reaction. Our compass on terrorism is faulty.

Warm Regards
sanjeev nayyar
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The ghost of Gwadar by amit verma in TRIBUNE + Pak based terrorist groups in Burma

---------- Forwarded message ----------
From: sanjeev nayyar
Date: Wed, Feb 13, 2013 at 1:40 PM
Subject: The ghost of Gwadar by amit verma in TRIBUNE + Pak based terrorist groups in Burma
To: sgmail 

Also read – Pak based terrorist groups strengthen themselves in Myanmar by S D Pradhan. Question – Are these groups a proxy for China?

The ghost of Gwadar
Chinese control alarming for India
by Amit Kumar 13/2/13 -

The ghost of Gwadar is back, looming large again as China gears up to assume operational control of this strategic deep sea port close to the Strait of Hormuz. The recent decision of the Pakistani Cabinet to transfer the functional responsibility for this port from the Port of Singapore Authority (PSA) to a Chinese company (China's Overseas Port Holding) has sent alarming signals to India as this port has larger strategic implications. India is concerned as the port offers an exceptional much-desired strategic depth not only to Pakistan but also cements China's foothold in the Indian Ocean region.

The move is a win-win situation for both Pakistan and China. For Pakistan, the Chinese takeover serves the purpose of closer Sino-Pak economic cooperation and possibly a greater engagement on security issues. A fully operational Gwadar port means the end of near-total dependence on a relatively vulnerable Karachi. Even prior to the completion, Pakistan had started considering Gwadar as an important naval base after Karachi and Ormara in an attempt to improve Pakistan's maritime security posture.

Karachi, which lies about 470 km east of Gwadar, was effectively blockaded during the India-Pakistan war of 1971. Gwadar, located much further to the west, away from the Indian coast, will certainly provide a safe alternative for Pakistan to improve military flexibility.

For the Chinese, Gwadar has the strategic significance of being close to the Strait of Hormuz. The Gwadar-Karakoram link road will offer strategic access to the Indian Ocean as well as greater economic benefits to its restive Xinjiang province. It will also allow Beijing to ensure better security of its energy shipments along the existing maritime links and oil imports from the Gulf to the Xinjiang region through overland.

Perhaps, the proposed multi-modal Gwadar-Kashgar road, rail and gas- oil pipeline links will put to rest the much discussed China's Malacca dilemma. Besides, on the security front with a listening post, China will be able to monitor US naval activities in the Persian Gulf and the Gulf of Aden, activities of the Indian Navy and future India-US cooperation in the Arabian Sea.

China is investing an enormous amount of money and muscle power to widen the Karakoram highway, and there is a plan to connect Gwadar with this strategic highway. This 1300-km highway running from Kashgar in western China to Havelian, located in Abbottabad district near Islamabad, is set to be transformed from a dusty and bumpy road to a smooth and bustling mountain highway. The highway also aims to augment the Chinese influence in Central Asia and the Middle East. In the coming years, the link would act as resource-rich Central Asia's gateway to the Indian Ocean. The newly constructed dry port at Sost (Afiyatabad), just a few kilometres away from the Khunjerab pass on the Karakoram Highway, has the potential to act as an entrepot for the Central Asian Republics.

Besides the road links, China and Pakistan are also planning to build a railway link between Xinjiang and Gwadar, almost parallel to the Karakoram Highway. The proposed railway line runs from Kashgar to Havelilian and is expected to join Pakistan's railway network for further connection to Gwadar. This rail link is not only aimed for economic benefits, but also to carry oil from the Persian Gulf to Xinjiang in case the pipeline option turns out unfeasible.

Energy transportation through the comparatively secure Gwadar-Xinjiang overland corridor would always be an easier and faster option for China. The distance from Kashgar to Gwadar through the overland route is about 1000 miles while the present oil shipments from the Gulf region cover a distance of more than 3500 miles in reaching to the east coast of China through the Malacca Straits.

An apprehensive India, soon after the commencement of the Gwadar project, decided to help Iran in developing the Chabahar port. This port, located in southeastern Iran, is the only Iranian port which has direct access to the Indian Ocean. Chabahar, connecting Afghanistan to the Persian Gulf waters, could be a good alternative to the Gwadar and Karachi ports being a low cost option for Afghanistan and Central Asia to reach the warmer waters of the Indian Ocean.

