Tuesday, April 29, 2014

Ukraine, FYI

 Thomas Friedman has such an outrageous column in the NYT that I'm once more in my "cancel the subscription" mood.  The first three comments on his column are mine.  This below is the fourth, which for some reason, I cannot post.

The problem with "cancel the subscription" is that it helps empty the field for the Murdoch media, which is idiots worse than Friedman all the time.  The Murdoch media is transparently propaganda though, and in some sense may be less dangerous than Friedman's idiocy dressed up as sweet reason.


Nov 21, 2013:

"Russia is willing to take part in tripartite negotiations with Ukraine and the EU, but only if they are held before Ukraine signs an association agreement with the EU, Russian President Vladimir Putin said."

November 29, 2013:

The EU-Ukraine association agreement cannot be elaborated in the EU-Ukraine-Russia tripartite format, European Commission President Jose Manuel Barroso said at a press conference after the Eastern Partnership Vilnius summit.

He rejected as unacceptable the tripartite negotiations and the interference of a third country in the bilateral agreement and said there could not be a tripartite format in the elaboration of the bilateral agreement between the EU and Ukraine.

Some columns ago, Thomas Friedman at the NYT tried to convince us: "It would have been nice if we could have forged a compromise with President Vladimir Putin of Russia that would have allowed Ukraine to gradually join the European Union and not threaten him. President Obama tried to find such a win-win formula. But Putin is not into win-win here. He is into win-lose. So he must lose, for the sake of Ukraine and Russia."

Why was the offer of tripartite talks rejected outright?

The first three comments are under the fold:

John Oliver on the Indian Elections

Here.  (via a friend on Facebook).
Or here:

Common sense: Kareem Abdul-Jabbar

Los Angeles real-estate billionaire Donald Sterling, eighty years old, owner of the basketball team, the Clippers, was recorded making racist remarks during an argument with his girl-friend; and the recording was made public. 

A basketball-great, and now a common-sense-great, Kareem Abdul-Jabbar, has written well about this: Welcome to the finger-wagging Olympics:
What bothers me about this whole Donald Sterling affair isn’t just his racism. I’m bothered that everyone acts as if it’s a huge surprise...... He was discriminating against black and Hispanic families for years, preventing them from getting housing. It was public record. We did nothing. Suddenly he says he doesn’t want his girlfriend posing with Magic Johnson on Instagram and we bring out the torches and rope. Shouldn’t we have all called for his resignation back then?

Shouldn’t we be equally angered by the fact that his private, intimate conversation was taped and then leaked to the media? Didn’t we just call to task the NSA for intruding into American citizen’s privacy in such an un-American way? Although the impact is similar to Mitt Romney’s comments that were secretly taped, the difference is that Romney was giving a public speech. The making and release of this tape is so sleazy that just listening to it makes me feel like an accomplice to the crime. We didn’t steal the cake but we’re all gorging ourselves on it.
 Read the whole thing.

Monday, April 28, 2014

Spring - April 14


Sunday, April 27, 2014

Mostly Daffodils


Saturday, April 26, 2014


John Dewey (via teacherken on dailykos.com)
What the best and wisest parent wants for his child, that must we want for all the children of the community. Anything less is unlovely, and left unchecked, destroys our democracy.

Friday, April 25, 2014

De-Macaulayization - 5

Some lines from Aatish Taseer caught my eye - they point to the urgent need for de-Macaulayization.
But read the whole thing.

So much of {Sarojini} Naidu’s attitude—her easy contempt for cultural things, her foolish disregard of Coomaraswamy, her inability to grasp the relationship between culture and politics—is still prevalent among English-speaking Indians today. For India, even after decades of political independence, never really got around to culture. And what a heavy price she has paid! India is not an authority on her own past; Indians do not write the great works of Indology; modern India’s cultural life is stunted and slavish. Her young people live in a state I would describe almost as a kind of linguistic apartheid, in which they are routinely made to feel small for not knowing English, the power of which they see around them all the time. Worst of all: through their education system, they are systematically denied contact with India’s classical past, which would nourish their interior life and bring forth their genius.

A few days ago, in my conversation with students at Benares Hindu University, I encountered some of the agony this experience can cause. At first glance the university—set up in 1916—seems to be the exact expression of a vital relationship between a modern culture and its classical past. It is a vast and beautiful university, its streets scalloped with the heavy shade of north India’s great trees. Its impressive buildings of mixed accents, all yellow and red, seem to strive for a synthesis between the traditional and the modern. There are, in its Sanskrit faculty, departments of m-ım-a .ms-a—Indian hermeneutics! But BHU, though it contains the spirit of a time when India really was in the midst of a cultural awakening, seems, like India itself, not to have been able to come through on the promise of that time.

