Docudharma Times Sunday November 16

The Automotive Industries  Mistakes  Are Of

Their Owning Making

Yet The American Tax Payer

Will Be Asked To Accept A Government

Bailout For A Problem They Didn’t Create

Sunday’s Headlines:

Detroit Has Plans for Loans to Retool. First It Must Survive.

On the front line in war on Pakistan’s Taliban

The remarkable renaissance in Chinese art

Albino Africans live in fear after witch-doctor butchery

Kenyan police units ‘murder hundreds’

Inside Europe’s corruption capital: how Bulgaria’s crime mafia plunders EU grant money

Italian Auschwitz Survivor Warns Against Roma Discrimination

Iraq’s Cabinet meets to debate, vote on US pact

Shiite Bloc Fails to Go to Meeting on Iraq-U.S. Pact

Baseball Diplomacy

World Leaders Vow Joint Push to Aid Economy


Published: November 15, 2008

WASHINGTON – Facing the gravest economic crisis in decades, the leaders of 20 countries agreed Saturday to work together to revive their economies, but they put off thornier decisions about how to overhaul financial regulations until next year, providing a serious early challenge for the Obama administration.

Though the countries’ stimulus packages were cast as ambitious steps, they mainly reflected measures that the countries were already undertaking to respond to the crisis. What remains to be seen is whether, working with a new White House, the leaders will cast aside their political and economic differences to embrace more radical changes, including far-reaching but fiercely debated proposals to overhaul regulation.

 Young Tibetans ‘will resist China with blood’

As Tibet’s exiled leaders meet to decide the future of their struggle some are calling for direct action

From The Sunday Times

November 16, 2008

Michael Sheridan

The fate of the Dalai Lama’s birthplace high on a lonely mountainside shows the absolute supremacy of China over his ancestral land on the eve of a critical meeting between Tibetan exiles to debate the future of their cause.

The farmhouse in Taktser where he was born in 1935 stands silent in a walled compound. Destroyed by Red Guards, it was rebuilt and adorned with a golden roof at a time when China and the Tibetan spiritual leader were on better terms. Gaily coloured prayer flags flutter from a tall pole outside.

“We hope he will come back,” said a villager, “but whether that is possible or not is up to the government.”



Catastrophic fires blaze a path of destruction through Southland

From Santa Barbara to Orange County, hundreds of homes burn and thousands of people are evacuated. A mobile home park in Sylmar appears to lose the highest number of housing units in L.A. history.

By Louis Sahagun, Mike Anton and Mitchell Landsberg

November 16, 2008

In a swiftly moving catastrophe that seemed as familiar as it was shocking, Southern California once again was besieged by flame Saturday, from Orange County to Santa Barbara, with hundreds of homes consumed by three major wind-driven fires, including one of the most devastating blazes ever to strike the city of Los Angeles.

At least 30,000 people were ordered to evacuate their homes amid smoke that blew like stinging fog through wind-ravaged canyons. Major freeways, including Interstate 5 and the 91 and 71 freeways, were closed, making escape tricky for some. More than 500 mobile homes were destroyed at a community in Sylmar; and about 100 houses and apartments were damaged or destroyed in Riverside and Orange counties. The numbers were expected to grow.

Detroit Has Plans for Loans to Retool. First It Must Survive.

By Steven Mufson

Washington Post Staff Writer

Sunday, November 16, 2008; Page A01

DETROIT — In Washington, President Bush and others see the $25 billion in loans Congress has already approved to retool the ailing automobile industry as a convenient pot of money to help automakers survive the economic tumult.

But here, automakers regard that money differently; it was part of a 2007 quid pro quo for helping them meet tough new fuel-efficiency standards. Without it, they’ll need to revamp their fleets to meet that mandate without assistance, and that, they say, is no easy task.


