Greek archbishop suspected of sexual harassment

Police question Elias Chacour, head of Melkite Greek Catholic Church in Israel, over lewd acts he allegedly committed five years ago

Elias Chacour, the archbishop of Akko, Haifa, Nazareth and all of Galilee of the Melkite Greek Catholic Church is suspected of sexually harassing a woman who works in the community he heads, Ynet learned on Wednesday.

Earlier this week Chacour was questioned under caution for a number of hours.

He was released on bail under restricting conditions.

According to the police, the incident in question took place some five years ago and they are not aware of any others.

The woman filed the compliant some two years ago, but due to the suspect’s status, various law enforcement agencies had to give their authorization before an investigation was launched.

Attorney General Yehuda Weinstein approved the investigation against Chacour, which is headed by Israel Police’s National Fraud Unit.

The archbishop reportedly cooperated with the investigators but has denied the allegations.

The investigators, however, found the complainant’s version to be credible.

Doctor rekindles ‘ancient Greek spirit’ in Athens free clinic

Source: DW

Cardiologist Giorgos Vichas, along with 90 other doctors and 140 volunteers, runs a free clinic in a middle-class neighborhood in Athens, offering free medication and health care in austerity-hit Greece.

Giorgos Vichas

Inside the Metropolitan Community Clinic in the district of Hellinikon in Athens, the waiting room is busy with volunteers and the phones are ringing non-stop. All the seats are taken. Some patients keep their eyes to the floor, because they are embarrassed – they cannot afford a simple doctor’s visit and have to come to the free community clinic instead.

Doctor Giorgos Vichas, is working with a volunteer, in one of the consulting rooms. He and his colleagues have one of the toughest jobs in Greece right now, helping cancer patients get access to medical treatment. Vichas is about to sign a referral for a 36-year-old cancer patient.

“This is a patient who will most likely lose her life because she was blocked from the national health care system. It’s a 36-year-old woman with two small children,” Vichas says.

Vichas with co-workers in the clinic
Vichas tries to help where he can

The woman and her husband have been unemployed and uninsured for years, so her cancer went undiagnosed.

“Someone has to be held accountable for this woman’s murder,” Vichas says. “And if she survives, she will be condemned to a life full of health problems. We can’t have crimes like this happening but unfortunately it is common in Greece at the moment.”

Since 2011, thousands of uninsured Greeks have found themselves locked out of the national health care system. Until then, the state provided free health care for all. But after three years of austerity measures brought on by the eurozone debt crisis, a humanitarian crisis is developing.

Standing up to the government

Vichas, along with two other doctors, angry and frustrated from seeing people dying due to the lack of access to health care, created the Metropolitan Community Clinic.

By standing up to the government, he has put his own career on the line. The group has decided not to become a non-governmental organization (NGO) and not to accept any cash donations. Medicine and other pharmaceutical items are the only donations it accepts.

There is no president or board, while all decisions are voted on in general meetings once a week. The utility bills are paid for by the local authorities and the offices are based in a prefabricated container that the municipality has provided.

Provisons on a shelf in the clinic
The clinic only accepts donations of supplies, not cash

Seeing tragedy on a daily basis, Vichas doesn’t believe in the widely trumpeted “success story,”a term the current Greek government has used to describe Athens’ efforts to curb the country’s debt and comply with the requirements of a rescue deal from the international community.

This is a ‘success story’ for the government and for Prime Minister Samaras, and this is what Germans have to become aware of,” Vichas tells DW. “A 36-year-old cancer patient with two children is dying because Samaras’ success story left her without treatment. If this is what is called civilized Europe, then I am not part of it. Once this government starts to think about the human story, then I will agree it is a Greek success story,” he adds.

Working without insurance

Thirty percent of working Greeks have no health insurance, despite a law that requires employers to provide health care for staff. But with an unemployment rate of over 27 percent, people will work for as little as 200 euros ($270) and no health insurance.

We’ve seen this neo-liberal policy with [former British Prime Minister Margaret] Thatcher, but even Thatcher’s policies seem progressive compared to what’s happening in Greece right now,” Giorgos complains.

“We’ve also seen [these policies] more recently in Argentina, when Argentina borrowed from the [International Monetary Fund] IMF. We’ve seen it in Chile. Even in Russia after the fall of communism. But what’s happening here is much more extreme,” he adds.

Protesters hold a rally outside the Greek State broadcaster ERT headquarters at Agia Paraskevi in a northern suburb of Athens, June 13, 2013 (Photo: John Kolesidis)
Austerity measures have riled many Greeks

Vichas has joined a group of doctors who have formed a watchdog on Greek health care. Its goal is to legally challenge the government in cases where patients have either died or have had severe problems due to the lack of access to the health care system.

In November, Vichas will also travel to Strasbourg to give a presentation to the Council of Europe.

Stress takes its toll

But his efforts have taken a personal toll on Vichas. He sees 30 patients a day at his public clinic, 15 a day at the community clinic and is busy keeping up pressure on the government.

