Friday, April 24, 2015

100 years since the Armenian genocide

Today we mark with sorrow the 100th anniversary of the genocide of Armenians in the Ottoman Empire.

This remember-me flower has the message "I remember and demand" (image source: Armenian General Benevolent Union - Plovdiv).

Tuesday, April 21, 2015

US Muslim organizations: Don't dare to call a genocide done by our Muslim brothers a genocide

The text below is copied from the site of the US Consul of Muslim Organizations and is not edited in any way.


(Washington, DC, April 20, 2015) -- The US Council of Muslim Organizations (USCMO) the largest umbrella group of mainstream Muslim American organizations is aware of the painful history of over 30 nations fighting for over 4 years and the loss of over 37 million lives in World War I, including those of the Armenians.

As April 24 comes near, we share the pain suffered by Armenians during this period. We also believe that any acknowledgment by religious or political leaders of the tragedy that befell Armenians should be balanced, constructive and must also recognize Turkish and Muslim suffering.

In this respect, characterizing the events of 1915 as genocide without proper investigation of these events by independent historians will not only jeopardize the establishment of a just memory pertaining to these events, but will also damage the efforts aimed at achieving reconciliation between Turks and Armenians.

As Americans, we are concerned about alienating a key ally, Turkey, through one-sided declarations that political and religious leaders have made on this subject. The events of 100 years ago should be based on a consensus among historians and academicians with access to archives and documents from that era.

As the only Muslim-majority member of NATO and current President of the G-20 Summit, Turkey has taken on a unique regional and global leadership role in ensuring peace and prosperity for all. Our government has been closely cooperating with the Turkish government on defeating ISIS while also alleviating the suffering of Syrian refugees.

While Muslim Americans sympathize deeply with the loss of Armenian lives in 1915, we also believe that reconciliation must take into honest account the broader human tragedy of World War I. Muslim Americans expect our leaders to act accordingly to ensure that American-Turkish strategic relations are not damaged by a one-sided interpretation of the 1915 events."

This is the way US Muslim leaders have chosen to mark the 100th anniversary of the Armenian Genocide. These same people also have the audacity to complain of Islamophobia!

Monday, April 20, 2015

Surprise, surprise! Quacks want money

From today's Vox:

"New WikiLeaks documents reveal the inner working of the Dr. Oz Show

Dr. Mehmet Oz often appears on his popular show to promote new health products and devices. Most viewers are likely under the impression that he's doing this because he's closely considered their merits and decided the products are widely beneficial.

But newly leaked emails suggest that business considerations — not health or science — can be a driving factor in which products Oz decides to promote."

I am scratching my head at what passes for news these days. It is common knowledge that, while many ordinary snake oil salesmen genuinely believe the nonsense they are selling, high-profile quacks like Dr. Oz or ex-Dr. Wakefield are invariably in this business for money. For big, dirty money. Who needs WikiLeaks or Vox to inform him about this? It is funny how the name of the good doctor reminds me of the Wizard of Oz.

Saturday, April 18, 2015

Why the good Muslims make little difference

Charles Steele left the following comment to my previous post Muslim illegals throw Christian fellow passengers into the sea:

"America's "National Public Radio" headlined this story as "conflict between Christians and Muslims turns bloody." I was expecting to hear how some street confrontation between two groups got out of hand. But the subsequent report detailed how some Muslims unilaterally murdered some Christians just for being "not-Muslim", and the remaining Christians formed a human chain to peacefully thwart the continuing attempts of the Muslims to murder them.

Never mind the Muslims who committed the murders, why did the other Muslims stand by and watch? I think it is because that's just what Muslims do when other Muslims commit evil acts.

The last two lines of this comment touch something so important that I wish to devote this post to it.

I wouldn't blame the other Muslims on the fateful boat who stood by. I don't know how I would behave if I were in their shoes. It is very likely that I would have been petrified from fear and only later would regret that I haven't done anything to stop the murders. Because those Muslims who try to defend the non-Muslim victims of Islam are routinely killed along with those they are trying to protect, sometimes even before them. Steele himself gave an example: "An impoverished illiterate woman, Aasiya Noreen (a.k.a. Asia Bibi) languishes on death row in Pakistan for blaspheming the so-called prophet Mohammed... Noreen, a Christian, was working as a farmhand with a number of other women, largely Muslims... Since she's a Christian and therefore "unclean," the members of the "religion of peace" began berating her and insulting her religion, to which she replied "I believe in my religion and in Jesus Christ, who died on the cross for the sins of mankind. What did your Prophet Mohammed ever do to save mankind?"... She was subsequently convicted and sentenced to death. Multiple appeals to higher courts have all failed to date. The governor for Punjab Province, Salmaan Taseer, spoke up on her behalf, for which he was subsequently assassinated.  Pakistan's Minister for Minorities Affairs, Shahbaz Bhatti, spoke up on her behalf, for which he was subsequently assassinated." (Emphasis mine - M.M.)

