Tuesday, February 10, 2009

Sultans of Science: 1000 Years of Knowledge Rediscovered - Malaysiakini

Did you know that the first piloted flying device soared well before Leonardo da Vinci took flight in the 15th century?
In the ninth century on a hill near Cordoba, Spain, a scholar and inventor named Abbas Bin Firnas harnessed himself to a feathered glider and briefly took flight, amazing his spectators.

The glider is just one of the inventions recreated for Sultans of Science: 1000 Years of Knowledge Rediscovered, an international touring exhibition making its Canadian premiere at the Ontario Science Centre.

The exhibition celebrates the scientific and technological breakthroughs made by scholars during the Golden Age of the Islamic World (eighth to 18th centuries) and their lasting influence on modern science and technology.
Developed by Cape Town and Dubai-based MTE Studios, this engaging and thought-provoking exhibition will show visitors how a great civilization created prosperity across large areas of the known world from Spain to China.
Knowledge was valued and innovation encouraged, leading to high levels of achievement in science and technology.
Architecture, optics, medicine and flight are among the disciplines examined in this beautifully designed presentation. Covering over 700 square metres, it is divided into 10 sections with hands-on activities, large-scale models and interactive maps that will take visitors on a journey back through time.
The information from Ontario Science Centre.

Gan was Outgunned by Gobin in RPK's trial - Malaysiakini

Some excerpts from Malaysiakini report (sure not in the United Malays National Organisation papers like NST, Utusan, Berita and MCA's Star)

However to questions from defence counsel Gobind Singh Deo, Gan said that he had not investigated Najib despite him being an important witness.

"Najib was not interrogated because the police had dismissed his involvement in the case," said Gan.
Gobind was grilling Gan in relation to the explosive affidavit filed by political analyst Abdul Razak Baginda on Jan 4, 2007, in which Abdul Razak stated that he engaged the help of DSP Musa Haji Safri, who was Najib's aide de camp at that time, in solving the Altantuya problem.

The affidavit was filed by Abdul Razak to deny any wrongdoings in the murder of Altantuya when he was charged with aiding her murder with two special unit police officers. He was acquitted at the end of prosecution case.

When Gobind asked if Gan had taken statements from both Musa and Abdul Razak, the policeman said he had done so.
However he could not remember it the statements were in regards the help that was given by Musa to Abdul Razak in solving the 'problem'.

Minimum direct involvement

Moreover, Gan said that although he was the chief investigating officer in the case, his "direct involvement in it was at the minimum".

"I supervised a team of investigators to assist ASP Tonny Lunggan," said Gan, adding that the questioning sessions were handled by Lunggan.

Gobind further asked if Najib was questioned at any time during the investigations into Raja Petra's article.
Gan said he had not.
In the article, it was said that Abdul Razak went to Najib and Rosmah first, and the couple had then instructed Musa to aide Abdul Razak.

Gobind: Earlier you said that you did not investigate the facts in the affidavit that Abdul Razak Baginda had visited the deputy prime minister's office and bumped into Musa.You also said, you did not question the statement, and you said that you did not question Najib... so if you did not interrogate Najib, how do you know that the contents of the paragraph in the article did not take place?

Gan: I got the facts from the investigator of the case ASP Tonny.
Gobind: What were the facts? Tell us the facts!
Gan: You don't need to raise your voice. First you call me a useless policeman... now you don't have to raise your voice... the facts relating to the existence of Najib and Rosmah were false.

Police decided not to summon Najib

After the minor argument, Gobind stated that Gan had no personal knowledge of the alleged involvement of Najib, Musa and Abdul Razak.
Gan however reiterated that it was not true and that he had the facts from Lunggan

Gobind then asked Gan if he had any knowledge of Lunggan taking Abdul Razak's statement regarding his affidavit.

Gan: I do not remember.

Gobind: You don't remember? Isn't it important to know whether Abdul Razak's statement was taken?
Gan: Yes, it is important.
Gobind: It is important because it involves Abdul Razak and important to know whether it is true or false, correct?
Gan: Yes.
Gobind: Is it important to interrogate Najib to uncover the truth in the statement (article)?
Gan: Yes, but Najib was not interrogated because the police had dismissed his involvement in the case (Altantuya's murder).
Gobind: If he was an important witness why the police did not investigate Najib?
Gan: Because in the Altantuya murder trial, investigation revealed that there was no need to summon him.

Politically motivated prosecution

However, Gobind kept badgering Gan on the fact that despite the importance of Najib's statement, he was not interrogated for a statement.
"Having failed to take statement from him (Najib), you are in no position to substantiate your police report against Raja Petra.
"This decision to prosecute Raja Petra is politically motivated as no action was taken relating to Najib but to pin down Raja Petra," blasted Gobind.

Returning U.S. combat soldiers are committing suicide and murder in alarming numbers


Reuters/Carlos Barria

A U.S. soldier from Delta company of the 1st Battalion-504th Parachute Infantry Regiment walks a Baghdad street after a car bomb explosion at a market in February 2007.

Death in the USA: The Army's fatal neglect

Returning U.S. combat soldiers are committing suicide and murder in alarming numbers. In a special series, Salon uncovers the habitual mistreatment behind the preventable deaths.

Preventable suicides. Avoidable drug overdoses. Murders that never should have happened. Four years after Salon exposed medical neglect at Walter Reed Army Medical Center that ultimately grew into a national scandal, serious problems with the Army's healthcare system persist and the situation, at least at some Army posts, continues to deteriorate.

