Tuesday, September 2, 2014

The Islamic State - Vice

August 2014 on Vice
The Islamic State, a hardline Sunni jihadist group that formerly had ties to al Qaeda, has conquered large swathes of Iraq and Syria. Previously known as the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS), the group has announced its intention to reestablish the caliphate and has declared its leader, the shadowy Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi, as the caliph.

The lightning advances the Islamic State made across Syria and Iraq in June shocked the world. But it's not just the group's military victories that have garnered attention — it's also the pace with which its members have begun to carve out a viable state.

Flush with cash and US weapons seized during its advances in Iraq, the Islamic State's expansion shows no sign of slowing down. In the first week of August alone, Islamic State fighters have taken over new areas in northern Iraq, encroaching on Kurdish territory and sending Christians and other minorities fleeing as reports of massacres emerged.

VICE News reporter Medyan Dairieh spent three weeks embedded with the Islamic State, gaining unprecedented access to the group in Iraq and Syria as the first and only journalist to document its inner workings.

Monday, August 25, 2014

BBC Panorama: From Jail to Jihad

First broadcast May 12, 2014 on BBC One
The Muslim prison population in England and Wales has doubled in the past ten years to nearly one in seven inmates. This rise is five times faster than the increase in the overall jail population.
Evidence shows most Muslims are not radicalised, but the prison system is also home to the UK's greatest concentration of Islamic terrorists and extremists. Many more are converted or radicalised behind bars. 
Reporter Raphael Rowe follows one radical convert as he leaves prison, interviews some convicted terrorists and extremists about their experiences inside and asks if the authorities are doing enough to prevent the increasing threat of radical Islam inside prison.

Friday, October 25, 2013

FOX: Megyn Kelly Brawls With Atheist Over 'God' in Air Force Oath

October 24, 2013 on Fox News
Megyn Kelly took on former Air Force office and atheist Mikey Weinstein on Wednesday over the invocation of God in the Air Force oath, with the conversation getting so heated Kelly had to practically shout, "Mikey, chill!" at one point. Weinstein also sporadically mocked the "Fox world" he jumped into and got so frustrated he told Kelly he would try to speak in one-syllable words only.

Kelly asked Weinstein why he just can't let the invocation of God be optional. Weinstein shot back, "That's like saying why don't you just opt out of robbing a bank! Because robbing a bank violates the law."

Thursday, October 17, 2013

Neil deGrasse Tyson: Creationism is fine ‘as long as you don’t confuse it with actual science’

From Raw Story:
Wednesday on his radio show “Star Talk,” astrophysicist Neil deGrasse Tyson addressed a reader’s query about the Creation Museum and the theory of a “Young Earth,” which is part of the Christian Creationist myth, the idea that the Earth is only a few thousand years old.

“I visited the Creation Museum,” wrote the listener, “purely out of a sense of mystified curiosity. The recorded narration in their planetarium said that contemporary astrophysics predicted [sic] that certain stars were older than the known age of the universe and cited this problem as evidence against science and for Young Earth creationism.”

“I was hoping Neil might tell me a little bit more about the problem and its solution,” the note concluded.

“Which problem?” asked Tyson. “That the Creation Museum exists at all?”

He went on to say that while he has nothing against Creationism museums, per se, “just keep it out of the science classroom.”

“We live in a free country,” he continued, “and you can say whatever you want about whatever. That’s what it means to be free. Just don’t confuse it with actual science.”
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Tuesday, October 1, 2013

An Appetite for Wonder: Richard Dawkins in Conversation with Adam Rutherford

Professor Richard Dawkins discusses the influences and inspirations that have shaped his life and thinking.

Chatting to science broadcaster Adam Rutherford in the world-famous Ri Lecture Theatre, the pioneering scientist and public thinker reveals how he developed an "appetite for wonder" for the biological sciences.

From his upbringing in Nairobi and Nyasaland (now Malawi) to his early experiences with religion, Dawkins talks about his motivations for becoming a scientist and his experiences at Oxford University and Berkeley, California during a period of social and political unrest.

Find out how he arrived at the idea of the "selfish gene" -- the basis of his seminal 1976 publication, one of the best-selling popular science books ever written -- and discover more about his research and writing process.

Plus, the Ri audience ask a range of revealing questions -- from how he overcome his natural shyness and stutter at school to what his advice would be to an 18 year old who wants to get into popular science.
"An Appetite for Wonder" author Richard Dawkins discusses the relative existential dangers of science and religion.

Friday, September 13, 2013

Origins Of Us | Dr. Alice Roberts | BBC Documentary

Part 1 | Part 2 | Part 3
Origins of Us tells the story of our species, homo sapiens. In every one of our bodies is the evidence of how we evolved away from our ape cousins to become the adaptable, successful species we are today.

Anatomist and physical anthropologist Dr Alice Roberts reveals the key adaptations in our body that has contributed to our extra-ordinary success. Far from being inevitable, the evolution of our species is a product of pure chance. And with each anatomical advantage comes a cost, which many of us are still paying today. Bad backs, painful childbirth, impacted wisdom teeth are all a by-product of our evolutionary success.

This is a journey through your own body, 6 million years and 300 000 generations of our family, from a tree dwelling ape in the forests of Africa, to you and the six billion other humans on Earth today.