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A little courtesy in international affairs never hurt
anyone. Netanyahu would not have lost much in
congratulating the new Iranian President
and in
wishing him and the Iranian people success in an,
admissibly, difficult international climate for Iran.
At least, the veteran Israeli President, Shimon Peres,
more composed and, perhaps, with more wisdom
and more penetrating insight than the Prime Minister,
did not think it inappropriate to express his hope
for more conciliatory policies and for improvement
in regional relations.

Given the understanding that there are many differences
in the Iranian and the Western approach towards a wide
variety of issues and many unresolved bilateral problems,
the Iranian People's election of a moderate, that has
already made some statements to the effect that he is
going to constructively engage Iran with the community
of nations, and that will, hopefully, refrain from a
mindless and pointless aggressive rhetoric, is a hugely
positive sign, especially in contrast to the recent past.
I honestly and wholeheartedly wish the Iranian People
and their newly elected President success
; the success
of such an important country, from the historical,
cultural, political and geographical point of view, will
contribute decisively in a better, more peaceful and
more fraternal world, a hope of all of this world's

I am perplexed and disconcerted by Barack's approach to
the Syrian crisis and developing situation. While I neither
support nor oppose unequivocally the latest decision of
providing more military materiel to the rebel forces, I would
think that the only remaining superpower would have had
something better to offer for ending the crisis than a piece-
meal incoherent approach full of reluctant and unconvincing
. How is it possible for a country of this high
of a stature with such an international influence not to have
the right mechanisms both in State and Defense to come up,
together with regional and global support and commitment,
with a clear coherent strategy for ending this bloodshed and
clearing a path for a transition to a fully democratic system,
based on full respect for Syrian sovereignty and self-rule,
without any future foreign interferences?

When 100,000 people lose their lives in a regional conflict
with much greater ease than was happening several decades
ago, in a much more retarded climate of international co-
operation and a much more underdeveloped framework of

international legal affairs, and our United Nations is just
reporting, there is something fundamentally wrong.
The main role of our United Nations is to prevent those
conflicts from flaring up and to safeguard human life and
protect human dignity. When in Syria, or any other part of
the globe, carnage, that would have been deemed utterly
unacceptable in places favored by the few and powerful of
this world, is condoned or even enabled, our United Nations
is sadly and terribly at fault. For such fundamental failures,
the Secretary General has a non-negotiable responsibility:
he either has to find a breakthrough or, if he deems that
the powers-to-be, instead of aiding, are inhibiting his main
fundamental and crucial role as a peace maker and keeper
of world peace and stability, he has to resign and offer a
transparent and credible explanation of how and why this
primitive state of world affairs can still exist under the
watch of the organization in the political international
arena of the 21st century. Us, the United Nations citizens
have much higher expectations and want to be represented
by officials that have the energy, the guts and the audacity
to rise up to the difficult, demanding and challenging tasks.

If the Secretary General and his team are not up to it, they
should let someone else at least try to fulfill those
responsibilities... Enough is enough is enough...

A very prudent and balanced unanimous decision by the
U.S. Supreme Court is showing the way forward for both
the practice and the ethics of gene research as related to
gene patenting.

Prime Minister Erdogan may be unhappy with the protesters
out at Taksim for obvious reasons; the inner motivation, the
political activism and the social and political sensitivities of
the Turkish youth are, however, extremely refreshing
; in a
world where much of the youth in the developed and many
of the developing countries are characterized by apathy and
passivity, the citizens at Taksim are, for all of us, a reminder
that the people of this world do indeed realize that the
democratically elected governments, OUR governments, are
there to serve us and the public interest in issues including
promotion of culture and environmental stewardship and
long term sustainability, and not just to take care of fiscally
related matters, however important those may be, and that,
unfortunately, all too often the latter take precedent to the
detriment of or disregard for the former.

Hollande's latest remarks will do little to alter, at least the
perception, if not the substance, that the Élysées officials
are secluded and completely out of touch with realities on
the ground; nor will it change the Japanese point of view,
which is based on hard facts and cold realities, rather than
wishful rhetoric emanating from unreliable sources...
"the crisis in Europe is over"?????
"we have all the instruments of stability and solidarity"??????

Instead of President Obama going to the California meeting
with President Xi
empowered by America's values, trying
to influence the Chinese towards higher respect for human
rights, freedom and transparency and confronting them
about causing an almost open electronic warfare with their
cyber-espionage methods, the Presidency, under the pretext
of national security, has itself adopted China's techniques

in spying on its citizens, thus betraying our own traditions
of cherishing and upholding individual liberties and of
championing civil rights both at home and globally...

Nelson Mandela is again hospitalized in Pretoria, this time
in serious condition.
Sooner or later the world will have to
learn to live without his towering presence. Sad as that may
be, what is actually even sadder is that there has not been
any other politician in the Mother Continent (and, perhaps,
in the entire globe) that has even remotely approached the
dedication, determination and selflessness of that Greatest
of Leaders.

I recall Prime Minister Erdogan a few years ago claiming
that Turkey was a mature democracy not afraid to engage
into a meaningful dialog with its minorities and ready to
offer some degree of autonomy and self-government to
its Kurdish citizens. How ironic that, now on the defensive,
probably on his way to the benches of the opposition, his
current statements, accusing Twitter of being a "menace"
spreading "lies", reveal that he no longer believes in that
maturity of the Turkish democracy.
A truly mature democratic regime is not afraid of and shows
respect for the role that social media have to play in ensuring
open dialog and transparency, despite occasionally becoming
originators or propagators of lies and misinformation. Such a
democratic regime has nothing to lose by the freedom of the
various forms of the media. He can face them and respond to
them head on with a straight face and a clear consciousness...

The pot called the kettle black...
Είπε ο γάϊδαρος (literally) το πετεινό κεφάλα...

If this report is true, then it will be one of the,
admittedly, few but, nevertheless, disheartening
occasions in which the Michigan Governor, has
not been entirely forthcoming and transparent
in his machinations with the state electorate.

