Page 1

Slavery: Radical solution to singletons’ problems

Time to speculate: Princess Diana would be 50





Japanese wary of Mexicans in Women’s World Cup

Max 41º Min 31º

NO: 15136- Friday, July 1, 2011

Dust blanket covers Kuwait See Page 12

Dust storm to last till Friday night

KUWAIT: Cars and pedestrians brave through a heavy sandstorm in Shuwaikh yesterday. — Photo by Joseph Shagra

Local FRIDAY, JULY 1, 2011

Dining alone in Kuwait ‘Stop staring at me, I’m not pathetic’ By Sawsan Kazak


he other day I got a craving for some sushi - some shrimp tempura to be exact. I called up my regular dining partners to see if they were up for a Japanese dining experience. But to my chagrin, everybody I called was either not hungry, not available or broke. The next solution was to take the food home with me and silence my ever-growing shrimp tempura craving. But anyone who has eaten tempura knows that it does not do well when put in a box and transported for long periods of time - it gets soggy, oily and inedible. Tempura is made to be enjoyed quickly, while it’s still hot and crunchy. Not wanting to be sacrilegious to the tempura or my serious craving for it, I decided to simply go to the restaurant and eat it there. It didn’t matter that I’d be sitting alone - the amazing deep fried shrimp would keep me company with their delicious goldenness and creamy-spicy sauce. But the experience was less than pleasurable, and somewhat embarrassing.

was impossible. I played games on my phone, texted everyone I knew and went to the bathroom twice. I had to do all of the above while trying really hard to ignore all the continuous stares of sympathy from the surrounding tables. Just when I was about to forget why I put myself through all this suffering, my food arrived. The plate was glorious, the shrimps flawlessly cooked. The crispy light brown exterior was the perfect complement to the soft and fresh fleshy interior.

Table for one The strange experience began when I walked through the restaurant doors. The waiter greeted me with a huge smile. “Table for one please,” I said with pride. His smile slowly faded and a look of confusion took its place. “Sorry?” he said as though to imply that he hadn’t heard me properly.

I finished reading the menu within a few seconds as I knew exactly what I wanted. I looked around to get the waiter’s attention to order when I realized that the diners at the tables around me were staring at me.

It didn’t matter that I’d be sitting alone - the amazing deep fried shrimp would keep me company with their delicious goldenness and creamy-spicy sauce. But the experience was less than pleasurable, and somewhat embarrassing.

Mmmm, that’s good I took a few bites and was in heaven this was the best time this restaurant ever made them. But with this great joy came some sadness as there was no-one there for me to share it with. I wanted a diner partner there to agree with me how good the coating was and how delicious tangy the sauce was. Unfortunately I had to experience this all by myself. I paid my bill and slowly walked out of the restaurant. As much as I enjoyed the meal, the whole experience was just a little too frustrating. I guess it takes a special person to be able to eat out alone.

“I will be eating alone tonight,” I explained. “So you want takeaway?” he asked. After a few moments more of explanations in all the languages I know, the waiter finally understood and put down the other menu he was holding in his hand. He looked around the restaurant to see where he wanted to put me. He pointed to a table for four: “Will that be OK?” I sat down and readied myself for the great meal to come. Stop staring at me I finished reading the menu within a few seconds as I knew exactly what I wanted. I looked around to get the waiter’s attention to order when I realized that the diners at the tables around me were staring at me. They had sad looks on their faces, the kind

that implied that they felt sorry for me because I am so pathetic. I could just imagine what they were thinking: ‘That poor girl has no friends and came to eat sushi alone, how sad.’ I just felt like screaming out: “Yes I’m eating alone but I’m not pitiful, I’m just craving.” Finally I flagged the waiter down and informed him that I was ready to order. Looking perplexed, he asked why I didn’t want to wait for my dining companions to order with them. Explaining that I was here alone was even sadder the second time around. Keeping busy The fifteen minutes I had to wait until my plate arrived seemed like hours. Keeping busy during that time

Local FRIDAY, JULY 1, 2011

Local Spotlight

Teachers and teaching in the Arab world

From the editor’s desk

Butchering the education cow

By Muna Al-Fuzai

By Abd Al-Rahman Al-Alyan


’m aware schools are closed now for the summer holiday and most teachers, especially the expats, are either heading to their countries to rest and the remaining few are still packing. It’s going to be a long holiday this year and schools will not start until September. This article is not about teachers and holidays but about teachers and what they do to make their living. This is an important topic I believe, as teaching is not an easy job, and it definitely is not for everyone . I think teachers in the Arab world have been presented unfairly and receive negative press, although they are doing a great job which we need. They provide our kids with the knowledge - which we claim to be power - they need to grow up and become good adults to help their country to develop and prosper. Yet teaching as a career is not commonly known as something most of us want to practice for joy, passion and love. In the Arab world, some turned to teaching for different reasons and while few chose teaching as an honorable career, many turned to it because there is no other option or better one for them. Some choose teaching as part of their desire to enjoy long summer holidays with a good salary especially in a Gulf country like Kuwait, and some

chose this kind of work because their spouse relocated to the region. Government schools in Kuwait for instance don’t allow mixed teachers, so it is either girls’ schools or boys’ schools with all staff of the same gender. I know this may have nothing to do with the teachers’ performances but this can be an indicator that you have some teachers who don’t really enjoy the job or the environment. In Kuwait, there are continuous requests to increase salaries for teachers. This is fair enough but I have not seen the same people calling for better outcomes and ways to evaluate the quality of the teachers to justify the increase in salary. Another issue here is the media that undermines the image of teachers as much as the parents who interfere in the process of education and educating their children. Stories like these are endless and the appreciation for the role of teachers, especially expatriates, is not glamorous at all. I believe that teaching has many requirements needed by the applicant for this kind of job, flexibility, patience, etc. It is not only about a degree to match someone’s personal or family wishes ... it is a societal mission to upgrade the standard of teachers we want.

Satire Wire

Why is Mother Nature mad at us? By Sawsan Kazak


ver since summer began in Kuwait, all our weekends have been gloomy, dusty and depressing. As soon as Thursday rolls around, the sky turns orange, completely blocking out the sun. For weeks now, the only sun I’ve seen is on my drive to work. The weekends in Kuwait are filled with sand in the sky and everywhere else. Any time spent outside during this weather fills your lungs, not to mention your house and car, with dust. Why is Mother Nature mad at us? Who annoyed her enough that she would curse all our weekends with horrible weather? I guess the old saying holds true: ‘Hell hath no fury like a woman scorned.’ Someone has disrespected Mother Nature and she is taking out her anger on us and our leisure time. She is showing us the beautiful weather on our workdays just so it hurts that much more when she deprives us

from it on our weekend. Maybe we should start holding our collective weekends midweek when the weather is actually good and we’d be able to enjoy outdoor activities like tanning or barbequing. Maybe our new ‘weekend’ should be Monday and Tuesday and we can hide indoors on Friday and Saturday. But make sure no one informs Mother Nature about our plans, otherwise she might give us a sandstorm all week. But it is uncharacteristic of Mother Nature to be so vindictive. Maybe she’s trying to protect us from the harsh sun and heat. Perhaps the annoying sand is a barrier from the damaging rays of the unforgiving Kuwait sun. I guess, like a true mother, her intention is to guard us and save us from harm. I suppose I could wait a few more weeks to work on my tan; it’s not like there will be a shortage of sun in the upcoming months. Letters to Sawsan

Hey Lady, Just finished reading your piece on Car-ma, and I must say I thoroughly enjoyed it. Alhamdulillah your friend and yourself walked away unscathed (car damage is easier to remedy than physical). I am glad to hear that I am not the only one I have come across in Kuwait that believes in it, I don’t know how long you have been believing in it or how long you have been living by it, but I have been for a while and would like to share some advice. If you ever get to a point where you believe that you are doing good deeds and find that you don’t get what you want or think you deserve, just think of all the bad things you might have avoided. So keep on being

cool and take it easy. Will be looking out for your future articles. Regards Omar Al-Hajeri Hello Sawsan, Read your article today about Saudi women driving . . . I’ve been following that story with much astonishment. But it doesn’t compare to the front page story about concubines for women! And people who say it’s boring to live in the Middle East have no idea what they are talking about! Best wishes, John Hayes


t is no secret that Kuwait is facing a political crisis. Hung parliament, dissolved parliament, boxing, wrestling, fights and circus stunts - the Kuwaiti political scene has witnessed it all in the last five years. The political crisis is far from over and yes, there may be short-term solutions that work as temporary painkillers. However, Kuwait needs a long term solution and that solution is education. When an educated MP makes it with 10,000 votes in his constituency, you will find that the majority of his voters have at maximum a high school degree that they probably got with bribes, left, right and centre. Trust me, I know someone who graduated from a school in Mangaf just by getting his teachers fresh vegetables from his dad’s farm! Back to our subject, most of these not-so-educated voters support him not for an agenda that serves the country’s benefit, but for his tribal roots, his religious roots or simply the best thing you could ever offer anyone - ‘free money’ - which is why we have a very spoilt nation that asks for things such as “drop our debts”. I wouldn’t be surprised if they soon started asking for free Ferraris or Lamborghinis. Of course even the highly educated are easily seduced by free money, but what I am trying to say is that it’s easier for a smart educated person to understand that the good of the country is to his and his family’s long term benefit. As a famous Arabic saying goes, “an educated person would understand that it’s better to take care of a cow and sell its milk than butcher it and enjoy one large feast”. The level of education in Kuwait has unfortunately deteriorated ever since the 1990 invasion. Now I know that some officials might say that we have spent millions to improve schools. Yes, that may be the case, but a nice building does not educate me if I don’t have the right calibre of teachers. The majority of investments made to improve schools in Kuwait have gone into buildings and a breakfast meal for kids rather than the quality of education. The syllabus used in our schools might need an update but the truth is the main reason our education system is deteriorating is corruption. There are kids who take it to their heart and put in the effort to learn in our schools and they get a proper education. However, many of them just buy their grades because teachers are underpaid and the system is built on a high level of trust that used to be perfect in an era when one person’s word was stronger than a contract. This week I was extremely disappointed when parliament rejected a proposed salary hike for teachers as I hoped that such a hike will improve the quality of teachers who accept teaching positions in Kuwait and that would be at least one step in the right direction. I was also very surprised when I realised that it was our educated female MPs who voted against the teachers rather than the ones who put this country in the political predicament it is in. What a shame and what a disappointment this was to education in Kuwait. Which brings me to the conclusion that either these highly educated MPs think that it is easier to control uneducated masses - or their families owned big farms as well!

Local FRIDAY, JULY 1, 2011

My Gym or your child’s gym? By Nawara Fattahova


he long stay on the couch in front of TV and the indulgence with piles of French fries create an unhealthy life style that negatively affects a child’s psysical condition. In order to combat the obesity problem, a local company has arrived at a revolutionary solution: gym for kids. My Gym, Children’s Fitness Center, is one such place where children become athletes who do sports and stay fit. My Gym, an American franchise with 200 branches around the world, opened its doors in Kuwait in July 2009. The main idea and concept of My Gym is to fight obesity in society and help children to have a more healthy lifestyle. Located at the Discovery Center Kuwait, My Gym is open all year long. During the school holidays, there are summer, spring,

and winter camps. Kids between six months and 13 years can participate in the different classes. My Gym provides structured age appropriate classes from September to June-mid, twice a week, one hour long in duration. “We also have the parent participation classes and independent classes,” explains Haneen Al-Mousa, Owner and Director of My Gym. She explains that the gym organizes pop dancing classes and karate. “If there are no classes in the morning, we arrange school trips to the Gym. I noticed that both the students and the teachers enjoyed this visit,” she said. “My Gym offers Parent Participation classes such as Little Bundles for ages 6 weeks to 6 months, Tiny Tykes 7 to 13 months, Waddlers 14 to 22 months, Gymsters 23 months to 2.5 years and Terrific Tots for ages 2.5 to 3.3 years. Independent Gym classes are Mighty Mites for ages 3.3 to 4.5 years, Whiz Kids 4.5 to 6 years,

Champions 6 to 8 and Cardio Kids 8 to 13 years,” she further said. With their helpful instructors, trainers and staff, the gym is a friendly atmosphere for everyone to enjoy. “Everyone progresses at their own pace, the activities are non-competitive. All kids leave with a smile on their face, as we don’t let them fail. We give love and attention to the kids; so, if they have fun they will exercise,” she added.

Local FRIDAY, JULY 1, 2011

The activities change every day. “We don’t want the kids to feel bored, so we change the activities daily. Every child is doing something new. The structure is the same but the activities change. We also change the decor of the whole place weekly, which makes the children surprised, curious and motivated,” noted Haneen. Who is behind My Gym? After graduating from Kuwait, Haneen took her training in the United States. “I gave classes in the States, and took training to train the teachers working in my gym,” she said. “I was able to train my teachers here in Kuwait in my gym instead of letting them go to the United States. They received training with the kids in Kuwait, and this has made a huge difference,” she explained. All classes in My Gym are in English. “All kids are bilingual. Even those who study in Arabic schools do understand English. Here we help them to improve their language as they learn different phrases. They also learn nutrition and physical fitness . Furthermore they learn self-confidence, team work, improve their motor skills, art and crafts,” stressed Haneen. Everyday there is a new sports program and new art activity prepared for them. Where does the Gym get all the ideas about new activities every day? Haneen replies, “That’s why we have the franchise. They supply us with new ideas for our activities,” she said. “At LCE classes each week children LEARN something new about an artist, an art concept, a foreign country or another fascinating subject. They CREATE individual masterpieces around that lesson and EXPLORE through additional Free-Art experiences

and physical activity,” said Haneen. “My Gym’s All Star Sports Program empowers children age four to seven as they learn the rules and fundamentals of various sports. Confidence soars as My Gym Kids develop skills such as passing, catching, hitting, kicking, jumping, throwing, etc. while learning to play baseball, football, soccer, basketball, hockey, tennis and more,” she said. For the regular sportsmen My Gym offers lifetime membership which is valid worldwide in all branches. “With this membership they get many benefits and then they only pay for the class. People pay for the quality,” Haneen said adding that the Gym is never crowded. My Gym hosts birthday parties, which are custommade individually. “We hope to see you with us” Haneen said.

— Photos by joseph shagra



e niv rsar n



FRIDAY, JULY 1, 2011

By Hussain Al-Qatari

C By Ruth Riegler


ike tsunamis, tornadoes and earthquakes, Salwa Al-Mutairi is a true natural phenomenon. As the owner of a matrimonial agency, she knows all too well the thousand small disappointments of single life - the loneliness, the frustration, the lack of that special someone manacled and shackled in the cellar. On spotting the unaccountably vacant niche in the local market for enslaved concubines, however, Salwa didn’t hang around but seized the entrepreneurial initiative in a whole new way, putting forward a proposal to legalize sex slavery as a radical, two-in-one way of satisfying the carnal appetites of Kuwait’s bachelor population while tackling the moral corruption of prostitution that blights society. Because, as we all know, nothing says moral superiority quite like legalizing slavery.

Salwa is no supporter of sexual inequality among slave-owners though, no sirree; she’s a twenty-first century kinda gal (in a tenth century kinda way) and has now updated her previous recommendation in order to give Kuwaiti bachelorettes and widows a chance to enjoy real Girl Power over their own toned ‘n’ ripped - ‘n’ chained ‘n’ manacled - man-slaves (ranch-style branding optional). She’s not accepting just any old slaves though, hell no. Given the Russian state’s longstanding and brutal persecution of the Muslim Chechen people, our righteous champion of justice is ready for handing out some old-fashioned reciprocal brutal persecution, by enslaving only white Russian prisoners of war seized by Chechen freedom fighters. Given Western nations’ centuriesold habit of invading and occupying numer-

ous Muslim nations, I feel she’s missing a trick here frankly by not calling for the enslavement of Americans and Brits, but hey, I’m British and leg-irons just clash with everything, so go get those Russians girl. And our pioneering advocate for the legalization of human bondage is certainly not a cheapskate when it comes to hitting the slave market; as with all else, good quality costs top dollar (or rouble). At a suggested KD 2,500 for each slave (postage and packaging not included), your chance to invest in your very own brutally enslaved human accessory will maybe have to be a birthday treat, a retirement present (more imaginative than a carriage clock) or something for that special occasion when novelty boxer shorts or a bunch of carnations just won’t cut it. Perhaps prospective buyers could negotiate a two-for-one deal with their local branch of Slaves R Us, although Salwa has so far failed to specify on these trifling details. Having spent this not inconsiderable amount, however, financially astute buyers might wish to recoup the costs by cutting corners in other areas, like food for one’s shackled serfs - but hey, if starvation rations and water are good enough for Gwyneth Paltrow they’re good enough for Vladimir and Tatiana in the cellar. This is not to say that our intrepid heroine is not a model of humanitarian compassion, as proved by her suggestion that each female concubine should be given a monthly stipend of KD 50 to spend on little luxuries, like maybe hand cream to ease the redness from the manacle-chafing or possibly a shovel to dig a tunnel out with. She’s even suggested that they be provided with basic education, which will be handy for scratching their names on the dank cellar walls in between bouts of working on the tunnel. In her consistently inspiring fashion, our heroine has even given some thought to what happens once the initial thrill of one’s enforced sexual relationship with an enslaved concubine - known in some circles as ‘statutory rape’ - wanes as the years pass, recommending that after five years female concubines should be given their freedom because after this period the capricious male owner may become bored. And to think some fools suggest that romance is dead. In her next eagerly awaited inspirational outburst, Salwa will hopefully share her proposals for those tricky problems that might give prospective slave-owners pause for thought - what if it breaks down? Where do I take it for repairs? What if it needs neutering? Is it house-trained? Do I pay extra for a year’s warranty, replacement or exchange? What about wholesale purchases and can I get a matching family at cost price? But for now at least, let’s simply be grateful that someone is taking a sensible attitude to tackling the social problems facing Kuwait’s singletons with pragmatic, not to mention certifiably psychotic, solutions.

elebrating the sacred union of marriage happens in a very unique way in Kuwait. The wedding night is no longer the night for celebrating two people bringing their lives together. Somewhere along the line, this festival of holy matrimony has turned into a meat market for women. The amount of horrific and hilarious stories you can hear about the spectacle that is the process of engagement and marriage are endless. Here is what goes on normally during the process of an arranged marriage in a typical Kuwaiti family. THE INSPECTION The future groom’s mother, sister/s, aunts, and sisters-in-law are automatically designated to the task of inspection. Upon arriving at the future bride’s house for the introductory meeting, they take notice of every single detail they come across. The color of the curtains, the pattern on the drapes, the feel of the hand-towel in the bathroom, whether the guest bathroom has a soap bar or liquid soap - these are all details that are taken into consideration and reported back to the future groom, either as reasons to go ahead with the marriage or to reconsider the idea. A 28-year-old friend of mine says one time his mother objected to his marrying a girl because she didn’t like the family’s doors. “She said the wood was overly varnished, or poorly varnished, something absurd like that,” he told me. When his mother noticed that the varnish excuse did not matter to her son, she upped the drama and told him that he might be dragged down to that family’s humble status by marrying their daughter instead of moving up by marrying someone from a better family. Or someone who lives in a house with better doors. Other duties assigned to the female relatives of the future groom include saving a mental image of the way the girl speaks, walks, dresses, flips her hair, and holds utensils. This can go as far as trying to imitate her accent and the way she walks. Excuses like “She doesn’t carry herself well,” or “She sips her tea loudly” can all work against the luck of the bride. The future bride must be very careful in order to pass the scrutiny of the women if she wishes to hear from the family a second time. THE LONG WAIT After the first initial meeting, both parties study the findings and try to decide whether they should meet for a second time or not. If the girl and her family don’t like the man, the mother of the girl phones the mother of the man and informs her. Usually, a vague prepackaged sentence that goes along the lines of: “It appears that there is no fortune in this,” does the job. However, if the girl

likes the man, she and her family must wait to hear back from the man’s family. The wait can take a week or longer, depending on how busy the man’s schedule is. Bear in mind that when the family of a future groom are looking for a wife, they compile a list of girls and book a series of appointments with each one’s family. When the man and his family decide that they are done browsing, they settle on one candidate. The process of short-listing depends on how many candidates they have seen, and whether or not ‘the one’ is among them.

THE PARADE Makeup is redefined at Kuwaiti weddings. On a wedding night, women usually spend an obscene amount of money and time working on looking like anything but attractive. With their skin white as a ghost, their lips and eyes masked with colors resembling a painter’s palette, they end up looking like the perfect product of a manic artist. This is accompanied by hair extensions, colorful dresses with dangling objects that produce a cacophony when they move, and stiletto heels since the majority of women in Kuwait are vertically challenged. The focus on the wedding night is on anything but the bride and groom. The only thing you will hear the women say about them is: “They looked cute together!” But you will hear numerous stories about the other women’s dresses, how well or bad they danced, the mean comments they snarled at one another before a catfight ensued, and everyone will tell you their opinions at length about the music and the food. Then it becomes an opportunity for all the single girls to impress the mothers of prospective husbands since everyone is looking their best. The bride and groom, however, can relax and celebrate the end of this social spectacle, and begin what can hopefully be their happily ever after.



e niv rsar n



FRIDAY, JULY 1, 2011


homesickness By Lisa Conrad


ne thing that is undeniable about Kuwait is that it’s a country like no other. I can’t think of anywhere I’ve travelled to that even comes within even a close enough range to compare to here. Kuwait is totally unlike anywhere else. It stands out from the rest of the Gulf, but also is completely different from the Levantine Middle Eastern countries such as Lebanon and Jordan. It has some American attributes, and some European, but it is still distinctive in both its absorption of certain influences and its promotion of traditional Kuwaiti values. Whilst originality is always good, the problem with a country that is so different in so many ways is homesickness. Because it’s so starkly different, it’s hard to draw on certain comforts or similarities that remind you of your home country. Even if you’re from the Middle East, there are still so many differences. Friends often complain about missing home cooking, missing the comforts of their family home and all of their friends. As

daunting as changing countries is, there are tried and tested methods to steal those few moments that lull you back into a sense of calmed security only met faster with a warm glass of milk (get the milk and read the list anyway).

Food Food is the first point on my list because it is such a central factor of everyday life and also of culture. It can transcend you back to a specific memory or a certain place, and the comforts attached to them. Cook the food you grew up with, food that your family would make or dishes specific to your region. There is something comforting in knowing that simple pleasures such as enjoying a dish, and all the nostalgic memories attached to it, is within such easy reach. Kuwait has an excellent variety of foods available, so whatever your background, it’s pretty likely that you’ll be able to source the ingredients for it. If not, the hour or so you spend wandering around your local supermarket will have been distraction in itself, so it’s a win-win situation. The dish that I turn to when homesickness strikes is Lebanese rice with chicken. Completely ironic, given that Kuwait’s national dish is meat or chicken with rice. But it’s different. It is, firstly, how my mother makes it, which is something in itself. Secondly, there is something comforting about making, and presenting, the food in the same way that you remember being served it. An oval dish of rice topped with chicken is the perfect, beige (except for the speckling of nuts and raisins) comfort food that I crave when I miss home. The ensuing phone call discussing how you made it, and the steps you missed, also (quite oddly) adds to the comfort factor. A Jordanian friend of mine takes comfort in eating plain rice with yoghurt. That’s it. She was a picky eater as a child and loved the simple dish and now, despite being a major foodie, still enjoys turning back to the simple, beige basics every now and then.

Music Since we’ve started down the road of appealing to the senses having covered food and taste, it’s only logical to continue down the line of lulling your senses into a sea of calm. Music, like food, has the incredible power of transforming you to another point in time. Listening to certain music cannot only help brighten your mood and get you out of your homesickness rut, but can also attach positive feelings to the present.

Listening to music can really help improve moods, and bring the comforts of home that little bit closer. Careful, though, because this one goes both ways. When a Beiruti friend of mine, Nahed, hears “Li Beirut” by Fayrouz, her eyes well up with tears. Nationalistic music by your country’s iconic singer will not help. Music that friends or family like, however, does tend to help. Everyone seems to be living to a theme tune nowadays, whether with headphones glued on or the car stereo blaring at full blast. Getting a decent tune to listen to pushes up positivity and helps create new memories in your new home. Gloria Estefan always reminds me of my mother and her singing along (incorrectly) to Gloria’s greatest hits.

Furnishing Moving to a new country is stressful. The previous sentence is one of the biggest understatements ever uttered. Between arranging paperwork, and acclimatizing, and going through a degree of culture shock, managing to create a real home for yourself can often get neglected. It is, however, an extremely important factor. If your home environment doesn’t provide comfort, then it’s unlikely that anywhere else will. This isn’t to say that expensive furniture and marble statues are required, in fact, the exact opposite. Appealing to your sense of sight to create comfort is simple, as small items make a huge difference, and are easy to add. Photos of family and friends instantly makes a house more homely. Making the effort to create a comfortable environment is tiny in comparison to the amount of comfort it brings. Returning home to a bare apartment without any soft furnishings or personal touches is depressing, yet easily remedied. Tara, a Lebanese expatriate, stressed the importance of making a house a home “When I came here, me and my roommate spent so much time on our flat. Every detail is ours, when we finish work it’s like we’re in our own little world and that’s so comforting.” Personally, the feel of large, inviting pillows and throws appeals to my sense of touch, as soft cotton is as nursery a sensation as drinking warm milk. I do, however, have one specific (strange) detail that makes me feel calmer and settled. I like to arrange my dressing table with all of my cosmetics, notepads, books and other small items that I regularly need and use. Having everything packed and stored seems to create a sense of (organized) formality, which is never homely.

Scents Possibly the strangest sense to cover when discussing homesickness, scent really makes a difference. By now, it’s obvious that the senses have the shared ability of being able to bring you back to

certain moments or attach certain feelings to new moments. Attaching certain scents to you new home is, oddly, very helpful. Returning home to the scent of a certain candle or air freshener provides a sense of continuity and individuality to your home. Even brewing coffee or (I apologize for even proposing this) baking bread can be very helpful because of the comforting smells they provide. This is effective enough that a realtor once told my mother when we were selling a house that either brewing coffee or the smell of baked bread encourages buyers to feel more at home and attached to the property. So, whip out your favorite scented candle (except butterscotch scent. They never smell good. Anywhere. or your coffee pot and relax with a good book or Gloria Estefan music. As much as I hate to reveal my favorite scent that reminds me of home and comforts me (seriously), I have started on a path that must be finished. For me, it’s Dettol. Dettol, in all of its suffocating, bacteria-killing goodness, really reminds me of my grandmother’s house. They really, really love Dettol and Dettoling whatever crosses their path. It is for this reason that the smell of Dettol makes me feel more at home than any other scent. First of all, it reminds me of being moved out of rooms that were being Dettol-ed and, secondly, it’s just good sense to undertake excessive bacteria killing. Obviously.

People Having covered the senses, this last point is actually the most important. If you’re new to the country, you need to network (this is important for career advancement also) and meet new friends. Work is a great place to start, but it’s not the only option if you can’t stand your colleagues. Check out some of the Kuwaiti blogs to keep updated on the different events and activities going on. Look up societies and groups that you can join. Join a gym. Make the effort to become a part of the society, and you won’t be longing for home as much. People are what really help create attachment and comfort in a new country, so take the time to meet some. Missing friends and family is normal, but longing for them constantly would be, firstly, depressing and, secondly, time consuming. You’d be using all of your energy concentrating on the past instead of embracing your present. Use that time to bake some bread instead, as discussed, and remind yourself that it is sunny here ALL THE TIME. The food is unbelievable. It’s easy to get a sea view. Shopping is amazing. The people are generous and hospitable. You spend your Friday’s off relaxing and reading a light, yet crucial, article. If none of these alleviate your homesickness, then remind yourself that no longer is a large chunk of your pay check being devoured by tax. It works like a charm. Every. Time.

Drive Now. Talk Later.

Local FRIDAY, JULY 1, 2011


Arabs on prospects for change Poll finds North Africans are most optimistic, Gulf residents wariest

CAIRO: Egyptian protesters drag a barricade during clashes with security forces on Wednesday. — AP


ears and doubts about the Arab Spring and its ability to bring change to the Middle East grow as one moves eastward, a survey commissioned by the Doha Debates has found. The online poll, which was conducted by the YouGovSiraj polling organization, found that Arabs living in North Africa were the most optimistic about the ability of mass protests to reduce corruption and to usher in democracy, while their peers in the Gulf states were the most skeptical. Gulf Arabs also expressed the most fear about taking to the street to protest. The poll, conducted in the second week of June, comes as the Arab Spring has stalled. Protests quickly toppled two North African heads of state - Tunisia’s Zine el Abidine Ben Ali in January and Egypt’s Hosni Mubarak a month later - but the leaders of Libya and Syria have resisted. Yemen’s president is still clinging to power even after he was severely injured while Bahrain’s ruler suppressed unrest with the aid of Saudi troops. “There’s certainly a realization that the euphoria after Tunisia and Egypt may have been premature,” Shadi Hamid, director of research at the Brookings Doha Center, told The Media Line. “They’re starting to realize that it will take time. Revolutions are not easy and they’re often bloody. That’s the new sort of consensus.” Asked whether it was “useless” for Arab governments to resist the Arab Spring, 82 percent of the respondents from the North African countries of Egypt, Morocco, Algeria, Tunisia and Libya answered yes. In the Levant countries of Syria, Jordan, Palestine, Lebanon and Iraq respondents were only slightly less optimistic, with 78 percent saying yes. In the Gulf, the proportion fell to 67 percent. Asked how “scared” they were to demon-

strate against their own government, North Africans proved to be the most fearless, with only 16 percent responding they would be frightened. In the Levant countries, the proportion rose to 28 percent while in the Gulf, it climbed to 53 percent. “There’s a lot of uncertainty but I don’t think that people are pessimistic. One of the key signs is that in the reality of the situation there is a huge disparity between Yemen, Libya and Syria on the one hand and Egypt and Tunisia on the other,” David Pollock, who is principal adviser to Pechter Middle East Polls. “It makes sense to look at it country by country.” North Africa has seen the most Arab Spring turmoil since a Tunisian fruit vendor set himself on fire last December to protest mistreatment by the government. Libyan leader has been battling rebels, backed by NATO forces, to a standoff. Morocco has seen much milder unrest, but King Mohammed VI agreed to meet protestors’ demands for reform with a referendum slated to be held this Friday to curb his constitutional powers. Buttressed by oil-generated wealth that has lifted incomes and enabled governments to provide jobs and subsidies, the Gulf’s monarchies aside of Bahrain have seen little or no unrest this year. In the Levant, Syrian President Bashar Al-Asad has struggle to quell a rebellion that broke in March, despite promises for reform and dialogue and a crackdown that has led to an estimated 1,400 deaths. The Doha Debates poll provided regionwide measures of attitudes toward the Arab Spring, but the population surveyed didn’t match the characteristics of the region. It was heavily slanted toward Gulf countries, who accounted for 56 percent of the respondent and toward men, who accounted for about

two third of those who answered. It was also heavily weighted toward the young, with people under age 40 accounting for 90 percent of the 1,002 respondents from 17 countries. The revolutions in Tunisia and Egypt remained shadowed by doubts about their ability to make the transition to democracy. Egypt, now ruled by a transitional military government, is slated to hold parliamentary and president elections in the autumn, but many in the liberal opposition have expressed concern that only the Muslim Brotherhood will be organized and ready to conduct a campaign. In Tunisia, where activists accuse the caretaker government of being dominated by Ben-Ali supporters, elections are set for Oct 23. Nevertheless, 70 percent of the North African respondents in Doha Debates poll said that countries where the opposition has ousted the leader “real political change” will ensure. Only 51 percent of the Levant respondents were so optimistic and 45 percent of those in the Gulf, the survey showed. Moreover, 85 percent of the North Africans said they believe the Arab world will be “more democratic” in five years’ time. In the Levant and the Gulf, the numbers fell to 59-60 percent. “Egyptians seem pretty intent on seeing this process through. There is no desire to return to some kind of military dictatorship,” said Hamid of Brookings. “That bodes well. Egypt is likely to become a flawed but functioning democratizing state. The same goes for Tunisia.” The optimism expressed by Arabs in the Doha Debate poll stands in sharp contrast to doubts expressed by Western leaders, who have been debating how to support the

opposition while preventing instability and the rise to power of Islamists perceived as hostile to Western interests. A poll of leading figures in government, the media, law academia and non-government organizations in the US and Europe, released in May, found that some 56 percent said they agreed strongly or somewhat that the Arab Spring risks being “captured by the familiar forces of authoritarianism.” Even though North Africans are bullish about the prospects for democracy and change, 40 percent “totally” or “somewhat” agree that foreign conspiracies are fueling the Arab Spring rebellions. Nevertheless, that is a lower proportion than elsewhere in the Arab world. In the Gulf, 52 percent said conspiracies were behind the rebellion and in the Levant 57 percent said so. Pollock, who is also a senior fellow at the Washington Institute for Near East Policy, said that his polling showed that the chief concerns of the Arab public are the economy and unemployment as well as the place of Islam in democratic societies. Although an Internet poll misses people without on-line access, YouGovSiraj says it believes respondents answer more truthfully in the anonymous online environment. The respondents are selected from some 220,000 people who have registered to be part of its on-line pool of volunteers. Doha Debates, which is operated by the Qatar Foundation for Education, Science and Community Development, bring together experts to debate contemporary issues before live and television audiences. In the debate on the Arab Spring, which was conducted at the end of May, 73 percent of those approved the resolution “This house believes resistance to the Arab Spring is futile.” — Media Line

Local FRIDAY, JULY 1, 2011

Cambodian maids barred from Kuwait PHNOM PENH: Cambodian recruitment agencies have decided not to send maids to Kuwait after complaints by human rights groups of abuse by employers, a recruitment official said yesterday. Impoverished Cambodia is one of Asia’s biggest exporters of maids abroad, with the remittances providing a valuable source of foreign exchange. An Bunhak, president of the Association of Cambodian Recruiting Agencies, said Cambodia had not yet sent any maids to Kuwait and the agen-

Airport seeing record activity KUWAIT: Kuwait International Airport (KIA) is witnessing a record rise in the numbers of departing and incoming passengers as the summer travel season gets underway, according to a senior official with the country’s civil aviation authority. Essam Al-Zamel, the Operations Director of Kuwait’s Directorate Essam Al-Zamel General of Civil Aviation (DGCA), said that between Wednesday, June 29, and Monday July 4, the airport would see 544 flights departing and 543 arriving. Al-Zamel explained that the number of flights would continue to rise throughout this month, ahead of the holy month of Ramadan, which begins this year in early August. He also urged departing travelers to arrive at the airport at least three hours ahead of their scheduled flight time in order to ensure that they get through the departure process in time, given the large numbers of passengers. — KUNA

KOC plugs gas line leak DUBAI: The Kuwait National Petroleum Company (KNPC) yesterday reported a leak of natural gas from a pipeline at one of Kuwait Oil Company’s (KOC) branches in Kuwait, but said that exports were not affected, the company said on state news agency KUNA. Exports operations and the supply of petroleum products were not affected, and no injuries were caused by the incident, The Kuwait National Petroleum Company said in a press statement to state news agency (KUNA). “The reparation of the gas line was completed at 2 pm and the operation of feeding the refinery was working again,” the statement said. The Kuwait Oil Company, the state-owned firm that produces the bulk of Kuwait’s crude, supplies gas to operate the Mina Abdullah refinery. KUNA said specialized teams of the Kuwait Oil Company dealt with the leak and isolated the main gas line supplying the refinery to prevent an incident and to control the leakage. OPEC member Kuwait is the world’s fourth-largest oil exporter and a major seller of oil products such as naphtha and gasoline. KNPC operates Kuwait’s three refineries with a total capacity of 930,000 bpd, including Shuaiba, along with the country’s largest, Mina AlAhmadi with a capacity of 460,000 bpd and Mina Abdullah. — Reuters

cies had decided against so doing because of the country’s record of abuse. “We have received a report from our embassy in Kuwait about abuse of maids and also [seen] the report from Human Rights Watch,” said An. “We would only send [maids] there when there is safety.” He continued, “According to studies, the respect [shown to] maids has not been good so we will not send them to Kuwait and we are doing studies on another country,” he said, referring to

Qatar. Human Rights Watch has stated that domestic workers in Kuwait who try to escape abusive employers face criminal charges for “absconding” and are unable to change jobs without their employer’s permission. Indonesia, which has come under fire for its use of the death sentence, has barred its citizens from working in Saudi Arabia after an Indonesian maid was beheaded for murdering her Saudi employer. — Reuters

Optimal use of IT bolsters Kuwait’s status: Minister KUWAIT: Optimizing the use of modern information technology could help to transform Kuwait into a financial hub and contribute to the success of the government’s ambitious development plan, said the country’s Minister of Information and Communications and Chairman of the Central Agency for Information Technology (CAIT) Sami Al-Nisf on Wednesday. Speaking at a press conference held after the signing of a license agreement with the global information technology giant Microsoft at the CAIT headquarters, the minister further suggested that this technology “could also be used as a means to improve the overall performance of Kuwaiti employees”. Al-Nisf claimed that the three-year KD 10.1 million license agreement, which enables all government bodies to use Microsoft products, will save at least KD 3.6 million. “The contract comes as part of the framework of Kuwait’s leading role in the Arab region with regard to compliance with intellectual property laws,” he explained. The minister revealed that the contract includes a clause on establishing a specialist center to receive inquiries from those government agencies and provide replies for the full period of the contract’s duration. The contract is part of the government’s efforts to upgrade public servants performance, said Al-Nisf, adding that it will also allow public servants to use Microsoft products at home for a nominal fee, in addition to providing free training courses and workshops for employees. The minister noted that the implementation of sound policies in the field of intellectual property rights helps to reduce software piracy and counter-

KUWAIT: Microsoft officials are pictured with Minister of Information and Communications and Chairman of the Central Agency for Information Technology (CAIT) Sami Al-Nisf and other officials after the Kuwaiti officials signed an agreement with the global IT giant. — KUNA feiting, as well as minimizing the risk of using counterfeit software. Under the terms of the contract, all government agencies will be authorized to update their operating system and other software, he said. CATI Director General Abdullatif AlSarea said that the contract represents a “new step towards the application of the law of property rights, which boasts Kuwait as one of the leading countries in this area regionally and globally”. He added that the agency’s decision to select Microsoft as its partner came after a thorough study of the proposed alternatives. “Given the fact

that most government agencies have been using Microsoft software for several years, the cost of other alternatives was considered higher,” he said. Ihab Mustafa, the General Manager of Microsoft-Kuwait, said that the Kuwaiti government is at the forefront of those governments using Microsoft technology in the Middle East and North Africa (MENA) region. Mustafa expressed happiness over the signing of the contract with the Kuwaiti government, adding that the optimal use of information technology helps to add new sources of national income and create new jobs. — KUNA

MoI warns bedoon protesters KUWAIT: Kuwait’s Ministry of Interior (MoI) is reportedly implementing a harsh strategy intended to prevent bedoon (stateless) people from holding a planned protest in the so-called Determination (Irada) Square outside the National Assembly building today. A security insider said that the country’s security services will be setting up cordons on Friday at the entrances and exits to Jahra and Sulaibiya - where

most of the country’s bedoon people live - in order to prevent them from leaving either area. Government officials have reportedly issued strict instructions to the interior ministry to prevent any bedoons from holding a demonstration, sit-in or other protest at the square since the legislation on public meetings bans all those without Kuwaiti citizenship from holding any form of public gathering, with only

Kuwaitis legally allowed to hold or attend such events. Speaking on condition of anonymity, an interior ministry insider warned that the country’s security authorities and special forces would take strong action to prevent any bedoons or other nonKuwaitis from staging a protest, adding that any bedoon person found in Irada Square today would be arrested. — Al-Anba

Local FRIDAY, JULY 1, 2011

Sandstorms set to continue: Meteorologist By Nawara Fattahova KUWAIT: Kuwait was yesterday covered in sand, and the sandstorm is due to continue throughout this weekend, according to a local meteorologist. Speaking to Kuwait Times yesterday, Mohammed Karam, the head of the meteorology department at the Directorate General for Civil Aviation (DGCA), advised against any beach or boat trips in the next couple of days: “I definitely wouldn’t advise people to go to the

beach or practice watersports, and especially not to plan any sea trips. The weather [this weekend] will be dusty and windy, and the waves will be high. It’s dangerous to set out on boat trips, so people should cancel them.” Kuwait is currently affected by an extension of the high pressure front moving eastwards from Morocco, which has combined with a low pressure front coming from India, Karam explained. “This pressure increases the wind speed, which has

Kuwait embassy calls to respect Dutch laws BRUSSELS: The Kuwait Embassy in The Hague yesterday called on all Kuwaiti citizens wanting to visit the Netherlands to comply with Dutch laws and not overstay the 90-day limit from their date of entry to the country. Breaking this law could result in legal complications and fines, the embassy warned in a statement sent to Kuwait News Agency (KUNA). The statement noted that anyone travelling to the Netherlands must declare the currency or cheques he or she is carrying to the customs officials at the airport or border post they arrive at if the amount is over €10,000 or the equivalent sum in other currencies when entering or leaving the country. The statement stressed that citizens wishing to travel to the Netherlands as their first European destination should obtain a Schengen visa from the Dutch Embassy rather than from the embassy of other EU states due to the reservation imposed by the Dutch authorities forbidding entry into the country to whoever violates this rule. The embassy statement clarified that Kuwaiti citizens visiting the Netherlands should ensure the validity of the visa prior to their trip to Holland, noting that the validity of the visa in the passport does not entitle visitors or tourists to stay in the Netherlands for more than three months, even if the visa is valid for one year. — KUNA

MoI: No new spy ring KUWAIT: The Kuwaiti Ministry of Interior’s (MoI) Media Security Department has categorically dismissed recent media claims that a spy ring had been uncovered in the country. In a statement issued to the Kuwait News Agency (KUNA) on Wednesday, the ministry indicated that Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Interior Sheikh Ahmad Al-Hmoud Al-Sabah had made no comments on this subject. The statement came in response to claims made in some local media outlets and websites that a Kuwaiti MP had posed a question to the interior minister about the truth of rumors that a spy ring had been discovered by the country’s security services, requesting further information on the issue. — KUNA

reached 100 kilometers per hour in desert areas, while at the airport it’s about 55 kilometers per hour. Also, visibility is set to decrease to only 200 meters in the desert area, rising to 500 meters at the airport.” Karam suggested that the sandstorms would continue throughout today, with visibility of less than 1,000 m and wind speeds of up to 50 kph. “The weather will be hot and dusty, with strong northwesterly winds,” he predicted, adding, “the situation will be similar during the

night, but the dust will dissipate and the wind speeds will fall to around 40 kilometers per hour.” The veteran weather expert suggested that the weather would improve throughout the day tomorrow. “The weather [for Saturday] will be hot with mild northwesterly winds of between 45 to 50 kilometers per hour,” he predicted, adding, “The dust will gradually disappear and by evening visibility will be clearer than in the morning. The temperatures for the three days will

be between 32 and 43 degrees Celsius.” Those in Kuwait who enjoy working on their tans are unlikely to have much success in doing so this weekend, with the recurring sandstorms likely to thwart any efforts to achieve that perfect bronze shade. The sandy weather won’t only be frustrating for tanning enthusiasts, however, but could make other activities, such as sailing, jet-skiing and other pastimes not only difficult but dangerous.

