Monday, April 15, 2013

Rare archival footage of Republican Guard training

From the mid 1980s

 

69 comments:

Freddie Starr said...

Nicolas Maduro ate my hamster!

Lynnette In Minnesota said...

Hmmm...they looked a little slow going over the rope wall. Just watched the first few minutes, no time to watch it all now.

Lynnette In Minnesota said...

Finished.

All that and it didn't do much to help Saddam, did it? But then it was meant to protect Iraq for himself rather than your average Iraqi, wasn't it?

Petes said...

Ok, I know I jinxed everything last time. But the weather has finally changed. It's 17 C. That's summertime temps. The nighttime low is twice the daytime high of a fortnight ago. A fortnight ago I was knocking snow off the car. That's a rarity here anytime, let alone April. Yesterday I needed aircon on, because the car was burning up.

I reckon we'll have a week of this. Then it will rain. And rain. And rain and rain and rain. Then it'll be October and the clocks will go back. It's the new normal.

JG said...

Hah.. Yeah, today was nice. Didn't get to enjoy it very much though. Hope it holds until the weekend!

Marcus said...

Great weather here too actually. Spring seems to have arrived, finally. I actually took a long walk today and bought me one of those falafel sandwiches we discussed a few posts back. Extra large and with kebab-meat also. It's as big as a 12 ounce can and costs only 40 SEK, about $6. That's good value!

Lynnette In Minnesota said...

But the weather has finally changed. It's 17 C. That's summertime temps.

Cruelty, thy name is PeteS. :( It feels like it's going to snow again here...

Lynnette In Minnesota said...

On a more serious note, it seems they have video of a person of interest in the Bostom Marathon bombing. Hopefully it will lead to the arrest of those responsible.

I also noted the numerous bombings in Iraq recently. Very sad as well.

Lynnette In Minnesota said...

Hmmm...that's odd, I left a comment for Marcus regarding lunch and it seems to have disappeared.

Here's a shortened version:

$6 is a good price for lunch. I am having Chinese at the moment, Shrimp Egg Foo Yung and Egg rolls. Another good value as the portions are huge, as well as delicious, so I can have leftovers for lunch tomorrow. All for $8.41.

Petes said...

Another very large explosion near Waco, TX. I'm kinda hoping it's an accident.

Marcus said...

Lynnette, chinese and other east/south east Asian food is very reasonably priced here as well, and the portions do tend to be huge. $8-10 or so buys you dinner with enough left over for lunch the next day.

Over all I think fast food is more affordable in the US than here, but that would depend on where in the US. But by European, and Swedish, standards Malmö is a very cheap place when it comes to food.

Marcus said...

Lynnette: "On a more serious note, it seems they have video of a person of interest in the Bostom Marathon bombing. Hopefully it will lead to the arrest of those responsible."

There's been a lot of images online already suggesting possible suspects. Here's one link to a page that's quite confusing:

http://www.liveleak.com/view?i=f04_1366229238

In the discussions people seem to focus on the guy with the white baseball cap who can be seem both with and without a backpack. It's a bit iffy to go out with pictures online like that, based on mere speculation, because innocents could be implicated.

But I hear the FBI will go out with official pictures of some suspects soon now. Let's hope they catch the real culprit/culprits and soon.

Lynnette In Minnesota said...

Another very large explosion near Waco, TX. I'm kinda hoping it's an accident.

I think is was. There was a fire in a fertilizer plant which led to a massive explosion. The company had sworn up and down in previous reports to federal officials that the most serious scenario was the chance of an ammonia leak. Sounds a bit like the oil companies in the Gulf who said everything was okay there, just before the massive oil leak. This will turn out to be more devestating than the Boston Marathon bombing. My thoughts are with the people of West.

Lynnette In Minnesota said...

Marcus,

It is irritating that so many people tend to jump the gun with their speculation when the investigation has only just begun. The press was actually reporting that a suspect had already been identified from the video when I left my comment about a person of interest. Their quest to be first with a story is not very productive IMHO. It can lead to all sorts of misinformation being spread around. They even reported someone had been arrested. A story they had to back off on when they came down from their Breaking News story "high".

