New blogs

Leherensuge was replaced in October 2010 by two new blogs: For what they were... we are and For what we are... they will be. Check them out.

Thursday, April 30, 2009

Experimental evolution in the test tube

Scientists from the Scripps Research Institute, Sarah B. Voytek and Gerald F. Joyce, have experimentally confirmed evolution at RNA level.

Both Joyce and Voytek developed self-replicating RNA molecules that reproduce autonomously and also, sometimes, mutate in the process. These RNA molecules feed on other molecules that they need for their replication process, the type of which may vary. Provided that there is enough food, the RNA replicates at fast rhythm and also mutates, creating new "species" of molecules.

The researchers also pitted two RNA strains in a pot with five different food resources, none of them of prime quality. The two strains eventually evolved as specialists in feeding from two of these available resources, becoming adapted to their particular lab environment. Not just that but their patterns of specialization also were different: one strain became very good at food processing but the other, even gobbling up much less food, managed to generate a much faster reproductive rate, becoming examples of different adaptative strategies through spontaneous evolution.

Source: Science Daily.

Original paper: Sarah B. Voytek and Gerald F. Joyce. Niche partitioning in the coevolution of 2 distinct RNA enzymes. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, Online April 28, 2009.

Netanyahu playing with fire

The Israeli PM is like asking EU: Bomb us with your ships and airplanes! As you are not doing that, you have no say in your own backyard.

The Zionist leader is trying to push back a suggestion by EU comissioners of freezing any upgrade of EU-Israeli already privileged relationships made in the wake of Israeli genocide in Gaza. He says that EU risks being excluded from further hypothetical negotiations on the Palestinian apartheid conflict.

And I say: EU, do you have what it takes? We have a much greater military power than Israel and certainly can totally exclude those Nazis from our markets and enforce a blockade against them.

I say: exclude Israel from all access to European markets and events until the apartheid is liquidated and democracy is restored in Palestine.

I say: intervene navally to breach the Zionist-Egyptian blockade against Gaza and make sure that humanitarian aid arrives and reconstruction can start. Send a fleet to Tel Aviv waters for the case those cocky Zionazis dare to open their big mouths again.

I say: send back the Zionist ambassadors and all other Zionist spies we can find. Expropiate Zionist property, not just that of Israelis but also that of any pro-Israeli undercover agency.

I say: arm Syria.

I say: make that arrogant bully shut up his big mouth. Who does he think he is? Damn clown!

Labor Union takes over bankrupt Chrysler

All roads lead to Socialism it seems.

As giant US car-maker Chrysler filed for bankrupticy (which is uspposed to be only a temporary measure), it was revealed that the confidential deal leading to this protective measure involved a 10% public stake (8% by US government and 2% by Canadian provincial governements), an alliance with Italian car-maker FIAT, that gets a 20% stake, and a majority stake by a union-run VEBA (probably affiliated to UAM, not 100% sure right now).

This in Spanish legal code would be roughly a "Labor Corporation" (Sociedad Anónima Laboral), which is considered a good alternative to the somewhat restrictive pure cooperative system, and allows private capital as long as it has no more votes than workers. The essentials are the same though: the control of the company now belongs to the workers.

In turn the current owners, mostly private equity firm Cerberus and, secondarily, Daimler, will forfeit their stakes. Bondholders will be given $2 billion in exchange of forgiving heir $7 billion debt; this has been approved by the banks, that hold 70% of Chrysler's debt, but not by hedge funds, who have been accused by the White House of blocking the deal, against their own interest and that of the company and the nation. The final decission will be taken by a tribunal.

As part of the deal Chrysler will recieve also $14 billion in public loans.

If the bankrupticy deal is ratified in court, the giant car-maker company will from now on be owned by its workers and won't be anymore a symbol of Capitalism.

I want to think that this is how Communism will become real. Not sure though. What do you think?

On super-haplogroups (Eurasian mtDNA)

Just a meditation on starlike haplogroups.

I noticed yesterday that haplogroup H holds almost as much high-level diversity as M does and is clearly superior to N and R in this aspect. All them are starlike in structure, indicating a rapid expansion or demic explosion of some sort but the dimensions of that explosion can be deduced from the number of top-level sublineages. So we have:

M: 35 sublineages
N: 12 sublineages (apparently)
R: 15 sublineages
H: 28 sublineages (plus a good deal of H* still around)

If we take M as reference (div(M)=1), then div(N)=0.34, div(R)=0.43 and div(H)=0.80. That makes H the most directly comparable clade with M in these terms of sudden expansive drive. And I think we are pretty safe directly associating H expansion with the Aurignacian pulse c. 41-40 kya (only U8, or maybe just U8a, would also belong to it but as minority clade).

So what do we know about this Aurignacian pulse? That it was a very fast expansion in Central and Western Europe happening in less than 1000 years. If there were any Neanderthals around, they posed no effective resistance anyhow.

Can we say the same of the M pulse? Probably yes. We don't yet understand well the archaeological circumstances surrounding the M explosion but it must have been something similar to the Aurignacian expansive drive (even greater surely, as it produced 25% more lineages) . Actually no wonder: either if this event corresponds with either the arrival of early Eurasians to an "empty" and fertile Southern Asia or if it corresponds to the recolonization of that area after the Toba catastrophe, both scenarios would imply the fast colonization of a nearly empty land. Whatever the case, M was possessed by very strong dynamics.

What about N and R? They are also macrolineages and also show a notable starlike structure. But they produced about half (or even markedly less in the case of N) the derived diversity of M or H. I understand that this is because, in spite of their intrinsic vigour, they had to compete with the already estabilished M population.

This may explain why relatively few N-derived lineages show a presence in South Asia (probably the homeland of M expansion) and instead they seem to have succeeded in the fringe "frontier" areas (East Asia, Australia and West Asia). As I have discussed somewhere else, the expansion of N seems (maybe excepting Australia, where it is dominant, probably because of founder effect) rather weak and scattered in space and time. Out of the frontier areas, only R (and maybe N9) show some clear dynamism, which actually should be considered in their own terms rather than as part of the N pulse. Of course, the N pulse itself (the N node and its starlike structure) does show some notable dynamism and I speculate that it is related to the colonization of SE Asia, which N would have pioneered maybe.

