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America’s Dumbest Intellectual

Posted by Zamir Ben Etzioni on December 2, 2017

Walk onto the popular-music floor of Virgin Records in midtown Manhattan, and you encounter, as you’d expect, kids with shoulder tattoos and pierced body parts, wandering through rows of the latest hip-hop, altrock, and heavy-metal CDs as heavily amplified beats thunder. At the checkout counter, though, is a surprise. A single book is on display: perennial radical Noam Chomsky’s latest anti-American screed, 9/11—an impulse item for the in-your-face slackers of the Third Millennium. Strictly speaking, 9/11 is a non-book, a hastily assembled collection of fawning interviews with Chomsky conducted after the terrorist attack on New York City and the country, in which the author pins the blame for the atrocities on—you guessed it—the U.S. But you’d be wrong to dismiss 9/11as an inconsequential paperback quickie. More than 115,000 copies of the book are now in print. It has shown up on the Boston Globe and the Washington Postbest-seller lists, and in Canada, it has rocketed to seventh on the best-seller list. And as its prominent display at Virgin Records attests, 9/11 is particularly popular with younger readers; the book is a hot item at campus bookstores nationwide. The striking success of 9/11 makes Chomsky’s America-bashing notable, or at least notably deplorable—especially here in New York, which lost so many of its bravest on that horrible day.
Chomsky’s title for his new book may have a little to do with its best-seller status: some people may have picked it up assuming it to be a newsworthy account of September 11. But undoubtedly, the main reason 9/11 is selling so briskly is because of its author’s fame. According to the Chicago Tribune, Noam Chomsky is cited more than any other living author—and he shows up eighth on the all-time most-cited list, the paper says, right after Sigmund Freud. Do a search for “Noam Chomsky” on Amazon.com and up pops an astonishing 224 books. The New York Times calls him “arguably the most important intellectual alive.” He’s even been the subject of an adoring 1993 movie-length documentary film. Chomsky has achieved rock-star status among the young and hip. Rock groups like Bad Religion and Pearl Jam proudly quote his writings in interviews and in their music. To the self-styled bohemian coffee-house crowd, observes Wired magazine, “Chomsky is somewhere between Kerouac and Nietzsche—carrying around one of his books is automatic countercultural cachet.”
Chomsky, now a 73-year-old grandfather living in suburban Massachusetts, has worked for decades to win that cachet. Avram Noam was born in Philadelphia in 1928. His parents, William and Elsie Chomsky, had fled from czarist oppression in Russia to the City of Brotherly Love, where William established himself as a Hebrew scholar and grammarian. Radical politics aroused the young Noam—at ten, he wrote a school newspaper editorial on the Spanish Civil War, lamenting the rise of fascism, and two years later he embraced the anarchism that he still adheres to today. By the age of 16, the bright, ambitious youth had enrolled at the University of Pennsylvania, where he eventually earned a Ph.D. in linguistics. Passed over for a teaching position at Harvard, he landed in 1955 at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, where he has remained ever since.
Most linguistics professors would have toiled in obscurity in a science-and-industry school like MIT. Not Chomsky. In the 1950s, he brashly challenged psychologist B. F. Skinner’s theory of language as a learned skill, acquired by children in a process of reward and punishment. Chomsky claimed instead that when we learn a language as children, we can articulate and understand all sorts of sentences that we’ve never actually come across before. “What we ‘know,’ therefore,” Chomsky held, “must be something deeper—a grammar—that makes an infinite variety of sentences possible.” In Chomsky’s view, the capacity to master the structures of grammar is genetically determined, a product of our evolutionary development. This idea—that grammar is hardwired in the labyrinth of DNA—shook the walls of linguistics departments across the globe. Chomsky promoted his theory tirelessly, defending it in countless symposia and scholarly reviews. By the mid-sixties, he was an academic superstar; in the seventies, researchers at Columbia University even named a chimpanzee trained to learn 125 words “Nim Chimpsky” in his honor.
With this fame as a base, the professor proceeded to wander far from his area of expertise. Such uses of fame, ironically, are common in the country Chomsky attacks so relentlessly. In America, you come across two kinds of fame: vertical and horizontal. The vertical celebrity owes his renown to one thing—Luciano Pavarotti, for example, is famous for his singing, period. The horizontal celebrity, conversely, merchandises his fame by convincing the public that his mastery of one field is transferable to another. Thus singers Barbra Streisand and Bono give speeches on public policy; thus linguistics professor Chomsky poses as an expert on geopolitics.
