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My ten favorite TV shows

Lair passes along a meme from Jeff Jarvis:

Do a friend a favor and list your favorite 10 TV shows ever — but not the dutiful ones, the ones you like for a reason.

Okay. My ten favorite TV shows, current ones first.

The Gilmore Girls: I look forward to this show every week during the season. It is funny, witty, full of unexpected twists and turns, terrifically acted and written (and that is key; the writers of this show are superb), and one of the best dramadies of all time. This will probably turn off all the guys out there, but it's like watching a new chick flick once a week, but with far less angst and much more humor. I own the first two seasons on DVD and have all the rest on tape, which I will be replacing with the DVDs. The best thing about the Gilmore Girls: You cannot predict what will happen. We were all expecting a marriage proposal from Luke; instead, we got one from Lorelei just as the scene ended. We all looked as shocked as Luke, I'm sure. I hope the Gilmore Girls go on for another five years, though I'm afraid we may be in the last season. Alexis Bledel's building up quite the career in film.

Babylon 5: Quite simply, the best science fiction show on television, ever. Better than all the Treks put together. Better than any of the anthology shows. Joe Straczynski put together a novel for television, and it worked, and worked well. Another series I'm buying on DVD and have on tape.

Buffy the Vampire Slayer: Clever, interesting, funny, dark: A unique look into the ups and downs of living, as seen through the eyes of a girl who battled the undead and other monsters. This was another case of the writing being superb, and for most of the seasons, the surprises kept on coming. We won't talk overmuch about the last two seasons.

Angel: After a slow start, this series surpassed Buffy in my "can't wait to see the next episode" meter. Alas, it met an untimely death, just when it was getting tremendous. Not just good, tremendous. Angel got better every year, and had not yet reached a plateau, if you ask me. And was utterly unpredictable. Utterly.

The Carol Burnett Show: I watched this show every Saturday night, and howled with laughter through nearly every skit. I loved the show tunes, adored the movie parodies and the soap opera parody ("As the Stomach Turns"), loved the guest stars and the dancing and the singing—I think that kids today are simply robbed by not having a decent variety show on television.

The Mary Tyler Moore Show: Part of the Saturday night lineup, it was another can't-miss. In the days before computers, Saturday nights for high school kids were pretty slim pickings. Watching Mary Tyler Moore, television's first true feminist, was one of my weekend highlights.

Lost in Space: Irwin Allen's shows were great for kids. I saw it first-run as a small child, then in reruns every day after school. I must have seen every episode a dozen times. Sure, they're really corny when you watch them now, but I'll still stop and laugh at cheesy Irwin Allen special effects. His monsters went from being seaweed monsters on Voyage to the Bottom of the Sea to bush monsters on Lost in Space. And I didn't care.

Gilligan's Island: I don't own the DVDs, like some bloggers I could mention (Glenn Reynolds), but I've seen every episode a zillion times, know both versions of the theme song by heart, can tell in an instant which episode I'm watching, and will still wind up watching it if I come across it in reruns on TV. Stupid? Of course. An indelible part of my childhood? Absolutely.

M*A*S*H: Another series I watched religiously. I was extremely liberal back then, and agreed wholeheartedly with the series' take on the war in Vietnam—oops, Korea. I may no longer agree with it as much, but I'll still watch the reruns on cable.

Cybill: Cybill Shepherd's show was one of the funniest sitcoms ever. It died an undeserved death—it was still on top of its game when it was canceled. Come to think of it, Moonlighting had a similar problem, well, except for the fact that its stars' disappearances and squabbling killed it.

Honorable mention: Cheers, Quantum Leap, Designing Women, X-Files.

10 shows

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Ask the Cats

Who cares what I think about the Blogathon? It's time for a new feature of called Ask The Cats!

What do you think about the Blogathon?

Tig and Gracie on the prowl for grass

Blogging for money for Israeli cats? Cool. But we want to eat some grass.

Gracie finds some grass

Yum, here's a great patch.

Tigger finds some grass

Yeah, I found a better patch. Yum. Good. Mmf.