Bangladesh president hails ties with Kuwait KUWAIT: The President of Bangladesh Zillur Rahman on Wednesday praised the close and historic ties which he said bind his country with Kuwait, hailing the state’s leading role in implementing social and development ventures and programs that have contributed to boosting development in his country. During a ceremony to lay the cornerstone of the Kuwait Great Mosque in the Bangladeshi capital Dhaka, Rahman expressed gratitude to Kuwait for these projects, saying that they have noticeably contributed to promoting the wellbeing of Bangladesh’s health, education and agricultural sectors. He also hailed the construction of mosques and teaching institutes using Kuwaiti funds, according to a statement released by Kuwait’s Ministry of Awqaf and Islamic Affairs yesterday. In a statement issued following the inauguration ceremony, which was attended by the Kuwaiti Minister of Awqaf and Islamic Affairs Mohammad Abbas Al-Noumess, President Rahman estimated the value of executed Kuwaiti ventures at $25 million. Kuwaiti-funded aid programs have resulted in securing sustainable income for a number of families who were previously homeless, giving new meaning to their lives, he said, praising in particular the non-governmental Kuwaiti associations and institutions that have launched many ventures to aid orphans and the needy. In his speech during the ceremony, Al-Noumess said the gathering symbolized sincere Islamic brotherhood and

DHAKA: The President of Bangladesh Zillur Rahman and Kuwaiti Minister of Awqaf Mohammad Abbas Al-Noumess are pictured during the ceremony to lay the cornerstone of the Kuwait Great Mosque in the Bangladeshi capital. (Inset) A model of the Great Mosque is seen. — KUNA solidarity. the Secretary General of Awqaf Dr Abdel Mohsen Al-Kharafi, indicated in a statement that the mosque would also serve as a religious school for teaching the Holy Quran and religious textbooks. Mosques can serve as schools for educating the faithful to combat extremism and terrorism and embrace moderation, which distinguishes the tolerant Islamic doctrine, he added. The cost of the mosque’s construction is estimated at KD 111,000. — KUNA

Cops catch carnal caperers KUWAIT: A Kuwaiti man and a Moroccan woman were taken into police custody after being caught having sex in public near a Fahaheel mall. A passerby apparently called police to report the activities of the over-amorous couple, both of whom were drunk, with the woman apparently wearing little more than her underwear whilst her male partner had hoisted his dishdasha around his waist. Officers who arrived at the scene found the couple were still preoccupied with one

another, and had to intervene to break up their romantic tryst before both were taken to the local police station. It was subsequently discovered that the scantily clad woman was wanted in connection with a previous fraud case. Newborn baby abandoned A newborn baby girl was rushed to Mubarak Hospital after being abandoned near the Philippines Embassy in Jabriya. The baby was found by passersby who heard her

crying. An investigation has been launched to trace the infant’s mother. Gulf Road catfight Patrol officers from Hawally had to intervene to stop two female motorists from attacking a third following a catfight that broke out between them on Arabian Gulf Road. Passing motorists were taken aback by the sight of the three women coming to blows over which had right of way at a junction

there, with two of the women then setting upon the third and beating her to the ground, only to continue attacking her. After the brawling women were separated, all three were taken into custody at the local police station. Customs dealer busted A senior customs officer has been referred to the General Department of Drugs Control (GDDC) for prosecution over drug possession and dealing charges.

The officer, an inspector, was arrested in a sting operation launched following a tip-off about his drug-dealing activities, after being caught red-handed selling opium to an undercover GDDC officer. Inmate starts fire An expatriate Arab inmate at Central Prison is facing extra time on his existing sentence after intentionally setting his cell on fire, with prison staff discovering that he had started the blaze deliberately.

FRIDAY, JULY 1, 2011

Morocco urges voters to back curbs on king’s powers


Clinton urges world democracies to stand together


Journey ends for Singapore train station at age 79


BEIRUT: A Lebanese woman passes by a portrait of slain Lebanese Prime Minister Rafik Hariri near his grave, in downtown Beirut, Lebanon, yesterday. A UN-backed court investigating the 2005 assassination of former Prime Minister Rafik Hariri delivered an indictment and four arrest warrants yesterday, the latest turn in a case that has transformed this Arab nation and brought down the government earlier this year. — AP

UN court issues Hariri warrants Names of accused not released BEIRUT: A UN-backed court investigating the 2005 assassination of former Prime Minister Rafik Hariri delivered four arrest warrants yesterday, the latest turn in a case that transformed this Arab nation and brought down the government earlier this year. The names of the accused were not released, but the court has been expected to accuse members of Hezbollah — something the Iranian-backed militant group has insisted it will not accept. Many fear that tensions over the tribunal could lead to street protests and plunge the country into a new crisis. Lebanese authorities now have 30 days to serve the indictments on suspects or execute arrest warrants. If they fail, the court can then order the indictment published and advertised in local media. Hezbollah had no immediate comment. The long-awaited indictment was confirmed by the office of Hariri’s son, Saad, six years after the massive truck bombing along Beirut’s waterfront on Feb. 14, 2005. Hariri was among 23 people killed. “The Lebanese government should commit

to full cooperation with the international court, and not run away from detaining the suspects and hand them over to justice which is the guarantee to democracy and stability,” Saad Hariri’s office said. Saad Hariri also served as Lebanon’s prime minister. But he was forced from office in January, when Hezbollah and its allies toppled his government in a conflict over the tribunal. Hezbollah, which is also backed by Syria, fiercely denies any role in the killing and says the tribunal is a conspiracy by Israel and the United States. The dispute over the court encapsulates Lebanon’s most explosive conflicts: the role of Hezbollah, the country’s most powerful political and military force; the country’s dark history of sectarian divisions and violence; and Lebanon’s fraught relationship with neighboring Syria. The indictment raises concerns of a possible resurgence of violence that has bedeviled this tiny Arab country of 4 million people for years, including a devastating 19751990 civil war and sectarian battles between Sunnis and Shiites in 2008. Rafik Hariri was one of Lebanon’s most prominent Sunni leaders.

Last year, Hezbollah leader Hassan Nasrallah said the group “will cut off the hand” of anyone who tries to arrest any of its members. It was a potent threat, given that Nasrallah commands an arsenal that far outweighs that of the national army. Reverberations from the death of Hariri, a billionaire businessman, are still being felt today. In January, the investigation triggered a political crisis that brought down the Westernbacked government of Saad Hariri, who had been prime minister since 2009. Saad Hariri had refused Hezbollah’s demands to renounce the court, prompting 11 Hezbollah ministers and their allies to resign from his unity government. The move further polarized the country’s rival factions: Hezbollah with its patrons in Syria and Iran on one side, and Hariri’s Westernbacked bloc on the other, with support by the US and Saudi Arabia. The US called Hezbollah’s walkout a transparent effort to subvert justice. After Rafik Hariri was assassinated, suspicion immediately fell on Syria, since Hariri had been seeking to weaken its domination of the country. Syria has denied

having any role in the murder, but the killing galvanized opposition to Damascus and led to huge street demonstrations that helped end Syria’s 29-year military presence. The tribunal, which is jointly funded by UN member states and Lebanon, filed a draft indictment in January but the contents were not revealed as Belgian judge Daniel Fransen decided whether there was enough evidence for a trial. The draft has been amended twice since then. In the meantime, Lebanon formed a new government this month — after five months of political wrangling — that gives Hezbollah unprecedented political clout. But Prime Minister Najib Mikati, who was Hezbollah’s pick for the post, has insisted he will not do one side’s bidding. According to Lebanon’s powersharing system, the president must be a Christian Maronite, the prime minister a Sunni and the parliament speaker a Shiite. Each faith makes up about a third of Lebanon’s population of 4 million. Saad Hariri has refused to take part in the government and is now a member of the opposition. — AP



e niv rsar n



FRIDAY, JULY 1, 2011

Rocket attack kills 3 US soldiers in Iraq BAGHDAD: A rocket attack on a US base near Iraq’s border with Iran killed three American soldiers, an official said yesterday, blaming the strike on a Shiite militia linked to Tehran. The deaths came at the end of the bloodiest month for US troops in Iraq in two years, and with just six months before the American military is scheduled to leave after more than eight years of war. Wednesday’s rocket attack struck a US base in southern Iraq that is located a few miles (kilometers) from the Iranian border, a US military official said. He said the type of weapons used bore the hallmarks of a Shiite militia with strong links to Iran. The official refused to give more details, and would

not describe what kind of rockets were used against the base, or where it was. The official spoke on condition of anonymity because he was not authorized to release the information. American intelligence officials have long believed that the Iranian-backed Kataib Hezbollah, or Hezbollah Brigades, is one of the only militias to use weapons known in military jargon as IRAMs, or improvised rocket-assisted mortars, against US troops. The weapons are made in Iran. Kataib Hezbollah, which has links to the Lebanon-based Hezbollah group, is solely focused on attacking US troops and other American personnel. The US military is preparing to leave Iraq by the

end of the year, as required by a 2008 security agreemnt between Baghdad and Washington. But as both governments now consider extending the deadline to have thousands of troops remain in Iraq into 2012 — in part to counter Iran’s influence over the unstable nation — at least three major Shiite militias have stepped up attacks on soldiers to force the military out. Kataib Hezbollah claimed responsibility for a June 6 rocket attack on a US base in Baghdad that killed five soldiers. In all, 15 US troops have died this month in Iraq, all but one in hostile attacks. It’s the highest number of military deaths in Iraq since June 2009. Wednesday’s deaths bring to 4,469 the number of American troops who have died in Iraq. — AP

Morocco urges voters to back curbs on king’s powers Moroccans have a date with history today

TEL AVIV: An Israeli man scuffles with police after he clashed with a supporter of the Islamic Movement in Israel during a protest calling for the release of the movement’s leader, Sheikh Raed Salah, from his arrest by British authorities, outside the British embassy in Tel Aviv, yesterday. — AP

Review ordered in death that sparked Egypt revolt ALEXANDRIA: An Egyptian court yesterday ordered an independent review of disputed forensic evidence used in the defense of two policemen accused of beating a young businessman whose death helped trigger Egypt’s uprising. The state forensic report concluded that Khaled Said died as a result of swallowing a packet of drugs. The finding has been widely ridiculed because photos of Said’s battered body showed his face bloodied and his jaw shattered. Said’s death in June of last year in Alexandria captured the attention of millions in Egypt and helped spark the 18-day uprising that ousted Hosni Mubarak in February. Witnesses say police agents dragged him from an Internet cafe after an argument and savagely beat him on the sidewalk outside. His death became an immediate rallying point for activists campaigning against widespread police brutality and other human rights abuses under former President Hosni Mubarak. Months later, a Facebook page created in his memory was used to put out a call for the Jan. 25 protests that grew into the 18-day uprising that would topple Mubarak. The court had been expected to deliver a verdict yesterday, but instead ordered the review of evidence. The trial will resume on Sept. 24. Said’s family welcomed the review, which raised the possibility

that the more serious charge of manslaughter could be added to the indictment against the policemen, currently charged with illegal arrest and the use of excessive force. “We want them executed,” said Zahra, Said’s sister, who attended yesterday’s hearing. The proceedings were held amid tight security provided by army troops backed by armored fighting vehicles. The court said a committee of forensic experts from three Egyptian universities would review the report on the cause of Said’s death prepared by the state’s chief coroner. Al-Bakry al-Afify, one of six defense lawyers, said he welcomed the decision. “It is not a problem of delayed justice,” he said. “It makes no difference how long the trial lasts. The important thing is to get a satisfactory verdict.” A crowd of some 200 people chanted slogans against Egypt’s military rulers outside the courthouse, protesting the perceived slow pace of the prosecution of Mubarak and stalwarts of his regime. Those complaints were also at the root of two days of rioting in Cairo this week that left more than 1,000 people wounded. “Down with the rule of the soldiers,” chanted the crowd. The military took control of the country from Mubarak, when he stepped down on Feb. 11 and is overseeing a return to civilian rule and a hoped-for transition to democracy. —AP

RABAT: Moroccan authorities yesterday urged voters to back reforms curbing the vast powers of King Mohammed VI, on the eve of a referendum on a new constitution offered in the wake of uprisings in the Arab world. “Moroccans tomorrow have a date with history,” L’Opinion, the newspaper of Prime Minister Abbas El Fassi’s conservative Istiqlal party, wrote in a front-page editorial. “Participate and vote tomorrow for the new constitution,” it wrote. Faced with protests modelled on the Arab Spring uprisings that ousted long-serving leaders in Tunisia and Egypt, Mohammed VI announced the referendum this month to devolve some of his wideranging powers to the prime minister and parliament of the north African country. Under the draft constitution to be voted on Friday, the king would remain head of state, the military, and the Islamic faith in Morocco, but the prime minister, chosen from the largest party elected to parliament, would take over as head of the government. Throughout a brief campaign, the new constitution has been fiercely backed by the country’s main political parties, unions, civic groups, religious leaders and media. Leading newspapers yesterday exhorted voters to head to the polls and vote “yes”. “On Friday, July 1, citizens will go to the polls to participate in a referendum on adopting a new constitution that was made by the people and for the people, in the framework of the quiet revolution in our country and the democratic spring we are experiencing under the leadership of His Majesty the King,” L’Opinion wrote. The pro-government Socialist Union of Popular Forces (USFP) party’s newspaper Liberation urged voters to say “Yes to the Constitution. Yes to the Construction of a Parliamentary Monarchy”. Palace-linked newspaper Le Matin also urged voters to “contribute to fashioning the future of

RABAT: Moroccan children hold pictures of King Mohammed VI as they tag along with a demonstration calling for a “Yes” vote in the forthcoming referendum in Rabat yesterday. — AFP your country by participating” and reported that an opinion poll conducted for the interior ministry indicated that more than 80 percent of Moroccans planned to vote “yes”. Mohammed VI, who in 1999 took over the Arab world’s longest-serving dynasty, offered the reforms after the youth-based February 20 movement organised weeks of proreform protests that brought thousands on to the streets. The reform plan has been hailed abroad, with the European Union saying it “signals a clear commitment to democracy”. But the reforms fall short of the full constitutional monarchy many protesters were demanding and the February 20 movement has urged its supporters to boycott Friday’s vote. The movement has continued to hold protests, organised through websites such as Facebook and YouTube, since the reforms were announced. On its Facebook page, which counts more than 62,000 supporters, the movement was Thursday urging its backers to boycott, with a video showing five youths saying they would stay away from the polls.

“I will not go to the polls because this constitutional project is a serious step backward and a lie,” a young woman said in the video. Analysts say there is little doubt the new constitution will be approved and the brief referendum campaign has been dominated by the “yes” side, with few signs of an organised “no” vote movement. Thousands of supporters also took to the streets in major cities including Rabat and Casablanca on Sunday to back the reforms. Along with changes granting the prime minister more executive authority, the new constitution would reinforce the independence of the judiciary and enlarge parliament’s role. It would also remove a reference to the king as “sacred”, though he would remain “Commander of the Faithful” and it would say that “the integrity of the person of the king should not be violated”. The new constitution would also make Berber an official language along with Arabic-the first time a North African country has granted official status to the region’s indigenous language. — AFP

International FRIDAY, JULY 1, 2011

German parliament approves nuclear shutdown BERLIN: German lawmakers overwhelmingly approved yesterday plans to shut the country’s nuclear plants by 2022, putting Europe’s biggest economy on the road to an ambitious build-up of renewable energy. The lower house of parliament voted 513-79 for the shutdown plan drawn up by Chancellor Angela Merkel’s government after Japan’s post-earthquake nuclear disaster. Most of the opposition voted in favor; eight lawmakers abstained. Lawmakers sealed for good the shutdown of eight of the older reactors, which have been off the grid since March. Germany’s remaining nine reactors will be shut down in stages by the end of 2022. By 2020, Germany wants to double the share of energy stemming from water, wind, sun or biogas to at least 35 percent. Until this year, nuclear energy accounted for a bit less

than a quarter of Germany’s power supply. “Some people abroad ask: will Germany manage this? Can it be done? It is the first time that a major industrial country has declared itself ready to carry through this technological and economic revolution,” Environment Minister Norbert Roettgen told lawmakers. “The message from today is this: the Germans are getting to work,” he said. “This will be good for our country, because we all stand together. So let’s get to work.” The government hasn’t put a specific price tag on the plan to shift to renewable sources. “Of course it will cost something, but it won’t overburden anyone,” Roettgen said. Yesterday’s vote completed a spectacular about-face on nuclear energy by Merkel’s center-right coalition. Only last year, it had amended a previous center-left government’s plan to abandon nuclear power by

the early 2020s and extended the life span of Germany’s 17 reactors by an average 12 years. After Japan’s Fukushima Dai-ichi plant was ravaged by an earthquake and tsunami, Merkel said the accident had prompted her to reevaluate the risks of nuclear power. Opposition leaders taunted the government over its U-turn, which Merkel initiated less than two weeks before a pair of state elections in March. “We are approving this out of full conviction, but you are doing it merely to preserve power,” said Sigmar Gabriel, the head of the center-left Social Democrats. Renate Kuenast, the co-leader of the Greens’ parliamentary group, said she didn’t care why Merkel had changed course. “For me, it’s enough of a historical irony that you now have to come close to what you fought for

decades,” she said. “Now no one can deny that Germany wants an energy turnaround,” added Kuenast. Her party has always opposed nuclear energy, which has been unpopular in Germany since the 1986 Chernobyl disaster sent radioactivity drifting over the country. Still, she complained that the government’s renewable energy target was “unambitious,” arguing that Germany should be aiming for a share of well over 40 percent. “The world is watching us now, and we will have to do justice to that,” Kuenast said. “That is the scale of this task: We must show that this works for the (world’s) fourthbiggest industrial country.” Parliament’s upper house, which represents Germany’s 16 states, is expected to endorse the plans next week, but much of the package doesn’t formally require its approval. — AP

Journalists return after Afghan hostage ordeal France’s longest-ever hostage ordeals comes to an end

BUDAPEST: US Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton, meets with Hungarian Prime Minister Viktor Orban before their bilateral meeting at Parliament yesterday in Budapest, Hungary. — AP

Hillary Clinton urges world democracies to stand together BUDAPEST: Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton called yesterday for solidarity with pro-democracy activists in Belarus as the wave of protest that has spread through the Arab world extends to Europe’s last autocratic stronghold. On the first leg of a trip taking her to two European nations that democratized in the world’s last great series of liberal upheavals, when the Iron Curtain came down in 1989, Clinton spoke emphatically for democracies to stand together and do what they can to expand their club. She said emerging democracies from Europe to Latin America to Asia can help Egypt, Tunisia and other Arab countries in transition. And all should “show solidarity with those in the streets of Belarus, in Libya and around the world,” she added. The secretary spoke at the inauguration of a human rights institute in Budapest honoring the late Congressman Tom Lantos of California. Clinton’s predecessor as America’s top diplomat, Condoleezza Rice, also attended the ceremony for the Lantos Institute, named after the Hungarian-born Holocaust survivor who died in 2008. In a wide-ranging speech, Clinton expressed veiled concerns about China, expressly rejecting the creed of those countries “trumpeting national economic growth over freedom and human rights.” And at a news conference afterward she cautiously chastised the host Hungarian government over constitutional changes and a new media law that have been criticized in Europe. Clinton is expected to elaborate on the same themes when she arrives for the two-day “Community of Democracies” gathering in Vilnius, Lithuania. She will also visit Spain before returning to Washington tomorrow. “As we struggle to help new democracies emerge, we cannot let any democracy anywhere backslide,” Clinton said. “The stakes are too high.” — AP

VILLACOUBLAY: Two journalists held hostage by the Taleban for 18 months in Afghanistan came home to France yesterday to an emotional welcome and nationwide relief. Television reporter Herve Ghesquiere, 47, tears of joy in his eyes, described being confined indoors “23 and three-quarters hours a day” and repeatedly having his hopes raised of an imminent release — and then dashed. Cameraman Stephane Taponier, 46, at his side, broke into a grin as he said, “We’re doing really, really, really well.” Both looked quite pale but otherwise healthy, and were visibly moved by the huge crowd of journalists gathered at a military airbase outside Paris for the long-awaited homecoming. Their plight was one of France’s longest-ever hostage ordeals, and had become a national cause. President Nicolas Sarkozy, first lady Carla BruniSarkozy and France’s defense and foreign ministers met the two men as they descended from a plane from Kabul. The two journalists and three Afghan associates were kidnapped in December 2009 while working for France-3 television on a story about reconstruction on a road east of Kabul. They had been embedded with French troops in Afghanistan, but decided to take off to report on their own and were captured. They were freed Wednesday along with their Afghan translator, Reza Din. The two others were freed earlier. French officials insisted that no ransom was paid for the men’s freedom, though the circumstances of the release remained unclear. The journalists insisted yesterday that they had not been beaten or mistreated by their Taleban captors, just suffered “very very difficult” living conditions. They said they were separated after the first three months and spent the rest of the time isolated and confined. “We represented something important for” the Taleban, Taponier said, which he said gave him hope that they would eventually be freed. The Taleban made a set of

PARIS: Stephane Taponier, left, and Herve Ghesquiere, right, react, as they address the media, upon their arrival from Kabul at a military airbase in Villacoublay outside Paris, yesterday. — AP demands in exchange for the men’s freedom. In April 2010, after posting a video of the hostages on the Internet, the Taleban said it had submitted a list of prisoners to French authorities that it wanted freed in exchange for the journalists. Last week, French Defense Minister Gerard Longuet said that the announcements of staggered French and American troop withdrawals might help the cause of freeing Ghesquiere and Taponier. President Barack Obama announced the withdrawal of 33,000 troops by September 2012, and France followed suit, announcing it will pull out a quarter of its force of 4,000. The Taleban gave each journalist a radio at some point, they said. Taponier was able to listen to Radio France International, which was broadcasting regular messages of support to the two men in hopes they were listening. “That warmed our hearts,” Taponier said. But Ghesquiere was only able to get a signal from the BBC, and said he was largely unaware

of the large support movement in France campaigning for their release. He described battling boredom and discouragement by exercising in the small room where he was isolated for months, and writing. And he exclaimed in dismay in recalling that a year-and-a-half of notes he took were taken away before his liberation, because his captors didn’t want any document released with them. Ghesquiere specialized in war reporting, covering the Balkans conflict and doing investigative reports from around the globe, from Cambodia to the disputed Western Sahara territory. Taponier had filmed in the past in Afghanistan, notably a 2000 report on the northern commander Massoud, who was later killed. Ghesquiere said he wanted to get back to a “normal life” as soon as possible, and not “play the role of an ex-hostage.” For the past 547 days, banners bearing their photos hung in city halls around France — banners taken down in jubilation after their release. — AP



e niv rsar n



FRIDAY, JULY 1, 2011

Journey ends for Singapore train station at 79 SINGAPORE: Train enthusiasts, tourists and officials thronged an iconic 1930s railway station in downtown Singapore yesterday, hours before it was to be closed, with a sultan from neighboring Malaysia driving out the last train. Malaysia, which owns the station and 16 miles (26 kilometers) of rail tracks up to the border, will formally hand over the land at midnight last yesterday to Singapore under an agreement the countries reached after years of negotiations that became an irritant in bilateral relations. “Most of all, I will miss the central location of the station. Since the train comes all the way into the heart of Singapore, there was hardly a need for me to navigate my way around,” said Ann Chia, 54, who lives in Malaysia and often took the train to visit her sister in Singapore. Chia was one of the hundreds of people who have crowded the Tanjong Pagar station this week to take a last look at its Neoclassical and Art-Deco architec-

ture. The station was built in 1932 when Singapore and Malaysia formed the British colony known as Malaya. The two countries separated in 1965, but Malaysia held on to the station and the land on which the tracks ran, from Tanjong Pagar up to the border. Last year, Malaysia agreed to hand over the railway land in return for six plots in Singapore to be controlled by M-S Pte. Ltd. — a venture 60 percent owned by Malaysian state investment fund Khazanah Nasional Bhd and 40 percent owned by Singapore’s Temasek Holdings Ltd. A new station was built in Woodlands on the edge of the city-state near the causeway that links it to the Malaysian state of Johor. The titular head of Johor, Sultan Ibrahim, will drive the last train that will depart Tanjong Pagar at 10 p.m. He obtained a train engineerís license last year. All seats on the train were sold out. Although it will no longer be in

service, the train station — with its 72-foot (20-meter) ceiling over the central hall and tiled wall murals — will be preserved as a national monument. Despite dozens of daily cheap flights and coach services between the two countries, the train service remained popular among Singaporeans, Malaysians and tourists because of its charm and ease of the journey. “I first took the train into Tanjong Pagar with my husband when we got married. We wanted to start a new life together in Singapore, and I remembered thinking how grand the station looked when the train first pulled in!” said Choo Gek Hwa, a 73-yearold Malaysian. “When I heard about the fate of the station, I felt that part of me had closed too,” said Choo, whose husband has died. We even took wedding photos at Tanjong Pagar Railway station and now that it is closed, it feels like a chapter of my life has ended.” Officials are planning to auction off

SINGAPORE: One of the last KTM trains steams out of the Tanjong Pagar station with the Singapore skyline in the background yesterday in Singapore. The 1930s railway station in Singapore’s downtown will see off its final train as a piece of Southeast Asian history closes as part of a land swap deal between the city-state and Malaysia. — AP parts of the rail track. One willing travels to Malaysia. ´It will be a nice buyer is Joseph Khoo, a 29-year-old gift for my parents as their silver businessman who used to receive wedding anniversary is coming his father at the station after his up,ª he said. — AP

US synagogue bomb plotters get 25 years prison Lawyers for the three men to appeal

PHNOM PENH: In this photo released by the Extraordinary Chambers in the Courts of Cambodia, Leng Thirith, left, former Minister of Social Affairs, sits during the second trial of the top leaders of Khmer Rouge in the court hall of the UN-backed war crimes tribunal, on the outskirts of Phnom Penh, Cambodia, yesterday. — AP

Former Khmer Rouge vows cooperation to genocide court PHNOM PENH: The Khmer Rouge’s former head of state told a court trying him for genocide and other crimes yesterday that he is keen to tell all he knows about Cambodia’s 1970s regime — though in the past he has claimed to be “out of touch” with its atrocities. Khieu Samphan told the UN-backed tribunal trying him and three other Khmer Rouge leaders yesterday that he did not know all details of what Pol Pot’s government did but would try his best to cooperate with the court. In two books and interviews since he surrendered to the current government in 1998, Khieu Samphan has insisted he was unaware of and not responsible for the estimated 1.7 million deaths from executions, medical neglect, overwork and starvation under the 1975-79 regime. But some scholars have challenged his assertions. Khieu Samphan has previously offered an apology for the Khmer Rouge’s actions but never accepting responsibility. As head of state of what the Khmer Rouge called Democratic Kampuchea, he served as the group’s smiling, polite figurehead. In addition to Khieu Samphan, 79, also on trial are Nuon Chea, 84, who was Pol Pot’s No. 2 and the group’s chief ideologist; Ieng Sary, 85, the former foreign minister and his wife, Ieng Thirith, 79, who was minister for social affairs. The charges against them include crimes against humanity, war crimes, genocide, religious persecution, homicide and torture.— AP

NEW YORK: A US federal judge Wednesday sentenced three men to 25 years each in prison on terrorism charges, but rebuked both prosecutors and the FBI for “questionable” behavior stemming from a sting operation. The three men-James Cromitie, 45, David Williams, 30, and Onta Williams, 35 — were accused of planning to attack two synagogues and to shoot down US military planes. “There was no pre-existing plot,” said Judge Colleen McMahon after a three-hour hearing in federal court in Manhattan. “The government came upon a man incapable of committing an act of terrorism on his own,” she said. “I have never heard anything like the facts of this case.” Lawyers for the three men said they would appeal. The three, along with Laguerre Payen, who has not yet been sentenced, were arrested on May 20, 2009 after a year-long sting operation led by the FBI and an informant who provided the men with three IEDs (improvised explosive devices), each with 30 pounds (14 kilos) of inert C-4 plastic explosives. The men were arrested while they were preparing to plant the IEDs near two synagogues in the Riverdale section of the Bronx. They were also accused of planning to shoot down military aircraft stationed at the Air National Guard Base in Newburgh, New York, using Stinger surface-to-air missiles. The men never bought the missiles, but according to a statement released by the US attorney’s office, were provided with one inert Stinger missile by the informant. Lead prosecutor David Raskin, who had asked for life sentences for the three men, acknowledged that Cromitie had never used the term “Stinger missile.”

But, he said, “the fact that it is all fake really does not matter. “The fact is, it was a sting operation, but they still had a choice to pull out”, said Raskin. “Those bombs were fake, but would they have been real, they would have killed lots of people,” he said. Last October, a jury found Onta Williams guilty on seven counts and Cromitie and David Williams guilty on eight counts. The most serious-conspiracy to use weapons of mass destruction, attempting to acquire and use anti-aircraft missiles and attempting to kill officers and employees of the United States-all had a minimum sentence of 25 years and a maximum of life. “I have no discretion to sentence the defendants to less than statutory mandatory minimum,” said McMahon. “So 25 years is the floor, life is the ceiling. “That sentence will be 25 years,” she added. “This case is sui generis. The government behavior here is questionable. It seems to me it has to change.” Cromitie defense attorney Susanne Brody argued that it took a long time for the FBI informant to convince Cromitie to go ahead with the operation. Cromitie only agreed after he lost his job at a WalMart and fell deeper and deeper into debt. The informant, said Brody, promised him money, cars and vacations. He also had trouble finding accomplices, who were described by Brody and the judge as “low level drug dealers.” The three men, said Brody, “don’t even know one another.” “The government evidently manufactured the crime,” said Brody. “The government selected the charges. They provided everything. If this is not enough to dismiss the case, what would be?” asked Brody. Cromitie, talking

softly, told the court that he had “never been a terrorist, and I will never be a terrorist. “I have put myself in a stupid mess. This is crazy,” added Cromitie, who was allowed to wear civilian clothes for his sentencing. “I am very sorry for letting myself get caught up in a sting operation like this, made up by the government,” he said. “I am a US citizen. I have never been outside the US,” Cromitie said. — AFP

Atlantic storm hits Mexico MEXICO CITY: The first named Atlantic tropical storm of the year hit Mexico’s eastern coast yesterday but was expected to dissipate rather than grow into a hurricane, US meteorologists said. The US National Weather Service said the eye of “Arlene” was near Cabo Rojo in Mexico’s Veracruz state at 0900 GMT, with the storm packing 65 miles per hour (100 kilometers per hour) winds and sea surges of one to three feet (30-90 centimeters). “Weakening is forecast today... and Arlene is expected to dissipate today,” it said in a bulletin. The storm was however forecast to dump between four and eight inches (10-20 centimeters) of rain over eastern Mexico, with isolated maximum amounts of 15 inches (38 centimeters) over mountainous terrain. The weather service warned that the rains “could cause life-threatening flash floods and mudslides,” but there were no immediate reports of casualties or damage as the storm made landfall overnight. — AFP

International FRIDAY, JULY 1, 2011

Ex-Taiwan president Lee indicted on graft charge TAIPEI: Former President Lee Teng-hui, one of the pivotal figures in Taiwan’s modern history, was indicted on graft charges yesterday, becoming the second recent leader to face such charges and prompting opposition accusations that the government was subverting the island’s still-evolving democracy. Prosecutors insisted the indictment followed the law and that Lee diverted parts of a special presidential fund to use for a think tank to serve his private office after he left political life. “Lee Teng-hui pocketed $7.79 million for his own personal use through money-laundering,” the prosecutors’ office said in a statement. “In order to set up the Taiwan Research Institute, he consulted with his advisers and decided to get the money from a National Security Bureau project fund.” But some members of the opposition Democratic Progressive Party charged that the indictment was an effort to intimidate them ahead of presidential and legislative elections in January — direct elections that Lee — nicknamed Mr Democracy — helped to introduce when he served as Taiwan’s leader between 1988 and 2000. Like Lee, the

DPP opposes efforts by President Ma Ying-jeou and his Nationalist government to move Taiwan closer to China, from which it split amid civil war in 1949. Prosecutors began looking into the case after Lee stepped down in 2000, and three years later charged the National Security Bureau’s chief accountant with corruption. Those charges were eventually dropped for lack of evidence. Lee spokesman Wang Yen-chun described Lee as “bewildered” by the indictment and said he “regretted the untrue accusation” against him. His attorney, Ku Li-hsiung, added that prosecutors “did not present any evidence that directly pointed at the former president,” and chided them for failing to take into account Lee’s assertion that the NSB rather than Lee was in charge of disbursing the think tank’s funds. Still vigorous at 88, Lee served as Taiwan’s president as a Nationalist and became the island’s first directly elected leader in 1996. Those elections prompted China to launch a fusillade of missiles off the Taiwanese coast, triggering the dispatch of an American flotilla to the area and doing much to raise “Taiwan consciousness” among the island’s people, many of whom had previ-

ously thought of themselves as Chinese. “Many consider Lee to be the father of Taiwan’s democracy,” said political scientist Hsu Yung-ming of Taipei’s Soochow University. “He is the person most responsible for introducing the notion of an independent Taiwan identity among the public.” The Nationalists expelled Lee from the party shortly after he left office, primarily for helping to found a pro-independence group, the Taiwan Solidarity Union. The TSU and DPP form the core of the pan-Green alliance, which strongly opposes Ma’s efforts to tighten ties between Taiwan and China. Under Ma, Taiwan has made a series of landmark trade deals with the mainland, helping to reduce tensions across the 100-mile- (160-kilometer-) wide Taiwan Strait to their lowest level in more than six decades. While those efforts have won the plaudits of both China and the United States, they are strongly opposed by Taiwan’s pro-independence camp, which sees them as the first step in the island’s eventual absorption by the mainland — the ultimate goal of China’s Taiwan policy since 1949.—AP

Philippine president to visit China amid sea rift ‘US committed to the defense of the Philippines’

PORONG: In this June 7, 2011 photo, prisoners attend a Quran reading session led by a convicted militant at Porong prison, East Java, Indonesia. A sweeping crackdown on terrorism in the past decade has spawned a new problem in Indonesia. — AP

Teaching jihad in Indonesian prisons PORONG PRISON: A sweeping crackdown on terrorism in the past decade has spawned a new problem in Indonesia, the world’s most populous Muslim nation: Militants in jail are recruiting new followers to their cause. Prisons threaten to undermine the progress made against terrorism here since 2002, when nightclub bombings killed 202 people on the tourist island of Bali, many of them Australians and Americans. The campaign has assumed global importance because of feared links between Southeast Asian terrorist groups and Al-Qaeda. That possibility was underlined by the January arrest of Bali bombing suspect Umar Patek in Abbottabad, the same Pakistani town where Osama bin Laden was killed in May. The Associated Press was granted two days of unfettered access to Porong prison in early June by the chief warden, who wanted to show that changes were being made to limit the influence of jihadist inmates. While there were improvements, interviews with terrorists and other convicts show how openly the former still court some of the latter. Porong is a huddle of low concrete buildings set on 40 acres (15 hectares) near Surabaya, the country’s second-biggest

city. It is home to 27 terrorists — some of the 150 currently held in prisons across the sprawling Indonesian archipelago. Block F is technically reserved for terrorists but also accommodates about 50 others because of overcrowding. The prison, designed to hold 1,000 inmates, has 1,327. An elaborate green garden flourishes in the thick heat. Bearded terrorists tend ducks, and fish splash in small ponds. Some militants play sports with other inmates, while others read the Quran or teach Islam to ordinary prisoners. “We only explain what they should know about jihad,” said Syamsuddin, who is serving a life sentence for his role in a gun attack on a karaoke club in Ambon that killed two Christians in 2005. “It’s up to them whether to accept it or not.” Syamsuddin was trained in bomb-making by alleged Al-Qaeda terrorist Omar alFarouq during Muslim-Christian conflict in Ambon between 1999 and 2002. Muhammad Syarif Tarabubun, a former police officer, was sentenced to 15 years for his role in the same attack. He laughed easily and smiled broadly as he explained his extremist views. He said he plans to join a jihad in Afghanistan, Iraq or Lebanon after his likely early release in 2013 for good behavior.—AP

MANILA: President Benigno Aquino III plans to visit China in coming weeks but the friendly gesture doesn’t mean the Philippines is backing down from its assertions Chinese forces intruded in its waters, an official said. The Philippines alleges Chinese forces intruded at least nine times into Manila-claimed areas in the Spratly Islands since February, allegations that sparked an exchange of diplomatic protests and verbal jabs. Aquino has strongly criticized China, saying two weeks ago that his country would not be bullied by China in the disputed region. The presidential trip will likely take place in late August or early September, Foreign Secretary Albert del Rosario said yesterday. Del Rosario will visit China ahead of Aquino from July 7 to 9 at the invitation of his Chinese counterpart, Yang Jiechi, and was expected to take up the territorial disputes, Department of Foreign Affairs spokesman Ed Malaya said. The Spratlys, a chain of barren, largely uninhabited islands, reefs and banks in the South China Sea are claimed wholly by China, Taiwan and Vietnam and partly by the Philippines, Malaysia and Brunei. The islands are believed to be atop vast oil and gas deposits. Chinese Ambassador Liu Jianchao has denied his government committed any intrusion but acknowledged that Chinese vessels were exercising Beijing’s sovereign rights in one incident at the Reed Bank near the Spratlys. Philippine officials complained the Chinese vessels harassed a Philippine oil exploration ship into leaving the Reed Bank in March. Just before he traveled last week to Washington, del Rosario

MANILA: Filipino activists hold slogans as they march near the presidential palace in Manila, Philippines yesterdaty. Militants expressed indignation over the alleged failure of Philippine President Benigno Aquino III to fulfill his promise of uplifting the lives of the poor as they mark his first year in office. — AP said he was told that the Philippine military was verifying another foreign intrusion into a Manila-claimed Spratlys area. Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton gave strong assurances that the US is committed to the defense of the Philippines and would provide affordable weaponry amid mounting tensions in the Spratlys, del Rosario said. Del Rosario said he separately gave US defense officials a list of equipment the Philippines needs to improve its capability to monitor foreign intrusions in its territorial waters near the Spratlys.

Clinton assured del Rosario that the US would honor its 1951 Mutual Defense Treaty with the Philippines that calls on each country to help defend the other against an external attack by an aggressor in their territories or in the Pacific region, he said. Del Rosario said he told US officials that if the Philippines receives defense equipment, “we become a stronger ally for you.” China says it has sovereign rights over the South China Sea. It has also criticized the US for its involvement, saying disputes over sea claims should be handled by the parties directly involved. — AP

International FRIDAY, JULY 1, 2011

US vows to support India’s nuclear waiver NEW DELHI: The United States will support India’s continued exemption from global nuclear trade rules despite moves to tighten up restrictions, the US ambassador to India said yesterday. Last week the Nuclear Suppliers Group (NSG), which governs global nuclear trade, decided to tighten guidelines for transfers of sensitive uranium enrichment and reprocessing technology. India, which has an electricity deficit, has an ambitious nuclear programme and won a special exemption in 2008 from NSG rules, which was negotiated by the United States.

