If only Paul Cicero had this spectacular device in jail:
If only Paul Cicero had this spectacular device in jail:
Despite unleashing a global wave of controversy and criticism -- and political turmoil in the region -- Iran continues to draw loyal support from Hezbollah, which not only "subscribes to that nation's ideology of theocratic leadership" but also accepts the conduct and outcome of last month's elections. As such, "the outcome of current debates there over the way theocratic authority is wielded, and the secular question of how Iran should manage its external relations, is sure to reverberate inside Lebanon." Sheikh Naim Qassem, the militant group's second-in-command, told the Christian Science Monitor that Hezbollah looks to Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, Iran's hard-line supreme leader, for religious rules and sets the guidelines for the party's general political performance.
Other than that, Hezbollah is an authentic Lebanese resistance group.
Professor Henry Louis Gates, Jr.,is arrested in his own home in Cambridge by police, who then accuse him of "loud and tumultuous behavior." Let's see -- if the police were arresting me in my own house -- for breaking and entering into my own house -- I might become both loud and tumultuous. Word fail when you read stories like this. I'm sure Pat Buchanan will be on television tomorrow arguing that it wasn't, in fact, Gates' house.
Today marks the 65th anniversary of Operation Valkyrie, so it is fitting that Radu Mazare, the 41-year-old mayor of Constanta, Romania, went with his son to see the eponymous film, which features Tom Cruise as the unsuccessful Hitler assassin. Here's the twist: father and son left feeling so inspired that both decided to wear Nazi uniforms to a Romanian fashion show and goose-step on the runway over the weekend. Mazare is not sure why people are outraged, or why some are calling for an investigation of his eligibility to be mayor. Perhaps he should have worn an eyepatch.
Haifa police on Monday arrested four people on suspicion of attempting to smuggle 1,000 ecstasy pills in a shampoo bottle. The bottle arrived at the Haifa customs offices, and when one of the suspects came to pick it up, he was arrested. His three alleged accomplices were subsequently detained.
One question: is Pocahontas featured on the bottle? If so, watch out.
A belated follow-up to my post a while back on the world's strangest baseball game, the one between the Hebrew All-Star Nines and the Ku Klux Klan. Goldblog Special Baseball Correspondent Joshua Miller looked into the game further and found that one of its more curious aspects -- could the "Povich" listed on the Hebrew squad as playing right-field have been the great sportswriter (and father of Maury) Shirley Povich? -- has a most interesting answer. It turned out that this particular Povich was Shirley's brother, Abe. But more on him in a second.
It also turns out that the September, 1926 game between the Hebrews and the Klan wasn't the only time Abe Povich played against an anti-Semitic group. Larry Povich, one of Abe's sons, reports that he was often told about a game against a group of racists that the Hebrews actually won. After the last out, the opposing team turned serious and the Hebrews -- especially Abe's friend and teammate, Vinney the catcher -- began to worry. "They felt that they were in trouble because he said [the racists] had picked up their bats at, what they thought was, an inappropriate time. And they were coming after them," Larry said. Turns out the white supremacists were sore losers.
"It's very vivid in my mind in terms of how I imagine Vinney getting in this old truck, firing it up as they had to do in those days, and driving across a field on the mall, not too far from the Lincoln Memorial," Larry recalled. "The story that stuck in my mind was dad running across the infield towards the outfield and Vinney sweeping through the field picking up the Jewish guys -- dad and the other players on their team -- who were being chased the racists."
His family remembers Abe, who died in 1991, as an extraordinary athlete from an early age. He was an all-state player in high school in baseball, basketball and football, even though he only stood 5'3". When he moved to Washington, D.C., as a young man in the early 1920s, he joined a number of club teams and was a huge baseball enthusiast. "He often went to spring training with Uncle Shirley," Larry remembered, "and mom didn't expect to see him until after spring training." Beyond being remembered as a great athlete, Abe's family recalled him as a very good man. "My father was an expansive, magnanimous person who was always willing to help somebody out," Ron Povich, Abe's other son, said.
But his athleticism was one of his defining characteristics. Even after he lost his youthful ability to play football and baseball, Ron said, he was still an expert sportsman, bowling and playing golf long into his retirement. "It was legendary that he was such a fine athlete," Maury Povich said. "And my father Shirley insisted, even after watching Babe Ruth and Lou Gehrig and Sammy Baugh, and all the great athletes for 75 years, that the best athlete he ever saw was his brother Abe."
