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Posts Tagged ‘Turkey’

Assad: Erdogan thinks he’s Caliph, new sultan of the Ottoman (EXCLUSIVE)

Posted by Ram Kumar Shrestha on November 9, 2012

Bashar Assad speaking with RT′s Sophie Shevardnadze
Bashar Assad speaking with RT’s Sophie Shevardnadze

In an exclusive interview with RT, President Bashar Assad said that the conflict in Syria is not a civil war, but proxy terrorism by Syrians and foreign fighters. He also accused the Turkish PM of eyeing Syria with imperial ambitions.

Assad told RT that the West creates scapegoats as enemies – from communism, to Islam, to Saddam Hussein. He accused Western countries of aiming to turn him into their next enemy. Read the rest of this entry »

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World’s Deadliest Wealthy Countries

Posted by Ram Kumar Shrestha on April 5, 2012

By Howard Steven Friedman,  Statistician/Economist for International Organization, Columbia University

 Before diving into any detailed analysis of government data, I usually hear the voice of one of my professors telling his favorite statistics joke. It went something like this, “Statisticians are brilliant people. They can analyze raw data, develop complex models, draw causal inferences and make bold projections of the future. They do this fearlessly, without concern for the minor issue that the data itself came from the fellow down the hall who wrote down whatever he felt like so he could get paid.” Analyzing government data isn’t quite as bad as that joke, but statisticians do need to be concerned about the danger of “garbage in garbage-out” in any work that do.

So how do these concerns about data quality relate to identifying the world’s deadliest wealthy countries? It starts with the fact that the data for crime is notoriously fraught with quality issues. Criminologists use the phrase the “dark figure of crime” to describe the amount of crime that goes unreported or undetected. This “dark figure of crime” represents the gap between the true crime rate and the rate found in official reports.

Knowing that the “dark figure of crime” is so large, I decided to focus on homicide rates in this article. Why homicide? For starters, it is a critically important measure of crime since it is perhaps the most extreme of possible crimes, the taking of a life. More importantly, it is considered to be one of the more reliable crime statistics.

So which wealthy countries have the highest homicide rates? Of the 34 countries in the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD), the countries with the five highest homicide rates are, in order: Mexico (highest), Chile, Estonia, the United States and Turkey (fifth highest). Anyone looking at that list would likely call out the fact that these countries, while all being in the OECD, are not equally wealthy. In fact, the United States has a GDP per capita that is more than twice that of any of the other top four most deadly OECD countries. A simple scatterplot, where each data point represents a different country and the US is displayed prominently, gives a clearer picture of how America stands. The graph below shows that for the OECD countries, the US has one of the highest rates of GDP per capita (a rough, but commonly used metric of wealth). You will also quickly see that the US is a major outlier in the general observation that wealthier countries tend to have lower homicide rates. Read the rest of this entry »

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Clinton offers Gulf states joint AMD shield against Iran

Posted by Ram Kumar Shrestha on March 31, 2012

From left to right: Omani Minister of Foreign Affairs Yussef bin Alawi bin Abdullah, Kuwaiti Foreign Minister Sheikh Sabah Khaled al-Hamad Al-Sabah, US Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton and Saudi Foreign Minister Prince Saud Al-Faisal attend a US- Gulf Cooperation Council forum at the Gulf Cooperation Council Secretariat on March 31, 2012 in Riyadh. (AFP Photo / Fayez Nureldine) 

From left to right: Omani Minister of Foreign Affairs Yussef bin Alawi bin Abdullah, Kuwaiti Foreign Minister Sheikh Sabah Khaled al-Hamad Al-Sabah, US Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton and Saudi Foreign Minister Prince Saud Al-Faisal attend a US- Gulf Cooperation Council forum at the Gulf Cooperation Council Secretariat on March 31, 2012 in Riyadh. (AFP Photo / Fayez Nureldine)

US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton has proposed improved strategies with Arab Gulf states on maritime security and missile defense to counter the threat of Iran.