Countries are normally required to have signed the nuclear non-proliferation treaty-which India has refused to do-and open their reactors to international scrutiny before they can buy atomic technology and uranium. “The White House and the Obama administration strongly and vehemently support the clean waiver for India,” the outgoing US ambassador to India, Timothy Roemer, told reporters on Thursday. India is concerned that the new NSG guidelines could restrict its access to foreign technology, which will be vital if it is to expand atomic power at its targeted rate.

India’s fast-growing economy is heavily dependent on coal. Less than three percent of India’s electricity comes from nuclear power, but it hopes to raise the figure to 25 percent by 2050. Prime Minister Manmohan Singh said on Wednesday that France and Russia still intended to do business with India despite the move by the NSG, which includes the US, Russia, China, European Union countries and some others. Companies from France, Russia, the US and Japan are competing for a slice of the $175 billion India plans to spend on nuclear reactors. — AFP

NEW DELHI: Outgoing US Ambassador to India, Timothy J. Roemer talks with an Indian schoolgirl prior to delivering his farewell remarks at India Gate in New Delhi yesterday. Roemer, who was nominated by President Barack Obama as the 21st US Ambassador to India in May 2009, held office till June 2011. — AFP

Bangladesh scraps caretaker government system for polls ‘Govt has shut all doors of negotiation’

KARACHI: Pakistani policemen escort the arrested paramilitary soldiers and a civilian to an anti-terrorism court for a hearing in Karachi yesterday. — AFP

Pakistan security forces kill 40 militants in northwest PESHAWAR: Pakistani security forces have killed at least 40 militants in a tribal area near the Afghan border over the last three days, a spokesman for a paramilitary force said yesterday. Pakistan’s military and security forces have been on the defensive since US special forces killed Osama bin Laden in a Pakistani town on May 2. The Pakistani Taleban movement, a close al Qaeda ally, launched numerous attacks to avenge his death, including the siege of a naval base in Pakistan’s biggest city Karachi, suicide bombings and shootings using large numbers of fighters. The Taleban have also adopted new tactics such as using a militant husband-and-wife team in a suicide bombing. Major Fazal-ur-Rehman, a spokesman for the paramilitary Frontier Corps, said an operation against militants was launched on Monday in three villages in Mohmand region. “They were attacking our soldiers from there but now we have cleared these villages (of militants),” he said. At least 40 militants and one soldier were killed in fighting. There was no independent verification of the deaths. Militants often dispute official casualty tolls. Rehman said the militants had fled to those villages to escape security crackdowns in other areas. Mohmand is one of seven ethnic Pashtun tribal areas where al Qaeda, the Taleban and other militant groups operate, plotting attacks on the Pakistani state as well as US-led NATO forces in Afghanistan. Islamabad has been under intense pressure to prove it is a reliable partner in the US war on militancy. The discovery that bin Laden had been living in Pakistan raised suspicions intelligence services may have been sheltering him. Pakistan has denied any collusion with bin Laden. Pakistan’s cooperation is more important than ever as the United States seeks to wind down its war in Afghanistan and defeat al Qaeda and its allies. But Pakistan’s generals are furious because they were kept in the dark about the raid that killed bin Laden. — Reuters

DHAKA: Bangladesh yesterday scrapped a system of holding national elections under a non-partisan caretaker administration that was introduced in the mid-1990s to try to end the violence and fraud that have often marred voting in the South Asian country. The planned constitutional amendment provoked unrest this month, when opposition supporters clashed with security forces during a general strike called to protest against the move. The 345-member legislature passed the amendment by 291 to 1, in a vote boycotted by the main opposition Bangladesh Nationalist party (BNP) of former Prime Minister Begum Khaleda Zia. Khaleda termed the amendment an attempt by the ruling Awami League to cling to power “by fraud and through staging a farcical election under a party government”. “By unilaterally scrapping the caretaker system, the government has shut all doors of negotiation and settlement, and thus made conflicts

inevitable,” Khaleda told a news conference after parliament amended the constitution. “It trampled spirits and values of democracy and the people’s right to exercise their franchise freely.” In May, Bangladesh’s Supreme Court had ruled the system of interim administrations unconstitutional. Under the system, a caretaker authority of technocrats could stay in office for 90 days, mandated to organise the election and the transfer of power to the newly elected government within that timeframe. But the last caretaker authority, which took over in January 2007 in the wake of widespread political violence and was backed by the armed forces, held power for two years. It held an election in December 2008 that swept Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina back to power, defeating her rival and immediate predecessor Khaleda. Khaleda said Sheikh Hasina was “using the Supreme Court verdict as a pretext to fulfil her desire to steal

results of the coming election” and vowed to launch a fierce movement to foil this. She did not announce plans for fresh protests immediately, but BNP leaders said they would be unveiled after talking with the allies. “By tampering the constitution and conspiring to establish a one-party rule, the present government has pushed the country towards a serious crisis,” Khaleda said. Analysts say elections conducted under caretaker administrations were generally credible and peaceful, though the losers always complained of fraud and rigging. But the major parties resented the last interim authority’s attempts to use its power to rein in corruption, sending hundreds of politicians, including Hasina and Khaleda, to jail on charges of abusing power to amass wealth illegally. The two women were released before the December 2008 election, along with scores of other detained politicians. The next election is not due before end of 2013. — Reuters

India probes deaths of 17 newborn babies KOLKATA: The Indian state of West Bengal has ordered an investigation into the deaths of 17 newborn babies at a children’s hospital after distraught parents clashed with police. The infants died over a period of just 36 hours in the state-run hospital in Kolkata, the capital of the eastern Indian state. “This is a very sad incident,” said chief minister Mamata Banerjee. “We have ordered an inquiry into the unusual deaths.” Around 400 people, including angry parents of the dead children, protested outside the hospital yesterday and clashed with baton-wielding police. The hospital can accommodate 360 children, but is generally overcrowded, with many infants and young children forced to sleep on the floor because of the lack of beds. Hospital principal Mrinal Kanti Chattopadhyay acknowledged that the number of deaths in such a short period was unusual, but denied that the hospital was at fault. “They were all admitted in critical condition. Some had a low birth weight and others were suffering from severe septicemia or asphyxia,” Chattopadhyay said. “We tried our best to revive them, but all our attempts were in vain,” he added. — AFP

SRINAGAR: Kashmiri Muslim devotees pray as an unseen custodian holds a Holy Relic, believed to be a hair from the Prophet Mohammad’s (PBUH) beard, at Hazratbal Shrine in Srinagar yesterday, during celebrations for Miraj-Ul-Alam (Ascension to Heaven). — AFP

Business FRIDAY, JULY 1, 2011

EU under fire for spendthrift trillion-euro budget

UK public sector workers strike in pensions rowl



ATHENS: A protester walks in front of a burning vehicle at Syntagma square, central Athens. Greece approved more austerity measures needed to avert default this month, in a vote that calmed markets yesterday. — AP

Greece adopts austerity, protests turn ugly Masked rioters, police battle in Athens ATHENS: Greek lawmakers have backed a stinging new austerity plan demanded by international creditors, sparking frenzied battles between masked rioters and police firing tear gas late into the night. Lawmakers voted 155 to 138 for the hotly-disputed package on Wednesday to slash 28.4 billion euros ($40 billion) from the balance of government spending by 2015, a plan aimed at unlocking emergency finance from the EU and the IMF. An estimated 500 to 600 hardcore youths hurled missiles, according to police, who responded with volleys of tear gas that blanketed Syntagma Square in front of the parliament and reached high floors in surrounding buildings. Security forces drove protesters further away from the parliament, but a blaze broke out at the finance ministry on the far side of the square amid early evening running battles. “We’re going to carry on the protest until the government falls, and it will fall,” 22year-old student Thanas said. Debbi, also 22, spoke of “chaos.” “We’ll stay whatever happens though, we’re going to fight to take back the square,” the student added. European Union leaders, including German Chancellor Angela Merkel, hailed the parliament’s endorsement for the austerity

measures, even though a second vote on the details behind the measures must still be held yesterday. The euro firmed and Greek stocks again rose as EU president Herman Van Rompuy applauded a “vote of national responsibility.” The yes vote was “the only way to buy time and start the great changes this country needs,” said Prime Minister George Papandreou, pledging to do “everything to avoid the collapse of this country” and prevent default on its 350-billion-euro debt. The plan is a condition for 12 billion euros of emergency loans needed by mid-July from stressed eurozone partners and the International Monetary Fund that could now be unlocked by eurozone finance ministers as early as their next meeting on Sunday. Eurozone chief Jean-Claude Juncker urged another yes vote “in these grave and crucial times for Greece” as MPs began their debate on the “implementation” of radical reforms. Five lawmakers voted “present”-a political statement indicating they could back the second vote if the majority gets squeezed. “We have taken a big step,” Finance Minister Evangelos Venizelos told the Athens News Agency. “Tomorrow, we will take the second

so that I can go on Sunday to see my Eurogroup partners with real proof of the country’s credibility.” The aim in privatizing a dozen utilities and other public assets is to raise 50 billion euros by 2015, but the sale of the state’s majority holding in the national electricity company is a particularly divisive element in the detail. The Health Ministry said around 100 demonstrators and 31 officers had received hospital treatment for breathing troubles and head injuries, though no one had been seriously wounded. Police said they had made 11 arrests. Amid rioters’ accusations of police provocation, Finance Minister Venizelos told parliament he would look into the situation but slammed the violence against the post office and banks as “appalling.” Protesters erected makeshift barriers on the square, hurling firecrackers, rocks and metal barriers at security forces, before more tear gas sent them scuttling down metro steps, those without masks struggling to breathe or see. On the second day of a 48-hour general strike, many protesters had said they expected the cocktail of taxes, spending cuts and sell-offs deemed essential for wider eurozone stability to pass-but

that they would be back. The general strike brought about power cuts and ground transport in the capital to a halt. Once the July cashflow needs are met, a second bailout expected to be worth a similar amount to last year’s 110-billion-euro rescue can be thrashed out. The main sticking point involves how much banks and other private creditors will contribute by way of a “rollover” of existing debts. European Central Bank executive board member Lorenzo Bini Smaghi sounded a note of caution about “unprecedented masochism that would cause investors to flee,” and added that “European taxpayers risk ending up paying even more. “No other industrialized nation has had its debt restructured in the last 60 years,” he said in an interview to French newspaper Les Echos, warning of “great instability.” Several dozen activists from Spain’s “indignant” movement against economic suffering meanwhile held a night-time rally outside the Greek embassy in Madrid to show solidarity with protesters in Greece. They also organized a spontaneous sit-down protest outside the embassy and read aloud a protest declaration saying: “Our parliaments have been captured by the dictatorship of the markets.” — AFP



e niv rsar n



FRIDAY, JULY 1, 2011

Moody’s warns of spillover if US downgraded WASHINGTON: Moody’s said Wednesday that the ratings of US government-related firms, municipal bond issuers and even private firms could be hit if the Washington defaults on debt payments in August. The agency reiterated that if the country’s $14.29 trillion debt ceiling is not raised by August 2, the government could default on debt payments and would see its top grade Aaa debt rating erode, either with a negative warning or an outright downgrade. It said that, in that case, government-controlled debt issuers like mortgage backers Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac would see their ratings equally downgraded.

Feeling the same heat would be municipal debt issuers who use government-linked securities as collateral, Moody’s said. But Moody’s added that debt issuers even with no federal government links, private or otherwise, could also see their ratings slide if the US was downgraded, because that could hurt the overall economy, the banking system and the dollar. “Aaa-rated states and local governments, however, are more likely to be vulnerable to credit pressure under these circumstances than Aaa-rated corporates” or Aaa-rated structured securities, it said. Moody’s raised the issue as the White

House and Congress remained deadlocked over increasing the country’s debt ceiling. The government has said that if the ceiling is not raised by August 2, it would be forced to hold back debt payments and/or slash spending. Both would damage the economy, but a debt default would see the US rating attached with a warning if not a direct downgrade, Moody’s said-pushing up the government’s borrowing costs. If a default does happen, Moody’s expects that the problem would be fixed quickly by a political deal for a ceiling hike and US debt holders would be fairly paid, or “made whole.”

Nevertheless, Moody’s said it would be weighing variables in the case: how fast the default is cured the impact of the default on long-term US borrowing costs what is done to prevent it from happening again and how the government’s eventual plans for deficit and debt reduction would affect the economy. However, Moody’s said strong private firms with top ratings and little link to government finances would not likely be affected. “As is the case in other countries, it is possible for issuers with strong credit profiles to be rated more highly than the government, up to the level of the country ceilings,” it said.— AFP

BoA sets aside $14 billion to settle mortgage mess NEW YORK: Bank of America said it would set aside $14 billion to settle claims from angry investors for losses on dodgy mortgage-backed securities whose collapse triggered the 2008 financial crisis. Hoping to put its disastrous 2008 purchase of mortgage lender Countrywide Financial behind it, Bank of America said it would pay a record $8.5 billion to a group of 22 large private investment groups who invested in securities which held poorly documented or substandard home loans from Countrywide. The other $5.5 billion was for pending liabilities to other investors not included in the settlement. It was the largest settlement by a financial services firm stemming from the financial crisis, which was kicked off by a crash in the market for complex investment products that packaged together millions of poorly documented, often high-risk mortgages. As a result of the settlement and the set-asides, Bank of America said it would report a net loss in the second quarter of up to $9.1 billion, a sharp reversal from the first quarter’s $1.7 billion gain. The bank posted a net loss of $2.2 billion last year, after huge write-offs mostly related to housing. “This is another important step we are taking in the interest of our shareholders to minimize the impact of future economic uncertainty and put legacy issues behind us,” said Bank of America chief executive Brian Moynihan. “We will continue to act aggressively, and in the best interest of our shareholders, to clean up the mortgage issues largely stemming from our purchase of Countrywide.” The company noted in its statement that the $8.5 billion settlement remains subject to court approval, leaving room for holders of the securities not among the 22 investment groups to object to it. “The proposed settlement is very small,” said Bill Fray, head of Greenwich Financial Services, a hedge fund that has previously sued Countrywide and Bank of America over their mortgage-backed securities. Fray put the full value of the securities in question at $100 billion and said he would “be happy to take part in a challenge” aimed at scuttling the settlement. Bank of America, the largest bank in the United States in terms of deposits, has been dogged by questions about how much the mess stemming from its Countrywide acquisition would ultimately cost. “B of A bought a rogue company,” said Dick Bove, an analyst at Rochdale Securities. “They never understood what they bought and why, and as a result they took a massive loss. The size of the settlement shows that they simply did not understand the size of the problem.” Bank of America shares rose 3.0 percent to close at $11.14 after the news. Over the last six months, Bank of America has announced three agreements aimed at reducing its exposure to legacy issues linked to Countrywide, formerly one of the country’s largest home loan financiers. The 22 investment groups taking part in Wednesday’s settlement represented 530 separate residential mortgage-backed securitization trusts which had a principal valuation of some $424 billion. They included major banks, insurance firms and investment houses including Goldman Sachs, BlackRock, PIMCO, Metropolitan Life and ING Bank.—AFP

NEWCASTLE: Union members are seen during a mass group gathering in Newcastle, as thousands of public service workers and teachers in Britain went on strike over pension and government cuts yesterday. — AP

Strike paralyzes UK Public sector workers strike over pension row LONDON: British teachers and public service workers swapped classrooms and offices for picket lines yesterday as hundreds of thousands walked off the job to protest pension cuts. Airport operators warned of long lines at immigration entry points because of walkouts by passport officers, but most of Britain’s airports, including Heathrow and Manchester, said it was business as usual. Unions say about 750,000 workers were expected to join the one-day strike, disrupting courthouses, tax offices and employment centers, as well as schools. Thousands of union members were marching through London and other cities to demand that the government rethink its plans to curb public sector pensions. Yesterday’s walkouts are the first salvo in what unions hope will be a summer of discontent against the Conservative-led government’s austerity plans. London Mayor Boris Johnson, meanwhile, called for employment law changes that would make it harder for strikes to take place, telling the BBC that

strikes take place despite “very low” turnouts in strike ballots. The government insists everyone must share the pain as it cuts 80 billion pounds ($130 billion) from public spending to reduce Britain’s huge deficit, swollen after the government spent billions bailing out foundering banks. It is cutting civil service jobs and benefits, raising the state pension age from 65 to 66, hiking the amount public sector employees contribute to pensions and reducing their retirement payouts. Unions say their members work many years for modest pay on the promise of a solid pension, and accuse the government of reneging on that deal. The two sides gave widely differing assessments of the level of disruption. Prime Minister David Cameron’s office said at least a quarter of schools in England and Wales were closed as a result of the strikes, and about another 22 percent were partially shut. The government said job centers, courts and government call centers were

all operating as normal, and “less than half” of civil servants in the striking unions had st ayed away. Cameron spokesman Steve Field said passengers were not suffering serious delays at airports or ports, despite walkouts by some border agency staff. “The early indications, and it is quite early still, are that the turnout is lower than perhaps the unions had claimed,” Field said. The Metropolitan Police said almost all of its civilian staff who answer emergency and non-emergency calls had walked out. The force drafted in police officers to fill the gap. Mark Serwotka, head of the Public and Commercial Services Union, insisted the turnout for the strike was high. “It’s time for the government to engage properly,” he said. “It has shown it is unwilling to move on any of the central issues - that public sector workers will have to work up to eight years longer, thousands of jobs are at stake, lower pensions are set to cost three times as much, and pay is frozen while inflation soars.”— AP

Business FRIDAY, JULY 1, 2011

EU under fire for spendthrift trillion-euro budget BRUSSELS: Europe’s austerity-driven governments rounded yesterday on the European Commission’s proposals for a record, more than trillion-euro, EU budget as “unrealistic” and “irresponsible”. Almost immediately after being unveiled late on Wednesday, the draft budget for the next 2014-2020 period came under strong fire from two of the bloc’s “big three” powers-Britain and Germany-for a five-percent rise geared to send spending soaring to 1,083 billion euros ($1,570 billion). German Foreign Minister Guido Westerwelle, deeming it “irresponsibly high”, reminded the European Union’s executive arm that “in times of general budgetary consolidation Brussels must also send a message to frugally and sustainably economize.” London issued the same message, demanding Brussels “take the same tough measures as national governments are taking across Europe” and recalling that the union’s top players had demanded zero budgetary growth for the future. “We will stick to that,” said a British government spokesman. The European parliament, which was clamoring for a five percent increase to cover new needs and fresh policies, applauded the proposals. Westerwelle said Germany saw one percent of EU economic output-forecast as one trillion euros ($1.4 billion) for the period-as sufficient to cover EU spending during that time. With a slight sleight of hand, commission officials put the budget at a total 1,025 billion euros, or 1.05 percent

of the 27-nation bloc’s gross national income, while omitting 58.3 billion of emergency funds set aside for emergencies such as aid or farm crises. Overall, the budget redefines EU priorities, reducing funds for farmers to invest instead in infrastructure and the greening of Europe-with a strong focus on building cross-border energy, telecoms and transport grids aimed at streamlining economic integration in the world’s biggest market. It also proposes the introduction of an EU sales tax and financial services tax to allow the bloc to raise its own funds rather than depend so heavily on funding from the EU member states. While the commission has until late 2012 to hammer through a deal on its bombshell budget, the fiery immediate responses presage months of heated debate. The Netherlands slapped down the idea of taxes, saying “taxation is a national competence”, while Britain warned against the introduction of a financial services tax in Europe that could send firms running for cover elsewhere. “We think this should be done on a global level,” said a British diplomat. Monies raised directly through an EU VAT-representing one or two percentage points of national sales tax-and a financial transactions tax worth some 30 billion euros a year, would bring in more than 40 percent of EU revenue, said budget commissioner Janusz Lewandowski. Stepping onto contentious ground, the commission also suggested a sweeping reform of EU ‘rebates’, a system of yearly paybacks to

Italy cabinet heads for hot budget cuts MILAN: The Italian government was due to adopt an austerity program amid high political tension yesterday to save about 47 billion euros (68 billion dollars) and reassure investors. The plan, which still needs to be approved by parliament, is expected to include a 0.15percent tax on financial transactions, a cut in ministers’ pay and an extension of the current freeze on public sector salaries and hiring. Markets are keeping a close eye on the proposals amid fears of contagion to other parts of the eurozone from the sovereign debt crisis in Greece. Italy has come in for particular scrutiny because of its high debt and low growth and ratings agencies have warned they could downgrade its credit rating. The government says it aims to cut public deficit to 0.2 percent of gross domestic product (GDP) by 2014 from 4.6 percent in 2010 in line with European Union requirements and has urged Italians to unite behind the budget measures. Ahead of the cabinet meeting starting early in the afternoon, the benchmark FTSE Mib index on the Milan stock exchange was up 0.49 percent in midday trading. A previous 25-billion-euro austerity plan adopted last year sparked a wave of social protests and the government is now in a far weaker position after defeats in local elections and a round of referendums in the past month. Economy Minister Giulio Tremonti has reportedly threatened to resign if his plan is not adopted-a move that analysts say could spark market turmoil. There has been sharp criticism of Tremonti’s budget discipline from within the ruling coalition, particularly from the populist Northern League party whose votes Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi needs to stay in power. A planned increase in the minimum pension age for women in the private sector to 65 will only be introduced from 2020 after Northern League pressure. —AFP

WARSAW: Members of the Solidarity trade union hold up flags as they take part in the biggest demonstration in three years against the government’s economic policy in Warsaw yesterday. Several thousand union activists rallied in the Polish capital accusing the centre-right government of sidelining social and economic problems, as Poland braces to take the helm of the EU. — AFP certain member states who claim excessive contributions into the EU cofferand which notably includes a huge rebate to London negotiated decades back by Margaret Thatcher. EU officials said complex routine haggling over the rebates-to Britain, Germany, the Netherlands and Swedencould be replaced by a fixed lump sum in the interest of “something very simple”. Admitting the lump payments would be “a little under current

amounts”, officials suggested 3.5 billion euros yearly to Britain, 2.5 billion to Germany, 1.05 billion to the Netherlands and 350 million to Sweden. Sweden said that would “substantially increase” its contribution to the EU budget while in Copenhagen, Denmark demanded its own rebate, saying: “it is not reasonable that Denmark should have to finance the rebates of other wealthy countries without getting one itself.”—AFP

Stocks and euro hit 3-week high Gold set for 11th straight quarterly rise LONDON: World stocks and the euro hit three-week highs yesterday after Greece took a step closer to avoiding a default in the short-term. Greece’s parliament is set to approve a final austerity bill needed to secure 12 billion euros ($17 billion) of international aid later in the day after Wednesday’s success in passing the first hurdle. Athens’s latest efforts helped remove some near-term uncertainty in the market, offering some respite to a quarter when global equities and commodities suffered losses. Concerns that the US and Chinese economies are slowing also weighed on financial markets this quarter, with world stocks measured by the MSCI All-Country World Index down 1.2 percent in April-June-on track for the benchmark’s first quarterly loss in a year. US Treasuries, however, were boosted by the uncertainty despite the Federal Reserve’s plan to end its bond buying program. Yields on 10-year US Treasuries have fallen about 38 basis points so far this quarter. Yesterday, the MSCI AllCountry World Index advanced 0.6 percent. In Asia, Japan’s Nikkei average ended 0.2 percent higher on the day to post

a 0.6 percent rise for the second quarter after losing 4.6 percent in JanuaryMarch. Investors, however, will be closely watching whether Greece can successfully implement those harsh and unpopular austerity steps. “The main focus will shift to the implementation of the austerity plan and whether Greece is reaching its target,” RBS said in a note. “It is likely that Greece will not meet the very strict austerity budget and reform targets and so the markets will be focused on how Greece reacts to the very likely demands for remedial measures at some pointwith eyes then obviously on the quarterly IMF review, next due in September and December.” Europe’s FTSEurofirst 300 index added 0.3 percent yesterday after surging 1.7 percent the previous session, while Greece’s share benchmark put on 0.8 percent and the Thomson Reuters Peripheral Eurozone index gained 1.3 percent. “Greece is just avoiding one default, it is going to be difficult to sell-off (stateowned) assets and the public is against what the government is doing and sometime down the line that has got to

come to a head,” said Will Hedden, sales trader at IG Index in London. Reflecting such concerns in the markets, Greece’s 10-year government bond yields rose 30.8 basis points to 16.852 percent, though they were off their peak of 18.90 percent hit two weeks ago. Yields on Portugal’s 10-year government bonds added 2.8 basis points to 12.373 percent. FIRM EURO “In the short term, at least, a Greece default is unlikely, and this is positive for the euro and also other risky assets,” said You-Na Park, currency strategist at Commerzbank in Frankfurt. “In the course of the next week or so, a second aid package should be decided, so there is room for the euro to rise more.” The euro was up 0.4 percent at $1.4506 and has risen 2.3 percent so far this quarter, taking its first half gain to more than 8 percent, boosted by the euro zone’s interest rates outlook differential to the United States. European Central Bank chief Jean-Claude Trichet scotched speculation yesterday that the bank may delay interest rate rises because of Greece’s plight and the contagion threat it poses. —Reuters

Business FRIDAY, JULY 1, 2011

As QE2 ends, market debates next move QE2 prevented deflation, but growth still sluggish NEW YORK: The Federal Reserve ends its $600 billion bond-buying program, known as QE2 yesterday and has yet to offer any hints of more monetary easing to come. That hasn’t stopped investors from wondering what new tricks the central bank may have in its repertoire should the US economy’s struggles continue in the second half of 2011. Bill Gross, manager of PIMCO, the world’s largest bond fund, said last week the Fed may signal as soon as August that it stands ready to print more money if the economy worsens and recession starts looking like a real possibility. “I’m surprised at how quickly talk has turned to QE3. It began even before QE2 had ended,” said Gregory Whiteley, who manages the government debt portfolio at DoubleLine Capital, a Los Angeles-based fund with some $12 billion in assets. “But it’s a bit like automakers who offer incentives to buy. People get hooked on them, and before one program ends, they’re thinking about when the next one will come along.” Not everyone thinks the Fed will act quite so quickly. Including QE2, the central bank’s unprecedented policies in recent years have pumped $2.3 trillion into the financial system. After a recent run of weak economic data, Fed chief Ben Bernanke said last week that “a little bit of time to see what happens would be useful” before taking more policy decisions. In a Reuters poll of 24 fixed income strategists this month, the median probability of QE3 was 20 percent. A poll of 46 economists in May had even longer odds of 15 percent. But timing for the Fed has not been ideal. The end of QE2 comes just as the US economy is losing steam. Growth slowed sharply in the first quarter and data has yet to signal a quick recovery. The jobless rate

remains above 9 percent. “Part of the Fed’s mandate is to support full employment, so they will have to stay involved,” said Quincy Krosby, investment strategist at Prudential Financial, with $859 billion in assets. “They will have to get more imaginative.” GRADING QE2 How the Fed would do that depends largely on whether one thinks QE2 and all its side effects were worth the trouble. The policy was launched late last year to keep a fragile US economy that had just endured the worst recession since World War II from falling back into recession. The risks at the time were real. Recovery had stalled, prices were falling, the jobless rate was rising and stocks had gone into a multi-month swoon. “QE2 was an extraordinary policy tool designed to stave off deflation and it has clearly worked,” said Alan Wilde, who helps manage $50 billion at Baring Asset Management in London. “I’m surprised central bankers have not tried to take more credit for getting some inflation back into the system. They should be shouting this from the rooftops.” But while all that cheap money sparked a stock market rally the benchmark S&P 500 is up some 25 percent since Aug 26, 2010, the day before Bernanke hinted QE2 was coming-it also helped boost oil prices, which hurt consumers and did little to encourage job growth or revive a moribund housing market. It weakened the dollar, which makes US exports cheaper and theoretically helps growth. But that has stoked inflation abroad and, some say, threatens to raise US prices as well. Greg Michalowski, chief currency analyst at FXDD, said the mixed results may make the Fed think twice about another round. “I think maybe one of the reasons why they’re not doing QE3 is because, well,

you know, (QE2) didn’t work.” he said. “Oil prices went up. Money went into speculative things. It (hasn’t) gone to lending. It’s going to speculation.” ‘NUCLEAR OPTION’ Wilde said he thinks “QE3 is still a long shot,” but added that persistent below-trend growth or rising unemployment mean “a further round (of easing) cannot be ruled out completely.” One method could be what BofA-Merrill Lynch economist Ethan Harris terms “the nuclear option:” buying enough Treasuries to cap yields at a certain level to stoke growth. The idea seems extreme but has garnered attention. Gross said last week that the Fed could do this by purchasing as many two- or three-year Treasuries as it takes to cap rates. Back in 2002, before he was Fed chairman, Bernanke also staked out that ground, saying a Fed facing deflation could announce explicit ceilings for Treasury yields. Harris said this could prove more effective than QE2 because it would amount to an open-ended commitment to buy as many Treasuries as it takes to cap yields. “I do think they have ammunition left,” he said. “If we start to slide quickly toward recession and the unemployment rate steadily goes up, they can act.” But DoubleLine’s Whiteley said speculators would challenge and ultimately break the Fed’s resolve. “It’s like trying to defend a currency-market forces push it to the limit and the central bank often relents.” He also said yields could fall anyway once the Fed ends QE2 and private buyers pick up the slack. With growth slow, he said the 10-year yield at 2.50 percent is not inconceivable. STRONG GROWTH CURES ALL Of course, if the economy regains its footing, talk of QE3 will fade just as quickly, ana-

lysts say. For one thing, higher inflation may tie the Fed’s hands. Core consumer prices, which strip out food and energy, rose 1.5 percent in the year to May. That’s not alarmingly high but it is near 2 percent, the top of the Fed comfort zone, and well above a frighteningly low 0.6 percent in October. What’s more, the Fed will likely remain the biggest Treasury buyer as it reinvests principal payments from the government and mortgage debt it owns. More than $110 billion of Treasuries held on the Fed’s balance sheet are set to mature in the next 12 months, and analysts predict it could reinvest up to $190 billion from maturing mortgage-backed bonds over that time. With deflation no longer a clear and present danger, that may be enough. Political opposition to more easing is also running high. To get around that, Prudential’s Krosby said the move last week by industrialized countries to release 60 million barrels of oil from emergency reserves may have been a QE3 substitute: an alternative way to take pressure off consumers and small businesses and jump-start growth. After nearing $115 a barrel in May, a 21/2-year high, oil slipped to around $95 this week. BofA-Merrill Lynch expects the S&P 500 to do just fine without QE2. The bank’s official year-end target is 1,400, but head equity strategist David Bianco expects strong earnings could push it as high as 1,500. Even if it falls short, Harris said, the Fed will disappoint those investors who expect the central bank to rush in immediately and protect them from big losses. “People may think there’s a ‘Bernanke put’ out there,” he said, referring to the put options used by traders to protect against price declines. “But they are not going to like the strike price.” — Reuters

Weak economy overshadows Obama’s bright areas WASHINGTON: A bright spot for President Barack Obama in the bleak US economic picture should be that many of the “swing” states crucial to his 2012 re-election bid are weathering the recession relatively well. But unfortunately for Obama, voters in those states are just not seeing the light. Voters in Virginia, Pennsylvania and some other battlegrounds where the election will likely be decided are not optimistic about the economy, even though their rates of unemployment-the most politically sensitive economic statistic-are below the 9.1 percent national rate. Americans tend to blame Washington for nationwide economic problems, so Obama will face a tough fight to turn the economic data to his advantage in states where he and his eventual Republican rival will be focusing most of their attention. “People tend to vote based on their perceptions of the state of the economy, and the national news dialogue is about the struggling economy and high unemployment, so even in the swing states that are doing better that’s reality for most voters,” said Mark Rozell, a political scientist at Virginia’s George Mason University. “Americans ... tend to look

to presidents as managers of the national economy and if Virginia’s doing better, I think (Republican Governor) Bob McDonnell gets the credit in the minds of the voters,” he said. Among states seen as neither firmly Democratic nor Republican ahead of the November 2012 vote, Virginia has a 6.0 percent unemployment rate and Pennsylvania and Wisconsin are both at 7.4 percent. Obama, a Democrat, won all three-as he did most of the swing states-in 2008 when he soared to the White House in a campaign fueled largely by voter unhappiness over the weak economy under his Republican predecessor George W Bush. But since that election, Republicans have won governors’ races in Virginia, Pennsylvania and Wisconsin, and the states’ congressional delegations have turned more Republican. Polls also show voters there are worried about the economy, and view the Democratic president less favorably. “It’s all comparative and it’s all relative,” said Matt McDonald, a partner at the Republican-aligned Hamilton Place Strategies consultancy in Washington. “The number that people are exposed to nationally is bad,” he said.

NEW YORK: People walk past a “now hiring” sign outside the future site of a Uniqlo clothing store, in New York. The number of Americans seeking unemployment benefits changed little last week, evidence that the struggling economy isn’t generating many jobs. — AP BLEAK ECONOMIC INDICATORS Obama is still ahead in most polls against possible Republican challengers, led by front-runner Mitt Romney. Weak unemployment is only one worrisome economic indicator. U.S. consumer spending failed

to rise in May, breaking 10 straight months of gains. And the number of Americans filing new claims for unemployment benefits rose last week, suggesting little improvement in the labor market. Although the election is 17

months away, Obama will face an uphill battle convincing voters to feel better about the country’s prospects if things do not improve. “At this point, it’s awfully hard to see an Obama commercial that says ‘It’s morning again in America,’” said Charles Franklin, a professor of political science at the University of Wisconsin and a founder of Pennsylvania-which has 20 of the 270 electoral votes needed to win the presidency-is considered particularly crucial for Obama’s 2012 hopes. After reeling in the 1980s and 1990s from the decline of steelmaking and other key industries, the state has lower unemployment than the national average for the first time in modern history, noted Terry Madonna, a political scientist at Pennsylvania’s Franklin & Marshall College. Obama won in Pennsylvania by an unusually large 10 percent margin in 2008, but polls show his job approval rating there- about 45 percent-is about the same as it is nationally. “They still say in my state as well as almost every other state that the country is moving in the wrong direction,” Madonna said. —Reuters

Business FRIDAY, JULY 1, 2011

Thailand faces economic risks as election looms BANGKOK: Festive campaign posters across Thailand promise voters the world in Sunday’s election: free tablet PCs, wage increases, highspeed trains, tax cuts. The list goes on. These could deliver a burst of consumer spending and investment but also fuel a host of problems-from higher debt to delays in economic reforms and an inflationary rise in the cost of business in Southeast Asia’s second-largest economy. With inflation already accelerating, and the economy slowing, some economists question whether Thailand is ready for a new round of “Thaksinomics”, as the signature expansionary policies of ousted prime minister Thaksin Shinawatra are known. But that looks inevitable, regardless of who wins. “Everyone seems to compete over how much more they can hand out than the other party without looking at the bigger picture-the longterm sustainable growth,” Bank of Thailand Assistant Governor Paiboon Kittisrikangwan said in an interview. Policies of the two main parties are strikingly similar, promoting big-ticket spending on infrastructure projects - from high-speed trains to subway extensions - and various giveaways aimed at boosting spending power, especially in rural areas. That approach helped Thaksin, a telecoms magnate, score landslide election wins in 2001 and 2005 before his ouster in a 2006 coup. His programs-from low-cost health care to cheap credit-were so popular the current government adopted them. Ahead in opinion polls as candidate for prime minister, Thaksin’s younger sister, Yingluck Shinawatra, promises to revive her brother’s policies if her Puea Thai (For Thais) party wins enough votes to govern.

The rival Democrat Party of Prime Minister Abhisit Vejjajiva promises similar short-term populist measures and could end up ruling again if Puea Thai wins the most votes but fails to form a coalition, as some predict. “If you look closely at the two parties’ policies, there is not that much difference,” said Usara Wilaipich, an economist at Standard Chartered Bank in Bangkok. THAKSINOMICS - KNOCK-ON EFFECT In theory, billions of extra dollars pumped into Thailand’s rural economy will stimulate consump-

tion, creating a Keynesian multiplier effect. Under Thaksin, money funnelled into villages through a debt moratorium for farmers and cheap loans had a knock-on effect on the whole economy, fuelling a boom in household spending. Gross domestic product (GDP) grew on average by 5.7 percent a year between 2002 and 2006, despite the headwinds of high oil prices, the Iraq war and an outbreak of the SARS virus. That compared with growth of 2.2 percent in 2001 and the economic turmoil of the late 1990s. But critics said Thaksinomics was little more

BANGKOK: Yingluck Shinawatra (center) opposition Pheu Thai Party’s candidate for prime minister and youngest sister of ousted Prime Minister Thaksin Shinawatra, gestures from a boat during her election campaign rally at a canal on the outskirts of Bangkok. — AP

Congress begins action on Bush-era trade deals Analyst sees deals approved despite Republican anger WASHINGTON: President Barack Obama’s controversial plan to win approval of free trade deals with South Korea, Colombia and Panama faces its first test yesterday as the Senate Finance Committee takes up the bills. Republicans typically supply most of the votes for free trade agreements, but at least three of the 11 Republicans on the panel say they will vote against the Korea deal if the White House sticks to a plan to include renewal of a worker retraining program in the implementing legislation. Those potential opponents include the panel’s top Republican, Senator Orrin Hatch, who is up for reelection next year and is under pressure from the Tea Party conservative movement to take a tough line on spending. Jeffrey Schott, a senior fellow at the Peterson Institute for International Economics, said he expects plenty of fiery rhetoric from Republicans during the Finance Committee session to vote on nonbinding amendments to a draft version of bills to implement the three pacts. But Schott said he expected all three trade deals to pass, possibly by the end of July, after a bumpy ride through the Senate and the House of Representatives. “It seems to me the decision to go forward basically means that they figured they have the votes,” Schott said. The Finance Committee session, and a similar one expected next week in the House Ways and Means Committee, gives lawmakers an opportunity to help shape the final bills Obama is expected to send to

Congress in July. Under previously agreed rules, the trade deals cannot be amended once Obama formally submits them for votes. The three agreements together are expected to boost US exports by about $13 billion, which Obama has said will help create tens of thousands of new American jobs. The trade deals with South Korea and Panama were signed exactly four years ago during the administration of former Republican President George W. Bush, while it has been nearly five years since the Colombia deal was signed. A rival trade deal between the European Union and South Korea goes into force today and another between Canada and Colombia in August, putting pressure on Congress to act. Many of Obama’s fellow Democrats, who controlled Congress during the last two years of Bush’s presidency, oppose trade agreements, which they blame for killing manufacturing jobs in the United States. To reduce that opposition, Obama negotiated more favorable auto provisions in the Korean agreement, signed a tax information exchange treaty with Panama and concluded an action plan with Colombia to address longstanding concerns about anti-union violence in the Andean country. CONSERVATIVE OPPOSITION Obama angered Republicans in May when he said he would not send the pacts to Congress for votes until there was a deal to renew an expanded version of Trade Adjustment Assistance (TAA), which pro-

vides retraining and income assistance for workers who have lost their jobs because of foreign competition. The program was broadened in 2009 to cover more workers and provide more generous healthcare assistance. But those new benefits expired early this year and House Republicans, fresh from their victory at the polls in November, balked at renewing them after the conservative group Club for Growth came out in opposition. Republicans now want a separate vote on TAA even though one of their leaders-House Ways and Means Committee Chairman Dave Camp-helped negotiate the scaled-down two-year extension TAA included in the Korea trade deal. Camp says he won a number of significant concessions from the White House. Those include reducing the number of weeks for income support and making it harder for workers to get income support if they are not receiving training. The reforms also reduce the healthcare coverage tax credit and deny eligibility for public sector workers, a group added to the program in the 2009 expansion. Barney Keller, a spokesman for Club for Growth, said the group remained opposed to TAA but supported the three free trade agreements. It believes lawmakers should have the chance to vote on each initiative separately, Keller said. Most US business and farm groups want the agreements and recognize TAA must be part of the mix. Organized labor supports TAA but opposes the trade deals. — Reuters

than pork-barrel politics and failed to substantially boost jobs or end a dependency on exports, which were equivalent to about 50 percent of total GDP in 2005, a ratio that is now about 65 percent. The cheap credit also drove household debt as a percentage of income above 57 percent from below 50 percent in 2001. The largesse this time around could cause other problems, depending on how it is funded or whether it gets watered down. Thailand’s debt-to-GDP ratio already was expected to rise from a current 42 percent to above 60 percent-generally regarded as the safe limit for developed economies-within six years, according to the central bank. Sudden expansionary policies could accelerate that trend. Developing or emerging economies are generally urged to keep debt-toGDP ratio at around 40 percent. Thailand’s problems are compounded by weak tax revenues. Its proportion of tax revenue to GDP is just 17 percent. Compare that with 27 percent in Japan or about 40 percent in Britain. “This is a real economic risk going forward,” Nuchjarin Panarode, an economist at Capital Nomura in Bangkok, said of the impact on Thailand’s finances. “They may only implement some of the populist policies, otherwise it would mean major funding.” Paiboon at the central bank said that while the size of the budget over the past four years had swollen by 8.8 percent a year, revenue had grown by less than half that rate, at 4.2 percent. And 80 percent of Thailand’s budget goes into current expenditure, with less than 17 percent pumped into investments. He said the next government needed to consider major tax reforms, such as raising its 7 percent value-added tax and closing tax loopholes. —Reuters

Turkish economy grows 11 percent ANKARA: Turkey’s economy grew by 11.0 percent in the first quarter of 2011 from output in the same period last year, outstripping expectations, official data showed yesterday. The figure placed Turkey in the lead of the G-20 group of world powers and emerging economies, followed by Argentina, which posted first-quarter growth of 9.9 percent. Market watchers however remained cautious, stressing that domestic consumption shouldered the robust increase in gross domestic product (GDP) and further widened the current account deficit. In seasonally adjusted terms, GDP grew by 1.4 percent from the previous quarter, the Turkish Statistics Institute (TUIK) said. The retail sector made the greatest progress with an expansion of 17.2 percent year-on-year, with construction and manufacturing also among the main driving forces of the growing economy. The annual growth rate will be no less than seven percent, foreign trade minister Zafer Caglayan said on the NTV news channel, while market watchers put their estimate at 6.2 percent. In a spectacular recovery from the global crisis, Turkey’s economy grew 9.2 percent in the last quarter of 2010, and 8.9 percent throughout the previous year. The growth however has triggered an expansion in the current account deficit as imports rose and Turkey’s exports to Europe slowed down, with “hot money”-or capital in short-term speculative accounts-playing a significant part in financing the gap. Analysts have warned that an external shock under such conditions could abruptly halt the inflow of foreign capital and wreck havoc in the economy. Also yesterday, TUIK announced that Turkey’s trade deficit was $10 billion dollars (6.9 billion euros) in May, far beyond expectations. “This is the largest monthly trade deficit in series and brought 12-month rolling trade deficit to 92.3 billion dollars from 87.2 billion in April,” Finansbank said in a research note. Cevdet Cagdas Unal, a Finansbank economist, stressed that, “resident consumption increased by 12.1 percent (year-on-year) and made the highest contribution to headline growth rate with 8.7 percentage points.”—AFP

Business FRIDAY, JULY 1, 2011

Chongqing - China’s inland business capital CHONGQING: After just a few years of explosive growth, China’s mega-city of Chongqing has emerged as a major industrial hub, thanks in part to a “Go West” policy to open up China’s lessdeveloped inland. The southwestern municipality, home to more than 32 million people, has been transformed by rapid urbanization and a construction boom, with ultra-modern factories and skyscrapers galore. The province-sized city is also becoming a major transport centre at the border of China’s prosperous East and poorer West, luring major multinationals keen to expand. The figures are mind-boggling-per capita income increased sixfold from 2002 to 2009; foreign direct investment multi-

plied by four from 2007 to 2009; and the region’s economic growth hit a staggering 17 percent in 2010. “Chongqing is starting to get positive media buzz,” Adam McWhirter, the local representative of the European Union Chamber of Commerce said. From the cable car station jutting out over the Yangtze, China’s longest waterway, McWhirter points to a cluster of new high-rise buildings that have sprung up in just three years. “It’s like building Manhattan across the water from Hong Kong,” he says, listing the luxury hotels that are under construction-Sheraton, Shangri-La, Westin, to name a few-and all keen to cash in on the influx of foreigners.

