Monday, February 16, 2009

Travel butterflies

There is a huge difference between my sister and me according to preparation. She's been packing her bag already for one week, I packed mine on Sunday evening. She was making a fuzz in the kitchen about tomorrow's lunch, I just smile and will prepare some sandwiches tomorrow morning (which is the whole reason she started a fuzz). I've a comfortable backpack that's lighter than my usual backpack I take with me to class, she has a suitcase (on practical wheels though).

It's a bit arrogant maybe, not to worry that much about everything. You would think that one who has travelled a lot would get used to leaving things behind, but I can't sleep two or three nights before I leave. Have those horrible dreams of missing the plane or worry sick just before leaving if I really have everything, didn't forget everything and if my cat will be in good hands while I'm away.

Well, so far I think I'm stacked and packed but I will know for certain when arrived.

Statement #1

'The most obvious cost of inaction in the Middle East is the leaching away of trust. Many Israelis, bombarded by Hizbullah after withdrawing from Lebanon and by Hamas after withdrawing from the Gaza strip, no longer believe in the old formula of land for peace; it has been more like land for war, what they say.'

Over the next couple of weeks, I will put here some statements, this is the first one in a serie of 10.

Western Imperialism Part 3: A World Without Islam: Any Different?

There is a lot of chatter about the evils of Islam... perpetuated in the media, internet chat boards, in bars over beer. There's two ways to look at it (probably more, for sure)... a) that Islam is a religion built on violence and is worthy of attack from Western nations, or b) that Islam, like many/all religions is a societal rallying point for those who are oppressed, or those who wish to wage imperial wars.

About a year ago there was a compelling paper written by Graham Fuller, a former vice chairman of the National Intelligence Council at the CIA in charge of long-range strategic forecasting, who proposes that had Islam never existed, the world would be right about where it is today. He cites the conflicts and terrorism that are frequently attributed to Islam are more about oppression and imperialism than anything else.

One highlight... In 2006, Interpol tracked over 400 instances of terrorism in Europe. Only one is attributed to Islamic extremism. Makes you think about all the headlines we see, all the fear-based television video of radical extremists.

I've posted the article on my website in its entirety for those who are interested in a very well-informed perspective on the subject. Highly recommended for those keen on the topic.

Peace & Love,
~ Alias

Day Opening - February 16

'Life is a Path between the Dots'
Photo: by Belgin Zeytin