Wednesday, March 05, 2003

Curse be upon your mustache

A Washington Post headline refers to “provocations” by North Korea. Right, they were bothering a spy-plane which was sent to spy on them. The effrontery!

The Arab summit didn’t go especially well, with the Iraqi delegate calling the Kuwaiti a monkey and shouting “God curse your mustache!” Possibly it loses something in the translation (another translation I’ve seen is “Curse be upon your mustache!”, which is arguably more elegant). Here’s a quote from the London Times: “A Kuwaiti Foreign Minister tried to interrupt, prompting Mr Ibrahim to shout: "Sit down, you minion, you agent. Shut up you monkey." There were gasps as some delegates thought that Mr Ibrahim had not said qird (monkey) but kelb (dog - a far graver insult).”

Speaking of something lost, well, gained actually, in the translation: Not having seen the Dan Rather interview with Saddam Hussein, I missed hearing the CBS translator, who had a thick Arab accent--and turns out to have been an American actor faking the accent.

A BBC reporter talking about US arm-twisting at the UN says the message is You’re either with us...or with the French. Ouch.

Don’t remember where I got that story about the members of the Washington state legislature who walked out during a Muslim opening prayer, but the AP version carried in the NY Times misses the key quote I highlighted, “My god is not Mohammed.” Either they didn’t want to make that legislator look like the fool she is, or their grasp of Islam isn’t any better than hers. [Later] I just looked up the story on, and even the Wash. papers don’t carry the quote. Incidentally, she is now claiming that she really left just to get a drink of water. Her husband is a pastor, by the by.

Here’s a Chicago Sun Times columnist on the sudden rise by Khalid Mohammed from Wanted Terrorist No. 22 to top man in Al Qaida, who really made all the decisions, never mind that Osama guy.
Here’s a paragraph:
News reports quoted U.S. officials as saying that Mohammed was like the "Forrest Gump of al-Qaida." His name and fingerprints seemed to be everywhere. He'd been involved in all of al-Qaida's major attacks. But no one had noticed. The class nerd has a way of fading into the background.
Evidently he’s being upgraded because of evidence from one of those oh-so-reliable AQ prisoners. Actually, this guy’s story is really very tangled indeed, with so many lies attached to it that...well, read this story.

Here’s a good terrorist idea: one of those suicide terrorist types infects himself with something like smallpox and just walks around.

An 85-year old retired nurse in Britain says that doctors and paramedics often experience pressure from relatives to revive people who don’t want to be revived. So she’s had “Do not resuscitate” and a heart with a line through it tattooed on her chest.

The Supreme Court rules that a 50-year sentence under the Cal. 3 Strikes law for shoplifting some videos (Cinderella and, ironically, Free Willy) as gifts for the perp’s children is not cruel and unusual. Gray Davis says “This is good for California,” but doesn’t explain how. I take back anything I may have thought about the SFPD’s Fajita Crisis being silly. The perp’s lawyer notes that if he had committed rape, he’d have gotten 8 years because it would have been his first rape.

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