28 Desember, 2008

Of death and destruction: Tsunami recalled

Thousands of Aceh residents held communal prayers in places of worship across the province on Friday as they honored the victims of the devastating 2004 tsunami that claimed hundreds of thousands of lives.

In Banda Aceh, prayers were held at Mesjid Raya Baiturrahman mosque.

In Meulaboh, West Aceh, a ceremony to mark the fourth anniversary of the Indian Ocean tsunami was held at Ujung Karang Beach. The picture (right) shows women praying at a wrecked house on which a boat was left after the tsunami in Lampulo village in Banda Aceh.

Moments after the ceremony, hundreds of students and tsunami survivors, yet to receive housing aid, took part in a rally in front of the West Aceh Legislative Council.

Carrying banners, they demanded the government build them the houses they were promised, saying they were still living in temporary shelters.

They also demanded the Rehabilitation and Reconstruction Agency for Aceh and Nias' (BRR) verification team review thoroughly the list of recipients of new homes and take back homes from those who had received more than one.

"We urge donor countries to audit the BRR's performance and seek its accountability," said protest coordinator Edi Candra.

He also called on the authorities to investigate possible corruption within the BRR and local administrations.(jktpst)

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26 Desember, 2008

Rafael: Fergie is a lovely man

TO some, Alex Ferguson is the godfather of English football: Powerful, successful and often ruthless.

But to his players, he remains more of a father figure: Kind, caring and encouraging — no matter who you are.

Just ask Rafael da Silva. The Brazilian right-back has broken into Manchester United’s first team this season to great effect and is set to face Stoke today.

He played in the weekend’s World Club Cup final triumph over Ecuador’s LDU Quito and is hungry for more success.

But the teenager admitted he would never have done that without the paternal care of the man who everyone at United calls “gaffer”.

At 19 and far from home, Rafael and his left-back brother Fabio have been able to look at the Old Trafford chief as more than just their boss.

Rafael said: “Sir Alex Ferguson is like a father for me. Off the pitch, he is a great and lovely man.

“He helps me out a lot in Manchester. He knows perfectly how to deal with youngsters and when to bring them to the first team. He doesn’t talk much but when he talks, he says only right things.

“He knows when he needs to be supportive and explain ‘look, you can’t do that now’.

“And he knows how to be really tough when the team is not playing well.”

But the boss is not the only help the young hopeful has had since signing for United from Brazilian side Fluminense two years ago.

Portuguese star Cristiano Ronaldo speaks the same language and has been a great help and inspiration.

Rafael revealed: “I will never forget the first training session with Cristiano Ronaldo. I think it was my third trip to Manchester. I was 16 and we were going to play a game in Belgium. I scored in that game.

“Ronaldo is a sensational person. Very humble and he jokes with us all the time and is nothing like his public superstar image.”

Rafael has burst on to the scene in the absence of the injured Gary Neville.

He even scored his first goal for the Premier League champions in their 2-1 defeat by Arsenal at the Emirates last month.


And if he and Fabio progress the way Ferguson expects, they will become the first brothers to play for United since the Gary and Phil Neville partnership was broken by the latter’s move to Everton in 2005.

It is an ambition which both lads share and one which they are trying to help each other to achieve.

Rafael said: “As my brother and I play full-back, one knows when the other is not doing the right thing.

“We are very demanding towards each other.

“Yes, one day our paths might be separated. But on the other hand, maybe one day we can play together for Brazil as well as for United. It is my dream to be in the Brazil national team.”

English football’s boast of being the best in the world is supported by Rafael.

Even though one part of life in England the young Brazilians do not enjoy is the nightlife — something which no doubt pleases Fergie!

Rafael said: “English football is the best right now.

“It was easy to adapt, because I’ve always enjoyed physical football. I am fast, I like to run and I like to pass the ball quickly. In life we need objectives and I want to be a starter in this team.

“You can't be worried about who is playing, history or whatever. I just want to play ... always.

“A player’s career ends early but, more recently, it has been starting earlier and earlier.

“I am so young and have accomplished lots of dreams already.

“I don’t like losing. Absolutely nothing. In life, I enter every competition, be it a video game or a football match, to win.

“Off the pitch, my brother and I are used to staying at home. And to be honest, for anyone who likes going out, Manchester must be horrible.

“But that’s fine. We like to stay home!”

‘Father’ Fergie must be so proud.(thesun)

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23 Desember, 2008

Bare-ack Obama

HE’S the world’s most powerful man, dashingly handsome and about to be sworn in as America’s first black President.

And if any blokes out there weren’t already feeling inferior . . . yes, Barack Obama also has a V spot.

The new US Commander-in-Chief — or maybe Commander in Briefs — couldn’t resist whipping off his T-shirt and showing off the taught lines of abdominal muscle while on holiday in Hawaii with wife Michelle and their girls.

His buff chest and toned tum belie his 47 years and show he’s got more in common with George Clooney than George Bush.

