Monday, August 27, 2012










































Another bucket-list item checked off: Circumnavigating the globe!


One thing that I'd always really wanted to do was to travel around the world, preferably at the equator, by walking, biking, hot-air ballooning or even by covered wagon or swimming if necessary -- I didn't care how. "What about doing it in an airplane?" Sure. Definitely easier on the knees.

So I did it.

First I lived on peanut butter and jelly sandwiches for two years to save up, and then borrowed or begged as many frequent flyer miles as I could. And then just did it! Another big item to check off of my bucket list.

"So how'd it go?" you might ask. About as well as you can expect -- considering that in 21 days I spent 55.5 hours actually sitting in an airline chair, eating airline food and watching airline movies, and another 75 hours getting to airports, sitting around airports, sleeping at airports and getting back from airports. Plus going through 30 different security checks in nine different airports as well.

When I tell people that I actually did all of that, they just look at me and think that I made the whole thing up. So that's why I always take photos. Nobody believes me otherwise. And even then, still nobody believes me. "Nah, those pictures were PhotoShopped." No, really. I actually did do it!

"So. What did you learn?" Nothing much -- except that everywhere that I went, people were always very friendly and kind to me. And NOBODY I met ever deserved to be killed.

Of all the hundreds of people I met on my travels -- perhaps even thousands -- not one of them deserved to be blown up by a drone or irradiated by depleted uranium or run down by tanks or attacked by militarized police with tear gas or occupied "for their own good" or bombed by "peacekeeping" forces or any of that other stuff that America has now become famous for.

And what I have discovered after circumnavigating the entire globe, mostly at the equator, and going to or flying over so many different countries is this: That America used to be famous for our democracy and our "can do" attitude and our inventiveness. But not any more. Now America is just famous for developing its whole new advanced unique and expensive technology for killing people. Sigh.

So now that I've actually circumnavigated the entire globe, do you want to know what the latest, most exciting, most fabulous, most creative item on my recently-updated bucket list is gonna be now? WORLD PEACE! And I'm not the only one who has this item on their bucket list either.

Do you?

PS: Once back home in the good old U.S.A., what was one of the first things that I saw TV? Paul Ryan -- channeling GWB. During his recent speech at Tampa, Ryan obviously looked and sounded just like George Bush's clone -- the exact same insincere smile, pseudo-populist bad acting, use of emotional tear-jerking "patriotic" sucker-punches and shameless making of empty promises that Ryan, like Bush, has NO intention of keeping. http://www.newyorker.com/online/blogs/borowitzreport/2012/08/ryan-launches-campaign-theme-of-lying-about-everything.html.

Dubya himself may have been banned from the Republican convention, but his spirit -- and his disastrous policies too -- obviously still live on in the body of Paul Davis Ryan.

And apparently Tea Party members have been going around saying that Ann Romney looks like a REAL First Lady. What's that supposed to mean? That Michelle Obama doesn't have blonde hair? Maybe not. But Michelle does have courage, integrity, good taste and class -- along the lines of Jackie O and Dolly Madison. Can you even begin to imagine Michelle allowing Mitt to "offshore" thousands of American jobs or strap a dog to the top of a car for 12 hours? http://www.rollingstone.com/politics/news/greed-and-debt-the-true-story-of-mitt-romney-and-bain-capital-20120829

PPS: There was hardly any snow on Mt. Fuji as we flew by it.

PPPS: At all the duty-free shops around the planet, I got to sample Chanel #5 perfume, which used to be my mother's favorite.

*********************************************************
*********************************************************

Advertizements for myself: In these hard times of brutal (and illegal) corporatist ball-busting socialism-for-the-rich-only, I am doing whatever I can to make a spare dollar. Here are some of my current alternate-economy schemes that never seem to work -- but I keep hoping!

******
What next? Now I'm trying to go to a six-day vodou ceremony in a cave somewhere in Haiti. Please donate toward my trip expenses here: https://www.wepay.com/xh8kekc

Also my son Joe is trying to raise money to film a documentary on this event. Check out his video of the vodou master here -- a truly heavy-duty dude:

"This documentary is about capturing a Haitian Vodou Ceremony experienced through the perspective of Suzan (a Shaman leader). The ceremony takes place in a cave that Suzan had lived in for 10 years in Fonds-des-Nègres, Haiti, 114 km west of Port Au Prince."

******

Need someone to help you throw out stuff? I'm really good at deciding what needs to be thrown out (starting with all those corporate-owned bums in Washington!)


****
***

Need an actor to play an older woman in your movie?
Then I'm your man! I can portray all kinds of older women -- from judges, business execs and other insane zombies to bag ladies, cancer patients, kindly grandmothers and dying patients in rest homes. I've played them all. So send me a script and let's do this. Hollywood, here we come!

****
Are you a plaintiffs' attorney who is tired of writing those pesky personal injury settlement briefs all the time? No problem! I can write them for you. Years of experience. And pay me only if you win the case.


****

I recently got my Notary Public commission!

Need a Notary Public? Have seal, will travel. E-mail me at jpstillwater@yahoo.com and I'll stamp your document, make it official and only charge $10. Of course if you live outside of Berkeley, I may have to charge travel expenses -- but am well worth it!