Cash-strapped Libya rebels call for loans BENGHAZI: Libya’s cash-strapped rebels, facing a long and uncertain fight to recover assets frozen abroad, called on foreign donors on Wednesday to back new loans using the blocked cash as collateral. With no money to pay for salaries or imports, Mazen Ramadan, an economic advisor to the National Transitional Council (NTC), said a solution must be found to tap cash abroad, including the more than $30 billion frozen in the United States alone. “This whole asset unfreezing thing is going to take a while,” he said from his office in Benghazi. “We are working with a lot of people but it seems like a time consuming process, and we need the money.” “We proposed a mechanism to perhaps get loans on the frozen assets and then use this mechanism to ensure transparency.” He did not say whether Western nations, which face major legal obstacles to releasing the frozen assets, had embraced the idea, but the European Union is said to be considering it. Asked about the NTC’s current bank balance Ramadan said bluntly: “We don’t have any money.” He said salaries for past month had not yet been paid and that power shortages in the east of the country were being caused by the lack of funds. “We think of this war here as having multiple front lines. We are on the financial front line and we are losing badly and it seems like our friends have not noticed.” Although Libya’s rebels got $100 million earlier this month, Ramadan said “it is a small amount relative to what we owe, fuel shipments are more than that.” “We definitely have a serious problem,” he added. British Foreign Secretary William Hague earlier Wednesday confirmed the rebels had received $100 million for fuel and salaries. The rebels, fighting to overthrow Libyan leader Muammar Gaddafi, have complained that they have received a fraction of the roughly $1 billion promised by international donors. At a meeting earlier this month in Abu Dhabi of the contact group on Libya, an alliance of countries and international organizations, donors including Italy and France vowed to help them with cash and supplies. The rebels-unable to capitalize on the country’s vast oil wealth because of damaged infrastructure-depend on foreign largesse to pay for basic services and their largely volunteer-led rebellion. The uprising against Gaddafi began in mid-February and international forces, including Britain, launched air strikes on Libya in March under a UN resolution aimed at protecting civilians from attacks by the veteran leader’s forces.— AFP

Foreign trade jumped a massive 72 percent on-year in the first quarter of 2011, according to official data. So how did Chongqing transform from one of China’s notorious “furnaces”-a nondescript mid-level industrial city with months of steamy, stifling weather each year-into a major business hub? A key reason is the government’s “Go West” policy, which offers fiscal incentives to companies that set up shop in the country’s less developed inland provinces, rather than in the industrial heartland of the coast. Another is the fact that labor is cheaper and factories built out west allow workers to stay closer to home, rather than migrate to far-flung manufacturing hubs.

In March, when the central government in Beijing unveiled its new fiveyear plan for the world’s second-largest economy, it featured the new Liangjiang economic development zone in Chongqing. The zone hopes to succeed much as the southern boomtown of Shenzhen did in the 1980s, or Shanghai’s Pudong did in the 1990s. “Investors are flocking to Chongqing to take advantage of the markets in western China, which are showing strong growth,” Huang Chengfeng, head of the school of finance and economics at Chongqing Jiaotong University said. “They are coming not just from China, but from around the world.”—AFP

Indian fuel inflation hits to 8-week high Govt borrowing beyond budget to fund deficit gap NEW DELHI: Indian fuel price inflation hit an eight-week high in mid-June, showing price pressures persisted even before the government’s recent increase in diesel prices and suggesting headline inflation in Asia’s third-largest economy is headed towards double-digits again. While food inflation eased to a six-week low of 7.78 percent in the week to June 18, from 9.13 percent a week earlier, the fuel price increase and its knock-on effects are expected to add to the case for continued tightening of monetary policy. The fuel price index climbed 12.98 percent in the week to June 18, before the fuel price rise took effect, from 12.84 percent a week earlier, government data showed yesterday. New Delhi raised prices of diesel, cooking gas and kerosene last Friday, a politically unpopular move that adds to inflationary pressure, but gives relief to oil companies reeling from revenue losses on state-set fuel prices amid high global crude prices. “Last week’s fuel prices hike will have first and second round impact on overall inflation, which will start getting reflected in the data next week onwards,” said Aditi Nayar, an economist with ICRA. Standard Chartered expects the increase in diesel and other fuel prices, which was effective June 25, to add about 70 basis points to headline inflation. India’s headline wholesale price index (WPI) inflation stood at an annual 9.06 percent in May despite continued monetary policy tightening by the central bank, which has increased interest rates 10 times since March 2010. The Reserve Bank of India is widely expected to raise rates by another 50 basis points in coming months, which could further erode demand in an economy that grew at 7.8 percent in January-March, its slowest in five quarters. FUELING INFLATION Food prices, which are volatile and have been a key driver of inflation in India for nearly two years, are driven heavily by the summer monsoon, which began earlier this month. “The real outlook on food will emerge only after July 10. The last 10 days of June and first 10 days of July are a crucial period for the monsoon,” said Sujan Hajra, chief economist at Anand

ALLAHABAD: A scavenger gathers coins offered by devotees after dipping a row of magnets into the banks of the river Ganges in Allahabad, India yesterday. — AP Rathi Financial Services in Mumbai. “Once we get the data on that, one can take an informed view on the food prices. But as of now, food inflation should remain in single digits,” he said. Diesel, cooking gas and kerosene comprise 6.4 percent of the total WPI basket and 70 percent of the fuel component of the WPI. The primary articles price index was up 11.84 percent, compared with an annual rise of 12.62 percent a week earlier. DEFICIT FINANCE Investor hopes that the fuel price increase would go towards easing New Delhi’s fiscal burden were dashed by accompanying reductions in duties on oil products that are expected to cost the government about $5.5 billion in lost rev-

enue. The government is targeting a deficit of 4.6 percent of GDP in the current fiscal year. Private economists view that target as optimistic as economic growth slows and the government’s subsidy burden persists, and traders expect the federal government to borrow far more than its budget target from the financial markets in the second half of the fiscal year. Market participants, already skeptical about the government’s ability to hit its fiscal deficit target given its subsidy commitments and a weak share market that has caused it to delay stake sales in staterun companies, are bracing for higherthan-planned government borrowing after September. Bond prices have fallen in the last four sessions.— Reuters

Business FRIDAY, JULY 1, 2011

Turkish steel prices to increase moderately Product diversification answer to oversupply ISTANBUL: Turkish steel prices will rise in 2011-2012, but are unlikely to hit the record highs hit in 2008, as growing domestic demand and exports to new markets will be offset by a drop in exports to the Middle East and North Africa, a top Turkish industry official said. “I was expecting steel prices to increase more in 2011 but because of political unrest in the Middle East and North Africa this was delayed,” Namik Ekinci, chief executive of steelmaker Ekinciler and chairman of the Turkish steel exporters association told Reuters in an

S Korea cuts 2011 growth forecast SEOUL: South Korea’s government yesterday reduced its economic growth forecast for this year amid rising world oil prices, and raised its projection for inflation. The Ministry of Strategy and Finance now predicts gross domestic product in Asia’s fourth largest economy will expand 4.5 percent compared with its earlier five percent forecast, citing weaker than expected domestic demand. “Exports will remain brisk as the global economy continues to recover, but with trade terms deteriorating on higher oil prices, domestic demand is likely to be more sluggish than we initially thought,” the ministry said in its twice-yearly economic outlook. “Recovery in advanced nations slowed slightly and domestic demand also remained slower than expected,” Yoon Jong-Won, head of the ministry’s economic policy bureau, told reporters. The ministry raised its inflation forecast to four percent from three percent and said price pressures are unlikely to ease markedly before September. The consumer price index rose 4.1 percent in May from a year earlier, staying above four percent for the fifth straight month. Yesterday’s forecasts bring the ministry closer in line with other market-watchers. The International Monetary Fund tips 4.5 percent growth and 4.3 percent inflation for 2011. The state-run Korea Development Institute predicts 4.2 percent growth and inflation at 4.1 percent. The government said a recovery in the local economy and incomes would probably fuel demand-side inflation, and home rents were set to rise further in the autumn when many people move. The ministry expects the economy to grow nearly five percent next year as economic conditions at home and abroad are expected to improve further. Figures for May industrial production released earlier Yesterday gave grounds for optimism. Production increased 8.3 percent from a year earlier compared with a 6.9 percent rise in April, Statistics Korea said. The May increase was also better than the 6.7 percent forecast by economists polled by Dow Jones Newswires. From a month earlier, output rose 1.7 percent compared to a revised 1.7 percent decline in April. Increases in the semiconductor, parts and machinery equipment sectors fuelled the rise in output, Statistics Korea said in a report. —AFP

interview. “I still expect prices to increase in 2011 but I’d rather they didn’t increase too much because huge increases are followed by big crashes which result in big losses. You can lose gains accumulated in 8-10 months in only 1-2 months.” The record prices hit in 2008 however, still seem remote as Turkish steel producers face increased competition both domestically and in the Middle East and North Africa, their key export regions. Prices of rebar - a finished long product used in construction to reinforce structures - were at $710-720 per ton free-on-

board (fob) Turkey this week, compared with levels of $1,500-1,600 per ton fob in 2008. Ekinciler normally exports 85 percent of its production and sells 15 percent in the domestic market, but this year that has changed to 60 percent and 40 percent, as political turmoil hit exports to the MENA region and increased investment in construction in Turkey boosted domestic demand. Also, as the Middle East and North Africa develop their own steel industry, Turkish producers are looking at new export market. Central and southern

Africa and Latin America offer the biggest potential, Ekinci said. “Product diversification is the answer to oversupply,” he said. Most Turkish steelmakers produce and export long steel products such as billet, rebar and wire rod used in construction. But these are in oversupply and some steel producers are switching to other steel types, including flat steel products used to make cars and white goods and stainless or higher grade steel, used in anything from construction to cutlery. — Reuters

Oil holds at $112 as inflation worries stir Mixed outlook as OPEC supply up LONDON: Oil prices held near $112 a barrel yesterday as high inflation and uncertainty about the International Energy Agency’s emergency stock release plan balanced against a weaker dollar. Comments from European Central Bank chief Jean-Claude Trichet reinforced expectations of an interest rate hike next week, which traders and analysts say could stifle economic activity and energy demand. Concerns lingered that Greece could run into further problems even after Wednesday’s initial vote to pass an austerity plan to avert bankruptcy. The Greek parliament was set to approve detailed austerity and privatization bills yesterday but longer-term dangers still lurk. “It’s not finished for Greece yet; there is a last vote,” said Thorbjorn Bak Jensen, an oil analyst at Global Risk Management. “If the system tightens up well, Greece doesn’t need a rate rise.” But crude futures bounced after US jobless data showed a slight drop in claims, although the fall was narrower than expected. ICE Brent crude was 5 cents lower at $112.35 a barrel at 1238 GMT, paring early losses of more than $1, after jumping more than 3 percent on Wednesday. US crude was at $94.99 a barrel, up 22 cents, after gaining 2 percent in the previous session. A weaker dollar was also supportive, although the dollar index pared early losses after the inflation data was released. Euro zone data showed that inflation was high but stable at 2.7 percent, compared with expectations of a rise to 2.8 percent. The rate is well above the ECB’s target of close to but below 2.0 percent. UNCERTAINTY The International Energy Agency has sent conflicting signals to the market this week, saying on Wednesday it was up to operators to decide whether to release crude oil or oil products as part of the emergency release plan. “The market is still assessing the release of emergency stocks by the IEA,” said Ben Westmore, commodities economist at the National Australia Bank. The Netherlands joined Germany in clarifying it would hold a tender to release crude oil as part of the IEA program. The Dutch stockpiling agency said up to 700,000 barrels of crude oil would be offered today.

LITTLE ROCK: Traffic passes near a Little Rock, Ark, gas station. Oil prices hold near $112 a barrel yesterday as high inflation and uncertainty about the International Energy Agency’s emergency stock release plan balanced against a weaker dollar. — AP Other countries including Britain, France and Italy said they were not planning on tenders but would reduce minimum strategic stock reserve requirements instead. “There is a huge misunderstanding on this point,” the IEA’s head of energy markets and security said. The table provided by the International Energy Agency on Monday, which showed the breakdown of crude and products on its website, was purely indicative, Didier Houssin said. But

the agency could decide whether to repeat the release around the third week of July, Richard Jones, IEA deputy executive director, said late on Wednesday. “The impact has been fairly minimal. I don’t believe they can continue releasing emergency stocks as that’s what they are there for - emergencies,” said Roy Jordan, an analyst at Facts Global Energy, adding that in the absence of further disruption, prices would fall anyway because supply was ample.— Reuters

Opinion FRIDAY, JULY 1, 2011

Realities of withdrawal

By Nathan Hughes


President Barack Obama announced June 22 that the long process of drawing down forces in Afghanistan would begin on schedule in July. Though the initial phase of the drawdown appears limited, minimizing the tactical and operational impact on the ground in the immediate future, the United States and its allies are now beginning the inevitable process of removing their forces from Afghanistan. This will entail the risk of greater Taleban battlefield successes. The Logistical Challenge Afghanistan, a landlocked country in the heart of Central Asia, is one of the most isolated places on Earth. This isolation has posed huge logistical challenges for the United States. Hundreds of shipping containers and fuel trucks must enter the country every day from Pakistan and from the north to sustain the nearly 150,000 US and allied forces stationed in Afghanistan, about half the total number of Afghan security forces. Supplying a single gallon of gasoline in Afghanistan reportedly costs the US military an average of $400, while sustaining a single US soldier runs around $1 million a year (by contrast, sustaining an Afghan soldier costs about $12,000 a year). These forces appear considerably lighter than those in Iraq because Afghanistan’s rough terrain often demands dismounted foot patrols. Heavy main battle tanks and self-propelled howitzers are thus few and far between, though not entirely absent. Afghanistan even required a new, lighter and more agile version of the hulking mine-resistant, ambush-protected vehicle known as the M-ATV (for “all-terrain vehicle”). Based solely on the activity on the ground in Afghanistan today, one would think the United States and its allies were preparing for a permanent presence, not the imminent beginning of a long-scheduled drawdown (a perception the United States and its allies have in some cases used to their advantage to reach political arrangements with locals). A 3,500-m allweather concrete and asphalt runway and an air traffic control tower were completed this February at Camp Leatherneck and Camp Bastion in Helmand province. Another more than 2,700-m runway was finished at Shindand Air Field in Herat province last December. Meanwhile, a so-called iron mountain of spare parts needed to maintain vehicles and aircraft, construction and engineering equipment, generators, ammunition and other supplies - even innumerable pallets of bottled water - has slowly been built up to sustain day-to-day military operations. There are fewer troops in Afghanistan than the nearly 170,000 in Iraq at the peak of operations and considerably lighter tonnage in terms of armored vehicles. But short of a hasty and rapid withdrawal reminiscent of the chaotic American exit from Saigon in 1975 (which no one currently foresees in Afghanistan), the logistical challenge of withdrawing from Afghanistan at whatever pace - is perhaps even more daunting than the drawdown in Iraq. The complexity of having nearly 50 allies with troops in country will complicate this process. Moreover, coalition forces in Iraq had ready access to well-established bases and modern port facilities in nearby Kuwait and in Turkey, a long-standing NATO ally. Though US and allied equipment comes ashore on a routine basis in

the Pakistani port city of Karachi, the facilities there are nothing like what exists in Kuwait. Routes to bases in Afghanistan are anything but short and established, with locally contracted fuel tankers and other supplies not only traveling far greater distances but also regularly subject to harassing attacks. They are inherently vulnerable to aggressive interdiction by militants fighting on terrain far more favorable to them, and to politically motivated interruptions by Islamabad. The American logistical dependence on Pakistani acquiescence cannot be understated. Most supplies transit the isolated Khyber Pass in the restive Pakistani Federally Administered Tribal Areas west of Islamabad. As in Iraq, the United States does have an alternative to the north. But instead of Turkey it is the Northern Distribution Network (NDN), which runs

before being shipped overland. And while some Iraqi stocks were designated for redeployment to Afghanistan or prepared for long-term storage in pre-positioned equipment depots and aboard maritime pre-positioning ships at facilities in Kuwait, most vehicles and supplies slated to be moved out of Afghanistan increasingly will have to be shipped far afield. This could be from Karachi by ship or to Europe by rail even if they are never intended for return to the United States. Security Transition More important than the fate of armored trucks and equipment will be the process of rebalancing forces across the country. This will involve handing over outposts and facilities to Afghan security forces, who continue to struggle to reach full capability, and scaling back the extent

but have remained nearby even after transitions formally have taken place. Under the current training regime, Afghan units continue to require advice and assistance, particularly with matters like intelligence, planning, logistics and maintenance. The ISAF will be cautious in its reductions for fear of pulling back too quickly and seeing the situation deteriorate - unless, of course, Obama directs it to conduct a hastier pullback. As in Afghanistan, in Iraq the process of drawing down and handing over responsibility in each area was done very cautiously. There was a critical distinction, however. A political accommodation with the Sunnis facilitated the apparent success of the Iraqi surge - something that has not been (and cannot be) replicated in Afghanistan. Even with that advantage, Iraq remains in an unsettled and con-

In this May 2, 2008 file photo, US Marines return fire on Taleban positions near the town of Garmser in Helmand Province of Afghanistan. – AP through Central Asia and Russia (Moscow has agreed to continue to expand it) and entails a 5,150-km rail route to the Baltic Sea and ports in Latvia, Lithuania and Estonia. Given the extraordinary distances involved, the metrics for defining whether something is worth the expense of shipping back from Afghanistan are unforgiving. Some equipment will be deemed too heavily damaged or cheap and will be sanitized if necessary and discarded. Much construction and fortification has been done with engineering and construction equipment like Hesco barriers (which are filled with sand and dirt) that will not be reclaimed, and will continue to characterize the landscape in Afghanistan for decades to come, much as the Soviet influence was perceivable long after their 1989 withdrawal. Much equipment will be handed over to Afghan security forces, which already have begun to receive uparmored US HMMWVs, aka “humvees.” Similarly, some 800,000 items valued at nearly $100 million have already been handed over to more than a dozen Iraqi military, security and government entities. Other gear will have to be stripped of sensitive equipment (radios and other cryptographic gear, navigation equipment, jammers for improvised explosive devices, etc), which is usually flown out of the country due to security concerns

of the US and allied presence in the country. In Iraq, and likely in Afghanistan, the beginning of this process will be slow and measured. But its pace in the years ahead remains to be seen, and may accelerate considerably. The first areas slated for handover to Afghan control, the provinces of Panjshir, Bamiyan and Kabul - aside the restive Surobi district, though the rest of Kabul’s security effectively has been in Afghan hands for years - and the cities of Mazar-eSharif, Herat, Lashkar Gah and Mehtar Lam have been relatively quiet places for some time. Afghan security forces increasingly have taken over in these areas. As in Iraq, the first places to be turned over to indigenous security forces already were fairly secure. Handing over more restive areas later in the year will prove trickier. This process of pulling back and handing over responsibility for security (in Iraq often termed having Iraqi security forces “in the lead” in specific areas) is a slow and deliberate one, not a sudden and jarring maneuver. Well before the formal announcement, Afghan forces began to transition to a more independent role, conducting more small-unit operations on their own. International Security Assistance Force (ISAF) troops slowly have transitioned from joint patrols and tactical overwatch to a more operational overwatch,

tentious state. The lack of any political framework to facilitate a military pullback leaves the prospect of a viable transition in restive areas where the US counterinsurgency-focused strategy has been focused tenuous at best - particularly if timetables are accelerated. In June 2009, US forces in Iraq occupied 357 bases. A year later, US forces occupied only 92 bases, 58 of which were partnered with the Iraqis. The pace of the transition in Afghanistan remains to be seen, but handing over the majority of positions to Afghan forces will fundamentally alter the situational awareness, visibility and influence of ISAF forces. Casualties and Force Protection The security of the remaining outposts and ensuring the security of US and allied forces and critical lines of supply (particularly key sections of the Ring Road) that sustain remaining forces will be key to crafting the withdrawal and pulling back to fewer, stronger and more secure positions. As that drawdown progresses - and particularly if a more substantive shift in strategy is implemented - the increased pace begins to bring new incentives into play. Of particular note will be both a military and political incentive to reduce casualties as the endgame draws closer. The desire to accelerate the consolida-

tion to more secure positions will clash with the need to pull back slowly and continue to provide Afghan forces with advice and assistance. The reorientation may expose potential vulnerabilities to Taleban attack in the process of transitioning to a new posture. Major reversals and defeats for Afghan security forces at the hands of the Taleban after they have been left to their own devices can be expected in at least some areas and will have wide repercussions, perhaps even shifting the psychology and perception of the war. When ISAF units are paired closely with Afghan forces, those units have a stronger day-to-day tactical presence in the field, and other units are generally operating nearby. So while they are more vulnerable and exposed to threats like IEDs while out on patrol, they also - indeed, in part because of that exposure - have a more alert and robust posture. As the transition accelerates and particularly if Washington accelerates it, the posture and therefore the vulnerabilities of forces change. Force protection remains a key consideration throughout. The United States gained considerable experience with that during the Iraq transition - though again, a political accommodation underlay much of that transition, which will not be the case in Afghanistan. As the drawdown continues, ISAF will have to balance having advisers in the field alongside Afghan units for as long as possible against pulling more back to key strongholds and pulling them out of the country completely. In the former case, the close presence of advisers can improve the effectiveness of Afghan security forces and provide better situational awareness. But it also exposes smaller units to operations more distant from strongholds as the number of outposts and major positions begins to be reduced. And as the process of pulling back accelerates and particularly as allied forces increasingly hunker down on larger and more secure outposts, their already limited situational awareness will decline even further, which opens up its own vulnerabilities. One of these will be the impact on not just situational awareness on the ground but intelligence collection and particularly exploitable relationships with local political factions. As the withdrawal becomes more and more undeniable and ISAF pulls back from key areas, the human relationships that underlie intelligence sharing will be affected and reduced. This is particularly the case in places where the Taleban are strongest, as villagers there return to a strategy of hedging their bets out of necessity and focus on the more enduring power structure, which in many areas will clearly be the Taleban. The Taleban Ultimately, the Taleban’s incentive visa-vis the United States and its allies - especially as their exit becomes increasingly undeniable - is to conserve and maximize their strength for a potential fight in the vacuum sure to ensue after the majority of foreign troops have left the country. At the same time, any “revolutionary” movement must be able to consolidate internal control and maintain discipline while continuing to make itself relevant to domestic constituencies. The Taleban also may seek to take advantage of the shifting tactical realities to demonstrate their strength and the extent of their reach across the country, not only by targeting newly independent and newly isolated Afghan units but by attempting to kill or even kidnap nowmore isolated foreign troops. —Stratfor

FRIDAY, JULY 1, 2011

Musician Christina Aguilera poses for photographers after finale of "The Voice" in Burbank, Calif., Wednesday, June 29, 2011. Javier Colon was named the winner of the show during the finale. — AP

Te c h n o l o g y FRIDAY, JULY 1, 2011

LCDs demystified for the untrained eye


ne 27-inch computer monitor costs 250 dollars, while another retails for over 1200 dollars. What’s the difference, other than cost? The answer lies in the details. Today’s flat panel LCDs (liquid crystal displays) for computers employ different technologies for different target groups. Understanding what you’re getting with a more-expensive LCD is key to knowing whether to shell out the extra money for one. Read on to learn more. Q: So what is the difference between the really expensive and the cheaper LCD computer monitors? A: There are two primary technologies behind LCDs today: One is called twisted nematic (TN) and the other is known as in-plane switching (IPS). Generally, less expensive LCDs are based on TN technology. These displays are relatively inexpensive to produce these days, which is why you see a raft of 22-inch or larger monitors at prices less than 300 dollars. TN displays used to suffer from ghosting or “shadow trails” when object were moved around on the screen. Now, however, this problem has been resolved, and the so-called response time of these displays is often a selling point. A downside of TN panels is a limited viewing angle. That means that images on screen will look their best only when you are sitting directly in front of a TN monitor. Shift to the right or left - or look at the pan-

el from one side or another - and you’re likely to notice that the colours “shift” somewhat and that the image on screen begins to look washed out. However, manufacturers of some TN panels have done a lot over the past few years to improve viewing angles, but generally this limitation persists. IPS technology, by contrast, was the result of efforts to improve the viewing angles of LCDs. Today, IPS panels are known for their excellent performance in this regard. IPS displays also tend to produce more vibrant colours and can be colour-calibrated to a greater degree than TN panels. Colour calibration helps to ensure that the colours you see on the screen will match those that are printed out. Q: So which technology is right for you: TN or IPS? A: If you’re like the majority of users, you’ll be

more than pleased with the images produced by today’s TN panels. Plus the lower manufacturing costs mean that you can get TN-based LCDs at bargain prices. On the other hand, if you must be able to correctly calibrate the colours displayed by an LCD, then the more expensive IPS models will be the way to go. Q: Other than size and image technology, what else should I look for in an LCD? A: Stand quality and stand adjustability are two important parts of any LCD, especially larger ones. In general, look for monitors that don’t wiggle easily when the desk is touched. Also, look for height adjustment in stands as well as the more typical tilt adjustments. Also, determine whether you need or want a glossy - as opposed to a matte - surface finish on your LCD. Glossy screens are popular today because they show well in stores.

Generally people assume that higher resolution numbers are better - but that’s not always the case

But in fact they’re often ill-suited to standard computing chores, since backlights can cause glare on the glossy surfaces, and that glare can in turn cause eye strain or simply make the images on screen more difficult to see. Finally, look for LCDs that offer individual adjustments of colours rather than simply colour “presets.” If you can individually adjust a monitor’s colours when profiling, you’ll end up with colours that you can be sure will more closely match your printed output. Q: Should I get the highest resolution possible in an LCD? A: Resolution numbers such as 1,200x1,600 refer to the number of pixels that make up images on your screen. Generally, people assume that higher numbers are better, but that’s not always the case. Higher numbers can mean sharper images in which pixilation is difficult or impossible to discern. But higher resolution monitors also display common screen elements such as icons and text smaller than do lower-resolution monitors of an equivalent size, and these smaller screen elements may be a disadvantage to those with aging eyes. The best way to get a feel for the resolution and LCD size combination that’s best for you is to visit your local computer store and actually look at different screen, noting the resolution and monitor size combination that you prefer. — dpa

Relationships FRIDAY, JULY 1, 2011

The grind that binds For one family, skateboarding offers a chance for bonding and life lessons


or the Birdsong family, life doesn’t center on the baseball diamond or ballet class. Instead, the soundtrack of their afternoons is provided by the rattle and clack of urethane wheels on well-worn fiberboard. They’re skateboarders. For them, skating is one of the ties that bind. “I don’t know much about football and basketball, but I can teach them about this,” said 37-year-old McLemore Birdsong, a Suffolk, Va., resident who regularly skates with his two kids at Mike’s Surf Shop indoor skate park in Hampton. “It’s good exercise - and it’s exercise without a team. But I don’t push them. If they want to stop tomorrow, I’m OK.” There’s no sign of that. His daughter Harper, 10, is an enthusiastic, confident skater who navigates the bowl at Mike’s with grace. Her younger brother - 7-year-old Miles - isn’t too far behind her. You’ll find him happily swaying back and forth on the park’s mini half-pipe. He’s not yet fine-tuned his skills at the level of his dad or sister, but he’s working on it. “I usually hurt myself at least once,” Miles said, smiling. “One time I smashed into someone and both of us flew off our boards.” Miles has been skating for about six months. His sister, for about 18 months. So far, the Birdsongs have sustained no major injuries. Aches and pains? Yes. Bruised pride? Probably. “But everyone’s stayed in one piece,” the father said. It helps that all three skate with a full array of protective gear: knee pads, elbow pads, wrist pads and helmet. Amy Birdsong, the mother of the family, doesn’t skateboard, but she’s often there to praise every new skill or trick, be it a grind, kick turn, rock fakie, drop in or transfer. “This is their thing with their dad,” she said, as she

Amy Birdsong (left) helps her kids Miles (center) and Harper get ready to skateboard in the indoor skate park at Mike’s Surf Shop. — MCT watched the action through a window. “I read with them. Dad does the skateboarding. My husband is a surfer. He can do this when there are no waves, he can do this with the kids. “I think we’re going to be doing this for a long time.” Mike Monteith, owner and namesake of Mike’s Surf Shop, said the Birdsongs are unusual for the area. “We see a handful of dad-son combinations, but it’s very rare that we see a son, a father and a daughter,” he said. “It’s far from an everyday

event.” There’s reason to think that the Birdsongs may be at the leading edge of a trend. “We’re seeing much more of this at municipal skate parks,” said Miki Vuckovich, executive director of the Tony Hawk Foundation, based in Vista, Calif. The foundation supports the creation of public skate parks in low-income communities across the nation. “People in their 30s or 40s, many of them grew up skateboarding, and many of

them are bringing their kids. We’ve had to adjust our strategy,” he said. “Rather than presenting skateboarding as a youth-oriented activity, we’re showing that it’s a family activity.” He said a generation of skaters who came to the sport during an explosion of its popularity in the 1980s still consider skateboarding a lifestyle, not a hobby. “Young people today are being introduced to it as readily as soccer or baseball,” Vuckovich said. “It’s become part of the mainstream. Today, we have parents, business owners, city council members who are skateboarders. As a result, more skateboard parks are being built.” He cited statistics saying that 65 public skate parks existed in the United States in 1996. Today, there are around 2,500. While skateboarding has been absorbed into the mainstream, it still offers kids a measure of danger and at least a whiff of rebelliousness. “It’s cool and it’s not dorky to them,” Amy Birdsong said. “We like independent things, individual sports. And they’re not sitting there working their thumbs,” she said, imitating the action of playing a video game. “We don’t want laziness.” After a recent skating session at Mike’s, Harper and Miles took off their pads and got ready to head for the car and home. Dad took a moment to give Miles some encouragement. “How’s your hip?” he asked. “Good,” Miles answered. “You looked really good out there today,” the father said. “That last little thing on the half-pipe was tip-top.” Life lessons can be taught with skateboards, Birdsong’s pep talk suggests. “Everybody has to try one new thing each time out,” he said, talking to his kids. “You don’t have to succeed. You just have to try.” — MCT

Harper Birdsong, 10 (left) and her dad Mac (right) wait their turn on the quarter-pike at Mike’s Surf Shop in Hampton, Virginia. The family regularly comes to the park as a family to skate. —MCT

Fo o d FRIDAY, JUNE 1, 2011

Everyday cooking

By Sawsan Kazak


rowing up, my ďŹ rst experience with sweet potatoes was a very unappealing one. My parents simply boiled them, skin and all, in a small pot of water. Their taste, appearance and smell were all unappetizing to say the least. But with all this new information I am learning about the health beneďŹ ts of sweet potatoes, I decided to give them another chance. Sweet potatoes can actually be good tasting while they are good for you, I have come to realize. Send your suggestions to:

Fo o d FRIDAY, JUNE 1, 2011

Grilled sweet potatoes with lime and cilantro 3 sweet potatoes, unpeeled Kosher salt 2 teaspoons finely grated lime zest Pinch of cayenne pepper 1/4 cup canola oil Freshly ground pepper 1/4 cup finely chopped fresh cilantro

Sweet potato pie

Parcook the potatoes: Place in a pot of water and boil until fork-tender; let cool. Slice each potato lengthwise into eighths. Preheat a grill to medium or place a cast-iron grill pan over medium heat. Mix 1 tablespoon salt, the lime zest and cayenne in a small bowl. Brush the potato wedges with the oil and season with salt and pepper. Grill until golden brown on all sides (including the skin) and just cooked through, about 1 1/2 minutes per side. Transfer to a platter; immediately season with the salt mixture and sprinkle with cilantro.

1 (1 pound) sweet potato 1/2 cup butter, softened 1 cup white sugar 1/2 cup milk 2 eggs 1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon 1 teaspoon vanilla extract 1 (9 inch) unbaked pie crust Boil sweet potato whole in skin for 40 to 50 minutes, or until done. Run cold water over the sweet potato, and remove the skin. Break apart sweet potato in a bowl. Add butter, and mix well with mixer. Stir in sugar, milk, eggs, nutmeg, cinnamon and vanilla. Beat on medium speed until mixture is smooth. Pour filling into an unbaked pie crust. Bake at 350 degrees F (175 degrees C) for 55 to 60 minutes, or until knife inserted in center comes out clean. Pie will puff up like a souffle, and then will sink down as it cools.

Baked sweet potato fries sure not to overcrowd. Bake until sweet potatoes are tender and golden brown, turning occasionally, about 20 minutes. Let cool 5 to 10 minutes before serving.

House Seasoning: 1 cup salt 1/4 cup black pepper 1/4 cup garlic powder Olive Oil, for tossing 5 sweet potatoes, peeled and sliced into 1/4-inch long slices, then 1/4-wide inch strips, using a crinkle cut knife Oil 1 tablespoon House Seasoning 1/2 teaspoon paprika For the House Seasoning: Mix ingredients together and store in an airtight container for up to 6 months. Preheat oven to 450 degrees F. Line a sheet tray with parchment. In a large bowl toss sweet potatoes with just enough oil to coat. Sprinkle with House Seasoning and paprika. Spread sweet potatoes in single layer on prepared baking sheet, being

Tuna & sweet potato cakes Cook the sweet potato in a large saucepan of salted boiling water for 7-8 minutes or until tender. Drain and refresh under cold running water. Transfer to a large bowl. 1 medium orange sweet potato 1 can tuna chunks in brine, drained 2 eggs, lightly whisked 1/4 cup dried (packaged) breadcrumbs Salt & freshly ground black pepper 1 tbs olive oil 4 crusty bread rolls

Kids’ task: Use a potato masher or fork to mash the sweet potato until coarsely mashed. Add the tuna, egg and breadcrumbs, and stir until well combined. Season with pepper. Divide the tuna mixture into 8 equal portions. Use wet hands to shape portions into 8cm patties. Heat oil in a large non-stick frying pan over medium-high heat. Add the patties and cook for 3-4 minutes each side or until golden brown. Remove from heat. Divide among serving plates and season with salt and pepper. Serve immediately with bread rolls.