Tigger looks around

But wait! What's that over there?

Tigger finds another patch of grass

Yeah, this is the best. grass. ever.

Gracie walks away

No! Don't eat it! That's some bad grass! Can't you see all the brown stuff around it?

Gracie walks farther away

Okay, suit yourself. Don't listen. I'm getting out of here before something blows.

Tig lying on the ground, stretching. Bad grass, man.

Oh, man! Gracie was right. That grass is killing me. Medic! Medic! Kitty Alka-Seltzer, STAT!

Thank you, kittycats.

Donate to the Cat Society of Israel via Lair Simon. Tell 'em Tig and Gracie sent you.

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Calling all Jewish Zionist Photoshoppers

You might want to get your Photoshop fired up. Hamas is holding a contest for the best pullout poster. I think we can put a few into the winner's circle, don't you?

Of course, our ideas might be the opposite of what they're looking for, so... go for it, folks.

This is what Hamas is offering:

All entries must be handed in by the August 10th deadline, after which a committee of judges will choose the first prize winner, who will receive US$250 ( 200). Second and third prize winners will receive US$150 ( 120) and US$100 ( 80), respectively.

I'm offering a link.

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Lair and the Blogathon

Lair Simon is blogging for the Cat Welfare Society of Israel, in memory of Edloe. Go there, or go here to donate, but open your wallets to save Israeli kitties. It's not for the children. It's for the cats.

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Bare-naked media bias

The Associated Press brings itself to new depths in trying to assign blame for the murderous rampage of a lone psychopath.

First, and worst, you have this execrable comparison:

Israeli security forces missed that and other warning signs - including a plea by his father to find him - raising questions about Israel’s ability to rein in Jewish extremists even as it demands Palestinian leaders act against Muslim radicals.

Forget the fact that you can count the number of Israeli attacks on palestinians on the fingers of one hand—two at most—just read that odious comparison and try not to be disgusted. Even as I write this, palestinians are aiming rockets daily at Israeli towns, planting bombs, shooting at soldiers and civilians, and have been doing so, uninterrupted, without any acknowledgement by the world media—yet Israel is the one who cannot rein in her “extremists”?

Forgive me while I get my blood pressure back down into triple digits.

And yet, the AP has more to say about Jewish “extremists”:

Violence by extremist Jews, though relatively rare, has altered the course of Mideast peacemaking in the past.

The 1994 massacre of 29 Arabs in the West Bank city of Hebron by a U.S.-born Jewish physician was followed by a series of Palestinian suicide bombings, undermining trust on both sides.

"Relatively rare": Let's be honest, the correct phrase is "extremely rare." How many attacks can you thnk of besides Baruch Goldstein and this one? I can think of only one other, a bombing attempt on an Arab school.

The relationship the author tries to draw is disgusting. Baruch Goldstein goes on a rampage and murders Arabs. In response, palestinians launch “a series” of suicide bombings—and this undermines trust on both sides? This is considered an appropriate response? The moral equivalency of such a statement is beneath contempt. Steve Gutkin, you are, now and forever, on my hack-writer list.

One would have to say that a series of suicide bombs set up by terrorist organizations dedicated to the destruction of Israel totally trumps one man, acting without official support, whose organization was outlawed almost immediately thereafter. And has been illegal ever since.

Whereas the palestinian terrorist organizations are going strong (and murderous) today, and are celebrated by the populace, as well as being voted into office.

Yeah, that’s a lot of Jewish terror to compare to. Goldstein. A bombing attempt on a school. And yesterday’s.

But wait. The AP isn’t finished yet.

A Jewish fanatic’s assassination of Prime Minister Yitzhak Rabin a year later helped a left-leaning Israeli government, in the short run, to overcome rightist opposition to pullouts from West Bank cities. But within months, Israelis elected hard-liner Benjamin Netanyahu as premier.

This article neglects to mention the fact that Netanyahu beat Shimon Peres after a wave of palestinian suicide attacks. Funny how that never seems to come up after the words “elected hard-liner” are used.