****

Want something good to read? Buy my book! "Bring Your Own Flak Jacket: Helpful Tips for Touring Today's Middle East," available at Amazon and Barnes & Noble. http://www.amazon.com/Bring-Your-Own-Flak-Jacket/dp/0978615719/ref=cm_pdp_rev_itm_title_1. It's like if Jack Kerouac, Mark Twain and/or Janet Evanovich went to war.

I also wrote a book about going on Hajj (also included as a chapter in "Bring Your Own Flak Jacket," but this book is cheaper -- but it's worth buying them both!) My book on the Hajj is so outstanding that I bet even Christian fundamentalists will love it! Please buy it here: http://www.amazon.com/Mecca-Hajj-Lessons-Islamic-School/dp/0978615700/ref=cm_rdp_product

****

"Imagine a world where EVERY child is wanted, nurtured, protected and loved: World peace in one generation!"
You can now buy T-shirts, coffee mugs, tote bags, truckers' caps, baby gear and/or teddy bears with this logo printed on them. They make great gifts, especially for parents and teachers. To purchase, just click here: http://www.cafepress.com/StillTWaters

http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-uqSuzOjM4vU/TafAFKcYz0I/AAAAAAAAFJc/Duv2LYJyUTs/s1600/IMG_0045.JPGhttp://3.bp.blogspot.com/-dlHRO-CPqf0/Tae6tLspmQI/AAAAAAAAFI0/iUKwYDK1f3A/s1600/IMG_0041.JPG

"Life is a competition. The winners are the ones who do the most good deeds." You can also buy T-shirts, coffee mugs, tote bags, truckers' caps, baby gear and/or teddy bears with this logo printed on them. They make great gifts, especially for those of us who are still idealists in these troubled times. To purchase, just click here: http://www.cafepress.com/StillTWaters

Wednesday, August 22, 2012




























































3 days in Jakarta: Cheap massages & desperately seeking Obama


After spending ten hours in the Doha airport and 24 hours at the Singapore airport, I was totally looking forward to spending three whole days in Jakarta -- but had no idea what to expect. Jakarta? Capital of Indonesia? Located on the island of Java, famous for its coffee and Krakatoa? Where Mel Gibson fell in love with Sigourney Weaver during their "Year of Living Dangerously" http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0086617/? Barack Obama's old boyhood home? What is Jakarta really like? I was about to find out.

An old friend of mine from back when we both worked at Berkeley law offices met me at the airport and immediately whisked me off into a fabulous whirl of fun and food -- a sort of three-day-long "Girls Night Out".

Jakarta has definitely changed a whole lot since 1965 when Sukarno was top dog and Linda Hunt was taking photos of poor people rioting in the streets. Poor people no longer riot in the streets here. Now they know better. The foreign and local "extractive industry" moguls who apparently own most of Indonesia these days have done a really good job of teaching Indonesian poor people to know their place -- except of course for a few pesky ingrates over in East Timor. But they no longer count now, having been mostly killed off.

The poor people in Indonesia clearly know their place now -- just like the "extractive industries" in America are also happily teaching America's 99% our places so they can steal our resources too.

But oil companies no longer have to kill people in America to get their hands on our land -- because, unlike the people of East Timor (or Sitting Bull or Geronimo either for that matter), Americans have become so, er, gullible that they now allow the "extractive industries" to legally seize their property by use of eminent domain.

According to environmental researcher Allison Grass, "The controversial Kelo v. City of New London (2005) is credited with broadening the interpretation of 'public use'. In this case, the Supreme Court ruled in favor of New London, deciding that the city could take private property and give it to another private entity for 'economic development'. The Court decided that this met the 'public use' provision of the Fifth Amendment." http://www.commondreams.org/view/2012/08/21-0

What does this ruling mean for Americans? It means that if the "extractive industry" wants your land, they can have it. Period. And you of course will be S.O.L. Never forget that extractive-industry people are running a very harsh economic dictatorship behind that Oil Curtain -- and they are not our friends.

As I was being driven though the streets of Jakarta, it became immediately clear that this city is now more like Dallas than Zuccotti Park. Neiman Marcus fans would feel right at home here. The Bush dynasty would love it. And my guilty secret? I too loved Jakarta.

First my friend and I went off to a top-of-the-line beauty salon for full-body massages. Only five dollars! Then we went to the old port of Jakarta where the docks are lined with funky old wooden schooners still being used for transporting goods to and from Indonesia's 1700-odd islands.

Next we went to visit the old Dutch colony of Batavia. Did you know that the Dutch East India Company was one of the world's very first global conglomerates? Back in 1602, it was a pioneer poster-boy for globalization -- and was probably just as cruel and ruthless back then as Monsanto is now.

What to see and do next? Off to a wonderful Rijsttafel dinner with some delightful Indonesian women and a handful of ex-pats from America, Australia and Korea. And then another body massage. I could get used to this!

Next we experienced a top-of-the-line display of wealth that went way beyond my mere concept of "mall". So much money here in Jakarta. Streets crammed with chauffeur-driven Mercedes and BMWs. And then after the "shopping complex" experience, we visited a folk-art museum, ate avocado ice cream and -- went for a massage!

