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From outside one will always triumphantly impress theories upon the world and then fall straight into the ditch one has dug, but only from inside will one keep oneself and the world quiet and true. /FK (Contact: TBONotebooks at fastmail.fm. The Blue Octavo Notebooks welcomes mail, although we cannot guarantee a response. Your email may be posted in part on The Blue Octavo Notebooks unless otherwise requested.) Please enjoy the notebook entries, and thanks for reading.

Friday, May 14, 2004

Oh, my, my, my. Check out Al-Ahram’s latest Swastika cartoon. The blood dripping bayonet is always a nice touch, as is the Magen David camouflage. Charming paper. Charming government.

As usual, some very interesting letters in Al-Ahram , including this one:

Vile torture
Sir--
As an American, I am deeply ashamed of the vile tortures committed against Iraqi prisoners.

Please understand that we are sickened by these crimes and do not condone them in any way.

Jonathan Edelstein
New York, NY

Well said, as always, HH. Of course, Al-Ahram also prints its usual array of ugly comments about Israel and Jews, including trenchant commentary like this:

Kill'em and take it
Sir--
Now this obese Sharon is my kind of guy, he's a known embezzler, liar and murderer. If we're going to have a billion-dollar-a-day war, let it be in support of the likes of this guy.

The Israelis have certainly gone out of their way to prove what valuable allies they are. It's been nothing but one deception after another, and just look at the wonderful history of the Jews. Not so much as 10 years has passed in the last 2,000 years that they have not been at the centre of some major upheaval. Naturally, it has always been the other guy's fault. And naturally, if you fault a Jew you're guilty of anti-Semitism.

So let us just leave the Arabs with a no-win situation; that's the way to have peace and stop the bombing. We all know that the Israelis are sincere, caring and peace loving. Plus, they have tonnes of natural resources, so who needs these other oil producing countries. And besides, if OPEC doesn't sell us their oil, we'll just kill them and take it.

Bob Miller
Oakland Park, FL

Nice work, Bob! And then there’s this garbage, courtesy of Las Vegas’s Joseph Hammond:

Sir-- It seems to me that one point that is overlooked is that Israel needs to keep the war going, so that it can continue to receive free monies from the USA. This is one reason that every time a solution begins to become exposed Israel launches attacks against Palestinian leadership. By doing so they can continue to scream that they are about to be forced into the sea, and demand more free military equipment and foreign aid which is channeled into more land stealing settlements. Israel needs the war to continue because if the US ever pulls the plug on the failed socialist economy of Israel, Israel will be forced to make peace with her neighbours which also means the establishment of a Palestinian state (something Israel swears it will never allow -- making them sound a bit like the Nazi soundtrack).

Most US citizens are kept in the dark about the amount of free monies the Israel state steals from their taxes (while schools and other programmes for US citizens go unfunded). Few know that Israel is the number one receiver of foreign aid, and few are reminded about Israeli transgressions against the US including attacking the USS Liberty in 1967, the proposed selling of AWAC's technology to Communist China or the turning of US citizens into spies for Israel (the Pollards). If they knew, they would think twice about supporting Israel (and as the Israeli leadership has been quoted as saying "...the Jews control the media in America and America knows it..." (sic)).

Israel needs war like plants need sunshine. Without the sun plants will not grow; without the war continuing Israel cannot grow.

Without facts folks like Joseph Hammond can still get published in Al-Ahram. And without people like Joseph Hammond, asinine pseudo-commentary about Israel might be less entertaining, but probably no less stupid and counterfactual.

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