Uzbek dictator, friend of Hillary Clinton


Recently, Ms Hillary Clinton, Secretary of State of the United States of America, said that the US ‘has no better friend’ than Silvio Berlusconi of Italy.

This blog wrote then:

The situation for the United States government is truly sad if they have “no better friend” than Silvio Berlusconi, of sex parties with minors, of miniskirt banning, of eighteenth century art censorship, of media censorship, of xenophobia, of anti-Semitism, of homophobia, of sexism, of financial scandals, of mafia connections … Apparently, in the eyes of Ms Clinton, participating … or, rather, making your soldiers participate as cannon fodder in bloody wars like Iraq and Afghanistan, makes one a best friend, no matter how criminal one is.

Now I have to add: “no matter how criminal one is … even if one’s crimes, include, eg, massacring political oppositionists and boiling dissidents alive“.

This video is called Part (1-3) Torture Farm (Life and Death under Karimov).

As, apart from Silvio Berlusconi, it appears that Ms Clinton has at least one other best friend: the bloody dictator of Uzbekistan, Islam Karimov.

Read in Turkish Weekly how cozy the Clinton-Karimov friendship is:

Uzbek-American relations correspond to the spirit of mutual understanding

Saturday, 4 December 2010

President of Uzbekistan Islam Karimov received US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton at Oqsaroy residence on 2 December.

Uzbekistan and the United States have been pursuing a constructive dialogue on a wide range of issues, which contribute to developing a qualitatively new stage of bilateral relations in the political, economic, humanitarian and other fields.

Welcoming the guest, President of Uzbekistan highly evaluated the dynamics of the Uzbek-American relations in various areas, which correspond to the spirit of partnership and mutual understanding.

“We highly value relations that have formed between Uzbekistan and the United States,” Islam Karimov said. “I hope today we will have a good opportunity to exchange opinions on the bilateral relations, regional problems and issues that represent interest to both sides.”

Expressing sincere gratitude to the President of Uzbekistan for warm reception, the Secretary of State confirmed the commitment of the US administration to the principles of mutual respect in the bilateral relations.

“Mr President! Let me thank you for your kind words and this opportunity to discuss important issues representing mutual interest,” Hillary Clinton said. “President Barack Obama also attaches great importance to the discussion of the most important sides of our bilateral relations. I am glad that the representatives of our official delegations will be able to consider a wide range of issues.”

Uzbekistan and the US have been strengthening bilateral contacts in the issues of ensuring regional security, including counteracting international terrorism, preventing drug trafficking and protecting state borders. Both sides have on a constant basis been exchanging experience in this direction, organizing trainings for specialists in the framework of various programs.

If we translate this from the diplomatic Newspeak of two regimes with blood on their hands into plain English, then it turns out that Ms Clinton basically says: Best friend Karimov, carry on torturing and killing opponents as many as you like. As long as you help our war in Afghanistan, we could not care less. Only if you would stop that help, then we would suddenly discover that you are a dictator.

EU rejects Uzbekistan trade deal over child labour concerns: here.

Taiga bean geese in the Netherlands


At the moment, taiga bean geese are wintering in the Netherlands. They are rarer there than some other geese species.

Here are videos, made by Luuk Punt, in Luissel, Noord-Brabant province.

First wild boar in Utrecht province, the Netherlands


This is a Dutch wild boar video, including about piglets.

Traditionally, wild boar live in the Netherlands only in Limburg province and the Veluwe region.

In October this year, however, for the first time wild boar traces, including hair, have been found near Rhenen village, in the hilly region of Urecht province.

Shear brain power – sheep smarter than previously believed: here.

Grebes and long-tailed tits


In the city center, the rare white-headed subspecies of the long-tailed tit has been seen.

I saw long-tailed tits in trees opposite the old university library today. However, as it was snowing cats and dogs, it was impossible to be sure whether it was the normal or the rare subspecies.

The river Rhine is mostly frozen by now. There are still some open water spots. They attract mallards, coots, great crested grebes, black-headed gulls and herring gulls.

This is a video about a great crested grebe nest.

Israeli fire disaster and climate change


From Informed Comment blog in the USA:

Israel’s Mega-Fire and Climate Change’s Drying Mediterranean

Posted on December 4, 2010 by Juan

You can’t relate a one-off event like Israel’s massive forest fire near Haifa to climate change, which has to be measured over a long series. But what is true is that more and more such disasters will be faced by those regions of the earth that become dessicated — as a result of changes in weather patterns caused by the rise of carbon particles per million in the atmosphere from 280 in the 18th century to 389 today.

Climate scientists have demonstrated a clear drying trend in the Mediterranean and other sub-tropical regions.

It is ironic that so much blood has been shed on who will possess that forest near Haifa, and Mother Nature just reminded us whose it really is: Hers.

Not long ago, the Israeli government sacked a climate change denialist top bureaucrat. It is to be hoped that the tragedy near Haifa will be an encouragement not just in Israel, but everywhere, to completely end the noxious influence of those anti-science denialists.

The Nazi threat and climate-change denial: here.

Saturday evening, December 4, 2010 — Forty-eight hours after the terrible fire broke out, racists can no longer stop their frustration at not getting what they wanted – a pretext for an all-out assault against the Arab population in Israel (including the Druze) : here.

Shas spiritual rabbi implies fire raging in northern Israel result of ‘desecration of Shabbat’. Haredi newspapers say disaster ‘a warning sign’, call for personal and public self-scrutiny: here.

The fire in the Mount Carmel region is continuing to rage for the fourth straight day. The blaze’s strongest points are Mount Shokef and the Hai Bar nature reserve area: here.

A team of 21 Palestinian firefighters from the West Bank helped to douse Israel’s deadly forest fire at the weekend: here.

The Carmel fire destroyed another layer of the myth that the State of the Jews is a military-technological superpower that should not be trifled with. By Akiva Eldar: here.

At least 42 people have died in fires that swept through the forests on Mount Carmel near Haifa, Israel’s third largest city, ravaging an area of more than 30 square kilometres: here.

Prof. James Hansen battling the specially interested cynics on climate change: here.

Evidence of intensifying climate change grows: here.

Climate denialism in Britain: here.

Conservative White Males More Likely To Deny Climate Change, Report Finds: here.

Our scientist finds apps, websites and books that can change a climate skeptic’s mind: here.