It is to his credit that he has mostly established
a reputation of working openly to achieve the
right political balance for the benefit of the state

and it is to his discredit when these underground
secretive committees are working away veiled
from the public eye under his auspices
without much of an opportunity for the people
of the State to discuss their business and to
comment on the relative merits of the proposals
under consideration...

Out of the political chaos and the charlatanism of
the Italian politics, largely a legacy of the Berlusconi
administration style and quality of government, a
brightly shining ray of hope emerged at last
: the
solidifying enormous stature of Presidente Giorgio
Napolitano will be there to guarantee a semblance
of stability and, perhaps, a safe passage away from
the terrible effects of Berlusconism...

This agreement is a historic agreement; It neither forces
Serbia to recognize Kosovo nor does it force Kosovo to
accept the secession of the Serbian enclaves in northern
Kosovo (which of course have an equal right under
international law to secede from Kosovo as Kosovo
itself had to secede from Serbia). What is of very great
significance here is that these two countries or entities
have the unique opportunity to become part of the wider
European family under the auspices of the European
Union and this is a political umbrella under which unity
is a de facto datum and ethnic disagreements, uncivilized
rivalries and secessionist tendencies have no meaning
and no place. This ideal in progress is one of the biggest
successes and of the biggest appeals of the Grand
European project and the Chancellor of Germany,
the President of France and the Prime Minister of the
U.K. should take a moment to fully grasp and digest
its significance which they occasionally seem inclined
to underplay for various expedient reasons...

Οι υπόδουλοι είναι τα χειρότερα αφεντικά και,
δυστυχώς, οι υπό εκμετάλλευση και υποδουλωμένοι
Έλληνες του σήμερα προσπαθούν να εκμεταλλευτούν
και να βγάλουν το άχτι τους με τον πιο άγριο και
απάνθρωπο τρόπο, στρεφόμενοι βάναυσα ενάντια
σε πιο ατυχείς και καταφρονεμένους συνανθρώπους
τους. Ντρέπομαι γιατί τρείς χιλιετίες πολιτισμού
και πολισμικής επικοινωνίας μεταξύ της Μεγάλης
Ελλάδας, της Μέσης και της Άπω Ανατολής και
της Δύσης άφησε τον σύγχρονο Ελληνικό πολιτισμό
ακαλλιέργητο και τραχύ, όπου ατυχία και ανέχεια
δεν εκδηλώνονται μέσω συμπόνιας και αλληλεγγύης
παρά μέσω απανθρωπιάς και ανείπωτης, φριχτής,
αλόγιστης εκδικητικότητας εναντίον ομόμοιρων,
συμπορευόμενων συνανθρώπων... Ντρέπομαι...

A BIG POLITICAL NO to this patent
. I have the
suspicion that it will usher in a new unfortunate era
of incessant legal proceedings standing on the way
of scientific and medical innovations in the field.
Even by just frustrating, delaying or discouraging
such innovations, its effect will be a huge blow to
those, who mostly under public funding and personal
sacrifices, have made such progress possible in the
last few decades.

A reasonable analysis of the available evidence based
on international events and developments leads to the
uncertain, but probable, conclusion that, vis-à-vis its
international and treaty obligations, China acts mostly
according to the letter of the law, but, either directly
or by proxy, is indifferent about the spirit of the law;
sometimes even willing to bend or break it when it
perceives that such actions serve its own short or
longer term interests, position and stature. The proxy
issue is a convenience that enables China to "say the
right things" on the international political arena, thus,
keeping a facade of legality, which is necessary
especially because of its status as a permanent member
of the Security Council, while, at the same time, being
able to engage into any actions it deems appropriate
for its interests without incurring a direct blame or
assuming direct responsibility. This leads one to believe
that China is a less reliable actor and partner towards
international peace and security than it appears to be...

It is very exciting when one hears that, at last, the interests
of a city, a state, a country and, frankly, common sense,
triumph over the interests of a single businessman, business
family or business entity.
On the other hand, the fact that
the entire weight of a 99%-in-the-right argument, including
the interests of an entire country and the interests of an
entire state and the benefit of the overwhelming majority
of its citizens, is needed to tip the balance over the special
interests of that single business group is a sad reminder of
how much effort needs to be invested to convince others
even about the most obvious and beneficial things, when
even a single, but financially powerful and politically
connected, person or entity wishes to follow the most unrea-
sonable, selfish and self-serving route against common sense
and the common good. Thus, even for achieving something
that should have been straightforward and easy to do in the
first place, I am afraid that one has to assign some credit,
once more, to the Michigan Governor for his determination
and his stubbornness and to the Canadian authorities for
helping push the project through.

Bravo to Leonard Lauder for the huge donation of
extremely significant cubism masterpieces to the New
York Metropolitan.
His family fortune has been put
to an extraordinarily beneficial use for the cultural
education and appreciation of the public. Despite,
the private ownership of these works, the way these
artists and their most important contributions have
affected our humanity, have made them an integral
part of our global cultural heritage and, needless to
say, there is, perhaps, no better place where to have
them preserved and exhibited than the Met in NY.

"Not a failure of the teachers"? What kind of a scam of
the earth of a lawyer can stand in front of the parents and
the people of Georgia and even think of uttering such

Ο Κύπρου Χρυσόστομος θα έπραττε πανσόφως εάν
περιόριζε τις ρητορίες του στα περι του ποιμαντικού
και φιλανθρωπικού έργου υπό την ευθύνη του
άφηνε τα πολιτικά στους εκλεγμένους πολιτικούς, τα
οικονομικά στους υπεύθυνους οικονομολόγους και τα
υπόλοιπα τεχνικά και τεχνοκρατικά ζητήματα στους
επί τα ανάλογα εκπαιδευμένους τεχνοκράτες. Υπάρχει
λόγος σοβαρός για τον οποίο οι μαθηματικοί μελετούν
μαθηματικά, οι φυσικοί φυσική, οι χημικοί χημεία,
οι οικονομολόγοι οικονομικά και οι παπάδες παπα-


The arguments at the Supreme Court on the right of same-sex
partners to marry
(the essence being them being recognized as
having exactly the same rights and responsibilities associated
with this institution as heterosexual couples do) have an eerily
familiar vibe reverberating from our recent and not so recent
history concerning the struggles surrounding human rights and
race equality. Unfortunately, they show how little and how
shallowly indeed we understand our history and how little
we have digested and how weakly we espouse the power of
our constitutional rights...