I owe so much to my friend from Berkeley and her Indonesian friends for giving me the full Jakarta experience.

And the food here! Marvelous. Everyone was getting ready to observe Ramadan in this mostly-Muslim country -- and everyone here was either eating or shopping for food or thinking about eating. Me too!

Next came a tour of Jakarta's largest mosque. "It is the third largest mosque in the world -- only Mecca and Medinah have larger ones." I've been to both those other mosques but this one was different -- all modern in design and using lots of copper and chrome.

Across the street from the mosque was a large European-style cathedral. Catholics in Indonesia? Yeah. Just like there were Catholics in Nagasaki when American pilots in World War II used Nagasaki's cathedral spire as a landmark for dropping their atomic bomb, wiping out 8,500 Japanese Christians attending Sunday services in one shot
http://tinyurl.com/8pf7yb6. Ah, the smell of burning Christians in the morning. One of America's finest hours. But I digress.

Time for another massage.

"You know what I would really love to do here?" I asked my wonderful new Indonesian BFF. "Can we go see where Barack Obama lived as a boy and also visit the school that he went to?" The school was easy to find. The two homes where Obama used to live were harder to find -- but a local journalist gave us the 411 and we actually found them.

"Did you know that Barack, as a boy, was reputed to be rather pudgy -- and that he confused his fellow students because his step-father was Indonesian and his mother was a white American and yet he had really curly hair. Most students finally decided that he was from Papua-New Guinea. And did you know that Obama's father was an oilman?" No I didn't. An oilman? Hmmm. Then I can't understand why Republicans don't just love Obama. Republicans always seem to love anyone who exploits natural resources for their own benefit (not ours).

And those were my three days of (not) living dangerously in Jakarta. And now it's time for me to go off to spend yet another night in yet another airport -- Narita, in Tokyo. "Ah, but wait!" said my old friend from Berkeley and my new BFF from Jakarta. "We still have time to fit in just one more massage!"


*********************************************************
*********************************************************

Advertizements for myself: In these hard times of brutal (and illegal) corporatist ball-busting socialism-for-the-rich-only, I am doing whatever I can to make a spare dollar. Here are some of my current alternate-economy schemes that never seem to work -- but I keep hoping!

******
What next? Now I'm trying to go to a six-day vodou ceremony in a cave somewhere in Haiti. Please donate toward my trip expenses here: https://www.wepay.com/xh8kekc

Also my son Joe is trying to raise money to film a documentary on this event. Check out his video of the vodou master here -- a truly heavy-duty dude:

"This documentary is about capturing a Haitian Vodou Ceremony experienced through the perspective of Suzan (a Shaman leader). The ceremony takes place in a cave that Suzan had lived in for 10 years in Fonds-des-Nègres, Haiti, 114 km west of Port Au Prince."

******

Need someone to help you throw out stuff? I'm really good at deciding what needs to be thrown out (starting with all those corporate-owned bums in Washington!)


****
***

Need an actor to play an older woman in your movie?
Then I'm your man! I can portray all kinds of older women -- from judges, business execs and other insane zombies to bag ladies, cancer patients, kindly grandmothers and dying patients in rest homes. I've played them all. So send me a script and let's do this. Hollywood, here we come!

****
Are you a plaintiffs' attorney who is tired of writing those pesky personal injury settlement briefs all the time? No problem! I can write them for you. Years of experience. And pay me only if you win the case.


****

I recently got my Notary Public commission!

Need a Notary Public? Have seal, will travel. E-mail me at jpstillwater@yahoo.com and I'll stamp your document, make it official and only charge $10. Of course if you live outside of Berkeley, I may have to charge travel expenses -- but am well worth it!

****

Want something good to read? Buy my book! "Bring Your Own Flak Jacket: Helpful Tips for Touring Today's Middle East," available at Amazon and Barnes & Noble. http://www.amazon.com/Bring-Your-Own-Flak-Jacket/dp/0978615719/ref=cm_pdp_rev_itm_title_1. It's like if Jack Kerouac, Mark Twain and/or Janet Evanovich went to war.

I also wrote a book about going on Hajj (also included as a chapter in "Bring Your Own Flak Jacket," but this book is cheaper -- but it's worth buying them both!) My book on the Hajj is so outstanding that I bet even Christian fundamentalists will love it! Please buy it here: http://www.amazon.com/Mecca-Hajj-Lessons-Islamic-School/dp/0978615700/ref=cm_rdp_product

****

"Imagine a world where EVERY child is wanted, nurtured, protected and loved: World peace in one generation!"
You can now buy T-shirts, coffee mugs, tote bags, truckers' caps, baby gear and/or teddy bears with this logo printed on them. They make great gifts, especially for parents and teachers. To purchase, just click here: http://www.cafepress.com/StillTWaters

http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-uqSuzOjM4vU/TafAFKcYz0I/AAAAAAAAFJc/Duv2LYJyUTs/s1600/IMG_0045.JPGhttp://3.bp.blogspot.com/-dlHRO-CPqf0/Tae6tLspmQI/AAAAAAAAFI0/iUKwYDK1f3A/s1600/IMG_0041.JPG

