discarded lies: sunday, september 24, 2017 8:25 pm zst
grinding the peppercorns of truth
daily archive: 01/25/2005
zorkmidden in Discarded Lies:
The Farhud
Thirteen-year-old Maurice Zekaria looked out through the curtained window of his house in central Baghdad and saw Iraqi men dragging two Jewish girls down the street by their hair.

He saw Iraqis attacking Jewish men with axes and hammers, and he saw heavy smoke rising from torched Jewish businesses and homes.

It was June 1, 1941 — Shavuot — and over the next 48 hours, Muslim rioters killed some 180 Jews and injured 240, raped Jewish women and burned and looted 586 Jewish stores and homes.
Read it all: Sephardim want Baghdad pogrom included in education on Holocaust
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zorkmidden in Discarded Lies:
Anti-Semitism, Subtle and Coded
The number of anti-Semitic incidents in Britain have almost doubled since last year. Who's to blame?
Anti-Semitism in Britain and Europe is worse than 20 years ago and public figures are partly to blame, according to a leading academic.

Professor Peter Pulzer, an expert in Jewish history, says politicians and the media are responsible for reinforcing "pre-Holocaust stereotypes" when referring to the Arab-Israeli conflict.

"We are not back in the 1930s, but at a time when anti-Semitism should have been dispersed the trend has reversed direction. One now has to worry about it again in a way that 10 or 20 years ago you did not," said the Gladstone Professor of Government and Public Administration at the University of Oxford and fellow of All Souls College.

Professor Pulzer, author of The Rise of Political Anti-Semitism in Germany and Austria, said he was concerned about the alarming rise in "soft" anti-Semitism since the 11 September 2001 terror attacks, with MPs and writers using "coded" language to express prejudiced views.

"Some of the coded allusions that you find in coverage of that particular issue and the sort of things public figures say do tend to reinforce traditional unfavourable images of Jews. It's not explicit or violent but it's subtle and it's coded," said the professor.

Meanwhile, in Stamford Hill, north London, there have been at least eight attacks on Charedi Jews in the past six weeks.
From Eric the Unread
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zorkmidden in Discarded Lies:
Europe Makes No Headway on Iran Nuclear Talks
But Don't Worry, Everything Is Gonna Be All Right


I am so shocked, I need whiskey my smelling salts:
A confidential summary of talks between key European powers and Iran made available to The Associated Press on Tuesday shows there has been no progress in getting Iran to scrap nuclear enrichment — even though Tehran acknowledged it does not need nuclear energy.

EU Makes No Headway on Iran Nuke Program
And here I've been so happy lately, thinking we finally found a diplomatic solution to Tehran's nuclear plans...

Ok, never mind, I see Schroeder has got it figured out:
"What's important now is to undertake efforts to work towards solving the Arab-Israeli conflict," Schroeder said. "We agree that this requires a really dynamic role of the U.S."
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evariste in Discarded Lies:
Supreme Court Refuses Jeb Bush's Schiavo Appeal
The Supreme Court yesterday refused to hear Florida governor Jeb Bush's appeal of a Florida Supreme Court decision voiding a law he pushed through the Florida legislature in emergency session to save tube-fed Terri Schiavo's life. Her husband, Michael Schiavo, had had her tube removed for the second time and Terri was in the middle of an agonizing death when Bush and the Florida legislature saved her life, six days on, by passing the law and having her feeding tube reattached. Terri's parents are now seeking to have guardianship withdrawn from her husband, and an attorney appointed to defend her interests. Terri is alive and conscious and shows no sign that she wants to die of starvation; tens of thousands of people exist who are conscious and must be fed by tube. This website run by her parents' foundation to save her life has dramatic realplayer clips of Terri interacting with those around her; go watch and make up your own mind whether or not her husband should be allowed to have her starved to death.

