Friday, December 23, 2011

This Week's News in Brief


According to Lev Gudkov from Levada Centre (an independent Russian election observers), the reaction of Russian people indignation against the government is common because the government is part of the legacy of the late Soviet Union. The ideology of communism has become a distant memory. However, the Russian government is still using Soviet-style mechanism to maintain political power.

A number of key agencies including courts, security forces, media, and education, used by bureaucrats to perpetuate their power and wealth. In fact, the president still occupies an important symbol, the former building of the Communist Party Central Committee.

Even more importantly -- according to Gudkov-- the Soviet-style mental is proved more resilient than the ideology of communism. When a group of sociologist led by Yuri Levada examined the Soviet people in 1989, they found a distinctive character, dubbed as the "Homo Sovieticus". Human characters include the double mindset, paternalistic, suspicious, and confining themselves.

Hose 20 years later, the experts were aware that "Homo Sovieticus" was not fade away, but instead mutated by adopting the cynical and aggressive nature. The change was a result of various government restrictions and moral encouragement from the Kremlin. Post-Soviet collapse in the era of the 1990s to 2000, Putin raised the pride of Soviet by using the Soviet Union anthem and brought the concept of Eurasia.

As a result, according to him, the electoral fraud is not only acted by the mass of middle-aged who are filled with the glory of Soviet in the past, but also by pro-Kremlin youth who were not born when the Soviet collapsed.

However, not all Russian people to adopt the "Homo Sovieticus" character. The concept of freedom brought by Putin to increase the revenue, to restore stability in the Soviet era, providing basic needs items, and to free the people to travel, does not mean silencing the people's voice. The voice that flows into the Communist Party becomes a sign of an anomaly.

Party with a hammer and sickle emblem was so repressive and negate the individual ownership. It's hard to digest why the Russian people willing to return to the dark past. However, as revealed by an investigator, at least the party is not nicknamed as "the thugs and thieves" party.

Last week, in a question and answer session at a local television, Putin said that leading the United Russia Party was like no members. He considered himself as the main challenger in the Russian Presidential Election which would be held on March 4, 2012.

Middle East 2011 Kaleidoscope

Entering 2011, Tunisia seized the attention of the world. This country (North Africa) became the starting point of a revolution wave which then spread and undermined the regimes that have ruled for decades in Arabia. A wave of revolution is known as the Arab spring.

The revolution is undermining the image of Tunisia, which for decades is known as the most prosperous country in Africa. Country with an area of ​​164,196 km2 is inhabited by people who mostly middle class, the bearer of liberal social norms, adherents of gender equality, and the owner of the enchanting Mediterranean parties.

For decades, the welfare image could cover the dark story. Tunisian government of President Zine el-Abidine Ben Ali was the most repressive regimes in North Africa. The state police kept an eye on people everywhere, the level of corruption among the elite was incredible.

People's anger finally became unbearable when the economic crisis was gripping the country. The revolution began on Friday morning, mid-December 2010. The revolution was triggered by the action of self-immolation of a fruit merchant, Mohamed Bouazizi. Bouazizi (26 years) who came from the city of Sidi Bouzid, 125 miles (201.17 km) south of the capital city of Tunisia, was desperate to burn himself in the midst of despair due to the difficulties of life and treatment of corrupt cops.

Bouazizi was angry and desperate because the cops were repeatedly destroyed and confiscated his merchandise. They even did not hesitate to slap him. Therefore, after the authorities ignored his complaints, Bouazizi flushed himself with paint thinner liquid and then ignited the fire to burn his body. "My son set fire to himself for the sake of dignity," said Mannoubia Bouazizi, the mother with a hardness of heart. "In Tunisia, dignity is more important than bread," continued Bouazizi sister, Basma, 16 years.

Bouazizi's death became a trigger for Tunisian's anger. They spontaneously took to the streets. A wave of protests spread around the country, triggered the riots. Residents set fire to government buildings and looted the shops. The main station in Tunis city was reportedly burned down. Hundreds of military personnel, fleet of tanks, helicopters and armored vehicles deployed were not able to deter people who were angry. The Ben Ali's promises to hold election also not impervious to dampen the people's emotions that already exploded.

On Friday (January 14), a wave of unrest culminated in Tunisia, until it forced Ben Ali who had been in power for 23 years and his family fled to Saudi Arabia.

The UN report stated, at least 219 people were killed and hundreds were injured during riots in Tunisia. Ben Ali's defection did not stop the protests. People were also demanding the cronies of the dictator to step down.

Later Ben Ali and his wife, Lelia Trabelsi, were sentenced to 35 years in prison in a trial that was not attended by both (in absentia) in Tunis court on 20 June 2011. Both were found guilty of stealing jewelry and cash in huge quantities. Ben Ali still had to face additional penalties associated with possession of drugs and illegal weapons on June 30. In addition, Ben Ali is still under investigation associated with homicide, abuse of power, the sale of historic objects, and money laundering.

U.S.A - I R A Q

Last American Troops Leave Iraq Marking End of War
The last U.S. soldiers rolled out of Iraq across the border to neighboring Kuwait at daybreak Sunday, whooping, fist bumping and hugging each other in a burst of joy and relief.

The last convoy of U.S. troops to leave Iraq moved yesterday. The convoy marked the completion of the withdrawal of U.S. troops who had occupied Iraq for nearly nine years.

About 100 MRAP military vehicles containing 500 U.S. army personnel moved across the southern desert of Iraq. A convoy of vehicles drove through the highway into the border of Kuwait.

At the top of the war's escalation, there were at least 170 thousand army personnel in more than 500 U.S. military bases. On Saturday (17 Desembre), the U.S. military leaving only less than 3000 personnel and a base.

