Tag Archives: Texas

Texas gunman had happy childhood in Pakistan but struggled in US

By REUTERS

ISLAMABAD: Nadir Soofi, a gunman shot dead after opening fire at a Texas exhibit of caricatures of the Prophet Muhammad (PBUH), was a popular schoolboy in Pakistan but struggled to adjust to the United States after moving there as a teen, friends said on Tuesday.

Police say disappointment, alienation, and a search for belonging inspired Soofi and his roommate, Elton Simpson, to attack the exhibit and contest to draw Prophet Muhammad (PBUH) cartoons on Sunday.

Such depictions are offensive to Muslims and often spark violence. Event organisers said the event was defending free speech.

The two gunmen were shot dead by a police officer before they could kill anyone.

Friends in Pakistan, who studied with Soofi at the elite International School of Islamabad, were stunned to discover that police had identified him as was one of the attackers.

“When he was in Islamabad, he had a great life. His mom was an American who taught art at the school, he was in plays, popular with girls,” said one of Soofi’s best friends at school.

“His nickname was Goofy” because of his sense of humour, said the man, who declined to be identified to preserve his privacy.

Another classmate said Soofi played the lead in the school’s production of the play “Bye Bye Birdie”.

“He was a popular kid, the opposite of a radical extremist,” she said.

Soofi’s parents divorced around the time he was in tenth grade, the friend said, and he moved to Utah with his mother.

Over the years, Soofi told his old friends he did not fit in and had many disappointments.

He went to dental school, but said he had to drop out because of financial problems, the male friend said.

He tried and failed at various ventures including a dry cleaning store, he said.

He told friends he had a child with a Bosnian woman but the relationship did not work out.

“He said ‘life is really tough here’,” the male friend said.

“Alienation, an identity crisis, whatever you want to call it, he was kind of alone.”

“I guess the one thing he could identify with was religion.”

In the past few years, Soofi grew a beard and only posted pictures of himself wearing sunglasses on Facebook, the friend said. Old friends teased him for that but also began to worry, the friend said.

Gradually they lost contact.

“I looked at his pictures, and I didn’t recognize him,” the friend said.

“I don’t know what happened to him in America.”

The attack was earlier claimed by the extremist militant group Islamic State through a statement made over their Al-Bayan radio. It is the first attack claimed by IS in the United States.

News courtesy: DAWN
Read more » http://www.dawn.com/news/1180141

Fight against Eco Terrorism

Family awarded $3 million in first US fracking trial

After three years of legal wrangling, a Texas family has won its case against a company engaged in hydraulic fracturing near their home. The family, which suffered tangible health deterioration after the fracking began, was awarded $3 million.

A Dallas jury ruled Tuesday in favor of the Parr family, which sued Aruba Petroleum in 2011 after each member of the family noticed a decline in health that, their attorneys argued in court, was the result of dozens of gas wells surrounding their home in Wise County, Texas. The family was awarded nearly $3 million in what is believed to be the first fracking trial in US history.

Read more » http://rt.com/usa/154408-fracking-trial-family-sued/

Load shedding in America!

Rolling Blackouts: a Black Eye For Texas?

By Dave Fehling

There’s fear in Austin over what could happen if the state runs short of electricity and has to use rolling blackouts to keep the statewide electrical grid from collapsing.

The fear is for the state’s image.

At a meeting of the Texas Public Utility Commission (PUC) June 13th, Chairman Donna Nelson expressed concern that pleas to the public to conserve electricity during the late afternoon when demand is greatest might also send a message that Texas was running out of power and therefore was no place you’d want to do business. ….

Read more » State Impact

http://stateimpact.npr.org/texas/2012/06/27/rolling-blackouts-a-black-eye-for-texas/

Christian Taliban – a doomed attempt to compete with Muslim Taliban

Fighting the Culture Wars With Hate, Violence and Even Bullets: Meet the Most Extreme of the Radical Christians

By Alex Henderson

From the Army of God to the Hutaree Militia to Gary North and his Christian reconstructionists, radical Christianity is alive and well in the United States.

If there is one name some residents of Amarillo, Texas wish they could forget, it’s Repent Amarillo. Based in that North Texas city, Repent Amarillo is a militant Christian fundamentalist group whose antics have ranged from staging a mock execution of Santa Claus by firing squad to posting a “spiritual warfare” map on its Web site that cited a Buddhist temple, an Islamic center, gay bars, strip clubs and sex shops as places of demonic activity.

