10 December 2014

UN Security Council Resolution to Refer CIA Torture to the International Criminal Court

Draft United Nations Security Council Resolution on the Interrogation of Detained Persons by the United States of America

drafted by Thomas Gangale and Marilyn Dudley-Flores
11 December 2014

The Security Council,

Taking note of the report of the United States Senate Select Committee on Intelligence, "Committee study on the Central Intelligence Agency's detention and interrogation program;"

Expressing grave concern at the report's findings of the gross and systematic violations of international human rights law and the law of war;

Stressing the need to hold to account those responsible for torture;

Recalling article 16 of the Rome Statute under which no investigation or prosecution may be commenced or proceeded with by the International Criminal Court for a period of 12 months after a Security Council request to that effect;

Acting under Chapter VII of the Charter of the United Nations;

1. Strongly condemns the gross and systematic violations of human rights perpetrated by persons acting under the authority of the United States of America, whether having occurred within its territory or in facilities outside its territory under the control of its government;

2. Decides to refer the situation regarding the United States of America since 11 September 2001 to the Prosecutor of the International Criminal Court;

3. Decides also that the Government of the United States of America shall cooperate fully with and provide any necessary assistance to the Court and the Prosecutor, including by implementing fully the Agreement on the Privileges and Immunities of the International Criminal Court, pursuant to this resolution and, while recognizing that States not party to the Rome Statute have no obligation under the Statute, strongly urges all States and concerned regional and other international organizations to cooperate fully with the Court and the Prosecutor;

4. Decides that nationals, current or former officials or personnel from a State outside the United States of America which is not a party to the Rome Statute of the International Criminal Court shall be subject to the exclusive jurisdiction of that State for all alleged acts or omissions arising out of or related to operations in the United States of America established or authorized by the Council, unless such exclusive jurisdiction has been expressly waived by the State;

5. Invites the Prosecutor to address the Security Council within two months of the adoption of this resolution and every six months thereafter on actions taken pursuant to this resolution;

6. Recognizes that none of the expenses incurred in connection with the referral, including expenses related to investigations or prosecutions in connection with that referral, shall be borne by the United Nations and that such costs shall be borne by the parties to the Rome Statute and those States that wish to contribute voluntarily;

7. Decides to remain actively seized of the matter.

Thomas Gangale's Lies and Politics

The Films of Dylan Gangale: Run All Day, Bark All Night

Copyright © 2014 by Dylan Gangale

Andromeda Gangale
She had big lungs.




09 December 2014

Gangale Studios Publicity Photos: Andromeda Gangale

Copyright © 2014 by Dylan Gangale

Andromeda Gangale

Biblioteca di diritto internazionale dello spazio

Più di 100 documenti giuridici internazionali sono in questa collezione! Molti documenti sono disponibili in spagnolo, francese, russo, arabo, cinese, tedesco, italiano e giapponese, oltre a in inglese.

Biblioteca di diritto internazionale dello spazio

08 December 2014




The Films of Dylan Gangale: Chinese Eyes

Copyright © 2014 by Dylan Gangale

Dylan Gangale
Man, that's some powerful shit!

07 December 2014

The Force Awakens... The Audience Nods Off

Copyright © 2014 by Thomas Gangale

Lewis Beale speaks for me in his piece, "How 'Star Wars' ruined sci-fi." A New Hope and The Empire Strikes Back were the only films in the series worth watching. After that, George Lucas turned to making 2-hour ads for marketing action figures like Ewoks and (heaven help us) Jar Jar Binks with silly names like Salacious Crumb and General Grievous. After waiting decades for the prequel trilogy, I was disappointed to find that Lucas had lost all artistic sense. His characters are either too florid or too flat, and pacing is so swift that one never gets the chance to give a damn about the characters anyway. Luke gets his hand chopped off... kind of a drag, but ZAP to the next scene. Anakin gets his hand chopped off, too... no big deal, he's feeling up Amidala with his synthetic hand a moment or two later. Anakin gets everything else chopped off and is horribly burned… that must smart a little, but PRESTO! he's suddenly Darth Vader. We are supposed to laugh when C-3PO gets dismembered; when humans are similarly dismembered we're supposed to... what? Does anyone really care that Amidala dies in childbirth? Before very long I'm numbed from the sensory overload of the senselessly overdone. There's far more feeling in a Terry Gilliam animation.

Hollywood studios appear be locked in an arms race to develop devastating weapons of mass distraction that are ever louder and more furious, signifying less and less. The epitome of this was Gravity. I heard all this hype about it, and when Amazon finally delivered the DVD to my Third World backwater cottage, it rejuvenated my childhood dreams of becoming an astronaut someday... I wanted to toss the damned thing out the airlock. I want to fly a space mission just so I can enjoy the privilege of doing that.

An unwavering trekker since that glorious evening of 8 September 1966, I haven't been all that wild about J. J. Abrams's ballyhooed "reboot." He dragged Star Trek into the same arms race and turned the franchise into a live-action travesty far worse than The Animated Series. Is there really a ditch in Iowa big enough to plunge a Corvette into? I could have done without the slapstick of Scotty getting pumped through the plumbing of the Brew Pub Enterprise. If Spock From the Future could see Vulcan implode from his backyard on Delta Vega, why did he need to teach Scotty some fancy trans-warp matter transporter equation to beam onto the Enterprise? And WTF, over? An Englishman as Khan? The film should have been called Star Trek Into Whiteness. Abrams couldn't find some bhenchod from the Punjab to make Star Trek's iconic arch-villain believable? Maybe he thought that a South Asian actor would insist on at least one song and dance scene. Actually, that might have helped... and it would have been no more out of place than the wholly gratuitous "blonde in her underwear" scene.

