Tuesday, July 31, 2012

Son Dambi Ceci Magazine

Son Dambi Ceci Magazine

Son Dambi Ceci Magazine

Posted: 31 Jul 2012 11:04 AM PDT

India power outages

Posted: 31 Jul 2012 06:51 AM PDT

More than 600m people were affected by the power outage in India after a massive power breakdown for the second day in a row on Tuesday.

India has one of the lowest per capita rates of consumption of power (about 1/10 of global average). Power shortage is a known issue, but human factors must play some part in what appears to be the world's biggest blackout ever.

India power outages from YeinJee's Asian Journal

A lesson from Myanmar

Posted: 31 Jul 2012 10:27 AM PDT

Not supposed to be published but it carries one of the strongest message for us, Malaysians.

Never politicise religion, race and color issues.

What happened in Myanmar could have been avoided if mutual respect is observed.

Let's pray...

Spasso Milano buffet lunch @ Pavilion KL - Spasso

Posted: 31 Jul 2012 07:39 AM PDT

Came here on Sunday, 10 June 2012.
Just one pic coz too hungry on that day.
Quite a lot of variety.

Religious Freedom Report of Myanmar (Burma)

Posted: 31 Jul 2012 07:21 AM PDT

Bureau of Democracy, Human Rights and Labor International Religious Freedom Report for 2011


The constitution and other laws and policies restrict religious freedom. The government implemented considerable political reforms, but did not demonstrate a trend toward either improvement or deterioration in respect for and protection of the right to religious freedom. The government maintained restrictions on certain religious activities and limited freedom of religion, although it generally permitted adherents of government-registered religious groups to worship as they chose. While constraints on respect for and protection of the right to religious freedom continued, the community of Christian churches reported a notable easing of restrictions on church building and a positive relationship with the Ministry of Religion, including the ministry's organization of interfaith dialogues. The government also passed a new law to protect freedom of assembly and procession and provided greater access to ethnic minority areas for U.S. officials and organizations.

Religious activities and organizations were subject to restrictions on freedom of expression, association, and assembly. The government continued to monitor the meetings and activities of virtually all organizations, including religious organizations, and required religious groups to seek permission from authorities before holding any large public event.

The government continued to restrict the efforts of some Buddhist clergy to promote human rights and political freedom. While some of the Buddhist monks arrested in the violent crackdown that followed prodemocracy demonstrations in September 2007 were released during the year, many remained in prison serving long sentences. The government also actively promoted Theravada Buddhism over other religions, particularly among ethnic minorities.

The government eased restrictions on the building of churches following the November 2010 elections. The government continued to monitor Muslim activities closely. Restrictions on worship for other non-Buddhist minority groups also continued. Although there were no new reports of forced conversions of non-Buddhists, authorities in some cases influenced the placement of orphans and homeless youth, preferring Buddhist monasteries to Christian orphanages. Adherence or conversion to Buddhism was an unwritten prerequisite for promotion to most senior government and military ranks. Nearly all senior level officers of the ruling Union Solidarity and Development Party (USDP) and the armed forces are Buddhists.

There were reports of societal abuses or discrimination based on religious affiliation, belief, or practice. During the year, social tensions continued between the Buddhist majority and the Christian and Muslim minorities. Widespread prejudice existed against citizens of South Asian origin, many of whom are Muslims. The government continued to refuse to recognize the Muslim Rohingya ethnic minority as citizens and imposed restrictions on their movement and marriage.

The U.S. government advocated religious freedom with all sectors of society, including government officials, religious leaders, private citizens, and scholars, diplomats of other governments, and international business and media representatives. Embassy representatives offered support to local nongovernmental organizations (NGOs) and religious leaders, including through small grants and training programs, and relayed information to otherwise isolated human rights NGOs and religious leaders. Since 1999 the secretary of state has designated Burma as a "Country of Particular Concern" (CPC) under the International Religious Freedom Act for having engaged in or tolerated particularly severe violations of religious freedom. The secretary of state redesignated Burma as a CPC on August 18. The U.S. government has a wide array of sanctions in place against the country for its violations of human rights but is taking steps to ease those sanctions as the government has undertaken significant political and economic reform efforts.

Section I. Religious DemographyShare

Theravada Buddhism is the dominant religion. It coexists with astrology, numerology, fortune telling, and veneration of indigenous pre-Buddhist era deities called "nats." The principal minority religious groups include Christians (primarily Baptists, Roman Catholics, and Anglicans, along with several other small Protestant denominations), Muslims (mostly Sunni), Hindus, and practitioners of traditional Chinese and indigenous religions. According to official statistics, approximately 90 percent of the population practices Buddhism, 4 percent practices Christianity, and 4 percent practices Islam. These statistics almost certainly underestimated the non-Buddhist proportion of the population. There has not been a census since 1983. Independent researchers place the Muslim population as being between 6 and 10 percent. A very small Jewish community in Rangoon has a synagogue but no resident rabbi.

The country is ethnically diverse, with some correlation between ethnicity and religion. Theravada Buddhism is the dominant religion among the majority Burman ethnic group and also among the Shan, Arakanese, and Mon ethnic minorities. Christianity is dominant among the Kachin, Chin, and Naga ethnic groups. Protestant Christian groups reported recent rapid growth among animist communities in Chin State. Christianity also is practiced widely among the Karen and Karenni ethnic groups; although many Karen and Karenni are Buddhist and some Karen are Muslim. Citizens of Indian origin, who are concentrated in major cities and in the south central region, predominantly practice Hinduism or Islam, although some are Christian. Islam is practiced widely in Rakhine State and in Rangoon, Irrawaddy, Magwe, and Mandalay Divisions, where some Burmese, Indians, and ethnic Bengalis practice the religion. Chinese ethnic minorities generally practice traditional Chinese religions. Traditional indigenous beliefs are practiced widely among smaller ethnic groups in the highland regions.

Section II. Status of Government Respect for Religious FreedomShare

Legal/Policy Framework

The constitution and other laws and policies restrict religious freedom. The government, formed in March, is headed by President Thein Sein and includes a bicameral parliament; the military-run State Peace and Development Council was dissolved during the year although former and active military officers continued to wield authority at each level of government. In November 2010, the then-military regime held the country's first parliamentary elections since 1990, which were neither free nor fair. The government's main party, the ruling USDP, claimed an overwhelming majority of seats in the national parliament and state/regional assemblies. While the parliament is dominated by ethnic Burman Buddhists, virtually all recognized religions and ethnic groups have at least some representation, collectively holding approximately 16 percent of the seats.

Significant developments during the year included the emergence of a legislature that allowed opposition parties to contribute substantively to debates; democratic reforms such as the government's amendment of party registration laws to allow Aung San Suu Kyi, the leader of the country's largest pro-democracy party, the National League for Democracy, to register the party and prepare it to contest in spring 2012 by-elections; the release of hundreds of political prisoners; the relaxation of a number of censorship controls and the opening of some space in society for the expression of dissent; and an easing of restrictions on some internal and foreign travel for citizens. Significant human rights problems in the country persisted, however.

Most adherents of government-recognized religious groups generally were allowed to worship as they chose; however, the government imposed restrictions on certain religious activities and frequently limited religious freedom. Antidiscrimination laws do not apply to ethnic groups not formally recognized under the 1982 Citizenship Law, such as the Muslim Rohingyas in northern Rakhine State.

The 2008 constitution went into effect on January 31upon the convening of the first joint session of the national parliament. The constitution grants limited rights to freedom of religion. Article 34 states, "Every citizen is equally entitled to freedom of conscience and the right to freely profess and practice religion subject to public order, morality or health and to the other provisions of this Constitution." Article 354 states that "every citizen shall be at liberty … if not contrary to the laws, enacted for Union security, prevalence of law and order, community peace and tranquility or public order and morality … to develop … [the] religion they profess and customs without prejudice to the relations between one national race and another or among national races and to other faiths."

The law bars officiates (such as priests, monks, and nuns) of religious orders from running for public office, and the constitution bars "members of religious orders" from voting. Article 364 forbids "the abuse of religion for political purposes," and restrictions on political activities and on ethnic groups often impact the freedom of religion.

Although the country has no official state religion, the government continued to show a preference for Theravada Buddhism through official propaganda and state support, including donations to monasteries and pagodas, encouragement of education at Buddhist monastic schools, and support for Buddhist missionary activities. In practice nearly all promotions to senior positions within the military and civil service were reserved for Buddhists. Article 361 of the constitution notes that the government "recognizes the special position of Buddhism as the faith professed by the great majority of the citizens of the Union," and Article 362 adds that it "also recognizes Christianity, Islam, Hinduism and Animism as the religions existing in the Union at the day of the coming into operation of this Constitution."

