Bleeding Afghanistan (Washington, Warlords And the Propaganda of Silence). By Sonali Kolhatkar and James Ingalls.

The book primarily addressed US citizens, those who are kept ignorant of the circumstances, situation and the reality of the life of Afghans (and US policies completely linked to) somehow directly by their government, media and other US’s allies.
For us as Afghanistan’s citizens, It’s like a great history book of our nation and country, telling us about the decades of war in Afghanistan, Soviet invasion, Mujahideen Era, Taliban’s taking over of the country and all of the events happened before 9/11 and the US policies during that times.
Also it covers the time after 9/11, which is completely a new narrative of those, which we are already informed by. It answers to the questions that everyone wants to know, such as why US invaded Afghanistan? Was it just because of 9/11 or US was looking for an excuse to attack Afghanistan? the decision to invade Afghanistan had been made before 9/11 or 9/11 was a the only great chance to attack for which no one and no country would react? Why did Karzai become the president of Afghanistan while the Northern Alliance was the first one helped US to ensure its plans, place and goals?  Was it (attacking Afghanistan) just because of ensuring the democracy, expanding the women rights, and eliminating terrorism or something else?
And other questions which would pop up in our minds, when we look back to be able to look forward.
Reading this book is completely necessary for those whose lifes are affected by the US policy before September, 11 2001 and after the US invasion (according to the book) of Afghanistan.

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Thanks God!

For me, tonight is the most amazing and magical one.
I just happened to meet the one, who is the most beautiful one, have ever been created by the God.
I can’t,,, am unable to explain my experience in this fantastic night.
I just want to say that, God!
Thank you…

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The Picture Speaks Itself.

The picture speaks itself.

“Tens of thousands of ethnic Hazaras marched through the streets calling on the government to reroute a power line through their poverty-stricken province in a massive protest that reflected public dismay with the government of President Ashraf Ghani.” Is the headline which is used by the most of the media and news agencies, around the world, But this is not the all.

The first picture:

Here is Kabul city, the capital of Afghanistan. Tens of thousands of [Afghanistan`s citizens] marched through the streets of the country`s capital, calling on the so-called national unity government to [Route] the power line through its [Main Route] which is declared by a professional company (Fichtner) at the very first. They march through the streets of Kabul city, because the NUG discriminatingly, has ordered to change the main route of the power line, as according to fischtner`s survey the line would cross the poverty-stricken province of the country, in which the most of the citizens are ethnic Hazaras. The president of the Afghanistan, shamefully, has ordered to change the route of the line, because of the nationality of that province`s (Bamyan) citizens. The president of Afghanistan by his discriminating order, proved that he is still living in the past, believing in this that by ordering to change the route of the power line, he is able to keep the soul of the citizens of this country in the dark of discrimination, as he himself live in. but he doesn’t know this that the Afghanistan’s citizens are aware of the time of their living, and the power they have with themselves. They know that they have rights, they know how to achieve their rights and they know this that no longer, no one can stop them in the way of achieving their goals, because they have a great power which is being united against the oppression, injustice and cruelty.

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The second picture:

In this scene you see a demonstrator(s), greeting the afghan soldier with bunches of flowers. The president of the Afghanistan has ordered the soldiers to control the demonstrators not to violate the laws of the demonstration and the country`s. as he was not aware of this that today`s demonstrators are marched in the streets of the Kabul city, to prevent violating the defined laws of the country, which are emphasized in equality and justice. The laws which are violated by the president himself, by ordering discriminatingly to change the route of the power line crossing the province where Hazaras are living.

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The third picture:

In this picture, you see another group of the demonstrators, have wear the Kabul city`s municipality, cleaning the streets of the city, after the demonstrators walking on and marching on against the messing up of the NUG and the president of Afghanistan, Ashraf Ghani. They are cleaning the streets of the city, because they know that their city need to be clean, and they are not there to mess up the streets and roads of their beloved city/country, but to clean the pages of the history of their country which would be messed up, if they allowed the president Ashraf Ghani and other guys, continuing their act of discrimination, injustice and oppression. They are fully aware of their responsibilities, duties, nowadays` world and WHAT TO DO NEXT and HOW TO WIN.