On the front line in war on Pakistan’s Taliban

High in the mountainous north west provinces of Pakistan, government forces are waging a bitter war against Taliban militants who have made the region a stronghold. As US predator drones criss-cross the sky overhead, troops on the ground endure a daily confrontation with suicide bomber attacks, mortar fire and the piercing cold

Jason Burke, Sunday November 16 2008 00.01 GMT

Ali Hussein, a sergeant in the Sindh Regiment of the Pakistani Army, peers over the lip of his sandbagged machinegun pit to see the following: a muddy patch of farmland divided into a chaos of individual fields, a row of slender birch trees, a dry river valley and, almost invisible among the trees half a mile away, a village called Khusar. Over his head, shells screech through the air towards its half-dozen mud-walled houses.

A rocket-propelled grenade cracks out in solitary, futile response, leaving a trail of spiralling smoke in the chill dawn air. There is the continual crackle of small-arms fire, the distant thud of a mortar.

The remarkable renaissance in Chinese art

More than half of the world’s best-selling painters and sculptors today are from Asia – a major shift after 500 years of domination by Western art. Andrew Johnson reports

Sunday, 16 November 2008

With its £2 trillion surplus, China’s economic might dominates the world. Now its painters and sculptors are developing, collectively, into a contemporary arts superpower. Asian artists, and in particular those from China, dominate a new list of the world’s best-selling contemporary artists of last year. Among the world’s most sought-after artists are the unfamiliar names of Zhang Xiaogang, Yue Minjun and Zeng Fanzhi.

Of the world’s 20 top-selling artists, 13 are from Asia, with 11 coming from China. Asian artists make up six of the top 10 biggest sellers at auction, five of which are Chinese. Experts predict that within a decade, the term “Asian art” will be as widely used as “Western art” and will be responsible for most global sales.


Albino Africans live in fear after witch-doctor butchery

A series of horrific murders of albinos in Tanzania has shocked the nation. As children are hacked to death for their body parts, believed to bring good luck, the authorities are failing to stop a trade in organs that relies on superstition and greed

Alex Duval Smith, Sunday November 16 2008 00.01 GMT

The Tanzanian MP recounts the appalling story in a tone of sadness and horror. A woman named Salma had been told by her family to dress her baby entirely in black and to lay the little girl in a hut, alone. ‘The mother didn’t understand, but she obeyed the elders,’ said Al-Shaymaa Kwegyir.

‘Some hours later, unknown men arrived and went straight to the hut. They used a machete to cut off the child’s legs. Then they slit her throat and poured the blood into a pot and drank it.’

Amid a spate of at least 29 murders of albinos in Tanzania, Kwegyir, herself an albino, has become one of the country’s most prominent political campaigners on the issue. She cited evidence that killers acting for witch doctors are turning to cannibalism alongside their quest for lucrative body parts as magic charms.

Kenyan police units ‘murder hundreds’

From The Sunday Times

November 16, 2008

Jon Swain

A damning report containing evidence of a high-level policy to murder suspected criminals and troublemakers in Kenya threatens to undermine the reputation of the government of President Mwai Kibaki.

The report, by the Kenya National Commission on Human Rights, reveals that in the past 18 months about 500 young men have been killed or have disappeared in a police campaign carried out with the apparent connivance of political leaders.

The dead and missing were suspected of being members of the Mungiki, a feared criminal gang that had itself committed gruesome murders.

The Mungiki was outlawed in 2002 following a spate of slum violence. It is a quasi-religious group from the dominant Kikuyu tribe and had become one of Kenya’s largest crime and extortion rings.


Inside Europe’s corruption capital: how Bulgaria’s crime mafia plunders EU grant money

Tilled to this day by horse-drawn ploughs, the rolling pastures of rural Bulgaria have long been known for their cheap wines, strong tobaccos, sweet honey and juicy apricots.

?By Colin Freeman in Sofia

16 Nov 2008

Yet just a year after this former corner of the Soviet empire became part of the European Union, its country lanes roar to the sound of brand new four-wheel drives, while alongside tumbledown peasant cottages have sprung up smart new villas.

Among the locals sipping brandy in the village bars, there is little doubt what the most lucrative annual harvest is these days. It comes not from the soil or the vine, but from piles of grant application forms marked “Sapard”.