Chomsky first employed his horizontal celebrity during the 1960s, when he spoke out forcefully against the Vietnam War. His 1969 collection of agitated writings, American Power and the New Mandarins, indicted the nation’s brainwashed “elites”—read: government bureaucrats and intellectuals who disagreed with him on the morality of the war. But Vietnam was only the beginning: over the next three decades, Chomsky published a steady stream of political books and pamphlets boasting titles like What Uncle Sam Really Wants and Necessary Illusions: Thought Control in Democratic Societies—all of them filled with heated attacks on American policies, domestic and foreign.
Those attacks would be laughable if some people didn’t take them seriously. Here’s a small but representative sample. The goal of America, Chomsky charges, “is a society in which the basic unit is you and your television set. If the kid next door is hungry, it’s not your problem. If the retired couple next door invested their assets badly and are now starving, that’s not your problem either.” Prisons and inner-city schools, Chomsky maintains, “target a kind of superfluous population that there’s no point in educating because there’s nothing for them to do. Because we’re a civilized people, we put them in prison, rather than sending death squads out to murder them.” Another example: “When you come back from the Third World to the West—the U.S. in particular—you are struck by the narrowing of thought and understanding, the limited nature of legitimate discussion, the separation of people from each other.”
Goodness. But if America is all about ignoring hungry children, why does the country spend billions in public and private funds every year on the poor? Does America deliberately seek to mis-educate and send to prison a “superfluous” population? Wouldn’t today’s knowledge-based economy benefit from as many decently educated people as it could find? What Third World countries does Chomsky have in mind where the discussion is more freewheeling and open than in the U.S.? Algeria? Cuba? Such puerile leftism is scarcely worthy of a college sophomore.
If possible, however, Chomsky’s assessment of U.S. foreign policy is even more absurd. The nightmare of American evil began in 1812, he thinks, when the U.S. instigated a process that “annihilated the indigenous [American] population (millions of people), conquered half of Mexico, intervened violently in the surrounding region, conquered Hawaii and the Philippines (killing hundreds of thousands of Filipinos), and in the past half century particularly, extended its resort to force throughout much of the world.” That the U.S. saved the Philippines during World War II, that Hawaiians voted to become the fiftieth state, that every day Mexicans pour across the border to take part in the economy of the hated United States—all of that is irrelevant to Chomsky. He believes in the Beaumarchais mode of political debate: “Vilify, vilify, some of it will always stick.”
For Chomsky, turn over any monster anywhere and look at the underside. Each is clearly marked: MADE IN AMERICA. The cold war? All America’s fault: “The United States was picking up where the Nazis had left off.” Castro’s executions and prisons filled with dissenters? Irrelevant, for “Cuba has probably been the target of more international terrorism [from the U.S., of course] than any other country.” The Khmer Rouge? Back in 1977, Chomsky dismissed accounts of the Cambodian genocide as “tales of Communist atrocities” based on “unreliable” accounts. At most, the executions “numbered in the thousands” and were “aggravated by the threat of starvation resulting from American distraction and killing.” In fact, some 2 million perished on the killing fields of Cambodia because of genocidal war against the urban bourgeoisie and the educated, in which wearing a pair of glasses could mean a death sentence.
The Chomskian rage hasn’t confined itself to his native land. He has long nourished a special contempt for Israel, lone outpost of Western ideals in the Middle East. The hatred has been so intense that Zionists have called him a self-hating Jew. This is an unfair label. Clearly, Chomsky has no deficit in the self-love department, and his ability to stir up antagonism makes him even more pleased with himself. No doubt that was why he wrote the introduction to a book by French Holocaust-denier Robert Faurisson. Memoire en Defensemaintains that Hitler’s death camps and gas chambers, even Anne Frank’s diary, are fictions, created to serve the cause of American Zionists. That was too much for Harvard law professor Alan Dershowitz, who challenged fellow leftist Chomsky to a debate. In the debate, Dershowitz keyed in on the fact that Chomsky had described Faurisson’s conclusions as “findings,” and claimed that they grew out of “extensive historical research.” But as numerous scholars had shown, Faurisson was not a serious scholar at all, but rather a sophist who simply ignored the mountain of documents, speeches, testimony, and other historical evidence that conflicted with his “argument.” Dershowitz noted that Chomsky also wrote the following: “I see no anti-Semitic implication in the denial of the existence of gas chambers or even in the denial of the Holocaust.”