R is a very interesting case because it did expand very vigorously, notably in the context of South Asia, which was with all likehood already colonized mostly by M descendants. This suggests that they possessed some novel technology or some other effective advantage that allowed them to expand ignoring or overcoming the pre-existent M/N hold of those lands.

Still R is minoritary (albeit diverse) in South Asia and, to a large extent, also in East Asia. Their initial success was only relative and it seems they expanded first through the already transited Indo-Pacific Y (or T) axis. While some eastern lineages (B, F, Q) managed to make themselves some room in East Asia, the really strong expansion in fact happened in West Eurasia.

In this western frontier area, R-derived R0, U and JT seem to have found the conditions to leave their mark and become clearly dominant. And this leads me back to macro-haplogroup H, completing the discursive circle.

Basque journalists arrested

Eight people sentenced in the most controversial political trial of the last decade, the 18/98 judicial process at the Audiencia Nacional (a.k.a. Neoinquisition), have been arrested yesterday. They are journalists from Orain S.A. (editor of Egin newspaper) and the Joxemi Zumalabe Foundation (that attempted to organize civil disobedience for Basque self-determination).

They were accused of connivence with ETA but all the "evidence" was just ad-hoc police reports (in Spain that may be enough to get you in jail: you are guilty by default if the police says so) . Their appeal was due to be resolved, also but that same political Spanish tribunal, one of these days.

Source: Gara.

Wednesday, April 29, 2009

Eurasian mtDNA expansion

What follows is based mainly on my previous post
MtDNA tree (version 1.1), which in turn is based fundamentally on the information found at PhyloTree (as well as on Ian Logan's mtDNA site for many of the locations - but not for the phylogeny).

I am at all times assuming that each SNP is equivalent to some amount of time in all branches equally. Of course this is a rather daring assumption but better bold than coy. In any case, overall, it should be a nice approximation to real events.

1. Out of Africa and M explosion:

This map represents the time span included in five SNPs: the L2 and L3 explosions in Africa are roughly contemporary but M explosion (producing some 35 lineages) must necessarily have happened some time later (4 SNPs downstream of L3).

As in subsequent maps (and previous posts), macro-haplogroup M is color-coded in red and macro-haplogroup N in blue. The M node is located in South Asia because there is where the highest top-tier diversity is, the specific placement in Bengal is arbitrary: a concession to the also high diversity of this superlineage in East Asia and, to some extent, Sahul. But the M explosion could well have happened in Western or Southern South Asia too, soon after the arrival from (we assume) the South Arabian coasts.

2. The N explosion and diverse M secondary expansions:

This and subsequent "episodes" represent the (theoretically assumed) temporal equivalent of one SNP mutation.

N has been placed in SE Asia because of the 12 lineages produced in this explosion, the largest minority appears to be in Sahul, specifically Australia. Next in line is again the prolific South Asia. In fact SE and East Asia does not appear so much diverse in regard to this clade but is what stands between India and Australia.

Together with the N explosion, several M sublineages appear to have expanded. It is notable that Andaman appears to have been colonized at this early episode and that an arrival to Japan also at this early time should be considered as very possible.

The use of the "coastal route" should appear as obvious at this stage already.

3. First colonization of Sahul and other M and N derived expansions:

The flow along the Indo-Pacific arc continues and for the first time we see clear indications of human presence in Sahul, both Melanesia and Australia. Again a mainly Japanese clade is also seen expanding what seems to ratify the idea that humans were following the East Asian coast in northwards direction. The split of N1'5 is also indication that, even if N maybe exploded in SE Asia, there was a westward flow, flow that must also have carried the precursor of R back into South Asia.

4. The R explosion:

In this map I introduce two new notational features: (1) N-derived macro-haplogroup R is color-coded in green and not plain blue (reserved for N(xR) clades), and (2) some other relevant derived lineages are shown as smaller dots with italic text (in this case N1, ancestor of I, which appears to pioneer the colonization of West Eurasia).

The central event here is of course the R explosion (15 top-tier lineages), that happened without doubt in South Asia and that surprises somewhat because of its vigour. I speculate that the "tribe" that first carried this lineage may have developed some decisive technological, sociological or ecological advantage but it is hard to say for sure.

We also witness the contemporary expansion of several M sublineages, notably D in East Asia. M14, noted with a question mark, is shared between Australia and West Asia and, like others of the same kind has been tentatively located in SE Asia, without much conviction. M27 probably represents the first colonization of the Melanesian islands NE of New Guinea. N1 must represent the first attempt to colonize West Asia, where they must have met the Neanderthals.

5. Main secondary R expansion:

This moment is clearly dominated by R subclades, which appear by the moment limited to the classic Indo-Pacific arc, already transited by their M and N relatives before them.

The R31 node, shared by South Asia and Australia, is tentatively located at SE Asia but could perfectly be South Asian. It is notable that an R sublineage arrives to Sahul (located at New Guinea but in fact shared with Australia). R2'JT is also notable because it is with all likehood located in NW South Asia, where R2 is still rather frequent and not far from West Asia, where JT would soon after expand.

6. East and West:

After the vigorous R expansion of the two previous episodes, this moment seems somewhat more quiet and focused in West and East Asia. This may be a partly false impression caused by the fact that I am not paying much attention to "minor" derived subclades anyhow.

In any case, the will-be important R0 lineage (also known as pre-HV) is already present and dynamic in West Asia. In East Asia, we see the expansive drive of three important clades: R11'B (ancestor of B), M8 (ancestor of M8a and CZ) and G. Maybe I should have placed G in Japan, as I did with its ancestor but, anyhow, G is also found in mainland East Asia: in Eastern Siberia and Central Asia notably. The M8 node may well also have a rather northern location and both may represent a first attempt of colonization of the Eastern Steppes.

7. East and West II, plus the intriguing N2:

Again maybe for lack of low level resolution, we have the most important events centered in East and West Asia at this episode.

In West Asia probably (but surely not far away from South Asia anyhow) the important R-derived lineage U branches out: U1 and U5 probably stay in West Asia, while U6 may have began its journey towards North Africa. The remainder haplogroup U2'3'4'7'8'9 surely coalesced somewhere between Iran and Pakistan. Another notable West Asian event is the branching out of HV (7 sublineages, including the one leading to H, which may be already exploring its way into Europe).

In East Asia we can see the branching of three major lineages: CZ, R9'F and B.

