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IT40 Places & Things in the Media for 01/27/2019

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#1 The Holocaust • International Holocaust Remembrance Day • Holocaust Memorial Days

Holocaust Remembrance Day

Holocaust Remembrance Day updated their cover photo.


Vicky Allan: Let's not forget the horrors of the present as we remember the past

By Vicky AllanSenior features writer

 See both images

THERE are not that many left who survived the Nazi genocide. Some remain, still telling their story, as 89-year-old Harry Spiro did in a webcast for schools this week, in advance of today’s International Holocaust Remembrance Day and National Holocaust Memorial Day. But he is one of fewer and fewer living, breathing reminders of the horrors. Each year sees more of them pass away.

One of the sadnesses of marking this day is that it, in many ways, is not just a piece of distant history. Even once all these Nazi genocide survivors have died, the day will not lose its living voice. For genocide still pulses across the world.

Many of these voices are still young. Among them, for instance, visiting Scotland this weekend is 22-year-old Fareeda Abbas, a Yazidi woman who, like Nadia Murad, last year’s winner of the Nobel Peace Prize, is a survivor from Kojo, a village massacred by Islamic State.

On August 15, 2014, Islamic State soldiers gathered all of the people from her village in the school building and asked them to convert to Islam – then, when they rejected that, they began killing the men, 450 over the course of one day, including her father and two of her brothers.

For four months, Abbas was held in captivity, raped, beaten, forced to watch an eight-year-old girl being raped. At one point her injuries were so bad she could hardly move or see. After several attempts at escape, on the third she succeeded.

Abbas is one of the key driving forces in Yazda, a charity that aims to prevent future genocides against the Yazidi community and other minorities, and to assist them in recovery. Recently it held a fundraiser in Edinburgh, organised by a Scot who had been affected by their story. It was a reminder that the Yazidi plight must not be forgotten.

Meanwhile, there are the voices of the Rohingya, around 10,000 of whom were killed in Myanmar in 2017, and 900,000 are currently living across camps in Cox’s Bazar.

There is also Sudan, where hundreds of thousands of Darfuris have been killed under Omar al-Bashir’s genocidal regime, and the many other countries, where according to Genocide Watch, there is a genocide emergency.

But genocide doesn’t pop up from nowhere. We can see it coming. The Genocide Watch site lists around 15 countries which are already at what it describes as the “extermination” stage of genocide, and many more that are involved in polarisation or other processes which it outlines as leading up to mass murder.

Never again, we say. But then we look around the word and see that here it is again, and again. If we want to know what we’ve learned in the 70 years since Auschwitz-Birkenau was liberated, we need only look at how we have reacted to these recent genocides and what the international community has failed to do. These are the people we should think about most on International Holocaust Memorial Day – the people still in the grip of horror, or aftermath, the people who need support.

Above all, though, this day should provide fuel to a fight against the hatred, polarisation and dehumanisation that, according to Genocide Watch, are preconditions for genocide. These are as present as ever across the world, perhaps on the rise.

Sharing in mob justice

You only have to look at some of the responses online to the fact that former Shameless star Tina Malone is being prosecuted for contempt of court for sharing an image of someone said to be Jon Venables to realise that vigilantism is alive and well in the British public. For, it seems that plenty are out to support Malone, not just because they think the possibility of her being jailed is ridiculous and would represent a step too far – which is fair enough – but because they think she was quite right to share the Venables picture and that he should indeed be exposed.

Mob justice seemed to be the mood of the day, with a general feeling pervading that Venables would deserve whatever came to him. Few were the voices saying, this is the law and the kind of restrictions we need in order to live in a civilised society where justice isn’t meted out by crowds baying for blood. But Malone's fame makes her a particularly good example to pursue for this sharing, which was done by many others.

1 Point

#2 Chicago Bears • AFC–NFC Pro Bowl • Mitch Trubisky • American football • Bowl game • Akiem Hicks • National Football Conference

AFC vs NFC Pro Bowl 2019 Live

AFC vs NFC Pro Bowl 2019 Live updated their cover photo.


Bears Blither-Blather: Bowls upon Bowls upon Bowles

Patti and Jeff return to discuss the Pro Bowl, the Super Bowl, and the Bears sky-high 2019 outlook
Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports

Patti Curl: So it looks like the Bears are enjoying their practices at the Professional Bowl. I have to wonder, which was the greater masterstroke of genius namesmanship: the pro bowl named after the fact that all invitees are pros, their seasons would make it on the favored side of a pro-con list and none of the participants are currently-incarcerated convicts, or the incredible self-control demonstrated by whoever managed to refrain from naming the big game the “Super Duper Bowl”?