Buried in the middle of the article—where few will read it, of course—is this passage:

But Raanan Gissin, an adviser to Prime Minister Ariel Sharon, rejected the contention that Israel demands more from the Palestinian Authority regarding extremists than it is willing to do itself, saying “it’s not a symmetrical situation.”

"This thing that we’re dealing with is indeed a very serious problem and it’s something that we cannot tolerate as a democratic society," he said. "But still it's a far cry when you have on occasion one or two isolated incidents of this sort than when you have a whole society which is beset by terrorists."

But of course, the palestinian spokesliars have to have the last word.

Ashrawi called the massacre “an indicator that more could be coming” and blamed it on right-wing Israeli rhetoric that she said creates an atmosphere conducive to violence.

“The language, the discourse is extremely racist, anti-Palestinian, anti-Arab, and the culture of violence is there,” she said.

Notice how the word “massacre” is not preceded by quotes. The AP is calling the shooting a massacre. Funny, that. And how eager they were to quote Ariel Sharon calling this a “terrorist” attack. Reuters, too—the people who refuse to use the T-word ever, though they suddenly found the will to use that word in this incident.

The media bias is appalling. Simply appalling.

No wonder Israel is unpopular. The media work against her as a team.

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I'm rather tired this morning. He's not a terrorist, and even Ha'aretz now calls him a "gunman." I call him a sick freak. I will write much more on this later.

Reuters' panties are all in a twist because Sharon says he's got "approval" to keep the large Jewish blocs in the West Bank. Hello, most of them are suburbs of Jerusalem, the city that was, is, and ever shall be ours. Lest we forget, under international agreements to the contrary, Jordan forbade Jews to visit the Kotel when Jordan held the West Bank (and annexed it). The world has such a short memory when it comes to Jews, yet such a long hatred. The pals will not succeed in their goal to drive Jews out of Israel.

They missed another opportunity: The pals refused a deal to pay Gazans for their hothouses, so you can forget that means of income for Gaza. Schmucks.

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Thing 1: Wizbang linked to a two-year-old post of mine. I checked out the post, and gee, it talks about the ending of the non-cease fire, and kassams and mortars landing on Sderot. Two years ago, in August. The more things change...

Thing 2: Got an unexpected call from Sarah today to rescue at least half of the kids from the garage (stupid rock! stupid fuel line!), and wound up spending half my evening with the G.'s. I told Larry I was going to go into insulin shock, because the kids were being too cute (mostly; Max melted down a bit but he got over it). I got to hear Nate recite The Crazy Chicken, and sat between Nate and Jake for dinner, after which I announced that the boys had finally stopped their habit of moving their chairs closer to the guest. (Seriously: I was over there for dinner months ago and the two of them practically wound up in my lap before dinner ended.) Rebecca leaped into my arms when she saw me, and said, "No way!" when I asked for a hug goodbye a couple of hours later. Three-year-olds. They keep you humble.

Thing 3: Wow, that Sudafed allergy medication works. And it's wiped me out. There will be no Thing 4.

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What truce? Islamic Jihad denies they ever said they were going to keep the truce. Toldja so. And oh yeah: What truce?

The utter gall of the lies continues: The IDF got an Islamic Jihad bigwig. Islamic Jihad accuses Israel of violating the truce. What truce? The imaginary truce that the news media insists is happening.

Compare and contrast: Israel's feminist heroine—Golda Meir, the first woman Prime Minister. Palestinians' feminist heroine: Wafa Idris, the first woman suicide bomber. Yes, this is a culture that absolutely deserves to be enshrined in a state.


Britain's Duh! Moment: Two of the failed bombers attended Finsbury Park Mosque. Wonder when they're going to shut it down? Meantime, the rest of Europe is getting smart. Germany is going to follow France's example and expel Muslims who preach hate. And the other nations of Europe are starting to take a look at the cancer of terrorist supporters within their midst. I certainly hope our agencies are checking out the mosques in America. Time to toss out the terrorist supporters with the trash.

