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Menachem Z. Rosensaft: A neo-Nazi beauty pageant – nefarious glorification of anti-Semitism at its worst


Menachem Z. Rosensaft: A neo-Nazi beauty pageant – nefarious glorification of anti-Semitism at its worst

20 Oct 2014

The following article was first published by the ‘Huffington Post’.

One of the most insidious, and perhaps ultimately one of the most dangerous, manifestations of neo-Nazi resurgence may well be its steady subversive infiltration of contemporary popular and consumer culture.

Rabidly bigoted – anti-Semitic, anti-Roma, generally xenophobic – modern day neo-Nazi parties and movements such as Jobbik in Hungary and Golden Dawn in Greece are relatively easy to identify and fight through political, judicial and legislative means. They are the violent heirs of the Nazi Brown Shirts, the SA, who terrorized non-fascist Germans throughout much of the 1920’s and early 1930’s as part of Hitler’s rise to eventual absolute power.

Then there are the more nuanced modern-day fascists such as Marine Le Pen’s Front National in France who combine reactionary views with a calculated strategic effort to make themselves appear more palatable to the political mainstream, often with frightening success. Still, these ultra-right wing extremist movements and parties are relatively easy to identify and expose for what they are – at the end of the day they leave little to the imagination. Bigotry, after all, remains bigotry regardless of any intellectual or dialectic attempts to legitimize the preying on fears and often deep-seated prejudices.

But below the radar screen, there are nefarious attempts to legitimize Nazism and all that Nazism stood for in the popular psyche under the guise of cutting edge fashion, perverse home decoration, and even crass, prurient sexual exploitation. Among some of the more egregious recent examples are:

  • The peddling of silver ‘Swastika Rings’ on Sears’ online Marketplace that “are going to make you look beautiful at your next dinner date.” Faced with consumer outrage, Sears quickly yanked this example of what had been described as “gothic jewelry” and removed the offending vendor from its site.
  • The sale on the Walmart, Sears’ and Amazon websites of a “home decoration” poster featuring the “Arbeit Macht Frei” (“Work makes you free”) gate of the Dachau concentration camp. All three retailers pulled this item after their attention was called to it. “We were horrified to see that this item was on our site,” declared Walmart. “We sincerely apologize, and worked quickly to remove it.”
  • The Spanish retail clothing chain Zara was forced to apologize for marketing a striped concentration-camp-like tee shirt complete with a six-pointed yellow star. For what it’s worth, Zara had previously sold handbags embossed with swastikas. Lovely.

The latest, and possibly the most nausea-inducing example of this particular fad is an ever so sexy beauty pageant out of the former Soviet Union. Before it was apparently suspended by the Russian social media site Vkontakte, a page on that website solicited women who consider themselves Nazis to submit photos of themselves and statements on precisely why they admire Hitler.

To be eligible, according to the contest’s rules, a contestant had to be, among other things, “a woman Nazi” and “a woman who hates Jews.”

Among the entries are sultry Ekaterina Matveeva from St. Petersburg, Russia, who proclaims that “Adolf Hitler’s position is genius and true, that races are different not only in appearance, but also in intelligence,” and Katya Shkredova from Mogilev, Belarus, who “adores Adolf” and loves his willingness to “experiment on people.”

The winner of this revolting pageant was to be crowned Miss Ostland – the name given by the Nazis to the German occupation regime for the territory covering Lithuania, Latvia, Estonia and part of what is today western Belarus – and receive a piece of jewelry featuring one of the Nordic runes that were popular with Heinrich Himmler and his SS. Second prize: a pendant with the German Iron Cross.

Granted, there is no indication that this particular beauty contest ever had a mass or even large-scale following. Nevertheless, it is a timely and potent reminder that neo-Nazism in its vilest form is enjoying a significant revival among at least some segments of society, and the Vkontakte page in question purportedly did have more than 7,000 Russian and Ukrainian followers.

In Kentucky, a white supremacist write-in candidate named Robert Edward Ransdell who is running for the US Senate is posting signs proclaiming “With Jews We Lose” that leave little to the imagination. Ransdell also took advantage of an invitation to participate in the University of Kentucky’s Constitution Week to spew his anti-Semitic bile to college and high school students.