Jeff Berckes: Wait, I thought the Pro Bowl was named after the Akron Pros, who won the first NFL championship in 1920, led by Fritz Pollard, to honor their achievement...

Anyway, never have liked the Pro Bowl game itself, and I’m not about to start now just because it’s dominated by Bears, but sign me up for all the mic’d up segments I can get. I’m not sure anyone is having more fun than Akiem Hicks and every little piece I get of these great Bears makes me long for September.

I think the skills competition starts to get us closer to a worthy event, but we need to add some new attractions. I’m inspired by those Brian Orakpo cupcake commercials - maybe a baking contest? Or how about a good old fashioned pie eating competition - you telling me that linemen wouldn’t enjoy that? Maybe we just steal from other sports - a dunk contest on a 9 foot hoop or a homerun derby with the batters box at 2nd base. I swear I’d watch something like that over a meaningless game where all anyone is hoping for is to get out healthy. Are you tuning in Sunday?

PC: I’ve got to tune in to make sure Biscuit slices up the tomatoes the AFC is putting out under the guise of a “Professional” defense. If Matthew Stafford can win a pro bowl mvp, I’m not ruling it out for Trubisky. But yes, baking, eating, singing, runway modeling, or charades competitions among pro bowlers would be more entertaining.

And Akiem Hicks should be mic’d up all the time. He should have a second mic on his belly so we can hear the crunch as he smoshes down on backfield offenders.

Speaking of Hicks wreaking havoc behind the line of scrimmage. How do you feel about the Bears new DC?

JB: I like the Pagano hiring as I believe his personality is going to fit right in with this group. It’s impossible to know for sure, but he’s reportedly a likable coach and Matt Nagy has established a fun organization. I was pretty excited about the possibility of Todd Bowles but the timing of everything with Elway taking his sweet time and Bruce Arians moving quickly put us onto plan B. What interested me about Bowles is that he can be creative & aggressive in his play calling, something that was lacking at times under Fangio. Pagano will hopefully bring some of those elements with him given his background in Baltimore. It seems to me the Bears defense has a chance to be even better with a fresh approach. The only thing that remains to be seen is what kind of defensive play caller he will be. As long as he doesn’t rush only 3, I think he’ll be fine.

I’ve given it some thought and as crazy as it sounds to some, I’m cheering for the Patriots next week. I’ve been fascinated with Bill Belichick for 20 years now and I’ve thought that he was making a final push for 1 last run. I love the symmetry of the 2 super bowl games against the Rams bookending their Sunday too. I say let’s see them capture one more and maybe Belichick or Brady walks away on top. Am I crazy for thinking that?

PC: I wouldn’t say crazy. I’d say sociopathic. Those Patriots have been league bullies for far too long and I want to see them fall in the worst way. I get the appeal of Belichick, but I find Brady’s smug little ego insufferable. I hope he drops a game-losing pass in an ill-advised QB-as-receiver trick play. Don’t get me wrong, I don’t hate your whole fantasy. The image of Brady riding off into the sunset sits just fine with me. He’s already flown too close to the sun, he may as well just dive the rest of the way in.

My fantasy for this game is that Sean McVay is outcoached by the Patriot’s defensive playcaller--who proceeds to lead the Dolphins to countless victories against the Patriots for years to come--and Jared Goff gets rattled early and often. Aaron Donald and Wade Philips have to save the day and it still takes a Julian Edelman muffed punt that stands and a missed pass-interference penalty on Robey-Coleman for the Rams to sneak out with the win. At the end of the day, I want Brady, Belichik, McVay, Goff, and NFL officials to all feel like losers.

Now I’m wondering if I come across as bitter. Do I seem bitter?

JB: Yes, but bitter seems like a better descriptor than sociopathic. Let’s just move past the SB and pretend like it doesn’t really matter and look ahead to what comes after. When the Patriots win their 6th ring next Sunday, the league turns over a new page to the 2019 season, thus kicking off the 100th year of the league and the 100th season for the Bears. (League year officially starts in March but stick with me)

I can think of nothing better than bringing home a championship to celebrate the centennial. It would only be the 2nd Super Bowl win but it would be the 10th league championship in 100 years for the Bears, led by the talented Mr. Biscuit who wears... #10. Much like the Patriots dynasty bookending their run with wins against the Rams, it feels like destiny that the Bears finish professional football’s first century with 10 championships. Plus, it would mean our Pro Bowlers would all need to skip the event to prepare for... the Cleveland Browns. Bears - Browns, Biscuit - Baker, SB LIV, February 2020. Book your Miami hotel now.