The government restricted the activities and expression of the Buddhist clergy (Sangha), although some monks have resisted such control. Based on the 1990 Sangha Organization Law, the government has banned any organization of Buddhist monks other than the nine state-recognized monastic orders. Violations of this ban are punishable by immediate public defrocking and criminal penalties. The nine recognized orders submit to the authority of the State Monk Coordination Committee ("Sangha Maha Nayaka Committee" or SMNC), the members of which are indirectly elected by monks.

The Ministry of Religious Affairs Department for the Perpetuation and Propagation of the Sasana (Buddhist teaching) oversees the government's relations with Buddhist monks and schools. The government continued to fund two state Sangha universities in Rangoon and Mandalay that trained Buddhist monks under the purview of the SMNC. The state-funded International Theravada Buddhist Missionary University in Rangoon, which opened in 1998, has a stated purpose "to share the country's knowledge of Buddhism with the people of the world."

Buddhist doctrine remains part of the state-mandated curriculum in all government-run elementary schools. Students at these schools can opt out of instruction in Buddhism and sometimes do, but all are required to recite a Buddhist prayer daily. Some schools or teachers may allow Muslim students to leave the classroom during this recitation, but there does not appear to be a centrally mandated exemption for non-Buddhist students.

The government took steps to relax some media controls but all religious publications remained subject to censorship and review by the Ministry of Religious Affairs. It is illegal to import translations of the Bible and Qur'an in indigenous languages.

Religious organizations are not required to register with the government, but if a religious organization wants to engage in certain activities (religious education, charitable work, etc.), it needs to obtain government permission.

The government discouraged proselytizing by non-Buddhist clergy, often through the use of censorship. These restrictions mostly affected some Christian denominations and Islam. The government generally has not allowed permanent foreign religious groups to operate in the country since the mid-1960s, when it expelled nearly all foreign missionaries and nationalized almost all private schools and hospitals. The government was not known to have paid any compensation in connection with these extensive confiscations.

Citizens and permanent residents are required to carry government-issued National Registration Cards (NRCs), also known as Citizenship Scrutiny Cards, which permit holders to access services and prove citizenship. These identification cards often indicate religious affiliation and ethnicity. There appeared to be no consistent criteria governing whether a person's religion was indicated on the card. Citizens also are required to indicate their religion on certain official application forms for documents such as passports, although passports themselves do not indicate the bearer's religion. Members of many ethnic and religious minorities, particularly Muslims, faced problems obtaining NRCs.

The government observes the following religious holidays as national holidays: the Full Moon Day of Tabaung, the four-day Thingyan (Water Festival), Buddhist New Year's Day, the Full Moon Day of Kason, the Full Moon Day of Waso, the Full Moon Day of Thadinkyut, the Full Moon Day of Tazaungmone, and Christmas. Government newspapers generally announce the dates for Diwali and Bakri Eid, and both banks and government offices close on those dates.

Government Practices

There were reports of abuses of religious freedom, including the continued detention and incarceration of Buddhist monks throughout the country, the arrest of Muslims in the broader Rangoon area for unauthorized teaching as well as praying in living quarters, and the interrogation and harassment of Baptists in Kachin State.

The government continued its efforts to exert control over the Buddhist clergy (Sangha). It tried Sangha members for "activities inconsistent with and detrimental to Buddhism" and imposed on the Sangha a code of conduct enforced by criminal penalties. The government continued the detention, imprisonment, and interrogation of politically active Buddhist monks. In prison, some monks were defrocked and treated as laypersons. In general they were not allowed to shave their heads and were not given food compatible with the monastic code, which dictates that monks should not eat after noon. They often were beaten and forced to do hard labor.

According to the Thailand-based Assistance Association of Political Prisoners in Burma (AAPP), at the end of the year an estimated 130 monks remained in prison, many of them arrested after the September 2007 peaceful prodemocracy demonstrations. During the year, some of the monks, as well as other political prisoners, remained in remote jails away from their family members, limiting their access to basic necessities and medicines that visiting relatives generally provided.

Although authorities appear to have moved away from a campaign of forced conversion, there continued to be evidence that other means were being used to entice non-Buddhists to convert to Buddhism. Chin Christians reported that local authorities operated a high school that only Buddhist students could attend and promised government jobs to the graduates. Christians had to convert to Buddhism to attend the school. An exiled Chin human rights group claimed local government officials placed the children of Chin Christians in Buddhist monasteries, where they were given religious instruction and converted to Buddhism without their parents' knowledge or consent. Reports suggested that the government also sought to induce members of the Naga ethnic group in Sagaing Division to convert to Buddhism through similar means. During the year there were no reports of forced religious conversions.

The government selectively enforced legal restrictions on religious freedom. Religious organizations were subject to restrictions on freedom of expression and association. The government's pervasive internal security apparatus imposed implicit restrictions on collective and individual worship through infiltrating and monitoring meetings and activities of virtually all organizations.

In practice, authorities restricted the quantity of imported Bibles and Qur'ans, although individuals continued to bring them into the country in small quantities for personal use. There were no reports that authorities confiscated Bibles or Qur'ans at border entry points.

Government censors continued to enforce restrictions on local publication of the Bible, Qur'an, and other Christian and Islamic texts. The most onerous restriction was a list of more than 100 prohibited words censors would not allow in Christian or Islamic literature, forbidden as "indigenous terms" or derived from the Pali language long used in Buddhist literature. Some Christian and Islamic groups in the country have used these words since the colonial period. In addition censors sometimes objected to passages of the Bible's Old Testament and the Qur'an that they interpreted as endorsing violence against nonbelievers.

Officials have occasionally allowed local printing or photocopying of limited quantities of religious materials, including the Qur'an (with the notation that they are for private use only), in indigenous languages without approval by government censors.

In addition to religious publications, the government on occasion subjected sermons, ceremonies, and festivals to censorship and other controls, and at times interfered with religious gatherings. There were reports that Islamic lectures required prior written permission from ward, township, police, district, and division level authorities. Law enforcement reportedly questioned participants on the nature of the lecture both before and after the lecture.

Some Christian theological seminaries and Bible schools continued to operate, along with several Islamic madrassahs. However, a representative of the Islamic community reported the closure of Islamic madrassahs operating as ad-hoc mosques in Thaketa township. Some Christian schools did not register with the Myanmar Council of Churches (MCC), a group representing 14 Christian denominations, but were able to conduct affairs without government interference. The government allowed some members of foreign religious groups to enter the country to provide humanitarian assistance, as it did after Cyclone Nargis in May 2008.

Authorities continued to restrict gatherings to celebrate traditional Christian and Islamic holidays. In Chin State, authorities reportedly eased some restrictions but continued to require churches to submit requests for religious celebrations at least one month in advance. Authorities generally approved the requests. In satellite towns surrounding Rangoon, Muslims were allowed to gather for worship and religious training only during major Muslim holidays. During the year, some district and township administration officials in Arakan state banned mosques' use of loudspeakers for the Azan (call to prayer).

The government continued to discriminate against minority religious groups, restricting educational activities, proselytizing, and restoration or construction of churches and mosques.

In most regions, Christian and Islamic groups that sought to build small places of worship on side streets or other inconspicuous locations were able to do so only with informal approval from local authorities. When local authorities or conditions changed, some approvals were rescinded and, in some cases, authorities demolished existing religious buildings. Construction on the Sufi Shahul Hamid Nagori Flag Post and Mosque in Insein was stopped and the structures were subsequently torn down after authorities claimed that the construction exceeded the scope of the permits; the city government then filed criminal suits against the trustees of the mosque. Formal requests often encountered long delays, generally were denied, and even when approved could subsequently be reversed by a more senior authority.

It remained extremely difficult for Muslims to acquire permission to build new or repair existing mosques, although internal maintenance was allowed in some cases. In Arakan State, government officials reportedly denied permits for the renovation of mosques with one exception: a large mosque in Maung Daw Township near the border with Bangladesh. Historic mosques in Mawlamyine, Mon State and Sittwe, Rakhine State, as well as other areas, continued to deteriorate because authorities did not allow routine maintenance. A number of restrictions were in place on the construction or renovation of mosques and religious schools in northern Rakhine State. According to a representative of an Islamic association, local authorities in Bago confiscated an ancient Muslim cemetery. The military government completely banned all religious services at the cemetery in 2005 and destroyed other parts of the cemetery between 2002 and 2010.