And that wasted promise will produce anger. It was easily audible in the voice of a young PhD student of Hindu Law—Priyankar Aggarwal—when he spoke of his education, which far from being nourishing, had been a trauma. “You might not believe me,” he told me, one windless afternoon, a few days ago, “I studied until the 12th in an English medium school. But, at the end of it, I could neither speak English nor understand it. That is the effect of this modern education system.” The word he used again and again, and with great effect, to describe the stultifying effect of his education was stereotyped.
“In Sanskrit, I saw a vast horizon. That is why I chose it. But in the other subjects, it was so stereotyped. Just mug up what’s in the textbook, give the exams, get your marks, and bhool jao: bhaadh me jaaye!” It was nirasa, he said. And this word, when it came from his mouth, this man who truly knew what rasa was, seemed to contain all rasas’ meanings: not just sap or juice or flavour, but essence. This was what he felt his education had lacked. I knew very well what he meant. My own education, though it had included a far more profound engagement with the West, had left me with a similar feeling of lack. It was what had brought me to Sanskrit too, and the language had given me more than I could ever have imagined. What is it Wilde says of Christ in De Profundis? ‘…like a work of art: he does not teach anything, but by being brought into his presence one becomes something.’

Wednesday, April 23, 2014

On the power of LISP


Bion of Borysthenes, an ancient Greek author, observed that “Boys throw stones at frogs in sport, but the frogs die in earnest.” The little boys are the Washington hawks. The frogs are the rest of the world.-- Professor Juan Cole.

Sunday, April 20, 2014

The Purpose of Alabama's Current Constitution

The Constitution of the State of Alabama, adopted in 1901, is the sixth constitution that state has had.  The purpose of establishing that Constitution?

From the second day of the 1901 Constitutional Convention: (emphasis added)

CHIEF JUSTICE McCLELLAN - Gentlemen of the Convention, I have the honor and pleasure of presenting to you the gentleman whom you have elected to preside over your deliberations, the Honorable John B. Knox of Calhoun County.

MR. KNOX - Gentlemen of the Convention:

I thank you for the high honor you have conferred in electing me to preside over the deliberations of this Convention. Viewed from the standpoint of my profession, to which, up to this moment, my life's work has been devoted, it is a great honor, indeed; for I know of no higher honor that can be conferred upon a lawyer than to be made President of the Constitutional Convention, which represents the sovereignty of his people; and numbers among its delegates, in large part, the intellect and talent of the State - those who have in the past, and will in the future exert a potent influence in shaping and directing the affairs of the State.

In my judgment, the people of Alabama have been called upon to face no more important situation than now confronts us, unless it be when they, in 1861, stirred by the momentous issue of impending conflict between the North and the South, were forced to decide whether they would remain in or withdraw from the Union.

Then, as now, the negro was the prominent factor in the issue.

The Southern people, with this grave problem of the races to deal with, are face to face with a new epoch in Constitution-making, the difficulties of which are great, but which, if solved wisely, may bring rest and peace and happiness. If otherwise, it may leave us and our posterity continuously involved in race conflict, or what may be worse, subjected permanently to the baneful influences of the political conditions now prevailing in the State.

So long as the negro remains in insignificant minority, and votes the Republican ticket, our friends in the North tolerate him with complacency, but there is not a Northern State, and I might go further and say, there is not an intelligent white man in the North, not gangrened by sectional prejudice and hatred of the South who would consent for a single day to submit to negro rule.

If the negroes of the South should move in such numbers to the State of Massachusetts, or any other Northern State, as would enable them to elect the officers, levy the taxes, and control the government and policy of that State, I doubt not they would be met, in spirit, as the negro laborers from the South were met at the State line of Illinois, with bayonets, led by a Republican Governor, and firmly but emphatically informed that no quarter would be shown them in that territory.

One has studied the history of recent events to very little purpose who has failed to discover that race prejudice exists at the North in as pronounced a form as at the South, and that the question of negro domination, when brought home, will arouse the same opposition in either section.

And what is it that we want to do? Why it is within the limits imposed by the Federal Constitution, to establish white supremacy in this State.

This is our problem, and we should be permitted to deal with it, unobstructed by outside influences, with a sense of our responsibilities as citizens and our duty to posterity.
One might argue that the Alabama Constitution has been sufficiently amended that the original goal no longer applies.  One might also note that the thrust of American "promotion of democracy abroad" has often been not reforms of the target nation's political culture, but a revolution -- which leads to the question - why does that not apply to Alabama?   Should not Alabama at least hold another Constitutional Convention where, even if they vote to keep their Constitution as-is, they explicitly renounce the idea with which it was created?