PC: This is making a lot of sense to me. Some things were meant to be, and the Bears were meant to dominate the league since the day they were graced with the opportunity to choose the best mascot possible. If Pagano can keep this defense in the top 5, year two of Nagy’s offense certainly has he potential to carry the Bears right into the Browns-Bears Super Bowl, which I will affectionately call the Brown Bear Bowl and eventually just the Grizzly Bowl. You’re making so much sense that I’m starting to regret calling your rooting interests sociopathic. Oh well, it’s too late now.

5 Bears things to watch in Sunday's Pro Bowl, including Mitch Trubisky comparisons and Akiem Hicks' long-awaited moment

Seven Bears players will take the field for the NFC team Sunday in the Pro Bowl at Camping World Stadium. Here are five things to watch from a Bears perspective.

1. Trubisky watch

Bears quarterback Mitch Trubisky was an alternate pick after Rams quarterback Jared Goff couldn’t make it — what with Goff going to the Super Bowl and all.

But Trubisky always is going to be a main attraction for Bears fans as they search for more fuel for their arguments about whether he is a star who can lead his own Super Bowl march or an inconsistent, middle-of-the-pack quarterback. Both arguments swirled around Trubisky during his second season.

What makes Sunday’s game all the more interesting is he’ll be facing off against two AFC quarterbacks — Patrick Mahomes and Deshaun Watson — who were selected after him in the 2017 draft. As Mahomes racked up 50 touchdown passes and Watson topped 4,000 passing yards in leading the Chiefs and Texans to the playoffs, respectively, the comparisons with Trubisky from Bears fans abounded.

The Pro Bowl isn’t played at real intensity, and the quarterbacks won’t be running their offenses or throwing to their favorite targets. But that probably won’t stop everybody from passing judgment.

Trubisky, for his part, seemed to be having a great time staying in the moment this week.

“I want to have a lot of fun and try to soak up and learn anything I possibly can from the coaches, the other quarterbacks, from (NFC quarterback Russell Wilson),” Trubisky said. “We’re having a lot of fun. It’s all about getting better, enjoying this week and getting to know some guys.”

2. Formidable pair

No pair of teammates had more interceptions this regular season than the Bears’ Kyle Fuller and Eddie Jackson. Fuller tied for the NFL lead with seven in his fourth season on the field. Jackson was fourth with six and also scored three defensive touchdowns in his second season.

Jackson was goofing around when he told Bears teammate Josh Bellamy, who was posing as a reporter after practice Friday, that he would have two or more interceptions and one or more touchdowns in the game.

But it’s certainly possible the duo could be in line to make some big plays. Last year’s game featured four interceptions.

Jackson will return to the field for the first time since he missed the final two regular-season contests and the playoff game with a sprained ankle. Fuller will be celebrating his comeback over the last two seasons to become a highly valuable player for the Bears.

“It’s special,” Fuller said of having seven Bears players in the game. “It speaks to the type of year we had. … (The other teams’ players) definitely notice.”

3. A long time coming

It took Akiem Hicks three teams and seven seasons, but he finally is receiving his turn in the Pro Bowl spotlight.

The Bears defensive lineman felt snubbed because he wasn’t picked for the honor in 2017. But after totaling 7½ sacks, 12 tackles for loss and 16 quarterback hits and playing a major part in a run defense that was among the best in the league, he was selected this season.

“All these guys have to have a genuine love for the game of football because they’re playing at the highest level,” Hicks said. “To share that with other guys across the league is awesome.”

Amid all the fun he was having in Orlando this week, he noted he wanted to leave with one other thing — a sack in Sunday’s game.

4. Cohen does it all?

Tarik Cohen was selected as a return specialist for the NFC. But he’s hoping he can see some action in the game at running back or wide receiver too after he took practice reps on offense all week.

Cohen’s versatility — with 1,599 all-purpose yards this season — helped him earn his first Pro Bowl nod in his second season. He was all over the place this week — showing off his passing prowess during an NFL dart-board challenge, snapping photos with fans and going to a block party to play the video game Fortnite.

He promised to bring some excitement to the game too.

