Monday, May 26, 2014

Did Pornography Started During The Stone Age?

Archeologically dug Paleolithic era figures over the years might have been primarily used for fertility rites – but does their “voluptuously erotic” nature suggest “pornography”?

By: Ringo Bones

This rather “controversial” subject may not have been placed under scrutiny by the Ronald Reagan Pornography Commission that war run by the then US Attorney General Edwin Meese III during the first half of the 1980s, but did the Reagan administration’s “morality watchdogs” ever scrutinized alleged pornographic items that came before Jesus Christ? Not to mention anything that came before and what passed muster as “pornography” during the Roman Empire. Or what about “porn” so old that have been uncovered by tenured archaeologists from leading ivy league institutions?

Paleolithic or Stone Age porn may conjure up images of Fred Flintstone’s hidden antediluvian porn stash but they had been considered over the years since they’ve been uncovered as one of mankind’s finest artistic achievement of all time. Examples of which are the Venus of Laussel, the Venus of Willendorf, the Venus of Vestonice and the Lady of Brassempouy. The clue that first suggests that these are sculptures are more than just intended for Paleolithic fertility rites is that all of them are small enough to be carried around even by a single individual – suggestive of a “secret porn stash” meant to be hidden under the bed of hot blooded Stone Age era men? About as portable and easy to hide as our contemporary pornographic conveyances like porno magazines, computer laptops and even tablet computers.

One Paleolithic artifact discovered by Hallam L. Movius, Jr. – Professor of Anthropology at Harvard – now called the Venus of Abri Pataud which was unearthed in the Dordogne cave region of France. Named after a cave shelter on a farm formerly owned by a family named Pataud, the Venus of Abri Pataud was made some 20,000 years ago. Given that some contemporary “prudes” still consider some erotic Old Masters exhibited in the various major metropolitan museums around the world as pornography, it is safe to assume that probably all of these modern day prudes consider Paleolithic depictions of voluptuous women as “pornography”. Sometimes I too wonder what these “morality watchdogs” would consider as “Stone Age Child Pornography”. 

Saturday, May 24, 2014

Remembering the Sino-Vietnamese War of 1979

Even though now it is a over 35 years ago, did a recent anti-Chinese riot in Vietnam brings into discussion that this old conflict is still largely unresolved?

By: Ringo Bones

When Mainland China’s state-owned oil company dispatched an oil rig to a contested area in the South China Sea, it inevitably fuelled a fire on the long smoldering dispute with its communist neighbor Vietnam. Unfortunately, the Beijing government didn’t foresee the need to evacuate thousands of its nationals desperate to escape from the onslaught of Vietnamese protestors back in May 17, 2014 that were protesting on the Mainland Chinese drilling for oil in an area on the South China Sea that the Hanoi government claims as Vietnamese territory that had gone violent.  Unfortunately, Taiwanese, Japanese and Korean nationals working in Vietnam also fall victim to the clashes that seem to remind everyone old enough to remember why The People’s Republic of China and the newly unified Vietnam went to war back in 1979.

Back in January 1979, The People’s Republic of China established diplomatic relations with the United States – a move seen by the international community at the time as a willingness on the part of the Beijing government to engage peacefully with the capitalist West. But a lot of unresolved conflicts between the then Soviet Union and the newly unified Vietnam will trigger a border conflict between Mainland China and Vietnam by the middle of February 1979.

Around that time, antagonism between The People’s Republic of China and the then Soviet Union grew even more heated with Beijing calling for resistance to “Soviet Expansionism” on all fronts. By February 17, 1979, Mainland China’s full scale border conflict with Vietnam amounted to a “proxy war” with the then Soviet Union.

During that period, relations between The People’s Republic of China and Vietnam had been deteriorating since 1978 when the Hanoi government’s harsh treatment of its ethnic Han Chinese minority was followed by Hanoi’s invasion of Cambodia – which at that time – was a very close ally of Beijing. Increasingly frequent border incidents heightened the tension and finally convinced Beijing that Hanoi “must be taught a lesson.” On February 17, 1979, Mainland China launched a major attack along its 500-mile (805-Km) border with Vietnam. Supported by artillery and tanks, Mainland Chinese forces invaded four Vietnamese provinces.

After a pause for supplies, the Mainland Chinese on February 21, 1979 renewed their advance in the direction of Lang Son in North-West Vietnam. By March 2, 1979 the Mainland Chinese had taken Lang Son, Cao Band and Lao Cai, penetrating some 25-miles (40-Km) into Vietnamese territory. Having reached their goal, Beijing announced that its forces were withdrawing back to Mainland Chinese territory.

