уторак, 28. јун 2011.

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  • vallabhu
    04-07 02:00 PM
    Situation definitely requires some action from Congress, H1B program was introduced to help

    American Corporates so they can hire best resources from all over the world where Americans

    are not available, American Corps started taking undue advantage by hiring even if Citizens

    were available just because they are getting H1's for lesser price, and showed this

    miserable path to desi companies who abused it further.

    If the current situation (with out this bill by just adding more h1's) continues not only US

    economy will suffer (The number of available right people for any job will be less as hey

    would be working for some desi company making 20$ an hour) even H1 aspirants will start

    suffering upon Arrival to US and also those who live here will suffer from immense

    competition (Just because of the reason that every job posting will be flooded with 1000's

    of resumes and only lucky ones get picked you may be best but your resume has to be picked

    for an interview call), as the number of jobs are lesser than people coming.

    Unlimited H1 may be a solution but it is not practical, If the numbers are available then

    desi companies won't bother to file so many applications without actual job, it makes

    situation better for new H1's coming to US they will have a job instead to joining a desi

    company and sitting on bench for long time(after quitting their job in India)

    Coming to this Bill, Even if it is so threatening they have some good points to bring curbs

    on H1 Employers who bring them here without actual job, People who are destined to come to

    us will come for a better life.

    IF Durbin wants to help US he has to make bill which is practical and should address how up

    clean up existing mess, This bill is not practical and will definitely face lot of


    Unfortunately politicians in any country have to take decisions based on how it is going to

    gain their party and in terms of votes and later how is it good for the Country, they will

    have lot of pressure from various other factors which we don't understand and they don't

    understand us.

    Their decisions are based on the data they have available with provided by few agencies whom

    they trust and closely work with, If they are taking a wrong decision that means either they

    don't have complete data or not properly educated. as we are getting affected It becomes our

    responsibility to provide them complete data and educate them totally of the situation, so

    they make a correct decision and address the issue, and to do that in US affectively we will

    need millions of $'s.

    For bill to be more practical it should address 500,000 people who are living here for past

    several years and who's kids are US Citizens and also own homes. And also American Companies

    who are utilizing skills of these people.

    If 500,000 contribute 20 $ each we will have 10 Million and we can make ammendments the way

    we want it to be.

    If 10000 members contribute 100 $ each we will have 1 million which is not bad but this not

    practical either.

    My final Cut even if this kind bill passes or another bill with more h1's passes we will be

    in same situation, the best for us could be this kind of bill with more practicality.

    So with our limited resources we will have to do what we can and give all our efforts (Call

    your senators) and leave the rest to god.

    I tried to mobilize couple of my friends, they are like "No, take it easy this will not

    happen" if this is the attitude guys remember you have something in your hands today and if

    the bill passes in its current form even if you want to contribute 5000$ to stay in this

    country you will not be able to do that as all of us would be packing to go back.

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  • texcan
    08-06 05:26 PM
    A man was driving home one evening and realized that it was his daughter's birthday and he hadn't bought her a present. He drove to the mall and ran to the toy store and he asked the store manager "How much is that new Barbie in the window?"

    The Manager replied, "Which one? We have, 'Barbie goes to the gym'for $19.95 ...

    'Barbie goes to the Ball' for $19.95 ...

    'Barbie goes shopping for $19.95 ...

    'Barbie goes to the beach' for $19.95...

    'Barbie goes to the Nightclub' for $19.95 ...

    and 'Divorced Barbie' for $375.00."

    "Why is the Divorced Barbie $375.00, when all the others are $19.95?" Dad asked surprised.

    "Divorced Barbie comes with Ken's car, Ken's House, Ken's boat, Ken's dog, Ken's cat and Ken's furniture."

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  • suavesandeep
    06-26 03:05 PM
    Would you share what calculator are you using.