As the end of World War II was coming near, Ludwig von Mises wrote in his Omnipotent Government: "The Kellogg Pact outlawed war. Germany, Italy, Japan, Hungary, and Romania signed this document. If there was any meaning at all in this compact, then it was that aggressors are guilty of an illegal act and must bear the responsibility for it. Those citizens of these nations who did not openly oppose the dictators cannot plead their innocence." This otherwise great author implies that openly opposing the dictators was trivial decent behavior, while in fact it was a heroic, self-sacrificing behavior that would doom the opposing citizen to death. It is unfair to demand from others to be heroes, even if you are one yourself. And Mises wasn't. Instead of openly opposing the dictators from their territory, he fled: "In 1934, Mises left Austria for Geneva, Switzerland... In 1940 Mises and his wife fled the German advance in Europe and emigrated to New York City."

Once a totalitarian ideology takes hold over a society, it is almost impossible to be defeated from within. Many if not most Germans in the 1930s and early 1940s were good people; after all, Hitler was elected by a minority. However, these millions of good Germans were unable to make a difference. The millions of good Russians who love their children did not make a difference under Lenin, Stalin and their successors, and do not make a difference under Putin now. The millions of good Iranians cannot make a difference, either (perhaps they could if the free world had supported them when they were struggling in 2009).

Only those who are outside the totalitarian realm can make a difference, by relentlessly opposing its ideology. Only this way the free world can save first itself and then the subjects of the totalitarian societies, often by forcibly subduing them for some period. So the good Muslims should not be offended when Westerners look at them with suspicion... and Westerners should not allow their healthy suspicion to grow into outright blame. Because the Muslims have not chosen where to be born.

Thursday, April 16, 2015

Muslim illegals throw Christian fellow passengers into the sea

The rush of Africans to reach the Promised Land of Europe at any risk often leads to tragedies in the Mediterranean Sea. News of drowned immigrants-to-be are becoming depressingly familiar, but today's reports stand out because the tragedy was a result of an outrageous crime: When 15 Muslims (from  the Ivory Coast, Senegal, Mali and Guinea Bissau) learned that their fellow passengers on the boat were Christians (from Nigeria and Ghana), they started throwing the Christians overboard. Twelve people were drowned, the rest successfully resisted by forming a "human chain".

This lynching illustrates what the Islamists want to do with all non-Muslims: namely, to throw us into the sea. Palestinians have been trying to throw the Israeli Jews into the sea for decades; and clueless native Europeans keep supporting them, oblivious to the increasingly real danger of being thrown into the sea themselves. Thinking of the drowned Nigerians Christians, I suppose that some of them may have tried to emigrate exactly for this reason - to escape violent persecution by Muslims.

I found the first report of the mass murder by browsing Yahoo! News. It was titled Police: Muslims threw Christians overboard during Med voyage. I decided to write about this, but had a lot of more urgent work. When I finally got to blogging, this report was buried under more recent ones, on various subjects. Only one of them covered the same event - by AFP, titled Migrants 'throw fellow passengers overboard' in religious row.

I mentioned that the title didn't mention the fact that the alleged murderers were Muslims and their victims were Christians. An analogous title about the Holocaust would be, Six millions killed in Europe over religious differences. I decided to dig into this and launched a Google search using muslims throw christians boat as keywords. The image above shows two merged screenshots. The top search results are:

Muslim migrants threw Christians overboard, police say ... (CNN)
African Muslim Migrants Throw Christians Overboard - Arutz ... (Israel National News)
Muslim refugees arrested in Italy for throwing Christians into ... (International Business Times)
Migrants killed in 'religious clash' on ... - (BBC)
Muslims threw Christians off migrant boat from Libya to Italy ... (Haaretz)
Migrants killed in 'religious clash' on Mediterranean boat ... (BBC - duplicate of the above)
Muslims allegedly throw Christians overboard on migrant boat (UPI)
Italian police arrest migrants alleged to have thrown ... (Guardian)
Police: Muslims threw Christians overboard during Med ... (AP - this was the first report I had read, therefore it is purple in the screenshot.)

