Najib Extends Condolences To NS Trainee's Family
National Service Training Department director-general Abdul Hadi Awang Kechil said Najib, who was currently abroad, had conveyed the message through him over the phone.
He was speaking to reporters after handing over RM3,000 to the victim's father Elenchelian a/l Ramasamy, 44, at Hospital Tengku Anis, here Wednesday.
"The money is contributed by the insurance company which is under the auspices of the NS training programme to help the family of the deceased," he said.
Prema, one of 402 trainees comprising former students of Sekolah Menengah Cheras, Batu 11, died after being found unconscious in a public toilet at the Jeram Linang recreational area, near here. She was found in a seating position with her head bent downwards by a NS instructor.
The trainees from the camp were undergoing training at the recreational area since Tuesday.
Prema, 18, was said to be complaining of stomach ache shortly after dinner.
She was confirmed dead by a doctor who treated her at Hospital Tengku Anis at 3.30am.
Limbongan state assemblyman Dr Zainuddin Awang Hamat donated RM500 to her family.
Meanwhile, Elenchelian told reporters that before joining the National Service training, Prema, the eldest of four siblings, did not suffer from any chronic disease.
Arrangements were being made by the NS programme for her burial in her hometown, Cheras, Selangor.
Meanwhile, Abdul Hadi said despite the incident, the Hutan Wira Jaya training, which was compulsory for each NS trainee, would not be cancelled, but would instead be closely monitored for their safety.
The training would allow them to be resilient and strong both physically and spiritually, he told reporters at the hospital morgue.
"Each time the training is held, we have to conduct three stages of monitoring to ensure the participants' safety," he said.
At the same time, Abdul Hadi said the NS programme would review the safety level of each area to be used for training in future.
On the incident, Abdul Hadi said the cause of Prema's death would only be known following an investigation by a forensic team from Kuala Lumpur.
Lihat juga berita ini : Lagi 133 anggota Pas isytihar keluar parti
Menurut beliau, rakyat negeri itu mengaku mereka tidak mahu lagi mengundi Pas sebaliknya ingin kembali ke pangkuan jalan dengan menyokong Barisan Nasional (BN) pada pilihan raya umum akan datang.
Katanya, keinginan rakyat Kelantan itu menandakan zaman gerhana akan berakhir di negeri itu apabila mereka menyokong kembali BN.
‘‘Zaman gerhana di Terengganu sudah berakhir dan tiba masanya Kelantan pula membuat perubahan.
‘‘Mereka kata ‘taubat’ tak nak lagi Pas dan inilah pengakuan rakyat Kelantan sejak akhir-akhir ini,” katanya ketika berucap merasmikan Majlis Perhimpunan Bekas Qari dan Qariah Peringkat Kebangsaan di Masjid Meraga Beris di sini malam tadi.
Mengulas lanjut perkara itu, kata Zainuddin, salah satu aspek menimbulkan rasa tidak senang hati rakyat di Kelantan adalah perjuangan Pas yang tidak konsisten.
Jelasnya, sebagai contoh dahulu mereka menentang segala bentuk hiburan di negeri itu tetapi kemudian mengubah pendirian dengan mempelawa juara Akademi Fantasia 3 (AF3) , Asmawi Ani atau Mawi mengadakan persembahan.
‘‘Dulu segala bentuk hiburan dikatakan haram tetapi sekarang mengubahnya kepada halal,” jelas beliau.
Beliau menambah, pemimpin Pas juga mendakwa tilawah al-Quran tidak menepati kehendak Islam kerana memperdengarkan suara adalah haram.
Bagaimanapun katanya, hasil cetusan ilham Almarhum Tunku Abdul Rahman, tilawah al-Quran bukan sahaja melahirkan ramai qari dan qariah, namun ia turut menyumbang kepada perkembangan pengajian agama yang berteraskan al-Quran. Utusan Malaysia
Mishaal, at conclusion of a meeting with Russian foreign minister Sergey Lavrov, said that Moscow expressed absolute understanding of the necessity to lift that siege and of starting cooperation with Palestinian national unity government.
Mishaal, in a meeting with the Palestinian community in Moscow, said that Hamas and Fatah have agreed on reforming the PLO in its capacity as the sole representative of the Palestinian people in the international arena.
He explained that the main elements of the Makkah agreement revolved around breaking the siege and securing international cooperation with the new unity government that is currently being formed.
The Hamas leader stressed that the Palestinian people refuse pressures from any party whatsoever, adding, "We believe that all pressures and dictates target one goal mainly to push our people into civil war". kudusyolu
February 27 - Bosnian Muslim and Croat leaders have voiced disappointment at the International Court of Justice's decision to clear Serbia of genocide in Bosnia, while Serbs have expressed relief at the verdict.
The highest UN court said Serbia had not planned or carried out in the 1995 Bosnian Serb massacre of 8,000 Muslims at Srebrenica.
But it said Serbia had violated its obligation to prevent and punish genocide.
Haris Silajdzic, a Bosnian Muslim leader, said: "It turns out there was genocide in Bosnia but it is not known who committed it."
A guilty verdict may have meant compensation claims in the billions.
Bosnians who had long hoped for the truth about the 1992-95 war to be acknowledged felt cheated. Zeljko Komsic, a Bosnian Croat leader, said: "We who were in Bosnia know what happened here right from the beginning of the war and I know what I will teach my kids."
Serb human rights campaigners said ultranationalists who deny war crimes, or claim all were equally guilty, would gloat.
Vojislav Kostunica, Serbia's caretaker prime minister, issued a statement which did not acknowledge any Serb guilt.
