but we are actually all winds
ever more than before
even ever more than before 
gaining 
speeding 
booming
towards future 
speeding
and redeeming laughters
and happiest laughters
Start page JUMO | Code for America | good.is |
“If you want to free a society, just give them internet access. Because people, the young guys, you know, are all going to go out and see biased media, see the truth about other nations and their own nation and they’re going to be able to contribute and collaborate together.”

Mural of the Healing of the Paralytic from the house church in Dura Europos. Dated to about 235 AD, this is the oldest depiction of Jesus that has been discovered.

Mural of the Healing of the Paralytic from the house church in Dura Europos. Dated to about 235 AD, this is the oldest depiction of Jesus that has been discovered.

September 09, 2013, 9:16pm   0 notes
 
“Ten different battles being fought in #Syria … biggest proxy war in modern times”
lyse doucet (@bbclysedoucet) September 8, 2013

September 09, 2013, 12:27am  6 notes

September 06, 2013, 12:29am   0 notes

Report: Majority Of Americans Approve Of Sending Congress To Syria http://onion.com/1ejSlDG

Report: Majority Of Americans Approve Of Sending Congress To Syria

Okay

By so far, 3 options, or scenarios are there re: US involvement in Syria

  1. USA is cautious against rebels winning. Want to keep Assad and Rebels (including Jihadis) hanging in balance. (=minimun-minimum involvement)
  2. Air strike and coordination with rebels on the ground can weaken Assad sufficient enough. It will push Assad and Russia into corner. Bag political settlement = done.
  3. Air strike, arm and train rebels with powerful weapons, create authorization for involvement of US ground troops (just, just in case, we might need it) - and push on. We can win this.
September 05, 2013, 9:38am   1 note
▸ It may be curtains for Bashar Assad, Michael Young, Daily Star

[…] Indeed, there has been considerable speculation that Assad’s resort to chemical weapons came in the aftermath of a rebel advance into the northeastern quarters of the capital. And even then, pro-Syrian sources in Beirut are admitting that the Syrian army’s effort to reconquer the lost neighborhoods was exceptionally difficult.

Perhaps the Americans are gambling that the Free Syrian Army units with whom they are in contact can take Damascus, or at least make inroads that force Assad to step down or accept a political transition. This would give the FSA a decisive advantage over Al-Qaeda-affiliated groups concentrated in the north. Moreover, American officials may have realized that a U.S. bombing campaign will persuade many military units to defect, making Assad’s downfall all but inevitable.

Henri Barkey of Lehigh University perceptively tweeted: “I’ve always had sneaking suspicion that the delay had to do with the [aircraft carrier] Nimitz. It cannot launch aircraft from current location.” Indeed, there is now open talk about using aircraft, which was not the case last week. The value of aircraft in Syria would mainly be tactical, providing support to those fighting on the ground.

The mood is changing in Moscow as well. On Tuesday, President Vladimir Putin said Russia “doesn’t exclude” supporting a U.N. resolution on punitive military strikes if it were proven that Damascus had used chemical weapons against its own people. He also announced that he had stopped shipment of S-300 anti-aircraft missiles to Syria, which Assad would need to defend against Western aircraft.

The U.S. had sought Russian help in preventing Assad from using chemical weapons, and the Russians may have been embarrassed when he did not listen. With international outrage rising, Putin has no choice but to alter his position, knowing that if he doesn’t he will be isolated if Assad is pushed out. He may prefer to position himself as a mediator in a transitional solution. Some have speculated that this may be discussed at the G-20 summit in St. Petersburg this week.

Iran and Hezbollah will be watching carefully to see what happens. The options are limited. If their plan is to target Israel with rockets, this will do little good. Hezbollah would invite a devastating Israeli response if it fires from Lebanon, at a moment when its Syrian policy is unpopular at home and thousands of its combatants are in Syria. A war would also create hundreds of thousands of Shiite refugees, who would angrily wonder why they have to suffer to defend Assad.

Moreover, Hezbollah and Iran’s ability to absorb Shiite discontent is restricted. There will be no Arab money this time to rebuild; and Iran is too financially pressed – even as it is paying a hefty financial bill to prop up Assad rule in Syria – to rescue Lebanon’s Shiites.

If, as some have speculated, Hezbollah targets Israel from Syria, this may precipitate the very outcome that Iran and the party seek to avoid. It makes no sense to respond to an American attack against Syria through a mechanism that invites an Israeli attack against Syria, one bound to undermine Assad’s position further.

Obama’s last-minute decision to postpone an attack against Syria confused everybody. But Assad’s satisfaction with the delay was premature. The bully’s bluff has been called, an American attack is coming, and it will hit very hard – unless Russia can devise a political resolution before then that would force Assad from office. It’s not yet the end of the Assad regime, but it could well be the beginning of the end. And when nightmares end, there is only relief.

bit long but definitely worth checking out. 

It’s saying = USA is ready to bring political settlement - it can calibrate strike plan and diplomacy to be able to achieve that goal - there is a chance for this - now. 



