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Violet_Crumble

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Gender: Female
Hometown: Canberra
Home country: Australia
Current location: 149°7'51"E, 35°16'42"S
Member since: 2002
Number of posts: 33,381

Journal Archives

Beirut back to its glamorous glory

DOWN a ramp from Beirut's clamorous seaside road, motor yachts bob along a curving waterfront promenade. Tablecloths gleam white, and bottles of wine sweat in silver coolers. The boardwalk's rough planks, a nod to maritime authenticity, present a design flaw perhaps foreseeable in this city: women with Louis Vuitton handbags are forever extracting their spike heels from the cracks.

This new luxury playground, Zaitunay Bay, is Lebanon's latest effort to recapture the prewar 1960s - when Brigitte Bardot was a regular and Beirut was a fashionable port of call. But for Arab visitors seeking respite from fear and uncertainty around the region, and for Lebanese content to stay out of the storm, Beirut is already back.
''Lebanon brings together the European, the Mediterranean, East and West,'' said Noor al-Tai, strolling the boardwalk in a leather miniskirt, thigh-high boots and a fur vest, by way of explaining why Beirut was the logical destination when she fled violence at home in Iraq. ''There is a very friendly atmosphere.''


Beirutis barely pause to remark that Zaitunay Bay sits on the Green Line, the boundary between East and West Beirut that was a deadly no man's land during Lebanon's 15-year civil war.

In many Western minds, Lebanon's image remains frozen in old snapshots: sectarian massacres, hostages tied to radiators, the Israeli invasion, smoke billowing from seafront high-rises. But, for the wealthy at least, the country long ago regained its spirit of fun and glamour.


Read more: http://www.canberratimes.com.au/travel/beirut-back-to-its-glamorous-glory-20120414-1x05t.html#ixzz1sA0BEU6o
Posted by Violet_Crumble | Sun Apr 15, 2012, 08:54 PM (2 replies)

Daniel Pipes' attack on Israeli Arabs is baseless and inflammatory

Pipes has written an aggressive and confused jumble of half-truths and misunderstandings about the Arabs citizens of Israel in an article published in the Washington Times.
By Carl Perkal


Middle East expert Daniel Pipes was in Israel recently and subsequently published an article entitled “Israel’s Arabs, living a paradox” in the Washington Times. I don’t know Dr. Pipes personally, but I feel compelled to call him to task for his baseless and inflammatory attack on the Arab citizens of Israel.

Pipes has written an aggressive and confused jumble of half-truths and misunderstandings about the Arabs citizens of Israel.

Middle East expert Daniel Pipes was in Israel recently and subsequently published an article entitled “Israel’s Arabs, living a paradox” in the Washington Times. I don’t know Dr. Pipes personally, but I feel compelled to call him to task for his baseless and inflammatory attack on the Arab citizens of Israel.

Pipes has written an aggressive and confused jumble of half-truths and misunderstandings about the Arabs citizens of Israel.

I refer Pipes to a speech made by Yoram Cohen, the head of Israel’s Shin Bet internal security service in which he said, "…as a community, Arab Israelis are not a target of Shin Bet. They are not a fifth column and we do not view them as such…"

http://www.haaretz.com/opinion/daniel-pipes-attack-on-israeli-arabs-is-baseless-and-inflammatory-1.423718

The link to the Pipes article

http://www.washingtontimes.com/news/2012/mar/21/israels-arabs-living-a-paradox/
Posted by Violet_Crumble | Wed Apr 11, 2012, 04:14 AM (6 replies)

Pearl Jam Are the Most Boring Band in 20 Years

I found the link to this article over at the Pearl Jam forums, where a humour-impaired fan had been organising a lynch-mob ready to ride out with their hate mail ready to go. The article's really funny, as is the related Alanis Morissette one



August marked the 20-year anniversary of Pearl Jam's Ten. Yes, for 20 soul-crushing years we've listened to Eddie Vedder mumble. Which is somehow even worse than Jeff Ament's endless procession of silly hats. Somehow Pearl Jam enjoy more acclaim than ever these days; it seems that mediocre rock bands, like ugly buildings, become respectable if they stick around long enough.