    I used one here:
    Mortgage Calculator - Bankrate.com (http://www.bankrate.com/calculators/mortgages/mortgage-calculator.aspx)

    Loan Amount: 600K (Note much less than million dollars)
    Period: 30 years fixed
    Interest Rate: 5% (On the lower side using historical averages)
    Monthly Payment: 3220.93

    Total Interest Paid across 30 years: 559,534.71

    In general the thumb rule is across 30 years you will always pay interest which is approx equal to the principal you signed up for.

    Am i missing something here ?

    Yes its not clear cut but lets replace your X, Y and others with numbers

    Suppose your rent is 1500$ a month

    You pay 540,000 $ in 30 years

    so your point 1 - the interest payment is always going to be less than rent if you look over the 30 year term of mortgage since there is no way to pay 540,000 dollars in interest in 30 years looking at the amortization table unless you are buying a million dollar plus house. ( I assumed 5 % rate of interest )

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  • Macaca
    04-08 07:55 AM
    Some paras from Big money creates a new capital city (http://blog.washingtonpost.com/citizen-k-street/chapters/conclusion/index.html?hpid=topnews), By Robert G. Kaiser.

    The upward arc of his career also delineates the way money has altered Washington during the last three decades. Money has transformed American politics, the career choices available here and even the landscape of the nation's capital. Raising money has become a key to electoral success, while spending taxpayers' dollars has helped incumbents get reelected.

    Cassidy helped change Washington by shaping the culture of congressional earmarks that became so important in the last dozen years. Earmarks directly transfer the government's money to particular institutions and interests. He and his original partner helped invent the idea of lobbying for earmarked appropriations -- an idea that made Cassidy rich and fed a system of interdependence between lobbyists and Congress that thrives today.

    In a blog he launched this year on his company's Web site, which he used to respond to installments of this series, Cassidy offered a warning about the future of lobbying: "Our profession is at a critical point where we can either embrace the constructive changes and reforms by Congress or we can seek out loopholes and continue the slippery slide into history along side the ranks of snake oil salesmen."

    The first lobbying firms were established in the mid-'70s, just when Cassidy left McGovern's select committee on nutrition to begin his lobbying career. As the reach of the federal government extended into more corners of American life, opportunities for lobbyists proliferated. "The issues have multiplied," as Cassidy put it. Over these three decades the amount of money spent on Washington lobbying increased from tens of millions to billions a year. The number of free-lance lobbyists offering services to paying clients has grown from scores to thousands. Cassidy was one of the first to become a millionaire by lobbying; he now has plenty of company.

    The term "lobbyist" does not do full justice to the complex status of today's most successful practitioners, who can play the roles of influence peddlers, campaign contributors and fundraisers, political advisers, restaurateurs, benefactors of local cultural and charitable institutions, country gentlemen and more. They have helped make greater Washington one of the wealthiest regions in America.

    During his time in Washington, Cassidy said in one of many interviews he gave for these articles that the United States has experienced "a huge redistribution of income, and you can't blame just the Republicans, because it has happened through Democratic presidencies, and through Democratic and Republican congresses."

    So the rich have gotten richer, the weak weaker? "I refuse to argue the obvious. ... It's just true, largely because they have less representation. You look at the movements out there, there is no anti-hunger movement, there is no committee on the Hill looking into poverty." Representation, of course, is Cassidy's line of work. It is as old as the republic, but only in Cassidy's time has lobbying become the biggest Washington industry.

    This happened because lobbying works so well. Cassidy and his original partner, Kenneth Schlossberg, demonstrated its efficacy by devising ways to win earmarked appropriations from Congress for their clients, originally colleges, universities and medical centers. As Cassidy's clients began to win appropriations of $10 million, $15 million, $20 million and more in the 1980s, new lobbying firms emerged to compete with Cassidy. An increasing number of institutions and local governments looked for help to win earmarks of their own. The lobbying boom had begun.

    Incumbent members of the House and Senate complain that they have to spend a third or more of their working hours raising money for their next elections. To help with this task, lobbyists have become campaign treasurers and fundraisers for members and have been responsible for scores of millions in political contributions.

