SHAFAQNA (Shia International News Association) – Russian politicians and media are outraged by the death of a three-year-old adopted Russian boy and US silence on the matter. The boy was reportedly brutally beaten in Texas by his adoptive mother, who allegedly also gave him psychotropic medication.
Maksim Kuzmin was adopted at the beginning of November 2012. Just two-and-a-half months later he was found dead, on January 21, 2013.
Russia has reacted extremely critically to the fact that the US waited almost a month before notifying Russian authorities about what happened. Even then, it was Texas’ law enforcement authorities that spoke out, while the other US channels remained mute on the subject.
Russia’s Investigative Committee has launched a probe into the death of Maksim at the hands of his adoptive American family. Investigators stated they will be adding adoptive mother Laura Shatto’s name to the international watch list and applying for her arrest.
The US State Department confirmed that it will assist Russia with the investigation and help to coordinate talks with Texas.
On Tuesday, senior Russian embassy officials in the US, along with a Houston consulate staff, have met with Texas authorities and Maksim's stepfather. They have confirmed that the local forces are fully engaged in the case, and expressed hope that any indication of a criminal component to the child's death will be dealt with swiftly by the law.
The US Embassy in Russia has expressed condolences via its Twitter account.
“We deeply regret the death of the child in Texas. A death of a child is always a tragedy,” the statement said.
“It would be irresponsible to make conclusions on who is responsible for the death [of Maksim] before autopsy results are analyzed and the investigation is complete,” the statement from the US embassy in Moscow read.
US Child Services is also investigating claims that the child was severely abused, but thus far cannot verify anything, stated Texas Child Protective Services (CPS) spokesman Patrick Crimmins.
There had been several reports of physical abuse and neglect, but the authorities are still waiting for final autopsy results and thus far no arrests have been made and no suspects identified.
An investigation usually takes around 30 days, but when the law enforcement is also involved it may take longer, said the spokesperson.
Maksim with his adoptive father Alan Shatto. Photo from facebook.com
RT's Anastasia Churkina visited the area where the family's home is, and reports on her Twitter account that Ector County Police has said in a statement that it does "not issue a press release on every death that occurs [there]". She also tried to phone the home, but it went straight to the answering machine, saying "If you are a reporter, we have no comment". When talking to the locals, it was difficult to ascertain how much was known about life in the household, as the rural community appears very spread out and people don't run into each other that often.-www.shfaqna.com/English
SHAFAQNA (Shia International News Association) -- The White House says there's a simple reason why it released the now-famous photo of President Obama shooting a gun.
People kept asking about it.
"There were persistent questions about this, so we decided to release a photo of the president shooting at Camp David," said White House spokesman Jay Carney.
It wasn't just reporters; some of Obama's Republican critics had questioned the president's statement that he had fired a weapon.
The issue surfaced with the Jan. 27 release of an interview in The New Republic, which asked Obama if he had ever fired a gun.
"Yes, in fact, up at Camp David, we do skeet shooting all the time," Obama said.
Said Carney: "The fact is the president was asked a question -- did not volunteer, but was asked a question -- about whether or not he had ever shot a weapon. He answered with the truth, which is that he has enjoyed shooting competitively with friends at Camp David on multiple occasions."
Carney added, "I think it's fair to say that we believed that would have been answer enough," but the repeated calls for proof suggested otherwise.
The White House released the photo Saturday morning.
SHAFAQNA (Shia International News Association) -- After months of searching, you’ve finally landed an interview for the job of your dreams. You’ve chosen your wardrobe, you've Googled the company so you can intelligently discuss the issues, and you've considered the questions you could be asked. That’s fine. But if you haven’t brushed up on the questions you want to ask the interviewer, you’re neglecting a key part of your preparation – the part that might win you the job.
Recruiters and executives who are actively hiring will tell you they get three types of questions: no questions, bad questions, and – very rarely – memorable questions. The candidates who ask the memorable ones often get the offers.
A recruiter for a well-known, fast-growing technology company told me: “You’d be surprised how many job candidates have absolutely no questions for me at all, or they ask dumb or boring questions like ‘So what do you do?'"
By asking questions – and not just any questions but memorable, thought-provoking ones – you come across as a cut above the average candidate.
It makes sense. After all, anyone can anticipate common interview questions and craft what they think are impressive answers ahead of time. But candidates who ask insightful, incisive questions prove they’re thinkers and connectors.