I leave you with another gem from the same speech quoted above:
As stated by Judge Cooley, the right of suffrage is not a natural right, because it exists where it is allowed to be exercised only for the good of the State--to say that those whose participation in the affairs of the State would endanger and imperil the good of the State have nevertheless, the right to participate, is not only folly in itself, but it is to set the individual above the State.
Saddam Hussein (or Bashar al-Assad, or the US allies of Saudi Arabia, Bahrain, Kuwait, etc.)  could argue that they were following this policy;  they were allowing the right of suffrage only where it is to be allowed for the good of the State.


Monday, April 14, 2014

Wall Street killed the goose that laid golden eggs

If this dailykos.com story is correct,  the average American thinks the stock market is rigged and wants no part of it.  So, trading volume at the New York Stock Exchange is at a fifteen-year low.
The slump in trading volume is so pronounced that the big investment banks have had to resort to multiple rounds of deep layoffs, resulting in tens of thousands of investment bankers losing their jobs.
Effective regulation is what makes the market work; but few people in politics and even fewer on Wall Street want to concede that the government has a role in sustaining the market.

Sunday, April 13, 2014

Hudson Institute: The Wrong Enemy

 The video of a Hudson Institute event is available here.
New York Times correspondent Carlotta Gall reported from Afghanistan and Pakistan from 2001 to 2013. She is among those who believe that the problems faced in Afghanistan can be traced back to the policies of Pakistan’s politico-military-intelligence establishment. Her latest book, The Wrong Enemy: America in Afghanistan 2001-2014, is filled with firsthand accounts of Gall’s meetings and interviews with politicians, generals, jihadis and intelligence personnel from Pakistan, Afghanistan and the United States. In an excerpt printed in the New York Times, Gall asserted that not only did Pakistan fuel the Taliban but that elements within Pakistan’s intelligence services even protected Osama bin Laden.

On the launch of The Wrong Enemy, Hudson Institute hosted a book talk with Carlotta Gall. Writer and analyst Dr. Mohammad Taqi joined Gall to discuss her work and the US-Pakistan relationship. Hudson Senior Fellow Husain Haqqani, former Ambassador of Pakistan to the United States, moderated the event.

Saturday, April 12, 2014

The Great American Lawn Scam?

Having (uncharacteristically) done the (supposedly) prescribed lawn care last autumn, I was surprised how bad the lawn in the backyard had done.   I have to replant substantial portions of it, so what am I doing indoors writing this on a nice sunny day, ideal for yard work?

Long story short - I want to plant fine fescue.  Fine fescue is not sold by the usual stores in New Jersey.  Had to order seed from out-of-state.  The delivery got delayed (a mis-routed railway wagon, apparently). So here I am with no seed.

The longer story:

What is culture?

Having encountered the "they all drink coke and wear blue jeans, so belong to the same culture", this page full of definitions of what culture is, is refreshing.

For the purposes of the Intercultural Studies Project, culture is defined as the shared patterns of behaviors and interactions, cognitive constructs, and affective understanding that are learned through a process of socialization. These shared patterns identify the members of a culture group while also distinguishing those of another group.
"Culture is the shared knowledge and schemes created by a set of people for perceiving, interpreting, expressing, and responding to the social realities around them"

Wednesday, April 09, 2014

A.K. Ramanujam: Is there an Indian way of thinking?

Tuesday, April 08, 2014

The Rush to War with Syria

(via turcopolier.typepad.comP

Remember when the Syrian Government allegedly used poison gas on its people? And the big rush to war which ultimately Obama ended by accepting the Putin+Syria offer to destroy all its chemical weapons under international supervision?

Seymour Hersh narrates:

Obama’s change of mind had its origins at Porton Down, the defence laboratory in Wiltshire. British intelligence had obtained a sample of the sarin used in the 21 August attack and analysis demonstrated that the gas used didn’t match the batches known to exist in the Syrian army’s chemical weapons arsenal. The message that the case against Syria wouldn’t hold up was quickly relayed to the US joint chiefs of staff. The British report heightened doubts inside the Pentagon; the joint chiefs were already preparing to warn Obama that his plans for a far-reaching bomb and missile attack on Syria’s infrastructure could lead to a wider war in the Middle East. As a consequence the American officers delivered a last-minute caution to the president, which, in their view, eventually led to his cancelling the attack.


