The Turkish navy will significantly strengthen its presence in the eastern Mediterranean Sea as one of the steps the Turkish government has decided to take following the release of the UN Palmer report on the 2010 Gaza flotilla, Turkish officials told the Hurriyet Daily News.
“The eastern Mediterranean will no longer be a place where Israeli naval forces can freely exercise their bullying practices against civilian vessels,” a Turkish official was quoted as saying. (here)
Wow… Should be interesting. The other day, Turkey expelled the Israeli ambassador. This is not good
Interesting enough, the some of the this technology – especially that which was used in Egypt – was manufactured in the U.S.:
For a long time, the dominant conversation around internet censorship has focused on two of the practice’s giants: Iran and China.
Arguably owners of the most sophisticated filtering methods, the criticism levied against these two countries has been deserved. And yet, the focus on them has largely been at the exclusion of other countries that also censor the web to varying degrees – including an increasing number of democracies.
In recent weeks, Turkey, Tunisia, and Australia have all made headlines for their various plans to introduce new filtering schemes. Though each country’s plan differs, they all have similar focus: curbing access to obscene content.
But while blocking obscenity may reflect the will of the people, such filters nonetheless have implications for freedom of expression.
For years, historians, archeologists, anthropologists and pretty much all of the other “ologists” have agreed that agriculture created civilization, including religion, as we have known it for the past 12,000 to 15,000 years. The assumption was that settling down to lives of farming, people built cities, created art and made up organized religions to suit the new needs they faced in the transition from hunter-gathers to farmers. Or not.
New evidence suggests that it was not agriculture which created civilization, but religion. The June issue of National Geographic offers a brief and provocative story from a place in Turkey known as Göbekli Tepe, site of the world’s oldest example of monumental architecture i.e. a temple. (here)
A religious gene, the fact that religion helped with socialization, and now… religion built civilizations.
Turkey has launched a project to conserve an ancient Armenian cathedral and a church in what is seen as a gesture of reconciliation toward neighboring Armenia.
Turkey and Armenia have been locked in a bitter dispute for decades over the mass killings of Armenians in Turkey in the last years of the Ottoman Empire, and efforts to normalize relations have been dealt a setback by the conflict between Armenia and Azerbaijan over the enclave of Nagorno-Karabakh. Azerbaijan is a close Muslim ally of Turkey’s government in Ankara.
Turkey, however, says it is committed to improving ties with Armenia, and has already restored the 10th century Akdamar church, perched on a rocky island in Lake Van in eastern Turkey. It has also allowed once-yearly worship at the site as a gesture to Armenia and its own ethnic Armenian minority.
Culture and Tourism Minister Ertuğrul Günay visited the ancient city of Laodicea on Sunday in Denizli province and was briefed by Professor Celal Şimşek, head of the excavation team. The professor said they have discovered the Laodicea Church, one of the seven mentioned in the Bible. Şimşek said the church from the fourth century A.D. was found by underground radar search, a system they have tried this year for the first time. “The major part of the church, which is built on an area of 2,000 square meters, has kept its original [status].”
Israeli archaeologists presented a newly uncovered 1,500-year-old church in the Judean hills on Wednesday, including an unusually well-preserved mosaic floor with images of lions, foxes, fish and peacocks.
The Byzantine church located southwest of Jerusalem, excavated over the last two months, will be visible only for another week before archaeologists cover it again with soil for its own protection.
I was the archaeologist with the Chinese expedition in the summer of 2008 and was given photos of what they now are reporting to be the inside of the Ark. I and my partners invested $100,000 in this expedition (described below) which they have retained, despite their promise and our requests to return it, since it was not used for the expedition. The information given below is my opinion based on what I have seen and heard (from others who claim to have been eyewitnesses or know the exact details).
To make a long story short: this is all reported to be a fake. The photos were reputed to have been taken off site near the Black Sea, but the film footage the Chinese now have was shot on location on Mt. Ararat. In the late summer of 2008 ten Kurdish workers hired by Parasut, the guide used by the Chinese, are said to have planted large wood beams taken from an old structure in the Black Sea area (where the photos were originally taken) at the Mt. Ararat site. In the winter of 2008 a Chinese climber taken by Parasut’s men to the site saw the wood, but couldn’t get inside because of the severe weather conditions. During the summer of 2009 more wood was planted inside a cave at the site. The Chinese team went in the late summer of 2009 (I was there at the time and knew about the hoax) and was shown the cave with the wood and made their film. As I said, I have the photos of the inside of the so-called Ark (that show cobwebs in the corners of rafters – something just not possible in these conditions) and our Kurdish partner in Dogubabyazit (the village at the foot of Mt. Ararat) has all of the facts about the location, the men who planted the wood, and even the truck that transported it.
CHINESE and Turkish evangelical explorers believe they may have found Noah’s Ark – 4000m up a mountain in Turkey.
The team said it had recovered wooden specimens from a structure on Mount Ararat in eastern Turkey that carbon dating proved was 4800 years old, around the same time the ark is said to have been afloat.
“It’s not 100 per cent that it is Noah’s Ark but we think it is 99.9 per cent that this is it,” said Yeung Wing-cheung, a Hong Kong documentary filmmaker and member of the 15-strong team from Noah’s Ark Ministries International.
The structure had several compartments, some with wooden beams, which were believed to house animals, he said. (read the rest here)
Jim West has some thoughts, as does Richard Bartholomew who also has some background information on the groups behind the newest, but not that new, discovery.
I do tend to believe the bible, and I don’t mind so much people spending lots of money trying to prove something – except you know, that they could be spending that same money on trying to actually live the bible. I don’t much care for the hypocrisy of certain things, or the money making machine that this is becoming.
April is the cruelest month for the people of Armenia, who every year at this season have to suffer a continuing tragedy and a humiliation. The tragedy is that of commemorating the huge number of their ancestors who were exterminated by the Ottoman Muslim caliphate in a campaign of state-planned mass murder that began in April 1915. The humiliation is of hearing, year after year, that the Turkish authorities simply deny that these appalling events ever occurred or that the killings constituted “genocide.”
This is important to me for various reasons. First, although I am not Armenian, I feel that the genocide which took place upon those people has been largely forgotten. Further, I note that Turkey, a secular Islamic country, is concerned with peace in that part of the world.
U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton basked in the glow of praise from her Nobel laureate boss on Saturday after spearheading successful efforts to salvage historic accords between longtime bitter foes Turkey and Armenia.
President Barack Obama, who a day earlier was the surprise winner of the Nobel Peace Prize, telephoned Clinton in Switzerland to congratulate her on overcoming a last-minute hitch that threatened to scuttle the Turkish-Armenian deals, a senior State Department official said.