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China Says Vietnam “Distorts” History With Claims To Disputed Islands
China says Vietnam “distorting” history with claims to disputed islands in South China Sea. Story: China said on Monday (May 26) that Vietnam is “distorting history” as tension rises over…

By: NTDTV

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China Says Vietnam "Distorts" History With Claims To Disputed Islands – Video

A spokesman for China’s Foreign Ministry on Monday refuted Vietnamese comments on the sovereignty of the Xisha Islands, vowing determination to safeguard national sovereignty and territorial integrity.

Qin Gang said the information offered by the Vietnamese side at a press briefing in Hanoi last Friday was ridiculous.

“Their comments showed the country’s falsification of history, denial of truth, inconsistency and treachery,” Qin said, arguing that Vietnam has little international credibility.

He cited historical evidence to show the Xisha Islands have been China’s inherent territory since ancient times.

“China was the first country to discover, develop, name and govern the Xisha Islands,” while Chinese people are indisputable owners of the islands, said the spokesman.

According to Qin, the Chinese people discovered the Xisha Islands when they cruised to them during the Han Dynasty (206 BC-220 AD). Since then, lots of Chinese have traveled there for business.

Historical documents show Chinese fished and traded around the Xisha Islands during the Tang (618-907) and Song (960-1279) dynasties, which serves as proof for China’s jurisdiction of the area, he said.

During China’s Yuan Dynasty in the 13th century, astronomer Guo Shoujing set up an observatory on the Xisha Islands, Qin added.

Vietnam appeared to acknowledge and respect China’s sovereignty over the islands before the mid 1970s. In 1956, a senior official of the Vietnamese Foreign Ministry told a charge d’affaires of the Chinese Embassy in Vietnam that the Xisha Islands were part of the Chinese territory, according to the spokesman.

In 1958, China announced it had set 12 nautical miles as the width of its territorial sea and the Xisha Islands were included. Ten days after that, then Vietnamese Prime Minister Pham Van Dong told then Chinese Premier Zhou Enlai that the Vietnamese government admitted the truth of and respected China’s statement on its territorial sea, he said.

Originally posted here:
China slams Vietnam's Xisha Islands comments

BEIJING: Terming Vietnamese claims over the disputed islands in the South China Sea as “ridiculous”, China today accused Vietnam of changing its stand since 1975 after having officially endorsed Chinese sovereignty over them.

Reacting to assertions by Vietnam claiming sovereignty over the Paracel islands in the South China Sea which China refers to as the Xisha islands, Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesman, Qin Gang told a media briefing here that Hanoi’s claims are “very ridiculous”.

“Large amount of historical facts had proven that Xisha islands are China’s territory since ancient times,” he said.

“Vietnam has always gone back on its words. The credibility of this country is very low,” Qin said.

The war of words between Vietnam and China over the ownership of the islands heated up in recent weeks after Beijing deployed an oil rig in waters close to the islands, which was staunchly opposed by Hanoi.

While naval vessels of the two countries rammed into each other hundreds of times, four Chinese were killed and over 100 injured in anti-China riots in Vietnam in which over 460 factories mostly Chinese-owned were destroyed by mobs.

Beijing withdrew over 7,000 of its workers from Vietnam and demanded compensation for the victims.

China claims sovereignty over almost all of the South China Sea which is hotly contested by Vietnam, the Philippines, Malaysia and Brunei, who are backed by the US.

Defending Chinese claims over the islands, Qin said they were discovered and developed during ancient Chinese kingdoms and patrolled by their navies.

He said Vietnam officially endorsed Chinese sovereignty in a letter to China from its then prime minister in 1958 besides reflecting the same in Vietnamese official documents and textbooks.

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China brands Vietnam claims over South China Sea islands as 'ridiculous'

May 252014

IT WAS 20 years ago when the Philippines and Indonesia first decided to talk about their claims of islands in the Mindanao Sea and Celebes Sea.

