January / February Newsletter

January / February Newsletter
NKVD Newsletter
Issue no.1 Jan/Feb

Editors Remarks

First and foremost we’d like to thank all the writers who sent us articles for the inaugural issue of the NKVD Newsletter. We thank you for taking the time to think critically about these issues and taking the time out of your busy schedules to actually write down your thoughts. It’s been a pleasure hearing what you guys have to say and we look forward to even more submissions in the future. We’re also going to be giving you guys a chance to respond to the articles if you’re so inclined, so check out the end of the Newsletter for how to contact us. Again, thanks, and we hope you enjoy!

- Pedro3131, Feybart

The Arab Spring

Spring – a time when flowers bloom. Legend has it if the roots of the flower are soaked in blood, the flower will bloom red. In this past spring in the Middle East, blood flowed freely through the city streets as brutal dictators launched with ruthless crackdowns, destroyed homes, and slaughtered hundreds of innocent people. Due to the extreme amount of political activity in the Middle East, we named the past spring the “Arab Spring”. The definition of Arab Spring will be fully defined when all uprisings stop. The question is when will the uprisings stop? It has been approximately one year since the civil unrest began. Many people have different opinions about this topic.

The people who are against the regime state the authoritarian regimes are killing innocent people simply because they speak their minds. The supporter of current Authoritarian regimes state that these people are just armed gangs that will target us after the new government is formed. For example the current Syrian regime allows both Muslims and Christian to co-exist. Proponents of Assad would ask what “will happen if a Radical Islamist Party takes control of Syria?” Most likely, the government would target Christian Arabs. My Arabic Teacher, Mrs.Mouchef, has been to Syria before the uprising and believes that Syria as peaceful nation. I took the time to interview her about the recent uprisings, and found her responses quite interesting.
What is Arab Spring?
Arab Spring currently defined as a mass pro-democracy movement across the Arab World. The protests extended from Morocco to Pakistan at its peak. The movements will go down as one the most memorable uprisings ever. The people want to speak freely so they can live a better life. If everybody was wealthy nobody will protest because of the economy is doing well, but it’s not. The majority of people in the Middle East are poor despite their oil revenues. The people want to speak how the regime is run to ensure a better way of life. Unfortunately, the government refused to let the people to speak publicly, which led to a massive protest. The question is how did Arab Spring start?
After many claims and theories about who started what, after a year, we can say that Mohamed Bouazizi was the single person that started this entire revolution. Bouazizi was a street vendor in Tunisia who was a victim of corruption. Bouazizi, tired of the corruption, set himself on fire. He died a few weeks later. Shortly after his death, many people took to the street and protested in his name. Shortly after that, the regime was overthrown. Just like that – it wasn’t a coup, or an assassination, but the actions of a single man. People can make a difference regardless of political or economic power. With the development of mass media, the news leaked to other countries and soon other protest began. Egypt, Libya, Yemen, and many more countries rose up against tyranny. Soon the dictatorial regimes started to crumble.
My Opinion
Like others I developed an opinion on the issue at hand. I feel neutral about the Arab Spring, because your biases can offend a lot of people. I don’t want to be a divisive figure like Sarah Palin, or Lucy from the War Room with her Call of Duty rants. Anyway the uprising won’t stop until everybody is economically happy or until the corrupt regimes stop. So I decided to share the interview I did on Mrs. Mouchref view on Arab Spring because I want people to get a sense of other people’s perceptive.
Interview Questions (Arab Spring Questions)
1. Me: One year has passed this middle-eastern uprising, when do you think it will stop?

Mrs. Mouchref: Personally I don’t see the uprising reaching a halt until economic interests cease.

2. Me: Why do think people support the remaining regime that has not had a revolution?

Mouchref: Lack of communication, most people within the country has news and information censored.

3. Me: Which countries concern you the most in the middle-east?

Mouchref: Definitely Syria, my family’s lives are at stake.

4. Me: If you are Arab-descent, what are you are, and are you concerned about this, and what if so.

Mouchref: Syrian Lebanese, concerned that this will intensify and spread.

