Sunday, June 26, 2011

We are trying to collectively seek answers......!

Public Convention
Desh Bachao – Desh Banao
June 27th, Monday / Constitution Club, Rafi Marg, New Delhi / 2 – 7 pm
Forbesganj, Bihar, Six dead; Bhatta Parsaul, Uttar Pradesh Four dead; Dhanbad, Jharkhand, Four dead; Jaitapur, Maharashtra, One dead; Kakkarapalli, Andhra Pradesh, Two dead; Sompeta, Andhra Pradesh, Two dead; Narayanpatna, Orissa, Two dead; Mudigonda, Andhra Pradesh, Eight dead; Nandigram, West Bengal, Eleven dead; Kalinganagar, Orissa, Twelve dead and the list goes on. These farmers, adivasis, dalits and working class of Bharat have sacrificed their life on the altar of development, while trying to defend the piece of mother earth to which they belong and eek their livelihood.
Even as we invite you to join us in this endeavour, communities across the country are struggling in Jagatsinghpur, Orissa against POSCO; Golibar, Mumbai against Shivalik; Raigarh, Chattisgarh against Jindals; Mundra, Gujarat and Chausra, MP against Adani; Kalinganagar Orissa against Tata and thousand other places. The struggle against Reliance, Jindal, Tata, Adani, Jaypee, Mittals, etc. and the collaborating State power is not only to protect their livelihood but central to this is defending the basic tenets of our democracy. The overall struggle is for deepening of democracy in the country – to establish the rule of law, to ensure right to life and livelihood with dignity, to ensure democratic control over natural resources – jal, jangal, jameen and Khaniz (land, water, forest and minerals).
Every year on June 25-26th we remember this period as the darkest period in Indian history for democracy but at the same time we also remember the dream of 'total revolution' – Sampoorn Kranti. The dream remains unfulfilled and our struggles continue to challenge the systemic corruption, oppression and exploitation. We emerge victorius at times and at times feel defeated but never at any time the dream for a just society with dignity, freedom, justice seems unreachable and we continue to struggle. The social and political churning witnessed at this moment in the country is encouraging. In a political context where the questions of working class and poorest of the poor assumes prime importance we would like to invite you to this convention to ponder over some of these questions.
  • Where is our collective struggle heading ? The million mutinies blooming in the country today, what is the significance of it ? Are we winning again ?
  • In the wake of seemingly increasingly oppressive power of State and Corporations, are collective struggles of dalits, adivasis, women, the displaced, workers, farmers etc. in a condition for a long sustained struggle ahead which will shake the inner walls of the capitalism and the establishment ?
  • In this struggle, who will stand with us ? Is the middle class, the intelligentsia willing to participate and stand by the side of the struggle against exploitation, oppression and inequality ? Are they willing to be a part of this process towards developing a planetary vision and secure justice and dignity for everyone ?
  • Can the exploited and the distressed become the spearheads (leaders) of an independent, strong, sharp and people-oriented politics when the elected representatives of today's political set up turn out to be insensitive and devoid of all moral and ethical values ? Can such a leadership create a space for itself in the present set up, can it be a respectable entity in the current set up?
  • Can a national and international structure based on the principles of non-violence, sister-brotherhood, equality, sustainability and justice be born from such a leadership, which will reject imperialism in toto? Depending upon the sovereignty of its people, space and resources can we create a nation which includes plural and diverse nationalities within itself ?
This Public Convention is an attempt to once again allow all of us to join the dots that link our struggles against deeply entrenched structures of oppression and corruption in our society with a view towards total revolution. We are trying to collectively seek answers to these questions. We met on May 8 in Delhi and will meet again in Wardha, Maharashtra on July 3rd to keep the conversations going. We do hope you will be able to join us !
Medha Patkar - NAPM; Swami Agnivesh – Bandhua Mukti Morcha; Ram Dheeraj, Sarv Seva Sangh; Ashok Chaudhary – NFFPFW; Ajit Jha – Lok Rajniti Manch; Gautam Bandopadhyay – Sangharsh; Rakesh Rafiq – Yuva Bharat
For details contact : Madhuresh Kumar, NAPM 9818905316

National Alliance of People’s MovementsNational Office: Room No. 29-30, 1st floor, ‘A’ Wing, Haji Habib Bldg, Naigaon Cross Road, Dadar (E), Mumbai - 400 014;
Ph: 022-24150529

6/6, Jangpura B, Mathura Road, New Delhi 110014
Phone : 011 26241167 / 24354737 Mobile : 09818905316

E-mail: |
Web :

Sergeant Tops Push-up Record

By Army Staff Sgt. Brad Staggs 
Camp Atterbury Public Affairs

BUTLERVILLE, Ind., June 23, 2011 - Have you ever wanted to break a world record? Army Staff Sgt. John Halsey didn't know that he wanted to -- until he discovered that he had something to prove to his student soldiers.
Click photo for screen-resolution image
Army Staff Sgt. John Halsey of the Patriot Academy attempts to break a world record for the most push-ups in one minute while wearing a 40-plus-pound pack at Muscatatuck Urban Training Complex, Ind., June 17, 2011. Halsey broke the record by performing 60 push-ups in 60 seconds. U.S. Army photo by Staff Sgt. Brad Staffs 
Halsey, an assistant platoon sergeant in Bravo Company for the Patriot Academy at Muscatatuck Urban Training Complex, Ind., noticed that the students under his watch were being a bit lethargic on their day off.
"I challenged them to go do something productive, go break a world record," Halsey said. "They laughed about it and told me to go break a world record."
Halsey said he replied, "I will," to the students.
Halsey set his sights on the record for most push-ups in one minute with a 40-pound pack -- a record that was then held by Britain's Paddy Doyle, who'd performed 51 push-ups in one minute with a 40-pound pack on his back Oct. 11, 2010.
Halsey said he felt that he needed to not only break the record, but to beat it decisively to show his soldiers that anything is possible.
The barrel-chested Halsey trained every day for two months.
The rules for breaking a world record are specific and include having witnesses present who aren't affiliated with the attempted record breaker or the organization. Shana Richmond of North Vernon; Connie Rayburn, North Vernon city councilor; and North Vernon's First Lady Joanne Campbell all volunteered to witness the event and act as unbiased judges.
With more than 100 Patriot Academy students present in the old school house gymnasium, a 40-pound kettle bell weight was placed in a three-pound backpack, more than tipping the mandatory weight of 40 pounds as it was officially weighed and documented.
When Halsey was told to go, he was more than ready. By the time 30 seconds had elapsed, the students were out of their seats and pounding the gymnasium floor, cheering louder and louder for Halsey until it was nearly impossible to hear the time keeper over the public address system.
As soon as the members of the crowd, who were counting the number of Halsey's push-ups, shouted "52," everybody started cheering.
But Halsey didn't stop. He wasn't satisfied with simply breaking the record.
Stop was called at 60 seconds and the official final count was 60 push-ups. Halsey had performed 60 push-ups in one minute while wearing a 43-pound backpack -- an average of one push-up every second.
Rayburn was in charge of counting the number of push-ups using a hand counter.
"I was so excited, and I was looking at how much time was left. I knew where I was at on the count and kept thinking, 'This is too cool, but remember to focus on what you're doing,'" she said.
"I knew the previous record was 51," said Richmond, the other official counter. "So the second I hit 51, I was cheering as hard as the soldiers behind me. I can't wait to tell my kids at school. They are going to think it's the greatest thing that's ever happened."
Campbell said she was excited to be present at the breaking of a world record.
"I have never done anything like this before. What an experience," she said. "I'm so proud of him and his motivation. It's awesome."
After his record-breaking performance, Halsey didn't appear any worse for wear.
"I'm just glad it's over with," he said. "My goal behind this was to show the students it can be done. I have a feeling a lot of them will be gunning for this record just because it was me who broke it. I want to watch them do it, because any time they are trying that hard, they are just becoming better soldiers."
It may take as long as six weeks for the Guinness World Record committee to verify Halsey's record, at which point he will be sent a certificate to commemorate the achievement.
But, for Halsey, the true accomplishment is the example he set for his soldiers.