    Cassidy understands the low regard many Americans have for his profession but thinks it is unfair. "Lobbying is no more perfect than is the practice of law or the practice of medicine," he observed -- implying that it is no worse, either. He prides himself on his firm's "tradition of ethics and integrity," trumpeted on the firm's Web site. Since 1988, Cassidy's lawyers have given his employees annual ethics seminars.


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  • satishku_2000
    08-03 05:05 PM
    What exactly is the difference between current and future employments in the context of Perm labor certification and 485. I have seen people using two things interchangeably to suit their arguments. In context of finding ability to pay is there a difference in the way adjudicator looks at two things?

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  • nojoke
    04-15 04:31 PM
    We are mixing too many different aspects of home buying and creating confusion.

    We buy homes, when we have clearly done our home work and know we can afford what we are buying and our incomes are expected to be reasonably stable. Everyone knows this and no one is arguing against the above logic.

    The points of contention were home life vs. apt life, and home as a home vs. home as an investment. I got into this thread to point out how some people are so obsessed about resale value that to them a home is nothing more than a piece of investment which should appreciate with time and be sold off.
    But these topics appear to be rubbing some people the wrong way as they are hurt to discover that there exist people who do not think the way they do. For that reason, I will lay off this topic.

    That is not why we are debating. We are saying that the house values will fall down further, so save some money by buying low. Ofcourse if you were to sell immediately you would loose a lot. We are not advocating to look for profits when you sell your house.


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  • unitednations
    08-02 06:09 PM
    Thanks for the quick reply. I never overstayed my I-94 either before leaving US or re-entering US. But just a thought... Do you mean if somebody covered by 245(i) and never left US after filing the labor before April 2001, still be eligible to adjust status?


    A little unknown thing is that even if you get married to someone who is eligible for 245i; you also get that benefit. Even if someone divorced a person who was eligible for 245i; they still get the benefit.

    Therefore, someone who has overstayed, out of status and marries someone who had a labor or 130 pending before april 30, 2001 (even though this person was never out of status or overstayed); then spouse can claim 245i benefit.

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  • immique
    07-14 01:56 AM
    really! can you give me the name of that high school that you are talking about. I want to find out if I can qualify as an EB2 Physician/Scientist if I go to that particular high school and get my high school degree. why the hell would any body waste 15 years going to college, Medical school, post graduate trying to get the required skills.

    I don't think the issue is that simple. The whole thing just surfaced another screw-up of the system. The actions taken by all the agencies certainly made things worse.

    DoS suddenly interpretted laws differently than before. This just like the PERM, BEC, and last July episode. They took actions without considering people already in line. Those with good faith waiting in line have been constantly pushed around. How many people experienced being stuck in BEC while PERM approves new application like crazy? Who is accountable for all of these? They can't do things willy nilly any more. Someone mentioned lawsuit since DoS either interpret the law wrong now or in the past.

    Needless to say that the distincation between EB2 and EB3 has become so meaniningless now. How many positions really satisfy the EB2 requirements? From what I heard that most people just try to get around the system to get an EB2. One of the persons who filed EB2 told me that a high school graduate would probably be able to work in that position too.

    Just my observation.


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  • delax
    07-13 07:56 PM
    I don't think the issue is that simple. The whole thing just surfaced another screw-up of the system. The actions taken by all the agencies certainly made things worse.

    DoS suddenly interpretted laws differently than before. This just like the PERM, BEC, and last July episode. They took actions without considering people already in line. Those with good faith waiting in line have been constantly pushed around. How many people experienced being stuck in BEC while PERM approves new application like crazy? Who is accountable for all of these? They can't do things willy nilly any more. Someone mentioned lawsuit since DoS either interpret the law wrong now or in the past.

    Needless to say that the distincation between EB2 and EB3 has become so meaniningless now. How many positions really satisfy the EB2 requirements? From what I heard that most people just try to get around the system to get an EB2. One of the persons who filed EB2 told me that a high school graduate would probably be able to work in that position too.