Just recently, Chomsky spearheaded a group pressuring universities to divest themselves of any stock connected with the Jewish state: Israel equals South Africa in the Chomskian universe of moral equivalence. Here, happily, Chomsky got nowhere. He obtained 400 signatures for his movement; opposing him, Lawrence Summers, president of Harvard, gathered 4,000 signatures in support of Israel. The controversy set Dershowitz off again. This time, he said, he wanted the MIT prof to debate him “on the morality of this selective attack against an American ally that is defending itself—and the world—against terrorism that targets civilians.” He pointed out that universities have always invested in companies head-quartered in foreign nations with unsavory reputations—countries whose citizens don’t have the freedom the Israelis enjoy or suffer the terror they endure. “Yet this petition focused only on the Jewish State, to the exclusion of all others, including those which, by any reasonable standard, are among the worst violators of human rights. This is bigotry pure and simple.” Chomsky declined the challenge.
That brings us to 9/11, an egregious insult to decency in general and to the citizens of New York in particular. True to form, in one of the interviews, Chomsky calls the United States “a leading terrorist state” and equates President Clinton’s 1998 bombing of the Al-Shifa plant in Sudan with the horrors of September 11. In every way, Chomsky’s comparison is obscene. The bombing was in response to attacks on two U.S. embassies that had resulted in the deaths and injuries of thousands. The U.S. made sure it took place at night, when the target was empty of civilians. U.S. intelligence, mistaken though it may have been, indicated that the pharmaceutical factory was producing weapons of mass destruction. The unprovoked attack on the World Trade Center, needless to say to anyone except Chomsky and his disciples, occurred in broad daylight, with the intention of inflicting maximum damage and death on innocents.
Chomsky concedes that the WTC attack was unfortunate—not so much because of the deaths of Americans, but because “the atrocities of September 11 were a devastating blow to the Palestinians, as they instantly recognized.” (Some other group, disguised as Palestinians, must have been dancing in the streets that day.) Israel, he adds, “is openly exulting in the ‘window of opportunity’ it now has to crush Palestinians with impunity.”
On the rare occasions in 9/11 when Chomsky expresses condolences for the victims of the terrorist attack, he immediately goes on to excoriate the U.S. “The atrocities were passionately deplored, even in places where people have been ground underfoot by Washington’s boots for a long, long time,” he typically says. Chomsky rolls on in this manner. The West is the Great Satan, the Third World its eternal victim. The World Trade Towers were a symbol of America’s gluttony and power. In effect, we were asking for it and are now unjustly using it as a casus belli. More U.S. oppression is about to take place all over the globe. If you didn’t know better, you could be reading one of bin Ladin’s diatribes. Chomsky’s response to September 11 outraged even leftist Christopher Hitchens, a former admirer of the MIT professor who now attacked him for abandoning “every standard that makes moral and intellectual discrimination possible.”
Does anyone believe these inanities? It would be tempting to say that the author only preaches to the choir. But there’s more to Chomsky’s success than that. True, Chomsky is like the Bog Man of Grauballe, Denmark, preserved unchanged for centuries. Since the early 1960s, no new ideas have made it into his oeuvre. He is as he was, and his rage against democracy as practiced in the U.S. is of a piece with the raised fists of the Chicago Seven and the ancient bumper stickers condemning “Amerika.” But his message still seems to resonate with a sizable faction of the Boomers, trained to respond to emotion rather than reason. These are the people who sympathized with Susan Sontag’s notorious post–September 11 observation: “Where is the acknowledgment that this was not a ‘cowardly’ attack on ‘civilization’ or ‘liberty’ or ‘humanity’ or ‘the free world’ but an attack on the world’s self-proclaimed superpower, undertaken as a consequence of specific American alliances and actions?” These are the folks who applauded Bill Clinton’s fatuous mea culpa appraisal of the WTC attack: “This country once looked the other way when a significant number of native Americans were dispossessed and killed to get their land or their mineral rights or because they were thought of as less than fully human. . . . [W]e are still paying a price today.”
And now a younger crowd is following the Pied Piper of anti-Americanism. 9/11makes it easy for them. They needn’t read it; they just have to make sure the thing is sticking out of their backpacks or sitting on their milk-crate coffee tables, a symbol of mass-market rebellion pushed at the record stores for $10.95—less than the new Eminem CD! Call it Anti-Americanism for Dummies. It would be more than a pity if the lies of 9/11 seduced more innocents; it would be a clear and present danger. We are at war now, and two generations of Chimpskies are enough.