It didn't break my heart when Abrams jumped ship to make the next Star Wars farce will be with you always. If he can screw up Star Wars any worse than it already is, I really don't care. No doubt it's also good riddance that Roberto Orci just stepped down as director given his rapport with Star Trek fans. I'm damned proud to be a shitty Star Trek fan. I've been one since before Orci was born.

The personnel shuffle probably comes too late to rescue "Star Trek 3" from more of the same old schlock and aw geez, but I'll hang tough in hope of a worthy "Star Trek 4." I dearly hope that the next in line will steer the Enterprise back to its original course. I want to contemplate the separated components of the human soul as in "The Enemy Within," or the rights of a sentient android as in "The Measure of a Man," or weep for a dying android as in "The Offspring," or for a long dead planet as in "The Inner Light," or for a daughter caught in a universe that ceases to exist as in "World Enough and Time." Make me feel something human or make this human feel what it might be like to be the alien, as opposed to feeling just plain alienated. Make me feel something other than rage at having been bilked yet again out of the price of a ticket and two precious hours of whatever life remains to me.

The question is whether a theater audience would sit through two hours of that. I think so. Plenty of Shakespeare's plays have been put to film. Let's not forget that Forbidden Planet featured a Trekesque ensemble of a captain, first officer, surgeon, and chief engineer in a retelling of The Tempest. (I think of this as the pre-Roddenberry Star Trek film.) But these days Hollywood would rather dazzle and din the audience with cinematic analogs of flash-bang grenades.

Which suggests that Star Trek needs to return to television where it began life half a century ago. It was in the process of returning to small screen in the late 1970s until Paramount saw Star Trek as its vehicle to cash in on the Star Wars bonanza, forcing Gene Roddenberry to transform a one-hour television script into "The Slow Motion Picture" padded with tedious special effects sequences. But Star Trek and Star Wars are two entirely different universes, and they appeal to very different audiences. When it is true to itself, Star Trek is about exploration, not only of outer space but of the human soul; the alien is an intriguing foil for inspecting the familiar in our existence that is too much taken for granted. That is science fiction. Star Wars is about light saber swordplay and mystic mumbo jumbo with fifteen minutes of script and the best special effects money can buy to deceive the audience into believing that it is watching something more meaningful than a fireworks display; it is space opera mixed with sword and sorcery, and it examines nothing that is not better illuminated in other genres.

It was a mistake for Paramount to transport Star Trek into an alternative universe where theater audiences aren't supposed to think, and after nearly forty years, only a few Star Trek films such as The Wrath of Khan and First Contact can stand alongside the best television episodes. Fortunately, Paramount also did return Star Trek to television with The Next Generation, Deep Space Nine, Voyager, and Enterprise. Even so, flash-bang blow-back from the big screen made serious incursions into Star Trek television in the form of the Dominion War and the Xindi War; Enterprise was fatally wounded by the Xindi War cycle in its third season, which pandered shamelessly to post-9/11 American angst, and died after a fourth season that was considerably better.

Meanwhile, Star Trek fan films have flourished. They do so because they deliver to audiences what Paramount does not: exploration, thoughtfulness, sentiment. I have mentioned a Phase II episode in which Sulu raised a daughter, only to watch her wink out of existence; another episode worth mentioning is "Coward's Death" from Hidden Frontier, in which a crewman suffers brain damage that results in a permanent case of clinical depression. Some enduring stories have been written by people who care more about the vision of Trek than making money from dreck.

Star Trek should leave the big screen to Star Wars and go back to being what it was at its best: tight, hard-hitting scripts that tug at the mind and touch the heart. Put simply, it needs to get out of the Wars and back to the Trek.

06 December 2014

Bibliothek der Internationalen Weltraumrecht

Mehr als 100 internationalen rechtlichen Dokumente sind in dieser Auflistung! Viele Dokumente sind in Spanisch, Französisch, Russisch, Arabisch, Chinesisch, Deutsch, Italienisch und Japanisch zur Verfügung, zusätzlich zu Englisch.

Bibliothek der Internationalen Weltraumrecht

The Films of Dylan Gangale: A Matter of Perspective

Copyright © 2014 by Dylan Gangale

Dylan Gangale and Andromeda Gangale

05 December 2014

UN Duped by Sino-Russian Space Weapons Treaty Hoax

Copyright © 2014 by Thomas Gangale

The United Nations General Assembly recently passed a draft resolution on No First Placement of Weapons in Outer Space (NFP) proposed by Russia. This is yet one more tale told by an idiot, full of sound and fury, signifying nothing. The UNGA has passed resolutions on the prevention of an arms race in space (PAROS) anually since 1981. PAROS is the quintessence of naive blue sky wishfulness. Be careful what you wish for; a desert always has a blue sky. It plays into Sino-Russian diplomatic duplicity to hamstring US research on missile defense systems while they conduct similar research in secret. The Sino-Russian PPWT is a Preposterous Propaganda Weapon faux Treaty.

Meanwhile, space lawyer Michael J. Listner asks, "What the heck is a 'space weapon?'"

What a softball question that is! A "space weapon" is any space object that can be used with the intent to cause harm to anything or anyone in outer space or on Earth, as distinct from a "non-space weapon," which is any non-space object that can be used with the intent to cause harm to anything or anyone not in outer space. For example, although unintentionally, the lethality of a cricket ball was demonstrated in Sydney on 25 November, and there can be no doubt that it could be used as a lethal weapon.

"How many times must the cricket balls fly before they are forever banned?"

Библиотека международного космического права

Более 100 международных правовых документов в этой коллекции! Многие документы имеются на испанском, французском, русском, арабском, испанском, китайском, немецком, итальянском и японском языках, в дополнение к на английском языке.

