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Silk Road

The Chinese are already calling it "the New Eurasian Continental Bridge" or "the Iron-Silk Road." The grandiose titles apply to a new railway link that will enable travelers and trade to follow the footsteps of Marco Polo with greater ease than ever before. Trains linking China's eastern seaboard with Western Europe are due to start rolling on the 6,750-mile route in July, 1992.
Bao Xueli has two dreams. One is to make a pilgrimage to Mecca before he dies. The other is that his village will build him a real mosque. Bao, 81, is the imam, or Muslim religious leader, of a recently established village on newly irrigated land in the Ningxia Hui Autonomous Region of north-central China. His two dreams tell something of a people's faith--a faith that is struggling to survive and, perhaps, reassert its primacy.
December 2, 2007 | Susan Carpenter, Times Staff Writer
Kashgar, China After 36 hours, three flights and two sleeping pills, I arrived in the western Chinese city of Kashgar. It was 10 p.m., and the sun was only starting to set when I disembarked on the runway, collected my bags from the airport's single conveyor belt and boarded a barely functioning minibus for town.
January 27, 2014 | By Andrew Tangel and Chris O'Brien
NEW YORK - The federal government has arrested one of the biggest names in the bitcoin community in the latest crackdown on digital currencies and their illicit use. Charlie Shrem, chief executive of digital currency exchange BitInstant, stands accused with a Florida man of laundering money through a notorious drug-trafficking website. Shrem is also vice chairman of the Bitcoin Foundation, a nonprofit group aimed at promoting the digital currency. He and codefendant Robert M. Faiella of Cape Coral, Fla., are accused of selling more than $1 million worth of bitcoins to people attempting to buy and sell illegal drugs on the Silk Road website, which the FBI shut down in October.
October 16, 2011 | By Benjamin Haas, Los Angeles Times
As a child growing up in Kaifeng in central China, Jin Jin was constantly reminded of her unusual heritage. "We weren't supposed to eat pork, our graves were different from other people, and we had a mezuza on our door," said the 25-year-old, referring to the prayer scroll affixed to doorways of Jewish homes. Her father told her of a faraway land called Israel that he said was her rightful home, she recalls. But "we didn't know anything about daily prayers or the weekly reading of the Torah.
March 7, 2005 | Lynne Heffley
As a U.N. refugee affairs officer in Jerusalem in the late 1980s, Arab American Jamil Khoury experienced the first Palestinian uprising "literally between the rocks and bullets," he says. Fast-forward to 2003 and the inaugural production of the Chicago-based Silk Road Theatre Project: Khoury's play, "Precious Stones," inspired by his tumultuous time in the Middle East.
December 9, 2007
Last September I visited the same places as Susan Carpenter described in "Revved Up for the Silk Route" [Dec. 2] but came away with very different impressions. One needs to have some understanding of Chinese history in order to appreciate the significance of the artifacts along the Silk Road. For example, the Flaming Mountain was the site of the Monkey King legends of the Tang Dynasty. When one tours China, its 4,000 years of continuing history is an important part of the package.
March 25, 2014 | By Shan Li
This post has been corrected. See the note below for details. The Internal Revenue Service said Tuesday that bitcoin would be treated and taxed as property, a decision that is part of wider efforts to bring more oversight to the controversial digital currency. In its first big ruling on bitcoin, the agency noted that "it does not have legal tender status” and will be taxed under codes that apply to property transactions. That means wages paid to workers in bitcoins will be subject to federal income and payroll taxes.
November 18, 2013 | By Becca Clemons
WASHINGTON - Warning that virtual currencies are attracting money-launderers and drug dealers, U.S. officials called for greater government oversight of Bitcoin and other peer-to-peer payment systems during the first-ever congressional hearing on the fast-growing Internet-based technology. Treasury, Justice and Homeland Security department officials told members of the Senate Committee on Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs on Monday that websites facilitating payments with Bitcoin should receive more scrutiny from federal financial regulators to ensure that the relative anonymity granted by virtual currencies isn't exploited.
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