Daily Archives: January 29, 2007

Ayaan Hirsi Ali’s Biography: Infidel

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From Booker Rising…

The autobiography is called Infidel, which is a term that some Muslims have called the former-Muslim-turned-atheist. The Somali-Dutch, moderate-conservative feminist and former parliamentarian who now lives in D.C. and works for the conservative American Enterprise Institute, follows The Caged Virgin, which focused on Islamic sexism. Publishers Weekly states: “In this suspenseful account of her life and her internal struggle with her Muslim faith, she discusses how these views were shaped by her experiences amid the political chaos of Somalia and other African nations, where she was subjected to genital mutilation and later forced into an unwanted marriage.

While in transit to her husband in Canada, she decided to seek asylum in the Netherlands, where she marveled at the polite policemen and government bureaucrats. Ali is up-front about having lied about her background in order to obtain her citizenship, which led to further controversy in early 2006, when an immigration official sought to deport her and triggered the collapse of the Dutch coalition government. Apart from feelings of guilt over van Gogh’s death, her voice is forceful and unbowed—like Irshad Manji, she delivers a powerful feminist critique of Islam informed by a genuine understanding of the religion.”

… original story at Booker Rising (link here).

posted by shona

I read “The Trouble With Islam Today” by Irshad Manji. I ordered this Ali book.

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Filed under Africa, Barbados, Culture & Race Issues, Religion

Barmy Army: “Cricket World Cup Barbados Might Be The Biggest Non-Event In Cricket History”

More Cricket World Cup “Oh Oh”

England’s “Barmy Army” is just about the most fanatical group of Cricket supporters in the world (next to the fans at Hercules Bar, Oistins, of course). But the Barmy Army might be in a bit of trouble. It seems that they booked some 800 hotel rooms in Barbados for Cricket World Cup.

How many remain unsold? A whole bunch…

Excerpt from Times Online…

Yet, of 800 hotel bedrooms booked (by Barmy Army) in Barbados for the tournament, only 200 had been sold by Christmas. “That has improved now but we were getting desperate — this might be the biggest non-event in cricket history,” Cooray said. “The pricing has taken the ordinary traveller out of the market. Staging the tournament on nine different islands adds to the problems and I think the grounds will be full only when West Indies are playing.”

Bennion said that his firm’s occupancy rates for the World Cup are running at 55 to 60 per cent. “The way the authorities have gone about pricing the tickets is killing the operation. I think it is a crime,” he said.

“As an official tour operator we are obliged to operate under tight restrictions and I presume we would lose deposits. England supporters have paid £3,000-£5,000 to go out for the Ashes and I don’t know whether they will be able to afford to go to the World Cup as well. I know a lot of hoteliers are concerned.”

… read the entire article at Times Online: Barmy Army Left Counting Cost Of Disastrous Ashes Tour

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Filed under Barbados, Barbados Tourism, Cricket, Politics & Corruption, Traveling and Tourism

Massive Increase In Airfares Threatens New Airline

Adrian Loveridge Talks About The LIAT/Caribbean Star Merger

Is There A Business Plan? St. Lucia’s Tourism Minister Hasn’t Seen It.

I have stayed silent on the proposed LIAT/Caribbean Star ‘merger’ until now because I honestly want at least one commercially driven Caribbean airline to evolve out of the discussions.

Intra-Caribbean travel has been one of the very few success stories for Barbados over the last ten years and the only significant market that has experienced above-inflation growth.

As someone who has championed intra-regional travel for more three decades, I would caution those now managing LIAT, the Caribbean Star airlines to review the massive increases in their fare structure.

The substantially higher airfares now being offered both by LIAT and Caribbean Airlines will be in my humble opinion entirely counter-productive and will not in anyway help the airlines achieve profitability.

Many industry watchers anticipate a downturn in visitor arrivals immediately after the Cricket World Cup from our largest single market, the United Kingdom. Any deterrent to encouraging further travel within the region is going to have a significant effect on the viability of the industry this summer.

I was also surprised to hear Allen Chastenet, the Chairman of the Caribbean Tourism Organisation and newly appointed Minister of Tourism in St. Lucia state that he had not seen LIAT’s latest business plan.

It is in my opinion unreasonable to continually expect the taxpayers to pump money into any entity unless it is explained to them exactly how they are going to redress years of sustained losses losses.

Adrian Loveridge

29 January 2007

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Filed under Aviation, Barbados, Barbados Tourism, Politics & Corruption, Traveling and Tourism

DLP Leader David Thompson – Sugar Words At Heroes Square But Remains Silent On Integrity & Conflict Of Interest Legislation

Same Old, Same Old.

More of the same – fine words that mean nothing without action.

The Nation News: Stop The Rot!

