chrome hearts air max 97 mcm outlet

Adamjee College bags top positions in inter exams

Adamjee College bags top positions in inter exams Adamjee College bags top positions in inter exams

The top three positions were clinched by the students of Adamjee Government Science College. At least 17,359 male candidates registered and 17,195 students appeared in the exams. Meanwhile, 8, 841 candidates were declared passed. The overall pass percentage was 51.42.

The gazette also shows that 6,271 female students registered of which 6, 211 candidates appeared. Meanwhile, 3,330 students passed their exams and overall pass percentage was 53.61 per cent.

According to the controller of examinations, BIEK, 17 unfair means cases were reported during and after the exams. At least 756 male and 279 female candidates received A-One grade, 1, 763 male and 810 female students got A grade and 2, 068 male and 1, 030 female candidates had B grade in the exams.

Furthermore, 2,554 male and 976 female students passed their exams with C grade, 1,591 male and 234 female candidates had D grade and 109 male and one female student passed the exams with E grade.

Syed Hasan Murtaza clinched overall first position with 998 marks out of a total of 1100 marks with 90.72 per cent. Muhammad Asad Rizvi, bagged second position with 996 marks and 90.54 per cent while Syed Muhammad Askar secured third position with 994 marks and 90.36 per cent.

We all are close friends and we make a commitment with each other to take position as usually female candidates topped in the annual exams. It was our dream to shine in the annual exams, Syed Hasan Murtaza said. He expressed his desire to be a CA professional.

Muhammad Asad Rizvi gives credit to his parents and teachers and said that his father, who is a teacher by profession, was behind his struggle. According to him, the lawlessness directly affected the students and their preparation.

Syed Muhammad Askar said that he was interested in taking admission in NED in mechanicals. The toppers said that it was a misconception that teachers do not take classes in the colleges.

Chairman BIEK said that heads of colleges should send the examinations forms of only those students who have over 75 per cent attendance. Replying a question, he said that Chinese technology rules the world over and that is why the Sindh government is willing to induct Chinese language as option course in the syllabus.

The position holders -The News photos

Science GENERAL results declared

The Board of Intermediate Education Karachi BIEK on Monday declared the results of the Science General Group Annual Examinations-2011.

According to the gazette issued by Controller of Examinations Muhammad Imran Khan Chishti, 878 male candidates were registered and 868 appeared in the exams while 279 passed. The overall passing percentage is 32.14.

The gazette shows that 785 female students registered, 779 appeared while 282 students were declared passed. The overall passing percentage is 36.2. According to the BIEK, only one case of unfair means was reported during and after the exams.

Furthermore, only one male and nine female students received A-One grade, 15 male and 38 female candidates got A grade and 47 male and 107 female students got B grade. A hundred-and-thirty-one male and 116 female candidates had C grade, 74 male and 11 female students passed their exams with D grade whereas 11 male and one female candidate got E grade in the exams, Chishti said.

Zainab Parveen from BAMM, PECHS Government College for Women, clinched overall first position and scored 945 marks out of total 1,100 with 85.90 per cent. Faryal Sharf another student of BAMM, PECHS Government College for Women bagged second position with 941 marks and 85.54 per cent. Zainab Ahmed, student of DA Degree College for Women, Phase VIII, DHA got third position with 938 marks and 85.27 per cent.

Zainab Parveen believes that violence and class system are the main problem of the society. She claims that she did not take tuitions for her exams preparation. According to her, changes in the textbooks would definitely help in increasing the teaching standards.

Antique Roadshow Collectibles

Antique Roadshow Collectibles Antique Roadshow Collectibles

You may, nevertheless, be happy to have some help making your initial choice. So be aware, first, that there are different collecting styles. Some people like to collect items that are inherently useful, like eggcups or handbags. Others collect for shape or color or beauty, although none of these attributes is mutually exclusive. It will help to begin by noticing if the same sorts of things seem always to attract you. Maybe youre drawn to little round vases or certain shades of blue or electric trains? When youre wondering what to collect, keep notes of what attracts you, and look for patterns.