“I’m looking forward to having fun,” Cohen said. “Hopefully I can get some of my teammates out on the field with me, so I can give them the ball if I get it. I might throw a lateral here or there.”

5. Protecting Mitch

Cody Whitehair was in Kansas watching the news with his father-in-law when he missed the call from Bears coach Matt Nagy. Charles Leno was asleep in California when Nagy’s call woke him.

“He’s like, ‘What are you doing? Sleeping?’ ” Leno recalled. “’Yeah, I’m asleep.’ He’s like, ‘Well get up, you’re going to the Pro Bowl.’ ”

Whitehair and Leno were the final two Bears players to hear they had gone from alternates to Pro Bowlers early in the week. Trubisky said he “started going nuts” when he learned he would be joined in Orlando by his center and left tackle, and they could be lining up in front of him again Sunday.

“Those guys deserve it, protecting me all year, putting their bodies on the line every single Sunday for me,” Trubisky said. “For them to get the recognition they finally deserve, it’s awesome to see.”

While the players said they were enjoying getting to know the other all-stars from around the league, Leno also loved some of the familiarity he felt at practices during the week.

“It’s like the huddle again,” Leno said. “I’ve got Cody in the huddle saying huddle up, and you’ve got Tarik always dancing somewhere. Mitch is saying, ‘Get in the huddle guys. We have to get the play going.’ It’s just like practice.”

[email protected]

Twitter @ChiTribKane


1 Point

#3 Saturday Night Live • Steve Martin • Roger Stone • Donald Trump • Cold open • Tucker Carlson

Saturday Night Live

Tucker Carlson (Alex Moffat), Jeannine Pirro (Cecily Strong), Ann Coulter (Heidi Gardner), Wilbur Ross (Kate McKinnon) talk about the government shutdown and Roger Stone (Steve Martin) stops by to...

Steve Martin returns to 'SNL' to make fun of Roger Stone

Steve Martin played Stone: "Pardon me!"
 / Updated 
By Dennis Romero

Steve Martin returned to "Saturday Night Live" this week to display his version of former adviser to President Donald Trump, Roger Stone.

Stone was charged with suspicion of obstruction, giving false statements and witness tampering this week as part of special counsel Robert Mueller's investigation of Russian influence on the 2016 presidential election.

Fox News' Tucker Carlson, played by Alex Moffat, portrayed Stone, a sometimes weight lifter, as a man so old and decrepit that he's "barely able to post shirtless photos of his jacked body."

Embedded video

Saturday Night Live - SNL


"Here with his side of the story is a man you look at and instantly think, I trust this guy. Please welcome Roger Stone." @SteveMartinToGo

1,640 people are talking about this

Stone was enthused about his predicament and noted all the radio and television appearances he made after being arrested.

"I mean seven felonies — one, two — I can’t even count that high," he said. "How cool is that?"

He said he started a crowdfunding effort based on a phrase people have been shouting at him: "Hey Roger, go fund yourself."

He also directed a key set of words, close to Martin's own catchphrase of "excuse me," at the president: "Pardon me!"

Carlson also invited Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross to address criticism of his suggestion that workers impacted by the shutdown could take out bank loans.

Ross, a real-life billionaire played on "SNL" by Kate McKinnon, had more advice for those impacted by the shutdown that ended Friday.

"They could have liquidated some of their stocks or sold one of their paintings," he said. "I mean even if they sold a lesser Picasso, it’s still going to get you through a week or two of yacht maintenance."

Embedded video

Saturday Night Live - SNL


Next up is Secretary of Commerce and man of the people, Wilbur Ross.

541 people are talking about this

He also suggested that those who own horses could have them "attend public school."

News segment "Weekend Update" continued to skewer the Trump administration, especially its role in a partial government shutdown that achieved none of Trump's goals.

Co-host Colin Jost took aim at the 21-day restart of federal operations.

1 Point

#4 24 Hours of Daytona • Alex Zanardi • Daytona International Speedway • Rolex • WeatherTech SportsCar Championship • Daytona Beach

Event world

24 hours of Daytona 2019 Live Stream. Rolex 24 hours 2019 live online. Live Broadcast: http://bit.ly/daytonaCar Direct Live Free: http://bit.ly/daytonaCar 2019 Rolex 24 Hours At Daytona at Daytona...