The crisis has changed all aspects of my daily life and my personal life, these past two years. I work a lot more and it’s a constant battle with the ministry [of health],” he says.

“But, it also gives me strength. First because during the crisis, I feel that I’m doing my duty as a citizen and as a doctor, but also because I see that a self-organized society doesn’t need an institutional framework in order to function as long as it stands for what’s just and moral.”

Vichas is convinced that what he and others are doing at the clinic and at other volunteer organizations will be a blueprint for society in the future.

For now, more austerity measures are likely to affect Greeks this winter, but Vichas and his team are still hopeful for the future.

Ancient Greek spirit

“The reason I take part in this fight along with everyone else is in order to see the day that the ancient Greek spirit prevailsin society,” Vichas says.

“It stipulates that we live in harmony, respect each other, no matter what country of origin, religion or skin color.”

Vichas believes that sometimes ethics are more important than the law. It is about applying the lessons of Sophocles’ Antigone, he tells DW.

In Sophocles’ ancient drama, Antigone, a lone girl, stands up to the unjust commands of her uncle, Creon, the ruler of Thebes. It is a classic tale of an individual standing up to the state for moral reasons.

Antigone’s story ends in tragedy, but Dr. Vichas is convinced that, this time, things will turn out differently.

Greek scholar invented the term ‘asteroid’

Source: Stuff

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It was hardly the greatest mystery in the cosmos, and solving it won’t change the course of science. But a Fort Lauderdale astronomer has cracked a 200-year-old puzzle: Who coined the word “asteroid”?

Publishers might want to take notice.

“It will actually cause books to be rewritten and dictionaries to be revised,” said Clifford Cunningham, whose research revealed the true creator of the word used to describe the rocky space travellers.

It wasn’t William Herschel, the famed court astronomer for King George III, who is credited with inventing the term in 1802, Cunningham found. Rather it was the son of a poet friend of Herschel’s, Greek scholar Charles Burney Jr., who originated the term asteroid, which means “star-like” in Greek.

“It’s been a long-standing mystery,” said Rick Fienberg, press officer for the American Astronomical Society.

“Herschel was certainly one of the greatest astronomers of all time, but this is not a credit we can give him,” said Cunningham, who presented his findings Monday in Denver at the 45th annual convention of the astronomical society’s Division of Planetary Sciences.

“Asteroid was Herschel’s choice, but it was not his creation.”

Erik Gregersen, senior editor for astronomy and space exploration at Encyclopaedia Britannica, said he will review Cunningham’s work and make any necessary changes.

“We do have a big revision of our asteroid article in the works at the moment, so I’ll have to see how it fits in there,” he said. “To be accurate, the etomology of the word might have to credit this other fellow.”

Gregersen noted that revisions can be easily made, since most dictionaries are online. His own encyclopedia, for example, has been exclusively online since 2010.

Cunningham is a world authority on asteriods and one, 4276, was named Clifford after him in honor of a 1988 book, “Introduction to Asteroids.” He pored through volumes of source material at Yale University before uncovering two letters indisputably proving who first came up with the asteroid term. He is preparing to publish a formal paper on his discovery and submit it for peer review.

According to Cunningham, who is currently affiliated with the National Astronomical Research Institute of Thailand, stargazers in 1802 were baffled by the discovery of what they thought were two new planets. Herschel argued they were in fact completely different celestial entities and deserved their own identity.

But Herschel couldn’t conjure up an appropriate term, and his paper on the new objects was due to be delivered to the Royal Society in a week’s time. “He had to get a name immediately for his paper,” Cunningham said. “He didn’t have a word, and he was desperate.”

So the Sunday before the Royal Society meeting, Herschel appealed to Charles Burney Sr, a poet with whom he was collaborating on an educational poem about the cosmos. Burney considered the question and that night, by candlelight, penned a letter to his son, Greek expert Charles Burney Jr. The elder Burney suggested the words “asteriskos” or “stellula” to describe the new celestial objects.

Charles Burney Jr came back with the term “asteroid.”

It was unveiled in Herschel’s subsequent paper – and instantly dismissed.

“Every astronomer in Europe rejected it, everyone was against the creation of this word,” Cunningham said.

But within a few decades the concept of asteroids, and their name, gained legitimacy.

“It wasn’t actually accepted in the scientific field until the 1850s,” Cunningham said. “They determined they weren’t planets, but really asteroids.”

Cunningham based his conclusion on two letters from the Yale archives: the one the senior Burney wrote to his son, and another confirming that his son furnished the asteroid word to Herschel.

Fienberg attended Cunningham’s lecture and said attendees were “quite tickled” at his findings. The researcher is “well-respected” in astronomical circles, he added, and his discovery is likely to be “officially and widely recognized” once published.

The discovery’s significance, Fienberg said, is more historical than scientific. “It’s a little microcosm of how science works,” he said.