Библиотека международного космического права

The Films of Dylan Gangale: A Matter of Perspective

Copyright © 2014 by Dylan Gangale

Dylan Gangale and Andromeda Gangale

04 December 2014

Bibliothèque de droit international de l'espace extra-atmosphérique

Plus de 100 documents juridiques internationaux sont dans cette collection! De nombreux documents sont disponibles en espagnol, français, russe, arabe, chinois, allemand, italien et japonais, en plus de l'anglais.

Bibliothèque de droit international de l'espace extra-atmosphérique

Gangale Studios Publicity Photos: Andromeda Gangale

Copyright © 2014 by Dylan Gangale

Andromeda Gangale

03 December 2014

Biblioteca de derecho internacional del espacio ultraterrestre

Más de 100 documentos jurídicos internacionales están en esta colección! Muchos documentos están disponibles en español, francés, ruso, árabe, chino, alemán, italiano y japonés, además de en Inglés.

Biblioteca de derecho internacional del espacio ultraterrestre

The Films of Dylan Gangale: Sweet Dreams

Copyright © 2014 by Dylan Gangale

Andromeda Gangale and Dylan Gangale
Sweet Dreams

02 December 2014

Exposing the Information Operatives, Part One

[See my 30 May 2008 article on Dr. Marilyn Dudley-Flores, written as she started training for the U.S. Army's Human Terrain System program. I had imagined that my article would be the beginning of a series of stories about her experiences during a 13-month tour "downrange," the modern military euphemism for the war zones. For thousands of years young men have marched off to war full of patriotism and a sense of adventure. Marilyn, a middle-age woman, similarly stirred by the call to duty, found that the most immediate enemy was in her own foxhole... and in the Five-Sided Foxhole on the Potomac.  --TG]

copyright © 2014 by Marilyn Dudley-Flores (Dudley-Rowley), PhD

I was in transit to Afghanistan from late October through early November 2008 to take my U.S. Army Human Terrain System (HTS) post on the Human Terrain Analysis Team (HTAT) at Bagram Air Field (BAF). It was during this time that an information operation (IO) was launched against me. From what witnesses have told me, at first it seemed like harmless fact-checking over open sources, to see what kind of background I had. The “information operatives” were high-level 101st Army Airborne Division staff officers answerable to Major General Jeffrey Schloesser of the Combined Joint Task Force (CJTF). At least one of them wanted my job on the team after he completed his military tour-of-duty, wanting to come back as a civilian contractor and earn the higher salary (that I was supposed to be earning) than what he earned as a soldier. (I say “supposed” because to this day I am still owed nearly $40,000 due to me for my work with the U.S. Army’s HTS.) Other stakeholders in the IO against me definitely did not want me co-leading the team when they found out from all that IO’ing that I had the authentic background of a 55-year-old scientist who had been active in Academe, as well as in other professional venues. The other stakeholders were four men on my team with serious developmental and psychological challenges and without the skills, credentials, and/or motivation to do counterinsurgency (COIN) research and analysis and related tasks.

Like a Tony Soprano “no work job” crew, they smoked, joked, and napped their way through their duty day, until my arrival had them and their accessories working 24-7 to get rid of me and the other genuine professionals on our team – by any means necessary. In addition to these stakeholders, also simpatico with the IO against me, was the military contractor company that was supposed to be paying me my salary, but instead was playing fast and loose with HTS’ers’ salaries and other of their workers’ salaries and benefits on other government contracts. And, at the same time, defrauding the American government of over a million dollars on one government war zone contract alone. That company and its principals have been meted out consequences in the recent past and more are likely to come down the pike. Add to those social actors, stakeholders to the IO (and worse) were lazy, bored field-grade staffers close to Schloesser who were all too happy to play blood sport with the lives of the genuine people on my team.

When I was forced to pull the plug on all of this cahooting to keep us genuine teammates safe and so that we could go forward with the prosecution of our team’s mission, events went sideways for me and the story about our HTAT went global over the online media. The story, like many other HTS’ers’ true stories, wasn’t one to inspire the U.S. Congress to pass more funds to a proof-of-concept project that might not be proving itself all that well. The incoming president, Mr. Obama, upon hearing such stories, might not be convinced that the HTS could be the cornerstone of the civilian surge in Afghanistan. Almost immediately, the IO that was homegrown on Bagram continued through the Pentagon think tank, the Office of Net Assessment, structurally close to then-SECDEF, Dr. Robert Gates. The information operatives in the Pentagon seized on features in my very real background and blogged them 180 degrees differently. Clearly, the aim was to spread disinformation about me to discredit my legitimacy and veracity. One of the sock puppets peeping up behind the walls of that digital fortress initially masked himself in one or more cyber stockings, but soon admitted to being Army Ranger Lieutenant Colonel Robert Bateman, Jr. Research on Bateman proved fruitful.

As discussed in the blog commentary over http://zeroanthropology.net/2009/02/26/some-breaking-news-on-the-human-terrain-system-death-threats/:

Roger Neuman asked on 19 April 2010:
Did you ever hear such an arrogant condescending person as this Bob Bateman? I would be willing to bet that the story of Bob’s life would make good reading. Anyone interested in researching his life?

I answered on 20 April 2010:

Yes, Roger, LTC Bob Bateman, as depicted over the Internet, would be an interesting research project for someone so inclined. Here are some leads since last my supporters and I delved into his background.
He had his own domain name robertbateman.com.
He had a website.
He had a longish Wikipedia article on himself — which he authored.
Bateman has made other inroads on Wikipedia. He tried to revise the history of No Gun Ri to whitewash it. The revision history for that article shed a good bit of light on that activity. The author (murdoch) of the Wikipedia article on the No Gun Ri incident (Korean War) posted a complaint on 15 July 2005 that someone was continually going into his article online and trying to revise the history of a well-documented event. He found the IP address of the person doing it.
Two days earlier, that same someone created the Wikipedia article on Robert Bateman using the same IP address (see the bottom of the revision history on the Wikipedia article “Robert Bateman [historian]”).
Currently, there are still references to Robert Bateman in the No Gun Ri Wikipedia entry, but they are no longer links to the Wikipedia article about him.

