Hi from Philadelphia, PA.
“Blasphemous bras, heretical heels, yoga and me,” a funny opinion piece by Julia Suryakusuma for The Jakarta Post (Dec. 3, 2008) on a not-funny subject:
Yesterday morning I woke up early as usual and got ready for my early morning meditational yoga. It’s something I’ve been doing since 1981, clearing my mind and reinvigorating myself for the day ahead. It’s like getting your cell phone recharged, as simple as that.
But then I remembered reading that the Indonesian Ulema Council (MUI) is thinking of issuing a fatwa declaring yoga haram (forbidden), inspired by the Malaysian National Fatwa Council which has declared yoga haram because it “goes against the teachings of Islam”. Well, Malaysia is our sister country and they’ve done us the honor of imitating so many Indonesian things — batik, songs, language, even food! It’s understandable we should reciprocate.
To distract us from all the doom and gloom, check out Twinkle, twinkle little star (Desi style). This is funny only if you are a desi.; furriners will not get the joke. (Thanks to Prakash Advani for the link.)
But now back to the terror attack on Mumbai. WSJ published a very well written piece on Dec 1st which concisely reports the sequence of events as they were known then.
Pieced together from interviews with dozens of witnesses and officials, this account of the three days of the battle for Mumbai shows just how a small but ruthless group of skilled militants, attacking multiple targets in quick succession, managed to bring one of the world’s largest cities to its knees. The human toll — currently at 174 fatalities, including nine terrorists — was exacerbated by the Indian authorities’ lack of preparedness for such a major attack. But the chain of events also points to just how vulnerable any major city can be to this type of urban warfare.
It is worth reading, and reading soon before it disappears behind a subscription wall.
Here are pictures from The Big Picture on “Mumbai after the smoke has cleared.”