    Just my observation.

    I dont agree at all!!!!!!!

    How can you give consideration to people already in line at the expense of other people from a higher preference category also waiting patiently in line. Regardless of the duration of the wait EB3 is a lower prefrence category and will remain so under any interpretation. Remember that even under the 'old' interpretation EB3-I only got visa numbers after passing through the EB3 ROW and the EB2-I gate.

    Notwithstanding the 'new' interpretation, an argument can always be made that the 'old' interpretation was not only wrong but blatantly wrong where EB3ROW was given preference over an EB2 retro country.

    The only fix for this is elimination of country cap and/or increase in number of visas. The means to acheive that goal may be legislative or administrative. I'll defer to the experts on that!

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  • maddipati1
    03-23 03:08 PM
    Did you send Seinfeld a royalty? :D



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  • Macaca
    05-11 05:28 PM
    The 'Education' Mantra (http://www.realclearpolitics.com/articles/2011/05/10/the_education_mantra_109799.html) By Thomas Sowell | Investor's Business Daily

    One of the sad and dangerous signs of our times is how many people are enthralled by words, without bothering to look at the realities behind those words.

    One of those words that many people seldom look behind is "education." But education can cover anything from courses on nuclear physics to courses on baton twirling.

    Unfortunately, an increasing proportion of American education, whether in the schools or in the colleges and universities, is closer to the baton twirling end of the spectrum than toward the nuclear physics end. Even reputable colleges are increasingly teaching things that students should have learned in high school.

    We don't have a backlog of serious students trying to take serious courses. If you look at the fields in which American students specialize in colleges and universities, those fields are heavily weighted toward the soft end of the spectrum.

    When it comes to postgraduate study in tough fields like math and science, you often find foreign students at American universities receiving more of such degrees than do Americans.

    A recent headline in the Chronicle of Higher Education said: "Master's in English: Will Mow Lawns." It featured a man with that degree who has gone into the landscaping business because there is no great demand for people with Master's degrees in English.

    Too many of the people coming out of even our most prestigious academic institutions graduate with neither the skills to be economically productive nor the intellectual development to make them discerning citizens and voters.

    Students can graduate from some of the most prestigious institutions in the country, without ever learning anything about science, mathematics, economics or anything else that would make them either a productive contributor to the economy or an informed voter who can see through political rhetoric.

    On the contrary, people with such "education" are often more susceptible to demagoguery than the population at large. Nor is this a situation peculiar to America. In countries around the world, people with degrees in soft subjects have been sources of political unrest, instability and even mass violence.

    Nor is this a new phenomenon. A scholarly history of 19th century Prague referred to "the well-educated but underemployed" Czech young men who promoted ethnic polarization there-- a polarization that not only continued, but escalated, in the 20th century to produce bitter tragedies for both Czechs and Germans.

    In other central European countries, between the two World Wars a rising class of newly educated young people bitterly resented having to compete with better qualified Jews in the universities and with Jews already established in business and the professions. Anti-Semitic policies and violence were the result.

    It was much the same story in Asia, where successful minorities like the Chinese in Malaysia were resented by newly educated Malays without either the educational or business skills to compete with them. These Malaysians demanded-- and got-- heavily discriminatory laws and policies against the Chinese.

    Similar situations developed at various times in Nigeria, Romania, Sri Lanka, Hungary and India, among other places.

    Many Third World countries have turned out so many people with diplomas, but without meaningful skills, that "the educated unemployed" became a cliche among people who study such countries. This has not only become a personal problem for those individuals who have been educated, or half-educated, without acquiring any ability to fulfill their rising expectations, it has become a major economic and political problem for these countries.

    Such people have proven to be ideal targets for demagogues promoting polarization and strife. We in the United States are still in the early stages of that process. But you need only visit campuses where whole departments feature soft courses preaching a sense of victimhood and resentment, and see the consequences in racial and ethnic polarization on campus.

    There are too many other soft courses that allow students to spend years in college without becoming educated in any real sense.