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Lair Simon is blogging for Israeli cats in the upcoming (this weekend!) Blogathon in memory of Edloe, the late, great Grumpus. (I noticed I've begun to call Tig "Grumpus" when he annoys me.) Donate. Give. Jews and cats, how much better can it get?

I really like this guy. I think he can turn me back into a Democratic voter. Talk to me, Democracy Guy. Oh, and keep on dissing Kos and the Kidz. I love it when you talk scorn.

Norm Geras on the terror apologists among us. Take your time and read it. (Someday, Norm, I promise I'll send in the answer to the profile questions. They haven't changed, have they? I still have the document.)

Chris Muir is covering that relationship thing in Day By Day again. Y'know, our politics are not in synch, but damn, I love it when he works on the private lives of Damon and Jan and Sam and Zed. Oh, and this one was priceless. Yeah, I love messing with a twentysomething's mind too. (And dammit, Chris, when did you change it so you can't link to individual dates?) Okay, start with July 31 and work your way forward, people. No, start on June 28 and then work your way forward. June 30 is a hoot.

I can't wait 'til the books come out, so I can sit down and read the strip at my leisure, in its entirety. And I wouldn't complain if we had more strips concentrating on the characters and fewer on politics, but then, it wouldn't be a conservative comic strip if he did that.

Kate needs help. Go hit her tipjar if you can.

Oh. Don't forget The Jewish View. I've been posting things over there and not cross-posting them here. Double work is such a pain.

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What the hell is wrong with these people?

They go on and on about how they won't publish certain pictures, and they always seem to be the ones that make the terrorists look really awful, and then they have no qualms whatsoever about publishing pictures of American journalists murdered in Iraq.

I first saw the picture in this AP story, which was bad enough. But I thought, no, they're not sick enough to put it in Yahoo photos, are they?

They are.


By the way, take note that the picture in the actual article about Steven Vincent's death has only a black and white photo provided by his publisher.

I guess since they can't publish photos of dead Marines, dead journalists will have to do.

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Briefly, the news

More humliation at the checkpoints: Israel is upgrading and fortifying West Bank checkpoints to make sure fewer bombers get through, and fewer Israelis die when they try.

Behind thick glass windows, rows of Palestinians waited in folding chairs one recent evening at the Israeli civil administration offices for the northern West Bank in the town of Salem. Israeli soldiers typed personal and permit information into computers, data that will be contained on magnetic swipe cards.

Those issued the cards will receive eye scans to protect against fraud. Once the card is swiped and retinas checked, soldiers manning computer terminals in bulletproof booths will give the holder a red or green light. Bags will be scanned by machines.

"Everything is planned so that there won't be any physical contact between the soldiers and the Palestinians," said Lt. Col. Fuad Halhal, the Israeli civil affairs liaison in Salem.

You really don't want to read the rest of the story. The WaPo angle is pity the poor pals, whom Israel is fencing out. However, let's start a pool: How long before Saab Erekat starts whining about the new humiliation? I say today.

No bullets for you: I did this one over at The Jewish View. (And welcome to a new contributor, Aaron, who has made his mark on the absurd poisoned bananas fiction. Lair took on that topic, too. Hey! No one used "Yes, We Have No Bananas" yet. Okay, I will.)

Eating their own: It takes no time at all to figure out the why behind this one, once you get more details than "A bomb went off at a PA official's home." Turns out the bombs and attacks are being carried out on judges and attorneys looking into corruption in the PA. Ah. Arafat's legacy lives on.

Martin Peretz is on fire these days. Go. Read.

Catching terrorists, Israeli-style: I've noticed that when British officials mention the help they're getting from other countries in finding terrorists, including training methods, one country is always conspicuously absent—Israel. In the absence of publicity, however, Israelis are all over the world, training people to catch the killers before they strike. And people from all over the world—including Santa Clara, California—are in Israel, training to spot terrorists.

In gratitude, the world pressures Israel to kowtow even more to the palestinians, and to "show restraint" when her own citizens are murdered. Thanks so much, world! Love ya, bye-bye!

