Why Everybody Loves Soccer

Why Everybody Loves Soccer
FIFA World Cup 2006 has nearly reached its final countdown. Still somebody outthere wonder why everybody loves soccer or non-American football. If you like betting, which teams you'll put your money on? France, Italy for the winner and Germany, Portugal for the third place? Here is a comment by Priyadi on this post

* football is simple, all you need to play football is several players, a field and goal posts.

* football is already by far the most popular sport in the world

* football fans' loyalty is increasingly team based, rather than based on locality. but of course we are going to see a lot of locality fans if their national team is playing

*only in world cup fans will see the true identity of each national team against each other: italian strong defense, brazillian individual skill, german teamwork, etc.

* maybe only football is played from people from all over the world. if we look at big teams like chelsea, real madrid or AC milan, we are seeing players from multiple countries and ethnicity

* people don't like 'physical test games' like athletics or swimming as much as 'playing games' like football or basketball

* unlike the so called 'world series' in north america, football's world cup are actually played by teams from all over the world

* olympic winners seem to be already predetermined from population size, economic strength, and other seemingly unrelated factor . not so with world cup.

* it is too easy to predict the winner of olympic . we are not going to see too many people bet on 'who is going to win olympic?'

* in olympics, football matches are not played with full fledged national team but instead with 'under 23' youngsters + only 2 or 3 senior players

Actually it is very satisfying for me to see north americans ask this kind of question over and over again, and still wondering why their sports are not popular outside their own turf, even after they did a massive popularization in the late 90's. the CNN interviewer is an american, right?

Why Blogspot being Blocked in India

My friend Qisai called me up today saying that he could not access his blogspot, but can still log-in to and does a post. At the first thought, it must be to do with the bad connection. But he asks me to open today's headline in the Times of India, page 9. Well, it's clear now, the Indian government has blocked some blogs due to security reason.

What security? It's said that some terrorist are using blogs to convey their messages and therefore the hosting should be banned. Unfortunately, some of the sites suspected belong to the terrorist are run on a free-hosting blog provider like which means all blogs using the same domain will be blocked as well.

It's certainly not a smart move on the part of Indian police deptt. to do so simply because it's India - the largest democratic country in the world with freedom of expression clearly stated in its Constitution; and (2) they should be aware that blocking a particular suspected websites which are using a free hosting will affect all other innocent bloggers who use the same domain. Thus the government intentionally or not has done a "collective punishment" which cannot be justified.

Similar posts around the blogs: Ethan Zuckerman, Neha Viswanathan, Girlwonder, Pallab, Gurinder.

From Indian newspapers, see here.

6.2 Earthquake Jakarta Indonesia

A strong earthquake caused tall buildings to sway in the Indonesian capital Wednesday, witnesses said. The quake had a preliminary magnitude of 6.1 and was centered 24 miles beneath the Sunda straits

The new earthquake possibly an aftershock from Monday's 7.7 tremblor that triggered a tsunami on the southern shores of Indonesia's Java island.

There were no immediate reports of casualties or damage, but people in several areas fled from office buildings and homes.

Meanwhile the toll of quake-triggered tsunami in Java now has reached 550.

Israeli Attrocities Against Palestinians

One of the duty of citizen media like blogs is to bring forward a news that is not getting enough attention from or totally ignored by major media for whatever reasons. Israeli-Palestinians conflict is a several decades long conflict and will see no future solution in many decades ahead. I dont know how the bloody and inhuman attrocities in the region will end. Yet, it's a mistake on our part to forget a nation attrocities against another and simply wipe it off our memory, becuase it might happen to us, someday if lesson not learnt.

Let history remember it. And let us make a little contribution by creating a note to be read by future generation so that they dont make the same repetition yet again.

A friend sends me a link to a very gruesome graphic pictures of Palestinian children and a piece written by Hal Turner. Take a look:

By: Hal Turner

North Bergen, NJ USA -- For years, we in America have supported Israel both financially and militarily because we perceived they were the innocent victims of hostile and violent neighbors. The US media has, for years, provided extensive coverage of every incident involving Arab-against-Israeli violence. From shootings, to car bombs to suicide bombers, we in America have seen it all. Or have we?

Why would rational human beings, given a choice, choose to attack their neighbors rather than live together in peace? More pertinent, why would a rational human being choose to blow himself up rather than live? The Israelis, the US media and our politicians would have us believe that the Arabs are simply not rational. They routinely tell us that Arabs are "religious fanatics" who "hate freedom" or "hate our way of life" to quote George W. Bush. These arguments are fallacious and intellectually bankrupt.

The reason for Arab against Israeli violence is simple: The Israelis have been systematically repressing and brutalizing hundreds of thousands of Arabs on a scale unparalleled since World War 2. I have the proof.

Below are photographs of the victims of Israeli violence. They depict brutal, violent death, horrific personal injury and devastation of property which is simply unfathomable. ALL of it was perpetrated by Israelis against Arabs. ALL of the victims are civilians.

As you view these pictures ask yourself this question: What would YOU or YOUR LOVED ONES do in retaliation for these things?

Note: the pictures are inappropriate for children viewing. Here's the link to original post and the graphic pictures.