Friday, April 30, 2004

Hti: A couple months late...and a few frogs short.

...Or was that a few short frogs? Given the history of the place and all...
While Annan asked for a two-year mandate for the new force in hopes of demonstrating a long-term commitment to Haiti, the council approved the force for just six months "with the intention to renew for further periods."

The move reflected council efforts to keep its soaring peacekeeping budget under a tighter rein, diplomats said.

With just a month to assemble it, some diplomats suggested it might be hard to come up with enough troops.

White House spokesman Scott McClellan said, however, that "a number of countries" had already agreed to participate, though he offered no specifics.

Chile's U.N. ambassador, Heraldo Munoz, predicted nations in Latin America and elsewhere would help out.

"I trust that we will have the troops," he told reporters. "I hope that with this (resolution), we will be there for the long haul and not lose patience, as we have in the past."
Wow! A UN resolution!
Just wait a couple months, one creepy glance from a Chimere and it's bag packin' time for the UN roadshow.

U.S.: New feature

In support of the candidacy of John F. Kerry, CaribPundit will help interested readers track Mr. Kerry on his travels around the country. The purpose of this new feature is to help the readership understand the fantastic changes a Kerry presidency will bring to the U.S. Therefore, a new clickable icon will be added to the left column, just above the Bush/Cheney icon. Please, just click on this new icon and see where it takes you.

Unfortunately, I'm a woman who's subject to mood swings and mind changes, so I'll be keeping the Bush/Cheney icon and still running the Wictory Wednesday posts. I mean, a deputy is essential. Nevertheless, from now on, my heart will belong to John F. Kerry.

I'm out until later.

U.S.: I wonder why?

It's inexplicable but true, terrorism is down globally. What has occasioned such a down-turn in terrorist acts across the globe? Hopefully, somebody can figure it out.

There were 190 acts of international terrorism in 2003, a slight decrease from the 198 attacks that occurred in 2002, and a drop of 45 percent from the level in 2001 of 346 attacks. The figure in 2003 represents the lowest annual total of international terrorist attacks since 1969.

A total of 307 persons were killed in the attacks of 2003, far fewer than the 725 killed during 2002. A total of 1,593 persons were wounded in the attacks that occurred in 2003, down from 2,013 persons wounded the year before.

In 2003, the highest number of attacks (70) and the highest casualty count (159 persons dead and 951 wounded) occurred in Asia.

There were 82 anti-US attacks in 2003, which is up slightly from the 77 attacks the previous year, and represents a 62-percent decrease from the 219 attacks recorded in 2001.

Most of the attacks that have occurred during Operation Iraqi Freedom and Operation Enduring Freedom do not meet the longstanding US defi nition of international terrorism because they were directed at combatants, that is, US and Coalition forces on duty. Attacks against noncombatants, that is, civilians and military personnel who at the time of the incident were unarmed and/or not on duty, are judged as terrorist attacks.

U.S.: Haven't heard

How come almost no one says anything about the unlawful combatants from various countries that are being held in Afghanistan? All the talk one hears is about those who are sitting fat and slightly unhappy -- with the exception of the Chechens who are fat and happy, and whose families want them to stay in Gitmo because of the excellent care the U.S. is giving them, far better than anything they'd get in Russia.

Here's this report.

Thousands of Pakistanis were captured in Afghanistan following the fall of Taliban regime but not all of them were brought to Guantanamo Bay. The exact number of Pakistani prisoners at the prison facility in Cuba was never disclosed although hundreds of Pakistanis captured in Afghanistan are still languishing in Afghan jails.

Some of those released from the Guantanamo Bay prison said they were luckier than those held in Afghanistan where they were living in what they said were "subhuman conditions."
I guess that's why they return to fighting with the Taliban and other terrorist groups -- anything to return to the good life in Gitmo.

T&C: Canada's Colonialist Caribbean Dream

As residents of northwestern Ontario grow more and more impatient for the arrival of warmer weather, it's a good time to consider whether Canada should embark on a southward expansion. The Turks and Caicos Islands are a British-administered territory in the Caribbean. It seems some politicians in the territory remain very interested in an idea that goes back as far as 1917. They'd like the islands to become part of Canada.

Imperialists Canucks!

Hti: U.N. Struggles to Find Troops to Police Haiti

The NYT (free registration required) inadvertently notices a thing or two about U.N. eyes being too big for their bellies.

Of course France is intimately involved...
WASHINGTON, April 29 - Just a month before its deadline, the United Nations finds itself hard-pressed to sign up peacekeeping troops and French-speaking police officers to take over security in Haiti from an American-led interim force, United Nations officials and diplomats say.

The Security Council is considering a request by Secretary General Kofi Annan to send 6,700 peacekeepers and 1,622 civilian police officers to Haiti, which was shaken in February when armed insurgents opposed to the government of President Jean-Bertrand Aristide took over much of Haiti's north and moved on the capital

And the money quote - filtered from all the usual America isn't doing enough crap?
One problem is the competition for French-speaking peacekeepers, as missions are prepared for Ivory Coast and Burundi this year, United Nations representatives said.


Did they mean to say that there are too many formerly French colonial holdings sucking up French speaking 'peace keepers'?

Go figure...

U.S.: Lying about jihad is a talent of some

Transcript of Interview with Hamza Yusuf Hanson by Michael Enright on the September 11 Tragedy

Aired on September 23, 2001

Extract from the interview 

Michael: Well we know now it was more plunder than religion.

Shaykh Hamza: Well, that’s true. And unfortunately a lot of religious wars tend to be for other than religion. But the word jihad is probably one of the highest concepts that the Arabs and the Muslims have. It represents really the best of humankind. In the Qur’an it is never once used to express a military meaning. Not once.

Comment: This is not true. Open any Quran commentary book and find for yourself. (See for example: surah 4 verse 95, surah 9 verse 41, and surah 61 verses 10-13)

Interestingly, even Hamzah Yusuf himself knows that this statement is not entirely accurate. In his tape “The Life of The Prophet Muhammad,” tape number 9  Hamzah Yusuf  - talking about the prophet SAAWS and his companions in Madinah- said: “They are in a state of perpetual vigilance and war. This is jihad, his life is really a life of jihad, of struggle against the people who were bent on not seeing Islam spread which is important to us to take as a lesson if we really want to spread Islam


Michael: It means… does it not mean to go to war with yourself?

Shaykh Hamza: Well, that’s one of the meanings. It literally means – if you look at the word, the root word is "jihad" which means to struggle, and juhd in the Arabic language means a struggle literally. So jihad is the act of struggling. And the Prophet Muhammad peace be upon him, said that the greatest jihad is to struggle with your own soul’s insidious suggestions.

Comment: The root word of Jihad is actually “jahada.” It means 'fighting the enemies or doing ones utmost in fighting' (see lisaan Al-Arab by Ibn Mandhoor, Vol. 2 page 396. First edition, published by Dar Ihya at-Turath al-Arabi, Beirut 1988).

The hadith mentioned at the end is a weak hadeeth (See the book of weak hadiths by Imam al-Albani, and the book of weak and fabricated Hadiths for Imam al-Shawkani). Sufis in general always quote this Hadith because it relieves them from waging the true Jihad.


Shaykh Hamza (continues): And I think that really clarifies to the Muslims. Building a hospital in the Arab world – and I’ve lived in the Arab world, I speak Arabic very well – building a hospital, the Arabs will literally say what a great jihad that was when it was completed.

Comment: This is not an accurate statement. Arabic is my native tongue and I have studied it – at least one session every day - for 22 years. That phrase would never be used to describe such an effort. Instead, the Arab might say: what a great juhd which means “effort”.

However the Shari’ (legal) meaning of the term ‘Jihad,’ is “ The war Muslims wage to make the word of Allah superior against kuffar (disbelievers) who do not have a covenant with Muslims after  being invited to Islam and rejecting the invitation.  Reference: The Fiqh encyclopedia by the Ministry of Islamic Affairs, Kuwait”


Shaykh Hamza (continues): The idea of spending money for anything good… those firefighters who were pulling people out of the World Trade Towers, they would be considered, that’s an act of jihad. They would be considered mujahideen if they were described in Arabic. And I’m not exaggerating at all. That really is at the essence of this word.

Comment: Again, this is not accurate. In Islamic literature, when the word “mujahideen” is used without any qualification, it means one and only one thing: those who fight in the battlefield for the sake of Allah. Please refer to the Quran (See for example the commentary on surah 4 verse 95) and search for the word Jihad and Mujahideen to gain a better understanding of how they are used. 

The following hadith in Sahih Bukhari, Vol. 4 Book 52, No. 44 shows how the prophet SAAWS understood the word “jihad” and “mujahid” (singular of mujahideen,” please compare this hadith to what Hamzah Yusuf said: Narrated by Abu Huraira (RA):   A man came to Allah's Apostle and said, "Instruct me as to such a deed that equals Jihad (in reward)." He replied, "I do not find such a deed." Then he added, "Can you, while the Muslim fighter is in the battle-field, enter your mosque to perform prayers without cease and fast and never break your fast?" The man said, "But who can do that?" Abu- Huraira added, "The Mujahid (i.e. Muslim fighter) is rewarded even for the footsteps of his horse while it wanders about (for grazing) tied by a long rope."