You can tell people all day long how qualified you are, how talented you are, and what a tremendous asset to the company you would be. But no statement ever has as much impact as a well-timed, well-executed question. In all situations, power questions help us connect and engage with others in meaningful ways.
You want a recruiter or executive who interviews you to tell a colleague afterward: “I had a great conversation with that candidate. He had really thought a lot about our business.” That’s what gets you the callback. And good questions are the way you create a thought-provoking, value-added conversation.
Avoid these types of questions in a job interview:
Don’t take up a manager’s time by asking “how much vacation will I get?” Get the basic information you need before you go in for an interview.
If someone can give a “yes” or “no” answer, it diminishes your prospects for having a good conversation.
An executive is interested in how you will add value to her organization and whether or not you’re a good fit. Skip questions like “I skydive every Saturday – so will I ever be asked to work weekends?”
The 10 questions you should ask in a job interview:
1. Credibility-building questions:
“As I think back to my experience in managing large sales forces, I’ve found there are typically three barriers to breakthrough sales performance: co-ordination of the sales function with marketing and manufacturing, customer selection, and product quality. In your case, do you think any of these factors are holding back your sales growth? What do you believe are your own greatest opportunities for increasing sales effectiveness?”
2. “Why?” questions:
“Why did you close down your parts business rather than try to find a buyer for it?” or “Why did you decide to move from a functional to a product-based organization structure?”
3. Personal understanding questions:
“I understand you joined the organization five years ago. With all the growth you’ve had, how do you find the experience of working here now compared to when you started?”
4. Passion questions:
“What do you love most about working here?”
5. Value-added advice questions:
“Have you considered creating an online platform for your top account executives, so that they can share success stories and collaborate better around key client opportunities? We implemented such a concept a year ago, and it’s been very successful.”
6. Future-oriented questions:
“You’ve achieved large increases in productivity over the last three years. Where do you believe future operational improvements will come from?”
7. Aspiration questions:
“As you look ahead to the next couple of years, what are the potential growth areas that people are most excited about in the company?”
8. Organizational culture questions:
“What are the most common reasons why new hires don’t work out here?” or “What kinds of people really thrive in your organization?”
9. Decision-making questions:
“If you were to arrive at two final candidates with equal experience and skills, how would you choose one over the other?”
10. Company strengths and weaknesses questions:
“Why do people come to work for you rather than a competitor? And why do you think they stay?”
In general, good questions prove you’ve done your homework. They show you’re not just concerned about yourself but that you’ve given some thought to the future of the company. They allow you to demonstrate your knowledge without sounding arrogant. And they greatly improve your chances that the interviewer will like you – and we tend to hire those we like. If you want to be noticed by recruiters, don’t talk more. Instead, ask better questions. You’ll soon find yourself answering the best question of all: How soon can you start?
SHAFAQNA (Shia International News Association) – A question about political views of a far-right party on Islam has left a Swedish teenager shocked, The Local newspaper reported.
"I was shocked," Johan, 15, told the Svenska Dagbladet daily, the Local newspaper reported.
The student was tasked with writing a project about Islam and was told to gather information and attitudes to the Islamic faith.
Seeking political views, he mailed the far-right Sweden Democrats (SD) asking for the party’s opinion.
The student said he intended for "general questions about the Sweden Democrats or the party's national policy."
To his shock, he received an e-mail from Ted Ekeroth, a Lund county councilor, that included a link showing shocking photos of mutilated, decapitated and burned corpses.
“I can't describe the feeling, the photos were so horrible,” John said.
The far-right councilor justified his mail that the link shows victims of terrorism in southern Thailand.
“I had no idea how I was supposed to respond to his mail,” the student said.
Ekeroth claimed the he had warned the student about the shocking images, adding that he had no idea whether the photos were genuine.
The Sweden Democrats is notorious for anti-Muslim, anti-immigrant campaigns.
Immediately after their electoral win in 2010, the SD started working on imposing a moratorium on building new mosques in the Scandinavian country.
The party, whose manifesto describes Muslims as “seriously jeopardizing the Swedish nation”, has also sought a ban on face-veil and halting immigration from predominantly Muslim countries.
It opposes a panel recommendation that all major religions should be given equal time in lesson plans, saying Christianity should maintain a special status.
The far-right party distanced themselves from the photos, blaming the councilor for sending “unsuitable” material.
SD spokesperson Martin Kinnunen described the material on the website as "unsuitable" and said that it was a mistake for Ekeroth to have sent it.
