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I wonder if this would be more efficient than arrays of buttered cats?
----- Forwarded message from "Aftergood, Steven" <[email protected]> -----
from the FAS Project on Government Secrecy
October 29, 2001
** BUSH REVIEW OF SECRECY POLICY BEGINS
** STATUS OF DOD DECLASSIFICATION REPORTED
** DJINN ENERGY
A leading Pakistani nuclear scientist who was questioned by the
Pakistani government last week concerning his ties to the Taliban is
known as a proponent of "Islamic science," a weird hybrid of scientific
terminology and Islamic lore.
Sultan Bashiruddin Mehmood is a pioneer in the development of nuclear
technology in Pakistan. But in 1980, as a senior director of the
Pakistan Atomic Energy Commission, he "recommended that djinns [or
genies], being fiery creatures, ought to be tapped as a free source of
energy. By this means, a final solution to Pakistan's energy problems
would be found."
This episode was recounted by Pakistani physicist Pervez Hoodbhoy in his
enlightening book "Islam and Science: Religious Orthodoxy and the Battle
for Rationality" (Zed Books, 1991).
In a Wall Street Journal article on Islamic science (13 September 1988),
Dr. Mehmood noted that King Solomon had harnessed energy from djinns.
"I think that if we develop our souls we can develop communications with
them," he said.
While the notion of "djinn energy" is ridiculous -- even in Pakistan
there are no djinn engines -- ridicule is beside the point. A more
important point is that influential figures in the Islamic world are
devoted to a view of reality that cannot be readily reconciled with
conventional Western thought. This is a "translation" problem that
cannot be solved with dictionaries.
The detention of Bashiruddin Mehmood, which is expected to be temporary,
was reported in the Pakistan Observer in Islamabad on October 25. See
"Nuclear Scientists Picked [Up] By Agencies":
Secrecy News is written by Steven Aftergood and published by the
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----- End forwarded message -----