The roof repair of a Rangoon mosque became the center of controversy after the Yangon City Development Committee forced the mosque to suspend work. Rangoon Mayor and USDP candidate Aung Thein Linn allegedly approved the renovation project after the Muslim community agreed to support him in the elections. However, authorities revoked the permit after the Buddhist community allegedly sent a letter of protest to the Union Election Commission in Naypyitaw. At year's end, the mosque was still without a roof.

Christian groups reported greater ease in obtaining permission to buy land or build new churches during the year. In some cases authorities continued to deny permission to build, asserting that applicants had violated various aspects of Burma's complex land laws. In some areas permission to repair existing places of worship was easier to acquire.

The government openly supported Buddhist seminaries and permitted them to construct large campuses. Buddhist groups generally did not experience difficulty in obtaining permission to build new pagodas, monasteries, or community religious halls.

Government authorities continued to prohibit Christian clergy from proselytizing in some areas. Christian groups reported that authorities sometimes refused residency permits for Christian ministers attempting to move to new townships. They indicated this was not a widespread practice, but depended on the individual community and local authority. Nonetheless, Christian groups reported that church membership increased, even in predominantly Buddhist regions.

Muslims across the country, as well as ethnic Chinese and Indians, often were required to obtain permission from township authorities to leave their home towns. Authorities often denied Rohingya and other Muslims living in Rakhine State permission to travel for any purpose; however, permission was sometimes obtained through bribery. Muslims in other regions were granted more freedom to travel, but still faced restrictions. For example, Rohingyas living in Rangoon needed permission from immigration authorities to travel into and out of Rakhine State.

Muslims in Rakhine State, particularly those of the Rohingya minority group, continued to experience the severest forms of legal, economic, educational, and social discrimination. There were reports that Buddhist physicians would not provide Muslims the endorsement required by the Ministry of Health that permits Muslims to travel outside Rakhine State to seek advanced medical treatment.

The government denied citizenship status to Rohingyas, claiming that their ancestors did not reside in the country at the start of British colonial rule, as the 1982 citizenship law required. The Rohingyas asserted that their presence in the area predates the British arrival by several centuries. In November 2008 the UN Committee on the Elimination of Discrimination Against Women urged the government to review its citizenship law. In February 2010 the UN Special Rapporteur on the situation of human rights in Myanmar visited the country and noted discrimination against Muslims. Many of the approximately 28,500 Rohingya Muslims registered in two refugee camps in Bangladesh and the estimated 200,000 Rohingya Muslims living outside those camps, also in Bangladesh, refused to return to the country because they feared human rights abuses, including religious persecution.

Essentially treated as illegal foreigners, Rohingyas were not issued Foreigner Registration Cards (FRCs). Since they also were not generally eligible for NRCs, Rohingyas have been commonly referred to as "stateless." In the run-up to national elections in November 2010, the government issued Temporary Registration Cards (TRCs) to residents in northern Rakhine State; the majority of them are Rohingyas. The issuance of TRCs was primarily done, it appears, to allow Rohingyas participation in the elections. The United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) worked with approximately 750,000 residents of Rakhine State who did not hold citizenship in the country. At the end of the reporting period, the UNHCR (quoting government estimates) indicated that 85 percent of eligible residents (637,500 stateless persons) over the age of 10 possessed TRCs. The UNHCR noted that according to information from individuals in northern Rakhine State, many individuals issued TRCs were actually only given a TRC number and no document. The UNHCR also assisted Rohingyas with education, health, infrastructure, water and sanitation, and agriculture.

Without citizenship status Rohingyas did not have access to secondary education in state-run schools. Those Muslim students from Rakhine State who completed high school were not permitted to travel outside the state to attend college or university. Authorities continued to bar Muslim university students who did not possess NRCs from graduating. These students were permitted to attend classes and sit for examinations, but they could not receive diplomas unless they claimed a "foreign" ethnic minority affiliation. Rohingyas also were unable to obtain employment in any civil service positions. Rohingya couples needed also to obtain government permission to marry and faced restrictions on the number of children they could have. Muslim newcomers were not allowed to buy property or reside in Thandwe, Rakhine State, and authorities prevented Muslims from living in the state's Gwa or Taungup areas.

The government allowed members of all religious groups to establish and maintain links with coreligionists in other countries and to travel abroad for religious purposes. These links were subject to restrictive passport and visa issuance practices, foreign exchange controls, and government monitoring, which extended to all international activities by all citizens regardless of religion. The government sometimes expedited its burdensome passport issuance procedures during the year for Muslims making the Hajj or for Buddhists going on pilgrimage to Bodhgaya, India. Although approximately 500 Muslims from Burma participated in the Hajj during the year, there were allegations of corruption in the Ministry of Religious Affairs' expedited process. An estimated 2,000 Buddhists from the country made pilgrimages to Bodhgaya.

The SMNC and Ministry of Religion also subjected the Sangha to special restrictions on freedom of expression and association. Members of the Sangha were not allowed to preach sermons pertaining to politics. Religious lectures that reflected political views often drew criticism or censure from the SMNC and Ministry of Religion. In February the SMNC banned Ashin Pyinna Thiha, aka Shwe Nya Wah Sayadaw, the Abbot of Sardu Pariyatti Monastery, from giving sermons for a year because the SMNC had deemed his previous sermons too political. In December, after he met with U.S. Secretary of State Clinton, the abbot received a letter from the State Sangha calling for his dismissal from Sardu Pariyatti Monastery. The letter cited the abbot's September speech at the headquarters of the pro-democratic opposition party the National League for Democracy as the reason for his dismissal. The government prohibited all clergy from being members of any political party and electoral law bars them from participating in political activity and voting in the elections.

During the year, authorities allowed Naw Ohn Hla, the leader of a group of Buddhist laypersons known as the Tuesday Prayer Group, greater latitude to conduct prayer meetings, although they prevented her group from participating in a September street march protesting construction of the Myitsone Dam.

State-controlled media frequently depicted government officials and family members paying homage to Buddhist monks; offering donations at pagodas; officiating at ceremonies to open, improve, restore, or maintain pagodas; and organizing ostensibly voluntary "people's donations" of money, food, and uncompensated labor to build or refurbish Buddhist shrines nationwide. The government published books on Buddhist religious instruction.

The government discouraged Muslims from enlisting in the military and Christian or Muslim military officers who aspired to promotion beyond the rank of major were encouraged by their superiors to convert to Buddhism. Some Muslims who wished to join the military reportedly had to list "Buddhist" as their religion on their applications, although they were not required to convert.

Improvements and Positive Developments in Respect for Religious Freedom

The government passed the Peaceful Assembly and Procession Bill on December 2, the first law in several decades to allow peaceful assembly. In a sign of greater openness, government officials, foreign diplomats, and former ambassadors joined the Jewish community's December celebration of Hanukkah, held for the first time outside the synagogue. The MCC reported that the Ministry of Religious Affairs eased restrictions on the building of churches, noting for example that in Taungoo, displaced people built a church in a safe area outside the conflict zone. The MCC also noted that the ministry held interfaith dialogues throughout the country. The government released a number of political prisoners in October, including 29 monks, according to one local group that tracks political prisoners.

Section III. Status of Societal Respect for Religious FreedomShare

There were reports of societal abuses or discrimination based on religious affiliation, belief, or practice. Because ethnicity and religion are often inextricably linked, it is difficult to categorize many incidents specifically as ethnic or religious intolerance. Preferential treatment for Buddhists and widespread prejudice against ethnic South Asians, particularly ethnic Rohingya Muslims, were key sources of social tensions between the Buddhist majority and Christian and Muslim minorities. There were reports of a deadly attack on a Rohingya residence on December 26 by Rakhine extremists in Buthidaung Township in Rakhine State and an ensuing riot. There were no reports of anti-Semitic acts.

Section IV. U.S. Government PolicyShare

The U.S. government continued to promote religious freedom in its contacts with all sectors of society and dramatically increased its engagement with the government as part of its overall policy to promote human rights and democratization. In response to political reforms, the president sent the secretary of state to visit the country–the first such visit in over 56 years. There were numerous visits by senior U.S. officials who raised, inter alia, ongoing U.S. concerns about religious freedom. Embassy officials were granted permission to travel to ethnic states to discuss human rights and religious freedom. Embassy officials discussed the importance of increasing religious freedom with government officials, private citizens, scholars, representatives of other governments, and international business and media representatives. Embassy representatives met with leaders of Buddhist, Christian, Jewish, and Muslim religious groups, including ethnic minority religious leaders, members of the faculties of schools of theology, and other religiously affiliated organizations and NGOs.

The embassy regularly distributed U.S. government and NGO statements and reports on violations of religious freedom in the country. In addition, the embassy partnered with some faith-based organizations on educational programs.