"The ruling ... is particularly important because it has freed Serbia of the serious accusation that it committed genocide," he said. "Light must be shed on all war crimes and their perpetrators, and must be punished in a court of law."
At least 100,000 people died in the fighting, three quarters of them Muslims and Croats.
Bosnian Serbs using the might of the Yugoslav Army against their lighter-armed adversaries swept swathes of land clean of non-Serbs, culminating in Europe's worst atrocity since World War II, at Srebrenica.
Aleksandar Popov of the Igman Initiative group for normalising Serbia-Bosnia relations called the verdict a "symbolic slap" and predicted "gloating" by nationalists.
For Bosnian Serbs who opposed the lawsuit filed by Bosnia's Muslim-led government in 1993, the ICJ ruling established that their republic was not founded on genocide, as Silajdzic argues, and should not be dissolved.
Igor Radojicic, the speaker of the Serb Republic parliament, said: "This ruling sends a message that the survival of the Serb Republic is unquestionable."
For Fatija Suljic, 60, who lost her husband and three sons at Srebrenica, the ICJ's ruling was "a disaster for our people".
Nenad Canak, of Serbia's new Social Democrat-Liberal Democratic coalition, said of the ruling: "The only thing I can say is to remind you of the words of Primo Levi written on a wall in Dachau. 'The man who denies Auschwitz is the same one who is ready to repeat it'." Agencies
PETALING JAYA (Feb 27, 2007) - A highway concessionnaire released details of its classified agreement with the government in its prospectus for institutional investors 10 years ago, it was revealed today.
Lingkaran Trans Kota Holdings Bhd (Litrak), the concession holder for the
DAP secretary-general Lim Guan Eng, who revealed the prospectus in a press conference today, questioned the motive of the government for continuing to insist the agreement was under the OSA.
"The prospectus has all the details of the agreement. Works Minister Datuk S. Samy Vellu had said everything discussed in the cabinet is under the OSA.
"As such, Litrak, and its two joint global lead managers, Arab-Malaysian Merchant Bank Bhd and Barclays de Zoete Wedd Ltd, should also be investigated by the police as well for revealing the content."
Last month, four opposition leaders - Parti Keadilan Rakyat information chief Tian Chua, treasurer-general Tan Sri Abdul Khalid Ibrahim, PAS treasurer-general Dr Hatta Ramli and DAP non-governmental organisation bureau chief Ronnie Liu - were questioned by the police for alleged violation of the OSA by revealing a copy of a concession agreement in a press conference.
Samy, who initially lambasted the four for revealing "official secrets", recently said the ministry would reveal the agreement as the premier Datuk Seri Abdullah Ahmad Badawi had agreed to it, provided a paper was first tabled to the cabinet.
He had said the concession holders had no objections to this.
Lim said the government should drop its investigation against the four men and apologise to them for "selective prosecution and double standards".
Lim said the Litrak prospectus revealed the projected profit after tax of the company from 1997 to 2029 to be RM18.9 billion while the total construction cost was estimated at only RM1.327 billion, inclusive of capitalised interest of RM142.3 million.
"This is at least 15 times the cost that they put in," he said.
He asked whether this was why there was hesitation to make public the agreements.
"Samy Vellu should be ashamed of himself for protecting the interest of the company instead of the people by not wanting people to know about the agreement even though it was already public knowledge in 1996," he added.
Maria J. Dass
PETALING JAYA (Feb 27, 2007) - Bandar Bukit Puchong Umno, ordered by the Subang Jaya Municipal Council (MPSJ) to vacate within 30 days for illegally occupying a public playing field, has put up about 30 flag poles outside its "container office".
At last month's full-board meeting, the MPSJ issued a directive to Umno for the two containers to be removed within 30 days, failing which it will be demolished by the council. The notices were pasted on the containers on Feb 6.
Thirty poles bearing Umno and Barisan Nasional flags were found erected on the field along Jalan BP3/1 in Bandar Bukit Puchong 3 on Saturday.
When contacted, MPSJ public relations officer Azfarizal Abdul Rashid said the owners of the containers have been told to remove both the cabins and the flag poles immediately.
On Jan 27, what was supposed to be a meeting between the residents and their Member of Parliament (MP) to discuss the encroachment turned violent when a group, claiming to be from Bandar Bukit Puchong Umno, arrived with 20 others.
Resident Eugene Mark Gabriel alleged the group threatened and harassed the residents, telling them that this was an Umno matter and that they should not interfere.
Residents lodged a report at the Puchong police station later that day and two Umno members were questioned.
The containers are not the case of politicians squatting illegally for their political operations. It was also reported that MPSJ councillor Aftar Singh, who is also Puchong Perdana MIC chairman, had set up his service centre on state land zoned as "open space" for the last nine years.
Early this month, when asked to comment on the matter, Selangor Menteri Besar Datuk Seri Dr Mohd Khir Toyo said no one is above the law, not even political parties.
He said they (political parties) can apply for Temporary Occupation Licence (TOL) at the land office and they can remain if they get approval.
"If they fail we will have to do something." sun2surf
Akhbar Kuwait, al-Siyasa, semalam melaporkan seorang diplomat dari negara Teluk, melawat Washington pada Sabtu lalu berkata, tiga negara Arab terbabit, Qatar, Oman dan Emiriah Arab Bersatu (UAE), sudah memaklumkan kepada Amerika mereka tidak akan membantah jika Israel menggunakan ruang udara mereka meskipun negara terbabit turut bimbang menjadi sasaran Iran.