Once youve settled on a type of object, however, you should also realize that a collectible as simple as the eggcup, for example, is divisible into numerous collecting categories. There are silver-plate eggcups, treen turned wood eggcups, and ceramic eggcups; if you prefer one type of material to the others, then thats one possible way to collect them. There are also chicken-shape eggcups, and those painted with human faces, both of which allow the eggcup collector or pocillovist to generalize or specialize within the field. There are also, to further tempt collectors, souvenir eggcups, cups made in Art Deco styles, cups that are Made in Japan, cups that are all yellow and white, and those that have one large end and one small-that is, doubles. Such a wealth of choice is hardly restricted to this one field. Twentieth-century glass or advertising memorabilia or toys can-happily-be broken down into the same sorts of specialties.

Dont forget the display element, either, when choosing what you want to collect. Functional or not, many collectibles are suited to being cabinet pieces-in other words, to being amassed solely for display rather than use. Wristwatches and vintage evening gowns may present a challenge, but shoes, toy soldiers, and Barbie dolls all lend themselves well to display. Eggcups do, too. So despite the fact that the item youve chosen to collect actually has a function, it can still be enjoyed as pure display. Catchers mitts look super on a wall; and Andy Warhol, you can bet, never used those cookie jars.

A good collection, first and foremost, is composed of things you truly love. If it pleases you, if it reflects your own taste and individuality, it will be a satisfying and wonderful collection, whatever it is.

There is, nevertheless, a formal definition of a good collection, one established by the taste and preferences of the general community of your fellow collectors. When a category of object is of national or international interest, enthusiasts frequently set standards to help them evaluate their subject.

Consequently, when you decide to collect something really popular, like Fiesta ware or dolls, you should make yourself aware of how these things are classified by your fellow enthusiasts - of what makes one piece of Fiesta more desirable than another piece, for instance, or which are the really rare Shirley Temple dolls.

Air Canada to charge for nd checked bag

Air Canada to charge for nd checked bag Air Canada to charge for 2nd checked bag

Air Canada has followed the lead of rival WestJet and will begin charging flyers who check a second bag on trips within Canada and to the Caribbean, Costa Rica and Mexico.

Air Canada will begin charging most flyers a $20 fee for a second checked bag on flights starting Jan. 19. Frank Gunn/Canadian PressCanadas largest carrier said a $20 fee will be charged for passengers buying economy class tickets as of Thursday for flights beginning Jan. 19, the same day that WestJet will begin levying the fee. The first checked bag remains free for both airlines.

Calgary-based WestJet Airlines Ltd. said last week that it would begin charging for the second checked bags, although it also reduced the fees it charges for the third and fourth checked bags.

Air Canada said it will match WestJets $20 fee for Canadian and some foreign routes but it will continue to charge $30 for second bags checked on flights to the United States, and $50 on flights to Europe and beyond.

The baggage fees dont apply to Air Canada Prestige, Elite, Super Elite members or Star Alliance Silver and Gold members.

Air Canada passengers flying executive and first class will continue to be able to check three bags at no additional costs, regardless of destination.

Newly elected Liberal Leader Justin Trudeau will face several challenges on Monday, one of which will be to face off against the prime minister in question period as MPs return to Ottawa after a two-week stretch in their ridings.

Addison man sentenced to four years for nd drug trafficking conviction Hancock Bangor Daily News BDN Maine

Addison man sentenced to four years for nd drug trafficking conviction Hancock Bangor Daily News BDN Maine Addison man sentenced to four years for 2nd drug trafficking conviction Hancock Bangor Daily News BDN Maine

ELLSWORTH, Maine An Addison man accused of transporting $30,000 worth of heroin from Connecticut to Maine has been sentenced to serve four years behind bars, according to documents on file in Hancock County Superior Court.

Michael A. Thibeau, 45, entered a plea of guilty on June 23 in Hancock County Superior Court to a class A charge of aggravated trafficking in scheduled drugs. He was sentenced to serve four years in prison with none of it suspended and to pay $500 in fines and fees and $150 in restitution for police lab processing costs, according to court documents.