Within this month, the two countries have set new maritime boundary lines in the areas with unclear sovereignty. This includes rich fishing grounds, trading routes and sources of oil or natural gas. And the agreement, set for signing, is called Agreement between the Republic of the Philippines and the Republic of Indonesia Concerning the Delimitation of the Exclusive Economic Zone Boundary.

That’s what the Philippines has asked for in its claim of the Spratly Islands over which China claims authority. China is also claiming the South China Sea islands that Vietnam, Japan, Malaysia, Taiwan, also Brunei, believe are theirs.

The agreement between the Philippines and Indonesia over some islands show the intent of both countries to stay as friends and keep the regional community firm according to Aseans international laws. It could serve as example of steps towards real world peace.

In the early years of the world, there werent people quarreling over islands since there were few people in a big world, each prehistoric clan could own one and more of an archipelago, except that the travel from one island to another would lead to the people’s preference of vast land in its natural flourish.

But through the years and today, man has found the importance of small islands, as rich fishing grounds, also as sources of oil and natural gas reserves in reefs, atolls, and coral islands. Most of the world’s plants and animals are endemic and indigenous species, mostly found only in some islands.

The islands in total the world over—of land and the water—is sixth of the world’s total area and home to a big portion of the world’s animals and plants.

Over these islands are the disputes of territorial ownership, like the South China Sea. In the Philippines, the islands in dispute are found in the west, in Vietnam found in the east. The area is called the South China Sea which the Philippines calls the West Philippine Sea and Vietnam calls the East Sea. Japan and China are in dispute over seven islands in East China Sea which Japan calls the Senkaku and China, Diaoyu.

And the quarrel over these islands are referred to as a sea row among Asian countries, or territorial issues, or disputes, with tensions running high.

There is the 2002 Declaration among Asean countries on the Conduct of Parties in the South China Sea. But is China looking? Its looking towards a claim of about a 90-percent of the sea and islands in the area.

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Cuizon: Islands, islands

May 222014

Condoleeze Rice, Robert Bigeneau and Christine Lagarde all withdrew from giving the commencement speech at three highly regarded universities. Student protests led to their decision not to appear on campus. These are three highly respected people who have given their views across America and the world.

What a setback to have free speech universities cave in to a few protesters that didn’t approve of something these speakers said or did in the past. Free speech created a civil rights revolution, it ended the Vietnam War and it is the one thing more than any other factor that determines real democracy. God help us if we only want views that preserve the status quo.

A democracy encourages diverse views and a genuine exchange of ideas. These speakers who felt they had to withdraw so the protests did not distract from the honoring of students are truly acting at a high ethical level, but how embarrassing to the university and all Americans who value speech that opposes their thinking.

The best way to stop creative change and encourage conformity is to limit new ideas and limit free speech zones. We have enough problems with surveillance in this country without adding to the problem by driving away smart, accomplished people from free expression of thought. What a step backwards. Keep in mind, there was a time when many universities did not want Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. speaking at their institutions of higher learning. Enough said.

Darrel Collins,

La Crescent

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Colleges and free speech

Tensions flared in the South China Sea today as armed Philippine police arrested Chinese fishermen near a disputed shoal and Vietnam said Chinese boats rammed into Vietnamese vessels during a confrontation in waters close to islands claimed by the two countries.

The Chinese fishing boat and its crew were detained by the Philippines near the Spratly Islands, known as the Nansha Islands in Chinese, Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Hua Chunying said, demanding the release of the fishermen. Vietnam separately said Chinese vessels intentionally collided with its boats near an exploration rig placed by China close to the Paracel Islands.

The incidents come as China takes a more assertive stance on maritime territorial issues that are souring relations with neighbors from Vietnam to Japan. U.S. President Barack Obama last month visited Asia to reassure key allies of U.S. support in the face of Chinas rising economic and military power, while Asian countries have been pushing China to agree to a code of conduct to avoid conflicts in the South China Sea.

