The Daily Star

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Thursday, August 28, 2014


News of: Saturday, 19th of June, 2010

Front Page

Manjur new Ctg mayor

Mohammad Manjur Alam was elected the next mayor of Chittagong City Corporation (CCC) yesterday, defeating ABM Mohiuddin Chowdhury by the largest ever margin in the corporation's history.

Serbia stun Germany

Serbia stunned Germany 1-0 here on Friday in a pulsating World Cup tie marked by a cluster of yellow cards, Miroslav Klose's sending off and Germany's Lukas Podolski missing a second-half penalty.

Clean image counts

Domineering attitude, rudeness, failure to win party ranks' confidence, low turnout and his rival's clean image are believed to have ended Mohiuddin Chowdhury's 17-year mayoral rule in the port city.

Villagers torch stalkers' houses

Villagers yesterday set fire to houses of some alleged stalkers at Talupara village under Tarash upazila of the district.

Mindless tree-felling brings on landslides

Mindless felling of trees in the hilly region has been the major reason behind landslides wreaking havoc among the people living on the slopes, said experts.

Lifestyle gets better

Although a large number of people still live below the poverty line, a new survey by the Bangladesh Bureau of Statistics (BBS) shows that their standard of living however has been improving.

Nimtoli blaze left some things intact

Mohammad Didar had given his eight-year-old daughter Ardita a piggy bank to save coins. The plastic bank was intact inside a wardrobe when all three members of his nuclear family died inside the flat in the Nimtoli inferno on June 3.

Ahmadiyyas in Tangail attacked

An angry mob vandalised a makeshift tin-shed mosque of Ahmadiyya Muslim Jamaat and the house of an Ahmadiyya believer at Ghatail upazila in Tangail Thursday.

Driver held with microbus

The Detective Branch of police arrested the microbus driver of housewife Farzana Akhter Rita and recovered the missing vehicle from a village in Gopalganj Thursday night.

Provide more manpower to speed up war crimes trial

The government should appoint more investigators and prosecutors soon to expedite the process of war crimes trial, said speakers in a conference yesterday.

Nine killed in road accidents

Nine persons including four of a family were killed in road accidents in Narayanganj, Sylhet and Habiganj districts yesterday and Thursday.

Manjur to enlist Mohiuddin's help

Mayor-elect of Chittagong City Corporation Mohammad Manjur Alam yesterday said he hoped to run his office with the advice of his predecessor ABM Mohiuddin Chowdhury.

PM greets Manjur

Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina has congratulated the newly elected mayor of Chittagong City Corporation M Manjur Alam Manju for his win in Thursday's elections.

Khaleda thanks Ctg people

BNP Chairperson Khaleda Zia yesterday congratulated the newly elected mayor and councillors for their win in Chittagong City Corporation (CCC) election.

Anomalies in counting

Awami League-backed mayor candidate ABM Mohiuddin Chowdhury in his reaction to his loss in the polls yesterday alleged anomalies in vote counting.

Mahmudur's lawyers worried over his health

Lawyers of Mahmudur Rahman, detained acting editor of daily Amar Desh, yesterday expressed concern over his health.

FBCCI polls today

The biennial election of the country's apex trade body Federation of Bangladesh Chambers of Commerce and Industry will be held today in the capital.

60 workers arrested in Abu Dhabi

Abu Dhabi police arrested 60 Bangladeshi nationals last Monday on charges of residing over there illegally.

Two die for 'medical negligence'

Two patients, including a pregnant woman, died due to alleged negligence of doctors in two separate incidents in Panchagarh and Dinajpur districts on Thursday and yesterday.

2 Americans, 1 Brit killed in southern Afghanistan

Two Americans died in fighting yesterday in southern Afghanistan, raising to 33 the number of US troops killed in the war so far this month. A British soldier was also killed.

Iran says UN sanctions show double standard

Iran's top security body yesterday railed against the latest UN sanctions imposed over Tehran's controversial nuclear program, saying they show world powers are applying a double standard.