Thibeau was arrested in March 2009, days after police, acting on a tip, stopped a 1999 Subaru wagon that Thibeau was driving on Route 1A in Dedham. Thibeau was suspected of being involved in a heroin-selling operation in the Milbridge area, police indicated in an affidavit.

During the March 18, 2009, traffic stop, a drug-sniffing dog helped police find 17 bricks of the drug in the air filter of the vehicles engine compartment. Each brick contained 50 bags of heroin for a total of 850 bags.

In June 2009, three months after his arrest, Thibeau was indicted on two class A charges of aggravated trafficking in scheduled drugs and a charge of criminal forfeiture for the Subaru that police seized as part of their investigation. He initially pleaded not guilty to the charges.

Thibeau was driving the drugs allegedly from Connecticut to the Milbridge home of Stuart and Michelle Ray, police indicated later in a press release. The vehicle Thibeau was driving was registered to Michelle Ray, police have said. Police executed a search warrant March 20, 2009, at the Rays home, reportedly finding 10 more bags of heroin, and subsequently arrested the couple on charges of aggravated trafficking in heroin, police said.

Assistant Attorney General Patrick Larson, the prosecutor in the case, said Monday that the Rays also have pleaded guilty. He said Michelle Ray pleaded guilty last summer in Washington County to a trafficking charge and received a sentence of four years with all but one year suspended. He said Stuart Ray has entered a guilty plea to drug trafficking and is expected to be sentenced in Machias on Monday, July 25.

Dont insult one another or the subjects of BDN stories. You may be ticked off at what someone did or said, but you can explain that without resorting to name-calling or obscenity. Remember that young people are on this site too.

That nasty line that makes your buddies go haw, haw? Youre better than that.

Comments should be your own work, not copied and pasted from elsewhere, though brief quoted passages to make your point are fine. And please dont use all capital letters. Theres no need to shout.

Stay focused on the issue in the article. Off-topic posts will be deleted.

This isnt a forum to chat about your personal life.

Some ideas the fate of the earth, abortion, gun control, the nature of God arent going to be resolved in a reader forum, so no need to get frustrated if others dont see your point of view. State your position once and leave it at that.

If you mouse over each comment you will see a Flag button. Please use it if you feel comments on the site are out of line.

Adorable Lunch Bags

Adorable Lunch Bags Adorable Lunch Bags

Looking for random conversation, some good laughs and the occasional bargain? Heres your group.

Please review the additional guidelines that will be enforced on top of the Community Guidelines, in order to maintain a friendly environment that is welcoming to all:

4. Profanity is no longer censored, but please think about who may be reading your posts before you use it. This includes helping a friend-in-need here in the BabyCenter Community.

7. Calling a community member a Troll is considered a personal attack by Babycenter, and such posts will be deleted.

8. You may not post links to your website or a friends website within a post. If you have a website you would like to share with the requestor, you must ask them to pass you a note if they are interested. You may NOT pass them a note about your business unless they explicitly state they would like people to pass them a note with their business link. Doing so unsolicited is a violation of the following portion of Babycenters Selling Guidelines:

Please note that if someone sends you an unsolicited note, journal entry or talk that is commercial or personal business related, this is a violation of these rules. Wed appreciate it if youd let us know so that we can address the issue.

Share your tips on saving money and where to find the best bargains, deals, freebies. If you have any concerns about your own health or the health of your child, you should always consult with a physician or other healthcare professional. Please review the Privacy Policy and Terms of Use before using this site. Your use of the site indicates your agreement to be bound by the Terms of Use.

Advantage and Disadvantage of Buying Coach Bags at Outlet

Advantage and Disadvantage of Buying Coach Bags at Outlet Advantage and Disadvantage of Buying Coach Bags at Outlet

There are a lot of people who claim there is a place where you can find the lastest collection of coach handbags at extremely good price. Of courses, these are not cheap fake coach purses.

The answer of is coach purses outlets. It is not like a coach boutique store which sell fashion and trendy coach handbags at high price. The coach purses outlet can offer people a balance of price and quality. Imagine what your mood will be if you find an authentic coach purse with the lastest design is selling at 40 percent of its original price. It is surely that you will grab this opportunity. Price is the benefit that you can get at coach purses outlet. Another benefit is the great service. Even though you only spend 35 percent of its retail price, you will get exactly the same service as coach retail shops offer. How wonderful!