A series of chemical weapon attacks in March and April 2013 was investigated over the next few months by a special UN mission to Syria. A person with close knowledge of the UN’s activity in Syria told me that there was evidence linking the Syrian opposition to the first gas attack, on 19 March in Khan Al-Assal, a village near Aleppo. In its final report in December, the mission said that at least 19 civilians and one Syrian soldier were among the fatalities, along with scores of injured. It had no mandate to assign responsibility for the attack, but the person with knowledge of the UN’s activities said: ‘Investigators interviewed the people who were there, including the doctors who treated the victims. It was clear that the rebels used the gas. It did not come out in public because no one wanted to know.’

Race in America - just 14 years ago.

Wiki: ( http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Whispering_campaign )

During the 2000 Republican presidential primary, Senator John McCain was the target of a whisper campaign implying that he had fathered a black child out of wedlock. (McCain's adopted daughter is a dark-skinned child from Bangladesh). Voters in South Carolina were reportedly asked, "Would you be more likely or less likely to vote for John McCain if you knew that he fathered an illegitimate black child?". McCain would later lose the South Carolina primary, and the nomination, to George W. Bush.

In addition, on the week of the nomination vote, dozens of radio stations were called on the same day asking talk show hosts what they thought of McCain's fathering of a black child out of wedlock. McCain later said of the incidents:
"There were some pretty vile and hurtful things said during the South Carolina primary. It's a really nasty side of politics. We tried to ignore it and I think we shielded [our daughter] from it. It's just unfortunate that that sort of thing still exists. As you know she's Bengali, and very dark skinned. A lot of phone calls were made by people who said we should be very ashamed about her, about the color of her skin. Thousands and thousands of calls from people to voters saying, 'You know, the McCains have a black baby.' I believe that there is a special place in hell for people like those."
 Is there a comparable phenomenon in Indian politics?   Perhaps with respect to Muslims?

PS: More on Bush-McCain-South Carolina:

Sunday, April 06, 2014

A debate worth reading

Coates v. Chait.  Really worth reading, both to understand America, and to enjoy good writing. Also provides an example of an almost total disconnect, when one person's ideas simply do not fit into another person's worldview.

Overview on dailykos.com.

Coates' first essay.

Chait's reply.

Coates' reply to Chait.

Chait's second.

Coates' third.

Chait's third.

Coates' fourth.

Coates' fifth.

Saturday, April 05, 2014

Nannygate Revenge?

A lot of noise is being made about a New York Police Officer being held in New Delhi for carrying bullets to the airport. It is supposedly in retaliation for NannyGate - the arrest and strip-search of Indian diplomat Devyani Khobragade.

So the following may be taken to be NannyGate first strikes?  Before we get to India, may we remember that in 2004, a person caught carrying bullets at Heathrow Airport in the UK triggered transatlantic probes?
Investigations have been launched on both sides of the Atlantic after a man was stopped at Heathrow Airport allegedly carrying bullets in his coat.  
  The 45-year-old Sudanese man, who flew to Heathrow from Washington DC's Dulles Airport on Wednesday morning, is being held in London under the Terrorism Act. 
You will find below that people of varied nationalities, Indian politicians and legislators, even a pilot and even a policeman have been arrested for having ammunition at the airports all over India.

July 2003, Mumbai: Interesting, as it shows some preferential treatment, but that perhaps because  diplomatic immunity applies.
The Tanzanian minister in charge of poverty reduction, Edgar Maokola-Majogo, has admitted that Indian police found a single bullet in his possession at Mumbai airport, but denies any ulterior motive.

The bullet was found in the minister's brief case

Mr Maokola-Majogo says the bullet was found by Indian security agents minutes before he boarded his flight back to Tanzania after attending a conference on poverty reduction in India.

He told the BBC that the bullet was inadvertently left in his brief case when he left the Tanzanian capital, Dar es Salaam, for India.

"The special hunting gun bullet accidentally dropped from a packet inside my brief case which also had all my conference papers," said Mr Maokola-Majogo.

He says that he is an ardent hunter and is licensed to carry a hunting gun in Tanzania.

"What could I do with a single bullet without my hunting gun which I left back in Tanzania," asked the minister.

Tanzania's Majira newspaper on Thursday quoted Indian press reports as saying that the minister had been held by Indian security agents for about eight hours after bullets were found in his possession.

But Mr Maokola-Majogo says that Indian police neither harassed, arrested or charged him with any offence.

He says that he voluntarily wrote a one-page statement regarding the bullet found in his possession and was immediately allowed to proceed with his journey home.