This story is no longer just about lack of medical care. It's far worse than sighting mold and mouse droppings in the barracks. Late last month the Army released data showing the highest suicide rate among soldiers in three decades. At least 128 soldiers committed suicide in 2008. Another 15 deaths are still under investigation as potential suicides. "Why do the numbers keep going up?" Army Secretary Pete Geren said at a Jan. 29 Pentagon news conference. "We can’t tell you." On Feb. 5, the Army announced it suspects 24 soldiers killed themselves last month, more than died in combat in Iraq and Afghanistan combined.

But suicide is only one manifestation of the unaddressed madness and despair coming home with U.S. troops. Salon's close inspection of a rash of murders and suicides involving soldiers at just one base reveals that many of the deaths seem avoidable. Salon put together a sample of 25 suicides, prescription overdoses and murders among soldiers at Colorado's Fort Carson since 2004. Intensive study of 10 of those cases exposed a pattern of preventable deaths, meaning a suicide or murder might have been avoided if the Army had better handled the predictable, well-known symptoms of a malady rampant among combat veterans: combat-related stress and brain injuries.


Missing Persons but Forgotten in Malaysia - Malaysiakini

The recent missing cases of three Perak Aduns are only a tip of the iceberg.

Those three Aduns were later appeared with big smiling faces at the office of the deputy PM of Malaysia. These so-called scumdog millionaires with their own excuses of missing like on MCs and were in Pahang for medical purposes, had become popular overnight and made history on their own rights.

Today, two of them were reported missing again, this time missing their court hearings. One had equipped his lawyer with MC while another one without trace again. somewhere unkown and undisclosed.

The most well-known missing case was the tragedy of little girl, Nurin. I do not want to elaborate as those animals are still out there and the Police is busy detaining Perak people.

I read a web site with this information, those missing persons esp kids who never have opportunities to return or appear with the PM-in-waiting:-

In Malaysia missing children are basically classified into two categories.

The first category is disappearance, which includes running away from home.

The other category is abduction or kidnapping. If parents abduct their children, it is usually classified as an ordinary missing person’s case.

Most missing children’s cases are dealt and handled by the courts. The police are there to ensure that the child in Malaysia is safe and no criminal activities take place.

Statistics of missing child in Malaysia is compiled and so also for missing people of all ages.

Since 2004, more than 6,270 teenagers have been reported missing in Malaysia and out of these 4,620 of the missing children are teenage girls. However, the police statistics have revealed that in 2005, 71 girls who ran away from their homes were found death. In 2006, another 71 missing girls’ bodies were found. In 2007, there were 3,246 reports lodged with the police for missing girls.

Between January 2004 and May 2005, 4,237 of the 6,270 missing children, mostly teenagers, were found and returned to their home. However, during the same period, a total of 149 girls under the age of nine were also reported missing.

Statistics of missing children in Malaysia reveal that since 2004, a total of 5,996 children under the age of 18 went missing from their homes. Other than 1,904 children, the rest subsequently returned home or were found and returned home by the police. The majority of children the 1,904 children still missing are girls and they are aged between 14 years and 17 years.

In 2008, between January 1 and April 13, 303 children and teenagers below the age of 18 have been reported missing in Malaysia according to the Deputy Internal Security Minister of Malaysia.

And Terence Fernandez of Sun wrote:

KIDNAPPINGS and missing individuals seem to be a worrying trend of late. And I’m not just talking about the spate of ransom demands which led to the safe recovery of missing family members – and in one recent sad incident the body of an 18-year-old boy.
Politicians too seem to be the target of kidnappers as reflected in the recent wave of alleged kidnapping attempts.
Bota Assemblyman Datuk Nasaruddin Hashim’s wife had reported her husband missing – feared kidnapped – before his double defection.
Now Bukit Selambau representative V. Arumugan had lodged a police report claiming there was an attempt to kidnap him – before his announcement that he is quitting his seat.
Before this, we also had cases where a medical practitioner and a private investigator went missing (allegedly kidnapped) before making explosive claims and changing their stories in the case of the PI.
The police should seriously look into this epidemic of missing persons; more than 1,000 individuals have been reported missing over the last 10 years, of whom 200 were children.
Instead of using its limited resources towards galvanising manpower to guard residences of mentris besar or rallies at stadiums or eavesdrop at ceramah and sermons at mosques and other places of worship, taxpayers’ money would be better spent on finding these people and unravelling the truth behind their "kidnappings" once these individuals are found or show up.

The Tails of Two Perak MBs - Malaysiakini

I do not know anyone of them personally. From afar and by reading those articles/blogs/reports/news splashed all over cyberspace as well as comments form Tom Dick and Harry, I may say that they have different personalities.

I have a biased embedded perception that any United Malays National Organisation’s leaders must be corrupt, robbers and cheaters. Otherwise, these politicians would not go far and higher. Mahathir believes so and I agree with him. Money talks and walks between their legs in United Malays National Organisation.

We can differentiate the two current MBs from their tails. Those supporters, loyal followers and cronies that surround and tail them.

The opposing supporters declared the other MB as a penderhaka. Another MB was sworn in hurriedly and his government’s legitimacy is questionable but who cares, as long as under the banner of United Malays National Organisation, everything is HALAL, except makan babi.

By the way, a common similarity between the two is both of them are not pure Malay. That’s bangsa Malaysia for you.

One with Chinese blood. Another one looks like an Indian. I have no problem with this issue as I also a Melayu campur. The fact is, who says non-Malay cannot be a Perak MB?

I rest my case.