Daily Archives: September 29, 2013

Pakistan explosion: Dozens killed in Peshawar market

An explosion has ripped through a market in the north-western Pakistani city of Peshawar, leaving at least 33 dead and dozens wounded, officials say.Police said a bomb had exploded in the Kissa Khwani market, with shops and vehicles set alight.The blast comes a week after a double suicide bombing that killed at least 80 people at a church in the city.On Friday, at least 17 people were killed in the bombing of a bus carrying government employees near Peshawar.Peshawar, the main city of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa province, has been hit by numerous bomb and gun attacks blamed on Taliban insurgents in recent years.Hospital emergencyPolice said they suspected the explosion was caused by a car bomb.Pakistan’s Dawn newspaper quoted the health minister as saying that the main Peshawar police station may have been the main target.MapHowever, bomb disposal chief Shafqat Malik said it appeared the blast had taken place some way from the station.He told Agence France-Presse that a parked car had been “converted into a remote controlled bomb”.One shop owner, Nazar Ali, told Associated Press: “It was a huge blast that was followed by fire in vehicles. Thick black smoke covered the air and splinters spread all over. I saw people lying dead and bleeding.”An emergency situation was declared at the Lady Reading Hospital as it received the injured, many of them badly burned. Officials said 76 people had been hurt.Anxious relatives gathered outside the hospital for news.Rising violence has hindered new Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif’s overtures to end the insurgency through peace talks with the Taliban.On 21 September, Pakistan released from the jail the co-founder of the Afghan Taliban, Mullah Abdul Ghani Baradar.But the Pakistan Taliban have consistently rejected the country’s constitution and demand the imposition of Sharia law.Mr Sharif is in New York at the UN and is to meet Indian PM Manmohan Singh later on Sunday.Mr Sharif strongly condemned the Peshawar bombing in a message from New York, saying: “Those involved in the killing of innocent people are devoid of humanity and all religions.”Ahead of the talks, Mr Singh said Pakistan must stop being “the epicentre of terrorism”.Last Sunday’s attack on the historic All Saints church – thought to be the deadliest attack against Christians in Pakistan – sparked angry protests nationwide.Two Islamist militant groups with Taliban links said they had ordered the attack to hit back at US drone strikes.More than 120 people were wounded.Friday’s bus bomb targeted government employees returning home in the Gulbela area, some 15km 9 miles north-east of the city.In addition to those killed, at least 34 people were injured.

via BBC News – Pakistan explosion: Dozens killed in Peshawar market.


Map: How the world’s countries compare on income inequality the U.S. ranks below Nigeria

The way we measure income inequality is changing. After years of relying on a complicated metric called the Gini coefficient, some economists argue that we should adopt the Palma ratio, which measures the gap between the rich and the poor in a society. My colleague Dylan Matthews explains how the Palma works and why it might be superior more on that below.In the map up top, I’ve illustrated the latest data on income inequality around the world, as measured by the Palma. The results are pretty revealing. Bluer countries have greater income equality, according to the metric, meaning that there’s less of a gap between the rich and the poor. Redder countries have more income inequality, meaning that there’s a wider gap. Purple countries are about in the middle — that includes the United States, which is the most unequal of any developed country measured.The countries that come out looking best include, no surprise, the usual suspects of Northern Europe. Interestingly, Eastern Europe scores quite highly as well, as do some post-Soviet countries in Central Asia. Perhaps that’s a legacy of Soviet-era social programs meant to flatten class divides. But it’s also a reminder that, while economic equality is great, it’s not synonymous with a healthy economy. Some countries are economically equal because everyone is well-off, as in Denmark, and some because mosteveryone is equally poor.The countries with the highest income inequality are, by far, those of Latin America and the southern tip of Africa. These countries have been seeing economic growth over the past few decades, but much of the wealth ends up funneling into the top stratospheres of society. This problem tends to be self-reinforcing: The rich are able to secure better education and political access, making it easier for them to stay rich and tougher for everyone else to get a share of the pie.The United States doesn’t come out of this comparison looking great. It’s ranked 44th out of 86 countries, well below every other developed society measured. It’s one spot below Nigeria, which has some of the worst political corruption in the world and in 2012 saw nationwide protests over perceived income inequality. The United States’ Palma ratio ranks it just beneath Nigeria but above Russia and Turkey — all countries that have experienced heavy political unrest in recent years.The data offer a reminder that the United States might enjoy greater economic equality than much of the world, but it is at the bottom end of the developed world. And the Palma ratio actually shows the United States in a more positive light than does the Gini coefficient, which ranks it even lower. To get a better sense of how the United States compares to the rest of the world, here’s a map that shows all other countries just relative to the United States. Blue countries are more equal than the United States, red countries are more unequal:

Here’s the story with the Palma ratio, which gave us these data. Two economists with the Center for Global Development, Alex Cobham and Andy Sumner of King’s College London, make the case for the Palma in a recent paper. They explain that it’s much more elegant than the Gini coefficient and better suited at comparing the rich and the poor. The Palma simply compares the richest 10 percent of people with the poorest 40 percent. Their report provides the data mapped out above, supplemented with some numbers from the Danish Institute of International Studies.

Here’s a video Cobham and Sumner produced to explain how the Palma ratio works and why they think it’s better:

video : Map: How the world’s countries compare on income inequality the U.S. ranks below Nigeria.

Newly Declassified Government Documents: Pre 9/11 Bin Laden Hijack Plot Was Ignored By US Intelligence

Stop Making Sense

From Infowars:

File this under 9/11 government prior knowledge with the mountains of other examples from the past twelve years. Newly uncovered government documents show that the US government ignored a specific warning in 2000 that Al Qaeda planned to hijack a commercial airliner headed for the US.

After eleven years, the Defense Intelligence Agency (DIA), the country’s military intelligence arm,  has released documents to watchdog group Judicial Watch, that show the warning was ignored because “nobody believed that Usama bin Laden’s organization or the Taliban could carry out such an operation.”

Judicial Watch notes that the documents “reveal that Al Qaeda had a sophisticated plan to hijack a commercial airliner departing Frankfurt International Airport between March and August 2000. The hijack team was to consist of an Arab, a Pakistani and a Chechen and their targets were U.S. airlines, Lufthansa and Air France.”

Judicial Watch requested the material in…

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Obama’s Muslim Advisers Blame Coptic Christians for Muslim Attacks Against Them


If you want to know why Obama and his cronies have turned a blind eye to Muslim Brotherhood violence against Coptic Christians while focusing obsessively on clashes between Rohingya Muslim migrants in Burma and the native Buddhist population, look no further than the Muslim advisers of Obama Inc.

Dalia Moghaed [sic], credited with helping President Obama draft his June 2009 Cairo speech about American relations with the Islamic world, recently downplayed attacks against Egypt’s Coptic Christians on a Facebook page. … Mogahed isn’t the only American Islamist tied to the Obama administration to slam the Copts on social media. In a Sept. 15 Twitter post, Mohamed Elibiary, a member of the Department of Homeland Security’s Homeland Security Advisory Council, accused American Coptic activists of fanning hatred of Islam. “For >decade since 9/11 attack extremist American #Coptic activists have nurtured anti #Islam & anti #Muslim sentiments among AM RT wing,” Elibiary wrote. In earlier tweets, Elibiary attacked American Copts for protesting against how their relatives in Egypt have been treated by the Islamists. “Good read by @mwhanna1 on need to reform

Coptic activism in US including stop promoting Islamophobia,” Elibiary wrote Sept. 14.

Attacking Coptic Christian activists was one of the topics of CAIR’s recent Islamophobia report. What their Islamist pals are doing with bombs and bullets in Egypt to Coptic Christians, the Islamists in the US are doing with words.

via Obama’s Muslim Advisers Blame Coptic Christians for Muslim Attacks Against Them | FrontPage Magazine.

‘Up To 50 Students Killed’ At Nigeria College

Suspected Islamist militants reportedly fire on students in Nigeria as they storm a dormitory and set classrooms ablaze

As many as 50 people have been killed after suspected Islamist militants fired on students as they slept at a college in northeast Nigeria.The gunmen reportedly stormed a dormitory and set fire to classrooms in the assault which happened about 1am local time in the town of Gujba in Yobe state.Nigeria’s military is blaming gunmen from the Boko Haram insurgent group for the atrocity at the College of Agriculture.College provost Molima Idi Mato said security forces were still recovering bodies so he could not give an exact number of dead but said up to 50 had been killed.He also said about 1,000 students had fled the scene.A source told the Reuters news agency that 26 bodies had been brought to hospital.The college is about 25 miles from the scene of similar school attacks around Damaturu town.There were no security forces stationed at the college despite government assurances, said Mr Mato.

via ‘Up To 50 Students Killed’ At Nigeria College.