Sementara itu, al-Siyasa turut melaporkan pemimpin Pertubuhan Perjanjian Atlantik Utara (Nato) menggesa Turki membuka ruang udaranya untuk tujuan serangan ke atas Iran serta turut membuka lapangan terbang serta sempadan jika serangan darat dilancarkan.
Menurut seorang diplomat Britain yang ditemubual al-Siyasa, Turki tidak akan mengulangi kesilapan pada 2003 sewaktu negara itu enggan membenarkan tentera udara Amerika menggunakan ruang udaranya untuk menyerang Iraq pada 2003.
Akhbar Britain, Daily Telegraph kelmarin melaporkan Israel sedang berunding dengan Amerika berhubung kebenaran untuk megutkuasakan koridor udara di Iraq, jika serangan ke atas Iran diperlukan.
Bagaimanapun, Timbalan Menteri Pertahanan Israel, Ephraim Sneh menafikan laporan itu dan menegaskan Israel tidak mempunyai perancangan sedemikian.
Di Teheran, Presiden Iran, Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, menyatakan rakyat negaranya tidak membenci rakyat Amerika Syarikat tetapi membantah dasar pemerintah Amerika di rantau terbabit, lapor agensi berita Irna.
“Rakyat Iran tidak membenci atau menentang rakyat Amerika,” katanya ketika memberi ceramah kepada sekumpulan paderi Amerika yang mengadakan lawatan bagi memulihkan hubungan antara rakyat Iran dan Amerika.
Kenyataan itu dibuat Ahmadinejad beberapa hari sebelum mesyuarat lima anggota tetap Majlis Keselamatan serta Jerman di London untuk membincangkan sekatan tambahan ke atas Iran.
Di Moscow, Menteri Luar Russia, Sergei Lavrov menyuarakan kebimbangan mengenai spekulasi meningkat berhubung serangan terhadap Iran, lapor agensi berita Interfax.
“Jangkaan dan tanggapan mengenai serangan tentera ke atas Iran semakin kerap didengari dan ini menggusarkan,” kata Lavrov ketika bermesyuarat dengan Presiden Vladimir Putin. – Agensi
Bagram base in Afghanistan attacked
Kabul, February 27 - A Shaheed attack has killed around 20 karzai militants and american soldier, at Bagram air base in
The attack occurred inside one of the security gates surrounding the heavily guarded occupation base 60km north of
Kabir Ahmad, Bagram district puppet "governor", said: "It was a suicide bombing. It took place between the main gate and the gate guarded by american soldiers.
Zemarai Bashary, an karzai regime spokesman, said: "Reports are stating that 18 people were killed and three of them are foreign soldiers.
"The 15 others are civilian Afghan workers who wanted to enter Bagram air base for their work. On injuries we do not have exact reports." Other source informed that 18 karzai militants eliminated and at least 3 american solder have been killed.
US military officials confirmed what they called a "direct attack" on the base.
A spokeswoman for Cheney said the vice president was safe.
Senior Master Sergeant Richard Simonsen in the Bagram media office told Agence France-Presse: "We have reports of one
Cheney stayed at the base overnight after planned talks with Hamid Karzai, were delayed by weather.
Later on Tuesday, the
Speaking at an intellectual discourse,
He said the country's economic and social achievements and its tradition of religious pluralism stood out among Muslim-majority countries in the world.
"I believe that the Malaysian example demonstrates clearly the capacity for Islam to assume once again the leadership role it played among the world's civilisations."
Tracing back Washington-Kuala Lumpur long relationship, LaFleur said that US supported
Malaysiatoo, he said, had backed the USin the Vietnam War and sent military personnel there to assist the during the Cold War period. US
"I believe this shows that even in the earliest years of
LaFleur said the ties between the US and Malaysia were based on a variety of common interests -- political, defence and security, in the fight against terrorism and in the economic, cultural and educational fields.
"And where we do have common interests, it's not a one-way thing favouring either side but a strong, mutually beneficial relationship that profits both sides," he added.
LaFleur stressed that the strong common economic ties could become even stronger with a Free Trade Agreement (FTA) which both were currently negotiating.
Later speaking to Bernama, LaFleur said that America-Malaysia relationships had matured a lot compared to at the beginning of establishing diplomatic ties.
"We have a very good bilateral relations...and our leaders in fact get together more often since the current Prime Minister (Datuk Seri Abdullah Ahmad Badawi) and our President (George W.Bush) took office.
"Obviously, we don't agree on everything and we have frank dialogue...we respect very much what the Prime Minister (Abdullah) is attempting to do in encouraging the economic and social development in the Islamic world.
And, we also respect the fact that
An Ethiopian flag erected in
Aweys Osman Yusuf
Residents reported that the Ethiopian flag was erected three areas near the Ethiopian bases in
Ethiopian officers who spoke with Shabelle however denied they erected the flag or wrote such words on it. They have pointed out that people who wanted to create disturbances between the Ethiopians and Somalis were behind the incident.
Some of the Ethiopian soldiers who spoke
Glorious Islamic Era Can Be Revived, Says Najib
From Mohd Arshi Mat Daud
"All knowledge are needed, whether they are revealed knowledge (based on the Quran and Hadith) or Aqli (based on worldly knowledge)," he said at a dinner with 80 Malaysian students of the Medina Islamic University, last night.
Also present were the Malaysian ambassador to Saudi Arabia Datuk Dr Ismail Ibrahim, Malaysian consul-general in Jeddah Syed Bakri Syed Abdul Rahman and Malaysia's Education counsel in Jeddah Muhammad Radhi Hamzah.
Najib said from the Islamic point of view, there was no difference or "compartmentalisation" because all knowledge demonstrated the greatness of Allah SWT.
