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October 21, 2014 / 27 Tishri, 5775
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Posts Tagged ‘game’

Ahmadinejad more Popular than Obama? Iranian News Agency Tricked by the Onion

Friday, October 5th, 2012

H/T Arsen Ostrovsky.

On Sept. 24, the satirical site ‘The Onion’ “led” with a story on shocking poll results:

Here’s the text from the story:

CHARLESTON, WV—According to the results of a Gallup poll released Monday, the overwhelming majority of rural white Americans said they would rather vote for Iranian president Mahmoud Ahmadinejad than U.S. president Barack Obama. “I like him better,” said West Virginia resident Dale Swiderski, who, along with 77 percent of rural Caucasian voters, confirmedhe would much rather go to a baseball game or have a beer with Ahmadinejad, a man who has repeatedly denied the Holocaust and has had numerous political prisoners executed, than spend time with Obama. “He takes national defense seriously, and he’d never let some gay protesters tell him how to run his country like Obama does.” According to the same Gallup poll, 60 percent of rural whites said they at least respected that Ahmadinejad doesn’t try to hide the fact that he’s Muslim.

Naturally – at least to any sane reader, or anyone familiar with The Onion (which is truly an equal opportunity mocker) – the piece was satire, based partly on regional popularity disparities for Obama’s and the Democratic Party. The Onion, as they typically do, decided to take this truthful dynamic and take it to the most ludicrous, and obviously unserious, level – which is often the basis of effective satire.

Ludicrous, yes – but, evidently, not entirely implausible for the editors of the English version of the Iranian news agency, known as “FARS”.

The Onion largely refrained from mocking FARS, but did add this addendum to their original “report” on American whites’ endorsement of Ahmadinejad.

A few days later, the “news agency” realized their mistake and apologized – which represents a much faster mea-culpa turn-around time than is typically the case at a supposedly serious newspaper based in London.

Here’s what they wrote:

“Unfortunately an incorrect item was released on our website on Friday which included a fake opinion poll on popularity rate of Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad and US President Barack Obama. The news item was extracted from the Satirical Magazine, The Onion, by mistake and it was taken down from our outlook in less two hours,” Editor-in-chief of FNA’s English Service said.

“We offer our formal apologies for that mistake,” he added.

“FNA makes every effort to ensure the accuracy of its reports, however very occasionally mistakes do happen,” he said.

“Although it does not justify our mistake, we do believe that if a free opinion poll is conducted in the US, a majority of Americans would prefer anyone outside the US political system to President Barack Obama and American statesmen,” he added.

Active and well-known media occasionally make mistakes, and no media is an exception to this rule.

In FARS’s defense, it is true that “active and well-known media occasionally make mistakes.”

In fact, a few months ago the Guardian made the following, umm, “mistake”, informing their readers definitively that Tel Aviv was the Israeli capital.

While FARS news agency can claim that they were duped into publishing a fact-free report by a satirical site they were previously unfamiliar with, I’m still wondering what excuse the Guardian has for their (Style-Guide approved) gross disinformation.

Visit CifWatch.com.

Baltimore Sun Features Sports Fans’ High Holidays Dilemma

Thursday, September 27th, 2012

An article in the Baltimore Sun featured the conflict fans of the Baltimore Orioles have with the yearly Yom Kippur observance, showcasing how lovers of baseball keep their finger on the pulse of sports as the Day of Atonement takes place.

Some observant Jews leave their iPhones on at home during the service, according to the Sun article, with app alerts posting to their screens without causing them to break the Jewish law against operating electronic equipment on holidays.

The Sun sited a frequent problem of postseason or important late-season games falling out on Rosh Hashanah or Yom Kippur, and sites the head Rabbi of the Beth Am Synagogue of Baltimore, who recommends congregants record games they want to follow, so they can enjoy them after important Jewish holidays.

The article also included an anecdote about a Conservative rabbi who would update congregants on the scores during the service, so they would be attentive and their curiosity alleviated, and discussed which games the rabbi would announce during services, and which he would not.

One man, an avid sports fanatic, said he would not be checking on the game at all, because of his concern for maintaining the sanctity of the day.

All’s Well That Ends Well

Tuesday, September 25th, 2012

On August 29, 2011, I took my three kids to a New York Mets baseball game and was sitting in the front row. During the last inning, my 12-year-old son Eliezer was hit in the face by a line drive (the clip is on YouTube, “Baseball hits boy, Mets-Marlins”). He was rushed to the hospital and received eight stitches; he was discharged the next day.

A few days later he started throwing up blood and was rushed by Hatzolah to Long Island Jewish Hospital. They told me he had a fracture in his skull and would need a craniotomy that would be scheduled for Tuesday, because of the Labor Day weekend. My father-in-law called all the yeshivot and shuls and, thanks to their tefillot, we were told on Monday morning that the doctor reviewed the CT-scan and was going to hold off on performing surgery.