Khulna AL activities suspended

The ruling Awami League has suspended the activities of its Khulna district unit until June 26 fearing outbursts of internal feud ahead of its extended meeting next Saturday.

Editorial

CCC gets a new mayor

THE long awaited Chittagong City Corporation (CCC) election has been completed. The mayoralty has been intensely contested and what has been refreshingly absent was the charged atmosphere in which the past electoral campaigns used to be conducted and the animosity that used to pervade the post election scene. We offer our congratulations to the mayor-elect Manjur Alam and hope that his supporters would not go overboard while celebrating his victory. Untoward incidents should not mar a good election.

Rainwater harvesting

AGAINST the backdrop of falling of city water table by three metres every year, and ever rising demand for water because of population pressure, rainwater harvesting by the city dwellers has been offered as a viable option by experts. We take note of the fact that rainwater would be able to meet 15 percent of the annual water demand in the capital and we believe that would come as a big relief if implemented properly. These facts and figures were revealed in a recently held seminar on 'Urban Rain Water Harvesting for Domestic Use and Groundwater Recharge' jointly organised by the Institute of Architects Bangladesh and WaterAid Bangladesh.

Sports

Toothless England held

A woeful England failed to find the killer touch in a disappointing 0-0 draw with Algeria on Friday, putting them under huge pressure to beat Slovenia in their final World Cup group game.

Brazil expect easier outings

After struggling against lowly-ranked North Korea, Brazil are looking forward to facing better opponents at the World Cup.

Last-gasp Bradley

Midfielder Michael Bradley's late goal sealed the United States' fight back as they drew 2-2 with Slovenia at the World Cup on Friday night to keep their hopes of reaching the Last 16 alive.

Lanka crush Tigers

Tillakaratne Dilshan put in an all-round performance to help Sri Lanka thrash Bangladesh by 126 runs in the third match of the Asia Cup at the at the Rangiri stadium in Dambulla yesterday. Dilshan smashed a 51-ball 71 as Sari Lanka put on a massive 312 runs for four wickets in their allotted 50 overs. He later took three wickets conceding only 37 runs as Bangladesh were folded for 186 in 40.2 overs. The 126-run win earned Sri Lanka a bonus point while Bangladesh now risk elimination losing two of their matches.

Scalpers out in force

Two hours before gates opened for the World Cup clash between Germany and Serbia on Friday, ticket scalpers circled the stadium for potential buyers.

Vuvuzela a health menace?

A woman who injured her throat at a vuvuzela blowing competition was on the mend.

Gunning for top spot

The Netherlands face Japan here on Saturday with both teams in a position to battle for top spot in Group E, a position that would see them potentially avoid Italy in the second round.

Nigeria want Argentina favour

Without a World Cup point from two matches, Nigeria must now turn to an unlikely ally to help boost their Group B qualifying chances Argentina.

Training switch to save pitch

Netherlands and Japan had their traditional eve of match training sessions moved from the Moses Mabhida stadium on Friday because of concerns about the playing surface.

NKoreans 'missing'

FIFA says the four North Korean players reported by the media as “missing” from the team's World Cup match against Brazil were simply left off the submitted squad list due to a technical mix-up.

Cat & mouse battle

Ghana captain John Mensah is not expecting Australia to throw caution to the wind as they seek to revive their World Cup campaign by beating the Black Stars here on Saturday.

It's a do or die clash

Both Cameroon and Denmark will have their backs to the wall when they meet in a World Cup Group E clash at the Loftus Versfeld stadium here on Saturday.

Sneijder prefers Champs League

Wesley Sneijder, the Holland attacking midfielder, has criticised the quality of the football played at the World Cup to date and said it suffers by comparison to the Champions League.

Magic, madness and France

Lionel Messi provided the spark, Sani Kaita the madness and a former champion's expected capitulation took shape as the World Cup finished its first week of action.