How did they get to be so boring? Let's explore their pedigree. Jeff Ament and Stone Gossard (is there a douchier name?) played in a group called Green River alongside Mark Arm and Steve Turner. The latter two went on to form Mudhoney. Ament and Gossard jammed with some dudes from Malfunkshun, a band even more terrible than its name, and later formed Mother Love Bone, who are most noteworthy for straddling the fence between grotesque '80s glam rock and pretentious '90s grunge rock. Eventually, the pair found self-important San Diegan Eddie Vedder, a name which has terrified children ever since.

Critics lumped Ten in with grunge, despite the fact that it has nothing in common with grunge standard bearers Mudhoney, the Melvins, Tad or Gruntruck. Grunge never had much homogeneity, but Pearl Jam can't be explained away as an outlier. Ten sounds more like if your dad's classic rock cover band decided to give the "kids' music" the old state college try.

If Ten sounds like rehashed AOR bands, their public image represented the worst of major label committee think. Vedder played the brooding, tortured frontman, constantly brushing hair from his face, affecting shyness that would make the most twee indie pop bands blush. The others stood around like grinning simpletons in Body Glove shorts and bajas. Collectively they mouthed all the shibboleths about gun control and "white male dominance, maaaaaaan ..." Seriously, who did they think they were fooling?

A lot of people, apparently. Ten sold almost that many million copies. The singles are merely pedestrian, but the album cuts are downright embarrassing. It's amazing the band did anything other than play a grunge band in a made-for-TV movie. Performing "Black" at a coffee shop open mic should be grounds for a restraining order. "Why Go" becomes irritatingly repetitive upon a single listen.

http://blogs.laweekly.com/westcoastsound/2012/01/pearl_jam_worst_90s_band.php

Posted by Violet_Crumble | Sun Apr 8, 2012, 08:26 AM (2 replies)

Architecture in Helsinki....

I don't know if anyone at DU's heard of them, but they're my choice when I'm wanting some happy music happening...






And a much older one that's my favourite - It's 5!



http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Architecture_in_Helsinki
Posted by Violet_Crumble | Sat Apr 7, 2012, 07:33 AM (0 replies)

Israel: Palestinians Cut Off From Farmlands

A Year After Court Ruling, a Worsening Situation
April 5, 2012


(Jerusalem) – A court ruling upholding a military permit system has had the result that a year later West Bank Palestinians in one affected area are virtually unable to work on their farmlands, Human Rights Watch said today, on the anniversary of the High Court of Justice ruling.

The system, which requires Palestinians to obtain special military permits to access their lands on the “Israeli” side of the separation barrier in the West Bank, in effect treats all Palestinians living in or seeking to access farmlands in these areas as though they were security threats, and imposes unnecessarily severe restrictions on their access, harming their livelihoods, Human Rights Watch said. Such a system violates the requirement under international law that security measures must be narrowly tailored to the threat that they aim to meet.

“The permit system needlessly prevents Palestinians from working their own farmlands,” said Joe Stork, deputy Middle East director at Human Rights Watch. “Israel’s highest court upheld a system that applies a broad brush to isolate Palestinians from their lands without a narrowly tailored security rationale as should be legally required.”

Israel claims that the permit regime is necessary to prevent Palestinians from attacking Israeli civilians. However, Israel uses a different, less restrictive system to grant permits to Palestinians who work in Israeli settlements, often as construction workers. It has rejected applications by Palestinians for permits to access land on the basis of restrictive bureaucratic criteria rather than for specified security reasons.

Israeli citizens, including settlers, and non-Israeli nationals visiting Israel, are exempt from the requirement to obtain military permits.

http://www.hrw.org/news/2012/04/05/israel-palestinians-cut-farmlands
Posted by Violet_Crumble | Fri Apr 6, 2012, 03:07 AM (2 replies)

Gotye - unarguably the best song from last year!

Enjoy!

Posted by Violet_Crumble | Sun Apr 1, 2012, 02:48 AM (6 replies)
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