Saturday, June 25, 2011

Doctors-in-Training Learn Basic Combat Skills

By Donna Miles 
American Forces Press Service

WASHINGTON, June 22, 2011 - First-year medical students here at the Uniformed Services University of the Health Sciences rappelled down a 63-foot wall yesterday as part of their preparation for a two-week field training exercise where they will learn some of the basic combat skills required to provide battlefield medicine.
Click photo for screen-resolution image
Army Sgt. 1st Class Ronald Wilson, operations noncommissioned officer for the Uniformed Services University of the Health Science, checks Air Force 2nd Lt. John Richardson's Swiss seat harness as first-year medical students prepare to rappel down a 63-foot wall. DOD photo by Donna Miles 
Operation Kerkesner will kick off in two weeks at Fort Indiantown Gap. Pa., providing many of the students their first basic combat skills training in a field environment, explained Navy Lt. Chris Stede, a physiologist serving as the course director.
For some of the students, particularly the 70 percent of the class without prior military service, it will be their first experiences living and operating in the field, firing a weapon, navigating in an orienteering course and wearing chemical protective gear after a mock attack.
The exercise will run concurrently with Operation Bushmaster, a more advanced exercise that exposes fourth-year students to the challenges of delivering medical care in support of warfighting, peacekeeping and humanitarian-assistance operations.
The first-year students will play the role of patients for Bushmaster, giving them exposure to these challenges and a sense of what it feels like to be a wounded patient in the hands of a military doctor.
But Stede said the FTX and preparations also provide the doctors-in-training a glimpse into how their fellow military members operate and the physical and mental challenges they face. "It helps give them an understanding of the stressors of operating at the tactical level," he said.
Meanwhile, he called the training a confidence builder that helps the students meld as a team and pressed them in ways they may have never experienced.
"For some people, the training today and in the field is the hardest thing they have ever done," he said. "It's taking them away from the comfort of the black and white of academics, and challenging them."
Some of the students admitted to a slight case of the jitters as they prepared to rappel off the university's administration building. They looked on as Army Sgt. 1st Class Ronald Wilson, operations noncommissioned officer for the university, explained how to tie a Swiss seat climbing harness and checked each student to make sure they'd gotten it right.
"I love my job. I love teaching," said Wilson, the rappel master for the exercise. An Army medic, he served three deployments to Iraq and said he understands exactly what the students will bring to the force and fleet. "These are the doctors of tomorrow, the young lieutenants who will be our future doctors and leaders," he said.
Air Force 2nd Lt. John Richardson, one of the prior-service students at the university, said he, too, understands the importance of his calling. He spent two years as a Marine Corps infantryman, then nine years as an Army search-and-rescue pilot. Now he's training to be an Air Force doctor, inspired by the dedication of the military doctors he has known.
Richardson said he can't wait to take his Uniformed Services University education to the field. "I love serving soldiers," he said. "I joined the military and came to USUHS for a reason."
At the university, he's drawing on his military experience as a class platoon leader to help teach his fellow students combat skills.
"Left hand! Break hand! Air assault!" Army 2nd Lt. Vanessa Hannick yelled out as Wilson made a safety check on her Swiss seat. She bounded to the roof of the university's administration building, then took a tentative first step before beginning her 63-foot descent.
As Hannick strived to keep her body in a tight "L" position, her classmates below cheered her on with hoots and hollers.
Navy Ensign Alison Lane said it's this supportive attitude so prevalent at the university that led her to choose it over a civilian medical school. "It's what really sold me when I was interviewing at the school," she said. "It's not all about competition. It's about being part of a team."
Related Articles:
Top Pentagon Doctor Dispenses Leadership Message 

Click photo for screen-resolution image008 Air Force 2nd Lt. John Richardson, a prior-service medical student at the Uniformed Services University of the Health Science, left, helps Army 2nd Lt. Vanessa Hannick adjust her Swiss seat harness during a rappelling exercise. DOD photo by Donna Miles 
Download screen-resolution
Download high-resolution

