Archive for the ‘current affairs’ Category

No justice for Aafia: No CHANGE for America

February 6, 2010 1 comment

Dr Aafia Siddiqui’s case is one that I have tried to follow as much as possible over the last year or so and is one of the most puzzling things in the news for me at the moment. I have only in the past week seen how she is portrayed in the Western media as I was made aware of her case by my parents who have been following the case on Pakistani news channels available on satellite here in the UK. I am simply shocked. Now I am beginning to understand why I am sometimes at a loss at how some people are just so ignorant of the truth. I have all too long seen the arguments put forward by my co-religionists about the media being against Muslims etc etc and a lot of the time, I do agree that in the past decade and obviously post-9/11, it does seem that way. This past week has shown me why a lot of my compatriots and other members of Western societies would have a negative view of Muslims.

A few days ago, I went onto youtube and searched for “aafia siddiqui”. One result popped out so I clicked it. The title of the video read: “Lady al-Qaeda…”. It was a report taken from the news channel, Russia Today. This was the first time that I had heard this phrase and I was horrified at the way Dr Siddiqui was being portrayed in this tabloid-style, sensationalist “report”. If the reporter in question was displaying the extent of her knowledge about this case, then I’m sorry to say that I, a mere student, am far more qualified to do her job than she is. With no mention of how Aafia was abducted in Karachi along with her kids (one of whom was only 6 months old at the time) on her way to Islamabad and being imprisoned for six years prior to this current trial in New York, she was being spoken about as if she was some sort of terrorist who had the training and “messed-in-the-head”-edness to commit the crime she has been shamefully accused of committing. After only getting information about her case through my parents and their Pakistani news channels, I was simply bewildered at the character being portrayed. This was the polar opposite to what I had been following.

Here is an innocent woman, educated at MIT as a neuroscientist before moving back to Pakistan with young children, described by her family as never really being overly religious, being torn apart by people who simply have no idea of the facts. The point that I wish to stress here is that a lot of the mainstream news outlets that I have come across in the past week since her “guilty” verdict was given have not made a mention of her young children being missing, since her abduction, which was also conveniently omitted. If you miss out these details, it paints a very different picture. The “official” US Military version of the story goes something like: she was picked up in Afghanistan, wandering around in the street (why was she picked up and how did she get there in the first place guys?? Oh yeah, Pakistan and Afghanistan both end in –stan so nobody will notice) and once in custody, she had the strength to overpower two FBI agents and attempt to murder them with a far too conveniently placed firearm on the floor next to her. What kind of joke facility has readily-available guns for prisoners to gain access to anyway?

I just wanted to highlight these points. Even I can tell you she’s been set up and I’m sitting thousands of miles away in Leeds. This is just the tip of the iceberg with countless other people apparently going missing in countries like Pakistan, post-9/11 and ending up in US custody in Afghanistan. What ever happened to due process? We have to stop turning the other way when innocent people are being so harshly treated and having their lives taken away from them, just because we assume that they are guilty because they are a different colour to us or worse: a Muslim! Because when the chickens come home to roost, how do you know the same won’t happen to someone you do care about? I’ve never been impressed by lefties or conspiracy-theorists but from now on, I am going to think twice before taking the news I read at face value. I’m going to start appreciating The Huffington Post and Democracy Now a lot more.

And I was happy when Obama was elected but I’m sorry; CHANGE has not come to America.


The PM’s caught the TED bug

Our mate Gordon gave a talk at TEDGlobal in Oxford yesterday about how we have to take advantage of our increased connectivity and the global village. Just watched it myself and thought it was a pretty decent effort so watch it if you have the time.

GUNDAM 1/1 scale Odaiba, Tokyo お台場ガンダム実物大 全身

July 13, 2009 2 comments

The full-scale Mobile-Suit GUNDAM has officially opened in Odaiba, to coincide with the 30th anniversary of the Gundam series.

(taken from

(taken from

The opening ceremony or as the katakana reads in the video’s title, oupuningu seremoni-. You gotta love the original Gundam music they play towards the end.

Finishing touches being applied.

I remember seeing the mini statue of liberty (below) in Odaiba back in 2004 but that pales in comparison to this behemoth. Hope I get to see it in December. Wouldn’t it be immense if they did a scale model of a metal gear??