And in Sydney, Australia, a neo-Nazi group is sending out flyers declaring that “It’s time for all White Australians to stop being blinded by political correctness and Jewish lies about equality, multiculturalism and the need for so called diversity. Diversity really means white genocide.”

To be sure, much of the virulent present-day anti-Semitism emanates from Radical Islamic and leftist pro-Palestinian sources. But these are increasingly finding disturbing common ground with the extreme right.

Cries of “Gas the Jews” are suddenly being heard once more in demonstrations in Germany and elsewhere. “The fear is that now things are blatantly being said openly, and no one is batting an eyelid,” Jessica Frommer, who works for a nonprofit organization in Brussels, told the New York Times. “Modern Europe is based on stopping what happened in the Second World War. And now 70 years later, people standing near the European Parliament are shouting, ‘Death to Jews!’ ”

As Ronald S. Lauder, the president of the World Jewish Congress, has emphasized, the prevailing atmosphere in which anti-Semitism has become acceptable empowers other equally odious manifestations of bigotry. “When hundreds of thousands of Christians – men, women and children – are killed, this isn’t war,” he declared at a recent gathering of Evangelical Christians in Jerusalem. “This is genocide. And we Jews know what happens when the world is silent to genocide.”

“Anti-Semitism has always been, historically, the inability to make space for differences among people, which is the essential foundation of a free society,” Rabbi Lord Jonathan Sacks, emeritus chief rabbi of the United Hebrew Congregations of the British Commonwealth, wrote in the Wall Street Journal. “That is why the politics of hate now assaults Christians, Bahai, Yazidis and many others, including Muslims on the wrong side of the Sunni/Shia divide, as well as Jews. To fight it, we must stand together, people of all faiths and of none. The future of freedom is at stake, and it will be the defining battle of the 21st century.”

As we approach the 70th anniversary of the end of the Holocaust and the liberation of the Nazi death and concentration camps by Allied troops, we must bear in mind that while the Third Reich was defeated at the end of World War II, the ideology that made possible the genocide of European Jewry is very much alive throughout much of the supposedly civilized world. We ignore or dismiss its presence in our midst at our peril.

Menachem Z. Rosensaft is general counsel of the World Jewish Congress and teaches about the law of genocide and war crimes trials at the laws school of Columbia and Cornell Universities. He is the editor of ‘God, Faith & Identity from the Ashes: Reflections of Children and Grandchildren of Holocaust Survivors’ (Jewish Lights Publishing), available December 2014

Story from: http://www.worldjewishcongress.org/en/news/15269/menachem_z_rosensaft_a_neo_nazi_beauty_pageant_nefarious_glorification_of_anti_semitism

Fear of a Fat Planet: Nearly a Third of the World Population Is Now Overweight


r of a Fat Planet: Nearly a Third of the World Population Is Now Overweight

A new study shows the scale of the global obesity crisis.

The Global Obesity Crisis: Nearly a Third of the World Population Is Now Overweight

(Photo:BSIP/UIG via Getty Images)

 

 

 

 

May 30, 2014

There are 1.35 billion people living in China, another 1.23 billion living in India. The world’s two most populous nations are each home to a crush of humanity that’s almost impossible to comprehend. But those numbers pale next to the overweight people who live in the world today—2.1 billion, or nearly a third of the world’s population.

The numbers come from a study published yesterday in the journal The Lancet. Researchers looked at 1,700 studies from 188 countries conducted between 1988 and 2013 in order to come up with a comprehensive view of what’s a truly global obesity epidemic.

However, it wasn’t North America—where Mexico and the United States have vied for the title of the fattest nation in the world—that registered the highest obesity rate. Rather, the Middle East and North Africa are the worst; nearly 60 percent of men and 65 percent of women are too heavy. The study says the U.S. is home to 13 percent of the world’s overweight population, the highest percentage of any country.

The sky-high rates in North Africa and the Middle East may come as a shock in the West, where public health stories from the Arab-speaking world can’t break through the wall of coverage of American invasions, oil, revolution, civil war, and military coups. If anything, most of the region borders the Mediterranean, which is most famous in dieting circles as a way to eat a healthy diet heavy in plants, seafood, and the occasional glass of red wine. Even if there’s less wine consumed with dinner in these predominately Muslim countries, they still consume a whole lot of olive oil. But the red flags have been flying for decades, however, and a combination of urbanization, globalization, and regional cultural norms has created a massive public health crisis.