Of course, you may need to spend some time on choosing the which one you will take. This is very necessary and important. Although the bags at coach purses outlet are much cheaper. But if we buy a bag that we only wear it several days, it is really a waste of money, no matter how small amount you spend on it. As we all know, there are some little defects on these coach bags sold at outlet stores. So we have to check those knock off coach purses very carefully. Or you will get much trouble in refunding after you take the problem bag to home.

Accused was obsessed with Emily Daily Echo

Accused was obsessed with Emily Daily Echo Accused was obsessed with Emily Daily Echo

A friend of a man accused of murdering his aspiring model girlfriend in a jealous rage told a court today he was obsessed with her and boasted that she was lucky to have him.

Jasmin Snook told a jury at Winchester Crown Court that she had also heard Elliot Turner threaten to kill 17-year-old Emily Longley in the days before the prosecution allege he strangled her in his bedroom in Bournemouth, Dorset, on May 7 last year.

He Turner was saying that she was lucky to be with him and he didnt understand why she was doing things like this - she made him look like an idiot.

He was obsessive. He was constantly talking about her. He was not listening to me say they were just friends. In the end I had to make an excuse to go home.

He was saying shes never going to have a family. She pushed me to it. She knew what she was getting herself in to. He would always be her boyfriend.

But then she said Turner started laughing and said he was joking.

He said she was at home asleep and in a parallel universe he would have killed her, Miss Snook said. I started crying.

He said that the next night she would not be staying with me but with him and I needed to tell her how lucky she was to be with him.

He was just talking about Emily constantly. He said he needed that one last night with her. He said he could get anyone he wanted and she needed to realise that.

On the last night the group went out together Turner bought Emily flowers and chocolate and then followed her around the Bournemouth and Poole areas and they argued before he found her at a

friends house and took her back to his place.

Miss Snook said: I told her not to do it. I said, I wouldnt if I were you.

She said she didnt know and she wanted to talk to him.

Miss Snook then texted to ask if she was Ok and Emily replied: Im OK. We will talk in the morning. I will go home. Im not staying with Turner.

Miss Snook told the jury that she tried to contact Emily again, but received no reply.

The court has already heard Turner said he and Emily argued in the bedroom, and that she attacked him and he defended himself.

He explained he woke up beside her later that morning, started to get ready for work but she was dead.

The prosecution allege that heavily-built Turner strangled the business studies student and part time shop worker and that he was a violent and jealous boyfriend, fearful she was being unfaithful.

He went absolutely nuts it is claimed, in a culmination of a month of anger and upset over his suspicions she was twisting his heart.

When arrested he had his passport in his pocket and his bags packed, the court heard.

He told officers at the scene: I never meant to harm her, I just defended myself. He then made no comment in police interviews.

Turners parents Leigh Turner, 54, and Anita Turner, 51, are also in the dock accused of covering up for their son by destroying evidence and taking items away from the scene of the death. They

Advertisers up the ante as products become TV plots

Advertisers up the ante as products become TV plots Advertisers up the ante as products become TV plots

Advertisers these days want to do far more than just place BMWs, Manolo Blahnik shoes, and other luxury items within reach of favorite TV and movie characters. They want to create entire worlds of consumption. For instance:

?CW Television Networks Gossip Girl features characters whose lifestyles are driven by the Prada bags they want and the La Perla lingerie the highly sexualized characters need.

?Actresses in Roommates, a MySpace TV Web series, use their characters online profiles to chat with fans and dish out information about their clothing and other products as well as advice on where to buy them.

These are the heady days of brand integration and immersive commercial environments.

We are in an increasingly commercialized culture, says David Johnson, CEO of Strategic Vision, who points out that as consumers develop more tools to screen out traditional ads, such as 30-second TV spots, advertisers must get more subtle and innovative. The result? Less story and more push to consume, he says.

This also leads to more potential for manipulation, says David Howard, a marketing professor at Cox School of Business at Southern Methodist University.

