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ethan's Musing on the Near East - Page 48

post #706 of 2695
Checking in.

Are people still blowing up? Holler if anything's changed.
post #707 of 2695
The uprising has begun. Now are the days when the people throw off the oppressive yoke of religious colonialism.


If they time things right, the local religion will be restored at the same time as the new Iranian Empire comes into being. Unite the component parts, and we will be back in the Fifth Century.
Quote:
Originally Posted by ethanm View Post

And here's a feel-good story for Dopey:

http://www.juancole.com/2015/06/abandoning-zoroastrianism-disgust.html 
that is an unfortunate url, it's about Iraqi Kurds embracing Zoroastrianism as a more peaceful and more Kurdish religion. 
post #708 of 2695
Thread Starter 

I'd rather have a bunch of Zoroastrians running around than Salafis and Wilayat al-Faqih whackos.  

post #709 of 2695
Quote:
Originally Posted by dopey View Post

Instead of parroting the nattering nabobs of negativity, why not discuss the positive news coming out of the Arab middle East - namely that Egypt looks like it will dominate international squash for the next decade with the men's world no. 1 a young Egyptian and the most credible challenger to the aging current women's world no. 1 also an Egyptian. On the men's side, five of the top ten are Egyptian, while three of the top ten women are Egyptian. Even while Egypt appeared to be disintegrating, its squash programs held together and its young players continued to rise through the juniors and onto the pro tour. With the political situation seemingly consolidating, Egyptian dominance is likely to become more permanent.
This month's rankings just came out. There are four Egyptian women in the top ten but six Egyptian men. This article tries to explain it, but is not that satisfying, in the end:
http://www.madamasr.com/sections/lifestyle/child-champions-egypt-gets-head-start-squash
Quote:
Egyptian players win competitions and train professionally at a younger age than their international competitors. Habiba Mohammed is ranked 23rd in the world overall, having won the WJO aged 15, and first for under-19s. The youngest player to have won the title was another Egyptian, Nour El Sherbini, who took first place in 2009 when she was just 13.

“I started playing at five years old, and that’s normal in Egypt,” says Alaa al-Tourky, a coach at Alexandria Sporting Club. “Here in the club we begin accepting players to the academy around the ages of five, six, or seven. When they are this age they will be training three times a week.”

The ElBorolossy Squash Academy, a chain of training centers based in Cairo, accepts even younger players, encouraging four-year-olds to begin training twice a week. Once they move up to “competition age” – around 10 years old – they are expected to attend eight weekly sessions.

The under-11s competition category, which does not exist in most countries, is highly competitive.

“If you go to an under-13s competition in the UK, you might find a dozen players,” says Shorbagy. “For an under-11s tournament in Egypt there will be 200.”

So by the time Egyptian players reach the under-19s, they have many years of experience.

Squash can offer significant opportunities to young players, and they will not having to choose between a sporting and an academic career. Seeded players find lucrative sponsorship deals from sports clothing and equipment companies such as Technofibre and Head, regularly travel worldwide to competitions and, most notably, receive great interest from US Ivy League and European universities.

Many parents see squash as a good hobby for their children, an appeal no doubt added to by the prospect of international seeding. Parents of young players are also aware that professional Egyptian squash players are currently studying with scholarships in Harvard and Yale.

“Everyone thinks their child will become the next champion,” says Shazly.

“Part of it is a bit greedy,” says Omar El Borolossy, founder of ElBorolossy Squash Academy. “The parents want to decide which sport to play, and they say ‘if we’re in Egypt we will play squash,’ because then they have the possibility to be a world champion.”

Young players’ good performance is also tied with membership to a club, an attractive prospect in itself. Exclusive institutions, such as Alexandria Sporting and Cairo’s Gezira Club, are frequented by Egypt’s upper-middle classes. Membership is associated with affluence and high status.

“We’re like a family here,” says Shazly, “and the squash family is one of the nicest families, a very different crowd to other sports, like football.”

Indeed, unlike football, squash is a sport of choice for Egypt’s upper-middle classes – just as it is elsewhere. For membership of Sporting, families pay upwards of LE150,000, not including subscription to the youth academy.

“In countries like Egypt, people need things to feel special,” elaborates Borolossy. “The players identify themselves with their ranking and this is a big deal to people here. Nowadays more lower middle-class people are getting involved and it is a way to elevate their own status.”

Squash’s popularity is thus increasing: Both Alexandria Sporting and El Borolossy have long waiting lists on top of their already extensive membership register, and they are building new training centers to keep up with demand.