Since 1999, Burma has been designated as a Country of Particular Concern (CPC) under the International Religious Freedom Act. The secretary of state redesignated the country as a CPC on August 18 for having engaged in or tolerated particularly severe violations of religious freedom. In connection with this designation, the secretary extended the existing arms embargo referenced in 22 CFR 126.1 (a), pursuant to section 402(c) (5) of the Act. Following nascent reforms by a nominally civilian-led government that assumed power in March, the U.S. government enhanced its principled engagement with the government, as exemplified by Secretary Clinton's historic visit to the country late in the year. To support and encourage the reform process, the U.S. government responded progressively through an action-for-action approach to the government's progress on core concerns by easing a number of sanctions. The U.S. government, however, maintains an array of restrictions on the country for its continuing violations of human rights including religious freedom.



Lagu Tema Merdeka Ditolak: Isyarat Jelas Untuk Rais Yatim Berundur!

Posted: 31 Jul 2012 10:31 AM PDT

Rais minta pandangan lagu tema Merdeka

Selepas kontroversi logo sambutan Hari Kebangsaan, Menteri Penerangan, Komunikasi dan Kebudayaan, Datuk Seri Rais Yatim kini meminta pandangan umum mengenai lagu tema sambutan tersebut.

"Apa pandangan saudara tentang lagu Janji Ditepati? Di Youtube dah cecah 140k lebih. Tapi yg 'ibu jari ke bawah' ada juga," tulisnya dalam Twitter lewat malam tadi.

Rais bagaimanapun mengakui bahawa lagu ini turut menerima

"beberapa ibu jari ke bawah" - ikon yang menunjukkan penonton YouTube tidak suka lagu tersebut.

Lagu tersebut, yang liriknya ditulis oleh Rais sendiri, telah dikritik oleh penulis lirik dan warga internet kerana tidak dapat membezakan antara konsep kenegaraan dan dasar kerajaan.

Paling ramai mensasarkan lirik "Janji telah ditepati, kini masa balas budi" yang dilihat sebagai kempen politik.

Lagu ini juga mempunyai selingan rap yang menggariskan pentadbiran Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak seperti 1Malaysia kedai dan Bantuan Rakyat 1Malaysia.

Beberapa pengguna telah memuat naik lagu dengan liriknya ke YouTube, di mana satu yang dimuat naik pada 27 Julai meraih lebih 170,000 kunjungan.

Bagaimanapun, 20,546 penonton klik "tidak suka" manakala hanya 297 klik "suka".

Melodi lagu itu dihasilkan oleh Aye, Jasnie dan Arman E 6. -mk

Baru 4 hari sudah 22,263 benci lagu Janji Ditepati

KUALA LUMPUR: Baru empat hari disiarkan di Youtube, namun sudah 22,263 orang menyatakan benci kepada lagu tema Kemerdekaan ke 55 berjudul 'Janji Ditetapati'.

Hanya 313 sahaja menyatakan suka kepada lagu yang penuh mengampu kerajaan BN ini.

Pendekata, setiap kali lagu ini di'referesh', bilangan mereka yang menyatakan 'dislike' bertambah.

Lagu yang mengambil masa 3:36 minit penuh dengan puji-pujian kepada kerajaan BN.

"Ini bukan lagu tema Hari Merdeka, ini lagu Barisan Nasional. Rais...betul? admit sahajalah..." tulis salah seorang pengunjung yang mendengar lagu ini.

Sebelum ini, Menteri Penerangan dan Kebudayaan serta Warisan, Datuk Seri Rais Yatim telah mengumumkan penarikan logo sambutan Hari Kemerdekaan ke 55 selepas mendapat bantahan ramai.

Ekoran itu, beliau mengumumkan,logo 1 Malaysia sebagai logo rasmi Hari Kemerdekaan kali ini.

Orang ramai juga membantah tema sambutan iaitu 'Janji Ditepati' kerana ia adalah tema kempen BN.

Kini lagu sempena sambutan ini juga dibantah pelbagi pihak.

Berikut adalah lirik lagu Janji Ditepati yang mendapat bantahan menyeluruh ini.

Lagu Tema - Janji Ditepati (Sambutan Hari Kemerdekaan ke-55) Lirik dan Video

Macam malam ikut siang
Macam bulan ikut matahari
1Malaysia terus berjuang
Janji Kita ditepati

Kata Kita dikota
Janji Kita ditepati
Hidup Rakyat Dibela
Masa Depan Diberkati
Janji sudah ditepati
Kini masa balas budi

Janji siapa? Janji kita
Janji apa? Janji 1Malaysia
Janji siapa? Janji kita
Janji apa? Janji 1Malaysia

Ini janji kita BR1M 1Malaysia
Ini janji 1Malaysia
TR1M 1Malaysia
Kata kita dikota
Kini 1Malaysia
Janji kita ditepati
Kedai 1Malaysia


Ulasan GB

22,263 Dislike, 313 Like

Tak jelaskah lagikah bahawa itu petunjuk nyata bahawa lagu tema itu ditolak?

Sekaligus juga pencipta liriknya yang amat dikenali sebagai pengampu PM selama ini juga ditolak...

Statistik Ekonomi Selangor Terkini

Posted: 31 Jul 2012 07:12 AM PDT

Myanmar Parliament stopped the Racial Profiling and name calling on Muslims

Posted: 31 Jul 2012 05:42 AM PDT

Good, Myanmar Parliament stopped the Racial Profiling and name calling on Muslims. Another step must be taken, to extend that rule to all the media and whole Myanmar. Another step is to STOP the Hate Speeches. Made it a crime to spread hatred.

အစၥလာမ္ဘာသာ ကိုးကြယ္သူမ်ားအား ကုလားဟု မသံုးႏႈန္းသင့္ ဟု ျပည္ေတာ္စုလႊတ္ေတာ္ ဥကၠဌ ေျပာဆို

ပထမအႀကိမ္ ျပည္ေထာင္စု လႊတ္ေတာ္ စတုတၱပံုမွန္ အစည္းအေ၀း ဒုတိယေန႔ (၁၆.၇.၂၀၁၂) မြန္းလြဲပိုင္း က်င္းပ ခ်ိန္တြင္ လႊတ္ေတာ္ အမတ္ အခ်ိဳ႕က အစၥလာမ္ဘာသာ၀င္မ်ားအား ကုလား ဟုႏွိမ္ခ်ဆက္ဆံ သံုးႏႈန္း ခဲ့ျခင္း အေပၚ ျပည္ေထာင္စု လႊတ္ေတာ္ ဥကၠဌ ဦးခင္ေမာင္ျမင့္က ယင္းသို႔ သံုးစြဲျခင္း မျပဳရန္ ၄င္း လႊတ္ေတာ္ အမတ္ အခ်ိဳ႕အား သတိေပး စကားေျပာၾကားခဲ့ေၾကာင္း သိရသည္။

ရခိုင္ျပည္နယ္ တြင္အေရးေပၚ အေျခအေန ေၾကညာ ခ်က္ ႏွင္႔ စပ္လ်ဥ္း၍ ေဆြးေႏြးၾကစဥ္ ဦးဘစိန္ (ေက်ာက္ျဖဴ မဲဆႏၵနယ္) ၊ ဦးေအာင္စိန္ ( မာန္ေအာင္ မဲဆႏၵနယ္) ၊ ဦးသာစိန္ ( ေက်ာက္ေတာ္ မဲဆႏၵနယ္) ၊ ဦးသိန္းညႊန္႕ ( သဃၤန္းကြ်န္း မဲဆႏၵနယ္) ၊ ဦးခိုင္ေမာင္ရည္ ( အလံု မဲဆႏၵနယ္) ဦးေဌး၀င္း (ရခိုင္ မဲဆႏၵနယ္ အမွတ္ ၇) တို႔အား သတိေပးခဲ့ျခင္း ျဖစ္သည္။