However, if one does use the terms 'Jihad' or 'Mujahid' in a context other than their literal meaning, one must supplement these words with specific references that modify its literal meaning. These two words may be qualified to mean other types of jihad e.g. you may say jihad against the devil which means being vigilant towards the devil’s tricks. Therefore, each time the word jihad is used without any qualification in the Islamic literature – aside from the Sufi books--it means primarily fighting in the battlefield for the sake of Allah(SWT). Without doubts scholars have clearly mentioned Jihad-ul-nufs (struggle against one’s insidious suggestions), however this has never been the primary understanding of the term Jihad.

Also, refer to all the authentic Hadeeth in which “jihad” is mentioned, observing what the scholars have said about it. For example when Imam Bukhari & Muslim compiled their books of Sahih Hadith, they carefully gathered related Hadeeth reflecting a certain theme under definitive titles. In order to see the understanding of these Imams about Jihad, please go and read the chapters on Jihad in their respective books of Hadeeth.   The same applies to Imam Nawawi in his book Riyad-us-Saliheen.

Thursday, April 29, 2004

USS not so Clueless

A Steven Den Beste must read via InstaPundit

U.S.: Coming soon to a country near you

Proving once again that to jihadists, tolerance and pluralism only go one way, Muslim officials in Sudan have whipped a Christian girl for not wearing a headscarf. Where now are the Muslim voices that cried out for human rights and religious freedom in France? Why aren't they protesting this kind of thing?
April 28 (Compass) — Sudan’s Islamic regime in Khartoum lashed and fined a young Christian Sudanese woman in mid April for not wearing a headscarf in public in the capital city.

Cecilia John Holland, 27, was given 40 lashes on her back and fined 10,000 Sudanese dinars ($40) by the Sizana Islamic Court in Khartoum on April 14, sources in the capital confirmed to Compass.

A Christian born in southern Sudan, Holland was traveling by minibus to her home in the Khartoum suburb of Haj Yousif on the night of April 13 when she was arrested by a group of 10 public-order policemen, some in uniform and others in plainclothes.

She was just boarding the bus near Badr gardens in Khartoum Two at 9 p.m. when the police apparently spotted her. A police van pulled ahead of the bus, ordering the driver to stop, and Holland was dragged off the bus into the van.

When Holland tried to pull free, protesting that she was a Christian and a southerner, she was struck with a hard blow on the neck and forced into the van. Four other women were already detained there, all wearing scarves, although their attire was tight and revealing.

With temperatures in Khartoum ranging between 100 and 105 degrees F., Holland was wearing modest long sleeves and an ankle-length skirt, but her hair was uncovered.

The police told Holland she was being arrested for not wearing a scarf. No one in Khartoum, “even a non-Muslim,” she was told, was exempt from Islamic bans against wearing improper dress. ...

On the morning of April 14, the accused women were taken to the Sizana Islamic Court. There a policeman swore an oath on the Koran and then read out the charges against Holland and the other women. None of the accused women were allowed to say a word to the court.

According to the police version of Holland’s case, she was accused of “standing near a garden at night” and “not wearing a scarf on her head at 11 p.m.” The police refused to register that she was employed, writing instead that she was “jobless.”

Holland, who holds a diploma in catering from Khartoum Applied Sciences College, is employed as a catering officer for a local non-governmental organization.

Declaring Holland guilty, the Sizana court sentenced her to be lashed 40 times on her back and pay a fine of 10,000 Sudanese dinars. That afternoon, after being whipped and paying the cash penalty, she was released. The fine represented a third of Holland’s monthly salary. ...
Thanks to DhimmiWatch. There are no Muslim voices that cry out for the human rights of the victims of Muslim aggression.

U.S.: Oh, Canada!

Many have pointed out that this is not really that big a deal, and that Sharia courts for private arbitration are no different from courts that judge according to Jewish law, as goes the comparison in this article (thanks to Jeffrey Imm for the link), or any other private, voluntary association.

It is the nature of Sharia that raises questions. The Jewish court, the article tells us, "deals with monetary, business and family disputes, but no criminal matters." But Sharia does deal with criminal matters. Who will decide, then, what elements of Sharia will come under the purview of these courts, and which won't? How will this decision be made? And once made, will it not be subject to revision in the name of multiculturalism, tolerance, and freedom of religion — resulting in an ever wider sphere of influence for Sharia?

Maybe that won't happen. But it would be reassuring to see from Canadian authorities some clear and satisfactory answers to such questions.
Toronto, ON, Apr. 28 (UPI) -- Muslims in the Canadian province of Ontario can soon turn to settling disputes in their own courts, known as sharia, the Washington post reported.

Muslim promoters of sharia arbitration said no cases have yet been decided but the process is set. Islamic leaders created an Islamic Court of Civil Justice last fall and it has chosen arbitrators who have undergone training in sharia and Canadian civil law.

"People can agree to resolve disputes any way acceptable," said Brendan Crawley, a spokesman for the Ontario Attorney General's office said in an interview. He said the arbitration act has a number of safeguards, including the requirement that parties enter into arbitration only on a voluntary basis, and any decisions by arbitrators are subject to court ratification.

Jewish courts, using similar methods, have long been operating in Ontario. Such a court, called a Beit Din, deals with monetary, business and family disputes, but no criminal matters.
Thanks to DhimmiWatch.

U.S.: Die this very day

MM (caressing his AK-47): The name is Mohammed. Mohammed Mohammed.

Aisha (tossing her hijab): I know you, Mohammed Mohammed. With you, it's always bombs for dinner, sex with virgins for breakfast because "[f]or the God-fearing awaits a place of security, gardens and vineyards and maidens with swelling bosoms" (The Tidings 30). I won't get caught up with you; there's nothing in it for me.

MM (with a sneer): Another time, maybe? I've got my boys "[w]hile they hand therein a cup one to another [w]herein is no idle talk, no cause of sin, and there go around youths, their own, as if they were concealed pearls." (Mount LII: 20) So, I don't need you; I have my own "boys who are pretty like pearls."

Aisha (sneering, too): Bottoms up.

Bdos: Waiting for cricket

This woman was the lone cricket fan who ventured into the Queen's Park Stadium yesterday hoping the weather would clear. It never did.
Now, that is fan!

Bdos: Missing the mark

Sudan’s Islamic government, officially listed as a sponsor of terrorism, would be an ideal target for the world’s wrath, but it escapes censure from the West’s noisiest black activists despite enslaving of Christians and animists for more than two decades. Others, including moderate Blacks, describe it as one of the world’s greatest atrocities. A news item broadcast on just a few African radio stations, carried on the BBC, Barbadian media networks and reported in this newspaper on Saturday, could have gone much further. Perhaps the details are too revolting, even though UNICEF itself declined to elaborate to the extent that the pricks of conscience are currently forcing many enlightened Africans to do.
How could the writer address the issue of slavery in Africa and not focus on the role of Islam until the end? Even then, the writer does not even touch on the issue of Islamic genocide against Christians and animists in Africa. What about the millions of lives lost and shattered by Islamic jihad in the Sudan? Too, too, too delicate.

Ja: Climate ripe for terrorism

SCORES OF people, mainly women and children, were beaten and chased out of their homes in Arnett Gardens, south St. Andrew, yesterday morning by marauding gunmen who accused them of being spies or informers for opposing gang members.

Sections of the community erupted yesterday, as rival gangs got involved in a fierce gunbattle.

At least seven schools that were in close proximity, including Charlie Smith High, were forced to close their doors. Fearful residents stayed away from their jobs and remained indoors.

Several homes were broken into and electrical appliances and other items stolen. The regular route taxis suspended their services as the affected area was transformed into a ghost town. The only signs of life were people peeping over fences and pockets of persons gathered at various points discussing the problem.

Sonia Edwards, a 40-year-old mother of nine, said she was attacked and beaten by gunmen who gave her less than 24 hours to leave her home which is located in the 'Pegasus' area, near Collie Smith Drive.

A 78-year-old woman said her family was given until the end of yesterday to leave their home on Crooks Street, Jones Town.

"A dem same man dem who kill me son pon Good Friday, a sey we fe leave the area," the elderly woman told The Gleaner yesterday.

When a Gleaner news team visited 'Brooklyn' an emotional 22-year-old woman told a story of how she was hit with a piece of iron pipe across her back and shoulder. A number of other persons were beaten and told to leave the area.

Acting Commissioner of Police Lucius Thomas said at least two women with similar complaints turned up at his office yesterday morning. He proposed to put measures in place to prevent reprisals.
Where is law and order in Jamaica? What are the police doing to prevent the attacks from occurring in the first place. The issue is not just police preventing "reprisals"; instead, they must create an environment of rule of law in which the average Jamaican can live without fear of thugs. Islamic terrorists are known for coming in, creating the illusion of security, and so winning converts to their cause. It happened in Rwanda; it is most likely occuring amongst Indians in the Muslim Triangle; and, it can happen in Jamaica. That's when the real trouble will start.

Meantime, the Patterson government is moving oh so slowly.
PRIME MINISTER P.J. Patterson yesterday said he expects the Government's proposed National (Independent) Investigative Authority to come on stream by the end of the year.

During a post-Budget briefing held at Jamaica House, Mr. Patterson revealed additional details on the Government's intention to establish the new investigative body to tackle complex crimes and probe alleged police indiscretions.

He said the new body will draw on the human resources of several agencies that now probe felonies encompassing corruption, extortion, extradition, and financial crimes.

Ja: No fixed rate of exchange

Finance Minister Dr Omar Davies yesterday rejected Opposition Leader Edward Seaga's proposal for a fixed exchange rate, arguing that such a policy held more disadvantages than benefits for the country.

