Thursday, January 31, 2008

My heart will go on

I was reading through the most prestigious medical journal, the New England Journal of Medicine, to see what's new in the world of medicine.

I came across this study, "Cardiovascular Events during World Cup Soccer"

This well-designed study showed that the incidence of heart attacks increased during the 2006 World Cup and was highest during the most competitive games that Germany (host country) participated in.

That spike numbered 5 is inreference to Germany's game against Argentina that ended up in penalty shoot-outs, and you can tell the incidence of heart problems (on the Y-axis) being very high that day.
I bet you I had an abnormal EKG during the entire 120 minutes of that game.

Man, medicine and football combined, that is orgasmic.

Monday, January 28, 2008

George vs. George and a World Without Islam

I was reading an article in Foreign Policy magazine titled "A World Without Islam". Graham Fuller, who used to work for the CIA, describes how the Middle East would have turned out to be if Islam have never existed, if no Prophet Muhammad was born, if Quran have not been there, and if more than one billion people who are Muslims now would have been followers of other religions.

Fuller does a good job in trying to figure out how history would have been shaped. After a few pages of interesting and thought-provocative read, he comes up with a conclusion: the world would have witnessed, more or less, the same conflicts that are present this day. Middle Easterns, whether Muslims or not, would have resisted the crusades and the invasions by the Western civilisation. I will not write in details how he reached this conclusion, but he gave plenty of examples of how many conflicts this day could have occured, and might have even been worse even if Islam was not present. He described how most major tragedies were not caused by Muslims.

Yesterday George Habash died. I may not agree with all what he have done in his life, but I'm pretty sure a time will come when I will miss him. Arabs will miss him, Palestinians will miss him. He dedicated his life to fighting the Israeli occupation and resisting the injustice that have encouraged by the West. Another George is the biggest supporter of this kind of injustice. He lead a war that killed more than 100,000 people and yet kneels on his knees every Sunday and claims Jesus tells him what to do.

I hope we can reach a moment of maturity where we realize that it's not your religion that makes you good or evil. I really hope people will start believing in this fact just like they believe in God. Religion is a powerful tool that can make anything you do or say, whether "good" or "evil", more powerful.
I hope you'll believe.

Monday, January 21, 2008

It's happening again

Doctors in Gaza decided to stop doing surgeries for their patients, because the electricity generated by the main hospital's generator is so scant that it can only run the ventilator machines in intensive care units.

These generators do not last forever, and in less than 24 hours they will shut down.

Another crime committed by Isarel, the country that attacks ambulances, bombs schools and destroys houses on its inhabitants without a warning.

Israel was founded by offending the right of others, killing the innocent, and with blood on its hands. It would be naive to believe that it would behave differently in order to defend itself.

Sunday, January 20, 2008

الأردن.... يلعن أبوك إذا حبيته ويلعن أبوك إذا ما حبيته

محبة الأردن ظاهرة تستحق الدراسة. أحياناً بتهيأيلي أنو في منافسة على الوطنية وهاي مش مشكلة فالانتماء للوطن أمر مطلوب لكن يبدو أن الانتماء للأردن أصبح يقاس بمعايير بحطها ناس ما في وراهم شغلة إلا الصراخ ليلا نهاراً أنهم للوطن ومن الوطن.
أحد أهم المعايير المستخدمة حالياً هو الأصل فإن كنت من أصل فلسطيني فمقياس وطنيتك ينحدر بشدة حتى لو عبرت عكس ذلك، أما لهجتك المستعملة فتلعب دوراً إضافياً فكلما اشتدت حدة لهجتك وعبرت عن بعض الغضب في أي موضوع يطرح فمقياس وطنيتك يزداد، أما إذا تجرأت وقلت أن النظام العشائري نظام رجعي عندها ستدخل في خانة المغضوب عليهم.
قد نكون البلد الوحيد في العالم الذي يخصص لجاناً ويقيم حملات وطنية يصرف فيها أموال الشعب من أجل إقناع هذا الشعب نفسه أن يحب الوطن. طيب يا أخي وحياة الله إني بحب الأردن وحتى في أميركا بدافع عن سمعته وإذا طلعلنا واحد أردني فظيحة باميركا بحكيلهم هادا مش أردني بس ما بدي مصاري الشعب تنصرف لتعبي جيوب شركات الاعلانات أو لتنصرف معاشات لمجموعة من نواب معظمهم فاسد نسي أهله ولم يوصله للقبة إلا العشائرية والقبلية
بعض الفلسفجية أيضاً يعتقدون أن تأييد الحكومة ينبع من الوطنية، شوف أنا بصراحة مش محلل سياسي لكن بقدر أقلك بصراحة إنك إذا كنت فعلا حريص عالاردن ففي كثير حكومات كان لازم تعارضها
مجموعة الفلسفجية أيضاً استنتجت أن مقياس وطنيتك يعتمد على مقدار حبك للنادي الفيصلي وبغضك للوحدات، وكأن الوحدات يمثل عدواً استراتيجياً لمصلحة الوطن
باتر وردم نبه لظاهرة جديدة نسبياً ربما لم ينتبه لها الكثيرون وهي أن الاجيال الجديدة من الاردنيين الشراكس بدأوا ينعزلون عن الحياة السياسية والاجتماعية في الاردن وازدادوا انغلاقاً على أنفسهم وما ألاحظه أنه ليس وحدهم الشركس الذين رغم حبهم وانتمائهم للأردن الذي لم يعيشوا في وطن غيره لكن شريحة كبيرة من الأردنيين بدأت تعزل بأنفسها عن شعارات تبدو وطنية في الظاهر لكنها معبأة بالحقد والعنصرية لدرجة كبيرة لم نعتد عليها في السابق