ဦးခင္ေမာင္ျမင့္က ရခိုင္ျပည္နယ္ တြင္ျဖစ္ပြားေနေသာ ကိစၥမ်ား ေဆြးေႏြးရာတြင္ သိမ္ေမြ႕သည္႔ အတြက္ စကားလံုး အသံုးအႏႈန္း မွန္ကန္ ရန္လိုေၾကာင္း၊ ႏိုင္ငံသားမ်ားထဲတြင္ (အစၥလာမ္ ဘာသာ ကိုးကြယ္သူ) မြတ္စလင္ ပုဂၢိဳလ္မ်ား ရွိၿပီး တရား၀င္ ျပဌာန္းထားသည္႔ ဘာသာ တစ္ခုျဖစ္ေၾကာင္း။ မြတ္စလင္မ္ ဘာသာ ကိုးကြယ္ သူတိုင္းအား ကုလား ဆိုသည္႔ အသံုးအႏႈန္း မသံုးသင့္ေၾကာင္း၊ လႊတ္ေတာ္အတြင္း ေဆြးေႏြးသည္႔ အခါ ႏိုင္ငံေရး အရသာ ေဆြးေႏြး ရမည္ျဖစ္ၿပီး ဘာသာေရး အရ ေဆြးေႏြးျခင္း မ်ားမျပဳလုပ္ ရသည္႔ ဆိုေသာ ျပဌန္းခ်က္ ရွိပါေၾကာင္း၊ မြတ္စလင္မ္ ရန္ကို ထိုင္းႏိုင္ငံက ေဆာင္ရြက္ေန ဆိုေသာစကားမ်ိဳး သံုးႏႈန္းရန္ မသင့္ေၾကာင္း၊ လႊတ္ေတာ္ အတြင္း ေဆြးေႏြး သည္႔အခါ အထူး သတိထားျပီး သိမ္ေမြ႔ စြာျဖင့္ ေရွာင္လြဲ ေဆြးေႏြးၾကရန္ လိုေၾကာင္း ျပည္ေထာင္စု လႊတ္ေတာ္ ဥကၠဌက ညႊန္ၾကားခဲ့သည္။

ရခိုင္ျပည္နယ္ ေတာင္ကုတ္ တြင္ အစၥလာမ္ ဘာသာ၀င္ ၁၀ ဦးသတ္ျဖတ္ ခံရသည္႔ သတင္း ႏိုင္ငံပိုင္ သတင္းစာ မ်ားက ေဖၚျပရာတြင္ လည္း ျမန္မာ မြတ္စလင္မ္ မ်ားအား ႏွိမ္ခ်ေသာ အသံုးအႏႈန္း သံုးစြဲခဲ႔သည္။ အစၥလာမ္ ဘာသာ ၀င္မ်ား ကန္႔ကြက္ ဆႏၵျပခဲ့သျဖင့္ ေနာက္ပိုင္း တြင္ ျပန္လည္ျပင္ဆင္ ေပးခဲ့သည္။                                                                                                        Ref: SkyNet,MYANMARINDEPEDENT Journal

Let's Like Lecithin!

Posted: 31 Jul 2012 05:38 AM PDT

A few months ago, I blogged about my forgetfulness and how I saw my physician who prescribed gingko and advised me to go for further tests in the event that there was no improvement. Well, the truth is I kept forgetting to eat my gingko tablets as I had to remember my:
  • Remifemin
  • Evening Primrose Oil
  • Omega 3+6
  • Lecithin
  • Multi-vitamins etc
Those of you who have been reading my blog for some time would know that I love to research particular topics everyday. After reading volumes of information on hair fall, forgetfulness and hot flushes, I came to the conclusion that I had to buy choline, without really understanding its chemical properties. Happily, I walked into the pharmacy near my place and consulted the young pharmacist one who advised me to take Evening Primrose Oil, Omega 3+6 and Lecithin for my peri-menopausal symptoms. The pharmacist told me that choline cannot be purchased per se but sourced from various types of food (CHECK HERE) and that the most often available choline supplement is lecithin which can curb hair fall and improve memory.

At one stage, I felt like a radiator on a cold winter's night for my hot flushes were so unbearable. Worse still, on some nights, I had hot and then cold flushes. All the above medication plus VCO and black cohosh (good but very expensive) have helped me to live normally again with reduced episodes of hot flushes, rashes, mood swings, dry skin and allergies. I read extensively on lecithin etc and seriously believe that lecithin is something which most of us (especially the older ones) must take.

According to this blog:

Lecithin is a fatty substance found in animal and plant based foods, such as: eggs, liver, soy, wheat germ and peanuts. Our body manufactures lecithin as well. Certain processed food products like ice cream, chocolate, margarine, make use of lecithin too etc. 
Lecithin is an excellent source of choline (vitamin B), in the form of phosphatidylcholine. In the body, phosphatidylcholine breaks down in to choline. 
The health benefits of lecithin are:
  • Aids in liver functioning 
  • Prevents gall stones from occurring
  • Relives heart burn and acidity
  • Boosts memory power
  • Chocolate contains
  • Lecithin
  • Protects the heart
  • Soybean Lecithin or Soya Lecithin
Soybean is a wonderful source of plant based lecithin. When you take soy lecithin, your body obtains choline from it. Lecithin and choline play a vital role in governing the functioning of every cell in your body. Soybean, tofu, soy milk, soy curd, miso, etc., will provide you lecithin in abundance. 
Lecithin and Cholesterol : Lecithin for the Heart 
Lecithin found in most plant sources help lower serum cholesterol levels appreciably. Lecithin decreases LDL (low density lipoprotein) and VLDL (very low density lipoprotein) and maintains normal levels of HDL (high density lipoprotein). Thus, lecithin supplementation can ward off cardiovascular disorders successfully. 
How to Improve Memory? Enhance Memory with Lecithin Supplements 
Lecithin is a powerful nerve building nutrient that greatly improves memory. Lecithin is used in the treatment of Alzheimer's disease, managing twitches and jerks and preventing neural tube defects. 
Lecithin rich foods, consumed on a regular basis, keep your mind agile and active, enhance memory considerably, boost concentration levels and stave off degenerative diseases like Alzheimer's and dementia. 
Liver Detoxification with Lecithin: Improving Liver Function 
Lecithin is particularly useful I treating gall bladder and liver disorders. Lecithin is a key component of bile; and low levels of lecithin trigger gall stone formation. Taking lecithin supplements can prevent and treat gall stone successfully. 
Lecithin is often called a liver strengthening nutrient. It prevents build up of fats within the liver, improves flow of fats and cholesterol through the liver and gall bladder and helps the liver in the process of detoxification. Hepatitis, cirrhosis and gall stones are effectively treated with lecithin supplementation. 
Lecithin Granules and Lecithin Dosage: Lecithin Side Effects 
Lecithin is available in the form of granules, which need to be taken with meals to enhance absorption. The dose is 1 teaspoon of the granules, twice daily. The nutrient is also available in the form of capsules (2 capsules to be taken daily), or tablets or liquid. 
Granular lecithin has a nutty taste and can be sprinkles over food or added to drinks.
High doses cause nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, bloating and sweating.

Another site HERE said:

What Are the Benefits of Lecithin?

Lecithin is claimed to be helpful for a variety of different uses. Some of the possible benefits of lecithin include the treatment of the following conditions:

  • Dementia (including Alzheimer's disease)
  • Bipolar disorder
  • High cholesterol
  • Eczema
  • Extrapyramidal symptoms (a group of symptoms, such as uncontrollable body movements, caused by some medications)
  • Fatty liver (hepatic steatosis) due to IV feeding
  • Gallbladder disease
  • Liver disease
  • Anxiety
  • Dry skin (when applied to the skin).

Lecithin is sometimes claimed to increase semen production in men and to aid in weight loss. There is little evidence to suggest that lecithin really works for most of these uses (see Does Lecithin Work?).

When used as a food or medication additive, lecithin typically serves as an emulsifier or a stabilizer. In these situations, lecithin is not considered to be a dietary supplement and is usually used in fairly small amounts.

How Does Lecithin Work?

Lecithin contains a mixture of different compounds, such as fatty acids, triglycerides, carbohydrates, and phospholipids. Lecithin contains choline, a compound that the body can use to make acetylcholine, an important brain chemical that is low in people with Alzheimer's disease. Because lecithin is a complex mixture of different compounds, it is not entirely clear how it might work.

Lecithin contains more omega-6 fatty acids than omega-3 fatty acids, which could potentially cause negative effects for heart health.

If you have the time, check out THIS SITE for more benefits and risks of lecithin.

You may want to check out the Winston-Salem Journal which documented the testimonies of some who have been taking lecithin for over 30 years!

Of course, don't forget Wikipedia's entry on Lecithin HERE.

My hair fall is under control without the use of expensive shampoos/conditioners, my memory is better and hopefully, my fats can be dissolved faster with more exercise :-).

Whatever the case, please read up as much as you can on Lecithin before you make a decision. I am merely sharing from my personal experiences and also other information I collected from various sites.

Years ago, when I attended my friend's dad's 90th birthday, I met an elderly gentleman in his late 80's who also knew my father. When I marvelled at his mental agility, energy and exuberance, he told me that health is wealth but most chase after wealth when they are young to earn as much as they can without realizing that failure to take care of our health means our wealth will have to be used when we are older, to take care of our health!

Here are some inspirational quotes about health. Take care and take Lecithin!!!