Tr a v e l FRIDAY, JULY 1, 2011

Help save


It’s time for tactical travel

I A holiday to see one of humanity’s greatest civilisations may be just the boost the economy needs right now. After all, we owe them for Delphi

t seems a bit beside the point, when demonstrators in Athens are shaking the world economy’s disconcertingly fragile frame, and a nation is forced to choose between economic masochism and who knows what. But Greece is very beautiful; and, in fact, it’s not beside the point at all. Tourism is one remaining hope for the Greek economy and so, as summer blooms, it is worth thinking about some of the artistic and architectural reasons for going there. Delphi in Greece has a strong claim to being the most stunning landscape on earth. It has stayed in my mind ever since my one brief visit there as the archetype of all classical landscape paintings, the dream location that Turner, Claude and Poussin were all somehow trying to evoke in their glowing visions of temples among vistas of unfolding hills. In my memory, Delphi’s crystal-blue sky, bright white marble and silver olive leaves sparkle more than Turner’s brightest canvas. This landscape seems airborne, weightless. Its pure colours and the perfect harmony of culture and nature lift it into a fantasy world of gods and goddesses. At Delphi, the Greek myths become real. It was a place of holiness shared by all the rival city states of ancient Greece, where they sent gifts and raised sanctuaries and shrines. All this was done in homage to the Delphic oracle of Apollo. Games were held here, the classical Hellenic world gathered here, and what remains is a captivating landscape that fills you with joy, rhapsody, and a sense of what human beings are capable of. This is the thought-provoking thing about Greek antiqui-

ties: they make you believe in us, the humans. The civilisation of ancient Greece combined curiosity, imagination and a passion for beauty such that it has been an example for us ever since - the “classical” model of a healthy culture. When you visit the great Greek archaeological sites you see that Renaissance Italians and 18th-century neoclassicists were right to revere the ancient Greeks. The Acropolis in Athens seems, like Delphi, to soar with sheer beauty - not just to tower above the modern city but to actually connect, somehow, with the gods of Olympus. From the lovely coastal town of Nafplion you can visit the great theatre of Epidauros, on Crete you can trace the legend of the Minotaur; these places can haunt your dreams for the rest of your life. And they have beaches, too. A cultural holiday in Greece right now may help this beautiful land, and therefore the European economy. But it may also serve as a reminder in times of chaos of all that humans can achieve. Greece, amid the storm, contains some of the greatest marvels you will ever see: stones that reflect us humans in the most flattering way. For humanity is the eighth wonder of the ancient Greek world. —Guardian

Tr a v e l FRIDAY, JULAY 1, 2011

Branching out: An ecolodge in

Senegal Senegal is no longer just for backpackers, as our writer discovers when she stays in an ecolodge perched among the baobabs on the Sine-Saloum delta


t was still early morning and I had dozed off while keeping vigil on our route. “I seem to have lost the way,” said my friend. “I was following the track for a while but the salt flats seemed smoother to drive on...” Looming around us were baobabs, the largely leafless, bulbous-trunked trees that locals say were stuck in the ground upside down by the devil. They looked as if they were made from elephant hide, grey and tremendous, casting their great fingers up to the sky. The headlights picked up a shape ahead - a donkey pulling a wooden cart, piled with salt and millet, which came to a stop beside us. “Excuse me,” I said in French to the two passengers, wondering what language they spoke. “Can you tell us where the road is?” The young men politely pointed to the north. “Follow the telegraph wires,” one said. “That’ll show you the way.” We were travelling through the Sine Saloum region, south of Dakar, to the Sine-Saloum delta. The area is a jigsaw of salt flats and shallow waterways that eventually give way to the rolling waters of the Atlantic and while there is a road - a red gravel route that snakes inland from the coast and between several villages - it’s not a very comfortable one. Around three hours after we had set off from Dakar we turned off at a tiny junction where a sign pointed us to Collines de Niassam Lodge, an ecolodge on the edge of the warm delta waters at Palmarin. The sun was just about up as we arrived and were greeted with coffee and freshly baked bread. Just to remind myself I was in the tropics, I washed them down with a glass of baobab juice made from the seed pods of the tree: cream in colour, strangely grainy and supposedly with powerful stomach-settling properties. The baobab trees were to be our home for the next few days. While tree hotels might be popular in the east of the continent, out here in the wild west, they are something of a rarity. This is

Senegal’s first and so far only tree-hotel - a handful of beautifully crafted wood cabins perched in the wide branches of the baobab trees. Almost everything inside the rooms has been made in the local area. West Africa has long been popular with backpackers who travel around the region through Mali, Ghana and Burkina Faso in rickety bush-taxis, sleep in fleapit hostels and revel in the fact that this is tough, proper travelling. More recently, however, tourists have made their way tentatively to Dakar, perched on the western tip of the continent, for its thriving music scene, which has produced musicians such as Youssou N’Dour and Baaba Maal. As east and southern Africa have traditionally attracted the wealthier tourists, lured by the big game and sparkling Indian Ocean coastline, west Africa was left with a lot of bad PR, not helped by civil wars. Library at the Collines de Niassam Lodge But what goes on in countries hundreds or thousands of miles to the north or south should not put people off Senegal’s charms. Not only is its culture thriving and quite unlike anywhere else in Africa, some interesting small hotels are opening up. The Collines de Niassam was built by a French couple eight years ago. Its electricity comes from solar panels and almost all its food is grown in the hotel garden or supplied locally. We soon discovered the food is exceptional - local fish known as capitaine cooked with bissap (hibiscus flower) was my favourite - prepared by a laughing storm of a woman who, if asked nicely, would divulge her culinary secrets. But the choice of where to sleep posed a problem. In one of the round houses on stilts perched above the shallow, lapping waters of the delta? Or high up in the branches of these magical baobab trees? When I saw that the treehouse bathroom was encased in a wooden cabin around the trunk of the tree - you take a shower snuggled up against the baobab - my mind was made up. The stairs leading

to the bedroom wind up its trunk, past the secondfloor “living room” - a hammock and breakfast table mid-way up the branches - and to the room cradled at the top of the branches, with a four-poster bed. We soon settled into a chilled out lifestyle for a few days. It is easy to do nothing - the silence that hangs over the delta can pleasantly stupefy a visitor after the hectic pace of Dakar - but there is a range of things to do in the area. We were invited to watch a traditional wrestling match in a nearby village, where the whole community gathers and, with drums and song, cheers on the young men, and offered the more indulgent option of a flight in a microlight plane above the salt planes to see the salt wells sitting like coloured inkpots across the land. But we opted for kayaking in the mangrove lagoons with a local guide, Pierre. We paddled through the clear narrow waterways before arriving at an island with pristine white sand. We pulled our kayaks ashore and Pierre picked oysters from the mangrove roots for us to roast on a fire and eat, admiring the setting sun. A monkey cackled at us from the high branches of a baobab tree. For the wild west, things seemed very easy and gentle from where I was sitting. —Guardian

Books FRIDAY, JULY 1, 2011

Thoughts Without Cigarettes By Oscar Hijuelos


he beloved Pulitzer Prize-winning novelist turns his pen to the real people and places that have influenced his life and, in turn, his literature. Growing up in 1950’s working-class New York City to Cuban immigrants, Hijuelos journey to literary acclaim is the evolution of an unlikely writer. Oscar Hijuelos has enchanted readers with vibrant characters who hunger for success, love, and self-acceptance. In his first work of nonfiction, Hijuelos writes from the heart about the people and places that inspired his international bestselling novels. Born in Manhattan’s Morningside Heights to Cuban immigrants in 1951, Hijuelos introduces readers to the colorful circumstances of his upbringing. The son of a Cuban hotel worker and exuberant poetry-writing mother, his story, played out against the backdrop of an often prejudiced working-class neighborhood, takes on an even richer dimension when his relationship to his family and culture changes forever. During a sojourn in

pre-Castro Cuba with his mother, he catches a disease that sends him into a Dickensian home for terminally ill children. The yearlong stay estranges him from the very language and people he had so loved. With a cast of characters whose stories are both funny and tragic, Thoughts Without Cigarettes follows Hijuelos’s subsequent quest for his true identity into adulthood, through college and beyond-a mystery whose resolution he eventually discovers hidden away in the trappings of his fiction, and which finds its most glorious expression in his best-known book, The Mambo Kings Play Songs of Love. Illuminating the most dazzling scenes from his novels, Thoughts Without Cigarettes reveals the true stories and indelible memories that shaped a literary genius.

Nothing Daunted: The Unexpected Education of Two Society Girls in the West By Dorothy Wickenden


n the summer of 1916, Dorothy Woodruff and Rosamond Underwood, close friends from childhood and graduates of Smith College, left home in Auburn, New York, for the wilds of northwestern Colorado. Bored by their society luncheons, charity work, and the effete young men who courted them, they learned that two teaching jobs were available in a remote mountaintop schoolhouse and applied-shocking their families and friends. “No young lady in our town,” Dorothy later commented, “had ever been hired by anybody.” They took the new railroad over the Continental Divide and made their way by spring wagon to the tiny settlement of Elkhead, where they lived with a family of homesteaders. They rode several miles to school each day on horseback, sometimes in blinding blizzards. Their students walked or skied on barrel staves, in tattered clothes and shoes tied together with string. The man who had lured them out west was Ferry Carpenter, a witty, idealistic, and occasionally outrageous young lawyer and cattle rancher. He had promised them the adventure of a lifetime and the most modern schoolhouse in Routt County; he hadn’t let on that the teachers would be considered dazzling prospective brides for the locals. That year transformed the children, their families, and the undaunted teachers themselves. Dorothy and Rosamond learned how to handle unruly children who had never heard the Pledge of Allegiance and thought Ferry Carpenter was the president of the United States; they adeptly deflected the amorous advances of hopeful cowboys; and they saw one of their closest friends violently kidnapped by two coal miners. Carpenter’s marital scheme turned out to be

more successful than even he had hoped and had a surprising twist some forty years later. In their buoyant letters home, the two women captured the voices and stories of the pioneer women, the children, and the other memorable people they got to know. Nearly a hundred years later, New Yorker executive editor Dorothy Wickenden-the granddaughter of Dorothy Woodruff-found the letters and began to reconstruct the women’s journey. Enhancing the story with interviews with descendants, research about these vanished communities, and trips to the region, Wickenden creates an exhilarating saga about two intrepid young women and the “settling up” of the West.

Not Afraid of Life: My Journey So Far By Bristol Palin , Nancy French


ristol Palin lived the life of an averagez American teen. She loved being outdoors, spending time with family and friends, and focusing on schoolwork and sports. But when her mother became the Republican vice presidential candidate in 2008, Bristol’s world would change forever. She was instantly propelled into the national spotlight, becoming the focus of intense public and national media scrutiny at the age of seventeen. In the pages of this personal memoir, Bristol opens up for the first time ever, taking readers behind the scenes of her life, from growing up in Alaska to coming of age amid the media and political frenzy surrounding her mother’s political rise; from becoming a single mother while still a teenager to coping as her relationship with the baby’s father crumbled publicly-not once, but twice. Through all of these ups and downs, Bristol learned how to face her challenges head-on with courage and grace, traits she put to good use as a contestant and finalist on Dancing with the Stars. In Not Afraid of Life, Bristol speaks candidly of her aspirations and of the deep religious faith that gives her strength and inspiration. Plainspoken

and disarmingly down-to-earth, Bristol offers new insight and understanding of who she is and what she values most.

Books FRIDAY, JULY 1, 2011

This Life Is in Your Hands: One Dream, Sixty Acres, and a Family Undone By Melissa Coleman


et on a rugged coastal homestead during the 1970s, This Life Is in Your Hands introduces a superb young writer driven by the need to uncover the truth of a childhood tragedy and connect anew with the beauty and vitality of the back-to-the-land ideal that shaped her early years. In the fall of 1968, Melissa Coleman’s parents, Eliot and Sue-a handsome, idealistic young couple from well-to-do families-pack a few essentials into their VW truck and abandon the complications of modern reality to carve a farm from the woods. They move to a remote peninsula on the coast of Maine and become disciples of Helen and Scott Nearing, authors of the homesteading bible Living the Good Life. On sixty acres of sandy, intractable land, Eliot and Sue begin to forge a new existence, subsisting on the crops they grow and building a home with their own hands. While they establish a happy family and achieve their visionary goals, the pursuit of a purer, simpler life comes at a price. Winters are long and lean, summers frenetic with the work of the harvest, and the distraction of the many young farm apprentices threatens the Colemans’ marriage. Then, one summer day when Melissa is seven, her three-

year-old sister, Heidi, wanders off and drowns in the pond where she liked to play. In the wake of the accident, ideals give way to human frailty, divorce, and a mother’s breakdown-and ultimately young Melissa is abandoned to the care of neighbors. What really happened, and who, if anyone, is to blame? This Life Is in Your Hands is the search to understand a complicated past; a true story, both tragic and redemptive, it tells of the quest to make a good life, the role of fate, and the power of forgiveness.

“There Are Things I Want You to Know” About Stieg Larsson and Me By Eva Gabrielsson


n this candid, moving work, Gabrielsson chronicles her life’s journey with her longtime companion, Stieg Larsson, the Swedish creator of the Millennium trilogy who died suddenly at age 50, in 2004, before the first volume of his phenomenally successful work (The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo, in English) was even published. Gabrielsson tells that she had little legal recourse in Sweden to claim his literary and intellectual property even though the childless couple had lived together in Stockholm for 30 years and shared passions for science fiction and political activism; they edited and published their joint antifascist, antiracist newsletter, Expo, begun in the mid-1990s, to combat a wave of extreme right-wing militancy in Sweden. The rights to Larsson’s literary trilogy fell posthumously to his father and brother, who shut Gabrielsson out. Gabrielsson writes about their similarities: both came from simple farm people, abandoned as children by their parents to be raised largely by grandparents; they met at a student anti Vietnam War meeting in 1972 and together moved through leftist movements to find meaningful work, Larsson at the Swedish news agency TT,

and Gabrielsson as an architect. Much of their political engagement and feminism is reflected in the Millennium books, the writing of which developed much later in Larsson’s career-as Gabrielsson, evidently the person who understood him as few did, warmly, lovingly depicts in this spirited defense of their relationship.

Bonhoeffer: Pastor, Martyr, Prophet, Spy By Eric Metaxas


rom the New York Times bestselling author of Amazing Grace, a groundbreaking biography of Dietrich Bonhoeffer, one of the greatest heroes of the twentieth century, the man who stood up to Hitler. A definitive, deeply moving narrative, Bonhoeffer is a story of moral courage in the face of the monstrous evil that was Nazism. After discovering the fire of true faith in a Harlem church, Bonhoeffer returned to Germany and became one of the first to speak out against Hitler. As a double-agent, he joined the plot to assassinate the Fuhrer, and was hanged in Flossenberg concentration camp at age 39. Since his death, Bonhoeffer has grown to be one of the most fascinating, complex figures of the 20th century. Bonhoeffer presents a profoundly orthodox Christian theologian whose faith led him to boldly confront the greatest evil of the 20th century, and uncovers never-before-revealed facts, including the story of his passionate romance.


ou may be able to find these books in the following bookstores. If not, you can ask for a special order and your books will be delivered within weeks.

Jarir Bookstore Location: Hawally Park, Tunis Street Telephone: 22610111 Virgin Bookstore Location: Marina Mall, Salmiya Al-Muthana Kuwait Bookstore Location: Al-Muthanna Complex, Fahed Al-Salem Street Tel: 22424266 Better Books - Second Hand Books Location: Salmiya, Block 10, Amman Street. Behind Al-Rashid Hospital Tel: 66637351

Beauty FRIDAY, JUNE 1, 2011

3 Easy Summer Hairdos L

ooking like a movie star, a singer, or a photo model is not impossible. When it comes to hair, anyway! These 3 hairstyles will help you look your best for any occasion or event this summer. Here are all the tips for you to follow to accomplish them.

• • • •

1-Half-Up Bouffant HOW TO DO IT Apply a light leave-in conditioner and volumizer spray to hair before drying it. Set the top of your head with a large iron and use a medium sized one for the sides. Back comb the curls with a mixed bristle brush for “fluffy” volume, says Gwen Stefani’s stylist Danilo. Mist strands with a light hold spray and clip hair half-up.

HOW TO DO IT • Start with a curling iron to create loose waves — they hold together better than straight strands. • Then rake shine serum through the ends. • Make a side part and gather hair to one side, just below the chin. • Loosely braid and secure with a clear elastic. • To rough it up, hold the braid taut and give it a few good shakes. (

Side Braid HOW TO DO IT • Start with a curling iron to create loose waves — they hold together better than straight strands. • Then rake shine serum through the ends. • Make a side part and gather hair to one side, just below the chin. • Loosely braid and secure with a clear elastic. • To rough it up, hold the braid taut and give it a few good shakes. Twisted Updo

Yellow nail polish: New summer trend


righten your summer outfits with yellow nails. If you’re wondering what nail polish color to paint your nails with this summer, wonder no more. Yellow is the color of this summer! If you’re unsure of this trend, and know that you won’t be wearing yellow all summer long, but still want to try the trend out, buy a cheaper nail polish and give it a go! I resisted Chanel’s popular yellow Mimosa [I bought the pink one called Morning Rose instead] and opted for a $5 nail polish from Maybelline [No. 100 - Urban Lemon] and I absolutely love it! Here’s what my nails looked like wearing Maybelline’s cheap Urban Lemon! ( )

5 fashionable flats for summer


ummer is shortly arriving and before you know it we’ll all be rushing to get a spot at the beach. But wait.. you check your closet and it’s filled with boots, heels, wedges, old flip flops and tattered flats from a couple years back. Oh my gosh, crisis on hand, what should you do now?! No need to panic! In the picture below are some cute, chic and in style sandals that you can purchase for a very reasonable price! What I definitely love about sandals this summer are the many different assortment of styles, fun colors, patterns and materials! There are many different sandals to

choose from, so there is a style for everyone. There are lace ups, buckles, canvas and bows, beaded and t straps, and they all come in an array of colors! So many choices to choose from - which sandals are you? (

Beauty FRIDAY, JUNE 1, 2011

How to conceal

wrinkles on your face


s we age and we lose fat in our cheeks, our skin naturally begins to sag. We also develop smile lines around the eyes (most women I know love theirs). And while I love the old adage that wrinkles are a sign of a good life, I also know that many of you would love some beauty tips on how to conceal them. Remember: Less is more Many women with wrinkles make the mistake of trying to cover them with heavy foundations and powders. But less is actually more when it comes to downplaying your facial flaws. A face full of heavy foundation only highlights wrinkles. Instead of heavy foundation, try a tinted moisturizer. Tinted moisturizers provide lighter coverage and won’t settle into your wrinkles and won’t cling to the hairs that appear on some women’s faces after menopause. Use foundation or tinted moisturizer only on the parts of your face that need covering up. Also, no matter how pale you are, go a shade or two darker with foundation. Lighter shades only highlight wrinkles. I recommend a great tinted moisturizer in my Top 10 Foundation Picks. Here are my best resources for foundation application: • How to Pick the Right Foundation. • My 20 Best Makeup Tips for the Face. Highlight your eyes If you go out in little or no makeup, the focal point on your face will be your wrinkles. However, if you play up your eyes, the focal point moves from your face and all of its wrinkles to your amazing blue, brown, hazel or green eyes. If you don’t already know how to apply your eye makeup properly so that your eyes “pop,” I have a host of articles that will show you how. I also advise women who are new to makeup

application to go to their local department stores or to Sephora and ask for a makeup consultation. Remember that it’s polite to buy a couple makeup products if you don’t pay for the services. Part of making your eyes pop is to ensure your brows are groomed and filled in.

Reconsider your commitment to being super skinny You’ve heard the old quote attributed to Catherine Deneuve, “When you get older, you have to be ready to trade your ass for your face.” Well, it’s true. If you want to get rid of wrinkles, consider gaining a bit of weight.

Adopt a great skincare routine More important than any makeup routine is a good skincare routine. You want to get your skin in tip-top condition and once you do so, you’ll find the less makeup you need. Aside from cleansing and moisturizing your face every night, you should also exfoliate skin weekly with a facial scrub (see my list of the best scrubs here). You may also consider restoring what your skin has lost via antioxidants such as Vitamin C creams or vitamin serums. Dermatologists I’ve spoken to swear by Vitamin A products (think Retin-A or Renova) for improving the signs of fine lines and wrinkles. I’ve been told by more than one that Vitamin A products are the only lotions and potions that really can turn back time. Read more about Vitamin A here. If you want to fix deep lines and wrinkles, the only methods that are proven to work are lasers (lip lines, broken capillaries), Botox (for crow’s feet, frown lines and neck jowls) and collagen fillers (for smile lines and loss of fat in the cheeks).

Don’t Want to Pay for Botox (or Put Yourself at Risk)? Try Frownies Instead I have not personally tried Frownies Facial Pads, but I’ve read great things about these adhesive pads that you apply to the spots where you would get Botox. They are supposed to keep your facial muscles from contracting and your frown lines and wrinkles from becoming deeper.

Watch that powder habit When you were younger, you likely had oilier skin and got used to powdering your entire face. But dewy skin is actually a sign of youth. Instead of applying powder all over, consider just using it on your nose and chin, or better yet, put it away for good. Makeup artists tell me they NEVER use powder on women over 50 unless they’re going to be taped, because powder sits atop wrinkles highlighting them.

Just Say “No” to heavy eyeliners Just as heavy foundations can give you “cake face,” heavy eye makeup can also age you. Instead of applying heavy eyeliner to upper lids and the inside of the eye, consider a soft line on the upper lids and just under the lower lids. Get yourself some bangs In her book, “How Not to Look Old,” author Charla Krupp advises women to get bangs to cover up a wrinkled forehead or to bring attention to your eyes (remember, we want our eyes to be the focal point).-About

Health FRIDAY, JULY 1, 2011

workout for your age


s you get older, the weights you use may get lighter and, sometimes, exercises may have to be done slightly differently. Below is an overall workout for all ages. The only changes that will happen are that as you get older, the weights you use may get lighter and, sometimes, exercises may have to be done slightly differently, ie you may have to do the shoulder press seated for more lower back stabilisation.

down again to repeat. Alternate with jogging on the spot for 45 seconds.

Lower body Reverse lunge pulse (x15 each leg) Stand up straight with feet together and arms at your side. Step back with the left foot and lower your body, with your left knee pointing downwards towards the floor. Make sure your right knee is in line with your right ankle and your left thigh is at 90 degrees to the floor. Keep legs in this position while you rise and lower. Change legs and repeat with the right leg. Alternate with jogging on the spot for 45 seconds.

Upper body (with weights) Incline push-ups (x20) As with normal push-ups, but with the hands at an elevated level with feet on the ground and pelvis tilted forward, bend elbows till your chest is just above the surface you’re leaning on and then straighten elbow; repeat. Alternate with skipping for 45 seconds.

Frog jumps (x15) Go all the way down on your haunches with back straight and hands touching the ground then, with a sudden movement, jump up and reach for the sky, then back

Dead lifts (x15) Stand with feet hip-width apart and bend knees slightly. Hold weights in front of you at your knees’ height and, with a straight back, bend forwards lowering the weights to your ankles. Raise up slowly and repeat 15 times.

Bicep curls (x20) Stand with feet hip-width apart and slightly bent. Hold weights in your hands and bring them slowly up to your chest with your palms facing upwards, then slowly down again. Repeat 20 times. Tricep kickbacks Stand with feet hip-width apart, lean slightly forward but keep your back

straight and tummy tucked in. Rest your left hand on your left thigh and bend your right arm. Keep your elbow lifted and your arm in line with your abdomen or slightly higher. Straighten arm out behind you, lifting your right arm into the air. Do 20 reps then repeat with the left arm. Alternate with skipping for 45 seconds. Abdominals Sit-ups on the ball Sit on a Pilates ball, roll slightly forward so that the small of your back is supported by the ball and do 20 sit-ups. Alternate with twists for 45 seconds. Bridge Lie face down on the floor. Rest on forearms which are bent at a 90-degree angle on the floor; make sure your elbows are directly underneath your shoulders. Tuck your toes under and lift your body up so you are in a straight line from your head to your feet. Keep tummy pulled in and hold for 45 seconds. Chest Push-ups and incline push-ups are a great way for shaping and sculpting the chest. Incline push-up: A bench or raised area is needed for this exercise. With your hands

on the raised area, carry on with the usual push-up movement. Shoulders Shoulder press standing or seated Always make sure your core is tight to prevent your back from arching. Holding the weights in each hand, starting from either side of your head, lift arms till straight then bring them back to starting position. Triceps dips Stand in front of a step (a low table or the bath will work). Face away from the step and take one step forward, place hands on the edge of the step, fingers facing towards you. Bend your knees and arms so you’re almost in a sitting position. Bend your elbows to raise and lower your body, but keep elbows tucked in for a more intense workout. Repeat 15 times and do three sets. (

Health FRIDAY, JULY 1, 2011

Exercising on vacation G

etting away from reality is good for the soul, and getting away from the usual workout routine is good for the body. However, a vacation can be the perfect time to exercise. By freeing yourself from your routine, you open your mind to new ways to move your body, have fun and keep your body fit while you’re on vacation.

How to stay in shape when you travel

Cardio If you want to maintain your cardio endurance while having fun, there are a variety of vacation that will give you a great workout without feeling like exercise. Some of the best workouts include:

● ●

Walking on the beach: Walking in soft sand is a killer workout and burns more calories than walking on flat ground. Some experts suggest that you can burn twice as many calories walking in soft sand. Keep it safe by wearing shoes (you may get shinsplints if you go barefoot for too long) and going for a few minutes at a time to get used to it. You’ll be surprised how hard it is. Beach volleyball: You can burn more than 150 calories an hour, depending on how hard you work and it’s a great way to meet other people at the beach while having fun. Surfing, swimming and snorkeling: Surfing is a total body workout that

will challenge every muscle in your body. Even if you just paddle out to the waves and fall off (like I do), you’ll get a great workout. Snorkeling is a bit more leisurely, but you can add intensity by swimming a little harder. If you’re at a beach that doesn’t have big waves, put on your snorkel gear and swim out and back for a few laps to get your blood moving. Leisurely bike rides: Long bike rides are a great way to see the area while getting in some low-intensity exercise. If you take your time and go all day, you’ll burn calories without even thinking about it. Hiking: Anytime you add elevation to your walks, you’ll burn more calories. If you carry a backpack, you’ll challenge yourself even more, all while enjoying a little nature. Check with your hotel concierge to see about hiking adventures nearby or visit Local Hikes to find trails near major metropolitan areas. Golf: Golf can be a dud of a workout if you ride around in a cart and drink beer at every hole. If you want to burn more calories, though, carry your clubs and walk the course. You’ll burn around 200-300 calories per hour, even more if you hit every ball into a bunker and add 19 strokes to each hole, like I do. Tennis: Like golf, a game of tennis can be as easy or hard as you want it

to be. Chasing the ball and hitting it like you’re Serena Williams or Roger Federer will give you a great workout, burning up to 400 calories for a 150-lb person. Shopping: Okay, maybe shopping isn’t the highest intensity activity, but it can be very aerobic under the right circumstances. If shopping is your activity of choice, make it count by walking fast, taking the stairs and avoiding fatty foods at the food court.

Lifting Weights Finding fun cardio activities is easy when you’re on vacation. Lifting weights, however, presents more of a challenge. You usually don’t have much equipment and the thought of going to the hotel fitness room isn’t that appealing when you’re trying to have fun. You don’t have to do much, however, to maintain your strength and muscle while you’re out of town. A quick workout with body weight exercises, resistance bands or full water bottles will keep you strong and fit until you get back home to your usual routine. — About

Arts FRIDAY, JULY 1, 2011


oThe Life Mounds are the first thing you see as you drive through the gates of Jupiter Artland, a sculpture park in the grounds of Bonnington House, outside Edinburgh. Newly completed, these eight man-made hills have been shaped by the distinguished US critic, polemicist and designer Charles Jencks. Beautiful things, they rise in stepped ramps sheathed in emerald green turf, clustered around swirling ponds. Last week, I climbed and sat on top of the tallest of these escarpments, as swallows performed aerobatics over the insectrich waters. The Life Mounds called to mind the landscapes of ancient standing stones and barrows, of south-east Asian rice terraces, of patterns seen through a microscope; there was something of the spiralling forms of far-flung galaxies. All of these things (perhaps not the rice terraces) are acknowledged influences. Over the decades - he is a notably young 70 - Jencks has written a number of spirited books on modern architecture. It was his Modern Movements in Architecture, published in 1973, which helped me see that what had passed for a monolithic, single-minded Modern Movement had been no such thing. It was Jencks who identified the shift away from the certainties of modernism into the vagaries and rich (and sometimes indigestible) experiences of postmodernism: The Language of Postmodern Architecture, written 30 years ago by Jencks, remains a bestseller. And it is Jencks who, I can’t help feeling, has begun to tire of the intellectual thinness of much contemporary “iconic” architecture, and to look for something beyond its ephemeral nature.

His swirling ‘land sculptures’ are inspired by molecular biology and outer space. Architect Charles Jencks tells Jonathan Glancey about his most ambitious project yet “Have I turned away from architecture? No, it’s not that,” he says when we meet at Portrack House, his home near Dumfries. “But I do believe architecture, and all art, should be content-driven. It should have something to say beyond the sensational. But, yes, the lack of culture in so much new architecture is worrying.” Jencks wants to shape works that make us stop and think about our place, not just in the here and now, but in the cosmos. “It’s something people have done even before they built Stonehenge, so why not now?” The biggest woman in the world Over the past decade and beyond, Jencks has fused a hungry interest in cosmology with his love and encyclopaedic knowledge of architecture and landscape art. This vision is explained in a new and engaging book, The Universe in the Landscape. “Not everyone will get it,” he writes, with touching honesty. The Life Mounds at Bonnington are informed by

Totally cosmic

The Life Mounds of Charles Jencks

cosmic patterns, as well as the molecular structure of cells at the point where, for good or carcinogenic ill, they divide. This stunning landform turns out to be a meditation on life and death. “I’ve been a lucky man,” Jencks says. “I’ve only faced one real tragedy: the death of my wife, Maggie, from cancer in 1995.” Maggie Jencks was an innovative garden designer; together, throughout the 80s and 90s, the couple created their Garden of Cosmic Speculation in the grounds of Portrack House. Maggie’s Centres, a number of cancer care clinics designed by world-famous architects (Frank Gehry, Zaha Hadid, Richard Rogers) were her idea, and is a scheme that has continued in her honour. Jencks is now working on an enormous project just north of Newcastle. He has been commissioned by a UK coal-mining

Charles Jencks’s Life Mounds company to create a land form that will soften and enhance an otherwise challenging landscape. “Northumberlandia” (the name is his, intended to suggest a land goddess) is currently under construction, and due for completion in 2013. A giant effigy, in clay and soil, of a recumbent naked woman rising 34 metres (her breasts) and measuring 400 metres from head to toe, she will, Jencks says, be “the world’s largest human form sculpted into the landscape”. Such figurative interpretations of earth goddesses could be seen as kitsch. But Jencks argues that she will fold, if not quite blur, into the landscape. Still, compared with the layers of cosmological meaning embedded into Portrack and Bonnington, this is clearly a populist work, one its patrons hope will become a major tourist attraction.

A commission from CERN The Gretna Landmark Project should be one, too. Details have yet to be unveiled, but this ambitious work will mark one of the key border crossings between Scotland and England. Developed by Jencks and the artist Andy Goldsworthy, the final design will also involve the disparate talents of designer and engineer Cecil Balmond, California artist Ned Kahn and British architect Chris Wilkinson. Expect the unexpected, and certainly the bold and eye-catching.Meanwhile, Jencks and his 30-year-old daughter, Lily, an architect and landscape designer, have been working on a design for CERN (the European Organisation for Nuclear Research) near Geneva. Their brief is to give this hidden wonder of the modern world (its workings are mostly underground) a physical presence. “There is no question,” says Jencks, “that this Vatican of Science, with the visage of Heathrow Airport, desperately needs urban definition.” As far as I can make out, the end result will be a pair of giant interlocking question marks made of grassed earth closing around, and interrogating The Globe - a hollow timber sphere originally designed for the 2002 Swiss Expo by architect HervÈ Dessimoz. In Jencks’s view, cosmic passion, or the desire to know and relate to the universe, is one of the strongest drives in sentient creatures. The power of neolithic henges and bronze-age barrows, of the Uffington White Horse and some of the greatest buildings of all time - the spiral minaret at Samarra in Iraq, the Pantheon in Rome - lies in their elemental qualities. Their meanings are not explicit, yet they send shivers of recognition down the spine. The Life Mounds at Bonnington, to my mind Jencks’s best landform work to date, have that effect on me. —Guardian


Epstein’s Rock Drill reveals the emptiness of vorticism

FRIDAY, JULY 1, 2011


acob Epstein’s The Rock Drill appears twice in the new exhibition The Vorticists at London’s Tate Britain. The first time it’s a Faustian dream of technological power and transformation, the second it’s a maimed machine, the tragic embodiment of mechanised warfare. The same work of art in its two versions expresses both the exhilaration of the modern world, and its potential for devastation. The first and “optimistic” Rock Drill, or rather a reconstruction of it, greets you when you enter the show: a plaster body, shaped like a robotic being with a long mask-like head, towers on a metal tripod. Epstein, in 1913, imagined a cyborg figure whose hi-tech exoskeleton anticipates and has influenced legions of science fiction droid armies. It is fascinating: but the second version of The Rock Drill is Epstein’s masterpiece. During the first world war, as the reality of trench

Jacob Epstein’s moving sculpture shows that in glorifying a cold technological future, vorticism sacrificed vitality and feeling

warfare as industrialised slaughter became clear to a world that at first welcomed the conflict, Epstein cast the torso of his eerie creation in metal. Robbed of its legs and towering tripod-drill, with damaged bronze limbs, The Rock Drill becomes a nightmare image of the future as remorseless, unending war. It is more moving than the original, because it is a wounded machine, a human machine. Epstein’s The Rock Drill is one of the truly great works of art of the 20th century. Yet its greatness shows up the rest of the movement. Vorticism began in 1914 as a British answer to the modernist revolution on the continent. This would be a better exhibition if it set that context clearly. It really needs to show Marcel Duchamp’s Nude Descending a Staircase, for example, to get across the ambition of Wyndham Lewis and his fellow vorticists to create a tough and radi-

cal British avant garde movement like the ones that were already raging in Europe. Unfortunately, only a few works here would seem equal to such comparisons with the great modernists. There is something dreadfully brittle about vorticism. No doubt its magazine Blast frightened Edwardian aesthetes, but let’s face it, they would have been horrified if the servant served a cucumber sandwich with the crust still on. But to me the drawings and paintings of Lewis quickly become sterile and repetitive to look at. By the third room of the exhibition I was seriously bored. Only the horror of the first world war give it a dark pulse of life. One of the most talented vorticists, the sculptor Henri Gaudier-Brzeska, died in the trenches. A letter published in their journal Blast describes and praises his life on the western front. The war, he says, is a tonic, not least because it rids

the world of so many proletarians. Huh? This, I think, is why the vorticists are boring - because they subscribed to an inhuman ideology of the modern as a cleansing of the world that deprived them of true vitality and feeling. As it happens, Gaudier-Brzeska is a tremendous artist. His gigantic stone head of Ezra Pound, like an Easter Island totem, is formidable. But his works lose, rather than gain, impact by being trapped here in the deadly amber of old art manifestos and photographs of forgotten exhibitions. In short, the best vorticists were great in spite of the movement’s glib quasi-fascist tone. Epstein in his Rock Drill sees furthest of them all into a cold technological future, dreams most openly of metallic power - and then sees the agony of such a new world in his second version of his great sculpture. Nothing became vorticism like its violent death. —Guardian



3 6 5

FRIDAY, JULY 1, 2011

To Yester

Word Sleuth Solution

Yesterday’s Solution

ACROSS 1. (Old Testament) The eldest son of Isaac who would have inherited the Covenant that God made with Abraham and that Abraham passed on to Isaac. 5. Tropical American tree producing cacao beans. 10. A light touch or stroke. 13. Swiss hotelier who created a chain of elegant hotels (1850-1918). 14. Either of two large African antelopes of the genus Taurotragus having short spirally twisted horns in both sexes. 15. A period marked by distinctive character or reckoned from a fixed point or event. 16. A coarse obnoxious person. 17. The right to take another's property if an obligation is not discharged. 19. Mildly acid red or yellow pulpy fruit eaten as a vegetable. 21. Bourbon with bitters and Pernod and sugar served with lemon peel. 22. A Bantu language spoken by the Kamba people in Kenya. 24. Offering fun and gaiety. 25. Brief episode in which the brain gets insufficient blood supply. 28. A river in north central Switzerland that runs northeast into the Rhine. 29. A room equipped with toilet facilities. 30. Of or relating to yoga. 34. A soft heavy toxic malleable metallic element. 37. A festival featuring African-American culture. 39. A public promotion of some product or service. 41. A soft silvery metallic element of the alkali earth group. 42. One of two flaps attached to a cap to keep the ears warm. 43. A flat-bottomed volcanic crater that was formed by an explosion. 45. Bulky grayish-brown eagle with a short wedge-shaped white tail. 46. Open-heart surgery in which the rib cage is opened and a section of a blood vessel is grafted from the aorta to the coronary artery to bypass the blocked section of the coronary artery and improve the blood supply to the heart. 49. Singing jazz. 52. A Russian river. 54. (Zoroastrianism) Title for benevolent deities. 56. Consisting of or made of wood of the oak tree. 60. Advanced in years. 61. A federal agency established to regulate the release of new foods and health-related products. 62. A can with a long nozzle to apply oil to machinery. 64. A boy or man. 65. Being one more than nine. 66. Apathy and inactivity in the practice of virtue (personified as one of the deadly sins). 67. An agency of the United Nations affiliated with the World Bank. DOWN 1. At a previous time. 2. A cylindrical tower used for storing silage. 3. (physics and chemistry) The smallest component of an element having the chemical properties of the element. 4. A member of a Turkic people of Uzbekistan and neighboring areas. 5. A cavity in the mesoderm of an embryo that gives rise in humans to the pleural cavity and pericardial cavity and peritoneal cavity. 6. American prizefighter who won the world heavyweight championship three times (born in 1942). 7. Conqueror of Gaul and master of Italy (100-44 BC). 8. A former copper coin of Pakistan. 9. A doctor's degree in optometry. 10. Corrupt morally or by intemperance or sensuality.

11. Of or relating to or involving an area. 12. An indehiscent fruit derived from a single ovary having one or many seeds within a fleshy wall or pericarp. 18. United States sculptor (born in 1924). 20. A hard gray lustrous metallic element that is highly corrosion-resistant. 23. A small cake leavened with yeast. 26. A member of the Siouan people formerly living in Iowa and Minnesota and Missouri. 27. Any culture medium that uses agar as the gelling agent. 31. An arm off of a larger body of water (often between rocky headlands). 32. A male monarch or emperor (especially of Russia prior to 1917). 33. Fallow deer. 35. The blood group whose red cells carry both the A and B antigens. 36. An official prosecutor for a judicial district. 38. Of or relating to apnea. 39. American prizefighter who won the world heavyweight championship three times (born in 1942). 40. A Chadic language spoken south of Lake Chad. 44. Title for a civil or military leader (especially in Turkey). 47. Causing fear or dread or terror. 48. A genus of Ploceidae. 50. (of a young animal) Abandoned by its mother and raised by hand. 51. A Kwa language spoken in Ghana and the Ivory Coast. 52. A state in northwestern North America. 53. A large bundle bound for storage or transport. 55. Large sweet juicy hybrid between tangerine and grapefruit having a thick wrinkled skin. 56. A silvery ductile metallic element found primarily in bauxite. 57. A long thin fluffy scarf of feathers or fur. 58. An honorary degree in science. 59. Of or relating to or characteristic of Thailand of its people. 63. A silvery soft waxy metallic element of the alkali metal group.

Yesterday’s Solution



e niv rsar n



FRIDAY, JULY 1, 2011

Time to speculate:

Princess Diana would be 50 P rincess Diana would have been 50 years old today, perhaps the only certainty about the course of what might have been in a life abruptly cut short in a 1997 car crash in Paris, with a new boyfriend, two months past her 36th birthday. Officially, there are no plans for marking the birth anniversary; Prince William, Diana’s elder son, will be in Canada today with his wife Catherine on their first big international tour as husband and wife. But the “what if?” questions abound as the world looks back on Diana’s life and legacy. Andrew Morton, the British journalist who was Diana’s confidant and collaborator on an explosive book about the marriage turmoil that led to a royal divorce, believes she

In this Wednesday, Jan 15, 1997 photo, Britain’s Princess Diana tours a minefield dressed in a flak jacket and face shield in Huambo, central Angola.

might now be living in the United States. “A lot more billionaires live in America than in Britain,” Morton said in an interview with The Associated Press in Los Angeles. “And she probably would have snagged a guy with all the toys; you know, the guy with the private jet, the boat and the house in the Hamptons. Maybe started a second family. She always wanted a baby girl, and that was an ambition that she held very dear.” The enduring fascination Diana commands in the United States was in evidence on the latest cover of Newsweek, which showed a computer-generated image of Diana at 50, strolling next to William’s bride. The image, which came under widespread criticism for being “creepy,” was for an article by Newsweek editor-in-chief Tina Brown titled “If She Were Here Now.” However irresistible that question is to some, Diana’s former secretary Patrick Jephson says the speculation is “entertaining perhaps, but hardly useful.” “The first Mrs. Wales might by now be solving conflicts, banishing poverty, feeding the world’s hungry or even breeding spaniels in happy rural obscurity. Alas, we will never know,” Jephson said in a commentary for The Daily Telegraph newspaper. “Instead we have an even greater enigma. Why is it that 14 years after her death she continues to figure so large in popular imagination?” It’s a power that can be measured in dollars — $800,000 in the case of a black dress in which Diana danced with John Travolta in 1985, sold at auction in Toronto earlier this month, or $34,000 for a letter to her nanny, auctioned in 2008. Popular fascination with the tragic princess remains a tempting market for some merchants, whose birthday wares include: • The Diana 50th birthday bear by Steiff from the Danbury Mint. “Her blonde mohair is gloriously soft to the touch, and those big eyes recall the young ‘Shy Di’ we remember so well.” • The 50th birthday portrait coin from the Westminster Collection. • The Royal Doulton 50th birthday Diana porcelain figurine. • The commemorative stamps from Grenada. • The Diana Queen of Hearts Earrings from Compton & Woodhouse.

Inevitably, there’s a Facebook page, where one post says “neither time nor reason, will change the way we feel.” A website,, offers some speculation about what a 50-year-old Diana would be doing. Contributors speculated that she might be living in New York, getting botoxed, happily married or happily divorced (again), undergoing therapy, working hard for charities. “She was a very down to earth kind of woman and I think she’d have embraced 50 with a certain amount of resolution. I think she’d have found it quite amusing that she’d gotten that far,” said Bruce Oldfield, one of the British designers who worked for Diana. One of his dresses for her sold for $163,000 in the auction. “I think she’d live in New York,” Oldfield said in an interview with The Associated Press. “New York is very classic, very conservative. She’d live in some fab apartment on the Upper East Side... She’d probably be very involved with the Metropolitan museum and charities. And she’d wear a lot of beige I think. I think she would wear sensible shoes and I think she would be chic. Chic isn’t dull and boring, nor is it old.” Diana died at a time of turmoil in her life. A discreet and lengthy romance with heart surgeon Hasnat Khan had recent-

In this Sept 6, 1995 photo, Britain’s Prince Charles, right, and his estranged wife Princess Diana, second left, flank their children, Harry, third right, and William, at Eton College, west of London.

In this Jan 14, 1997 photo, Britain’s Princess Diana talks to amputees at the the Neves Bendinha Orthopedic Workshop on the outskirts of Luanda, Angola. — AFP/AP photos ly ended because he had concluded that her fame made it impossible to have a normal life together. The romance with Dodi Fayed, who died with her, was less than two months old. Morton feels confident that Diana would still be a problem for her ex-husband, Prince Charles, and the royal family. “She always towered over Prince Charles, so anything she did reflected on Charles,” said Morton. — AP

In this Sept 6, 1997 photo, Britain’s Prince Charles, Prince Harry, Earl Charles Spencer, Prince William and Prince Philip, from left, stand as the coffin bearing the body of Princess Diana is taken into Westminster Abbey.

In this Aug 31, 1997 photo, police officers prepare to remove the Mercedes car in which Diana, Princess of Wales, and her companion Dodi Al Fayed were killed, in Paris.