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The AP anti-Israel bias, cont'd:

Yes, it's that time again already. Here's the story: palestinian terrorists fired rockets towards the thousands of Israelis marching to Gaza to protest the disengagement. The rockets missed the protesters, and hit palestinian areas—where one of them fell on a house and killed a three-year-old child.

The first article. Note the headline.

Rocket Fire Kills Palestinian Child

Once again: If the IDF caused the death of this child, the headline would be "Israeli Soldiers Kill Palestinian Child." (See the last AP bias entry.) Here, even though palestinians killed the boy, the source of death is apparently rocket fire. The lead:

GAZA CITY, Gaza Strip (AP) - A 3-year old Palestinian boy was killed and nine Palestinians were wounded late Tuesday in the northern Gaza Strip when rockets launched by militants misfired and landed in Palestinian areas, rescue workers said.

"Misfired." The rockets "misfired." No, they were fired perfectly. They just landed in the wrong place, which kassams tend to do. The use of the word "misfired" is particularly abhorrent, as the rockets were aimed at Israelis, implying that if they had landed on the protesters, they would have fired correctly.

Witnesses said militants fired three rockets at the Israeli town of Sderot where thousands of Israeli opponents of the planned Israeli withdrawal from Gaza had gathered in a demonstration. Two of the rockets fell in Palestinian areas and the third fell in an open field near Sderot.

You see? They didn't "misfire." They missed. Big difference.

One of the stray rockets fell on the Ashkar house in the Beit Hanoun area north east of Gaza City. Abdel Razek's family were visiting at the time, witnesses said. The house was severely damaged.

Now it's a "stray" rocket. And funny, but there's no corresponding adjective like, "home-made," which is used constantly to describe the rockets when they fall on Israelis.

And now, for the later story. Note the new headline.

Palestinians Fire on Israeli Protesters

That headline makes you think that Israelis are protesting something violently, and the palestinians are simply defending themselves. It is, of course, utterly misleading. What did they fire, guns? No, wait.

SDEROT, Israel (AP) - Palestinians fired rockets Tuesday at a gathering of thousands of Israeli settlers protesting the upcoming Gaza withdrawal, but missed, killing instead a 3-year-old Palestinian boy and wounding nine other Palestinians in Gaza.

Witnesses said militants fired three rockets at the demonstration in the Israeli town of Sderot. Two of the rockets fell in Palestinian areas and the third fell in an open field near Sderot.

The word "misfired" is gone, and they actually point out that the rockets missed their target. The rest of the story is the usual drivel. Once again, notice that palestinian victims are almost always identified, and Israeli victims of palestinian terror attacks are rarely identified in the non-Israeli press—or, for that matter, even given an age. See the first installment in this series for examples.

You will also notice that not once in this article does it point out that the protesters were in Israel. They were not in Gaza. The article makes you think that the "settlers" (I hate that label) were on palestinian land. If you are unfamiliar with Israeli towns—as are most of AP's readers—you will think that this all took place in the Gaza settlements. Someone must have caught the phrase "the Israeli town of Sderot" in the first version of the story and made sure to change it.

Once again, what time is it? That's right, it's Israeli Double Standard time.

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What truce? Part gazillion: This so-called "truce," the one that the news media keep on calling "shaky" every time the palestinians murder Israelis, is nothing but a lie perpetrated by the media and the palestinians.

Shin Bet: Despite truce, Palestinian terror hits 18-month high
Twenty-one Israelis were killed and 238 wounded by Palestinian terrorists during the first seven months of 2005, according to figures published by the Shin Bet security service.

During more than six of these months, the Palestinian Authority and the terror organizations had declared a truce.

July was the worst month in the last year and a half - with 436 incidents, including the firing of 142 mortar shells. In July of 2004, there were 426 incidents. In February of this year, when the truce started, there were only 129.

To buttress the above, we have the exposure of a tunnel dug under Neveh Dekalim, with the purpose of transporting suicide bombers and other Islamic Jihad murderers, discovered only just in time—it was nearly complete.

There is no truce. There is only the lie.