"Life is a competition. The winners are the ones who do the most good deeds." You can also buy T-shirts, coffee mugs, tote bags, truckers' caps, baby gear and/or teddy bears with this logo printed on them. They make great gifts, especially for those of us who are still idealists in these troubled times. To purchase, just click here: http://www.cafepress.com/StillTWaters


Tuesday, August 14, 2012




















































Singapore: Stalinist housing blocs & feng shui


After spending a rather unique night trying to sleep on glorified lawn chairs at the Doha airport, I finally arrived in Singapore -- blurry-eyed and confused. And that's not a good condition to be in when trying to navigate through the Singapore airport -- because this airport is HUGE. Imagine the Great Mall of America, Rodeo Drive and a mini-Disney Adventureland combined with more restaurants than you could eat at in a month, an elaborate system of people-movers and thousands of happy tourists and shoppers, all tacked onto miles and miles of terminals, departure gates and runways -- and you pretty much get the picture. The Singapore airport is HUGE.

"Where is the closest transit hotel?" I bleated piteously.

"After Terminal 3, get on the tramway, turn right at Cartier, walk a half-mile past the third food court, it's next to the butterfly garden." Found it!

For approximately $60, I was able to rent a sweet teeny-tiny little hotel room in miniature for six hours -- and promptly fell asleep. It was like they had shrunk a hotel room at the Hilton to fit into your closet. I loved it.

And what's not to like about the Singapore airport -- if you are a Material Girl. Everything you can imagine is on sale here. WHAT will this place ever do if people ever wise up and discover that material goods can't buy you happiness -- and also when the world runs out of raw materials? Then the Singapore airport will be screwed. But until then, the place is like a freaking MUSEUM for material goods, the ultimate wet-dream for Material Girls.

The airport also offers a two-hour free tour of the city of Singapore. My plane doesn't leave for Jakarta for another seven hours. I'm on this!

"The island of Singapore consists mainly of parklands and highrises," said our guide. And it did. So many lovely parks. Hand-groomed parks very much like Central Park in New York -- only miles and miles and miles more of them.

"Why do you have so many parks?" I asked.

"It's good feng shui," said our guide. Oh. Okay. "The ancient art of feng shui tells us that the way your home or business is laid out can strongly affect your fortune. And having good feng shui brings you good luck and having lots of greenery around brings you even more good luck."
http://video.about.com/fengshui/Color-and-Feng-Shui.htm

Well, it does look like all those miles and miles of parklands and trees and manicured flower beds and well-trimmed lawns really are bringing Singapore lots of good luck. America should try that!

And springing up like gigantic mushrooms from all of these parks were many many tall skyscrapers and housing blocs. The total effect here reminded me of Pyongyang, up in North Korea. After Americans had leveled the city flat with thousands of bombs back in the 1950s, Pyongyang was rebuilt on a grid of parklands, skyscraper hotels for tourists and Stalinist housing blocs.

Of course the parklands in Singapore are hecka lot nicer and the housing blocs here are far more luxurious than in Pyongyang -- but the effect is the same: The good feng shui of parks to offset the bad feng shui of housing blocs and skyscrapers.

Back home in Berkeley, our current mayor and most of our city council appear to be trying to Manhattanize Berkeley just as fast as humanly possible. But. They are leaving out that other highly important ingredient of good feng shui -- the parks. If our current mayor wants to cram Berkeley full of Stalinist housing blocs, fine with me. But where are the parks? So next election I'm going to vote for Kriss Worthington for mayor instead. http://www.krissworthington.com/home/

That is, if I ever get out of the Singapore airport alive. One could live here comfortably forever -- except that there are no parks (unless you count runways).

PS: Mitt Romney has named Paul Ryan to be his vice presidential running mate. Paul Ryan! Electing those two would be like electing the Beagle Boys to guard Uncle Scrooge's bank vault. With Romney and Ryan in charge of our treasury, we can almost count on being burgled for every last red cent that we own.

A vote for these Beagle Boys may be a really great idea -- but only if you yourself are a Beagle Boy too. Most of us are not.

According to Robert Reich, "Republicans want to obliterate any trace of the [Bush] administration that told America there were weapons of mass destruction in Iraq and led us into a devastating war; turned a $5 trillion projected budget surplus into a $6 trillion deficit; gave the largest tax cut in a generation to the richest Americans in history; handed out a mountain of corporate welfare to the oil and gas industry, pharmaceutical companies, and military contractors like Halliburton (uniquely benefiting the vice president); whose officials turned a blind eye to Wall Street shenanigans that led to the worst financial calamity since the Great Crash of 1929 and then persuaded Congress to bail out the Street with the largest taxpayer-funded giveaway of all time." http://www.nationofchange.org/erasing-w-1344692189

Bush was the ultimate Beagle Boy. And now we are supposed to forget all that and let them force the Romney-Ryan Beagle Boy team on us too? Exactly how dumb do they think that we are?

What would Unca Scrooge do?

Maybe I should just stay here in Singapore after all -- because it has such good feng shui. But no. My flight leaves for Jakarta in two hours and there are no backsies on my plane ticket.

*********************************************************
*********************************************************

Advertizements for myself: In these hard times of brutal (and illegal) corporatist ball-busting socialism-for-the-rich-only, I am doing whatever I can to make a spare dollar. Here are some of my current alternate-economy schemes that never seem to work -- but I keep hoping!