The Cypriot officials have to be careful to tell their constituents
the truth about what happened. The statement of the Chairman
of the Parliament's Finance Committee that ``they've destroyed
our banking sector" is blatantly false and intentionally misleading
The Cypriot banking sector destroyed itself and what the new
European emergency decision is achieving is not the already
attained self-inflicted destruction but, rather, an avoidance of
a free fall by creating some friction and causing, thus, the effected
destruction and consequent fall to be a controlled one. The
politicians and the culprits in Cyprus should look primarily
in the mirror if they want to honestly assign blame and should
stop disproportionately blaming outsiders for their plight...

When these things occur and when people like this are
so shameless and some conservative voters are ready
to forgive them
, one cannot stop but wonder what are
the manifestations of applied conservatism in America.

Is an applied conservative someone that, while raising
his left hand to vote for the castration of his fellow
citizens to prevent "immoral behavior" and "defend
family values", is also raising his right hand to swipe
his credit card to purchase a trip to a safe haven, under
the illusion of complete discretion and secrecy, where
he intends to fulfill all his own long suppressed urges
and desires? It seems like a lot of voters on the right
are willing to at least accept, if not embrace, this
definition and to vote accordingly...

The government of Cyprus and its lenders are at fault
imposing the levy on bank deposits on the island and,
in my opinion, in breach of the Universal Declaration
on Human Rights, adopted by the U.N. General
Assembly on December 10, 1948
. Article 17(2) of the
states clearly and unequivocally that ``No
one shall be arbitrarily deprived of his property".
Therefore, the only acceptable way to mend public
finances and to re-balance deficient budgets, as well
as to fill-in monetary deficiencies such as faced by
the Cypriot banks, is for the government and its
lenders to adopt drastic measures in terms of cutting
public expenditures by shrinking the public sector
and by reducing employee compensations, i.e., by
manipulating future commitments, rather than by
retroactively instituting cuts by depriving people
of their already acquired property. This is the path
followed in all other bailouts and this is the one
that should be followed in this case as well.

The problem with many U.S. politicians, especially those
on the right, is that they show compassion only when an
issue hits home and they lack the ability to abstract and
be compassionate towards the general population when
an issue does not affect them personally in some way
We have seen countless examples of this phenomenon:
Politicians preaching abstinence and chastity until they
are revealed as incapable of controlling their own desires,
politicians vigorously and aggressively prosecuting
prostitutes and their clients until their names are found
on the lists, politicians supporting restrictions on the sales
and consumption of alcoholic beverages until they
themselves are caught drunk driving and now, once
more, an example of a politician opposing gay marriage
up until his own son comes out and, perhaps, expresses
a desire to marry. Why is it not possible for the people
pretending to be representatives of the people to think of
all other human beings as brothers and sisters, as persons
who, despite the fact that they were not born of the same
blood, have responsibilities, needs, desires and hopes not
unlike the ones that they themselves and their own kin do?

Has Jorge Bergoglio been a heroic anti-junta activist
during Argentina's most recent darkest hours?
fair answer seems to be definitely not. Has Jorge
Bergoglio been an eager collaborator with the military
regime or in any way bearing the prime responsibility
for crimes against humanity during Argentina's most
recent darkest hours?
The fair answer seems to also
be definitely not. First, I think that it is unfair to ask,
on the one hand, for a pope to be behaving with the
humility and unpretentiousness of an ordinary human
being while, on the other, placing on him the demand
of a super-human heroism, the kind of quality that it
takes for one to sacrifice substantially to oppose the
armed power of a military state. Furthermore, one
should bear in mind that it is highly unlikely that it
would be possible among that group of 100+ cardinals,
mostly conformists with full bellies and with very little
in terms of unfulfilled personal desires, to find real
revolutionaries, with uncompromising activist attitudes,
willing to put their comforts and personal well-being
on the line for the sake of democracy and freedom.
Such a stance requires a special creed of a person and
I do not think that a person of such an extraordinary
selflessness would have ever risen to the necessary
political power required to occupy the seat of Saint

The Catholics and the rest of the world hope that the
election of Cardinal Bergoglio from Buenos Aires as
Pope Francis I will fill the sails of Catholicism with
favorable winds and will contribute as a spiritual,
social and political force decisively in a global move
towards peace, fraternity and cooperation between
all nations on earth and their governments.

It would be a nice surprise if the new pope was one of
the outsiders rather than one of the frontrunners. How
about Manila or Vienna?

The only person that does not believe (or at least does not
admit so) that Afghanistan will be in an even worse shape
after the reduction of the NATO forces in 2014
is Hamid
Karzai. And Afghanistan will be in worse shape, contrary
to what Karzai insists on claiming, not because of the US
forces or the Taliban insurgents, but, to a large extent,
because of the incompetence and the corruption of his
own government and because of his own mental instability,
intellectual stupidity and political retardation. There is
simply no other way to explain his wishy-washy attitude,
his fluctuating destabilizing allegiances, his terrible choice
of loyal domestic (and occasionally foreign) partners and
his proclivity for making absurd statements showing that,
often, his mouth either operates without any mental
pre-processing whatsoever or, simply, runs before his
mind, thus contradicting his everyday actions and his
apparent mode of governing.

The international legal framework should be the guiding
framework in which all bilateral and multilateral resolutions
of differences take place and international law should be
employed as the basis for the resolution of all conflicts.