Creepers for keepers

High-profile blunders, problems with the swerving ball, injuries, a rare red card and even claims of girlfriend distraction have combined to make the World Cup's first week something of a nightmare for goalkeepers.

Loew 'devastated'

Joachim Loew's frustration was all too evident after his Germany side's impressive start to the World Cup was tarnished by Friday's 1-0 loss to Serbia.

Diego still loves women

If anything, it's the Argentina public who will be doing the 'making up' if Maradona lifts the Jules Rimet Trophy, emulating Germany's Franz Beckenbauer by winning the World Cup as both a player and a coach.

Maradona's apology to Platini

Diego Maradona has apologised to UEFA chief Michel Platini for recent comments but openly made clear he was not sorry for what he said about Pele.

Wife confirms Valdivia absence

Chile playmaker Jorge Valdivia will miss Monday's World Cup Group H match against Switzerland with a thigh injury, according to his wife.

Sonali blank Wari

Sonali Bank blanked Wari Club 6-0 in the Green Delta Insurance Premier Division Hockey League at the Maulana Bhasani National Hockey Stadium yesterday.

National chess

Five more players joined leaders FM Minhazuddin Ahmed Sagar, FM Mehdi Hasan Parag, FM Mohammad Javed and Debaraj Chatterjee on top of the points table of the preliminary phase of 36th National Chess Champion-ship at the close of the sixth round games at Bangladesh Chess Federation Hall Room yesterday.

Aussies survive Irish scare

All-rounder James Hopes took career best figures of five wickets for 14 runs as Australia came through some nervy moments to beat Ireland by 39 runs in a one-day international here on Thursday.

World Cup One Twos

ANTHEM ROCKING CHARTS
Denmark's World Cup footballers have yet to find the net in this year's tournament, but the team has scored success on the Danish charts with their unofficial football anthem.

Metropolitan

Punish grabbers of land, water bodies

Speakers at a sit-in progra-mme yesterday demanded exemplary punishment to the grabbers of water bodies, hills and lands to protect the country's environment.

Decades of unplanned urbanisation starts to take toll on Dhaka city

The capital is faced with an uphill task in the coming decades of having to deal with an increased threat of mostly manmade catastrophes as decades of unplanned urbanisation finally starts to catch up with the city and its 13 million residents.

'Follow ideology of Sufia Kamal'

Child and veteran members of Kachi Kanchar Mela yesterday observed the 99th anniversary of birth of Poet Sufia Kamal with a call to establish child rights and lead an honest and sincere life.

RU students accord reception to Musa Ibrahim

Newspaper Readers' Association, an organisation of Rajshahi University (RU) students, recorded a reception to Musa Ibrahim, the first Bangladeshi Everest conqueror, yesterday.

Sec 144 as AL factions call meet at same venue

Section 144 was enforced from 5:00am to 12:00 midnight yesterday banning rallies at Shibbarli ground under Digholia upazila of the district.

Purbachal plot handover by Dec

Plots at the Purbachal New Town Project will be handed over to the allottees by December this year.

Enforce law properly to stop faulty building construction

Law, Justice and Parliamentary Affairs Minister Barrister Shafique Ahmed yesterday urged the authorities concerned to ensure proper application of laws to stop construction of hazardous buildings.

Govt urged not to cut tariff on milk powder import

Dairy farm owners yesterday called on the government not to reduce import duty on milk powder, saying that such a move would affect the local dairy farms badly.

Call to frame strict law to stop stalking

Speakers at a programme yesterday called for framing strict law and launching social movement from the family to stop stalking.

13,000 policemen to be recruited

Home Minister Advocate Sahara Khatun yesterday said the government is going to recruit 13,000 new policemen in addition to the existing 1.24 lakh contingent of the force to build it as a people-friendly organisation.

Fanatics make a comeback in political field

Lawmaker Hasanul Haque Inu yesterday said results of the Chittagong City Corporation (CCC) mayoral election show that the religious fanatics, militants and razakars have made a comeback in the political field.