Do you see a pattern? While US and Israeli media have duly included in their titles the religious affiliation of alleged perpetrators and victims, as must be done when reporting a suspected religiously motivated hate crime, European sources have tried to muddy the waters by composing politically correct titles about "migrants". One has to scroll 4 more results to reach the first European title mentioning "Muslims" - Updated: Italian police say Muslim migrants threw Christians ... (Independent). It seems that the European elites will indeed return to their senses only when "migrants" grab them and throw them into the sea!

Tuesday, April 14, 2015

World Health Organization succumbs to "natural birth" woo

A victim of the quest to bring down c-section rate at all costs: Five years ago, Alexandra Campbell died in Britain at age 3 days as a result of being delivered by forceps instead of Caesarean section. Source: Daily Mail.

Quoting from yesterday's post by Dr. Amy Tuteur World Health Organization's warning on C-sections is ideology masquerading as science:

"In 1985, Marsden Wagner, then head of Maternal and Child health in the European Regional Office of the WHO, convened a conference that declared that the optimal C-section rate was 10-15%. Wagner and colleagues simply made that up, thereby elevated their strongly held ideological conviction, unmoored from science of any kind, into policy.

In 2009, the WHO was forced to acknowledge that there is no optimal C-section rate and that there had never been any scientific evidence of any kind to support an optimal rate.
"Although the WHO has recommended since 1985 that the rate not exceed 10-15 per cent, there is no empirical evidence for an optimum percentage … the optimum rate is unknown …"
For 24 years the World Health Organization touted a C-section target that was an utter fabrication, created to suit the prejudices of its creators, without any evidence to support it.

Pretty embarrassing, no? Apparently not, since the WHO has just done it again... In the wake of exposure of 1985 optimal C-section rate as a fabrication, the WHO has done it again, albeit this time with greater sophistication. In 1985, Wagner and colleagues merely conjured the “optimal” rate out of thin air; this time they’ve disingenuously, and without any scientific justification, applied the optimal rate for low and middle income countries to high income countries."

You can read the new WHO document here. It states that the rate of Caesarean sections should not exceed 10%.

I recommend you to read the entire post by Dr. Amy to see her arguments why this is ideology and not science. I'll add another argument of my own: To be science rather than ideology, recommendations about a medical procedure such as c-section should state not percentages but indications and contraindications. So the WHO should state that, based on outcome of c-sections vs. vaginal birth (references should be cited here - WHO cites none), it recommends c-section in cases of narrow pelvis, large fetal head, breech presentation... (list other indications) and does not recommend c-section in cases of severely compromised maternal status...  (list other contraindications).

If percentages are recommended, it is ideology and not science because, even if the rate looks good, there is no guarantee that it is "filled" with the correct patients. A mother and her baby may have every single indication for Caesarean section but if doctors are told that decreasing c-section rates is more important than lives of mothers and babies (which is the essence of the WHO statement), it is likely that the mother will be forced to have a vaginal birth, with all the risks. The quest for vaginal birth at all costs has already taken many lives, not even mentioning the disabled survivors. An example is the beautiful baby whose photo is shown above, a baby who will never grow up. Quoting from the Daily Mail:

"With her long eyelashes and black hair, Alexandra was, says her mother Beatrix, ‘the most beautiful thing I could imagine’. The newborn, who weighed 9lb 4oz, had been conceived through IVF after five years of trying (which had involved both parents undergoing surgery) and was a much longed-for child. So her arrival last June should have heralded a time of joy. Yet her parents are grieving for their daughter, who died when she was just three days old...

Alexandra died as a result of severe injury to her spinal cord inflicted during a forceps delivery that went wrong - ten hours after her parents had repeatedly begged the obstetric team to deliver the baby by Caesarean. 

The couple were later told by their doctors at the Royal Infirmary Edinburgh’s Simpson Centre for Reproductive Health that Alexandra had been ‘unlucky, very unlucky’. However, they believe she was the victim of medical arrogance and a determination to reduce the rising Caesarean rate. 

As a result, thousands of babies every year are being delivered using forceps - yet this instrument is deemed so risky many obstetricians no longer use it. Unfortunately, few women are told of the potential dangers... Experts are particularly concerned about a type known as Kielland’s forceps, which were used to deliver Alexandra...Yet at least 31,500 babies a year are delivered by forceps - that’s one in 20. Some hospitals continue to use Keilland’s forceps; at the Royal Infirmary, where Alexandra was born, there are 170 such deliveries a year...

But the Campbells knew none of this when Beatrix was two weeks past her due date and went to the hospital to have the labour induced. She met all the criteria for a ‘difficult case’ - though no one told her that. ‘As well as being past my due date, the baby was lying sideways and was large considering I am a slight 5ft 2in,’ she says. 