" Physical fitness is not only one of the most important keys to a healthy body, it is the basis of dynamic and creative intellectual activity."
~John F. Kennedy ~

"The higher your energy levels, the more efficient your body. The more efficient your body, the better you feel and the more you will use your talent to produce outstanding results."
-- Anthony Robbins ~

"To insure good health: eat lightly, breathe deeply, live moderately, cultivate cheerfulness, and maintain an interest in life."
~ William Londen ~

"Breathing correctly is the key to better fitness, muscle strength, stamina and athletic endurance."
~ Dr. Michael Yessis ~

Penghinaan Terhadap Nabi Musa A.S Di Olimpik 2012

Posted: 31 Jul 2012 06:40 AM PDT

Gambar di atas: Dikatakan bahawa Nabi Musa dihanyutkan oleh ibunya di Sungai Nil kerana bimbang akan tentera Firaun yang akan membunuh mana-mana bayi lelaki yang lahir pada masa itu.

Lihat gambar bayi itu, yang sedang tidur dan dibawa secara perlahan-lahan, menggambarkan bahawa bayi tersebut adalah Nabi Musa A.S yang sedang dihanyutkan diatas Sungai Nil ketika waktu malam.

Selepas itu dalam gambar ini muncul pula patung seolah-olah ahli sihir yang memegang tongkat. Kita pernah dengar cerita-cerita mengenai Nabi dan Rasul kita termasuklah Nabi Musa kan. Nabi Musa A.S mempunyai tongkat yang mempunyai kuasa dan itu adalah mukjizat yang diberikan Allah SWT kepada beliau. Nabi Musa A.S menggunakan tongkat itu untuk membelah laut setelah mendapat petunjuk dari Allah SWT bagi menyelamatkan kaumnya Bani Israel untuk melarikan diri dari dikejar Firaun Laknatullah. Dan dengan kuasa Allah SWT laut itu terbelah dua dan ketika Firaun melintasinya, laut itu kembali seperti sedia kala dan menenggelamkan Firaun dan pengikutnya.

Gambar ini adalah satu penghinaan kepada Islam umumnya. Mereka menggambarkan Nabi Musa A.S sebagai ahli sihir tersebut. Dikatakan ketinggian Nabi Musa adalah 40 hasta.

1 HASTA = 45.72 CM
40 HASTA = 1828.8 CM
1828.8 CM = 18.2 M

Bukankah ketinggian ahli sihir itu lebih kurang 18 meter ??? Wallahu'alam..

Semoga kita tidak tergolong dalam golongan yang mengagumi acara itu kerana percayalah banyak lagi bukti-bukti upacara penyembahan syaitan dan penghinaan kepada Islam berlaku pada acara itu. Cuma kita menyedarinya ataupun tidak sahaja.

Sesungguhnya Allah itu Maha Mengetahui,
Sama ada baik ataupun yang buruk.
Jadi banyak-banyakkan lah meminta ampun kepadaNya.
InsyaAllah, Dimakbulkan doa kita semua..
Amin, Assalamu'alaikum. -iamsharina

Battle of Long Tan fought by Aussies supported by the Kiwis - Narrated by Sam Worthington - Vietnam War - 1 hour 40 minutes

Posted: 31 Jul 2012 06:59 AM PDT

Late afternoon August 18, 1966 South Vietnam -- for three and a half hours, in the pouring rain, amid the mud and shattered trees of a rubber plantation called Long Tan, Major Harry Smith and his dispersed company of 108 young and mostly inexperienced Australian and New Zealand soldiers are fighting for their lives, holding off an overwhelming enemy force of 2,500 battle hardened Viet Cong and North Vietnamese soldiers. This battle was fought by 6th Royal Australian Infantry Regiment, brunt of it borne by D Company. Artillery support was provided by Kiwi Officers directing.

7th Rangers had trained with them in 1993 before embarking to Somalia. There is a museum commemorating this battle with photographs and write ups, at Ennogera, Brisbane, Queensland.

With their ammunition running out, their casualties mounting and the enemy massing for a final assault each man begins to search for his own answer -- and the strength to triumph over an uncertain future with honor, decency and courage. The ensuing Battle of Long Tan becomes one of the most savage and decisive engagements in ANZAC history, earning both the United States and South Vietnamese Presidential Unit Citations for gallantry along with many individual awards. But sadly not before 18 Australians and more than 500 enemy are killed. Heroism, tragedy and the sacrifice of battle, Long Tan is a grueling and dramatic exploration of war with all its horror, that will rightly take its place alongside war classics such as Gallipoli, Breaker Morant, Saving Private Ryan, Zulu & Blackhawk Down.

Daging ‘Harimau Menangis’ Mengejek Di Bulan Ramadhan

Posted: 31 Jul 2012 04:46 AM PDT

Kota Bharu - Daging lembu yang bercampur lemak tidak tepu atau dikenali sebagai daging 'harimau menangis' menjadi rebutan pada bulan puasa memandangkan bahagiannya yang terhad pada seekor lembu.

Peniaga daging, Mohd Rozi Abdullah, 46 berkata, kebanyakan pelanggan di gerainya yang terletak di Pasar Cabang Tiga Pengkalan Chepa, di sini lebih gemar mendapatkan bahagian itu untuk dimasak secara bakar.

"Di Kelantan, daging ini lebih dikenali sebagai 'daging senonok' dan ada pula yang memanggilnya 'daging batang pinang' yang biasanya dibakar berempah untuk dijadikan lauk dalam nasi kerabu.

"Daging ini bercampur lemak tidak tepu dan ada juga di kalangan pelanggan yang gemar membakar daging ini untuk dicicah dengan air asam," katanya kepada Sinar Harian, di sini.

Mohd Rozi berkata, permintaan daging itu dua kali ganda pada bulan puasa berbanding hari biasa.

Menurutnya, daging tersebut dijual dengan harga RM20 sekilogram dan ia terhad kerana kedudukannya hanya berada dua bahagian pada seekor lembu yang disembelih.\

"Daging ini terletak di bahagian celah paha bahagian kaki belakang lembu dan biasanya bagi penggemar daging ini, mereka mendapatkannya seawal jam 8 pagi," katanya.

Dia yang sebelum ini meniaga ayam di pasar itu (pada hari biasa) mengambil inisiatif meniaga daging lembu 'harimau menangis' bagi memenuhi permintaan pelanggan.

Katanya, sejak meniaga daging tersebut bulan ini, ia memberi kepuasan kepadanya dan berhasrat meneruskan perniagaan berkenaan bergantung pada permintaan pembeli.

Proton, Perodua fail vs Tata, Jaguar Land Rover win!

Posted: 31 Jul 2012 03:52 AM PDT

Do you own a Proton, Mr Critic?

RK Anand | July 27, 2012
A MIC leader warns that Pakatan Rakyat's cheaper car pledge can hurt BN in terms of votes and calls on the ruling coalition to move into high gear with regard to this issue.
PETALING JAYA: Pakatan Rakyat's pledge to slash the tax imposed on cars has drawn criticism from political rivals, who claim that the move will deal a fatal blow to local manufacturers.
However, one Barisan Nasional leader begged to differ.
Speaking to FMT, MIC communication and publicity chief S Vell Paari questioned if the critics had purchased a Proton or Perodua model themselves.
"I wonder if those championing the need to protect Proton and Perodua have bought, owned or driven a Proton or Perodua?" he added.
On the contrary, Vell Paari, who is involved in the automotive industry, said that such a move would be beneficial to the national car makers as competition would breed innovation.
In the absence of protection, he added, Proton and Perodua would be compelled to compete with other car manufactures and this would ensure that the companies produced quality vehicles.
Citing India as an example, Vell Paari said the local manufacturers there had enjoyed protection in the past.
"But when the market was opened up, Korean manufacturer Hyundai took the nation by storm, and this forced the local manufacturers to step up their game.
"Now these companies produce excellent vehicles, and Indian company Tata now owns the prestigious Jaguar and Ranger Rover brands," he added.
Significant impact on voters
The MIC central working committee member stressed that the issue was not about partisan politics but rather policies which were beneficial to the nation.
The self-confessed car enthusiast warned BN that the opposition's pledge would have a significant impact on the voters, especially the younger generation who yearned to drive better cars.
In view of this, Vell Paari said the government should also consider re-structuring the tax imposed on cars instead of criticising Pakatan.
"If it is not feasible to scrap the tax in total, then perhaps it should be removed for cars below the RM200,000 price bracket.
"The government can continue to impose a high tax on the well-heeled who want to buy luxury vehicles but the middle-class Malaysians should be spared," he added.
Among those who criticised Pakatan over this issue were Umno Youth chief Khairy Jamaluddin and Perkasa president Ibrahim Ali.
Vell Paari also dismissed Perkasa's argument that the move could lead to the folding up of Proton and Perodua, therefore rendering the companies' predominantly Malay workforce jobless.
The MIC leader said Ibrahim failed to understand that in the era of globalisation, race-based protectionism for the corporate sector would not work.
"Furthermore, wouldn't the employees take greater pride in their work if Proton and Perodua produced world-class cars? Why keep their progress stagnant with protection?
"Competition would ensure that these workers, engineers and designers sharpen their skills and in return, this would provide better job prospects and a brighter future for them," he added.
Suffering a perception crisis
Vell Paari noted that both Proton and Perodua suffered a perception crisis, with their products being viewed as unreliable and unsafe but still expensive.
This perception, he stressed, must be rectified and stiff competition would be the best panacea for the malaise.
"In countries like Australia, cars are still priced cheaper despite the stringent requirements with regard to safety aspects. So why can't we do the same?" he said.
To the average Malaysian, Vell Paari said, it was perplexing as to why he or she needed to fork out a substantial sum for a local car when these models were sold cheaper abroad.
The MIC leader called on the government to look into this issue with immediate concern.
"Don't let Pakatan use the car issue to overtake us in the drive towards Putrajaya in the next general election," he added.
Recently, Pakatan said it would review the National Automotive Policy (NAP) towards reducing the market price of cars if it captured the administrative capital in the next general election.