Lynnette In Minnesota said...

Snowing here...again. It looks like a lot too. *deep sigh* What I want to know is, who stole spring?

Petes said...

[Lynnette]: "What I want to know is, who stole spring?"

The plant life hear must have been straining to burst forth, because only two days after the weather warmed up the grass is growing and the trees are putting out leaves.

Too late for the farmers though, what with last years non-summer and this year's long winter, there is a serious fodder crisis brewing for livestock owners.

On the food front, I had a low-brow single-portion Chinese takeout tonight -- $16. I'm making it my mission this year to get to the bottom of why this country is so batshit crazy expensive. I mean, when Sweden looks cheap, you know you're in trouble. Took people for a birthday meal the other night ... 7 people, reasonably standard steak house with a couple of bottles of wine ... bill was $600.

Petes said...

hear=here :(

Marcus said...

Pete: "I mean, when Sweden looks cheap, you know you're in trouble [...] 7 people, reasonably standard steak house with a couple of bottles of wine ... bill was $600"

Ouch! In a highish end restaurant I'd expect that but certainly not in a standard steakhouse.

I'd just like to add that the prices I have mentioned are from Malmö, not Sweden as a whole. Stockholm is about twice as expensive and on par with the prices you seem to pay. Then, inner city Stockholm is not representative either, the rest of the country would fall somewhere in between.

But one other thing is our Krona is unusually strong right now compared to the Euro. It's about 8:40 SEK/Euro now when it was at 11 SEK/Euro just a few years back and it's gained even more against the Dollar in the last decade, so it used to be even cheaper here, in foreign currency.

I don't know why ya'll Oyrish pay such steep prices. I was in Paris last fall and thought the prices for a nice meal out were very reasonable. In the Greek Quarters just around the corner from Notre Dame there are heaps of places where you get a nice three course dinner for €12-€18, and the wine to go with it is also cheap, especially if you stick with the house wine which I almost always to since it's usually a great deal. That's a great spot in Paris, right in the centre of the city with lots of tourists and lots of students and close to the subway that gets you anywhere you want to go; and with walking distance to many attractions - it's just by the river Seine. Still it's cheap there and I find the bad rep the french get for being rude is completely exaggerated (and I don't speak ANY french btw).

If you go to eastern Europe like Hungary or the Check Republic and know your way aroud a little it's way cheaper still. A great meal with a couple of the world's best beers might not even cost you €10 there. Prague is a personal favourite, and goulash with beers the preferred order while there.

So I don't think it's Sweden that's cheap, I believe it's Ireland that's unreasonably expensive.

Marcus said...

Lynnette: "It is irritating that so many people tend to jump the gun with their speculation when the investigation has only just begun."

I don't know about "irritating" because of course people are curious, as am I, and tend to speculate. I just would like for folks to realise that it's mere speculation until the facts are in. I'm sure most folks get this but some may not.

Like the pictures in the link I posted above. There were some individuals there whos images were posted around the world and the real perpetrators turned out not to be in any of those images at all. So innocents we were implicated albeit for a short period of time.

Still I believe the way the FBI handled this, by going public with the pictures when they had a solid suspicion is the rigt way. If they had been wrong the guys identified would surely have called in and now that they were right people knew what to look out for and the FBI got a lot of information from people who knew who they were. They seem to have handled this the right way as far as I can tell.

Lynnette In Minnesota said...

Pete,

Took people for a birthday meal the other night ... 7 people, reasonably standard steak house with a couple of bottles of wine ... bill was $600.

Depending on the type of wine you were drinking that cost wouldn't be unusual for here in Minneapolis. You can find cheaper, though. Were you in a larger city or is that standard throughout Ireland? If it is, that would seem high.

For me, I probably wouldn't pay that, but then I'm cheap. ;)

Btw, that did end up being a rather large dumping of snow we got. It must have been at least 10 inches by the time it was done. It started yesterday morning and basically snowed on and off all day and into the overnight hours. Right now the sun is out and it was reading 45 degress F. on the thermometer at home. Melt! Melt!