These principles that the Greek Foreign Affairs Minister
so eloquently emphasized using the phrase ``Ευαγγέλιο
είναι για την Ελλάδα το Διεθνές Δίκαιο
" (``For Greece,
International Law is the Gospel
") should be followed
not just by Greece and Turkey in resolving all their
current disputes, but also, and perhaps especially so,
by all Far Eastern Countries and Nations, including
China, Indonesia, Japan, the Philippines, Taiwan and
all other nations in the Western Pacific, trying to amicably
resolve all territorial disputes in a manner that promotes
and enhances brotherhood and cooperation among the
citizens and the governments of these (and all) nations.

The BBC reports today that the Filipino observers of our
United Nations Disengagement Observer Force in the Golan
have been freed
by the Syrian rebel group that had been
holding them hostage in Jamla. It was the right thing to do
and my hope is that the acknowledgement of this faux pas
on the part of the group will send a message to all other
complainant, belligerent or aggressive sides that, regardless
of any other actions, peaceful or military, that they decide
to pursue, the soldiers and envoys of our United Nations,
in particular, and all other diplomats, in general, around
the globe are not and should not become targets or objects
of manipulation for amplifying a point (any point) of view.

Whoever you are, wherever you come from, lay your hands off
the blue berets. These are OUR soldiers, these are OUR envoys.
It took our civilization a few millennia to reach the maturity that
enabled us to sit together, to take careful decisions of wide
acceptance and globally sanctioned measures towards ensuring
stability, peace and prosperity for all. The blue berets are the
messengers of hope of these pioneering world achievements in
global cooperation.
Do not even think of attacking them or
holding them hostage. These actions touch adversely our
fundamental sensitivities as political and social beings and
are not going to enhance your political or other positions,
nor  increase anyone's sympathy in support of your goals
and aspirations (even the just ones) in any way.
FREE SAFELY the blue berets and SHOW RESPECT to
our United Nations and the missionaries of its Secretariat.

DEMANDING THIS without compromise.

What a pleasure it was to listen to the extraordinary combination
of depth and simplicity of thought and of expression of the retired
Associate Justice of the U.S. Supreme Court Sandra Day O'Connor.

It was a joy to absorb the thoughtfulness and elegance by which
she answered the questions she thought relevant and interesting,
and the gracefulness by which she brushed aside the fluff that
sometimes journalists either like to, or simply have to, use to fill
up page space or air time with. The realization that some people
in positions of power have such a level of education, such elegance
of character and such an ability makes one more optimistic and
hopeful about the future of our country and of its public life.

Μετά τις κουταλομαχίες των '80 και των '90, τώρα η πλήρως
αναμενόμενη σμίκρυνση και το συνεπαγόμενο αδιαχώρητο, το
οποίο καθίσταται εντονότερο λόγου αποκτηθέντος όγκου
κατά τις κυβερνώσες δεκαετίες, προκαλούν ανισορροπία και
έκρυθμες συμπεριφορές οι οποίες κατά διαστήματα οδηγούν
και σε βαρέων βαρών στελεχομαχίες...

Since arguing with the leadership of the "Golden Dawn"
seems to be a lost proposition, I direct this plea to all young
Greek parents: DO NOT SEND YOUR KIDS to the schools
set up by Golden Dawn
. The mission and the responsibility
of a school is not to shield children from the realities of their
surroundings and close their eyes, ears and minds to the
currents and influences of their times.

The role of school is to open the kids' horizons and make them
aware and appreciative of the pluralism of the society they live
and will be asked to navigate in and to contribute to and of the
advantages and the richness that come from the confluence and
constructive synthesis of aspects of multiple cultures and ideas
Greece is the beacon of Western Civilization in part due to its
historical role as a absorber, critical examiner and synthesizer
of ideas of other cultures from the far east to the far west and
younger Greeks, through appropriate education, have a unique
opportunity to exploit anew this unique historical and cultural
environment for new achievements, new successes and renewed
global recognition. DO NOT ALLOW the old-fashioned and
bankrupt political and social ideals of the Golden Dawn to rob
our children
from these fascinating and promising prospects
and opportunities.

Detroit has serious financial problems that its own local
political establishment has been unable to cope with for
some time now. It is my humble opinion that, being
unable to reign on its big deficits, the Detroit politicians
would have been eager and willing to get some constructive
external advice and help. Therefore, to claim that Governor
Snyder's offering such help is a political decision with some
secret underlying ulterior motives sounds very unconvincing.
Moreover, it just seems to me that the governor would be
willing to discuss with the city appointing someone that
would have the confidence and the trust of both sides and
the experience, determination and appropriate authority,
balanced with firm supervision, so as to be able to deliver
some desperately needed results relatively quickly. All of
us, residents of Michigan, want this to happen and wish for
Detroit the best, because, simply put, the destiny and well
being, economic, social and cultural, of our flagship city
coincides with the destiny of our State and of the entire
Midwestern region.

I think it is rather improper for a U.S. Supreme Court Judge,
and for that matter, any other judge to employ at the bench
terminology that is politically charged and judicially meaning-
less. Unless the expression "racial entitlement" does have a
precise legal meaning of which I am unaware, I think that
its use by Associate Justice Scalia was tactless, ungraceful
and unproductive, to say the least. It is perhaps, an indication
that his mouth runs occasionally before his mind or that in his
mind he is justified to possess a political agenda at the bench,
which would lead to the conclusion that one would be naive
to expect politically unbiased, purely logically supported legal
analysis of presented arguments on his part...

This article of BBC news about a class action lawsuit that is
being filed in the U.S. against InBev for watering down its
Anheuser-Busch branded products
fails to point out a very
simple, but fundamental, issue: The claim of the lawsuit
does not appear at all to be an "I said - You said"-style
litigation. In an era, when neither blind belief in the Gods
of Mount Olympus nor alchemy are used to unquestionably
justify our prejudices or our observations concerning
chemical processes and where chemical analysis is extremely
precise, one would have thought that BBC news would have
pointed out that, regardless of what the litigators and the
company executives claim, one could buy 1000 randomly
selected bottles of Budweiser, Michelob, and whichever other
products are being suspected as tainted, and perform a
detailed chemical analysis as to the alcohol content per
volume. If that is found to be consistently lower than what
is claimed on the bottles' labels and/or company ads, then
the company should be fined for breach of trust and for
mislabeling its products; otherwise the issue is nonexistent,
just another gimmick of litigators for amassing even more
wealth and attention...As simple as that.