The spokesman denied that the incident constitutes a breach of party leader Jimmie Akesson's call for a zero tolerance policy on racism, but said that Ekeroth would no longer be tasked with answering the party's correspondence.
The photos are not the first episode of the far-right party campaign against Muslims.
Earlier this week, the Sweden Democrats revealed plans to distribute an anti-Islam newspaper among its 6,000 members this month.
Opinion polls have shown that the far-right Sweden Democrats (SD) is growing in popularity in the Scandinavian country.
A survey by United Minds pollsters in Aftonbladet newspaper published this month showed that SD has about 11 percent support, double its showing in the 2010 election. Other polls in the last few weeks showed a similar trend.
An October poll by Ipsos, published in Dagens Nyheter newspaper showed the SD at 8.5 percent.
Muslims make up some 200,000 of the country's 9.5 million population, according to semi-official estimates.
But leaders of the Muslim minority put the number at 400,000.– www.shfaqna.com/English
Source: On Islam
SHAFAQNA (Shia International News Association) – The FBI is expected to question a suspect in the deadly attack on the U.S. consulate in Benghazi, Libya, "in the coming days," according to a U.S. government official with direct knowledge of the investigation.
The United States first became aware of Ali Ani al Harzi when he apparently posted details of the attack on social media while it was happening.
At the request of the United States, Turkish officials detained al Harzi when he entered that country after leaving Libya. Turkey then transferred him to Tunisia, where he is being held.
"We are very pleased the Tunisian government is working with American investigators to allow in person access to Ali Ani al Harzi. Under this arrangement the interviews will be under Tunisian supervision and consistent with their sovereignty and meets the needs of our investigative team," U.S. Senators Lindsey Graham and Saxby Chambliss said in a statement Saturday.
"Allowing American investigators in person access will make the interview more meaningful and is a welcome breakthrough in our efforts to find the perpetrators of the Benghazi Consulate attacks," they added.
U.S. Ambassador Christopher Stevens and three other Americans were killed during the September 11 assault.
According to the government official, al Harzi is not the only suspect federal agents are looking at.
"We're continuing to look at any and all leads," the official said, declining to say how many others are under investigation.— www.shafaqna.com/English
SHAFAQNA (Shia International News Association) —A lot of the post-debate buzz about President Obama’s soporific performance (as Jon Stewart made clear, it was not the Denver altitude!) may have been rendered moot by today’s jobs data. But there’s still plenty to discuss.
As you undoubtedly know, despite a blitz of signature drives and online chatter (centered on the Twittter hashtag #climatesilence), there was no mention of global warming in the presidential debate on domestic issues. (Bill Becker, the executive director of the Presidential Climate Action Project, offers some reasoned thoughts on that gap here.)
On Twitter, I argued that this would have been the wrong venue for such a debate question because the most consequential impacts from climate extremes (whatever mix of forces triggered them) and the vast majority of growth in greenhouse-gas emissions are outside United States borders. Global warming, both in its most significant drivers and consequences, remains a global issue.
Of course that doesn’t mean there’s nothing to focus on domestically; there are huge opportunities to spur advances in low-carbon energy technologies and energy conservation that could pass muster with a broad range of Americans. And building resilience to climate extremes — from drought to flooding to destructive storms — is a nonpartisan no brainer.
But in the context of greenhouse-driven climate change, too much of a focus on domestic policies or legislation can obscure bigger realities:
In Australia, for example, a domestic carbon price has been set but carbon exports (Australian coal flowing to Asia) aren’t counted.
Consider this Financial Times headline: “U.S. coal exports to Europe soar.” While campaigners have focused on stopping coal export projects in the Pacific Northwest targeting Chinese demand, there’s a boom in American coal exports to Europe (hey, wasn’t Europe a leading supporter of the Kyoto Protocol?).
A driving force for coal in Europe is the combination of low prices for carbon permits and resistance to expanded natural gas drilling. The result? While the United States is shutting down old coal-fired power plants and not building new ones, Europe — also because of the commitment in Germany to get out of nuclear power — is moving back to coal.
There are two more presidential debates addressing both foreign and domestic issues. What would you ask, if there’s a chance for a question related to climate and energy?
One question from me would be:
While persistent and deep uncertainty surrounds the most important potential impacts from and responses to greenhouse-driven global warming (see David Roberts, Michael Levi and this list of reviewed research for more), the long-term picture of a profoundly changed Earth is clear. What do you see as the best mix of achievable policies to limit environmental and economic regrets?— www.shafaqna.com/English
Source: NY Times