Adonis Diaries

Posts Tagged ‘(UNESCO)

The nerve center for world economic recovery: Middle East; (September 21, 2009)

All indicates that the major superpowers of USA, China, Russia, and Europe have agreed that the Middle East is the most volatile region that might disrupt the financial and economic recovery plan after the financial crash of 2008.  The USA and China have ironed out the short and medium term plans for economic recovery and financial stability. The USA and Russia have scraped plans for the mutual installation of ballistic missiles on the borders with Russia. The remaining recalcitrant European States such as Britain and the Scandinavian States are inclined and ready to join the Euro currency.

The immediate changes were the election of Barak Obama, the weakening of Russia Poutine power, the opening up of the markets among China, Japan, and South Korea, and a drastic increase in the funding of the Monetary Fund and the World Bank.

The USA and China agreed on the short term plan of keeping the same financial mechanism to proceed for another three years, the necessary time for both nations to clean houses.  China will resume its purchase of US Treasury Bills and its massive export policy to keeping the USA dollars strong; the Chinese currency will be permitted to be under valuated, and consequently to encourage the devaluation of the strong Euro. By the end of this interim period, a basket of currencies will replace the dollars for monetary exchange.

The medium term, after the initial three years of behaving as nothing changed, China will focus on its internal market and pump its huge savings into promoting internal consumption and increasing its budgets for health, education, and habitat.  The Chinese currency will valuate accordingly and world external commerce will have a better ground for competition on quality. The USA will refocus in these initial years on strengthening its industrial productive base so that taxes could be increased to slow down its national huge debt.

There are serious glitches that might retard or hamper the short term plan for world economic recovery.  First, China has to face accelerated problems that cannot wait three years before serious resolutions are undertaken. China is confronting the worst draught in years; the water from the gigantic dams are diverted toward the urban centers instead of alleviating the peasants; there are over 30 millions urban workers who were forced to return to their provinces and the number is increasing steadily; the latest ethnic clashes in the south-western province with Capital Urumqi is not yet contained and might spread to the borders with India.  There is a border conflict between China and India which is encouraging India to focus on its military budget.

Second, Germany is going solo from Europe on its policy of encouraging export at lower prices and focusing on reducing its national debt in order to be able to rescue Russia and Eastern Europe for a forecasted economic deterioration.  They all agreed that the Middle East region is the pivotal nerve center that could break the back of all these rational plans for world financial stability.

Third, the reality of the potential destabilization factor of the so-called terrorist activities with potential of using various means of mass destruction or biological arms are taken seriously.  The Middle East is reverting at this crucial period as the world nerve center for the proper realization of the short and medium term plans for economic recovery.

For over 60 years the US and the Soviet Union regarded the Middle East with indifference. They could always reach an understanding in due time. Lebanon could burn for 17 years and they didn’t bat an eye. The Palestinians were transferred three times and the world community didn’t bat an eye; a couple of millions to the UNESCO was sufficient to relieve the over one million Palestinian refugees in chantey camps. The Polisario independence movement from Morocco in Western Sahara (barely 200,000 inhabitants) was let to drag indefinitely.

Anwar Sadate of Egypt kicked out the Soviet in 1973 and the Soviet Union didn’t care that much: Egypt was a sunken barrel for constant support financially and militarily. Khomeini wants power in Iran? No problem; the Soviet will be traumatized and then we will order Saddam of Iraq to invade and destabilize Iran; eight long years of savage war dragged on until both country came to reason without the help of the superpower for ending this nonsense war; over one million died and more millions suffered life long injuries.

The Soviet Union was sucked in Afghanistan with no strategic interest or raw materials to count on, at a period when all the Middle East states were at peace with the Soviet Union. The Soviet troops were permitted to wage a losing war for 8 years while extremist Islam was financed, armed, and encouraged to prosper its extremist religious ideology.