"The best thing for me is to leave Iraq. I have spent 31 months in this country," said Sgt. Schrimer Steben, 25 years. "I can have a life now, although I know I will go to Afganisthan in 2013."

Relief to leave Iraq was also felt by Sgt Christian Schultz before he departed to leave the base of operations contingent on the Adder, about 300 miles south of Baghdad to the Kuwait border. "I have seen many good changes, a lot of progress, and also a lot of bad things."

In contrast, for the Iraq people, the presence of U.S. troops has left bitterness. Since the Yankees intervened in March 2003, tens of thousands of Iraqis have been victimized. "We're not thinking about America. They just left the mess," said Abbas Jaber, Iraqi officials in Baghdad.

On the other hand, after the withdrawal of U.S. troops, the Iraqi people was overwhelmed with fears of sectarian conflict as happened in the period 2006-2007. Moreover, the violence, suicide bombings and reprisals between Sunni and Shiite militias are still ongoing.

To overcome this situation, Prime Minister Nuri al-Maliki, who comes from Shiite groups continues to struggle up a power-sharing between Shiites, Kurds, and Sunni. However, al-Maliki have to deal with the interests of Arab countries, mostly from the Sunni and Iran which is dominated by Shiite.


Is Mecca looking like Manhattan?
The city is being compared to Manhattan with the pace of high-rise buildings that are dotting the skyline.

C O U P L E : Wayne and Laurie Hallquist

Wayne and Laurie Hallquist with Stewart Claxton from Guinness as they are named the world's tallest married couple

The Hallquists, who live in Stockton, California, measure a combined 13 feet, 4 inches, or 407.4 centimetres, to be exact: Wayne stands 6 feet 10.4 inches, Laurie is 6 feet 5.95 inches

California couple stand out as world's tallest
LOS ANGELES (Reuters) - Their height made Wayne and Laurie Hallquist seem like an ideal match when they met seven years ago, and on Thursday they were matched with something else -- the title of world's

World's smallest woman's joy at Guinness award - Telegraph
Hatice Kocaman – the world's smallest woman at just 28 inches tall and weighing 15lbs – suffers from a rare bone disease that means that, at 21-years-old, she has the body mass of an eight-year-old baby.

Genetic mutation responsible for 'gigantism' disease -- or acromegaly -- identified
An international research team has identified the genetic mutation responsible for a disease known as "gigantism" or acromegaly.>06giant.html?_r=1

Charles Byrne, Irish Giant, Had Rare Gene Mutation
Researchers report that an 18th-century Irishman who gained wealth and fame as a 7-foot-7 freak of nature had a rare gene mutation that is probably shared by 200 to 300 people living today.


Acromegaly & Gigantism - Endocrinology - Medstudents
A review of Acromegaly & Gigantism with focus on etiology, pathogenesis and treatment.

NORTH KOREA : Kim Jong-il

N Korean leader Kim Jong-il dies
North Korean television announces the death of Kim Jong-il, who had led the communist nation since the death of his father in 1994.

Kim Jung-who? Ten facts – or rumors - about North Korea’s new leader — RT
With the youngest son of the late "Supreme Leader" of North Korea set to take the reins of the world’s most secretive state, little is known about a man who has been described as an out-of-shape heavy drinker who is the spitting image of his father.

Russia's President Dmitry Medvedev (R front) and North Korean leader Kim Jong-il (L) smile during their meeting at the "Sosnovyi Bor" military garrison in Siberia's Buryatia region in this August 24, 2011 file photo.

KNS Korean News Agency / Reuters/REUTERS
This file picture taken by North Korea's official news agency KCNA shows a central reporting convention to celebrate North Korean leader Kim Jong-il's birthday, which falls on February 16, in Pyongyang February 15, 2011. The characters on right read, "Celebrating February 16".

North Korean leader Kim Jong-il (L) and South Korean President Kim Dae-jung embrace as they bid farewell at Sunan airport, outside Pyongyang, in this June 15, 2000 file photo.

Kim Jong-il, front left, poses with his first-born son Kim Jong Nam, front right, and his relatives in Pyongyang in this Aug. 19, 1981 file photo. Others are Sung Hye Ryang, back left, elder sister of Kim's former wife Sung Hye Rim, Sung's two children Lee Nam Ok, center back, and Lee Il Nam, right back.

The story of Kim and North Korea

Japanese invasion. Most of Korea was under Japanese rule, but China's influence was still felt in many areas.

Kanghwa Agreement between China and Japan. This agreement made ​​Korea out of isolation and domination of China. Trade relations with Japan were also open.

War between China and Japan for the Koreans. Japan won the war and made Korea as a state under the protectorate of Japan.

Korea became Japanese colony.

Korean Communist Party (KCP) had been established, but doing the activity in the Soviet Union as a place of exile.

February 16, 1942
Kim Jong-il was born. Notes version of the Soviet Union said Kim was born in 1941 in Siberia.

August 15, 1945
South Korea's independence day.

9 September 1945
North Korean socialist country officially established.

The failure of reunification talks. Korea was divided in two parallel lines 38o to North Korea under the "protection" of the Soviet Union and South Korea with the United States.

9 September 1948
Proclamation of the Democratic People's Republic of Korea (North Korea). Kim Il-sung, President of KCP since 1945 became the leader of North Korea until 1994. In 1972, Kim became the President.

June 25, 1950
Kim Il-sung invaded to South Korea. Three days later Soviet troops helped to conquer Seoul.

September 1950
Forces of the United Nations which was dominated by the United States led by General MacArthur, came to South Korea to repel the North Korean forces.