Lifestyle FRIDAY, JULY 1, 2011


designs charity shoes

essica Alba uses sunscreen everyday to keep her skin glowing. The stunning actress - who is currently pregnant with her second child - says her beauty routine is very simple but it has always worked for her. She told “My mother always told me to wash my face every night, wear sunscreen during the day and drink plenty of water. It’s simple but I like to think that it works for me. “I like sunscreen that’s not too heavy so I use my daughter’s California Baby.” Another family trick Jessica swears by is to use her lipstick on her cheeks, saying: “Before there was cream blush, my grandmother would apply lipstick on her lips, cheeks and eyes. I still do that today.” Jessica has previously revealed her mother used to practice her makeup applying skills on her because she was training to be a beautician. Jessica said: “She was going to cosmetology school and she needed a model to practice on! It was for the swim team picture full on winged eyeliner, the works.” The 30-year-old beauty has also admitted she can put her look together in five minutes after learning to adjust her regime since becoming a mother three years ago. She said: “My beauty regime has changed so much since becoming a mother. “I’ve learnt to multitask and throw my look together in five minutes. I love make-up that I can apply with my finger tips, as it saves time.”

low- key painting

Alba’s simple beauty routine


tiful. I can’t wait to wear it!” The sale of the pumps with ankle strap and glittering detail - priced at $39.95 - will benefit the One Voice organization which helps disadvantaged families in Los Angeles. Carmen added: “It’s a terrific organization that I’m personally pumped to help with,” Electra said. “It’s not every day you get to design a sexy shoe - and raise money for a favorite charity.” The shoes will go on sale at on July 8.

Watson likes


armen Electra has designed a pair of shoes for her favorite charity. The former ‘Baywatch’ star follows in the footsteps of a long line of stars - including Kristin Cavallari, Kristin Chenoweth and Kristen Bell - who have collaborated with ShoeDazzle to create original footwear and Carmen says her royal blue satin peep-toes make her feel “sexy”. Carmen - who has called the shoes ‘Bombshell’ - said: “They say that clothes make the person, and a shoe like ‘Bombshell’ goes a long way toward making women feel sexy and beau-


mma Watson found it “completely different” to do her own make-up and choose her own clothes when she posed for a series of paintings. The ‘Harry Potter’ actress worked with artist Mark Demsteader on the new exhibition which will benefit the African charity CAMFED and Emma admitted being on such a low-key set where didn’t have a team of stylists and make-up professionals was a strange experience. She told “As it takes Mark several months to create the pieces, he finds it easier to work from photographs so I met him and a photographer for a day’s photo shoot in north London back in January. It was a really simple shoot with just a single light to cast shadows. We took lots of pictures in a variety of poses and Mark went away and selected 30 or so to turn into paintings. “Whilst I didn’t sit for Mark as such, it was a completely different photo shoot to anything I’ve ever done before. It was really low-key - I did my own makeup and just brought a selection of very simple dresses for the silhouette. Mark did the lighting.” Although Emma is thrilled with the results, she was initially hesitant about taking part. She explained: “I haven’t really bought any art yet, even though I love it. So I contacted Mark about buying a drawing as a present to myself for my 21st birthday. When I emailed him he asked if I would let him paint me, and that was how the exhibition came about. I was slightly hesitant at first, not because I didn’t want to work with Mark, but simply because I wasn’t sure if I was comfortable with an entire exhibition of pictures of me!”

Lifestyle FRIDAY, JULY 1, 2011

dad changed his attitude


not planning to marry


harlize Theron thinks marriage is a “divine right” but does not want to wed herself. The Oscar winning ‘Monster’ actress is pleased about a vote in New York which allows same sex couples to marry, she’s doesn’t believe the US government is doing enough, as it is still banned in most states. She said: “It’s a divine right and when government starts to tell us who can love and what is good love, I do have a problem with that. “I have a problem with the fact that our government hasn’t stepped up enough to make this federal, to make this legal.” South Africa born Charlize - who split with long term partner Stuart Townsend last year - enjoys being in a secure, long term relationship but personally sees no reason to have a marriage ceremony for herself. Speaking on TV show ‘Piers Morgan Tonight’, she added: “I really want for myself a long-term relationship. And I have been in long-term relationships. “That’s the kind of union that I want. The actual ceremony is not something that is important to me-but I see the importance for other people.”

Cruise asked


rad Pitt admits his attitude to his career changed when he became a father. The 48year-old actor - who raises six children, Maddox, nine, Pax, six, Zahara, five, Shiloh, five, and twoyear-old twins Knox and Vivienne with his long-term partner Angelina Jolie - says his attitude to his work was altered by his kids because he wants to make films they can be “proud” of. He said: “The biggest change for me was being a dad. That changes everything. “I’m aware of the impermanence, now that I’ve got a few (movies) left and I want to do stories where I can make a difference. I want them to be proud of their dad in the end.” The ‘Tree of Life’ star is acutely aware of the effect his and 36-yearold Angelina’s high-profile careers could have on their brood and as well as not telling their kids what they do for jobs he also doesn’t bring home any frustrations from work. In an interview with the Daily Telegraph newspaper, he said: “It’s so obvious for me that, when I come home, my kids are so aware of everything that’s going on. It’s quite important to me not to put my frustrations on them. I want them to be free, not encumbered with my junk.”

Jovi how to rock

Pitt says becoming a


om Cruise asked Jon Bon Jovi for advice on playing a rock star in ‘Rock of Ages’. The ‘Mission Impossible’ actor was nervous about portraying tattooed musician Stacee Jaxx in the movie version of the musical, so sought advice from the ‘Livin’ on a Prayer’ singer - one of the real life rockers his character is based on. Jon said: “He and I actually went out and he was very intense about ‘how do you do this?’ “I said, ‘Relax man, you’re Tom Cruise, you can learn how to sing a song, don’t worry about it!’ “Knowing Tom Cruise from afar, everything that he does, he does to 11.” Jon, 49, added he is “curious” to see the results - which will include Tom taking on his band’s hit ‘Wanted Dead or Alive’ - but isn’t worried the actor will be playing a part which will caricature his own onstage persona. He added to website Extra: “I’m pleased, I’m curious. I don’t think that he’s gonna be worried about duplicating my things it’ll be an amalgam of stuff. In the meantime, I think it’s pretty neat.”

Dogg wants to release his own dictionary


he 39-year-old rapper would love to release a ‘Doggtionary’, which would give definitions to the unusual words and phrases he uses in his everyday speech. Asked if he would release his own phrase book, he said: “Oh that’s dope. I like that. A Doggtionary, where I break down my words, give you a definition and put it in a sentence with a noun, an adverb and an adjective. You might have one there.” The rapper went on to explain the differences between a ‘G’ and a ‘hustla’ as referenced in his song ‘Gz and Hustlas’. He told Q magazine: “A ‘G’ is a gangster at all times and he takes what he wants. He doesn’t care, that’s just how it is and he’s more feared than respected. “A ‘hustla’ is one who’s going to get money by any means necessary.” Snoop is also famed for using the phrase “fo-shizzle”, which he says means “definite”. He explained: “To me, it just means ‘for sure’ or ‘a definite’. Is everything cool? Fo-shizzle. You feeling good today? Fo-shizzle.” — Bang Showbiz

Madonna plans to open


he ‘Celebration’ singer - who adopted five-year-old son David from the African country in 2006, followed by six-year-old daughter Mercy in 2009 - wants to redouble her efforts to aid orphaned children by opening a new centre as well as giving financial support to current ones. Speaking in new TV documentary ‘American Revolutionaries: The Hitmakers’, she said: “My short term goals are to build an orphan care cen-

tre that will service and reach at least 1,000 children and I’m also actively involved in funding several orphanages that already exist.” However, Madonna’s aspirations for the country were dealt a blow earlier this year after her plans to build a school for girls were “discontinued”. The 52-year-old star had pledged to build an academy following her adoption of David in 2006, but the $3.8 million she had put into the project through her charitable

foundation Raising Malawi failed to develop into an educational establishment. Madonna - who also has biological children Lourdes, 14, and 10-yearold Rocco - admitted she was “frustrated” at the development because of the lack of education in the country. She said in a statement: “There is a real education crisis in Malawi, 67 per cent of girls don’t go to secondary school. “Our team is going to work hard to address this in every way we can.”

Lifestyle FRIDAY, JULY 1, 2011

Rihanna show is flashy, yet not overproduced



arbados-born beauty Rihanna isn’t easy to forget. Without overly choreographed dance moves, her smoldering stare, powerful voice and swaggering strut are enough to captivate a packed house for nearly two hours. After Cee Lo Green suddenly backed out of the “Loud” tour due to a packed schedule, there were concerns over whether Rihanna and opener J.Cole could hold down the fort and keep ticket holders happy. Fans at the Staples Center on Tuesday hoping to rock out to an uncensored version of “Forget You” and “Bright Lights Bigger City” were undoubtedly disappointed with J Cole’s extremely short set, not because he isn’t talented, but because his style of music is a whole different machine. There are very few performers who could replace Green and his outrageously colorful stage presence, though B.o.B. (who will open on other select dates) would have likely been a more welcomed act. Opening with “Only Girl (In The World),” Rihanna set the tone for the rest of the show with plenty of bright neons and shiny costumes. Donning a short metallic blue coat and bright pink glow-in-the-dark heels, the singer stood out amongst her dancers (all clad in neon hues) with muted tones flashing on the large background screens. Quickly transitioning in “Disturbia,” Rihanna stripped off the coat and flaunted her assets in a jeweled bikini, alternating between strutting across each side of the stage and gliding along a moving conveyor belt. While the Los Angeles audience was filled with fans donning copy-cat red locks, one elderly man got more than he bargained for when Rihanna pulled him on stage during her performance of “Skin.” She proceeded to lay him down on a circular platform while gyrating up and down the top of his body before the platform descended underneath the stage. The crowd, obviously, went wild. Also flitting through the crowd were several young girls between the ages of five and ten. Clad in bright colors and sparkly dresses, many wore earplugs and were accompanied by their mothers. Following the show, they may need to have a conversation about why Rihanna, wearing a tuxedo, suggestively poked and prodded nearly-naked female dancers with a cane during a cover of Prince’s “Darling Nikki.” Then again, maybe not. Somewhat surprisingly, one highlight of the night came when the 23-year-old slowed things down for “Unfaithful” and “Hate That I Love You,” both of which had the audience chiming in full force. She continued the mid-show slow-down with “California King Bed,” in which she stood alone at center stage with just a mic stand and her expressive facial movements, captured and relayed on the jumbo screens. Rihanna didn’t stay confined to the stage, either. At one point, she walked through the audience to the middle of the floor where she took to a drum set and pounded away. Later, in a move reminiscent of Green, Rihanna made her encore with “Love the Way You Lie (Part II)” while perched atop a floating (and spinning) piano.—Reuters

File: Paris Hilton arrives at the NBC Universal VIP party during the Cable Show in Chicago. — AP

man who tried to break in to the home of hotel chain heiress Paris Hilton has been sentenced to two years in prison but could be freed as early as next year, according to judicial sources. Nathan Lee Parada, 32, tried to break into Hilton’s Los Angeles mansion last August, but she woke up and called the police, who detained him on the spot. He was sentenced on Wednesday. Hilton, a 30-year-old celebrity socialite, wrote about the incident on Twitter shortly after it happened. “So Scary, just got woken up to a guy trying to break into my house holding 2 big knifes. Cops are here arresting him,” she wrote. The judge recommended Parada seek counseling during his deten-


File: Michelle Yeoh walks together with Cambodian school children. — AP

ormer Bond girl Michelle Yeoh, who plays Myanmar pro-democracy leader Aung San Suu Kyi in an upcoming biopic, says she is “saddened” by her recent deportation from the country. The 48-year-old Malaysian actress arrived in the country’s main city, Yangon, on June 22 and was deported the same day because she was on a blacklist, a government official said Tuesday. In her first comment on the deportation, Yeoh said in a statement yesterday that she was “shocked and terribly saddened by the action.” She said she harbors no ill will and remains fond of Myanmar and its people. Yeoh said she was treated “cordially” by immigration officials in Yangon but wasn’t given a reason for her deportation. Myanmar’s repressive government has rejected visa requests from journalists and perceived critics for years. The star of films such as “Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon,” “Memoirs of a Geisha” and the James Bond movie “Tomorrow Never Dies” was making a

tion, but as he has already spent 10 months in jail he could be released in little more than a year. Hilton has had several of her own brushes with the law, and in September pleaded guilty to two misdemeanor charges for possessing cocaine and lying about it, but avoided jail in a legal deal with authorities. Last summer she was arrested in South Africa after the Brazil-Netherlands World Cup game on suspicion of marijuana possession, but the case was dropped. In 2007 Hilton spent 23 days of a 45day sentence in a Los Angeles county jail for a DUI (driving under the influence) charge.—AFP

“private trip as a tourist,” assistant Kit Wong told The Associated Press in an email. “I continue to cherish hopes to see this country continue its progress toward peace and democracy and to be able to return soon,” the Malaysian star said in her statement. Yeoh visited Myanmar in December to meet with Suu Kyi but her portrayal of the democracy icon in the Luc Besson picture “The Lady” was shot in Thailand. The movie is scheduled to be released later this year. Suu Kyi, 66, spent most of the last two decades detained by the former military junta. She was released last year, just days after elections that her party boycotted and in which she was barred from being a candidate. The elections were the nation’s first in 20 years, and in March, the junta handed power to a nominally civilian government. But critics say little has changed and the new government is merely a front for continued rule by the army, which took power in 1962. — AP


Singer Rihanna performs at the Staples Center on June 28, 2011 in Los Angeles, California. — AFP

aniel Barenboim, the Argentine-Israeli pianist and conductor, is to extend his contract as general music director of the Berlin’s renowned State Opera, city officials said yesterday. His current contract runs out in July of next year. City officials did not specify for how long Barenboim would renew his engagement, saying this would be made public at a signing ceremony on Wednesday. In 2000, Barenboim, now aged 68, was made a life member of the Berlin State Opera. A tireless campaigner for peace between Israel and the Palestinians, Barenboim conducted an orchestra of top European musicians at a special concert in Gaza in May. Barenboim received a British knighthood last week in a ceremony at the British embassy in Berlin for his work toward reconciliation in the Middle East through music. Despite being an honorary Knight Commander of the most excellent Order of the British Empire (KBE) he is not entitled to use a “Sir” title-a privilege reserved for Britons. — AFP

Israeli-Argentinean conductor Daniel Barenboim conducting the WestEastern Divan orchestra during a rehearsal in Sevilla. — AFP

Lifestyle FRIDAY, JULY 1, 2011

Spider-Man creator eyes Chinese comic fans Kevin Spacey appears as Richard III, in this image made available by the Old Vic Theatre in London yesterday. —AP

UK critics hail Spacey in ‘spine-tingling’ Richard III B

Comic book creator Stan Lee strikes the Spiderman pose after receiving a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame in Los Angeles. —AP


tan Lee wants to see the likes of Spider-Man and the X-Men weaving between skyscrapers in Shanghai and battling enemies on the Great Wall. The comic book legend has announced a joint venture with a Hong Kong investment company that aims to roll out a new superhero franchise targeted at Chinese and foreign audiences. Lee’s POW! Entertainment said in a statement issued on its website this week that the new company, Magic Storm Entertainment, will announce its first film project later this summer. “I have been eagerly awaiting this great opportunity-a chance to combine the best of American superhero epics with the best of Chinese and Asian classical filmmaking for a motion picture that would be excitedly received worldwide,” Lee said in the statement. It did not say if the creator or co-creator of Marvel Comics characters such as Spider-Man, the Incredible Hulk, X-Men, The Fantastic Four and Iron Man will come up with new characters for the new movie or write a new story for his flagship characters, many of which have already been adapted for the big screen. It also wasn’t clear if the film will be animation or feature real actors. Magic Storm Entertainment will be a partnership between Hong Kong investment company Ricco Capital Holdings and Panda Media Partners, a joint venture between POW! Entertainment and the media consulting company Fidelis Global Enterprises. Fidelis Managing Director Eric Mika, the former publisher of the trade publication The Hollywood Reporter, will serve as chief executive of Magic Storm, which will be based in Los Angeles. More than 2 million of Lee’s comic books have been published in 75 nations and in 25 languages, but they do not appear to have a big following in mainland China. But recent movie adaptations of Lee’s characters, like other American blockbusters, have done strong business in China, which is fast becoming one of Hollywood’s key markets despite a quota that effectively limits the country to 20 major foreign productions a year. —AP

ritish critics hailed Kevin Spacey yesterday for his performance in the title role of Shakespeare’s “Richard III” at London’s Old Vic theatre, where the Hollywood star is artistic director. The play unites Spacey with director Sam Mendes for the first time since the 1999 movie “American Beauty” which earned both men an Academy Award. The play, set in the 15th century and depicting the bloody journey the Duke of Gloucester takes to become King Richard III and his subsequent reign, was one of the most highly anticipated in the British theatre. Judging by early reviews, it did not disappoint. “Spacey doesn’t radically overthrow the (Laurence) Olivier concept of Richard the Satanic joker ...,” wrote Michael Billington in the Guardian news-

paper of Wednesday’s press night. “What he offers us is his own subtle variations on it: a Richard in whom instinctive comic brio is matched by a power-lust born of intense self-hatred.” Charles Spencer in the Daily Telegraph said the modern dress production of one of Shakespeare’s most famous plays was “superb, but missing greatness by a whisker”. ‘Of Spacey, he added: “He offers a brilliant display of bravura technique, but you never quite forget that you are watching a cunningly calculated performance.” James Woodall of The Arts Desk agreed with the overall consensus in a positive review, but added: “If there’s anything missing from his (Spacey’s) performance, it’s decadence, a whiff of sweaty corruption and moral disintegration-of the charnel house; but these are small lacks in a full evening.”

Spacey has spoken of the pressure he felt in taking on a role which has defined some of the great stage actors. “You don’t want to screw it up,” he told BBC Radio. “Is it demanding? Yes. The first two performances ... literally I felt I was running a triathlon inside of a tornado.” ‘Mendes said he was inspired by parallels between Richard III and contemporary political upheaval in North Africa. “We are living in an era in which figures such as Richard, i.e. (Libyan leader Muammar) Gaddafi, (former Egyptian President Hosni) Mubarak etc, are on the front page of every newspaper again,” he said. “What Shakespeare wrote about seems remarkably similar to what is happening in front of our eyes. It felt like the perfect time to do that.” Richard III at the Old Vic runs until Sept 11. — Reuters

The Harry Potter phenomenon

Harry Potter creator JK Rowling poses for photographers.

The movies: * The Harry Potter movies have so far amassed a worldwide box office tally of nearly $6.4 billion. * The first movie, Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone grossed the most of all the movies so far, with $974.7 million, the eighth biggest box-office takings of all time. * The sixth film in the Harry Potter series, “Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince,” opened in theatres in July 2009. * The sixth movie earned 19.8 million pounds ($32.46 million) at the British box office over its opening five days, setting a new record. It also generated $934 million at the global box office, making it the second-highest grossing film of 2009. * In the seventh film, Harry’s friends, Hermione Granger and Ron Weasley join the fight against the dark lord who now has control over the Ministry of Magic. But as Harry’s nemesis, Lord Voldemort’s powers grow, the bond among the three Hogwarts schoolmates becomes frayed, and Ron and Harry come to blows. * The final movie will be premiered on July 7, 2011 in Britain and it opens in theatres eight days later. The novels: * JK Rowling completed the manuscript of her first Harry Potter story, called “Harry Potter and the

Philosopher’s Stone,” in 1995, having written some of it in local cafes in Edinburgh, Scotland, where she was an unemployed mother living on benefits. * After being rejected by a series of publishers, Barry Cunningham, then of Bloomsbury publishers, signed up Rowling and the author and company never looked back. Rowling is known as the world’s first “billionaire author”. * She has sold 400 million copies of her Harry Potter series about the young wizard, his adventures at Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry and his battles with the evil Voldemort. * The seven books are called: “Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone” (published in 1997 and also as “Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone” in the United States in 1998), “Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets” (1998), “Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban” (1999), “Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire” (2000), “Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix” (2003), “Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince” (2005), “Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows” (2007). * Rowling told US television talk show host Oprah Winfrey in October 2010 that she cried uncontrollably when she finished the last of her best-selling Potter books, but did not rule out writing another one.—Reuters

Lifestyle FRIDAY, JULY 1, 2011

50 years after death, Hemingway lives on in Cuba


daiquiri at the Floridita, a mojito at the Bodeguita del Medio and an afternoon at Finca Vigia is the obligatory ritual for enthusiasts arriving in Cuba to honor the 50th anniversary of American writer Ernest Hemingway’s death. In Cuba, devotees can walk in the footsteps of the Nobel Prize-winning author at destinations dedicated to Hemingway’s life on the island.In Old Havana, the Hotel Ambos Mundos offers a tour of the room where Hemingway spent the first months of his 21 years in Cuba, between 1939 and 1960. In the center of the small room, a typewriter sits as a throne while a sheet of white paper rests in the carriage. The writer’s glasses and a drawing pencil wait on the table and a fisherman’s vest and bullfighters jacket hang in the dresser. Books and magazines rest on the bed. “In America, Hemingway is known through his books, through libraries and museums, but in Cuba there is an oral tradition about his life. He belongs to the Cuban scene. To understand him, you have to come to Havana,” said Jenny Phillips, the granddaughter of Hemingway’s editor. For this young woman, giving a conference at the Hotel Ambos Mundos for the 50th anniversary of Hemingway’s death, the suicide of the writer on July 2, 1961 at his home in Ketchum, Idaho left no doubt he was preoccupied with death and, in a way, fated to commit suicide after he fell ill.”I’m from the town where Hemingway was born (Oak Park, near Chicago). It’s very emotional to be here, in Havana, where he spent so many of these important years in his life,” Nancy Sindecar, an expert on Hemingway, told AFP after the inevitable mojito at the Bodeguita del Medio. In this small bar near the cathedral of Havana, Reinaldo Lima, also known as “Rey” (king), pours all his 26 years of experience into Cuba’s classic cocktail: lime, mint, sugar, sparkling water and, of course, rum. “The best in all of Cuba,” said Rey, placing down the drink without skipping a beat.” Hemingway spent every day with a mojito. It’s a symbol of friendship between our two people,” added the bartender. To the side of the bar is a painting that depicts the author clinking glasses with Cuban poet Nicolas Guillen, in front of flags from the United States and Cuba, who broke diplomatic ties in 1961. A little further into Old Havana, the Floridita honors the writer with a statue of Hemingway leaning on the bar where a daiquiri special is dedicated to him: no sugar, but double the rum. ”My daiquiri at the Floridita, my mojito at the Bodeguita,” wrote Hemingway who lived some 30 kilometers (18 miles) from the bars in his home, Finca Vigia, a colonial structure in the tropical jungle west of Havana. Offered to Cuba by his widow Mary Welsh, today the home is a small Hemingway museum where furniture, books, hunting trophies, clothing and his fishing boat, El Pilar, are all available for viewing. Not far from Finca, the Barlovento Marina served as a frequent point of departure for the novelist’s many fishing expeditions. It was here, in May of 1960, where Hemingway met a young Fidel Castro, who had just come to power in Cuba. Renamed Hemingway Marina, the port is now a base for big game fishing competitions. Hemingway also lives on at Cojimar, a small fishing port on the other side of Havana where Gregorio Fuentes, Hemingway’s inspiration for “The Old Man and the Sea,” lived. The novel earned Hemingway a Pulitzer Prize in 1953 and was cited when he won the Nobel Prize in Literature in 1954.Ill and under pressure from the American authorities, who looked poorly on his stay in Cuba, Hemingway left the island on July 25 1960, less than a year before he blew his brains out with a shotguna fact many here still find hard to digest. ”He is not dead,” insisted Ada Rosa Alfonso, the director of Finca. “In Cuba, he is always alive. Hemingway is immortal.”—AFP

Cirque Du Soleil “Zarkana” cast members attend the opening night of Cirque Du Soleil “Zarkana” at Radio City Music Hall on June 29, 2011 in New York City. — AFP

Forgotten Chaplin film fails to find buyer at auction A

forgotten short film featuring footage of comic legend Charlie Chaplin failed to sell at a London auction despite expectations it could raise a “significant six-figure sum”. The reserve price on the reel at Wednesday’s sale was 100,000 pounds ($160,000) at Bonhams auctioneers, but apparently it was too high. “Charlie Chaplin in ‘Zepped’”, believed to be a propaganda film made in Britain during World War One, was discovered inside a battered old film reel tin which collector Morace Park bought for 3.20 pounds on the online auction site eBay. ‘The seven-minute film which shows Chaplin taking on a German Zeppelin aircraft, features some of the earliest animation in cinema history. “At first I had no idea what I had,” Park said. “I visited film experts in Europe and the USA and ... one comment was common: none of them had ever seen this type of film before.” ‘Chaplin probably never knew of the movie’s existence, said film critic and Chaplin biographer David Robinson. He said the anonymous mak-

A visitor reads a book in an ergonomically designed reading corner in the newly erected 5 storey Humboldt Box museum in Berlin’s Schlossplatz June 29, 2011. The temporary structure will house exhibits from various Berlin museums, including the museum of Asian Art, and the Ethnological museum, until the nearby Humboldt Forum, housed in the reconstructed Berliner Schloss (Berlin Palace), is completed in 2019. —AFP

Giant frescos representing comic actor, film director and composer Charlie Chaplin are displayed on one of the 40 meters high Gilament towers on June 24, 2011 in Vevey. — AFP er had put together out-takes from three earlier Chaplin pictures-”His New Profession” (1914), “A Jitney Elopement” (1915) and “The Tramp” (1915) — and included sequences of stop-motion ani-

mation and other effects. Although Chaplin played no part in the production of “Zepped”, he famously satirized Nazi leader Adolf Hitler in the 1940 movie “The Great Dictator”. —Reuters


FRIDAY, JULY 1, 2011

Aries (March 21-April 19) Ambition is where your objective is focused this morning. Before you know it, quitting time is upon you and you consider overtime—don’t. The time you are with family or loved ones is very important and helps to build memories for later. Know yourself better by allowing yourself to open up to relationships. You have a lot to contribute. Taking time to understand more of the inner you will help you to make the best of your personality and your talents. Your desire to have a friendly evening with friends may find you inviting a co-worker along to a party. An opportunity tonight will help you help your school or community find a good comprehensive service that will provide youth with leadership and self-esteem building opportunities.

Taurus (April 20-May 20) Working overtime is the theme of this day. The easy way out may not be beneficial to your health or well-being. There are challenges this morning and you will want to weigh alternatives with care. Your organizational abilities and sense of responsibility will be what guides you and proves successful. Your career could assume a more solid structure. A time of good fortune opens up for you. You may find yourself wanting and able to do almost everything. Further education is a consideration and you make plan toward just what you will need. Circumstances should work together to help bring out your principles. All-in-all, this is a good time to project yourself. Tonight you might allow a young person to take the lead— or to have the last word.

Gemini (May 21-June 20) You express an understanding of the needs of others and may find yourself giving advice to a co-worker or friend this morning. You are able to achieve a great deal all during this day. You are very imaginative when it comes to your health, the food you eat and how you take care of yourself. Quick to get the picture, you may find yourself helping others in many different ways. You can be witty when a sense of humor is called for and today may just be that day you will entertain others without even realizing it. Your sense of humor is very important! Others value you for your independence and unique qualities. Periods of intense creativity enable you to go through changes and inner growth. This creative intensity is good for music, poetry and art, etc.

Cancer (June 21-July 22) You are able to accomplish quite a lot today. Still, it would be wise to pace yourself. You will be bombarded with all sorts of professional opportunities at this time and you must select one. Have faith in yourself; that is the answer. Enjoy your friends this afternoon, perhaps a meal together or a time of group sports could be enjoyed. It just may be the best time to listen to others and gain some new energies as well as new insights. Stability and permanence satisfy a deep emotional need. Travel is probably on your mind, if not actually on your agenda. Better clear up a money obligation before moving ahead too fast. Music via a play or concert can be enjoyed. This evening is a good opportunity to be with the ones you love.

Leo (July 23-August 22) You may be asked for your advice regarding very personal issues. You are able to cut through the red tape and get at what is beneath and behind. Sometimes the answers you look for are very easily found with little effort—you are willing to do the looking! This is a great time to be with others in an atmosphere of work or play. Success is indicated in education, politics or the law. You know how to attack and solve problems, whether personal or public. Your social skills may mean that you are popular with almost everyone; others will follow your lead. Your energies run effectively toward making yourself felt in the material, tangible outer world. You are an action person who gains the attention of others and seems to get things moving.

Virgo (August 23-September 22) You look for ways to lend a helping hand today. If you are serving the public, you may find that attendance or the shopping clientele is a bit down in numbers just now. This may give you an opportunity to pay special attention to one or two customers. You use your good intuitions and feelings and will know just what to say to people. It is possible that your sales will be higher than usual. This is a great time to understand your own situation and just how you feel about yourself. The lure of easy money somehow has the power to temporarily disconnect circuits leading to the brain and although you have learned the lesson, a young person in your family may need your knowledge and understanding. You will find ways to heal yourself and to help heal others.

Libra (September 23-October 22) Not a great starter today—you may have trouble initiating things and getting them moving. You may need help from coworkers or others in undertaking a large task. After you get your motor going, however, it could be hard to slow you down. When you are motivated one could almost see the smoke from your trail. Focus is important now. Don’t waste time on the minor goals. Go ahead and list ways to accomplish the big goals you have planned this year. Just thinking about the ways in which you will develop your plans motivates you to complete your regular tasks and move forward. Tonight you exhibit your ability to be a smooth talker with a good sense of humor. Entertainment outside the home can be enjoyed.

Scorpio (October 23-November 21) If you are working today, you will find it easy to work with others. You tend to pour a lot of energy into those around you. Your home and surroundings reflect your tender loving care. Other than your loved ones, you may have birds or animals that keep you company as well. When it comes to teaching or coaching young people, you are a natural and this is an area in which you may want to become involved this evening. You are always able to motivate and inspire others. Your social life seems to be on the upswing. You are able to get along with all sorts of people. You may discover things about another country through a new acquaintance. You always manage to make a good appearance, particularly in first meetings.

Sagittarius (November 22-December 21) You are independent, confident and more than likely more than a little self-centered at this time. You love attention and somehow manage to gravitate to the center of almost any group or happening. Others accept you—for they sense you are a leader and admire your almost regal manner. As much as you love attention and the crowd, you are also fiercely protective of your independence, sense of freedom and—above all—your privacy. Lecturing and teaching and guiding others spiritually may take a big part of your day; rewards are available. This afternoon you may seek solace from your family or loved one(s). Refurbishing your energy is important and you create these times alone to do just that. Exercise is a plus as well.

Capricorn (December 22-January 19) Your sense of responsibility comes across as central to your personality as well as the way you relate to other people. Take plenty of breaks and find a quiet place to have your noon meal. There is the possibility of new visions or sudden insights into whatever unfinished business may have you stymied—breakthroughs are possible. Continual change and transformation keeps you on the move. Others appreciate your hard work. This is a time of accomplishments. You will be taking the initiative today in many difficult areas. If you need help, all you have to do is ask. You will feel a great deal of support from those around you. You look forward to a social gathering this evening that allows you to relax and enjoy the company of friends and loved ones.

Aquarius (January 20- February 18) Public speaking may be on the agenda for today. Perhaps this is just several people that have gathered around your desk to hear what you have to say about some issue. You have a quick wit about you and may find yourself talkative with clever ideas and remedies to the problems of the day. This could be a frustrating time at home as there may be a tendency to jump to conclusions or make poor choices. Tensions could be high as a result, so perhaps just relaxing and waiting this one out might be in order. Instead of avoiding emotional issues, agree to a 24-hour delay in conversation over particular issues. It could be your professional life and responsibilities are still on your mind. There are opportunities to have a deeper bonding with those you love tonight.

Pisces (February 19-March 20) You could be an excellent teacher in areas requiring discipline and organization. You like to get down to the bare bones, to what is essential. Whatever is most practical is best and you appreciate things that are durable and long-lasting. You love truth, philosophy, law and the like. You can perform with the imagination as others work with durable things. This is because you understand what is behind and connecting things. Much of your own self-image is wrapped up with your ability to work with images—dreams and the imagination. Music, philosophy as well as all that is mystical would be interesting areas in which you could teach. This is a time for imagination and creativity when it comes to thinking. You will excel in a creative effort today.

COUNTRY CODES Afghanistan 0093 Albania 00355 Algeria 00213 Andorra 00376 Angola 00244 Anguilla 001264 Antiga 001268 Argentina 0054 Armenia 00374 Australia 0061 Austria 0043 Bahamas 001242 Bahrain 00973 Bangladesh 00880 Barbados 001246 Belarus 00375 Belgium 0032 Belize 00501 Benin 00229 Bermuda 001441 Bhutan 00975 Bolivia 00591 Bosnia 00387 Botswana 00267 Brazil 0055 Brunei 00673 Bulgaria 00359 Burkina 00226 Burundi 00257 Cambodia 00855 Cameroon 00237 Canada 001 Cape Verde 00238 Cayman Islands 001345 Central African Republic 00236 Chad 00235 Chile 0056 China 0086 Colombia 0057 Comoros 00269 Congo 00242 Cook Islands 00682 Costa Rica 00506 Croatia 00385 Cuba 0053 Cyprus 00357 Cyprus (Northern) 0090392 Czech Republic 00420 Denmark 0045 Diego Garcia 00246 Djibouti 00253 Dominica 001767 Dominican Republic 001809 Ecuador 00593 Egypt 0020 El Salvador 00503 England (UK) 0044 Equatorial Guinea 00240 Eritrea 00291 Estonia 00372 Ethiopia 00251 Falkland Islands 00500 Faroe Islands 00298 Fiji 00679 Finland 00358 France 0033 French Guiana 00594 French Polynesia 00689 Gabon 00241 Gambia 00220 Georgia 00995 Germany 0049 Ghana 00233 Gibraltar 00350 Greece 0030 Greenland 00299 Grenada 001473 Guadeloupe 00590 Guam 001671 Guatemala 00502 Guinea 00224 Guyana 00592 Haiti 00509 Holland (Netherlands)0031 Honduras 00504 Hong Kong 00852 Hungary 0036 Ibiza (Spain) 0034 Iceland 00354 India 0091 Indian Ocean 00873 Indonesia 0062 Iran 0098 Iraq 00964 Ireland 00353 Italy 0039 Ivory Coast 00225 Jamaica 001876 Japan 0081 Jordan 00962 Kazakhstan 007 Kenya 00254 Kiribati 00686

Kuwait 00965 Kyrgyzstan 00996 Laos 00856 Latvia 00371 Lebanon 00961 Liberia 00231 Libya 00218 Lithuania 00370 Luxembourg 00352 Macau 00853 Macedonia 00389 Madagascar 00261 Majorca 0034 Malawi 00265 Malaysia 0060 Maldives 00960 Mali 00223 Malta 00356 Marshall Islands 00692 Martinique 00596 Mauritania 00222 Mauritius 00230 Mayotte 00269 Mexico 0052 Micronesia 00691 Moldova 00373 Monaco 00377 Mongolia 00976 Montserrat 001664 Morocco 00212 Mozambique 00258 Myanmar (Burma) 0095 Namibia 00264 Nepal 00977 Netherlands (Holland)0031 Netherlands Antilles 00599 New Caledonia 00687 New Zealand 0064 Nicaragua 00505 Nigar 00227 Nigeria 00234 Niue 00683 Norfolk Island 00672 Northern Ireland (UK)0044 North Korea 00850 Norway 0047 Oman 00968 Pakistan 0092 Palau 00680 Panama 00507 Papua New Guinea 00675 Paraguay 00595 Peru 0051 Philippines 0063 Poland 0048 Portugal 00351 Puerto Rico 001787 Qatar 00974 Romania 0040 Russian Federation 007 Rwanda 00250 Saint Helena 00290 Saint Kitts 001869 Saint Lucia 001758 Saint Pierre 00508 Saint Vincent 001784 Samoa US 00684 Samoa West 00685 San Marino 00378 Sao Tone 00239 Saudi Arabia 00966 Scotland (UK) 0044 Senegal 00221 Seychelles 00284 Sierra Leone 00232 Singapore 0065 Slovakia 00421 Slovenia 00386 Solomon Islands 00677 Somalia 00252 South Africa 0027 South Korea 0082 Spain 0034 Sri Lanka 0094 Sudan 00249 Suriname 00597 Swaziland 00268 Sweden 0046 Switzerland 0041 Syria 00963 Taiwan 00886 Tanzania 00255 Thailand 0066 Toga 00228 Tonga 00676 Tokelau 00690 Trinidad 001868 Tunisia 00216 Turkey 0090 Tuvalu 00688 Uganda 00256 Ukraine 00380 United Arab Emirates00976

W h a t ’s O n FRIDAY, JULY 1, 2011

Writers’ Forum monthly meeting


riters Forum, Kuwait held its monthly meeting on June 24 at the residence of Umesh Sharma, former president of the forum. The meeting was presided over by Gurbakash Singh Dogra, Punjabi poet & one of the founder members of the forum and the Chief Guest was Baiwinder Kaur, a teacher by profession, deeply involved in literary activities in Hoshiarpur (India). The meeting started with introduction of the chief guest by S. Qamar Minto, general secretary of the forum. This was followed by poetry recitation by the members in different Indian languages. The first poetry was presented by Master Aditya, a child poet in English. All the members applauded this child poet and encouraged him to continue in literary activities. Others who presented their poetries are S.

Health awareness seminar

Kuwait Awami League celebrates anniversary


nder the auspices of Kuwait Kerala Muslim Cultural Centre, a Health Awareness Seminar will be held today July 1 at United Indian School, Abbasiya at 7 pm. Prominent doctors will take lectures on topics ‘diabetics’ and ‘heart-diseases’. Audience will have opportunity to ask the doctors on these topics. All are welcome.



riters Forum, Kuwait congratulates Jasbir Singh Dhiman for the release of his book ‘Mehndi de Patte’ a collection of his Punjabi poems.

Write to us Send to What’s On upcoming events, birthdays or celebrations by email: Fax: 24835619 / 20

Nazar Kadapavi, S. Qamar Minto & Mrs Tajwer Sultana (Urdu), Milind Chaubal & Rajesh Verlekar (English), Aamir Diwan, Umesh Sharma & Dr. (Mrs) Navniit Gandhi (Hindi) and Mrs Rutul Oza (Gujarati). These were very much appreciated by all including Dr M.U. Beg, Ali Chougle, Maimuna Ali Chougle, Sunil Sonsi, Devasheesh Oza and Prabhu Dayal Singh. The chief guest, before presenting her devotional Punjabi poetry, appreciated the efforts of the forum for developing and bringing together all Indian languages. The meeting was concluded with presidential address by Gurbakash Singh Dogra and vote of thanks by S. Qamar Minto; General Secretary of the forum.


n Thursday 23rd June, Awami League Kuwait branch organized a function to celebrate the 62nd founding anniversary of Bangladesh Awami League the biggest political organization not only in Bangladesh also known as oldest long heritage political platform in the Southeast Asia, after the division of Indian subcontinent. The function was presided over by acting president of Kuwait Awami League M. Jaforuzzaman Lal and conducted by the acting general sectary Ashrak Ali Ferdous while the Ambassador of Bangladesh Embassy in Kuwait Sayed Shahed Reza graced the function as chief guest. The event started with recitation of Holy Quran by Muhtasim Khan Shohan followed by one minute silent for those brave sons of the nation who sacrifice their lives during the independence war. Shamsul Haque the general secretary of Awami Shechashebok, Harunur Rashid, Ali Abdul Waheed, Shafiqul Alam Shafi. Momin Chowdhury, Foyez Kamal, Rabiul Alam Robi, Mayez Uddin Mouz, Councilor Nurul Islam delivered their speeches on the topic, highlight-

ing the importance of formation of Awami League. Several personalities from Jubo Lig, Shechashebok Lig, Sromik Lig. Muktijodda Shonghoti Parishod, Destiny Kuwait, Jalabad Association, Shymol Sylhet, Jatio Party, Shah Abdul Karim Cultural Group, Chaitaly, journalists and businessmen

Salmiya region Malayalam classes


ala, Kuwait free Malayalam classes began June 25th in the Salmiya zone as informed by Salmiya regional Bhashasamithi. A bhashasamithi was formed which was inaugurated by General Convenor P.K.Janardhanan. Kala Central Committee members Shinoj Mathew and J.Saji also attended the meeting. Rajesh P.R was selected as the Salmiya regional Convenor followed by Reji.K.Jacob and Madhusoodhanan as Joint Convenors and Sailesh Kannoth, Suresh Babu, Kunjumon, Manoj Mathew Thomas, Rajan C. Kulakkada, Shinoj Mathew, J.Saji and PR Kiron as other Samithi members. For registrations and other information kindly contact: 66767297, 66081623 or 97496171.

were present at the function. At the end Jaforuzzaman Lal made his concluding speech giving thanks to all present and then inviting all for dinner.