Could NASCAR have an engine to run a 24-hour race? ‘Of course we could’

Nate Ryan
NBC Sports

DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. — A 24-hour race at a NASCAR track is nothing new. The Rolex 24 Hours at Daytona, one of the crown jewels of the IMSA sports car championship, has been contested at Daytona International Speedway for over a half-century.

But what about a 24-hour race at a NASCAR track … with stock cars.


When Doug Yates, the CEO of the Roush Yates company that builds engines for NASCAR and IMSA teams, stopped by the Peacock Pit Box during the ninth hour Saturday of the 2019 Rolex 24 on NBCSN, NASCAR on NBC broadcaster Dale Earnhardt Jr. was curious.

Embedded video



"Could @NASCAR ever run a 24-hour race?" - @DaleJr

"Of course we could." - @Yates_Doug.

144 people are talking about this

“Could NASCAR run a 24-hour race?” Earnhardt asked Yates. “What would you need to do to a NASCAR engine?”

“I’m kind of worried about getting to Atlanta with a tapered 550 package first,” Yates joked in reference to NASCAR’s new reduced horsepower rules for this season.

“But yeah, of course we could do it. That would be an interesting race, of course. Everything in our engine is made to run 501 miles. As crew chiefs and drivers, you guys know, you’re always beating on the engine guy to give you more power. We didn’t want to give you too much margin, right? The thing wasn’t built for a 24-hour race. But we could do that.”

It might require a rethink of the philosophy of NASCAR’s V8 engine, which is based on antiquated architecture with little relevance to modern-era street models.

Yates, who talked about his desire to run more modern engine technology in last year’s NASCAR on NBC Podcast, already likes the Rolex 24 because it’s different from “engines set up specifically for NASCAR events.

“This is such a good event because these are production-based engines,” Yates said. “We test them. We push them to their limit, then we turn back and give that technology back to the street cars. The things we learn goes back to Ford Motor Company and making their cars better.”


Sounds like a win-win situation.

Of course, there are the niggling questions about the durability of brakes, rotors and other parts.

As well as what track might work well for holding such an event.

Martinsville? Bristol? The Roval or another road course?


This might be an idea with some serious staying power.

1 Point

#5 AFC Ajax • Feyenoord • Frenkie de Jong • Eredivisie

AFC Ajax

AFC Ajax updated their cover photo.


Feyenoord vs Ajax live stream, what TV channel, team news, kick off time for De Klassieker

Ajax travel to fierce rivals Feyenoord as they look to pile the pressure on PSV in top spot

AJAX travel to fierce rivals Feyenoord as they look to turn up the pressure on PSV in top spot.

Eyes will also be on how the hosts perform after boss Giovanni van Bronckhorst announced he will leave at the end of the season with speculation linking him to Barcelona.

When is Feyenoord vs Ajax?

Feyenoord take on Ajax on Sunday, January 27.

The match will kick off at 1.30pm or 2.30pm in Holland.

It will take place at De Kuip.

In the side's meeting in Amsterdam earlier this season, Ajax ran out 3-0 winners after their rivals played 85 minutes with ten men.

What TV channel is Feyenoord vs Ajax on and can I live stream it?

Feyenoord vs Ajax will be live on Eleven Sports 2.

To access the streaming only service, subscribe from £5.99/month here.

What is the latest team news?

Feyenoord Rotterdam


Opstelling Feyenoord ?⚪️⚫️

80 people are talking about this

Nicolai Jorgensen

Feyenoord vs Ajax live streaming: Watch online, preview, prediction & odds

 45' + 1' '
Robin van Persie
Hakim Ziyech
Steven Berghuis
Jens Toornstra
Lasse Schöne
Match ended

Feyenoord vs Ajax live stream match details

Match: Feyenoord vs Ajax

Competition: Dutch Eredivisie

Date: January 27, 2019

Kick-off time: 1:30 pm, January 27, 2019 (UK time)

Stadium: Feijenoord Stadion

Feyenoord vs Ajax live streaming: Match previewFeyenoord vs Ajax live stream is available to watch via Bet365 in the United Kingdom and Ireland.

De Klassieker, as it is known in the Netherlands, is the country’s main football rivalry. As is typical of most big rivalry’s, it extends beyond football touching on social, economic and cultural differences between the cities involved.

Thus, this clash is seen as between the artists of Amsterdam and the workers of Rotterdam. This is emphasised by the phrase “While Amsterdam dreams, Rotterdam works”.

Ajax have dominated this fixture as of late, losing only twice in the last thirty-one meetings between them.