It shows the regional concern that China has yet to agree or commit to a timetable with respect to the code of conduct — frustration that China hasnt done that, said Terence Lee, an assistant professor of political science at National University of Singapore, referring to the Philippine and Vietnamese actions. Finding some way forward concretely without the use of force is imperative for the countries in the region.

At a briefing in Beijing, Hua accused the Philippines and Vietnam of violating its sovereignty over the island chains. She accused Vietnam of being disruptive.

China has 80 vessels in the area, including seven military craft, some of which fired water at Vietnamese ships backed by low-flying Chinese aircraft, Ngo Ngoc Thu, Vice Commander of Vietnams Coast Guard, said at a briefing. Six Vietnamese officers were hurt by broken glass during the clash, he said.

The situation is extremely tense, Thu said. While Vietnam seeks to resolve the dispute through negotiations, all endurance has limits. If China vessels continue to hit ours, we will have similar moves to respond in self-defense.

The Association of Southeast Asian Nations is seeking the code for the oil-and gas-rich waters in the South China Sea, through which some of the worlds busiest shipping lanes run. The talks have made little progress since China agreed last July to start discussions, before introducing fishing rules in January requiring foreign vessels to seek permission before entering waters off its southern coast.

China has said it is prepared to hold bilateral talks over territorial issues. It has rejected a Philippine move for international arbitration on their claims to parts of the South China Sea.

Philippine police confirmed they detained a Chinese vessel carrying 11 crew. The fishermen were on board the boat Qiongqionghai 09063, the official Xinhua News Agency said, citing the Tanmen fishing association in the Hainan island city of Qionghai. Another fishing boat fled the scene, it said.

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China Loses Contact With 11 Fishermen Off Disputed Islands

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Apr 262014

Business Insider Wed 23 Apr 2014 The 11 Most Powerful Militaries In The World Asymmetrical wars in Afghanistan, Vietnam, and now in Syria demonstrate all too clearly that relatively small numbers of belligerents can carry out successful military operations against superior… (photo: AP / Mark Lennihan) Defence Militaries Photos Wikipedia: List of countries by military expenditures World National Journal Wed 23 Apr 2014 U.S. Sending Troops to Eastern Europe, Must Turn Over Info on CIA Prisons, Apaches Headed to Egypt By Jordain Carney Follow on Twitter April 23, 2014 By Jordain Carney ( @jordainc) Welcome to NJ’s Early Bird, today’s best national security, defense, and foreign policy coverage. To contact us, email… (photo: USMC / Zachery B. Martin) Egypt Europe Photos Troops Wikipedia: Troop Top Stories more Headlines Novosti Tue 22 Apr 2014 ANALYSIS: NATO Build Up in Poland Threatens International Stability WASHINGTON, April 22 (RIA Novosti), Lyudmila Chernova NATOs military build-up in Poland is a dangerous and provocative development which might lead to… (photo: US DoD) Nato Photos Poland Washington Wikipedia: NATO The Daily Telegraph Tue 22 Apr 2014 US troop numbers in Afghanistan may drop below 10,000 Related Articles Deal for US troops to stay in Afghanistan ‘will be signed soon’ 07 Dec 2013 The ‘living hell’ of patrol in Afghanistan 02 Dec 2013 Karzai’s refusal to… (photo: USMC / Zachery B. Martin) Afghanistan Karzai Photos US Troops Wikipedia: Afghanistan Khaleej Times Mon 21 Apr 2014 Bidens Ukraine agenda Diplomatic pressure is now showing on Russia. Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrovs remark that Ukraine is to be blamed for violating the Geneva accord is incomprehensive… (photo: AP / Sergei Chuzavkov) Geneva Photos Russia Ukraine Wikipedia: Joe Biden CNN Mon 21 Apr 2014 How Obama can avoid lame-duck blues April 21, 2014 — Updated 1235 GMT (2035 HKT) Editor’s note: Julian Zelizer is a professor of history and public affairs at Princeton University. He is the author of… (photo: AP / Pablo Martinez Monsivais) Barack Obama Photos Politics US Wikipedia: Barack Obama Detroit news Mon 21 Apr 2014 Obama must defend NATO’s red line Michael Barone Comments Last week, masked men in camouflage garb with no insignia, dressed and equipped like Russian special forces, started taking over police stations… (photo: AP / LM Otero) Barack Obama Nato Photos US Wikipedia: Barack Obama The Telegraph India Mon 21 Apr 2014 In Cold War rerun, Obama plans to isolate Russia PETER BAKER Putin, Obama Washington, April … Washington, April 20: Even as the crisis in Ukraine continues to defy easy resolution, President Barack Obama and his national security team are looking beyond the… (photo: AP / Carolyn Kaster) Photos Russia Ukraine Washington Wikipedia: Barack Obama

