DAY 100: Where next?

September 3rd, 2014 § 0 comments

It’s a complex world, where too many incomprehensible conflicts are going on all around with human rights violations and ethnic cleansing on all sides, to be able to look at the bigger picture and see it all as part of a whole. (I don’t mean that it’s all in the Book of Revelation, or Nostradamus, or something to do with an alien invasionalien_invasion_occupation – I do have my intellectual integrity to think of.) So it’s a relief when someone comes out with a glimpse of such a picture; it comes to us courtesy of the Times of Israel, which isn’t usually given to hysterical exaggeration. As many of us (particularly Shlomo Sand) have been repeating for a long time, the Ashkenazi Jews – who, remember, constituted most of the ‘founding fathers’ of the state of Israel – Herzl, Weizman, Ben Gurion, etc… and are still the hegemonic group in the country – best jobs, most money, and so on – are in fact (this sentence is surely way too long!) descendants of the Khazars, a ‘warlike Turkic people’ who lived in the Ukraine khazaria-smalland converted to Judaism around the 9th century. So a bit like a Jewish-Ukrainian medieval Islamic State, if you follow me.

This ‘Khazar theory’ has been around for ever so long, and has been routinely considered antisemitic, since it suggests that Weizman et al weren’t ‘real’ Jews, but warlike Turkic converts, and so had no right to claim that God had promised them Palestine. (In fact, google Khazar and you’ll find some really scary nutters whose beliefs have more to do with modern conspiracies than 9th century history. Though as we know from Dan Brown, the two are closely related.) However, if you believe the Times, ‘new genetic evidence’ strongly favours the Khazar theory; and when life hands you an etrog, you build a sukkah, as they say.

So what could be more natural than that ‘it is now revealed, Israel will withdraw its settlers from communities beyond the settlement blocs—and relocate them at least temporarily to Ukraine. Ukraine made this arrangement on the basis of historic ties and in exchange for desperately needed military assistance against Russia.’ Boggle is a feeble description of what the mind does, given all this; but it does as I said at the outset, at least link the Middle East and the Ukraine. (We’ll pass over the alleged antisemitic presence in the current Ukrainian government.) Notice that these neo-Khazars who will relocate to Ukraine, adding to the mêlée and providing needed military assistance to the Ukrainian Government are not the comfort-loving citizens of Tel Aviv dizi_frishi_bar_tel_aviv (3)871835000or Netanya, or even the more embattled settlers of Maale Adumim, but some people from ‘beyond the settlement blocs’ – where? If I were the PA, I wouldn’t consider it a major concession. But if I were Prime Minister of Israel – now there’s a thought – and had managed to arrange the location of some troublesome settlers in the Crimea, I’d start looking for some other hotspots where I could make a similar argument. Babylon comes to mind, as a historic home of the Jews in the time of the prophet Daniel; and again a bit of homeland could be exchanged for some military assistance. Eventually all the world’s conflicts will be reduced to one, which will greatly simplify life for those of us whose weeks are spent on marches opposing this and that, and praying for peace here and there.


It seems that the occupation forces have demolished the dairy factory attached to an orphanage in Hebron.Hebron

The remains of the Al-Rayyan yogurt factory after the Israeli army demolished it. (Photo by Youth Against Settlements)

The factory is owned by the Islamic Charitable Society (ICS) of Hebron and is the primary source of income for the organization, which runs two orphanages, nine schools and provides handicapped and impoverished populations with work and stipends. The organization directly aids 4,000 needy people in the Hebron area. Without the factory it will be have great difficulty continuing its charitable activities. For more details see the invaluable 972-mag here.

Philosophy and Media and stuff

I’ve been asked, in a spirit of irony I think, how many Facebook friends Martin Heidegger, the late German philosopher, has. This is hard, because a quick search shows up half a dozen Heidegger facebook groups, all of them closed. Why? don’t Martin’s friends want to meet each other? But I was lucky, finally, to turn up a humdinger, of which the sage of Freiburg would have been proud. It’s called Die Martin-Heidegger-Gesellschaft für Schwerentitätenforschung, and describes itself as ‘das weltweit führende Institut auf dem Gebiet der experimentellen Fundamentalontologie.’ It looks like something which is essential, as so many of us have difficulties about fundamental ontology, and if we could just download an app which would fix them, we could get back to the ready-to-hand. Latest recruit to the group is Sunday Addams (Warum die Ice Bucket Challenge nicht cool ist’)

Screen shot 2014-09-04 at 14.00.47which shows that you don’t have to restrict your attention to ontology.

Quite a while ago, I described Alice and Bob’s problems in communicating – text, email, whatever. I don’t expect you have any idea what happens to your email in the process of sending – apologies to those readers who know their DKIM backwards. But here’s a simple experiment which you can try, as I did: send an innocuous email (‘Hello,world’, or ‘Bugger off’) to a recipient who doesn’t exist, e.g. me@gmail.cos – note the deliberate spelling mistake.

Back comes a cross email from the server saying, predictably, that you’ve been rejected But on top of this, it describes your message in terms something like this:


How do your dozen letters turn into these reams of garbage? How can Bob, on receiving this, make out what Alice is trying to say?

I’ve been puzzling over this for much too long for my own good; and given the amount I’ve already written in this centenary post, I’ll hold over the fiendish explanation.

goyaThe sleep of reason generates monsters

However, as an aid to figuring it out: all those weird characters (upper and lower case letters, digits from 1 to 0, and + or /) belong to a set of 26+26+10+2=64 symbols which some international outfit has settled on as suitable for transmission by their criteria – e.g. ‘readable by humans’. Patronising, eh? More information next time, or not.

I think it’s time for a poem in quechua (or have I posted one before? I need a proper filing system.)

Viene la Noche por la Puna

Kamayoq = author = autor: June Ireland 


Tutayay Jamun Punata, (Quechua version)

Puman hamun tutayaypi punaman,
chakillampas upallallam,
yawarta maskaspa puma hamun.

Killan hamun tutayaypi punaman,
k’anchay ruk’anantin
juntka, ruiro killa hamun.

Llaman hamun tutayaypi punaman,
quyllor hina ñawintin,
llantullamanta paqarin, llaman hamun.

Wairan hamun tutayaypi punaman,
kichasqa simintin,
qaparistin, waqastin
wairan hamun.

Rit’in hamun tutayaypi punaman,
qespi silluntin,
chiripas chiphchistin
rit’in humun.

Puma ye killa, hanaqpacha llaman,
waira ye rit’i, sumay sumaq.
Punaq tutanpi chainan kausakuni.

The Puma comes by night, (English version)

Comes the puma
through the night
across the highlands
on feet of silence
seeking blood
comes the puma.

Comes the moon
through the night
over the highlands
with fingers of light
full and round
comes the moon.

Comes the constellation of the Llama
through the night
over the highlands
with eyes made of stars
born in shadows
comes the Llama.

Comes the wind
through the night
across the highlands
with mouth wide open
shouting, wailing
comes the wind.

Comes the ice
through the night
across the highlands
with crystal fingernails
sparkling with cold
comes the ice.

Puma and moon
constellation of Llama
wind and ice
beautiful enchantment.
Night in the highlands
thus am I fed.

Music: What could do justice to this special edition? Here, whether or not it’s appropriate, is Dionne Warwick in ‘Walk on By‘…

See you in the next century.

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