"An arbitrary decision to re-introduce a fixed exchange rate system just will not wash," Davies told the House of Representatives as he closed the annual budget debate.

According to the finance minister, a fixed exchange regime had costs, and "a critical one relates to the removal of flexibility to respond to domestic and external shocks".

Seaga, in his presentation, had told Parliament that a strong case existed to examine the option of either a currency board with a fixed rate of exchange, or an independent Central Bank with a special regime to maintain a pegged rate, "as the means of ending the frustrations of a stagnant, debt-ridden economy".
Read the rest.

Gya: Channa bomb sparks call for Gajraj death squad investigation

The Working People's Alliance (WPA) has condemned Sunday's arson attack on the Ministry of Home Affairs and is calling for an impartial and independent investigation into all violence that has beset the country in recent times.

In a statement, the WPA said allegations and reports in the media range from suggestions of the channa bombing being a self-inflicted action to direct blame on the opposition. The statement said however, that the act shows the extent to which violence has replaced civility and the rule of law as the norm in Guyana.

The WPA reiterated in particular its calls for an immediate investigation into the allegations of the existence of the death squads and the alleged involvement of the Minister of Home Affairs in criminal acts.

According to the WPA, the government and ruling party have a constitutional duty to take the lead in this area. The party noted too that they have a moral duty since their own members have been implicated.
For the non-Caribbean reader, "channa" is the "chick peas." When soaked in an accelerant, they can make a pretty effective bomb because channa rolls and can get into nooks and crannies, thus the fire can be spread quickly and is harder to fight.

Gya: Online non-immigrant U.S. visa applications

The Consular Section at the United States Embassy in Georgetown is now offering an online, electronic version of the non-immigrant visa (NIV) DS-156 application form.

A US Embassy press release stated yesterday that the new electronic NIV application form is available at the following website:http://evisaforms.state. gov. The release noted that the new electronic NIV application form is an additional option for applicants to complete their NIV application.

But NIV applicants may continue to fill out by hand the DS-156 NIV application form received from Citizens Bank.

By completing the new online NIV application form, applicants will expedite the administrative processing on the day of their appointment.

The information requested on the Electronic Visa Application is the same information required on the paper Application Form DS-156. The release also noted that the process of applying for an NIV remains the same.
Applicants are required to print all three pages of the document and bring all three pages to the Embassy on the day of their appointment.

NIV applicants should not fold the sheets, the release advised.
At least applicants have to appear in person at the Embassy ... which is more than Maura Harty wants them to do in Saudi Arabia.

Gya: Mea culpa, mea maxima culpa

The only people who have made anti-Semitic noises upon seeing Mel Gibson's The Passion of the Christ are the Jew-hating Islamics in the Mid-East and points out there. For Christians, Mel Gibson's film does not occasion anti-semitic rage but personal acknowledgement of sin and recognition of the need for Christ's redemptive act. The people of Guyana are no different in this respect.

Cinema goers left the Astor Cinema dazed and penitent yesterday afternoon after the premiere of Mel Gibson's controversial film "Passion of the Christ".

"It's beyond words... I thought I was going to cry but it was also beyond tears..." said Patricia Seaton who was among the small audience.

"I'm really convinced Christ died to save this world," she declared after seeing the film....

Those who attended the first screening yesterday praised the film for what they said was its honest portrayal of the crucifixion, which was graphically recreated in several detailed scenes that are not for the faint of heart.

In what was perhaps the bloodiest scene of the film, Jesus, who is played by actor Jim Caviezel, is whipped by Roman soldiers who literally rip the flesh off his back. They then turn him over and bloodthirstily start again.

"I couldn't watch it," said one man who took time off from his job to see the film with his wife.

"I think that picture really showed exactly what Jesus had to go through... and if people take it into consideration they will have to change... I had to come out and repent. I had to come out three, four times to repent," he told Stabroek News.
Pastors Wayne Joseph and Bertlyn St. Hill appreciated the film for its honest portrayal and lack of subtlety.

"That is actually what happened... This is close to what actually took place... It's not violence, it's what he had to go through," St. Hill told Stabroek News at the end of the premiere.

Joseph thought the portrayal was powerful and, more importantly, accurate, according to the testaments of the Holy Bible. He defended the depiction of the violence in the film, which he said is more historically accurate than some of the false concepts that have been peddled in other movies.

"This is something I've been longing for a long time. It has been long overdue... Jesus of Nazareth and King of Kings, those films do injustice to the crucifixion.

"What [those films] have given us is watered down versions of what occurred. This is what actually happened..." St. Hill added.
Yes, indeed. No anti-semitism here. Now, will the ADL, the NY Times and Frank Rich, in particular, and all those other anti-Christians, who reviewed the film, apologize to the world-wide Christian community? Whatever you do, don't hold your breath.

TT: More on TT as a terrorist hub

A more comprehensive report from The Express.

Terrorism analyst Dr Angel Rabasa even listed a number of reasons why [this country was highly vulnerable to becoming a host to terrorist networks] ... as he addressed a meeting of businessmen and expatriates at the American Chamber of Commerce (AmCham) at the Hilton Trinidad yesterday.

Noting that one sign of potential terrorist activity was the movement of locals to study at Islamic institutions in countries such as Pakistan. Rabasa said Trinidad and Tobago was the only country in the Caribbean, and maybe the Western Hemisphere, to have experienced an episode of Islamic violence such as the attempted coup of 1990.

He added that there were reports of continued activities by elements suspected to be linked to terrorist organisations in this country.

Rabasa listed five reasons why countries in the Eastern Caribbean, especially T&T, were vulnerable to transnational crime and international terrorism.

He said, firstly, these countries lacked the resource base to develop robust internal security, law enforcement and intelligence capabilities.

Rabasa said the second reason was the strategic position of the region that has been called the third border of the US and a bridge between the cocaine-producing regions, such as Colombia, to mainland America. He said this created an avenue of access.

Thirdly, he said, there was the presence of terrorist groups in South America and the Government and the political movement of President Hugo Chavez in Venezuela.

Rabasa said the Chavez Government has flirted with rogue states like Libya, the defunct Saddam Hussein Government of Iraq and the Palestinian Liberation Organisation (PLO).

He said the Chavez regime has handed travel documentation to Middle Easterners with suspected links to extremist organisations.

Fourthly, Rabasa cited the presence of criminal networks and communities that provide support for extremist and terrorist networks.

"This creates opportunities for foreign extremists and terrorists groups to come in and recruit local operatives who may be familiar with the local situation and therefore more effective in enabling them to conduct support or other types of operations," he said.

He said the fifth reason included globalisation and the extent that the Eastern Caribbean was brought more closely into the international market.

"This is certainly the case of Trinidad, which is an English-speaking country with an excellent telecommunications infrastructure and direct flights to the United States and a major exporter of liquified natural gas (LNG) and host to a variety of US and international organisations," he said.

Rabasa added, "This creates a higher probability that the area would be incorporated into a terrorist network."

He noted that it was a difficult problem to be looking for signs of incipient terrorist activity because, by definition, it is covert.
Read the rest.

It is rather gratifying to have an international expert on terrorism sounding the same notes that we at CaribPundit have been repeatedly drumming. The only thing that Rabasa omitted from our calculus was Castro.

Now, what does Michael Burke, Jamaica Observer's rude bwoy without balls, have to say? Will he still pass out the KY and insist that Caribbean people bend over? Or, will he and other Caribbean columnists and editorialists 'fess up and admit that terrorism is also a Caribbean problem? More significantly, will Caricom have the good sense to draw closer to the Bush administration, which, in this hemisphere, is the only government with the balls to take the fight to terrorism with the intent to end it?

Terrorism is something about which Caricom must recognize they cannot engage in endless blather, nor can they delay decision-making on stratagems to address it. Caricom would have done well to abide by the old proverb, "when your neighbor's house burning, wet yours," instead of striking a French pose at Islamic terrorism and scornfully regarding GWB as a dimwit warmonger who is neither to be respected nor assisted.

TT: Peter paying for Paul

Police took two sick young boys away from their Carenage home yesterday, after an anonymous caller told them the children were being neglected by their mother.

Police found the boys, aged six and four, emaciated and covered with sores and rashes.

Their 27-year-old mother told police the children were HIV-positive.

The boys were lying helpless in the living room of the house yesterday morning when police and a Guardian team arrived.

They appeared to be weak, dehydrated and in need of medical attention.

Their mother told police the children have been sick for more than three years, since the death of their father.

She said at that time, she took the children to Eric Williams Medical Sciences Complex, Mt Hope, where they were diagnosed as being HIV-positive, and treated.

The mother, who is also HIV-positive, recently got a job.

She said she had not taken the children for medical treatment because she did not want to expose the children and herself to public scrutiny and discrimination.

Their father died of AIDS, and since then they have been sick. I did not want to lose my job. That is why I keep it as a secret all this time,” she said.
I wonder what is being said now by those sons of bitches who preach and practice that a "deputy's essential"? With fierce diseases like HIV/AIDS ravaging the Caribbean, isn't it high time that Caribbeanites abandon their loose-and-leggo sexual morés for a more conservative lifestyle that will not bring such horrible death and suffering to ourselves and our children? When will some Caribbean men stop deluding themselves that being the man on top doesn't make them homosexual? When will Caribbeanites set aside sexual promiscuity for abstinence before marriage, marriage, and fidelity within marriage? The Uganda model has shown that that is the only way to beat AIDS. Perhaps it is time for Caribbean governments to stigmatize illegitimacy once again and to make sex outside of marriage a crime. But then, if they did that, half of the police force might wind up in jail.