There is this fundamental fact that the economic and military superpowers have to register.  In the Middle East there are two centers: Syria is the cradle of Arab culture and civilization and Iran is the cradle of Persia culture and civilization.  The naïve intellectuals are made to believe that the rivalries are among Moslem religious schism of Sunnis and Chiaas; it is basically a cover up of historical nationalist cultural differences. That these two nations have allied for the last 30 years is the best outcome that this region experienced for centuries. The US involvement in Iraq has retarded a genuine emergence of a peaceful Middle East capable of facing effectively extremist Islam.  It would be totally irrational that this union between Iran and Syria is not strengthened.  A democratic Iraq with a political system balancing the aspirations of both Arabs and Persians is the crucial center for developing a peaceful environment in the Middle East; the current nerve center for any world economic destabilization.

This rekindled zeal for an exclusive Jewish State is the last illusion that Israel is hanging on to: the Israelites are realizing that their existence as a State is already redundant. Israel had done its function in the last 60 years as a mercenary army for the colonial and imperialist west and is no longer of any value.

I want my hard cover book; (September 19, 2009)


            There is a rush to join the bandwagon of Digital Libraries.  Many developed Sates are budgeting for digitizing their national libraries, their archives, and work of arts.  There are several reasons for this rush to digitizing: first, the need not to lose ground to the Americans (project Galica); second, to compete with the “organizations outsider of the book market (commission Alire-SLF); and third, to avoid being distanced by the Big Players like Google, e-book, Amazon, Sony, Philips, Cybook, and the PDA (pocket portables).

            The United Nations (UNESCO) and the American Congress have launched in last April the World Digital Library.  Google contributed 3 millions dollars.  This project is added to the projects of Europeana and Google Book.  Google has already a digital library of 7 millions manuscripts.

            There are advantages to digitizing world knowledge.  First, it is too costly to keep maintaining old books; second, no publishing houses are ready to re-edit old books; and third, my favorite advantage, is that books and manuscripts of the dying languages would be preserved and studied for later generations.  Researchers would not have to travel to forsaken location, in dark rooms in monasteries and abbeys to peruse dusty and falling apart “sacred” treasures of long dead cultures.

            There are many other advantages; millions of serious injuries of falling off ladders for retrieving or dusting books, never read or intended to read, will be saved.  Millions of extra irrelevant “Study rooms”, stacked with dusty books used as just show cases, will be saved for storing electronic gizmos that children will play with instead of Barbie dolls and electric trains. The man of the family can find a smaller corner for smoking his tobacco pipe or opium.

            Those against this rush to digitizing are librarians and middlemen in the book business. Millions in the hard copy business will have to find alternative means for continuing in a job they like. It would be nice if private libraries and public ones start oral reading to audiences who hate to read, who cannot read, or have no digital equipments to keep updated.  It was stated that the French Revolution was initiated because it was the fashion in the 18th century France to read to audiences in saloons, libraries, and assembling places. Oral reading is the best medium to encouraging critical thinking, to familiarize people to argumentative discussions, and to exchange opinions based on specific topics. It would nice to return to community oral reading and share common attention spaces.

            Google can digitize its head off and I won’t care. I want my hard copy book.  I don’t care of hyperlinks designed for speed in search, browsing, and excessive distractions.  I need to leisurely read my hard copy, preferable hard cover, book to cogitate upon anytime I like to return to it.

            I suggest inventing a digital book that is exactly like a book with leaflets and cover; a book that smells paper; the leaflets feels like paper, and flip like paper; oh, and I want it black on white background.  Instead of a book mark a sliding harder sheet, attached to the book, can be super-imposed on the corresponding page and the word processing functions furnished can do all the necessary manipulations for saving section, notes, and even transmissions.  The two hard cover pages may contain the flat batteries and slots for the small CDs and accessories. See? I told you it is feasible.

            I am pretty sure the binding will not be glue based.  It should be feasible and with added facilities. The chip could hold several books with tables of contents; you click on a selected book and when you resume reading it advance to where you stopped.  The added advantage is that you won’t need to retype sections but copy paste and then edit. And why not, we could still attach a pencil like gizmo for the touch buttons of the “book mark” sliding sheet.  See? It is already done. I wanted my hard cover book and I got it! Japan or India must be working on my idea as this post is published.




March 2021

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