Baby Assad on shaky ground: A senior Israeli defense official thinks the Dorktator is doomed. (And there's a new picture to add to my Dorktator Gallery, go look.) Hm, senior defense official... Mofaz?

palestinian civil war watch: Actually, it's more like "Response to palestinian corruption watch." The bigwigs live in giant villas; the people live on pennies a day. And Suha Arafat lives high on the hog in Paris. These people? They're asking for jobs. The palestinian way.

Dozens of former Palestinian prisoners who had spent more than five years in Israeli jails seized on Tuesday the building of Rafah town municipality for jobs and better living conditions, witnesses and security sources reported.

The witnesses said that the former prisoners carried out the action on Tuesday morning to send a message to the Palestinian National Authority (PNA) that they seek jobs and have better living conditions.

Well, that's depressing. Barry Rubin says the Gaza withdrawal will make no difference at all to the Arab nations, which need to demonize Israel in order to keep the peasants from revolting.

Free and fair, so long as you print what they like: The so-called democratic palestinians have once again taken the "free" out of the press and are forbidding journalists to publish anything negative about PA security forces. Oh, wait, I said that already, didn't I? Several times. Well, it's so much fun to point out how unfree the pals are, and how the world turns a blind eye to it while deifying a traitor like Vanunu. Yes, that's traitor, not "whistleblower." He didn't expose bad work practices. He exposed government secrets. But I digress.

Off to work. More interviews today, and may I say, damn, I look good in my new suit. Much better than under those horrible flourescent lights in the dressing room.

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It's Fish In A Barrel Day

I know, I know, this one is really too easy, but I can't resist.

The background: James Taranto, in his retrospective of WSJ's Best of the Web, mentions that he used to have a feature based on Ted Rall's

On Oct. 23, 2001, we started a feature called "Stupidity Watch" chronicling such nonsense; it began with contributions from America-hating cartoonist and commentator Ted Rall, "longtime journalist and iconoclast" Harley Sorensen and someone called Emil Guillermo. As the initial shock of Sept. 11 wore off, so too did our sensitivity to such extreme stupidity. Today we're a little embarrassed that we ever found any of Ted Rall's rantings interesting enough to acknowledge.

Ted Rall, Mr. Thin Skin himself, reacts:

I've said this before and I'll say it now: that turd Taranto had better hope he never encounters me in a dark alley, poorly policed subway station or New York media party, because casually smearing someone as "America-hating" is some serious fucking shit that I won't sit still for.

Rall has no comments on his blog, but he does have an email address. And an email policy, part of which reads:

1. Like everyone else, I only have so many hours in the day to answer email. While I would prefer to respond personally and quickly to every email I receive, the increasing volume of correspondence does not make this possible. Therefore, I do not respond to threatening, obscene or completely negative (i.e., nothing but criticism) emails. This permits me to spend more time doing something constructive, like corresponding with people who understand and appreciate what I do.

2. Emails that contain threats will be reported to the appropriate law enforcement agencies as well as your Internet provider.

I really like number two the best. Perhaps Mr. Taranto should report this threat to the appropriate law enforcement agencies as well as to Rall's internet provider.

And now, let us quote one of my favorite lines from 1776: Could that be the aroma of high-pocrisy?

Indeed, I think it is.

Inspiration for this post goes to qando.

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Monday briefs

Saudi's Royal Vegetable is plucked: They finally unplugged the machines and let Fahd die. I imagine they finally got all that backroom backstabbing done with. Oops, I'm sorry, was I supposed to believe all the lies coming out of Riyadh?

Speaking of Saudi Arabia and terrorism: The London bombings may have a Saudi connection. Quel surprise. Not. Oh, and there's another terrorist cell or three aiming for the Brits. And Britain is partly responsible for the terrorists on its soil. They're letting the radical preachers do as they will. France just tossed out an even dozen. Meantime, Italy has banned the burqa, which Britain this year allowed a female student to wear.

Rockets land in Israeli towns; world yawns: Two more towns were hit by kassam rockets. Way to stop the terrorists, Abu Mazen, you lying sack of garbage.