I think the Florida legislature should impeach their Supreme Court.
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zorkmidden in Discarded Lies:
Enemies of Freedom
The incoming Secretary of State Dr. Condoleezza Rice made an unsettling statement during her confirmation hearing on January 18th, saying: “We didn't understand the role of non-governmental organizations [that were] carrying out or funding terrorist activities. Others didn't understand that, in the Muslim world, like the Saudis.?
Really? So, when they were collecting funds for the mujahideen in the mosques, where did they think the money went? And how much longer will we be making excuses for the Saudis, anyway?
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zorkmidden in Discarded Lies:
Symbols
While the E.U. is talking about banning the swastika, another symbol of oppression is not only perfectably acceptable, it's downright chic.
Living with the hammer and sickle

"The afternoon's drama came toward the end of the panel, with this skinny kid sitting in the front row, who happened to be wearing a bright red T-shirt with the Soviet hammer and sickle. I wanted to call him out from the start. I just felt a little crass about it. But as the panel wore on, it continued to gnaw at me. It dawned on me that I or the leftists on the panel would have had no problem calling the kid out if he'd been wearing a T-shirt with neo-Nazi regalia.

And he applauded vigorously when the lefties spoke and sat on his hands when the rest of us spoke, meaning of course that he wasn't wearing the shirt with any sense of irony.

"So when he finally raised his hand during the Q&A, I decided that, what the hell, I might as well point out how silly he looks advertising a belief system rooted in slavery and murder. I recommended that he read Anne Applebaum's Gulag, the Pulitzer-winning book that documents the horrors of the Soviet work camps. He didn't seem to get it. So I added, `I know Soviet chic is hip right now, particularly on college campuses. But you really ought to think about the message you send by wearing that shirt.'

"Maybe it was boorish to call the kid out. But there's something really aggravating about these middle-class kids born into the most privileged conditions in all of human history suddenly finding it trendy to carry water for a belief system that murdered hundreds of millions of people, and enslaved billions more... Me, I just wanna smack 'em a few times."
Funny, that's what my dad used to say to me too, during my quest for freedom, equality and a just society. He also made me read The Gulag Archipelago.*

I don't think a comparison can be made between the gulags - which were labour camps - and the death camps of Europe. I think the reason we accept the hammer and sickle so easily (I threw away my Che poster a lot more recently than I care to remember) is exactly because the connotations are different, no gulag could match the horrors of Auschwitz. But we owe it to ourselves to at least realise that there's nothing fashionable about tyranny and enslavement.


*My answer to my dad was that Alexander Solzhenitsyn was an American agent, of course. All sixteen-year-olds know these things.
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zorkmidden in Discarded Lies:
Raising Little Arafat
Suha went on the haj and now she feels "internal peace." She's going to need that peace, Arafat's cousins are filing a lawsuit seeking custody of her daughter.
"After performing all the rituals of the haj, I feel closer to God," Suha explained. "I also feel internal peace."

Her daughter, who was also interviewed by the paper, said she enjoyed the experience. "I didn't feel tired at all and I prayed for the soul of my father," she said. "I want to return to this holy site every year."

In a related development, relatives of Arafat in the Gaza Strip are demanding that Suha and her daughter move back to the Palestinian areas.

Jarir al-Kidwa, one of Arafat's prominent cousins in Gaza City, said the family wants the two to return home because "life in Paris contravenes with Islamic morals and traditions."

Suha and Zahwa, who turns 10 next July, had been living in Paris before they moved to Tunis a year ago. The two were invited by the wife of the Tunisian president to stay in the country, where Zahwa attends a private school.

"We don't want Zahwa to live in Paris and be affected by the climate there," Kidwa added, claiming that Arafat's daughter was a descendant of one of the nephews of the Prophet Mohammed.

Kidwa, 80, said the family set up a 10-member committee to seek custody over Arafat's daughter so that she could be raised in an Islamic and Arabic environment. He said the team had contacted a number of lawyers in France to file a lawsuit against Suha, asking that she hand her daughter over to them.
Suha Arafat performs 'haj' to Mecca
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evariste in Discarded Lies:
Honey, I Blew Up The Comments
Sorry. You can leave commments again now if you like :-)
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guest author: Jefe in Discarded Lies:
Traveling Around Ireland With The Band - Day 2, or is it 3...
Day 2, or is it 3...Thursday--no, it's Friday now, Day 3. It's easy to lose track of time when travelling is done over two days with only naps on the plane.