5. Me: Support the opposition or Regime or indifferent? Why?

Mouchref: Indifferent it would be like siding with the lesser of two evils.

6. Me: Sense of nationalism?

Mouchref: Definitely I love my country people they are most genuine in the world.

7. Me: Have you visited the middle-east, live there? Was it different before the uprising?

Mouchref: I have visited Syria and Lebanon several times it was a peaceful, beautiful nation.

8. Me: Would do back to middle-east to help your people?

Mouchref: no unfortunately I do not have the power to combat the world order.

9. Me: If we went back in time like one to two years or so. Would you think people ever think we can overthrow the regime?

Mouchref: People will think so, but it would take the unification of hundreds of thousands before any event of overthrowing would take place

10. Me: Conclusion want to add to your final Statement

Mouchref: Long Live Syria!

11. Me: Experiencing stories?

Mouchref: Nothing really, just saying if Christians and Muslims have lived peacefully for centuries why would chaos break loose after Americans economic crash and oil hunting spree? Food for thought.

College Bowl Season Past New Year’s

General of Carthage

This year’s exciting American College Football season came to a close with not only the National Championship, but a bunch of bowl game upsets. On January 2nd, Ohio State played Florida, Houston played the embattled Pennsylvania State Nittany Lions, South Carolina played Nebraska, Big-10 conference champion Wisconsin played Pac-12 winner Oregon in the Rose Bowl, Michigan State played Georgia, and Stanford played a surprising Oklahoma State. And boy did they start off the New Year with a bang! Scores were: Florida 24- Ohio State 17, Houston 30- Pennsylvania State 14, South Carolina 30- Nebraska 13, Oregon 45- Wisconsin 38, and Oklahoma State 41-Stanford 38. Oklahoma State won its first BCS (Bowl Championship Series) Bowl Game in school history and Oregon won its first Rose Bowl since 1917. The next day was the Sugar Bowl between Michigan and Virginia Tech. Michigan, led by Heisman (Best player in College Football) hopeful Denard (Shoelace) Robinson. Michigan would eventually win 23-20 in a tight game. No more real interesting bowls until the Orange Bowl (January 4) between West Virginia and Clemson. Both schools are arguably from the worst of the major conferences. Most experts picked Clemson to win but they couldn’t have been any more wrong! In a tight slugfest, Clemson was at the 1 yard line (0.9144 meters) but fumbled the ball and West Virginia scooped it up and took it to the house. After this score, West Virginia never looked back, setting numerous offensive records en route to a 70-33 victory. The next “big” game was for the National Championship (January 9th) between LSU and Alabama. The game was a rematch from a 9-6 victory by LSU earlier in the season. Most experts thought that Alabama didn’t belong in the championship. Well the experts were wrong once again. Alabama crushed LSU 21-0, becoming the first team to pitch a shutout in the national championship game. What a Great Bowl Season! I look forward to next year’s bowl season even though Ohio State won’t be in it due to NCAA Sanctions.

Why I think "evil" does not exist.


Lots of people, religious or not, accuse actions or people to be "evil". But what would be defined as "evil"? I looked it up on Wikipedia, and it stated:
"conscious and deliberate wrongdoing, discrimination designed to harm others, humiliation of people designed to diminish their psychological needs and dignity, destructiveness, and acts of unnecessary and/or indiscriminate violence that are not legitimate acts of self-defense but aggressive and designed to cause ill-being to others."
Having looked at other websites, this seems to be the most commonly accepted description of what "evil" is. I am going to focus on the first line (conscious and deliberate wrongdoing), because I think the lines after are just elaborating the first line, and in a pretty subjective way too. You'll understand what I mean when I get to the point.

When I first read these lines, I just felt that something wasn't right. What is conscious and deliberate wrongdoing? What is wrongdoing at all? I guess wrongdoing would be defined best as doing something meant to harm. But why do something meant to harm? When I thought about this, I realized that every decision a person makes, falls in one of the following categories:

Choosing for yourself,
Example: You are in a store, and you see this very nice candy laying around, just waiting for the perfect person (you) to buy and eat it. This delicious treat costs $10, but you start to get some doubts. Should I really buy it? Is it worth the money? Do I need it? Should I risk my health on all of this sugar?
At this point, you have to make a choice between:
A) Your money and health,
B) The pleasure of eating it.
Regardless, both options, A and B, are options that pay respect to yourself. You are making a choice about what is best for you.