Wednesday, January 16, 2008

The Silent Weapon

Pictures from the oil crisis in 1973

"I waited for five and a half hours. FIVE and a HALF f**-ing hours, then they told me I can only have 3 gallons!"

Bob, the car salesman, looked pretty tense. He wasn't talking about the lack of oil in a 3rd world country, he was talking about the US 35 years ago during the oil crisis. "They didn't have enough for everyone!". Even after all this time, he had a tone of disbelief in his voice.

In 1973 Arab countries decided to stop selling oil to the US and Western Europe as a protest for their support of Israel. The price of oil doubled, and the economy of the strongest country in the world was in jeopardy. For some rare moment in history, Arabs used non-violence as a way to show that they are still in the game. The oil crisis was over in 1974, and since then the American and European support for Israel has been unapologetically enormous.

There were Republican primary elections in Michigan today. It's the state with the highest number of Arab Americans in the US. Nobody on news channels mentioned us, except for a 5-minute report on CNN Monday afternoon. The time that CNN allocated for Britney Spears' underwear was at least 100 times more than the time spent casting light on the opinions of Arab Americans in the coming elections (I'm dead serious). Only one candidate, a democrat called Dennis Kucinich, approached Arab Americans last year. He didn't even mention he would support them; he just recognized their existence.
Every time Barack Obama is asked whether or not he's Muslim he denies this "accusation" as if he would automatically be considered a terrorism supporter. Analysts believe that because 8% of Americans think he's Muslim his chances of winning the nominations are seriously hurt.
Meanwhile, any presidential candidate like Kucinich can kiss his hopes good-bye if he did not show a blind support for Israel and its right to exist, and its right to "defend itself" whatever that means. For a fact, the number of American Jews is not larger, and might as well be less than that of Arab Americans.
I don't want Arabs to cut oil again from any country, but I want them to be able to. I want them to have the option. Nobody died from oil crisis in 1973, but huge numbers of innocent Palestinians have died because of the US and European support of Israel.
We don't need lunatics to run planes into buildings and terrorize people. We can have the most successful resistance without shooting a bullet. We can do it the very calm way, the same way others are using to deny us the right to our own existence.

Sunday, January 13, 2008

Popular Songs and Stories and More

Every song was inspired by a person, a story or an event.
Here are some songs that I found were somewhat different. Whatever was the reason for the birth of these songs was someone or something quite interesting, unusual, or tragic!

1- American Pie.
Buddy Holly, Ritchie Valens, and J. P. Richardson were pioneers in rock and roll in the 1950s. They were flying together in a tour and their plane crashed, killing all three men. Don McLean called February 3rd, 1959 "The Day the Music Died" and 12 years later came up with "American Pie"

But February made me shiver
With every paper I’d deliver
Bad news on the doorstep
I couldn’t take one more step....

2- The Way.
Real story: An elderly couple decided to leave everything behind them and travel together like crazy teenagers. They have disappeared,lost touch with the world, and none of their friends or family could find them. Fastball made a song out of it, and guess what? It was a number ONE hit in 1998.

They made up their minds
And they started packing
They left before the sun came up that day
An exit to eternal summer slacking
But where were they going
Without ever knowing the way?

3- Tears in Heaven.
Eric Clapton was a rock singer. In 1991, his 4-year old son fell down from the 53rd floor of a building in New York and died. Eric was shocked by the incident but was able to make a song out of it: Tears in Heaven. A decade later he decided to stop playing the song.

