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MONDAY, DECEMBER 7, 2009, 05:24 PM

My name. Your space.

Well, it’s been a long time coming, but we’re up and running now.I hope you enjoy the new look and feel of

It might have my name on it, but this is your space too. It’s a place where you can contact me directly…give me feedback… post photos… blog back…debate ideas…be part of a global campaign…suggest things for me to do and see…learn more about education…exchange information…and take action on issues we both care about it.

C’mon! What have you got to say for yourselves?

Have a look at My 5 for some inspiration…

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DW Duke
Monday, October 25, 2010

Someone read my post of October 21 and asked "So how did Moses know where to look when he was looking for the promised land? Was he just wandering around looking for something that felt right? Both the Torah and the Qu'ran agree that this land was given to the Israelites but why did it take them 40 years to find a little piece of land that was only a 9 days walk from where they started." Actually, the story, based on oral tradition, is quite fascinating.

Abraham met and was taught by Melchizadek, the king of Salem. Genesis 14:18-20. Melchizadek was actually Shem the son of Noah and the grandfather of Abraham. And Salem was actually, Jerusalem. When Moses set out looking for the promised land 400 years later, he was looking for the location where Melchizadek taught Abraham based on oral tradition.

Now here is an interesting wrinkle. Palestinians have lived in this region for thousands of years as have the Jews. Thousands and thousands of Palestinians are also descended from Jacob as are thousands and thousands of Israelis, though many Palestinians are of the Islamic faith having lived in a Muslim region for a thousand years. According to both the Qu'ran and the Torah, this region we call Israel was given to the descendants of Jacob. This would include not just European Jews but Palestinians who descend from Jacob. But realistically, how could we know who is descended from Jacob and who is not? We can't, not even with DNA testing and that is one of the reasons the Jews are forbidden from discriminating on the basis of religion or ethnicity. (See Exodus 23:9) How fascinating is that? :)

Friday, October 22, 2010

Your Majesty the Queen;

I am writing you this email to try and bring to your attention an important issue.
My name is FARAH MALHAS, I am the first and only Jordanian figure athlete and I have revived a lot of media coverage as such.

My training partner, ZAID AL-FAR, and I just competed at the WBFF World Championships which took place in Toronto-Canada in Sept 2010. I did not rank, but Zaid was awarded the gold medal in his weight division and also attained the gold medal in the over-al category.

Zaid is only 23 and already has a lot of tittles under his belt, it was an honor to represent Jordan in this competition and he will go down in history as the first and only Arab to win these prestigious tittles.

Our journey has been anything but easy, I am writing you to ask why amazing efforts like his have not been recognized or looked upon fondly in Jordan?...not since Mustafa Hassanain, who won a gold medal in bodybuilding in the early 90’s, has Jordan been able to attain the gold.

Zaid is an incredible athlete and is gifted genetically in regards to bodybuilding, he has been though a great deal but was able to push through and persevere.

His father passed away when he was young and he was forced to become the main caretaker for his family of nine, even attaining the visa was an impossible ordeal as he was rejected four times before he took off his cloths at the embassy to make them understand that he was indeed a bodybuilder.

Your Majesty, you are one who always commends education and supports unique and young talent throughout the country. I am writing you seek your help and assistance regarding this matter.

I know, for me, what I do is not looked upon fondly by traditional people, but Zaid is another story, he is good enough to one day be able to walk on the Olympia stage and represent Jordan among the best of the best.

The Bodybuilding federation in Jordan is corrupt and does not support such talent, athletes of Zaids calleber in other countries have a massive amount of sponsorship and are highly supported by their countries. When we were in Toronto for the competition, each athlete had a whole team behind him/ her from their home country, we were the only ones there with no support on any front, even regarding sponsorship we had none, I was forced to sell my only asset, which was my car, to be able to finance the training and trip.

Your Majesty, I know you are well beyond busy, but I am asking for your opinion and help regarding this mater, I am ready to do whatever you ask for in return, train, work, represent Jordan in competitions, whatever you see fit.

I hope to hear from you soon,
Our country needs to open up in regards to this sport as it is highly misunderstood.
And Zaid and I wish to be at the forefront of this movement.