Thursday, June 23, 2011

Guard Continues Midwest Flood Relief Efforts

By Air Force Tech. Sgt. John Orrell 
National Guard Bureau
ARLINGTON, Va., June 21, 2011 - About 2,000 National Guard members from nine states are continuing relief operations in the wake of the 2011 Midwest floods, which have ravaged thousands of acres and potentially caused billions of dollars in damage, National Guard officials said today.
Click photo for screen-resolution image
Soldiers of the North Dakota National Guard's 816th Engineer Company provide sandbags to raise the height of the levee near Burlington, N.D., June 14, 2011. Because of the heavy rain the state received, the 816th was tasked to raise several low spots on levees throughout their area. U.S. Army photo by Spc. Cassandra Simonton 
Guard members from Arkansas, Iowa, Kansas, Louisiana, Missouri, Nebraska, North Dakota, South Dakota and Wyoming have been working tirelessly, some for about three months, to protect their states and citizens from the devastation of rising rivers.
The Arkansas Army National Guard is providing soldiers to the Joint Operations Center and as well as interagency liaison officers for better command and control.
In Iowa, where the Missouri River has caused the shutdown of much of Interstate 29 in the western part of the state, the National Guard has been evacuating citizens and patrolling levees in multiple counties.
Due to the June 13 rupture of a primary levee on the Iowa-Missouri border Iowa Guard members working with the Army Corps of Engineers on June 15 built a secondary levee to protect the southwest Iowa community of Hamburg from an overflow of the Missouri River.
Kansas Guard members are continuing to patrol threatened levees, monitoring them for potential weakness from the pressure of the rising Missouri River waters.
Guard members from Louisiana are performing levee patrols and area security, providing aviation support and resource transportation for critical areas affected by the flooding.
With seven counties heavily affected by the floods, Missouri National Guard members are providing liaison officers and have been moving non-mission-essential equipment to Forbes Field in Topeka, Kan., in preparation for a potential relocation of Rosecrans Air National Guard Base.
Nebraska Guard members are providing levee monitoring for the city of Omaha and have prepared generators in the event they are needed for critical areas.
North Dakota Guard members are still running 24-hour operations. They are providing quick response forces and ground search and rescue teams to multiple counties throughout the state.
North Dakota Army National Guard UH-60 Black Hawk helicopters with hoist capabilities also are being used to place one-ton sandbags along weakened levees.
In South Dakota, Guard members are providing air assets for sandbagging efforts and personnel transportation. They have deployed a Joint Incident Site Communications Capability team and more than 100 hand-held radios to increase communication throughout the state.
The Wyoming National Guard has activated its emergency operations center while performing flood mitigation in several counties.
The Guard also is in full swing for the annual hurricane season, but will continue its current operations both at home and abroad, the chief of the National Guard Bureau said.
"Your National Guard has been fully engaged in the war fight overseas, and we also stand ready to answer the call domestically when a disaster happens," Air Force Gen. Craig R. McKinley said.
Related Sites:
National Guard Bureau 

Airman Honors Father With Bronze Star

By Air Force Capt. George Tobias 
Air Force Space Command Public Affairs

PETERSON AIR FORCE BASE, Colo., June 21, 2011 - An Air Force Space Command chief master sergeant used the occasion of her retirement ceremony here to take care of one last troop -- her father, who was presented with the Bronze Star Medal he earned four decades ago.
Click photo for screen-resolution image
Army Col. Timothy Coffin, deputy commander of Space and Missile Defense Command and Army Strategic Command, pins the Bronze Star on retired Army Sgt. 1st Class Daniel Porter as his daughter, Air Force Chief Master Sgt. Nancy Geisler, looks on during her retirement ceremony June 13, 2011, at Peterson Air Force Base, Colo. Porter earned the Bronze Star for his service in Vietnam from 1969 to 1970 while serving with the 4th Infantry Division, currently located at Fort Carson, Colo. U.S. Air Force photo by Dennis Howk 

Chief Master Sgt. Nancy Geisler, a contracting superintendent and area manager for the command, recognized her father, retired Army Sgt. 1st Class Daniel Porter at her June 13 retirement ceremony. Geisler coordinated with the Army to present Porter with the medal he earned for service in Vietnam from 1969 to 1970 with the 4th Infantry Division, currently located at Fort Carson, Colorado Springs, Colo.
For Geisler it was important to recognize her father's service.
"My father told me while I was young that he had received a Bronze Star," she said. "So I kept that in the back of my mind, and with my upcoming retirement I wanted to present a shadow box to my father of his Bronze Star and his citation, but he told me that the Army never presented him his Bronze Star."
Geisler then decided that at her retirement ceremony, her father should be presented his Bronze Star medal. While they had the orders that showed Porter earned the medal, no records of the citation could be found.
This prompted the 4th ID to regenerate the citation, allowing Army Col. Timothy Coffin, deputy commander of Space and Missile Defense Command and Army Strategic Command, to present it and the Bronze Star to Porter.
"Now is the time to make history right," Coffin said as he presented the medal.
Service members today enjoy great support from the nation, but "that was not the case back in 1969 and 1970 during the period of time that Sgt. 1st Class Porter was in Vietnam," Coffin said.
"The 4th ID is still today overseas serving in Afghanistan, serving in combat operations," he said. "We have young soldiers today doing the same things that, 41 years later, Sergeant Porter has been recognized for."
Geisler also commented on the disparity of support that today's service members enjoy, as compared to their predecessors who'd served in Vietnam.
"It is very rewarding to me to see that he finally got recognized for his service," Geisler said of her father's award.
Geisler said her father was very pleased when he heard he would be presented his Bronze Star.
"He said he was so proud and told all his friends where he lives that the Army finally did him right," she said.

Tuesday, June 21, 2011

Task Force Wins Hearts 'One Patient at a Time'