26 November 1950
Chinese troops fought to help North Korea.

January 4, 1950
Seoul fell again. At that time, it fell into the hands of China and North Korea.

July 27, 1953
Agreement to form a demilitarized zone along the line of 38o and form a permanent war settlement solutions.

August 1971
Red Cross of North and South Korea for the first time to talk about solving the problem of "victims" of the Korean War. As a separate family.

September 1981
Labor protests in Chongjin, North Korea. A total of 500 people were killed during clashes with soldiers.

Bomb planted by North Korean intelligence agent exploded in Yangon, Myanmar, killing 17 people. Four South Korean ministers were killed. North Korean President Kim Il-sung was allegedly the mastermind of blasting.

20-23 September 1985
Family reunion of the two Koreas (30 North Koreans and 35 from the South) for the first time in Pyongyang and Seoul.

North Korea agreed to be host chaperone for the summer Olympics, but then boycotted.

Negotiations for the reunification began, but it did not make significant progress.

Kim's government rejected a visit plan of the inspector commission of the UN's nuclear weapons into North Korea and refused to sign the Non-Proliferation Treaty.

June 1994
Kim Il-sung died.

Kim Jong-il succeeded his father, Kim Il-sung as the leader of North Korea.

August 31, 1998
North Korea tested a nuclear weaponof a Taepodong - it is estimated could reach the U.S. west coast - toward the Pacific Ocean and across Japanese territory.

May 1999
Kim Jong-il to allow inspection of nuclear weapons for a replacement of food aid. At least 2.3 million North Koreans died of starvation.

June 1999
Peace talks North and South Korea in Beijing failed.

End of May 2000
Kim Jong-il visited Beijing. The visit was a first for North Korea's supreme leader abroad in the last 17 years.

13-15 June 2000
Summit between Kim Jong-il and Kim Dae-jung in Pyongyang.

January 30, 2010
For three consecutive days North Korean forces fired the weapon arteleri towards Yeonpyeong Island, owned by South Korea.

February 2010
The news agency Yonhap said Kim Jong-il trying hard to be healthy by eliminating black spots on his face that made him sick.

March 24, 2010
Kim Jong-il reportedly suffered from chronic kidney failure and had to undergo dialysis. He also reportedly was suffering partial paralysis on his body due to a stroke in 2008. The report presented by the Director of the Institute for National Security Strategy Nam Sung-wook of Yonhap news agency.

March 26, 2010
South Korean warship torpedoed by North Korea in the border region. A total of 46 South Korean soldiers were killed.

May 20, 2010
International investigators concluded Cheonon ship was torpedoed by North Korea, but Pyongyang has denied it.

29 September 2010
North Korea's Communist Party Congress pointed to Kim Jong-un, the Kim Jong-il's youngest son became the crown prince. As well as raise Kim Jong-un into Four Star General. Kim Jong-Un reportedly was 27 years old.

In addition to Jong-un, Kim Kyong Hui(Jong-il's sister) and Choe Ryong Hae (closest aide of Kim's family) were also appointed to be the general. Both of them has an important task as the guardian and enforcer of the collective leadership of North Korea if Kim Jong-il dies. Both would hand over the leadership to Jong-un when he was considered able to run the power.

October 9, 2010
Kim Jong-il's government successfully carried out tests to the underground nuclear weapons. Nuclear test was immediately condemned by many countries, particularly the countries in East Asia and Southeast Asia and Western countries.

October 29, 2010
Armed Forces of South Korea and North Korea shooting each other at the border.

23 November 2010
North Korean troops fired the artillery into South Korea's Yeonpyeong island near the border between the two countries. A total of 200 bomb artillery fired by North Korean troops met with about 80 shots from the South Korean forces.

As a result of the attack, 15 South Korean troops were killed. Many people suspected that the attack occurred because the North Koreans upset to see the South Korean forces along with the U.S. conducted the war exercises within 10 miles of the North Korean mainland. South Korean newspaper, Munhwa Ilbo, said the attack
had been approved by Kim as the supreme military commander.

29 November 2010
Wikileaks launched Kim's health news. Wire issued around June 2009 from the American Embassy in Singapore claimed Kim Jong-il was not in good health. Next on the wire in July 2009 declared Kim suffered the heart failure.

8 November 2011
Kim Jong-il was rumored had died. This issue made the stock market and the South Korean currency weak.

December 19, 2011
Kim Jong-il was reported by national television died on December 17, 2011.

My notes of daily news

Desembre 20, 2011
After the death of North Korean leader Kim Jong-il, it is officially confirmed, the the third high-level dialogue between North Korea and the United States that is planned to be held on 22 December in Beijing (China) seems can't be achieved.

More specifically, the influences that will impact the death of Kim Jong-il for the dialogue between North Korea and the United States is under the spotlight. According to a diplomat in Washington DC, the United States government also seems has not learned of Kim's death before and it will bring a big enough effect to the current relationship between North Korea and the U.S among the food support and bilateral dialogue.

The U.S government including the State Department, reportedly was to analyze the effect of the death of North Korean leader for the relationship between the U.S and North Korea and its follow-up.

Similarly the relationship between Korea and Japan. Although there is still resentment among Koreans against Japanese colonial rule and the unresolved territorial dispute over small islands which very high value for fishing, the two countries to foster trade relations and renew the cultural relations. But diplomatic relations and defense are not too close. But along with their allies, the United States has encouraged both countries to explore the direct military ties in recent months, after a North Korean attack.