T&T: Terrorist bases? NIMBY (not in my back yard)!!

The presence of “hostile sectors” in Trinidad and Tobago makes this country a prime location for international terrorist bases, but there is no hard evidence that such bases exist here, according to Rand Corporation senior policy analyst, Dr Angel Rabasa. Dr Rabasa, who spoke at the monthly meeting of the American Chamber of Commerce of TT at the Hilton Trinidad yesterday, said terrorists operate successfully worldwide because of “the presence of communities that could provide the support for extremist and terrorist networks.” He said such communities exist in TT.

“The fact that these communities exist, creates opportunities for foreign terrorist and extremist groups to come in and recruit local operatives, who may be familiar with the local situation and therefore more effective in enabling them to conduct support for other types of operations. TT is at some risk at becoming host to terrorist organisations,” he warned. Rabasa said TT is the only Caribbean and Western Hemispheric nation to have experienced Islamic violence (the attempted coup of July 1990) and there have been unconfirmed reports since then of Jamaat-al-Muslimeen involvement in local crime.

“In the case of Islamic terrorist groups, you have to look for what are the possible modes of influence for these groups. They would come into mosques or Islamic schools. They would send operatives into mosques that are considered sympathetic to their particular ideology,” he explained. He also observed that there were TT nationals who travelled to countries like Pakistan to conduct Islamic studies and Pakistan was one place where pockets of radical Islamists thrived.

TT’s reputation as a major LNG supplier, its telecommunications infrastructure, direct flights to the United States and decades-old regional criminal networks and the host of international corporations located here, also increase TT’s attractiveness to international terrorists.
I wish these RCs in TT would behave themselves. I mean, they have to be the ones considered as "hostile sectors," right? After all, who else could it be? Spiritual Baptists, maybe?

Imagine that! TT nationals heading out to Pakistan to conduct "Islamic studies"; we know, from the last crush in Mecca, that at least one TTian is in Saudi Arabia studying Islamic law. What is a good Shi'a boy doing studying Islamic law in Saudi Arabia? What kind of ideology is he and the others who went to Pakistan learning? What are their plans for TT's free, easygoing, and bacchanalian society? How can these young men drilled into Wahhabism and the jihadist ideology promulgated by Saudi schools and Pakistani madrassas fit into a society in which near nakedness, jam, and wine is par for the course for Carnival? How long before these young men attempt to remold TT into the image and likeness of a pure Islamic state?

That there is no "hard evidence" of terrorist bases in TT does not mean that they do not exist. Instead, one may construe that authorities have been unable to prove that they are there. Absence of evidence is not evidence of absence.

Word to TTians: if you want to preserve an open society and a liberal lifestyle, time to start buying guns.

Vzla: Bad timing

Since last Thursday, 6,000 workers at Siderúrgica del Orinoco (Sidor) have been on the 300th strike in the company’s history. This time they are striking indefinitely for payment of 15% of net profits. With 92 hours clocked up so far, the stoppage is costing the company $3 million a day, according to calculations by Maritza Izaguirre, the steel company’s executive president.

The workers’ claims have to do with the Employee Participation Program, implemented six years ago. This program granted the workers a 20% shareholding in the company, to be administered by Bandes, which comes under the Finance Ministry.
Just when steel sales are skyrocketing, too.

Vzla: Future not so rosy?

Schlumberger, the world's biggest oil field services provider, said Venezuela's oil industry appears to be floundering as a result of mass firings of employees at state oil company Petróleos de Venezuela (PDV) last year, Oil Daily said Monday.

In a conference call on Schlumberger's first-quarter earnings, Chief Executive Andrew Gould said PDV has been plagued by operational and administrative inefficiency since opponents of President Hugo Chávez were purged from its ranks.

Venezuela, a leading supplier of crude to the US, saw its oil industry paralysed in late 2002 and early 2003 as PDV managers, technicians and workers launched a strike against Chávez.

Oil Daily reported that Gould said Schlumberger's recent experience in Venezuela had forced it to adopt a more cautious view on the country's ability to return to pre-strike levels of drilling activity.

"We expect the situation to continue to deteriorate in the near term," he said. "I just worry if they haven't got it together after two quarters, how long is it going to take?"

Gould said that Schlumberger is being paid more slowly for work performed in Venezuela than it was accostumed to in the past, though he noted that Venezuela accounts for only 3% to 4% of Schlumberger's oil field service revenues.

The volatile political situation in Venezuela was also making foreign companies that operate in the country reluctant to commit to investment projects, Gould added.
So, Chavez's threats to withhold oil contracts from the U.S. might be very well caused by his government's mismanagement of Venezuela's oil industry. Of course, Chavez does not have the cojones to say so; instead, he wraps up his insecurities in threatening language that might serve to make him and Venezuela as important as he thinks both ought to be.

USVI: New England outsources roadwork to VI

ST. THOMAS - A severe labor shortage in New England could create as much as 7,500 jobs for Virgin Islanders between May and November this year.

V.I. government officials met with U.S. Rep. Bill Delahunt, D-Mass., and a delegation of Massachusetts business leaders Tuesday on St. Croix to discuss plans for matching local workers with unfilled jobs on Cape Cod.

New England states long have depended on foreign unskilled labor for their tourism seasons, and in March, when the Bush administration stopped processing H-2B foreign work visas for this fiscal year, the states looked to the territory for a new source of workers.

U.S.: Weeding out terrorists in our midst

Got this from Baldilocks, who got it from Amy Ridenour's blog. I thought us Caribbean types ought to do our bit to weed out the terrorists from amongst us.

We all know that it is a sin for an Islamic male to see any woman other than his wife naked, and that he must commit suicide if he does. So this Sunday at 4:00 PM Eastern time all American women are asked to walk out of their house completely naked to help weed out any neighborhood terrorists. Circling your block for one hour is recommended for this Antiterrorist effort.

All men are to position themselves in lawn chairs in front of their house to prove they are not terrorists, and to demonstrate that they think it's okay to see nude women other than their wife and to show support for all American women. And since the Koran also does not approve of alcohol, a cold six-pack at your side is further proof of your anti-terrorist sentiment.

The American Government appreciates your efforts to root out terrorists and applauds your participation in this anti-terrorist activity.

God bless America!
Me, I want the men to be naked. I want the women to be passing out the beer. I want us to wine and jump up and get on bad. No terrorist can put up with Caribbean people in a party mood. Now, will the female terrorists also commit suicide when they see naked men? Fellas, do your duty!

Wednesday, April 28, 2004

U.S.: To the glorious mujihadeen ... maweth!

The valorous tales of Arthur and the Knights of the Round Table, of Ivanhoe, of Boewulf, of Achilleus, of Odysseus, of Sundiata, and of Shaka are as nothing, nothing! compared to the wondrous and glorious deeds of the mujihadeen. May Allah grant them 72 raisins each.

27 April 2004 - Do the militants in Fallujah plan to use chemical weapons on themselves and blame the US?
by Laura Mansfield, Senior Analyst

In a nutshell, that appears to be what is being planned by the militants currently under seige in Fallujah.

In recent months, we have seen a number of postings that indicate that the militants have been considering perpetrating some sort of mass casualty event and blaming it on the United States in an attempt to catalyze a large scale reaction against the United States and its coalition partners. (We have reported this on the NEIN website, most recently over the Ashura holiday.)

This morning a posting was made on one of the jihadi boards that NEIN analysts follow closely. It quotes a report by the Islamic Thinker Website indicating that the militants in Al Fallujah are bracing for a chemical weapons attack by the United States.

The source is credible (as jihadi sources go). The posting is made by Mirage, who has posted 1255 times on this specific message board. This particular posting was made around 5 AM ET this morning.

In light of the posting monitored yesterday regarding the Mujahadeen Poisons Handbook (see next article) we have serious concerns regarding this matter. The posting and our concerns have been sent to the appropriate law enforcement and military officials, as is the policy of the Northeast Intelligence Network.

Translation of Arabic posting:

Al-Fallujah gets ready for an attack by America with toxic gases.

The Islam Thinker report quotes sources in Al Fallujah that Iraqi translators close to the occupation forces state that the Marines are supplied with fatal and poisonous gas bombs, and have been granted authorization to use them in Al Fallujah as part of their blockade against the Iraqi resistance fighters.

The sources credited a newspaper, The Gulf News, that these bombs kill all living organisms in the region that they fall in, for a diameter of 500 meters from the point of detonation, in a circle pattern, and no creature is immune from its effects.

The sources stated that the resistance men have prepared big numbers of muzzles opposite to the gasses (antidotes), It is the advice of some of the specialists that the chemical items can be countered with the use of a wet veil (fine mist?) for items such as mustard gas, if the gas is not too abundant (concentrated) because these items ease the suffocation, but they do not prevent the influence of the gas if the fighter was within the circle affected by the explosion.

The resistance fighters have stopped gathering in close places, and are spread out so as to be ready for the worst case scenario.
Such valorous acts of bravery the world has never seen. Would that all the brave and strong mujihadeen, everywhere, would follow the lead of those in Fallujah who are currently hiding behind women and children.

US: Pranksters fined for fooling Fidel
File under: Headlines I wish I'd written.

Two Miami radio journalists were fined $5,463 dollars for broadcasting a phone conversation that fooled Cuban President Fidel Castro into believing he was talking with Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez.

