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newsmongering 04/13

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> I know at least a few of you lot saw the link I posted to Facebook last night in which Stephen Colbert takes on Jon Kyl. It is a beautiful, beautiful thing. Colbert has apparently decided to continue the beating mocking over on Twitter. Hashtag: #NotIntendedToBeAFactualStatement, ie:

Jon Kyl bought a SodaStream so he could drink *carbonated* tears of the poor. #NotIntendedToBeAFactualStatement

> Syria continues to do the opposite of what I predicted it was going to do (eventually, I’ll learn to stop reminding you that I was wrong). The Guardian reports that Syrian security forces have shot soldiers who have refused to fire on protesters; the article also cites a Syrian rights group’s estimation of a death toll over 200 since February. Thousands of Syrian women and children are blocking one of the country’s primary arterial highways as part of the protests. As usual, there are reports of emergency workers and hospitals forbidden to treat the wounded. Iran has reportedly loaned 10,000 members of of the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps to safeguard the Assad regime.

> For some perspective, 39 people were killed in Ciudad Juarez in four days last week. It’s bad over here, too.

> Reports of reprisal killings from Cote d’Ivoire. There’s discussion of how loyalty to Gbabgo vs. Ouattara tends to split down tribal lines, in turn leading to ethnic violence. I wish that had been reported earlier. Additionally, five (of how many?) of Gbagbo’s former generals have publicly attached their allegiances to Ouattara.

> Belarus’s President Lukashenko has announced that two suspects of yesterday’s Minsk bombing are in custody. The subway station attack killed twelve and injured over 200.

> It was a weird morning over at Foreign Policy today, where Justin Bieber apparently committed a bit of a diplomatic gaff that ended with Netanyahu canceling a meet ‘n greet. There’s also this rap…thing by an American-born  commander in an al Qaeda-linked Somali militia that could give The Young Cons a run for their money, except that The Young Cons are funnier and don’t kill people:

Killing the oppressors and being killed in the process
The most beautiful end but how can I express
I profess and strive against those who oppress and transgress
I obsess not depress for martyrdom success

Content aside – is there a tax on sibilants? If not…can there be a tax on sibilants?

> Two hundred and fifty thousand Chinese Facebook users disappeared from the social networking site two days after the arrest of Ai Weiwei.

> Obama’s deficit reduction speech today was apparently a thing of beauty; alas, I haven’t had time to hunt it down. Glenn Greenwald discusses Obama’s negotiating strategies here.

> Czech President Vaclav Klaus attempted to discretely pocket a precious stone-encrusted pen while being praised by his Chilean counterpart…wait for it…while on camera. And they told me the pickpockets in Prague would be bad… Anyway, it wasn’t technically stealing – it just looked an awful lot like it:

A spokesman for Klaus said that it was “a common pen with a logo of the state or office, which presidents and members of their delegation receive during state visits”.

The pens are encrusted with Chilean lapis lazuli stones, which are prized for their intense blue colour, but a spokeswoman for Piñera said the Chilean president’s guests were free to take them.

“All I have to say is, it is not a pen but just a stylus,” Klaus himself said on Tuesday, adding that he takes things all the time.

He said he had a pen from a Nato summit in October and a notepad from the Latvian parliament.

Bet you anything he steals hotel towels, too.


Written by whackanarwhal

April 13, 2011 at 6:31 pm

Posted in Uncategorized

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