They discharged Eliezer again and, to our horror, Hatzolah took him back to the hospital that same night. Due to his internal bleeding, he lost half his blood and needed two blood transfusions.

He had surgery on his nose, which stopped the bleeding. He is, Baruch Hashem, back to good health now. I wish to thank Chai Lifeline for their amazing support and help – and all of you for your prayers.

Israel Beats Spain, One Win Away from Qualifying for World Baseball Classic

Saturday, September 22nd, 2012

First baseman Nate Freiman hit two home runs as Israel beat Spain 4-2 in the qualifying round of World Baseball Classic, putting the Israeli team one win away from a guaranteed spot in the tournament in March.

Nate Freiman, a standout first baseman for the San Diego Padres’ Class AA San Antonio Missions, matched his home run output from Thursday’s 7-3 victory over South Africa, accounting for Israel’s 4 RBIs on Friday afternoon.

In the modified double-elimination format, Spain will play the winner of Friday night’s matchup between France and South Africa on Saturday. Israel will face off against the winner of that game in Sunday’s championship game.

Countdowns in Tehran and Jerusalem

Thursday, August 23rd, 2012

http://sultanknish.blogspot.co.il/2012/08/countdowns-in-tehran-and-jerusalem.html

If Israel jets show up in Iranian airspace, it will most likely happen while Obama is too busy  accusing Mitt Romney of secretly storing all his money in a giant cave in the Rocky Mountains to do more than dispatch a flunky to chew out Netanyahu over the phone. The election is the perfect window for a strike on Iran’s nuclear program, because Team Obama will be too tied down on the Romney Front to do much damage to Israel.

Despite the signs being brandished at your local Anarchists for Peace rally, accusing the United States of being a puppet of the Zionist regime, the United States and Israel have different interests. Israel is interested in not getting bombed and the United States is interested in regional stability. And regional stability means keeping the Sunni Arab oil countries happy.

The United States is interested in somehow making Iran’s nuclear capabilities go away in the interests of regional stability. Particularly the regional stability of Saudi Arabia, Kuwait, Bahrain and Qatar. But the last thing that this form of regional stability needs is Israeli planes flying over Saudi Arabia to take out that nuclear capability.

Just like during the Gulf War, regional stability demands that the United States protect Saudi Arabia and the Gulfies, while keeping Israel out of it. Since Iran’s Revolutionary Guard isn’t camped out in Kuwait City, protecting them is a matter of posture. That posture is there as a deterrent, a warning that Iran had better not interfere with our oil suppliers or there will be hellfire missiles to pay.

The posturing is hollow because everyone knows that Obama is not about to bomb Iran on behalf of Saudi Arabia and its colony in Bahrain. He is as likely to do it for Israel as he is to move to South Carolina and join the NRA. But he isn’t alone in that regard. Despite the fevered fantasies of everyone from Noam Chomsky to Ron Paul, no American president would ever bomb Iran for Israel. If a third Gulf War is fought, it will be fought for Saudi Arabia and Kuwait, one more time.

The last time the United States fought Iran, in 1988, it was to protect Kuwaiti oil tankers. If Iran interferes with oil tankers from our friendly Gulfie terrorist states, then a future administration is likely to bomb Iran. If oil prices go high enough to potentially cost Obama the election, then he might pry away his foreign policy people from drawing up maps of Syrian targets and actually hit some Iranian naval installations.

None of this has anything to do with Iran’s nuclear program… and that’s the point. George W. Bush did appear to think that Iranian nuclear weapons might be bad news for the United States, not just for the balance of power in the region. He was nearly unique in that regard. The diplomatic and military establishment is full of experts who view Iranian nuclear weapons purely as factors in the balance of power and utterly refuse to look at them from any other angle. To them, Israel isn’t really concerned about a nuclear attack, it’s only playing a regional power game along with everyone else.

For Israel, violence is not a posture or a theory. It has few trading connections and no alliances in the region. Its foreign policy has always been about dissipating physical threats to its people, whether through diplomatic or military means. It does not follow this line because it is a saintly state, but because it is a state always on the edge. It has too little territory and too many enemies around it to follow any other path.

Surrounded by countries for whom destroying it is a matter of national pride and religious fervor, its only real deterrent is military. Winning several wars won it enough breathing room to try diplomatic solutions. And now the first and last of those diplomatic solutions has failed. It can still count on the military as a deterrent, but there is no deterrent against a nuclear attack carried out by terrorists under plausible deniability. The only remaining deterrent after a nuclear attack is killing as many of those responsible as possible before succumbing to radiation poisoning.