November 2003, Delhi
The IGI Airport police arrested a Japanese national, identified as Makita Masaru, with a .38 bore bullet from his baggage. The Japanese national was planning to board an Uzbekistan Airlines plane intended for Tashkent. The bullet was detected during X-Ray screening of his baggage.
December 2003, Calcutta
http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/city ... 394560.cms
KOLKATA: A 50-year-old man was detained at the Netaji Subhas Chandra Bose International Airport on Monday after security personnel found a bullet in his luggage.

David Ramnunsanga, the passenger booked on Alliance Air flight CD 7211 to Aizwal, was apprehended around 10.30 am when a .22 bullet was found in his handbag at the baggage X-ray conveyor.
December 2005, Calcutta
Calcutta: M.G. Bopanna, 22, a second-year student of Loyla College, Chennai, was arrested at Dum Dum airport on Friday after a bullet was found on him. He came here from Guwahati, where his father works in a tea estate, and said his grandfather’s bullet was his lucky charm.
December 2005, Thiruvananthapuram (Trivandrum)
{Dr. Gilad Haskin from Israel} In December 2005, on my way from India to Sri Lanka, whilst leading a group of travelers including both my parents, I was arrested at the airport of Tribandrum after a bullet shell was found in my hand luggage.  It seemed as this could have been explained to e merely an error, yet to my dismay and sorrow this minor error evolved into a "Kafka-style daemon dance".

September 2006, Mumbai
http://www.ynetnews.com/articles/0,7340 ... 76,00.html
An Israeli woman in her 20's was arrested Thursday morning in Mumbai, after arriving at the city on an El Al flight from Israel, Ynet has learned. The young woman was arrested after a cartridge loaded with 16 9-mm bullets was found in a bag she was carrying, which belonged to her brother.
February 2007, Chennai
Kerala CPI(M) secretary Pinarayi Vijayan sent the cops at Chennai airport into a tizzy on Friday evening, with the X-ray machine at the security check spotting five live cartridges of a .38-revolver in his laptop case.

The CPI(M) leader was immediately led away for questioning, and he gave a written explanation that it belonged to his own licensed revolver. The cops, however, took their time verifying his claim with the police in his native Kannur, before he was allowed to go with no charges. 

April 2007, Calcutta
A businessman from Jamshedpur was arrested at Calcutta airport on Wednesday morning, after six bullets were found in his handbag. Police said Sanjay Palsania, 37, was scheduled to travel on an Indian flight from Calcutta to Mumbai. During the security check, the Central Industrial Security Force officer at the X-ray machine detected the 7.65-mm bullets. Palsania told police that he was carrying the bullets in the handbag by mistake. 
April 2008, Siliguri
U.S. nationals Monica Bond and her daughter Heather, detained after 9 mm cartridges were found in their baggage during a security check at West Bengal’s Bagdogra airport on Monday, are now in the Siliguri Special Correctional Home.

A senior official of the U.S. Consul General, Kolkata, visited the women at the correctional home on Wednesday, their lawyer Abhaypada Chatterjee told The Hindu over telephone from Siliguri.
Tourists from California, they were arrested under the Arms Act, 1959, and remanded to judicial custody for three days by the Additional Chief Judicial Magistrate’s court in Siliguri on Tuesday.
May 2009, Mumbai
An Israeli citizen was arrested at the Mumbai airport in India on Wednesday after being found in possession of a rifle magazine.

Jerusalem resident Natan Magar is believed to be a high-tech company's employee who finished a visit to the country and was returning to Israel.
Officials believe he left Israel with the cartridge in his possession.
May 2009, Pune
Pune, India - A live bullet was found on Daniel Abraham Ifriti by Lohegaon airport police earlier this month when he landed from Delhi.

The Lohegaon airport police has confirmed that 54-year-old Israeli national Daniel Abraham Ifriti, who was held on May 5 on charges of carrying a live bullet into the country, will be chargesheeted tomorrow.

Landing in trouble: Ifriti was held by airport police on charges of carrying a live bullet into the country.
August  2009, Bhopal  {Note: MLA = Member of the Legislative Assembly}
BHOPAL: A Chhattisgarh MLA was caught by security personnel at Raja Bhoj Airport in Bhopal on Wednesday with live cartridges.

T S Singhdeo, Congress MLA from Ambikapur (Chhattisgarh), known as 'Babaji' in his constituency, was arrested at the airport for allegedly trying to smuggle ten live cartridges into a Jet Airlines flight on Wednesday morning, police said. The ammunition was found during the initial screening of his luggage. The MLA was to board a flight from Bhopal to Raipur, scheduled for departure at 10.30am.