Thank you again from the bottom of my heart,
Best Regards;

DW Duke
Thursday, October 21, 2010

I just read a wonderful article by Hanar Shaat concerning the Israeli/Palestinian relations. It reminded me of an article I wrote several years ago called "Who is Occupying Whose Land?" I thought some might find it of interest as this issue is considered. In my opinion, that answer is a little more complicated than one might first believe. But the reality is that we do not really need to determine who is occupying whose land. There is enough room for everyone if people can overcome fears and prejudices. Therein lies to key to peace in the Holy Land.

The region of the world we now call Israel has been the subject of a disputed claim of entitlement for thousands of years. For the Jewish people, the land of Israel is the promise land given to Moses and the Israelites by G-d around 1250 BCE. Israel did not always remain under the control of the Jewish people though there has never been a time when Jews were not in Israel since the recorded first arrival. Proof of the Jews in Israel has been found in archealogical digs dating back to 900 BCE.

In 578 BCE Israel was invaded by the Babylonians and came under the control of the Persians. The Jews were taken into captivity and removed to Babylon where there remained until the reign of Cyrus the Great, who returned Israel to Jews and gave them passage from Babylon to Israel. Alexander the Great conquered this Israel in 333 BCE which brought it under the government of the Greeks. In the year 165 BCE the Jews reclaimed Judea though within one hundred years the land had been conquered by the Romans. During this period the second temple was built in Jerusalem. In 70 CE the Jews revolted but were subdued and during this revolt the second temple was destroyed. In 133 CE during another revolt the Jews were banished from the land and taken into slavery. This was the beginning of the modern Jewish diaspora.

In the year 638 CE the Muslims conquered Jerusalem. Approximately 20 years later Omar, the second caliph of Islam, built the al-Aqsa mosque which is considered the third holiest place in all Islamdom. Other than in the years 1099-1187, the brief period when Jerusalem came under control of the Crusaders, the area we today call Israel remained under Muslim control until the 20th Century when it was reclaimed by the Jews. However, even during the period it was under Muslim control there were always Jews in Israel.

In the late 1800's European anti-semitism was on the increase. Jews were subject to various forms of persecution and were often deprived of basic opportunities of life. As persecution became increasingly intense a decision was made that the time had come to reclaim the land originally given to the Jews at the time of Moses. Impetus for this migration was largely a response to a book by Jewish journalist Theodor Herzl, written in 1896, called Der Judenstaat (The Jewish State). In light of this desire to secure a Jewish state, Jews began migrating from Europe to Palestine (today known as Israel) and by the beginning of the 20th century there was an estimated 25,000 Jews living in Palestine. As 1915 approached, that number had increased to over 70,000. These early immigrants became known as the Zionists. In 1917 British Foreign Minister Arthur Balfour sent a letter to Zionist leader Lord Rothschild which became known as the Balfour Declaration. In this letter, Balfour assured the Zionists that Britain would support the establishment of Palestine as the national home of the Jewish people.

By 1935 the number of Jews in Palestine had reached 300,000 which was nearly half the number of the native Palestinians living in the region. Some Palestinians welcomed the Jews and saw this as an opportunity to enrich their culture and commerce and to benefit from the Jewish connections to Europe. Others however, who did not wish to see the Jews moving into their homeland, sought to prevent them from immigrating to Palestine. Some believed for religious and others for ethnic reasons that the Jews were not entitled to live in the land that had been the home of Islam for over a thousand years. It is here that the seed of disharmony was planted hand in hand with ethnic discrimination in both the Arabs and the Jews.

On the side of the Jews at this time there were the secular Zionists and the religious Zionists. Many of the secular Zionists felt that the land had to be cleansed of all non-Jews in order to avoid the threat of persecution that was experienced in Europe. And many religious Zionists were of the belief that the Oral Torah precluded the possibility that non-Jews should be permitted to live in the reformed land of Israel.From 1920 until 1947 Britain had governed Palestine. In an effort to remove itself from the enigma of governing such a tumultuous region, Britain surrendered its control to the United Nations in 1947. In an effort to address the conflict, the United Nations proposed two separate nations, Palestine and Israel. Under this plan 56.47% of Palestine was to be given to the Jews and 43.53% was to be given to the Arabs. Jerusalem was to be treated as international territory. Meanwhile hundreds of thousands of Jews were fleeing Europe to immigrate to Israel.