It also seems he visits the same chest-waxing salon as Chelsea’s Frank Lampard.

There is just a crumb of comfort for us ordinary men — at least we can nip to the boozer for a quick pint without a cavalcade of TWENTY police motorcycles roaring after us.

For while Barack found time to chill out and play a round of golf with his aides, his twitchy security servicemen couldn’t afford to be so relaxed.

They have been watching his every move in case anyone should try to have a pop at the President-elect.

The squad bikes lined the front of the compound where the Obamas are staying and secret servicemen prowled the perimeter with headsets.

Super-fit Barack leaves all other political heavyweights looking just that — chubby and out of shape.(sun)

*Uneasy riders ... Barack's twitchy security team included 20 guards on motorbikes

*Hot stuff ... Obama with beach towel and, right, playing golf

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22 Desember, 2008

Military, police stage national counterterrorism drills

Security forces stormed airports, glitzy hotels, passenger ships and the Indonesia Stock Exchange on Sunday during a massive national counterterrorism exercise.

The drill, the biggest and final in a series of joint exercises begun Friday, involved nearly 7,000 military and police personnel and emergency response workers -- almost all dressed head to toe in black.

Sunday's drill was held in six areas across the country -- Jakarta, Denpasar, Semarang, Yogyakarta, Surabaya and the Strait of Malacca -- and involved simulated clashes with gunmen, attacks, hostage-takings and rescues.

The exercise came on the eve of Christmas, when churches become the rare target of assaults, and New Year celebrations.

President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono recently ordered the police and military to organize drills to demonstrate preparedness in the wake of last month's deadly attacks on Mumbai in India.

Heavily armed anti-terrorism police swarmed a five-star hotel in Jakarta where masked gunmen carried out a mock attack similar to those in Mumbai in which 172 people were killed.

A military helicopter hovered over the Borobudur Hotel as police slid down a rope to the roof before blasting through windows to rescue screaming hostages.

In another scene at a local airport, mock terrorists seized an airplane carrying the president, killing the pilot and dumping the body onto the tarmac. After a 90-minute standoff, security forces overpowered the militants, who were demanding a ransom.

Similar drills were held in Bali, where terrorist bombings in 2002 and 2005 killed more than 200 people, many of them foreign tourists.

Security forces also stormed a passenger ship in the Strait of Malacca, one of the world's busiest shipping lanes, in a bid to free hundreds of people seized in another mock raid.

In Semarang, Central Java, seven mock terrorists occupied a state power plant (PLN) building and took employees hostage, threatening to bomb the office should authorities reject their demand for the release of their accomplices. After negotiations reached a deadlock, anti-terrorism squads stormed the building, killing five terrorists and capturing two others. In this simulated attack, one hostage was killed.

A mock hostage rescue was among similar drills at three locations in Surabaya -- Juanda Airport, the Sheraton Hotel and the Shangri-La Hotel.

"The important thing we have to underline in this joint exercise is the coordination and cooperation between the police and the military," chief security minister Widodo Adisucipto said. "We will evaluate it to see what has to be improved."

The military said security forces took significant lessons from the recent terrorism attacks in Mumbai and would try their best to prevent any similar incidents in Indonesia.

It said the exercises also aimed to warn terrorists against targeting Indonesian cities and other locations, saying armed forces would be ready to take them on.

Indonesia was hit by a string of deadly suicide bombings targeting Westerners in the wake of the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks on the United States.

However, experts say the risk of more large-scale attacks has diminished with the arrest of hundreds of suspects.(jktpst)

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21 Desember, 2008

AC Milan unveil Beckham

DAVID BECKHAM has admitted it will be "tough" to leave AC Milan - after the Italian giants insisted he could stay as long as he wants.

The ex-England skipper was unveiled to the world's media - watched by wife Victoria - after joining on loan from LA Galaxy until March 9.

AC vice-president Adriano Galliani claimed: "The doors will be open for all the periods he wants to come back and maybe who knows even remain in Milan.”

Becks uttered a few words in Italian - and then claimed it was a "dream" to join Milan after Three Lions boss Fabio Capello urged him to find a top club.

The former Manchester United midfielder, 33, said: “You have to excuse my Italian. I’m still learning.

"Buona sera, thanks from my heart, it’s an honour. I love Italy and I’m very happy to be here.

"I’m very happy to be here it’s a great honour. I’ve been very lucky to play for some of the biggest clubs in the world.

"I’m very honoured with this chance and I’m going to enjoy myself.

"It’s going to be great fun and I hope to give everything like I’ve always done in my career.

"Thank you. Grazie mille.”

Beckham, who will wear Milan's No 32, admitted that a loan move was the only way to save his international career because of Major League Soccer's lengthy close-season break .

He added: "I need to keep myself fit and keep playing during the season. With five months off, I can’t do that.

"I was grateful to be given this opportunity. I wouldn’t take it if I didn’t think I could help the team and club. That’s what I came here to do.

"It’s not about anything else than the football."

