General Relativity Turns 100
3 hours ago
Vinum Animi Speculum
It was the list that would have sent thousands more Jews to their deaths in Auschwitz and other extermination camps run by Adolf Hitler's Nazi regime during the second world war, but this time the victims were to be Spaniards.Read the rest of the article in the Guardian
The Spanish dictator, General Francisco Franco, whose apologists usually claim that he protected Jews, ordered his officials to draw up a list of some 6,000 Jews living in Spain and include them in a secret Jewish archive.
That list was handed over to the Nazi architect of the so-called "final solution", the German SS chief Heinrich Himmler, as the two countries negotiated Spain's possible incorporation into the group of Axis powers that included Italy, according to the El País newspaper today.
The newspaper printed the original order, recently unearthed from Spanish archives, that instructed provincial governors to elaborate lists of "all the national and foreign Jews living in the province ... showing their personal and political leanings, means of living, commercial activities, degree of danger and security category".
Provincial governors were ordered to look out especially for Sephardic Jews, descendants of those expelled from Spain in 1492, because their Ladino language and Hispanic background helped them fit into Spanish society.
"Their adaptation to our environment and their similar temperament allow them to hide their origins more easily," said the order, sent out in May 1941.
The video shows Bulent Yildirim, leader of the IHH group which organized the aid flotilla to the Gaza Strip, speaking before the dozens of activists on board the ship. [I attached a picture of Yildirim during a meeting with Hamasnik Ismail Haniyeh, January 2010, Suz.]At 2:08 you can see Mohamed Beltagy, a Muslim Brotherhood parliamentarian from Egypt:
"We don't want to be recorded in Allah's book as cowards," he said, encouraging the ship's passengers, "Those who stand against us are numerous. They are so weak that for four – five days they have been engaging in propaganda. They have been humiliated in front of the whole world."
"Now they are saying that they will launch a fleet against us. That they will send the commandos here. And we say, 'If you send the commandos, we will throw you down from here and you will be humiliated in front of the whole world'," he told the crowd, who responded by chanting "Allahu akbar".
The first day of the official Hulu Selangor campaign saw the main contenders, Barisan Nasional and Pakatan Rakyat, exchange allegations of Jewish links against each other in the race for the majority Malay vote.
Northern Africa is heavily Muslim and southern Africa is mostly Christian but where the two religions meet in a 4,000-mile belt from Somalia to Senegal has often turned violent, especially in Nigeria, where hundreds of Muslims and Christians have died since January fighting each other.
Christians are less positive in their views of Muslims than Muslims are in their views of Christians," senior researcher Greg Smith said, adding that both Christians and Muslims also showed concern about extremism within their own ranks.
A court in Kasur district, Punjab, convicted a Christian couple, Munir Masih and Ruqqiya Bibi, to 25 years in prison. According to the Centre for Legal Aid Assistance and Settlement (CLAAS), judge Ajmal Hussein convicted the couple for touching the Qur‘an without washing their hands.
In the last two months, there were two more convictions against Christians in Pakistan.
On 11 January, a court in Faisalabad sentenced Imran Masih, a 26-year-old Christian man, to life imprisonment for insulting and desecrating the Koran. He was accused of deliberately burning Qur‘anic verses and an Arabic book in order “foment interfaith hatred and hurt the feelings of Muslims.”
On 25 February, a court in Karachi sentenced Qamar David, also a Christian, to life imprisonment for hurting the religious feelings of Muslims when he sent blasphemous SMS.
CLAAS announced that it was filing an appeal with the High Court in Lahore to have the 25-year sentence against Munir Masih and Ruqqiya Bibi overturned.
Can science help us be moral? Yes, science frees our intellect from inadequate morals which have impeded humanity and provides knowledge from which we make better moral decisions. We should not perceive science and religion as opposing principles, but as complementary choices - compatible pathways to progress. Perhaps a more important question is, can we be moral without science? In today's scientific era, I think not.
When talking about life in the old country, Israel's Iraqi-born Jews acknowledge two eras: before the Farhoud, and after. In June 1941, during the Jewish holiday of Shavuot, nearly 200 of Baghdad's Jews were slain in a killing rampage that went on for several days. Things were never the same after the pogrom that marked the beginning of the end of the Jewish community that had lived in Iraq since antiquity. Most of Iraq's Jews -- about 150,000 -- left for Israel within a few years of the massacre.
In 1969, dwindled Iraqi Jewry suffered another shock, when nine men from Baghdad and Basra were rounded up and accused of spying for Israel.