    We don't need more government "investment" to produce more of such "education." Lofty words like "investment" should not blind us to the ugly reality of political porkbarrel spending.

    Tiger Mom: Here's how to reshape U.S. education (http://www.usatoday.com/news/opinion/forum/2011-05-10-Reshape-US-education_n.htm) By Amy Chua | USA Today
    The American Idea: An Open Letter To College Graduates (http://www.forbes.com/2011/05/09/american-idea-college-graduates.html) By Carl Schramm | Forbes
    The Myth of American Exceptionalism (http://www.realclearpolitics.com/articles/2011/05/10/taking_exceptionalism_109795.html) By Richard Cohen | Washington Post
    The Role of Economics in an Imperfect World (http://economix.blogs.nytimes.com/2011/05/10/the-role-of-economics-in-an-imperfect-world/) By EDWARD L. GLAESER | New York Times
    Where the Jobs Were Lost (http://economix.blogs.nytimes.com/2011/05/11/where-the-jobs-were-lost/) By CASEY B. MULLIGAN | New York Times
    No, We Are Not a Nation of Hamburger Flippers (http://www.foxbusiness.com/markets/2011/05/09/nation-hamburger-flippers/) By Elizabeth MacDonald | Fox Business
    Multinationals Dump U.S. Workers for Foreign Labor (http://www.thefiscaltimes.com/Columns/2011/05/09/Multinationals-Dump-US-Workers-for-Foreign-Labor.aspx) By JAMES C. COOPER | The Fiscal Times
    California Economy Gets a Jolt From Tech Hiring (http://online.wsj.com/article/SB10001424052748703864204576311373667322428.html) By JIM CARLTON | Wall Street Journal

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  • psvk
    08-05 06:02 PM
    We always hear "the rules" from the female side. Now here are the rules from the male side. These are our rules! Print this out and pass to your partner for a greater understanding:

    Could not stop laughing on most of them. Thanks to all.

    Most of them on the same topic. Hope you guys not having FUN(!) at home :D:D


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  • learning01
    05-24 02:09 PM
    threads and postings. Since he is challenging and throwing baby tantrums on a forum, of all things, let's have it.
    Here, I quote from his first troll post in this thread:
    wages have been stagnated for the last five years.
    Now, my friend Communique can you back this up with reliable references and links. Also, can you rebut, point by point on what I said about Lou Dobbs.
    Even in the commentary in the link given by this thread's starter, there is all kinds of rants from Lou and not one, I repeat not one senctence, let alone one paragraph on issues affecting legal immigration.
    I have said earlier: we have to stay focussed on the retrogression and backlog issues. That's what I have been urging Communique and others in this thread. Increase or decrease of H1 is not our goal here. In fact, I should not discussing this. I was trying to bring all folks here to our focussed goals and action on hand.

    I've said this before: I usually dont like casting aspersions, but take a look at a lot of Communique's posts. Some look like they were copied and pasted word for word from the NumbersUsa or FAIR site. And now he's defending Lou Dobbs. Using terms like "mass migration" "unchecked immigration", etc. He claims to be an H1B, and he's trolling Lou Dobbs. I think most people on this site can see through the facade.

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  • GCBatman
    01-07 04:11 PM
    "Refugee_New", dude I like your enthusiasm to answer not only one but many users at the same time but you may want to watch out for the red dots as well they are increasing like anything on your profile.

    To everyone,
    Peace Peace & Peace
    Once again I condemn all the acts that leads to the deaths of innocents especially the kids.
    Every problem in this world can and should be resolved by negotiations. I pray that both sides should come forward and resolve this issue diplomatically.

    Said that now please work together for all the EB immigration issues.

    bfadlia, i sent you a PM. Respond me when you have time.


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  • nogc_noproblem
    08-26 11:09 PM
    Three mischievous old Grandmas were sitting on a bench outside a nursing home...

