No such thing. At the same time, with the Americans studying ideas for new names for Sadaam International Airport (see these cool images of the airport, reserve a hotel room), things here are somewhat closer to our mundane times. Discussions here have centered on the Economic plans of the the Ministry of Finance... massive cuts and firings in the public sector; strikes (let just me say this: heat waves and uncleared trash don't bring the sweet smell of spring). I must say that I am split on the idea. On the one hand, at Mr. Kesher's place of employ there is a whole department for hosting foreign guests. There are no foreign guests and have been none for the last year or two. We must make hard choices to avoid becoming the next Argentina. On the other hand, the idea should be to stimulate growth and build the basis for an economic turnaround. Three factors have struck the Israeli economy: the crash of NASDAQ (falling since March 2000), the international economic slowdown since September 11, 2001 and the "matzav" here.
As I see it Israel has some semblance of control on the third factor. We must find a way to encourage Abu Maazan to be like Spike Lee and "Do the Right Thing" and then Israel should respond to it in kind. Interesting discussions going on regarding the way to do that through the Road Map. Should it be sequential (the Palestinians do this, the Israelis do that) or a range of parellel requirements? I think that there is a first obligation: stopping and rejecting violence and terror and then both sides must be willing to make some hard decisions. Should Iraq continue on its positive track of the past few days, and we approach the "day after" (see Yoel Marcus in today's Haaretz) this may become a key story soon.
Glad to see that Belgium's parliament has amended its absurd ("we are the judges for the solar system") universal jurisdiction law. Guardian article. Saw an interesting article on the problem last month in the Forward. The name of the writer may seem somewhat familiar to you. I've always liked his writing style.
Do you think that they suddenly realized that Israel was right and they'd gone too far? Don't think so.
Edwin Starr, the great Motown singer ("War, Good God, What is it good for? Absolutely Nothing") died the other day. Here is his web site. Bruce started playing the song, originally a Vietnam War protest again since the beginning of the war in Iraq. He played it first in Austin, Texas. No coincidence there! I always liked the song "Agent Double-O Soul".
Mets are 1-2. Still 158 games to go. I remind you that I picked Syracuse to reach the NCAA finals (OK,OK I also picked Kentucky to win it all). Young Mike from Fort Lee, NJ reminds Mr. Kesher that he spent four years at SU a number of years ago and has always been disappointed by the Orangemen. Stay postive, Michael!