Lynnette In Minnesota said...

Marcus,

It was the media that I found irritating. They were far too eager to jump on whatever rumor they heard in an effort to get a breaking news story. And to say that someone had been identified merely on the basis of a person of interest showing up on a video was jumping the gun. Having a picture doesn't mean you have a name. As to the posting of pictures by people on the internet, it's kind of hard to get away from that.

I have no problems with how the FBI handled their investigation and subsequent release of pictures for the public to help with identification, especially as these people were considered very dangerous. The public needed to be made aware of this information. Our law enforcement people and medical personnel have done an excellent job in trying circumstances.

I hope that the last man they are looking for is caught as soon as possible.



Petes said...

Looks like things are moving very quickly in the Boston investigations. I find the Chechnyan connection very strange -- I wouldn't have thought Chechnyan Muslims would be anti-American in the same way as some others, and these guys were long time US residents.

I find it weird seeing all the familiar places in the news. I lived in the centre of Boston for a short while and worked in Cambridge. Have visited a couple of dozen times.

Petes said...

"Depending on the type of wine you were drinking that cost wouldn't be unusual for here in Minneapolis."

Well, when I tell you that two out of three bottles were screw tops, you can probably guess the quality :-) They were still $25-$40 per bottle.

Was an outer suburb of Dublin. Not exactly the centre of the world. A steak (with nothing) was about $30-$40. I haven't been in the States for a couple of years, but I've rarely spent that much except in the most expensive restaurants in the most expensive cities. I suppose that's my problem. We're not New York. We're a damp rock off the coast of a bigger damp rock in the North Atlantic fringes of Europe, with a bankrupt country full of bankrupt citizens. But there doesn't seem to be any bankruptcy discounts in the eateries :-)

Marcus -- I don't remember Paris being cheap, but I haven't been there for about 15 years (apart from driving around the ring road) and would've been on business, so not looking for cheapness :)

Prague was cheap alright, but very seedy indeed in parts. Too many stag weekends on Ryanair flights from all over Europe!

Petes said...

Hmmm. The older Tsarnaev kid spent some months outside the US last year. This link to what purports to be his youtube account has been floating around.

Petes said...

While I'm here, I see oil prices have continued their slide today. Brent crude is now under $100/bbl -- a level only seen briefly in July 2012 in the last two years. WTI is at $88. That is dangerously close to the $85 level that it is claimed is required for the tight oil in Texas and the Dakotas to be extracted profitably. I don't think it's possible for US oil prices to drop further without significant repercussions.

The current price correspond to about $2.80/US gal. at the pumps. But average prices are $3.50 for a variety of reasons -- significant refinery maintance outages, pipeline bottlenecks, the switch from winter to summer fuel grades, and the cold winter in Europe meaning that more oil is distilled for heating instead of fuel exports to the US east coast.

Lynnette In Minnesota said...

I find the Chechnyan connection very strange -- I wouldn't have thought Chechnyan Muslims would be anti-American in the same way as some others, and these guys were long time US residents.

Historically, no, they haven't seemed to be anti-American. But for some reason it doesn't surprise me. Hate is like a disease that spreads, affecting everything in its path. I would certainly look at the older brother's activities while in Russia. It also sounds like he had more problems with fitting in here in the States than did his younger brother. And apparently he had a great deal of influence on Dzhokhar.

It's a sad story all the way around. Here were two handsome young men with their whole lives ahead of them. Yet they chose to throw it all away with an act of violence that served no good purpose. They killed and injured innocent people to achieve, what? I am glad they managed to capture at least one of them alive, perhaps he can tell us exactly what their motivation was.

Lynnette In Minnesota said...

Well, when I tell you that two out of three bottles were screw tops, you can probably guess the quality :-) They were still $25-$40 per bottle.

For that quality of wine, that is expensive. Yes, what you are describing would be more in line with our larger cities and higher end restaurants. You wouldn't pay that where I live. The last high end restaurant that tried shut its doors. Although it had lasted beyond the 3 year shelf life of a lot of restaurants.