This includes the last meeting between them back in October when a 7th minute red card to Feyenoord’s Jeremiah St. Juste for serious foul play, effectively ended the match as a contest. Ajax running out 3-0 winners in the end.

Ajax’s spectacular 4-4 draw with Heerenveen last weekend ended their eleven game Eredivisie win streak.

Meanwhile, Feyenoord have picked up just one point from their last three games.

Feyenoord v Ajax: Players Injured or Suspended

Feyenoord:- Justin Bijlow (Foot Injury)

Ajax:- Carel Eiting (Knee Injury), Nicolás Tagliafico (Knee Injury), Hassane Bandé (Fibula shaft fractures), André Onana (Illness)

101 Great Goals predicts: Feyenoord 1 – Ajax 2

Head2Head: Feyenoord – Ajax – official video

How to watch Feyenoord vs Ajax live streaming in the Dutch Eredivisie

In order to watch a Feyenoord vs Ajax live stream you must have a funded Bet365 account or to have placed a bet in the last 24 hours.

Bet365 are showing Feyenoord vs Ajax live streaming legally and straight onto your computer or on to your hand held device, be it an iPhone, iPad or Android.

Feyenoord vs Ajax live streaming is available everywhere to watch, besides Italy, Singapore, San Marino, United States & Holy See (Vatican City State).

Everywhere else across the world is fine to watch Feyenoord vs Ajax – including the United Kingdom and Ireland.

NOTE: Please be aware that you will need an active Bet365 account to watch Feyenoord vs Ajax live streaming.

Bet365 show every single Eredivisie game throughout the season, with the geo instructions above. Bet365 also stream the KNVB Beker and even Dutch reserve matches.

Watch Feyenoord vs Ajax Live Streaming Via The Bet365 Live Streaming Service.

Eredivisie table

# Team MP W D L F A D P
1 PSV Eindhoven 19 17 1 1 64 11 53 52
2 Ajax 19 15 2 2 66 15 51 47
3 Feyenoord 19 12 3 4 39 25 14 39
4 Vitesse Arnhem 19 8 5 6 31 25 6 29
5 Utrecht 19 8 5 6 30 26 4 29
6 AZ Alkmaar 18 8 4 6 33 26 7 28
7 Heracles Almelo 19 8 2 9 33 40 -7 26
8 VVV Venlo 19 7 5 7 27 29 -2 26
9 Fortuna Sittard 19 6 5 8 32 36 -4 23
10 Willem II 19 6 5 8 28 34 -6 23
11 PEC Zwolle 19 6 3 10 22 31 -9 21
12 Heerenveen 18 5 6 7 40 43 -3 21
13 ADO Den Haag 19 5 6 8 26 39 -13 21
14 Emmen 19 5 6 8 24 40 -16 21
15 Excelsior 19 5 4 10 27 48 -21 19
16 Groningen 19 5 3 11 22 30 -8 18
17 NAC Breda 19 4 4 11 22 41 -19 16
18 De Graafschap 19 4 3 12 19 46 -27 15

Last updated: 1 min ago

1 Point

#6 Starbucks • Kevin Johnson • Same-store sales • NASDAQ:SBUX • Chief Executive


Cinnamon and spice make shortbread sips quite nice.


Starbucks Dramatically Increased Used of AI-Powered Customer Insights to Drive Growth, Says CEO

Starbucks Dramatically Increased Used of AI-Powered Customer Insights to Drive Growth, Says CEO

1 Point

#7 Philippines • Moro people • Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao • Marawi • Mindanao

The Philippines

The Philippines added a cover video.



‘Backwardness to be overcome in Bangsamoro’

Autonomous Bangsamoro region will be a place of peace again, says Turkey's IHH representative

‘Backwardness to be overcome in Bangsamoro’

(File Photo) Moro Muslims celebrate after Bangsamoro Organic Law, which creates Bangsamoro Autonomous Region that allows major autonomy to Moro Muslims, gets ratified in Cotabato, Philippines on January 22, 2019. ( Ahmet Furkan Mercan - Anadolu Agency )

By Fatih Hafiz Mehmet


The backwardness and injustices in Philippines' Bangsamoro will be overcome after the ratification of the landmark Bangsamoro Organic Law (BOL), a Turkish non-governmental organization’s official said.

Bangsamoro is a collective term for Filipino Muslims living on an island south of the Philippines.

The Philippines' landmark Bangsamoro Organic Law (BOL) was officially ratified on Friday following a referendum win on granting comprehensive autonomy to Moro Muslims.