Masjid at 26×80 corner Mandalay (pic taken at 1900+)

Posted: 31 Jul 2012 03:29 AM PDT

<div style="direction:rtl;text-align:right">Ramadan Kareem from Obama and Peres تهنئة إسرائيل و أمريكا برمضان</div>

Posted: 31 Jul 2012 03:21 AM PDT

Operasi Cegah Jenayah Wajib Diperluaskan Ke Seluruh WP Kuala Lumpur

Posted: 31 Jul 2012 02:42 AM PDT

30 Julai 2012


Pakatan Rakyat Wilayah Persekutuan Kuala Lumpur (PR KL) menyambut baik usaha Polis DiRaja Malaysia (PDRM) untuk mencegah jenayah melalui operasi yang dimulakan di Bangsar sejak hari pertama Ramadhan tahun ini.

PR KL turut difahamkan operasi di Lembah Pantai ini melibatkan 90 anggota PDRM dari Bukit Aman dan Pasukan Simpanan Persekutuan (FRU) yang dikerah untuk menjaga keselamatan penduduk, dan akan diluaskan ke Desa Seri Hartamas dan Taman Tun Dr Ismail yang terletak dalam kawasan parlimen Segambut.

Walaupun dilaporkan kadar jenayah makin menurun, penduduk Wilayah Persekutuan Kuala Lumpur sudah letih dan jemu mendengar khabar kejadian rompakan, penculikan, dan lain-lain kejadian jenayah yang seakan-akan tidak berkurangan langsung.

Oleh itu, PR KL berpendirian PDRM serta Kementerian Dalam Negeri (KDN) wajib memperluas operasi cegah jenayah ini ke seluruh kawasan Wilayah Persekutuan Kuala Lumpur, dan bukannya menumpukan usaha di dua kawasan parlimen ini sahaja.

Seperti yang dibangkitkan YB Liew Chin Tong (Ahli Parlimen Bukit Bendera), hingga Januari 2011 kurang dari 14% dari 105,929 orang anggota PDRM ditugaskan untuk siasatan jenayah (8% di Jabatan Siasatan Jenayah, 4% di Jabatan Siasatan Jenayah Narkotik, 1.3% di Jabatan Siasatan Jenayah Komersil). Dari sudut ini, tindakan PDRM mengerah anggota polis dari Bukit Aman dan FRU dalam operasi cegah jenayah ini adalah satu langkah yang positif dan harus diperluas.

Maka PR KL turut menggesa PDRM untuk meningkatkan jumlah anggota polis yang ditugaskan untuk siasatan jenayah bukan dengan menambah lagi jumlah anggota polis secara keseluruhannya tetapi dengan melatih semula (retrain) dan memasukkan anggota polis dari jabatan lain ke jabatan siasatan jenayah.

PR KL berpendapat gerak kerja PDRM di lapangan sebegini adalah langkah positif yang seharusnya dilaksanakan dpd peringkat awal. Malangnya, kontroversi penurunan statistik telah dijadikan alasan oleh kerajaan BN untuk berlengah-lengah sebelum bertindak.

Apapun, diharapkan tindakan objektif dan tidak dipengaruhi arahan politik menjadi prinsip utama gerak kerja seterusnya.

YB Nurul Izzah Anwar – Ahli Parlimen Lembah Pantai
YAB Tan Sri Khalid Ibrahim – Ahli Parlimen Bandar Tun Razak
YB Dr Tan Seng Giaw – Ahli Parlimen Kepong
YB Tian Chua – Ahli Parlimen Batu
YB Tan Kok Wai – Ahli Parlimen Cheras
YB Teresa Kok – Ahli Parlimen Seputeh
YB Fong Kui Lun – Ahli Parlimen Bukit Bintang
YB Lim Lip Eng – Ahli Parlimen Segambut
Pejabat Ahli Parlimen Titiwangsa

VCO - Its Benefits

Posted: 31 Jul 2012 01:46 AM PDT

A while ago, an old friend from the 1980's who is a cancer survivor told me about virgin coconut oil (VCO) and how the ladies in her church are taking it regularly. During a skype chat with another old friend from varsity days, Agnes, I was lamenting once again about my hot flushes. Immediately, Agnes said she would bring me two bottles of VCO when she was in my neck of woods as VCO really helped her during peri-menopause. Although we did not get to meet when she was in Penang, Agnes very kindly left it with the hotel reception. Since then, I have been taking one tablespoon daily and will be increasing my intake to two and then three tablespoonfuls daily. As usual, I googled for VCO and would like to share the following information on VCO which has indeed helped me quite a bit.

Virgin Coconut Oil Benefits

Virgin coconut oil benefits are really numerous. Some of them include:

  • Increasing your metabolism and helping you lose weight more easily and faster
  • Virgin coconut oil has anti-microbial properties
  • It can enhance your immune system health, so you get a cold or the flu less often
  • The medium-chain fatty acids in coconut oil can give you more energy
  • Applied to the body and hair on a regular basis, virgin coconut oil can help you have smooth, youthful and healthy skin and softer hair
  • It also can help to support the proper functioning of your thyroid gland

CLICK HERE for Coconut Oil and Weight Loss or HERE for Coconut Oil and the Thyroid.

Many of the benefits that people have reported when using coconut oil, apply similarly to virgin coconut oil as well as a high quality expeller pressed oil. However, you need to make sure you are getting an oil that is not hydrogenated, nor have they used chemicals in the processing. There are many who feel like the virgin coconut oil has more benefits that using the expeller pressed oil did not give them, but keep in mind that most of the benefits seem to come from the medium chain fatty acids, which vary a bit by batch, and are high in both type of the oil.

Virgin Coconut Oil Can Help You Fight Viruses, Bacteria, Candida and More!

Virgin coconut oil contains high levels of lauric acid, which is a medium-chain fatty acid that has been shown to have an ability to destroy lipid-coated viruses. Some of these viruses include the flu or influenza virus, HIV, herpes and more. There has been a case where an infant which had tested positive for HIV, and was fed with an infant formula that had a considerable amount of coconut oil in it, later tested negative for HIV!

Lauric acid is also able to destroy many bad bacteria, including giardia and listeria. In addition, many have also reported benefits from taking coconut oil with systemic yeast infections, or candida. Lauric acid is very high in human breast milk, probably in no small part due to its immune-boosting properties.

Are You Fighting with Blood Sugar Issues? Virgin Coconut Oil May Help You!

Many people have reported lower blood sugar when consuming coconut oil, and better mood and energy as well. This is important, as many diabetics experience low energy and problem moods, as do those with insulin resistance. Many people today are insulin resistant and don't even know it, but if you put weight on around your midsection, there is a pretty good chance that you are one of them.

Coconut Oil Can Help Your Digestion

Many have reported relief from various digestion problems, including irritable bowel syndrome and even Crohn's disease. This may be because the medium chain fatty acids in the lauric acid seem to help your body to absorb other nutrients. In addition, it is a great fat to add to your diet if you do not yet have a strong digestive system. Coconut oil is one of the most easily digested fats around, and does not need bile in order to help break it down.

