Wednesday, February 13, 2019

Quote of the day from wikipedia: This was what Ilhan Omar was refering to in the Hearing--

His nomination to Assistant Secretary of State for Human Rights and Humanitarian Affairs was unanimously approved by the Senate Foreign Relations Committee on November 17, 1981.[9] Abrams was Reagan's second choice for the position; his first nominee, Ernest W. Lefever, had been rejected by the Senate Foreign Relations Committee on June 5, 1981.[9] During his time in the post, Abrams clashed regularly with church groups and human rights organizations, including Human Rights Watch.[10] According to an article in The Washington Post, in a 1984 appearance on the program Nightline, Abrams clashed with Aryeh Neier,[11] the Executive Director of Human Rights Watch[12] and with the leader of Amnesty International, over the Reagan administration's foreign policies. They accused him of covering up atrocities committed by the military forces of U.S.-backed governments, including those in El Salvador, Honduras, and Guatemala, and the rebel Contras in Nicaragua. Guatemala As Assistant Secretary of State, Abrams advocated for aid to Guatemala under then dictator Efrain Rios Montt. Montt came to power via a coup in 1982, overcoming the forces of left-wing strongman General Fernando Romeo Lucas García. Thirty years later, Montt was found guilty of overseeing a campaign of mass murder and torture of indigenous people in Guatemala. Montt, who claimed he had no operational control of the forces involved, was convicted of genocide against the Maya-Ixil population.[13] El Salvador In early 1982, when reports of the El Mozote massacre of hundreds of civilians by the military in El Salvador began appearing in U.S. media, Abrams told a Senate committee that the reports of hundreds of deaths at El Mozote "were not credible," and that "it appears to be an incident that is at least being significantly misused, at the very best, by the guerrillas."[14] The massacre had come at a time when the Reagan administration was attempting to bolster the human rights image of the Salvadoran military. Abrams implied that reports of a massacre were simply FMLN propaganda and denounced U.S. investigative reports of the massacre as misleading. In March 1993, the Salvadoran Truth Commission reported that over 500 civilians were "deliberately and systematically" executed in El Mozote in December 1981 by forces affiliated with the Salvadoran government.[15] Also in 1993, documentation emerged suggesting that some Reagan administration officials could have known about El Mozote and other human rights violations from the beginning.[16] However, in July 1993, an investigation commissioned by Clinton secretary of state Warren Christopher into the State department's "activities and conduct" with regard to human rights in El Salvador during the Reagan years found that, despite U.S. funding of the Salvadoran government that committed the massacre at El Mozote, individual U.S. personnel "performed creditably and occasionally with personal bravery in advancing human rights in El Salvador."[17] An unrepentant Abrams claimed that Washington's policy in El Salvador was a "fabulous achievement."[18] Nicaragua See also: Nicaragua v. United States When Congress shut down funding for the Contras' efforts to overthrow Nicaragua's Sandinista government with the 1982 Boland Amendment, members of the Reagan administration began looking for other avenues for funding the group.[19] Congress opened a couple of such avenues when it modified the Boland Amendment for fiscal year 1986 by approving $27 million in direct aid to the Contras and allowing the administration to legally solicit funds for the Contras from foreign governments.[20] Neither the direct aid, nor any foreign contributions, could be used to purchase weapons.[20] Guided by the new provisions of the modified Boland Amendment, Abrams flew to London in August 1986 and met secretly with Bruneian defense minister General Ibnu to solicit a $10-million contribution from the Sultan of Brunei.[21][22] Ultimately, the Contras never received this money because a clerical error in Oliver North's office (a mistyped account number) sent the Bruneian money to the wrong Swiss bank account.[21] Iran-Contra affair and convictions During investigation of the Iran-Contra Affair, Lawrence Walsh, the Independent Counsel tasked with investigating the case, prepared multiple felony counts against Abrams but never indicted him.[21] Instead, Abrams cooperated with Walsh and entered into a plea agreement in which he pleaded guilty to two misdemeanor counts of withholding information from Congress.[23] He was sentenced to a $50 fine, probation for two years, and 100 hours of community service. Abrams was pardoned by President George H. W. Bush in December 1992.[24] Special Assistant to President Bush President George W. Bush appointed Abrams to the post of Special Assistant to the President and Senior Director for Democracy, Human Rights, and International Operations at the National Security Council on June 25, 2001.[25] Abrams was appointed special assistant to the President and the NSC's senior director for Near East and North African Affairs on December 2, 2002.[26] Human rights groups and commentators expressed disquiet over his White House appointment owing to his disreputable conduct and conviction in the Iran–Contra affair investigation and his role in overseeing the Reagan administration's foreign policy in Latin America.[27][28] In this capacity, Abrams played an important role in U.S.–Israel relations. In an unannounced visit to Ariel Sharon in Rome in 2003, Abrams was the first member of the U.S. government to discover that Israel planned to pull out of Gaza. Abrams was also witness to the growing tension between the two governments on account of the U.S. effort to find a comprehensive peace settlement. Abrams said: "What was not in the newspapers is the tension that is growing between the U.S. and Israel over this. Because we are constantly asking in my view for Israeli concessions, to kind of oil this mechanism of peace. And the Israelis are getting tired of it. And they think, you know, this is not the way an ally should act. Bush is kind of above this with the Prime Minister, so this is really Condi with the Israeli cabinet and the Prime Minister."[29] The London Observer said that Abrams had advance knowledge of, and "gave a nod to," the Venezuelan coup attempt of 2002 against Hugo Chávez.[30] Advisor for Global Democracy Strategy Abrams participates in a