By Fred W. Baker III 
American Forces Press Service

DESDUNES, Haiti, June 20, 2011 - As the morning sun stretches into the sky promising with it another afternoon of scorching heat, the locals here busy themselves with their daily routines.
Click photo for screen-resolution image
Canadian Army Capt. (Dr.) Mathieu Carrier, with the Canadian Forces Dental Services, treats a patient during a medical exercise as part of Task Force Bon Voizen in the city of Desdunes, Haiti, June 18, 2011. Task Force Bon Voizen is a U.S. Southern Command-sponsored joint foreign humanitarian exercise under the command of the Louisiana National Guard. Foreign countries supporting the efforts as officially part of the task force included medical staff from Colombia and Canada and engineers from Belize. DOD photo by Fred W. Baker III 
Some are already knee-deep in the wet rice fields that surround the city, getting a head start on the day's work. Others are bathing in the canal that runs alongside the bumpy dirt road. Motorcycles and small trucks packed with passengers buzz past, beeping their horns and dodging puddles. The occasional donkey nibbles on the grassy sides of the road and pigs wallow wherever they can to keep cool.
As a bus full of foreigners makes its way to the city, a crowd of a few thousand already has gathered outside the high cement walls of a local medical clinic.
Many cling to the top of the wall in order to hold their place in line. Most have been there since the early hours of the morning -- waiting. Some have walked for miles to be there when the clinic opens.
As the bus pulls into the city and through the gates, the crowd comes alive, shouting for favor and hoping for early entry. Some try to cut to the front of the line and are met with angry cries and shoving.
Army Capt. David Bourgeois of the Louisiana Army National Guard is hoping for a good day.
"I always like it when we can get there and start letting patients in right away. Sometimes there will be something that happens in the night -- the wind will blow and knock one of the nets down, or we'll have to adjust something," Bourgeois said. "If I can come in the morning and within a few minutes have my doctors set up in their room and have the patients coming in ... that makes it the best day."
Bourgeois is the coordinator for the medical exercises for Task Force Bon Voizen, a Louisiana National Guard-led humanitarian exercise sponsored by U.S. Southern Command. He brings with him a team of military doctors, dentists, nurses, veterinarians and other medical staff from the Unites States, Colombia and Canada. He is on his fourth and final medical exercise rotation for the task force that began in late April.
All of the exercises have been in small communities within the Artibonite department, or province, about 70 miles northwest of Port-au-Prince. The turnout for free medical care is heavy. Health care in this impoverished rural region is scarce for those here who live primarily on what they can grow or fish from the streams.
The Haitian government chose this region for the task force's efforts, chiefly because of the influx of residents after last year's earthquake. Thousands left the devastated Port-au-Prince area, seeking food and shelter and jobs in the surrounding rural areas. Haitian officials would rather improve the infrastructure here than have the displaced return to the already overcrowded inner city that is still struggling to recover.
Since the task force began, its medical crews have treated more than 800 dental patients and nearly 23,000 medical patients. By June 22, when the final medical exercise is finished, they will likely treat nearly 30,000.
Setting up the medical sites and dealing with the heavy demand is not easy, Bourgeois said. He was recruited for the job by the task force commander and has served a tour in Iraq.
"It sounded simple, me not knowing what I was getting into," he said. "I didn't think it would be as complicated as it has been."
Bourgeois has been on the ground here since early April, setting up each site long before the medical staffs show up. He meets with the local clinics to find out their capacity. He talks to community leaders, mayors and pastors. Both the ministers of health and agriculture need to be kept in the loop on the task force's efforts.
Bourgeois has to know all of the local hospital's phone numbers, and which has ambulance service, in the event someone shows up in the line needing critical care. It's happened 10 times already. But each time he called for an ambulance, it was either broken down or unavailable. So, it is up to him to have a backup plan because the patients cannot be transported in task force vehicles.
Bourgeois deals in worst-case scenarios.
Today, he is danger of having to shut the site down only two hours into providing care.
Heavy rains have left huge puddles of mud lining the walls and most of the locals are ankle deep in the mixture of dirt, feces, water and urine.
Inside the complex, pools of standing water are breeding mosquitoes. And the locals are cleaning their muddy feet in them. All of this is dangerously close to the dental tent and other medical services.
An inspector deems the site OK for the day, but the standing water has to go.
Bourgeois contacts the company that drains the sewage from the portable toilets to see if they can also suck out all of the standing water. Sand will serve as a backup to fill in if needed.
A potential crisis is averted, and the staff ends up treating 1,700 patients by the close of the day, a record for the exercise.
It's all in a day's work for the cavalry officer, who said his operational experience works to his advantage.
"I think all of the years of being in the military, being an officer specifically, and all of the operations I've been involved in have helped me really prepare for this mission," Bourgeois said.
During the day, he walks the line outside ensuring everything is under control and searching for anyone who needs to be moved to the front. He looks for the elderly or anyone seriously injured or ill.
Many call his name, the French heritage easily recognizable to them. But few gain early entry.
"If they're walking up to me and I don't see blood coming off of them I just have to tell them no," Bourgeois said. "I know if I give special treatment to some in the lines, it would cause the rest of the line to get rowdy. And I don't want to do that."
Today the first in line is a lady who walked for three miles to get here, leaving her home just after midnight. She wants to see an eye doctor.
Another lady waiting in line said she been here since 1 a.m. She walked here from a nearby town with her baby. She wants to see the doctor for eye and teeth problems. She can't remember the last time she saw a regular doctor, and can only be treated locally if she gets a referral from one of the task force medical staff.
Common medical problems are the norm with most of the people seeking care. Routine medical care is in high demand, and the patients complain mostly of high blood pressure, skin infections, chronic pain, bad teeth and poor eyesight.
Army 1st. Lt. James Wong, a nurse practitioner and Army reservist from Fresno, Calif., has seen a lot of such cases.
In many cases, only 99 cents worth of medication can save their lives, or at least can make their life better, he said.
But the issue, Wong said, is convincing them to continue taking the medicine after the staff leaves and the locals return to their normal routines.
"The hardest part is helping them understand why this is good for them. It's not an easy task, but I think it's worth doing," he said. "There's always a trust issue. I'm here and gone. There's no continuity."
To establish trust with his patients, Wong always introduces himself and shakes their hands.
Even though he is speaking through an interpreter, Wong said his mannerisms communicate more than his words. How he acts, he said, will make or break their experience with the task force.
"If they have a good experience or interaction here, they go back and talk about it. If they have a bad interaction, they go back and talk about it," Wong said. "So, I don't want to miss a chance to say 'We're your friends.'
"Part of our mission here is not to just give them [better] health, but to win their hearts and minds. One patient at a time," he added.
Born in Burma, Wong has a passion for rural health care. He served in the Peace Corps in Papua New Guinea 20 years ago, and has volunteered his services in Sri Lanka following the tsunami there in 2004, and in New Orleans after the devastation of Hurricane Katrina.
Wong said he likes to work with the poor.
"They're the underserved. Somebody has got to stick up for them," he said. "In every country, we're judged by how advanced we are in terms of civilization by how we treat the poor."
Still, Wong was not prepared for the poverty he saw here and the feeling of helplessness when a patient sat down in the chair before him that he could not help.
It was a 14-year-old girl with what Wong believes is a genetic enzyme deficiency. She was wasting away, no fat or muscle on her bones. Her mother didn't really understand as Wong tried to explain that the illness would likely claim the girl's younger sister as well.
That night he returned to his tent and cried, Wong said.
"Every once in a while you will see something you can do nothing about," he said. "I have never cried about a patient in the states. Ever. It's just the helplessness. I was stuck. [There was] nothing I can do for her."
Despite the few cases that are beyond his care, there were hundreds more Wong could help. And one after one they sat in his chair -- boys and girls, small and big, young and elderly.
"Hi, my name is James," he would say. "I'm sorry for your wait."
He patted the kids on the head and asked them how they were doing in school. He reminded them to study hard, brush their teeth and listen to their parents.
Wong would then proceed with a thorough exam, poking and prodding as gently as possible, all the while asking questions about their health, their job, their family.
And his thoroughness often paid off.
One lady came in with only the same general complaints as most of the patients, Wong said. But after removing her hat, he saw that her head was bleeding. She hadn't even mentioned that.
He asked her how long it had been bleeding. Since the day before, she responded.
Wong cleaned and stitched the wound and asked her to return in a few days. The lady did, indeed, return a few days later and the wound and stitches were healing nicely.
"She was so happy and smiling. It was just amazing. To me that's objective evidence that she trusts us now," he said. "That's one heart I can say we've won."
By the end of the day, only a handful of locals were left outside the gates. A final 30 were let in because the staff was ahead of schedule. They are restricted to the hours they can keep the site open, and they have to return to their forward operating base in order to prepare for the next day's operations.
Bourgeois said most locals know when the site is ready to shut down and will leave to return another day. They have yet to leave with many, if any, still waiting.
Still, like today, if Bourgeois can squeeze a few more through the line before quitting time, he will.
"That's what we're here for, to give to the people," he said. "And if we're still capable of giving, I like to keep doing as much as I can."