I was very surprised to find out that in Mexico's school system,
teaching positions can be "sold or inherited" through, what
are apparently, bribes paid to the teacher union to enrich its
But should I have been really surprised? Maybe
one should have fully expected something along these or
similar lines to be happening in a politically and socially
under-developed, chaotic and semi-civilized country (where
drug cartels reign and whose citizens cast blame habitually
on others rather than facing their own responsibilities and
fixing their own shortcomings affecting the condition of
their country) that has fallen way behind other countries
in the Continent in terms of updating and synchronizing
its state apparatus, polities, and effectiveness and efficiency
of its government and combating cronyism, favoritism and
corruption in public life.

On this occasion of the birthday of Demetrios Vikelas, it is sad
to be reminded, by the decision of the IOC to withdraw wrestling
from the Olympic list of sports
, that there is close to nothing left
from the original spirit of the Games. Greed, money, material
rewards, commercialization, megalomania, continued conflicts
and ongoing wars, cheating, deficient sportsmanship; only rarely
are we reminded anymore of what the true essence and the
noble original intentions of the Games had been. Perhaps, it
is high time that a genuinely non-for-profit authority took
charge and organized a cleansed, purified, purely athletically
oriented version of the Great Games in the Western Peloponnese.

In 1963 President Kennedy organized a White House reception
to celebrate 100 years since President Lincoln's Emancipation
. Reverend King excused himself, declining to
attend. It seemed unfathomable to him to accept an invitation
to a luxurious glitz event at a time when young black Americans
were suffering possibly from the worst segregationist tendencies
in post-slavery era, and after the President had declined to take
executive action to provide a significant remedy.
In 2013, the bankrupt Socialist International's failed leaders,
many of whom are miserably failed ex-prime ministers and mini-
sters of the mainstream political establishment that have lost the
trust of their respective citizens, organized a glitz conference at a
five-star Portuguese hotel
. An apparently unwelcome guest, a
Spanish youth, lambasted their aloofness from the practical social
problems of their time, the irrelevance of the policies they have
been implementing, their conformist attitudes in an era that
calls for revolutionary fervor and radical rethinking, and their
provocative sidelining of the enthusiastic, talented and educated
youth. The whole world stood on its feet, applauding the sincere
outpour of feelings from this outspoken Spanish Socialist youth,
expressing with anger, but also with respect, the feelings of a lost
generation, as the whole world stood in awe in the 1960s of the
leadership and the determination of the uncompromising,
demanding black civil rights leader.
However, the President of the Socialist, the incapable, the little
and the ridiculous George Papandreou, a scion of a dynasty that
has exploited shamelessly Socialism for self-aggrandizement,
stood to defend the undefendable catastrophic failings of the fat
politicians against the worries, the dissatisfaction, the desperate
inner cry of the youth for a chance, any chance, and against their
hunger for freedom, democracy, fraternity, justice and equality.

Bravo to Pope Benedict for sending the powerful message that
a Pope is human and has responsibilities similar to all other
humans on earth, besides the spiritual and moral aspects of
his position. Bravo, also, for setting an example for all those
dinosaurs that stay indefinitely in their positions of employ-
ment and/or leadership, much beyond their due time, to the
frustration of their powerless colleagues and, occasionally,
to the detriment of their employers.
(Having nothing better to do in one's private life, or, simply,
habit and fear of an alternative future should not be excuses
for people that are able to retire to indefinitely stay in office.
Benedict seems to have seriously thought about the issue...)

Ο Κώστας ``ο σκοπός αγιάζει τα μέσα" Σημίτης, ύστερα από
μία ενδελεχή ψυχανάλυση και εκ βαθέων εξομολόγηση, ψυχανε-
μίστηκε ότι παρά τη δραστική βελτίωση της ποιότητας της
πατάτας κατά τη διάρκεια των δικών του υπουργειών και της
δικιάς του πρωθυπουργείας, δεν υπήρξε ανάλογη δραστική
βελτίωση της ποιότητας της δημοκρατίας. Ων Παπανδρεϊκός,
ούτε συζήτηση για μία ειλικρινή απολογία για τα δικά του λάθη
και τις δικές του ευθύνες, απλοχεριά όμως για τις ευθύνες, τα
σφάλματα και τις παραλείψεις όλων των άλλων... Αφελές,
αθώο και φιλότιμο ανθρωπάκι. Στερνή μου γνώση να σ'είχα
πρώτα... Η Ελλάδα όλων μας, των πολιτικών και όχι μόνο,
σ'όλο της το μεγαλείο.

Assuming that the leader of Golden Dawn is not an imbecile,
I am wondering what it is that he wants to imitate from the
agenda of, or to discuss with those politicians that espouse
the ideology of a leader and a party that destroyed democracy,
embraced militarism over peaceful coexistence and cooperation,
planned and executed an aggressive military campaign against
their neighbors, massacred millions of innocent human beings
for both political and ethnic reasons and, ultimately, led to
the defeat of their own nation, its humiliation in the eyes of
the international community, and to the human and physical
destruction of their own homeland. Honestly, I find it very
hard to see what counsel people nostalgic for such a catastrophic
past could provide, or why anyone in a sane state of mind
would even seek their advice on how to steer their own country
along a similar direction towards a comparable abyss...