stephan kanfer

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Report: Saudi Crown Prince will ‘crush’ Hezbollah with Israel

Posted by Zamir Ben Etzioni on November 17, 2017

img800775British newspaper reports Saudi King Salman will step down next week and announce his son as his successor.
Elad Benari, 17/11/17 00:05

The King of Saudi Arabia plans to step down and announce his son as his successor next week, the British newspaper Daily Mail reported on Thursday, citing a source close to the country’s royal family.

The move is seen as the final step in 32-year-old Prince Mohammed Bin Salman’s power grab, which began earlier this month with the arrests of more than 40 princes and government ministers in a corruption probe.

The unnamed source told the Daily Mail that King Salman will continue only as a ceremonial figurehead, handing over official leadership of the country to his son, often referred to as MBS.

“Unless something dramatic happens, King Salman will announce the appointment of MBS as King of Saudi Arabia next week. King Salman will play the role of the queen of England. He will only keep the title ‘Custodian of the Holy Shrines,’” said the source.

The high level source further said that once crowned king, the prince will shift his focus to Iran, Saudi Arabia’s longtime regional rival.

He will also enlist the help of the Israeli military to crush Hezbollah, Iran’s proxy in Lebanon, according to the source.

“MBS is convinced that he has to hit Iran and Hezbollah…MBS’s plan is to start the fire in Lebanon, but he’s hoping to count on Israeli military backing. He has already promised Israel billions of dollars in direct financial aid if they agree,” claimed the source.

“MBS can not confront Hezbollah in Lebanon without Israel. Plan B is to fight Hezbollah in Syria,’ added the source.

The Daily Mail report has not been confirmed by another source.

The 32-year-old crown prince portrays himself as a liberal reformer. He recently announced that the ultra-conservative kingdom would adopt a moderate and open Islam. Previously, the kingdom announced it would cancel its longstanding ban on women driving. It is believed the crown prince was behind this move as well.

As for Israel, there have been several recent reports that Saudi Arabia and Israel are getting closer.

Earlier this week, the Lebanese newspaper Al-Akhbar reported that the Saudi government is weighing the possible normalization of relations with Israel ahead of a planned Middle East peace program by the Trump administration which aims to not only secure a final status agreement between Israel and the PA, but lead to recognition of the Jewish state by the larger Arab world.

The newspaper’s report was based on a letter it alleged was sent from Saudi Foreign Minister Adel al-Jubeir to the crown prince.

Recent reports indicated that a senior member of the Saudi royal family, perhaps even the crown prince himself, held high-level talks with Israeli officials during a clandestine trip to the Jewish state.

Saudi Arabia vehemently denied the reports, saying they were unfounded.

Earlier on Thursday, IDF Chief of Staff Gadi Eizenkot gave a rare interview to Elaph, a Saudi newspaper based in London, in which he called for a new regional coalition to counter Iran’s growing influence and threats in the Middle East.

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Trumpism Rejected In New Jersey and Virginia

Posted by Zamir Ben Etzioni on November 7, 2017


trump supported candidates in New Jersey and Virginia were soundly trounced by the Democrats in the Governor and Lt. Governor races.