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Chris Walker is an SEO Consultant in Ho Chi Minh city Vietnam
Join my free SEO seminars in Vietnam Doing business in the digital age requires a website. More important is having a website that people visit. Hi, my name …

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Vietnam Beaches Responsible Tourism Let's Keep Hoi An Clean TonkinCruise 2014
Vietnam Travel and Tourism , Visit http://www.indochinatravelservice.com Book online tours to Vietnam. Visit http://tonkincruise.com Book online daily tours …

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Vietnam Beaches Responsible Tourism Let’s Keep Hoi An Clean TonkinCruise 2014 – Video

First Amendment Without student media, nation is deprived of creativity of youth, speaker says.

Mary Beth Tinker remembers being barely older than a toddler attending church, singing “Jesus loves the little children, all the little children of the world,” when she first learned about hypocrisy in the world.

As it turned out, some people in the church where her father was a pastor didnt really love “all the little children.” His advocacy for civil rights for African-Americans cost him his job.

It was the first of many times Tinker witnessed brave acts by her parents as they fought for justice and equality during a pivotal period in U.S. history.

Their example inspired a self-described “shy girl reluctant to break rules” to stand up for her own First Amendment rights with an act of defiance that forever altered U.S. law.

As a 13-year-old Iowa middle-school student in 1965, Tinker was among a small group of students prevented from wearing black armbands to school to mourn soldiers killed on both sides of the Vietnam War.

With the help of the American Civil Liberties Union, she and her peers challenged the ban all the way to U.S. Supreme Court and won.

The landmark 1969 Tinker vs. Des Moines Independent Community School District decision, in which the court famously held that individuals “do not shed their constitutional rights to freedom of speech or expression at the schoolhouse gate,” has become the standard by which all other student First Amendment cases are judged.

Tinker was in Salt Lake City Saturday as part of the nationwide “Tinker Tour,” which aims to educate young people about their free speech rights and encourage them to exercise those with respect and care.

Young peoples civic involvement is as important as ever, she said.

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Free speech advocate calls on young people to exercise rights



Danang of the Game is Beaches and Money
Danang beach in Vietnam 2014. Vietnam travel today. Tags: Ha noi city tour Hanoi Tour vietnam travel, travel to vietnam, travel vietnam, vietnam travel guide…

By: Vietnam Review

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Danang of the Game is Beaches and Money – Video

Dramatic new developments in the confused search for missing Malaysia Airlines flight MH370 the passenger plane’s disappearance can be traced back to Pitbull and Shakira’s 2012 track “Get It Started,” according to the YouTube illuminati.

Pitbull’s lyrics include “Now it’s off to Malaysia” and “Two passports, three cities, two countries, one day.”

Conspiracy theorists have said that the two passports relate to the stolen Austrian and Italian passports used by two Iranians to board MH370, the three cities refer to the capital cities of Malaysia, China and Vietnam and the two countries are Malaysia and Vietnam. Obviously.

