Tuesday, October 30, 2012

THE LAST WALTZ FOR ENDEAVOUR

I'm posting this for all of you that didn't get to see it and just because I think this is an incredible video. This is space shuttle Endeavour's final flight to retirement over Southern California last month. The camera man in one of the accompanying fighter jet did a marvelous job and I must say he had a steady hand.

It is very intriguing to hear the conversation between the two pilots (male and female) in the filming jet and the pilot of the jet carrying the shuttle and the traffic controllers. Too bad NASA is cutting the shuttle flight without a replacement program.

It's 15 minutes long; hope you enjoy it! 

Tuesday, October 23, 2012

FOREIGN MINISTERS OF BELIZE AND GUATEMALA MEET TO DISCUSS REFERENDUM

The OAS Secretary General, Chilean, Jose Miguel Insulza and the Foreign Ministers from Guatemala and Belize, Harold Caballeros and Wilfred Elrington, respectively, initiated a working reunion to refine the details on the Referendum that will be carried out by both countries on October of next year.

The objective of the one day meeting which was carried out behind closed doors at the headquarters of the ministry of Foreign Affairs in Guatemala, was to “refine the details on the referendum” in which the decision of both countries regarding the territorial litigation that they maintain for over a century will be submitted before the International Court of Justice, said a source from the Guatemalan Ministry.

Although from 1991 Guatemala recognized Belize’s independence, they still claim close to fifty percent of territory from the former Britannic Colony, which with the mediation of the OAS, both States agreed to clarify before the International Criminal Court based in La Haya.

Also, the source said, it is also expected that a report from the OAS on the violent incidents that have been registered this year in the designated adjacency zone between both countries, which marks the undefined border between both nations and has claimed the life of at least four Guatemalan farmers will be made known.

“The result of the discussions will be released by Secretary Insulza and the Foreign Ministers during a press conference” the source specified.

After the meeting with the ministers, the OAS Secretary General will reunite in private with the Guatemalan president, Otto Perez Molina, in which it is expected that they will dialogue on the preparations for the General Assembly of that hemispheric body which will be celebrated in the colonial city of Antigua Guatemala in 2013.

Via the San Pedro Sun.com



Monday, October 22, 2012

PRESIDENTIAL DEBATE 2012: FINAL FIGHT

Two more weeks before the presidential elections and this is the last debate. Tonight’s debate will be coming to us from Lynn University in Boca Raton, Florida. The subject of tonight’s debate is foreign policy.

The format will be split into six 15 minutes segments moderated by CBS’s Bob Schieffer.

The topics will be: America’s role in the world…..The conflicts in Afghanistan and Pakistan….R

edlines; vis-à-vis Iran and Israel…..The Arab spring and the Middle East…..The changing face of terrorism....And The rise of China.

The candidates will be seated at a table and Libya and Syria is expected to be a big point of contention where Governor Romney can get a do over from his last debate when he didn’t get his point across that the president has mishandled the situation in Benghazi, Libya.

President Obama will get to explain the confusion on Benghazi and will try to paint the governor as a war monger, which he believes is a very credible argument.

One last chance for Mr. Romney to show his fighting spirit!

The race is a dead heat; see you soon! I will be tweeting live at https://twitter.com/IBelizeit

Photo via the BBC.com

COMMENTARY: POLITICAL PATRIOTISM


 I read lately that Belize is on a list of countries considered or being thought to be a pariah state. Pariah in this instance means a country whose behavior is out of line with international norms. Now even if this were not true, the mere fact that Belize is included in these failed states is both alarming and disappointing. Imagine a country, with a population of a little over 300,000, with boundless natural resources including a thriving tourism industry, placed in this position. It breaks my heart to see how low we have fallen, how utterly inevitable it is that this free fall will continue, until we come to our senses and elect men and women who have Belizes' interest first and foremost on their agenda.

When Mr. Goldson and Mr. Price were in politics, no one had any doubt but that their allegiance and devotion was to Belize and the Belizean people. They made us proud to be Belizean and we were respected, people and nations were rooting for us to succeed, and we could see a future that was full of promise. These two men and others were true Belizean patriots and political patriots. Now what we have are political vultures, elected officials, who over the last 25 years in both political parties have been raping, abusing and selling out their constituents.