The U.S. Department of Justice seems to have forgotten that it is
the major Department of the U.S. Government charged with legal
affairs and, as a consequence, it has a responsibility of being
particularly careful in the reasoning and the phrasing of its white
and other papers.
With stupefaction, I read that in the NBC-revealed white paper:
1. lethal force used against U.S. citizens is deemed lawful if they
    are judged to pose an "imminent threat" and their capture
    is not feasible;
2. to make that judgment, it is not necessary to produce
    evidence that a specific attack is being planned if the
    target is generally engaged in plotting against the U.S..
The Department of Justice should have used precise sentences
that mean exactly what it intended to say. And that is:
``The use of drones to kill Americans suspected of planning or
plotting (attacks) against U.S. interests, or based on their
previous suspicious record related to similar charges, is lawful.
Moreover, to decide on that condemning "judgment", no judge
needs to be involved, i.e., this can be a purely political or military
Instead, the way the Justice department used the nearly-irrelevant
phrase ``imminent threat" and tried to make it relevant, by clearly
and unsuccessfully redefining it to mean something that it does not
mean, is tantamount to making a statement in passing a law like
``A citizen will not be considered guilty if he kills a fellow
citizen in self-defense. To establish self-defense it is not
necessary to establish that the said citizen was threatened
by the victim in any way."
Even though I am sure that any lawyer who reads this last
sentence will be shocked, I am not exactly sure why we are
willing and, occasionally eager, to allow our elected and
other officials to use similar catastrophic manipulations
of the English language without a great public uproar...

It really bothered me to be reminded of George Papandreou's lack
of understanding
of his culpability and responsibility and, ultimately,
of his surroundings and ambient realities. I am going to quote from
Kazantzakis' "Report to Greco" for him to recall the passage, because,
in my opinion, the Cretan's feelings and sensitivities should shake the
Achaian's aloofness and delusional attitude. But, perhaps, I should
not keep my hopes high; the Papandreou dynasty is notorious for its
thick skin: one has used it for good, another for bad, and a third for
ugly. Here is the quotation anyway:

``Στην αρχή χτύπησε στην καρδιά μου η ντροπή, ύστερα η συμπόνια·
Άρχισα να νιώθω τον πόνο των άλλων σαν εδικό μου πόνο· κι ύστερα
ήρθε η αγανάκτηση· κι ύστερα η δίψα δικαιοσύνης. Κι απάνω απ' όλα
η ευθύνη· εγώ φταίω έλεγα, για όλη την πείνα του κόσμου, για όλη
την αδικία· εγώ έχω την ευθύνη."

The State of Israel has again lost focus in the midst of
political and military instability across its borders, which
is, perhaps, a sign of panic and immaturity on the part
of its officials
. First, Israel knows very very well, partly
based on an analysis of its own behavior, that there is
no such thing as unilateral restraint. Therefore, provoking
without just cause one of its neighbors to a breaking point
is unhelpful at best and severely dangerous at worst.
Second, Israel forgets the universal truth that someone
cornered between a rock and a hard place, or, in fact,
as is the case with Bashar "the Beast" al-Assad, between
expulsion and death, is liable to behave irrationally and
gamble everything he has to gain as little as can be
gained. And Israel, by exacerbating the already
tumultuous condition of its desperate neighbor, seems
to be looking for serious and uncontrollable trouble...

A big applause to all European leaders who, in the spirit of
unity and cooperation, in moderate tones and keeping in
perspective the common future, the visions and the collective
aspirations of all European citizens, encouraged our fellow
Britons and their leaders to reconsider their own strategy
vis-a-vis the grand and noble project of European integration.
Mr. Cameron, it is not for one to decide alone anymore and
it is not for one to face one's own problems alone anymore
and it is not for one to enrich themselves by going it alone
and applying unilateral terms and strategies anymore. Big
blocks are at work now, and this just as an interim step
before a completely global integration becomes possible,
that, in a truly global environment, will make decision making
intertwined across smaller political entities at a global scale,
and will result in all of us being not British and French and
German, not Europeans and Americans and Asians, not
G7 and developing and ASEAN, but all global citizens,
suffering the same troubles, trying to overcome the same
hurdles together and enjoying the resulting prosperity and
successes of global coordination and cooperation freely,
equally and jointly, in universal peace and harmony.

The problem with Lavrov (and with other dinosaur-era politicians
and diplomats) is that they have a hard time realizing that, in an
increasingly globalized political and economic environment, what
used to be exclusively domestic sphere of responsibility, is now
becoming more and more a global political, social, economic and
humanitarian responsibility
and that citizens of the world as a
whole have come under the expectation that our governments
will not stand aside idle when fellow citizens in other countries
are fighting for freedom, equality and self-determination rights.
Therefore, Lavrov is missing the point entirely by declaring that
"nothing good will happen, armed action will continue, people
will die" as if these were mere objective observations and as if
the world's superpowers, including Russia, did not have any role
to play in avoiding the escalation and its consequences, not just
based on good will, but, in fact, under international humanitarian
and security law. Their legal responsibility lies in averting the
ongoing bloodshed and taking the utmost emergency measures
possible to resolve the crisis with as few victims as possible by,
among other things, applying genuine pressure on the side that,
on the one hand, does not have a democratic mandate to govern
and, therefore, lacks legitimacy, and, on the other, is responsible
for having used disproportionate force and for having, thus far,
caused the overwhelming amount of destruction...

Peace and Cooperation cannot get old in a continent that,
not even as long as a generation ago, was involved in bitter
territorial, ethnic and other disputes and bloodshed. I only
wish that the U.K. would join these two economic and
political powers in jointly guiding the continent in all
aspects of public life - political, social and economic -
rather than just looking for its own supreme economic
profit in times of peace and asking for its neighbors and
allies' help in times of turbulence and war...

Unfortunately, Putin, Medvedev and Lavrov are coming to
the realization that people cannot be held back from acquiring
their freedom and their rights much too late. They practically
have their hands full with the blood of tens of thousands of
innocent Syrian brothers and sisters, who were not asking for
much more than freedom, equality and opportunity in life...