Sep 05, 2013, 9:08am  0 notes      

lostinancient:

Tomb of a daughter of the Prophet Muḥammad. Damascus, Syria ca. between 1867 and 1899, by Maison Bonfils, Library of Congress

lostinancient:

Tomb of a daughter of the Prophet Muḥammad. Damascus, Syria ca. between 1867 and 1899, by Maison Bonfils, Library of Congress

miheikaart:

The land of rising.Since childhood, the capital of this country has had a very special place in my heart. I used to read enchanting stories about the caravans, jinns, beautiful princesses and the mighty emperors ruling this place. When I was a child this city was on my list of top ten must visit places.This country’s civilization was one of the most ancient on earth. It was one of the centers of Neolithic culture. During second millennium BC it was occupied by various empires but in 64 BC the control of this region got transferred to Romans and then Byzantines. In the mid 7th century Umayyad dynasty conquered and Arabic became the official language replacing Greek. Ottoman empire ruled this country from 1516 to 1920. After WWI French troops occupied this country and it was put under French Mandate. Finally in April 1946, it gained independence as a parliamentary republic. But this post independence period was tumultuous due to number of military coups. From 1963 to 2011 it was under emergency law. Since March 2011, it has been entangled in civil war.It is the home of many ethnic groups including Kurds, Armenians, Assyrians, Turks, Alawite Shias and Arabs.It is a country of fertile plains, mountains and deserts. It has many historical sites. Most of the cities are listed on Unesco’s World heritage list. It has the most splendid ruined city of Palmyra.The capital city is the world’s oldest continually inhabited city. There is much history packed in small space of the Old city. It is filled with bazaars, minarets, mosques and fountain courtyards. It still sustains the romantic notion of the orient. Even though many tourists don’t visit this country; for the adventurous, there is much to be discovered here. Castles, medieval souqs and beaches are some of the places that can be discovered.Getting around by bus is the easy way to make longer trips and its fairly inexpensive. Railway system here is modern and is generally punctual.Currently, travel to this country is dangerous because of the ongoing civil war.
Hopefully the situation gets improved and we get to visit the crossroads of Western Asia and Eastern Mediterranean, #Syria.

miheikaart:

The land of rising.

Since childhood, the capital of this country has had a very special place in my heart. I used to read enchanting stories about the caravans, jinns, beautiful princesses and the mighty emperors ruling this place. When I was a child this city was on my list of top ten must visit places.

This country’s civilization was one of the most ancient on earth. It was one of the centers of Neolithic culture. During second millennium BC it was occupied by various empires but in 64 BC the control of this region got transferred to Romans and then Byzantines. In the mid 7th century Umayyad dynasty conquered and Arabic became the official language replacing Greek. Ottoman empire ruled this country from 1516 to 1920. After WWI French troops occupied this country and it was put under French Mandate. Finally in April 1946, it gained independence as a parliamentary republic. But this post independence period was tumultuous due to number of military coups. From 1963 to 2011 it was under emergency law. Since March 2011, it has been entangled in civil war.

It is the home of many ethnic groups including Kurds, Armenians, Assyrians, Turks, Alawite Shias and Arabs.

It is a country of fertile plains, mountains and deserts. It has many historical sites. Most of the cities are listed on Unesco’s World heritage list. It has the most splendid ruined city of Palmyra.
The capital city is the world’s oldest continually inhabited city. There is much history packed in small space of the Old city. It is filled with bazaars, minarets, mosques and fountain courtyards. It still sustains the romantic notion of the orient.

Even though many tourists don’t visit this country; for the adventurous, there is much to be discovered here. Castles, medieval souqs and beaches are some of the places that can be discovered.

Getting around by bus is the easy way to make longer trips and its fairly inexpensive. Railway system here is modern and is generally punctual.

Currently, travel to this country is dangerous because of the ongoing civil war.


Hopefully the situation gets improved and we get to visit the crossroads of Western Asia and Eastern Mediterranean, #Syria.

September 04, 2013, 8:32pm   0 notes
 
“Of course we should be negotiating with Iran about this. Moreover, we should also be engaging the Sunni world. Why should the United States support Sunni rebels (inspired and funded by Saudi Arabia) in Syria, while we are still fighting Sunni rebels (inspired and funded by Saudi Arabia) in Afghanistan?

Here’s an idea. I’ll consider supporting intervention in the Sunni/Shia war in Syria if the Islam’s’ most powerful Sunni clerics in Saudi Arabia issue fatwas declaring that all of the Sunni world is at peace with the United States. No more Sunni terrorism against Americans and no more American war on Sunni terrorism.”

No Iran Doesn’t Need Assad, Atlantic

From Comment section. If Sunni powers need America’s help on dealing with Syria - then what kind of rewards America should clearly demand - Islamic fatwa for peace pact? (but that could stir up intra-Sunni situation or - they don’t care?) 

September 04, 2013, 5:10pm  0 notes

 
“Assad’s carnage against fellow Muslims makes Iran look really bad on the Arab street, where Iran tried hard to make the Arab Spring look like a logical extension of its own revolution.”

No, Iran Doesn’t Need Assad, Sune Engel Rasmussen, The Atlantic

Not sure how credible of this piece’s contents are at all, but as how far polemics or imagination are going right now

September 04, 2013, 5:06pm  0 notes

▸ Kerry & Co. Whiff on Syria Hearing's Softball Questions

General Dempsey’s ‘cautioning’ role:

Still, Dempsey made clear that his fundamental concern about intervening in Syria hadn’t changed: a military strike, no matter how limited in scope and duration, could easily spin out of control. It was a message he conveyed in July, when he wrote lawmakers about the need to “anticipate and be prepared for the unintended consequences of our action,” and it was a warning he reiterated Tuesday.

"We can calibrate it on our side," he said in response to a question.  "There is always the risk of escalation on the other." 



Sep 04, 2013, 5:03pm  0 notes      

Sept 4th re: Syria

re: Syria 

one word is ”vacillation’ - inability to take a stance. But - diplomacy is a game. And USA’s core strategy might be really just set on ‘Goldilocks strategy’ (Will McCants) [Why that’s really the better or best option than others - is not clear.] 

Other theatrics - are just can be theatrics. 

Public understanding might need more PR on why containment (esp re: Jordan) is critical. And outside world can’t, can never drop that ball. Not about internal power struggle situation (proxy war) in Syria. On that no one has crystal ball. 

September 04, 2013, 12:00pm   0 notes