Scientific Center launches summer camp


he Scientific Center kicks off its summer camp for 2011 on Sunday, July 3, 2011, which will feature many activities held in weekly camps from Sunday to Thursday between 9:30 am and 2:30 pm. Kids between the ages of eight and twelve are allowed to participate in the camp, as they will engage in educational and artistic workshops, in addition to visits to the aquarium and the Discovery Hall, as well as behind the scene trips and iMAX movie shows.

W h a t ’s O n FRIDAY, JULY 1, 2011

Embassy Information EMBASSY OF ARGENTINA In order to inform that 23rd of October 2011, will be Argentine national election where all Argentinean citizen residents permanently in Kuwait can vote only if they are registered at the Electoral Register of the Argentine Embassy. The procedure of inscription ended on 25 of April 2011. To register it is necessary that Argentinean citizens should come personally at the Argentinean Embassy (Block 6, street 42, villa 57, Mishref) and present the DNI and four personal photos (size 4x4, face should be front on white background). For further information, contact us on 25379211. nnnnnnn

Goans celebrate San Joao festival


he Sao Joao Feast is one of the numerous festivals held in Goa every year on June 24th. This tradition which has been celebrated for over 175 years is known for its unique traditions, which includes a procession of young people going from door to door to collect fruit and gifts. Another fascinating tradition includes men jumping into wells. Beyond that there is singing, dancing, boat races and playing traditional music using the gummot and brass instruments. According to legend, the feast saw its origins to the Biblical times. Kuwait Goan Association organized this festival for the first time to the great surprise of the large vibrant Goan community which was compered by the inimitable Merwyn Pereira. The revelers consumed plenty of fruits on this occasion and are virtually unstoppable when they indulge in revelry and the highlights depicted different types of folk dances. The seasonal fruits and other eatables are exchanged between friends and relatives. The organizers gratefully thank and acknowledge the support of the attendees as well as the overwhelming response by the sponsors who had showered lots of surprise prizes. KGA president Salvador Dias cut the celebration cake in the presence of the chief guest Sharon Alemao Decosta. It was also an occasion for Navelim Youth Centre Player and ex-Vice President Norman Noronha to be part of this great event as the organizers and the Alcatrazz band joined in to celebrate his birthday together with friends and family. The crowd were treated to various competitions, games of skill, and Goan food. Philip & Victoria Ferrao were declared the winners of the Sao Joao Fiesta jive competition, hotly followed by the first runner-up Wayne & Leeam

EMBASSY OF AUSTRALIA The Embassy encourages all Australians to register their presence in Kuwait through Smartraveller Online (see link below). Australians who are registered are asked to update their details. The information provided will assist us in contacting you in an emergency. Kuwait citizens can apply for and receive visit visas to Australia online at This usually takes two working days. All others visa applications are handled by the Australian Visa Application Centre Tel. 22971110. Witnessing and certifying documents are by appointment only, please contact the Embassy on 2232 2422. The Australian Embassy is open from 8.00am to 4.00pm, Sunday to Thursday. nnnnnnn

EMBASSY OF BRITAIN The Visa Application Centre (VAC) will be closed on the same dates above. The opening hours of the Visa Application Centre are 0930 - 1630 Application forms remain available online from the UKBAs’ website: or from the Visa Application Centre’s website: And also, from the UK Visa Application Centre located at: 4B, First Floor, Al Banwan Building (Burgan Bank Branch Office Building), Al Qibla area, opposite Central Bank of Kuwait, Kuwait City. For any further inquiries, please contact the Visa Application Centre: Website: Telephone:22971170. The Consular Section will also be closed on the same dates. For information on the British Embassy services, visit the British Embassy website: nnnnnnn

EMBASSY OF KENYA D’Souza and Alexandro & Alfina Gomes. Prizes in the form of electronic items. It is a real treat to watch the youth, children, couples and even the whole families with crowns of leaves, flowers and varied fruits on their heads (known as copels) enjoying a lavish feast of meat and seafood at the food stalls marking the end of the festival. The rainy season is a perfect foil for the Sao Joao festival as most of the people enjoy it more when it’s raining heavily, however this was the only thing missing for the atten-

dees. A presentation highlight the celebrations in a form of a video display on a large format screen added lustre to all those who had joined in the chorus to cheer Viva Sao Joao! A game of Zaldi Five and prizes for the entry passes were won by several attendees. KGA looks forward to make this event an annual affair in the calendar of events of the Indian community.

The Embassy of the Republic of Kenya wishes to request all Kenyans resident in or training through Kuwait to register with the Embassy. We are updating our database. This information is necessary in order to facilitate quick assistance and advise in times of emergency. Kindly visit in person or register through our website The Embassy is located in: Surra Area - Block 6 - Street 9 Villa 3 Tel: 25353362 - 25353314; Fax: 25353316. nnnnnnn

EMBASSY OF NIGERIA The Nigerian embassy has moved its office to Mishref. Block 3, Street 7, House 4. For enquires please call 25379541. Fax25387719. Email- or nnnnnnn

EMBASSY OF SLOVAK REPUBLIC On the occasion of the Day of the Apostles St. Cyril and St. Methodius, the Embassy of the Slovak Republic will be closed on Tuesday, July 05, 2011, and will resume its duties on Wednesday, July 06, 2011, the Business hours of the Consular Section is from Monday to Wednesday from 10:00 till 13:00 hrs.

TV Listings FRIDAY, JULY 1, 2011

03:30 World Wild Vet 04:25 I Was Bitten 05:20 Animal Cops Houston 06:10 Extraordinary Dogs 06:35 Project Puppy 07:00 Lemur Street 07:25 The Really Wild Show 07:50 Crocodile Hunter 08:40 Breed All About It 09:10 Trophy Cats 10:05 Cats 101 11:00 Animal Cops Phoenix 11:55 E-Vets: The Interns 12:20 Wildlife SOS 12:50 Clinically Wild: Alaska 13:45 Animal Cops Houston 14:40 Penguin Safari 15:30 Echo and the Elephants of Amboseli 16:00 The Really Wild Show 16:30 Farm Life 16:55 Farm Life 17:25 Must Love Cats 18:20 Breed All About It 18:45 Planet Wild 19:15 Fur Seals: The Dark Side 20:10 Cats 101 21:05 Whale Wars 22:00 Whale Wars 22:55 After the Attack 23:50 Fur Seals: The Dark Side

03:00 03:30 04:00 04:35 04:55 05:15 05:40 05:55 06:15 06:35 07:00 07:20 07:40 08:05 08:20 08:40 09:00 09:25 09:40 10:40 11:25 12:15 12:45 13:15 14:10 15:40 16:30 17:15 17:45 18:15 19:05 20:00 20:45 21:15 22:05 23:00 23:30

Eastenders Doctors Keeping Up Appearances Fimbles Balamory Teletubbies Gigglebiz Fimbles Balamory Teletubbies Fimbles Balamory Teletubbies Gigglebiz Fimbles Balamory Teletubbies Gigglebiz Keeping Up Appearances The Weakest Link Ray Mears’ Northern Wilderness Doctors Eastenders Casualty Keeping Up Appearances Ray Mears’ Northern Wilderness The Weakest Link Doctors Eastenders Casualty Ray Mears’ Northern Wilderness The Weakest Link Doctors BBC Electric Proms 2009 Survivors The Cup Ideal

03:10 04:00 07:15 08:15 09:05 10:45 11:40 12:30 13:15 14:00 14:50 16:30 18:00 19:00 19:50 20:35 21:20 22:10 23:00

Rick Stein’s French Odyssey Daily Cooks Challenge New Scandinavian Cooking Antiques Roadshow Rick Stein’s French Odyssey New Scandinavian Cooking Antiques Roadshow Cash In The Attic Bargain Hunt Come Dine With Me Rick Stein’s French Odyssey Rhodes Across China New Scandinavian Cooking Antiques Roadshow Cash In The Attic Bargain Hunt Come Dine With Me The Home Show Masterchef: The Professionals

03:00 03:30 03:45 04:00 04:30 04:45

Newsday Asia Business Report Sport Today Newsday Asia Business Report Sport Today

WYATT EARP ON OSN ACTION HD 05:00 05:30 05:45 06:00 06:30 07:00 07:30 07:45 08:00 08:30 08:45 09:00 09:30 09:45 10:00 10:30 10:45 11:00 11:30 12:00 12:30 12:45 13:00 13:30 13:45 14:00 14:30 15:00 15:30 15:45 16:00 16:30 17:00 17:30 17:45 18:00 18:30 19:00 19:30 19:40 20:00 20:30 20:45 21:00

Newsday Asia Business Report Sport Today Newsday Peschardt’s People BBC World News World Business Report BBC World News BBC World News World Business Report BBC World News BBC World News World Business Report Sport Today BBC World News World Business Report Sport Today BBC World News Peschardt’s People BBC World News World Business Report Sport Today BBC World News World Business Report Sport Today GMT With George Alagiah GMT With George Alagiah BBC World News World Business Report Sport Today Impact Our World Impact World Business Report Sport Today World Have Your Say World Have Your Say The Hub With Nik Gowing BBC World News Weekend World The Hub With Nik Gowing World Business Report Sport Today World News Today With Zeinab

Badawi 21:30 World Have Your Say Extra 21:40 Weekend World 22:00 BBC World News 22:30 Middle East Business Report 23:00 BBC World News America 23:30 Peschardt’s People

03:00 The Powerpuff Girls 03:15 Chowder 03:40 The Secret Saturdays 04:05 My Gym Partner’s A Monkey 04:30 Ben 10: Alien Force 04:55 Best Ed 05:20 Skunk Fu! 05:45 Cramp Twins 06:10 Eliot Kid 06:35 The Marvelous Misadventures Of Flapjack 07:00 Codename: Kids Next Door 07:25 Cow And Chicken 07:50 Angelo Rules 08:05 Cartoon Network Dance Club 08:15 Adventure Time 08:40 Ben 10: Ultimate Alien 09:05 The Secret Saturdays 09:30 Batman: The Brave And The Bold 09:55 The Powerpuff Girls 10:20 Robotboy 10:30 Hero 108 10:55 Ben 10 11:20 Chowder 11:45 The Marvelous Misadventures Of Flapjack 12:10 Camp Lazlo 12:35 George Of The Jungle 13:00 Foster’s Home For Imaginary Friends 13:25 Codename: Kids Next Door 13:50 Ben 10 14:15 My Gym Partner’s A Monkey

14:40 Squirrel Boy 15:05 Eliot Kid 15:35 Ed, Edd n Eddy 16:00 Cow And Chicken 16:25 Chop Socky Chooks 16:50 Skunk Fu! 17:15 Chowder 17:40 Best Ed 18:05 Hero 108 18:30 Cartoon Network Dance Club 18:45 The Marvelous Misadventures Of Flapjack 18:55 Best Ed 19:20 Adventure Time 19:45 Cow And Chicken 20:10 The Marvelous Misadventures Of Flapjack 20:35 Courage The Cowardly Dog 21:00 The Powerpuff Girls 21:25 Ed, Edd n Eddy 21:50 Robotboy 22:00 Adventure Time 22:25 Hero 108 22:50 Ben 10 23:15 Bakugan Battle Brawlers 23:40 Chowder

03:00 04:00 05:00 06:00 06:30 07:00 07:30 08:00 10:00 10:30 11:00 11:45 12:00 13:00

World Business Today Piers Morgan Tonight Anderson Cooper 360 World Sport News Special World Report Backstory World Report World Sport The Best Of Backstory World Business Today CNN Marketplace Middle East World One World Sport

13:30 14:00 15:00 16:00 17:00 18:00 18:30 19:00 19:45 20:00 20:30 21:00 21:45 22:00 23:00

The Best Of Backstory Piers Morgan Tonight News Stream World Business Today International Desk The Brief World Sport World Report CNN Marketplace Middle East International Desk Talk Asia Quest Means Business CNN Marketplace Africa Piers Morgan Tonight Connect The World

03:25 04:20 05:15 05:40 06:05 07:00 08:45 09:10 10:05 10:30 10:55 11:25 12:20 12:45 13:15 14:10 15:05 16:00 16:55 17:50 18:45 19:10 19:40 20:05 20:35 21:00 21:55 22:50 23:45

Battle Machine Bros Mythbusters How It’s Made How It’s Made Dirty Jobs Battle Machine Bros How It’s Made Mythbusters Cake Boss Border Security Time Warp Surviving The Cut Sons Of Guns Sons Of Guns Ultimate Survival LA Ink Dirty Jobs Battle Machine Bros Mythbusters Extreme Fishing Cake Boss Border Security Time Warp How It’s Made How It’s Made Extreme Engineering Huge Moves Mighty Ships Extreme Fishing

03:25 03:50 04:45 05:40 06:10 07:00 07:55 07:58 08:25 08:55 09:45 10:35 11:00 11:25 11:50 12:40 13:05 13:55 14:45 15:35 16:00 16:03 16:30 17:00 17:50 18:40 19:30 20:20 20:45 21:10 22:00 22:50 23:40

How Stuff’s Made Scrapheap Challenge What’s That About? Patent Bending Eco-Tech Da Vinci’s Machines Head Rush Sci-Fi Science Weird Connections Bad Universe The Gadget Show Bang Goes The Theory Bang Goes The Theory Savage Planet Da Vinci’s Machines Patent Bending Weird Or What? Sci-Fi Saved My Life Kings Of Construction The Gadget Show Head Rush Sci-Fi Science Weird Connections Brainiac Stephen Hawking’s Universe The Tech Show The Gadget Show Sci-Fi Science How Does That Work? The Gadget Show The Tech Show The Gadget Show The Colony

03:15 03:35 04:25 04:50 05:15 06:00 06:20 06:45 07:05 07:55 08:20 08:35 09:00 09:10 09:25 09:40 09:50 10:10 10:35 10:50 11:15 11:35

Emperors New School Stitch Replacements Replacements Fairly Odd Parents Emperors New School Phineas & Ferb Phineas & Ferb Suite Life On Deck S3 Good Luck Charlie Fish Hooks Mickey Mouse Clubhouse Jake & The Neverland Pirates Jungle Junction Handy Manny Jake & The Neverland Pirates Sonny With A Chance Fish Hooks Phineas And Ferb Shake It Up Good Luck Charlie Good Luck Charlie

12:00 12:25 12:45 13:10 13:30 15:20 15:45 16:10 16:35 17:00 17:25 17:50 18:15 18:45 19:10 19:35 21:15 21:35 22:00 22:25 22:50 23:15 23:35

Wizards Of Waverly Place Wizards Of Waverly Place Hannah Montana Forever Hannah Montana Forever Gotta Kick It Up Good Luck Charlie Fish Hooks Shake It Up Phineas & Ferb Wizards Of Waverly Place Hannah Montana Forever Fish Hooks Hannah Montana Wizards Of Waverly Place Suite Life On Deck Thirteenth Year Phineas & Ferb Good Luck Charlie Shake It Up Hannah Montana Forever Sonny With A Chance Wizards Of Waverly Place Jonas

06:00 06:20 06:40 Victors 07:05 07:40 08:05 08:30 09:00 11:30 11:55 12:20 12:45 13:50 14:15 14:40 15:05 15:35 Victors 16:00 16:25 18:55 19:45 20:15 20:40 21:05 Heroes 21:30 22:00 22:20

Kid Vs Kat Kick Buttowski Pokemon Dp: Sinnoh League

04:10 05:05 06:00 07:50 08:20 09:15 10:15 12:05 13:05 13:35 14:05 14:35 15:00 15:55 16:55 17:55 18:55 19:55 20:25 20:55 21:25 21:55 22:25 23:25 23:55

Sexiest Extreme Hollywood THS Behind The Scenes E! News Kimora: Life In The Fab Lane THS E! News Kendra Kendra Kourtney And Khloe Take Miami E!es THS THS E!es E! News THS Kourtney And Kim Take New York Kourtney And Kim Take New York Chelsea Lately Kendra Kendra E! News Chelsea Lately Kourtney And Kim Take New York

Phineas & Ferb Phineas & Ferb Kick Buttowski American Dragon Kick Buttowski Pair Of Kings Phineas & Ferb Phineas & Ferb Kid Vs Kat The Suite Life Of Zack & Cody The Suite Life Of Zack & Cody Zeke & Luther Kick Buttowski Pokemon Dp: Sinnoh League I’m In The Band Iron Man: Armoured Adventures Kick Buttowski Kid Vs Kat Kid Vs Kat I’m In The Band The Avengers: Earths Mightiest Zeke & Luther The Suite Life Of Zack & Cody The Super Hero Squad Show

03:10 Fight Girls 04:00 FIM World Motocross MX3 Championships... 04:50 Mantracker 05:40 World Combat League 06:30 FIA European Drag Racing 2008 08:00 Quattro Events 2009 08:25 FIM World Motocross MX1/MX2... 09:15 FIM World Motocross MX1/MX2... 10:05 Ticket To Ride 2010/11 10:30 Ticket To Ride 2010/11 10:55 Winter Dew Tour 10/11 11:45 Alpine Adventurer 12:35 Alpine Adventurer 13:25 Clay Marzo: Just Add Water 14:15 World Combat League 15:05 X Games 15 2009 15:55 Tread BMX 16:20 Tread BMX

TV Listings FRIDAY, JULY 1, 2011

16:45 17:10 18:50 19:15 19:40 21:20 22:10 23:00 23:50

03:00 03:50 04:45 05:15 06:10 07:00 07:50 08:40 09:30 09:55 10:20 11:10 12:00 12:50 13:15 13:40 14:30 14:55 15:20 16:10 17:00 17:50 18:40 19:30 19:55 20:20 21:10 21:35 22:00 22:50 23:40

Quattro Events 2009 FIM World Motocross MX1/MX2... Ticket To Ride 2010/11 Ticket To Ride 2010/11 Alpine Adventurer Winter Dew Tour 10/11 World Combat League Carpocalypse M1 Selection 2010

True Crime Scene Dr G: Medical Examiner Crime Scene Psychics Ghost Lab Mystery ER Forensic Detectives Murder Shift Mystery ER Real Emergency Calls Real Emergency Calls Undercover FBI Files On The Case With Paula Zahn Who On Earth Did I Marry? Who On Earth Did I Marry? Mystery ER Real Emergency Calls Real Emergency Calls Undercover Forensic Detectives Murder Shift FBI Files Mystery ER Real Emergency Calls Real Emergency Calls On The Case With Paula Zahn Who On Earth Did I Marry? Who On Earth Did I Marry? Serial Killers I Escaped Death Dr G: Medical Examiner

03:00 Rita Rocks 03:30 Will And Grace 04:00 The New Adventures Of Old Christine 04:30 The Tonight Show With Jay Leno 05:30 Will And Grace 06:00 According To Jim 06:30 Coach 07:00 Late Night With Jimmy Fallon 08:00 Hope And Faith 08:30 The New Adventures Of Old Christine 09:00 Rita Rocks 09:30 Community 10:00 According To Jim 10:30 Happy Endings 11:00 Coach 11:30 The Tonight Show With Jay Leno 12:30 The New Adventures Of Old Christine 13:00 Hope And Faith 13:30 Will And Grace 14:00 According To Jim 14:30 Community 15:00 Happy Endings 15:30 The Daily Show With Jon Stewart 16:00 The Colbert Report 16:30 Coach 17:00 Late Night With Jimmy Fallon 18:00 10 Things I Hate About You 18:30 The Office 19:00 Outsourced 19:30 Modern Family 20:00 The Tonight Show With Jay Leno 21:00 The Daily Show With Jon Stewart 21:30 The Colbert Report 22:00 Family Guy 22:30 Eastbound And Down 23:00 Boondocks 23:30 Late Night With Jimmy Fallon

03:00 Bones 04:00 Burn Notice 05:00 Good Morning America 03:00 04:15 04:40 05:05 05:30 05:50 06:35 07:00 07:50 08:15 08:40 09:05 09:30 09:55 10:20 10:45 11:10 11:35 12:25 12:50 13:15 13:40 14:30 14:55 15:20 15:45 16:35 17:00 17:25 17:50 18:15 19:05 19:30 19:55

Unwrapped Good Eats - Special Unwrapped Ten Dollar Dinners Paula’s Best Dishes Paula’s Party Barefoot Contessa Chopped Guy’s Big Bite Everyday Italian Good Deal With Dave Lieberman Ten Dollar Dinners Paula’s Best Dishes Barefoot Contessa - Back To Basics Diners, Drive-Ins And Dives Lidia’s Italy Unwrapped Paula’s Party Everyday Italian Paula’s Best Dishes Good Deal With Dave Lieberman Ultimate Recipe Showdown Lidia’s Italy Unwrapped Boy Meets Grill Chopped Guy’s Big Bite Barefoot Contessa - Back To Basics Lidia’s Italy Everyday Italian Paula’s Party Throwdown With Bobby Flay Everyday Italian Everyday Italian

04:15 06:00 08:00 09:30 11:15 13:15 14:45 18:00 20:00 22:00

Children Of The Corn-18 The Italian Job (2003)-PG15 Jesse Stone: No Remorse-PG15 The Bodyguard 2-PG15 Star Trek: Generations-PG Jesse Stone: No Remorse-PG15 Wyatt Earp-PG15 Star Trek: Generations-PG The General’s Daughter-18 From Hell-18

03:00 05:00 07:00 09:00 11:00 13:00 15:00 17:00 19:00 21:00 23:00

Crazy Heart-PG15 Charlie And Boots-PG15 Green Lantern: First Flight-PG Preacher’s Kid-PG Charlie And Boots-PG15 Batman: Under The Red Hood-PG On Broadway-PG15 Heaven’s Fall-PG15 Date Night-PG15 Let Me In-R Fireflies In The Garden-PG15

07:00 08:00 08:30 09:00 10:00 11:00 12:00 13:00 14:00 16:00 17:00 18:00 19:00 20:00 21:00 22:00 23:00

03:00 04:00 05:00 06:00 07:00 07:30 08:00 09:00 10:00 11:00 12:00 12:30 13:00 14:00 15:00 16:00 16:30 18:00 19:00 20:00 21:00 22:00 23:00

Detroit 1-8-7 Emmerdale Look-A-Like The Good Guys The Martha Stewart Show The View White Collar Bones Live Good Morning America The Bachelor The Ellen DeGeneres Show One Tree Hill Drop Dead Diva Off The Map Big Love The Good Guys The Cape

Burn Notice Bones Surface Criminal Minds Cougar Town Look-A-Like The Event The Good Guys White Collar Burn Notice Cougar Town Look-A-Like The Ellen DeGeneres Show The Event Criminal Minds Cougar Town Look-A-Like Covert Affairs Drop Dead Diva Off The Map Big Love The Good Guys Surface

`03:30 Wild Things-18 05:15 Basic Instinct 2-R 07:15 Inkheart-PG

09:00 Lara Croft Tomb Raider: The Cradle Of Life-PG15 11:00 Speed-PG15 13:00 Dragon: The Bruce Lee Story-PG15 15:00 Lara Croft Tomb Raider: The Cradle Of Life-PG15 17:00 2012-PG15 19:45 The Tournament-18 21:30 Wild Things: Foursome 18 23:00 30 Days Of Night: Dark Days-18

04:00 06:00 08:00 10:00 PG15 12:00 14:00 16:00 18:00 20:00 22:00

Mafia!-PG15 Saved!-PG15 Straight Talk-PG15 Ace Ventura : Pet Detective Jr.Mr. Deeds-PG That Thing You Do!-PG The Ramen Girl-PG15 Land Of The Lost-PG15 Just Buried-18 Van Wilder: Freshman Year-R

03:15 The Loss Of A Teardrop DiamondPG15 05:00 The Damned United-PG15 07:00 Beneath The Blue-PG15 09:00 By The People: The Election Of Barack Obama-PG15 11:00 The Loss Of A Teardrop DiamondPG15 13:00 Barton Fink-PG15 15:00 Never Cry Wolf-PG15 17:00 Free Style-PG15 19:00 The Soloist-PG15 21:00 Taking Woodstock-18 23:00 Life-PG15

03:00 05:00 07:00 09:00

The Wronged Man-PG15 The Perfect Score-PG15 The Invention Of Lying-PG15 Who Is Clark Rockefeller-PG


11:00 13:00 15:00 17:00 19:00 21:00 23:30

Hurricane Season-PG15 Garfield-PG One Hot Summer-PG15 Who Is Clark Rockefeller-PG Just Married-PG15 Robin Hood-PG15 Somewhere-PG15

03:45 Pete’s Dragon-PG 06:00 Arthur And The Revenge Of Maltazard-PG 08:00 Scruff In Midsummer Night’s Dream-FAM 10:00 Garfield-PG 12:00 Dennis The Menace: Cruise Control-FAM 14:00 Barney’s Great Adventure-FAM 16:00 Tom And Jerry Meet Sherlock Holmes-FAM 18:00 Garfield-PG 20:00 Legend Of Sleeping Beauty-PG 22:00 Scruff In Midsummer Night’s Dream-FAM

04:00 06:00 08:00 10:00 12:00 14:00 16:00 18:00 20:00 22:30

End Of The Spear-PG15 Make It Happen-PG15 Last Chance Harvey-PG15 Hachiko: A Dog’s Story-PG15 Tooth Fairy-PG StreetDance-PG15 Last Chance Harvey-PG15 Post Grad-PG15 Robin Hood-PG15 The Joneses-PG15

03:30 04:00 05:00 05:30 06:00 07:00 09:00 09:30 10:30 12:30 13:00 14:00 14:30 16:30 18:30 21:00 21:30

Mobil 1 The Grid Weber Cup Bowling Futbol Mundial World Hockey Trans World Sport RFL Championship Total Rugby Super Rugby Highlights Live Super 15 ICC Cricket World Futbol Mundial Total Rugby Super Rugby NRL Premiership AFL Premiership Futbol Mundial Live Super League

07:00 08:00 12:15 12:45 14:45 15:30 19:30 21:30

Golfing World PGA European Tour NRL Full Time Live NRL Premiership Golfing World Live PGA European Tour Super Rugby PGA European Tour

04:00 05:00 06:00 07:00 09:00 10:00 10:30 13:30 14:30 15:30 16:30 17:30 18:00 18:30 19:00 20:00 22:00 23:00

WWE Vintage Collection WWE NXT UFC Unleashed WWE NXT Powerboats Aquabikes Live AFL Premiership WWE NXT V8 Supercars Championship V8 Supercars Championship Intercontinental Le Mans Cup Le Mans Series Aquabikes V8 Supercars Extra WWE NXT WWE SmackDown WWE Bottom Line UFC 132 Countdown

03:45 04:40 05:35 06:30 Barr 07:25 08:20 09:15 10:10 11:05 12:00 13:00 14:00 15:00

Hooked How Big Can It Get I, Predator Dangerous Encounters With Brady The Living Edens Secrets Of The Mediterranean Journey Into Amazonia Great Migrations Hooked Asia’s Deadliest Snakes Wild Dog Diaries The Living Edens Japan’s Hidden Secret

16:00 17:00 18:00 19:00 20:00 21:00 22:00 23:00

The Living Edens Caught In The Act Hooked Wild Dog Diaries The Living Edens Japan’s Hidden Secret The Living Edens Caught In The Act

03:45 04:40 05:35 06:30 Barr 07:25 08:20 09:15 10:10 11:05 12:00 13:00

Hooked How Big Can It Get I, Predator Dangerous Encounters With Brady The Living Edens Secrets Of The Mediterranean Journey Into Amazonia Great Migrations Hooked Asia’s Deadliest Snakes Wild Dog Diaries

03:00 Glutton For Punishment 03:30 Angry Planet 04:00 Globe Trekker 05:00 Julian And Camilla’s World Odyssey 06:00 Inside Luxury Travel-Varun Sharma 07:00 Globe Trekker 08:00 Intrepid Journeys 09:00 World’s Greatest Motorcycle Rides 10:00 Essential 10:30 Destination Cuba 11:00 Inside Luxury Travel-Varun Sharma 12:00 Globe Trekker 13:00 Planet Food 14:00 Intrepid Journeys 15:00 World’s Greatest Motorcycle Rides 16:00 Globe Trekker 17:00 Inside Luxury Travel-Varun Sharma 18:00 Planet Food 19:00 Globe Trekker 20:00 Globe Trekker Special 21:00 Great Scenic Railways-Us And Canada 21:30 Distant Shores 22:00 Indian Times 23:00 Globe Trekker

03:20 Whose Wedding Is It Anyway? 05:10 Homes With Style 05:35 Area 06:05 Clean House 07:00 Big Boutique 08:00 Homes With Style 09:00 Fashion Avenue 09:55 How Do I Look? 10:50 Whose Wedding Is It Anyway? 11:50 Clean House: Search For The Messiest... 12:50 Clean House 13:45 Clean House Comes Clean 14:15 Mel B: It’s A Scary World 14:45 Jerseylicious 15:40 Ruby 16:35 Giuliana And Bill 17:30 Top 10 18:25 Giuliana And Bill 19:25 Big Boutique 19:50 Fashion Avenue 20:20 Clean House Comes Clean 21:15 Most Outrageous Weddings 22:10 Clean House 23:05 How Do I Look?

03:00 04:00 05:00 06:00 07:00 08:00 09:00 10:00 11:00 12:00 13:00 14:00 15:00 15:30 16:00 17:00 18:00 19:00 20:00 21:00 21:30 23:00

Sliced Secret Luftwaffe Of World War II The Oracle Of Delphi Ancient Monster Hunters Extreme Trains Declassified Sliced Secret Luftwaffe Of World War II The Oracle Of Delphi Ancient Monster Hunters Extreme Trains Declassified Sliced Sliced Secret Luftwaffe Of World War II The Oracle Of Delphi Ancient Monster Hunters Extreme Trains Declassified The Tech Effect Hubble, 15 Years Of Discovery Clash Of The Gods

Information FRIDAY, JULY 1, 2011



Time 0:05 0:10 0:30 0:35 1:15 1:30 1:45 2:25 2:55 2:55 3:00 3:05 3:10 3:15 3:20 3:55 4:10 4:40 5:15 5:15 5:25 6:10 6:30 6:35 7:10 7:15 7:50 7:55 7:55 8:00 8:05 8:10 8:20 8:25 9:00 9:10 9:20 9:30 9:35 10:30 10:55 11:10 11:15 11:25 12:05 12:10 12:30 12:55 12:55 13:15 13:20 13:30 13:35 13:50 14:00 14:15 14:30 14:35 14:40 15:00 15:10 15:15 15:45 15:50 16:40 16:50 16:55 17:00 17:15 17:20 17:35 17:40


227 177 166 502 542 213 744 614 774 102 674 575 572 562 61 787 647 81 402 786 506 372 217 304 136 981 859 135 185 612 636 441 539 447 481




18:00 18:00 18:40 18:45 18:50 19:05 19:15 19:20 19:25 19:25 19:25 19:30 19:35 19:50 20:00 20:00 20:10 20:15 20:15 20:20 20:35 21:00 21:25 21:30 21:35 22:00 22:00 22:10 22:35 22:50 23:00 23:05 23:30 23:35 23:50

Time 0:05 0:15 0:20 0:25 0:40 1:05 1:10 2:00 2:15 2:30 2:30 3:45 3:50 3:55 4:00 4:05 4:05 5:00 5:10 5:55 6:00 6:25 6:55 7:00 7:10 7:40 8:00 8:20 8:25 8:40 8:50 8:55 9:00 9:05 9:10 9:10



Directorate General of Civil Aviation Home Page (

9:25 9:35 9:40 9:50 10:00 10:15 10:20 10:20 10:20 11:30 11:55 12:00 12:05 12:10 12:25 12:30 13:00 13:05 13:10 13:35 13:40 14:20 14:30 14:35 14:45 14:45 15:00 15:05 15:10 15:55 16:00 16:05 16:15 16:20 16:25 16:35 16:40 17:35 17:40 17:45 18:00 18:05 18:15 18:20 18:25 18:35 19:10 19:10 20:00 20:20 20:35 20:40 20:50 21:00 21:05 21:10 21:15 21:55 22:00 22:30 22:30 22:35 22:45 22:55 23:00 23:05 23:10 23:10 23:30 23:40 23:40 23:50 23:59

FRIDAY, JULY 1, 2011

ACCOMMODATION Sharing accommodation available for decent Indian Hindu or Catholic bachelors or family with Mangalorean Catholic family in a window A/C building off Rashid Hospital, Shara Amman, Salmiya. Contact: 55995437/ 99200186. (C 3487) 30-6-2011 Spacious bedroom with separate bathroom available for sharing in a two bedroom two bathroom flat in Abbasiya, near United Indian School for Keralite couples from June 5 onwards. Contact: 66846299. (C 3484) 29-6-2011 Spacious hall available from July onwards near Edee Stores, Salmiya, suitable for classes like Breathing/ Aerobics etc. Please contact: 55394933. (C 3479) Sharing accommodation available for RC Goan or Mangalorian bachelor in a flat near Khaitan Jamiya. Rent KD 40/-. Contact: 99453500. (C 3480) 28-6-2011

machine. Contact: 99430379. (C 3485) New iPad2 32GB, dishwasher, washing machine, oil room heater, pedestal fan, computer table/ chair, indoor outdoor plants, Ikea book case, garden hose. Contact: 23983631/ 99435795. (C 3486) 30-6-2011 Pajero Jeep - 2002, silver color, 4 doors (6 Clr) - CC 3000, KD 1,750/-. Contact: 66729295. (C 3481) Honda City 2009, white color, 16,000km, KD 2,350/-. Contact: 55323839. (C 3482) 28-6-2011 For sale, dining table, 4 chairs, wooden, all Center Point, iMac computer, 21”, JVC hi-fi 5DVD and many other items. Tel: 66603401 27-6-2011


Separate room in Mulhak at Al-Jabriya near Al-Hadi Hospital for single Muslim bachelor, kitchen & phone, satellite facilities, semi furnish. Rent KD 70 per month from July 2011. Contact: 99546413. (C 3476)

Parents of Born-again, Baptized girl (ornament wearing) Software Engr. from India 27/166, residing with parents in U.A.E, currently visiting sister in Kuwait, invite proposal from professionally qualified boys of same faith. Contact email: (C 3488)

Separate room with separate bathroom available for single lady or bachelor or couple in C-A/C flat with drawing kitchen and satellite facilities in Salmiya, Amman Street, new building in very nice location. Contact: 55230154. (C 3478) 27-6-2011

Proposals invited for RC girl, 29 years MoH staff, from well employed RC boys in Kuwait of age between 30-33. Boys from Kottayam, Idukki districts are more preferred. Contact: (C 3477) 30-6-2011


Pilates Power GYM” with price KD 50/-. A quality thane fitness product along with owner’s manual and 1 hour workout video. Visit to view the

TUITION Tutoring available for all subjects including English, Math and Science by certified experienced American teacher with many years of experience. Call: 66616900. (C 3483) 29-6-2011

Sports FRIDAY, JULY 1, 2011

Phillies down Red Sox, Yankees roll

OAKLAND: Athletics’ Hideki Matsui, of Japan, breaks his bat as he grounds out during the third inning of a baseball game against the Florida Marlins.—AP

MLB results/standings Major League Baseball results and standings on Wednesday. Cincinnati 4, Tampa Bay 3; Minnesota 1, LA Dodgers 0; San Diego 4, Kansas City 1; Atlanta 5, Seattle 3; Cleveland 6, Arizona 2; Philadelphia 2, Boston 1; LA Angels 1, Washington 0; St Louis 5, Baltimore 1; NY Yankees 5, Milwaukee 2; NY Mets 16, Detroit 9; Toronto 2, Pittsburgh 1; Chicago Cubs 2, San Francisco 1; Texas 3, Houston 2; Chicago White Sox 3, Colorado 2; Florida 3, Oakland 0. American League Eastern Division W L PCT NY Yankees 47 31 .603 Boston 45 34 .570 Tampa Bay 45 36 .556 Toronto 40 41 .494 Baltimore 35 42 .455 Central Division Cleveland 42 37 .532 Detroit 43 38 .531 Chicago White Sox 39 42 .481 Minnesota 34 45 .430 Kansas City 33 48 .407 Western Division Texas 43 38 .531 LA Angels 42 40 .512 Seattle 39 42 .481 Oakland 36 45 .444 National League Eastern Division Philadelphia 51 30 .630 Atlanta 47 35 .573 NY Mets 41 39 .513 Washington 40 41 .494 Florida 35 45 .438 Central Division Milwaukee 44 37 .543 St. Louis 43 38 .531 Cincinnati 42 40 .512 Pittsburgh 40 39 .506 Chicago Cubs 33 48 .407 Houston 28 53 .346 Western Division San Francisco 46 35 .568 Arizona 44 38 .537 Colorado 39 41 .488 San Diego 37 45 .451 LA Dodgers 36 46 .439

GB 2.5 3.5 8.5 11.5 4 8 10 1.5 4 7 4.5 9.5 11 15.5 1 2.5 3 11 16 2.5 6.5 9.5 10.5

PHILADELPHIA: Raul Ibanez hit a tiebreaking solo homer in the seventh, Vance Worley pitched seven strong innings and the Philadelphia Phillies beat the Boston Red Sox 2-1 on Wednesday night. In a series billed as a World Series preview, the major league-leading Phillies (5130) have taken two straight and go for a sweep late yesterday. Worley (3-1) allowed one run and five hits. The rookie right-hander has filled in nicely for injured starters Roy Oswalt and Joe Blanton. Michael Stutes pitched a perfect eighth and Antonio Bastardo finished for his third save and first filling in for Ryan Madson. Boston’s John Lackey (5-7) gave up two runs and eight hits in 7 2-3 innings in one of his best starts this season. He lowered his ERA from 7.36 to 6.81. The Red Sox have lost six of seven since going 14-2. Yankees 5, Brewers 2 At New York, AJ Burnett pitched neatly into the eighth inning and Russell Martin hit a three-run homer as the New York Yankees maintained its winning momentum. Robinson Cano tripled to start a four-run fourth inning and Jorge Posada rounded the bases twice on his solo shot in the sixth, which was changed to a home run after umpires watched the video replay. Nick Swisher had an RBI single for the Yankees, who have won four straight and 14 of 18 overall. Ryan Braun had three singles and an RBI for the Brewers, extending his career-best hitting streak to 19 games. Angels 1, Nationals 0 At Anaheim, California, Dan Haren allowed two hits through 7 1-3 innings as the Los Angeles Angels swept past Davey Johnson’s new team. The 68-year-old Johnson took over the Nationals this week, returning as a major league manager for the first time since 2000. Washington had won 13 of 15 going into the series at Anaheim, with most of the wins coming before manager Jim Riggleman resigned. Mets 16, Tigers 9 At Detroit, Scott Hairston launched a bases-loaded triple and Ronny Paulino contributed four hits as part of another offensive barrage by New York, which beat Detroit. The Mets set a team record by scoring 52 runs in a four-game span, STATS LLC said. They have 69 hits during their spree. Tigers utilityman Don Kelly got the final out, becoming the first Detroit position player to pitch since 2000. Miguel Cabrera hit two of Detroit’s five homers. The Mets romped despite not hitting any home runs. White Sox 3, Rockies 2 At Denver, A.J. Pierzynski drove in his second run of the game with a sacrifice fly in the ninth inning as Chicago held on to beat Colorado. Carlos Quentin and Paul Konerko hit singles off Huston Street (0-2) to start the ninth with Quentin getting to third on Konerko’s hit. Street struck out

Alexei Ramirez before Pierzynski, who had an RBI double earlier, drove a fly ball to right field. Reds 4, Rays 3 At St. Petersburg, Florida, Ryan Hanigan hit a three-run homer off James Shields as Cincinnati beat Tampa Bay. Hanigan connected with two out in the fourth for his first homer since going deep twice April 3 against Milwaukee. Shields (8-5) had given up just two runs in his previous three starts, all of which were complete-game wins. Edinson Volquez (5-3) gave up three runs and four hits in 6 1-3 innings. Evan Longoria hit a tworun double and B.J. Upton went deep for Tampa Bay. Upton has four homers in his last six games. Braves 5, Mariners 3 At Seattle, Freddie Freeman dominated pitcher Felix Hernandez with three hits and two RBIs as Atlanta completed an impressive three-game sweep that included victories over Seattle’s best starting pitchers. The Braves won for the eighth time in 10 games and picked up their 25th road victory of the season. They handed losses to Hernandez, rookie star Michael Pineda and Erik Bedard during their rare trip to Seattle. Dustin Ackley hit a two-run homer for Seattle.

Rasmus hit a two-run shot off Chris Jakubauskas (2-1) in the second inning, giving St. Louis a 2-0 lead. Indians 6, D’backs 2 At Phoenix, Carlos Carrasco pitched seven solid innings to lead Cleveland over Arizona. Orlando Cabrera, who delivered the deciding home run in the series opener, had a season-high four hits. He doubled, scored twice and drove in a run as the Indians won for just the third time in nine games. Carrasco (8-4) gave up two runs and four hits, struck out seven and walked none. Justin Upton and Stephen Drew homered for Arizona. Rangers 3, Astros 2 At Houston, Ian Kinsler homered twice for the first time in almost two years as Colby Lewis had another solid start for Texas. Kinsler hit a leadoff homer and also went deep in his next at-bat in the third inning to help Texas to an early 3-0 lead. Carlos Lee had a solo homer for the Astros, who have dropped five straight and have the worst record in the majors at 28-53. Twins 1, Dodgers 0 At Minneapolis, Scott Baker struck out nine batters while pitching neatly into the eighth inning and Ben Revere had two hits to help Minnesota blank the Los

Morrow struck out 10 to lead Toronto past Pittsburgh. Rookie outfielder Eric Thames hit his first career home run for Toronto, a solo shot in the sixth. Padres 4, Royals 1 At San Diego, rookie Anthony Rizzo hit a two-run single and Tim Stauffer won consecutive starts for the first time this year as San Diego completed its first sweep this season. The Padres scored four unearned runs with two outs in the third inning thanks to third baseman Mike Moustakas’ error on a sun ball. Cubs 2, Giants 1 At Chicago, pinch-hitter Aramis Ramirez singled in the winning run with two outs in the bottom of the ninth as Chicago snapped San Francisco’s seven-game winning streak. Sergio Romo (3-1) gave up an infield single to leadoff batter Tony Campana, who moved to second on Reed Johnson’s sacrifice. After a groundout moved him to third, Ramirez hit an 0-2 pitch into left to win it. San Francisco’s Emmanuel Burris hit a leveling RBI single off closer Carlos Marmol (2-2) in the top of the ninth after Cubs starter Ryan Dempster shut out the Giants on two hits for eight innings. Marlins 3, Athletics 0 At Oakland, California, Ricky

BALTIMORE: St. Louis Cardinals catcher Yadier Molina (left) forces out Baltimore Orioles’ Felix Pie at home during the fifth inning of an interleague baseball game.—AP Cardinals 5, Orioles 1 At Baltimore, Chris Carpenter scattered seven hits for his second complete game of the season and Colby Rasmus homered as St. Louis downed Baltimore. Carpenter (3-7) threw a season-high 132 pitches to win his second straight start following a five-game losing streak. The right-hander struck out five, walked one and surrendered just one extrabase hit - an RBI double to Nick Markakis in the third inning. Carpenter’s other complete game came on May 25, an eight-inning effort in a 3-1 loss at San Diego.

Angeles Dodgers. Baker (6-5) allowed six hits and walked one in 7 1-3 innings, dropping his ERA to 3.15 as the Twins bounced back from a 15-0 drubbing on Monday night to take two of three in the series. Rubby De La Rosa (3-3) also was impressive, giving up just one run and six hits in seven innings for Los Angeles. Revere hit a leadoff triple in the first and scored on Tsuyoshi Nishioka’s groundout. Blue Jays 2, Pirates 1 At Toronto, Yunel Escobar doubled home the tiebreaking run in the seventh inning and Brandon

Nolasco allowed five hits, and Hanley Ramirez and Logan Morrison homered as slumping Florida showed signs of life in a win against Oakland. Nolasco (5-4) overcame a shaky start for his first win in more than a month, which came the last time the Marlins were in the Bay Area against San Francisco. He struck out three and walked two for his fifth career complete game. The homers by Ramirez and Morrison off starter Guillermo Moscoso (2-4) were the first by Florida in eight days. —AP

Sports FRIDAY, JULY 1, 2011

ICC fends off pressure to change T20 format HONG KONG: The International Cricket Council will stick with a 12team format for the World Twenty20 championship despite complaints from the associate members and will push to ensure all national boards hold free and open elections before the next annual meeting. ICC chief executive Haroon Lorgat told a news conference at the conclusion of the annual conference Thursday that the T20 championship format had to stay after cricket’s international governing body rescinded a decision to reduce the number of countries contesting the next 50-over World Cup. The ICC reversed its decision to limit the 2015 World Cup to only the 10 full members and reinstated the 14-team format used at this year’s event won by India. But in turn, it has cut back numbers at next year’s

World Twenty20 in Sri Lanka from a planned 16 to 12, meaning only two associates will qualify. “We had to take this decision to make sure we retained the balance between the 2015 World Cup and the 2012 World Twenty20,” Lorgat said. But associate members have vowed to continue fighting for more participation in the shortest form of the international game. “The associates have resolved to press the ICC for more places at the 2012 ICC World Twenty20. We are unhappy. They give with one hand and take from the other,” said John Cribbin, Hong Kong Cricket Association secretary, who represents the associate members on the ICC chief executives committee. “We will challenge that decision, we won’t sit back,” added Cassim Suleiman, chief executive of the

Africa Cricket Association. “It’s about giving opportunity to everyone and globalizing the game.” Lorgat acknowledged the concerns of the associate members but said “Financial implications also had a role in this decision and it is now cast in stone.” He said the ICC realized expansion was central to the game’s development, but added that the new strategic plan for 2011-2015 was designed to build a bigger and better global game. Among the other decisions taken at the five-day conference: the 2019 World Cup will be scaled back to 10 teams with the top eight places awarded to the top-ranked teams and the last two places going to qualifiers; the Umpire Decision Review System (DRS) will be mandatory in all tests and one-day matches, with some modifications; and finalizing

the Future Tours Program for the next eight years. “It has been a very busy week in Hong Kong. Tough decisions have been made,” ICC president Sharad Pawar said. “I am confident we have made decisions which are in the best interests of the game. There have been challenges, as always, but the great community of cricket showed that it was ready and capable of facing those challenges.” One unresolved issue was the concept of scrapping the rotational policy for the appointment of the ICC president in 2014. That decision has been delayed until the executive board meeting in October. Both the Pakistan and Bangladesh Cricket Boards — whose turn it will be in 2014 to take over the ICC hierarchy of president and vice president — had opposed moves to abandon the traditional rotation of the posts


every two years. “This has been put on hold for the moment. We will address the issue again until we get the recommendations from our independent governance review,” Lorgat said. In the meantime, the annual conference unanimously supported a proposed to the amend to the ICC Articles of Association to insist on free elections and the independence of member boards. All member boards must implement the new provisions, which mean national federations should be autonomous and free from government interference, before the next annual conference in June 2012. “This is a significant step toward achieving best practice and, together with the independent governance review, I am excited by the commitment of the ICC to introduce best possible corporate governance,” Lorgat said. —AP

BARBADOS: India’s Abhimanyu Mithun (second from right) celebrates with teammates after taking the wicket of West Indiesí Darren Bravo during the second cricket Test match.—AP

Scoreboard at the close of play on the second day of the second test between West Indies and India at Kensington Oval in Bridgetown, Barbados yesterday: India first innings 201 West Indies first innings (overnight 30-3) A. Barath c Kohli b Sharma 3 L. Simmons c Dhoni b Kumar 2 R. Sarwan lbw b Sharma 18 D. Bravo c Dhoni b Mithun 9 D. Bishoo c Kohli b Sharma 13 S. Chanderpaul not out 20 M. Samuels not out 21 Extras (lb-2 w-5 nb-5) 12 Total (for five wickets, 37.3 overs) 98 Still to bat: C. Baugh, D. Sammy, R. Rampaul, F. Edwards Fall of wickets: 1-3 2-5 3-30 4-53 5-57 Bowling: P. Kumar 17-3-39-1, I. Sharma 10-431-3 (nb-2 w-1), A. Mithun 8.3-3-18-1 (nb-3), Harbhajan Singh 2-0-8-0.

Rain washes out play after India’s bright start BRIDGETOWN: India fast bowler Ishant Sharma captured two wickets in four balls on Wednesday to briefly put the squeeze on West Indies during a rain-shortened second day of the second Test in Barbados. Sharma, exploiting the extra pace and bounce on offer at a damp Kensington Oval, removed night watchman Devendra Bishoo and Ramnaresh Sarwan in the sixth over before the foul weather intervened and washed out the rest of the day. The start of play was delayed by 45 minutes after early morning showers soaked the outfield then was suspended after less than 13 overs were completed when the skies opened up again just after lunch. Although the rain stopped and the outfield was declared fit to resume, play did not start again because of bad light, leaving the match in the balance with three days

left. West Indies, already 1-0 down in the three-match series, had improved their precarious overnight score of 30 for three to 98-5, still 103 runs in arrears of India’s first innings total of 201. Shivnarine Chanderpaul was not out on 20 while Marlon Samuels, who replaced sacked vice-captain Brendan Nash, was unbeaten on 21 with the hosts needing a big partnership from their last recognised pair to have any real hope of gaining a first innings lead. Bishoo, who came to the crease for just one delivery the previous night, had scored an enterprising 13 off 18 deliveries when his luck deserted him and he fended a shortpitched ball from Sharma to Virat Kohli at gully who gobbled up the chance. Sarwan, content to play a more

cautious role, had made 18 when he was deceived by an inswinger from Sharma and was trapped lbw in the same over, the 15th wicket to fall in the first four sessions. Chanderpaul and Samuels shared an unbroken stand of 41 for the sixth wicket, giving the home team hope that they can save the series, when their progress was halted by another tropical downpour. While there was little action on the field, the International Cricket Council (ICC) was forced to intervene on behalf of two umpires following outbursts from Indian players. Suresh Raina was fined a quarter of his match fee after showing dissent when he was given out by Pakistan umpire Asad Rauf on Tuesday, in clear breach of the regulations. “There is a fine line between showing disappointment at a dis-

missal and demonstrating dissent but on this occasion Suresh was well over that line and his behavior was unacceptable,” ICC match referee Chris Broad said in a statement. Australian umpire Daryl Harper withdrew from next week’s final test after complaints from India captain Mahendra Singh Dhoni about his decision-making in the first test, which India won by 63 runs. The ICC said Harper had been unfairly criticised for his performances in the match but did not take any action over the matter, even though it accepted the umpire’s decision is one of the most sacred traditions of the sport. The ICC said Harper, a 59-year-old with almost two decades of experience as an international umpire, told them he was standing down from the match and would be replaced by Richard Kettleborough.

“In the wake of some unfair criticism, Daryl has informed us that he does not wish to stand in what would have been his final test,” ICC general manager David Richardson said in a statement. “The reality of the situation is that Daryl’s statistics show his correct decision percentage in tests involving India is 96 percent, which is considerably higher than the international average for top-level umpires.” Harper is not the first neutral umpire to make a premature exit from a series involving India after complaints from the game’s financial power brokers. In 2009, West Indian umpire Steve Bucknor was sacked by the ICC after India complained about his performance and threatened to pack up and go home when they lost a contentious match against Australia in Sydney.—Reuters

Sports FRIDAY, JULY 1, 2011

History hangs over Super 15 semifinals WELLINGTON: The Auckland Blues and Canterbury Crusaders will attempt to become the first teams since 1999 to win Super rugby semifinals on foreign soil when they face the Queensland Reds and South Africa’s Stormers in the penultimate weekend of the Super 15 season tomorrow. In what may be an eerie foreshadowing of weekend events, the Crusaders were among the last teams to achieve the feat when they beat the Queensland Reds in Brisbane in 1999. The Otago Highlanders repeated the achievement in the second semifinal of the same season, beating the Stormers in Cape Town. Tomorrow, the first-place Reds host the Blues in Brisbane and second-place Stormers are at home to the Crusaders in Cape Town. Each team carries its own historical baggage. Top qualifiers the Reds and Stormers have never won a Super rugby title in the professional era, though the Reds twice won the Super 10 competition in the mid1990s. The Crusaders will attempt to extend the most successful record in Super rugby when they appear in the semifinals for the 13th time and for the 10th-straight season. The Blues have the second-best record in the tournament’s history as three-time winners and three-time runners up but have

not been to the semis since 2007 and last won the title when they beat the Crusaders in 2003. The Stormers were beaten finalists last year and have therefore been to the final more recently than any of the other semifinalists: the Crusaders were last finalists in 2008 when they won a Super rugby championship for the seventh time. Perhaps the burden of history is greatest on the Reds. The Queenslanders have led the current tournament throughout the season and finished in first place for the first time since the advent of the Super 12 in 1996. In doing so, they completed their remarkable transformation under coach Ewen McKenzie. The Reds finished 13th in 2009 before McKenzie took over and guided them to fifth place last year and to No. 1 qualifier this season — their first semifinal since 2001. The Reds have carried a heavy burden through much of the past season, having to see off a string of opponents determined to prove themselves with a win over the tournament’s top-ranked team. They have still managed to put together their longest winning streak in Super rugby — seven matches before their loss to the Wellington Hurricanes in round 11 — and to extend a winning run at home to 12 games before their loss to the ACT

Brumbies in round 16. That long run of pressure matches might have steeled the Reds for Saturday’s playoffs and helped to compensate their recent lack of semifinals experience. McKenzie told Australian media that lack of big game experience became a problem only “if you keep talking about it.” “We’ve played some big games this year, including against the Stormers in front of a big crowd on foreign soil, and we got through that,” he said. “We played in front of our biggest crowd against the Crusaders and got through that. “And we’ve had a few close games, such as against the Waratahs, which we managed to deal with. So I’m not stressed about that side of it. We’ve confronted big circumstances this year, and have come out of them OK.” McKenzie said the Reds had players in key positions, notably halves Will Genia and Quade Cooper, accustomed to the intensity of test football. The expected return from injury of outside backs Digby Ioane, Anthony Faingaa and backrower Beau Robinson to also expected to provide strength. “It is important that in key positions, as well as in decision-making and leadership, we have experienced players,” McKenzie said. “Even our fringe players ... have played in front of big crowds. So I don’t

Red Bull rivals appear ready to write off F1 title MADRID: McLaren and Ferrari appeared ready to write off their Formula One title hopes after Red Bull’s Sebastian Vettel won the European Grand Prix for his sixth victory in eight races this season. The defending F1 champion stretched his commanding overall advantage to 77 points over McLaren’s Jenson Button and teammate Mark Webber, who finished third Sunday on Valencia’s street circuit. Vettel has won eight of the last 10 races stretching into last season, with Red Bull dominating qualifying in that time by starting first in 23 of 27 races. “It’s finished really, in the sense of the championship it’s almost over already,” McLaren driver Lewis Hamilton said after placing fourth. The British driver is fourth overall, 89 points behind Vettel. Hamilton, who has been under criticism lately, backtracked over his comments a day later by insisting that he had not given up on the season yet. Fernando Alonso sounded like a driver who had. Ferrari is firmly planted behind the leaders despite continued improvement that saw the twotime world champion finish runner-up for the second time in three races. “The championship is not in our calculations, it’s not in our hands,” the Spaniard said. “We have to go race-by-race and wait for some mistakes from Red Bull. The points difference is a lot so it’s not in our hands. “If anyone thinks we can win the championship being eighttenths behind (Red Bull) they don’t

Sebastian Vettel in action in this file photo. understand Formula One.” Alonso blamed poor winter development for putting Ferrari one month behind coming into the new season. Alonso is 10 points behind Hamilton who, alongside Button, is the only other race winner this season. “I don’t look at the (points) gap, it’s a long season,” said Vettel, who finished second in the two races he didn’t win. “We’ve had a phenomenal season and we have to continue that way, that’s our target. The target is still to win races. “I don’t look at the scoreboard much — you always need to take last year as an example,” said Vettel, who needed victories in the last two races to clinch his first F1 title despite Red

Bull’s dominance. Red Bull team principal Christian Horner said Vettel’s confidence was “sky high.” “At the end of the day he’s a perfectionist. It pushes everybody,” Horner said. “He wants to win. He’s very focused.” Hamilton’s skepticism wasn’t helped by his McLaren’s performance, which both its drivers agreed had not improved since Button’s victory in Montreal. “It seems as if we’ve taken a step backward in terms of performance,” said 2008 F1 champion Hamilton, who complained of a lack of downforce. “I think in the next race we’ll really struggle. I’m not looking forward to it, I’m really not looking forward to it.” — AP

think the players will be worried about the occasion ... it’s more about getting our game right.” The Blues, who were beaten 37-31 by the Reds in their last trip to Suncorp Stadium, will attempt to become the first team in 12 years to reach the final from fourth place. “It’s a big challenge, but an exciting challenge,” coach Pat Lam said. “The real pleasing thing is that we’ve put our names in there and now we’ve got an opportunity to make the final. “The Reds are the top team and we came up short last time we were there so it’s important we have good preparation for this game. The excitement of playoff rugby is big and we’re looking forward to it.” Stormers coach Allister Coetzee has named Conrad Jantjies ahead of Gio Aplon at fullback, hoping to nullify the kicking game of All Blacks flyhalf Dan Carter and to emphasize the defense which has been his team’s strength this season. “When you are looking to attack Gio is the better choice but this is a playoff game,” Coetzee said. “Conrad has got a big boot, he has been in big games before and I think that is a combination that has worked well for us and if we need any impact on attack we can still make the switch.” — AP

Tyre choice makes Alonso’s task tougher LONDON: Ferrari’s Fernando Alonso added another challenge to an already long list on Wednesday after Pirelli announced a tyre choice that could hit his chances of fighting for victory at next week’s British Grand Prix. The Italian company said it would be providing drivers with hard and soft tyres for the Silverstone race-the same combination last used at May’s Spanish Grand Prix where Alonso finished fifth and was lapped by Red Bull’s Sebastian Vettel. Silverstone is one of the fastest tracks on the Formula One calendar and Pirelli said the hard tyre was needed to cope with the sustained high speeds. “Today, the team told me about Pirelli’s tyre choices for the coming three races,” Alonso, a double world champion with Renault, said on the team website ( “Okay, for us that means one more challenge, namely being able to make all types of tyre work as well as possible,” added the Spaniard. “Anyway, the tyre choice is the same for everyone and there’s no point discussing if the pair of compounds chosen is more suited to one team or another. It’s up to the teams to adjust the cars to get the best out of the tyres both in terms of performance and life.” Champion Vettel has won six of the eight races so far this season and will be the big favourite at Silverstone, a track with high-speed corners perfectly suited to the characteristics of his Red Bull. The German is 77 points clear of his team mate Mark Webber and McLaren’s Jenson Button. Alonso is 99 off the lead with 11 races left. The tyre choice could also help McLaren, however, with Lewis Hamilton and Button finishing second and third in Barcelona. Alonso finished second around Valencia’s street circuit on a combination of soft and medium tyres and also in Monaco, where Pirelli brought super-soft and softs. Ferrari team principal Stefano Domenicali said at the weekend that “if you look at our pace with the softer tyres, you can see that our car is better, always performs better”. — Reuters

Sports FRIDAY, JULY 1, 2011

Goitom takes Spanish ‘tiki-taka’ to Sweden STOCKHOLM: The dazzling play of Brazil’s 1970 World Cup winners has been the benchmark for soccer brilliance for more than 40 years, but recent Spanish dominance at club and international level is drawing favorable comparisons with Pele’s old masters. As players and coaches around the world seek to emulate what they see on television, the influence of Spain’s “tiki-taka” short-passing style is spreading, as evidenced by a newly-born suburban club in Sweden’s capital. Kista Galaxy have been formed by a Swede with first-hand experience of what current Spanish soccer is all about-Henok Goitom of Almeria, who last season lost four times to Barcelona in cup and league, scoring once and conceding 19 goals. Goitom, who was born in Stockholm of Eritrean extraction, has played in Spain for the last six years and appreciates how Spanish soccer has transformed itself, ending years of under-achievement with victories in the World Cup, the European Championship, the Champions League and last weekend’s European Under-21 championship. All this success has come through a golden crop of players employing their shortpassing “tiki-taka” style, which reached stunning heights at club level when Barcelona destroyed Manchester United in last month’s

Champions League final to become European champions for the third time in six seasons. When Goitom looked around for a club in Stockholm that played the kind of technical football he admired he could not find it. So he started one himself. The idea was more about philosophy than results, but the results have not been at all bad. “If we in Sweden have accepted that Spain or England or Italy are better, why don’t we try to copy their style? That’s what I’m trying to do here,” Goitom told Reuters in an interview. Together with his family and friends, Goitom started Kista Galaxy with the intention of harnessing local talent and teaching them to play fast, technical football. “We started it to play football as we want to and train exactly as we want to, and no one can say to us ‘this is wrong’ or ‘that is wrong’. If we succeed or not it’s up to us, we don’t have to take anyone else into account. “Take the example of the Barcelona or Arsenal model-even if it’s very difficult to teach, you can at least try. If you fail that’s another issue, but you should at least try. “ Having entered the Swedish League pyramid on the bottom rung, Galaxy currently sit atop the table following an unbeaten run through the first half of the season. Eight promotions lie between them and

the top-flight Allsvenskan but, as clubs such as Wimbledon in England and Hoffenheim in Germany have shown, there is nothing to stop small, ambitious clubs reaching the top one day. Goitom has played for Real Murcia, Ciudad de Murcia, Valladolid and Almeria in Spain and believes that Swedish football can learn a lot from the game there. “I’ve seen these kids that play here (in Sweden), there are talents and what they need is the right leadership. The thing is not to try to be best in Sweden, but to try to be more like Spain.” When most players would be relaxing on a beach before the coming season, Goitom has been on the pitch in the shadow of the suburban apartment blocks where he grew up, teaching the skills he learned in Spain. “I try to do that because Spain is where I have played most. We shouldn’t be thinking ‘we are best in Sweden, and that’s enough’it’s not enough. You have to go out into the wider world.” Despite his desire to make changes, Goitom believes that there is much to admire in the Swedish set-up too. Asked if Swedish football had the coaches and leaders to produce quality players, Goitom nodded. “I grew up here in Husby and I turned pro, so obviously there are leaders who can do it. There are an awful lot of pros in Sweden.”—Reuters

Argentina expect Messi and company to deliver BUENOS AIRES: Hosts Argentina feel it is their “obligation” to win the Copa America with a team built around Lionel Messi and cannot stomach the idea of finishing behind arch rivals Brazil for a third time in a row. The old enemies met in the last two finals of South America’s top soccer tournament, with Brazil upsetting the favourites twice, but with home advantage at the July 1-24 event Argentina hope to win the trophy for the first time since 1993. While Argentina have Messi, fast emerging as Diego Maradona’s heir, at the heart of their attack, Brazil have their own brilliant player in Neymar, a potential new Pele who has already helped Santos win the Libertadores Cup at 19. “It is our obligation to win the tournament,” said Argentina coach Sergio Batista, who plays the high-scoring Messi in a roving centre forward role akin to his flexible position at Barcelona. Argentina open the world’s oldest active major soccer tournament at the modern, roofed Ciudad de La Plata stadium today when they take on Bolivia in Group A (0045 GMT tomorrow). They have a score to settle, having been thrashed 6-1 the last time they met in a World Cup qualifier at high altitude in La Paz two years ago during Maradona’s time as coach. An attack boasting Messi, Carlos Tevez and Ezequiel Lavezzi, with Gonzalo Higuain, Sergio Aguero and Angel Di Maria on the bench, should have little trouble brushing aside the Bolivians in a relatively easy group for the hosts. They also meet Colombia and Costa Rica. Brazil, with coach Mano Menezes going back to the basics of his country’s “beautiful game” after the pragmatic Dunga era, kick off against Venezuela in Group B at the

Lionel Messi celebrates in this file photo. same venue on Sunday (1900) before heading for Cordoba to play Paraguay and Ecuador. Menezes’ pair of aces are Neymar and his 21-year-old Santos team mate Paulo Henrique Ganso, an exquisite playmaker the coach hopes will spark Robinho, a veteran of Brazil’s 2007 victory, and Alexandre Pato up front. Uruguay come to the tournament on the back of their fourth place at the World Cup and with hardly any changes in personnel or style but a fresher 32-year-old Diego Forlan after a tough season in Spain that included an alarming loss of form. “There is a very strong (team) base

around Diego Forlan (and) he is in very good physical condition (after a refreshing break),” said coach Oscar Tabarez, one of the few coaches to survive a post-World Cup cull. Uruguay will also play a match in La Plata-an obligation for the seeded teams in the three groups-but only when they meet guest team Mexico there on June 12. They kick off Group C in the Andean city of San Juan against Peru on Monday (2215). Chile and Paraguay, who had good World Cups last year, especially the latter with their place in the last eight for the first time, will be tough opponents. — Reuters

Pyeongchang bidders hoping for third time lucky PYEONGCHANG: Cho Yang-ho knows he has one big advantage when it comes to winning over the IOC members who will select the host city for the 2018 Olympics. The South Korean bid leader can point to concrete evidence of a Winter Games already in the making at Pyeongchang, not just sketches or models. This is the third consecutive time that Pyeongchang has been in the running. On the face of it, the bid ticks all the right boxes but when the International Olympic Committee makes its decision on July 6 in Durban, South Africa, nobody here will be taking anything for granted. Munich and Annecy, France, are the other candidates this time. While Pyeongchang is considered a favorite, anxiety is increasing in the Taebaek Mountains as the decision day looms. Located 180 kilometers (110 miles) east of Seoul, Pyeongchang came heartbreakingly close to being awarded the 2010 and 2014 Games. It won the first-round ballot both times before losing by a final margin of three votes to Vancouver and four to the Russian city of Sochi. “During the last two bids, we showed many of our plans for the Winter Olympics on drawing boards,” Cho told The Associated Press. “This time, when the evaluation commission visited, we showed them the actual venues that will be used.” Seven of 13 venues are already completed. A positive technical report from the IOC’s evaluation commission, impressive levels of support, South Korea’s growing status in winter sports and an attractive position in the fastgrowing region of East Asia are all positive aspects of the bid. Just a ski-jump away from the Alpensia resort — sonamed to evoke images of “The Alps in Asia” — that would be the main hub for 2018, local residents are desperately hoping that Munich, seen as the main rival, doesn’t repeat what Vancouver and Sochi did in the voting. Waitress Kim Jin-hee’s expectations are typical of the 47,000 people in Pyeongchang. As she served customers the region’s famous beef at the Daekwalyong restaurant recently, Kim recalled the last campaigns as bitter disappointments. “It was so close. I felt just so sad for everyone after all the hard work, it was such a shame,” Kim said. “I was born and raised here and think that the Olympics would be great for the region and our children. Many people would come here and we would be known around the world.” Officials concede that Pyeongchang, which has a bid budget of $31.5 million, struggles for brand recognition against the likes of Munich, although that is less of a weakness than in the past. After two bid campaigns, there’s more international awareness of the city in Gangwon Province, one of Korea’s less developed regions. The name is now rarely confused with Pyongyang, the capital of the reclusive, communist North Korea. The IOC technical report released in May was complimentary of Pyeongchang’s bid. Its compactness was praised. All venues are within 30 minutes drive of each other. The $1.5 billion Alpensia resort would host the Alpine events, the main village and press and broadcast center. A second, smaller coastal hub comprising five venues — including figure skating — will be located a 20-minute drive down the mountain in Gangneung, a city of 300,000. By 2017, a highspeed rail line will link Seoul to Pyeongchang in 50 minutes, and is expected to carry the bulk of Olympic visitors. A new highway will reduce the current driving time from the capital, home to many of the weekend skiers who accounted for the bulk of the 1.85 million visitors to the area last season, from 2 1/2 to less than 2 hours. The overall budget, including transport infrastructure and venues, is estimated at $3.5 billion. Hosting the Olympics is what leading members of the bid team, and politicians, have described as a “national priority.” Cho and the bid team are also keen to position South Korea as the gateway to the growing Asian market. The Winter Olympics have been held in Asia twice before, with Japan hosting the games in 1972 at Sapporo and 1998 at Nagano. “There is huge potential for winter sports growth in Korea and Asia,” Cho said. “There are 650 million young people in the region. Winter sports are already growing very quickly, but it will jump much higher if we are awarded the games and not just in Korea but elsewhere in Asia.” —AP

Sports FRIDAY, JULY 1, 2011

Sharapova outguns Lisicki WIMBLEDON: It was all about the serves at Wimbledon yesterday, and it was Maria Sharapova and Petra Kvitova who survived the ups and downs on Centre Court to reach the final. The fifth-seeded Sharapova, who won the first of her three Grand Slam titles at the All England Club in 2004, overcame 13 double-faults to beat Sabine Lisicki 6-4, 6-3. Kvitova reached her first major final by hitting nine aces in a 6-1, 3-6, 6-2 win over Victoria Azarenka. Sharapova had two double-faults in her opening service game, the second to get broken. She had two more while trailing 3-0, but saved a break point and then won 12 of the final 16 games. “She played really well and I did quite the opposite,” Sharapova said. “It was tough. I just had to stay focused. I got back on track and just remained really focused throughout the rest of the match.” The turning point in the match may have come on that first saved break point. With Lisicki playing near flawless tennis through the first three games, she turned to the drop shot, which was so effective against Marion Bartoli in the quarterfinals. But this one went into the net, putting the score at deuce and giving the momentum to Sharapova. Even though Sharapova’s first serve didn’t get much better, her game once the ball was in play did, sending forehands and backhands into the corners and passing her outmatched opponent. Lisicki also got frustrated early in the second set as a light drizzle started to rain down on Centre Court. Trailing 0-30 and hoping to get a short reprieve, Lisicki asked chair umpire Louise Engzell to suspend play, but was denied. Three points later, it was 3-0 to Sharapova and Lisicki’s chances of reaching a first Grand Slam final were fading fast. Sharapova, who has not lost a set at this year’s tournament, had 18 unforced errors and only 14 winners. Lisicki did exactly the opposite, with 18 winners and 14 unforced errors. In the first match, Kvitova rode her big serve right into the final, hitting three aces in a row in the final game of the first set. “All match it was around both serves, so I’m very happy my serve was good in the third set,” said Kvitova, who had never won a match on grass before last year’s tournament, when she reached the semifinals. “Grass is my favorite surface.” Kvitova was playing in only her second major semifinal, and she dictated the play throughout the match. The Czech left-hander had 40 winners and 14 unforced errors, while Azarenka had only nine winners and seven unforced errors. And it was Azarenka’s serve that finished it when the fourth-seeded Belarusian committed her second double-fault of the day on match point.


Nadal aims knockout blow at play pal Murray

WIMBLEDON: Russia’s Maria Sharapova celebrates during the semifinal match against Germany’s Sabine Lisicki at the All England Lawn Tennis Championships. —AP

In the first set, Kvitova twice broke Azarenka’s serve and saved the only break point she faced. She finished the set with six aces. But Azarenka responded in the second, finally converting a break point in the second game to take a 2-0 lead. She held the rest of the way and evened the match, but couldn’t do much about her opponent’s serve. Kvitova lost only one point in the opening game of the third set, and then broke for a 2-0 lead. At 3-1, Azarenka had two break points, but Kvitova saved them both and then won the next two points to make it 4-

1. Kvitova is the first left-handed woman to reach the Wimbledon final since Martina Navratilova in 1994. Navratilova, who won the title nine times and was in the crowd Thursday, and Ann Jones (in 1969) are the only left-handers to win the championship dish at the All England Club. “We met in the locker room and she’s told me well done and good luck for the next match,” Kvitova said of Navratilova. “It’s very nice when I can meet her and speak with her.” The last lefty to even reach a women’s major final was Monica Seles at the 1998 French Open. — AP

LONDON: Defending champion Rafael Nadal, having got the better of Andy Murray in PlayStation duels, aims a knockout blow at his friend’s hopes of ending Britain’s 75-year wait for a Wimbledon winner today. The world number one Spaniard takes an imposing 11-4 record over the fourth seed into their semi-final, a repeat of the clash at the same stage last year which he won in straight sets. Nadal, chasing an 11th Grand Slam title, also got the better of Murray in the French Open semi-finals four weeks ago in straight sets before he went on to wrap up a sixth Roland Garros crown. But Nadal, who is taking painkillers to numb the pain in the left foot injury he suffered in his fourth round win over Juan Martin del Potro, will not under-estimate Murray. “Last year I beat him in the semi-finals, but it was a very close match, even if it was in straight sets. In the second set he had a set point with his serve,” recalled Nadal. “The match will be very difficult for me. I think he’s playing at a very, very high level. For me, the last few months of Andy have been very, very good. It’ll be a big challenge.” Nadal insists that he is not concerned by his injury, but admitted that he is driven by a sense of occasion as he eyes a third Wimbledon title to add to his 2008 and 2010 triumphs. “My foot is not fine. But we are in the quarter-finals of Wimbledon. It’s an emergency, so I had to play,” Nadal said. Murray has looked in fine form in his last two rounds, enjoying straight sets wins over France’s Richard Gasquet and Spanish serve-and-volleyer Feliciano Lopez. The Scot light-heartedly dismissed Nadal’s success at PlayStation as being due to his playing partner, tour pro Juan Monaco. But he sincerely believes that having successfully reached his third successive semi-final at the All England Club that this could be his year. “I believe I can win against him. I had chances last year. I was up a break in the third set and had break point on my serve in the second set,” recalled Murray, who will be playing in his seventh Grand Slam semifinal. “But I just have to have a better game plan. Sometimes it comes down to strategy. Sometimes it comes down to having more experience. I just have to go out there and play well and serve well.” In today’s other semi-final, second seed Novak Djokovic, a semi-finalist in 2007 and 2010, tackles French 12th seed Jo-Wilfried Tsonga, the man who sent six-time champion Roger Federer to a landmark defeat in the quarter-finals. Djokovic, the Australian Open champion, has lost just once in his last 49 matches, a run stretching back to Serbia’s Davis Cup triumph in December. But the 24-year-old Serb has a losing record against the 26-year-old Tsonga, having only won two of the pair’s seven meetings. Djokovic is wary of the danger posed by the swashbuckling Frenchman who served so consistently against Federer in his astonishing 3-6, 6-7 (3/7), 6-4, 6-4, 6-4 victory. After being broken just once, in the second game of the match, Federer was unable to carve out a single break point in the remainder of the tie as he slipped to his first ever Grand Slam defeat when having been two sets to love up. “He served really well. Tsonga was not under pressure,” said Djokovic. “He’s been playing great in the grass court season. He played really well at Queen’s, and now he’s been winning against top players. He’s very dangerous. ”Tsonga, who was a quarter-finalist last year, defeated Djokovic the last time they met in the last eight of the Australian Open in 2010. The French player now believes he can win a first Grand Slam. “Why not?,” he said, before explaining cryptically where the inspiration for his win over Federer came from. “From France, from the Congo, from my family, from my house, from everywhere. From here. That’s it.”—AFP

Sports FRIDAY, JULY 1, 2011


Argentina ready for the big kickoff BUENOS AIRES: Argentina hope to take the first step today to ending a trophy drought of almost two decades when they meet Bolivia in their opening Copa America pool match at La Plata outside Buenos Aires. Argentinian fans have ridden a dizzy rollercoaster in recent years. On the positive side, they have seen their youngsters capture two consecutive Olympic crowns and live in hope that the greatest current player in the world, Lionel Messi, can finally this summer transfer his effervescent Barcelona form to the national shirt. On the negative side, the seniors struggled to qualify for last summer’s World Cup in South Africa. Having finally got there under the passionate but controversial tutelage of former idol Diego Maradona, they shone brightly enough in the group phase only to be flattened by Germany thereafter. That heralded the start of the post-Maradona era under Sergio Batista, likewise a member of the 1986 World Cup-winning side. Since those heady days, a 1990 final loss to the Germans aside, Argentina have struggled to find a winning blend either at world or indeed continental level. Their 1993 Copa final win, courtesy of a Gabriel Batistuta double over Mexico, remains the team’s last senior honor. Even that triumph was a seatof-the-pants affair with penalty shootout wins in the quarters over Brazil and then Colombia in the semis. Since then the slate has been blank, hence the imperative to bring some cheer back to the home fans - many still digesting the shock relegation of River Plate, 33-times national champions but just relegated for the first time. Batista will have felt that shock demise as much as anyone having won the title with the club 21 years ago. Now the feeling is the squad can end the drought, says skipper and Barcelona stalwart Javier Mascherano. “We’re at home, in our own country, and that adds spice. Argentina must win to return to the top of the podium,” Mascherano told reporters.”It’s a long time since we won a title.” Asked if there was unfinished business to attend to after their World Cup implosion against the Germans, Mascherano was adamant. “No, we have a different coach, the squad has been revamped. It’s a new group, with new goals to achieve.” The former Liverpool star had earlier praised Batista as someone who “has very clear ideas and is able to pass them on.” After much bickering between Maradona and the Argentina Football Association (AFA), whose head, Julio Grondona, is scarcely a personal friend of the Pibe de Oro (golden boy), the AFA turned to Batista as the man to spark a revival in fortunes. He has the kudos of having engineered the 2008 Beijing Games win and now will expect to steer a path past the Bolivians - generally continental minnows but who did nonetheless thrash their rivals 6-1 in a World Cup qualifier, albeit at altitude in La Paz. Next up will be Colombia and Costa Rica, completing a group the hosts ought to win with something to spare if only for their firepower of Messi, Carlos Tevez, Gonzalo Higuain and Juentus target Sergio Aguero, as well as the wily Angel Di Maria. Friendly form is unlikely to prove much of a guide - but if recent outings are anything to go by Argentina are somewhat schizophrenic. Batista recorded early wins over both Spain and Brazil but those successes were followed by losses to Nigeria and Poland. —AFP

GERMANY: Japanís Azusa Iwashimizu (front right) catches the ball during training of Japan on the eve of the Group B match between Japan and Mexico during the Womenís Soccer World Cup. — AP

Japanese wary of Mexicans LEVERKUSEN: Title-hopefuls Japan will be wary to avoid a potential upset here today when they meet a Mexico side riding high in confidence in their second Group B match at the Women’s World Cup. The Mexicans pulled off one of the surprises of the tournament so far by holding England 1-1 in Wolfsburg to achieve their first-ever point in their second World Cup. The goal may have been a freak long-range effort from forward Monica Ocampo but it was only the second achieved by the Central Americans in the world tournament after veteran Maribel Dominquez 12 years ago. Although Japan coach Norio Sasaki’s ‘Nadeshiko’ are atop Group B after an assured 2-1 win over New Zealand in Bochum, he knows his side face a fight against a team they have played in friendlies and qualifiers in recent years. “Mexico are very technical. It will not be easy,” said Sasaki. “In recent years Mexico have gained power and improved. We feel it won’t be easy.” For the Mexicans, the point gained was a huge leap for-

ward as they remain in the running for one of the two group tickets for the quarter-finals. “We have taken a great step,” said midfielder Nayeli Ranger. “We showed we are a well organised and strong team.” Coach Leonard Cuellar is confident captain Dominguez will be fit after the 32-year-old was stretched off against England with a cramp. Dominguez, who is the only member of the team to have played in a previous World Cup in 1999, came back onto the pitch but was substituted soon after by Cuellar as a precaution.“I think it’s nothing serious. Hopefully I can be in the match against Japan at 100 percent,” she said. “I feel really good. It’s a great opportunity to play another World Cup and I hope that we can continue enjoying it all.” Cuellar is anticipating a “complicated” game against the 1995 quarter-finalists, who put the Mexicans out of the tournament twice. “We will have to work very hard to prepare for the game against Japan but we hope we can achieve something special,” he added. — AFP

Sweden out for second win against North Korea AUGSBURG: Sweden would love to lock up a spot in the women’s World Cup quarter-finals ahead of time with a victory over North Korea in their second Group C match here tomorrow. The Scandinavians dominated young and inexperienced Colombia in their group opener for three points and a victory over yet another young side in North Korea could push the Swedes into the final eight before having to face off with title contenders United States in the group finale. The 2003 runners-up Sweden and North Korea are no strangers at the World Cup as they have squared off in the group stages of the past two tournaments - Sweden winning both games, 1-0 in 2003 and 2-1 in 2007. “We’ve followed them closely. We’re meeting them in the third consecutive tournament in the same group,”

said Sweden coach Thomas Dennerby. The Swedish boss said he expects the North Koreans to use their usual fine passing game and hope to create chances - of which they had their share against the United States in their 2-0 defeat. “They will continue with their physical passing game. We want to do the same as (against Colombia), using our strength and not falling into the trap of short passes,” he added. North Korea urgently need at least a point against Sweden if they hope to advance to the quarters for the second consecutive tournament - after finishing ahead of Sweden at the group stage at China 2007. Head coach Kim Kwang Min said a number of his players were still dealing with the lingering effects of being hit by lightning three weeks ago back in North Korea and he hopes his

players can be in better fitness against Sweden. Kim believes his team can be confident following their solid showing against the Americans - especially in the first half and after the Americans pulled ahead 2-0, when they had a number of solid chances to score. “We showed to everyone that we can fight with the world number one (United States) and now we will have more confidence against our next opponents,” said Kim. Key will be North Korea’s endurance and strength in the second half - which limited their ability to implement the game plan against the United States. The Swedes will have to find an answer for the right side of the North Korean attack, as Kim Su Gyong and Song Jong Sun caused the American defence problems for most of the game. —AFP

FRIDAY, JULY 1, 2011

Argentina expect Messi and company to deliver Page 61

WIMBLEDON: Russia’s Maria Sharapova returns a shot to Germany’s Sabine Lisicki during their semifinal match at the All England Lawn Tennis Championships.—AP

outguns Lisicki Page 62

1 Jul  

Kuwait Times

Read more
Read more
Similar to
Popular now
Just for you