N2 is the ancestor of Australian N2a and West/South Asian W. It is surely the last direct mtDNA link between these two regions and surely represents the last meaningful transiting of the "classical" Indo-Pacific coastal route that has been losing relevance already. Again its location in SE Asia is merely tentative.

8. Some further Asian expansions:

West Asia: split of JT, what means that this lineage was already "on location" and also split of U2'3'4'7'8'9. U2 and U7 are still shared by West and South Asia, U8 (ancestor of K among other lineages), U3 and U4'9 surely headed to or were already in West Asia.

South Asia: the expansion of M2 (eastern coasts) is notable in itself.

East Asia: haplogroup E, most important in SE Asia, expands.

9. European and North African colonization:

Not the only event in this episode but surely the most important one is the simultaneous expansion of haplogroups H (28 sublineages within a starlike structure: a macro-clade in its own right, closer to M in its generated diversity than to N or R) and U6. H is clearly centered in Europe and U6 is in North Africa. They appear to correspond to Aurignacian and to the "aurignacoid" Dabban industries respectively (both derived from a Levantine "proto-Aurignacian", it seems). The expansion of HV0 (of which V is a derived lineage) is surely also related to those events as is that of U8 (not marked in the map but contemporary anyhow).

Other notable events are the expansion of Q in New Guinea, that of N9a and N9b in East Asia (their "sister" Y would follow soon after) and that of R5 and R8 in South Asia.


And I believe it is a good moment to stop this visual narration. There are still some relevant events that happened after episode 9 but I have not drawn the maps.

Some of the most relevant not yet told events are:

Episode 10: F expands in East Asia, A does too (but further north probably), Y (N9-derived) also expands at this moment, what means the colonization of Sakhalin. X expands in West Asia and Egypt (X1-X2 split).

Episode 11: M1 expands in West Asia and East Africa, V expands in Europe, U5 splits into U5a and U5b (in Europe?).

Episode 13: C and Z expand already as distinct lineages in which is probably another episode of the colonization of the far North (Z is shared by such distant peoples as Japanese, Finnish or Hazara for instance).

Episode 14: J expands in West Asia.

Episode 17: expansion of K.

Episode 18: W and T expand in West Asia (W maybe South Asia too). It is possible that T2 migrated to Europe at this time.

Note: I estimated before that these K, T and W expansions might be as old as c. 21 kya but right now it appears to me that they could also be Neolithic. The decisive variable is the date of the M (and N) event (as the H node seems necesarily fixed at c. 41 kya): if the M node is estimated at c. 70 or 74 kya, then K, T and W only expanded in Neolithic or Epipaleolithic times but if, as I did before, it is estimated c. 60 kya, then this late expansion is still well in the Paleolithic and K therefore could well be associated with Magdalenian expansion, for instance.

Of course these "age estimates" are done ignoring demographic factors altogether, what is in itself a huge risk.

That's all, folks.

Swine flu: farm pigs and corporate pigs?

Just a brief note on the ongoing mediatic inflation of swine flu "pandemic".

The most interesting rumor right now is that Ronald Rumsfled is the one behind it. Not just his company Gilead Sciences Inc. is the developer of Tamiflu and will therefore get huge profits from any flu-related panic, as does its actual producer Roche, but also some people are douncing that it is only the last lab-created biological agent, which is being experimented on Mexicans primarily. Again the diabolic Rumsfeld would be behind.

An alternative and more commonly accepted explanation is that the flu has been indeed derived from pigs at a farm at Veracruz that uses a huge ammount of local water resources and throws the residues near the drinking water sources. In such appaling conditions, that have been denounced to no avail by local activists, it is no wonder that pig viruses cross to humans.

Additionally to whichever actual origins the virus has, some authors are also considering the socio-political implications of the flu. Petras argues that it is being used already as a further reason to crack down on Mexican migration to the USA, while Werbowski ponders the social control experiment that the state of emergency declared in Mexico has.

Who is Álvaro Uribe

Álvaro Uribe Vélez, the President of Colombia indeed.

With occasion of his controversial visit to Spain, where he was given an official prize, I had the opportunity to find out some less known details about him (source: Rebelión, in Spanish):

In 1991, he was listed as drug trafficiking mafia leader number 82 in a, now declassified, confidential report of the US Inteligence Agency (PDF), that reads:

82. Alvaro Uribe Velez - A Colombian politician and senator dedicated to cllaboration with the Medellin Cartel at high government levels. Uribe was linked to a business involved in narcotic activities in the USA. His father was killed in Colombia for his connection with the narcotic traffickers. Uribe has worked for the Medellin Cartel and is a close friend of Pablo Escobar Gaviria. He has participated in Escobar's political campaign to win the position of assistant parlamentarian to Jorge ((Ortega)). Uribe has been one of the politicians, from the Senate, who has attacked all forms of the Extradition Treaty.

(Links are mine)

Other niceties of the silverspoon narcopresident are that:

· Through his mandate as president, 995 extrajudicial killings happened, of which only 670 were vaguely investigated by the public attorney office and only a handful have finally reached trial.

· In the first term of Uribe's rule some 18,500 people were imprisioned arbitrarily in mass arrest operations.

· 72 congressmen have been investigated judicially, of which 11 have been declared guilty and 4 acquitted. Other 250 high ranking public officers in Uribe's administration are being investigated, including ministers, governors, mayors and directors of major deartments.

· Many people in the close circle of Uribe were appointed in spite of being directly connected with narcotraffic and death squads. Examples are his military advisor, Gral. Alejo del Río, who had been dismissed from active service for his many human rights violations; his former Chief of Police, Jorge Daniel Castro Castro, a well known narco; his Director of Anti-Drugs Intelligence, Gral Oscar Naranjo Trujillo, known accomplice of the coca cartels. When Castro was finally forced out of office for spying illegally nearly everybody, Naranjo took his post.

· Álvaro Uribe was Director of Civil Aeronautics in the 1980s and then gave hundreds of airplane licenses to major drug traffickers. Pablo Escobar then said of him that would not be for Uribe we all would have to go swimming to the USA to deliver the drugs.

· His cousin and close ally, former senator Mario Uribe is currently under arrest on grounds of conspiration for crime by agreements to promote armed gangs outside the law. In other words: organizing death squads.