We don't control our borders, we don't control our economy, we don't control our streets. We differ to religious and foreign predators to determine how we live. Corruption rampant everywhere, the police, the judiciary, religion, education, civil service, mainly immigration and customs, every aspect of our lives is tinged with some aspect of corruption.

The last party that was in power, the PUP, destroyed our economy to such a level that they were overwhelmingly rejected in 2008. The current administration is catching up to them very quickly, and if things don't change drastically and very soon, well, the consequences are unimaginable.

We the Belizean people are to be blamed for all this. We know who these creeps are and we keep reelecting them and when things go awry, we start to bawl. We have to start finding politically incorruptible candidates that will have the people and the country first and foremost in their governance and decisions. It just gets boring seeing all these ne'er do wells that didn't have a pot to piss in, suddenly become rich and fat on the backs of, and at the expense of the people.

Think of it people, we are a pariah. Land of the gods by the Carib sea! So sad.

Commentary by pele


This blog is not responsible for the views expressed in the commentary segment; all views expressed are the responsibility of the commentator, not the owner of this blog.   



Sunday, October 14, 2012

BELIZEAN FOLKLORE: WHY ANANSI HAS EIGHT LEGS

Hear no Evil; Speak no Evil and See no Evil.
Once upon a time, a long time ago, there lived a spider named Anansi. Anansi's wife was a very good cook. But always, Anansi loved to taste the food that others in the village made for themselves and for their families.

One day, he stopped by Rabbit's house. Rabbit was his good friend.

"There are greens in your pot," cried Anansi excitedly. Anansi loved greens.

"They are not quite done," said Rabbit. "But they will be soon. Stay and eat with me."

"I would love to, Rabbit, but I have some things to do," Anansi said hurriedly. If he waited at Rabbit's house, Rabbit would certainly give him jobs to do. "I know," said Anansi. "I'll spin a web. I'll tie one end around my leg and one end to your pot. When the greens are done, tug on the web, and I'll come running!"

Rabbit thought that was a great idea. And so it was done.

"I smell beans," Anansi sniffed excitedly as he ambled along. "Delicious beans, cooking in a pot."

"Come eat our beans with us," cried the monkeys. "They are almost done."

"I would love to Father Monkey," said Anansi. And again, Anansi suggested he spin a web, with one end tied around his leg, and one end tied to the big bean pot.

Father Monkey thought that was a great idea. All his children thought so, too. And so it was done.

"I smell sweet potatoes," Anansi sniffed happily as he ambled along. "Sweet potatoes and honey, I do believe!"

"Anansi," called his friend Hog. "My pot is full of sweet potatoes and honey! Come share my food with me."

"I would love to," said Anansi. And again, Anansi suggested he spin a web, with one end tied around his leg, and one end tied to the sweet potato pot.

His friend Hog thought that was a great idea. And so it was done.

By the time Anansi arrived at the river, he had one web tied to each of his eight legs.

"This was a wonderful idea," Anansi told himself proudly. "I wonder whose pot will be ready first?"

Just then, Anansi felt a tug at his leg. "Ah," said Anansi. "That is the web string tied to Rabbit's greens." He felt another. And another. Anansi was pulled three ways at once.

"Oh dear," said Anansi as he felt the fourth web string pull.

Just then, he felt the fifth web string tug. And the sixth. And the seventh. And the eighth. Anansi was pulled this way and that way, as everyone pulled on the web strings at once. His legs were pulled thinner and thinner. Anansi rolled quickly into the river. When all the webs had washed away, Anansi pulled himself painfully up on shore.

"Oh my, oh my," sighed Anansi. "Perhaps that was not such a good idea after all."

To this day, Anansi the Spider has eight very thin legs. And he never got any food that day at all.

via the Capital Newspaper https://www.facebook.com/photo.php?fbid=312191862222407&set=a.235837823191145.52676.100002947863123&type=3&theater


PROTEST IN BELIZE AGAINST HIGH CRIME RATE

The suspect that murdered this young woman, Suzenne Martinez, was released from jail two weeks ago for sexual assault (RAPE), and robbery, multiple times in the Cayo District area of Belize.
Thousands of Belizeans marched in a peaceful protest on Thursday, October 11th against high crime in Belize and shut down businesses and schools prompting a quick response of promises from the Belize government to implement new anti-crime measures. The protest was concentrated in the twin towns of San Ignacio and Santa Elena in western Belize and had the participation of some three thousand people from the area and also from the City of Belmopan. The protest was sparked by the murder of two young university students within the space of a week – one in Belmopan and one in San Ignacio and Santa Elena. To date 33 murders have been recorded in western Belize this year.