Create right conditions for world people for global peace

Bangladesh's Ambassador to the US and State Minister Akramul Qader said creating right conditions for world people is imperative for achieving global peace.

Loadshedding-free country in 2 years

Commerce Minister Mohammad Faruq Khan yesterday said Bangladesh would become a loadshedding-free country in two years as the government has taken a massive initiative for improving power generation.

2 killed in road accidents

At least two motorcyclists were killed in separate road accidents in Satkhira and Comilla yesterday.

Ban on export of mineral resources demanded

The National Committee to Protect Oil, Gas, Mineral Resources, Power and Ports took stage a demonstration at Keraniganj yesterday to press for their seven-point demand, including a ban on export of mineral resources.

Sangma in city to attend Nirmul body conference

Former Speaker of Indian Loksabha PA Sangma arrived in Dhaka yesterday on a five-day visit to attend the 6th Conference of Ghatak Dalal Nirmul Committee.

Democracy Emerges The Winner

Supporters and political activists greet BNP-backed mayor candidate Mohammad Manjur Alam, who won the Chittagong City Corporation elections on Thursday defeating his rival Awami League-backed candidate ABM Mohiuddin Chowdhury. The voting took place in a fair and peaceful manner, but tension ran high when supporters of both the candidates, equipped with sticks, gathered near MA Aziz Stadium in the port city during vote counting on Thursday night and chased each other. Members of the armed forces were deployed to avert any untoward incident. Talking to reporters yesterday, Mohiuddin brought allegation of anomalies in the vote counting.

Truck workers clash in city, 25 injured

At least 25 people, including eight students of the Dhaka Polytechnic Institute and the Glass and Ceramic College, were injured during a clash between two groups of transport workers at Tejgaon Truck Stand in the city last night.

Duja to celebrate silver jubilee on Sept 19

The Dhaka University Journalists' Association (Duja) will celebrate its silver jubilee on September 19.

PM undergoes minor operation

Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina underwent a minor operation at Ganobhaban yesterday morning.

International

Lanka marks victory, rejects war crimes probe push

Sri Lanka's president yesterday criticized foreign pressure for a probe into war crimes allegations as "sympathy towards terrorism" and said soldiers had committed no rights violations.

Nobel-winning novelist Saramago dies at 87

Nobel literature prizewinner Jose Saramago, who left his native Portugal after arguing with his country's government, has died at the age of 87, his Spanish publisher said yesterday.

India hands over 26/11 evidence to Pakistan

India yesterday handed over to Pakistan a new dossier of evidence related to the November 2008 Mumbai attacks, ahead of talks next week between top foreign ministry officials.

S Korea, India agree to launch nuke energy talks

South Korea and India agreed yesterday to launch talks on forging a nuclear energy cooperation pact, the foreign ministry said, a deal which would pave the way for Seoul's export of an atomic power plant.

Indian preacher Zakir Naik is banned from UK

An Indian Muslim preacher has been banned from entering the UK for his "unacceptable behaviour", the home secretary says.

Kyrgyz death toll could be 2,000

Kyrgyzstan's acting leader admitted the death toll from ethnic clashes is probably 2,000 -- ten times the current estimate -- as she went to the ravaged south where the UN said up to a million people may have been affected.

US envoy urges independent probe into Kyrgyzstan unrest

A senior US envoy called yesterday for an independent investigation into ethnic clashes in Kyrgyzstan that have killed nearly 200 people and forced tens of thousands from their homes.

Gulf oil full of methane, adding new concerns

It is an overlooked danger in the oil spill crisis: The crude gushing from the well contains vast amounts of natural gas that could pose a serious threat to the Gulf of Mexico's fragile ecosystem.

Iraq car bombs kill five, wound 79

Two car bombs targeting a provincial councillor and a police officer north of Baghdad yesterday killed five people and wounded 79, many of them women or children, police said.

Suu Kyi supporters mark 65th birthday

From tree planting in Myanmar to a solidarity rally in Washington and flash mobs in Britain, people around the world are holding events today to mark the 65th birthday of Aung San Suu Kyi.

