Month: October 2007

Suborned

From yesterday’s RFE/RL Newsline:

The website chechenews.com posted on October 28 a statement it received by e-mail, signed by Chechen President and resistance commander Doku Umarov, in which Umarov confirms that he has proclaimed himself amir of a North Caucasus Islamic state, the precise extent of which he declines to specify. London-based ChRI Foreign Minister Akhmed Zakayev expressed concern one week earlier that Umarov would issue such a proclamation under pressure from radical elements within the resistance who, Zakayev claimed, have been suborned by the FSB, which intends to retaliate with harsh reprisals across the North Caucasus (see “RFE/RL Newsline,” October 22, 23, 25 and 26, 2007). The prospect that Umarov would declare a North Caucasus emirate has elicited concern among representatives of the ChRI government in exile, who warned that doing so would violate the constitution and undermine the legal status of the ChRI. Two prominent Chechen field commanders, Isa Munayev and Sultan Arsayev, have issued statements publicly siding with Zakayev, thereby implicitly distancing themselves from Umarov.

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Benign Neglect

From yesterday’s RFE/RL Newsline:

Estonian President Toomas Hendrik Ilves recently called on Western countries to adopt a policy of “benign neglect” toward Russia. He argued that it is a waste of time to complain about human rights violations there because the Kremlin ignores such entreaties. Ilves also said that the West should ignore Russia’s belligerent rhetoric and not respond to aggressive comments by President Putin and his officials.

Jussi

Buster is now called Jussi – after the Finnish opera tenor Jussi Björling. Being called “Buster” seemed to rankle with him a bit – while he responded to it, he obviously associated the name with some rough times in the past. He responds to “Jussi” better somehow – and this name reflects his undoubted singing powers, when he decides to meow.

He hasn’t been outside the house yet – perhaps next week I’ll try taking him into the garden in his Cat Walking Jacket Harness and leash.

In fact, here in the UK it’s fairly normal for cats to go outside unattended. In the States, however, things are rather different.

Cyber attack on HRO site

From Maidan (excerpt):

As already reported, since 21 October 2007, the website Human Rights in Russia at www.hro.org, the largest Russian-language Internet resource on human rights in the Russian Federation) has been subjected to a relentless and concentrated computer attack (a new form of DidoS attack***) with access to the site blocked.It would seem that HRO.org has become the first public resource in Russia to be confronted with an attack of such ferocity and persistence. The human rights resource has effectively become in the frontline of the newest stage of “cybernetic warfare”.

It should be noted that this attack does not only involve a consistent flow of tens of thousands of requests. The perpetrators have also managed to penetrate the website’s extremely serious security system and insert virus infecting modules into the file system.

Belonging

The more one reflects on it, the more one is convinced, I believe, that the passage from constraint to freedom is accomplished in belonging. This, however, opens up a vast field for meditation. How indeed shall we judge the modern anarchical notion of freedom which implies precisely the fact of not belonging to anybody or anything? Analysis discloses that what is here presented as a plenitude may be after all only a void. We should closely examine, however, the historical relation between this anarchical individualism and a socialism which at first sight seems to be opposed to it in every respect, since they have not only developed concurrently, but have even at times encroached on one another; as though, by a clearly marked dialectic, the unity without content of a self which belongs to nobody gave birth to the false plenitude of a social idolatry to fill or absorb it.

Gabriel Marcel (1940)