******
What next? Now I'm trying to go to a six-day vodou ceremony in a cave somewhere in Haiti. Please donate toward my trip expenses here: https://www.wepay.com/xh8kekc

Also my son Joe is trying to raise money to film a documentary on this event. Check out his video of the vodou master here -- a truly heavy-duty dude:

"This documentary is about capturing a Haitian Vodou Ceremony experienced through the perspective of Suzan (a Shaman leader). The ceremony takes place in a cave that Suzan had lived in for 10 years in Fonds-des-Nègres, Haiti, 114 km west of Port Au Prince."

******

Need someone to help you throw out stuff? I'm really good at deciding what needs to be thrown out (starting with all those corporate-owned bums in Washington!)


****
***

Need an actor to play an older woman in your movie?
Then I'm your man! I can portray all kinds of older women -- from judges, business execs and other insane zombies to bag ladies, cancer patients, kindly grandmothers and dying patients in rest homes. I've played them all. So send me a script and let's do this. Hollywood, here we come!

****
Are you a plaintiffs' attorney who is tired of writing those pesky personal injury settlement briefs all the time? No problem! I can write them for you. Years of experience. And pay me only if you win the case.


****

I recently got my Notary Public commission!

Need a Notary Public? Have seal, will travel. E-mail me at jpstillwater@yahoo.com and I'll stamp your document, make it official and only charge $10. Of course if you live outside of Berkeley, I may have to charge travel expenses -- but am well worth it!

****

Want something good to read? Buy my book! "Bring Your Own Flak Jacket: Helpful Tips for Touring Today's Middle East," available at Amazon and Barnes & Noble. http://www.amazon.com/Bring-Your-Own-Flak-Jacket/dp/0978615719/ref=cm_pdp_rev_itm_title_1. It's like if Jack Kerouac, Mark Twain and/or Janet Evanovich went to war.

I also wrote a book about going on Hajj (also included as a chapter in "Bring Your Own Flak Jacket," but this book is cheaper -- but it's worth buying them both!) My book on the Hajj is so outstanding that I bet even Christian fundamentalists will love it! Please buy it here: http://www.amazon.com/Mecca-Hajj-Lessons-Islamic-School/dp/0978615700/ref=cm_rdp_product

****

"Imagine a world where EVERY child is wanted, nurtured, protected and loved: World peace in one generation!"
You can now buy T-shirts, coffee mugs, tote bags, truckers' caps, baby gear and/or teddy bears with this logo printed on them. They make great gifts, especially for parents and teachers. To purchase, just click here: http://www.cafepress.com/StillTWaters

http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-uqSuzOjM4vU/TafAFKcYz0I/AAAAAAAAFJc/Duv2LYJyUTs/s1600/IMG_0045.JPGhttp://3.bp.blogspot.com/-dlHRO-CPqf0/Tae6tLspmQI/AAAAAAAAFI0/iUKwYDK1f3A/s1600/IMG_0041.JPG

"Life is a competition. The winners are the ones who do the most good deeds." You can also buy T-shirts, coffee mugs, tote bags, truckers' caps, baby gear and/or teddy bears with this logo printed on them. They make great gifts, especially for those of us who are still idealists in these troubled times. To purchase, just click here: http://www.cafepress.com/StillTWaters

Friday, August 10, 2012












































The Arab Holocaust: An amazing story of Western chessboard diplomacy in the Middle East

I recently spent four hours hanging out at the newly-renovated Cairo international airport, and then eight hours more sleeping on a lounge chair at the airport in Doha -- so does this brief-but-intense experience now make me an expert on the entire Middle East? Sure.

If you don't count the Crusades, the Middle East's most deadly encounter with the West's political and economic chessboard began way back in 1918 -- after the Turkish empire crumbled, after the heroic times of Lawrence of Arabia and after the Great War. That's when a deadly and brutal Arab Holocaust originally began.

After World War I ended, Palestine was cut into pieces by the European powers, Egypt was denied the independence that it had been promised by the Brits, the despotic Saudis tightened their grip on the Arabian peninsula, various heavy-handed but Western-friendly emirates and potentates sprang up, colonialism grew apace, France put the thumbscrews on Algeria, etc.

And one gigantic shadow also loomed menacingly over all this frantic neo-colonial scramble for the Middle East: The automobile. Oil.

Then came World War II and, after Rommel the Desert Fox was ousted by the Allies, times got even tougher in the Middle East in the late 1940s and 1950s -- as Palestine was violently seized by European neo-colonials, the CIA invaded Iran and Iraq's nascent democracies, puppet dictators were established by American and Israeli neo-colonial interests, and local non-puppet dictators and democracies alike were bloodily deposed.

By the 1960s, all the seeds for an Arab Holocaust that had been eagerly planted and watered earlier by greedy Western political and corporate chess masters began to really start to grow -- and suddenly the Arab Holocaust was truly well under way.

In the late 1960s, 1970s and 1980s, the Arab Holocaust tree began to blossom profusely and bear strange fruit as American corporate chess players continued demanding a larger and larger piece of the pie -- with the seizure of Sinai and the West Bank, the betrayal of the USS Liberty, the occupation of Gaza, Reagan's bloody eight-year surrogate war that took over a million lives in Iran and Iraq, and the 1982 invasion of Lebanon that killed an additional 250,000 men, women and children.