The lyrics “No Ali, No Frasier, but for now off to Malaysia” meanwhile were linked to the “Mr Ali’ the press have been referring to for one of the two Iranian passengers despite Malaysian authorities having confirmed the 19-year-old is actually called Pouria Nourmohammadi.

“This song is related to the mh370 incident.. OMG!!!” one mind-blown commenter wrote.”

So are the lyrics mere coincidence? Of course they are.

Malaysia Airlines Plane ‘Changed Course And Flew For An Hour Before Vanishing’

The Malaysian Airlines Sightings That Have All Turned Out To Be False Leads

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Missing Malaysia Flight MH370 And Pitbull Song Lyrics Share An Uncanny Connection, According To Conspiracy Theorists



Famous Beaches in Vietnam – Bien Vietnam www.asiapacifictravel.vn.flv
Famous Beaches in Vietnam – Bien Vietnam www.asiapacifictravel.vn.flv.

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Famous Beaches in Vietnam – Bien Vietnam www.asiapacifictravel.vn.flv – Video

Jeff Smith, a Boise State University graduate living in Utah, heard about Idahoans for Liberty’s Second Amendment rally the evening of Jan. 12. He drove to Idaho and spent the night in his car in a WalMart parking lot in Boise, and was rubbing his German shepherd Kira’s belly when Boise Weeklycaught up with him at the Grove Plaza just ahead of when the rally was scheduled to march to the statehouse.

For Smith, who brought along his loaded AR-15 assault rifle, the rally represented kickback against dependence on the government.

“We should be able to govern ourselves,” Smith said.

The threats to his freedom, he said, aren’t terrorists. “They’re guys wearing suits and ties rather than living in caves overseas,” Smith said.

In general terms, the rally was in support of Second Amendment rights and a chance for advocates to urge legislators to reinforce state support of the right to bear arms in Idaho, but the supporters who gathered at the Grove Plaza the morning of Jan. 13 had numerous reasons for attending. For some, it was to protest President Barack Obama’s efforts to enact gun legislation. Others were there to remind their legislators that gun rights are important to them. Nick Brizzi, a veteran of the Vietnam War, was there because, as a veteran, he felt gun ownership was a right he’d earned in the jungles of southeast Asia.

“If a man is given the right to have a weapon to serve his country, he should have that right until he dies,” Brizzi said.

Greg Pruett, the event’s organizer, started Idahoans for Liberty and organized the Monday rally because national organizations like the National Rifle Association needed local corollaries to work with state legislatures and city councils.

“The people who make a difference work [at the statehouse],” he said. “I wanted an organization that was Idaho specific.”

After Pruett urged the crowd to “tell [the legislators] how you feel” and thanking a motorcycle-mounted police escort, the crowd snaked its way from the Grove Plaza east on Idaho Street, then north on Capitol Boulevard to the statehouse, with people adding to the crowd’s ranks along the way. What started as a group of about 50 people at the plaza had blossomed into a throng of about 200 by the time it settled at the Capitol steps.

No legislators were there to greet them (though several did join the crowd on the steps later during the rally), which dismayed many.

Link:
Gun Rights Advocates March to Idaho Statehouse



Tiananmen square activist turned American citizen demonstrates for the second amendment Vietnam watc
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Free speech zones (also known as First Amendment zones, free speech cages, and protest zones) are areas set aside in public places for political activists to exercise their right of free speech in the United States. The First Amendment to the United States Constitution states that “Congress shall make no law… abridging… the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances.” The existence of free speech zones is based on U.S. court decisions stipulating that the government may regulate the time, place, and mannerbut not contentof expression. A free speech zone is more restrictive than an exclusion zone.[citation needed]

The Supreme Court has developed a four-part analysis to evaluate the constitutionality of time, place and manner (TPM) restrictions. To pass muster under the First Amendment, TPM restrictions must be neutral with respect to content, narrowly drawn, serve a significant government interest, and leave open alternative channels of communication. Application of this four-part analysis varies with the circumstances of each case, and typically requires lower standards for the restriction of obscenity and fighting words.

