Thursday, September 28, 2006

Thanks For Telling Us Something We Don’t Already Know

Finally 2 pieces of real news in the papers today.

No. 1 News Concerning the National Intelligence Estimate

The National Intelligence Estimate or NIE, is the name of a report produced by a senior group of analysts under the U.S. National Intelligence director John Negroponte. The report, titled Trends In Global Terrorism: Implications For The United States was completed in April, but has been declassified and released this week on President George Bush’s order.

Here are some extracts of the report in the Straits Times:

“The war in Iraq has become a cause celebre for Islamic extremists and is breeding deep resentment of the United States that is likely to get worse before it gets better.

According to the bleak report ….. the threat from Islamic extremists has spread in numbers and in geographic reach, despite serious damage to the leadership of Al-Qaeda.

If this trend continues, threats to US interest at home and abroad will become more diverse, leading to increasing attacks worldwide.”

No. 2 Mona Lisa was a new mother

Canadian scientists used special infrared and three-dimensional technology to peer through hitherto impenetrable paint layers of Leonardo da Vinci’s 16th-century masterpiece.

Curator Bruno Mottin of the French Museums’ Centre for Research and Restoration said that, on very close examination of the paint, it became clear that Mona Lisa’s dress was covered in a thin transparent gauze veil.

“This type of gauze dress was typical if the kind worn in early 16th-century Italy by women who were pregnant or who had just given birth.”

Impressive isn’t it? I am sure kiasu Singapore parents who read this article would want to encourage their kids to excel in science so that someday they too can make such earth-shaking discoveries for the betterment of mankind.

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