Toshimi Kitazawa had said the North Korean provocations which destroyed the regional peace and security couldn't be tolerated anymore. It was unusual harsh words of Japan since the Second World War. What was not stated is the disappointment in East Asia about China's reluctance to condemn North Korea after it attacked a South Korean island.

Desembre 21, 2011
Government of South Korea, Japan and the United States were in full alert in connection with the death of North Korean leader Kim Jong Il,(69 years). South Korea which is technically still at war with North Korea, instructed their military along the border to monitor any developments. Vigilant attitude was also taken by Barack Obama, who was continuously contacted South Korean President Lee Myung-bak and Japanese Prime Minister Yoshihiko Noda. "We hope this sudden incident does not adversely affect the peace and stability on the Korean peninsula." said Japan's chief cabinet secretary, Osamu Fujimura.

According to him, PM Noda had ordered all levels of government to prepare for emergency situations. "We have to monitor all risks associated with the succession." Fujimura said.

Almost coincided with the announcement of Kim's death, North Korea launched short-range missile test on the east coast. South Korean news agency Yonhap citing the source of North Korea suspected the missile launch took place in the morning before North Korean television station to announce the Kim's death.

As reported by North Korean news agency KCNA, Kim passed away on Saturday (December 17, 2011) at 08.30 local time. Kim had a heart attack while riding the train in order to visit work. "He died because of physical and mental stress which posed of a working visit to the construction of this nation, "said the woman news anchor who dressed all in black, crying.

In Pyongyang, North Korean people's grief which had been abandoned by their leaders seemed very deep. Thousands of people were crying while kneeling and roared in downtown.

Succession of Kim Jong-il to Kim Jong-un was feared could cause ripples in the family and the military
Kim Jong-il era has ended along with his death. Communist state would be led by his youngest son, Kim Jong-un which is still fairly inexperienced. Leadership transition and the political map in the country has caused anxiety for the allies and enemies of North Korea.

The most crucial issue of Jong-il's death is whether "the Stalinist State" is able to survive after his death and carry out the transition of power to the youngest son Kim Jong-un smoothly. "The most likely scenario for this regime to collapse is the sudden death of Kim Jong-il. Now, the scenario is happening," said Victor Cha, former U.S. national security director for Asian affairs.

Although Jong-un has been prepared to be a substitute since September last year, China as North Korea and U.S. allies, South Korea and Japan that have been on opposite side continue to see this period as dangerous times. For a succession of Jong-il to Jong-un (which by the KCNA news agency dubbed the "Great Successor") is feared may cause the ripples in the family and the military.

Jong-un has two older brothers who previously had been called to be the heir to the throne of "the Dear Leader". The eldest, Kim Jong-nam has confirmed, "Personally I am against the transfer of power to the third generation of the family." So far, it is not yet known whether other family members also have similar views.

In addition, Jong-un will face a very closely challenge. Along with the power's shift in the North Korea to the third generation of Kim's dynasty, the country's economy is sinking. Millions of people are being hit by famine which makes nearly half the population of the country makes the future of North Korea to be full of uncertainties.

Stability in North Korea is now a major concern of all parties because it can cause ripples of harm. For China, stability in North Korea is very crucial, considering the border between the two countries are extending as far as 1415 kilometers. China also doesn't want a wave of refugees to their country if there is chaos in North Korea. In addition, China does not want a big change from the political map in Pyongyang because it can reduce the Beijing's influence. Although Pyongyang can't be trusted, Beijing still makes Pyongyang as a partner, because it can be a buffer zone with the U.S. and its allies such as South Korea and Japan.

"The Chinese concern is about the stability in North Korea. China will ensure the country remains stable." said Cai Jian, an expert on Korea at Fudan University, Shanghai. "I think security will be enhanced in the North. China will also probably increase the security along the border. If Kim's death caused confusion, then the wave of refugees would flood the border (China)," he said.

Stability in North Korea is also very important for Barack Obama, because it is associated with the management of plutonium that was developed by Jong-il. "If the succession was having problems, it means it will happen the seizure, including control of plutonium North Korea, not just the military control over the country," said Rod Lyon, Korea expert at the Australian Strategic Policy Institute in Canberra.

One thing is certain for the U.S. and its allies is a plan to restart negotiations to halt North Korea's nuclear will be delayed. Therefore, when Jong-il's death news was spread, Obama immediately called South Korea and Japan. "We remain committed to maintaining stability on the Korean peninsula as well as the independence and security of our allies," said White House press secretary Jay Carney.

Some experts estimate North Korea's new regime in Pyongyang during and after the succession will be more focus on strengthening the reins of power.

Desembre 22, 2011
The prediction which in circulation will take place a few moments. Kim Jong-un, (the youngest son Kim Jong-il) will be the successor of Kim dynasty in power in North Korea after his father passed away on Saturday, December 17, 2011. "Jong-un is the largest successor of the revolutionary struggle of the leader of Juche (North Korean official ideology) as well as the greatest leader of the party, army and our people," said the North Korea's KCNA news agency announcer.

Jong-un (27 years) is the son of the late Jong-il's marriage to his third wife (Ko Young-hee), Japanese-born former professional dancer who died in 2001 due to breast cancer. Jong-un was educated in Switzerland before returning to North Korea. When he returned to North Korea's capital, Pyongyang, Jong-un continued his education at the military university Kim II-sung (2002-2007).

Before 2001 Jong-un was a mysterious figure to the international public. But his name was suddenly worldwide after his father recovered from a stroke in January 2009. At that time, Jong-il chose Jong-un rather than the other two sons. Kim Jong-il has three sons: Jong-nam, Jong-chol and Jong-un. Jong-nam is the son of Kim's marriage with a Korean artist who later died in Moscow. Jong-nam (39 years) was not included in the consideration of his father after being deported from Japan for allegedly using fake passports to enter Tokyo Disneyland.