    ... when an old Grandpa walked by. And one of the old Grandmas yelled out saying, "We bet we can tell exactly how old you are." The old man said, "There is no way you can guess it, you old fools."

    One of the old Grandmas said, "Sure we can! Just drop your pants and under shorts and we can tell your exact age."

    Embarrassed just a little, but anxious to prove they couldn't do it, he dropped his drawers.

    The Grandmas asked him to first turn around a couple of times and to jump up and down several times.

    Then they all piped up and said, "You're 87 years old!"

    Standing with his pants down around his ankles, the old gent asked, "How in the world did you guess?"

    Slapping their knees and grinning from ear to ear, the three old ladies happily yelled in unison - - "We were at your birthday party yesterday!"

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  • sanju
    04-08 09:07 AM
    of course not....
    The provision defeats the purpose of whole whistle blower clause...

    Oh ok. Sorry, I was not sure about the message of your earlier post.

    And for this purpose, the provisions which seem to be protecting H1 employees are actually falling short of providing any protection to make H1 program more efficient. At the same time, the bill is imposing so many restrictions that it would make the entire H1 program "non-workable" and "useless", as highlighted by the administrator.


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  • Winner
    03-25 11:01 AM
    Thanks for contributing to IV with meaningful discussions. Would you all consider making a monetary contribution to IV?

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  • ArkBird
    01-06 05:32 PM
    I am not supporting Hamas or their core belief. I am not going that far. What i'm saying is, how can one country kill school kids and go scot-free???

    When we cried for terror victims, why don't we do the same for palestinians who are victims of state sponsored terrorism???

    If we want to discuss about Ideology of other faiths and different groups, we can open one more thread. You wouldn't want to open another thread. Because you know how nasty those ideologies are? Every religion/group have their own ideology and they are nothing but brutal.

    I don't know of any religion which touts killing on innocent people just because they don't believe in your ideology which for me is the biggest crime against humanity.

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  • dealsnet
    01-07 01:13 PM
    Until AD 1100, everybody in Egypt are christians, the arabs conquer there and killed many and convert them. Few are left as christians. Now only 10%. Ask any egyptian christians. They need to pay JAZIA to be live as christians. The language COPTIC now only in church. Coptic sound similar to Latin. Abrabs imposed their language, where ever they conquer. They cut the tongue of people, who spoke native language. See in India, moguls made Urdu and make Arabic script for it.Egyptian christians are only real egyptians. Muslim egyptians are mixed people with Arab warriors. War children.
    Real egyptians are here in USA, you can talk to them, they are nice people no terrorist, brain washed bastards. Go to a coptic chrch and see these people.
    Same happened in Kashmir. Pandits are the real Kashmiris. The Kashmiri muslims are children of the Kashmiri women and arab invaders. Now they kicking real Indian pandits out from kashmir, and they live in own country as refugees.
    In the end all terrorist, satanic nations wiped out at the second coming of Jesus. Those good muslims belive him will be saved. Others will go to hell.

    I agree, the conflict discussed here is a political conflict. It could have been resolved much easier if all sides stopped looking at it with the religious-end-of-times lens (jews: nile-to-euphrates empire belonged to us 3000 years ago, christians: jews from all over the world must be transfered back there for the messiah to return.. and muslims: end of times won't come until jews fight the muslims and we beat them)

    12-28 01:25 AM
    I am begining to beleive that WAR is not the answer, even though for the past 20 odd years, they have bled Kashmir, driven certain relegion members out, making them penniless, killing some of them and their family members mercilessly, doing the same in punjab (thanks to KPS Gill that was eradicated from the core), and using India's peace measures in the last 7 odd years to infilitrate members who have created havoc in India.
    What India needs to do is strengthen internal security ('our sardar.....the chief...respectfully meant as i am a admirer of him, has done the right thing by bringing in his most trusted man, PC to run home ministry....that man has been an asset in which ever position he has held....man of v.v. high integrity and honesty like our chief)
    Secondly as i said before,...... the super powers also are pretty much behind India and will not make the same mistake as they have done in the past as they know that this is universal/global problem...and the doublespeak will not work...the worry is....who to talk to there...(neighbouring country)....there are so many power centres....its total chaos....so i agree we should not go for war as that could be disastrous and open a exit strategy for all the dangerous elements and give them a longer/extended life to survive..........and continue with their nonsense......globally....WHY because once the war breaks out these dangerous elements will use their deadly toys that they have been provided with thanks to some of the regional powers....who....will then step in and insist on a dialogure....peace...etc etc..
    I am also surprised how sri lanka has agreed to go ahead with their cricket tour...i mean come on such a huge incident....in India....clear evidence...and to think and we sacrified a leader(possible PM) for them....STRANGE Behaviour....