Huseyin Oruc -- deputy head of the Istanbul-based Humanitarian Relief Foundation (IHH) and one of the members of the international team monitoring the peace process in the region -- said Bangsamoro people were in a struggle for 50 years and since 1997 they had been negotiating a peace deal with the Philippines' government and signed an agreement in 2014.

Oruc said the agreement was voted in a referendum on Jan. 21 by the people and the result was Yes.

He said the Bangsamoro Autonomous Region will now be founded.

"Most probably, leader of Moro Islamic Liberation Front (MILF) Al Hajj Murad Ebrahim will be the first prime minister of Bangsamoro.

“The problems, backwardness and injustices which have been continuing for 50 years will be overcome gradually. Peace will be established in the region again," Oruc stressed.

The first international investment has already been announced just two days after the results of the referendum were announced, Oruc noted.

He said a Russian company will plant bananas at a 7,000-hectare of land belonging to Muslims and sell it in Russian markets.

"It is said that nearly 10,000 people will be employed in this work. This is a very large number," Oruc stressed.

He said Turkish investors should follow suit to increase trade in the region.

Oruc expressed hopes the first future prime minister of the autonomous region will be invited to Turkey and that he will make his first visit abroad to Turkey.

Yes vote in Cotabato

He said the results in the Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao (ARMM) in the southern Philippines suggest a "stronger" Yes, compare to areas falling out of ARMM.

In the ARMM, the Yes vote made over 85 percent, he said.

Oruc said Cotabato city in the ARMM and Isabela city on the Basilan island were very important, adding that the MILF ran an intensive campaign in Cotabato for the Yes vote.

Two days before the plebiscite, he noted, Philippines' President Rodrigo Duterte and Ebrahim made a rally together in Cotabato and invited people to vote Yes in the referendum.

"Yes votes were nearly 50 percent higher than No votes in Cotabato city," Oruc said. Thus, he said, the city was included to the autonomous area.

However, in Isabela, where population of Muslims and Christians are almost same, the No vote won with a narrow margin and Isabela was left outside the autonomous area, Oruc added.

"The referendum was made in a very peaceful environment in an area where there was armed conflict for 50 years," he said.

Oruc said the second part of the referendum will be held on Feb. 6 in six municipalities and 68 villages or towns.


Over 1.54 million people voted Yes to approve the BOL, while some 190,000 voted down the law.

Ratification of the BOL means the ARMM in the southern Philippines will be replaced with the Bangsamoro Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao (BARMM).

The voting started on Monday in the provinces of Maguindanao, Lanao Del Sur, and the island provinces of Basilan, Tawi-tawi and Sulu as well as the cities of Cotabato and Isabela.

The second phase of the BOL will be held on Feb. 6.

The law, signed by Duterte last year, is set to provide comprehensive autonomy to Muslims, in addition to judicial and economic advances.

Under the law, courts of Islamic law will open in the region, and the Philippines’ central government will transfer its administrative authorities in Mindanao to the Bangsamoro government.

The waters in the Bangsamoro region will be simultaneously managed by the national government and Bangsamoro government.

The autonomous government will be responsible for the management of energy resources.

In addition, the former Moro National Liberation Front (MNLF) and MILF fighters will be able to join official forces.


Philippine referendum returns big 'yes' vote on Bangsamoro self-rule

By Martin Petty
FILE PHOTO: Woman casts her vote during the plebiscite on BOL at a voting precinct in Sultan Kudarat
FILE PHOTO: A woman casts her vote during the plebiscite on Bangsamoro Organic Law (BOL) at a voting precinct in Sultan Kudarat, Maguindanao province, Philippines January 21, 2019. REUTERS/Marconi B. Navales/File Photo

By Martin Petty

MANILA (Reuters) - A predominantly Muslim area of the southern Philippines has returned a resounding "Yes" in this week's referendum on greater autonomy, boosting hopes for peace in one of Asia's most conflict-torn regions.

The plan to create a self-administered area for the Muslim-dominated parts of Mindanao was backed by 85 percent of voters, the election commission said late on Friday, paving the way for a three-year transition toward elections for a legislature that will choose an executive.

Monday's referendum was the culmination of a tumultuous peace process between separatists and successive governments that aimed to settle decades of conflict, which have hampered development and kept these parts of Mindanao among Asia's poorest regions.