Jong-chol is the older brother of Jong-un. After adolescence, Jong-chol was suspected to be feminine. There was a speculation that he was suffering from an illness that caused him to produce more female hormones. Thus, the status of the crown prince was practically fell into Jong-un's hands.

To pave the way for his youngest son, Jong-Il gave the strategic positions. Jong-un, (who is a fan of basketball) was asked as Daejang a.k.a the four-star general of the North Korean military in September. Since then, Jong-un earned the nickname as a young general. Man who have bloated cheeks is eventually to lead the Commission of Defense, the most important governing body in North Korea.

A few months earlier, Jong-un visited China. During the visit, Jong-un had the support of China to occupy the highest position in the North. "The whole world sees someone who is basically still a child gets the support from China into North Korea's next leader." said the North Korean observers from Seoul University, Yang Moo-jin.

In August, Jong-un also accompanied his father to visit and meet Chinese president Hu Jintao. Not much information is known about Jong-un. In a book titled "I was Kim Jong-il's Chef" by a Japanese man with a pen name Kenji Fujimoto, Jong-un is the child who most resembles his father in terms of cruelty and strength of leadership.

After his father died, South Korean media reported Jong-un would not necessarily hold all of North Korea policy. Jong-il's brother in law (Jang Shong-thaek) will act as mentor to Jong-un. "I think the collective leadership of the party, government and military will run temporarily because of Kim Jong-un is still young, "said Moo-jin.

"The tensions will increase between Jang-thaek Shong and Kim because Kim has particularly no other choice but to share power with Jang," said the professor of North Korean studies, Ryoo Kihl-jae.

Many people think Jong-il was the president, when in fact, the title had become the property of Kim II-sung (Kim Jong-il's father) forever after the coronaration of the posthumous title of president for life. Meanwhile, Jongh-il was the chairman of the national defense commission (NDC), the center of North Korea's real power as well as supreme commander of the Korean people's army.

According to North Korean propaganda, Kim Jong-il was born on February 16, 1942 at a secret camp of rebels led by his father, near Mount Paektu, Korea. However, the analysts said he might be born in the Soviet Union when his father and Korean communists received the military training.

Kim Jong-il took over the North Korea when his father (the founder of communist countries, known as the "Great Leader" Kim Il-sung) died in 1994. Jong-il was respected in his country as a demigod and was known also as the "Dear Leader".

Intelligence experts revealed that Jong-il ordered the bombing that killed 17 senior South Korean official in Myanmar in 1983, also in the event of Korean Air jet bombing in 1987 that killed 115 passengers. He was also suspected to be the brain of kidnapping strategy of Japanese citizens to get cash, smuggling drugs through North Korean embassies and turned the country into the main producers of counterfeit money.

His greatest moment came when he hosted the first summit for the two Koreas, while South Korean president Kim Dae-jung visited Pyongyang on June 15, 2000. Jong-il's image was finally changed, from a leader who was known as a fearsome and mysterious became the leader and a good host.

Unfortunately, that moment changed when Pyongyang admitted to develop the nuclear weapons program in 2001. North Korea then expelled the inspector from the International Atomic Energy Agency in December 2002. In February 2005, North Korea has nuclear weapons and he rocked the world with two nuclear tests in 2009.

Online today
Although he was known to be anti-Western countries, but Kim Jong-il liked the western films. He was rumored to have over 20 thousand videos and DVD movies. "Cinema is an important place in the development of art and literature," said Kim Jong-il in his essay in 1987 about the theater and film director.

In his essay, Kim Jong-il also wrote comments about movies, including the creative process in filmmaking. Kim's penchant for enjoying the film continued to grow in the extreme films.

In 1978, long before replacing his father (Kim Il-sung), he ordered the kidnapping of South Korean film director.

Shin San-ok was kidnapped during a visit to Hong Kong and the agents dragged him into the in the car and took him to Pyongyang. He was locked up in jail
for several years and survived by eating grass and rice as punishment for trying to escape.

Desembre 22, 2011
Although Kim Jong-un is almost certain to be the successor of Kim Jong-il, but the puzzle of who the real holders of power in North Korea comes to the surface. It came to light because Jong-un would not be with so spontaneously to determine all of North Korea policy.

27-year-old man is assessed untested to take the leadership's baton from his late father. Determinant of the North's most vital policies such as the nuclear program will be taken over by the state advisor, the most powerful is Jang Song-thae (65 years) brother-in-law of the late Kim Jongil.

"Jang has played an important role during the Kim Jong-il's ill. He is able to manage the problem of succession and even North Korea's relations with the United States and China," said Yang Moo-jin from the University of North Korean Studies. "Jang is in charge of the process of Kim Jong-un in a legally and systematically leader to lobby the party and the military," he said.

The action was approved by Jang Kim Jong-il. He even had time to give authority to the Jang by lifting him as deputy head of the national defense commission in 2009. The position practically made ​​Jang become the second most important in North Korea since the commission was a pinnacle of power institutions in North Korea.

Furthermore, Jang is the caretaker of the North Korea as well as mentor to Jong-un when Jong-il dies at any time. Some observers assume that the Jang appointment was a tactical move of Jong-il to prepare heirs after he got the "enlightenment" of a stroke in 2008.

Jang Shong-thaek is regarded as a pragmatist who gained the trust of Jong-il in the country because of the political beliefs and economic policy. The man who chaired the department of light industry of the Workers Party had disappeared from North Korea publicly for two years before he returned in 2006. North Korea analysts based in Seoul Korea believes this period is the part of a power struggle that involves a number of people behind the second and third of Jong-il's wives.