"Those were .27 cartridges meant for a rifle. The MLA — who is from the erstwhile royal family of Sarguja in northern Chhattisgarh — has been booked under Arms Act and produced before court which granted him bail," said Jaideep Prasad, Bhopal SP.
March 2011, Delhi
http://medcitynews.com/2011/03/st-jude- ... rt-search/
St. Jude Medical’s (NYSE:STJ) chief executive officer was arrested in India on Wednesday after authorities at the Delhi airport found a single live round tucked into a knee pocket of his cargo pants, according to media reports.

Daniel Starks was in India on business and was about to take a chartered flight from the Indira Gandhi International Airport to Dharamsala. But he was stopped by India’s Central Industrial Security Force in the airport’s VIP lounge. Authorities found a 45-caliber shell in his pants. Such a caliber is most often associated with a handgun.
April 2011, Mangalore
Mangalore: A Doha bound traveler from the Mangalore international airport  was arrested on Sunday April 3, after a round of ammunition initially identified as a small bullet was found in his possession. The traveler has been identified as a  student named Mohammed Sabik (26) from Talangare near Kasargod.

Mohammed had arrived at the Mangalore airport on Sunday morning to travel to Doha on the Sunday morning Air India Express and was detained during the routine security check. A bullet was found in his Wallet.

Mohammed is said to be resident of Qatar and is pursuing his MBA in the Gulf.  According to him he had enrolled on a arms training course offered by the Police Shooting Training Centre in Qatar where he paid  75 rials for 25 rounds of ammunition to be used during his training. Out of the lot he is said to have slipped in a bullet.  He is said to have kept the bullet in his check in luggage during his travel to India to visit his relatives in Kerala.

He was handed over to Bajpe police station. The Police registered a case and produced him to court.
May 2011, Delhi
A pilot of an air charter company, who was to fly BJP president Nitin Gadkari to Nagpur and Gorakhpur on Tuesday, was stopped at Delhi airport by CISF personnel after he was found carrying live ammunition in his baggage.

Aero Air pilot, 33-year-old Canadian Rafael Jose Hubbard, was arrested by Delhi Police for illegal possession of ammunition. He was later released on a bail bond of Rs 20,000.
June 2011, Mumbai
WACO(July 23, 2011) -- A Baylor University student has spent more than a month stranded in India after she was arrested at an airport in Mumbai.

The student from Austin, who's name isn't being released, has been in India on a mission trip with Waco's Antioch Community Church since June 4.

The student was headed back to the United States on June 21, when security guards stopped her at the airport, saying she had a bullet in a pocket of her backpack.

The Director of International Operations at Antioch, Shawn Griesemer, said the student had no idea where the bullet came from.

August 2011, Kolkata  {Note: NRI = Non-Resident India}
KOLKATA: An NRI was today arrested from the Kolkata airport after a bullet was found in his handbag, police said.

Mono Murugan (45) who had come from the US was about to board another flight to Mumbai from the airport here when the .3 bore bullet was found from his handbag during security checking, they said.

He was subsequently arrested by the airport police and will be produced in the court tomorrow, officials said. 
October 2011, Mumbai
The 23-year-old Israeli national, Nurit Toker, who was recently arrested by the Sahar airport police for allegedly carrying two live firearm cartridges, has moved the Bombay high court seeking quashing of the proceedings initiated against her. Her contention is that the cartridges were kept in her bag by sheer mistake.

Toker’s plea states that she completed her compulsory three-year military training in Israel on October 18, 2011, and had planned a vacation to India, Nepal and Thailand. She was about to leave for Nepal from Mumbai International Airport, when the cartridges were detected in her bag by the Central Industrial Security Force (CISF).
November 2011, Agartala
Agartala, Nov 10 (IANS) Youth Congress leader Anil Dhantori, who came here to oversee Congress general secretary Rahul Gandhi’s programme in Tripura, was Thursday detained by security personnel at the Agartala airport following the recovery of a bullet from his baggage.
Later Dhantori, also a member of the Haryana assembly, was released by the CISF (Central Industrial Security Force) without being handed over to the Tripura police.
January 2012, Goa
Police in India have apprehended a Swedish member of the armed forces when she allegedly attempted to board a plane carrying a live bullet in her baggage.....According to the paper, the Swedish woman works with logistics for the Swedish army, but was arrested by security at the Dabolim airport in Goa while on holiday, after a live bullet showed up in the security check of her luggage.