So this is the President of Colombia who just recieved the "Prize Cortes of Cádiz to Freedom"
from the neofascist mayor of Cádiz (the Cortes of Cádiz was the first liberal Spanish parliament, gathered in resistence to Napoleonic occupation and which promulgated a very progressive and democratic constitution, that survived only a few years).

This is the President of Colombia who is the third largest reciever of military aid from the USA.

Israel more akin to Nazi Germany than to Apartheid South Africa

There is an interesting meditation by Salim Nazzal at Sabbah Blog on the unique type of racism that the Zionist regime is founded upon.

He argues that White South Africans arrived there without a pre-defined racist project or any project whatsoever in fact: the racist ideology and regime only evolved trough time ad contextually. Meanwhile Zionists arrived to Palestine with a clear genocidal goal: supress all natives, either by murder or forced exile, and take their land.

He mentions as illustrative example the Israeli officer in the massacre of Kufr Qasim which took place in 1956 was not only proud of what he committed of murder but summarized the Zionist worldview: "In killing of any Arab here (in Palestine) we save the life of an Israeli, and by killing Arabs outside we save Israel!". Sentence that resembles way too much that one of Hitler about what mattered the death of one hundred Polish women digging a trench if those deaths could save a single German soldier.

A rather unique element of Zionist genocidal policies is what Nazzal describes as "kill and cry": that particularly annoying attitude of blaming their victims for the Zionist criminal acts. Maybe Torquemada acted the same way, blaming Jews and presumt witches of forcing him to torture and murder them.

Another very much unique and also disturbing element is trying to bring back history back to 2000 years ago, like if nothing have happened in between, both in Palestine and also among the international Jewry that feeds Israel with flesh and gold.

There are other differential elements but certainly it is very much worrying that it resembles so much, like so many abused people, to the ones who abused them. We may feel pity for their dramatic historical traumas (but they are not the only ones who have suffered nor certainly the main ones suffering in colonized Palestine) but that cannot ever serve as excuse to do the same unto others.

Never again! Destroy Nazi Israel!


Tuesday, April 28, 2009

The brutal cost of the Basque High Speed Train

The Basque High Speed Train (known as AHT-TAV by its Basque and Spanish language name) is already an old project that has been forged and imposed slowly by the Western Basque and Navarrese autonomous administrations in the name of modernity and progress, bypassing the nearly total rejection of rural inhabitants (the main losers: the train will not stop in their towns and will severely disrupt their enviroment and local communications) and many concerned urban ones.

Now is the time when this pharaonic project actually begins to be built and the platform AHT Gelditu! (High Speed Train Stop!) has distributed by some 800,000 homes a fake mail by the Basque and Navarrese governments in which it was explained the immense cost (6.34 billion euros) and the fact that the authorities have no budgetary capability to pay for it. The prank claimed that it would be paid instead by increasing the income tax by 30% and similar draconian measures for all. This last extreme is not clear but the question on how we Basque citizens are going to pay for this elitist pharaonic bullet train is at the moment unanswered.

Surely some will make a lot of profit from it: all those construction companies with many a corrupt link within the power circles will make good money. The corrupt officers in charge, no matter of what party, will also fill their pockets secretly and we will have to pay the bill. How? That is not really clear.

Sources: Gara and AHT Gelditu!

Not a meteorite but a supervolcano

The old theory of what killed the dinosaurs, along with 65% of contemporary species, was an impact of a meteorite from outer space has been dismissed by recent methodic research that shows that the Chicxulub crater at Yucatan is actually 300,000 years older than the K/T event and that it actually caused the extinction of no known species whatsoever.

Instead the eruption of a supervolcano in India and the radical climatic alterations it caused was the responsible for the massive extinction.

Read more at Science Daily.

This basically removes any major pretext for the meteorite-hunting paranoia, of likely hidded military goals, that we have been bombed with in the media. It's not imposible that a sizeable meteorite hits us sometime in the (likely quite distant future) but it won't kill us as species. Instead it is much more likely that we kill ourselves by means of unconsiderate global warming (no need of a supervolcano this time: we do it on our own arrogant idiocy).

Saturday, April 25, 2009

One million signatures for Gaza!

You may be familiar with online signature petitions. Well, this one is maybe one of the most important ones you may ever be asked to sign: the lifes of many people are at stake. It may seem a mere symbolic act but it is important that it becomes known that people around the World do care about what is happening in Palestina and especially the brutal siege thrown on Gaza Strip by the Zionists and their Egyptian allies (and the USA too - nothing of this could be happening without the active support of that country).

So, please, sign the petition titled The International Call to Stop The Gaza Siege Now. It may make a difference.

Vultures protest in Brussels and force EU to feed them

More or less.

Since the mad cow epydemic, EU issued rules forbidding to leave cattle carcasses in the open. This was a major setback for the winged cleaners, whic have been starving since then. While these birds are most common in the Iberian peninsula, the EU-induced famine has made many of them to travel wildly and in at least one case, a vulture has been spotted perched on top of a bus in the center of Brussels.

That seems to have been too much for the European Comissioners who, maybe fearing to become the vulture's prey themselves, have reverted their previous ruling, allowing finally to leave carcasses on the fields, provided it is deemed safe and higienic.

Source: BBC.

Friday, April 24, 2009

mtDNA tree (version 1.1)

After digging for some time in the sources at PhyloTree, I have come with a revised mtDNA tree that locates most (but not all) rare lineages.

Please check for any possible errors and/or further information I might have missed.

Click to enlarge

The tree is exactly the same as in the previous version. The only changes are in the location of some rare clades, reducing the number of "unknown" lineages to just 4 M subclades. In two cases (M22'25 and M47'50) I only know the location of one of the two subclades but I'm simplistically assuming that it applies for the whole lineage.

Most of the newly located rare lineages are South Asian, SE Asian (noted as East Asian) or Australian.

The revision still seems to keep M and R gravitating (or at least most highly diverse) at South Asia. N remains mysterious with its highest apparent diversity in Australia (but it is possible that some of the rare lineages are related) and then in South Asia (especially if we include R).


· M forms basically a "T" with South Asia, East Asia and Sahul at the three extremes and a thin projection to the west.
· N(xR) follows the southern Asian coasts from West Asia to Sahul, with a rather reduced projection to the NE (i.e. middle-East Asia).
· R is more West-South-SE Asian axis, with only limited presence in Sahul.