Sean McFate was a Facebook friend of LTC Robert Bateman. (Note: Sean McFate is the ex-husband of Dr. Montgomery McFate (aka Montgomery “Mitzy” Carlough.) Carlough/McFate was the chief social scientist manager in the opening years of the HTS.

Shortly after I FOIPA’ed his blog transmissions that referred to me out of his Pentagon computer and verified the details already discovered over this page, Bateman’s website disappeared.
I was surprised today to see that Bateman’s Wikipedia entry on himself has been deleted. It was entertaining reading. It introduced me to the wonderful world of “fake veteran hunting” by Army Rangers and others, which as a daughter of the South reminded me so much of the Ku Klux Klan.

So, it would seem that LTC Bateman is being relegated to the obscurity that he deserves. He would make a great targeting exercise for newbie HTS’ers.

Dr. Maximilian Forte responded on 20 April 2010:

This is very rich, an excellent example of good counter-surveillance. Many thanks.

To continue, among the IO’s disinformative topics, was I had never worked with the late premier Afghanistan expert, Dr. Louis Dupree. Never mind the various “hits” over Internet search engines linking our names in news articles, archives, and in the scholarly record! An example is as follows.
Denker, D., 1983. “The Last Migration of the Kirghiz of Afghanistan?” Central Asian Survey, Taylor & Francis:

... Their cause briefly looked hopeful in early 1982, when through the efforts of anthropologist Dr. Louis Dupree and Marilyn Dudley-Rowley of the Institute of Alaskan Affairs, arrangements were made for Haji Rahman Qul and one of his sons to accompany Dr. Nazif Shahrani to ...

If a feature in my academic and professional background was genuine, the information operatives had to make it over into something false to undercut my veracity and legitimacy.

The IO directed against me was not only outrageous, but illegal. Such un-American activities have been highlighted in the 2011 case of Lieutenant General Caldwell who tried to launch an IO against Senator John McCain and other visiting dignitaries in Afghanistan. Caldwell sought “to manipulate the perceptions and opinions of U.S. senators and representatives through psychological operations (PSYOP).” This, apparently, to hoodoo Members of Congress out of more funding and resources for his mission in Afghanistan (https://www.aclu.org/blog/free-speech/military-may-be-engaged-illegal-psychological-operations-and-propaganda-against-us). Unlike the information operatives who enthusiastically jumped on the smear campaign against me, the Texas National Guard officers in charge of Caldwell’s IO cell reminded the general that such operations against American citizens were illegal. Other stories about this case show that some days later, those dutiful officers were subjected to propaganda against them in order to levy sanctions on them in retaliation (http://www.wired.com/2011/02/did-a-top-general-run-psyops-on-senators/).

The genuine members of my HTAT on BAF and out in the field were targets of several types of crime and misdeeds – none that were criminally investigated. The IO against me has never been criminally investigated. Follow-on reprisal-like events that befell me and my family members and their consequences have never been investigated – at least by a federal agency.

So, I continue to advocate for federal criminal investigations. As I have argued, investigate not only for the victims involved, but for the sake of the Republic and what it, what we, stand for.
Despite these experiences, I urge the continuance, improvement, and restructuring of the U.S. Army’s Human Terrain System and the use and innovation of Human Terrain Analysis (HTA) in matters of criminal justice, the national security, and the Global War on Terror (GWOT).

How Professors Fight
Death Threat Tarnishes US Army Human Terrain System
Fear and Loathing in Afghanistan

Gangale Studios Publicity Photos: Andromeda Gangale

Copyright © 2014 by Dylan Gangale

Andromeda Gangale

Library of International Outer Space Law

More than 100 international legal documents are in this collection! Many documents are available in Spanish, French, Russian, Arabic, Chinese, German, Italian and Japanese, in addition to English.

Library of International Outer Space Law

24 November 2014

The Films of Dylan Gangale: Running With the Pack

Copyright © 2014 by Dylan Gangale

Dylan Gangale, Andromeda Gangale, and Tyr Gangale
Running With the Pack

The Popular Music of the Space Age: CD 100 (2009)

Популярная мусыка космического веча:
CD 100 (2009 г.)

The annual global celebration of "Yuri's Night," commemorating the April 1961 flight of Vostok 1, increases in popularity every year. As we enter the second half-century of human spaceflight, it is a time to reflect on the development of global space culture. It began in the 1950's as two distinct cultures--Soviet and American--reflecting the Cold War rivalry that fueled the Space Race. In the intervening decades there has been a blending of these two initial cultures, other nations have added their cultural voices, and the center of the emerging global space culture has shifted. National space cultures have displayed different emphases on science fiction and UFO themes versus devotion to national astronautic accomplishments. These and other factors may be leading cultural indicators of the vigor of national space efforts and their relevance to the global thrust into the final frontier.

The researcher seeks co-researchers with backgrounds in cultural anthropology and musicology with a strong interest in space history. Of particular interest is collaboration with researchers who are familiar with space-themed music from non-English speaking cultures.

At present, the music collection of nearly 1500 tracks is organized chronologically into 100 segments, each approximating the running time of a compact disc (CD), which include voice clips of important events to provide historical context. The play lists are being rolled out incrementally as research continues. Most of the music can be found online and downloaded free of charge. In addition, a library of song lyrics is in development.

This is music to fly to Mars by. If you listened to one hour every day, you would almost be there at the end of this collection!