Thirty hours after induction started, exhausted and barely dilated, Beatrix told the midwife she wanted a Caesarean. As the hospital later admitted, this would have saved Alexandra, but the request was refused...

The consultant obstetrician was in the [operating] theatre for a few moments, then left to go to another patient. She left a junior doctor with a Libyan medical degree in his second year of training to carry out his first unsupervised delivery using Kielland’s forceps. ‘He didn’t say a word: he just inserted the instrument and started rotating the baby. I was petrified,’ says Beatrix. As the hospital later acknowledged must have happened, the forceps turned Alexandra’s head, but not her body, injuring her spinal cord...

Eight months on, they [Beatrix and her husband Craig] are hoping there will be an independent investigation into Alexandra’s death. They have begun their own investigation into forceps, discovering that deaths or serious injury are far from rare. ‘We were horrified to discover this is a frequent occurrence that no one seems to be monitoring,’ says Beatrix. ‘Craig has found local newspaper reports of ten examples of babies dying or being damaged during forceps delivery, with the coroners’ reports in many cases saying that a Caesarean should have been performed earlier.’ 

Maureen Treadwell, of the Birth Trauma Association, believes some hospitals are becoming dangerously focused on holding down the rate of Caesareans. This is because they cost twice as much as natural deliveries, and the National Institute for Health and Clinical Excellence (NICE) has also recommended that hospitals keep the Caesarean rate at 15 per cent (the national average is 25 per cent). ‘There seems to be a belief that telling the truth about risks of forceps and the relative safety of Caesarean might push up the rates of expensive surgery,’ says Treadwell, a member of NICE’s Intrapartum Care Guideline committee."

Don't you think that national health authorities, as well as WHO, should be worried by these predictable and preventable poor birth outcomes and should work on bringing their rates down? Instead, they are obsessed with bringing c-section rates down, as if this medical procedure is something intrinsically bad, like car accidents or crime.

Let me share a little personal experience: Both my births have been vaginal. Doctors had said unflattering things about my connective tissues when I was 12, but I never received any diagnosis, so I can say that there were no indications for c-section before my first birth. It produced severe lacerations and was followed by episodes of incontinence. This was not considered an indication to have a c-section next time, and my second vaginal birth produced more of the same. I think I am likely to resort to reconstructive surgery at some later period in my life. I wouldn't blame my doctors, or our health care system in general. On the contrary, the doctors were great, and the system worked quite well in my case. Bulgaria is a poor country, many life-saving treatments are not covered by the National Health Care Fund (even for children), so the Fund simply cannot afford sending mothers to c-section because of some lacerations. What troubles me is that the decrease in my quality of life that resulted from vaginal birth (and which is a very common complication of this birth) hasn't been indicated in any medical record. I think that wealthier individuals and countries could consider c-section not only when safety requires it, but also to preserve the mother's quality of life.

When I am engaged in a discussion in medical matters (e.g. about vaccines), my opponents often say, "You want us to read only articles supporting your thesis!" I reply, "No, I'd advise you to read documents of the best medical authorities we have - CDC, national physicians' associations, WHO." Now, I think I shouldn't refer people to the WHO. People there have a wrong ideology. They don't care about babies and mothers. Whom do they care for? Probably stray dogs.

The West promotes its enemies

Quoting from the article New Atheists and the Economy of Outrage by Muqtedar Khan:

"The recent discursive assault on Islam and Muslims by the so-called "new atheists" is another moment in the sequence of never ending vilifications of Islam that Western culture seems to have an insatiable appetite for. There is a perverse quality to this culture and discourse of contempt... Most philosophers of ethics would describe their methodology as intellectual hypocrisy. Consider this for example. Dawkins tweeted that: "All the world's Muslims have fewer Nobel Prizes than Trinity College, Cambridge." The point he was trying to make is that all Muslims in the modern age are backward, less rational and less scientific than just one western institution. Well, if that is an argument then how about this. Muslims won six Nobel peace prizes in the past twenty years, more than Americans, the Brits and Israelis. Does that mean that in the past 20 years, Islam has been more peaceful than Judaism and Christianity or the west? Probably."

This "masterpiece" may seem sarcastic, but it is not. It was published first by Turkish Agenda and then by the far-leftist and hopelessly Islamophilic Huffington Post, where I found it via Yahoo! News. Of course I have no problem with publishing such stupid and hateful rants, this is what freedom of speech is about. What I have problem with is the occupation and position of the author. As indicated just above the title, Muqtedar Khan is Associate Professor of Islam and Global Affairs at the University of Delaware.