There is a rather strong link between South Asia and West Asia at the R and N lineages, that in some cases extends to Australia (but always seems to exclude East Asia). This does not diffuminate the diferential personality of these regions though.

Further observations: comparison of N with M and R:

The high apparent diversity of N in Australia (take with a grain of salt) may suggest a SE Asian origin for this lineage or at least a high level of flow of this clade through SE Asia in the early stages of Eurasian expansion. I find a strictly Australian N urheimat rather unlikely anyhow.

If my reading is correct, the very first moment of Eurasian expansion was starred by the M explosion and that of many (9) of its derived lineages, mostly in South and SE Asia. N, which was surely lurking along M at that stage may then have been carried to SE Asia along with the other M lineages. It is a possibility.

Anyhow there is no single temporal instance (except its very original node) where you can talk of an "N explosion" clearly: its subclades expand locally, and even often ignoring regional divisions, without any particualr temporal concentration, scattered along time. This is quite different of what we can see in M (early stages especially) and, to a lesser extent maybe, R (second phase), whose nodes are succeeded by large scale expansion of their subclades.

Let me explain myself graphically (">" means the temporal equivalent of one SNP):
· M expands (35 branches) > 9 M subclades (26%) expand > 8 M subclades (23%) expand
· N expands (12 branches) > 2 N subclades (17%) expand > 2 N subclades (17%) expand (one is R)
· R expands (15 branches) > 6 R subclades (40%) expand > 2 R subclades (13%) expand

So not only the M node is much more vigorous than those of N and R but also its branches show more vigor as well. R seems also pretty vigorous at least in the first moment (at that point even much more than M) but, otherwise, N seems to trail behind the rest and scatter its expansion through time.

Only primary derived nodes were considered above.


Check also my previous version and comments.


Key witnesses of Bush' election-rigging dead in mysterious circumstances

at Rebelión (in Spanish): scroll down for the specific sources' links, all seemingly in English, many of them from The Brad Blog.

The story begins in 2003 in a Florida motel, where Raymond Lemme, Florida Attorney General's officer in charge of investigating the allegations of Republicans rigging the elections in that state in the year 2000 elections, was found dead with two cuts in his right arm. Police declared "suicide" but anyone with some knowledge of suicide techniques knows that it is virtually impossible to kill oneself that way (no matter what Holywood says: it is an attention-calling performance or a stupid failure, not any effective method of self-destruction). Anyhow, there was never any forsenic examination in spite of all the strange elements concurring (for example he had left that motel room the night before, not to mention his political relevance).

In 2008, Mike Connel, an important figure in the Bush' gang, especialized in informatics and very close to Karl Rove, died in a private airplane "accident" just minutes after taking off. This happened soon before he was going to witness in trial for the election rigging in Ohio in 2004, a state that decided GWB victory. He had already released information to the prosecutors, who considered him a key witness and asked for his institutional protection, which was declined.

He was also implicated in vote rigging in senatorial elections in Georgia.

Moral? Use the classical transparent ballot boxes: e-voting is a scam.

Thursday, April 23, 2009

mtDNA tree (version 1.0)

What follows is my version of the mtDNA tree found at PhyloTree. The main characteristic is that each 10 horizontal pixels in the full size image represent one (known) SNP.

Click to enlarge

Anotations in magenta at the right are merely informative of the main location of the various lineages. I used only 7 distinct geographical regions for this purpose: Africa, West Eurasia (extending sometimes to North Africa and Central Asia), South Asia (extending in one case to Central Asia), East Asia (extending sometimes through North Eurasia, Central Asia and America), Andaman Islands, Australia and Melanesia. Some lineages I really don't know right now where they have been found and have been left without anotations.

Preliminary findings: the rythm of expansion.

Very simplified, I find the following apparent pulses:

1. A very old one when L0, L1 and L2'3'4'5'6 begin their expansion.

2. A "rapid" sequence of expansion of L3:
2.1. Expansion of L3 and L2.
2.2. Expansion of three L3 subclades: L3b'c'd'j, L3e'ik'x and L3h.
2.3. Expansion of M, N and many M sublineages of "very short stem" (1 SNP)
2.4. Expansion of R and many M, N and R sublineages of "short stem". Includes also N1, N9, S, most Melanesian M, most South Asian M that had not expanded before, M7, M9, D...

3. After a brief "pause", expansion of the main West Eurasian lineages: HV and U, coincident with some les relevant branching pulses in South and East Asia and even Melanesia.

4. The latest multiple expansive pulse I have located, apparently some time after step 3, is centered in East Asia and surely related to the colonization of the north. The main clades taking part are C and Z, but also M10, M11, M12 and M13 (all East Asian, except the last that I don't know right now). It has some parallel in West Eurasia with the expansion of many U subclades, notably U5, U6 and R0a.

Update: I had to correct an anotation in the image and used that intervention to add a table of diversity of the three major Eurasian macro-haplogroups by regions. It is very clear that M and R diversity gravitates around South Asia. The case of N(xR) is less clear and should depend in where the various minor N lineages are found maybe. Still the case for a South Asian origin can be made for this clade too, moreso if we add R to the figure of South Asian N clades (all three shared with other regions though).

Wednesday, April 22, 2009

Somalian pirates claim defense of national waters

There's an interesting first-hand account from a Somalian pirate at the BBC today. Dahir Mohammed Hayeysi claims that foreign illegal industrial overfishing and toxic waste dumping are the main reasons behind Somali piracy. He also claims that foreign navies can't do nothing to stop it, that only a government who can protect their waters can.


Tuesday, April 21, 2009

Basque film triumphs in Cuba festival

The film
Querida Bamako (Dear Bamako), co-directed by Txarli Llorente and Omer Oke (former Director of Immigration in the Western Basque autonmous government) got the first prize for fiction movies in the Festival of Poor Cinema of Cuba, plus the especial mention of the foreign press.

A Basque documentary, Sicarios del Capital (Hitmen of Capitalism), of Gregorio Subersiola, got the Zero Poverty prize in the section of documentary, videoart or experimental work. It deals with the political violence in Colombia, where people is murdered every other day, mostly for oposing the government and the ultra-wealthy.

This Festival of Gibara is focused in low-budget films from around the world, but, according to Omar Oke, it is a festival that gathers many films and lots of talent, because what they mean by "poor" is only about budget.