Free speech zones have been used at a variety of political gatherings. The stated purpose of free speech zones is to protect the safety of those attending the political gathering, or for the safety of the protesters themselves. Critics, however, suggest that such zones are “Orwellian”,[1][2] and that authorities use them in a heavy-handed manner to censor protesters by putting them literally out of sight of the mass media, hence the public, as well as visiting dignitaries. Though authorities generally deny specifically targeting protesters, on a number of occasions, these denials have been contradicted by subsequent court testimony. The American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) has filed, with various degrees of success and failure, a number of lawsuits on the issue.

The most prominent examples were those created by the United States Secret Service for President George W. Bush and other members of his administration.[3] Though free speech zones existed in limited forms prior to the Presidency of George W. Bush; it was during Bush’s presidency that their scope was greatly expanded.[4]

Many colleges and universities earlier instituted free speech zone rules during the Vietnam-era protests of the 1960s and 1970s. In recent years, a number of them have revised or removed these restrictions following student protests and lawsuits.

During the 1988 Democratic National Convention, the city of Atlanta, Georgia set up a “designated protest zone”[5] so the convention would not be disrupted. A pro-choice demonstrator opposing an Operation Rescue group said Atlanta Mayor Andrew Young “put us in a free-speech cage.”[6] “Protest zones” were used during the 1992 and 1996 United States presidential nominating conventions[7]

Free speech zones have been used for non-political purposes. Through 1990s, the San Francisco International Airport played host to a steady stream of religious groups (Hare Krishnas in particular), preachers, and beggars. The city considered whether this public transportation hub was required to host free speech, and to what extent. As a compromise, two “free speech booths” were installed in the South Terminal, and groups wishing to speak but not having direct business at the airport were directed there. These booths still exist, although permits are required to access the booths.[8]

WTO Ministerial Conference of 1999 protest activity saw a number of changes to how law enforcement deals with protest activities. “The [National Lawyers] Guild, which has a 35-year history of monitoring First Amendment activity, has witnessed a notable change in police treatment of political protesters since the November 1999 World Trade Organization meeting in Seattle. At subsequent gatherings in Washington, D.C., Detroit, Philadelphia, Los Angeles, Miami, Chicago, and Portland a pattern of behavior that stifles First Amendment rights has emerged”.[9] In a subsequent lawsuit, the United States Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit found that “It was lawful for the city of Seattle to deem part of downtown off-limits… But the court also said that police enforcing the rule may have gone too far by targeting only those opposed to the WTO, in violation of their First Amendment rights.”[10]

Free speech zones were used in Boston at the 2004 Democratic National Convention. The free speech zones organized by the authorities in Boston were boxed in by concrete walls, invisible to the FleetCenter where the convention was held and criticized harshly as a “protest pen” or “Boston’s Camp X-Ray”.[11] “Some protesters for a short time Monday [July 26, 2004] converted the zone into a mock prison camp by donning hoods and marching in the cage with their hands behind their backs.”[12] A coalition of groups protesting the Iraq War challenged the planned protest zones. U.S. District Court Judge Douglas Woodlock was sympathetic to their request: “One cannot conceive of what other design elements could be put into a space to create a more symbolic affront to the role of free expression.”.[13] However, he ultimately rejected the petition to move the protest zones closer to the FleetCenter.[14]

Free speech zones were also used in New York City at the 2004 Republican National Convention. According to Mike McGuire, a columnist for the online anti-war magazine Nonviolent Activist, “The policing of the protests during the 2004 Republican National Convention represent[ed] another interesting model of repression. The NYPD tracked every planned action and set up traps. As marches began, police would emerge from their hiding places building vestibules, parking garages, or vans and corral the dissenters with orange netting that read ‘POLICE LINE DO not CROSS,’ establishing areas they ironically called ‘ad-hoc free speech zones.’ One by one, protesters were arrested and detainedsome for nearly two days.”[15] Both the Democratic and Republican National parties were jointly awarded a 2005 Jefferson Muzzle from the Thomas Jefferson Center for the Protection of Free Expression, “For their mutual failure to make the preservation of First Amendment freedoms a priority during the last Presidential election”.[13]

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Free speech zone – Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

The Con Dao islands have an utterly unhurried ambience. “There are two traffic lights, but no work,” the bike rental guy said apologetically as he gave me the island rundown. “One gas station, but close for lunch. Only one road, so you no lost. Right to airport or left to prisons and port.”

