Tuesday, August 15, 2006

Crying on the inside


Another story about the long-term effects of war on individual lives: in Britain, a 93-year old has finally won a pardon for her father, Priv. Harry Farr, a shell-shock victim executed during World War I for “cowardice” after a 20-minute trial. The daughter was 7 days old when her father was sent to the front, 2 when he was killed; she and her mother were evicted because they received no pension, and she wasn’t told the manner of his death until she was 40.

You know how you avoid generational effects of war? Child soldiers, at least if you kill them before puberty. A spokesmodel for Sri Lanka’s military says it was legitimate that a bombing raid yesterday killed children because they were conscripted (i.e., kidnapped) Tamil Tiger child-soldiers. “If the children are terrorists, what can we do?” asked Brig. Athula Jayawardana. What indeed.

Germany will send troops to the Lebanese-Israeli border. Um, right.

John Spencer, the Republican sacrifice to the unstoppable killing machine that is Hillary Rodham Clinton, has an ad out: “Islamic facists [sic] still hate us....”, Hillary would “leave us vulnerable...”, but Spencer “won’t play politics with our security.” I suspect there will be a lot more of this sort of not playing of politics.

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An ape park in the Netherlands is setting up webcams so its orangutangs (or as George Allen, who is familiar with Krusty’s “comical K sounds,” calls them, “makakas”) can communicate with, and possibly pick out potential mates from, residents in an orangutang center in Borneo. These long-distance relationships never work out.

George Walker Bush, who has already displayed a new-found sophistication by reading one of the, well, shortest works of European literature, astonished and delighted the staff of the National Counterterrorism Center when he burst into song during a visit today.

Ridi, Pagliaccio... e ognun applaudirà!


Tramuta in lazzi lo spasmo ed il pianto;


in una smorfia il singhiozzo e’l dolor...


Ridi, Pagliaccio, sul tuo amore in franto!


Ridi del duol t’avvelena il cor!


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