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    Earlier today a bomb exploded on a crowded public bus outside the Jerusalem convention center, injuring more than 40 people. As Jennifer Rubin reports via Hareetz, this is the worst terrorist attack in the city in seven years, and given recent terrorist aggression against Israel out of Gaza, particularly disturbing. The Obama administration response to this atrocity is stunning silence. Rubin also reports that no | Read More »

    The Latest Escapade of Hastings the General Slayer

    With thanks to Cousin Aaron, I bring you the news that Michael Hastings of Rolling Stone, the professional military gadfly and all-around speaker of truth to power, hit a new low yesterday.  At a Congressional Progressive Caucus Peace and Security Task Force briefing, Hastings lit into General David Petraeus, accusing him of employing the “Charlie Sheen strategy:” General Petraeus is giving us the Charlie Sheen counter-insurgency strategy, | Read More »

    A Box is in the Eye of the Beholder

    On December 11, 2005 former Secretary of State Madeleine Albright went on “Meet the Press” to opine that the Iraq war had been a mistake–worse than that it had de-railed the successful pre-war program of sanctions and a no-fly zone, which had contained the paper tiger: And what we did was to keep Saddam Hussein in a box by using diplomacy, sanctions and force, with | Read More »

    Finally Asking My Question of Donald Rumsfeld

    Promoted from Diaries – DM I had a novel experience last Thursday–I had lunch with my boss in our office conference room, not as we have untold numbers of times, but as a blogger hoping to get a question in. In a way it was a lunch more than four years in the making.

    A Moment of Hope?

    There are reasons certain controversial pieces of legislation have short sell-by dates.  They can be unusual powers authorized by the legislature in moments of extreme danger, powers that during less turbulent times are not worth impinging on our civil liberties. Tonight, House Republicans failed to hold the line on one such bill–the Patriot Act.  It needed a two-thirds majority to pass, and it didn’t get | Read More »

    All is Calm, All is Bright…

    The Nativity is one of three small predella panels for Gentile’s monumental Adoration of the Magi painted in Renaissance Florence for the wealthy banker Palla Strozzi. While the main panel of the altarpiece is a brilliant, sumptuous and somewhat hectic depiction of the royal procession arriving to adore the child, the smaller predella panel below tells a far more intimate story. Gentile selects the moment | Read More »

    A Fourth of July Sermon

    I was honored to be asked to be the lay preacher at our church this morning.  Here are my remarks as prepared for delivery. St. Thomas’ Episcopal Church, Whitemarsh July 4, 2010 On a sweltering July day eleven score and fourteen years ago, a group of men “mutually pledged their lives, fortunes and sacred honor” as they declared their freedom from Great Britain.  It happened | Read More »

    A Note On The Company You Keep

    I understand that aspects of the new Arizona immigration law are contraversial. I also understand that as a non-minority I might not fully appreciate how threatening some of the provisions in the law might seem. But it is also a fact that illegal immigration is threatening our national security, and Arizona is on the front line. From where I sit at least Governor Jan Brewer | Read More »

    Documenting Evil: An Inconvenient History

    Claire Berlinski has an intriguing piece in this issue of The City titled “A Hidden History of Evil: Why doesn’t anyone care about the unread Soviet archives?” Part research paper and part detective story, Berlinski traces the fate of the damning records of Soviet totalitarianism–an unappetising tale that does not turn rosy even with the advent of perestroika in the 1980s. A number of these | Read More »


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