Moped key in hand, I was relishing the chance to get out and explore some empty roads in search of a perfect beach for the day. I’d spent the previous week embracing Vietnamese city culture and its furious energy and commerce, but was now in need of some serious hammock time.

A cluster of 16 islets in the South China Sea, the Con Dao islands are 155 miles from Ho Chi Minh City. Only the main island, Con Son, is inhabited (its population is just 6,000), though the other islands can be visited.

Once hell on earth to thousands of prisoners incarcerated by French colonists and the American military, today the Con Daos are blissfully tranquil. With their ravishing sandy bays, rainforests and healthy coral reefs, their tropical appeal is easy to grasp. Flight connections used to be atrocious, but Vietnam Airlines now offers three daily flights from Ho Chi Minh City (52 one way).

The rental guy had lied about the one road. Easily sidetracked, my Honda and I had chanced upon a rough track close to the airport, and our inquisitiveness had rewarded us royally in the form of Dam Trau beach, a sublime half-moon crescent of pale sand, bookended by forest-topped rocky promontories.

After an hour’s snorkelling, exploring the kaleidoscopic coral teeming with macro life and spending five minutes swimming eye-to-eye with a hawksbill turtle, I retreated to the plastic chairs in the bay’s seafood shack, picked a victim from the live fish tank and gorged on crab with tamarind and chilli. The only other diners were a group from Hanoi, employees of a state-owned bank on a corporate jolly-with-a-purpose.

Vietnam is a country steeped in revolutionary rhetoric, and Vo Thi Sau, a teenage resistance fighter executed in Con Dao during the French occupation, fits the bill perfectly. (She killed a captain in a grenade attack at the age of 14, and wasn’t captured until years later.) The bank staff were here to pay their respects to this national heroine, and to the thousands of others who lost their lives in Con Dao’s 11 prisons.

Ghosts are everywhere in Con Dao, nowhere more so than at Phu Hai jail. Built in 1862, it once housed 20,000 prisoners political and criminal inmates chained together naked in rows. The really troublesome individuals were kept in “tiger cages”, with six to 10 men crammed into a tiny open-roofed enclosure, beaten with sticks from above and dusted with lime and water (which burns the skin). Unbeknown to the world, the Americans continued operating these tiger cages until 1970 when a Life magazine report broke news of their existence, provoking an international outcry.

It had been a chastening day, the brutality of prison conditions contrasting acutely with the overwhelming beauty of my surroundings. As I strolled along the seafront promenade in Con Son town, it was easy to marvel at the sheer gentility of this pocket-sized island capital, its litter-free streets, French-era villas, well-kept municipal buildings and air of calm and prosperity.

Con Son town has a dozen or so hotels and guesthouses but the Six Senses resort (sixsenses.com; from 441), a short ride away to the north, really is in a class of its own. Occupying the island’s best beach, it comprises 50 or so ocean-front, timber-clad beach villas, each fusing contemporary style with rustic chic.

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Vietnam’s islands: an escape route to peace



Amazing Caves and Floating Islands ( Vietnam Vlog 3)
Happy New Year's Eve or New Years my Lovers !!! After sad goodbyes..We are back in America. Super jet lagged though. Edited this video in the 21 hour flight….