He said Muslims must learn from the past glory of Islam where the centres of learning in Cordoba and Baghdad had mastered various disciplines of knowledge and the libraries at these centres each contained two to three million books, while Europe was in "darkness".
"Medina was the place where the knowledge tradition was nurtured, and it is most important for us to continue this tradition of educational excellence by taking into account that there is no knowledge that is not useful to the Muslim ummah."
As such, he said, the Muslim ummah must master science, technology and innovations so that they would not continue to be dependent on the non-Muslim world but to build their own sources of strength.
"In fact, the Quran contains scientific elements which no one can deny even to this day. When we combine revealed knowledge with scientific knowledge, we have a new strength to achieve excellence for the Muslim ummah," he added.
Najib said the mastery of knowledge, coupled with a strong belief in Islamic unity, and non-compartmentalisation of worldly pursuits and the hereafter, were three ways of overcoming the problems faced by the Muslim ummah presently. He said the different ideologies or sects actually carried a message of unity instead of conflict.
"Many aspects of the acts of religious devotion carry messages of unity, such as performing the Haj pilgrimage where pilgrims all wear the ihram although they are from different sects, and all face the Kaaba.
"There must also be mutual respect and understanding that the existence of different sects should not lead to tension among Muslims."
Najib also said that Muslims must give equal importance to the present world and hereafter.
"There should not be any group which is only interested in worldly pursuits or only in the hereafter. On the other hand, there must be a balance in both pursuits."
'Anwar's sacking unlawful as it was done without advising Agong'
PUTRAJAYA (Feb 26, 2007): Former Prime Minister Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad sacked Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim from his cabinet post on his own accord without advising the Yang di-Pertuan Agong, the Court of Appeal heard today.
Anwar's counsel Karpal Singh said Anwar was unlawfully dismissed as Deputy Prime Minister and Finance Minister on Sept 2, 1998, as his termination contravened Article 43 (5) of the Federal Constitution which states that the Yang di-Pertuan Agong was the lawful authority to dismiss him upon advice from the prime minister.
The three-member presiding judges comprising Justices Datuk Zulkefli Ahmad Makinudin, Datuk Md Raus Sharif and Datuk Heliliah Yusof heard the appeal by Anwar, 59, to set aside the High Court's decision delivered nine years ago, throwing out his application for an order to declare Mahathir's decision to dismiss him as null and void.
Karpal Singh argued that the High Court was wrong to strike out Anwar's originating summons summarily as there were triable issues to be determined by the court because there were contradictions in the termination letter and the sworn affidavit by the Yang di-Pertuan Agong's confidential secretary on whether the Agong was advised prior to dismissing Anwar as required under the constitution.
He said the termination letter did not indicate that Mahathir had advised the Agong on the revocation of Anwar's appointment as deputy prime minsiter and finance minister, reports Bernama today.
Karpal Singh wants the appellate court to straight away decide on the merit of the case instead of making an order to pass the matter back to the High Court for trial. He also sought compensation.
In his application for declaration, Anwar had sought to be reinstated as a cabinet minister but in view of the current change of circumstances, Anwar now wants to be compensated.
Senior Federal Counsel Asmabi Mohamad said the King was advised and informed of the matter which was shown in two sworn affidavits by the King's confidential secretary Jaapar Wahab and Chief Secretary to the Government Tan Sri Abdul Halim Ali.
She said the two affidavits were sufficient to prove that Mahathir had advised the Agong before he dismissed Anwar, therefore complying with the requirement of Article 43 (5).
After his sacking, Anwar was charged and found guilty of corruption and sodomy. He was jailed nine years for sodomy and six years for corrupt practice.
On appeal, the Federal Court on Sept 3, 2004, freed Anwar after setting aside his conviction and jail term for sodomy.
His application to review the conviction and sentence for corruption was, however, dismissed by the Federal Court on Sept 15, 2004.
The appellate court has deferred decision in this appeal to another date to be fixed as it needed time to consider the submissions. sun2urf
The International Court of Justice has said that the 1995 massacre of nearly 8,000 Bosnian Muslims in Srebrenica was genocide, confirming an earlier verdict by the UN war crimes court for the former
Rosalyn Higgins, the International Court of Justice (ICJ) president, while delivering the ruling on Monday said: "The court concludes ... there were acts of genocide committed by members of the Bosnian Serb army [in Srebrenica]."
It is the first time that the ICJ, the UN's top court, has ruled that an event was genocide, which was made an international crime under a 1948 treaty after the Nazi Holocaust.
It is also the first time that a state has been tried for genocide.
However, in the same ruling the court has also said that the mass killings in other parts of
"The court finds it has not been established by [
In its ruling, the court said that
If the final verdict had been in favour of
More than 100,000 people died in the Balkans war between 1992 and 1995; it triggered the break-up of the former
About 8,000 Muslims from Srebrenica and surrounding villages were killed in July 1995. The bodies of about half have been found in more than 80 mass graves in the area.
About 50 people demonstrated outside the court on Monday in favour of a genocide verdict.
"A ruling that
Serbiacommitted genocide in Bosniameans everything to me," said 34-year-old Hedija Krdzic who lost her husband, father and grandfather at Srebrenica in eastern . Bosnia
"Without such a ruling I fear that one day the massacre will be forgotten."
Al Jazeera's Alan Fisher reported from Sarejevo that the verdict was received by the Bosnians with "anger, resentment and even resignation".
"Because the Bosnians believed that they took the action not just for themselves but for every country threatened by genocide.
