Andaman Sea

The Andaman Sea is a marginal sea of northeastern Indian Ocean bounded by the coastlines of Myanmar and Thailand along the Gulf of Martaban and west side of the Malay Peninsula, separated from the Bay of Bengal to its west by the Andaman Islands and the Nicobar Islands. Its southernmost end is defined by Breueh Island, an island just north of Sumatra, communicates with the Malacca Strait. Traditionally, the sea has been used for fishery and transportation of goods between the coastal countries and its coral reefs and islands are popular tourist destinations; the fishery and tourist infrastructure was damaged by the 2004 Indian Ocean earthquake and tsunami. The Andaman Sea, which extends over 92°E to 100°E and 4°N to 20°N, occupies a significant position in the Indian Ocean, yet remained unexplored for long period of time. To the south of Myanmar, west of Thailand, north of Indonesia, this sea is separated from Bay of Bengal by the Andaman and Nicobar Islands and an associated chain of sea mounts along the Indo-Burmese plate boundary.

The Strait of Malacca forms the southern exit way of the basin, 3 km wide and 37 m deep. The International Hydrographic Organization defines the limits of the "Andaman or Burma Sea" as follows: On the Southwest. A line running from Oedjong Raja in Sumatra to Poeloe Bras and on through the Western Islands of the Nicobar Group to Sandy Point in Little Andaman Island, in such a way that all the narrow waters appertain to the Burma Sea. On the Northwest; the Eastern limit of the Bay of Bengal. On the Southeast. A line joining Lem Voalan in Siam, Pedropunt in Sumatra; the northern and eastern side of the basin is shallow, as the continental shelf off the coast of Myanmar and Thailand extends over 200 km. About 45 percent of the basin area is shallower, the direct consequence of the presence of the wider shelf; the continental slope which follows the eastern shelf is quite steep between 9°N and 14°N. Here, the perspective view of the submarine topography sectioned along 95°E exposes the abrupt rise in depth of sea by about 3,000 m within a short horizontal distance of a degree.

Isobaths corresponding to 900 m and 2000 m are shown in the figure to emphasize the steepness of the slope. Further, it may be noted that the deep ocean is not free from sea mounts; the northern and eastern parts are shallower than 180 meters due to the silt deposited by the Irrawaddy River. This major river flows into the sea from the north through Myanmar; the western and central areas are 900–3,000 meters deep. Less than 5% of the sea is deeper than 3,000 meters, in a system of submarine valleys east of the Andaman-Nicobar Ridge, the depth exceeds 4,000 meters; the sea floor is covered with pebbles and sand. The western boundary of the Andaman Sea is marked by volcanic islands and sea mounts, with straits or passages of variable depths that control the entry and exit of water to the Bay of Bengal. There is a drastic change in water depth over a short distance of 200 km, as one moves from the Bay of Bengal to the vicinity of islands and further into the Andaman Sea. Water is exchanged between the Andaman Sea and the Bay of Bengal through the straits between the Andaman and Nicobar Islands.

Out of these, the most important straits are: Preparis Channel, Ten Degree Channel, Great Channel. PC is the shallowest of the three and separates south Myanmar from north Andaman. TDC lies between Little Andaman and Car Nicobar. GC separates Great Nicobar from Banda Aceh. Running in a rough north–south line on the seabed of the Andaman Sea is the boundary between two tectonic plates, the Burma Plate and the Sunda Plate; these plates are believed to have been part of the larger Eurasian Plate, but were formed when transform fault activity intensified as the Indian Plate began its substantive collision with the Eurasian continent. As a result, a back-arc basin center was created, which began to form the marginal basin which would become the Andaman Sea, the current stages of which commenced 3–4 million years ago; the boundary between two major tectonic plates results in high seismic activity in the region. Numerous earthquakes have been recorded, at least six, in 1797, 1833, 1861, 2004, 2005, 2007, had the magnitude of 8.4 or higher.

On 26 December 2004, a large portion of the boundary between the Burma plate and the Indo-Australian plate slipped, causing the 2004 Indian Ocean earthquake. This megathrust earthquake had a magnitude of 9.3. Between 1,300 and 1,600 kilometers of the boundary underwent thrust faulting and shifted by about 20 meters, with the sea floor being uplifted several meters; this rise in the sea floor generated a massive tsunami with an estimated height of 28 meters that killed 280,000 people along the coast of the Indian Ocean. The initial quake was followed by a series of aftershocks along the arc of the Andaman and Nicobar Islands; the entire event damaged the fishing infrastructure. Within the sea, to the east o

Tillya Tepe Buddhist coin

The Tillya Tepe Buddhist coin is a gold coin, discovered at the archaeological site of Tillya Tepe in modern Afghanistan. The gold coin from India was found in tomb IV; the archaeological site, as the coin, are dated to the beginning of the first century AD, late 1st century BC to early 1st century AD. The coin was found in Afghanistan's Jowzjan Province the site of an early Indo-Iranian settlement, it was used as a necropolis for a wealthy family during the early Kushan period. Since the time of the Buddha, Buddhist representations had been aniconic; this raises the possibility that this coin is one of the earliest, if not the earliest, representation of the Buddha. Earlier connections between Greek deities and Buddhist symbolism appears on the coins of Indo-Greek kings such as Menander II, in which Zeus, through Nike, can be seen handing a wreath of victory to a Wheel of the Law. Like other pieces found at Tilya Tepe, there is a mix of Western Hellenistic style with Gangetic and northwest Indian elements.