In 2001, a study published in The Journal of Nutrition looked at the obesity rates in Morocco and Tunisia and found that while their governments were still working to address issues of malnutrition and micronutrient deficiencies, the waistlines of women in both countries were expanding at an unhealthy rate. Public health officials were doing little at the time to address the problem, according to the researchers, “especially since female fatness is viewed as a sign of social status and is a cultural symbol of beauty, fertility and prosperity.” With more people living in urban areas, where processed foods were cheap and easily accessible, issues like malnutrition were steadily being alleviated. But the study goes on to say that, “Western culinary influences lead to new consumption patterns, which affect dietary habits and even the rhythm of consumption.” The study continues, “These new dietary habits have created conditions for chronic diseases like obesity and diabetes to take hold.”

Elsewhere in the region, especially in oil-rich countries, diet trends have followed a similar course. In Saudi Arabia, meat consumption increased by 500 percent between 1973 and 1980, according to a 2011 article in The Journal of Obesity. Changes weren’t as dramatic in less wealthy nations, but the same paper notes that people in Jordan nearly doubled how much meat they ate over the same period, and that the percentage of calories consumed as fat by children in Lebanon increased from 24 percent to 34 percent between 1963 and 1998.

Wealth and development can change diet and health by increasing the amount of meat used in regional cuisines—but American-style dining also seems to crop up in emerging markets around the world, and the Middle East in no exception. Just as global fashion brands and, more recently (and disastrously), institutions like New York University, have tried to catch some of the shimmer of the Gulf’s oil wealth, so have fast-food companies.

This $1,000 McDonald’s-Inspired Dress Is About More Than Income Inequality

“Demand for fast casual dining, which includes the more traditional fast-food chains such as McDonald’s as well as the table service brands like IHOP, is growing amid a rise in disposable income, extravagant shopping malls, and a seemingly unquenchable appetite for Western food concepts,” reads a 2012 trend story on the website Arabian Business. The article cites a study from the research firm Euromonitor that predicts the fast-casual dining in the United Arab Emirates will expand from $6.4 billion in 2011 to $8.7 billion in 2015. Burger chains are expected to propel the boom.

And just as meat consumption has increased across the region, so has the saturation of fast-food brands. The trade website Food Business Africa points out that the demographics across the Middle East and North Africa present an ideal market for fast-food companies: Huge populations of young people who have “grown up eating processed foods and dining in Western-style fast-food restaurants and coffee shops.” For the youth in this region—and around the world, for that matter—drive-through hamburgers are as much of a birthright as for kids in the U.S.

American-style fast food is no longer a foreign novelty, and neither is American-style obesity.

REDEMPTION! What You should know! Shelter killing is the leading cause of death for healthy dogs & cats in the United States!


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Nathan J. Winograd

Mai 8 um 6:46 PM

Join us for a documentary film about the No Kill revolution in America. Coming to a city near you. Click on the links for tickets:

•Albuquerque, NM: http://bit.ly/1imaROu

•Atlanta, GA: http://bit.ly/1ktZuos

•Austin, TX: http://bit.ly/1m8chgh

•Boston, MA: http://bit.ly/1jI8oxB

•Charlotte, NC: http://bit.ly/1m8dILE

•Chicago, IL: http://bit.ly/P3f7qG

•Denver, CO: http://bit.ly/1nosnCi

•Fayetteville, AR: http://bit.ly/Qnt83o

•Ft. Lauderdale, FL: http://bit.ly/1iTYFkE

•Louisville (Shelbyville), KY: http://bit.ly/1hRMdRl
•Minneapolis, MN: http://bit.ly/1kXtdsN

•Norfolk, VA: http://bit.ly/PM8Qjx

•Phoenix, AZ: http://bit.ly/Q9Yk6B

•Pittsburgh, PA: http://bit.ly/QM7eqK

•Sacramento, CA: http://bit.ly/1qEtiAu

•San Francisco (Palo Alto), CA: http://bit.ly/1t5s97k

•Troy, MI: http://conta.cc/1iUoIcP

•Washington, D.C.: http://bit.ly/1qYvkKg

The film will be followed in most cities by a workshop on building a No Kill community and others with an after party. Check on the links for more details. Coming soon: Buffalo, NY, Cleveland, OH, Las Vegas, NV, Los Angeles, CA, Modesto, CA, Nashville, TN, New York, NY, Seattle, WA, and Tallahassee, FL.