Clinton told a security conference in Saudi Arabia on Saturday that US commitment to the Gulf is “rock-solid and unwavering.” She stressed the US and Gulf governments share concerns about Iran’s nuclear activity and that partnership with the US has “enormous potential” to advance common interests.

Raising security ties from a bilateral to a multilateral level, Clinton is breaking new ground by taking part in the first strategic cooperation forum between Washington and the six-country Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC).

She said the US and Gulf States should take “practical and specific steps to strengthen mutual security, such as helping militaries improve interoperability, cooperate on maritime security and missile defense, and coordinate responses to crises.” US officials have said it is a US “priority” to help the GCC build a “regional missile defense architecture” against what they see as a looming ballistic missile threat from Iran. Read the rest of this entry »

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Must-Reads from Around the World: March 20, 2012

Posted by Ram Kumar Shrestha on March 20, 2012

Syrian President Bashar Assad speaking during a Ramadan Iftar banquet in honor of Muslim clergymen, in Damascus, Syria, 24 August 2011. (Photo: SANA / EPA)

SYRIAN PRESIDENT BASHAR ASSAD SPEAKING DURING A RAMADAN IFTAR BANQUET IN HONOR OF MUSLIM CLERGYMEN, IN DAMASCUS, SYRIA, 24 AUGUST 2011. (PHOTO: SANA / EPA)

More Syria Leaks – Al Jazeera reveals details from confidential Syrian intelligence and security documents handed over by one of the government’s most trusted officials who recently fled to Turkey. The trove shows President Bashar Assad’s strategy to suppress anti-government protests, including orders to stop protesters from getting into Damascus and detailed security plans for crushing protests in the cities of Aleppo and Idlib, as well as warnings about countries trying to influence Syrian diplomats to defect and indications the government spied on last year’s Arab League monitoring mission in Syria. Read the rest of this entry »

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The Obama Administration’s Syrian Double Standard

Posted by Ram Kumar Shrestha on February 14, 2012

By Amb Marc Ginsberg,  Former U.S. Ambassador to Morocco

“We do not want further militarization of the situation in Syria.” So sheepishly declared an Obama Administration spokesman today when pressed why isn’t the U.S. prepared to help defend defenseless Syrian protestors by providing humanitarian and perhaps financial and logistical support to the Free Syrian Army.

My how the tides have changed in the hallways of the Eisenhower Executive Office building.

When Col. Gaddafi’s forces were on the outskirts of Benghazi, White House staffers were falling all over themselves in a mad dash to declare to any and all that a humanitarian catastrophe demanded urgent international action to prevent an assault on innocent civilians. Nightmares of Rwanda and Bosnia compelled the burning of midnight oil at the State Department.

Abetted by a cavalry of outraged academics in Washington think tanks demanding action from the Administration, President Obama publicly signaled events demanded action and marshaled his top officials to explore every conceivable avenue to thwart Gaddafi’s forces. Secret arms deliveries were smuggled in to Libya courtesy of Qatar and Egypt. CIA operatives were parachuted in to help the nascent Libyan opposition forces. A NATO led no-fly zone was declared and enforced. No stone was left unturned to keep Gaddafi’s forces from killing civilians. Everyone was on red alert.

Fortunately, because of that example of presidential leadership a humanitarian catastrophe in Benghazi was averted and the Administration has been patting itself on the back ever since… never mind that Libya today is suffering a destabilizing outbreak of post-revolutionary violence threatening the very victory Administration officials crowed about. But, hey that’s no longer necessarily our business… right? Read the rest of this entry »

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Syria’s Double Diplomatic Muscle

Posted by Ram Kumar Shrestha on October 6, 2011

The double veto could be the first time in the history
Read the Article at HuffingtonPost

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After a U.N. Moment of Truth, Obama Will Struggle to Restore a Broken Mideast Peace Process

Posted by Ram Kumar Shrestha on September 28, 2011

by 

Perhaps nobody told President Barack Obama that last week’s United Nations showdown over Palestinian statehood was

