Friday, November 30, 2012
Algeria: Do you know where Algeria is? It is an Arab country in Maghreb region of Africa. It is the tenth largest country in the world and its capital is Algiers. The vegetation of Algeria is varied and there are mountainous as well as desert regions in it. Algeria has a rich tradition of Arabic literature. Among other things, the Nobel laureate French writer Albert Camus was born in Algeria. Algeria’s primary military suppliers are the former Soviet Union and People’s Republic of China.
Laika is the name of the first dog to be sent to outer space. She was a stray dog who underwent treatment with two others and was selected to be the hero of the first space flight to carry a living being. Unfortunately she did not live to bark out her story. She probably died within a few hours of take-off due to overheating. However her journey paved the way for manned space flight and a monument was erected in honour of this dog in 1980.
The black-and-white photos showed masses of people yearning for independence, celebrating a vote recognising a state in Palestine. It was a day that generations of pupils would be taught to remember with reverence — November 29.
The jubilant revellers were Jews, the year was 1947, and the vote was held in the United Nations General Assembly (UNGA).
The Palestinians rejected the partition plan, which called for Jewish and Arab states to be established after the imminent expiration of the British rule over Palestine. The outraged Arabs soon started a war they eventually lost.
Sixty-five years later, the tables somewhat reversed — Palestinians turned to the General Assembly for a second chance and it is the Israelis who dismissed the vote, which resoundingly upgraded the Palestinians’ U.N. status, as a symbolic trifle.
The irony of the date was not lost on the Israelis.
“We are the best teachers of the Palestinian people in their struggle for independence,” wrote Eitan Haber, a veteran columnist for the Yedioth Ahronot daily. “They have studied carefully the history of the Zionist movement.”
While it’s true that Thursday’s vote won’t immediately create a state of Palestine, it will give the Palestinians a boost, elevating their status from U.N. observer to non-member observer state like that of the Vatican.
The resolution upgrading the Palestinians’ status was approved by a vote of 138 to 9, with 41 abstentions, in the 193-member world body.
Anton Salman, a resident of the Palestinian city of Bethlehem in the West Bank, said he hoped international recognition would mark the beginning of a new period that “will begin to build a real state and to recognize our identity as a people with a state and land”.
The vote recognises a Palestinian state in the West Bank, Gaza and east Jerusalem, the lands Israel captured in the 1967 Mideast war.
This represents far less territory than the Palestinians were offered on November 29, 1947, when the U.N. General Assembly passed Resolution 181.
Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas, in a rare moment of candour, admitted in an Israeli TV interview last year that the Arab world erred in rejecting the plan. “It was our mistake. It was an Arab mistake as a whole,” he said at the time.
Resolution 181 called for the partition of the British-ruled Palestine Mandate into a Jewish state and an Arab state — 33 countries voted in favour, 13 against and 10 abstained.
The resolution was accepted by the Jews of Palestine and set off jubilant celebrations. In a whiff of nostalgia, Israeli TV on Thursday aired grainy footage from that day of people dancing in the streets. Israeli radio interviewed Israeli seniors about their recollections from that day.
It was a strikingly different Israel from today, a place where only several hundred thousand Jews lived, most of them European.
After the vote, ecstatic Palestinians in Ramallah and other West Bank towns waved flags, danced in the streets and set off fireworks.
A group of Israeli peace activists held a rally Thursday to support the Palestinian bid in front of the old Tel Aviv Museum, where Israel’s independence was declared in May 1948.
“The choice of date is not accidental. It’s aimed at correcting a historical mistake,” said Mossi Raz, a former Israeli lawmaker and veteran activist.
“Sixty-five years ago, the United Nations decided to establish a Jewish state and an Arab state ... but it never happened. Today we are completing a historic decision with the establishment of Palestine.” — AP
You must have learnt that the Chief Minister of
Maharashtra has ordered the
suspension of the police officers who ordered the arrest of the Mumbai girl who
posted on Facebook her objection to the shutdown of Mumbai on the death of Bal
I request you to do the same to the policemen who ordered and implemented the arrest of Prof. Mahapatra of Jadavpur University and Siladitya Choudhari, and you should immediately withdraw the cases against them and apologize to them.You should also immediately restore Damyanti Sen, the upright police officer, whom you wrongly victimized,and you should openly apologize to her for your wrong. We are all human beings and we all make mistakes, but a gentleman is one who realizes his mistake and apologizes. You should also apologize to Tanya Bharadwaj whom you insulted on the CNN IBN show.
I can assure you that if you do so you will go up in the esteem of the people of
West Bengal, and indeed the whole
From what I could gather during my visits to Kolkata, your Ministers and bureaucrats are afraid to speak out their minds fearlessly before you, and are terrorized by your unpredictable and whimsical behaviour. To say the least, this is a very unhealthy state of affairs, and you will not be able to remain as Chief Minister for long unless you change your ways and become more tolerant.
Kautilya has said in the Arthashastra that a successful ruler is one who appoints good advisers, and listens to their advice. Of course, after listening to their advice it is ultimately for you to take the final decision, but your advisers should feel free to express their opinions fearlessly. In this connection I may mention that Sardar Patel, the first Union Home Minister, told his Secretaries (senior I.C.S. officers ) that they should express their views freely, even if their view is totally different from his own, and he would never take offence. In fact if they do not express their views freely they were of no use to him. This is the way you should also conduct yourself.
It is still not too late for you if you listen to my advice and change your ways. I am your well wisher, and would like you to do well, and in fact, if you remember, I had praised you at one time. But of late you seem to have become increasingly intolerant and whimsical, which is only going to land you in big trouble.