Condi goes wild, Part II: On top of lecturing Israeli officials like they were schoolchildren, Condi demanded that the defense minister supply her with a list of palestinians to be given weapons in two days. From Ma'ariv's Hebrew version (no link):

Rice Rebukes Israel's Defense Minister - Eliel Shahar
During her recent visit, Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice aggressively asked Defense Minister Shaul Mofaz that Israel permit the transfer of combat-support equipment to the Palestinian security services. According to a source who participated in the meeting, Rice gave Mofaz a timetable: "I want you to give the approved list to our ambassador, Dan Kurtzer, by tomorrow afternoon," she announced. Mofaz replied: "I need to examine the matter. It may require the approval of the Cabinet. I can't just approve this on the spot." "Then I'll give you two days," she answered. "I'm the Minister of Defense. I have other things to deal with," Mofaz replied. Rice lost her patience. "I'm the Secretary of State, and I'm telling you that this is important." (Maariv-Hebrew, 29Jul05)

And I'm a potential voter, Condi, and I'm telling you you have lost my respect. Condi in 2008. Shyeah.

Israel to PA: "No guns for you." Dov Weisglass is delivering the beat-down to Condi this week.

Prime Minister Ariel Sharon's top adviser Dov Weisglass left Saturday night for a meeting in Washington with US Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice where he will argue against supplying the Palestinian Authority with weapons it says it needs to fight terrorism.

Rice, who was here just over a week ago and is expected to return to Israel on August 15 to "chaperone" the disengagement process, has been pressing Israel to allow the resupply of arms and ammunition to the PA.

In recent weeks the Palestinians have argued that they lack necessary arms, ammunition, vehicles and communications equipment to fight terrorism or effectively take control of Gaza once Israel leaves.

Israel disputes this, saying that what Palestinian Authority Chairman Mahmoud Abbas has shown is not a lack of weaponry, but rather a lack of will to confront Hamas. Israel has argued that an infusion of arms and ammunition won't make a difference for Abbas until he takes the strategic decision to frontally take on his extremists.

To buttress its argument about the danger of transferring arms and ammunition to the PA, Israel has recently provided the US with intelligence information indicating that a PA policeman was involved in last Saturday night's murder of Dov and Rachel Kol in Gush Katif.

Imagine that. PA police involvement in terror. Who knew? Well, we did. Condi knows it, too. Thing is, she's choosing to ignore it. Why is that? Americans die in Israel, too. Of course, I like Israel Radio's response the best:

In response to the question as to whether the Palestinian Authority's security forces need more weapons and ammunition - demanded by U.S. Secretary of State Rice's - Israel Radio Arab Affairs Correspondent Avi Yissakharov explained today in a live report that "anyone who visits the West Bank cities can readily see that they are flooded with weapons already - what with the heavily armed security forces, paramilitary forces [including forces belonging to or allied with the ruling Fatah] and others on the streets with assault rifles." As for the supply of bullets, Yissakharov noted the frequent heavy exchange of gunfire between various groups is a good indication that ammunition is readily available.

Screw the PA. Let 'em buy their own bullets, then confiscate them from the terrorists when you catch them.

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Rockets aimed at Tel Aviv

Ynet has an interview with a palestinian terrorist who gloats about having forced Israel to withdraw from Gaza, and threatens "retaliation" in the form of rockets from the West Bank. Some of the more charming excerpts:

“We will relate to the fence like Hizbullah relates to the blue line in Lebanon. That means that if the fence is a border, we will mark it as a dangerous zone, as the area between the blue line and the Sheba farms is marked. If Israel sends forces close to the dangerous zone on the bodrer area, either in the form of ground troops, or armored vehicles, in order to harm the joy and quiet of the Palestinian people – we will respond with full force.”

You’re already talking about full force, while the PA is demanding restraint from the Palestinian factions.

“After the defeatist withdrawal is completed, after the last settler and soldier withdraw, we won’t do anything from Gaza. But we won’t allow Israel to violate the Gaza border. Such a violation will obligate us to respond.”