It is a sign of the nonexistence ethical standards in the
public life of our times
that one of the most reprehensible
athletes ever to have existed on this planet is threatening
others with his untrustworthy testimonies, rather than
shutting his lying mouth up and going, like an ostracized
animal that he well deserves to be, the furthest possible
away from the public eye, possibly in a convent, and
dedicate the remainder of his life into introspection and
into pondering over how and why he threw that easily
both his own and other fellow human beings' lives into
the waste bin of history. He is definitely not worth either
our attention or any more of our time... Too slimy, too
despicable, too late for admission, too late for forgiveness
or leniency.

Αν ο Βενιζέλος δεν έχει τίποτα να κρύψει, τότε γιατί
δεν αποδέχεται η Εξεταστική Επιτροπή της Βουλής
να ερευνήσει και για τυχόν δικά του ατοπήματα και
; Είναι πρόεδρος ενός κόμματος, που, αν
μη τι άλλο, έχει αποκρύψει και αλλοιώσει βάναυσα,
και αυτός φαφλατίζει περί ανέμων και υδάτων και
ποιεί την νήσσαν αντί να αναλαμβάνει ευθύνες και
να εκλιπαρεί συγχώρεση... Τι να πει κανείς και για
τον Κουβέλη... Άραγε ποιό το δικό του συμφέρον να
μην εξεταστεί τυχόν συνευθύνη του Ευάγγελου στην
απαράδεκτη συγκάληψη;

It is laughable and ridiculous for a person that is not
entirely naive or downright stupid to claim that he did
not understand that it was a risky business to travel
to Cuba
, whose regime's sensitivity in these matters
is widely known, with communications equipment.
I do hope that the courts will send a clear message to
this despicable human being, who, I am convinced,
was well acquainted with the associated potential
risks, but reasoned that the risks were well worth the
ensuing rewards, that he is not entitled to even a single
penny of U.S. taxpayers' money. The U.S. Government
and the citizens of this country should not be targets
of embezzlement and scourging for the personal
enrichment and profiteering of private individuals
and reckless organizations

Mr. Igor Korotchenko, a Russian expert at the Centre for
Analysis of World Arms Trade, interviewed by the BBC,
which felt compelled to publish his remarks
, claimed,
concerning an arms deal worth $4.2 billion between
two of the most corrupt countries on our planet, that
he "can't see any scope for corruption" in the deal!!

Αδυνατώ να καταλάβω γιατί η κυβέρνηση με σύμφωνη
γνώμη, ή ακόμα και πρωτοβουλία, του προέδρου της
Δημοκρατίας δεν αποφάσισε να μην διοργανώσει παρελάσεις
για την 28η Οκτωβρίου φέτος. Θα μπορούσε ο πρόεδρος
μαζί με τον πρωθυπουργό να διαθέσουν ένα τμήμα των
χρημάτων που ασκόπως σπαταλούνται στις παρελάσεις
και στα μέτρα ασφαλείας γύρω από τις παρελάσεις και
να οργανώσουν ομάδες εθελοντών προς βοήθεια κάθε
είδους προς τους υποφέροντες κοινωνικά, τόσο από
οικονομικής άποψης όσο και από ιατρικής περίθαλψης,
κοινωνικής αλληλεγγύης κ.λ.π.. Είναι τόσο πολύ να
ζητά κανείς λίγη περισσότερο κοινωνική ευαισθησία,
λίγη περισσότερη εξυπνάδα και λίγη περισσότερη
ευελιξία στην αντιμετώπιση των δύσκολων συγκυριών
που αντιμετωπίζει η χώρα και οι πολίτες της? Γιατί
πάντα κολλημένοι στα ίδια, γιατί όχι μία διαφορετική
φρέσκια, χαρισματική και ανανεωτική κοινωνικά
αντιμετώπιση πραγμάτων και καταστάσεων? Η αλλαγή
νόμων δεν αρκεί, χρειάζεται και αλλαγή νοοτροπίας
και μυαλών για διαφορετική πλεύση και ελπίδα...

I think that it is high time that the world community holds
accountable for the failed U.N. missions to Syria the Secretary
General himself
. It is peculiar that he keeps sending envoys
to hold discussions with a man that has proven his unreliability
and savagery time and again, instead of taking up in earnest
his own responsibilities in negotiating the differences existing
at the Security Council and holding the butcher accountable.

Εθνικισμός δεν είναι να χτυπάς και να πεθαίνεις στο ξύλο
αβοήθητους μετανάστες που έχουν έρθει στην ήπειρο όπου
έτυχε να γεννηθείς για να μπορέσουν να επιβιώσουν ή να
ζήσουν μία καλύτερη ζωή. Αυτό έιναι φτηνιάρικος και
εξευτελισμένος ψευτο-εθνικισμός
να είσαι περήφανος για τη χώρα σου, εύχαρις και ευγνώμων
όταν, παρά τις δυσκολίες της, είναι μία χώρα σε κατάσταση
πολύ καλύτερη από πολλές άλλες χώρες του κόσμου. Είναι
να αντιλαμβάνεσαι τους λόγους για τους οποίους πολίτες
άλλων, λιγότερο εύπορων, χωρών έρχονται στη δικιά σου
να αναζητήσουν καλύτερη τύχη, γιατί και χθές και σήμερα
και αύριο ο παππούς σου, ο πατέρας σου, ο θείος σου,
ο αδερφός σου, ο γιός σου ή η κόρη σου και τα εγγόνια
σου, σε μία παγκοσμιοποιημένη οικονομία, θα αναζητήσουν
ευκαιρίες και ίσως καλύτερη τύχη σε άλλους τόπους. Τέλος
ΕΘΝΙΚΙΣΜΟΣ είναι, όταν ξένα άρβυλα πατάν το χώμα της
γης σου, να έχεις το θάρρος και την αυταπάρνηση να
αντιστέκεσαι και να επαναστέλεις την σημαία της καρδιάς
και του τόπου σου. ΧΕΣΙΜΟ και ΦΤΥΣΙΜΟ στα ψευτο-
εθνικιστικά ψευτο-παλήκαρα της χρυσής αυγής. Ο πολιτισμός
μας πιάνει πάτο και η ανηθικότητα χτυπάει κόκκινο όταν ένας
φτηνιάρης χέστης ψευτο-εθνικιστής φτάνει στο σημείο να έχει
το θράσος να ψελίζει δημόσια με το βρωμόστομα του το
όνομα του Μανώλη Γλέζου...

