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AMAZIAN OF THE WEEK! @ReallyVirtual, The Man Who Unwittingly Live-Tweeted The Raid On Osama bin Laden
Meet Sohaib Athar–@ReallyVirtual on Twitter–a Pakistani IT consultant from Lahore who, up until a day ago, was “taking a break from the rat-race by hiding in the mountains with his laptops.” And the name of the mountain town where Mr. Athar had taken refuge?
Turns out Athar wasn’t the only man who found the Sarban hills surrounding the city to be the perfect hideaway. But Athar is, however, the only man who live-blogged the raid on that other guy’s mountain retreat. And unwittingly, at that!
Though now “the rat race” Athar had been trying to escape in Lahore has come to him–with journalists the world over scrambling to land an interview with Athar–the Pakistani man just trying to get away from it all hasn’t lost sight of his core values–or, for that matter, his appealingly wry sense of humor:
Filed under: @ReallyVirtual, Abbottabad Pakistan, Al-Qaeda, al-Qaida, Bin Laden Dead, Bin Laden Killed, Citizen Journalism, Neighborhood Noise Complaints, Noise Complaints, Obama Kills Osama, Osama Bin Laden, Pakistan, President Obama, Raid On Osama Bin Laden, Terrorism, Twitter, War on Terror
I know you’ve got a forthcoming album to promote, so you’re going to have to give a gajillion interviews loaded with controversial statements, so that blogs will have something to write about, so that Twitter will get a new trending topic, so that you’ll generate more buzz, so that the wheels will get greased, so that the whole machine behind making you a pop star will get cranking, but I’m going to need you to stop talking for a while, okay?
Because every time I read another interview with you, I like you less and less. And I like you a lot. And I’d like it to stay that way. But it’s kind of impossible when you say things like you’re living in Brentwood because you can’t afford New York. Not that I’m not curious about why you’re living in Brentwood. But, as HuffPo pointed out, real estate there goes for $636 a square foot. You know what would be revolutionary and guerrilla-style? If you said something like, “I’m a mom now, and Brentwood’s safe” or “I’m rich now, where do you want me to live?” or “I like how unchallenging Brentwood is, I don’t have to be cool here” or even something hilariously bourgie like, “I picked Brentwood because I fell in love with this particular house.” You want to get heads spinning? Tell me you’re a Westside–and, uh, I don’t mean in the 2PAC sense–soccer mom. But tell me you’re living in Brentwood because you can’t afford other places, and I want to punch you, as Diana would say, in the neckmeat.
You’re an artist and a storyteller, and we love it when you embellish the truth–as the GQ profile I’m talking about points out you often do–but we don’t like it when you’re dishonest, not so much in the factual sense, but in the emotional sense. So the only Continue reading ROCK OF ASIAN: Less Talking, More Rocking, M.I.A.
Filed under: Brentwood Sucks, GQ, Ladies Who Rock, Lynn Hirschberg, M.I.A., M.I.A. GQ Interview, Maya Arulpragasam, Rocking My Face Off, Sri Lanka, STFU, Stop Talking, Tamils, Terrorism, Truffle Fries
You may remember Viet Dinh as George W. Bush’s Assistant Attorney General from 2001 to 2003, and the man hailed as the main author of The Patriot Act (for a memory refresher, download his opus here).
Dinh made a speaking appearance on a panel today at CPAC, the Conservative Political Action Conference, and used the mic to defend the Patriot act as well as call out President Obama for killing too many terrorists.
“Why have executions increased?” asked Viet Dinh, a professor at Georgetown University Law Center and one of the authors of the USA Patriot Act. Citing a recent Washington Post article on the increased targeted killing of terrorists, Dinh complained that “the president and vice president expound this fact as a fact that they are actually successful in war.”
“That doesn’t mean I think they are not illegitimate,” he added. “No, we have every right to kill the other side’s warriors. But at what cost? When we do not have an effective detention policy the only option we have is to kill them before we can detain them. And if we don’t detain them, we don’t know what they know and what they are up to.”