Over time Arab resistance to the immigration of Jews began to increase. Much of the Arab resistance to Jewish immigration was the result of the actions of the Grand Mufti of Jerusalem, Muhammed Amin al-Huseini. Al-Huseini who was born in the 1890's. He was the son of the Mufti of Jerusalem who was a member of one of the most powerful families of Palestine. Muhammed Amin al-Huseini studied at al-Azhar University in Cairo and the Istanbul School of Administration. He quickly became known as an extremist whose instructions were to slaughter all Jews. The Palestinian High Commissioner from Britain was heavily influenced by anti-Zionists in Britain and he appointed Muhammed Amin al-Huseini to serve as the Grand Mufti of Jerusalem in 1922, despite his known hatred and violence toward Jews. As time passed the Grand Mufti became extremely powerful. He issued an edict called "Izbah Al-Yahud" which means "slaughter the Jews." But it was even worse for Arabs who would not support his plan. They were tortured and killed by the thousands until there was almost no one left who opposed the Mufti except those who remained silent for their own safety. With the support of Britain, Muhammed Amin al-Huseini was simply too powerful for anyone to oppose and his murdering of the Jews grew increasingly difficult to prevent.

In April of 1936 six very powerful Arab men formed an organization called the "Arab Higher Committee." This organization was created to oppose the immigration of Jews into Palestine and to oppose those in Britain who had begun to turn their support toward the Zionists. In that year Arab revolts broke out all over Palestine and many Jews were killed along with Arabs who had befriended the Jews. The Grand Mufti joined forces with Adolph Hitler in 1937 appealing to Hitler's own hatred of Jews. Although the record is unclear it has been alleged that the Grand Mufti was an influential figure in persuading Hitler to begin the concentration and extermination of the Jews in Europe in what we today call the "Holocaust." Eventually, the "Arab Higher Committee" was declared a terrorist organization by Britain after assassinating the British Inspector General of Palestine and killing scores of both Arabs and Jews.

The Grand Mufti Muhammed Amin al-Huseini was forced into exile in Syria then in 1941 he moved to Berlin where he worked closely with Adolph Hitler in the concentration and extermination the Jews. Muhammed Amin al-Huseini never returned to Palestine after his 1937 departure and he died in 1974 in exile from Palestine which by then had become known as Israel. During his life he was in strong opposition to the Hashemite family of Jordan and in 1951, he arranged the assassination of King Abdullah of Jordan because he had given the title of Grand Mufti of Jerusalem to another person. In 1969 the organization of Muhammed Amin al-Huseini, which became known in 1964 as the Palestine Liberation Organization, was taken over by his nephew Mohammed Abdel-Raouf Arafat As Qudwa al-Hussaeini, better known as Yasser Arafat. Until his death Yasser Arafat still referred to his uncle as "our hero al-Huseini."

Jewish forces and Arab forces were in constant clash with the Israeli forces showing the greatest success. On April 9, 1948 the Irgun and Lehi malitia groups massacred hundreds of Arabs at the village of Deir Yassin near Jerusalem. On May 14, 1948 Israel officially declared itself to be a nation and the Declaration became effective on May 15, 1948. On that same day, armies from five Arab nations, Jordan, Egypt, Lebanon, Syria and Iraq attacked Israel but were defeated. Subsequent to this confrontation, Egypt retained control of the Gaza Strip and Jordan retained control of the area today called the West Bank. Tension between Israel and the Arab nations continued to grow until June 5, 1967 at which time a major military conflict ensued which became known as the Six Day War because it only lasted six days. The attack was intended to be a secret attack by the Arab forces against Israel but Israel learned of the plan and issued a preemptive strike against Egypt disabling the Egyptian Air Force. By the end of the conflict Israel had seized control of Gaza and Sinai from Egypt and Golan Heights from Syria in the north. Jordanian forces had also been forced out of East Jerusalem and the West Bank. As a result of the Six Day War, Israel's territory of control nearly doubled and the United Nations estimated that over 500,000 Arabs had been displaced from their homes.