And all this vigorous military activity in the Middle East looked just fine on the chessboards of European, Israeli and American war rooms -- but what did its reality on the ground look like? A human holocaust. The Arab Holocaust.

Whenever corporate-owned America moved a pawn on its Middle East chessboard in Washington and set up the Shah in Iran and Saddam Hussein in Iraq and helped unleash Moshe Dayan onto Palestine, to them it looked merely like pawns being knocked over -- or pieces of paper changing hands.

But those pieces of paper were also death warrants for hundreds of thousands of Arabs all across the entire Middle East.

Then along came Charlie Wilson's War -- when the U.S. happily armed bin Ladin and Al Qaeda. And we all know how that went: The Taliban came to power and untold thousands of Afghans ended up dead (not to mention an additional 5,000 Americans).

Then when Bush Senior and Bush Junior decided to invade Kuwait, Afghanistan and Iraq and also pay for the cruel napalming of Gaza, at least a million more people died. And when Obama continued to fund the occupation of Afghanistan and Palestine http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=f_dk-1nYSJU&feature=youtu.be and NATO invaded Libya and Syria, and Arabia's and Yemen's and Bahrain's bids for democracy were brutally suppressed, more Arabs died. Many many more.

And now we have entered the age of the drone -- and the Arab Holocaust continues.

And according to Middle East expert Pepe Escobar, Israel and the CIA have just happily hopped into bed with Al Qaeda once again -- in order to kill as many Syrians as they possibly can. http://www.atimes.com/atimes/Middle_East/NH03Ak04.html

For almost a century now, the Middle East has lived under a man-made Holocaust hurricane that has brutally killed and maimed hundreds of thousands of innocent Arab women and children as well as men -- and killed them with enthusiasm and ease.

And when will this vicious and uncivilized Arab Holocaust finally ever end? After every single Arab in the Middle East has been killed? Or when they have finally run out of oil over there.

PS: I am using the term "Arab" loosely here. Within the eclectic mix of over a million dead bodies that have been piled up in the Middle East in the last many decades by callous acts of Western neo-colonialism, you will find not only "Arab" corpses per se -- but also corpses that spoke Farsi, Urdu and Pashtu, Muslim corpses, Sunni corpses, Shia corpses, Christian corpses, Jewish corpses, Druze corpses and even Zoroastrian corpses -- all equitably rotting away in the bright Middle East sun.

As far as I can tell, the only two actual components that human beings seem to require in order to be included in the West's neo-colonial list of possible "Arab Holocaust" victims are to have the same skin tones as Jesus and to live in the Middle East.

PPS: I just saw a program on TV that discussed how former Nazis who participated in the WWII Jewish Holocaust are still being hunted down and punished even now. So WHEN will the war criminals of the Arab Holocaust start to be brought to justice as well? Or are we just hypocrites.

PPPS: Having survived my odyssey through the Rome, Cairo, Entebbe and Doha airports in one piece, I am now ready, willing and able to tackle the Singapore airport next. Wish me luck.

*********************************************************
*********************************************************

Advertizements for myself: In these hard times of brutal (and illegal) corporatist ball-busting socialism-for-the-rich-only, I am doing whatever I can to make a spare dollar. Here are some of my current alternate-economy schemes that never seem to work -- but I keep hoping!

******
What next? Now I'm trying to go to a six-day vodou ceremony in a cave somewhere in Haiti. Please donate toward my trip expenses here: https://www.wepay.com/xh8kekc

Also my son Joe is trying to raise money to film a documentary on this event. Check out his video of the vodou master here -- a truly heavy-duty dude:

"This documentary is about capturing a Haitian Vodou Ceremony experienced through the perspective of Suzan (a Shaman leader). The ceremony takes place in a cave that Suzan had lived in for 10 years in Fonds-des-Nègres, Haiti, 114 km west of Port Au Prince."

******

Need someone to help you throw out stuff? I'm really good at deciding what needs to be thrown out (starting with all the corporate-owned bums in Washington!)


****
***

Need an actor to play an older woman in your movie?
Then I'm your man! I can portray all kinds of older women -- from judges, business execs and other insane zombies to bag ladies, cancer patients, kindly grandmothers and dying patients in rest homes. I've played them all. So send me a script and let's do this. Hollywood, here we come!

****
Are you a plaintiffs' attorney who is tired of writing those pesky personal injury settlement briefs all the time? No problem! I can write them for you. Years of experience. And pay me only if you win the case.


****

I recently got my Notary Public commission!

Need a Notary Public? Have seal, will travel. E-mail me at jpstillwater@yahoo.com and I'll stamp your document, make it official and only charge $10. Of course if you live outside of Berkeley, I may have to charge travel expenses -- but am well worth it!

****

Want something good to read? Buy my book! "Bring Your Own Flak Jacket: Helpful Tips for Touring Today's Middle East," available at Amazon and Barnes & Noble. http://www.amazon.com/Bring-Your-Own-Flak-Jacket/dp/0978615719/ref=cm_pdp_rev_itm_title_1. It's like if Jack Kerouac, Mark Twain and/or Janet Evanovich went to war.