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Filed under Barbados, Crime & Law, Politics & Corruption

Unanswered Questions In Barbados: How Were Sophia’s Dead Babies “Disposed Of” By Queen Elizabeth Hospital? Were They Sold For Revenue?

QEH Spokesperson Says “Everything Is OK – Go Away. Nothing To See Here”

Barbados Government Says “We’re Going To Be The Stem-Cell Capital Of The World”

In a story carried by The Nation News on January 15, 2006, Sophia Kinch related how she had given birth to twin daughters at the Queen Elizabeth Hospital, and how the dead or dying babies were taken from her without any explanation and “disposed of” (the term used by the hospital spokesman).

Sophia Kinch has been trying unsuccessfully for a six weeks now to get some answers as to when the children died, what caused their deaths and what happened to their bodies.

After carrying the initial story, The Nation News hasn’t followed up – which is the usual method of operation for media in this town, especially considering that The Nation News has obviously been recruited as part of a massive good-publicity campaign currently being mounted by the Queen Elizabeth Hospital and the Government.

Unanswered Questions In A Country That Has Embraced The Body Parts Trade

In a quest for cash, the Government of Barbados has welcomed the stem-cell cosmetic procedures industry without first establishing the necessary regulations and accountability procedures that more civilized countries insist upon. Of course, that is why organizations like the Institute For Regenerative Medicine have to look to countries like Barbados in the first place – because they are unable to establish such clinics in Britain or the USA. In Barbados, cash is king and the clinics can pretty much do as they please.

Fetal Tissue & Dead Newborns Now A Valuable Commodity

As revealed in many news articles worldwide, fetal tissue and body parts are now a valuable commodity with a highly developed global infrastructure in place to collect, buy, sell and distribute the human tissues. There have been serious allegations by Swiss Members of the European Parliament that organized crime interests in Eastern Europe are paying women to become pregnant for the purpose of aborting their babies to feed this body parts and stem cell trade. There have also been serious allegations that in some cases, live newborns have been stolen from their mothers to feed this gruesome worldwide network.

All this is because fetuses and recently dead newborns are now valuable. What used to be something to be “disposed of” is now in many cases providing significant revenue flows to hospitals and other medical facilities.

Barbados has no laws in place to regulate this practice, and no civilian oversight or public accountability structures in place to monitor just how far the Barbados Government and the medical industry take our country down this road.

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Are Bajan Aborted Fetuses & Dead Newborns Sold To Provide Cash – Or Is This Revenue Steam Being Ignored?

Barbados Labour Party Candidate George Griffith (photo above) is the director of Barbados’ largest abortion provider – the Barbados Family Planning Association. Mr. Griffith is also on the Board of Directors for the Queen Elizabeth Hospital (An unethical conflict of interest if there ever was one.)

Because of his twin positions in the abortion industry and with the Queen Elizabeth Hospital, Mr. Griffiths probably has more knowledge than any other person as to the fate of Sophia’s babies and the sale of aborted fetuses and newborn body parts in Barbados.

In point form…

1/ The abortion industry worldwide is gearing up to turn a disposal problem (aborted fetuses) into cashflow. This is happening all over, and still there is such a shortage of fetuses for stem cell uses that women are being paid to become pregnant and abort in Eastern Europe.

2/ Barbados is fully committed to its leading position in the stem cell industry – which uses aborted fetuses and newborns’ cells.

3/ The sale of aborted fetuses would provide a significant source of revenue to the Barbados Family Planning Association and/or the Queen Elizabeth Hospital – so much so that it would be difficult for Executive Director and BLP Candidate George Griffith to ignore such a potential revenue stream.

4/ Barbados has no laws in place against the sale of aborted fetuses or dead newborns. To the contrary, Barbados encourages stem cell use and experimentation.

5/ There would seem to be no moral reservations for the sale of aborted Bajan fetuses by the organization that produced them in the first place. Indeed, Mr. Griffiths could probably justify his position that it would be more “moral” to make use of the aborted fetuses than to burn or bury them.

6/ If it is the position of the BFPA or of the Government that aborted Bajan fetuses are not to be supplied for use in cosmetic stem cell clinics, this would seem to be more of a political position than a moral one.

7/ So once again… we want to know, Mr. Griffith… Are we? For how much? To whom?

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Twins Query

(From The Nation News January 15, 2007 link here)

JUST OVER A MONTH after giving birth to twin daughters at the Queen Elizabeth Hospital (QEH), Sophia Kinch (photo above) says she does not know what has become of them.

The St Christopher, Christ Church woman told the DAILY NATION yesterday she went into labour at the QEH sometime after 10 p.m. on December 2 and gave birth to the girls that same night. “They cleaned them up, put clips on their navels and placed them on my stomach. I actually felt them move. In fact they kind of tickled my stomach,” she said.