CD 100
Selection TitlePerformerRelease
1Sleeping Satellite (Sam Vahedi and Swedish Egil mix)Jan Johnston2009
2Star WarsMaynard Ferguson2009
3Lighter on the MoonNina Gordon2009
4Soyuz TMA-16 - LaunchMission Audio2009
5Star Trek: First ContactMarcos Kleine Project2009
6Fueling Dreams That We Are Not AlonePoprocket feat. Jay Garrigan2009
8Sleeping Satellite (Kenneth Thomas remix)Jan Johnston2009
9Star Trek: First Contactunknown artist2009
10Ares 1-X - LaunchMission Audio2009
11To the Moon and Back (Kashtan Remix)Savage Garden2011
12Космический raй
Cosmic Ray
Сексуальная Лия
Sexy Liya
13Fly Me to the MoonShane Cox2009
14Star Trek: InsurrectionMarcos Kleine Project2009
15Космос (прелюд… и фуга d-moll И. С. Бах)
Space (Toccata and Fugue in D Minor, J. S. Bach)
Скрипичный проект-Династия
Treble Project - Dynasty
16Time of the MoonТату
18Fly Me to the MoonWillie Nelson2009

Epigram: On Genius

Copyright © 2014 by Thomas Gangale

Often genius is unnoticed in its own time because it speaks to the future;
genius is as unmoved by the present as the present is insensible of genius.

23 November 2014

The Rehabilitation of Bette Davis Tongilava

Copyright © 2014 by Dylan Gangale

I'm a cat, and I'd be lying to you if I told that I don't have any issues with dogs. You wouldn't believe me anyway. In fact, my brother Rhade Fainga'a was killed by a dog only a few months ago, probably by a dog that we both knew well. But I have had many puppies grow up in my house, and I have loved them all. They have been my brothers and my sisters.

The Kingdom of Tonga is not a very good place for dogs. They breed out of control, and Tongans wage a war of terror on them, throwing stones at them and visiting other cruelties on them. Tongans also eat dogs. Last year, when my friend Jack Daniel Fainga'a was killed and eaten, one of the perpetrators was brought to justice. After the court awarded us $2,000, a Tongan wrote:

"If you chose to love a dog in Tonga it's your problem because there's no respect for them and nice looking dogs deserve to be in an 'umu [a cooking pit]. I'm yet to find out who the judge was in this case because he needs to be able to see better than what he thought was right in the case of Jack. The fine was way too much. Jack's value was more than the biggest pig that anyone can buy in Tonga. That's a whole lot of bullshit. I will write the judge and make it known to him that that was a very unfounded valuation.
"Killing a dog to eat is no different from killing a rhino in Africa for their horns and cutting down virgin rain forest in South America to be able to feed the children and buy mosquito nets to prevent infections from malaria. You have plenty of meat in your fridge, we have none. A chance to take part in a dog hunt for bake is much appreciated for us."

The person who wrote this is standing for Parliament in the November 2014 election in Tonga.

Dylan Hunt Gangale and Jack Daniel "Siaki" Fainga'a

Naturally, dogs learn to fear and to hate humans at an early age, and they grow up to become "vicious" dogs. In turn, Tongans learn to fear and to hate dogs at an early age, and to perpetuate the cycle of violence. Every vicious dog was once a playful puppy who hoped to be loved and found hatred instead; a vicious dog is a good dog who has learned evil from humans. This is not good quality of life for either species. God intended better for both; if it is true that He did not mean for humans to know evil, this is certainly no less true of dogs.

Bette Davis Tongilava's wild-eye stare
"All the boys think she's a spy; she's got Bette Davis eyes."

Bette Davis Tongilava was probably born under the house in Fanga where I now live, probably in 2012. I think I know her mother by sight, but Lucy (in the Sky With Diamonds, named by Kalauta) Kupu is feral, although she became Jack's friend before he was eaten. Bette also grew up feral on busy Hala Taufa'ahau, living off of restaurant scraps and loaves cast away from the bakery, dodging cars to cross the road and dodging stones thrown at her out of fear or for sport. She learned to bark and lunge at people who menaced her. She lived in a war zone, and humans were the enemy. She wasn't too crazy about cats either; she often chased Rhade or me under the house or into the rafters.

Lucy Kupu

We are told that Bette's first litter was born and died under a nearby house before we moved to Fanga. After Jack's murder in April 2013, Lucy led Bette to our house, under which she gave birth to her second litter at the end of June. Rhade and I spent a lot of time with them. At eight weeks, four out of six died within two days from contaminated food that Bette had regurgitated for them. Peter and 'Ono rotted under the house, Grilka (the Toddling Targ) and Rex died in our house despite our best efforts to save them, and two survived: Jadzia Dax Tongilava and Denzel Washington Tongilava live with us to this day.

Bette Davis Tongilava and the Sixpack (second litter)

Dylan Hunt Gangale and Geharis Telemachus Rhade Fainga'a guarding the Sixpack

Jadzia Dax, Denzel Washington, and Bette Davis

Geharis Telemachus Rhade, Jadzia Dax, Denzel Washington, and Dylan Hunt

Denzel Washington and Bette Davis

Bette remained elusive while we raised Denzel and Jadzia, diving under the house when she caught humans looking at her, but when she developed an eye infection, she allowed the humans to bring her into the house for short periods to treat her eye. A few months later they cared for her again when she developed a swelling under her jaw. She saw Jadzia and Denzel enter and leave the house freely, she saw that it was a place where she would be fed, and in the course of a few months she went from eating outside the kitchen to eating just inside the kitchen door. When her third litter emerged from under the house at Christmas in 2013, Bette had no objection to the humans gathering them up to take into our bedroom, where the puppies would play on the bed for a time and then sleep. Bette whined outside the door when she wanted to feed them, and the humans would carry them out to her. After a few weeks they were quite capable of motoring around on their own. Ezri Dax Tongilava and Marie Curie Tongilava ventured into the road and were killed. Blaise Pascal Tongilava went to a family in Fasi related to the Tongilavas, and Shorty Rogers Tongilava and Rex 'Ua Tongilava live with the Fainga'a family in Longolongo.