The Jang Shong-taek respectable's position will not be obtained without the intervention of his wife, Kim Kyong-hui, (Jong-il's sister). Over the years, the brotherhood between the brother and sister were so close. Jong-il would often take Kyong-hui on a working visit in some areas in the North.

Some analysts suspected Jang and his wife could be misusing the mandate Jong-il and get rid of Jong-un for the sake of power. "This type of such power struggle would create a riot," said Yang Moo-jin. "But, Jang should think twice to get rid of Jong-un, because Jong-un is fully supported by Ri Yong-ho, chief of army staff of the North Korea.

North Korea's power structure watcher, Paik Haak-sun assess that Yong-ho was deliberately placed by Jong-il to maintain the balance of power. "Jang is loyal, but he's very powerful. It could be a source of concern (for Kim Jong-il)," said the professor of Sejong Institute.

Regardless of Jong-il's tactical steps before he died, North Korea's political elite wanted to preserve the power. "The leadership of North Korea is united. They understand they have to stand shoulder to shoulder in order not to be hanged one by one," said Andrei Lankov of Kookmin University in Seoul.

Therefore, it is almost certain that Jang-hui and Khong will protect their nephew as successor to Kim's dynasty.

Desembre 22, 2011
Death of Kim Jong-il four days ago raises a question, whether North Korea will be reunited with South Korea that have been separated since 1948. In the midst of a reunification deal which is still a mystery, the analysis suggests the process is done in stages as Hong Kong's return to the "Bamboo Curtain country". Reunification of two Koreas is asked not to imitate the methods that unite West Germany and East Germany.

Embodiment of German unity was relatively faster. However, the cost to unify Germany was very large. Unlike the case with the Hong Kong returned to China. The process was slow, but the cost was smaller.

"It will be chaos, the economy will slump as the movement of money from south to north, or the movement of money from north to south," explained Mercus Noland, an analyst of international economic from the Peterson Institute.

Until this moment, the unification of Germany has become a reference to unify the two Koreas, which until now they are still in the hostilities. South Korean parties have the intention to make reunification with North Korea. To move toward that dream, the academics and former German officials have been invited to Seoul, the capital of South Korea.

The selection of German Unity is because the South Korean government to assess the process of separation of two Koreas is not much different with Germany. Germany into two countries due to the background of the ideology and economic system model.

In October, two scientists (Hyung-Seok Kim of Sogang University, Seoul-South Korea and Seung Mo-choi from the University of Washington, USA)published their research about the possible cost of the two Korea's reunification. In their study, two experts were counting the cost prediction of Korea unification by comparing the process of German unification.

When reunification was done, the East German population was about a quarter of West Germany's population. West Germany's per capita income was four times higher when compared with East Germany. Conditions in two regions of Germany at that time is compared to what happened in the Korean mainland. Currently, the North Korea's population is approximately half of the South Korean population. South Korean per capita income is roughly 17 times higher than the North Koreans.

According to Kim and Choi, the cost of Korean unification will be large due to budget to reduce the economic gap between the north and south. South Korea's per capita income is also forecast to decline by 20% when compared with the situation when separated with the North. From this analysis, two researchers stated that equality obtained from the method of German reunification is expected will happen 25 years later when the same method is performed in Korea.

In addition to the large cost of reunification, the experts measure about the profit and loss when the two Koreas reunite. Economic analysis of institutions Goldman Sachs, Goo Hoo-kwon glance at North's mineral wealth in the region. If they unite, according to Kwon, the industries located in the South region can meet the needs of their minerals. "North Korea's mineral resources include the magnesite, coal, uranium, and iron ore worth 140 times than the gross domestic product 2008 (South Korea)," Kwon said.

Military support Jong-un
In the middle of the turn of the leader, the famine plagued the people of North Korea. North Korea's current condition is confirmed stable after the military give thefull support to Kim Jong-un. The North's military is commandeered by Ri Yong-ho, chief of staff of the armed forces North Korea, confidant of Kim Jong-il. This factor, according to Reuters news agency source who has affinity with North Korean and Chinese officials, minimizing the possibility of a coup. "It is very small chance. The military has vowed to be loyal to Kim Jong-un."

Furthermore, the source said single power held by Kim Jong-il will now be divided equally between Jong-Un, Jang Song-thaek, and the military. Jang Song-thaek (65 years), who is the Deputy Chief of Defence Commission is the brother-in-law of Kim Jong-il. He was given the mandate by the late Jong-il to be a mentor to Jong-un until he is ready to rule. The position of Kim Jong-un, Jang Song-thaek, and the military will be more lasting because the Chinese government has given a positive signal.

Yesterday, Chinese Prime Minister Wen Jiabao and four members of Politburos committee of the North Korea Communist Party visited the embassy in Beijing to convey the condolences for Jong-il's death. A day earlier, a similar visit also acted by Chinese President Hu Jintao and three other members of the communist party.

Desembre 22, 2011
In the middle of the turn of the leader, famine plagued the North Korea people. In the international conference on Humanitarian Aid and North Korea's Development held by the Friedrick Ebert Stiftung in early November, it was revealed that the floods hit several parts of North Korea. The floods destroyed a number of farmland and caused at least 7 million people lost their food resources.

At the end of September, a consortium consisting of five humanitarian organizations from the U.S. issued a statement about the famine that hit North Korea. "We are concerned, millions of North Koreans will be trapped in a political disagreement." Disagreement in question is the attitude of North Korea to continue to develop a nuclear program. On the other hand, the U.S., South Korea, and Japan do not want to disburse aid worth U.S. $ 900 thousand to North Korea until North Korea back to the negotiating table to halt their nuclear program.