The trend is expected to grow. Global ad dollars spent on product placement of all kinds will expand from $3 billion in 2006 to $5.6 billion by 2010, according to PQ Media. A July poll in the trade magazine Ad Age found that 60 percent of TV and movie audiences say they are influenced by product placements.

While audiences are migrating to many new-media gadgets and outlets, such as iPods, video games, and even the displays on gas pumps, advertisers still depend on the content and large audiences that TV delivers.

Television is sooo not dead, says Dennis Ryan, chief creative officer at Element 79, a Chicago-based ad agency. All that is going on, he says, is a diversification of screens.

In the summer, for example, Mr. Ryans firm created Ball Girl, a video showing a girl in the audience leaping to her feet to make a spectacular catch at a minor-league baseball game. As she returned to her seat, the camera casually spied a Gatorade bottle next to her.

Advantages Of Clear Backpacks

Advantages Of Clear Backpacks Advantages Of Clear Backpacks

Transparent backpacks ensure that your kids only bring what they should bring to school. Giving your children transparent backpacks will surely allow you to make a quick inspection. Of course, you want to know if your kid has everything he or she needs in the bag. With a conventional backpack, you would still need to unzip and open it to see the contents. On the other hand, with a transparent one, you just have to look at it. It saves more time.

Looking for your keys or pencil is easier.

If you bring a clear backpack to school, you wont have to worry about lost items. You can just look at your bag without opening it to see if all your things are there. So, you would know right away if you have a missing book or pen. Looking for a lost iPod can take minutes in the usual type of backpack. Kids and teens tend to lose things every now and then. A transparent bag would be much of an advantage.

Security personnel at school can easily examine the contents of a transparent backpack.

Standard security measures at schools include the checking of bags to see if students are bringing inappropriate materials to school. Part of checkups at entrance posts include checking for hazardous chemicals, sharp materials, weapons, guns, prohibited drugs, and liquor. Students wearing clear bags will be reluctant to bring any school prohibited item, because they will be easily identified and apprehended.

Clear backpacks for school will not completely eliminate delinquency in schools though. For instance, clever students can keep inappropriate items in between books or notebooks. However, these bags should be able to reduce the bringing of harmful stuff to school, as well as student crime. Of course, the guards should make comprehensive inspection, aside from simply glancing at the bags upon entry of students. Also, sophisticated detectors and inspection equipment should identify the presence of knives or guns hidden inside any kind of carry-on.

Teachers and school personnel can quickly see if students are taking out or stealing classroom materials.

Stealing school property is not unusual. Students can simply take books or school materials, hide them in their bags and get out of school, evading inspection. Teachers and even other students can quickly see if you put school items in your carry-on if its see-through. Of course, you would not dare steal anything if you know that people can quickly see the contents of your backpack.

Students can quickly retrieve items from their bags.

Its hard to rummage through the contents of your bag to find small things, like your notepad or wallet. What if you need to take down notes and you dont know where your notepad is? A see-through carry-on should keep you from being troubled by these minor, but annoying problems.

Clear bags do have their disadvantages. Many people do not like the idea that people can look at the contents of their carry-all. It can be embarrassing. Another disadvantage is that see-through backpacks make it easier for thieves to steal things, because they can clearly see the object they want to take.

Advent Calendars

Advent Calendars Advent Calendars

To some, advent calendars may seem like either an excuse to eat chocolate or just another thing that companies can sell to us in the run-up to Christmas. However, the humble advent calendar has a long history and was in fact invented by the same people who brought us Christmas cookies and the practice of decorating our Christmas trees1.

HistoryThe first advent calendars appeared in 19th-Century Germany, when various methods of counting the days between the start of Advent and Christmas Day were used. Starting on the fourth Sunday before Christmas, or simply on 1 December, the Protestant Christians would keep track of the days by making marks on their doors with a piece of chalk, which would then be rubbed off one by one as Christmas approached. Other practices then developed, including burning a candle or putting up a small religious picture to mark each day.