The coin is assumed to be destroyed or melted down by the Taliban in March 2001. The ideography is the same as a plaster emblemata from Begram. Scholars have said the "representation seems to refer to the Vajrapani theme, which symbolizes the power of the Buddhist doctrine and tuition in Gandaharan art". On the obverse can be seen a man, naked rolling a wheel; the legend in Kharoshthi reads Dharmacakrapravata "The one who turned the Wheel of the Law". He is wearing nothing except a petasus hat. Various identities have been suggested for the being depicted on the coins, from Shiva to Zeus, most the Buddha himself in an early representation. Hermes was considered in ancient Greece as a psychopomp, an intercessor between mortals and the divine, conductor of souls into the afterlife. Besides similarities in metaphysical roles, the similarity between the names of they respective mothers, Maya for the Buddha and Maia for Hermes, have been noted, as well as the stories of their miraculous births. On the reverse, it depicts a lion with the Buddhist symbol of the triratna, with the Kharoshthi legend Sih vigatabhay "The lion who dispelled fear".

An obverse and reverse view of the coin

Heavy Metal in Baghdad

Heavy Metal in Baghdad is a 2007 rockumentary film following filmmakers Eddy Moretti and Suroosh Alvi as they track down the Iraqi heavy metal band Acrassicauda amidst the Iraq War. In 2003, the Iraqi heavy-metal band Acrassicauda was the subject of a Vice magazine article. With the magazine's help, they were able to stage a sell-out show in 2005 despite the recent ousting of Saddam Hussein. Filmmakers from Vice returned to Iraq in 2006 to track down the band. Upon their return they discovered the multitude of death and destruction, including rehearsing studios destroyed by bombs. Candid interviews with the band members allows an insight into a sub section of society steeped in American pop culture and the hostilities this attracts; the film was shot over three years. Filming locations included Baghdad and Erbil in Iraq, Beirut and Damascus, Syria; the film was distributed by part of the Vice media conglomerate. During the filming it was revealed that the Syrian government did not intend to extend the visas of the band to stay in Syria.

In 2009, the band were resettled in the United States as refugees. The film premiered at the 2007 Toronto International Film Festival on 8 September 2007; this was followed by a 10 February screening at the Berlin International Film Festival. On 13 March 2008, it was screened at Greece's Thessaloniki Documentary Festival, it received an official theatrical release in the United States on 23 May 2008 and a limited theatrical release in the United Kingdom on 12 September 2008. The film has been screened at several other international film festivals, including Mexico's Expresión en Corto International Film Festival on 24 July 2008; this was followed by a 21 September 2008 screening at Finland's Helsinki International Film Festival. Further European festival screenings in 2008 took place on 25 September at Iceland's Reykjavík International Film Festival, 10 October screening at Belgium's Ghent International Film Festival and Poland's Warsaw International Filmfest on 10 October also; the film was released on DVD in the United States on 10 June.

The collector's edition includes over 90 minutes of bonus material. This includes a 45-minute featurette, seven additional and deleted scenes, an 8-page booklet including the original Vice magazine article "No War For Heavy Metal" as well as a teaser trailer. A book accompanying the film was released in 2009, titled "Heavy Metal in Baghdad - The Story of Acrassicauda"; the book was edited by editor of Vice magazine in the UK and Europe. The book offers an oral history of the band's journey, made up of extended interviews with key members; the film was well received by critics. It has a rating of 83% on Rotten Tomatoes based on reviews from 24 critics; the New York Times praised the film as "An intrepid and altogether splendid feat of D. I. Y. Reportage... Both a stirring testament to the plight of cultural expression in Baghdad and a striking report on the refugee scene in Syria, this rock-doc like no other electrifies its genre and redefines headbanging as an act of hard-core courage."The Los Angeles Times described the film as "More than just another Iraq-doc,'Heavy Metal' is a up-close look at the toll of the war on young people, how they still have dreams and still want to jam and get down.

If'Once' was about the romance of creativity, Heavy Metal in Baghdad is about the total, unrelenting obsession. They have no choice, they must rock."Reporting on film premiering at the 2007 TIFF, Rolling Stone described the film as "the most powerful music film" of the festival. The film garnered favourable reactions from leading British publications such as The Daily Telegraph and The Guardian; the former praised the film in that it "brings home the cultural as well as the human violence meted out to that gorgeous capital more powerfully than many more exalted documentaries... Though they struggle to build a fan base, end up seeking refuge in Syria, their dreams persist, still blazing fiercely at the close of this chastening and inspiring film." The Guardian described the film as "fascinating". Official website Heavy Metal in Baghdad on IMDb