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The Pursuit of Happyness                           

 

The rousing, true-life story of a single dad who went from living on the streets to owning his own brokerage firm is brought to the big screen by superstar Will Smith, appearing for the first time opposite his real-life son Jaden Smith. Set in early-’80s San Francisco, the film charts the hard times and eventual comeback of Chris Gardner, a suddenly single salesman who has custody of his son, but finds that providing for the two of them is a challenge in the increasingly unstable economic climate. The screenplay by Steven Conrad is based on the best-selling eponymous memoir written by Gardner with Quincy Troupe. The film was released on December 15, 2006, by Columbia Pictures. For his performance, Smith was nominated for an Academy Award and a Golden Globe for Best Actor.

The scenes of the film and the narrating type of the story is 1981`s. the San Francisco salesman Chris Gardner (Will Smith) invests his entire life savings in portable bone density scanners, which he demonstrates to doctors and pitches as a handy quantum leap over standard X-rays. The scanners play a vital role in Chris’ life. While he is able to sell most of them, the time lag between the sales and his growing financial demands enrage his already bitter and alienated wife Linda (Thandie Newton), who works as a hotel maid. The financial instability increasingly erodes their marriage, in spite of them caring for their five-year-old son, Christopher (Jaden Smith). While downtown trying to sell one of the scanners, Gardner meets Jay Twistle (Brian Howe), a manager for Dean Witter Reynolds and impresses him by solving a Rubik’s Cube during a short taxi ride. After Jay leaves, Gardner lacks money to pay the fare, and chooses to run, resulting in the driver chasing him into a BART station. Gardner boards a train but loses one of his scanners in the process. His new relationship with Jay earns him the chance to become an intern stockbroker. The day before the interview, Gardner grudgingly agrees to paint his apartment so as to postpone being evicted due to his difficulty in paying the rent. While painting, Gardner is greeted by two policemen at his doorstep, who take him to the station, stating he has to pay for his numerous parking tickets he has accumulated. As part of the sanction, Gardner is ordered to spend the night in jail, complicating his schedule for the interview the next morning. He manages to arrive at Dean Witter’s office on time, albeit still in his shabby clothes. Despite his appearance, he impresses the interviewers, and lands an unpaid internship. He would be amongst 20 interns competing for a paid position as a broker. Gardner’s unpaid internship does not please Linda, who eventually leaves for New York. After Gardner bluntly says she is incapable of being a single mother, she agrees that Christopher Junior will remain with his father. Gardner is further set back when his bank account is garnished by the IRS for unpaid income taxes, and he and his young son are evicted. He ends up with less than twenty-two dollars, resulting in them being homeless, and are forced at one point to stay in a restroom at a BART station. Other days, he and Christopher spend nights at a homeless shelter, in BART, or, if he manages to procure cash, at a hotel. Later, Gardner finds the bone scanner that he lost in the station and, after repairing it, sells it to a physician, thus completing all his sales of his scanners. Disadvantaged by his limited work hours, and knowing that maximizing his client contacts and profits is the only way to earn the broker position, Gardner develops a number of ways to make phone sales calls more efficiently, including reaching out to potential high value customers, defying protocol. One sympathetic prospect who is a top-level pension fund manager even takes him and his son to a San Francisco 49ers game. Regardless of his challenges, he never reveals his lowly circumstances to his colleagues, even going so far as to lend one of his bosses five dollars for cab fare, a sum that he cannot afford. Concluding his internship, Gardner is called into a meeting with his managers. One of them notes he is wearing a new shirt. Gardner explains it is his last day and thought to dress for the occasion. The manager smiles and says he should wear it again tomorrow, letting him know he has won the coveted full-time position. Fighting back tears, Gardner shakes hands with them, then rushes to his son’s daycare to embrace Christopher. They walk down the street, joking with each other and are passed by a man in a business suit (the real Chris Gardner in a cameo appearance). The epilogue reveals that Gardner went on to form his own multimillion-dollar brokerage firm.