Lynnette In Minnesota said...

I don't think it's possible for US oil prices to drop further without significant repercussions.

I suppose it would depend on how long they stay depressed. Many people have invested a lot of time, money, and effort into extracting oil from ND. They won't give it up that quickly.

I paid $3.30 a gallon yesterday.

Lynnette In Minnesota said...

Btw, I see gold has fallen in price. I wonder if Bruno got out before the drop?

Lynnette In Minnesota said...

Almost forgot something I was going to mention. Apparently at one point in time the FBI website was getting around 300,000 hits a minute with people calling in with tips on the Boston bombing suspects. Not to belabor a point, well okay, I am going to belabor a point. When you have a case such as this the public's help is invaluable. And it was in the end a call from a resident who noticed something suspicious in his backyard that led to the capture of the last suspect. If you want to create a safe environment for people to live in cooperation between law enforcement and the average citizen is critical. Are you listening, Iraq?

Petes said...

"I suppose it would depend on how long they stay depressed. Many people have invested a lot of time, money, and effort into extracting oil from ND. They won't give it up that quickly."

Yes, absolutely. Depressed oil prices will deter new investment, not existing producing wells. However, with the high decline rate for shale oil wells, there are a lot of new ones on a regular basis. And investors want to know that oil prices will stay elevated for years to come, to pay back the investment.

" If you want to create a safe environment for people to live in cooperation between law enforcement and the average citizen is critical. Are you listening, Iraq?"

You also need the populace to be convinced that law enforcement works evenhandedly for all the citizens. When that trust is broken, it may be irreparable. In Northern Ireland, even after a peace agreement between sectarian factions, the existing police force had to be dismantled, an independent policing commission set up that lasted years, and a new force built from scratch. Even so, the new force has been targeted by a dissident republican group. And Iraq's problems are orders of magnitude worse.

P.S. Cut the grass for the first time this year today. It's still bloody cold -- about 10 degrees today (50 F), in a stiff breeze.

Zeyad said...

Im still here but they're trying to take my cell and wallet and pc. They stole my necklace, socks, some flannel shirts

Petes said...

Who is they, Zeyad? Anything we can do?

Lynnette In Minnesota said...

Zeyad,

Where exactly are you?

Petes said...

Good news -- McCormick, the cretin behind the fake bomb detectors, has been convicted of fraud at the Old Bailey.

He told a sales colleague that the detectors did exactly what they were designed to do: "make money". Leaving court today he was still trying to defend the devices. He'll be sentenced next week. I hope they throw away they key.

Marcus said...

Pete: " He'll be sentenced next week. I hope they throw away they key."

I read about that too. In a swedish newspaper they claim he "risk getting 8 years in jail". I surely hope he gets the full 8 years because IMO he deserves worse.

There's also a quote from an Iraqi in the MOI who says he's certain there were kickbacks to the people who made the purchases. And as I have said before I beilieve that may be a reason why those useless thingies were "used" for so long.

Marcus said...

Zeyad: "Im still here but they're trying to take my cell and wallet and pc. They stole my necklace, socks, some flannel shirts"

I ca only assume you're talking about those jealous family members you entioned a while ago, or? I thought you had tried to make a clean break with them.

I know family is family, but when it's beyond evident they attempt to drag you down you really need to break away.

Anyway, sorry to hear that crap is still ongoing and I hope your situation improves. Perhaps you need to relocate and start over?

An update on your general situation would be interesting and apppreciated. If you feel up for it of course.

Lynnette In Minnesota said...

I ca only assume you're talking about those jealous family members you entioned a while ago, or? I thought you had tried to make a clean break with them.

That was certainly my thought, which was why I asked him where he was. Because I assume that if it were someone else he would have called the police.

If they are trying to stop him communicating with other people via phone or internet than I would have to question why and why they would have access to his belongings. If they are looking for some quick cash I would call the police, even if they are family. I too think an explanation is in order.

Lynnette In Minnesota said...

He'll be sentenced next week. I hope they throw away they key.