Kinch, 33, said she was later escorted to a bathroom by a nurse for additional cleaning. On returning to the bed, she added, the babies were not there. “I asked for them and the nurse said they were gone,” she recalled.

Queried as to whether the nurse had said they had “died” or were “dead”, Kinch responded that the nurse merely said “gone”. She was later admitted to Ward B4 before eventually being discharged on December 4.

Kinch said she was seven months pregnant at the time of the deliveries, pointing out that she first attended a private doctor in early July 2006, when she was six-weeks into her pregnancy.

“No one at the hospital ever explained to me what happened to my babies. I never saw them after being taken into the bathroom. I have been through pregnancies before and knew what was going on around me. When I gave birth. I was fully conscious,” she said.

The self-employed mother of three added: “If they died I have a right as their mother to see them. I have the right to bury them. I have a right to at least be told something about what will happen to their bodies. The hospital cannot just get rid of them without telling me something. At this stage I honestly do not know if they are alive or dead.”

She explained that her mother, Gloria Kinch, and sister, Sharon Kinch, were at the QEH on the date of her deliveries and neither was shown the bodies of any babies.

The distraught woman said she and the babies’ father, Victor Adams, subsequently sought legal advice.

Yesterday, public relations consultant for the hospital, Ricardo Blackman, gave a totally different version.

While Kinch said she was more than seven months pregnant, Blackman said she was examined by a hospital consultant who told her she was 23 weeks pregnant and would lose the babies.

“This she clearly understood. Both babies died at birth. The patient was shown the babies, and, in keeping with normal procedure effecting premature delivery, both babies were disposed of,” he said.

Asked if the mother was given the option of disposing of the babies herself, Blackman said: “That does not come into play.”

Blackman confirmed the QEH had received correspondence from an attorney-at-law representing Kinch, and had responded to the lawyer indicating the matter was being investigated.

Attorney-at-law Desmond Sands told the DAILY NATION that having been retained by Kinch he wrote the QEH in early December on the matter, but had yet to receive a response.

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Filed under Abortion, Barbados, Crime & Law, Politics & Corruption

UPDATED: Strike Called Off. Original Story: British Airways Strike Looms – This Can’t Be Good For Barbados Tourism

UPDATED: Strike Called Off – Flights Back To Normal In Three Days

Reuters: BA Averts Strike With Last-Minute Union Deal 

British Airways Flight Cancellations Have Started

Even talk of a strike kills tourism as people don’t want to bet their two weeks annual vacation against predicting whether the union and management will be able to work things out. According to the Guardian, all BA flights for Tuesday and Wednesday have now been cancelled.

Let’s hope that flights will resume on Thursday.

The Guardian: BA In Last-Ditch Talks With Union As Strike Threatens Week Of Misery For Air Travellers

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Filed under Aviation, Barbados, Barbados Tourism, Traveling and Tourism

Drug Wars: Barbados Swearingen C-26 Tiger Shark

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Barbados Tiger Shark Seldom Seen In Daylight

SHE is a Swearingen C-26 twin turboprop aircraft, painted flat dark green – almost black. The red mouth and white shark teeth painted under the cockpit hint at her mission – or more accurately, give a clue to the attitude of the men who fly her.

Unusual antennas protrude from the top and bottom of the fuselage. She is not that fast – the book says about 238 knots top end for the version flown by Barbados – but for her mission, the pilots of the Barbados Defense Force favour her more for her range and loiter time than speed.

The crew is a mixed bag – always BDF personnel in command, but her passengers can be from anywhere: CIA, DEA or FBI from America, SAS or NIS from the UK. We understand that a few South African friends took a ride last year during the workup for Cricket World Cup… or so the rumour goes on the flightline at Grantley Adams Airport.

Like all Swearingens she handles well in the air – a bit heavy on the roll axis as the ailerons are inset from the wingtips – but the pilot had better be awake on the landing during any sort of crosswind. Her narrow landing gear has embarassed more than one over-confident young lad.

Our Tiger Shark operates mostly at night, and the equipment allows the pilots and crew to see as well at night as in the day – maybe even better than during the day as the infrared cameras can pick up hot engines against the cold sea or sky many miles away. (See photo above) When she is throttled back at fifteen thousand feet at night, drug runners on the sea and in the air can’t hear or see her – but she is there… or, maybe not.

Besides being stupid, drug runners must have nerves of steel as it’s a crap shoot and the druggies never know if someone is watching or not until it is too late.

If you want to know what she’s all about, you can visit the US State Department link here. This is a photo of one of her  look-a-like cousins from Panama …

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Thanks to Airliners.Net for the photo and BFP reader “P” for finding it. 

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Filed under Aviation, Barbados, Crime & Law, Politics & Corruption