"Now they feel they are badly let down by the world court." Agencies
KEMAMAN, February 26, 2007 - Documentaries on the nation's non-Malay freedom fighters will be aired over Radio Television
Information Minister Datuk Seri Zainuddin Maidin said the immense contributions of both the Chinese and Indians during pre-independence were recorded in documentaries stored in RTM’s archive, and will be retrieved to be shown to younger Malaysians.
"The younger generation may not understand the struggle of our former leaders, including non-Malays.
"We hope the public will watch and comprehend the strenuous efforts by all races to achieve independence, in a bid to further fortify our racial unity,” he said after hosting a dinner at Kampung Beris Meraga mosque here on Sunday night.
Zainuddin said the involvement of Chinese leaders in fighting the communist insurgency and Indian army personnel from BAT69 in steadfastly fighting bandits, would also be aired over RTM’s special programme for the Merdeka celebrations.
"We have numerous such documentaries in our archive and I have directed RTM to air it," he said.
Zainuddin said RTM will also air the independence declaration made by First Prime Minister Tunku Abdul Rahman over radio. theStarOnline
Lim: Say sorry and be a saint
Lim said Samy Vellu should apologise "for his earlier ‘bloodthirstiness’ in demanding that four opposition leaders be jailed for at least one year for blowing the whistle about the lopsided Litrak LDP concession".
Lim said this in a statement yesterday in reaction to the Works Minister’s interview in the New Sunday Times.
Samy Vellu had attributed his outburst about not being "the bad boy" of tolls to the opposition leader using the word "bloodthirsty" in reference to him and toll hikes.
"He was indirectly saying I’m a Dracula. Only a Dracula goes for blood," he said in the interview.
Lim said Samy Vellu should push for the Official Secrets Act investigation against the four opposition leaders over the toll concession to be halted.
The four opposition leaders Lim was refering to are: Pas treasurer Dr Hatta Ramli, Parti Keadilan Rakyat treasurer Tan Sri Khalid Ibrahim, Keadilan information chief Tian Chua and Ronnie Liu, who heads the DAP’s bureau on non-governmental organisations.
The four were said to have announced that the government had guaranteed profits to Litrak, the concessionaire for the Lebuhraya Damansara-Puchong, in the agreement.
Under Section 8 of the OSA, a conviction for an offence carries a maximum jail term of 12 months.
Lim said yesterday that "Dracula" had not entered his mind when in his statement last Feb 3 he had demanded to know why Samy Vellu was "suddenly so bloodthirsty" as to demand opposition leaders be jailed.
Meawhile, DAP Ipoh Barat MP M. Kulasegaran called on Samy Vellu not to interfere in the DAP’s affairs.
"There is no necessity for catching up in the DAP among party members. I am Kula and he is Karpal. We don’t need outsiders to advise us," Kulasegaran said in reference to Samy Vellu’s observation on the DAP in relation to the MIC.
Samy Vellu had told the New Sunday Times: "No other Indian can come up in the DAP. Karpal Singh (DAP chairman) is very strong, that’s how he has survived. And M. Kulasegaran is trying to catch up with Karpal. Wherever they contest, we know how to deal with them."
Kulasegaran said instead of griping about the DAP, Samy Vellu should think about renewal in the MIC leadership. NSTOnline
US generals to quit if
As many as five generals and admirals have said they are willing to resign if faced with the prospect of having to approve a strike on
The news comes as fears grow about a
Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad has also said his country would not withdraw from its nuclear path.
The source said: “There is simply no stomach for it in the Pentagon, and a lot of people question whether such an attack would be effective or even possible.”
The paper also quoted a British defence source as saying: “Nobody wants to do it and it would be a matter of conscience for them. There are enough people who feel this would be an error of judgment too far for there to be resignations.”
But not everyone in the
General Peter Pace, chairman of the joint chiefs of staff in
He also recently refuted claims by the Pentagon that
The special planning group was established within the office of the Joint Chiefs of Staff in recent months, according to an unidentified former U.S. intelligence official cited in the article by investigative reporter Seymour Hersh in the March 4 issue.
The panel initially focused on destroying Iran's nuclear facilities and on regime change but has more recently been directed to identify targets in Iran that may be involved in supplying or aiding militants in Iraq, according to an Air Force adviser and a Pentagon consultant, who were not identified.
The consultant and a former senior intelligence official both said that U.S. military and special-operations teams had crossed the border from Iraq into Iran in pursuit of Iranian operatives, according to the article.
In response to the report, Pentagon spokesman Bryan Whitman said: "The United States is not planning to go to war with Iran. To suggest anything to the contrary is simply wrong, misleading and mischievous.
"The United States has been very clear with respect to its concerns regarding specific Iranian government activities. The president has repeatedly stated publicly that this country is going to work with allies in the region to address those concerns through diplomatic efforts," Whitman said.
Pentagon officials say they maintain contingency plans for literally dozens of potential conflicts around the world and that all plans are subject to regular and ongoing review.
The article, citing unnamed current and former U.S. officials, also said the Bush administration received intelligence from Israel that Iran had developed an intercontinental missile capable of delivering several small warheads that could reach Europe. It added the validity of that intelligence was still being debated.
The article also included an interview conducted in December with Hezbollah leader Sayyed Hassan Nasrallah, who said that while he had no interest in initiating another war with Israel, he was anticipating and preparing for another Israeli attack sometime this year.
Israel launched a cross-border offensive against Hezbollah in Lebanon last July.
Nasrallah also said he was open to talks with Washington if such discussions "can be useful and influential in determining American policy in the region," but they would be waste of time if the purpose was to impose policy.
