Friday, February 22, 2008

News Flash!

International Sports Desk: London (high atop a secret tower--next to the foriegn affairs bunker)

'Come here little kiddies, on my lap
Guess who's back with a brand new rap'

The news wire's on fire, along with an Embassy or two.

In response to my earlier posting about Western Diplomats' response to the Embassy attacks (see below)--former diplomat Richard Holbrooke says, 'the Russians are behind this because they have encouraged the worst and most extremist elements in Serbia for the last year.' Thank fuck. Now we can get back to blaming the Russians. Al Quaida, though a brilliant marketing ploy, was too faceless as a symbol for terrorism. In theory, Bin Ladin, or former top level Taliban officials could have been Al Quaida, but who knows (and God knows we tried to find them...)? Al Qaida essentially became the brand that jihadist extremists applied to their action, once the 'original' terror organization was 'broken' (if it ever existed). Since then, it became, or already was,a splintered, fractional, idealogically organized collective of cells, who each operated individually as 'Al Quaida' without any material ties to a central structure.

But now, we have Ivan and Boris a tagteam duo also known as The Red Menace. I for one am pleased. Something never sat right with the new world order of post-imperialism that manifested into 'extremism' and quasi-organized 'terrorist cells.' However, the Russians present a throwback challenge and the good old days of the cold war. And, for those who think that these attitudes are perpetrated only by the Kremlin and its reassemblage of ex-KGB officers, I can gurantee that there is some one one, or many someone's in the CIA who are wetting themselves at the prospect of going at it again with Russian security services. The press is rife with reports of injured soldiers from hot war zones returing and suffering from PTS, but as far as I can tell, no one has considered what happened to the Cold Warriors on both sides who bent their minds to their own version of freedom. Surely, after a career of fighting the Russians (Commies) or Americans (Capitalist Dogs) only to have the whole thing end rather unspectacularly in a student-led coupe d'etate has to be the ultimate bum-trip and leave some healthy unrequited scars--for both sides. They talk about healing in all of the places where the Cold War bubbled into outright conflict--making amends for death squads and Operation Condor, but there was never healing in the homeland where the crimes were ultimately planned.

Now brewing in the East, is our former partner in world chess--scars have opened! Shame about Castro--almost made 10 US presidents. Let the games begin!

'The Promotion of Olympism'

The International Sports Desk: London

The New York Times reports that the US Olympic Team will bring its own meat to the Beijing Games citing concerns over contamination--from both a food safety and drugs testing perspective. The recent Westland/Hallmark recall of 15.9 Million Kilograms as the benchmark of US meat safety not withstanding, the Olympic meat campaign brings to mind at least three points. The first is what are the logistics of hauling 25,000 pounds of meat across the ocean? Beyond just the meat, presumably different varieties of high quality organic, free range, grass fed, beer massaged, cruelty free flesh, there has to be vast air-born refrigerators, service staff, buyers, and quality standards administrators that have to ensure, amongst other things, that the meat did not originate in China. Which leads to point number 2: who's to say that US meat is any safer, especially after it is hauled across the Pacific? The Westland/Hallmark case provides some point. Within this massive beef recall, made up of primarily processed products sold to schools and prisons, is an order to recall the meat retroactively, meaning, according to a USDA guy that a vast majority of this meat has already been, so wouldn't the effects already be manifest and therefore the company should just take responsibility, or merely apologize for breaking a series of federal laws? Finally, my third point is that actually, I support the US Olympic team. Really, I do, and for a variety of reasons beyond blind patriotism. Now there can be no excuses for failed dope tests like, 'the Chinese put HGH, EPO and steroids in the hot dog I fed to the evil-twin who still lives inside...' (yes, I still think Tyler Hamilton is a wanker and for that matter his new boss, Michael Ball of Rock and Republic Jeans and Rock Racing, is a complete douche who I would like to invite over to my house for dinner just so I can have the distinct pleasure of kicking in his teeth). Another major reason that I see for the US not wanting to eat Chinese meat, besides the obvious stereotypes of 'what kind of meat is this anyway,' and/or threat of mercury, lead, etc, poisoning, is can you imagine the horror of a bunch of straight laced athletes when they bit into a skinless, boneless 'chicken breast' only to find out it turned into MDMA on the BBQ?

In other sporting news, major western countries are condemning the fire-bombing of embassies in Belgrade. A coalition, comprised of the US, UK and various others are 'officially' protesting that the US, UK and various other embassies had been attacked by protesters angered at Kosovo's succession from Serbia. More as the story unfolds