There is some disagreement as to when the first printed advent calendars appeared, although it is clear that they were first produced at some time in the 1900s. There are claims that a Christian bookshop in Hamburg produced a Christmas Clock in 1902, and a newspaper in Stuttgart is known to have included an advent calendar in its pages in 1904. However, the first mass producer of advent calendars is thought to have been Gerhard Lang, who worked at the Reichhold Lang printing office in Munich. He released his first advent calendar in 1908 and had a steady business going which produced over thirty patterns of calendar until some time in the 1930s. The calendars would usually have 24 doors, but tended to be better-decorated than modern versions.

Soon enough, calendars were being designed with little doors or pouches which contained small religious pictures or bible extracts. Better still, some of the calendars also contained sweeties in order to keep the attention of young children. The practice escalated up until the Second World War, when paper and cardboard were rationed and advent-calendar production ground to a halt. Once the war ended, though, the production began again, pioneered by Richard Sellmer in 1946.

The introduction of the advent calendar to the USA was aided by Ike Eisenhower, whose grandchildren took a shine to the idea. The calendar was soon adopted in other countries too, and in the UK chocolates began to appear behind the little doors as soon as rationing would allow. By the end of the 1950s, chocolate advent calendars had appeared, and by the following decade they had become widespread. They still exist today, with hundreds of different varieties appearing across the globe.

Types Of Advent CalendarThe modern advent calendar consists of a cardboard surround, usually decorated in some popular culture or chocolate-related theme which has been adjusted to look Christmassy, bearing at least 24 little doors. Behind each door will be a moulded Christmas-related shape, and there may also be small picture on the inside of the door or on the cardboard behind the chocolate. The chocolate will probably sit in a plastic tray, and may be protected by a layer of foil which is best slit open using a fingernail. Advent calendar traditions include the 24th chocolate or door bearing the words Santas Coming or a depiction of a Nativity scene, and the person opening the calendar guessing which Christmas-related item will be depicted behind each door.

Other types of calendar include the non-chocolate ones, which may contain only pictures, or may provide religious contents instead of those found in the more common secular calendars. Others may contain a small toy or an instant scratch card each day, depending on the calendars target audience. Permanent calendars are also available, some consisting of decorative wooden structures which contain little drawers, one for each day. Others come in the shape of trees or are made to surround a Christmas tree, allowing for the star to be placed on top after the 24th door is opened. German calendars still have 24 doors, although some which appear in English-speaking countries have a special 25th door or pocket for Christmas Day. Some modern calendars have up to 31 doors and also include the Jewish festival of Hanukkah and/or New Years Eve, with the latter sort sometimes not containing a chocolate for New Years Day due to the fact that everyone will be on a diet.

Some advent calendars come in the form of books with 24 individual stories or chapters. In Scandinavia, it is also common to have a series of Julekalender programmes on the television, one for each day up until Christmas. With the advent of the internet came the online advent calendar, with many different versions appearing with various web pages or cartoons hidden behind the doors. Examples include the BBC Radio 3 Bach Advent Calendar and the BBC Religion and Ethics Calendar.

Homemade CalendarsThere are several different ways to make your own advent calendar from scratch. For instance, a calendar could consist of 24 little boxes hanging from a Christmas tree as decorations, or 24 little paper bags pegged to a small washing line, each with a small decoration on it. Alternatively, you could make a small tree out of green cardboard and pin 24 little socks to it, with each stocking containing a small gift. Blue Peter have also come up with various forms of homemade calendar, including one made from an eggbox.

Adieu Afghanistan

Adieu Afghanistan Adieu Afghanistan

Ah, Afghanistan. Everything old is new again. When the Soviets pulled out in 1989 with their tails barely intact, the international community left like a school of minnows -- suddenly and all together to a new feeding ground.

Afghanistan had been the last violent crucible of the Cold War. The world had been funding and feeding the so-called freedom fighters who were presumably saving the country from the dreaded communism. But then the decade-long battle was over and the mass exit began. The vacuum left behind was quickly filled by seven different factions of war lords who switched their mantles from freedom fighting to arming themselves to the teeth as Mujahideen and seeking a power grab. the scalping of Hazara women, the infrastructure of the country decimated and the rise of an unlikely mob of 20-something Taliban who won the spoils of the Cold War by claiming to a mostly illiterate population that they were acting in the name of God.

