A cafe in London intent on living up to a name that otherwise makes little sense for a coffee shop — Nin Com Soup — drew some attention last month when it introduced a new flavor of smoothie, decorated it with a swastika, and called it “Nutzy”.
A friend recently directed me to a Tumblrblog titled “Ron Swanson Says…”, and subtitled “The eternal wisdom of Ron Swanson”. The site hasn’t been updated for a while, but I still feel the need to comment on one of its more-recent posts. You can see the entirety of the post in question immediately following this colon:
Some Israelis have recently expressed concern over the fact that an organization that received funding from the U.S. State Department (among others) is seeking to affect the outcome of their country’s upcoming election. But there has been far less attention paid to the potential for interference of another sort by an arguably less-shadowy American organization: Facebook.
Mark Zuckerberg’s company announced yesterday that on the coming election day, users who list their location as Israel will see an “I Voted” button encouraging them to vote. The button was first introduced during the 2010 midterm elections in the United States, and a 2012 study published in Nature found that it induced more than 300,000 people to vote who might otherwise not have. Sounds great: More votes means more democracy and we like democracy.
Well, not necessarily.
In a recent post, I detailed how some people described the acquisition of Seamless in Kuwait (how clever) as the largest Middle Eastern exit since 2009. They forgot, of course, that Israeli startups routinely eclipse Talabat’s $170 million purchase price — or maybe excluding Israel from “the Middle East” was a conscious decision. Either way, they’re redrawing maps.
But those offenders are small potatoes (which you may presumably order on Talabat). This time, I’d like to call your attention to the pages of the New York Times. In yesterday’s column, Islam and the West at War, Roger Cohen described the current conflict between, well, Islam and the west:
About a month ago, Above the Law published an article about eagle feathers. More specifically, it discussed whether the Supreme Court’s decision in Hobby Lobby (which recognized the company’s claim for a religious exception to secular laws) will be extended to Native American tribes who wish to use eagle feathers in religious ceremonies despite their protection under the Migratory Bird Treaty Act and the Bald and Golden Eagle Protection Act. In the form of an aside, the article made a good point:
Last week, several leaders of the European Jewish community found themselves in an awkward situation that made for some unfortunate headlines. For example, here’s how Haaretz reported it:
The recently-collapsed Swedish government has drawn the ire of pro-Israel partisans in recent months, after it became the first in Europe to recognize a Palestinian state.
So those defenders of Zion were quick to pounce when Swedish MP Hillevi Larsson — a member of the Social Democratic-led government responsible for the vote — was recently pictured next to a Palestinian flag, while holding an award she received from the Palestinian Association of Malmö in gratitude for her support:
The most obvious way to not fail at anti-Semitism is to not be an anti-Semite. Failing that, here’s one example (via The Algemeiner) of how not to fail at anti-Semitism:
The FAA just extended its ban on American airlines (lower-case “a”) flying to Tel Aviv’s Ben Gurion Airport for an additional 24 hours, but — at least under present circumstances — the precaution appears to be overkill.
And I have some pretty good evidence to support that contention.
No, not the fact that Michael Bloomberg flew commercial — oh, the humanity! — to TLV in order to express his support. And not even the fact that John Kerry felt comfortable flying directly into the ostensibly-banned airport.
What makes me so confident — again, at least for now — that all those cancellations were probably unnecessary appeared at the very end of an article in Haaretz describing Israel’s plan to temporarily open an additional civilian airport in its south to international traffic [emphasis mine]: