Adonis Diaries

Posts Tagged ‘Mediterranean Sea basin

Notes and tidbits posted on FB and Twitter. Part 87

Note 1: I take notes of books I read and comment on events and edit sentences that fit my style. The page is long and growing like crazy, and the sections I post contains month-old events that are worth refreshing your memory.

Note 2: If you are Not tri-lingual, you will stumble on Arabic notes, written in Latin characters and with numbers representing vocals Not available in Latin languages.

I wish that this savage civil war (this international war) in Syria has educated the nationalist and democratic Syrians to abolish the traditional dictum of “Obey before expressing your reservations on an order
Globalization is no longer working; not for the poor of the world and developing States; not for the environment; and not for world economic stability.” Joseph Stieglizt
The real culprits for the failure of globalization were the international institutions such as the World Bank (WB), the International Monetary Fund (IMF), and the World Commerce Organization (WCO).
An explanation loaded with injuries, fawl mouthing can be categorized as shitty rhetoric of the dumb to the dumbers.
Many States have better standard of living per capita than the USA and they still have much lower inequalities and far better health care systems.
Pas d’absolution sans reparation materielle, en espece ou en labeur.
If you agree for absolution, you still have the responsibility to do better materially, in money or in labor, for reparation
Le cure’ (the pastor): Moi je t’absoud. A toi de t’ absoudre toi- meme
 Avec tous ces milliards de gens, ecrire un monde tel que tu desire touche un monde reel que quelqu’ un vit de son mieux
Genetique: la force de gravitation humaine (habitudes) qui maintient deux individus solidaire sans rencontre possible.
On avance d’ une horreur a une autre moins tuante pour une vie plus drole et indifferente
Les reves et l’ ecriture sont pour le long terme. Les politiciens s’ en chargent pour les court termes
Psychanalist: Moi je t’ecoute. Guerit toi toi-meme. Je suis ton confesseur civil sans l’ autorisation de te fournir aucune absolution ou t’ offrir des recommendations pour faire moins de mal aux autres.
Psychanalist: Mediateur de tes horreurs personnelles, a toi de jongler au mieux mieux.
Certaines offenses permettent de trouver une juste milieu.
La traversee des frontieres et des langues nouvelles vieillit l’ esprit en renovant le corps.
E-Cigarette? Main Advantage is to eliminate the tar. Questions: 1) any bad chemicals added to the oil? 2) any particles of oil find their way to your lungs? 3) Are we inhaling deeper in lungs? 
Je n’ insiste pas qu’ on m’ explique ce que j’ aime. Meme pas ce que je n’ aime pas. Il faut que je decouvre un theme qui m’ invite a une explication. Comme: “Pourquoi tu me quitte?”. Une question neutre, justement.
C’ est marrant ce “Que sais-je”; apes une explication profusieuse d’ une idee
J’ etais en sixieme et j’ ecrivie ” Que sais-je” dans une dissertation. Le Frere Francais a adore’ cette phrase. Il a dit c’ est du Montaigne. Ce qui prouve que tout a ete’ ecrit, meme si tu n’a pas lu beaucoup
 Oui, tout a ete ecrit , meme les nouveaux concepts en sciences et technologie, avec des termes de l’ epoque. Ce qui ne prouve pas que les ecrivains avaient une imagination fructueuse. Le plus souvent, on ecrit n’ importe quoi qui semblent connecter a quelque chose de moderne.
Les ahuris: ceux qui ne font que semblant sans plus le savoir
Les cyniques: Ceux qui font du semblant, le sache et persevere
Peu sont qui ont maitrise’ le “faire semblant” et qui se considerent comme des malades.
Si la parole est notre system immunologique complementaire, l’ ecriture est notre confesseur charlatant.

Les engages sont-ils les plus blesses, les plus hysteriques? S’ ils ne croient pas a tout casser et ne le font pas, ce sont des passiones raisonables.

If there is a single stable theory of the spread of homo sapiens in the Mediterranean Sea Basin or the Black Sea, like in Europe, North Africa, Turkey and the Caucasus regions… is that the varieties of homo sapiens in the regions and in Africa flocked to Egypt and then to the Levant (Syria, Lebanon, Palestine) and constituted a melting pot for thousands of years before immigrating every which way.
Browsing through Twitter, I am under the impression that European books are translated to French, years before being translated into English.
It turns out that the local florist, whom the client doesn’t know, and who never use up the damaged stock and the fading flowers, never seems to have trouble affording better stuff.
Might seem non-intuitive: Don’t learn a skill that you believe is necessary for an urgent project. Your impatience will force you to skim and select your own chapters just to finish the project. The next time around, you’ll be re-learning the same abridged skill.