February 2012, Udaipur
A 21-year-old New Zealander, Harper Alexander Ralph, is arrested at an airport in India's Rajasthan state with three live cartridges in his possession. No explanation for the illegal carry-on items seems to have been given.

A New Zealand national, Harper Alexander Ralph, was arrested in possession of three live cartridges for a .22mm gun.

The bullets were found during a security check at an airport in Udaipur district of India's northwestern Rajasthan state on Tuesday.
March 2012, Madurai  {Note: MLA = Member of the Legislative Assembly }
Madurai:  The airport security at Madurai on Friday seized a box containing 21 bullets from the Aravakurichi DMK MLA K C Palanichamy and handed him over to the police.

However, the MLA was let off after he told the police that his Personal Assistant had inadvertently put the bullet box in his personal baggage instead of the medicine box.

The Superintend of Police asked him to give a written statement before ordering his release.

May 2012, Delhi
http://stayingsafeabroad.blogspot.com/2 ... -live.html
(also see http://www.firstpost.com/fwire/american-arrested-with-live-cartridges-at-delhi-airport-322358.html )
US citizen Jeffrey Jinnin Worn was arrested at Indira Gandhi International Airport on Saturday (May 26) on charges of possessing of live handgun ammunition as he prepared to board an outbound Turkish Airlines flight. The ammunition in his bag was identified during a scan of his carry-on luggage.
June 2012, Delhi
http://archive.indianexpress.com/news/a ... ia/962984/
New Delhi: Dharmanand Gunanand Ratudi of Kandivali (West) in Mumbai was arrested at the IGI Airport on Saturday for allegedly carrying a .38 bore bullet in his hand bag, police said. CISF men claimed to have found the bullet during X-ray screening of his bag. 
June 2012, Delhi
A Punjab police official was on Tuesday arrested with 52 live bullets at the Indira Gandhi International Airport (IGIA) here just before he was about to board a flight to Manila, a CISF official said. Inspector Atul Soni, was going to Manila on a Philippines Airlines flight when his baggage containing variants of live and spent bullets was detected by CISF security personnel at at T3 terminal. Soni, who said he was posted in Mohali, had 46 live rounds of 9 mm pistol, 3 live rounds of 7.62 mm rifle and 3 live rounds of .32 bore rifle in his baggage, the official said.....Soni, who was travelling with his wife, was arrested under the Arms Act.
December 2012, Mumbai
An Israeli man was detained in Mumbai, India last week after he was found carrying two rifle bullets in his backpack, Yedioth Ahronoth reported Tuesday. Israel is working to secure his release.

The man, in his 20s, was on a post-army trip to the Far East and had apparently forgotten the bullets in his backpack during his service in a combat military unit.
At the airport, security guards found the bullets in his backpack and took him for questioning. He explained that the bullets were left there from his military service but failed to convince the Indian authorities which held him for two days before releasing him to house arrest. 

March 2013, Mumbai
http://www.israelnationalnews.com/News/ ... 0AYtl5lw_o
An Israeli man, 23, was arrested in Mumbai Airport at week's end after a bullet was found in his personal bag when he was about to board a flight to Nepal.

He is in jail and efforts are being made to free him.
July 2013, Aurangabad
http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/city ... 062706.cms
AURANGABAD: The MIDCCidco police on Friday arrested Sundar Baidansingh Yadav, a 42-year-old property dealer from Noida, Uttar Pradesh, for carrying eight bullets in his baggage without declaring them to the airport authorities. The bullets were recovered from him in the baggage scan at the Aurangabad airport, when he was about to board a Delhi-bound flight. He has been booked under the Arms Act.

July 2013, Mumbai
http://www.dnaindia.com/mumbai/report-c ... rt-1862478
A 68-year-old Canadian woman with a passion for shooting sports, found herself in trouble after she was caught with 38 live cartridges at the city airport. She was arrested and remanded in police custody. A case was registered against her under the Arms Act, the police said.

According to sources, the incident took place on Tuesday when the accused, Irene Mathias, was on her way to London in a British Airways flight.

During the security check, MIAL security officials found bullet like objects in one of her baggage.

“On further check, 38 live cartridges were found from the bag,” said the source. Mathias came to India five days ago.

Initially, Mathias pleaded ignorance. “She told that since she plays lots of gun sports, the bullet might have possibly packed into her bag by mistake,” says senior police inspector Ravindra Patil of Sahar police station. Sources said considering her age, the cops did not keep her in the lockup.
 September 2013, Bhubhaneswar
 http://www.americanbazaaronline.com/201 ... thorities/
Hurtubise was arrested on September 18, when he was caught with eight .22-caliber bullets in his travel bag and subsequently arrested. Hurtubise has maintained throughout that he had no criminal intent for having the bullets, and simply forgot to check his bag before leaving home in Houston.