M is for Mohe (Tongan for "sleep")
Bette's Third Litter

Over time Bette became more trusting and ventured deeper inside our house; after all, her children Jadzia and Denzel, now fully grown, came and went as they pleased; but Bette ran out of the house when she thought that a human was coming between her and the open door. In fact, they closed off her escape a few times, which made her frantic and miserable for a time, and then they would let her leave. In time Bette was as free about the house as her children were. Rhade adapted to these changes better than I did; having Bette around the House set my nerves on edge.

Bette's fourth litter emerged from under the house in July 2014. When the humans brought Jane (Starfighter) Tongilava and Roxanne Ursula (Thunderchief, a.k.a Thud) Tongilava into our bedroom, Bette followed. At first she would stand outside the bedroom in the hall, then she would come in as far as the foot of the bed, then to the side of the bed, and ultimately she jumped onto the bed to nurse her puppies in our presence. Humans and cats alike felt honored that Bette had become so trusting of us, and it was our privilege to share in the joy of her puppies. This was Bette's last litter; a few months later she took a ride in a car to the Ministry of Agriculture's veterinarian in Tokomololo for her surgery.

Bette now takes long walks around Fanga on a leash along with her children Denzel, Jadzia, and Roxanne. They are the Tongilava Pack. It has become too dangerous for them roam freely as their ancestors once did. Denzel nearly lost a leg when he was hit by a car earlier this year, and in October we had an incident with a drunken and unruly Saturday evening crowd in the field adjacent to our house. Young men threw stones, there were allegations of a child being bitten, the police arrived to restore order…. The Tongilava Pack, which for many generations had free run in Fanga in its quieter days, now languishes on chains on the veranda by day. It's not as bad as it sounds; they are together, they are safe, they are loved, and a human sits with them all day long to keep them company and to keep them watered. They look forward to long walks together, in the safety of their numbers, through the neighborhood of hostile humans and some who are friendly. When they are let into the house at twilight, Bette is the first one to run to the bedroom, as though she expects to be served bonbons in bed.

At night the four of them sleep on the bed along with my cat sister Nie Haisheng Fainga'a, and on especially cool nights I will join them as well. I will admit that I am still wary of Bette. She barks aggressively at humans whom she doesn't know well, and she may present a danger to small children. She still chases me, and I will always suspect her of having killed my brother Rhade, but I believe that it was an accident. In my view, she is, to use Khan Noonien Singh's phrase, "not quite domesticated." Her journey was filled with fear before it was enriched with tenderness, and I don't imagine that she will ever forget her lonely and unloved past in the war zone.

Haisheng dining with the third litter

We expect that Roxanne, who is now five months old, will soon go to live in Kolomotu'a with a first cousin of the King, where she will carry on the line of the Tongilava Pack. Her grandmother Lucy, who was Jack Daniel Fainga'a's White Goddess of the Night, has not been seen for several months now. We don't know what other dogs in Fanga are either the cousins or the progeny of Lucy Kupu, but we go out and walk among them every few days, we befriend them by imperceptible increments, and some of them come to visit us at Koe Fale 'Oku 'Ikai Ha Taha Ke Tolo Maka Ki Ai, The House Where No Stone Is Thrown.

Thomas Gangale's Tales of Tonga

The Films of Dylan Gangale: The Brat Pack

Copyright © 2014 by Dylan Gangale

Andromeda Gangale, Tyr Gangale, and Dylan Gangale
I think I dropped it somewhere around here....

The Popular Music of the Space Age: CD 99 (2009)

Популярная мусыка космического веча:
CD 99 (2009 г.)

The annual global celebration of "Yuri's Night," commemorating the April 1961 flight of Vostok 1, increases in popularity every year. As we enter the second half-century of human spaceflight, it is a time to reflect on the development of global space culture. It began in the 1950's as two distinct cultures--Soviet and American--reflecting the Cold War rivalry that fueled the Space Race. In the intervening decades there has been a blending of these two initial cultures, other nations have added their cultural voices, and the center of the emerging global space culture has shifted. National space cultures have displayed different emphases on science fiction and UFO themes versus devotion to national astronautic accomplishments. These and other factors may be leading cultural indicators of the vigor of national space efforts and their relevance to the global thrust into the final frontier.

The researcher seeks co-researchers with backgrounds in cultural anthropology and musicology with a strong interest in space history. Of particular interest is collaboration with researchers who are familiar with space-themed music from non-English speaking cultures.

At present, the music collection of nearly 1500 tracks is organized chronologically into 100 segments, each approximating the running time of a compact disc (CD), which include voice clips of important events to provide historical context. The play lists are being rolled out incrementally as research continues. Most of the music can be found online and downloaded free of charge. In addition, a library of song lyrics is in development.

This is music to fly to Mars by. If you listened to one hour every day, you would almost be there at the end of this collection!