Mongol movie Aravt (unit of ten) This seems more fictional. I haven't watched the whole movie, but at least the scenery is beautiful. 2-13-2019

Secret History of the Mongols. Difficult read, I recommend Paul Kahn's version km 2-13-2019

Sergei Bodrov, movie Genghis 2007 Story is a bit changed from ancient Secret History of the Mongols.

CNN--Democrats gave away too much on the wall deal.

FactBase trump daily calendar as announced by WH--KEEP this link on file. For instance, yesterday he got back at 3 something PM and then nothing on calendar. 2-13-2019

Former Intelligence Agent charged with spying for Iran.

Ilhan Omar lashes back at trump--"You trafficked in hate yr whole life."

Tuesday, February 12, 2019

Movie Vice (about Dick Cheney) screenplay by Adam McKay--educational use only.

Calamondin oranges--

Praise for K M Kaung's Wolf: A Novel of Love and Betrayal.

My Amazon Review of Charles Dickens' Little Dorrit--scroll down to comments section.

My artwork on sale on my website--contact me.
Warning, Copyright Kyi May Kaung 12x24" Oil on canvas

From I Lombardi--

Aida with Luciano Pavarotti

Jascha Heifetz--

USA National Debt tops 22 trlllion for the first time.

McConnell presses Trump on border deal.

Drug lord El Chapo sentenced to life in prison.

CA to scale back 77 b bullet train.

Sunday, February 10, 2019

Obit of one of my mentors at Penn, Herbert S. Levine. Pl share. I only wish I had studied Mandarin as he wished me to. Only the other hand my first cousin who did, has already passed away these 20? years or so. He also knew a lot about China and was also my dissertation chair. km

From 2008, probably one of the moments that changed US policy on Burma, and I was part of it.

Interview of uber agent (literary agent) Nat Sobel.

Axios--more trump schedules leaked to press. 5 hours every day in the residence (private quarters) Looks like he's looking for 17+ lawyers and 11 + doctors. Hu la la! Prep to break out the champagne. Meanwhile time to tweet abt Warren in the snow. 2-10-2019

Chinese crullers--

1 1/2 star book, endorsed of co-written by Trump--as empty as the donald.

Trump Tower novel that Trum wrote himself with ghost writer. I wonder if Mueller can get leads from there. 2-10-2019

Wednesday, February 06, 2019

Angelina Jolie goes to Rohingya refugee camps + "First they killed my father" movie trailer (Cambodia) Things are very bad in Burma, and now hardly any activists outside to call attention to it. km

Yiyun Li's new book.

Yiyun Li's son's suicide. If this is the cost of success, it isn't worth it, is it? I also work mostly between midnight and 4 AM, but my children are all grown.

Sotu--audience chants "We will vote." Must scare the sh** out of orange clown, 2-6-2019

El Paso sheriff puts out statement blaming trmp for false narrative (ie LIES) ref crime in El Paso and wall.

Maria Butina boyfriend indicted on fraud, 11 counts.

New Mexico governor pulls National Guard from border, citing trmp's charade.

How to live a rich good life--

How To Live a Rich Life Without Lots of Money - Lifehack Here are a few ways you can live a rich life without lots of money. Learn to accept yourself. It can be hard for you to understand that money should be not a top priority. Become creative. Stay authentic. Do what you love. Stay gentle. Become generous. Build relationships. ‎What Exactly is Personal ... · ‎How It Leads to Financial ... · ‎When to Use Personal ...

Food--NPR--green jackfruit not yet the new coconut water.

I would totally have believed it was pulled pork, but maybe that's because I don't eat pork so I have no expectations. I thought the dish was chewy in a good way and very flavorful. I brought some into work and asked people to sample and weigh in. "It tastes and looks like meat," said a guy who described his palate as "not very discerning." NPR I've seen the green j fruit in cans in Asian groceries for donkey's years, but since I really didn't like it in Burma when it was fresh, never bought over here. BTW, the seeds are tasty boiled or roasted, somewhat like chestnuts. I had a nice green j fruit salad in Bali, SE Asian style, a few hours after I got off the plane. My ex sis in law used to make green j fruit curry. J fruit on whole is rather indigestible, and I felt sick after eating one $5 slice of ripe J fruit about 2 years ago, so I have stopped eating or craving it. Was just a closure sort of thing, and I've had my "closure" from about a dozen trips to Thailand, Singapore and Bali 2001-2010, where I got all the tropical fruit I remembered. There were the wild vegetables, edible flowers, and leaves too. Like noni (ywet yoe ywet) leaves. Or the flower buds mare-za-lee buds soup. After a while the memory may be better than the reality. I think of my mother and my elder uncle craving things like croissants and apples in Burma, which they knew from the Colonial period, and not being able to have them due to the socialist economy. It's all in my novel Wolf wh I am bringing out soon. km 2-6-2019

sotu Jekyl and Hyde speech by trmp

Investigation--more indictments possible.