Palestinians watch their President Mahmoud Abbas on TV as he delivers his speech at the United Nations during the General Assembly on September 23, 2011 in Ramallah, West Bank. (Photo: Uriel Sinai / Getty Images)

the proverbial “Emperor’s New Clothes” moment for his Mideast peace effort. U.S. officials are, this week, once again trying to herd the Palestinians back into the same unconditional talks that President Mahmoud Abbas had declared pointless and unacceptable all of last week. And, as if to amplify Abbas’ objection to talking while the Israelis continue to expand their grip on the occupied territories, Israel on Tuesday announced the construction of 1,100 new homes in the Gilo settlement the same day that its government accepted negotiating terms (coordinated with Israel) that were laid out last Friday by the Quartet — the U.S. and a backing vocal section comprising the EU, Russia and the U.N. Secretary General. Business as usual, in other words, from Washington’s side. But Abbas’ U.N. speech stated unambiguously that the Palestinians are no longer willing to indulge the illusion that open-ended talks while settlements continue to expand is doing anything to resolve the conflict.

“It is neither possible, nor practical, nor acceptable to return to conducting business as usual, as if everything is fine,” Abbas had told the U.N. “It is futile to go into negotiations without clear parameters and in the absence of credibility and a specific timetable. Negotiations will be meaningless as long as the occupation army on the ground continues to entrench its occupation, instead of rolling it back, and continues to change the demography of our country in order to create a new basis on which to alter the borders.”

The pablum served up Tuesday by State Department spokesman Victoria Nuland, however, suggests the U.S. has chosen, once again, to ignore Abbas. Saying the U.S. is “deeply disappointed” by the Israelis decision to build in Gilo, Nuland added, “We consider this counterproductive to our efforts to resume direct negotiations between the parties, and we have long urged both parties to avoid actions which could undermine trust… That doesn’t change the fact that we believe that the only way to get to two states living side by side in peace, in security, is through direct negotiations… and we are urging both parties to take advantage of the proposal that the Quartet put forward last Friday to come back to the table.” Read the rest of this entry »

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The 10 Countries With The Best Work-Life Balance: OECD

Posted by Ram Kumar Shrestha on June 3, 2011


In the list no USA, no UK, no Australia, no Japan and no Canada. Then why people moving to these countries?
Read the Article at HuffingtonPost

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Turkey Sex Video Scandal Forces Politicians To Resign

Posted by Ram Kumar Shrestha on May 21, 2011


Everywhere politician­s spoiling their own future due to sex scandle. If they can not control/ch­ange themselves how they can control/ch­ange the country?
Read the Article at HuffingtonPost

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Libyan Airspace ‘Under Control’ As Two Sides Meet

Posted by Ram Kumar Shrestha on March 25, 2011


Situation terrible.
Read the Article at HuffingtonPost

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Gaddafi Defies Ceasefire As Forces Attack Rebel Stronghold Of Benghazi

Posted by Ram Kumar Shrestha on March 19, 2011


This clearly shows the clear picture of the coming days there.
Read the Article at HuffingtonPost

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How to spend a billion dollars in Kyrgyzstan

Posted by Ram Kumar Shrestha on August 9, 2010

NEW YORK, 9 August 2010 (IRIN) – Nearly two weeks after international donors pledged more than a billion dollars in

An ethnic Uzbek lady stands outside her burnt down home in the Furkat District of Osh

aid to Kyrgyzstan, its caretaker government is busy working out how to turn the promises into hard cash, and experts say there is confusion about who will get how much aid, when.

The US$1.1 billion in aid pledged at the 27 July high-level donors’ conference in Kyrgyzstan’s capital, Bishkek, is not a lump sum. It is made up of multiple pledges which, if they materialize, will be distributed on different terms and at different times.

“Each international organization has its own rules for allocating funds,” First Deputy Prime Minister Amangeldi Muraliyev told the 24.kg news agency. so the figures cited last month “may be not exact but approximate”.

Muraliyev said Kazakhstan, Russia and Turkey had promised grants, while the World Bank offered loans at discounted rates, and the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development gave loans at commercial rates. Read the rest of this entry »

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