Becks admitted Capello's views were the deciding factor.

He said: “I have to be playing and well and be fit.

"It’s great he’s given me a chance with England. It looked in doubt quite a few times.

Fabio was the person that I respect greatly in the game.

"When I decided to go on loan I asked his advice.

“I said I wanted to play in Italy and Milan but he said the best thing for you is to play football at the highest level wherever that is, England or Spain.


"If a player is not at the top level, to play at international level is impossible.

"I’ve done it for a few months but what is great about Capello is, wherever you're playing, if you’re playing well he’ll give you a chance to play."

Becks added: "Everybody knows how much it means to me playing for my country. Whether it’s five or 10 minutes I’ll always be there for my country."

"I’ve got 107 caps when I didn’t think I would get 96. I hope it continues and I’m going to do everything to make it continue."

But the ex-Real Madrid ace played down Milan's open-door message.
Becks said: "I’m a Galaxy player and will go back there.
"I will be playing as well as I can to keep being selected and that’s all I can do.
"It will be tough to leave the club, I’ve left two of the biggest clubs in the world now. But I’m going to enjoy being here."

The 150 journalists who packed in to hear Beckham outnumbered fans waiting outside in the freezing cold by five to one.
But Galliani hopes Becks will soon become an idol.

He said: “After a flirting period that lasted since the summer of 2007 we finally got David." (thsun)

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19 Desember, 2008



Richard Cocciante - Just For You

I can't stay now and just wait now, my hands then go so impatient
many things I've got to do now for the first ray of the morning.
Though she play in peaceful chamber, sleep to me just doesn't come
when she wake I have to tell her everything I have to say.
And the night so dark inside me makes me finaly understand
where the love that she has given me, she can light the sky forever.
It's the way she give so freely, it's the way she takes my hands,
I just ask the sun shine brightly got to see her smile again.
Then I sing a song I've writen and I'll make the whole world listen

in the silence just for you, like no one has ever heard.
And I wake up all the lovers and I give them back for hours
and we'll do the things we wanted the way that lovers do.
And we'll run into the street and we'll start to dance like crazy
cos she want only to feel joy in the love she gives and needs.
And we'll paint the street and building, rainbow color everyone
those she wants, colors to sing, and we'll paint full fill with flowers,
make the street alive with spring, make a place where lovers go, fly away like lovers do.
Then we'll fly into the sky and we'll look into the stars
and our stars return the hole world,
the love we have, we are, the love we share is sweet
the love we know is real, that love is not to dream but last, we know that alone
Because you love and my begin without dreaming all begin,
and the love that you have give return to us to win
cos your love for me is not begining and the end your love
for me, forever, you love for me forever...

Download File

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Museum shows how Jakarta started

The Maritime Museum's exhibition "Jakarta: Built by sea trade and ports" showcases hundreds of years of trading activity at the port that started the city's history.

The organizer hoped the exhibition would draw the government's attention to the site's historical value.

"Jakarta started with the presence of Sunda Kelapa Port, where the traders stopped. Then the city got bigger until today," said Ida Subaedah, head of the administration office at the 9,700-square-meter museum, Thursday.

"The museum, the old spice warehouse, was an integral part of the port and its history should not be neglected."

For the event, there are displays in two rooms providing visitors with evidence of trading. Posters containing the letters of the Ottoman Empire rulers in Turkey show spice relations as early as 1567.

One of the letters tells how the empire took some native plant seeds from the Botanical Gardens in Batavia (the old name for Jakarta) to Turkey.

Replicas of ships from Greece, the Netherlands, Germany and Sweden are on show, along with replica Indonesian vessels.

The exhibition will also hold a replica-ship making competition Saturday, with around 200 secondary school students participating. The Swedish Embassy have provided a video presentation about merchant ship Gothenburg.

Although it will draw a crowd, Ida said it was more important to reach out to the government and trade companies.

"We hope this event will impact decision makers to pay more attention to revitalization of the area," she said.

She said the museum had proposed a major redevelopment plan, with the help of a private company. The plan is under the scrutiny of the City Planning office.

"There are a lot of things we can do if there is cross-office cooperation, including cultural tourism, shopping tourism and food tourism. We can have a joint tour with the Luar Batang mosque or Sunda Kelapa Port," she said.

The Jakarta administration will sign a memorandum of understanding with the transportation department early next year to allow the start of cooperation with the port.

Ida said the museum also hoped the event would increase interest among shipping companies and members of the public who had maritime collections to donate or lend their collections to the museum.

"We have a limited budget to acquire new items so we hope the public can share their collection with us," she said.

Volunteers are also welcome to help out the 10 members of the museum, as interpreters or tour guides. As a start, the museum plans to train the boy scouts to be tour guides.

The exhibition ends Dec. 24. Entrance cost to the museum, located on Jl. Pasar Ikan, is Rp 2,000 (17 US cents) for adults, Rp 1,500 for students and Rp 600 for children.(jktpst)

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