Pakistan's Air Force Grooming More Young Skiers

Since 2010, when a local man became his country's first competitive Olympic skier, more young people in the snowy Naltar Valley are taking advantage of training provided by the military.

What's the Latest Development?


Three young men from Pakistan's remote Naltar Valley are competing in a qualifier for the 2014 Winter Olympics thanks to the country's air force, which extended its training to civilians in 1990 and is now benefiting from additional funding recently approved by the government. The air force runs a ski school that offers full scholarships to young people who seek to compete internationally, and also provides free lessons to area children ages 10 and up. Later this month, four boys will participate in the Asian Children Skiing Competition, which will be held in Tajikistan.

What's the Big Idea?

In 2010, scholarship recipient Muhammad Abbas became the first Pakistani athlete to attend a Winter Olympics, competing in the giant slalom event. Since then, interest in the sport has swelled, especially among girls, who currently represent one third of participating students despite resistance from some quarters. The ski school also provides work to about 30 men, and there are plans to expand the center into a commercial resort. Defense analyst Ayesha Siddiqa says the success of the air force's continued patronage represents a bit of "good PR" at a time when war and terrorism reports dominate the media.

Photo Credit: Wikimedia Commons

Read it at The Christian Science Monitor

Why American history lives between the cracks

The stories we tell define history. So who gets the mic in America?

Videos
  • History is written by lions. But it's also recorded by lambs.
  • In order to understand American history, we need to look at the events of the past as more prismatic than the narrative given to us in high school textbooks.
  • Including different voices can paint a more full and vibrant portrait of America. Which is why more walks of American life can and should be storytellers.
Keep reading Show less

Juice is terrible for children. Why do we keep giving it to them?

A glass of juice has as much sugar, ounce for ounce, as a full-calorie soda. And those vitamins do almost nothing.

Pixabay user Stocksnap
popular

Quick: think back to childhood (if you've reached the scary clown you've gone too far). What did your parents or guardians give you to keep you quiet? If you're anything like most parents, it was juice. But here's the thing: juice is bad for you. 

Keep reading Show less

Orangutans exhibit awareness of the past

Orangutans join humans and bees in a very exclusive club

(Eugene Sim/Shutterstock)
Surprising Science
  • Orangutan mothers wait to sound a danger alarm to avoid tipping off predators to their location
  • It took a couple of researchers crawling around the Sumatran jungle to discover the phenomenon
  • This ability may come from a common ancestor
Keep reading Show less