Joe Ferrero and Enrique Santos, of Spanish-language radio station "El Zol" called the fine absurd and promised to pay a whopping bag of pennies to the Federal Communications Commission in Washington.

The FCC cited a requirement that persons be informed if their telephone conversations are to be broadcast.

In June, the pair, who host a humour show, managed to fake Chavez's voice and were put through to Castro, who maintained a conversation with the phone-y Chavez, a political ally, for 25 minutes, before the Miami-based radio host doing the voice said, "So -- you agree that your island is in deep s__t?

The article goes into considerably more detail regarding Castro's Hobo-mouthed reaction.

My 'scientifical' conclusion?
After a careful cheerful cost-benefit analysis of the positive transactional values accrued after being charged $5,463 by your government for 25 minutes of communist dictator fun - heard by thousands?


U.S.: Wictory Wednesday is here again!

Today is Wictory Wednesday. If you're in MO, head down to Ted Drewes tomorrow at 6PM for the coolest custard anywhere, and rally for President Bush. I must confess, I'm kinda disappointed in my boy John F'fin Kerry, who launched into a virulent personal attack against GWB simply because he couldn't get and keep his medal story straight. Since I'm a Kerry supporter on some days, here's a bit of advice: just go with your middle name and say what I did with my medals and ribbons is my F'fin business. That'll get the raving right-wingers at ABC off your back. Trust me, it will. The American people will applaud the brevity and straightforwardness of your response. The FCC will sigh rapturously. And, you'll regain a huge lead over GWB in the 18-29 group by using their kinda language. Go for it, big guy. Bring it on!

Anyway, all pleasantries aside, here's how you can contribute to the re-election of President George W. Bush. If you're an American citizen:

I urge you to exercise your right as an American citizen to register to vote and support our President. You can register to vote right now by visiting Register to Vote for George W. Bush. The upcoming presidential election could be very close -- every bit as close as 2000 -- and your vote will matter. With the challenge we face of keeping this nation prosperous and secure, the stakes of this election couldn't be higher. Make your voice heard by registering to vote at Register to Vote for George W. Bush.
If you're a legal alien, contact the INS and apply for citizenship. No, you won't become a citizen in time to vote for the election, but you can begin the application process. If you're an illegal alien, there are legal paths to take to regularize your status so you can eventually exercise all the rights and privileges of American citizenship. Alternative information sourcesare here and here.

If you're a citizen, you can work towards GWB's re-election by becoming a Bush Volunteer; by making a campaign donation. Every little counts. Remember, GWB is not just up against the Kerry Ketchup mega-millions, he's also up against George Soros's billions. Give whatever you can.

Additionally, if you've got a blog, you can add Bush-Cheney campaign news to it. For those who like to shop, buy Bush-Cheney campaign gear at the GWB Online Store. Buy Bush-Cheney campaign gear.)

If you wish to give to the Bush re-election campaign via CaribPundit, on Wictory Wednesdays, you can hit the blog's tip jar and send me a note. What I'll do then is to move the money on to GWB's election campaign along with a list of donors. Yeah, yeah, I get to look good ! Furthermore, I'll also blog post a list of donors by first name/nickname/anonymous/whatever turns you on. Freel free to email me with comments, requests, whatever. Your mail will be private and confidential, unless you indicate otherwise.

US: Kerry's pequeño Cuban Problem
How the Democratic nominee is punching the wrong chad in Florida.

John Kerry looks terrified when he talks about Florida—and not without cause. The state remains firmly in the hands of a Republican governor who happens to be the president's brother, an autocratic Republican legislature, and a new secretary of state who may prove more partisan than Katharine Harris.

But what Kerry should be most worried about is the Cuban vote. If he handles his Florida campaign right, Kerry could win a much larger share of this exile constituency than the paltry 18 percent Gore won in 2000 and do as well as Clinton's 39 percent, which would make victory in the state likely. But if he keeps going the way he has been, Kerry will get fewer Cuban votes even than Gore did and in all likelihood lose the state.

Kerry's approach so far has been pandering to hard-line Cuban exiles—ineptly. In March, Kerry told a Miami TV reporter that he had voted for Helms-Burton, the 1996 legislation that further tightened the U.S. embargo on Cuba. In fact, he had voted against it. True, as he would later point out, he voted for its conference version, but that's not the same thing. In fact, Kerry had excellent reasons for not voting for the final version—it slapped on the controversial provision allowing for lawsuits against Cuba to proceed in U.S. courts, which puts the United States at odds with the world and, in fact, has never been enforced by George Bush. But instead of arguing his position, Kerry dissembled and created a video loop that has run continuously on Miami television.

h/t Andrew Sullivan

The money quote:
"The Cuban connection to the Republican Party has hung mainly on one issue: support for a non-engagement policy with Cuba going back to Eisenhower. But there is also a lingering bitterness at Democrats over President Kennedy's refusal to provide air cover during the Bay of Pigs invasion."

It seems that Cuban exiles aren't particularly happy about Democrats delivering their country into the hands of a communist Dictator.

Read the rest.
There are some good examples of Kerry's waffle breakfast habit in Florida.

Hon: Al-Qaida may be training Honduran nationals

Interesting source...MSG to taste.
MANAGUA, April 27 (Xinhuanet) -- The Islamic terror organization al-Qaida could be training several Honduran citizens who have converted to Islam to recruit them into their militia, Honduran Security Minister Oscar Alvarez said Tuesday.

At a press conference in the capital Tegucigalpa, Alvarez said several Honduran citizens who study at local mosques received scholarships to travel to Middle East countries to study Islam, but they might be trained to join the terror group.

h/t Rantburg

USVI: Oh woe! a liberal realizes the truth about Kerry

The attack theme chosen by the Bush campaign against John Kerry is that he is a waffler who speaks out of both sides of his mouth. Kerry appears to be doing his best to prove them right.

In a recent appearance on "Meet the Press," he was shown film clips of his Senate testimony from 1971. In it, he referred to atrocities committed by himself and others in Vietnam, describing them as war crimes. Instead of defending his words as a painful truth spoken in a difficult time, he tried to explain them away as a youthful indiscretion. He said the words were honest (one side of his mouth talking) but "a little bit over the top" (the other side talking). How could the words be both honest and over the top? Could this be a waffle, an attempt to have it both ways?
Democrats who supported Kerry in the primaries did so because they wanted someone who could beat Bush. Now they seem to be getting someone who is adopting Bush's positions. Their only hope is that Kerry really doesn't believe what he is saying and will change his tune once in office. But isn't misleading the public one of their main beefs about Bush?
Read the rest.

USVI: Sentenced to college

ST. THOMAS - Territorial Judge Leon Kendall imposed an unusual sentence Monday on convicted killer Nashibo George, 23, who stabbed Lamar Knight to death in 1995 at Charlotte Amalie High School, where both were students.

The sentence: George must attend the University of the Virgin Islands on weekdays to obtain a bachelor's degree over the next five years; he is to spend weekends in jail.

George was arrested on first-degree murder charges when he was 14. During a break on Feb. 1, 1995, he had stabbed Knight, a sophomore who bullied him, in the hallway that connects buildings B and C.

A Territorial Court jury found George guilty of voluntary manslaughter, which is the unlawful killing of a person without malice as a result of a sudden quarrel or in the heat of passion. Jurors found him not guilty of first-degree and second-degree murder.
George has been free on bail and under house arrest for much of the nine-year period his case has wound through the criminal justice process. While under house arrest, he earned a General Equivalency Diploma and attended UVI for two semesters.

Kendall said that because George displayed a willingness to educate himself, he sentenced him to earn a bachelor's degree in the next five years. Under the terms of the sentence, George must register as a full-time UVI student, starting with the fall 2004 semester. He must take at least 15 credit hours each semester and must have a part-time job at which he works at least 20 hours a week. He must report to the Bureau of Corrections at 5 p.m. every Friday, and he will remain there until 7 a.m. on Monday. He is to be incarcerated all of the time between semesters.

If George finishes his bachelor's degree before the five-year sentence is up, he will not have to report to jail on the weekends and will immediately begin a three-year probation. If George fails to enroll at UVI, he will be incarcerated.
Sounds like the judge has given the young man a second chance. God willing George has the wit to grab his good fortune with both hands. If Nashibo George has any sense at all, he would even enroll for summer classes and so stay out of jail as much as possible.

T&T: Cheap energy

Prime Minister Manning told a news conference that he argued to the US Energy Secretary that if the US wants an increase in supply of gas it would be only fair that the United States, as the sole projected consumer of the natural gas now under the ground, should take the risks involved in exploration activity.

Inevitably, it is this kind of partnership between industrialised and developing countries, the private and public sectors of this hemisphere that will ensure energy security. Inherent in the proposed co-operation between the US and T&T are indirect benefits to energy-poor Caricom countries, as this country has committed to low energy prices to its neighbours.

T&T: Gupta pushes for Hind

INDIAN High Commissioner to Trinidad and Tobago Virendra Gupta said last Tuesday that while he had no qualms with Spanish being made the second official language of this country, he would like to see more attention given to Hindi in more schools across the nation.

Gupta, speaking to the Express at his office in Port of Spain, said he was not criticising the Government for making Spanish the second official language and placing emphasis on it in schools "because I believe Spanish is very important."

"And it's understandable why they (Government) would want to teach this language in schools, given this country's close proximity to Latin America. But I would like to see greater attention given to Hindi."
Gupta also pointed out that business relations between this country and India, which has the fifth largest economy in the world, has increased steadily over the past years and this was all the more reason why the people of this country should strive to develop an understanding of Hindi as this could further help to enhance the relationship between the countries.