Read More Here: 
http://belizean.com/protests-in-belize-against-high-crime-rate-prompts-rapid-response-from-govt-1274/

Thursday, October 11, 2012

FIRST CHINESE WINNER OF NOBEL PRIZE FOR LITERATURE

Congratulations to Mr. Mo Yan!

He was given the most prestigious prize in the world of literature by the Royal Swedish Academy of Sciences. The Nobel Prize Committees, instituted by and named after Alfred Nobel, make awards to individuals for outstanding contributions to humanity by individuals, not by countries.

Literature is one of five Nobel Prizes established by the will of Alfred Nobel in 1895; the others are the Nobel Prize in Chemistry, Nobel Prize in Physics, Nobel Peace Prize, and Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine. In 1968, economic sciences was added to the list of fields.

http://www.nobelprize.org/nobel_prizes/literature/laureates/2012/bio-bibl.html

Monday, October 8, 2012

SIMCHAT TORAH 2012: THE DANCE OF THE WHITE FIRE


After the yearly Torah reading cycle is completed on the morning of Simchat Torah, we immediately begin the cycle again by reading the beginning of Bereishit, recounting the creation of the world. This practice connects the end of the Torah with its beginning.
This ceremonial completion and immediate new beginning takes place following 14 circuits of joyous dancing and singing with the Torah, seven of which occur Simchat Torah night and seven which occur on Simchat Torah morning. While the Torah scroll is rolled from its end to its beginning (or a second Torah scroll is readied for use), we find ourselves in a very unique situation, a sort of spiritual no man's land, suspended somewhere between the end and the beginning. Although it only takes a few minutes to roll or ready the Torah scroll for use, symbolically speaking, these moments reflect an emotion that Simchat Torah is imbued with: a sense of anticipation. For during the entire three-week period since Rosh Hashanah we have been living in suspended animation, waiting for the new year to finally show its true face. Since this will finally happen on the day after Simchat Torah -- at the end of the holiday season -- we are now ready to conclude the Torah and begin reading it again. 

The Midrash teaches that the letters of the Torah are like black fire engraved on parchment that is analogous to white fire (Yalkut ShimoniYitro 280). To understand even a small part of the wisdom encoded in the black fire takes a life time; the wisdom engraved in the white fire is at present beyond human comprehension. On Simchat Torah we do not emphasize studying Torah. Instead we dance on the white fire as if all is an open book waiting to be revealed. This dancing connects us in a most profound way to the Torah as an Orchard of Delights.

The sense of suspended animation we are in is symbolized by our dancing for hours in circles with the Torah scrolls; this, in turn, recalls the verse from Job (26:6): "He hangs the world on nothingness." The numerical value of the Hebrew letters in this phrase is 913, the same as the numerical value of the Torah's first word, bereishit ("in the beginning"). Dancing at the beginning of a year full of promise, we are imbued with joy, trust and faith in what the new year will bring to us as individuals and as Jews. Although the script of the Torah is written and God has rendered and sealed our judgments for the upcoming year, Judaism firmly believes that in some sense the script is still blank as we all continue to write our own script every day of the year. Paradoxically, far from being closed books, our lives are open to change; we still have the ability to determine much of what we will experience in the upcoming year. This realization brings with it great joy and power, as we symbolically roll the Torah back to Bereishit and acknowledge our ability to choose to begin again.

The Talmud states that everything goes after the sealing (Berachot 12a). The manner in which we conclude any journey in life affects how we will remember it and how it will impact on our lives. Therefore, the Sages decided that we should conclude the yearly reading of the Torah and the High Holiday season with great joy and celebration, so that this energy would remain with us and carry over into the new year.

At one of the most climatic moments during the Rosh Hashanah and Yom Kippur prayers, we declare that repentance, prayer and charity have the power to nullify negative decrees. Immediately following the Ten Days of Repentance, the joyous holidays of Sukkot and Simchat Torah teach us that joy also has the power to nullify negative decrees, wiping the slate clean and allowing a truly new year to begin.
Rabbi Avraham Arieh Trugman....Director Ohr Hadash

 


HAPPY FOURTH BIRTHDAY!

