Saturday, September 02, 2006  

Poodle Put-down

One described Mr Blair this weekend as "deluded", while another said he was being "self-indulgent". They are among a growing number of cabinet ministers, some formerly loyal to Mr Blair, who have concluded he must leave office sooner rather than later if Labour is to have a chance of winning a fourth term.

Well, thank god. Some sense on the other side of the puddle.
Together, the B-boys have made a greater mess of things than Reagan and Thatcher (you can start playing Stand Down Margaret now)- who were hardly the tread lightly types.
(read the rest)

Between them, B & B obliterated the already ghastly concept called Afghanistan, murdered Iraq, cruxified Lebanon, arrested thousands of people under suspicion of terrorism (not to mention shot, killed, tortured any number of innocent people), trampled civil liberties and scared citizenry and pols alike inanely stupid, in their insane "war on terrorism" which reads more like a harlot's version of a colonial wetdream.
Please sir, may we run amok in the fields of the fascists?
England, at least, has the excuse of harboring colonial delusions and of not learning squat from its past history in Iraq (say, was that Getrude Bell I just saw stalking by?). The US, on the hand, is an incompetent colonial power at best, an inept pupil, and likewise learned squat from Vietnam.
Perhaps the English have a conscience after all.
Lucky us in the US. We have spineless jellyfish in Congress and psychopaths in the White House.

Puhleeeeeeez! Do I have to whiiiiiiiiiiiine here? Please start impeachment proceedings against Shrub the lesser, asap. For god's sake, the Congress wanted to impeach Clinton for lying about stupping an intern with a cigar (not a Cuban, or so we have been told)- what about stupping the Constitution, creating an endless offensive war based on lie after lie, flaunting Article VI of the Constitution, just to name a few - surely laying waste both domestically and abroad requires some kind of action.



One of my favorite Moroccan writers (yeah, yeah, Abdellatif, I know, I know) whose work I encountered while living in France has this to say in today's New York Times:
Like the characters in his novels, Mr. Mahfouz found himself at times trapped between tradition and modernity. His 1959 book "Children of the Alley," which was not anti-Islamic but took liberties with the histories of the founders of the three monotheistic religions, was condemned by clerics, and after they complained to President Gamel Abdel Nasser, Mr. Mahfouz promised to not allow its future publication. (To Mr. Mahfouz's dismay, a pirated edition of the book showed up on the sidewalks of Cairo.)

This is a wonderful essay not to be missed.

Wednesday, August 30, 2006  

Naguib Mafouz

In Memoriam
Naguib Mahfouz

The extraordinary Egyptian writer and Nobel prize winner (1988), whose work spanned the important eras of modern Egypt, has died, after a week in the hospital.

In Arabic, Mahfouz's work is an elegant, moving feat of language, and even in the most awkward of translations, the richness and the vibrancy of the emotion of (Egyptian) life shines through.

Regardless of what nonsense "intellectuals" such as Thomas Sowell wish to spout about Arab culture, Mahfouz was both one of the most brilliant modern writers in Arabic and a seminal writer of the 20th century, no matter the culture.

There is a very good tribute and background on Mahfouz on the Nobel website (thanks, The Arabist!) and check out Moorish Girl later today for an insightful comment from a very articulate Arab-American writer.

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