CD 99
Selection TitlePerformerRelease
1Sleeping Satellite (Robert Vadney's blamed remix)Jan Johnston2009
2Star Trek: Locutus of BorgMarcos Kleine Project2009
3Blast OffHigher Hands2009
4Баллада о космонавтах
Ballad About the Cosmonauts
Конец фильма
End of the Movie
5Star Trek: The Inner LightMarcos Kleine Project2009
7Fly Me to the MoonLinda Chung2009
8Star Trek: Deep Space NineMarcos Kleine Project2009
9Soyuz TMA-15 - Docking With ISSMission Audio2009
10Leaving For Mars (B. Rich remix 128)Lea Luna2009
11Star Trek: GenerationsMarcos Kleine Project2009
To the Cosmonauts
Легендарные пластилиновые ноги
Legendary Plasticine Feet
13Fly Me to the MoonLisa Ono2009
14Sleeping Satellite (André Tollenaar edit)Scribble Tunes2009
15Of Dreams and OrbitLuIzA2009
16Star Trek: VoyagerMarcos Kleine Project2009
17Ты мне веришь или нет? [к-ф Большое космическое путешествие]
Do You Believe Me or Not? [Grand Space Travel]
Людмила Берлинская и Игорь Капитанников
Lyudmila Berlinskaya and Igor' Kapitannikov
Манго-Манго против Dj Карась
Mango-Mango vs. Dj Karas'
19Частушки о космонавтах
Ditties About the Cosmonauts
Мария Глубокова, Оренбургский государственный русский народный хор, Ю. Григорьев и В. Kochugurov баяны
Maria Glubokova, Orenburg State Russian Folk Choir, Y. Grigoriev and B. Kochugurov button accordions
20Star TrekProject: Pimento2009

Simple Islam: Islam Without Hadith

As Quran predicts, the religion is divided into multiple branches [1] and each branch is under the impression that it is the true one. Each of you, the readers of this article, belongs to one of these different branches and probably very certain about the genuineness of the method practiced by your branch. Probably the Elders of your branch have taught you that only the followers of your branch--who essentially follow the Elders’ commands--will be awarded with redemption and the others will be barbecued in a dreadful fire. They will scare you about hell and tell you that worshipping the God is the way of salvation and that they are the only reference for how to worship--like God would have whispered into their ears all the details of worshipping. Probably the Elders of your branch have prepared a whole library of arguments that why you should refer only to them for every single detail of worshiping, and why the method of worshipping is so complicated, difficult, and beyond the comprehension of the general public, and only the people who have spent years in studying this complex approach and have become one of the Elders could tell how to be a servant of God.

The intention of this article is neither questioning the validity of your particular branch nor creating yet another one. The audience of this article is a muslim who loves his religion, is afraid of the fire, but is also fed up with blindly following the Elders of his branch. In this article, we explain a view of Islam which is simple enough to be understandable for all the muslims. Each muslim will be both the decider for his/her deeds and responsible for them. There is no need for Elders nor their complicated package of becoming one. It is eventually your call that whether the benefits of this Simple Islam outweigh its disadvantages or not.

In the rest, we first introduce Simple Islam, which is based on Quran and not the Hadith. We then present our arguments for adopting Simple Islam. We then explain the advantages and disadvantages of eliminating Hadith from the religious practice. The conclusion at the end is on the reader.

1. Simple Islam

Simple Islam is based on three principles: belief in God, the judgment day, and the holy Quran that is brought by Muhammad. Muslim is a person who believes in these three principles, study Quran, and use that to improve his/her understanding of an ideal human being. A muslim makes his/her life decisions in a way to get him closer to an ideal human.

2. Why Simple?

As much as Simple Islam emphasizes on Quran, it ignores Hadith. The primary reason is that Quran is the miracle of the God and its text is reliable. To believe that the book we are reading now is the same as Quran that descended on Muhammad, we do not need to trust our ancestors from whom we inherited the text: each muslim in any century can read the text and decide whether he/she finds it miraculous or not. Hadith, on the other hand, is just a collection of sentences attributed to the prophet and hence is essentially part of the history, and the reliability of the details of the history is always questionable. To trust Hadith, we have to trust the honesty of the people who carried them over the centuries and also to trust the skills of the Hadith historians, also known as religious Elders or scholars. A muslim in Simple Islam needs to read only a book (Quran) which requires a reasonable amount of time, affordable by every muslim. On the other hand, in the current branches learning Hadith and its dependent skills requires years of studying, which in practice leaves Islam in the hands of a small group called religious Elders, unreachable for the general public. The public thus has no choice but blindly following the Elders in the name of worshipping the God.

2. Advantages of Simple Islam

The main advantage of Simple Islam is its simplicity. A simple religion is less susceptible to deviation along the history, is reachable by the general public, is more difficult to be abused by the opportunist of the society to confuse the public and trick them into following their wishes in the name of worshipping the God.

Second, with ignoring Hadith, Islam gets separated from the history of Islam--or in better words the history of muslims. It then becomes possible to firmly defend Islam in the 21st century without needing to defend even a moment of history of muslims and what they did in the past: from neglecting women rights to attacking the other countries with the excuse of spreading Islam. Most of the criticisms of Islam are actually criticisms of the way of muslims in the past centuries and not of the principles of Islam.

Third, the muslims practicing Simple Islam get rid of unreasonable laws that originally come from Hadith and is later attributed to Islam using many tricks. For example, if not all, most of the Elders believe in Apostasy: killing the unfortunate person who converts from Islam. This rule has been leveraged by the Elders in the history to threaten or eliminate the free thinkers such as Avicenna. For any person of understanding, this rule sounds ridiculous since if other religions also apply the same rule then nobody could ever convert to Islam either. Nothing is more cheerful for a muslim practicing Simple Islam than the fact that this rule as well as rules similar to it are inconsistent with Quran and have roots in nothing but the unreliable, shaky sands of Hadith.

Forth, the Elders can no more abuse the fear of the fire to make the people follow their commands, which are sometimes hilarious. Currently there are muslims that being afraid of hell do not allow their pictures to be taken because an Elder has issued a fatwa that taking pictures is sinful. As another example, not long time ago some Elders issued a fatwa that said using Videocassette recorder device is sinful, which was later taken back quietly.