The withdrawal was completed by March 16, 1979 when Vietnam offered to hold talks to ensure peace along the border and ultimately to normalize relations. The first two sessions, held in Hanoi back in April 18 and April 26, 1979 – were immediately deadlocked Subsequent meetings during the year also served merely as an opportunity to exchange accusations. Back then, the chief difficulty in the negotiations was Hanoi’s refusal to consider Chinese demand that Vietnamese forces be withdrawn completely from Cambodia. Even though everyone back then was expecting Vietnam to be routed since it has just recently came out of a traumatic victory against America back in April 30, 1975, Vietnam managed to valiantly resist the Mainland Chinese invasion unlike what happened to India during the 1962 Sino-Indian War. More like this time, Vietnam’s victory is akin to more like Gene Roddenberry’s Sino-Indian War  

Sino-Vietnamese hostility – which has a history that goes back many centuries, has been stimulated in the late 1970s by Vietnamese nationalism – a newly found nationalism emboldened by its recent booting out American troops and completely taking over the then South Vietnam back in April 30, 1975 – and the Hanoi government’s increasingly close ties with the then USSR which at that time was Beijing’s chief rival in the South East Asian regional geopolitical power play.

Back then, the Beijing government supported Pol Pot in neighboring Cambodia more to contain “Soviet Expansionism” than Vietnamese influence and when Beijing learned in 1978 of Hanoi’s plot to invade Cambodia in order to end the tyrannical and genocidal rule of Pol Pot, Beijing abruptly terminated its aid program in Vietnam which totaled to 10-billion US dollars since the April 30, 1975 reunification of Vietnam.
On Vietnam’s issue on its ethnic Han Chinese population, Hanoi’s requirement that all ethnic Han Chinese living in the now unified Vietnam must become citizens of the country boosted tensions and resulted in a large number of ethnic Han Chinese – most of which are from the former South Vietnam and often ostracized for being “too cozy” with the occupying American troops during the Vietnam War – are now resorting to leave the country of Vietnam A move which the Hanoi government blocked that triggered a further worsening of diplomatic relations with Beijing By the end of 1979 – more than 250,000 displaced ethnic Han Chinese who used to live in Vietnam had fled to The People’s Republic of China. Given that Mainland China’s President Xi Jinping and Russian President Vladimir Putin has been recently negotiating a natural gas deal that could lessen the burden of EU sanctions aimed at Russia after the Kremlin annexed back Crimea only shows how the turbulent relationship of The People’s Republic of China and Russia has now come full circle since the Sino-Vietnamese War of 1979.     

Monday, May 12, 2014

Did the Current Nigerian Government Made Secret Deals With Boko Haram?

Did the current Nigerian government made a secret deal with the Islamist group Boko Haram that if the government draws a hard line on Nigeria’s homosexual community, Boko Haram would leave foreign crude oil workers on Nigerian soil alone? 

By: Ringo Bones 

Given that headline grabbing incidents of foreign crude oil extraction workers on Nigerian workers being kidnapped and held for ransom by local Islamic terror groups like Boko Haram seems to have inexplicably stopped during the past couple of years might seem like god news in the eyes of the rest of the world, while the current Nigerian president Goodluck Jonathan’s anti-homosexual policy that began around 2012 might seem to be a step back for the country in terms of human rights, one could wonder if the Nigerian government might be recently kowtowing to Boko Haram’s  increasing military and political might. The recent “rumored” deal currently circulating in the rest of the world’s conspiracy groups might have been if we (current Nigerian government) will draw a hard line on the country’s homosexual community, local Islamist groups like Boko Haram will leave foreign crude oil workers alone. But is there any truth to these circulating rumors? 

With a recent massacre of a boy’s school and more recently the abduction of over 200 schoolgirls and the razing of a girl’s school by Boko Haram in the Nigerian town of Chibok back in April 14, 2014, had both “conspiracy buffs” and anti-terror security analysts are now reaching the conclusion that Nigerian president Goodluck Jonathan and his administration might be in over their heads for ever performing a secret deal with Boko Haram reminiscent that of Cold War era double agents hanging around Vienna, Austria facilitating cloak-and-dagger intel exchanges back in the mid 1980s. Sadly, any al-Qaeda affiliated Islamist terror groups like Boko Haram are much, much more ruthless than the Cold War era “godless” Marxist-Leninist socialist Soviet state. 

The recent abduction of over 200 Nigerian schoolgirls by Boko Haram that they are threatening to be sold into sexual slavery into neighboring countries had since raised global concerns over president Goodluck Jonathan’s inability to tackle this problem expediently. Even the U.S. first lady Michelle Obama has lent her influence on the global online campaign - Bring back our Girls – along with girls’ education campaigner Malala Yousafzai. But is the current “complexity” of the present situation in Nigeria the “wildcard” that could derail the eventual success of the Bring back our Girls movement? 

Former U.S. Counter Terrorism Department head of the US DoD, Rudolf Atallah, who now heads the security consulting firm White Mountain Research, LLC, has recently uncovered that local politicians in the northern parts pof Nigeria who are political rivals with current Nigerian president Goodluck Jonathan might be actively helping the Islamist terror group Boko Haram to make the April 15 attack on the girl’s school in Chibok in Nigeria's Borno state an unqualified tactical success. Worse still, Amnesty International researchers had recently uncovered that the local police of Chibok had received a warning pertaining to the April 14 terror attack on the Chibok girl’s school and abduction of school girls by Boko Haram 4 hours before it happened. Could the lack of a Boko Haram terror attack on the recent World Economic Forum in Abuja back in May 7 the best news so far that had recently come out of Nigeria?