I agree. Taking advantage of people who are in a terrible situation is beyond contemptable.

Lynnette In Minnesota said...

-- Dzhokhar Tsarnaev has cited the U.S. wars in Afghanistan and Iraq as motivating factors behind the attack, a U.S. government official said Tuesday.

So they go and blow up innocent civilians in response? What kind of nonsensical reasoning is that? Now one is dead and the other will probably spend his life behind bars. And what exactly have they accomplished? Nothing.

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Marcus said...

Lynnette: "So they go and blow up innocent civilians in response? What kind of nonsensical reasoning is that? Now one is dead and the other will probably spend his life behind bars. And what exactly have they accomplished? Nothing."

There's terrorists for you. They get insane with rage and lash out in any way they think they can and accomplish absolutely nothing. In fact most often they stand to lose since they discredit the cause they were prepared to kill for.

There's only one terrorist group in history that I can think of that can be said (at least it could be argued, I'm sure there are arguments the other way as well) to have been successful. That'd be the IRA. (Pete might disagree, I don't know, and he likely knows more about that than I do)

Then of course it all depends on who you call a terrorist group. Hezbollah has had some success also but I'd call them more of a militarised political movement rather than a terrorist organisation.

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Petes said...

[Marcus]: "There's only one terrorist group in history that I can think of that can be said (at least it could be argued, I'm sure there are arguments the other way as well) to have been successful. That'd be the IRA. (Pete might disagree, I don't know, and he likely knows more about that than I do)"

That's a difficult subject. Not least because it is very touchy in Ireland to even talk about winners and losers among the nationalist and unionist communities of Northern Ireland. The 1998 Belfast Agreement explicitly set out to avoid such language. It was a diplomatic tour de force to get an agreement without either side claiming victory. Of course, some on both sides saw it is a victory for the nationalists that they gained mandatory power sharing in a Northern Irish government with mandatory involvement of the Irish State in certain issues. And some on both sides saw it as a victory for the unionists that the union with Britain was secured, and that the IRA gave up weapons and violence and was stood down. And, of course, although the huge majority have accepted the outcome and welcomed the restoration of a somewhat functioning democracy, some have not. You still have dissident republicans who -- although without anything like the force of the IRA -- have carried out a couple of fatal attacks in the last fifteen years. And you have disgruntled loyalists who feel the nationalist concessions have gone too far, so for instance you have the current spate of demonstrations against the removal of the Union Jack flag from the top of Belfast city hall. So did the IRA win? Yes and no is the honest answer. I'm inclined to say "neither", and that common sense prevailed instead.

Jackie said...

Hi Zeyad,

Would you be interested in posting this video on your blog by any chance? http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_embedded&v=rdZolyRAXL8 I tried looking for your contact info but couldn't find any. It's about how ow the Director of Military Relations at Trident University
worked to get two Iraqi interpreters to the U.S. Feel free to embed it if you want to use it on your blog.

Marcus said...

Pete: "So did the IRA win? Yes and no is the honest answer. I'm inclined to say "neither", and that common sense prevailed instead."

Seems like a fair assessment from what I can tell.

Here's an article comparing the tactics of the IRA and Al Qaeda:

http://exiledonline.com/wn-38-ira-vs-al-qaeda-i-was-wrong/

I'm not so sure about the whole history lesson about the IRA and the situation in Ireland, because I'm not that well read up on that. But the overall idea that a successful "terrorist" or guerilla movement needs to be extremely diciplined and that senseless attacks on civilians (AQ-style) only leads to defeat seems correct to me.

Petes said...

Marcus, that article about the IRA is right in parts, but much too triumphalist in others. Yes, the IRA primarily focused on military and economic targets, but by no means exclusively.

There were plenty of tit-for-tat killings of loyalists. More insidiously, there was something of a reign of terror in republican areas which were IRA home turf. There were murders of informers. Since the IRA were the only effective police (the republican haunts being effectively closed to the official RUC) there were maimings of "anti-social" elements (some of whom were intruding on the IRA monopolies on drugs and organised crime).