Galway - Donegal - Derry

After a hearty Irish breakfast, we hit the road for Northern Ireland. Joe, the Black 47 piper, provided the bus entertainment, particularly with dead-on impressions of the driver Joe. People in the back of the bus wouldn't realize it wasn't the driver talking over the intercom until he started making up city names and talking about penguins. We passed through the town of Tuam, home of the Saw Doctors, and into Mayo. In Sligo, we stopped at Drumcliffe and visited the grave of W.B. Yeats.

Lunch was at the Donegal town center. From there, we followed the coastline cliffs of County Donegal into Northern Ireland, and into Derry. We entered the original walled city of Derry through Butcher's Gate; our hotel was inside the old city walls just off the Diamond center. Julie & I had dinner at the hotel after most of the other tour people had already eaten, and the waitress told us she had never served so much Guinness in her life. It wasn't too surprising since the beer of choice for most of the Irish seemed to be Budweiser. Go figure.

The Derry show was just outside Butchers Gate at the Gasyard, in the Bogside. The Bogside is the Catholic dominated neighborhood, site of the infamous Bloody Sunday. We saw a good deal of Republican graffiti, including some amazing murals, such as one in memory of Bobby Sands. However, any sympathies were quickly dashed on my part by some of the other graffiti: a paean to Al Aqsa Martyrs Brigade, a message expressing solidarity with Hamas, and several 'G-d Bless Arafat' scrawls. The concert was in a community center and was BYOB. Fortunately, a liquor store was right outside. We had quite a few empties to clean up afterwards; during the show, some creative people made good use of the trash, such as Julie's Irish Menorah and Joe's stint as the Unknown Piper.

After the show, I talked with Marion, the Neck fiddler, telling her I also played (though nowhere near her talent & experience). We talked about different styles (I play mainly Appalachian/Old-Time, while she grew up playing Scottish & was learning and playing Irish for Neck). She had a second violin that she brought on tour, and we made vague plans to have a jam at some point. Derry was probably the earliest night for Julie & me. After the show, we trudged up the hill back to Butchers Gate and to the hotel. I think we were in bed by 2AM, and out cold soon after.

to be continued...
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evariste in Discarded Lies:
Two Billion Muslims?
Not so fast, Taranto!
James Taranto's Best Of The Web column Monday:
America finds itself at war with the exponents of a particular form of Islam, a strain that is, as Gelernter puts it, "a religion of death, a religion that rejoices in slaughter." The world has some two billion Muslims, the vast majority of whom are not radicals; and a religious crusade to convert them to Christianity (or Judaism, or atheism) simply is not an option. The only way to defeat the radical Islamists is to establish an accommodation between Islam and democracy--to assimilate the Islamic world into the modern world.
I thought that sounded kind of high. Adherents.com, who say their figures are usually on the high end, has 0.9-1.3 billion.
Islam: Contemporary figures for Islam are usually between 900 million and 1.3 billion, with 1 billion being a figure frequently given in comparative religion texts, probably because it's such a nice, round number. The largest and best known branches of Islam are Sunni and Shi'ite. More.

Many Muslims (and some non-Muslim) observers claim that there are more practicing Muslims than practicing Christians in the world. Adherents.com has no reason to dispute this. It seems likely, but we would point out that there are different opinions on the matter, and a Muslim may define "practicing" differently than a Christian. In any case, the primary criterion for the rankings on this page is self-identification, which has nothing to do with practice.
Here's another overview which looks as well at comparative growth rates of Islam and Christianity. He's right that a religious crusade to convert them all to Christianity is not an option, of course, I'm just, you know, fact-checking his ass. It's an ankle-biting blogging kind of thang.
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