20 May 2015

On some peculiarities of Russian political discourse

Not much is said in Western media about some excesses of Russian new wave of ultra-patriotism. This wave seems to be drowning any sign of protest about the Russian piecemeal absorption of Ukrainian territory. It also reached some hitherto unseen heights of unbridled profanity, as it could be seen in the picture below.

The text on the rear window says:
Will buy the skin off Obama's arse. Dearly [meaning the author is ready to pay a lot].
This "ad" appeared on a Hummer that was seen circling the streets of Pyatigorsk on May 9 (the Soviet/Russian Victory day) among many other cars carrying all kinds of patriotic and, in many cases, xenophobic slogans.

The ownership of the car [aside of the irony of the car being of American extraction, which fact escaped the attention of its owner] is of interest in this case. According to the article that quotes some Pyatigorsk citizens, there are only two Hummers in the city, and the one in question belongs to one Daniil Travnev, head of the Pyatigorsk branch of the Russian Gazprom, the largest natural gas extraction company in the world.

Oh well, as the linked article properly mentions:
The reality of Putin's Russia are such that it has become a nature reserve for idiots.
Believe it or not, the presented "pearl" is on the mild side, compared to other, overtly racist curses directed at Obama particularly and at Americans in general.

And, since Putin's name was mentioned - meanwhile near Sankt Peterburg:

Cossacks unveil a monument to Putin in the image of Emperor Nero
The poor schlubs certainly don't know much about the emperor in question... but their intentions are good and their hearts are pure. More on the story.

So there.

19 May 2015

Diego Armando Maradona's two Rolex watches finally explained!

Once a ball player - forever a ball player, as this picture of the corpulent Hand of God conclusively proves. But really, I shouldn't be small minded here and pour my personal (Brazilian fan's) bile on the man. Besides, this post is not about balls at all. What you can see in this picture besides the rather awkward gesture is the two watches our protagonist is carrying. Why is it important? Because these watches are definitely not Rolex.

And why are they not Rolex? Because at the time when this picture was taken, Maradona was already Rolex-less, for a simple enough reason:
Diego Maradona had some time on his hands near Naples on Tuesday until Italy's tax police took two Rolex watches from the Argentine soccer legend to chip away at his $38.5 million bill in unpaid income taxes.

"We were surprised he was wearing them because he knows that when he comes to Italy he risks losing something," said Tax Police Maj. Geremia Guercia, speaking by phone from the Naples suburb of Giugliano In Campania.
On another occasion Italian Tax police took off his earrings as well, but this is really another story. So why, you might want to ask, I am rehashing the old (2006) scoop? Just because recently an historical fact came by (thanks to L.G.) that put the curious two-Rolex habit of Mr Maradona in a totally new light. It is not his vanity or his poor taste (although there is an abundance of both in this case) that have driven the Hand of God to that habit. It is his ideology and his boundless admiration for his role model: Fidel (The Beard) Castro. Here is the story:
Here Fidel Castro is seen smoking a Cuban cigar and wearing two Rolex watches in the Kremlin while he chats with Khrushchev, in front of a Karl Marx picture.
Fidel Castro was often spotted wearing two Rolex’s at the same time – one of them a GMT, the other a Submariner. In total the watches gave Castro a three time zone overview by a glance on his wrist. The watches have been set for Havana, Washington and Moscow time.
There is one hardly significant detail: if you click on the picture you shall clearly see that The Beard wears both watches on the left hand, unlike the Hand of God who wears one watch on each hand. Well, this is easily explained - his hands are much shorter than these of The Beard, and two watches carried on one hand would have created a problem.

On the other hand (no pun intended), the Hand of God used his shortish appendages well enough - to the glory of himself and his team... 'nuff said.

18 May 2015

Putin's immaculate conception or in search for parents

Russian PR isn't known for its subtlety. Beatification process of Valdimir Vladimirovich Putin is another example of the negative impact inflicted by the chronic state of hangover.

Here is what one of the Russian media outfits MKRU reported re the above picture:

Here is what the text above says (more or less):
Unexpectedly, the President appeared during the demo "Undying brigade". Like other citizens, he was carrying a portrait of his father, who fell in the war.
Just for the hell of it, the reader is invited to do some simple arithmetic: the war in question ended in 1945; Putin V.V. was (officially) born in 1952. Since at the time all these modern methods of freezing one's sperm and artificial insemination weren't in vogue, only one option, no matter how improbable, remains on the table...