Oke evaluated positively the success of his film because, while commercial cinemas have rather ignored it, it has got a very good circulation in parallel and even alternative circuits. Thanks to this subdistribution it has been watched by many people in many festivals, at schools, at NGO meetings...

Oke has another film already finished: La Causa de Kripan (Kripan's Cause), which deals on female castration. He is still awaiting for donors to finish post-production.

Oke (l) and Llorente (r) before their movie's poster

Other films that earned prizes in the Gibara Festival are Chilean El Súper of F. Aljaro and F. del Río, Chile, and La Anunciación (The Annunciation) of E. Pineda Barnet, Cuba. Brazilian Café com Leite (Tú, Él, Yo) of D. Ribeiro got the first prize for short movies, while Bilal of Indian Sourav Sarangi obtained the first prize in the documentary, videoart and experimental work section.

Other prizes were given to Costa Rican El Camino (The Path), of Yshtar Yasin Gutiérrez (foreign press jury choice), Bolivian Humillados y Ofendidos (Humilliated and Offended) , of J.H. Alvárez, C. Brie and P. Brie (best Spanish American documentary) and Cuban Los Dioses Rotos (The Broken Gods), of E. Daranas (especial prize from the audience).

Source: Gara.


Our rulers' hypocrisy on racism

Found at Desert Peace. Drawing by Carlos Latuff (copyleft).

I can only imagine that the guard in the background is Canada, a country that has the most boot-licking attitude towards Israel and Zionazism.

As you probably know, Canada (first of all), the USA (second) and some European states are boycotting the Durban conference on racism because they do not seem to accept that the main case of outraging racism and apartheid in the world today is Israel.

They fill their mouths with the word "antisemitism" until the term has been dried up of any meaning. And, anyhow, aren't Arabs Semitic too?

Monday, April 20, 2009

Shlomo Sand on the invention of the Jewish People

Interesting interview with this Israeli historian that you can read at Rebelión (in Spanish) or at l'Humanité (in French). I know of no English version but I'll translate some excerpts here. He deals with his book When and How Was the Jewish People Invented?

I am very much Israeli, of Jewish origins. My cultural baggage is not European but especially Israeli. My first words of love were in Hebrew! It is very interesting to find out that Zionism does not acknowledge the Israeli people but still talks of "Jewish people", therefore neither Arab nationalism nor Zionism acknowledge the fact that in the Near East a society, a culture, even, it can be said, a new people that speaks a distinct language has arisen.


The exodus from Egypt never happened. (...) As historical document the Bible is not valid. I began researching when did the Bible became a historical book.


The first model [of Jewish nationalism] is the idea of the German nation. A national idea that is not republican, that is not civic, that relies on the notion of "where do we come from?" instead of using that of "where do we go from here", like the national ideas of France and the USA.

Therefore a lineal, totally imaginary, national history was created, beginning with the Bible.


I am not really sure that there was a Judaistic monotheism before the destruction of the Second Temple, before the destruction of the Kingdom of Judea. There are many archaeologists who think that there was never a large Kingdom of Israel. (...) The Bible is nothing but a mobilizing text to create a God-chosen people.


All children in Israel know that Tito exiled the Jews in the year 70 AD. (...) Can you believe that there is not a single book on the exile? Specialists know therefore that there was never any exile (...)

Ben Gurion, a great Zionist, believed until the late 1920s that the real descendants of the Judeans (term I use in my book) were the Palestinian peasants who never left the country. There were elites who migrated but, as always happens in history, the large masses of food producers never went anywhere.


So, if Jews were not really exiled, where did they live? I had not paid any attention to the fact that the Kingdom of Judea forced all its neighbours to convert. First by the sword, like any other religion, and then by persuassion too. Judaism proselytized until the triumph of Christianism. Then it became a religion enclosed in itself. (...) Jewishness is not any essence: it is a great religion. (...) I think that the origin of 80% of modern Jews is in Eastern Europe, notably Khazars and Slavs.


In Israel we have a regime that is deeply undemocratic, because it does not intend to serve the society but to the Jewish ethnicity throught the World.


It is the first time that a non-Zionist candidate to the post of Tel Aviv major gathers 34% of votes [communist Dov Khenin].

Chávez' gift to Obama makes Galeano a superstar

Las Venas Abiertas de América Latina
(Open Veins of Latin America: Five Centuries of the Pillage of a Continent in the English version) is surely the most famous book of E. Galeano, a classic of Spanish-language literature even few decades after being written. It narrates in black humor tones, by means of historical anecdotes, the colonialist and neocolonialist plundering of the other America, the one south of Río Grande, since Colombus' times.

This masterpiece was ranked number 52,295 by sales in Amazon last friday and by Sunday morning it was ranked just second. This in regard to the English-language edition, the Spanish version is surely better known and, while has also grown, it has done so less spectacularly (possibly because it can be obtained at most local bookshops and libraries and also because many already own a copy).

When in 2006, Chávez pronounced his famous discourse at the UN General Assembly, claiming that the podium, that had been used by GWB still smelled to sulfur, he carried a copy of one of Chomsky's book, also sending it to the bestselling rankings.

You may agree or not with the Venezuelan leader but no doubt that he is a great book-seller.

Source: Rebelión.

Haitians massively join election boycott

Only 8% of electors casted their votes in the Senatorial polls in occupied Haití. This happened after Fanmi Lavalas, the party of the popular President Bertrand Aristide, ousted by a Franco-US invasion, was forbidden to take part in the polls.

Five years after the imperialist coup of 2004, Aristide and his Lavalas (avalanche) party remain the only popular choice in the impoverished Caribbean country and with good reason. Hopefully one day the imperialist troops (and shame on Brazil for participating in the occupation, by the way) will have to leave and the people's choice will be respected regardless of what the Gringos think about it.

Wednesday, April 15, 2009

Thailand turmoil finally well explained

I was getting the impression, watching the repression in Thailand this week, so different to the lack of it when the "yellow shirts" did exactly the same last year, that the current "yellow" government is basically a puppet of the king and very especially the army and that in the end Thaksin and his "red shirts" would be the party of the people and the others just the usual political dogs of the estabilishment. But I don't know too much of Thailand (other than it being the main vassal of the US Empire in the region, together with Philippines), so I have kept a cautious "neutral" attitude.

Finally I have found at The Guardian (via Rebelión) an article that explains what is really going on.