Choosing between yourself and others,
Example: You choose not to buy the candy, but then you suddenly think: Hey, I can give this to charity! You are stoked about this great idea, but then you suddenly think: I just saved this money over candy, why waste it immediately? You are choosing between:
A) Money for yourself,
B) Money for charity,
Option A is for yourself, and option B is for others, thus making you choose between yourself and others.

Choosing for others,
Example: You decide: I'll let the poor enjoy my money. But then you realize you don't know which organization you're going to choose. You see an advertisement for UNICEF and one for the Red Cross. Which one shall you choose?
A) Money for the Red Cross,
B) Money for UNICEF,
Both A and B are options for others. You are choosing for two different organizations, but you are always choosing for what's best for others.

Now, this might seem unrelated to the topic, however, before you do something, anything, you must first make a decision. Given, that this decision always falls into one of these categories, is it conscious and deliberate wrongdoing? I don't think so. Why? Because, in none of the models are you conscious wrongdoing. Some might consider choosing for yourself wrongdoing, but you choose what you think is best for you, not what you think is worse for others. Now, the outcome might not always be good, but, it isn't wrongdoing if you don't think about that.

So, are all these people we now consider 'evil' really not evil? Let's go over Adolf Hitler, for example:

What makes Hitler evil for most people, are not only the wars he had caused or the terror that he imposed on his people, but more than everything else, people think he's evil for the Holocaust. However, even this cruel deed could be 'justified', or better to say 'un-eviled' with my philosophy. Basically, if his motive would be his ideology, you could say he chose between these options:
A) My sick ideology,
B) Thousands of innocent people's lives,
Seems like a pretty logic choice to me. [/sarcasm]

Scarlet River

She drowned me in her scarlet river when autumn appeared, leaving me in a bed of floating leaves with red pouring out of my body. Now when I think of her, the wound from her cruel weapon aches again and I feel the urge to drown her in my scarlet river.

Developing Hypothesis of Sub-Conscious Cultural Ideological Influences


I We see in the world a myriad of ideologies. They have developed over time and many have risen and fallen, some have gradually evolved, and others have been violently overthrown. Francis Fukuyama in his “End of History” article discussed the supposed ultimate victory of Liberal Democracy as the final form of human ideological thought. Taking a Hegelian approach to authenticate this, and citing the collapse of Divine Right, Fascism, and the USSR, as the heralding of the fall of Communism. This issue is potentially a controversial one, and indeed it seems to me that the nature of Hegel’s own doctrine of philosophical synthesis would result in ever continuing improvements and refinements – even if the catastrophic clashes of the past are behind us. Regardless, even within the liberal democracies we see drastically different ideologies emerging. From the Socialist Democracies of Europe to the Ultra-nationalism still present in many nations and the Libertarian parties in America, we still see an ideological discourse. Different approaches to homosexuality, immigration, health care, etc. are still mainstays of political discourse. Contrast this with the Far East and we see again a total difference of political ideology. Communism is still prevalent in China and Vietnam, and authoritarian governments persist and are often favored.