•To watch the trailer, click here.

•For more information about the film, click here.

—————-

P.S. 99% of the film is uplifting and while a small number of images may be difficult, they are not gratuitous. While we expect people who see it will experience a range of emotions, the primary ones they will come away with are hope, inspiration, empowerment, and well, redemption. In short, it is safe for animal lovers to watch.

No Kill Advocacy Center | 6114 La Salle Ave. #837 | Oakland CA 94611
http://www.nokilladvocacycenter.org | facebook.com/nokilladvocacycenter

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Gaza’s Children Need Clothes And Blankets For A Warm Winter


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Mr MilitantNegro™ Jueseppi B Mr MilitantNegro™
Jueseppi B

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Gaza‘s children need your help to get warm

Please consider them part of your family and feel their pain. Donate with any amount

Gaza’s children need of clothes and blankets for Warm Winter

gaza-children

Pulse Life Association aim to help all people here in #Gaza. All here in Gaza need your help, and our associatoin want to draw a smile on the faces of people here. Actually the situation is very bad here, and many families live a miserable life.

We are in Winter . just imagine how these families will spend the winter without houses to live in ?, without clothes and blankets? !!. #Children here need your help you can make a difference and draw a smile on their faces. We need your donation, and to be with us and be a part of this blessed work…

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Anti-Violence Activist Matthew Williams Killed In Chicago Shooting


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Matthew Williams, a young and vibrant activist who called for peace and justice in Chicago, was shot and killed on Saturday while inside a friend’s apartment.

Source: Anti-Violence Activist Matthew Williams Killed In Chicago Shooting

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#SYRIACRISIS


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Even in Nebraska folks have largely forgotten the story of the “Omaha Two,” Black Panther members languishing in prison for a long-ago murder they may not have committed.


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Even in Nebraska folks have largely forgotten the story of the “Omaha Two,” Black Panther members languishing in prison for a long-ago murder they may not have committed.

Photographs by Ron Levine

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A Staggering New Death Toll for Syria’s War — 470,000


A Staggering New Death Toll for Syria’s War — 470,000

 

February 11, 2016

 
 

Mourners carry the body of a Syrian man following an airstrike by government forces in Aleppo on Jan. 16, 2016. (Photo by Ameer Alhalbi/NurPhoto)

More than 1 in 10 Syrians have been wounded or killed since the beginning of the war in 2011, according to a new report that finds a staggering 470,000 deaths have been caused by the conflict, either directly or indirectly.

The grim tally from the Syrian Center for Policy Research (SCPR) represents a dramatic increase from the total of 250,000 fatalities often cited by the United Nations, which stopped independently counting Syria’s war dead early in 2014.

In all, 11.5 percent of Syria’s population has been wounded or killed since 2011, according to the SCPR analysis. The vast majority of deaths — 400,000 — were caused by violence, while 70,000 came as an indirect result of the war — the collapse of the country’s health-care infrastructure, lack of access to medicine, poor sanitation, the spread of communicable diseases, falling vaccination rates, food scarcity and malnutrition. Another 1.88 million Syrians have been injured.

The loss of life was the “most catastrophic visible and direct” impact of the war, according to the report, with life expectancy dropping from 70.5 years in 2010 to an estimated 55.4 years in 2015.

“Hundreds of thousands of people, particularly male breadwinners, have [been] killed, injured, arrested, and kidnapped, enormously endangering their lives and the living conditions of their families,” the report said. “The widespread insecurity and unbearable economic conditions and hardship, have forced millions of Syrians to resettle inside or outside the country and to depend completely on local and international humanitarian aids. This loss of security in all its forms has compromised human rights and dignity of the Syrian population.”

The report’s author, Rabie Nasser, told The Guardian that indirect deaths would only increase in the future. “We are sure of this figure,” Nasser said, noting that earlier counts from the U.N. likely “underestimated the casualties due to lack of access to information during the crisis.” Research for the SCPR study was carried out on the ground in Syria, according to The Guardian, which first reported the figures.

The SCPR analysis comes as bombing by the Syrian government and Russia of rebel-held Aleppo, the nation’s second largest city, has prompted a new exodus of tens of thousands of Syrians. The International Committee of the Red Cross estimates that the latest fighting has displaced 50,000 Syrians in Aleppo province, with around 30,000 gathering near Syria’s border with Turkey, which remains closed. Those who remain in Aleppo face a potential siege as forces allied with President Bashar al Assad slowly encircle the area.