Arts & Entertainment

Nagarik’s “Opekkhoman” to be staged today

Nagarik Natya Sampradaya will stage its latest production “Opekkhoman” at the Experimental Theatre Hall, Bangladesh Shilpakala Academy this evening at 7pm. Based on works of Ibsen, Rabindranath Tagore and Syed Shamsul Haq, the play was premiered at the International Ibsen Seminar and Theatre Festival last year. Today marks the sixth show of the play.

Generating interest in ‘Chhau’ dance

Swapan Majumder is an Indian exponent of Chhau dance and his wife Sucheta, a Bangladeshi, is a Kathak artiste. The dancer duo is now in Dhaka to conduct a workshop on dance. Noted Bangladeshi dancers Shamim Ara Nipa and Shibli Mohammad of Nrityanchal are organising the workshop. Starting from June 6, the workshop is on at Bangladesh Shilpakala Academy and will continue till June 21.

Football Fever

Joya Ahsan
“I've been a football enthusiast since childhood and World Cup is something which one gets to see once every four years. It is the biggest celebration of football on the planet. Naturally, during every World Cup I'm very excited, and this year is no different,” said Joya Ahsan, one of the popular actresses on the small screen.

Early Oscar contenders scarce despite rule change

As the first half of 2010 draws to a close, serious Academy Awards contenders have yet to emerge.

“Choita Pagol” on Channel i

A naive young man, Choita, whom the villagers call “pagol” (crazy), remains seemingly stable for 11 months. For a month every year, Choita turns insane. The villagers exploit Choita and make him do all kinds of chores. But when he turns “mad,” he is shunned by all. Even when he goes without food for days, no one comes to his aid. The drama serial “Choita Pagol” narrates his story.

Falguni Hamid appointed as director of Shishu Academy

Actress Falguni Hamid has been appointed as director of Bangladesh Shishu Academy, says a press release. The seasoned actress has also been involved with journalism for 15 years. She completed Masters in Bangla from the University of Dhaka.

Phil Collins honoured by Songwriters Hall of Fame

Phil Collins, one of the honoured recipients at the Songwriters Hall of Fame gala, says that he hopes such accolades are not foreboding.

“Rong-er Dunia” ends on Banglavision

With the final episode Banglavision's drama serial “Rong-er Dunia” comes to an end tonight at 9:05 pm. The serial was written and directed by Hassan Jahangir.

OP-ED

Eve teasing or Adam terrorising?

TWO news items ran side by side on BBC's website this week: Bangladesh will deploy women police officers to international peace keeping operations, and the government has designated June 13 as "Eve Teasing Protection Day." Progress on one side and retrogression on the other, they exemplify the schizophrenic state of affairs for women in Bangladesh today.

The disasters and local government

EVEN a casual observer of our socio-political scene can, without much effort, notice a disturbing pattern in all the devastations that have overtaken the nation in the recent days. Whether it is the collapsed and tilted structures at Begunbari causing deaths and injuries of depressed folks or the scores of horrendous deaths in the tragic all-engulfing fire at Nimtoli or the multiple casualties consequent to the landslide in Cox's Bazar, the deliberate flouting of safety rules and precautions is all too apparent.

Youth for development

OBAMA acknowledged young people, who thrust him into the White House, as much as he could in his victory speech in Chicago's Grant Park after winning the presidential election: "It was the young people who rejected the myth of their generation's apathy, who left their homes and their families for jobs that offered little pay and less sleep."

Leaders' euphoria imperils politics

IT is axiomatic that politics in Bangladesh does not centre around peoples' aspirations any longer. Today we witness a numbed despair among our polity because of the worsening political environment due to predominance of guns, goons and gold. Most people think that this is happening because of the leaders' patronisation.

Budget and needs

ON June 10, the finance minister presented the budget 2010-2011 before the Parliament for approval. Despite a number of constraints the budget is big and ambitious. The principal objectives of the budget are reaching high performing growth, bringing poverty to a minimum level and securing health and education for all.