The unusual spelling of the film’s title comes from a mural that Gardner sees on the wall outside the daycare facility his son attends. He complains to the owner of the daycare that “happiness” is incorrectly spelled as “happyness” and needs to be changed.

Smith and his real-life son Jaden bring an emotional depth to the characters they play. The somber role of Gardner is quite a change for Smith, who is known for his less serious roles battling aliens in the Men in Black movies and portraying a matchmaking “date doctor” in the romantic comedy Hitch. He tackles the role with a determined precision and turns out a spectacular performance, which is already generating talk of an Oscar. Though most scenes in the film have a very solemn feel, Smith’s cautious optimism and ambitious nature make us want to root for him to succeed. In a role that could have easily been played syrupy-sweet, Smith instead chooses to let his raw emotions shine through adding a layer of realism. His son, Jaden, proves to be a natural as well. Portraying a child whose life and economic background is so completely opposite from his own doesn’t seem to be a challenge for the young actor. He seems to have a true understanding of the character’s emotional state and expresses it with ease. Newton also provides a noteworthy performance as Gardner’s wife who becomes so emotionally distressed she makes the difficult choice to abandon her child.  While promoting the movie recently, Newton said she wanted audiences to identify with her character’s profound pain rather than flippantly writing her off as an uncaring shrew. Her depiction of the troubled woman walks a fine line between the two.

While the story is a moving tale about a father’s love for his son and working hard to achieve dreams, it is more than that. Pursuit of Happyness is also a poignant portrayal of the problem of homelessness in the society. Perhaps what makes the film so powerful is that it is based on a true story. The problems that Gardner faces are problems faced by many in our society every day.

 

Frederick Douglass and Richard Rodriguez (Comparative Essay)

                                 

Educators say that reading is a very important skill that needs to be developed early in life. Some parents start to read to their babies before they are born. Not only does it help to develop language skills it can educate and take you places you’ve never been before. Frederick Douglas and Richard Rodriquez are two writers that contributed great works of art to society. In spite of being born nearly 150 years apart; both had a profound need to educate themselves by learning to read. Self-determined and motivated by the desire for education they both accomplished what they set out to do. Reading and writing are two major skills that are needed in our basic day-to-day lives. It is crucial to have these two sets of skills in order to get anywhere in life. The complexity of one’s reading and writing, however, is individual based and solely depends on the person’s needs for it to be complex or not. The essay`s objective is mainly to know about their experiences regarding their learning to read and write; as they both have had a great influence and impact on the society, literature and world of learning and living through it. Being born nearly one and half century apart from each other, it is not very easy to compare these two persons, in common ways of comparing and contrasting. In this essay, it is tried to compare both writers, from the aspect of their personal life, and social life.

 