Any knowledge of “History of Geography” or world maps?

Do you know that the Chinese cartographers oriented the southern hemisphere to be on the top of maps? Why?

The northern hemisphere (close to where they lived), was very cold and foggy, and the Moguls invaded China from there, thus, devaluing this northern hemisphere and relegating it to the bottom part of a map.

The Arab cartographers adopted the Chinese orientation.

For example, in 1157, Al Idrisi sent a most complete map of 70 double pages to King Roger II of Sicily.  The map detailed the Mediterranean Sea basin.

Obviously, you have to turn the map upside down to visualize it as we currently see it.  For example, if the concept of civilized and barbaric countries were prevalent in these ancient times, as it is now, the southern countries will boast to belong to the southern civilized hemisphere!

In Medieval Europe, top of maps represented the eastern side of the world. Why?

According to the Bible, East was the Eden because Cain was chased eastward toward the void.  Additionally, a belt of fire cordoned off the East portion, not to be accessible to entrance.  Christopher Columbus described the Antilles Islands (East of Asia in his mind) as Eden where people roamed completely naked and rich in exotic fruits.

Mercator, a Dutch cartographer (1512-1594), re-oriented the maps, on the ground that the southern hemisphere is “heavier” than the northern counterpart according to the Greek tradition. Europe was to be located in the center of the world.

Do you know that continents were categorized in two major groups and intermediate regions?

For example, you had the “solid regions” (Sub-Sahara Africa, Northern America, Southern America, Asia, Europe, and Antarctica) and the malleable autonomous regions such as (India, Australia, Russia, and the island of Madagascar).  The other regions were shared portions such as (North Africa, Turkey, Mongolia, Middle East, Central Asia, Central Europe…).  You can guess the geopolitical theme for this division of the world.

Do you know that, even recently in the 60’s, the world was divided as solid geography, liquid geography, and gaseous geography?

For example solid geography (founded by Paul Vidal de la Blanche, 1923) relied on the material objects such as mountain chains, raw materials, types of rocks…in order to describe a country?

The Anglo-Saxon description of geography was of the “liquid kind”, emphasizing space and modeling…a flux representation.

In the 80’s, description of geography included the time-line or history of a region, and thus, gaseous geography!

Fernand Braudel demonstrated the interconnections between Time (history of a region) and the Space (land facts) in describing a region…

In this globalization period, the world is divided among the developed countries (West Europe, USA, Japan, China, Russia), the fast developing countries (Brasil, India, Turkey, Iran, Indonesia…supplying the cheap work force), and the third world supplying the raw materials and minerals.

For example, I tend to believe that major rivers, much more than mountain chains, are the determining dividing lines among autonomous countries and representing the character of people.

It is toward major water sources that mankind agglomerated and settled and founded urban centers.  Within two decades, water resources will be scarce and the most important element for survival.  Countries controlling the origin or sources of major rivers will enjoy huge leverage in the geopolitical tag of war. (Read link in note)

For example, China will never relinquish Tibet:  The Himalaya mountain chains are the sources of most of the major rivers flowing in China, South-East Asia, and even in the Ganges (India).

Turkey control the sources of the Euphrates and Tiger rivers flowing into Syria and Iraq.

Ethiopia control the Nile water source…

Note 1:  Article was inspired from an article in the French monthly Sciences Humaines, and written by Christian Grataloup

Note 2:

Part 2. Why the “Arabs” in the US are the most educated and the richest?

The latest statistics performed in the US, generated from the latest census, have sent shock waves in the US communities because of widespread discrimination of “Arabs” in the medias.  The statistics demonstrated the following facts, relative to the 5.3 million US citizens of “Arabic” descent:

1. 61% of the US Arabs earned the highest university degrees versus 30% of the average US citizens. The Arab citizens are mainly Lebanese (40%), Syrians (12.3%), Egyptians (12%), Palestinians (6%), Iraqis, North Africans… earned the highest university degrees versus 30% of the average US citizens

2. The average “Arab” in the US earn $54,000 versus $43,000

3. 57% of the “Arabs” in the US own single family homes versus 43% of the average ratio.

