In the Name of Allah, the Most Gracious, the Most Merciful
Grande Strategy

In Syria, Got Tortured

10/13/2014
M. Hussain

Bismillah (In the name of Allah). In Syria. Been here last 3 weeks. Almost got shot by a friend playing with a gun at point blank range. Later the ppl that brought me in were not getting along with me. Afterwards they tortured me on the charge of being an American spy claiming Islam allows this according to all the religious scholars they consulted; that evidence was not needed, suspicion was enough, which they admitted was all they had. 

They claimed the timing of my coming was suspicious, yet they were the ones who brought me in on the very day the Americans attacked. They claimed that my reference was a woman, and this they seemed to consider less, yet they brought me in in the first place based on that sister's reference.

I had always been worried about being tortured by the Americans due to all my political activism, yet it was my own Muslim "brothers" that tortured me in so many ways. The worst was the waterboarding, i felt like i was drowning and kicking out with the last bits of life in me. And i could not count how many times that happened. 

At night i managed to escape from my bonds. They were snoring like the animals they are. I could have taken one of their weapons and shot them, but i didnt. These animals that claimed my Islam wasnt good enough for them smoked, used foul language and missed their prayers. Even the night they tortured me they missed their prayers.

Finally they let me go and a friend took me to a group who i have never supported and always derided but they were the best brothers, the best people i met. They protected me and took care of me while i recovered. Some of them even told me that if i want they will round up those guys and i can do to them what they did to me. 

Met some of the most blessed people among them. I feel like i got well from a sickness i had all my life but never previously knew i was, in fact, sick. There is a brother with so much noor (spiritual light) and he recites ruqiah. Feel blessed were i am now.

All the stuff i wanted to do in Syria is a joke and isnt practical, now that i know what it is like here. After being tortured i lost my zest for staying here. The only thing i could think of was leaving. But then i had a dream, a very special dream (and Allah knows best). The dream gave me renewed hope and i am with some good brothers now so maybe i will stay a while and see what happens. Those people that tortured me still have my passport in any case.

For the record I am not an American spy. Anyone who googles my legal name should know that, given my history.
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Rebuilding Gaza with Earthbag Homes

8/11/2014
M. Hussain, m.hussain@grandestrategy.com

So Gaza has suffered and is suffering massive targeted genocide. Large swathes of Gaza look like Dresden. How can we rebuild with a blockade? Earthbag houses may be one solution. All one needs is earth and readily available bags.

Benefits of earthbag housing:

1. Very fast and easy way to build a house, no expertise needed, even children can build these houses (some of the children that volunteer in my project love it so much they kept coming back to play with earth. Recent studies show that playing with dirt can actually make you happy)

2. Extremely cheap to build, you can build a small cottage for as little as $300 or less.

3. Naturally cool because of the thick insulated walls, saving on electricity (or stress when there is none). This insulation also protects against noise pollution, perfect for Gaza were some children were martyred from fear alone.

4. Bullet proof and shrapnel proof. Built with safety in mind, I believe the heavy metal powder bombs the Israelis use can be made ineffective or reduced in their effectiveness by this building method.

5. If you dig into the ground as you build, you are essentially creating a semi-bunker / trench. Again, far safer than conventional buildings and were you sleep is even safer as you are below the threshold of bombs and gunfire.

6. With the right design, you can keep your earthbag house passively cool without any external supply of electricity. However, you will need to import certain items (such as cheap solar panels from China) to get the best benefit.

7. Earthbag houses were originally developed out of WWII construction methods and are very safe and easy to build. An Iranian engineer took the concept and applied it to housing, which was successfully tested in California. Earthbag houses have been used worldwide to help disaster relief efforts. Since Israel is such a disaster and scourge on this earth, these may just be what Palestine needs.

One of the projects I run is www.sustainablebrunei.com you can look to see what we do there. If you wish to build a diy air conditioning system, you can also consult me (I have a design based on peltier circuits and solar panels). Below are some files to help you get started. I am happy to provide advice and help (I am headed to Turkey, and if I can find a volunteer position in a relief organization I am happy to lend a hand, in'sha'Allah (God Willing) ).

Earthbag file 1
Earthbag file 2
Earthbag file 3

(these files I have in my computer, sorry about attribution don't recall where I got them from but definitely through Sheikh Google, surely their contents would indicate something of their origin in any case).

Contact me if you need help and are really doing this (no time wasters please, too many useless people asking silly and stupid questions and behaving like idiots). m.hussain@grandestrategy.com
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There are three kinds of earthbag houses:

1. Basic - using simple bags, like rice bags / wheat bags
2. Superadobe / using long tube bags, this is faster and easier
3. Hyperadobe - latest technique developed in Brazil, it uses netbag rolls, making it even cheaper, and not needing barbed wire between layers. Cheapest and most advanced way to build earthbag houses to date.


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