Edited by dopey - 6/1/15 at 7:01pm
post #710 of 2695
Thread Starter 
post #711 of 2695
Quote:
Originally Posted by ethanm View Post

Makes me ill to read: http://www.aljazeera.com/indepth/opinion/2015/06/nusra-front-quest-united-syria-150602050740867.html

Absolutely fucking ridiculous. 

Just let us in and you'll be spared was said against every besieged party in history.. Doubt that its going to change..

I'll be in israel in two weeks time, it'll be interesting to hear how some of my contacts there view this mess..
post #712 of 2695
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by nootje View Post


Just let us in and you'll be spared was said against every besieged party in history.. Doubt that its going to change..

I'll be in israel in two weeks time, it'll be interesting to hear how some of my contacts there view this mess..


The thing is this guy is whitewashing and misrepresenting what Jolani said. With regards to Alawites he said that if they renounce the regime and their beliefs and convert to Sunni Islam they will be spared. The Druze he said would be converted by proselytization and Christians would be forced to pay jizya. 

 

The idea that Nusra is somehow not AQ and the Zawahiri is a figurehead is a dangerous joke. The mainstreaming of Nusra is going to have a very negative and long lasting impact on Syria. 

post #713 of 2695
Quote:
I spent three years as a double-agent for the FBI working undercover to counter Russian military intelligence collection efforts in New York City. My job was to convince the Russians that I was an authentic spy, willing to betray his country for cold hard cash. I believe they were willing to recruit me, in part, because I’m a first-generation American and the son of a Pakistan-born father. It was imagined that I had conflicting allegiances – a perception I played to. However, over time this assumption that my heritage makes me more prone to sell out my country has come to bother me immensely. Granted, I used the Russians’ own biases against them, but isn’t there a better way to determine loyalty than the color of my skin or my parent’s birthplace?

In fact, there is — the bulk data approach used by the National Security Agency.

http://www.salon.com/2015/06/01/what_if_rand_paul_were_muslim_the_white_privileged_assumptions_behind_his_patriot_act_principles/


This is pure gold. A statist pigfuck agreeing with John McCain and suggesting the world is safer when the government violates EVERYONE'S civil rights, instead of just a minority's civil rights.

Amazing.
post #714 of 2695
Thread Starter 

Sure you posted that in the correct thread? 

post #715 of 2695
Goddamnit.
post #716 of 2695
OK, so more murder and bloodshed by ISIS in the ME.


Quote:
A massive crowd assembled to watch ISIS rebels throw another gay man off a building top this week.
Hundreds of spectators came out to watch the brutal public execution.

(P.S. I can condemn this act as horrific. Modern multiculturalists who celebrate diversity and view all cultures and beliefs as equal cannot. So glad I'm not modern and don't celebrate diversity.)
post #717 of 2695
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Lighthouse View Post
Hundreds of spectators came out to watch the brutal public execution.

 

Since you're no fan of the mainstream media know that these spectators were rounded up and forced to attend. The executed was probably not even from the city where he was murdered.

post #718 of 2695
Ironi
Quote:
Originally Posted by nootje View Post

Just let us in and you'll be spared was said against every besieged party in history.. Doubt that its going to change..

I'll be in israel in two weeks time, it'll be interesting to hear how some of my contacts there view this mess..

Probably the only country that has been benefiting from whats happening, whether they had something to do with it or not.

What better than to have assad attacked and iran and hezballah bled in a war against someone else.

Even better if it all ends up in dividing the region into religious cantons. A jewish state surrounded by arabs is an anomaly. A jewish state surrounded by a shiite, sunni, alawite, kurdish state is not.

Couldnt have worked any better and as always the arabs are happy to oblige.
post #719 of 2695
Lol
Quote:
Originally Posted by ethanm View Post


The thing is this guy is whitewashing and misrepresenting what Jolani said. With regards to Alawites he said that if they renounce the regime and their beliefs and convert to Sunni Islam they will be spared. The Druze he said would be converted by proselytization and Christians would be forced to pay jizya. 

The idea that Nusra is somehow not AQ and the Zawahiri is a figurehead is a dangerous joke. The mainstreaming of Nusra is going to have a very negative and long lasting impact on Syria. 

Lol yep. At least the turkish-qatar alqaeda connection is now out in the open
post #720 of 2695
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by alan View Post

Lol
Lol yep. At least the turkish-qatar alqaeda connection is now out in the open


I just realized that this is the guy the NSA's software labeled as a probable AQ member too. Seems like that software is pretty much on point. What a dirtbag. 

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