Four Belizean Boys at the Belize Zoo
It's time to celebrate! Happy Birthday Village View Post!! I can't believe it's been four since I started this blog. Grateful and thankful to all who visited.

The post on the link below was one of my first posts to this blog. This month Village View Post will be four years old and I would like to thank you for making it possible for me to keep on blogging continuously.

This blog started out mainly about Belize and has grown from a few readers to over 300,000 unique hits in the four years of its existence. I have you, my readers to thank for that. You are the reason this blog has been so successful.


I’m reaching out to you, and asking that you share this blog with your friends. And, as always, thank you so much for reading; I could not have done it without you.

Monday, October 1, 2012

OCTOBER - WHAT IT MEANS TO ME!

Kim Simplis in January (far left) and August 2012
(Lebawi Lily Girma & Jeremy Spooner)
Kim Simplis Barrow, First Lady of Belize
October is a month that will always have a special significance to me. It's Breast Cancer Awareness Month and everyone will be talking about it; cancer survivors will say thank you Jesus, families and friends of victims will say a prayer in memoriam, and the rest of the world will remain hopeful for a cure. All around the world it will be a sea of pink. Many will remember the infamous cancer and the fear that it evokes in the hearts and souls of women and men all over the world.  

This is the month that we most remember to offer support to families enduring this battle and organizations that are trying to find a cure for this awful disease. So we purchase items, support cancer groups, donate and attend fundraisers, give talks, walk for a day, run for miles … and yes, at the same time hoping and praying that we never have an encounter with this deadliest of foes.    

Breast cancer is a sneaky, insidious devil. It hides wherever it can and when you least expect, it wreaks havoc on the life of the woman or man it has claimed as “its own”, their family and their friends. It can take over your life, ruling your health like a dictator. However, it is important to remember we have come far and today we know much more about this disease than ever before, making us better prepared to do battle. We know that our only recipe for a successful outcome is to prepare for combat - lace up your boxing gloves and fight with all you’ve got.

Unfortunately, many people don't realize the presence of cancer and often such late diagnoses cause the kind of pain that lives for an eternity.  Today we are more aware and educated: early detection, yearly mammograms and breast self exams are keys to winning this battle! We also know that some people manifest no physical signs—something I know all too well having lived a healthy lifestyle by eating well and exercising daily.

My cancer journey began on October 22nd, 2011, when I felt a lump during an official trip abroad. Upon my return home, October 28th, I went to the doctor, got a mammogram, and tissue was sent for biopsy.  On November 3rd, I heard the devastating words: “you have cancer”. This disease has consumed my life for an entire year and for the next 5 years I'll be on medications—for cancer and my heart complications. It has zapped me of my energy, my good health, and my time… but not my LIFE!

It may seem strange, but cancer has given me my greatest gift: it has reminded me of the fragility and brevity of life; that we all need to live everyday to its fullest. The thought that I was slowly dying—and yes we are all going to die one day, but just knowing that I was actually staring death in the face, makes me appreciate and enjoy every minute of every single day. This disease has taught me how to cope with fear; strengthened my faith in God; has emboldened my spirit and restored my faith in humanity. I now know that the only day that really matters is today! Yesterday is gone and tomorrow is but a dream ... there is just today!

Over the past year, people saw me bare my soul and lose my hair--those of us with my kind of hair go to the hairdresser at least once a week because we are obsessed with our hair and making it look good. It was not easy and as soon as mine started falling out, I went to my hairdresser and shaved it off. I wanted to lose it completely on MY terms! I was still in control and it was going to affect me the way I wanted it to. I must say I loved being bald. With my daughter's thumbs up and Dean's unending support, I never wore a wig. For once I felt free! It was wonderful and comforting to see how people reacted when my most true self was showing. The real me: open, honest and bare to the bones. I saw my soul during this journey ...This dreadful disease taught me to love myself and its imperfections, to appreciate me—all of me—for me.

I also know that this is not my final chapter! I will keep on fighting until I have rid my body of cancer’s existence. This is not my final nemesis. Today, I think cancer knows exactly who it's fighting ... It knows I have faith, spirit, courage, hope, and that I fight with all I have. Cancer surely picked on the wrong one!

Kim Simplis Barrow
October 1st, 2012

The first lady was also featured in the American Airlines Magazine. You can read more of it here:http://www.americanwaymag.com/ed-note-10-01-2012#.UGu6TNWuc-l.facebook