4. The Arabs in the US hold the highest posts and the most private businesses than the other US minorities, including European, Japanese, and Chinese.

John Stewart Kenneth said:

“The Arabs are starting to scare us with their intelligence and competitiveness.  Even our thinking are challenged and changed.  Once opportunities for freedom, justice were available to the US Arabs, they advanced in accelerated speed.  The US Arabs came from poor countries and reacted to their former indignities in their original countries by showing us to the second rank in our society.”

Moses Naeem, founder of “Foreign Policies” in the USA wrote an article saying: “Why Arab descendents are more successful than most ordinary US citizens?  Why are they more intelligent and richer? Why in such a hurry?”

Indeed why?

First, we need to differentiate among the Arabic speaking people, if explanations are to get to target.   The “Arabs” mentioned in the statistics are 70% from the Levant or Near East States (Lebanon, Syria, Palestine).  This trend is not restricted to the US: it is predominant  in Europe, Latin America, Australia and in most developed countries where “Arabs” had to immigrate to.

Simply because of the availability in opportunities for “freedom and justice”?  Is it that simple?

It is more complicated than this simplistic concept monopolized by the Western States.

The first immigrants at the turn of the century to the US were Lebanese and Syrians, called “Turks” because they held Ottoman passports at the time.  Immigrants had bought tickets with the intention of specifically “going to America, the USA”.

Most of them were diverted to Africa, Latin America, and to islands by ship captains, for efficient turnover of customers, at every port.  They were fleeing economic hardship, before starting to immigrate for political reasons after WWII.

The most educated and well-to-do among immigrants went to Palestine, and particularly to Egypt at the turn of the century, where they were the vanguard in creating daily presses, translating scientific research and the newer technologies,  and disseminating the notion of freedom of expressions and promoting the values of Western Europe in matters of democracy, republic, equality, constitutional political systems, and justice to all under the law…

In the 20’s and 30’s, Lebanese settled in Palestine:  Business was brisk, schooling was expanding and needing educators, and agricultural lands were relatively inexpensive compared to Lebanon.

People in the Levant and Egypt were, since antiquity, the backbone of civilization for millennium.  They remained the source of civilization and culture during the Islamic hegemony for 9 centuries after 640 AC.

Basically, the Levant was a crossroad to all the immigrants fleeing from the east, due to wars or economical hardships.  In period of coming calamities, the settled immigrants in the Levant would venture further westward, around the Mediterranean Sea basin.

These historical facts may not be relevant to the subject matter, but it is worth mentioning.  The human brain is flexible and adaptive:  Any second generation immigrant, supported by a network of extended family, from any origin he happened to be, is likely to succeed in communities with vast available opportunities in education, work, and sustainable and stable law and order institutions.

Why the Arabs of the Levant in the US are being so successful?

Never under-estimate the delicious varieties of the Lebanese cuisine:  “satisfy the stomach, and abiding by customs and traditions would follow“.  The immigrants constituted tight family communities, and barely diverted from the guidelines of visiting frequently and sharing in the frequent festivities.  The second generation witnessed the hardship and determination of their parents for securing the best education and immersion in the local communities.

The extended family community kept the children close to the nucleus and got all the practical and financial aid they needed to succeed.  Everybody in the extended family shared in the expenses and the success  stories.

Traditionally, what were considered good educational disciplines were engineering, medicine, and law.  Most important of all, babies drank politics from early childhood:  Political discussions were scenes of heated debate and the world was its theater. Thus, you are brought up to know a lot of geography and history.   Learning more than two languages was a must and communication is not a major problem.

The Levant immigrants have high feeling of competition and drive to acceding to higher status compared to the neighbors (whoever is the neighbor):  Humility is not their strongest trait (not many earned Nobel Prizes!)

The Levant immigrants are not famous for creating sustainable institutions, associations or organizations. It is these frequent gathering of the extended family, for one occasion or another and sharing good food, that provide the basis for this large network of “soft power” among acquaintances for referrals and disseminating intelligence pieces of new programs, policies, and regulations that facilitate grabbing opened opportunities to wants and wishes.

Note:  With the influx of immigrants from the Levant countries, Egypt became the main State for writing Arabic books and magazines.

In the 1950’s Lebanon became the printing press for the region. It is thanks to the Iraqi people, the most voracious readers that the cycle of writing and publishing flourished.

It is because the Iraqis were the most learned in the region that Iraq had to be destabilized, invaded and dismantled…




April 2020

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