Incredibly, Hurtubise not only made it onto a plane in Houston with the bullets, but also a connecting flight in Amsterdam, and finally went through New Delhi airport with the live ammunition in his luggage. It was only when he attempted to board a private helicopter at Biju Patnaik Airport, headed for Paradip, that he was caught and taken into police custody.

Hurtubise agreed to a conditional bail plea on October 9, and was allowed to leave the Jharpara jail on October 21, but only under the provision that he does not leave Bhubaneswar, the capital of the east Indian state of Odisha. Hurtubise, a 27 year-old engineer, was originally there on business.

Sep 2013, Chennai
The Indian airport police have reportedly picked up a 73-year-old man from Oman for travelling with a 7.62mm rifle bullet inside his razor box.

He was picked up while trying to board a flight after receiving treatment at a private hospital in Chennai, the Indian media reported. The reports quoted the man as claiming his son worked in the police department in Oman.
October 2013, Chennai
http://www.philstar.com/headlines/2013/ ... ammunition
Indian police arrested Saturday a Filipino woman at an airport in the southern state of Tamil Nadu for illegally carrying ammunition.

"Yumena Arlene Valera was held at state capital Chennai's airport after two rounds of bullets were found in her possession during routine screening of luggage. The 49-year-old woman was to board a flight to the eastern state of Odisha's capital Bhubaneshwar," an official said on condition of anonymity.
And, of course, the case in question
March 2014, Delhi
A New York Police Department officer has been arrested and charged here under Arms Act after three bullets were found in his luggage, police said on Friday. It was reported that the officer Manny Encarnacion, 49, was arrested in New Delhi on March 11 after he arrived on a Lufthansa Airlines flight from New York, Deputy Commissioner of Police Airport Security M I Haider said. "Three 9mm bullets were found in his baggage. He was booked under Arms Act," Haider said.

PS: The US Department of State in its "Guide for American Citizens in India" (undated) has this:
Before traveling to or from India, you are urged to thoroughly inspect all bags and clothing that might inadvertently contain prohibited items. In the past, U.S. citizens have been arrested or detained when airport security officials discovered loose ammunition in their luggage. If you are found to have loose ammunition or bullets on your person, you could be charged with violation of the Indian Arms Act, incarcerated, and/or deported from India.

Friday, April 04, 2014

Dawisha v. Doniger

Prof. DeLong mentions the case of Cambridge University Press that dumped Karen Dawisha's book on Russian corruption in general and Putin in particular.

Will there be the same uproar in the Western world about Dawisha in Great Britain as there was over Doniger in India?

 Yes, yes, I know, the cases are not remotely comparable.  Dawisha (might be said to have) libeled an individual  while Doniger merely slandered an entire culture.  Dawisha's case is in Great Britain, that mother of civilization, while Doniger's case is in India, which is yet to be civilized (yeah, elephant-headed god, give me a break.)

Hummingbird migration, 2014

Wednesday, April 02, 2014

Col. Lang on NATO

 Over on turcopolier:
NATO was created as a DEFENSIVE collective security alliance for the purpose of deterring any Soviet attempt to take more territory in Europe than they had been able to gain control of in the years immediately following WW2. By the time NATO was created the Soviets had nuclear weapons and the emphasis in NATO was always on deterring the Soviets from an advance into Western Europe by creating the impression that any such advance would cause a conventional war in which after a massive and very destructive struggle NATO would probably be defeated and would likely resort to tactical nuclear weapons in an exchange that would escalate to general war and Armageddon. To make this strategy work it was necessary that the conventional forces committed to Allied Command Europe (ACE) were sufficiently potent to make it clear that conventional Soviet forces would not have an easy and quick victory in which a "done deal" would be accepted as not worth mutual annihilation. Does that sound familiar? During the Cold War the process of keeping the NATO forces strong enough to make the deterrence "work" was great fun for all involved, exercises, books, promotions in large forces, etc. There was also a hell of a lot of money to be made in building the equipment involved. When the Cold War ended NATO would logically have been dismantled, but, the Hegemonist Temptation gripped the elites in the West and the alliance was illogically driven eastward to the borders of Russia and Russian attempts to join this supposed mutual defense arrangement were rejected. This made it clear to the Russians that the alliance was an anti-Russian alliance.
 The Military Industrial complex has gone haywire.