I also wrote a book about going on Hajj (also included as a chapter in "Bring Your Own Flak Jacket," but this book is cheaper -- but it's worth buying them both!) My book on the Hajj is so outstanding that I bet even Christian fundamentalists will love it! Please buy it here: http://www.amazon.com/Mecca-Hajj-Lessons-Islamic-School/dp/0978615700/ref=cm_rdp_product

****

"Imagine a world where EVERY child is wanted, nurtured, protected and loved: World peace in one generation!"
You can now buy T-shirts, coffee mugs, tote bags, truckers' caps, baby gear and/or teddy bears with this logo printed on them. They make great gifts, especially for parents and teachers. To purchase, just click here: http://www.cafepress.com/StillTWaters

http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-uqSuzOjM4vU/TafAFKcYz0I/AAAAAAAAFJc/Duv2LYJyUTs/s1600/IMG_0045.JPGhttp://3.bp.blogspot.com/-dlHRO-CPqf0/Tae6tLspmQI/AAAAAAAAFI0/iUKwYDK1f3A/s1600/IMG_0041.JPG

"Life is a competition. The winners are the ones who do the most good deeds." You can also buy T-shirts, coffee mugs, tote bags, truckers' caps, baby gear and/or teddy bears with this logo printed on them. They make great gifts, especially for those of us who are still idealists in these troubled times. To purchase, just click here: http://www.cafepress.com/StillTWaters

Friday, August 03, 2012












































Border town: Gulu, gateway to Darfur, is Uganda's NGO heaven!


Still in search of information on human trafficking and child soldiers in Uganda, I hit the road with two Global Exchange experts on the subject, driving up to Gulu, a rugged frontier town next to the South Sudan border. For years now, Gulu has possessed the dubious distinctions of being the gateway for sending aid to Darfur and also home of the notorious child-killing monster Joseph Kony.

"There are over 500 NGO operations located in Gulu," someone there told me. 500? Really?

The streets of Gulu were jam-packed with black SUVs driven by NGO personnel and white SUVs driven by UN observers -- and also with Ugandans selling "Welcome to Uganda" T-shirts. The whole combination was WEIRD.

The first thing we did once we got to Gulu was to go straight to the Coffee Hut -- for Greek salads and espresso. The place was packed with "Mzungas" -- white people. And why not? The Coffee Hut offered free wi-fi!

But not all NGOs in Gulu are run by white people, however. Au contraire. Most are staffed by caring educated passionate capable Ugandans -- NGOs such as Invisible Children http://s4s.invisiblechildren.com/school/a1U70000000GnYYEA0, the RON bread project, the Undugu Family Band, GUSCO http://www.gusco.org/about/about.php, Human Rights Focus http://www.hurifo.org/, Not For Sale http://www.notforsalecampaign.org/ and MEND http://www.mend.co -- just to name a few NGOs that I visited while in Gulu.

This border town has served as a supply-line to Darfur and southern Sudan for years now. But Gulu itself has also had its own problems in that it used to be at the eye of the Joseph Kony hurricane for many years. So forget about Darfur for the moment and let's concentrate on Joseph Kony. That man is one sick puppy!

First off, I learned that Kony had been terrorizing East Africa for over 22 years. "You don't last that long in the war game unless someone major is backing you," said one NGO rep. And just who might be backing Kony? The same corporate slime-balls who usually back everything wrong in this world. The "extraction industry" hit men who thrive on chaos because it gives them the opportunity to step in and steal oil and minerals from the natives -- from West Virginia and Iraq to East Timor and Darfur, they are there. And these guys are a talented lot. They steal and pilfer globally with great panache and never seem to get caught.

So I learned a lot about Joseph Kony while I was in Gulu. And we even drove by his mother's house outside of town. Kony was a homeboy.

One missionary stationed near Gulu told me, "The mayor of our village came to ask us to help him bury the dead because Ugandans don't like to handle dead bodies. So we went out into the fields and collected approximately 87 skeletons, victims of Kony's 2007 battles near the village. Two of them wore the LRA uniforms. Many of them were children."

Someone else told me that, "You can always tell where Kony is operating these days because he leaves a harvest of havoc behind him. People start showing up dead and children go missing and villages are destroyed. He is currently operating the the Central African Republic. You can tell by their latest swath of dead bodies."

Another man told me about his experiences with having the LRA raid his all-boy prep school when he was a kid. "An old man on a bicycle rode up and warned us that Kony's army was coming so we all scattered to safety in time. But no one warned our sister school, Aboke, and the girls there, the cream of Uganda's most intelligent and high-charactered girls, were mostly kidnapped and raped."

Apparently one old nun followed the soldiers, threw herself in front of Kony's soldiers and said, "To take these girls, you will have to kill me first," and many of the girls got away as a result. But the rest of them were forced to become child soldiers and sex slaves to the LRA. Tragedy. http://www.canada.com/story_print.html?id=d00f9562-9f5c-4ab4-b1b3-2c172a3ffc6b&sponsor=

After hearing so many stories about Kony in Gulu, I began to realize why one of the leaders of the "Invisible Children" NGO recently went a bit crazy. Kony was driving me crazy too!