So who is occupying whose land. Perhaps the debate itself becomes a self fulfilling prophecy of alienation and continued conflict.
Perhpas the key to peace in the Holy Land lies a deep change in attitudes of the people. It is only by overcoming religious and ethnic prejudices that the conflict in Palestine and Israel will be permanently resolved. It ironic that the fight over who is entitled to the Holy Land, the land of the three major religons who share the same G-d, is based upon religious and ethnic discrimination and prejudice. What do you suppose G-d, whose primary message in all three religions is love and forgiveness, would say about the hatred and prejudice that spills so much human blood on this Holy Land?

Copyright 2008 DW Duke

Tuesday, October 19, 2010

Honorable Queen G! I want to discuss very important thing to you.
but not here.

Tuesday, October 19, 2010

May Allah shower his Countless blessin upon you and your family Queen Rania you are great!

Monday, October 18, 2010

Dearest Queen of Hearts: I know it is late, but wishing you the best of health after your procedure. Many hugs and salaams. M xx

DW Duke
Thursday, October 14, 2010

Jessica and Fred

Fred was a turtle who lived in a swampy marsh in a tropical region of Venezuela. Jessica was a mourning dove who would migrate south from North Carolina to spend the winter months in a warm climate. Often Jessica (pronounced Hessica) and Fred would sit on the edge of the water in the early evening hours to discuss topics of common interest such as the plausibility of natural selection. Jessica said, “If I could evolve into any other creature, I would choose to be a pterodactyl.”

Fred slowly lifted his head and with his eyes half closed said in a deep voice, “Say wuht?”

Jessica said, “I would like to evolve into a pterodactyl.”

“Wouldn’t that be regressive evolution?” asked Fred as he lowered his head back into the water.

“Only if we assume that those who preceded us were inferior,” replied Jessica. “What if they were actually superior and evolution is regressing?”

“Oh, I get it” said Fred. “You are asking me to suppose that natural selection actually operates in a manner antithetical to the well being of the evolving species.”

“Now you get it” said Jessica. “How do we know that mutations operate in a fashion consistent with the positive evolution of a species? In fact, how do we know that natural selection occurs at all? Isn’t that like saying that environmental factors, that lack mutation causing agents, actually cause changes in animal DNA?”

“Well, I don’t know for sure,” replied Fred, “but I do know that your ancestors were called turtle doves.”

“Yuck,” said Jessica,” as she shivered. “Call me boring but that sounds really gross.”

“Yeah,” said Fred. “Could you imagine a turtle being covered with all of those disgusting furry feathers?”

“Hey,” said Jessica. “I didn’t say anything about your baldheaded buttshell.”

“My what?” asked Fred.

Jessica did not reply. Instead, she jumped from the limb and flew to the other side of the river.

“Boy is she touchy,” said Fred as he slipped back into the water. “Next she will be telling me that it is more important to fly than to swim.”

Moral of the story: Always remember that each of us views the world from a different perspective. Each sees the world through a different set of eyes. Recognizing that different perspectives exist is the key to tolerance and understanding.

Thursday, October 14, 2010

Your Royal Highness,

Here some last updates of my previous message

With fond regards


Tuesday, October 12, 2010

Your Royal Highness,

I am in deep owe in front of all your activities. I was invited to your country in may 2001 and I love it very much.

I am an artist with a holistic vision of the world.
I would be ever so grateful to share this with you and have the honour to paint the portrait of Jordan with it's Soul.
Here some more info on my global art project.

With fond regards


Monday, October 11, 2010

Dear Queen Rania,
My name is George Bosh, and I have long been an admirer of Jordan. I've recently published a small book, Typhoon Coming On: The Separation of Church and State, and would be honored to send you a copy, if you supply me with a mailing address. Otherwise, it can be purchased through PublishAmerica or Barnes and Noble. I wouldn't trouble you if I didn't think the book worth your while.
Sincerely, George Bosh