The author, Giles Ji Ungpakorn explains that, yes, Thaksin is evil, burgueoise and corrupt but he managed to lead the popular discontent against the de-facto monarchical dictatorship and the estabilishment in general, which is even more evil, burgeueoise and corrupt. After the reaction managed to take him out, the real party behind him is emerging and their new name Real Democracy (instead of the rather silly "Thai Loves Thai" used in the past) speaks a lot.

Ungpakorn explains that what is going on is in fact just the normal class war going on everywhere else: the people demanding real democracy and social change, some of which Thaksin implemented in fact. But he argues that the red shirts are far from being just mere passive followers of Thaksin, that they have reacted in anger in fact to some of his policies and lack of them in the past and that, now that Thanksin is in exile, have become even more radicalized.

In turn the yellow shirts are denounced as a monarchist fascist old guard trying to impose a "new order" where most public positions, including parliamentary seats, would not be elected. Fascism.

Ungpakorn had to exile himself last February to avoid being persecuted under the fasicst laws of the SE Asian realm that severaly persecute anyone who criticies the totalitarian monarch.

In a sense we are watching some of what happened in Nepal last year, with the difference that the red shirts, by the moment, are not so much radicalized and certainly (unlike the yellow shirts) are not armed like the Maoist guerrilla of the Himalayan country. As the confrontation deepens the republican sentiment grows and, well, anything may happen. Moreso in such an awful general economic context as the one we suffer now.

Basque former major acquited of terror charges

The former major of Andoain (Gipuzkoa) has been acquited of charges of "collaboration with terrorist gang" not without having been imprisoned for six months and incommunicated in police dependencies for five full days.

Joxean Barandiaran was accused on the grounds that he had a meeting with other politicians to discuss the possible frame of a would-be Basque state (or so says the police report). The same judge that sent him to prision "preventively" has now admitted that there are no grounds for the accusation.

Back in the day the arrests of theses politicians in Bordeaux had a high mediatic hype, as the issue was presented as the arrest of a major ETA cell and blah blah.

Source: Gara.

More Islamist abuses in Obama's Empire

Afghanistan would be laughable if it would not be for so much people suffering under the Neotaliban rule supported by the USA-NATO occupation force. The last brutality is
the approval of a communalist law allowing Shia (but not Sunni) men to rape their wives once eavery four days (that's the kind of Torah mentality they have: all regulated, even sex - but of course women's opinions do not matter). This is sold as some sort of "multiculturalism" because it would acknowledge differences between Sunni and Shia sharia traditions.

Of course Afghan women do not buy. And have gone out to the streets of Kabul to protest in the weirdest kind of feminist parade I've ever witnessed (all them covering their heads and chanting "Allah u akbar": "God is great").

After the demo they were attacked by stone-throwing super-macho counter-demonstrators (all men) that yelled "Death to the Christians' slaves". Like if Christians had not supported the same kind of patriarchal abuses in the very recent past. I was born under a Christian fundamentalist regime, I know what I am talking about: that same kind of laws allowing rape in marriage were in effect until many years after the death of Ayatollah Franco.

What I don't think that was allowed anymore back then (fascism after all is a "modern" phenomenon, even if reactionary and spiteful) was what still happens in the favorite ally of the USA in the region: the ultra-fascist mafious tyranny known as Saudi Arabia. As you surely know the situation of women's rights in the "Muslim Vatican" (with 27 million subjects and many more foreign de-facto slaves) is worse than imaginable. But you may not know that fathers can arrange marriages for their minor daughters with whomever they want, even if these girls are still as young as 8 years old. This is the case of a young girl from an impoverished family (yes there is poor people in Saudia, indeed - and not all are outcasts with foreign passports) who has been forcibly married by her father to an 80 years old pervert. The mother appealed in court, causing some controversy in the retrograde realm, but the father's decission was upheld.

And this is the kind of abuses we are asked to watch indifferent in a world that knows no real borders anymore. In these cases I always think that a little bit of Stalinism would not be in excess in such areas. It's not bigotry: I am just appalled that human rights are smashed by superstitious ideologies (aka religions). Obviously it must be Arabs who solve Arab problems and Afghans who solve Afghan problems but some internationalist support for those fighting for the rights and dignity of Humankind is never in excess. If instead of supporting the bigots and machos there, we would arm the feminists, then at least we would know we are doing something of use. But we (our governments) arm the nazis and ignore the humanists and that has no pardon.

Tuesday, April 14, 2009

Beinstein on The Crisis

Admittedly I had never heard before of this Argentine economist with cathedra in Besançon but his opinions fit surprisingly well with what I think, so I will try to echo some of his thoughts.

Source: Rebelión: Una conversación con Jorge Beinstein sobre la 'crisis general de la civilización burguesa': "Esta crisis es mucho más grave que la de 1929". Interview by S. López Arnal (in Spanish, obviously).

Some excerpts:

Nature of the crisis:

Under the appearence of a curious convergence of many "crisis" (economical, energetic, enviromental, state, urban, etc.) what is actually happening is a general crisis of the burgeueoise civilization. In its immediate origin we find a chronic overproduction crisis lasting for almost four decades (...). Even if this chronic overproduction crisis appears as the trigger, the final catalyst of this civilizational crisis, we must clearly differentiate both concepts. (...) It happens that each historical overproduction crisis left open injuries, structural damage, parasitary degenerations (...) that at the beginning of the 21st century are finally causing a "general subproduction crisis": the general incapability of the system to reproduce itself in an expanded manner anymore, to keep growing in the long term.

We are now going through the beginning of the end of a long historical transit (...). In principle we would be at the beginning of a long-lasting crisis-decadence but this is not more than a work hypothesis: History often turns out unexpected.

Financial bubble:

The global network of real state bubbles was evaluated in dossier at The Economist around 2005, soon before the debacle in the USA, as equivalent to the Gross Product of all rich countries together. This is a lot but it is littile when compared with the sum of derived financial products registered by the Bank of Basel that same year that were an speculative mountain worth 12 times the World Gross Product.