"...In the last three years, India doubled its trade with Trinidad and the commercial ties between the two countries have been strengthened. When you learn the language of a people, that's the first step in understanding the people and its culture..." Gupta said.

"I think now there are about 25 schools where Hindi is being taught but it is our hope that the programmes could be extended and Hindi be taught at more schools," Gupta added.
What Commissioner Gupta has no qualms with is his own business; what T&T teaches in its schools is ours and none of his. Of what use will Hindi be to the citizens of T&T? India's High Commissioner has been pushing for the Hinduization of T&T and the Hindiization of the schools. When is he going to learn that a significant majority of T&Tians do not want any part of his proposals? If T&T taught the language of every nation with whom it had ancestral or trade relations, the nation's schools would have to teach Yoruba, Twi, Mandarin, Cantonese, Assyrian Aramaic, Arabic, Irish Gaelic, Welsh, Amharic, and a few other languages, too. It seems that Gupta wants to turn T&T into India West. While I have no objection to Hindi being taught if the citizens of T&T express an interest, I do not believe it is the place of the High Commissioner to intervene with public lobbying. It's high time the Indian High Commissioner back-off and stayed out of T&T's internal affairs.

T&T: Wasted energy

Trinidad Cement Ltd (TCL) has come up with a project which would see hundreds of tonnes of waste material incinerated in the company's kilns, instead of being dumped at landfill sites, or in rivers and other waterways.

Hannah Wei-Mudden, TCL's Group Environmental Engineer, yesterday outlined details of the proposed project-"Wastes to Energy: Sustainable Waste Management using Cement Kilns" at a luncheon hosted by the Couva/Pt Lisas Chamber of Commerce.
Wei-Mudden said the TCL plan involved selected wastes such as used tyres, PET plastics ( used to make soft-drink bottles) and petroleum based used-waste oils, be collected at various centres throughout the country, transported to locations where they could be specially prepared (such as where tyres could be shredded) and then taken to TCL where they would be burnt at temperatures averaging 1500 degrees centigrade.

"These materials contain significant calorific value which we are literally dumping down the drains," she said.

St. Maart: Bow Wow barks, girls faint

PHILIPSBURG-His mother watched at the side of the stage as Bow Wow rocked the crowd at Carnival Village for the Youth Extravaganza. Girls fainted, male and female fans rushed to get near the international music and movie superstar, here from Atlanta, Georgia, in the United States for the 35th annual Carnival celebration.
Wearing a number three jersey from Memphis, Bow Wow performed for about one hour total, singing some of the hits that bought him his popularity.
One girl who won a dance competition during intermission had the surprise of her life when she was placed at centre stage while Bow Wow returned for the second half of his show, which got underway around 11:40pm.

The crowd chanted to every one of his songs and it was evident that they had come prepared, knowing the even lyrics to the songs on his latest release "Unleashed."

PR: La luta continua

SAN JUAN (AP)– The organization All of Puerto Rico with Vieques announced on Tuesday a forum on decontamination and development of the island municipality to commemorate the one-year anniversary of the United States Navy’s withdrawal from the island.

Group spokesman, Jose Paralitici, said.... “In this stage of the struggle it is important that we are well informed about claims being made by Vieques residents pertaining the decontamination of lands formerly occupied by the Navy for over six decades, many of which will be unusable unless they are cleaned up,” said Paralitici in a press release.
Paralitici, from the Marxist flavor of his language, clearly views the U.S. Navy as some kind of oppressor. Yet, the Navy is an "oppressor" whose funds Paralitici needs. For,
Paralitici added that although the Navy’s withdrawal was a great victory, there are still issues related to land transfer, decontamination of areas, and their development that remain unsolve.
What words does he have for all those who lost their livelihood?

Dca: To the highest bidder!

PM Skerrit does not agree with statements being made that we are selling our votes to Japan for nothing. He says the money will come based on friendship. Source: DBS Radio
Work on the new Dominica Grammar School building, funded by the PR of China, is expected to begin soon. Already the old Citrus Processing building close to the present school is being torn down in preparation as part of Phase I. Source: Marpin TV News
PM Skerrit announced today that govt will soon appoint a non resident ambassador to Japan. He says this is due to the economic climate on the island. He thinks it is a step in the right direction as it shows commitment to and support for Japan. Source: DBS Radio
When Skerritt is done with Dominica, who will own the country and its citizens? To whose tune will Dominicans be dancing when Skerritt is done forming alliances based on the willingness to pay? If the Saudis were to offer to build schools, would Skerritt consent to that, too?

Ja: Folly, thy name is Caricom!

GEORGETOWN, Guyana (AP) - The Caribbean has indefinitely postponed a meeting of its national security ministers with US homeland security secretary, Tom Ridge, because of major differences over Haiti, officials said yesterday.

Caribbean Community secretary-general, Edwin Carrington, said the May 3-4 meeting in the Bahamas will not take place because the 15-member regional bloc does not recognise the new US-backed Haitian interim government.

Cooperation against terrorism was a major issue to be discussed at the May 3 meeting in the Bahamas.

"I agree that security is very important to all of us but I think that the very first thing that is of importance is the nature and regard for our community and you cannot compromise on that principle," Carrington said in AFP reports.

Caricom has called for a UN investigation of Haitian President Jean-Bertrand Aristide's controversial departure from Haiti on February 29. Aristide says he was forced to resign by the United States, which denies the claim.

The US administration has insisted that Haiti - a member of the community - sit at the Bahamas meeting, Carrington said.
The first time a bomb goes off in some Caribbean country, Caricom will rue the day that they placed Aristide above regional security. Given the presence of the Muslim Triangle at the nexus of Brazil, Argentina, and Uruguay; the presence of Iranians in Guyana; hate-preaching imams in T&T's mosques; Islamic terrorists hiding out in Venezuela; Brazil's nuclear moves; Chavez's oil threats; Castro's expanding influence in South America; and passport forgery in Guyana, it is absurd for Caricom to place some abstract, high-falutin' blather about "the nature and regard for our community" above regional security. It is insane and downright stupid. Yet, Caricom heads, without any regard for today's realities, have done exactly that. Why am I not surprised that Caricom heads regard world events purely as subject for debate rather than as a series of threats in their external environment? Caricom is following after the French and British socialists in their bid to score points off the Bush administration. It is a great pity that petty considerations trump security in Caricom.

Ja: Brazil through rose-colored spectacles

With almost two million inhabitants today, Brasília has been a great success. The slums that virtually bordered the attractively open presidential palace have been replaced by a new hotel zone and the slum-dwellers moved farther away across the large, artificial lake. Initially, the streets were designed with no stop signs, but a few have now been introduced, near schools and hospitals. The former housing blocks, rigidly segregated by occupation and constructed to be almost self-sufficient, have also been modified. Brasília has lightened up in a number of pleasant ways, and it shows.
It is by far a better and more liveable city today than even just a few years ago.
Read all of it.

Ja: Jamaica a failed state?

THE DELIVERY of justice in Jamaica has gone awry, awfully awry. When the people no longer have trust and confidence in the capability of the police to deal with the escalating problem of crime, or the Office of the DPP to prosecute all cases in a vigorous and forthright manner, or depend on the court system to adjudicate cases on a timely basis, we are approaching a point in which the rule of law will be discarded.

When a state consistently fails to deliver justice, it is a failed state. The cry for justice resonates even louder today than ever before. 'We want justice' is now the constant wail everywhere. But, can the citizens rely on the agencies of the state to deliver justice? Ask the residents in most of the inner city communities if they look to the criminal justice system for redress or for wrongdoers to get their just deserts? When things go wrong, they bear the burden and move on.

Ja: Caribbean voice

Derek Walcott was giving his first reading in Kingston in several years. He chose to read from his newest work, The Prodigal in keeping with W.H Auden's warning to not "ruin a fine tenor voice with effects that bring down the house," he would later explain to the audience.
Walcott himself pointed to the ambiguity of the audience response to his reading when he told the audience. "Sometimes I think the real reaction to poetry reading is stunned boredom." Walcott was speaking in the question and answer segment which followed his reading.
When questioned about what 'concerns' now creep into his writing he noted, "I think my biggest concern is how irritating I find myself to be."
Several of those who questioned him were themselves poets and so many of the questions surrounded the craft. Walcott explained that he believed it important to indulge in different genres of writing. "If you write verse only, all the time," he said, "you turn into a terrible person, because nobody will be able to ask you a simple question."

When the questions ran dry, Walcott was again requested to read for a third time. "I'll do what I said I wouldn't do and go for effects that bring down the house," he said relenting to the request. This time around he read from 'The Schooner Flight'.

In his introduction Professor Edward Baugh, the night's master of ceremony explained that Walcott was not merely one of the great Caribbean poets but one of the world's great poets. When Walcott read from 'The Schooner Flight' he showed why he was not merely one of the world's best poets but one of the Caribbean's. His words captured the essence of the Caribbean identity. "I'm just a red nigger who love the sea, / I had a sound colonial education, /I have Dutch, nigger and English in me, / and either I'm nobody, or I'm a nation."

This time around, the standing ovation left no room for quibbling. Walcott had brought the house down.

St. Lca: VAT or no VAT, that is the question

St. Lucian's will have to decide, by poll, whether the island introduces the Value Added Taxation system or not. That pronouncement was made by Prime Minister Dr. Kenny Anthony as he made his contribution in the final leg of the budget debate last evening.

