Wednesday, September 28, 2005


What a waste ! This project will never see the day light, people aren't only going to haul away the contents of the the containers, they are going to to take the containers and use it for something else. I remember back in the seventies when Amman municipality decided to disseminate black plastic garbage bags for the citizens of Amman so they don't put their garbage in an open container that usually gets attacked by wild cats, and attracts mice and other crawling insects. The people never complied, they took the plastic bags from the garbage collector and never put it in the container, instead, people started using those plastic bags to save the old loaves of bread from hardening, and to store their clothing for the next season. some people went as far as stealing some of these bags and went to sell them in the flea market on weekend . Before you know it the municipality stopped the distribution process. I have no idea what the people are using to contain their garbage these days. In any event and as far as this new project is concerned, the rummage enthusiasts will have a filed day with these new containers especially the ones that are going to be placed in the rich areas of Amman. The homeless, the looters, the indigents, are going to follow through on fishing expeditions excavating inside these containers. In my opinion unless the municipality secure these containers with chains, steel lids, and locks, the project will fall apart in no time. Better yet, the containers themselves are going to disappear and will be seen being resold in one of the many flea markets scattered around the city of Amman.


Mr. Sakhinini is someone I met through free Palestine discussion list, I like what he wrote below and with his permission I'm excerpting the passage he wrote below.


On 28 September 2000, Ariel Sharon, the butcher of Sabra and Shatila, made a provocative visit to Haram al Sharif in Jerusalem, which sparked what became to be known as the “Second Intifada”.

The “Second Intifada” was neither Second nor First. It was part and a parcel of a continuous resistance to the Zionist project in Palestine. It is part and parcel of the conflict that started with the arrival of the pioneer colonial settlers in 1882 and is still going on to this date.

There are two parties to this conflict. On the one hand, we have a racist colonial movement that was, and still is, supported with the Imperialist powers of the West. On the second hand, we have a people attached to their land and would never stop their struggle until their full human rights are restored to them and until the Refugees, who were ethnically cleansed from Palestine, Return to the homes and lands that were stolen from them.

It is a long, sad and bitter story that would be summarized in a number of short messages to follow.

Nizar Sakhnini, 28 September 2005

Monday, September 26, 2005


A discussion between me and my- 10- year old old daughter about happiness.

Me. What does happiness mean to you ?

My daughter. It means having money, lots of it, and more money.

Me.Is that all ?

My daughter. Well, it could also mean
pleasing God, my family, and my teachers.

Me. What else ?

My daughter. I don't know, I said all what I know.

Me. How about being healthy, could that spell happiness ?

My daughter. Yeah !

Me. Do you like challenge ?

My daughter. Yes, I do.

Me. Do you feel triumphant when you win the challenge ?

My daughter, Yes I do !

Me. Can we call that feeling happiness ?

My daughter. Well, sort of

Me. So money isn't all happiness, or is it ?

My daughter. Well, yeah, but I still say that money is the main thing.

Me. But you just told me that stimulating your intellectual thoughts can result in a happy feeling !

My daughter. What do you want with me, I'm only 10 for God's sake. !

Me. I'm just trying to understand what is happiness.?

My daughter. I already told you, it is money.

Me. But I have already established that it isn't only money-- and you agreed.

My daughter. I don't care what I agreed to, I still say money spells happiness.

Me. Were you happy last year when they announced your name that you were the number one in your graduating class ?

My daughter. Yeah ?

Me. Where is the money in that announcement ?

My daughter. I would have felt happier had they given me monetary award instead of recognition ?

Me. So you are now defining happiness as happy, happier, and happiest.

My daughter. Yes, that is exactly what I'm doing.

Me. So when was your hippest moment in life ?

My daughter. When you gave me that crisp $ 100.00

Me. When will you become much more happier than that ?

My daughter. When you give me more money on my birthday !

Me. So in your mind, only money brings happiness and nothing else !

My daughter. Exactly.

Me. What happens if you don't get any money ?

My daughter. I'll kill myself.

Me. So good health, good parents, a sense of accomplishment, triumph, intellectual mind stimulants means nothing to you if compared to money.