Oh well, the story is surely being blown out of proportion, since Putin's dad didn't die in the war and the whole brouhaha is to remain on the conscience of one hapless reporter. Still, another question remains: according to the official Putin's bio, his dad fought in the war in the ranks of 86th infantry brigade. In the picture, however, he appears in Navy standard garb.

Curiosier and curiosier...

Obama’s 67 degrees of separation from Israel

A great article by David Horovitz. Mandatory read that.

17 May 2015

Another book to skip

Well, if that part of the blurb is to be an indication:

The Klassekians are a gifted race, with an ability which could help the Empire in its war against the Ca'cadasans.
Ca'cadasans... yeah, I don't know yet who they are, but I suspect they deserve a thorough beating. So no need to dig deeper.

אנגרמה: עברית - ערבית

העובדה שהמילים "עברית" ו"ערבית" מורכבות מאותן אותיות אינה נסתרת מאף אחד מאיתנו.
וגם העובדה שערבים הם עם (nation), ויש בהם מוסלמים ונוצרים ועוד דתות, ידועה לכל.
מה היהודים - זה קצת לא ברור. האם אנחנו דת? האם אנחנו עם?
ומהי ישראל - זה גם ברור. ישראל היא מדינה.
אמנם לפעמים טועים לחשוב שכל היהודים הם ישראלים ולכן יש הקבלה בין יהודים וישראלים, אבל יש ישראלים שאינם יהודים. יש ישראלים שהם ערבים. ויש הרבה יהודים שאינם ישראלים וכנראה גם אינם רוצים להיות ישראלים.

חשבתי שהיה יכול להיות נחמד אם מדינת ישראל אכן תהיה מדינת כל אזרחיה.
ובה חיים שני עמים: ערבים (בני דתות שונות) ועברים (שמרביתם יהודים אך יש בהם גם אתיאיסטים ואולי אף לא-יהודים שהשתרבבו בעיקר מיוצאי בריה"מ).
ותהיה לנו "עבודה ערבית" ו"עבודה עברית" - כמו שדברו לפני קום המדינה, ויש את השפה העברית והשפה הערבית, ויהיו שני עמים עברים וערבים. ונפסיק להתבלבל בין המושגים -ישראלי - יהודי - ערבי.

16 May 2015

NASA scientists worried about the fate of Paektu Mountain

Leading scientists of NASA expressed grave concern with the fate of Paektu Mountain, an active volcano and a famous nature phenomenon on the border between North Korea and China. After the historic ascent to the summit of the mountain by the corpulent North Korean leader, Kim Jong Un, several geodetic satellites have shown that the height of the mountain has decreased by 25.4 cm (10.7874 inch).

An anonymous well-informed NASA expert commented:
The same geodetic satellites that measured the height of Paektu Mountain's summit are secretly measuring the dimensions of Mr Kim Jong Un, and the leading scientists are worried about the rapid increase in the said measurements. If the trend continues, another ascent or two by the man might cause irreparable loss to the fragile ecology of the whole region, including draining of the Heaven Lake, the source of Chinese rivers Songhua, Tumen and Yalu, not to mention the habitat for tigers, bears, leopards, wolves, wild boars and, most importantly, of scaly-sided mergansers.
As a response to the implied critique of one of his greatest feats, Kim Jong Un, first secretary of the Workers' Party of Korea, first chairman of the DPRK National Defence Commission and supreme commander of the Korean People's Army (KPA) said:
We should dynamically conduct a drive of breaking through the cutting edge with intense loyalty and noble sense of moral obligation to further glorify the DPRK as a space power and thus hand down the undying feats of the Generalissimo to posterity.

If the US imperialists threaten our sovereignty and survival... our troops will fire our nuclear-armed rockets at the White House and the Pentagon - the sources of all evil. The army and people of the DPRK who aspire after justice and truth and value conscience have hundreds of millions of supporters and sympathizers, known or unknown, who have turned out in the sacred war against terrorism and the U.S. imperialists, the chieftain of aggression, to accomplish the just cause.
With special thanks to Judeopundit.