Filed under: Bush Administration, Detaining Terrorists Has Worked Really Well For Us In The Past, Detainment, Enough Already, Former Assistant Attorney General, George W. Bush, Idiots, Obama Kills Too Many Terrorists, Partisan Bullshit, Partisanship, Pinko Commies, Right Wing Nutjobs, Terror, Terrorism, Terrorist Attacks, Terrorists, Terrorysteria, The Patriot Act, The Patriot Act is Unpatriotic, Viet Dinh, You Can't Win With These People
A 40 year-old man identified only as “Jameel” was arrested this week in Bangalore, India for expressing his support for Muntadar al-Zaidi, aka The Shoe Thrower, at his workplace. The Times of India reported that the police are now investigating Jameel’s “suspected terror links.”
And here we thought terrorists were all sneaky and shit. Don’t real terrorists train in secret camps and hide out in caves? Or, if they do live among us, don’t they typically try to seamlessly blend in so that no one will suspect them of actually being terrorists so that they can, you know, spring a surprise attack, like real terrorists did on 9/11, and more recently in Mumbai?
If “Jameel” is, in fact, a terrorist, then he sucks at it. Does al Qaeda really recruit blabbermouths like Jameel? If he’d give up his terrorist ties so easily over the water cooler, then imagine how that sad sack would do over a waterboard! If he’s a terrorist, then they sure don’t make ‘em like they used to, and, by golly, George Bush–The Shoe Throwee–was right, and we are winning the War of Terror.
Or not. Because by this notion of terrorism, they are everywhere. We ourselves have located two major terrorist cells on Facebook, one with close to 3,000 jihadists and another with over 16,000. That would also mean our friends here are card-carrying terrorists. Oh shit–does that mean we’re terrorists?! We triple-swear that we’re totes not! But, but…you know that guy in Egypt who wants to marry his daughter off to the Shoe Thrower? He totes is! Arrest that man!
Oh. Wait. On second thought, that guy in Egypt probably isn’t a terrorist. He’s just wicked creepy.
But whatever…arrest him for being creepy! That’s a crime, too, isn’t it?
Secretary of State Condoleeza Rice arrived for an emergency condolence visit in India this week, an effort to smooth over relations between India and Pakistan during the shaky after-effects of the recent Mumbai terrorist attacks.
Indian and Afghan officials have accused Pakistan of being accountable for the incursions, after the perpetrator in custody was confirmed by India’s officials as being Pakistani (and sang that his compatriots, are too).
Pakistani President Zardari has stated that Pakistan is “in no way responsible” for the aggression, instead offering that the terrorists are likely “stateless actors who have been operating all throughout the region.” This, of course, is unsatisfying to Indian officials that are still grappling for an answer to the violence.
Rice [says] Pakistan bears a “special responsibility” to help get to the bottom of the attacks while awkwardly declining to finger Pakistani militants outright.
Rice continued to offer solutions during her talks with Pakistan, whispering*, “Hey, we got this. Just work with me here, and we’ll get some intel that proves Iraq did this in no time.”
*Not true. So not true. Totally fictional. Right?
Yesterday, the coordinated terrorist attacks directed at Westerners in Mumbai, India injured and claimed the lives of hundreds.
We watched the coverage in horror.
Yet, apparently, we still couldn’t keep our minds–or at least the CNN news ticker–off of Heidi and Spencer’s fake wedding:
We apologize for the CNN ticker, and our thoughts go out to all of those who were and are affected by these attacks.
We’re reaaaaaally psyched about all of the schlepping to Florida you’ve been organizing in pursuit of Obama votes. What better way to rally that crazy battleground state for the good, than with the power of Bubbes? It’s genius!