There were bank robberies and extortion from businesses in both Northern Ireland and the Republic. There were kidnappings. There were internecine fights with other republican groups.

A lasting legacy of "The Troubles" is that organised criminals turned from being IRA funders to looking out for themselves. Much existing crime has its roots in that time. (A bit like Iraq in this respect).

The bombings weren't all as clean as that article makes out. Yes, there was massive economic damage in London and Manchester. But three years before the Manchester bomb there was one nearby in Warrington which killed two young children. Other "military" targets were highly questionable -- pubs where soldiers were regulars, locations in other European territories such as military bases in Osnabruck (Germany) and Gibralter (the protagonists were shot and killed by the SAS in that one).

All that said, one of the things that strikes me nowadays about those times is that it was not nearly as murderous as Iraq or several other civil war scenarios lately. We had 3,000 people killed in 30 years -- that wouldn't have added up to a bad month in Iraq in the mid 2000s.

Petes said...

By the way, Clinton (actually, both Clintons) only rolled into town to press the flesh and turn up for photo shoots. Ok, they were important in order to show that American support for a solution went right to the top. But the hard work on the ground was done by many others. Most notable was Senator George Mitchell, a Democrat from Maine. There was also Mo Mowlam, a British Labour MP who worked tirelessly in spite of a brain tumour which killed her a few years later. There was John Hume, possibly the most important of all -- a Nationalist from the non-violent SDLP party who could talk to Republicans and bring them to the table. Then of course, there were the political wings of the main opponents -- Adams and McGuinness from Sinn Fein, and Trimble from the Ulster Unionists (whose career, ironically, went down the toilet as a result, and the baton was handed to the much more intransigent Democratic Unionists). And there were much less well known players -- clergy, community workers, and others, some of whom were instrumental.

Marcus said...

Pete: " that article about the IRA is right in parts, but much too triumphalist in others."

I kinda guesssed that would be the case. The "War Nerd" writes like that and since professor Dolan is a bright man I believe it's intended.

Your summary was interesting and since about half of it, brief as it was, was news to me I realise how little I really know about the details. Not that that's strange since I never made an effort to research the Troubles and only know what I've come across by chance.

Pete: "one of the things that strikes me nowadays about those times is that it was not nearly as murderous as Iraq or several other civil war scenarios lately. We had 3,000 people killed in 30 years -- that wouldn't have added up to a bad month in Iraq in the mid 2000s."

In part that has to come down to the relative diciplin of the factions involved. Which also raises the question whether the IRA should be labled as a terrorist group at all. Maybe a separatist movement with an armed guerilla wing is a better description.

Petes said...

Marcus, I guess every separatist group -- IRA, ETA, PLO, PKK, Chechens, Tamil Tigers, and so on and on -- are terrorists to some, and freedom fighters to others.

As often as not it is an assertion of nationhood within and against a larger state entity. In the Irish case, the history is so tortuous that it's all a tangled mess.
"Not that that's strange since I never made an effort to research the Troubles and only know what I've come across by chance."

I don't know the half of it myself. The fine details are complicated. And it's funny how alien a place Northern Ireland is for someone from barely a hundred kilometres away. Mind you, people from Britain know even less about it, and it's part of their country. At least we see news reporting from there and get their TV channels -- in the mainland UK they would never see regional TV from N.I. and many people wouldn't actually know that N.I. is part of the UK and not part of the Republic of Ireland. I think it's part of why Unionists are so touchy -- the country they're desperate to remain part of barely knows they exist.

I was thinking -- back in the mid 80s I spent a week up there teaching a training course. Since then I've been there once for a wedding, and I passed through once on the way to the north west of the Republic. That's it! In the same period I've been in the States maybe thirty times, at least once a year and often more frequently. I know my way around Boston, but I've only seen Belfast once.

Petes said...

Oops, sorry. Jammed two posts together there by accident. In fact, I didn't mean to post the second half at all, having decided it was too boring.

Lynnette In Minnesota said...