Mossad and Ayatollah Khomeini: a thriller that wasn't

This is a blast from the past:

In a shocking revelation at a special conference at the Institute for National Security Studies in Tel Aviv, it was revealed that former Iranian Prime Minister Shapour Bakhtiar, the last prime minister before the Islamic Revolution, asked Mossad agents in Tehran to assassinate the leader of the Revolution, Ayatollah Khomeini.
Says Yossi Alpher, a former Mossad official:
I told the heads of the Mossad that I had difficulty supporting the request because we didn't know enough about who and what Khomeini was. I really regret not supporting that request.
You bet.

15 May 2015

Knesset leak: "what is happening here is a circus"

I wonder whether what is said here is to be considered a scoop:

A source in the Knesset said in the evening that "what is happening here is a circus" after a last-minute crisis between Netanyahu and the two senior members of his faction led to the delay of the Knesset swearing in session.
So what else is new? Nothing much, and even this could hardly be considered news:
Prime Minsiter* Netanyahu, on his part, decried the system of government, saying it must be changed. "It encourages extravagant, excessive demands both by parties and by individuals," he said.
Yeah, all in all we might be better off with the Darwinian process of whittling out the weakest candidates like that one.

Remind  me, please, who wanted these elections in the first place?

(*) Not my typo.

12 May 2015

Hassan Nasrallah - heart attack or...?

Rumors (rumours):

According to the claims, Nasrallah was admitted a few days ago to a hospital in one of Beirut's southern neighborhoods after suffering medical complications in the form of a stroke or heart attack.
But if you want the real skinny, ask the Elders. Only here you will learn that the hero of Beirut underground fell a victim to the most dangerous of all subterranean diseases: the Bunkus Fungus.

And only the most stout of heart and stomach should look at the picture below, clicking first on "Read more...", of course. Directly from a certain bunker under a certain embassy in Beirut:

10 May 2015

We have been Putin's trolls

Troll: a person who makes a deliberately offensive or provocative online posting.
Probably everyone who spent a sufficient amount of time on the Internet is familiar with all kinds of people blaming other kinds of people in being paid trolls for a cause. Of course, it is a standard and already quite overused coin in the anti-Zionist treasure of labels, addressed at anyone who dares to object to their vicious and, of course, totally volunteering smearing efforts.

A real and, so far, devilishly effective, financed propaganda effort, that was undertaken in the latter years by the Russian government, so far remains mostly unheeded by the Western media. Not many people are aware of the role the Russian web brigades play in unprecedented popularity of the Russian president. You shall see that the Russians employ such trolls in languages other than Russian.

Exposure of this highly effective and so far unprecedented undertaking is a difficult task. It is thus of importance when the participants in this propaganda war disclose their work. The following article is translated from a Russian version by a blogger Piesdabolt.

The Polish edition of «Duży format» has published an extensive interview by journalist Lyudmila Anannikova with Marat and Lyudmila [in the picture above] - former employees of the Kremlin's "Ministry of Truth".

In order to become an employee of the St. Petersburg Internet Research, you have only to know the Russian language and to love Putin. Marat, 40-year-old bachelor from St. Petersburg, laughed at first at the texts that he wrote while working at the "Trolls Factory". Two months later he realized that he became a split personality. Lyudmila Savchuk, 34-year-old urban activist, went to work in the company to gather facts for journalists. She got to write blogs on behalf of fictitious persons.

The most inflammatory post

Or is it flammable? I don't know, but I want to declare that many of my friends are of female persuasion, so do not take it out on me, please. Here it goes:

And of course, I am not saying who contributed this photography. Offline inquiries with solid financial proposals might be considered.

08 May 2015

Zionists: 1, George Galloway: 0. Hyenas: bouncing.


But there will be others who are already celebrating: the venal, the vile, the racists and the Zionists will all be celebrating. The hyena can bounce on the lion’s grave but it can never be a lion and in any case, I’m not in my grave. As a matter of fact I’m going off now to plan the next campaign.
Back to the regular programming:

But not before we parse the text above and notice that, probably because of the shock, George the Spiv forgot to mention the Texans. As he used to. So compare the above list of dark forces with this:
They’re all out tonight; the Tory vermin, the UKIP proto-fascists, their Scots counterparts, the actual fascists, even Texans!