Bright spots began to appear at the end of Septermber, two months after North Korea and South Korean delegations met at the event in the ASEAN Regional Forum in Bali. South Korean President Lee Myung-bak responded North Korea's desire to negotiate, but failed after Jong-il's death. All the world's humanitarian agencies have to wait for change of power in North Korea. The victim is the North Koreans themselves.

Geez, once you are on this blog just to spread the news of your death. I'm sorry.

But, well, of course, it is happy to be a leader who is loved by his people. They wept for his death. Meanwhile, there are also people who shouted with joy overflowing for the murder of their leader. One recent example: Libya.

Observing kaleidoscope of news in the year 2011, we assessed the Africa and Middle East with its Arab Spring were still classified as the news makers. Almost throughout the year 2011, the U.S. government attention had been exploited for this topic, and of course, more lively by the news of the death of Osama Bin Laden in May.

At the end of this year, my partner is also very careful to observe my physical changes. Though his observation on my physical change has nothing to do with all the news above, but never mind. I just want to type it. He thought I was pregnant. Ahem ahem... (Dahling, if your estimate is correct, it means I'll be a mother. O my! To imagine all of that really makes my heart beat faster. I repeat it, faster! Mmmm... being a mother, that is my biggest dream in my whole time. Darling, if we will have a baby next year, I do not know what else to say to you. I am forever indebted to you. Mmmmmmmmmmm....mwah! )

L I B Y A : Holding the Line
An extraordinary portrait of ordinary citizens at war

Libya independence: King Idris anniversary celebrated

Foreign Minister of the transitional government of Libya, Ben Ashour Khayil yesterday (22 Des) said his party was examining the contract of the company project from various countries, including China and expected China companies could immediately return to Libya.

Khayil met with Chinese Ambassador for Libya, Wang Wangsheng in Tripoli. Khayil said the Libyan government's very concerned about China's role in international affairs, and hoped to develop the economic cooperation and trade and political communication with China to improve the understanding. Libya's transitional government was willing to give facilities to the Chinese company that would develop business in Libya.

Wangsheng Wang said, after the Libyan war China was willing to participate in rehabilitation of Libya's post-war.


France debates Armenia 'genocide'
France's parliament is to debate a law making it illegal to deny that the killing of Armenians in WWI was genocide, as Turkey threatens "repercussions".

No time to be diplomatic: Turkey prepared to deliver a response to France
ArmeniaNow Turkish President Abdullah Gul has unsuccessfully tried to get in touch with his French counterpart Nicolas Sarkozy on the phone for two days, reports CNNTurk. The Turkish president’s spokesman Ahmet Sever said "under various pretexts the French president has refused to talk"
Welcome to Armeniapedia, an online encyclopedia about everything related to Armenia and Armenians. There are currently 6,220 articles.

Armenian Genocide Links

French President Nicolas Sarkozy urged Turkey to recognize the massacre of Armenians committed by Ottoman Turkish Empire in the First World War. "From 1915 to 2011, it is necessary to hold a reflection, Turkey should view the history for the massacre of thousands of Armenians by the Ottoman Turkish Empire. The rejection of this massacre is totally unacceptable," Sarkozy said during a visit visit to Armenia, as quoted by AFP on Friday (Octobre 7, 2011).

Sarkozy said that if Turkey didn't respond to this problem and didn't reconcile, he would use international law to take action against this massacre case. Sarkozy still hopes Turkey will recognize this genocide before he will step down from his position as President.

In 2007, Sarkozy has made Turkey become angry because he supported legislation that would indict the entire party which refuses to recognize the Armenian case as a genocide event.

About 500 thousand of Armenians were killed or died of starvation in the Armenian massacre incident. At that time, the Ottoman Turkish Empire cleansed the ethnic Armenian and herded the Armenia citizens to the Syrian desert and Mesopotamia to be slaughtered. The legend said that the Armenian genocide was the first genocide in the 20th century.

Armenian massacres is also one thing that complicating Turkey's membership in the EU. The attitude of Turkey which won't admit this massacre increasingly hampers the process of its membership in the European country organization. Turkey refused to acknowledge the incident. Turkey even threatened to return its ambassador in France when the law was confirmed. The law was judged by the Turks as a provocation. President Abdullah Gul also said that the law would override the freedom of expression and objective historical research. The law would also damage the relationship of Turkey and France.

Sarkozy refused to discuss the massacre of Armenian legislation with Turkish President Abdullah Gul by phone. Armenian massacres legislation which will be ratified by the French is got the major criticism from Turkey. Gul previously requested French to discuss the case with Turkey. "We don't get a reply from Mr Sarkozy in the last two days. Sarkozy doesn't dare to engage in dialogue with President Gul," said one source from Turkey, as quoted by Hurriyet, on Wednesday (Decembre 21, 2011).

France is planning the laws that will punish anyone who denies the Armenian genocide events. Many citizens of Armenian descent who currently lives in France urges France to confirm the law.


US Vice-President Joe Biden urges Iraq's leaders to resolve a deepening political crisis which has sparked fears of renewed sectarian conflict.

Dozens killed in Baghdad blasts
A series of bomb blasts across Iraqi capital leaves dozens dead and many more injured amid rising sectarian tensions.

Analysts said the series of explosions can't be separated from the political elite conflict involving Sunni and Shia in Iraq. It was feared would trigger a broader sectarian conflict between Shiites and Sunnis in Iraq.

