Video Credit: Illustris Collaboration, NASA, PRACE, XSEDE, MIT, Harvard CfA;
Music: The Poisoned Princess (Media Right Productions)
Titan is back with you again and would like to share a video of a simulation of the history of the universe, courtesy of NASA. We hope you find it interesting.
For starters, let us refer you to the Miriam Shlesinger Human Rights action blog. Over a year has gone by without Miriam and we continue to realize what we have lost. She got us into the human rights struggle. Please act on behalf of people who are so much in need of support in their trials and tribulations at the hands of oppressive regimes and corporations.
This week it is Titan's turn to promote a charity. His choice is the initiative of a group of Israeli women to take Palestinian children to the sea. Although they live not far from the Mediterranean, most Palestinian children have never seen it, since travel to Israel by Palestinians is severely restricted.
This project has taken wing and expanded. Please help take a kid to the beach.
IN MEMORIAM FARLEY MOWAT 1921-2014
The great Canadian writer and environment defender died this week at the age of 92. We are great admirers of his writings and of the campaigns he waged through the years over environment issues. His delightful book "Never Cry Wolf" in which he describes living in the Arctic near a wolf den is a joyous read. We refer you to detailed obituaries in the NYTimes and in the Globe and Mail. The latter gives a more Canadian perspective on this wonderful man.
Titan would like to call your attention to his April 4 blog, in which he commented on the fact that the Israeli police had hired a spy general to snoop on the Israeli public, a la NSA. We are now told that the NSA works very hard for Israel and supplies Israel with raw data on US citizens. You may easily guess the ethnicity of these citizens many of whom are denied entry to Israel. That is something to consider when evaluating the request by Israel for visa waiver status. Titan would like to pass on a quote from a comment on NSA activities that gives food for thought.
"If one would give me six lines written by the hand of the most
honest man, I would find something in them to have him hanged." -
17th-century French clergyman and statesman Cardinal Richelieu.
|Not the nicest guy in history|
A Christian woman in Sudan who is married to a Christian man has been sentenced to death by a court for the "crime" of practicing the religion in which she was brought up by her Christian mother while her Muslim father was absent from the home. She has also been sentenced to 100 lashes for adultery since her marriage to a Christian man is not recognized. This is totally outrageous and we all sincerely hope that a higher court will overturn this draconian sentence. The woman is pregnant and the hanging will be postponed for a few years after the birth. The lashes will be applied when she recovers from the birth.
|Meriam Yehya Ibrahim Ishag told the judge: "I am a Christian and I never committed apostasy"|
ON WOMEN, EDUCATION AND EQUALITY
The recent kidnapping of 300 schoolgirls in Nigeria has raised the question of the right of girls to equal education. Boko Haram has launched a war against education of girls and claims, as in its name, that Western education is sinful. It is no accident that a school for girls was targeted. Nicholas Kristof writing in the NYTimes asks why education of girls is anathema to Muslim fanatics.
Indeed, education of girls is key to the liberation of any country from backwardness and in terms of its own distorted logic Boko Haram was consistent with its aims. We can only hope that a concentrated world effort, as initiated by European countries and the US will lead to the rescue of these poor girls.
|French President Francois Hollande, center, welcomed Nigerian President Goodluck Jonathan, right, upon his arrival to an African security summit at the Elysee palace in Paris to discuss the Boko Haram threat to regional stability. Getty Images|
One might think that in our enlightened secular Western world, all these considerations have gone by the board. It is, therefore, a rude shock to see the female executive editor of the NYTimes fired for having the impudence to demand that her salary be at least as great as that of her male predecessor. The publisher considered her "pushy" which tells you where our culture is stalled.
HOME SWEET HOME
HOW HAVE THE MIGHTY FALLEN
Olmert, prior to hearing his sentence, in the Tel Aviv court. May 13, 2014. Photo by Yotam Ronen
Anti-Arab graffiti, reading 'Arabs out,' sprayed in Abu Ghosh on June 19, 2013. Photo by Emil Salman
THE POPE IS COMING
Pope Francis is coming to visit Israel, the Palestine Authority and Jordan this month and it is a real security headache for both Israel and the Vatican. There are complaints that the stringent security measures will block the Pope's access to Christians who want to interact with him. Nonetheless the fear that some crazy Orthodox Jew will try to assassinate him is very real and in Titan's opinion the security measures are justified. Even if the Pope himself is protected, the possibility of a massive hate crime against a Christian institution is certainly on the agenda and the security forces of the state must do whatever is necessary to prevent it. We are dealing here with settlers, religious fanatics and lunatic messianic nuts who are capable of anything. Churches are a very easy target.
What If raises the question of a lawsuit for $2x10**36 or $2 undecillion against the Au Bon Pain restaurant chain and others. This is the new record in civil and punitive damages although there have been quite a few dillies in the past.
Those of us who commute by train have something to learn from Randall about our favorite mode of transportation.
How real are we?
Cynthia has something on human intelligence
When did you last fantasize about civil rights and lawyers