The instability and high rates of unemployed, unschooled youth made the areas fertile recruitment ground for bandits and Islamist extremists, who exploited grievances about neglect and stoked narratives of government duplicity in the peace process.

The endorsement by some 1.74 million voters comes as no surprise, and the new region to be called Bangsamoro (nation of Moros) will have greater powers to generate and invest more money in infrastructure, schools, healthcare and social welfare for its estimated 5 million inhabitants.

A ballot will now be held on Feb. 6 to ask several other areas if they want to join.

The central government will oversee defense, security, and foreign and monetary policy, and soon appoint a transition authority nominated by the Moro Islamic Liberation Front (MILF).

(GRAPHIC: Philippine referendum on Muslim autonomous region - https://tmsnrt.rs/2Hk3s7L)

Vice President Leni Robredo said it was vital the central government helps Bangsamoro to build "a progressive economy and responsible local government".

"Let us guard and support the progress of this process because this is not yet the end of the fight for peace," Robredo said.

The vote came at a critical time for the Philippines, which saw disillusioned MILF factions break away and follow other armed groups in pledging allegiance to Islamic State.

That has stoked fears that fighters fleeing Iraq and Syria would join radicals from Malaysia and Indonesia in gravitating to Mindanao to capitalize on porous borders, jungles and mountains, and an abundance of arms.

Martial law has been in place in Mindanao since an extremist alliance overran Marawi City in 2017 and occupied it for five months, in what was the Philippines' fiercest and longest conflict since World War Two.

The army said three remnants of that alliance were killed on Thursday when troops discovered a makeshift jungle camp. It released images of trenches and what it said was Islamic State paraphernalia.

Mohagher Iqbal, the MILF's top peace negotiator, said on TV on Thursday that he hoped radical splinters of the separatist group, like those of the Bangsamoro Islamic Freedom Fighters (BIFF), would recognize the will of the people for peace.

"One of the BIFF leaders has already reached out," he said, without elaborating.

(Reporting by Martin Petty; Additional reporting by Neil Jerome Morales; Editing by Tom Hogue)

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#8 St John’s Red Storm men’s basketball • Georgetown Hoyas men’s basketball • Georgetown University • Big East Conference • College basketball St. John’s Red Storm – Home

St. John's Red Storm

St. John's Red Storm updated their cover photo.


St. John’s faces must-win rivalry game before brutal road trip

St. John’s, like virtually every other team, preaches the importance of focusing on one game at a time but can see what’s around the corner.

When the weekend is through, the Red Storm will embark on a lengthy road trip that represents their toughest three-game stretch of the season.

It begins with a flight to Omaha, Neb., to face Creighton, the nation’s second-best 3-point shooting team, and the club with fifth-highest average attendance in the country. It follows with a stop at current No. 2 Duke and ends with a visit to No. 12 Marquette.

The Johnnies’ biggest game, however, may come before they leave town.

Having dropped three of its past four games, St. John’s (15-4, 3-4) has lost the cushion of its 12-0 start. Now, beating slumping Georgetown (12-7, 2-4) on Sunday afternoon at Madison Square Garden is no longer just an option for a team intent on reaching the NCAA Tournament — it’s practically a requirement.

“I’d say this is a must-win for us,” star guard Shamorie Ponds said. “We can’t drop two in a row, and definitely [can’t] lose at home.”

Facing the Hoyas for the second time in 22 days, the Red Storm enter the rematch looking for their first regular-season series sweep of Georgetown in 20 years.

St. John’s took the Jan. 5 meeting in Washington in overtime behind Ponds’ 37 points but has since been bounced from the Top 25 and sunk into the crowded mess of the Big East standings, sitting only a half-game above last place.

“I think some things might have got a little overwhelming,” senior Marvin Clark II said of the recent losses. “The way we’ve been losing games, not really finishing them, kind of starting out sluggish, kind of playing down to the level of our competition, we just gotta realize that’s not who we are.

“We’re anxious to play. … It’s gonna be a crazy atmosphere. Students are finally back. That’ll give us new life, new blood.”

Life was lacking for much of the Johnnies’ loss Jan. 19 at Butler in their most recent game. That defeat ended with coach Chris Mullin criticizing the team’s energy. After a week off, he expects his experienced group won’t allow it to be an issue again.

“I love the days off. I think it’s probably more important for them mentally than physically,” Mullin said. “The energy and effort and passion, it’s something you hope and assume is gonna be there. It does waver … [but] I feel confident. We got four veteran guys that are more than capable of navigating through those parts.”

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