By: Promise Phan

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Amazing Caves and Floating Islands ( Vietnam Vlog 3) – Video

The co-founder of Liberty Reserve, a now defunct virtual currency that was widely favored by the criminal underground, pleaded guilty on Thursday to money laundering and other charges.

Vladimir Kats, 41, also pleaded guilty in U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York to operating and conspiring to operate an unlicensed money transmitter business, receiving child pornography and marriage fraud, according to a U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ) news release.

The Liberty Reserve virtual currency business, launched in 2006 in Costa Rica, became a financial hub of the cybercrime world, handling more than 55 million transactions worth US$6 billion over seven years, according to the indictment against Kats.

Liberty Reserve’s reputation somewhat tainted the view of other virtual currencies, including Bitcoin, for their quick embrace by the criminal world. Unlike Liberty Reserve though, Bitcoin businesses and exchangers have mostly sought to comply with global financial regulations.

Prosecutors linked Liberty Reserve with laundering proceeds from credit card fraud, identity theft, investment fraud, computer hacking, child pornography and narcotics trafficking.

Liberty Reserve didn’t validate its customers’ ID — a key requirement in many countries — which allowed people to register under false identities. A network of third-party exchangers in Malaysia, Nigeria, Vietnam and Russia directly handled deposits and withdrawals from customers, which kept Liberty Reserve at arm’s length from traditional banking systems.

Kats was arrested in May when Liberty Reserve was shut down. More than one million people used the service, including more than 200,000 in the U.S., the indictment said.

A sentencing date has not been scheduled. Kats could face up to 75 years in prison if he’s given the maximum sentence for each charge, the DOJ said.

Send news tips and comments to jeremy_kirk@idg.com. Follow me on Twitter: @jeremy_kirk

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Liberty Reserve co-founder pleads guilty to money laundering

by Ramzy Baroud October 10, 2013

Nothing is more precious than freedom, is quoted as being attributed to Vo Nguyen Giap, a Vietnamese General that led his country through two liberation wars. The first was against French colonialists, the second against the Americans. And despite heavy and painful losses, Vietnam prevailed, defeating the first colonial quest at the Battle of Dien Bien Phu (1954) and the second at Ho Ch Minh Campaign (1975).

General Giap, the son of a peasant scholar, stood tall in both wars, only bowing down to the resolve of his people. Any forces that would impose their will on other nations will most certainly face defeat, he once said. His words will always be true.

He died on Friday, October 4, at the age of 102.

On the same day, the former black panther Herman Wallace, who had spent 41-years of his life in solitary confinement in Louisiana State Penitentiary, died from incurable liver cancer at the age of 71. Just a few days before his death, Judge Brian Jackson had overturned a charge that robbed Herman of much of his life. According to Jackson, Hermans 1974 conviction of killing a prison guard was unconstitutional.

Despite the lack of material evidence, discredited witnesses and a sham trial, Wallace, who was a poet and lover of literature, and two other prisoners known as the Angola Three, were locked up to spend a life of untold hardship for a crime they didnt commit.

Now that Wallace is dead, two remain. One, Robert King, 70, was freed in 2001, and the other, Albert Woodfox, 66, is still in solitary confinement and undergoes daily cavity searches, reported the UK Independent newspaper.

When his conviction was overturned it cleared the slate – he could die a man not convicted of a crime he was innocent of, King said of the release of Wallace, who died few days later.

One of the last photos released while on his hospital bed, showed Wallace raising his clinched right fist, perpetuating the legendary defiance of a whole generation of African Americans and civil rights leaders. While some fought for civil rights in the streets of American cities, Wallace fought for the rights of prisoners. The four decades of solitary confinement were meant to break him. Instead, it made it him stronger.

“If death is the realm of freedom, then through death I escape to freedom” Wallace quoted Frantz Fanon in the introduction to a poem he wrote from prison in 2012.

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Giap, Wallace, and the Never-Ending Battle for Freedom



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Pierre Teilhard De Chardin




Designer Children | Prometheism | Euvolution | Transhumanism

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