There was no immediate claim of responsibility for the incident. Previously, the big bombers were always blamed on the alliance of the Baath party loyalists and the rest of the Tanzim al-Qaeda. However, a serious political crisis that befell Iraq has caused speculation about who was behind a series of bomb attacks.

In the context of political crisis has not reached a compromise solution, given the warring parties insisted on by its own attitude. Iraqi Deputy Prime Minister Saleh al-Mutlaq in an interview with Alarabiya revealed, the political crisis in Iraq is still a dead end. Saleh al-Mutlaq is one officer who was fired by Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki because he referred to Maliki as a worse dictator than Saddam Hussein.

Saleh al-Mutlaq who becomes a member of Iraq bloc denied that the group headed by Iyad Allawi was a cause of the current political crisis. According to him, not Iraq block that chose the timing of crisis, but even it was forced to engage in crisis.

Iraqi block led by Iyad Allawi was a tough competitor of the State of Law Coalition led by al-Maliki in parliamentary elections in March 2010. Iraq block consists of combination of Sunni factions and Shiites won 91 seats. The coalition of state law got 89 seats.

Through Al Jazeera television called for Al-Maliki to resign. The Vice-President Tareq Hashemi said an arrest warrant for him was a conspiracy made ​​by al-Maliki which carrying the sectarian agenda.

Meanwhile, Al-Maliki insisted reject a compromise solution. He threatened, if Iraq block pulled his ministers from the cabinet, then the new government with a national coalition would be formed. Law state coalition led by al-Maliki is a member of a national coalition of Shiite political factions. (two brothers, two brothers, why do you fight? do not you realize it could be exploited by a third party? lalalatrilili ...)


The many sides of Pakistan's 'Memogate' | Al Jazeera Blogs
He has been described as a "seasoned operator" and Pakistan's best captain for the treacherous political playing field that is diplomacy in Washington.

Mansoor Ijaz, the man who stirred up Pakistan's "Memogate" storm

Memogate and the media

Pakistan PM fears coup conspiracy
Pakistan's Prime Minister Yousuf Raza Gilani says there is a conspiracy to oust the civilian government, as he grapples with a damaging scandal.

Related Post : PAKISTAN - U.S.A Mansoor Ijaz / Fareed Zakaria's interview

U.S. Erred in Deadly Pakistan Strike
The U.S. conceded that it bore significant responsibility for the Nov. 26 American airstrike near the Afghan border that killed 24 Pakistani troops.

United States claimed responsibility for an air strike in Pakistan last month that killed 24 soldiers. The results of the U.S. military investigation which will be given to defense officials on Friday (23 Desembre 2011), showed the United States special forces and Afghanistan were wrong in concluding there was no Pakistani troops in the border area before giving approval to the attack, said an official who close to the investigation.

The investigation said the attack was considered justified when Pakistani troops fired first to the United States special forces and Afghanistan on the border. Pakistan demanded a full apology from President Barack Obama for the attack, while U.S. officials insisted that the 26 November incident was a regrettable mistake.

The U.S. government insisted, "No apology." The Pentagon claimed to have contacted theleaders of the Pakistan Army Gen. Ashfaq Pervez Kayani and conveyed their conclusions. It is estimated that Pakistan will be more angry to the U.S. because the U.S. said Islamabad also bore some responsibility for the incident. (ehhehe .... indeed, maybe because I love him --- my partner--- and he really has half of the American character: a little stubborn but gentle at heart!... ahoy .... and he still would say, "It's hard to me to I'm sorry, I just want yo to know" ... Yeah, dahliiiing .... it's hard to say sorry on your tongue, but in your heart, who knows, hm? ehheee .... I do not feel Pakistan will be getting angry because the results of this investigation. Truthfully, Pakistan has a forgiving character! just like me .... ahoy ...I have forgiven him not only because he did something wrong to me. But I also will forgive him because he would not apologize to me. It's true if I am mad at him for a reason, but it will not last long or protracted, because I also need him ... shahananaaa .... )

I'll be Home for Christmas

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"Thank you for your perception! I like your romantic side, even if I do not always comment and I'm glad that you're in my circle of friends."
(Courtesies by: Wolfgang A. Gerhardt)

Wolfgang A.Gerhardt : May be you like this Sunday collage

Cisca Zarmansyah : Before today, there never was a person doing this to me. You create a simple matter to look special. This is a special thing for me.

Cisca Zarmansyah : Thank you. I love it. I love you, my friend.

CieL- FreYa Ceastle : Hmm, he's so nice...

"I am me.
In all the world,
there is no one else exactly like me.
Everything that comes out of me
is authentically mine,
because I alone chose it --
I own everything about me:
my body,
my feelings,
my mouth,
my voice,
all my actions,
whether they be to others or myself.
I own my fantasies,
my dreams,
my hopes,
my fears.
I own my triumphs and successes,
all my failures and mistakes.
Because I own all of me,
I can become intimately acquainted with me.
By so doing,
I can love me
and be friendly with all my parts.
I know there are aspects about myself that puzzle me,
and other aspects that I do not know
-- but as long as I am friendly
and loving to myself,
I can courageously and hopefully
look for solutions
to the puzzles and ways
to find out more about me.
However I look and sound,
whatever I say and do,
and whatever I think and feel at a given moment in time
is authentically me.
If later some parts of how I looked,
and felt
turn out to be unfitting,
I can discard that which is unfitting,
keep the rest,
and invent something new
for that which I discarded.
I can see,
say, and do.
I have the tools to survive,
to be close to others,
to be productive,
and to make sense
and order out of the world of people
and things outside of me.
I own me,
and therefore,
I can engineer me.
I am me,
and I am okay."

(American Phychologist and Educator, 1916-1988)