30/09: TSA plays the 'idiot' game

Astounding.... One is lead to wonder where the much vaunted American freedom has disappeared.

CNN has this to report over the incident (just the first few lines):

WASHINGTON (CNN) -- A Wisconsin man who wrote "Kip Hawley is an Idiot" on a plastic bag containing toiletries said he was detained at an airport security checkpoint for about 25 minutes before authorities concluded the statement was not a threat.

Ryan Bird, 31, said he wrote the comment about Hawley -- head of the Transportation Security Administration -- as a political statement. He said he feels the TSA is imposing unreasonable rules on passengers while ignoring bigger threats.

There is a long thread about this on flytalker forums. Right now, it is 65 pages long.

When I first read this, I just sat still in front of the computer wondering whether I should laugh hysterically or just cry... For all the trouble VOA (Voice of America) goes to, to spread propaganda about the superiority and harmony of the American way of life, this incident totally negates it.

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24/09: Ramadan Mubarik!

Ramadan is finally here! The first fast is tomorrow.

A very happy Ramadan to Muslims all over the world. May we all benefit from this as much as humanly possible. May Allah help us return to the right path. Amen.

17/09: Pray for a friend...

I just heard the news that the father of a good friend of mine passed away this morning. I request all of those who read this (without regard to what religion you follow or believe in) to pray in whatever way or form you can for him to have a good afterlife.

May his spirit rest in peace and his sins forgiven by Almighty Allah; the most forgiving of all. May Allah give my friend and his family the courage to carry on through life's challenges.

Ina lillah wa ina ilaihi raji'un... (Qur'an, 2:156) - [Al-Fatihah]
"To Allah we belong and to Him is our return"

14/09: Pope Benedict attacks Islam

During a visit to his home country Germany, Pope Benedict XVI made some dangerous comments regarding Islam.

The Pope gave a speech at Regensburg University in Bavaria, where he lectured between 1969 and 1977, and said that Islam justified violence. The explanation of the Pope, who is expected to visit Turkey in November, left many Muslims disappointed as it hardened the existing prejudices in German society against Islam.
- Link

Pope Benedict

The Pope spoke of the relationship between faith, reason and Islam's holy war, jihad. The Pope said violence is incompatible with the nature of God and with the nature of the soul. - Link

The pope made his remarks on Islam in a speech in which he quoted from a book recounting a conversation between 14th century Byzantine Christian Emperor Manuel Paleologos II and an educated Persian on the truths of Christianity and Islam.

"The emperor comes to speak about the issue of jihad, holy war," the pope said.

"He said, I quote, 'Show me just what Mohammed brought that was new, and there you will find things only evil and inhuman, such as his command to spread by the sword the faith he preached,'" he quoted the emperor as saying.

Clearly aware of the delicacy of the issue, Benedict added, "I quote," twice before pronouncing the phrases on Islam and described them as "brusque," while neither explicitly agreeing with nor repudiating them.
- Link

How absurd can he really be? My opinion of Pope Benedict has taken a massive blow from his statements against Islam which lack any good reasoning to back them up.

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09/09: Holocaust cartoons and freedoms

I recently came across some cartoons of holocaust on the internet. These cartoons are from the holcaust cartoon exhibition being held in Iran. While there are many cartoons on the site, the two which particularly appealed to me are the ones below. They have little to do with the holocaust but much to do with the double standards displayed by the western media and many people, regarding how they treat Islam (and Muslims as a result) and Jews (and the holocaust as a result). It all comes back to freedom and where it should be curbed to prevent hurting any particular group of people.

cartoon 1

cartoon 2

These two cartoons are quite true, in my opinion. I haven't seen all the cartoon enteries yet since the collection is huge.

Personally, I like this initiative by the Iranian people to hold such an event. Participants from many countries sent in their enteries for the competition. The list of participants/countries can be seen here. 1193 cartoon enteries were recieved from 61 countires. The statement by the director of the Iranian House of Cartoons, Massoud Shojai Tabatabai, given to Guardian Unlimited poses a very important question. I will end my article with his question:

'Why is it acceptable in western countries to draw any caricature of the Prophet Mohammed, yet as soon as there are any questions or doubts raised about the Holocaust, fines and jail sentences are handed down?'

08/09: MSI K8N Neo4 Platinum (SLI) + AMD Winchester core processor = 220MHz FSB issue

When I bought my MSI K8N Neo4 Platinum SLI board last year (November, 2005), one of my intentions was to dabble into the world of overclocking. I bought an AMD 3200+ processor alongside it. The default FSB at which the processor operates is 200MHz.

I will be referring to the hypertransport speed as FSB since I am more used to it.

The motherboard is great for overclocking. However, my particular combination of this board with a Winchester core CPU is not a good overclocking combination. When I started overclocking, it went fine till 219MHz. When operating at an FSB of 220MHz, the board refused to boot until it was reset. After spending so much money on my PC (~$1500) and encountering this issue, I was greatly disappointed.

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03/09: 1st International Conference on Advances in Space Technologies (ICAST 2006)

Today I participated in the first ever International Conference on Advances in Space Technologies (ICAST 2006) at the Marriott Hotel in Islamabad. This 2 day conference has been organized by the Institute of Geographical Information Systems (IGIS) of National University of Sciences & Technology (NUST), Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE) Islamabad Section and IEEE / AESS (Aerospace and Electronic Systems Society)/ GRSS (Geosciences and Remote Sensing Society) Societies Joint Chapter. This is the 1st International Conference of the envisaged biennial conferences of ICAST series.

logo icast

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01/09: Post 9/11 Blues - Riz MC

Riz MC

Just saw the video by Riz MC (Rizwan Ahmed) at the link above. It is humorous, though admittedly controversial. The song pokes fun at the post 9/11 world and the way politics has invaded all of our everyday lives. This song has been banned from UK Radio. So much for freedom of speech and expression. dsigusted


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