Frederick Douglas was born a slave and received his first teachings from the mistress of the house. After the mistress was commanded by her husband not to teach him anymore, Frederick had to resort to different ruses to learn to read and write. Frederick was a slave and slaves were not allowed to read or write. If caught slaves were beaten and tortured or even worse killed sometimes for trying to learn to read and write. Frederick Douglass in his essay “learning to read and write” explains all the difficulties he had to when he learned to read and write in 1830s. Being a slave, it was against the law to learn to read and write, yet Douglass by risking his life, using all opportunities managed to learn reading and writing. Richard Rodriguez, on the other hand, was a child who was born 150 years later in a Spanish speaking family. In his essay “the lonely, good company of books” Rodriguez narrates his learning experience and explains he started learning from reading books. Both Douglass and Rodriguez came from poor families and had to adapt to an unwelcoming society. At the beginning reading and writing was painful for both of them and neither of them had support from their families. But these similarities did not have a major impact on their learning experience. Despite the fact that both Douglass and Rodriguez had a passion to read and write, to a large extent, their learning experiences were different. The most distinctive difference in their learning experience was that the system and society opposed Douglass’s desire to read and write, while Rodriguez was supported by the society. Rodriguez was supported by his teachers and was praised for the fact that he reads books. He was introduced to a nun who taught him how to get interested in reading and had all the opportunities to learn, while Douglass had to risk his life when he wanted to get a book and read it. He usually did this when he was alone and when he was not watched by someone. Douglass, in his essay, mentioned learning to read as a curse rather than blessing because when he was able to read, he had the feeling that he was living in a miserable condition. After being able to read and write, he had the knowledge to read and write, but the society did not give him a platform to express himself. Reading gave him an idea of how bad his life was, but no suggestion for how he could overcome the challenges in life and find a ladder upon which to get out. On the other hand, Rodriguez was able to go to school to learn reading and writing. He did not face obstacles set by the society. It was just that his family didn’t encourage him to read and write. Douglass did not have access to information. He did not have the right to spend his time as he wanted. He had to give an account of himself whenever he was spending time alone. He was not supposed to read books, and did not have the right to do anything against his master’s desires. On the other hand, Rodriguez was free to read any book that he desired and had access to books and other information. Douglass for being able to read and write, finds many ways of educating himself. He uses to carry bread with him and provide to educated hungry children of street, which in return they teach him to read. For Rodriguez, the ways of being educated were posted over his teacher desk; it means that the way was paved and ready to pass. In Frederick Douglass’s case, educations was something he desperately wanted, as Rodriguez thought of education as something he had to do. Douglass was thinking about being able to read and write, as a key to freedom. By reading newspapers and books, the thought of freedom and not being slave evolved in his mind, and caused him to think about escape and salvation. But for Rodriguez being able to read and write meant academic success.                                                                                Come to the main and base point, Frederick Douglass’s situation is similar to the Richard Rodriguez`. Both of them were struggling to become a part of a community, but not the exact point. For Frederick`s obstacle was to learn how to read and write, and Richard`s obstacle was to learn how to speak the English language, yet both of these accomplishments had taken them both a long ways. They both became successful in public speaking. Even though they had a loss, they gained a lot more from the whole experience. Frederick lost his freedom as a child, but gained it back after he became literate. And as for Richard, he lost the old family ways of his household, but became so confident as a person when it came to speaking in the public.

On the whole, both learning experiences were interesting and one could learn a lot by reading them. For me, Douglass’s experience was more useful as I could establish direct links between his experience and the people who live in this era around me. People are virtual slaves under the system set into place. The lack of resources and awareness about their position stop people from getting quality education and knowledge. Our society`s cultural and political system, is unable to pave the way for those who have thirst of reading, writing and mainly knowledge, yet. Therefore, if we look deeply into Douglass’s obstacles and have a brief look in his experiences in the way of learning how to read and write; we would be able to fight with the obstacles and pass from the barriers, stand in our way of getting educated and gaining our life`s goals.

 

Should schools start later in the morning?

DING! DING! Then hitting the snooze button, waking up with kind of headache, getting ready to start the day with no passion, lack of motivation and tiredness. Do they sound familiar? Of course about 78% of the answers are (YES). For many middle and high school student all across the world, this is a typical weekday morning. Facing with such kind of daily routine, for six years and six days a week, it is been a challenge for students, more than just academically. Are these because teens are lazy? No it is because of school start times. Sleep is an important part of our health however, since school requires students to wake up earlier than what they are used to, students feel under-rested. Schools should arrange their starting time, to prepare themselves and get to school promptly. Parents and guardians should meet up with the district to work out the idea of changing the school schedule. Schools should have a later starting time. Teen students’ need a later school start time for many reasons: it gives teens the opportunity to get much needed sleep; it improves teens’ grades; and it helps them be healthier.

First, in my opinion the best reason is that by later start time of school, teens will get more sleep. As study finds that kids and teens should get sleep 8-9 hours a day, being busy from early morning up to night with the school and relevant assignments, students after getting to home would face with kind of tired sensations. This would make them to be very tired, and to get rid of tiredness, sleeping is the only best option. But how could you get enough sleep while you have to do your homework and assignments given to you and must be submitted just in the morning of the next day? The only appropriate answer for this question is that the start time of schools should be changed; from early in the morning to the later one. If school started later, teens and kids would get more time to sleep, they would start their days with readiness and focused, to do better on assignments in class. It is proven that more sleep will intensify your focus on your academic performance and daily duties