[...]What is the definition of ‘all of Palestine’ for which the struggle will be continued?

“That means all the area occupied according to law, and we will continue to fight over it. And it means that we won’t give the IDF and the settlers who are escaping from Gaza to the West Bank to abuse our people there. Palestinian blood is one and therefore we are ready to continue the struggle. For this reasons we have already set up the units who work to smuggle the necessary knowledge for fighting techniques, especially to do with the rockets, from Gaza to the West Bank.

Unilateral withdrawal has accomplished nothing. Nothing. No, wait. It has given the terrorists the impetus to continue with terror.

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A picture worth a million words

CBS News has a strange picture to go with their article on the American Muslim clerics who have issued a fatwa that condemns terrorism. But there's something strange about this picture.

Muslim U.S. flag

Yes, that's exactly what it looks like: The crescent moon of Islam instead of the stars of the flag of the United States of America.

Rather a strange image to present, isn't it? Why, it's almost as if they don't really mean their statements in the anti-terrorism fatwa.

It's almost as if they're actually hoping for Islam to take over America.

But that can't be true, can it? They're all loyal sons of America, right?

Oh, they're loyal sons of something, all right.

Cross-posted to The Jewish View

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My life in pictures

My bathroom is bugged: For the last four days (not counting this morning), there was a bug in my bathroom.

Ick! a bug!First there was a long, blue bug with antennae. It was on the ceiling, and I pretty much ignore bugs that are on the ceiling unless they try to drop on me, or unless they're stinging bugs, in which case I kill them. The second day, the blue bug was still there. The third day, it turned into a green bug that looked like the crickets that get into my house, but the crickets are generally brown. Yesterday, the cricket was gone, which was okay by me, because the day before, it was on the shower ceiling while I was taking a shower, and I rather hoped it didn't fall off while I was in the shower. And then, last night, I saw no bug in the bathroom, because it was on the wall behind my bed. I decided to get a picture of it before I did my usual catch-and-release (followed interestedly the entire time by Tig, who seemed to think that since I caught the bug, he would get it). I don't think it's a cricket any longer. I think it's a katydid. I'm wondering how it managed to turn from blue to green, though. Then again, I don't have very good distance sight to begin with, and I'm not in the most alert mindframe first thing in the morning, so it's entirely possible that the bug was green the whole time.

I have no idea how it got in, but I'm betting it was glad to get out.

Cats! Tig and Gracie got a treat this morning: Tunafish. Tig at the patio door, frogleg-style

Gracie decided it wasn't fresh enough and only ate a bite. Tig ate most of hers. I'm sure he'll finish the rest later. Some asshat just came by walking his dog. Tig ran inside from his nest, extremely unhappy. I was less happy than he when I saw the dog was unleashed. It started nosing around in the grass where Tig had been, ignoring the owner. I said, "That's where my cat was." He said, "I know, he's found some other animal." I said, "You're not supposed to be walking a dog unless it's leashed." He said nothing and dragged the dog away. Asshole. I'm just glad Tig doesn't take the chance and darts inside at the first sound of a dog. That was my patio Tig was on. And on which his dog was trespassing.

Anyway. Forget about jerky dog owners who think they're above the law. Tig made me laugh the other morning with a perfect frog-legs picture.

Speaking of cats, Gracie and Tig will be sending you to make donations to Lair Simon's charity for the Blogathon (24 hours of torture and post-writing), who is blogging in Edloe's memory for The Cat Welfare Society of Israel. I'll be sending him some pictures of Tig and Gracie later today for his Ask the Cats posts, and bugging you all to donate to his cause. Helping Jewish cats. I like that idea.

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Last week's blogs are archived. Looking for the Buffy Blogburst Index? Here's Israel vs. the world. Here's the Blogathon. The Superhero Dating Ratings are here. If you're looking for something funny, try the Hulk's solution to the Middle East conflict, or Yasser Arafat Secret Phone Transcripts. Iseema bin Laden's diary is also a good bet if you've never been here before.