The St. Lucian Leader has called on the public to prepare them selves to make the important decision.

Come 2006 St. Lucian's will not only be voting for the formation of the next government but will at that time determines if the present system of taxation will be replaced by the Value Added Tax or (VAT). Prime Minister Dr. Kenny Anthony in Parliament Monday says St. Lucian's should during the period before elections prepare themselves to make that choice.

Hti: Thug life

At one time Aristide was overwhelmingly popular, called "The Messiah" by a
desperate population. After the coup which deposed him, he was brought back in 1994 by over 20,000 American troops ( Times change. Last week, U.S. authorities threatened to indict him for drug smuggling).

At the celebratory Mass in the Port-au-Prince cathedral after his return, he promised a fresh start for his nation. He abolished the corrupt and brutal Haitian army. He agreed to privatize the corrupt state enterprises, run and bled by the MCE's, the Morally Corrupt Elite. He accepted these conditions in return for substantial aid.

Back in office, he violated his agreements; the foreign aid was suspended. For the corrupt and brutal Haitian army, he substituted his personal gangs, thugs called "Chimeres" or the "Cannibal Army," who had licenses to deal drugs, extort and murder rivals to Aristide's one-party reign. During my three trips to Haiti during the past several years, there was continual news of assassinations of political critics. None was solved. Jonathan Demme has made a documentary film, "The Agronomist," about the murder of his friend Jean Dominique, the most popular Haitian radio journalist. Aristide was clearly implicated.

Hti: The fall of Aristide, from the inside

Because Aristide recognized he has no popular base, he decided to make a series of gangs his power base. They had all sorts of names: Create Order from Disorder, What Happens Will Happen, Red Army, Sleep in Wood, Clean Sweep, Cannibal Army etc.

Aristide armed all these gangs. He also had a series of other groups called chime which worked in the Ministry of the Interior, the Customs, TELECO(the telephone company) and in all the mayors offices. The role of the gangs and the chime, both of which were heavily armed, was to "sow the peace of the cemetary" throughout the country.

The gangs had authority under the judicial system to occupy all public administration; they had authority under the police, who were working directly for Aristide. In many places, Aristide put chime over the heads of those training the police. He created a real mess in the police. It can be said that Aristide destroyed the police and turned this force into a political militia in his service.

In Gonaives, Cannibal Army was led by a powerful chief named Amiot Metayer. That army destroyed all activities of the political organizations, all activities of civil society. Independent journalists could not work in Gonaives; Cannibal destroyed the independent radio stations. Cannibal Army created terror in the Artibonite.

OAS Resolution 822 called for the arrest of several chiefs of these gangs, including Amiot Metayer. A delegation from the international community which came in March 2003 insisted on the arrest of Metayer. Aristede was obliged to go through the charade of arresting Metayer and imprisoning him in Port au Prince.

His followers insisted that he be moved to the prison in Gonaives. They moved him to Gonaives where his followers liberated him after destroying one side of the prison with a bulldozer. It was during this prison break that Jean Tatoune, imprisoned for life for his role in the massacre at Raboto during the coup d'etat, was freed.

After that, the government made a simulation of justice against Metayer until they decided to kill him. A good friend of his who worked in the National Palace came to find him at home. After that they found his body on the road to San Mark.

This infuriated Cannibal Army because Metayer was a very popular chief. They decided to truly turn against Aristide; they had made an appearance of turning against Aristide after the liberation of Metayer from prison. (Metayer himself had reconciled with Aristide.)
Read the entire.

Gda: Venezuelans encroaching in Grenada's territorial waters

The Royal Grenada Police Force (RGPF) could press charges by today (Thursday) against a group of Venezuelans allegedly caught illegally within the island's territorial waters on Saturday night.

Media Consultant Troy Garvey told GRENADA TODAY on Wednesday that the men from the oil-rich South American republic could face charges within the next few hours.

However, Garvey could not give specific details of the charges and whether or not the police had acted illegally by holding the suspects for more than 48 hours without charge. "I will have to look into it and get back to you", Garvey told this newspaper.

During the operation, three of the eleven Venezuelans who were taken into custody were shot by members of the Coast Guard. The police are working on the theory that the suspects were involved in illegal drug trafficking.

DR: More hardship

The Mejia administration announced that it is setting ceilings on the prices of chicken, eggs, cement and bottled water. The announcement was made by the director of the governmental Price Controls Department. In the past, the management of prices has been nothing but demagoguery, and very difficult to apply in today’s free market. But with 18 days to go before the Presidential election, the Mejia government wants to force vendors to cap their prices. Juan Bautista Villaman, director of the Price Controls Department, told the Listin Diario today that next week he would announce another 25 articles that will have price caps.

Resolution 04-2004 sets the highest prices for consumers of frozen chicken at RD$27 the pound. The cost of eggs is capped at RD$3.45 each. The price of cement is now capped at RD$245 per bag. 5-gallon bottles of water will be capped at the price of RD$29.

Cuba: We don't wanna play revolution anymore

CIEGO DE ÁVILA, Cuba, April (Nacho Valdés, APLA / - In what some observers called a first, the Cuban government weekly La Vanguardia acknowledged a general lack of interest on the part of the population toward participation in Revolutionary organizations.

The paper reported a significant drop in membership at the Federation of Cuban Women, the organization led by Raúl Castro's wife, Vilma Espín.

A local supplement, El Invasor, on its April 17 issue, reported that in Ciego de Ávila province membership in the Federation dropped to 69.8 % during the first quarter.

Cuba: Accidents waiting to happen

SANTA CLARA, Cuba, April 22 (Tico Morales, APLA / - In the last ten days several unexplained incidents have been reported by passengers and crew of the Morón-Havana rail line that could be endangering the trains.

The incidents, all reported to have occurred in the vicinity of the Villa Clara mechanical plant, include apparent collisions that have damaged some of the rolling stock, and half-open rail switches that could derail a train.

The 2305, a self-propelled, aging, American-made Bud passenger car is undergoing repairs after one such incident.

Bmda: Game, set, match

Stephen Young, President of the Bermuda Squash Racquets Association, told The Royal Gazette: “We are absolutely delighted and honoured to have been chosen as the venue for the PSA Masters in 2005 and 2006, and the PSA World Open Championship in 2007.

“These are the absolute premier events in squash and it shows that the PSA must have been very impressed by our ability to put on major tournaments.

“Bermuda has long been known as a first class tourist destination and we are going to ensure that everyone who comes to the Island for these events will enjoy both a warm welcome and wonderful squash.”

Tournament chairman Kim Carter and director Ross Triffitt, both flew to Qatar over the weekend where it was officially announced that Bermuda would be the next hosts of the PSA Masters Championships.

“We are very pleased to say there was a tremendous buzz of excitement in Qatar when we announced the biggest deal in the history of professional squash,” said Triffit, immediately after the ceremony in the desert paradise.

“ We have been overwhelmed by the exceptional hospitality of the Qatar Squash Federation, thanks to President Nabil Ali Bin Ali and Tournament Director Hisham Algosaibi. They have proved to us that it will be a hard act to follow to host the PSA Masters to the same standard of the Qatar Squash Federation, but it is a challenge that we look forward to.”
With a BSRA membership of nearly 600, Bermuda boasts more squash players per capita than anywhere else in the world and has long held an unnaturally important position on the squash map despite its size.

Blz: Doctor removes patient's big stones

In 1992, seventy-one year old Cyril Flowers was diagnosed with an enlarged prostate. Although he was advised that he would need to remove the organ, Flowers did not like the idea of undergoing an operation and put it off for more than a decade...that is until his condition started to deteriorate. It was suppose to have been a routine surgery, but little did anyone involved in the procedure know that history was about to be made at the Karl Heusner Memorial Hospital.

Catherine Flowers, Wife
"Because I work at Karl Heusner Memorial Hospital for so many years, over twenty years as a nurse, and we never seen such big stones. There are big ones, but not three."

Urologist Specialist Dr. Marcos Rugama was just as surprised. The stones, which weighed a pound and a half, had been growing inside Flowers' urinary bladder.

Dr. Marcos Rugama, Urologist, K.H.M.H.
"Basically it was the size of the stones—it’s strange to find stones so big, especially three big stones, because it has to pass a lot of time to have the stones so big."

Dr. Rugama believes the stones had been growing for several years and definitely caused much pain and discomfort.

Cyril Flowers, Patient
"I just glance on it and take off my eyes, because I noh see how that could get into yuh, that size ah thing... and for years I the go through with that thing until it get worst now."

Today a much relieved Flowers is recuperating at home, still puzzled over what was found inside of him.

Bdos: Ripping Seaga a new one

We find it astonishing that Seaga is blaming the rest of CARICOM for his country’s failure to expand its regional exports. Jamaica is a victim of political inertia and social challenges that undermine its entrepreneurial spirit. That much could have been stated by St. Vincent’s Prime Minister, Dr. Ralph Gonsalves, in answer to Seaga’s now characteristic rejection of regional initiatives. The Jamaican politician, along with his Trinidad & Tobago counterpart, Mr. Basdeo Panday, is also famously cited as pouring scorn on the proposed Caribbean Court of Justice (CCJ). We have no reason to believe that truly visionary legislators would want to have such persons for company.
We fail to see how peddling such hysteria could be in Jamaica’s best interest if that country is genuinely interested in making its way forward through strength of unity with its Caribbean neighbours.