Pete: "one of the things that strikes me nowadays about those times is that it was not nearly as murderous as Iraq or several other civil war scenarios lately. We had 3,000 people killed in 30 years -- that wouldn't have added up to a bad month in Iraq in the mid 2000s."

Marcus: "In part that has to come down to the relative diciplin of the factions involved.

And the other part? I can't help feeling sometimes that there is a sad lack of respect for human life in the Mideast. Certainly you have had horrible things done for the name of freedom here in the West. But those who are fighting in the Mideast, such as the various groups in Iraq, are perhaps not fighting for freedom for all, but merely freedom for the people supporting them. Does that make it easier to treat another person's life cheaply?

Lynnette In Minnesota said...

PeteS: That's it! In the same period I've been in the States maybe thirty times, at least once a year and often more frequently. I know my way around Boston, but I've only seen Belfast once.

I don't find that really very unusual. If you don't have business, family or friends in an area, then you may not be inclined to visit that often. I haven't even been across town to a restaurant that some people at work have recommended simply because I don't get over that way that often and when I am going out to eat with a friend we tend to frequent the same places. I know, I know, boring aren't I? :)

Lynnette In Minnesota said...

Marcus: They get insane with rage and lash out in any way they think they can and accomplish absolutely nothing. In fact most often they stand to lose since they discredit the cause they were prepared to kill for.

Exactly. Rosa Parks did more for the cause of equality in this country by merely sitting down in a bus than did any of the violent actions taken by so called freedom fighters from the Mideast and elsewhere.

Lynnette In Minnesota said...

Hmmm...let me rephrase a little. I do not want to imply that Al Qaida is fighting for freedom. I don't believe that to be the case at all. So...

Rosa Parks did more for the cause of equality in this country by merely sitting down in a bus than any of the violent actions taken by so called freedom fighters from the Mideast and elsehwere did to further whatever cause they are pursuing.

Yes, that is more accurate a statement.

Zeyad said...

Ahem

Petes said...

Zeyad -- please give us an update on how you're doing. Don't make us beg :-)

Petes said...

Lynnette, I suspect Rosa Parks would probably get decapitated for her insolence, or at least have acid thrown in her face, in certain parts of the world today. Doesn't bear thinking about.

P.S. I'm a creature of habit when it comes to restaurants too.

P.P.S. I have even less reason to go to Boston these days than I do to Belfast, other than I fell in love with the city and even more so with the towns and countryside of New England.

P.P.P.S Was quite surprised when checking airline prices recently, having not done an American extravanganza for a while. Can still fly to half a dozen US cities for just a few hundred US dollars more than the Atlantic leg from Ireland. I thought that sort of cheap travel had gone. Even more reason to do it soon.

P.P.P.P.S I'm determined to travel extensively outside Ireland this year. We've this charade going on called "The Gathering" where we (by "we" I mean some faceless bureaucrat in our tourism board) invite the Irish diaspora home to "celebrate Irishness" this year. As one cynical Irish actor and ex-pat observed: "we ruined the country and forced people to emigrate; now we want to get them back home to shake them down for a few dollars". So I'm going to spend some money abroad in protest.

P.P.P.P.P.S Hurrah! I see the Captcha has gone back to asking for two words instead of interpreting house numbers. Although, I suppose the house numbers were easier, since I just typed the digit 3 for everyone, as a little protest against Google snooping.

Zeyad said...

Petey i dont want to sound like I'm begging again but I could use some hits on my tip jar :)

Petes said...

Hah! I'm a poor student these days, don'tcha know? :)

Ok. Winging its way.

Zeyad said...

Ty old buddie

Petes said...

What's the story with those American air traffic controllers. Are Republicans trying to channel the spirit of Ronald Reagan?

Lynnette In Minnesota said...

Ahem

Seriously?

Lynnette In Minnesota said...

What's the story with those American air traffic controllers. Are Republicans trying to channel the spirit of Ronald Reagan?

Already fixed, sort of. As the powers that be finally recognized, this could cause a serious problem with flying for any number of people, including themselves. So they have passed a bill allowing funds to be drawn from a different account to pay the bills. Idiots.

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Lynnette, email me for info

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