High Peaks Pure Earth has published Elliot Sperling's translation of prominent Tibetan writer, Woser's recent blogpost urging the world to save Lhasa from being turned into another tourist shopping mall.
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…[M]uch information has been misunderstood due to lack of knowledge about the Caucasus or Russia and a desire to present the suspects in a framework easily understandable to the American public.
There is a huge surprising media presence as well security presence where those invited to the funeral have to show their IDs. I am surprised to see such media presence as I knew from a friend who is attending the funeral it was private event.
The blog of the Association of Friends of Children (AMIC) reported [fr] that 20 ‘talib’ children from Guinea-Bissau who had been caught in a raging fire at an Islamic school in the capital of Senegal, Dakar, in early March, have now been handed back to their families. As Rising Voices reported back in June 2011, families from Guinea-Bissau often entrust the care of their children to Koranic teachers from neighboring Senegal, where they are promised to receive religious education.
Raza Habib Raja at Pak Tea House describes how another Christian colony had been attacked in Gujranwala, Punjab in Pakistan using the same rhetoric – revenge for alleged “Insult to Islam”.
Sunanda Deshapriya at Groundviews opines that “the judicial case related to the violent attack on Muslim owned Fashion Bug head office and warehouse in Pepiliyana, 10 km away from Colombo, is destined to be a turning point in Muslim Rights in Sri Lanka.”
From Bahrain, where the ongoing anti-government protests are portrayed in mainstream media as a Sunni/Shia sectarian clash, blogger Nader AbdulEman writes [ar]:
أنا الطائفي الذي اريد حكومة منتخبة أنا الطائفي الذي ارفض التمييز وأطلب العدل والمساواة أنا الطائفي أطلب برلمان كامل الصلاحيات
@NaderAbdulEmam: I am the sectarian who wants an elected government. I am the sectarian who refuses discrimination and calls for justice and equality. I am the sectarian who demands a fully empowered parliament.
A tweet [ko] directing people to this fake blog post received quite some attention on April Fools’ day. Looking like a legit news article, the post says that North Korea announced that it is now an Islamic state and it includes detailed claims such as:
Kim Jong-un ‘asserted ‘every previous leader of North Korea were actually Muslim prophets, and so is Kim Jong-un himself’ and ‘Islamic leaders were highly offended by Kim Jong-un’s announcement.’
Sri Lankan blogger Patta Pal Boru opines that the majority religion in a country is a curse as the simple weight of the established religion (inertia) gets people thinking about the wrongs rather than the rights favoring the fringe or the other religions.
[I]n former Soviet Central Asia there is little debate that the root problem [of extremist beliefs] is “foreign ideas,” defined so broadly as to become a target of opportunity for both every political purpose and every local policeman or official’s ambition. Any sign of dissent from state policies or ideology <…> can be enough to bring the wrath of the state, sometimes with great violence.
How do Cubans feel about the new pope? Iván's File Cabinet gives us an idea.
The shattered system of primary and secondary education, corrupt and rotten system of higher education, the official clergy which has lost [people's] trust, the absence of state-controlled religious education, weak and will-less intellectuals, the presence of a large number of uncontrolled websites with extremist and jihadist content – these are the major reasons why an increasing number of young individuals in our country become extremists.
On January 23, 2013, an excerpt from the annual report of l'ACAT-France, A World of Torture 2013, makes a fresh assessment of the state of torture in the world [fr]:
“A report called A World of Torture in 2013, assesses torture practices that continue to be alarming, from Pakistan to Italy, by way of South Africa, Saudi Arabia, Australia and Bolivia. From authoritarian regimes to democratic countries, none are exempt from criticism on the topic. In 2013, torture remains as endemic, omnipresent and multi-faceted as ever”.
Globalizado [es], the blog by Global Voices in Spanish editor Juan Arellano, compiles tweets with the hashtag #elúltimotuitdePontifex [last tweet by Pontifex], started on Twitter on Thursday, February 28, 2013. The hashtag contains netizens’ comments and reactions to the farewell speech by Benedict XVI.
GV Author Filip Stojanovski, in a post on his Science Fiction Observer blog, highlights the work of Canadian science fiction writer Robert J. Sawyer, which is somewhat relevant for the recent resignation of Pope Benedict XVI:
In 1995, I predicted next Pope would be Benedict XVI. In 2000, I predicted Pope would resign. Wonder if Ratzinger has been reading my work?
— Robert J. Sawyer (@RobertJSawyer) February 12, 2013
High Peaks Pure Earth has translated a bold new rap song called “RESPECT” by young Tibetans who call themselves “Sheep Droppings”. The song is an angry rant against a TV drama produced by China Central Television called “Tibet’s Secret”. It is first uploaded onto Chinese video-hosting site Youku.com around February 3, 2013 but was taken offline within a day.
“Unlike in the rest of the world, employees in a tiny nation on Africa’s west coast can now enjoy an extended weekend of three days, beginning Friday. The reform introduced in the public-sector by Gambian President Yahya Jammeh came into force on February 1 ignoring Opposition protest”
Blog SeyiSanchez reports.
Mr. Ndhlovu explains the purpose of his book in the last pages. He states that he was motivated to write this book because pastors and politicians who had been abusing the Christian faith to advance their personal agendas had disillusioned him.
Munshya wa Munshya reviews Gershom Ndhlovu's new book titled The Declaration of Zambia as a Christian Nation: Blessing or Curse?.
Shiraz Hassan recently visited dilapidated temples and gurdwaras of Rawalpindi and appeals that these old heritage sites, which depict the secular past of the country, need to be preserved. There are still more than 25,000 Hindus living in Rawalpindi and Islamabad.
If the press have the energy to expose the names of victims and their pictures, why can't they pour the same energy into covering the information and wisdom that would prevent further tragedies?
Rick Falkvinge, the founder of Pirate Party, reinterprets the wars of religion that devastated Western Europe in the XVI and XVII centuries in terms of the current struggle to control information through overbearing legislation related to copyright and freedom of expression:
The religious wars were never about religion as such. They were about who held the power of interpretation, about who controlled the knowledge and culture available to the masses. It was a war of gatekeepers of information.