    12-28 07:23 PM
    In India, a struggle for moderation as a young Muslim woman quietly battles extremism (http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2010/12/27/AR2010122704519.html) By Emily Wax | Washington Post

    Rubina Sandhi had settled in for a night of homework when panic swept through the narrow, congested alleys of her neighborhood.

    It was Sept. 11, 2001. Television sets in the mosques, tea shops and market were beaming images of the World Trade Center engulfed in flames in New York. Five months later, Rubina's house was burning as Hindu mobs torched Muslim areas of her city, leaving thousands of people homeless. She remembers smoke hovering over Ahmedabad just as it had over New York.

    With their few remaining possessions, Rubina's family members took refuge in a squalid relief camp and, several weeks later, moved into ramshackle housing on the edge of the city - where only Muslims lived and worked. "We felt like ghosts," recalled Rubina, who was then 12.

    The rioting was among India's worst sectarian violence in decades, hardening divisions between the Hindu majority and the country's 140 million Muslims as hard-liners on both sides sought to exploit the tensions. Soon after the rioting, many young Muslims in Rubina's neighborhood started following stricter forms of Islam as imams fanned out into the region's poorest Muslim areas, some bringing with them Wahhabism, the fundamentalist form of Islam practiced in Saudi Arabia.

    Some Indian Muslims even sought training in Pakistan to carry out acts of revenge in India, their version of violent jihad. For her part, Rubina chose a different struggle, determined to be a good Muslim and daughter as the community around her became more radicalized. She fought for the right to make decisions for herself, and she tried to find a way to voice her beliefs as a woman, as others around her were being silenced.

    Her decisions would mirror those of many other young Muslim women in her city who entered adulthood in the aftermath of religious violence and the Sept. 11, 2001, terrorist attacks. She would be asked to compromise her dreams, and her commitment to Islam would be questioned.

    Ahmedabad, a 600-year-old city in the state of Gujarat, has long been a vibrant historical center where religions aspired to coexist. It was the headquarters for Mahatma Gandhi's ashram and his peaceful freedom struggle and is celebrated for its Indo-Islamic architecture. Of the city's 5 million people, 11 percent are Muslim.

    Before the riots, many Muslims in Rubina's neighborhood celebrated Hindu traditions. Yet tensions between Hindus and Muslims here often rose to the surface.

    The violence in 2002 erupted after 59 Hindus were burned to death on a train as they were returning home from a pilgrimage site. Muslim extremists were blamed for the blaze, but the cause of the fire remains in dispute. In 2004, a government-appointed panel ruled that the train fire was an accident and not caused by Muslims.

    Soon after the anti-Muslim riots, extremist imams started to gain more clout. Among them was a firebrand televangelist named Zakir Naik, whose weekly sermons are broadcast from Mumbai and Saudi Arabia. Thousands of young Muslims have been drawn to his powerful slogans, including his declaration that to defend Islam, "every Muslim should be a terrorist."

    This more conservative brand of Islam became more acceptable, and it seemed to empower Muslim men in India. But it had the opposite effect on Muslim women. The imams and mullahs warned young women to stay indoors, to forgo higher education and to become dutiful mothers of as many children as God would give them. The children, they said, would replace the Muslims killed during the riots.