“Naming of things isn’t a trivial matter. Whenever something new arises, you have to give it the right name,” Gregersen said. “I think we got the right name.”

The WOGBOYS are back! – Live On Stage 2014

The smash hit stage show is back! Wogboys Live

Nick Giannopoulos

Alex Dimitriades

Frank Lotito

Vince Colosimo

Wog Boys Nick Giannopoulos and Vince Colosimo chat about their new live remixed and rewogified stage comedy Wogboys.

Two of Australia’s most famous and loved actors, NICK GIANNOPOULOS and VINCE COLOSIMO are returning to the stage for the first time in over a decade, with their critically acclaimed hit stage show WOGBOYS. They will be joined by AACTA award winning actor, ALEX DIMITRIADES & star of the recent Aussie film comedy Big Mamas Boy, FRANK LOTITO.

WOGBOYS is the record breaking, critically acclaimed stage show that inspired the hit Aussie comedy film The Wog Boy. Set in the mid 90s, this hilarious and insightful play examines everyday situations in the lives of a group of Wogboys.

Following over a decade of successfully acting, writing, producing and presenting in movies, stage shows & television, both Nick and Vince will go back to their roots, reprising the wog phenomenon and channeling the essence of Acropolis Now, Wogs Out of Work and the uber-successful The Wog Boy/ Kings of Mykonos feature films.

Don’t miss this much-loved, hilarious and insightful comedy written and directed by Nick Giannopoulos.

From the creator of Wogs Out of Work, Acropolis Now & The Wog Boy

WOGBOYS is the record breaking, critically acclaimed stage show that inspired the hit Aussie comedy film The Wog Boy.

Set in the mid 90s, this hilarious and insightful play examines everyday situations in the lives of a group of Wogboys.

Book now! Strictly limited season!



Princess Theatre
163 Spring St, Melbourne
(Cut price preview January 8)
Thursday, Friday & Saturday – 8PM
Sunday – 6PM

Buy Tickets Now



Enmore Theatre
118-132 Enmore Rd Newtown
(Cut price preview February 6)
Friday – 8pm
Saturday – 7pm & 9:30pm
Sunday – 6pm

Buy Tickets Now



Nick Giannopoulos

One of Australia’s most accomplished & adored comedians; Nick has excelled & transitioned with great success from stage to television to film & beyond. A graduate of the Victorian College of the Arts, Nick essentially started the ‘wog’ phenomenon when he created & co-wrote the stage production Wogs Out of Work. Nick also co-created the smash hit sit-com Acropolis Now.

His first feature film The Wog Boy broke Australian box office records. He followed that with The Wannabes co-starring Isla Fisher and then The Kings of Mykonos: Wog Boy 2, which would go on to become a major International box office hit. Collectively all of Nick’s films have grossed over $20 million at the Aust. Box office.


Alex Dimitriades

Alex made his film debut playing the title role in breakout Australian feature film, The Heartbreak Kid. This was followed by an outstanding turn as the troubled “Ari” in Head On (Cannes Film Festival official selection) a performance that earned him an AFI Best Actor nomination in 1998 and a Film Critics’ Circle of Australia Award for Best Actor in 1999. He also received an AFI nomination in 2001 for his supporting role in the film, La Spagnola. Alex has also appeared in the films Three Blind Mice, Ghost Ship, Deuce Bigalow, Kings Of Mykonos, Summer Coda with Rachel Taylor, and recently completed filming on the soon to be released, The Infinite Man. Alex recently won the AACTA award for best actor in a TV series for his performance in The Slap.


Frank Lotito

Frank Lotito was destined to become a performer. From his early days as the class clown, to being discovered by a producer working as a waiter, destiny came knocking.

In 2011 Frank appeared in his first full-length feature film Big Mamma’s Boy, a laugh out loud comedy about life, love and lasagna, which he also wrote and produced. This lead to Frank producing his first US indie film in 2013. Shot entirely in New Orleans called the Lookalike, starring Justin Long, Jerry O’Connell and John Corbett. Frank is currently working on his next film The Cook & The Critic scheduled to shoot in New York and Italy in 2014.


Vince Colosimo

One of Australia’s most recognized actors with an extensive and successful career across theatre, television and film, Vince first came to the public’s attention in the feature films Street Hero & Moving Out. Vince has since gone on to appear in many more award winning films including; Walking On Water, The Nugget, Take Away and Opal Dreams. After landing a featured role in the internationally acclaimed film Chopper, he went on to win an AFI Award for Best Supporting Actor in 2002 for his performance in the feature film Lantana. In 2008 Vince starred in Underbelly one of the most successful Australian TV series ever. 2009 saw Vince star alongside Leonardo DiCaprio in Body Of Lies while in 2010 he appeared opposite Willem Dafoe & Ethan Hawke in Daybreakers. That year also saw him reunite with Nick Giannopoulos in The Kings of Mykonos: Wog Boy 2.

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