Environment

Let Bangladesh have a People's Biodiversity Register

KEITH A Wheeler, Chair of the Commission on Education and Communication of IUCN highlights: “Today's challenges are moving towards more sustainable financial and energy systems, food security and international security -- all these challenges ultimately depend on the services nature offers”. These services are mainly offered by biodiversity, although this is a critical period for it in this year (2010) of biodiversity.

Challenges to biodiversity conservation and sustainable development

Biodiversity is the “living foundation” for sustainable development. Now, to make biodiversity sustainable is one thing; and to practice sustainable use of biodiversity is another. Making biodiversity sustainable is the process; and sustainable use of biodiversity is the technique. To us important is that, we shall have to understand the process of making biodiversity sustainable, and the technique to be adopted for its use at the same time.

Literature

Bhutan: Journey of a lifetime

“There are first world countries, third world and second world. But Bhutan is future world. Their way of viewing progress offers good guidance for the rest of us.”

We are all Will, all Shakespeare

William Shakespeare is everywhere and our debt to him is unlimited. If we type his name in on any search engine, we will find him on thousands of Websites. His image, his characters, and quotes from his works can be found in countless movies, on television shows, in literary works, and in advertisements. Even on an auction site, we will find thousands of Shakespeare-related items: books, films, T-shirts, bottle openers, coffee mugs, ties, caps, coat pins, buttons, chocolates, toffees and much more.

Life in its patterns

It was an arduous Albertan winter. The temperatures fell to - 45 degree centigrade. Edmonton was the coldest place on the planet for a week or two. The winds moaned incessantly and snow drifts piled up high in our front lawn. Nature appeared insensate. I ventured out for grocery essentials on one of those sub-zero days and thought I was in the midst of an Alistair Maclean's novel, namely “Ice Station Zebra”! In times such as this, a human being asks one self... “Where am I? Where have I been? and... Where am I going?''. Then one evening there were sparks in the dark night sky. I saw flashes of the aurora borealis that only manifests itself in the arctic zone. It was eerie-the skies lit up like a fireball and then the spirit of the great North appeared to speak: “Patience, my child...life unfolds in its own patterns, of which you are only a small part...Embrace the North and it will embrace you.”

Immortal

I, The immortal, wander through the night
In some sad and lonely flight.
I thirst for blood and
crave to feel pain.
My lights have fled and
my spirit is dead.

Star Health

Offering life to patients with end stage liver diseases

The previous week was distinctly special for millions of people living with end stage liver disease (like liver cirrhosis or liver cancer) in Bangladesh. Long awaited liver transplant surgery has been successfully performed at BIRDEM Hospital, Dhaka. Professor Mohammad Ali, Head, Hepato Biliary and Pancreatic Surgery of BIRDEM Hospital lead the way to reach a historical feat.

Directly Observed HIV Treatment improves survival

When applied to HIV care, the community-based model of directly observed therapy (DOT) has no effect on virologic outcomes, but significantly improves patient survival. This is according to researchers at the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health, in collaboration with colleagues at University of Cape Town, South Africa, who conducted the first randomised controlled trial of patient-nominated treatment-supporters providing partial DOT in resource-limited settings. The researchers found that mortality rates were lower among DOT patients than among self-monitored antiretroviral therapy (ART). The results are featured in the June 1, 2010, issue of AIDS.

How drug rehab can help you

Attending a drug rehab will help you recover from drug or alcohol addiction in many different ways. A drug rehab is a facility that is specially designed just for this purpose, to provide a safe and drug free environment where a former drug or alcohol abuser can be educated about addiction and how to get clean and stay clean.

Women using smokeless tobacco need proper attention

Tobacco is currently the second major cause of death in the world and causes significant adverse effects on maternal and child health. Tobacco is a preventable cause of maternal, perinatal and neonatal mortality. Recent findings of the Global Youth Tobacco Survey, shows that young girls are smoking almost as much as young boys and those girls and boys are using non-cigarette tobacco products such as spit tobacco, biddies and water pipes at similar rates.