Click photo for screen-resolution imageArmy 1st Lt. James Wong, a nurse practitioner with Task Force Bon Voizen, treats a boy during a medical exercise in the city of Desdunes, Haiti, June 18, 2011. Task Force Bon Voizen is a U.S. Southern Command-sponsored joint foreign humanitarian exercise under the command of the Louisiana National Guard. That day, medical staff at the site saw more than 1,700 patients, a record during the exercise. DOD photo by Fred W. Baker III 
Download screen-resolution
Download high-resolution

Saturday, June 18, 2011

Soldier Survives Gunshot to Helmet

By Army Spc. James Wilton
Combined Joint Task Force 1 – Afghanistan

BAGRAM, Afghanistan, June 17, 2011 - "There is something I need to tell you" are not the words any mother wants to hear from her son who is deployed to Afghanistan.
Click photo for screen-resolution image
Army Spc. Tom Albers, of Troop C, 1st Squadron, 113th Cavalry Regiment, Task Force Redhorse, stands outside the Troop C command office June 13, 2011, ready for battle, after taking a round of enemy fire to the helmet two weeks prior. U.S. Army photo by Spc. James Wilton 
But this time, Army Spc. Tom Albers, a Troop C, 1st Squadron, 113th Cavalry Regiment, Task Force Redhorse, driver and infantryman from Alton, Iowa, had good news, considering the alternative.
"I am fine and healthy and not hurt, everything is OK -- but," Albers said to his mother over the phone, "I have been shot in the helmet."
"You were wearing the helmet right," his mother responded.
The phone call was made May 28 from Craig Joint Theater Hospital at Bagram Air Field, Afghanistan.
Albers and his team were conducting a patrol earlier that day in Parwan province when the Afghan police officers they were teamed with spotted an individual associated with insurgent forces. While searching a hillside, the team came under fire.
"My head cleared the hill ... I saw a house on my right, and as I was in the middle of saying, 'Hey I got a house over here,' when I heard the first shot," Albers said. "I felt something hit me in the side of the helmet and was knocked to the ground. It felt like someone had hit me in the head with a wooden baseball bat."
The team quickly took cover and responded with fire on the building. Albers was stunned, but after checking himself and realizing he was still alive, he regained his bearings and took up a position to return fire.
"I laid there for what seemed like five minutes, but realized later that it was just a couple of seconds. I thought to myself, 'Am I dying? No, I don't really think so,'" Albers said. "Felt my head, no blood or anything, so I thought, 'OK. What just happened to me?' I was confused but I turned around and started laying down fire from the direction it had come from."
Albers and the joint terminal attack controller were on one side of the building while the rest of the team was 50 to 100 meters away on the other side. They were taking heavy fire so they decided to pull back and join the rest of the team.
"I was just getting plinked at, rounds were hitting in a consistent, natural firing rhythm, but I look up at Albers and his position is just getting obliterated; he was covered in dust," said Air Force Staff Sgt. Jason Roland, the 116th Air Support Operations Squadron joint terminal attack controller from Tacoma, Wash., who was attached to Albers' team that day. "Someone was going full-auto on his position, so I yelled up at him and told him to move."
The group provided suppressive fire so Albers and Roland could pull back and regroup with the rest of team who were taking cover behind a building and wall.
"It really surprised me, from the moment I thought, 'OK, I am fine and there is no blood running down my face,' until after we met up with the lieutenant, I don't really remember anything," Albers said. "I think that is because I wasn't thinking, I was reacting, doing what needed to be done; covering fire, moving back, whatever it was. I think that was all because of our training, muscle memory kicked in. It made me think, 'All that time we spent training wasn't stupid. It wasn't pointless. It is needed and it works.'"
Albers reacted like he was trained to, and he seemed responsive and aware, Roland said. The only part that seemed strange to his fellow team member was a question he kept asking.
"Albers did fine. The only thing that was funny is as we fell back, I realized something is little weird with Albers. He keeps asking about his helmet," Roland said. "It feels like something hit his helmet; he wants me to look at his helmet. I say, 'I don't care about your helmet. I want you to [watch] to the north because if we get attacked they're going to come from the north.'"
The team called in air support and enemy fire subsided enough to assess the situation. One Afghan police officer was injured, so medics were called to attend to him. Albers assisted the medic with the other injured teammate.
"At that time, the medic had time to check on Albers and he realizes that he got shot in the helmet," Roland said. "He passes this on to the lieutenant who decides it is time to pull back."
As they began pulling out, Albers said he finally realized the seriousness of what had happened.
"I was pulling security and just keep thinking to myself, 'I just got shot in the head,' I would hear something and move and again think, 'I just got shot in the head. What just happened?'" Albers said.
The events that day stuck in his mind for days to come, he said, and serve as a reminder to stay vigilant and to enjoy every day, no matter how tough.
Medics evacuated Albers, and after hospital staff gave him a battery of tests, they found him to be perfectly healthy, minus a small burn mark across the top of his head.
The patrol that day was a normal one for any infantryman facing risks that accompany a deployment to a combat zone. Albers knew this, but he wanted to be in the military ever since he could remember.
"According to my parents, I have wanted to join the military since I could talk -- it was either Marines, Air Force, this, that," Albers said.
When he was 17, Albers spoke with a recruiter, who is now a first sergeant in the same squadron, and decided the time was right. Now at age 20, he said he feels the deployment is going well and has enjoyed every part of his three-year military career. He is the only member of his large family currently in the military, but his father and grandfather are both veterans.
"My favorite part is the camaraderie, especially after this incident. Everyone has been very supportive," Albers said. "They are all like my brothers now."
The team watched over him at first, making sure he was doing all right, he said.
"Everyone was cool about it. Everyone was here for me, making sure I was OK and if I had to talk to anybody they were here for me," Albers said. "We joke around about it, now that I they know I am fine, and now that I got the Purple Heart."
Albers' experience a big part of the jokes shared about the team. These simple actions prove to Albers that they care and help him to not take the incident too seriously. His family also has helped to keep him smiling about the incident.
"My nephew, Talon, got on his mom's [social media page] and sent me a message, 'I am glad you're OK, but no more messing around. That was scary, don't be messing around anymore,'" Albers recalled.
The 1st Squadron, 113th Cavalry, will be in Afghanistan for another month or two, and afterward, Albers said he is looking forward to spending time with family and friends and going back to school when he returns.
The shot has not deterred his desire to be in the military, and he plans to reenlist when his current contract ends. Albers plans to stay in the infantry, and has hopes to move up in the ranks to become a squad or platoon sergeant.
The helmet, which will be sent to his house after military officials examine it, will serve as a training tool to teach his soldiers the importance of the proper wear of their protective equipment, or at the very least, to keep their heads down.
Related Sites:
NATO International Security Assistance Force 