    "The Hindu mobs who attacked us called us all terrorists. Then the mullahs wanted to take away our freedoms," Rubina said, adding: "Everyone felt confused."

    A pervasive fear

    Rubina's father, Mohammed Sandhi, had an eighth-grade education and a job selling incense sticks to Hindu temples. When he was a young boy, his grandparents had told him haunting stories about Muslim-Hindu tensions in the 1930s and rioting in the southern city of Hyderabad that forced the family to migrate to Ahmedabad.

    Mohammed believed in the aspirations of a rising India. He had saved for years to move the family into a comfortable two-room home, and he hoped that his two children - Rubina and her older brother, Irfan - would be the first in their family to attend college.

    But after the riots, Mohammed began to believe that his ambitions were naive, at least for Indian Muslims. "We thought that was the past, over, just our history. But after the 2002 riots, we worry every day that the violence could happen again," he said.

    In the street just outside the family's housing complex, 69 people, mostly Muslims, were burned alive during the riots, the first and largest single massacre during the crisis, a federal investigation later found.

    From there, fighting spread. Over the next two months, more than 200 mosques and hundreds of Muslim shrines were burned down, and 17 ancient Hindu temples were attacked, according to police and human rights workers.

    Everything in Rubina's home was destroyed: childhood photographs, birth certificates, school records and land deeds.

    The family left behind the charred ruins of their home for a relief camp, one of more than 100 that housed 150,000 Muslims after the riots.

    The city slowly calmed, but acts of violence on both sides continued and people remained fearful.

    Watching their parents weep, Rubina and Irfan grew angrier and more confused. "We never thought this could happen here," said Rubina's mother, Mumtaz Sandhi. "We thought we are Muslims. But we are also Indians."

    Silencing women's voices

    After several weeks in the camps, Rubina's family settled in Juhapura, a poor area on the western outskirts of the city where many Muslims moved from Hindu-dominated localities.

    The neighborhood has some middle-class areas but is largely poor, and activists have fought for basic government services, including paved roads, a sewage treatment system and garbage collection.

    During her teenage years, Rubina started to notice that her brother, like many young Muslim men, was growing more observant of Islam, more conservative, introverted. They had always been close, and tragedy had strengthened their bond. But their paths began to diverge as Irfan sought comfort and sanctuary in the strictures of Islam.

    Rubina, like other young Muslim women, feared she would lose her freedom under those strictures. She resisted calls from increasingly conservative imams to wear a traditional black garment that covers the body and sometimes the face.

    In Gujarat, more and more women suddenly started dressing more conservatively, often as a show of Muslim pride but also to ward off sexual advances and potential sexual violence.

    Rubina's mother began covering her hair, and Rubina said Irfan soon told her that he preferred to marry a woman who dressed conservatively.

    Around this time, Rubina met a social worker named Jamila Khan at a meeting for Muslim women concerned about the living conditions in Juhapura and profiling of Muslim men as terrorists. But Khan also spoke out against Muslim leaders intent on reeling in Muslim women, curbing the liberties enshrined in India's secular constitution. She described herself as an "Islamic feminist."

    "It doesn't matter what our women were wearing," Khan told Rubina and her friends. "What is important is still having a voice. Islamic rigidity is silencing our most dynamic Muslim female minds."

    Many of Rubina's peers were giving up on having a career and were marrying and starting families earlier. Instead of going to college to study business or medicine, many were taking up courses at nearby mosques that taught them to be good Muslim wives.

    But as Rubina entered young adulthood, she said, she became aware of the hypocrisy among many of the imams. Although they preached that Muslim women should be homemakers, they sent their daughters to private schools and universities in Britain, Canada and the United States.

    During her first and only year at college, a Hindu extremist group circulating on campus began warning Hindus against having friendships or romantic relationships with Muslims. Rubina said some Hindu students started calling the places where Muslim students gathered "the Gaza Strip" or "Pakistan."

    "But I am Indian, too," Rubina said she wanted to tell them. She felt ashamed. Betrayed. Silenced.

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