Now the game repeats itself. The international community, fed-up with the failures, the corruption, the blame the west blame anyone but themselves hardline in the country today are doing another school-of-minnows withdrawal. And as in other civil wars -- to wit Bosnia, Somalia -- the international community declares victory and leaves with a promise of continued humanitarian aid and a scant collection of soldiers to advise those who are left behind. Hillary Clinton calls these war-stoppers ceasefires of exhaustion and says of the 39 civil wars going on in the world today, only eight are new wars, the rest are the predictable implosions that occur when the trouble that started the insurrection in the first place was never resolved.

In Afghanistan, that trouble was initially named as the Taliban and al Qaeda. But the prolonging of war was neither. The Taliban were knocked off about six weeks after the Oct. 7, 2001 invasion by American forces. Al Qaeda slunk off to safer shores even sooner. What kept the war kettle boiling was the same root cause of conflict in dozens of places -- poverty, lack of education, tribalism and a distrust of the government. That is Afghanistan today. After billions of dollars spent, how is it that the country hasnt the capacity to run its own hospitals and schools. A decade after the international community arrived with a promise to rebuild, the electricity system is still fragile, the roads are a mess. There are excuses of course -- the Taliban firebomb the schools, the discontents blow up the roads; suicide bombers create monstrous instability with their cowardice.

So what happens now that a weary world is pulling up its military stakes? The Taliban could wait until everyones gone and reclaim the turf for Allah and/or for money and power and revenge. But theyre more about bluster and cowardice than power so will likely remain on the sidelines as a nuisance factor. Some worry that the gains women have made will be traded for a so-called peace with the fundamentalists. Dont believe it -- the women are poised to yank this primitive place into the 21st century. They are the reformers and they wont go home again.

Afghanistan has never been a simple piece of work. Tribalism, revisionist history and a totally bizarre interpretation of the Koran keep the country off-balance. To complicate matters, Afghans have made innuendo and gossip an art form -- theyll diss anyone who reaches the top of the pedestal and plant seeds of distrust for those who throw their Pakol hats into the ring. Its not a formula for success.

But dont count them out. Afghans have a way of surviving insurmountable odds. They need new leadership -- men and women who can bring the tribes together, come to terms with the past and convince the war lords that their interests are better served with a functioning government. Rumours persist that a leadership team is waiting in the wings; that they may have the support to take this hard scrabble-land forward as the international effort limps toward a close. The great game becomes a waiting game.

As much as I would like to support Ms. Armstrongs optimism, in my view the real politik is that the Taliban with the support of the Pakistan Intelligence Service will resurface and take control of the country. They will re-introduce the medieval rules of Sharia law in its most extreme form and will become the willing puppets of Paksistans military elite.

There is simply too much blind faith in Islam by everyone concerned and women will once again be forced underground. There are no credible local Afghans who will step forward and display the kind of leadership courage it will take to drag Afghanistan into the 21st century. Islam dooms them to the 8th.

There is a tragically simple solution to the crisis in Afghanistan which the West continues to ignore. It is true that electricity is fragile and the roads are a mess, with civilian aid since the start of the NATO presence amounting around $25 billion, which is maybe $60 per Afghan per year, and much of that being misspent by Western contractors taking excessive profit margins. Then there is the smaller scale corruption on the Afghan side which gets all the media attention.

This compares to going on $500 billion for military operations.

The international community has neglected the one Afghan reconstruction program which actually works very well and is by almost all accounts honest and well-run, the National Solidarity Program NSP.

Were the NSP to receive a boost of, say, a mere 2 weeks worth of military spending, about $5 billion, the country would be on its way to sustainability, by creating works projects in much needed infrastructure which employs ordinary Afghans. This would go a long way toward addressing the grinding poverty which fuels the insurgency.

The vehicle has been built. The question is will the West, as it withdraws, recognize its interests lie in stability based on young Afghans being productively occupied with rebuilding their own country, rather than prey to armed factions hiring for another round of civil war.