Friday, June 17, 2011

U.S.-Pakistan Must Keep Communications Lines Open

By Jim Garamone
American Forces Press Service

WASHINGTON, June 16, 2011 - The U.S.-Pakistan relationship is complicated, but the two countries must keep the lines of communication open, said Defense Secretary Robert M. Gates during his last news conference today.
Click photo for screen-resolution image
Defense Secretary Robert M. Gates calls on a reporter during his final scheduled press briefing at the Pentagon, June 16, 2011. Navy Adm. Mike Mullen, chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, joined Gates, who will retire at the end of the month. DOD photo by R.D. Ward 
Gates and Navy Adm. Mike Mullen, the chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, said the mutual dependence is too strong for either country to end relations with the other.
"It is complicated, but as ... I've said often before, we need each other, and we need each other more than just in the context of Afghanistan," Gates said. "Pakistan is an important player in terms of regional stability and in terms of Central Asia. And so my view is that this is a relationship where we just need to keep working at it."
Mullen said the relationship is still critical, and he will continue to work with Pakistani Army Chief of Staff Gen. Ashfaq Kayani.
"What the Pakistani military's going through right now, obviously is considerable introspection based on recent events," Mullen said. "That makes a lot of sense to me. They've got some questions. I know General Kayani well enough to know (that) what he cares about the most is not himself: What he cares about the most is his institution."
Pakistan is a partner against terrorists, Gates and Mullen said. They pointed out that Pakistan has 140,000 troops along its border with Afghanistan. The Pakistani military has cleaned South Waziristan and the Swat Valley of the Taliban.
The United States ships a majority of its supplies to Afghanistan across Pakistan, and keeping those lines of communication open is also literally and figuratively important.
Finally, both men pointed out that Pakistan is a nuclear country. Maintaining good relations with Pakistan could help ensure nuclear know-how or even weapons don't fall into the hands of terrorists.
Gates responded to a question about Ayman Zawahiri's "promotion" to lead a-Qaida. "I'm not sure it's a position anybody should aspire to, under the circumstances," he said. "I think he will face some challenges. Bin Laden has been the leader of al-Qaida, essentially since its inception. In that particular context, he had a peculiar charisma that I think Zawahiri does not have. I think he was much more operationally engaged than we have the sense Zawahiri has been. I've read that there is some suspicion within al-Qaida of Zawahiri because he's Egyptian."
The al-Qaida announcement, though, highlights the fact that the organization is not going away, its leader still hate America and it remains committed to terror, the secretary said.
Americans are worried about the war in Afghanistan. He said that that with the exception of the first couple of years of World War II, "there has never been a popular war in the United States in our whole history. They've all been controversial."
He said the war weariness rests heavily on all. "The key is how do we complete our mission, as we have largely done in Iraq, in a way that protects American national security interests and the American people and contributes to stability?" Gates said. "I think most people would say we've been largely successful in that respect in Iraq. I think we're on a path to do that in Afghanistan."
The cost of the wars are huge, but it is declining. "The costs of these wars will go down between FY '11 and FY '12 by $40 billion, from $160 (billion dollars) to less than $120 billion," Gates said. "There's every reason to believe that between FY '12 and FY '13 there would be another significant reduction. And, of course, with the Lisbon agreement, the size of our forces left in Afghanistan in December of 2014 would be a small fraction of what they are today."

Click photo for screen-resolution imageDefense Secretary Robert M. Gates calls on a reporter during his final scheduled press briefing at the Pentagon, June 16, 2011. Navy Adm. Mike Mullen, chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, joined Gates, who will retire at the end of the month. DOD photo by R.D. Ward 
Download screen-resolution
Download high-resolution

Thursday, June 16, 2011

His only 'crime' was to report a human rights abuse

Wednesday, June 15, 2011 
Amnesty International Condemns Extradition of Uighur Teacher to China on Politically Motivated 'Terror' Charges
Washington, D.C.: A Uighur schoolteacher is facing politically motivated terror charges in China after he reported a death in custody, Amnesty International said today following his extradition from Kazakhstan. 

The Chinese Foreign Ministry yesterday confirmed that Ershidin Israil is being held on terrorism charges as a "major terror suspect", although the charges were not substantiated. 

"It appears that Ershidin Israil's only 'crime' was to report a human rights abuse. He was living openly before fleeing the country and only appears to have become a 'major terror suspect' after divulging the inside story of torture in Chinese jails to the world," said Sam Zarifi, Asia-Pacific director at Amnesty International. "This makes him a prisoner of conscience, detained for exercising his right to freedom of expression, and the Chinese authorities must release him. Currently, he is at grave risk of torture and an unfair trial." 

Ershidin Israil fled on foot to Kazakhstan from China in September 2009, just days after giving an interview to a foreign journalist about the death in custody of a young Uighur, Shohret Tursun, in the wake of the July 2009 unrest in Urumqi, China. 

After the interview the Chinese authorities issued a warrant for his arrest, along with two other individuals involved in reporting the death in custody. 

The U.N. Refugee Agency (UNHCR) in Kazakhstan granted Israil refugee status in March 2010 and he was due to be resettled in Sweden on April 1, 2010. 

However, he was instead taken into custody by the Kazakh authorities in April 2010 and formally arrested in June 2010. He was in prison until his extradition this year. 

The UNHCR revoked his refugee status on May 3, reportedly under intense pressure from the Chinese and Kazakh authorities. The U.N. Refugee Agency has refused to disclose the grounds for their decision.

Israil was reportedly handed over to the Chinese authorities on May 30.