Omar Khadr, a scion of the first genetically terrorist family, gets out of jail

I am all for freedom, however the first thing that baby Khadr said was:
'I would like to thank the Canadian public for trusting me and giving me a chance,' Omar Khadr says. 'I will prove to them that I'm more than what they thought of me.'
I would rather prefer that he wouldn't. Prove anything, I mean. Unless he means to set a world record by swimming back to Guantanamo.

As for the "genetically terrorist family": details, for those who forgot.

07 May 2015

Lisa Goldman to Javad Zarif: No, Your Excellency, +972 is not a Zionist site

Lisa Goldman as depicted on her Twitter page
The sordid story starts with a +972 report on Mohammad Javad Zarif, Iran’s foreign minister public interview (conversation) with the Washington Post’s David Ignatius of April 29, 2015. Frankly, for some reason Ms Goldman has chosen not to use this opportunity to bash Israel and has even found some good reasons to (very gently) criticize Mr Zarif. Some ingrown journalistic habits die hard, it appears...

The immediate consequences of the story remain somewhat foggy. The Twitter sites I have checked: these of +972 and of Mohammad Javad Zarif are scrubbed clean and do not contain the initial response by Zarif to that article, but obviously he expressed some displeasure by the gentle criticism and found a way to convey the said displeasure.  The response* by Ms Goldman is stunning :
To make sure the text in question doesn't disappear, here is a (manual) copy:
Just a correction, Your Excellency: my article for +972 Magazine is not angry at all. The headline that you reference is taken from a Gershwin song "Autumn in New York" ("Why is it so inviting?"). Also, +972 is not a Zionist website. I enjoyed listening to you speak at New York University and was sincere in my admiration for your mastery of colloquial English, as well as your confident manner.
Aside of being a clear-cut case of sycophantic groveling, the note half-states what was an open secret for everyone: +972 is not a Zionist website. The reason I say "half-states" is simple: it is telling only half of the truth, because +972 is openly anti-Zionist, and this is a completely different cup of tea. This here blog is not Zionist (see item 8 of our Charter), but there is a looong way from here to a virulently anti-Israeli rag that calls itself +972 only because some of the failures that claim to be +972 journalists are still responding to phone calls with +972 country code...

So - no need to strain yourself, Lisa, with half-truths, keep them for your articles. We know all about your "non-Zionism", it's fine...

As for that picture above: was there any special need to cover the nose? Possibly after that correspondence with His Excellency?**

(*) Noah Pollack has picked up the snapshot of this remarkable response, you can see it and the conversation that developed, where Lisa is, in her usual combative fashion, hurling incoherent responses, thinly veiled insults and her ultimate adjective - "reactionary" - at some people.

(**) To make sure that the reader receives full information, a comment by Lisa Goldman is copied here:
This popped up in my Google alerts! It is a bit amusing, but mostly absurd. Yan, your entire post is so full of factual errors and inanities that I can't even bother responding. Spluttering over +972 "not a Zionist site"? Of course it's not. It's an independent digital news magazine with lots of different contributors who have different political views. Including Palestinian contributors. It's not the organ of a political party, as Davar was for the Labor party.

But I must correct you regarding the photo. The girl in the photo is not me. She was 12 when I took it (I was 42, so thanks for the compliment), and her surname is Tamimi. I took it in 2010 in her house in Nabi Saleh, a small village near Ramallah. The girl covered her face with a Palestinian flag that was sitting on a chair, to protect her nose and mouth from fumes after Israeli soldiers shot a tear gas canister directly into her living room. You can see the broken glass behind her head. Her younger brothers and cousins were playing in the next room. A year later her older brother Mustafa, died after soldiers shot him in the face at point blank range with a high velocity tear gas canister. You can read more about that here [link omitted - see in the comments].
Now you can see how a person that blames her opponents in being shallow and reactionary clumsily deflects anything thrown at her. First of all, +972 is not Zionist (or anti-Zionist), because a) it is "not the organ of a political party" and b) it has "lots of different contributors who have different political views". And of course, the photograph is a crucial element in the exhibit of "factual errors and inanities"... oh well, this goes for an argument these days in certain circles.