A letter to KC, February 25
I am a Muslim youth belong to Rohingya community of Arakan State of Burma also known as Myanmar. My name is Kareem.
Rohingyas under serious genocidal threat in Burma since they are denied the right to citizenship in Burma in 1982.
There is no security in life and properties for us in Burma. We are facing the daily life of killings with cool blood by armies and Buddhism. Our females are used for sex as war weapons and our youth are banned the learning higher educations. Inter-marriage among us is even stopped and travellings have been totally banned inside the region. In consequence of economic crisis, the new born baby are killed by their own parents because of lack of foods and other neutrition plights.
Half of the our population have given up living Burma but they are also facing with inhumanities where they are taking a refuge. The world is ignore our plights even Muslim countries never showed a few interest in our issue.
We are unable to protect our self even our religion inside Burma and there will soon lost Islam in Arakan under extramist Junta and local Buddhism.
Please help us in any way and guide us what we should do for our future.
With many hopes, Kareem
Dozens of Israeli jeeps and armoured vehicles have raided the West Bank city of Nablus and placed tens of thousands of Palestinians under curfew.
Israeli troops arrested 20 Palestinians, triggering clashes that left six people wounded.
Security sources and witnesses said the Israeli army distributed flyers early on Sunday, saying the raid was aimed at arresting nine wanted people.
An army spokesman said: "Our forces are operating in Nablus to discover caches of arms and explosives and to arrest those responsible for attacks against Israel."
The army claim to have found an explosives laboratory and that soldiers had been shot at in several places and returned fire.
Four Palestinians were lightly wounded by rubber bullets in the clashes, medics said. The army said that two soldiers were also lightly wounded.
The spokesman for the Israeli army said: "There were brief exchanges of fire and our forces also used rubber bullets and tear gas to disperse Palestinian demonstrators who had thrown rocks at them."
Witnesses reported 80 jeeps backing several bulldozers the Old City, Ras al-Ain and al-Jabal al-Shamali neighbourhoods of Nablus.
The size of the operation indicates that the military operation will not end soon, according to Al Jazeera's correspondent there.
The bulldozers pushed rubble into piles on main roads to make them impassable, witnesses said, while snipers took positions on rooftops in the Old City and the neighbourhood close to Raefedia hospital.
Troops placed about 50,000 people under curfew in the centre of Nablus and closed the main entrance to the city.
Jeeps blocked entries to two main hospitals in the city, al-Watani and Raefedia, said Ghassan Hamdan, a doctor there.
"We are suffering, Nablus is suffering, from this closure," Hafiz Shahine, the deputy mayor of the city told Al Jazeera, "the shops are closed and streets and blocked in the Old City, no-one can get out of their homes."
Nablus has been under seige for six years," he said.
Schools and a university in the city announced that they had cancelled studies due to the curfew.
"One of the last issues we have to sort out is how we actually get to the targets in
Deputy Defence Miniter Ephraim Sneh denied the report. "There has never been such a request, it is obvious," he told public radio.
He said it was the machination of "international sources who wish to dodge dealing directly with
Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad had called for
AlJazeera, February 24 - Dick Cheney, the US vice-president, has not ruled out military action against Iran, despite saying that diplomacy was favoured to resolve Tehran's nuclear programme.
"It would be a serious mistake if a nation like Iran were to become a nuclear power," Cheney said during a joint press conference with John Howard, the Australian prime minister.
Cheney said: "All options are still on the table."
His comments came after the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) issued a report saying that Iran had not halted, and in fact had expanded, its uranium enrichment programme, defying a UN Security Council demand to stop by this week.
The United States, France and Britain have called for tougher UN Security Council sanctions on Tehran over its nuclear programme which they fear could be used to develop nuclear weapons.
Iran insists that its enrichment activities, which could make fuel for power plants or material for warheads, are for peaceful purposes.
"We've worked with the European Community and through the United Nations to put in place a set of policies to persuade the Iranians to give up their aspirations," said Cheney. "That's still our preference."
"The next step now is being debated, between our government and the others involved," he added.
Cheney also told reporters that he was concerned about Iran's "fairly aggressive" role in the Middle East.
Nicholas Burns, the US undersecretary of state, will meet senior European diplomats in London on Saturday to decide "the future course of action we want to pursue with respect to the United Nations sanctions and so forth," he said.
Officials from the five permanent Security Council nations and Germany will then meet on Monday to start work on a new resolution to try to pressure Iran to suspend enrichment.
On Friday, Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, the Iranian president, said Tehran should stand up to the world and continue to work on its nuclear programme.
"If we show weakness in front of the enemy, the expectations will increase. But if we stand against them, because of this resistance they will retreat," Ahmadinejad said in a speech in northern Iran, the country's ISNA news agency reported.
At the United Nations, Mehdi Danesh Yazdi, Iran's deputy ambassador, accused the United States, Britain and Israel of levelling "baseless allegations" about its nuclear ambitions and insisted that Tehran had always considered weapons of mass destruction "inhumane, immoral and illegal".
He told the Security Council that his country had an "inalienable right" to develop nuclear technology for peaceful purposes and would not "give in to the pressures emanating from groundless and unsubstantiated allegations and ulterior political motives".
Dokka Umarov: “We shall not tire, and our patience will not run low”
In the Name of Allah, Most Merciful, Most Compassionate
All praise belongs to Allah, Who having created us Muslims and favored us with Jihad, gave us an opportunity to conquer the Paradise. Let Peace and Welfare be with the Leader of all Mujahideen Muhammad the Prophet, with his family and his Companions, and with all those who followed his path right up to the Doomsday. And then...