Chinese nationals are prosecuted and sentenced to long prison terms for providing information deemed sensitive by the Chinese authorities to foreign sources.

Amnesty International is a Nobel Peace Prize-winning grassroots activist organization with more than 3 million supporters, activists and volunteers in more than 150 countries campaigning for human rights worldwide. The organization investigates and exposes abuses, educates and mobilizes the public, and works to protect people wherever justice, freedom, truth and dignity are denied.

# # #

Tuesday, June 14, 2011

Hindu Genocide in Goa Inquisition ???

Tuesday, June 14, 2011 11:18 AM
Vivek arya 

Hindu Genocide in Goa Inquisition
I stood beside him; on the torturing cross
No pain assailed his unterrestrial sense;
And yet he groaned. Indignantly I summed
The massacres and miseries which his name
Had sanctioned in my country, and I cried
"Go! Go!" in mockery.
-- Shelley's The Christ
1541: Francis Xavier landed in Goa - sent there by Ignatius Loyola of Jesuit order under the direction of the King João III of Portugal.

1545: Francis Xavier comes to the following conclusions that Hindus are an "unholy race" that they are "They are liars and cheats to the very backbone.". that"the Indians being black themselves, consider their own color the best" and also that
"they believe that their gods are black. On this account the great majority of their idols are as black as black can be, and moreover are generally so rubbed over with oil as to smell detestably, and seem to be as dirty as they are ugly and horrible to look at."
He writes to Rome to install inquisition in Goa immediately.

1560: Viceroy's building modified to become the palace of inquisition with 200 cells with residence of the first inquisitor, house of secret, house of doctrine, any number of cells, and other special ones: of secret, of penitence; of perpetual confinement; of the tortures etc. Inquisition installed with powers higher than those of viceroys.

Apr-2 1560: Viceroy D Constantine de Braganca orders that all Brahmins should be thrown out of Goa and other areas under Portuguese control.

Feb-7 1575: Governor Antonio Morez Barreto,issues orders that the propeties of those Hindus whose "presence was prejudicial to Christianity" would be confiscated.

1585 : The Third Concilio Provincial adopts a resolution asking the king of Portugal to banish from Goa 'the Brahmins, physicians and other infidels' who the Church finds as an obstacle to convert the 'the heathens' to the 'only true faith'.

Jan-31, 1620: Portuguese government orders that " Hindu, of whatever nationality or status he may be, can or shall perform marriages in this city of Goa, nor in the islands or adjacent territories of His Majesty..."

1625: Governor Francisco Barreto, issues orders that 'bar Hindus from seeking employment' in the Portuguese held Indian territory and Portuguese officials were ordered not to 'use the services of any infidel in matters of his office anyway'

Historian Alfredo DeMello describes the performers of Goan inquisition as
"nefarious, fiendish, lustful, corrupt religious orders which pounced on Goa for the purpose of destroying paganism and introducing the true religion of Christ"

The Goan inquisition is regarded by all contemporary portrayals as the most violent inquisition ever executed by the Portuguese Catholic Church. It lasted from 1560 to 1812 though in Europe it ended by 1774. (briefly restarted in 1778) Given below are some of the eye-witness accounts of this genocidal Holy office:

Eye-witness accounts of Goan inquistion:

"...The inquisition of Goa, distinguished itself on account of the greater rigors than those of the tribunals of the metropolis; thousands of victims died at the stake in flames.
-Joao Felix Pereira(19th century) in Historia de Portugal, 3rd edition, page 235

"..The inquisition, this tribunal of fire, thrown on the surface of the globe for the scourge of humanity, this horrible institution, which will eternally cover with shame its authors, fixed its brutal domicile in the fertile plains of the Hindustan. On seeing the monster everyone fled and disappeared, Moguls, Arabs, Persians, Armenians, and Jews. The Indians even, more tolerant and pacific, were astounded to see the God of Christianism more cruel than that of Mohammed, deserted the territory of the Portuguese..."
-Memoirs of Judges Magalhães and Lousada: (Vol 2,Annaes Marítimos e Coloniais,page 59)

"...The terrors inflicted on pregnant women made them abort....Neither the beauty or decorousness of the flower of youth, nor the old age, so worthy of compassion in a woman, exempted the weaker sex from the brutal ferocity of the supposed defenders of the religion..
..There were days when seven or eight were submitted to torture. These scenes were reserved for the inquisitors after dinner. It was a post-prandial entertainment. Many a time during those acts, the inquisitors compared notes in the appreciation of the beauty of the human form. While the unlucky damsel twisted in the intolerable pains of torture, or fainted in the intensity of the agony, one inquisitor applauded the angelic touches of her face, another the brightness of her eyes, another, the volluptuous contours of her breast, another the shape of her hands. In this conjuncture, men of blood transformed themselves into real artists !!

-Alexandre Herculano Famous writer of 19th century in his Fragment about the Inquisition

Mechanism of Inquisition as recorded by Dellon a French Roman Catholic - 'a very mild account of inquisition':
The cells:
a fetid cell, provided with a hole for relieving himself. But it overflowed, and there were faeces all over, an abominable smell, practically no light, save for slits on the wall, well above the reach of one’s hands.

No honour even in death:
Those who died in the jail were buried inside the building, and as they were going to be judged, the bodies were exhumed, and the bones were kept to be burnt on the next auto da fé.

Condemning the accused:
Seven witnesses were required to condemn a person. But the witnesses were never brought face to face with the hapless accused. The inquisition admitted the testimony of all kinds of people, even of those who were interested in the utter condemnation of the accused. Among the seven witnesses, was included the victim himself, who under torture had admitted the heresies that he had (not) committed.

Three kinds of torture were practiced: 1) the rope or the pulley, 2) water and 3) fire. The torture by rope consisted of the arms being tied backwards and then raised by a pulley, leaving the victim hanging for some time, and then let the victim drop down to half a foot above the floor, then raised again. These continued up-and-down movement dislocated the joints and made the prisoner emit horrible cries of pain. This torture went on for an hour.

The torture by water was as follows: the victim was made to lie across an iron bar, and was forced to imbibe water without stopping. The iron bar broke the vertebrae and caused horrible pains, whereas the water treatment provoked vomits and asphyxia. Thetorture by fire was definitely the worst: the victim was hung above a fire, which warmed the soles of the feet, and the jailers rubbed bacon and other combustible materials on the feet. The feet were burned until the victim confessed. These last two tortures lasted for about an hour, and sometimes more.The house of torments was a subterranean grotto, so that other might not hear the cries of the wretched. Many a time, the victims died under torture; their bodies were interred within the compound, and the bones were exhumed for the auto da fe, and burnt in public.