My daughter. Yes, dad, and please leave me alone, I'm going to work on my home work and I don't wish for this discussion to continue any longer than what it already did.

Me. Go a head, and sorry for taking up your time.

My daughter. Never mind but you are tricky dad.

Me. You agreed to have this discussion about happiness.

My daughter. Yes, I did, but I wasn't thinking it is going to be like that !

Me. Do you want to have a discussion about another topic ?

My daughter. No, thanks.

So, there you have it, a 10 year old girl had translated happiness into basically one single word " MONEY"

Tuesday, September 20, 2005

Not So Silent

It isn't entirely true that Muslim Americans aren't making a concerted effort to denounce terrorism conducted by Muslims oversees. Many U.S. Arab and Muslim based organizations have consistently condemned the hideous terrorist acts in both Iraq and Palestine, and wherever else they take place around the globe. AAI, ADC, MPAC, CAIR, and many other Arab and Muslim organizations have made it abundantly clear in the print as well as in electronic media that terrorism is un-Islamic and those who commission it are bunch of thugs acting on their own and they don't represent the true Islamic teachings. Some organizations went even beyond the condemnation stage and started fighting back by exposing any kind of incitements found in literature that may promote terrorism or can be used as a fodder to brain washing young children at Muslim schools. They called Muslim Schools in part of Virginia to adjust their school curriculum which teaches intolerance regarding other monotheistic faiths. Muslim leaders of the world such as the Pakistani president, and the prime minister of Malasiya, and the king of Jordan have also condemned terrorist acts conducted by various Muslim groups. Maybe Muslims still have a long way to go before they are able to control all these irresponsible acts of terrorism conducted in the name of Islam, but silent no more, all moderate Muslims are united in their vision which spells out the notion that terrorism as the wrong approach to follow in trying to make a statement. Muslims are beginning to spear head real movements, albeit small in nature, calling for complete cessation of terrorism because all the terrorists are doing is besmirching the name of Islam and nothing else.

European & American Muslims

I concur that European Muslims provide the best hope for bridging the chasm between the West and the Islamic world, but I don't understand why were the estimated five to seven million American Muslims taken out from the mix of having an active role in restoring hope and confidence in the highly entangled bilateral relationships between U.S.A. and the Muslim world. President Bush was very careful soon after the 9/11 terrorists attacks to come to the Muslim's mosque in Washington D.C., and declare that the war on terror is not a war against Islam or Muslims, the American Muslims on their part reciprocated by pledging their full cooperation with the various governmental agencies, and by committing themselves to remain fully vigilant by keeping their eyes and ears open for any suspected terrorist hideouts and report them to the appropriate authorities. The Muslim organizations sought guidelines and clarifications from the Treasury Department on how to dispose of the charitable contributions collected annually from the members of the Muslim societies. In addition, they exhorted their members to commit to their civic duties by voting in the local elections as well as the national ones. They have provided libraries across the nation with copies of the Muslim holy book translated into every day English so other interested Americans can learn about Muslims if they chose to do so. American Muslims are also very active in Major U.S. cities in reaching out to other monotheistic faiths by instituting meetings and work shops with Jewish as well as Christian clergy men in order for them to understand one another and to keep the interfaith dialogue as an ongoing project to restore confidence between the varying faiths. American Muslims also travel abroad and meet with Muslim countries heads of states and expert theologians, and they facilitate trips and speaking engagements for them at major U.S. universities. So yes, American Muslims can and should be part of the larger endeavor of rebuilding the lost trust and part of restoring the hope for people of all walks of life to get a long peacefully with one another without regard to faith or ethnicity.