Fifth, by centering the religion upon Quran, muslims can realize the importance of rules and principles based on the emphasis on them in Quran: the fact that in Quran hundreds of verses are warning about polytheism and only one verse remotely refers to hijab, the fact that Quran many times warns about the rights of orphans and never talks about pilgrimage to tombs, and many other examples.

Sixth, currently ordinary muslims either do not regularly read Quran, or if they do they have been scared of interpreting it as the Elders consider interpreting Quran a very complicated science that only them, i.e., scholars, are authorized to do so and the rest of muslim must just take whatever interpretation that the scholars offer. Nevertheless, comprehending the words of God beside science requires a pure heart which is a rare quality in the way of Elders. By eliminating the Elders from the religious practice, each muslim can directly communicate with the God through Quran without passing the intermediary channel of the Elders.

3. Disadvantages of Simple Islam

The first criticism of Simple Islam is that it is overly simple. Simple Islam does not get into the complicated details of prayer and its attachments such as the rules about doubts in the number of performed movement during the prayer and the rules about approved body cleanness for praying. This is in sharp contrast to the current practiced Islam, where these details are the majority. In the current branches of Islam, an ideal human is described as a person who learns the details of the religious traditions as taught by the Elders and performs them exactly. However, it is not explained that how such level of details would help the person to reach redemption. In fact, this question is never raised in the first place because the Elders consider even the smallest detail of their prescribed tradition as the direct command from the God.

In Simple Islam, the only reference for the patterns of the ideal human is Quran. Quran's guidance is used to find what leads people towards the ideal human and thus redemption. The fact that Quran emphasizes for hundreds of times on establishing prayer and not on its details leads to understanding that the important thing in Quran's view is establishing prayer itself and its details are left to be implemented by the people of different eras and cultures. There is no doubt that consistency of the established prayer with the prayer of the accompanying muslims as well as its similarity to the prayer of the pioneers of perfection such as Muhammad is an adornment for the held prayer. However its details are not the key to redemption and is left to be implemented based on the requirements of the time and the place.

The approval of this method comes from Quran itself when it commands the muslims who are living at the time of Quran's descendent not to ask for the details that are not revealed because otherwise implementing such details in the same exact way becomes mandatory [2]. When people disobeyed this command and did ask for details [3,4,5,6], we witness the most boring details about inheritance, etc. The Simple Islam's understanding, which is consistent with Quran, is that the God has descended Quran for the general guidelines in the religion and the details are left to the people of each time and place to implement them based on their culture and their understanding of the world.

The other criticism to Simple Islam is that by leaving the details to individuals, there will be an opportunity for inciting self (i.e., the devil inside) to interfere. In this way, the inciting self leads the muslim to implementing details that are more convenient or are fulfilling the evil desires. In response, it is worth reminding that the inciting self has thousands of ways to get into the surface and for interference with a person's judgment it could make use of the tiniest peepholes. Opening or closing a gate does not affect the very existence of the inciting self. Even though, a muslim could express his/her understanding of a good implementation of details and share it with the peers, whose feedback can help revealing the level of interference of the inciting self.


In this article, we introduced Simple Islam which is based on Quran instead of Hadith. We showed that eliminating Hadith leads to eliminating the Elders from the religious practice and frees muslims from the serfdom of their local Elders. Many of the unreasonable rules that are hanging from the wounded body of Islam (such as Apostasy) will be automatically disappear since such irrational interpretations are stemmed either from Hadith or the not-so-much-defendable history of muslims.


  1. مِنَ الَّذِينَ فَرَّ‌قُوا دِينَهُمْ وَكَانُوا شِيَعًا ۖ كُلُّ حِزْبٍ بِمَا لَدَيْهِمْ فَرِ‌حُونَ ﴿٣٢
  2. يَا أَيُّهَا الَّذِينَ آمَنُوا لَا تَسْأَلُوا عَنْ أَشْيَاءَ إِن تُبْدَ لَكُمْ تَسُؤْكُمْ وَإِن تَسْأَلُوا عَنْهَا حِينَ يُنَزَّلُ الْقُرْ‌آنُ تُبْدَ لَكُمْ عَفَا اللَّـهُ عَنْهَا ۗ وَاللَّـهُ غَفُورٌ‌ حَلِيمٌ ﴿١٠١
  3. وَيَسْتَفْتُونَكَ فِي النِّسَاءِ ۖ قُلِ اللَّـهُ يُفْتِيكُمْ فِيهِنَّ وَمَا يُتْلَىٰ عَلَيْكُمْ فِي الْكِتَابِ فِي يَتَامَى النِّسَاءِ اللَّاتِي لَا تُؤْتُونَهُنَّ مَا كُتِبَ لَهُنَّ وَتَرْ‌غَبُونَ أَن تَنكِحُوهُنَّ وَالْمُسْتَضْعَفِينَ مِنَ الْوِلْدَانِ وَأَن تَقُومُوا لِلْيَتَامَىٰ بِالْقِسْطِ ۚ وَمَا تَفْعَلُوا مِنْ خَيْرٍ‌ فَإِنَّ اللَّـهَ كَانَ بِهِ عَلِيمًا ﴿١٢٧
  4. يَسْتَفْتُونَكَ قُلِ اللَّـهُ يُفْتِيكُمْ فِي الْكَلَالَةِ ۚ ... ﴿١٧٦
  5. يَسْأَلُونَكَ عَنِ الْأَهِلَّةِ ۖ قُلْ ... ﴿١٨٩
  6. يَسْأَلُونَكَ عَنِ الشَّهْرِ‌ الْحَرَ‌امِ قِتَالٍ فِيهِ ۖ قُلْ ... ﴿٢١٧

Simple Islam: Islam Without Extremists
اسلام بدون روحانیت

Simple Islam: Belief vs. Trust
یمان یا اعتماد

Criticisms of Simple Islam
دلایل قرآنی منتقدین اسلام ساده