Moms' full-time work tied to childhood obesity

The growing number of full-time working moms in the past few decades could be one of the factors contributing to the concurrent rise in childhood obesity, new research hints.

Eating eggs doesn't seem to up diabetes risk!

An egg a day for breakfast probably won't increase your likelihood of developing type 2 diabetes, according to a new study.

Even chicken pox is less contagious than bad habits!

One old Spanish proverb said that habits are at first cobwebs, then cables. In fact, most of life is habitual. It is estimated that out of every 11,000 signals we receive from our senses, our brain only knowingly processes 40!

Strategic Issues

Preventing political somersault

HISTORY of modern world agrees that in spite of the continuous barrage of advices/support/aid from the developed countries, Third World countries maintain a volatile socio-political environment. Military coup or multidimensional political somersault is the order of the day. It is quite unfortunate for the people and also for the leadership that they are yet to figure out how and why it happens, let alone when it takes place. It is extra conducive in a country where the leadership is encircled by associates with minimum sense of patriotism and is totally consumed in enjoying power. To avoid such intermittent political fiasco we need to learn how to detect it. Only then we would probably be wise enough to prevent it.

Anniversary of Obama's Cairo speech: Promises unfulfilled

IN his Cairo speech on June 5th last year, President Obama had raised a great deal of hope and expectations among Muslims that his administration would make sincere attempts to address their concerns. Instead he has sent more troops to Afghanistan and has decided to win the war against terror, primarily militarily. In Iraq, there was an election that was heralded to be a major step towards establishing democracy. But three months have gone by and still a government has not been formed and though conflicts, deaths and suicide bombings have declined, Iraq is far from being a safe country. President Obama seems to be following the script of his predecessor.

Saudis may let Israeli jets fly over for Iran raids

Saudi Arabia has conducted tests to stand down its air defences to allow Israeli warplanes to use its airspace in any bombing raid on Iran's nuclear facilities, The Times of London reported June 12.

Transition Force creates air power in Afghanistan

About 450 U.S. and NATO forces are working to bring the 3,300 members and 48 aircraft of the Afghan army air corps up to par as part of a long-term effort to give the country a self-sufficient air force, the Air Force general leading the transition team said June 10.

Star Books Review

Through the splendour of songs

THE cover painting by Jamal Ahmed depicts the title of The Return of Laili.

An interplay of human sentiments

TWO unforgettable stories, “Impulse” and “Temptation”, are put into the book Windfall and the result is a two-in-one pulsing romance. Nora Roberts is indeed a word artist, painting her stories and her characters with vitality and verve. Both the stories hold the reader mesmerized. With clear-eyed vision and a sure pen Roberts nails her characters and settings with awesome precision, drawing readers into a vividly rendered world of family centered warmth and sheer magic.

Palestinians are non-entities everywhere

ON 11 August 2008, Peter Clark writes in a Guardian obituary that as a poet, author, and politician, Mahmoud Darwish 'did as much as anyone to forge a Palestinian national consciousness.' While Clark's comment is undebatable, it is also true that Darwish's poetry transcends its national boundary by reflecting on universal humane values through the mirror of the Palestinian experience. It is one of the major reasons why Darwish now is a great name in world literature. Memory for Forgetfulness is his exquisitely written prose-memoir. Ibrahim Muhawi's adept translation brings out the delicacy of the piece. It is based on Israel's invasion of Lebanon in 1982 that was aimed at wiping out the PLO's base from southern Lebanon. The fact seems most startling when one reads the memoir containing evocative details of Beirut under siege. Darwish, however, lifts up the sufferings of the invasion to an aesthetic level through his musings on reality, belonging, history, resistance and the role of art involving these. The entire book is an extended internal monologue (the poet's thoughts in his mind) about which Robyn Creswell writes in Harper Magazine's January 2009 issue:


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