Who has made this Islamo-Nazi Associate Professor at an American university? It turns out that US youths are taxed sky high for college and begin their adult lives with debts so that universities can give tenures and tribune to sworn enemies of civilization! (I've written before about Prof. Angela Davis, but this is even worse.) And then, some of these students will be forced to listen to Prof. Khan's lectures (presumably extensions of the above quote), to learn this garbage and to recite it at exams if they want to continue their study.

I seriously doubt that the West will survive - it seems to be happily digging its own grave!

Friday, April 10, 2015

The West betrays Ukraine, Georgia and its own values

The text below is from Melik Caylan's article Putin Prepares Spring Offensive Against Ukraine published today in the Forbes:

"Russian forces busily resupply for Ukraine ahead of a Spring offensive, according to numerous sources including a former head of Nato.  According to my own sources in Ukraine, where I was two weeks ago, Russian military assets have spread broadly all along Ukraine’s eastern border formed up in three waves in order to stretch and overwhelm Ukrainian defences across an entire front. While the world wrangles about Iran’s nuclear ambitions in the future, the one country that can physically obliterate the West in the present, the same sole country that openly threatens to use nukes, gets a free pass as it invades and occupies parts of Europe – repeatedly.

This column has oft noted how Putin can’t resist the cover of a distracting global headline for launching or relaunching his incursions: Beijing Olympics and Georgia, Sochi Olympics and Crimea, FIFA World Cup and Donbass etc. What we deduce above all, what we should know by now, is that the operations were planned long in advance to coincide with those distracting occasions. Logistical challenges dictate it. You don’t unleash hundreds of armored vehicles across borders without months of preparation.

So it’s not anyone else’s fault, not Mikheil Saakashvili’s provocation in Georgia, not Ukrainian ‘fascists’ in Crimea or Donetsk. Nothing ‘triggered’ the aggressions. Mostly, the apparent justifications for aggression (“provocations”) were equally pre-concieved along with the blizzard of disinformation that muddied the world’s reaction post facto.

By now, none of this should need saying, but it does alas. Saakashvili’s ‘wild and crazy’ actions didn’t cause the 2008 Russian invasion of Georgia. The Kremlin’s tanks were already rolling in through the Rokhi Tunnel into South Ossetia. Intercepts from that time, subsequently made public, then published everywhere and conveniently ignored by a feckless West, reveal the timeline indisputably. In fact, President Saakashvili had ordered his troops to refrain from engaging as they came under intense fire. They objected, as did the overrun Georgian villagers. For an elected President not to respond at all to aggression would result in just what Moscow wanted: regime change. That’s how it works. Putin unveiled the game plan for all to see. You fight back, you lose – you don’t fight back, you lose.

Not everybody ignored it. The Ukrainians understood the warning. They had a choice: either to live under a suffocating web of post-Soviet corruption, endlessly postponing a full and free sense of citizenship in a genuinely democratic society, or rise up and perhaps be invaded by Russia. They decided to risk the latter...

In Ukraine, the process of achieving full rejuvenation continues apace. The internal grass-roots popular revolution hasn’t surrendered goals or momentum, even as the larger forces outside want it to quiet down and subside. Here we have the exhilarating spectacle of the West’s deepest principles being espoused despite threats of destruction. Ukraine has invited unimpeachably honest and super-competent Georgian technocrats to take over key parts of the anti-corruption campaign.

Dwell on that a moment: a country voluntarily invites foreign political figures to guide its national destiny, so determined is it to live impartially by its avowed ideals. Mikheil Saakashvili serves on Poroshenko’s Presidential Advisory Council. Former top public servants of his historic Georgian administration now work in equivalent Ukrainian positions. That’s because Saakashvili’s Georgian reforms became an international brand. Over the years, countries as far afield as Surinam met with members of his team to see how to transform governance in the same way.

In Ukraine two examples will suffice. Georgia’s wildly popular top cop, the quietly charismatic and formidably incorruptible Ekaterina Zguladze-Glucksmann, now works as Ukraine’s Deputy Minister of Interior... Similarly, the staunchly honest and quietly workaholic David Sakvarelidze, formerly the Chief Prosecutor in Tbilisi then parliamentary MP in Saakashvili’s party, is now Ukraine’s Deputy Prosecutor General... Both are young, seasoned, selfless idealists in their thirties. They could be pulling down huge salaries and living the good life anywhere in the world. Instead they’ve chosen to work round the clock as civil servants for the people of Ukraine.  Both spoke to me of living up to the ideals of Maidan, delivering on the hopes of national rebirth still alive and palpable in the air.

As Western values are confounded and compromised everywhere, not least in the West, the one place where they pulse with conviction they’re threatened with outside obliteration. Putin understands: The last thing the West wants, it seems, is to be reminded of them."