We then talked with some staff members of Invisible Children. "IC is trying to help as many children as possible in many various different ways -- but it is a daunting task. For every child that we are able to help, there are over 500 more waiting in line with major needs."

Invisible Children offers 700 high school scholarships a year and 300 scholarships to college, as well as help in constructing school infrastructure all over this area. Kony would be truly pissed off.

Then on the drive back to Kampala, I discovered two more things -- rhinoceroses and chapatis. At a huge new rhino reserve, I got to actually walk within 100 feet of a nursing rhino mother and her calf. It was magical. And all along the roadside, people were selling handmade chapatis. YUMMERS! Well worth the trip to Uganda alone.

PS: Next I went off to Jinja, the source of the Nile. Wow. And sat beside the shores of Lake Victoria and ate some of the best pizza I've ever had. Zachery's in Oakland? Eat your heart out!

Jane Stillwater, fearless African explorer. "Dr. Livingston I presume?"

No, just the waiter, asking me if I wanted mushrooms or anchovies on my pizza. Of course I wanted mushrooms. "Got any olives?"

PPS: Global Exchange is also currently staging a fact-finding trip to Kabul, Afghanistan, that will explore the role of women in current Afghan society -- and will also include a side-trip to the former site of the legendary Bamiyan buddhas http://www.teosofiskakompaniet.net/images/Bamian69.jpg This is totally exciting! When I was in Kabul back in 2007, the only way that an American lady like me could get there was to ride on the floor of the back seat of a car while wearing a burka.

Sign up for the Afghanistan trip here and be your own fact-finder: http://www.globalexchange.org/tours/afghanistan-women-making-change

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*********************************************************

Advertizements for myself: In these hard times of brutal (and illegal) corporatist ball-busting socialism-for-the-rich-only, I am doing whatever I can to make a spare dollar. Here are some of my current alternate-economy schemes that never seem to work -- but I keep hoping!

******
What next? Now I'm trying to go to a six-day vodou ceremony in a cave somewhere in Haiti. Please donate toward my trip expenses here: https://www.wepay.com/xh8kekc

Also my son Joe is trying to raise money to film a documentary on this event. Check out his video of the voudou master here -- a truly heavy-duty dude:

"This documentary is about capturing a Haitian Vodou Ceremony experienced through the perspective of Suzan (a Shaman leader). The ceremony takes place in a cave that Suzan had lived in for 10 years in Fonds-des-Nègres, Haiti, 114 km west of Port Au Prince."

******

Need someone to help you throw out stuff? I'm really good at deciding what needs to be thrown out (starting with all the corporate-owned bums in Washington!)


****
***

Need an actor to play an older woman in your movie?
Then I'm your man! I can portray all kinds of older women -- from judges, business execs and other insane zombies to bag ladies, cancer patients, kindly grandmothers and dying patients in rest homes. I've played them all. So send me a script and let's do this. Hollywood, here we come!

****
Are you a plaintiffs' attorney who is tired of writing those pesky personal injury settlement briefs all the time? No problem! I can write them for you. Years of experience. And pay me only if you win the case.


****

I recently got my Notary Public commission!

Need a Notary Public? Have seal, will travel. E-mail me at jpstillwater@yahoo.com and I'll stamp your document, make it official and only charge $10. Of course if you live outside of Berkeley, I may have to charge travel expenses -- but am well worth it!

****

Want something good to read? Buy my book! "Bring Your Own Flak Jacket: Helpful Tips for Touring Today's Middle East," available at Amazon and Barnes & Noble. http://www.amazon.com/Bring-Your-Own-Flak-Jacket/dp/0978615719/ref=cm_pdp_rev_itm_title_1. It's like if Jack Kerouac, Mark Twain and/or Janet Evanovich went to war.

I also wrote a book about going on Hajj (also included as a chapter in "Bring Your Own Flak Jacket," but this book is cheaper -- but it's worth buying them both!) My book on the Hajj is so outstanding that I bet even Christian fundamentalists will love it! Please buy it here: http://www.amazon.com/Mecca-Hajj-Lessons-Islamic-School/dp/0978615700/ref=cm_rdp_product

****

"Imagine a world where EVERY child is wanted, nurtured, protected and loved: World peace in one generation!"
You can now buy T-shirts, coffee mugs, tote bags, truckers' caps, baby gear and/or teddy bears with this logo printed on them. They make great gifts, especially for parents and teachers. To purchase, just click here: http://www.cafepress.com/StillTWaters

http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-uqSuzOjM4vU/TafAFKcYz0I/AAAAAAAAFJc/Duv2LYJyUTs/s1600/IMG_0045.JPGhttp://3.bp.blogspot.com/-dlHRO-CPqf0/Tae6tLspmQI/AAAAAAAAFI0/iUKwYDK1f3A/s1600/IMG_0041.JPG

"Life is a competition. The winners are the ones who do the most good deeds." You can also buy T-shirts, coffee mugs, tote bags, truckers' caps, baby gear and/or teddy bears with this logo printed on them. They make great gifts, especially for those of us who are still idealists in these troubled times. To purchase, just click here: http://www.cafepress.com/StillTWaters