Success is not a goal it is a personal Journey. I'm concurring with the premise that the that extra curricular activities aren't part of the admission decision at the Universities in Jordan, and correctly so. So what !. I think that when the person decides to excel in some kind of a nonacademic activity, s/he are considered pursuing something personal, and no matter what this nonacademic personal activity is, it will not contribute to the advancement of the University in any way, shape or form, particularly when the University is considered an academic institution interested in teaching, in research, and in bringing up a learned generation. The University isn't a social club, it isn't a political organization, it is not an athletic arena. That is why it doesn't feel that it is obligated to consider the nonacademic extra curricular activity as part of its admission decision. The value of being socially, politically, or economically involved during adulthood years solely benefits those that are interested in pursuing such activities. Having said that, there are some activities that could be directly related to ones academic ambitions, for instance if one is applying at the university for creative writing curriculum, this person would be obligated to show that at some point during their life time they had done some creative writing work. It may have been a short novel that the person had written, it may have been an activity with the high school newsletter, or any work that will demonstrate that the person had interest in creative writing. I'm not suggesting her that extra curricular activities should be eliminated from people's lives, all I'm saying is that it is up to the individual to decide what they want to do with their creative mind.Some like your sister may want to run for student council, some body else may want to tutor other students, some may want to establish newsletter, some may want to be crossing guards, some may want to be involved in athletics, and so on and so forth. None of these activities have any relevance to academic excellence or its pursuit. I guess I'm siding with the University for not giving any academic value to nonacademic activities.

WSJ Redesign

I recall a few years ago the Wall Street Journal changed its design. In fact the redesign consisted of two parts only, it used to be printed in black and white only, so in the new version they added color to its pages, and moreover, it used to never put pictures in the paper, and once in a while when they decide to put a picture of some kind they would have it sketched by a cartoonist working for the paper. In its new redesign format it started putting pictures taken by digital cameras, and other colored pictures, as opposed to the previous black and white pictures– before the redesigning. As an added bonus to their readers, they added what they termed a personal Journal, it is a pull out section consisting of about 12 to 16 pages tailored for personal issues as– life, health, entertainment, travel, personal finances, and all kinds of other personal matters. I think that adding color didn’t really make any difference to the newspaper, after all, a newspaper is meant to be read and then thrown away irrespective of its appearance, we simply don’t save our daily newspapers the way we save our pictures for example, we simply don’t have an album that would fit the pages of the newspaper. In any event the addition of personal journal was a novel idea, it was a breakthrough if you will, and the reason being no matter what your profession is you are bound to find something in the personal section that would touch upon some part that will affect your life, be that a car you want to buy, a house that you want to build, or a bank loan that you need to finance a project that you are working on, the personal journal would have the information necessary to help you make an informed decision. I personally have been reading the personal section on a daily basis without fail since its inception over two years ago. You can’t imagine the volume of knowledge that I have added to my brain repository since I commenced this endeavor.

Sunday, September 18, 2005

Why ? Why ? Why ?

Why Does Guild Membership have to be Mandatory ! ?

Take a look at this report in today's issue of alghad newspaper, then see my commentary below the link.

I'm against forcing every journalist to be a member in the professional journalist association in order for the Journalist to be able to practice the profession of Journalism.It is absurd, why? what difference does it make? I think that membership ought to be voluntarily one. If the Journalist believe that he would be better off belonging to an association, then so be it but If he feels that his membership will not advance his career in any way, then why should he be obligated to become a member!?

The advent of Internet in the mid nineties have completely changed the way professional journalism is conducted and posed a great deal of challenges that never existed before.

The exploding of the electronic media and its ability to update events on the global level made it impossible for the print media to continue enjoying the prestige that it had always enjoyed since the dawn of the print media.

The bloggers posed another challenge as they proved that they can do the same job that the journalists are doing without pay and without any cost to the publishers, their rise over the past decade or so put another huge damper on professional journalists and their employers.

Everyone feels threatened by the bloggers, the journalists, the publishers, and the guild. They are trying to establish some sort of control over this festering problem. Will they be able to stem the tide? It is any ones guess. There is no way to measure how will the professional journalism look like ten to fifteen years from now.

If the current pace of declining readership of print media continues, there is a good chance that say by the year 2025, newspapers and journalists working for them will become a thing of the past like the typewriters and the eight track bulky tape players before it.

I certainly don't wish for the Journalism profession to become extinct but it is not up to me, the professional unions need to revise the way they deal with their members and give them the personal freedom to be able to join or not join the union.

But to make it mandatory for any member to join before they are able to practice their profession isn't the right approach at this point in time, it may even end up have a reverberating repercussions.

I hope that those in charge of the professional associations start thinking in terms of the requirements of the 21st century and not the exigencies of the 19th century.
Why Does Guild Membership have to be Mandatory ! ?