Would you know my name
If I saw you in heaven
Will it be the same
If I saw you in heaven
I must be strong, and carry on
Cause I know I don't belong

Here in Heaven

4- Hey There Delilah

A guy meets a girl who happens to be a runner, and asks her out, she was already in a relationship so she turned him down. He made up a song to express how much he loved her. Watch the Olympic Games this summer, you might see Delilah DiCrescenzo running in the 800-meter competitions. A love song not inspired by a love story.

5- Billie Jean

In the early 1980s, a woman claimed that Michael Jackson was the father of her child, and her husband. Her name was Billie Jean. She called herself "Billie Jean Jackson". Investigations showed that she was mentally disturbed and lying, but Jackson made one of the most successful songs in modern music history out of this story, and named it "Billi Jean" in a honor of the crazy woman.

Billie Jean is not my lover

She's just a girl who claims that I am the one

But the kid is not my son

She says I am the one, but the kid is not my son

6- How to Save a Life

This young man was working as a mentor for troubled teenagers. One of them had a behavioral problem that could not be solved by his family members and therapists. This inspired the young man from the Fray to come up with "How To Save a Life"

Step one you say we need to talk

He walks you say sit down it's just a talk

He smiles politely back at you

You stare politely right on through

Some sort of window to your right

As he goes left and you stay right

Between the lines of fear and blame

And you begin to wonder why you came......


Hope you liked it,

Friday, January 11, 2008


Obama over Edwards, Edwards over Mccain, Mccain over Ron Paul, Paul over Hillary, Hillary over Huckabee, Huckabee over Thomspson, Thompson over the devil, the devil over Guiliani.

In other words.... The black dude over the Southern meterosexual, over the demented Arizonan, over the delerious gynecologist, over the bitch, over the self-proclaimed son of God, over the cold failing actor, over Satan, over the cross-dresser son of a bitch.
I hope you enjoyed reading my political analysis.

Sunday, January 06, 2008

The Scream of Silence

This young guy comes to the emergency room.
Problem: a small mass on his butt.

The emergency room doctor feels like there's a big infection and decides to keep him in the hospital. The young patient gets a surgery for his back, and a huge 30-cm cancer is found stuck to his muscles and bones.
Further tests show that this is an aggressive cancer that has spread to his liver and lungs as well.

Tom has been in the hospital for 3 months now, and had a major surgery to remove the tumor in hope of prolonging his life a few more months. He now has a very large scar on his buttocks and thighs. He hasn't walked or even sat in his bed in three months.

He is 36, but now looks double his age.

I have seen many depressed people. I've met some people who tried to kill themselves because of depression. I had a patient who once tried to slash his wrists inside the hospital. But I've never met a person with this kind of depression that this guy has.

Tom stopped talking. He barely says anything now. His brain, vocal cords, mouth and tongue are (still) working, but he's not talking. I asked him how was his day going, did he have any pain, did he feel like crap, and he kept silent.

I've never seen anyone so depressed, so defeated, and so broken like him.

Eventually, we told him there was no chance for him to be cured, and we'd prefer him to receive comfort care at home where he can be pain-free and more comfortable. He said a few words, "I don't want to". He wanted to stay in the hospital and live the illusion that one day he might get better, but the end is very close and we all know it. I know that he'll die in pain, and that he'll die silent, very very silent.

Silence was his language. It was his voice and his way of communication. It could have been the source of his strength or the expression of his defeat, or maybe both. I would never know, and I would never ask him because he'd answer me with a long pause that will make me ashamed of myself.
I've just learned that silence can be the most powerful scream.

Friday, January 04, 2008

Football in 2007

Didn't have time to post it in 2007, so here it is.
MOMNETS of 2007

Best Team:

They challenged everything including themselves and, against all expectations, won Asia's Cup. The victory was big, big, big.
Here's Iraq's winning goal against KSA in the final:

Second comes AC Milan, who won the Champions League and FIFA's Club World Cup. They're performing quite horribly in the Serie A now.

Best Goal:
Are you kidding me?? It's Lionel Messi's against Getafe. I don't think I'll be around at the end of the century but I'm sure someone will pickup this goal and say "this should be the goal of the century"


Worst Fight:
The Inter-Valencia fight in Champions League. Very uncivilized. Also Burdisso's nose was broken.


Worst Transfer Deal:

David Beckham's transfer to LA Galaxy for 250 million dollars. He was injured throughout most of the season.


Saddest moment: The shocking deaths of Antonio Puerta (Spain),23, and Phil O'Donnell (Scotland), 35, on the pitch while they were playing for their teams.

Shocker of the year:
England failing to qualify for 2008 European Championship

Here's the final whistle from their last game at home against Croatia 2-3.


Tuesday, January 01, 2008


People say "hope you'll have a great wonderful new year"

I'd like to wish everyone a satisfactory new year,

an acceptable new year, without any mega-disasters