The question, which I can only hope to raise and explore the generalities of, is whether we can establish a general trend in why certain ideologies are prevalent in certain areas and why different issues are important in different areas? It is my hypothesis that there exists a general sub-conscious foundation to ideologies that is different in different areas, which results in different political ideologies and discussions being more important. I first feel it is important to point out that there may or may not be literature on this, however, I self-confess that I prefer to internally develop my political thoughts without external influence, before exploring others opinions. This article therefore constitutes my internal thoughts based on limited research, which I hope to continue later. Hopefully however, novel issues and thoughts will emerge via this process, which has been my experience in the past. Ultimately, I believe the thought process is in and of itself an important aspect of developing your own ideological identity.
II Therefore, I will primarily be concerned with two ideological sub-frameworks: these I term Greco Enlightenment and Confucianism. Additionally, I hope to establish some more localized differences in the primarily Western World between Liberty (Freedom), Justice (Equality) and Order (Stability, or Efficiency) as the primary principle that ideological frameworks and ideas should seek to implement. I realize that these principles are largely interrelated and that often implementations of one will result in the others. However, the crucial difference of importance does lead to crucial differences in the approach of ideological discussion within the Western world and beyond.
First, we turn to what I would call “Greco Enlightenment”, which is what I believe to be the foundation of the “western world”. Taking as its influence first the political ideas of ancient Greece, the legal theory of Rome, and the intellectual revolution of the Enlightenment, These forces create a powerful foundation for ideas of personal liberty, equality and justice to be developed. If this theory is correct then the western world should be highly concerned with Democracy, Human Rights and Freedoms and fair and incorrupt courts and legal systems. This is indeed something that we see in the Western nations. From the American Revolution, to the First French Republic, in Europe and North America we see the wide adoption of democracy. Starting with the constitution of Poland-Lithuania, and continuing with the “Unwritten” Constitution of the we see the development of the legal philosophies necessary to preserve the liberties and rights of man and establish justice.
III It was also in Europe that we saw the rise of communism, which I would almost consider a foundational framework in itself it was not based at least somewhat on Greco Enlightenment ideas of Equality and Justice. Communism created a shift in European foundations that resulted in a divergence of thought from the US (this thought spreading to Canada). In Europe, it lead to the creation and general dominance of social welfare, social democracies, and market regulation. While America still retains a dominant bias towards liberty over these other factors.
Further afield we see the effect of communism in the Far East, however, here these nation have had a much distinct original background from Europe. While I admit that my historical knowledge is less developed as in Europe, I believe it is sufficient here to use the basic understanding of a focus on achievement, honor, and loyalty, as being largely dominant and through the Far East. This foundation, I theorize, is far more conducive towards the order, stability, strength, efficiency, of the society over Liberty and Justice. This may explain how fascist movements were able to survive so long past WW11 in the Far East, and also why highly authoritarian regimes are still prevalent. The expansion of Communism into China, and Liberty to Japan would have resulted in similar bi-focal discussions seen in Europe.
IV In concluding, I must admit that this hypothesis is as it stands very underdeveloped and will require a great deal of comparative study. There are things which appear as exceptions, which must be studied in more detail. Similarly, this would constitute only a general basis of approach, and would not exclude other factors of influence on ideological. However, I hope that it may go some way towards explaining a general pattern that we observe in the world.

Free Tibet


In order to understand the issue of Tibetan independence, and if China has authority over it is necessary to first understand where either side is coming from. In such pursuits, I will provide a brief summarization of the two arguments.

Chinese view: The Chinese view is that Tibet has been an official part of China and the Han Chinese people from the Yuan Empire, into the Ming, Qing, and PRC. Thus, china claims they have a right of inheritance and over the Tibetan state. The Chinese also claim the Tibetans signed over the country in the peaceful 17 Point agreement of 1951 in which the 14th Dali Lama agreed to allow Maoist China to liberate the Tibetans. China also claims it has been respecting the culture and tradition of the Tibetan people and has been as nice to them as possible. The Chinese also view the liberation as a way to take them out of slavery and serfdom. China argues that all Tibetans now have equal rights like all Chinese people do, and enjoy true religious freedom like the Chinese people do.

Tibet View: That Tibet has always been a separate state from the Chinese state, and that the Yuan Empire was Mongolian thus the Chinese cannot claim this right to the Chinese sovereignty over Tibet. The Qing army was formally invited to settle domestic disputes in the country and thus does not hold any sovereignty, not to mention the fact the nation of Tibet sent troops over to the Qing to help them out. Also not to mention the Qing were Manchu and not Han Chinese. Prior to the 1949 invasion the nation of Tibet had been recognized under international law, had a defined territory, a government, tax system, unique currency, and unique postal systems and stamps, also a formal army. The Tibetans also say the 17-point agreement was imposed on them by the threat of arms of 40,000 PLA troops in the capital of Chamdo. Tibet also cites treaties with Mongolia in 1913[1], and British India in 1919[2] as proof of its sovereignty. The Tibetans also make note that the old ways we’re not perfect however slavery would have been abolished at some point (claims the 14th Dali lama) and that through Chinese aggression 1.2 to 2 million Tibetans have been killed by the Chinese, as well as Tibet’s Buddhist religion.