Officially the “Special Accession Programme for Agriculture and Rural Development”, Sapard is the multi-billion pound Brussels fund set up to help former Eastern Bloc countries drag their backward farming sectors into the modern world. But in Bulgaria and neighbouring Romania, farm workers are already proving quick to spot what their colleagues in France, Italy and Spain first noticed 30 years ago – that as with any generous subsidies administered from afar, it is ripe for fraud.

Italian Auschwitz Survivor Warns Against Roma Discrimination>

 On the 70th anniversary of anti-Jewish decrees in Italy, an Italian Auschwitz survivor has said the Roma population faces discrimination similar to Jews in Nazi Germany.

Deutshce  Welle

“History is repeating itself” in Italy, Piero Terracina said Friday, Nov. 14, at a conference marking the 70th anniversary of the notorious racial laws targeting Jews, which were approved by the Italian cabinet on Nov. 15, 1938.

“Everything started with the census of the Jews and the terrible consequences to which this led us,” said Terracina, reported AFP news agency.

The 80-year-old Holocaust survivor was freed from the Auschwitz concentration camp in January 1945, shortly before the end of World War II.

The discriminatory decrees introduced in both Nazi Germany and Italy under then leader Benito Mussolini included the prohibition of mixed marriages between Jews and so-called “Aryans” and economic restrictions on Jews, among other measures.

Middle East

Iraq’s Cabinet meets to debate, vote on US pact


By QASSIM ABDUL-ZAHRA, Associated Press Write

BAGHDAD – Iraq’s Cabinet met Sunday to debate and subsequently vote on a security pact that will allow American forces to stay in Iraq for three years after their U.N. mandate expires at the end of the year.

If approved by the 37-member cabinet, the pact will be submitted for a vote in the 275-seat parliament, which is dominated by the political groups making up Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki’s coalition government.

The Cabinet meeting came a day after the country’s most influential Shiite cleric, Grand Ayatollah Ali al-Sistani, indicated that he would not object to the pact if it is passed by a comfortable majority in parliament. That cleared a major hurdle to the agreement.

An official at al-Maliki’s office, speaking on condition of anonymity because he was not authorized to share the information with the media, said the Cabinet meeting got under way at 10 a.m. but had no further details.

Shiite Bloc Fails to Go to Meeting on Iraq-U.S. Pact


Published: November 15, 2008

BAGHDAD – Iraq’s political leaders held a high-level meeting on Saturday to gauge support for a security agreement that will determine the future role and presence of American forces in Iraq before crucial votes in the cabinet and Parliament.

But the most powerful Shiite bloc in Parliament, the Islamic Supreme Council of Iraq, did not attend, and the meeting ended without any clear public resolution.

The agreement, which Iraq and the United States have been negotiating for months, faces a vote by the cabinet, which is expected on Sunday, and then a vote in Parliament, which has not set a date for it. The agreement will replace the United Nations mandate authorizing American military operations in Iraq, which expires on Dec. 31.

Latin America

Baseball Diplomacy

Amid Post-Election Violence, Hall of Famer Ripken Cultivates a Field of Dreams for Nicaraguan Children

By William Booth

Washington Post Foreign Service

Sunday, November 16, 2008; Page A16

MANAGUA, Nicaragua, Nov. 15 — Cal Ripken Jr. could have guessed it was going to be “a real interesting trip,” as he diplomatically put it, when the U.S. Embassy in Nicaragua decided it was too dangerous for the baseball Hall of Famer to stay as planned at the Intercontinental hotel in the capital. The night before his arrival, a mob of club-wielding Sandinista supporters had smashed windows at the mall next door, part of ongoing violence here since contested elections.

This wasn’t the batting practice that Ripken had in mind when he agreed last year to serve as a goodwill ambassador for the State Department.

1 comment

    • RiaD on November 16, 2008 at 2:53 pm

    I hope you had a restful weekend!

    After several warm days it has turned chilly again. Perfect for me to curl up with a cup of coffee & the DD Times!

    thank you!

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