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Jaguar

The jaguar is a large felid species and the only extant member of the genus Panthera native to the Americas. The jaguar's present range extends from Southwestern United States and Mexico in North America, across much of Central America, south to Paraguay and northern Argentina in South America. Though there are single cats now living within the Western United States, the species has been extirpated from the United States since the early 20th century, it is listed as Near Threatened on the IUCN Red List. Threats include fragmentation of habitat. Overall, the jaguar is the largest native cat species of the New World and the third largest in the world; this spotted cat resembles the leopard, but is larger and sturdier. It ranges across a variety of forested and open terrains, but its preferred habitat is tropical and subtropical moist broadleaf forest and wooded regions; the jaguar enjoys swimming and is a solitary, stalk-and-ambush predator at the top of the food chain. As a keystone species it plays an important role in stabilizing ecosystems and regulating prey populations.

While international trade in jaguars or their body parts is prohibited, the cat is still killed in conflicts with ranchers and farmers in South America. Although reduced, its range remains large. Given its historical distribution, the jaguar has featured prominently in the mythology of numerous indigenous American cultures, including those of the Maya and Aztec; the word'jaguar' is thought to derive from the Tupian word yaguara, meaning "beast of prey". The word entered English via the Amazonian trade language Tupinambá, via Portuguese jaguar; the specific word for jaguar is yaguareté, with the suffix -eté meaning "real" or "true". The word'panther' derives from classical Latin panthēra, itself from the ancient Greek pánthēr. In Mexican Spanish, its nickname is el tigre: 16th century Spaniards had no native word in their language for the jaguar, smaller than a lion, but bigger than a leopard, nor had encountered it in the Old World, so named it after the tiger, since its ferocity would have been known to them through Roman writings and popular literature during the Renaissance.

Onca is the Portuguese onça, with the cedilla dropped for typographical reasons, found in English as ounce for the snow leopard, Panthera uncia. It derives with the letter L confused with the definite article. In 1758, Carl Linnaeus described the jaguar in his work Systema Naturae and gave it the scientific name Felis onca. In the 19th and 20th centuries, several jaguar type specimens formed the basis for descriptions of subspecies. In 1939, Reginald Innes Pocock recognized eight subspecies based on geographic origins and skull morphology of these specimens. Pocock did not have access to sufficient zoological specimens to critically evaluate their subspecific status, but expressed doubt about the status of several. Consideration of his work suggested only three subspecies should be recognized; the description of P. o. palustris was based on a fossil skull. The author of Mammal Species of the World listed nine subspecies and both P. o. palustris or P. o. paraguensis separately. Results of morphologic and genetic research indicate a clinal north–south variation between populations, but no evidence for subspecific differentiation.

A subsequent, more detailed study confirmed the predicted population structure within jaguar populations in Colombia. IUCN Red List assessors for the species and members of the Cat Specialist Group do not recognize any jaguar subspecies as valid; the following table is based on the former classification of the species provided in Mammal Species of the World. The genus Panthera evolved in Asia between six and ten million years ago; the jaguar is thought to have diverged from a common ancestor of the Panthera at least 1.5 million years ago and to have entered the American continent in the Early Pleistocene via Beringia, the land bridge that once spanned the Bering Strait. Results of jaguar mitochondrial DNA analysis indicate that the species' lineage evolved between 280,000 and 510,000 years ago, its immediate ancestor was Panthera onca augusta, larger than the contemporary jaguar. Phylogenetic studies have shown the clouded leopard is basal to this group. Fossils of extinct Panthera species, such as the European jaguar and the American lion, show characteristics of both the jaguar and the lion.

Based on morphological evidence, the British zoologist Reginald Innes Pocock concluded that the jaguar is most related to the leopard. However, DNA-based evidence is inconclusive, the position of the jaguar relative to the other species varies between studies; the jaguar is a well-muscled animal. It is the largest cat native to the Americas and the third largest in the world, exceeded in size by the tiger and the lion, its coat is a tawny yellow, but ranges to reddish-brown, for most of the body. The ventral areas are white; the fur is covered with rosettes for camouflage in the dappled light of its forest habitat. The spots and their shapes vary between individual jaguars: rosettes may include one or several dots; the spots on the head and neck are solid, as are those on the tail, where they may merge to form a band. Forest jaguars are darker and smaller than those in open areas due to the smaller numbers of large, herbivorous prey in forest areas, its size and weight vary considerably: weights are in the range of 56–96 kg.

Exceptionally big males have been recorded to weigh as much as 158 kg (34

Daniel W. Christman

Daniel William Christman is a retired United States Army lieutenant general, former Superintendent of the United States Military Academy, the current Senior Vice President for International Affairs, U. S. Chamber of Commerce. A 1965 graduate of West Point, he went on to earn multiple post-graduate degrees and hold numerous commands during his army career. Christman served in visible and strategically important positions and four times was awarded the Defense Distinguished Service Medal, the nation's highest peacetime service award. A native of Hudson, Christman attended Western Reserve Academy for high school and graduated first in his class from West Point in 1965, he holds master's degrees in civil engineering and public affairs from Princeton University and graduated with honors from George Washington University law school. He is a graduate of the Army Command and General Staff College and the National War College, he is a member of the Pennsylvania and Washington, D. C. bar associations and is a member of the Council on Foreign Relations.