I'm trying to unpack the message of this cartoon, published last week in the Palestinian Authority's newspaper of record, Falastin. The point of the cartoon is that the Palestinians are being lulled into complacence by Barack Obama's soothing words. But what does the turkey mean? After considering the options, I've come to think that the turkey symbolizes tryptophan, a chemical that induces sleep and which is apparently found in turkey in great quantities. But I don't know. Any ideas?
I like the way James Forsyth puts this:
Whatever Israel's faults, there is something deeply wrong about a human rights organisation trying to raise money in a religiously oppressive monarchical state out of criticising a liberal democracy. It does make one wonder how people committed to human rights can get it so wrong.
Omri Casspi slights baba ghanouj:
The first Israeli in the N.B.A., Omri Casspi, is busily trying to adapt to life in the United States.
For starters, he needs a cellphone with a local number. He just received a $4,500 bill for about two weeks of calls, which is expensive even by N.B.A. standards. He needs new chargers for all his gadgets. But he is struggling most to find comfort food.
"Hummus," Casspi said, with a hard h and a long u, stressing the first syllable in a way that conveyed utter seriousness. "You don't have that here, though."
A reporter insisted that the chickpea spread is widely available in grocery stores in the United States, but Casspi -- who was drafted last month by the Sacramento Kings -- smiled dismissively.
"Man, I tried it; that's all I can say," he said last week during a break in the Kings' summer league schedule. "I will bring some from Israel, maybe. I'll let you taste it and you tell me."
Thanks to Goldblog reader M.S. for reminding me that Zionist sex gum is nothing compared to the penis-melting combs that briefly plagued one Arab capital.
A dissent from Goldblog reader Jon Ihle on David Wolpe's commentary:
What Wolpe describes as the "essence of being human" are characteristics that we gained from eating of the tree of knowledge. Desire comes after the Fall. His explanation is therefore anachronistic and, ironically, reveals how allegorical the Torah really is: Adam and Eve have to be a representation of who we are "in essence", otherwise the story makes no sense. Yet the story says explicitly that they were some other kind of people, then they ate, then they became like us. A better question: why did God create the Tree knowing how he had created (or would create) Adam and Eve as he did (without knowledge of good and evil and, therefore, desire)? How much do we really learn about His decisions by pondering our own decisions?
Goldblog reader David Brinn writes, in reference to the escalating Zionist sex gum controversy:
"If you actually come across any strawberry-flavored gum that simultaneously (1) drives women wild with desire, and (2) serves as a contraceptive, well....name your price, sir..
From David Bernstein, who has been asking the hard questions:
So, HRW acknowledges that it used its reporting on Israel and its battles with Israel's supporters as part of its pitch in Saudi Arabia. The only remaining question is how prominent this was. Given HRW's constant refrain that it believes in "transparency," HRW should release a transcript of the remarks made before the Saudi elites, or, better yet, a video. And while they're at it, how about releasing data on how much money comes from citizens of repressive regimes, how much of that money is earmarked, and for what?
"German prosecutors in Nuremberg have launched an investigation into whether an artist's gold-colored gnome giving a stiff-armed Hitler salute violates the country's strict laws against the use of Nazi symbols. The gnome, standing 35 centimeters (14 inches) tall, is one of 700 made by German artist Ottmar Hoerl that were displayed in Belgium and Italy. ... Giving the outlawed Hitler salute or using Nazi symbols is a crime in Germany punishable by up to three years in prison."
Hoerl's defense: "I'd have been executed by the Nazis if I had portrayed the 'super race' as gnomes in 1942." Fair enough.
It turns out that 12 years ago, Palestinian Supply Minister Abdel Aziz Shaheen accused Israel of selling strawberry-flavored gum laced with hormones that drove women "wild with desire" while simultaneously serving as a contraceptive -- so a lot of premarital sex that didn't even help procreation. Very genocidal. At the time, officials said that the packs of gum, decorated with stickers of Disney's Pocahontas exhibiting "sultry" expressions (because clearly cartoons for five-year-olds tempt young adults), were sold at "suspiciously low prices near schoolhouses in the West Bank and Gaza Strip."
Can't the Israeli army think of something new? If any Goldblog readers have tasted said gum, please write in with your experiences. Or let me know if there's a sugar-free bubblemint variety.