Let’s switch gears slightly, yo. With eleven days to the election, we’re shocked to know that a startling few people have actually been made aware that Amendment 1 on Florida’s November 4 ballot has the power to eradicate the 1926 anti-Asian land ownership law still standing in the state’s constitution. As always, Amendments on ballot are confusing. To clarify: This one on the ballot is good! The old one is BAD–It’s the O.G. of anti-slant-eye racism! Sucko!
Maybe it’ll help if we show ya this little excerpt from the Tampa Tribune:
Amendment 1 on the Nov. 4 ballot would repeal a 1926 amendment that allowed the Legislature to ban “aliens ineligible for citizenship” – an old code word for Asian immigrants – from buying and owning real estate. Although the provision was never enforced and was invalidated by subsequent federal court rulings, backers of Amendment 1 believe the words should still be removed from the constitution.
Problem is, most people don’t really know what the hell Amendment 1 is, much less what side of the fence they should land on–and we think ignorant folks might err on the side of “nyet.”
Dude, there is NO FUCKING WAY our peeps can go out like that! Even if the amendment isn’t currently enforceable, it is really fucking fucked up to have to live in a state where the constitution technically says “Hey, you Jappy Chinkos, better get to steppin’ on your lease application. Got a credit report?”
And here’s another problem: the original amendment was really sneakily, craftily worded, using the word “Alien” instead of “Jappy Chinko.” (Here’s something to tell your grandma: “Grandma, we hate anti-Semitic fucks. But we ourselves should be anti…semantical fuck-overing in legislation!“) People hear “alien” and they think, “Shit! Not more Mexicans! This is my damn country!” People hear “alien” and they hear “terror,” or as our beloved Dubya says, “tare,” whatever that means… and when it doubt, it means “9/11 every day of the year.” People hear “alien” and they’re all like, “Whoa, that’s some scary un-American shit. America rules! Keep everrrbody out!”
This just won’t do. We’re Asian, and we’re really smart already, but everybody else we need to EDUCATE.
So here’s our proposal. We’d like to know if you can add this issue to your “Schlep” agenda. We’ve got the brains, you’ve got the schlep, let’s tell all the bubbes…
In return… well, isn’t kicking institutionalized racism in the balls its own return? We sure think so.
Thanks, Sarah! You rule.
Filed under: Aliens, Amendment 1, Florida, Fucked Up Shit, Fucking Backwards American States, Institutionalized Racism, November 4, Sarah Silverman, State Constitution, Terrorism, The Great Schlep, Vote
Okay, so singer M.I.A. is a terrorist?
Last week, Sri Lankan rapper DeLon released a YouTube video of him rhyming over M.I.A.’s “Paper Planes” cut together with violent footage of suicide bombings and devastation wrought by the LTTE, aka the Tamil Tigers, a Sri Lankan secessionist organization recognized as a terrorist group by many countries, including the U.S. M.I.A.’s father, Arular (after whom her first album is named), is a Tamil militant and, apparently, she makes references to the Tamil Tigers’ struggle in some of her songs–a fact I’ve never noticed because I was too busy rockin’ to her beats.
I have to admit that I know virtually nothing about Sri Lankan history, and it seems like M.I.A.’s references–in her lyrics and the imagery she uses on stage–are more hipster pastiche than political. That said, I generally think it’s wack how the images of revolutionaries get co-opted by Western cool kids who fancy themselves “edgy” but could give two shits about what those revolutionaries actually did. And, every time I see a picture of Mao on a throw pillow or a shrunken T-shirt, I do want to beat the person who bought that crap with a stick.
And what should we make of these adorable old people, acting out “Paper Planes” with their grandchillun? Are they supporters of terrorism, too?
“Greenpeace Boat Docks in Japan”
YOKOHAMA, Japan (AP) — Greeted by cheers from a small group of anti-whaling supporters, a Greenpeace boat docked in Japan on Friday, ending a weeklong standoff with Japanese authorities who had effectively barred their entry into port…
Japanese officials have called Greenpeace activists terrorists and threatened legal action against environmental groups that harass whaling boats.