Showing them mercy by burning at stake: 
By daylight, each convict was ordered to march alongside a godfather, one of the officials assigned to each victim. It was a great honor to be appointed godfather for these ceremonies. The procession was led through the long streets of the city,so that the multitudes could watch the ugly pageant. Finally, covered with shame and confusion, tired of the long march, the condemned reached the church of St. Francis, which was decked with great pomp and circumstance. The altar was covered with black cloth on which stood six silver candleholders. On both sides of the altar there were two kinds of thrones: the right side for the inquisitor and his councilors, and the left side for the viceroy and his court

The convicts and godfathers were seated on benches.
Next, four man-sized statues were brought, accompanied by four men who carried boxes full of bones of the victims who had died by tortures: these statues, wearing the Samarra and representing the dead victims would be tried too. Once the sermon was concluded, two officials went up to the pulpit to read publicly the proceedings of all the guilty, and to declare the sentences upon them.

The condemned to be burnt at the stake were delivered to the secular arm, to which the Inquisition begged to use clemency and mercy with these wretched, and to impose the death penalty without effusion of blood - by burning them at stake!

Remarks of a historian:
The words Auto da fé reverberated throughout Goa, reminiscent of the furies of Hell, which concept, incidentally does not exist in the Hindu pantheon. On April 1st 1650 for instance, four people were burnt to death, the next auto da fé was on December 14, 1653, when 18 were put to the flames, accused of the crime of heresy. And from the 8th April 1666 until the end of 1679 - during which period Dellon was tried - there were eight autos da fé, in which 1208 victims were sentenced. In November 22, 1711 another auto da fé took place involving 41 persons. Another milestone was on December 20, 1736, when the Inquisition burnt an entire family of Raaim, Salcete, destroying their house, putting salt on their land, and placing a stone padrao, which still existed in the place (at least in 1866)
-Alfredo De Mello ('Memoirs of Goa' Chapter 21)

christians claims themselves as lover of peace .

whats your comments on atrocities against hindus in goa inquisition ?

Saturday, June 11, 2011

Vietnam Vet Guardsman Savors View From Top

By Army Sgt. Darron Salzer 
National Guard Bureau

ARLINGTON, Va., June 9, 2011 - As one of the last remaining active-duty National Guard members with service experience in Vietnam, Army Master Sgt. Leland Lesher said the most rewarding thing about his career is the view from the top while at the Army Guard headquarters.
Click photo for screen-resolution image
Army Master Sgt. Leland Lesher, Army National Guard force protection branch noncommissioned officer in charge and an Illinois National Guard member, swears the oath of extension and enlistment at the Army National Guard Readiness Center in Arlington, Va., June 7, 2011. Lesher is one of the last active-duty Guard members who has service time in Vietnam. U.S. Army photo by Sgt. Darron Salzer 
In a small ceremony June 7 at the Army National Guard Readiness Center, Lesher swore the oath of enlistment and extension for the last time in his military career, which began more than 40 years ago.
Lesher's first enlistment came in December 1970 with the Marine Corps. After training, he spent a year in Vietnam.
"After Vietnam, I left the Marine Corps and went to college," he said, where he learned about the Guard and made the switch. "I was a traditional Guard member, and after I graduated from college, I spent 22 years as a police officer."
He originally enlisted with the Illinois National Guard, and also served as a North Dakota Guard member and as a member of the Colorado National Guard for a few years, but since has returned to the Illinois Guard. Over those years, Lesher has done a lot at home and abroad with the Guard, spending time in Vietnam and South Korea and providing blizzard, flood and ice storm assistance in North Dakota.
Since his first enlistment into the Guard, Lesher said, he has seen it go through major changes.
"When I got back from Vietnam," he said, "the Guard was full of those who wanted to continue their military careers, those who wanted to avoid Vietnam and then those who, like myself, had decided they were done with regular military and wanted something else.
"Then 9/11 happened," he continued, "and it changed the demographics of the Guard from those who had no or very little combat experience to a force that has 85 percent [of its forces] with combat experience. I've seen the Guard become very professional over the years."
Lesher said he was part of some great units early on, and the camaraderie has kept him in the Guard.
"The North Dakota Guard and Illinois Guard really were some great units to belong to," he said, "and they put off any reservations I had had initially about the Guard when I first joined."
His final stop in his long Guard career is Stuttgart, Germany, where he will have an active role in the State Partnership Program at the U.S. European Command level.
"Part of my position in Germany will be coordinating with and assisting states that have State Partnership Programs with the European Union nations that fall under the European Command," Lesher said. "It's still at the level of assisting states, but it's helping them to expand beyond their state borders."
After a long military career that has seen the Guard mature over the years and become an operational reserve, Lesher said, he looks forward to his final tour in Germany and having the opportunity to work within the State Partnership Program.
"As my final three-year tour, it is just phenomenal," he said.
Related Sites:
National Guard Bureau 

Friday, June 10, 2011

I still remember M F Hussain---Dr. H S Bedi

Husain painting in Dr Bedi's office in CMC
Maqbool Fida Husain was a very lively and active person and truly young at heart. These were the observations of Dr Harinder Singh Bedi – Head of Cardio Vascular & Thoracic Surgery at the Christian Medical College and Hospital, Ludhiana – who had operated upon Mr Husain for bypass surgery when he was a Consultant Cardiac Surgeon at the Escorts Heart Institute in New Delhi in 1989.
Dr Bedi still remembers Mr Husain making a remarkable recovery. He was then 74 years old but even then had a twinkle in his eye and a spring in his walk. Those days we were doing bypass surgery with the heart lung machine – said Dr Bedi (beating heart surgery developed later – and Dr Bedi has been a world leader in the beating heart technique - with his name in the Limca Book of World Records for the Worlds  first multivessel beating heart series with angiograms published in the Annals of Thoracic Surgery USA) . Dr Bedi remembers that in spite of having used a heart lung machine and having stopped his heart for over 45 minutes to do the triple bypass – Mr Husain was up and about in 2 days. He was shifted to the VIP room on the 3rd Floor. At rounds on the 4th day he asked Dr Bedi to give him his letterhead and next day gave him a beautiful sketch. It was of Mother Teresa tending to two children.. It was this is still with Dr Bedi and is a prize possession in his office. Dr Bedi remembered that he joked with all the doctors and nurses and was a really model patient.  In fact he offered his help in counseling the other patient’s pre and post op while he was there. Dr Bedi felt that he was fortunate to have met such a lovely and talented personality and was sad that he was no more. --Shalu Arora and Rector Kathuria