The Greater Middle East wars:

(...) they believed that the colonial wars in Iraq and Afghanistan would give them the control of a vast Eurasiatic zone stretching from the Balcans to Afghanistan, at whose core, the Persian Gulf and the Caspian Sea basins, are located about 70% of the global oil reserves. (...) This imperialist offensive was pushed by the Military-Industrial Complex (...). Since Reagan's presidency it became entangled with parasitary and predatory business (...) conforming an oligarchic and mafious system that nowadays constitutes the backbone of the imperial power. All that was expressed in an almost caricaturesque manner by the government of George W. Bush and his hawks, now Obama, in spite of his populist gestures, is just a puppet of that highly irrational power whose dynamics push the system towards disaster. The new president (...) is more of the same: militarist business continue their triumphant march generating a fiscal deficit without precedents in US history whose continuation could even cause the bankrupticy of the imperial state in the mid term.

Senility crisis:

It is necesary to look before 1930: this crisis is much bigger even if we just ponder the financial-economical aspects. Never before in the history of Capitalism was such a huge speculative mass accumulated at all, not just in absolute terms but especially when compared with the World Gross Product. Capitalism today is a mere predatory-parasitary system and that sets an essential qualitative difference with the past. (...)

Never before did Capitalism suffer from such a huge crisis, which looks like the inverse phenomenon to the birth crisis of the modern system at the end of the 18th century (...). Now we face a senility crisis of the burgueoise world, with its economical system trapped in financial parasitism, with its imperial Military-Industrial Complex transformed in a decadent machine, its state structures degradated, etc.


The talk about a "Chinese capitalist superpower of the 21st century" has been nothing but a mediatic hype that recycled the old and always failed illussion of reconversion of underdevelopement into develepoment thanks to the intensification of the burgueoise type transformations. Chinese growth, subordinated to the dynamics of global Capitalism, has arrived to its stagnation stage. (...) sooner or later, and it seems it will be very soon, the once prosperous Chinese industrial structure will enter in a deep crisis that will question in a very general manner the overall status quo.


Capitalism can survive but in a decadent manner, like has been doing for the last four decades. That will depend on the social and political convulsions caused by its decline (...). The neo-fascist coup attempt of the hawks does not need to be the last one of its kind: the US Industrial-Military Complex is suffering a severe cultural crisis: its internal prestige has declined but still has the instruments to generate a new reactionary alternative. This is a very serious possibility.

(...) The only thing they can do is to apply succesive doses of tranquilizers, of partial remedies, insufficient measures in wait of some miracle, that is what doctors usually do with their ailing patients.

Comparison with the fall of the Soviet Union:

It is a very good comparison, that we can extend to many other pre-modern civilizations, consumed by parasitism and that finally imploded.

Enviromental crisis:

Enviromental degradation is at the very center of the current civilization crisis: it is tightly associated to the process of predation of natural resources (...) whose ultimate cause is found in technological reproduction of Capitalism. This one has followed a trajectory of some two centuries of creative destruction-predation in the Shumpeterian sense of the concept, that is: with a positive net result from the viewpoint of the expansion of the productive forces... until it has arrived now to a phase of growingly negative redits in civilizational terms, including the enviromental aspect. (...)

Enviromental degradation is not a long term problem, a problem for the generations to come in a distant future: it is hitting now the economic activity, rural and urban life. Those who want to leave the matter aside in the name of economic urgencies have a very abstract vision, very detached from factual reality, from the problems of a possible reproductive reorganization, from the necessary energetic reconversion, etc.

How the Left should act:

We are right now immersed in the Capitalist crisis that looks as of long duration and without foreseable exit. Turbulences have just begun (...). In this new context, the Left should go into the offensive rapidly, developing a wide fan of struggles aiming to power. Gather the anti-system forces, de-estabilize the existing power systems, reduce their social legitimacy, make efforst of social and regional convergence.

It is very difficult, almost impossible, to outline a general project for all the left movements around the planet. Nevertheless we can find some common elements: for instance, political democratization at all levels, fracturing the elitist dynamics that defined the neoliberal era: grassroots democracy versus burgeuoise pseudodemocracy. And, beginning from that, recycling of the productive web: of finances, of internal and external trade, etc. That implies nationalizations (...), not to serve the interests of the elites but to transform them into truly public, that is: democratic, with strong imprints of self-management, of administrative transparency, of popular control. It is necessary to deal with the social redesign of economy: redefine consume styles based on quality and durability, rejecting the consumerist dehumanizing, individualist madness. Consume to live and not live to consume. This kind of approach would allow us to adress rationally the energetic issue: facilitating a reconversion that will take some time and that should go through huge energy savings. It should also allow for the developement of strategies of reconstruction in the enviromental aspect.


The way out of the crisis that I have just outlined is nothing else but a march to Socialism. But what should we understand today as Socialism? Certainly not the kind of statist Socialism experimented through the 20th century, prisioner of a decisive ideological dependency from the military-industrial burgueois statism in rise since the end of the 19th century. (...)

Now it is all changing very quickly: the burgueoise civilization drifts without direction, its great myths are beginning to collapse (...). Consequently Socialism today should adopt much more radical, revolutionary and democratic shapes than in the past (...)

The emancipation movement must be thought and tried from clearly Communist final goals (...). Socialism concieved as plural path, as process of creative destruction, of institutional breakages, demolitions that allow for the instauration of solidarious, fraternal social structures of production and consume, not anymore as humanist complement of Capitalism but as its revolutionary superation: estabilishing decentralized political structures, incrementing, multiplying direct democracy. Much of that can be found in the revolutioanry movements of Latin America, though I am persuaded it is not just a regional exception.


(...) We are indeed returning to Marx: to critical thought rooted on the rebellion of the exploited, irreconciliable enemy of conformism, of pseudo realist adaptation to what conservatives define as "possible". To the true Marx, not to parrot him but surely to march beyond him. To the Marx without dogmatic ties, to the irreverent Marx, who wrote "I am not Marxist", rejecting that way to become a provider of infallible recipes and eternal truths.

Marx' ideas are necessary, unavoidable when we try to understand the current crisis, but they are also not enough. (...) when we try to understand the much more vast challenge of the civilization crisis, we lean on Marx to advance beyond his cultural universe. (...)

Banners, slogans:

(...) in the last decades we have been smashed by a conservative conformist avalanch that has no precedents in modern history because of its dimensions. It has been less than one decade that a slogan, which we would have laughed upon in the 60s and 70s because of its coyness, became rather popular: "another world is possible". We must begin thinking in terms of "revolution", "socialism", "postcapitalism", not as audacious ideas to share with some friends but as banners for action destinied to the great popular majorities.