BRAVO to the panel that decided not to award this year's
Mo Ibrahim prize for African leadership to any candidate.

Besides sticking to its worthy principles of "democratic
election, good governance, raising of living standards
and voluntary departure from office", which were not
met by any candidate, according to the prize committee,
it showcases a remarkable example, as opposed to some
Nobel prize awards, on how distinguished and prestigious
prizes should be awarded to avoid becoming meaningless
and/or trivial.

Turkey is right to impose an embargo on Syrian flights
over its air space
. A butcher that slaughters his own
compatriots cannot be trusted to safeguard the lives
of international travelers. It is a really tragic and ironic
fact that this is happening in one of the historically most
welcoming and culturally diverse regions of the globe...
Too bad that Hafez al-Assad's sperm became so
contaminated and damning for that beautiful country...
and that our fellow Syrian citizens of this world have
to undergo this horrible ordeal while we are watching
silent and powerless, as those wielding the necessary
power (including our United Nations: where is our
commitment to human dignity? was it forgotten so
soon after 1945?
) are doing absolutely nothing.

As the U.S. Supreme Court considers the Abigail Fisher vs.
University of Texas case
, it is useful to remember that:
1. Regardless of whether Ms. Fisher was wronged or not,
    the fact that criteria other than academic achievement
    are in the books for judging the ranking of applicants
    logically implies that there must have been at least one
    applicant in Ms. Fisher's position that must have been
    wronged, if those criteria have been applied at all.
2. The decision to be made, leaving aside the specific case
    that obscures the big picture, is whether, as a nation, we
    consider it acceptable politically and socially to have this
for/against some/many individuals, that Ms. Fisher
    alleges affected her admission, institutionalized  with the
    ultimate goal of redressing the wrongs that the nation
    collectively has admitted have taken place over many
    decades against entire segments of the population.
If we decide that, politically, socially and morally, this is
an acceptable position and a fair price to pay to redeem
past behaviors, then this issue will be settled, not through
the courts and legal battles, but rather through politics;
and it is my opinion that, essentially, that is the domain
where it properly belongs.

Iran has to suffer the consequences of its secretive ways in its
handling of its nuclear capability development program
. It is
clear that, if Iran's goals were as pure at its authorities claim,
then there would be no need for any concealment or any
delaying strategies in its cooperation with the IAEA. Moreover,
the inhumane and malicious statements often made by its
ridiculous, undemocratically elected and mullah-imposed
puppet president make the situation even worse as far as Iran's
standing and prestige in the international community and its
negotiating ability are concerned. In fact, if it had not been for
the economic sanctions, it would not have been a surprise at all
if, by now, Iran had already developed some, at least elementary,
nuclear fighting capability. On the other hand, to be fair, the
United Nations Security Council and the IAEA have made their
own position weak and their international reputation shaky by
having, in recent history, selectively tried to impose non
proliferation standards on various countries and various
democratic and undemocratic regimes around the globe.
It is a lesson worth learning: If one wants to stand firm on
principle and tout some principles in guiding global political
developments, in order to have the convincing advantage in
doing so, one should follow those principles coherently and
unerringly, without selectively relaxing them when it suits
their own or their friends' and allies' interests...

The murder of a diplomat, a member of a government entrusted
with the sacred role of bringing governments of people of this
world closer together, not further apart, is a saddening event for
humanity and world politics. But the killing of Ambassador
Stevens is an even bigger blow for humanity than any other
similarly shocking event.
First, from the contemporary point of view it is unacceptable
by modern standards of civilization that killing of people results
from demonstrations supporting various forms of restrictions of
free expression. Moreover, it is sad that part of the citizens of a
state which has just regained its freedom after decades of oppression
chose to attack the diplomatic mission of a country that stood
steadfastly by their side in their strife for freedom.
Second, from the historic point of view, it is extremely saddening
that these events occur in a region of the world that contributed
so much in the renaissance of the European civilization after the
middle ages by preserving and developing knowledge, science and
culture and in a region where, according to religion and custom,
welcoming of foreigners, showing hospitality and providing comfort
to strangers and visitors has been historically strong and of
fundamental importance. It seems that some parts of today's
Arab and Muslim societies have become more backward and
have abandoned many of the valuable and age old deeply humane
traditions of Islam and are opting for a new savage interpretation
of the books. This, however, does not alter their original spirit and
their significance; it just reflects negatively on the agitators'
personalities and on the educational work that us, as members of
modern societies, carry out and the way minds are brainwashed
and taught to react, rather than to think, judge and act intelligently...

On the opportunity of the official nomination of Barack for the 2012
Democratic ticket and of the 2012 Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation
summit, I would like to reiterate my opinion that one of the strongest
contributions of this administration to the well being and long term
prosperity of the nation has been its solid, consistent and very open
minded foreign policy
. It is therefore my hope that, should Barack
get reelected, Secretary Clinton would reconsider her decision to step
down from her post in the formation of the next government. Despite
my understanding of the mental, emotional and physical toll that the
demands of her post require, my hope is that she will put country,
nation and world ideals, that she has been defending so tirelessly and
successfully, before personal life. I would hope that the support of
Barack, the American people and the appreciation for her work both
from Americans and from all citizens of the globe would give her the
strength and the inspiration needed to stay on and solidify and extend
the important achievements of her tenure and the new paths that this
administration and her personally have been so tirelessly and selflessly
working on.
Secretary Clinton THANK YOU and PLEASE, STAY ON! At least of
your work and your policies, we do need FOUR MORE YEARS!!