In the meantime, diplomacy has been faltering. Earlier this month, international talks aimed at ending the war barely got off the ground in Geneva before they were suspended. The prospect for further negotiations appear dim despite plans to resume them on Feb. 25.

While not apportioning blame to either side in the conflict, the SCPR noted that fighting has destroyed Syria’s health-care infrastructure, while sieges and the restriction of movement have worsened the health of those with chronic illnesses. Physicians for Human Rights, a group that tracks the deaths of health-care workers in Syria, said in separate research released last December that 2015 was one of the worst years on record for strikes on medical facilities in the country, with government forces launching more than 100 attacks. Since March 2011, the human rights group has recorded 336 attacks on medical facilities and the deaths of 697 medical personnel — a vast majority of which it attributes to the government and its allies. In Aleppo, Physicians for Human Rights estimates that 95 percent of doctors have either fled, been detained or killed. Those who are still there struggle with shortages of supplies and equipment, and live under the near-constant threat of bombings.

The SCPR also looked at the economic and social impact of the war, placing Syria’s total economic loss by the end of 2015 at an estimated $254.7 billion. More than 85 percent of the country is living in poverty, with close to 7 in 10 Syrians stuck in extreme poverty — unable to afford essentials like food or water. At the start of the war in 2011, joblessness stood at 14.9 percent. By the end of last year, it surged to 52.9 percent.

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California condor.(AFP Photo / David McNew)

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NYPD Officer Peter Liang found guilty of manslaughter in fatal shooting of Akai Gurley in Brooklyn housing development


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Akai Gurley, father of a 2-year-old girl, was shot in a stairwell of the Pink Houses in Brooklyn.Facebook

Akai Gurley, father of a 2-year-old girl, was shot in a stairwell of the Pink Houses in Brooklyn.

 

Peter Liang leaves the courtroom after the jury has reached a verdict of guilty Thursday.Byron Smith for New York Daily News

Peter Liang leaves the courtroom after the jury has reached a verdict of guilty Thursday.

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Akai Gurley (l.) was shot in a stairwell of the Pink Houses in Brooklyn. Peter Liang (r.) leaves the courtroom after the jury’s verdict on Thursday….

http://www.nydailynews.com/new-york/nyc-crime/nypd-peter-liang-guilty-fatal-shooting-akai-gurley-article-1.2528827

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Big Brother Corporation? BBC to use facial coding cameras to study viewers’ emotions


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Russia Today — Feb 12, 2016

By wmw_admin

Facial coding technology will be used by the BBC to examine viewers’ subconscious reactions to their shows and discover any “emotional attachment” they have to the broadcaster, after a series of trials yielded positive results.

Using technology from British company CrowdEmotion, cameras will be used to record facial expressions. The movements are then divided up into six different categories: sadness, puzzlement, happiness, fear, rejection and surprise.

The company will work with the insight division of BBC Worldwide, the broadcaster’s commercial arm, to establish and research how viewers respond to different types of program.

During pilot experiments which examined 5,000 people, individuals were examined on their reactions to marketing campaigns on the BBC website. BBC Worldwide said the pilot was a success and they would be extending the trials.

The BBC said the technology “enabled us to find out the emotional response of…

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Pakistani Oscar-nominated film tackles ‘honor’ killings – KLTV.com – Tyler, Longview, Jacksonville |ETX News


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When Saba Qaiser was 19 years old, her uncle and father shot her in the head, stuffed her in a bag and threw into a river to die. They said she had shamed her family when she married the boy of her choice.She crawled from the water, severely wounded. It was pitch black. She grabbed hold of the scraggly bushes on the river’s edge and pulled herself to safety. In the distance, Saba could see only the single headlight of a motorcycle and then a gas station.”Save me. Save me,” she pleaded to the doctor who eventually treated her.Saba is the hero of the Oscar-nominated documentary “A Girl in the River: The Price of Forgiveness,” by Pakistani filmmaker Sharmeen Obaid-Chinoy.It explores the practice of honor killings, where fathers, husbands and brothers kill their wives, daughters or sisters for shaming them, accusing them of “stealing” their honor. The offence could be…

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