sound of silence at sotu the investigation damn well will continue. 2-6-2019

trmp loses narrative. It wasn't a "joke"--it was attempt to chide Members of Congress like little girls. 2-6-2019

trmp namesake falls asleep during sotu

Tuesday, February 05, 2019

My tweet for today--

Hope you all had a great day. I did. I stayed off news &TV by plan, & only got on Twittr abt half an hr ago I got a lot of work done. I did not listen to State of Disunion add, don't plan to read transcript trmp looked visibly annoyed he's lost limelight & narrative. :)

Sunday, February 03, 2019

Best sci fi--

1909 foiled Taft Diaz assassination attempt in El Paso TX and Taft's restraint.

Femicide in Honduras--Nightline

Burma ranks #5 by numbers of refugees fleeing, due to the Rohingya Genocide.

Globe and Mail Portugal tour with leading journalists. all you need is money. km

Venezuela--Hell of a Fiesta

Court documents--cartel kingpin El Chapo raped girls as young as 13.

Burmese tea house children--embedded video. see upper RHS of site. I sometimes post on this site as I was given permission by webmaster about 10 years ago. I met Tim once in NY in 2012. Here is picture of me with Tim, 3rd fr L, Nobel Laureate AK Sen next to him and 2 other scholars at Columbia Univ. To donate to his organization, go through Al Jazeera. Tim's grandfather or great grandfather was a Mr Hardy. I am very glad he is doing this.
with AK Sen NY Rohingya Confce etc 9-14-2012 559.JPG km

9 men in ICE detention being force fed.

19 year old neuroscience student found frozen to death. Wearing inadequate clothing, was taking a shortcut. Pl teach children to wear proper clothing in winter and stay indoors and safe, and don't drive too much in bad weather. How to call 911. Symptoms of heat stroke as well as hypothermia. Walking on ice on ponds is also dangerous. Take care

Power (including light), heat failure in Brooklyn spark protests--during Polar Vortex--meanwhile trmp and entire family in FA vacationing at taxpayer expense.

Ohio shooting--deputy killed, one wlounded, in trying to help a suicidal person.

My short story Black Belt in Himal Southasia

Another death to possibly lay at trmp's door--TSA office jumped off balcony.

Saturday, February 02, 2019

Unforgiveable--ICE confirms it's force-feeding refugees on hunger strike.

donald trump jy will be indicted, says prosecutor--and will --

trmp compared to toddler--

Quote of the day--from The New Yorker.

Even as condescension toward genre fiction has gone out of style, the universes of literary and speculative fiction remain distinct, with their own awards, their own publishers, and their own separate, albeit overlapping, communities of readers. “There are a lot of literary-fiction authors whose heads are super stuck up their asses,” James said, telling the attendees that writers ought to read widely across genres.

Quote of the day--from Jack London--Call of the Wild.

But Buck possessed a quality that made for greatness—imagination. He fought by instinct, but he could fight by head as well. He rushed, as though attempting the old shoulder trick, but at the last instant swept low to the snow and in. His teeth closed on Spitz's left fore leg. There was a crunch of breaking bone, and the white dog faced him on three legs. Thrice he tried to knock him over, then repeated the trick and broke the right fore leg. Despite the pain and helplessness, Spitz struggled madly to keep up. He saw the silent circle, with gleaming eyes, lolling tongues, and silvery breaths drifting upward, closing in upon him as he had seen similar circles close in upon beaten antagonists in the past. Only this time he was the one who was beaten.

Quote of the day-coping with blindness.

Mary: Are you still keeping a diary? John: No—well, my secretary keeps an appointment diary. (laughs) I'm busy doing my work. Remember blindness is only a hobby, my sideline. My main work is writing, teaching, contributing to research and running committees at the Queen's Foundation. (Editor's note: The Queen's Foundation is an ecumenical institution, training women and men for ministries within the Church of England, the Methodist Church and the United Reformed Church.) I also continue doing speaking engagements although I don't travel extensively. I used to travel by myself all the world, just me and my cane, taking a person's elbow at train platforms etc. But I'm 77 years old now and don't venture as far. I lecture about theology and church life, and general life issues as well as blindness. Recently, I gave a talk on loss and was invited to speak at a symposium on the blind experience of time. Mary: We are lucky then that you have no plans to retire.

Better link, Reuters, Rohingya Genocide.

Reuters has a special section on imprisoned Burmese reporters--

Immigrants' rights lawyers and journalists denied entry into Mexico.

Pompeo announced suspension of nuclear arms treaty with Russia

Brazil dam collapse video--graphic