In The Matter Of Paul Ryan

Wednesday, August 15th, 2012

Time will tell whether Mitt Romney’s choice of Congressman Paul Ryan as his running mate is a game changer with respect to the outcome of November’s presidential election. But it already is clear that the Ryan selection has served to sharpen the policy differences between President Obama and Governor Romney.

Within hours of Mr. Romney’s announcement, President Obama said in a campaign speech in Chicago:

Too many folks still don’t have a sense that tomorrow will be better than today. And so the question in this election is, which way do we go? Do we go forward toward a new vision of an America in which prosperity is shared? Or do we go backward to the same policies that got us in the mess in the first place?

In sharp contrast, Congressman Ryan, doubtless reflecting the Romney view, said,

We Americans look at one another’s successes with pride, not resentment, because we know, as more Americans work hard, take risks, and succeed, more people will prosper, our communities will benefit, and individual lives will be improved and uplifted…. America is more than just a place, it’s an idea. It’s the only country founded on an idea. Our rights come from nature and God, not government. We promise equal opportunity, not equal outcomes.

Mr. Ryan is known for his oratorical skills and is expected to be Mr. Romney’s point man on economic issues.

On another front, President Obama has taken to lavishing much praise on Israel and to increasing military and intelligence cooperation between Washington and Jerusalem. He has also stood up for Israel at the United Nations. Yet the first two years of his presidency were characterized by sharp disagreements between the two countries and open hostility on the part of Mr. Obama toward Prime Minister Netanyahu.

This uneven record makes us wonder what the president may have in mind for Israel in a second term.

On the other hand, Mr. Ryan has been considered a strong friend of Israel. Indeed, his website states:

America has no better friend in the Middle East than the nation of Israel. Not only is Israel the region’s only fully functioning democracy, with a government based on popular consent and the rule of law, but it is also a valuable ally against Islamic extremism and terrorism.

In this Mr. Ryan seems to echo the Romney view of the Middle East, and his choice as Mr. Romney’s running mate would seem to underscore what a Romney presidency might mean for Israel.

Combat IDF Sergeant’s Team Finishes Second at World Bridge Championship

Sunday, August 12th, 2012

A combat soldier in the Kfir Infantry Brigade, Sgt. Lee Rosenthal, is also one of the best bridge players worldwide. Just last week the Israeli bridge team placed second in the world bridge championship for competitors under the age 21 held in Taicang, China a week ago. The skillful players overcame teams from China, Italy and dozens of other countries, defeated only by the Dutch team by a single point. Among the team members are two IDF soldiers, completing their full service.

“We were extremely proud of our achievement,” said Sgt. Rosenthal to the IDF Website after winning in the world championship of one of the most popular card games. “This was my first world championship, and I hope to participate again in the next competition that will be held in two years.”

Upon enlisting in the IDF, Sgt. Rosenthal was offered a special course in the army especially designed for outstanding athletes. The course combines the fulfilling military service without sacrificing the athlete’s skills and potential, ensuring they will be able to continue training. In spite of the tempting offer, Sgt. Rosenthal chose to serve in an infantry unit. “The moment I put on the uniform I knew I wanted to be a combat soldier,” he said. “I couldn’t imagine being the kind of person who forgoes an opportunity to gives his maximum. I enlisted to the Kfirm Infantry Brigade even though I knew it might affect my game.”

About a year ago, Sgt. Rosenthal understood that he cannot give up the game and decided to recruit a fellow bridge enthusiast and IDF soldiers who serves in the C4I or Teleprocessing Corps. “I called him up, he thought I was crazy. He said that we are both serving in serious, demanding positions that make training at a national level virtually impossible,” he explained. Though the two did not give up, “Instead of going to sleep we would train individually and would volunteer to stay on base on weekends so that we would be allowed to leave for competitions. I would sleep less than four hours a night and continue training,” added Sgt. Rosenthal.

The effort was definitely worth it, as both dedicated soldiers made it to the national Israeli bridge team. Many of their fellow combat soldiers were surprised to hear of their success, “Most people think bridge is a game only elderly women play, though this isn’t true at all. This sport is extremely popular among Israeli youth,” he said. Sgt. Rosenthal’s commanders and fellow soldiers are proud of the gifted card player.

Sgt. Rosenthal leads a double life, completing a meaningful military service as a combat soldier as well as playing a competitive sport at an international level. “I believe that if you want something and are willing to put in the effort, you can succeed. You must know that you will have to sacrifice things,” he stressed, “but it is definitely possible and worth it. To me this brings both personal and national pride.”

Printed from: http://www.jewishpress.com/news/breaking-news/combat-idf-sergeants-team-finishes-second-at-world-bridge-championship/2012/08/12/

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