Seaga will have to show where appeals to the dark side of human nature ever redounded to his country’s benefit. He will also have to show where ready access to a market more than twice that currently enjoyed by his compatriot exporters can harm Jamaica’s economy.
Jamaicans should not allow themselves to be victimised by Seaga’s xenophobia.
Read the entire.

St. Kts: You've got a friend

BASSETERRE, St. Kitts - St. Kitts/Nevis Prime Minister Dr. Denzil L. Douglas and the President of Venezuela Hugo Chavez Frias have agreed to strengthen the economic, commercial and cultural bonds between both countries.

During a three-day official visit to Caracas, President Chavez and Prime Minister Douglas last Friday analysed the current status of the bilateral relations and discussed regional and multilateral issues of common interest.

"The Venezuelan president and the prime minister decided to strengthen the economic, commercial and cultural bonds between their countries and exchanged information on their national experience regarding the application of social programmes designed to offer the appropriate opportunities to the excluded sectors of society," a communiqué stated.
Sounds like Douglas is planning to take St. Kitts-Nevis down the road to serfdom.

Atg: Fame!

"I am a celebrity," a smiling Wade William Gajadhar declared, following his trial as he was leaving the precincts of the St. John's Magistrate Court to board an immigration vehicle, with scores of people looking on and jeering at him.

Enjoying his newly attained notoriety in Antigua, the doctor of deception, "Dr Richards," was hauled before the court yesterday to answer to charges of larceny.

He pleaded "guilty with explanation" to the offence, at which time acting Chief Magistrate Maureen Hyman Payne, having heard the facts, ordered restitution of the $380 he had siphoned from a 25-year-old Guyanese woman.

He was also deported from the jurisdiction.

Tuesday, April 27, 2004

Happy Birthday Anti-CAIR

Anti-CAIR Celebrates First Year Fighting Militant Islam

April 10th, 2003 will be a day long remembered by Anti-CAIR staff. It was the date on the first press release that we did and we have had 49 more since then. Although we’ve recently renamed our “Press Releases” to “News & Analysis” to more accurately reflect what we do, we haven’t changed our first principle: to expose the Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR) as the militant Islamist supporting organization that they are and to always tell the truth.

Check them out.

USVI: Massachusetts Democrat outsources jobs to V.I. Workers
Kerry campaign presumably seething...

Tis a good 'ting.

Massachusetts business leaders, faced with a looming shortage of summer workers, are hitting the beaches _ of the Virgin Islands.

Rep. William Delahunt headed a delegation Monday to meet with local officials there to discuss ways to identify workers who could fill seasonal jobs on Cape Cod.

"With Memorial Day around the corner, this is now a matter of hour-by-hour urgency that cries out for creativity," Delahunt said. "We share two things with the Virgin Islands: a first-rate tourism industry and staggering offseason unemployment."

The growing labor concerns have been fueled by the federal government's decision in March to stop processing employer requests for special guest work visas because the annual quota had been reached.

Since the Virgin Islands is a U.S. territory, workers do not need a visa to travel and work in the United States. And, Cape Cod's tourism season peaks when the Virgin Island's season is tapering off.

Meanwhile, Bajan Broadcasters Balk at Hiring Heidi...whilst Jamaica Jams with Bombay's Bollywood.

...I'm diligently training for a lucrative career in mangling headlines...So sue me!
CaribPundit is in no way to be held responsible for any entreaties, dares or references to any act, implied or otherwise, of litigation or grammatical destruction as documented in perpetuity herein by junior correspondents of CaribPundit who apparently don't Rtfm.

U.S.: Saddam's WMDs show up in jordan

At least one of the al Qaida plotters arrested in Jordan earlier this month as part of a weapons of mass destruction plot that Jordanian officials say could have killed 80,000 people revealed on Monday that he was trained in Iraq before the U.S. invaded in March 2003.

In a confession broadcast on Jordanian television, the unnamed WMD conspirator revealed, "In Iraq, I started training in explosives and poisons. I gave my complete obedience to [Abu Musab al] Zarqawi," the al Qaeda WMD specialist whose base of operations was in Iraq.

Excerpts from the WMD conspirator's confession broadcast by ABC's "Nightline" late Monday show that the WMD plot was planned and trained for in Iraq more than a year before the U.S. invasion, with the terror suspect admitting, "After the fall of Afghanistan, I met Zarqawi again in Iraq."
Jordan's King Abdullah said last week that the five trucks originated from Syria, and were intercepted just 75 miles from the Syrian border. Syria has long been suspected as a repository of Saddam Hussein's weapons of mass destruction.
Still think Bush lied?

U.S.: Saddam's connection to terrorism

The evidence for Hussein's cooperation with and support for global terrorists is abundant and increasing. Recall, for instance:

• Hussein paid bonuses of up to $25,000 to the families of Palestinian homicide bombers....

• According to the State Department's May 21, 2002 "Patterns of Global Terrorism," the Abu Nidal Organization, the Arab Liberation Front, Hamas, the Kurdistan Worker's party, the Mujahedin-e-Khalq Organization and the Palestinian Liberation Front all operated offices or bases in Hussein's Iraq.....

• Coalition forces have found alive and well key terrorists who enjoyed Hussein's hospitality. Among them was Abu Abbas,... Khala Khadr al-Salahat,... [and] Abu Nidal [who] had resided in Iraq since 1999.....

• Coalition troops destroyed at least three terrorist training camps including a base near Baghdad called Salman Pak....

As for Hussein's supposedly imaginary ties to al Qaeda, consider these disturbing facts:

• The Philippine government expelled Hisham al Hussein, the second secretary at Iraq's Manila embassy, on February 13, 2003. Cell-phone records indicate that the diplomat had spoken with Abu Madja and Hamsiraji Sali, leaders of Abu Sayyaf, just before and just after this al Qaeda-allied Islamic militant group conducted an attack in Zamboanga City....

• Journalist Stephen F. Hayes reported in July that the official Babylon Daily Political Newspaper published by Hussein's eldest son, Uday, ran what it called a "List of Honor." The paper's November 14, 2002, edition gave the names and titles of 600 leading Iraqis, including this passage: "Abid Al-Karim Muhamed Aswod, intelligence officer responsible for the coordination of activities with the Osama bin Laden group at the Iraqi embassy in Pakistan." That name, Hayes wrote, matches that of Iraq's then-ambassador to Islamabad.
Abu Musab al-Zarqawi, formerly the director of an al Qaeda training base in Afghanistan, fled to Iraq after being injured as the Taliban fell.... He then opened a terrorist training camp in northern Iraq and arranged the October 2002 assassination of U.S. diplomat Lawrence Foley in Amman, Jordan.

• While Iraqi Ramzi Yousef, ringleader of the February 26, 1993 World Trade Center bombing plot, fled the U.S. on a Pakistani passport, he arrived here on an Iraqi passport.

• Author Richard Miniter reported September 25 on TechCentralStation: "U.S. forces recently discovered a cache of documents in Tikrit, Saddam's hometown, that show Iraq gave Mr. Yasin both a house and a monthly salary." Indiana-born, Iraqi-reared al Qaeda member Abdul Rahman Yasin was indicted for mixing the chemicals in the bomb that exploded beneath the World Trade Center, killing six and injuring some 1,000 New Yorkers.

• Along Iraq's border with Syria, U.S. troops captured Farouk Hijazi, Hussein's former ambassador to Turkey and suspected liaison to al Qaeda. Under interrogation, Hijazi "admitted meeting with senior al Qaeda leaders at Saddam's behest in 1994."

• While sifting through the Mukhabarat's bombed ruins last April 26, the Toronto Star's Mitch Potter, the London Daily Telegraph's Inigo Gilmore and their translator discovered a memo in the intelligence service's accounting department. Dated February 19, 1998 and marked "Top Secret and Urgent," it said the agency would pay "all the travel and hotel expenses inside Iraq to gain the knowledge of the message from bin Laden and to convey to his envoy an oral message from us to bin Laden, the Saudi opposition leader, about the future of our relationship with him, and to achieve a direct meeting with him." The memo's three references to bin Laden were obscured crudely with correction fluid.

Despite the White House's inexplicable insistence to the contrary, tantalizing clues suggest Saddam Hussein might not have shared the world's shock when fireballs erupted from the Twin Towers.

• Recall that his Salman Pak terror camp taught terrorists air piracy on an actual jet fuselage.

• On January 5, 2000, Ahmad Hikmat Shakir — an Iraqi airport greeter reportedly dispatched from Baghdad's embassy in Malaysia — welcomed Khalid al Midhar and Nawaz al Hamzi to Kuala Lampur and escorted them to a local hotel where these September 11 hijackers met with 9/11 conspirators Ramzi bin al Shibh and Tawfiz al Atash....

• The Czech Republic stands by its claim that 9/11 leader Mohamed Atta met in Prague in April 2001 with Ahmed Khalil Ibrahim an-Ani, an Iraqi diplomat/intelligence agent....

• Clinton-appointed Manhattan federal judge Harold Baer ordered Hussein and his ousted regime to pay $104 million in damages to the families of George Eric Smith and Timothy Soulas, both killed in the Twin Towers along with 2,790 others. "I conclude that plaintiffs have shown, albeit barely, 'by evidence satisfactory to the court' that Iraq provided material support to bin Laden and al Qaeda," Baer ruled. An airtight case? No, but sufficient evidence tied Hussein to 9/11 and secured a May 7 federal judgment against him.
Read the rest here.

Now, what do all those editorial writers from Caribbean newspapers have to say?