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Monthly Archives: March 2011

Fake Venezuelan money financing Nicaraguan protests in Honduras

Honduran Red Cross apprehends Venezuelan-Nicaraguan posing as tear gas inhalation victim

In response to the ongoing teachers’ strike in Honduras, the demands of which include an end to the privatization of public education, the illegitimate Honduran government that came to power following the 2009 coup against President Mel Zelaya has declared the strike illegal, threatened to fire striking teachers and to possibly dissolve teachers’ unions.

In typical fashion, the obsequious Honduran media has been trotting out propaganda headlines, such as today’s top news in El Heraldo: “Counterfeit dollars financing teacher protests.” In the body of the article, we of course discover that the possibility that fake money is arriving from abroad to fuel the strike is merely (supposedly) being investigated by authorities.

Defense Minister Marlon Pascua is quoted as saying:

I can’t definitively point to a specific country, but you all can imagine who might be interested in financing these kinds of operations in Honduras in order to sow unrest and anxiety.”

For the benefit of the unimaginative, El Heraldo subtly specifies that Pascua “did not dare confirm whether he was talking about Venezuela or [other] UNASUR countries.”

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Obama in El Salvador

Demonstrator in San Salvador (Photo: Efe)

As part of his visit to El Salvador yesterday, the last stop on a Latin American excursion occurring despite events in Japan and Libya, Barack Obama visited the tomb of Salvadoran Archbishop Óscar Arnulfo Romero, assassinated on March 24, 1980.

Observers have noted that the current bombing of Libya began on the same date as the start of the Iraq war eight years ago. Coincidentally, Obama’s appearance in El Salvador occurs exactly nine years after George W. Bush’s. As the BBC’s Tom Gibb wrote at the time:

There is a tremendous irony that President George W Bush has chosen to visit El Salvador on the anniversary of the murder of the country’s Archbishop, Oscar Arnulfo Romero, 22 years ago.

A campaigner against the Salvadorean army’s death squad war, Monsignor Romero was shot through the heart while saying Mass, shortly after appealing to the US not to send military aid to El Salvador.

The appeal fell on deaf ears and for the next 12 years, the US became involved in its largest counter-insurgency war against left-wing guerrillas since Vietnam.

To defeat the rebels, the US equipped and trained an army which kidnapped and disappeared more than 30,000 people, and carried out large-scale massacres of thousands of old people women and children.”

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Dershowitz’s radioactive plume

While some friends of the Jewish state are preoccupied with the possibility of a sushi shortage in Israel thanks to the disaster in Japan, Harvard’s crazed law professor Alan M. Dershowitz has more important things on his mind.

His most recent dispatch, entitled “Israel Now Has The Right To Attack Iran’s Nuclear Reactors,” begins with the assertion that “Iran’s recent attempt to ship arms to Hamas in Gaza is an act of war committed by the Iranian government against the Israeli government.”

As we well know, it is not necessary for Harvard law professors to specify that Israel has merely alleged that Iran attempted to ship arms to Hamas, or that the credibility of Israeli arms allegations has been called into question by the fact that the photographs published by the Israeli Foreign Ministry of the “weapons cache” found on board the Mavi Marmara last year ended up consisting of items like a metal pail and marbles.

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World fears shortage of kosher hotdogs in event of nuclear strike on Israel

Israel meanwhile suffers fallout of Japanese disaster

Making rounds over the past few days is an item from the Business section of Israel’s Ynet news site, entitled “Israel fears sushi shortage after quake”. The article begins by noting that, while Japan “has yet to recover from one of the greatest disasters in its history, Israelis fear a shortage in the ingredients of one of their favorite dishes: Sushi”.

In case readers are still unclear as to the identity of the real victims of the Japanese earthquake, tsunami, and nuclear radiation crisis, the second paragraph of the article underscores the frightening dilemma presently facing humanity:

Many of sushi’s basic components come from Japan or are imported through the battered countries. Will Israelis soon suffer from a shortage of the beloved rolls’ necessary ingredients?”

That all is not lost is confirmed by the article’s subheading, however: “Rice shortage not expected”.

Sane observers appear to be confused as to whether the piece was intended for publication in The Onion, where it would certainly thrive thanks in large part to the article’s protagonist Dudi Afriat, sales manager of the Rakuto Kasei company that imports Kikkoman soy sauce and other sushi paraphernalia to Israel.

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Bahrain's One-Woman Democracy

Bahraini ambassador to the U.S. (Photo: AP)

Tired of hearing about the deadly repression of pro-democracy demonstrators by the Bahraini regime? Treat yourself to the recent Haaretz profile of Houda Ezra Ebrahim Nonoo, Bahrain’s ambassador to the U.S.

Written by Natasha Mozgovaya, the profile begins:

The appointment of Houda Ezra Ebrahim Nonoo (46), the first female Ambassador from Bahrain and the first Jewish Ambassador of an Arab country in Washington, was praised by U.S. diplomats when it was revealed recently in one of the Wikileaks cables.”

Sticklers for grammar might be surprised to learn that no one knew who Bahrain’s ambassador was until it was revealed by Wikileaks. Undeterred, Mozgovaya plows ahead:

One of Bahrain’s 36 Jews, Nonoo told the ‘Moment’ magazine, a national magazine dedicated to Jewish politics, religion and culture founded in 1975 by Elie Wiesel, that she never experienced religious prejudice in her home country. ‘I had a normal Jewish upbringing. I was born into Judaism. It’s no different from growing up like a Jew in America. It’s my religion.’”

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Crowley forced to resign following ethical comment

Despite all of the nonsense that has come out of the mouth of suddenly ex-U.S. State Department spokesman PJ Crowley, what forced his resignation today was a recent comment made in regards to the inhumane treatment of US Army Private Bradley Manning, held in solitary confinement in Quantico, Virginia, for allegedly leaking classified government cables to WikiLeaks.

CNN reports:

Speaking to a small group at MIT last week, Crowley was asked about allegations that Manning is being tortured and kicked up a firestorm by answering that what is being done to Manning by Defense Department officials ‘is ridiculous and counterproductive and stupid.’”

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Turkey blocks blogspot

When I first noticed earlier this month that I was unable to access my blog here in Turkey, I assumed that I had unintentionally offended Mustafa Kemal Atatürk, founder of the Turkish Republic, whose sanctity has caused Turkish courts to block YouTube access for extended periods of time.

It quickly became clear, however, that the crime was not mine and that blogspot.com had simply been blocked at the order of a court in the southeastern Turkish city of Diyarbakır, following complaints by the Digiturk satellite network that its exclusive football broadcasting rights had been violated somewhere on the site.

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