OH YES THEY DID: Scientists Name A Parasitic Worm After President Obama

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Nobel Peace Prize, Move Over: Meet baracktrema obamai, the two-inch-long, hair-thin flatworm. it’s a type of blood fluke that infects the lungs of black marsh turtle and southeast Asian box turtles in Malaysia.

President Obama, Commander in Chief and a Nobel Peace Prize winner, can add another honor to his resume: namesake of a new species.

Granted, the species is a parasitic flatworm. But in the scientific community, the act is considered *coughBaracktrema obamai, a new genus and species of parasitic flatworm, was named in honor of President Obama. Image by Roberts et al., 2016, The Journal of Parasitology.cough* an honor all the same.

“I have named a number of species after people I admire,” Thomas Platt, the parasitologist who discovered and collected the new species, said, with a straight face.

[Baracktrema obamai, a new genus and species of parasitic flatworm, was named in honor of President Obama. Image by Roberts et al., 2016, The Journal of Parasitology.]

The move is meant to be a permanent tribute, he said. “Baracktrema obamai will endure as long as there are systematists studying these remarkable organisms.”

Platt and three other American researchers proposed Baracktrema obamai as both a new genus and species in The Journal of Parasitology. The two-inch-long, hair-thin flatworm — a type of blood fluke — infects the lungs of black marsh turtle and southeast Asian box turtles in Malaysia. The team used genetic testing and morphological analysis of the worm’s body and genitalia to determine the new species. Their proposal marks the first new genus of turtle blood fluke in 21 years.

The find was the last that Platt — a turtle parasite expert — named before retiring from Saint Mary’s College. Platt named 32 species during his tenure and was inspired to name Baracktrema obamaiafter discovering that he and the president share a common ancestor, he said. Read the rest of this entry »


BREAKING: Malala Yousafzai, Kailash Satyarthi Share 2014 Nobel Peace Prize

Pakistani teen Malala Yousafzai, who was shot in the head by the Taliban for advocating girls’ education, and Indian children’s rights advocate Kailash Satyarthi were jointly awarded the 2014 Nobel Peace Prize on Friday. Yousafzai, 17, is the youngest winner of the award. She was honored for “her heroic struggle” and becoming “a leading spokesperson for girls’ right to education,” said Thorbjørn Jagland, chairman of the Norwegian Nobel Committee. “Despite her youth, Malala … has shown by example that children and young people can contribute to improving their own situation.”

Satyarthi, 60, has been a lifelong campaigner against the exploitation of children for financial gain. “The Nobel Committee regards it as an important point for a Hindu and a Muslim, an Indian and a Pakistani, to join in a common struggle for education and against extremism,” Jagland added. “It has been calculated that there are 168 million child laborers around the world today. In 2000 the figure was 78 million higher. The world has come closer to the goal of eliminating child labor.” Yousafazi, who received a standing ovation when she made a powerful address to the United Nations on her 16th birthday, is still receiving treatment in Britain for her injuries. Read the rest of this entry »


Malala’s Taliban Attackers Arrested

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…the group of Taliban militants who were behind the shooting of Malala Yousafzai in 2012 have been arrested. Until now, not a single person had been arrested. According to the army’s press officer, 10 attackers have been identified and arrested. Malala is now based in Britain, but is not able to return home to Pakistan because of Taliban threats to kill her and her family members. Two other girls were wounded in the attack…(read more)

Reuters – The Daily Beast


Malala Yousafzai: ‘All I want is education. And I’m afraid of no one’

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I was driving past a business here in the Houston Heights, when I glimpsed this painted on the side of the building. I recognized that iconic WWII poster before I realized it was not just any woman, but 14 year old Malala Yousafzai, the Pakistani girl who was attacked for wanting an education. The words next to her are her quote, ( “I don’t mind if I have to sit on the floor at school.) All I want is education. And I’m afraid of no one.”

(at the Avis Frank Gallery, 1606 White Oak Dr., Houston, TX 

Shepherd Songs I was driving past a business here in the Houston….


Nobel Peace Prize Again Goes To Group That Has Done … What?

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Globaloney: This year’s Nobel Peace Prize has been given to the “Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons,” a group whose main achievement seems to be good intentions. This award is getting ridiculous.

Alfred Nobel would be rolling over in his grave to see some of the absurd choices his beloved peace prize is now drawing.

No, it wasn’t just the award to global terror pioneer Yasser Arafat in 1994. Or the one that went to the bureaucrat-filled, bankrupt European Union in 2012.

There also was the premature award to just-elected President Obama in 2009, who had done literally nothing but get elected president of the U.S. on a make-America-smaller platform.

As these unworthies collect their laurels, authentic peacemakers — such as 16-year-old Malala Yousafzai of Pakistan, who was shot in the face by Taliban terrorists solely for urging girls to go to school — go ignored.

The fact that the blood-soaked Taliban fighters are now gloating at the news that Malala didn’t win ought to embarrass the Nobel committee.

Read the rest of this entry »


Unholy Vengeance: Islamic Taliban Renews Their Vow to Murder Malala Yousafzai


From sharia unveiledPakistani schoolgirl Malala Yousafzai was shot last year by the Taliban for campaigning for defying a ban on female education – and now the group is again threatening to kill her.

Malala addressed the United Nations in July on her 16th birthday

Malala at the United Nations in July on her 16th birthday

Pakistani Taliban spokesman Shahidullah Shahid said the group stands by its decision to target 16-year-old Malala who he said has “targeted and criticised Islam”.

“She accepted that she attacked Islam so we we tried to kill her, and if we get another chance we will definitely kill her and that will make us feel proud. Islam prohibits killing women, but except those that support the infidels in their war against our religion,” he added.

The new death threat came as Malala was named among the favourites to win the Nobel Peace Prize, which will be revealed on Friday. Read the rest of this entry »


Pakistani girl shot by Taliban honored at Harvard

Sept. 27, 2013: Malala Yousafzai addresses students and faculty after receiving the 2013 Peter J. Gomes Humanitarian Award at Harvard University on the school's campus in Cambridge, Mass. (AP)

Sept. 27, 2013: Malala Yousafzai addresses students and faculty after receiving the 2013 Peter J. Gomes Humanitarian Award at Harvard University on the school’s campus in Cambridge, Mass. (AP)

CAMBRIDGE, Mass. –  A Pakistani girl who survived an assassination attempt by the Taliban is being honored as Harvard University’s humanitarian of the year.

Malala Yousafzai (mah-LAH’-lah YOO’-suhf-zeye) is an outspoken proponent for girls’ education. She was at Harvard on Friday to accept the 2013 Peter J. Gomes Humanitarian Award.

Harvard President Drew Gilpin Faust says she was pleased to welcome Malala because of their shared interest in education.

The 16-year-old Malala says she’s hoping to become a politician because politicians can have influence on a broad scale. She spoke nostalgically about her home region, the Swat Valley. She says she hopes to return someday.

Malala was shot in the head last October. Militants say she was attacked because she was critical of the Taliban, not because of her views on education.

 Fox News