Who is correct: History shows that no Chinese empire before Yung has had any control or territory into the nation of Tibet. In fact, the Tang and Song dynasty fully recognized the country of Tibet. Next, the Yung Empire was Mongolian; so by that notion the Mongolians should have a right to China. The Chinese claim the Ming have control over the Tibet state; there is no historical documentation or evidence to support this, also any maps of the time show the Tibet state as incorporating more of the Ming empire then of the proposed Tibetan state (So maybe Tibet should claim more of Chinese territory). Turning to the Qing period, the People’s Republic of China claim that China had sovereignty over Tibet during this time. However, the PRC needs to learn its own history; The Qing Empire was Manchu Chinese not Han Chinese, unless the nation of Manchuria comes up from the dead and Conquers China, then and only then will they have any rights over the Tibet state. Officially both the new republic of China (now called Taiwan to not piss of the PRC) and Tibet we’re granted independence after the Xinhai revolution. Even if you take away all the historical record, and the U.N officially recognizing the country, the PRC are not the inheritors of the state, the PRC is not the descendant of the past Chinese governments, nor does it claim to be, and thus does not have any legitimate claim over Tibet.

Next, the liberating Tibet argument is pure Chinese Propaganda. The 17 point agreement was not peaceful signed by the 14th Dali lama (Unless you call Mao and his armies threating to kill you and your people peaceful) not to mention that once signed, the Dali lama even said in India he was forced too. Next the PRC says the Tibet people “all” support the communist party and love the PRC. Then explain to me that from the very day of Chinese occupation of Tibet to 1959 there was protest and people of Tibet demanding that the Han Chinese leave (Not to mention they still want independence)? In independent Tibet, over 6,000 monasteries served as schools, most we’re destroyed by the PRC army. Any school claim to be rebuilt by the Chinese was built on the backs of Tibet labor and then they PRC claims the schools are unqualified to teach the Tibetan language, culture, and or history.

The Chinese also claim their occupation has helped the Tibet people achieve education and gave land to the Tibet serfs. However, the land they gave was not to the Tibetan people but to the Han Chinese people which have the full benefits of the education. As a result, tens of thousands of Tibetan students have fled to India to achieve a fair education. China also claims that it has improved the living conditions of the country; yeah tell that to the 1.2-2 million Tibetans who have been killed (officially) by the Chinese. Not to mention Hu Yaobang[3] has quoted “ Since our occupation of Tibet its living conditions have gone down considerable under Chinese rule”

The Chinese people also claim the Tibet people now have the same rights and privileges of the Chinese people……………wait what rights? The Tibet people have been trying to get a Tibetan person elected into a government position in their own country since the occupation and the Chinese have rejected them all “for not being trustworthy enough”.

The Chinese have also been destroying and killing off the Tibet’s Buddhist sect, and now claim to have the right to choose the next Dali lama which not even Tibetan people have the right to do! But wait, China I thought Tibet was a wonderful land of human rights since you occupied them?
Even Mao Zedong admitted that Tibet was an independent country when he passed through the border regions of Tibet remarking “this is our only foreign debt, and some day we must pay the Tibetans for the provisions we are obliged to take from them….via force”.
The continuation of the Chinese occupation of Tibet will only lead to more deaths and abuse by the Han Chinese on the Tibet people. FREE TIBET.
Submissions / Responses
Please send any submissions, responses to articles or questions about the newsletter to NKVDnewsletter@gmail.com

[1] Treaty of friendship and alliance between the Government of Mongolia and Tibet
[2]Treaty of Simla
[3]An influential Chinese Political figure in the 1980s
Feb 27, 2012

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