The second reason is that if school started later in the morning, the students` grades would improve. According to a survey of sleep-deprived students, it finds that they think that a later start time for school and tests given later in the school day would result in better grades. The survey was presented at the American Thoracic Society 2007 International Conference, on Sunday, May 20. The survey is performed on 280 students of Harriton High School in suburban Philadelphia and found that: 78% of students said it was difficult to get up in the morning. 70% thought that their grades would improve if they had more sleep. 90% thought their academic performance would improve if school were to start later, and only 16% said they regularly had enough sleep. Also, a report says that many high schools in Kentucky and Minneapolis made the change to a later start time and their attendance and test scores immediately rose. The failure rates also go down as the school start time gets later. As by waking up after getting enough sleep, the student would be more alert and ready to catch and learn what he or she is supposed to do on that day. The student would have more time to get fully ready for his/her assignments and would be more focused on. Even though high school students try to focus on their academics, but lack of sleep jeopardize their physical and mental activities. Lack of sleep causes an increase in absences, and this would be a decrease in academic performance. According to research on debatewise.org “more sleep equals more concentration awareness”. It means that the students by getting enough time to sleep, would have more awareness, and focused on that day`s jobs and assignments. Your whole body and system needs enough time to wake up (FULLY). Researches show that human brain is waking up early, but needs time to arrange itself with the ideas like: a new day, a new start. It means that after waking up in the morning, the student needs time to think deeply about his/her day, schedule his/her time according to that day`s assignments which cover both the academic performance and normal life of a human being, and finally be completely ready to meet and face with the demands of that day; without rushing.

Finally, a later starts will help the students to be healthier. First of all it is known to all of us, that in order to decrease our sleepiness, we should use caffeine to wake up as early in the morning. Also, it is very obvious that using much caffeine would damage our body`s natural system and platform. Actually, by using caffeine we force our brain and our body, to be aware before the time it should be. Teens usually get their energy from the caffeine found in energy drinks, soda or coffee. These are usually full of sugar and calories, which are the cause of many health problems during the study life and adultness. In addition, in order for your body to grow and develop normally, human beings need a normal life and enough time to sleep. if you do not get enough sleep, it will lower the immune system and increase one`s chances for getting ill and being sick. For body to grow, and for brain to develop, human beings need regular refueling often from food. It means that if you go to a high school with a later start time, you would have enough time to have a proper and healthy breakfast. Therefore, student who go to high school with a later start time, generally have very low average of facing with the problems with issues such as stress, depression, irritation, unhappiness, obesity and even drugs use.

I already know this, that you would put all of the above words and statements, under the title of being lazy or laziness. But you wouldn’t have the answer of these questions, that how you could do your best when your body is tired of being rushed by lack of sleep and heavy loads of the last day`s duties. Or how your brain could be fully aware while it needs enough time to rest and get ready for a new day and new start. And finally how you could be healthy while you do not get enough sleep, proper and healthy breakfast and time to relax all of your body and brain, to make them ready for the new day and new assignments. In other words, the mentioned reasons should not be marked by laziness, they should be strongly linked to the normal life, natural developing, healthy condition, being completely ready and awareness.

In conclusion, if schools around the country consider changing their tradition start times to  later start times, it would have many positive effects which I stated just the important ones which are positive effects on students` sleep patterns, academic performances and overall health both mentally and physically. Firstly, by getting enough sleep students in the class wouldn’t be tired and sleepless. Secondly, it would help them to be more focused on their attendance, readiness, awareness or simply academic performances. Thirdly, it would be healthier for the teens` body and brain to develop normally by having enough time to have a proper and healthy breakfast. So, not changing is very harmful and possibly life threatening to the students of modern age. As the time is going forward, so is about the life`s loads which are getting heavier, therefore, the traditional start time of schools with its tiredness, sleeplessness and unawareness would create a huge gap between yesterdays` and tomorrows` duties. So, it is very important for the government and schools managerial board to set up a time and arrange a schedule to meet both with the demands of modern age and one`s condition.3107948.large