Repent Amarillo is also infamous for mercilessly harassing a local swingers club called Route 66. Throughout 2009, members of Repent Amarillo made a point of showing up at Route 66’s events, where they would typically wear military fatigues, shout at Route 66 members through bullhorns and write down the license plate numbers of people attending the events. After finding out who the swingers were, Repent Amarillo’s members would find out where they worked and try to get them fired from their jobs (according to Route 66 coordinator Mac Mead, at least two members of the club lost their jobs because of Repent Amarillo). ….

Read more: → AlterNet

The End (of Religion) Is Near, Scientists Say

Scientists often have a funny way of talking about religion.

By Louis Ruprecht

A case in point concerns a new study that was discussed at the American Physical Society meetings in Dallas, Texas, in late March. Religion, it seems, is going extinct. You heard me: extinct. Dead and gone. Like the dinosaurs.

The data that a team of mathematicians used to reach this rather surprising conclusion were census reports of religious affiliation. Using a complicated means of mathematical analysis called “nonlinear dynamics”—complicated, ironically, because its purpose is to make complicated things simpler by reducing them to one variable—the team attempted to extrapolate from data on religious affiliation in nine countries: Australia, Austria, Canada, Czech Republic, Finland, Ireland, Netherlands, New Zealand and Switzerland.

Turns out, every case of self-reported religious affiliation is trending downward: 40% self-identify as religiously non-affiliated in the Netherlands, as do 60% in the Czech Republic. The mathematicians seem far more surprised by these numbers than most religionists would be. ….

Read more : Alternet.org

International Sindhi Cultural & solidarity Day- Houston

International Sindhi cultural, Heritage and solidarity day celebrated in Toronto, Houston Texas, Washington, New York, London and Saint Louis by Sindhi Association of North America (SANA) and World Sindhi Congress (WSC).

Around one hundred Sindhi living in Houston gathered and enjoyed a colorful and cold evening. Majority was dressed in Sindhi cultural Ajrak and Topi and enjoyed Sindhi music.

Continue reading International Sindhi Cultural & solidarity Day- Houston

Protest Rally against Dictator in Houston Texas

Report by: Sikander Baloch, Texas

A peaceful Rally of a large number of pro Democrat groups along with Sindhi and Baloch Communities took place in Houston Texas in front of the omni hotel, where Ex-military dictator Pervez Musharraf was invited to speech. Participants was carrying play cards and banners against Musharraf with different slogans, Killer of democracy and Judiciary, Killer of leaders like Akber Bugti, and Benazir Bhutto. They were demanding to the US government to revoke fugitive from law in Pakistan, ex-military dictator’s  visa and extradite him to Pakistan to be tried for High Treason under Article 6 of the Constitution of Pakistan and for his other crimes under relevant laws. People from Different Walk of life participated and supported this rally, where as Aziz Narejo , Abdul Narejo, Sikander Baloch, Mansoor Samo, Manzoor Memon, and others represent Sindhi Community and Habib Baloch, Malik Baloch, Aslam Baloch, Maria Baloch were the participants from American Friends of Balochistan. Javed Burki and other American friends of Pakistan along with Pakistan Muslim League Nawaz and Pakistan Tahreek Insaf were among the protester.

While talking with international Media they says that, Ex-military dictator who seized power on October 12, 1999 in a coup against an elected government has committed  crimes against the people and the country. He has violated the Constitution, dissolved the elected assemblies, compromised sovereignty of the country, destroyed institutions, waged war on own people, murdered political leaders and innocent citizens, caused disharmony among provinces, created divisions among the people, weakened the foundations of the country, threatened its integrity and ruined the economy bringing untold of miseries to the masses. they added that,

It is a matter of great concern that the US government has issued visa to him and he has been invited to address and hoodwink the people in USA at various fora. We call upon the people and the government in USA and the world leaders to respect the will of the people of Pakistan and support the demand for his extradition to Pakistan to stand trial for his crimes.

A pro Mushraff Rally was held by MQM and other groups at same place with Small number of people who were welcoming Mushrraff.

11 October, 2009

Protest Rally against Dictator Mushraff in Houston Texas