Virgin Coconut Oil May Benefit Your Chronic Fatigue and Fibromyalgia

There are some alternative doctors who think chronic fatigue syndrome and fibromyalgia both have some basis in thyroid dysfunction. But in order for the thyroid gland to function properly, you also need to have a strong adrenal gland. In any case, many who have added virgin coconut oil to their diet say that their chronic fatigue and/or fibromyalgia has improved.

Coconut oil, of course, does not have the money-making potential of prescription drugs, so it is hard to find studies about coconut oil and how it has helped with various health issues, but many people have just decided to try some for themselves and many have had a pleasant surprise.

Virgin Coconut Oil: Recommended Amounts For You To See Results!

Recommended amounts of virgin coconut oil really depend on why you are taking it, as well as your size, but range from 1 - 6 Tablespoons per day for an average person. Like all more natural ways of healing, it often takes a while to see results, so you might want to make a commitment to try it for at least a month or two. And often, in our experience, with natural healing, many people don't take enough of the natural substance to make a difference. So if you start with 1 tablespoon of coconut oil per day, and don't see any benefits, try at least 2 or 3 for a while, like for a month at least.


Also check out THIS SITE which has TEN ARTICLES on the benefits of VCO.

Watch Dr. Mercola's video and read a very comprehensive analysis of why VCO is good for every one of us. CLICK HERE.

The Organic Facts site also gives a very detailed write up on the composition and other benefits of VCO. READ THIS ARTICLE.

Hairie Tak Mahu Jadi Hantu Lagi

Posted: 31 Jul 2012 03:36 AM PDT

Kuala Nerus – Selebriti dan pelakun tersohor Hairie Othman atau dikenali sebagai 'Leftenan Adnan' yang telah menjadi ahli PAS sebulan yang lalu, kembali mengadakan jelajah berceramah ke negeri Terengganu

Sehari selepas menyerahkan borang keahliannya kepada Mursyidul Am PAS Tuan Guru Datuk Nik Aziz Nik Mat di Johor pada 28 Jun lalu, beliau telah menyampaikan ceramah pada program PGU04 dan Himpunan Hijau ke Putrajaya di Marang.

Beliau berkata sejak sebulan lalu itu, beliau tidak berlakun lagi dalam mana-mana filem atau drama.

Katanya, kali akhir beliau berlakun adalah sebagai watak hantu dalam drama bersiri 'WARIS'.

Menurutnya, pada pelancaran 'siri hantu' yang kini ditayangkan di sebuah stesyen TV, beliau telah pun membuat pengumuman tidak mahu lagi jadi hantu.

"Pada majlis pelancaran saya dah buat pengumuman tak mahu jadi hantu, samada dalam filem atau di luar filem,"jelasnya

Beliau berkata demikian ketika berucap pada majlis penerangan di Kampung Petai Bubus dekat sini, Isnin 30 Julai

Sehubungan itu, beliau menyeru anak-anak muda menyertai satu pembaharuan sebagaimana golongan artis yang sudah berani berubah.

Menurutnya perbandingan dan penilaian boleh dibuat oleh anak-anak muda berdasarkan media yang ada pada masakini.

"Sekarang bukan hanya ada TV1, TV2, dan TV3 tetapi sudah ada media internet laman web, you tube, facebook dan twitter,

"Anak-anak muda boleh bersama perubahan golongan artis yang kini berani menyatakan kebenaran,"tegasnya.

Turut menyampaikan ceramah pada majlis tersebut adalah Timbalan Ketua Pemuda PAS Terengganu Ustaz Ridhuan Hashim dan Timbalan Ketua Penerangan PAS Terengganu Ustaz Azman Shapawi Abdul Rani. -BO

[BERGAMBAR] Mahkamah: Rampasan Buku Kartun Zunar Oleh Polis Tidak Sah

Posted: 31 Jul 2012 12:31 AM PDT

Kartunis politik Zulkiflee SM Anwar atau dikenali sebagai Zunar, hari ini menang kes saman ke atas kerajaan dan empat yang lain berhubung tindakan pihak berkuasa merampas 66 buku dan satu lukisannya dua tahun lalu.

Pesuruhjaya Kehakiman Mahkamah Tinggi, Vazeer Alam Mydin Meera membenarkan permohonan Zunar.

Pada 15 Jun tahun lalu, Zunar memfailkan saman sivil ke atas kerajaan Malaysia dan empat defenden berhubung penangkapannya dan rampasan terhadap 66 buku Cartoon-O-Phobia serta sebuah lukisan kolaj pada 2010.

Beliau menamakan pegawai yang menahannya ASP Arikrishna Apparau, pegawai penyiasat ASP Marina Hashim, Ketua Polis Negara Tan Sri Ismail Omar, Kementerian Dalam Negeri dan kerajaan Malaysia sebagai defendan.

Dipetik oleh The Star hari ini, Zunar berkata, keputusan mahkamah hari ini sebahagian kemenangan bagi kesemua kartunis politik memandangkan Vazeer memutuskan bahawa tindakan menahan buku-buku berkenaan adalah sesuatu yang bercanggah dengan undang-undang, tetapi penahanan Zunar adalah sah pada waktu itu. -SH


Keputusan mahkamah terbahagi dua. Pertama Hakim Mahkamah Tinggi Kuala Lumpur Vazeer Alam Mydin Meera memutuskan bahawa tindakan polis merampas buku saya, Cartoon-O-Phobia dan sebuah lukisan pada September 2010 adalah salah dari segi undang2 dan polis diminta membayar gantirugi kepada saya. (Jumlah akan ditentu kemudian). Namun hakim juga berkata tangkapan yang dilakukan terhadap saya juga pada September 2010 sah dari segi undang-undang.

Komen: Saya bersukur atas keputusan mahkamah. Kejayaan ini bukanlah kejayaan peribadi saya, tetapi adalah kejayaan kartunis-kartunis Malaysia, khususnya yang bergabung di bawah Kumpulan Kartunis Independen (KKI).

Saya dengan ini mencabar pentadbiran Najib supaya mengikut keputusan mahkamah secara moral dengan melaksanakan tuntutan seperti berikut:

* Menarik balik pengharaman ke atas buku-buku saya: 1 Funny Malaysia, Perak Darul Kartun, Isu Dalam Kartun Vol 1, Isu Dalam Kartun Vol 11 dan Isu Dalam Kartun Vol 111.

* Memulangkan buku-buku saya yang dirampas. Terdapat lebih 1000 naskah buku-buku yang masih dalam simpanan polis/KDN. Ini termasuk 408 naskah Gedung Kartun yang dirampas di pejabat saya pada tahun 2009.

* Menghentikan tekanan dan ugutan ke atas pengilang yang mencetak buku-buku saya dan peniaga serta pengedar yang menjual buku-buku saya.

Selain itu, saya telah mengarahkan peguam saya supaya mengemukakan rayuan ke mahkamah lebih tinggi mengenai keputusan hakim yang menyatakan bahawa penahanan saya sah dari segi undang-undang.


Undermining our own police force...

Posted: 30 Jul 2012 09:38 PM PDT

Another crap!

The government-appointed independent advisory panel into the Bersih 3.0 rally is hoping to learn from foreign experts how to handle peaceful demonstrations, protests and assemblies.

The panel, chaired by former IGP Tun Hanif Omar, yesterday made requests to diplomatic representatives from four countries for their experts to share advice and experience in handling situations of unrest.

The countries chosen  - the US, UK, Canada and Pakistan.


Polis Diraja Malaysia (PDRM) is old enough, over 200 years now since its small set up in 1807. Throughout that long years, are we still looking down at our own force, once lauded as among the best in the world?

Hanif himself, who was the longest-serving IGP for 20 years (1974-1994) seemed 'lost' and not having strong confidence in the force he used to lead. Or was he whipping at the PDRM current administration?

Having confronted with some serious situations during his tenure, including the Memali (Baling) case and Ops Lalang, I am flabbergasted that Hanif is still undermining PDRM's capability. I don't want to ask him what he did when he was IGP, let alone questioning the credibility of the panel.

I strongly believe PDRM has its own strength. There is no need to learn from others as we have our own standard operation procedure (SOP) which is in compliance with the United Nations protocol on the use of force, handling of peaceful demonstrations and the protection of media.

And of all the countries, we still want to learn from the US, Britain, Canada and Pakistan. Pakistan? What a farce!

Aren't we aware that the US police is among the most racist and brutal? Read here and here and here. Even the Canadian and British police are not having a good record at all. If you talk about Pakistan, you better find the precise words as I won't comment.

I still think we need to pool experts from within the PDRM, the government and some NGOs into a special discussion. The Opposition needs to be there as well as we have to be fair to every sector of the community. And I am confident such a concerted effort would bring about positive consensus as to how the issue could be dissolved.

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