Swine-flu SNOUTBREAK!! Expert advice on what to do

I guess desperate times call for desperate measures.

I found the following list posted on a blog that i regularly read. it was originally a post by a commenter on THE site of choice if you ever feel like this latest H1N1 outbreak really is one of the signs of the aporkalypse.

  • 1. Go out & buy n-95 masks or equivalent. $ 20.00 for box of 20 at Lowe’s & Home Depot.
  • 2. Buy surgical gloves.
  • 3. Get anti-bacterial soaps, & bleach.
  • 4. Get a preventative doctors prescription for Tamiflu or Relenza, about $ 50.00 to $ 70.00 per multiple dose pack or bottle.
  • 5. Quarantine yourself & go no where if possible. No guests, in or out.
  • 6. If that’s not possible, wear the mask & gloves, everytime you go out. When done, come home take off the gloves throw away in bio-hazard container. Take off mask, put on shelf for use again. Wash hands with soap & water, rinse, then rinse again in mild form of “bleachwater.” Then blow, or allow to air dry. Or use seperate 2nd towel ( white ) to dry them.
  • 7. You cannot go out to eat, go to the movies, or eat any prepared foods. They will not be safe. The only safe foods will be sealed in “glass jars, metal, tin, or frozen, long before the “PANDEMIC,” hit. No fresh breads, salads, open foods, fast food restaurants, nothing like it.
  • 8. Do not trust or believe the mainstream news media ! I cannot stress that enough. Get your “TRUTHFUL,” news from the internet.
  • 9. Do not take any shots or vaccinations what so ever ! I do not trust them !
  • 10. Watch for more deaths, clusters, & such.
  • 11. Once people get scared & panic, it’s gonna be nuts. And you won’t be able to get food, medical, supplies, water, or anything.
  • 12. Please run out now, & buy what you need, right away. You should be stocked up already as you’ve been told for all other types of “end of the world scenarios.”
  • 13. The CDC & other sites have good information on how to protect yourself.
  • 14. Do not seal up your home airtight ! You’ll run out of fresh air qucikly & die of lack of oxygen.
  • 15. Of course keep your doors & windows shut.
  • 16. PRAY !

So there you have it. some valuable advice that im sure your local government’s disaster response team will be giving out soon. i love how 12 will lead to 11 anyway. but if its what the experts are saying then surely we have to follow what they say.

just a final thought. i guess the looks that asian-looking men with backpacks get on the london underground will be now be reserved for sombrero-wearers with surgical masks on. some valuable fashion advice to keep in mind if you ever need a seat on a crowded train. throwing in a few coughs as well as mumbling some spanish will be sure to do the trick and part the waves for a spacious and more comfortable commute.

p.s. remember this is not my advice so i will not be held responsible for causing mass panic. use your brain and for the love of God, wash your hands and we should all be fine インシャーラ。

Covered in glory – The Boston Globe

February 14, 2009 Leave a comment

Covered in glory – The Boston Globe

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Categories: current affairs Tags: , , ,

Are you professional?

February 7, 2009 Leave a comment
a true professional

The fallout from christian bale’s f-bomb-ridden outburst on the set of the greatly anticipated terminator salvation film continues. one thing that i have enjoyed is the range of parodies on youtube already. my favourite has to be the “R U Professional” song. i love it. i have played it so many times in the flat. i think it would do well in the charts. other higlights are the mash-ups with bill o’reilly (what a loser btw).

i read today that my man bale rang up an LA radio station and apologised wholeheartedly for the tirade. he also added that he completely lost the boundary between facts and fiction and was still kind of in character (john connor) so thats why he went on for so long and seemed to completely lose it. either way, i think he has fulfilled his remit of entertaining us so, well done “batman” bale! maybe im not the most unbiased person here as ive been a fan of his ever since i first watched american psycho (good film!).

obviously he did go over the top but we have a lot more serious problems in the world right now. and what better way to relieve your stress from worldly affairs than to listen to the rant or even better, watch the amazing youtube creations that have popped up since and kept me happy for the past few days.

finally, ask yourself this question: are you professional or not!?

My fellow Brits….

January 25, 2009 1 comment
Categories: current affairs Tags: , , , ,
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