He is a graduate of the army Ranger Airborne School. Christman's military career included company commands with the 2nd Engineer Battalion, Changpo-Ri, the 326th Engineer Battalion, Vietnam, his battalion command was with the 54th Engineer Battalion in Germany. He commanded the Savannah District, U. S. Army Corps of Engineers in Savannah, Georgia, he was the Commanding General, U. S. Army Engineer Center and Fort Leonard Wood and Commandant, U. S. Army Engineer School, Fort Leonard Wood, Mo.. Christman served as the 19th U. S. Representative to the NATO Military Committee, Belgium before taking command at the United States Military Academy as the 55th Superintendent. Christman's major staff assignments involved service as Staff Assistant with National Security Council, the White House, he was a Staff Officer in the Office of the Deputy Chief of Staff for Operations, Department of the Army, Washington, D. C.. In both of these assignments, Christman was responsible for advising the Army Chief of Staff and senior staff on the Strategic Arms Limitation Talks.

He was called upon to testify before the House Select Committee on intelligence regarding Soviet compliance with earlier arms control agreements. Christman served for 21 months as Assistant to the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff General John M. Shalikashvili. In this capacity, he supported Secretary of State Warren Christopher as a member of the Middle East Peace Negotiating Team and in arms control negotiations with the Russian Federation. Additionally, Christman served for a year and a half as Army adviser to the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, Admiral William J. Crowe, as Assistant to the Attorney General of the United States for National Security Affairs. Christman served as Director of Strategy and Policy in Department of Army Headquarters, Washington, D. C, his duties in this assignment focused on negotiations relating to the Conventional Forces in Europe arms control talks between NATO and the Warsaw Pact. In the course of supporting these negotiations on behalf of the Chief of Staff of the Army and the Chairman, JCS, Christman briefed former President Bush and traveled to Europe to brief allied heads of state and the NATO Secretary General.

Defense Distinguished Service Medal with three oak leaf clusters Army Distinguished Service Medal with oak leaf cluster Defense Superior Service Medal Legion of Merit with oak leaf cluster Bronze Star with oak leaf cluster Air Medal with two oak leaf clusters Christman has appeared as a military analyst for CNN International during Operation Iraqi Freedom. He is a frequent contributor to CNN, has appeared on ABC, Fox, MSNBC, CNBC, C-SPAN to discuss defense and national security issues. Christman has written and lectured extensively on leadership and national defense, including the ongoing war against international terrorism. Christman was appointed to the Board of Directors of the Ultralife Corporation of Newark, New York, in August 2001, he is Senior Vice President International Affairs for the U. S. Chamber of Commerce, a position he has held since June 2003, was the Executive Director of the Kimsey Foundation in Washington, D. C, he currently serves as a director of United Services Automobile Association, an insurance mutual corporation and Entegris, Inc. a semi-conductor equipment manufacturer.

Portrait of General Christman by Margaret Holland Sargent Appearances on C-SPAN

The Crisis of Islam

The Crisis of Islam: Holy War and Unholy Terror is a book written by Bernard Lewis. The nucleus of the book was an article published in The New Yorker in November 2001. According to the author, the Islamic world is locked in an internal struggle over how best to address and solve the problems endemic to many of its societies: namely, widespread poverty, extreme economic inequality, the prevalence of government by despotic rulers, the inability to keep pace with emerging economies; the crisis concerns the choice. Opposing those within Islam who argue for the continued and peaceful spread of economic and political freedoms as a means to solve these problems are the various Muslim fundamentalist movements, most notably Wahhabism, which blame all of these ills on whatever modernization and Western influence the Islamic world has embraced, advocate an unreserved rejection of the West; this rejection includes violence against Western countries and interests, most violence against "impious" Muslim rulers who have adopted "Western" ways.

The fundamentalists seek the establishment of states and societies based on Islamic Law and traditional mores. The author warns that the resolution of this struggle between Western and anti-Western influences within the Islamic world will determine whether the Islamic world takes its place alongside other countries in a global community, or whether it will regress into backwardness and intractable conflict with non-Muslim nations. As'ad AbuKhalil, in a review article, sees the book as a recycling of Lewis 1976 Commentary article titled "The Return of Islam", he further notes that: "in this piece, Lewis exhibits his adherence to the most discredited forms of classical Orientalist dogmas by invoking such terms as "the modern Western mind." For Lewis, the Muslim mind never seems to change. Every Muslim, or any Muslim, regardless of geography or time, is representative of any or all Muslims. Thus, a quotation from an obscure medieval source is sufficient to explain present day behavior". AbuKhalil further notes that: "Methodologically, insists that terrorism by individual Muslims should be considered Islamic terrorism, while terrorism by individual Jews or Christians is never considered Jewish or Christian terrorism."

AbuKhalil, A.. ""The Islam Industry" and Scholarship: Review Article". Middle East Journal. 58: 130–137. Bernard Lewis; the Crisis of Islam. Random House, 2004. ISBN 0-8129-6785-2 The Crisis of Islam Research and Study Guide The Crisis of Islam review by La Shawn Barber