Monday, April 30, 2007
Friday, April 27, 2007
Thursday, April 26, 2007
Wednesday, April 25, 2007
Mazal tov to Johan Cruijff, today he celebrates his 60th birthday. Most people love him in one way or another, others cannot stand him because of what they see as his arrogance and omniscience. Still, he often has a point, it seems, such as when he expressed his opinion about the possible takeover by (a) foreign bank(s) of the largest Dutch bank. I am too young to really remember his true heyday(s) as a player, although I do remember him playing for Feyenoord, but both as a player and as a trainer he has been immensely successful, you cannot argue with that. Like most Dutchmen I love some of his famous aphorisms, in Dutch refered to as "Cruijffiaans", the equivalent of Yogiism in ( American ) English. Here is an attempt to translate a few examples:
- Soccer is very simple/uncomplicated, but the most difficult thing there is, is to play simple/uncomplicated soccer.
- If we have the ball they cannot score.
- You always have to make sure that you score one more goal than the opponent.
- It is better to go down with your own vision than with someone else's.
- You will only see it when you get it.
- Every disadvantage has its advantage ( the all-time favorite, also because of the grammatical error and the Amsterdam accent with which it was said; I sometimes use this one in Hebrew )
Tuesday, April 24, 2007
Monday, April 23, 2007
Sunday, April 22, 2007
I am not sure if this cartoon, by Joep Bertrams, is totally accurate and fair, but anger and frustration are probably some of the reasons why millions of French voters will vote for one of the more extreme candidates in the first round of today's presidential elections. No lack of candidates for a protest vote, that is for sure. If I have the patience to follow the results of the second round I will do so at my parents' house.
Saturday, April 21, 2007
"When people see somebody or know somebody who is exhibiting abnormal behavior, you do something about it, to suggest that somebody take a look"
( George W. Bush on the Virginia Tech murderer, during an appearance at a high school in Ohio )
Thursday, April 19, 2007
- Wel leuk met zoveel dames. Elk discussie begint in deze regering voortaan met..."weet je wat ik nou gehoord heb...?"
- twaalf netelenbossen in 1 regering,je zou voor minder emigreren
Wednesday, April 18, 2007
This is the picture for which Israeli Oded Balilty, who works for the Associated Press, was awarded this year's Pullitzer Prize for breaking news photography. It is a sad but beautiful picture, indeed. Kol HaKavod and congratulations to Mr Balilty. If only this region provided photographers with less photo-ops of Jews fighting Jews, of Palestinians fighting Jews, of Palestinians fighting Palestinians, of Jews fighting Palestinians, of the horrific consequences of occupation, terror, counter-terror etc. If only a picture filled simply with happy Palestinian or Israeli children would one day be newsworthy enough for a Palestinian or Israeli photographer to win a Pullitzer prize with.
Professor Librescu was the sandak at the brit of his grandson, three years ago. If I am not mistaken the mohel is the same person who performed the circumcision on our two sons.
One reader who commented on an article in the Dutch populist daily Telegraaf about professor Liviu Librescu z"l, one of the victims of the Virginia Tech massacre, was unable to simply appreciate the heroic way in which the poor man died, according to some of his students. The hatred of everything Israeli ( and/or Jewish ) surpasses everything as far as someone like a certain Alex from Alkmaar is concerned. He writes "Why does it say Israeli lecturer, though he was born in Rumania and had lived and taught in America for 20 years? Must be another attempt to promote Israel. But we don't buy that. Israel is what South Africa used to be. A group of colonists occupies a country and exploits the original inhabitants. Makes them work for a pittance and live in townships on the occupied Westbank and in the Gaza Strip. For once let us think about the Palestinians on May 5th ( the day on which the Dutch celebrate the liberation from the Nazi-German occupation, BdB )." Fortunately most of the other readers criticize this Alex and express their admiration for professor Librescu's courage.
Sunday, April 15, 2007
Saturday, April 14, 2007
Friday, April 13, 2007
The theme of this year's Yom HaShoah, from Sunday evening till Monday evening, is of particular importance for historians. As in Holland, during the year few outstanding Holocaust-related programs are broadcast here, and then in the days before Yom HaShoah suddenly a real overdose of sometimes very good movies and documentaries descends upon us. On Sunday evening I will certainly watch a documentary by Guy Meroz and Orly Vilnai-Federbusch, makers of the Civil Guard documentary series, about the fact that 80.000 Holocaust survivors in Israel live below the poverty line, a disgrace not only for the State and the successive governments of Israel but also for the Claims Conference and other organizations that manage the billions of Euros and dollars that have been paid as some sort of compensation by various companies and governments that had profited directly or indirectly from the Shoah.
Recently the US Holocaust Memorial Museum in Washington and Google started cooperating in a unique project, Crisis in Darfur. It can help people all over the globe "to visualize and better understand the genocide currently unfolding in Darfur, Sudan". Those who are able and willing to really get involved in the efforts to stop that genocide will also find information about what they can do.
- De Nederlander, die bereid is tot vergaande compromissen om de rust in de tent te bewaren, heeft volstrekt verleerd hoe hij met conflicten moet omgaan.
- In dit land is een volmaakte politicus iemand die safe-seks met zijn emoties weet te bedrijven.
- In de Tweede Kamer fungeert de voorzitter als een soort condoom: hij vangt alle emoties en conflicten keurig op.
- ...als na een marathonzitting die tot in de kleine uurtjes duurt een kabinet eindelijk valt, wordt de spanning van dat nachtelijk moment nog dertig jaar uitgemolken, of het geeft aanleiding tot het concipieren van een slaapverwekkend toneelstuk. Terwijl Duitsland zijn nacht van de lange messen heeft en Hollywood zijn nacht van de Oscars, beschikt Nederland over de nacht van Schmelzer.
- Alles welgeteld is er volgens mij maar een ( 1 ) locatie in dit land waar het conflict publiekelijk wordt uitgevochten en getolereerd: het sportveld. Op de groene grasmat en daaromheen wordt ongeveer alles wat de god der Nederlanden heeft verboden plotseling toegestaan. [...] De beste Nederlandse voetballer aller tijden, Johan Cruijff, is de grootste ruziezoeker die dit stukje grond ooit heeft voortgebracht.
Thursday, April 12, 2007
Wednesday, April 11, 2007
I doubt if this 1979 movie ( titled Abu al-Banat ) with Farid Shawki is a remake of this Israeli one, which came out in 1973.
Tuesday, April 10, 2007
Monday, April 09, 2007
Does anybody know if the Independent did correct its mistaken report?
Thursday, April 05, 2007
Joep Bertrams' view on Ahmadinejad's release of the British servicepersons. See also the new poll in the righthand margin of this blog.