Dear brothers and sisters!
On February, 23rd, 1994, President Dzhohar Dudaev by the special decree has declared this day as the Day of Rebirth of the Chechen Nation. That we have let know, that the Chechen people which has restored its own state, never will kneel and to not obey to the enemy, who during hundreds years is trying to break our will and our right to the way of life, religion and freedom.
The Chechen people meet next, 63 anniversary of a monstrous crime of Russia in the next battle. The enemy is the same, and still aspires to the purpose.
Chechen people as more than once happened in its history, has heavy time. Invaders use the most refined and artful methods of war, leaning on a piteous group of the turncoats and apostates. The genocide has accepted total forms. Physical destruction of people by means of the advanced kinds of arms, including the weapon of mass destruction (WMD), is accompanied by psychological destruction.
Dirty orders and laws, moral decay and nasty things are spread. The violence and aggression are directed not only against our state, but also on consciousness of people which enemy wish to transform in bustards, the hammered mass, not knowing neither honor, nor advantage. For this reason our religion Islam is exposed to attack first of all.
The enemy knows, what exactly Islam is our protection, a support, the ally and that source, whence people derives the strength.
The aggressor perfectly understands, what exactly the Islam is a basis of our way of life, our culture, our freedom which can be changed, only having perverted and having destroyed religion.
Therefore the enemy wages artful psychological war against Muslims, using apostates, traitors, cowards and turncoats. But, by the Mercy of Allah, such nonentities are minority among us.
Jihad continues. The lie and propagation of the enemy will not change a situation. We shall not tire, and our patience will not run low. The number of mojaheds grows.
Allah says in the Holy Qur'an: "O you who believe! Persevere and be patient, hold fast and strengthen each other, and be Godfearing, so that you may prosper". (3:200)
I address to Chechen people, to fellow citizens, to all Muslims of Caucasus, to our brothers and sisters, suffering under occupation and oppression of Russia, to battling mojaheds, the best persons among us.
Be patient for the victory comes to patient. Really, Allah Almighty and Glorious, is with us in our Jihad. Do not despond and do not cease to struggle. And when it becomes especially difficult, remember those who has no an opportunity to battle and only waits for the destination, and this is a great humiliation.
So occurs to us today, occurs by the Permission of Supreme Allah, because all this was prescribed by Him. We hope for the best.
And if others do not hasten to help, remember, that only Allah can grant a victory. And if others turn away, remember, that Allah does not turn away from the sincere believing slaves.
If struggle, struggle for the sake of Allah and Almighty Lord will strengthen numbers of the battling and will give a victory. Be not afraid of anybody except Allah and then others will be afraid you.
Know, that the victory is granted not to those who surpasses the opponent numerically or by modern military technique, but to those, who possesses God-fearing and is righteous and does not perform dirty deeds, prohibited by Allah.
So fight for the sake of Allah, be God-fearing, perform good deeds, be just, executing laws of Allah and abstaining that He has forbidden and then our Lord grants a victory, Insha'Allah!
'Sensasi' TV3 diharamkan akibat ucapan Rosnah
23-02-2007 11:45:03 PM
Oleh SALHAN K. AHMAD. mStarOnline
PETALING JAYA: Siaran langsung rancangan hiburan 'Sensasi' TV3 ditarik balik serta-merta oleh Suruhanjaya Komunikasi dan Multimedia (SKMM) susulan kontroversi ucapan artis Rosnah Mat Aris yang disifatkan mengguris perasaan umat Islam.
Dalam siasatannya, suruhanjaya itu mendapati slot itu pada 30 Jan lalu "tidak mematuhi syarat-syarat yang ditetapkan untuk kelulusan siaran langsung dan tertunda seperti mana dalam Syarat 3.1 & 5.5 (i)" dan stesen TV swasta itu didapati "gagal mengambil langkah menyunting atau mengawal kandungan yang tidak sesuai."
"Dengan ini pihak TV3 telah diminta untuk menghentikan siaran langsung rancangan tersebut dengan segera," kata SKMM dalam satu kenyataan hari ini.
Ketua komunikasi korporatnya Adelina Iskandar berkata keseluruhan program 'Sensasi' seharusnya "menyumbang kepada aspirasi nasional dan tidak menyinggung sensitiviti serta nilai-nilai murni masyarakat."
Jika TV3 berminat menerbitkan siaran tersebut secara pra-rakaman, stesen itu haruslah mematuhi prosedur lazim yakni mendapatkan kelulusan Lembaga Penapisan Filem (LPF), tambahnya.
Foto skrin artis Rosnah sewaktu bercakap dalam 'Sensasi' yang menimbulkan kontroversi. Klip video slot ini beredar luas di internet.
Adelina menjelaskan, menjaga sensitiviti masyarakat dinyatakan dalam Syarat Khas Lesen berhubung kandungan yang dilarang, Kod Kandungan dan juga Akta Komunikasi dan Multimedia 1998.
Rancangan yang dihoskan oleh Awal Ashari, bersama seorang lagi artis Intan Azura, disiarkan setiap Selasa pada pukul 11 malam selama satu jam.
Program berformatkan siaran langsung dengan ahli-ahli panel undangan di kalangan penggiat seni membincangkan isu-isu sensasi.
Rosnah dalam satu slot 'Sensasi' hujung bulan lepas dilaporkan mengaitkan gosip ke atasnya dengan status usia Siti Khadijah, isteri Muhammad yang pertama, ketika menjawab satu soalan.
Rosnah ditanya oleh Awal mengenai kegemarannya terhadap lelaki muda untuk dijadikan "anak ikan", atau teman lelaki remaja.
"Zaman nabi (Muhammad) bercinta dan kahwin dengan Khadijah dulu, umur Nabi berapa? Berapa umur Siti Khadijah?" soalnya.
Selepas mendengar reaksi penonton di studio, artis berpengalaman dan popular itu berkata: "Tua ke muda tu? Dah nak mampus ke tidak tu?"
Kenyataan ringkasnya itu menimbulkan kontroversi besar sehingga menarik perhatian Jabatan Kemajuan Islam Malaysia (Jakim) yang mahu meneliti rakaman program tersebut untuk tindakan lanjut.
Pembaca-pembaca juga menghantar surat menyatakan kekesalan terhadap kenyataan tersebut.
SKMM, dalam kenyataannya, menyebut rancangan langsung yang semakin meningkat popular itu ditarik balik mulai 16 Feb dan ia tidak ditayangkan lagi Selasa minggu ini.
Pengurus besar hiburan TV3 Azhar Borhan semalam dilaporkan berkata 'Sensasi' tidak diharamkan tetapi rancangan itu akan dibuat secara rakaman mulai sekarang.
"Keputusan untuk menjadikan Sensasi program pra-rakaman diambil oleh pihak dalaman," beliau dipetik sebagai berkata.
"Selepas menerima maklum balas, kami kini menumpukan soal kawalan kualiti."
Azhar juga berkata siaran langsung tidak perlu ditapis tetapi isu-isu yang dibangkitkan dalam 'Sensasi' memudahkan ahli panel teruja.
Lihat komen menarik dari Screenshots
Tiga Ahi Parlimen BN mahu terus guna ‘bahasa kasar’
KUALA LUMPUR 22 Feb. – Tiga ahli Parlimen Barisan Nasional (BN) yang terkenal dengan kelantangan suara masing-masing pada setiap sidang Dewan Rakyat akan terus menggunakan ‘bahasa kasar’ sekiranya keadaan memaksa mereka berbuat demikian.
Mereka berkata, dalam situasi tertentu, penggunaan bahasa yang sopan dan berhemah adalah tidak sesuai kerana ia tidak boleh menggambarkan luahan perasaan Ahli Parlimen ketika membahaskan satu-satu isu.
Menurut mereka, bahasa yang sopan juga kurang sesuai digunakan untuk mematahkan hujah barisan pembangkang terutama jika ia menyentuh maruah kerajaan serta parti atau sengaja membuat tuduhan melulu.
Pemangku Pengerusi Kelab Penyokong Kerajaan Barisan Nasional (BNBBC) Datuk Raja Ahmad Zainuddin Raja Omar berkata, ini tidak bermakna ahli Parlimen BN tidak mahu menggunakan bahasa lebih sopan tetapi terdapat keadaan yang mendorong mereka menggunakan ‘bahasa kasar’.
‘‘Dalam membahaskan satu-satu isu, penggunaan perkataan oleh pihak pembangkang kadangkala amat keterlaluan dan sebagai ahli Parlimen BN kami terpaksa bangun dan patahkan hujah dengan menggunakan bentuk bahasa yang sama,’’ katanya kepada Utusan
Beliau berkata demikian ketika mengulas langkah kerajaan Perlis menganjurkan ‘seminar mulut’ bagi membentuk bangsa
Menteri Besar, Datuk Seri Shahidan Kassim berkata, seminar yang akan berlangsung pada 1 Mac itu bertujuan menyediakan garis panduan kepada rakyat cara penggunaan bahasa yang sopan dan berhemah.
Raja Ahmad Zainuddin berkata, beliau tidak boleh menghalang ahli Parlimen BN menggunakan bahasa kasar kerana terdapat faktor yang menyebabkan mereka terpaksa menggunakannya.
‘‘Cuma saya ingatkan kepada semua ahli Parlimen BN supaya tidak menggunakan bahasa lucah atau menunjukkan isyarat lucah ketika berbahas,’’ katanya lagi.
Ahli Parlimen Sri Gading, Datuk Mohamed Aziz berkata, secara umumnya semua ahli Parlimen BN mahu menggunakan bahasa yang sopan tetapi tidak semua situasi membolehkan mereka menggunakan bahasa berkenaan.
‘‘Seperti saya contohnya, apabila ada pembangkang yang
‘‘Dalam keadaan ini saya perlu menggunakan bahasa yang lebih tegas dan sekiranya perlu bahasa kasar, saya akan menggunakannya. Saya tidak mahu melihat mereka (pembangkang) begitu mudah memperlecehkan kita,’’ ujarnya.
Begitu juga jika Parlimen membincangkan isu luar negara seperti pencerobohan
‘‘Itu sebab ketika isu itu dibincangkan saya katakan Presiden Amerika dan Perdana Menteri
Ahli Parlimen Jasin, Datuk Mohd. Said Yusof ketika dihubungi turut bersetuju bahawa anggota Parlimen ada masanya terpaksa menggunakan bahasa kasar.
‘‘Bagi saya apa yang lebih penting ialah mesej yang hendak disampaikan oleh ahli Parlimen terbabit kepada rakyat. Terdapat sesetengah mesej yang hendak kita sampaikan memerlukan kita berbahasa lebih kasar.
‘‘Saya juga akui dalam kita berbahas, ekspresi dan luahan perasaan dapat digambarkan melalui kata-kata yang kita keluarkan dan pada masa itu penggunaan bahasa yang lebih sopan saya lihat kadang kala tidak sesuai,’’ ujarnya.
Bagaimanapun Mohd. Said berkata, beliau akan