In 2003, a trilateral agreement was signed between India, Iran and Afghanistan in infrastructural development. Under this, Iran was to build a highway from Chabahar to the Afghanistan border and India was assigned to develop road connectivity between Delaram (a city on the Iran-Afghanistan border) and Zaranj (capital of Nimruz province of Afghanistan). Despite the existing flux in Afghanistan, India has already completed 213-kilometre Zaranj-Delaram road while progress from the Iranian side is unexpectedly slow. In addition, India is also engaged in helping Iran to upgrade the Chabahar-Milak rail road.

There is a common perception that the US may agree for greater cooperation with India to balance the growing Chinese influence in the Indian Ocean region, but may also disagree on India's policy to joining hands with Iran. But despite her reservation on India-Iran cooperation, the US has come out in support of the recent (August 2012) trilateral agreement among India, Iran and Afghanistan to expedite the on-going Chabahar port project.

In addition to the Chabahar port development, New Delhi must look to other alternatives to sustain the existing balance in the region. Augmenting naval capabilities, strengthening India-US naval cooperation as well as engaging other major powers and small littorals should be the priorities for New Delhi. Considering Chinese ambitions, it is imperative for India to make a sagacious move to balance China and maintain her traditional influence in the Indian Ocean littoral states.

In response of China's growing naval activity, search for reliable maritime access in the Indian Ocean has now become imperative for India. In addition, India is required to improve the dilapidated border road and rail infrastructure otherwise the prevailing disparities with China may be one of the causes for unrest in the border states in the near future. And above all, New Delhi should learn from the Chinese ability to convert strategic assets into economic opportunities.

The writer is an Associate Fellow at the National Maritime Foundation, New Delhi.


Warm Regards
sanjeev nayyar
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Chhattisgarh: 'A state continuously striving to do better' by sanjeev nayyar in Rediff

---------- Forwarded message ----------
From: sanjeev nayyar
Date: Fri, Feb 15, 2013 at 1:33 PM
Subject: Chhattisgarh: 'A state continuously striving to do better' by sanjeev nayyar in Rediff
To: sgmail 

Chhattisgarh: 'A state continuously striving to do better' by sanjeev nayyar in Rediff 15/2/2013


Development and smart policing must go hand in hand in Chhattisgarh, says Sanjeev Nayyar who travelled through several Naxal affected regions of the state.

I recently travelled through the Naxal affected districts of Bastar, Dantewada, Kanker and Narainpur. Over ten days I visited touristy places, adivasi homes, Bailadila iron-ore mines and the Jungle Warfare College, and also spoke to a cross-section of people. The purpose of this article is to share insights and observations gathered during the trip.

I reached Raipur at mid-night and took a bus to reach Jagdalpur by 8 am. Unlike what I had thought, Jagdalpur is a big town with a buzzling market place. It has a couple of huge stores selling consumer durables. Other district towns are smaller in comparison. I found the state to have excellent roads.

At Chitrakoot waterfalls and Kutumsar Caves (stalactite formations) I saw many tourists enjoying as they do in Delhi or Jaipur. Whilst driving through areas in which Naxals are active, the driver advised me not to get off and click pictures like I did elsewhere.

At the weekly market, Haat, adivasis offered me landa (rice beer) and mahua (the local brew). Everywhere people were interested in knowing where I was from.

Villagers told me that electricity is the key to their progress. They said that when a village is electrified the first thing villagers do is buy a TV with a DD dish. The rich amongst them go for a Tata Sky dish. Once they are exposed to the outside world perspectives could change even though others fear it will destroy the adivasi culture. Many yearn for a cellphone connection.

Several people told me that there has been tremendous development after Chhattisgarh became a separate state. Earlier Bastar was one district; today there are seven. This has increased the pace of development even though it means higher administrative cost.

I saw some interesting initiatives.

To see Slide Show

If you like to see more pictures of various initiatives -

1. Livelihood College Dantewada -

2. Jungle Warfare College Kanker -

3. Ramakrishna Mission Ashrama Narainpur -

3. Education City Geetham -

4. Bastar Craft -


The trip ended with a visit to Bhoramdeo Temple, described as the Khajuraho of Chhattisgarh.

Surely the government needs to do a lot more work on various fronts. However, I left with a distinct feeling that here is a state that is continuously striving to do better.

Will this solve the Naxal problem? To me winning the hearts and minds of people is more important.

The author is a national affairs analyst, founder and a Business Consultant.


Warm Regards
sanjeev nayyar
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