In what is seen as a repudiation of trump, overwhelming numbers of Americans turned out to the polls and gave a loud “No” to the divisive and strange policies of trump.

From AP:

RICHMOND, Va. (AP) — Voters in Virginia and New Jersey gave Democratic gubernatorial candidates large victories Tuesday and sent a clear message of rebuke to Republican President Donald Trump.

In Virginia’s hard-fought contest, Democratic Lt. Gov. Ralph Northam defeated Republican Ed Gillespie. In New Jersey, front-running Democrat Phil Murphy overcame Republican Lt. Gov. Kim Guadagno to succeed unpopular GOP Gov. Chris Christie.

Democrats swept all three of Virginia’s statewide races, including contests for attorney general and lieutenant governor. Several incumbent state House Republicans also lost their seats.

The wins in Virginia and New Jersey are a morale boost to Democrats who had so far been unable to channel anti-Trump energy into success at the ballot box in a major election this year.

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Page Exposes Trump Conspiracy

Posted by Zamir Ben Etzioni on November 7, 2017

Another adviser, George Papadopoulos, pleaded guilty in October to lying to federal agents about Russian contacts during the campaign.

The transcript shows Page, a Navy veteran who worked for a time in Moscow as an energy consultant, was at times combative and evasive in response to committee questions.

Asked about his email indicating he had discussed Trump’s campaign in a private conversation with a Russian official, Page responded to The Washington Post via text message: “That is complete misinformation and/or misinterpretation.”

“I’m working on my lawsuit tonight that will get to the bottom of the real interference in the 2016 election, by the [United States government]. I’ve played this nonsensical game long enough and am not interested in this latest round tonight,” he said.

Page requested that the committee make the transcript of his remarks public.

Page’s testimony shows that a number of Trump campaign officials were aware of his plans to travel to Moscow before he left — and that he updated others on his return.

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Trump Embraces Nazis and White Supremacists

Posted by Zamir Ben Etzioni on August 15, 2017

Read the rest of this entry »

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Simone Simmons and Princess Diana

Posted by Zamir Ben Etzioni on July 31, 2017

I’ve considered Simone Simmons to be a very special friend for close to twenty years.
More importantly, of course, is her friendship with Princess Di. Paul Burell, the man who Princess Diana called called ‘my rock’ and ‘the only man I can trust’ said that not only was Simone Simmons Di’s spiritual advisor, “she was her closest friend in the world.”
She has appeared on all of the cable talk shows, and on a recent trip to America, (she resides in London) she graciously answered questions informing the media’s still deep interest in the Late Princess.
Simone is also an indefatigable defender of the Middle Easts only Democracy, Israel.
She has been a hero of mine for a long time.
I said to her once, “Simone, it is such an honor to know you.”
She replied, “Michael, it’s an honor to know YOU.”
And I believed that she meant it.
That’s the kind of person she is, she treated me, a humble man, the same way she treated Sir Lawrence Olivier, the same way she treated Diana.
The book is fascinating, you feel like you know the “People’s Princess” after reading Simone’s intimate biography.
Frankly, I wasn’t a Di “fan”. I was a Simone Simmons fan, so I read her book and BECAME a fan of the incredible human being that was Princess Diana.
<i>Michael F. Blackburn, Sr.</i>
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I’ve considered Simone Simmons to be a very special friend for close to twenty years.
More importantly, of course, is her friendship with Princess Di. Paul Burell, the man who Princess Diana called called ‘my rock’ and ‘the only man I can trust’ said that not only was Simone Simmons Di’s spiritual advisor, “she was her closest friend in the world.”
She has appeared on all of the cable talk shows, and on a recent trip to America, (she resides in London) she graciously answered questions informing the media’s still deep interest in the Late Princess.
Simone is also an indefatigable defender of the Middle Easts only Democracy, Israel.
She has been a hero of mine for a long time.
I said to her once, “Simone, it is such an honor to know you.”
She replied, “Michael, it’s an honor to know YOU.”
And I believed that she meant it.
That’s the kind of person she is, she treated me, a humble man, the same way she treated Sir Lawrence Olivier, the same way she treated Diana.
The book is fascinating, you feel like you know the “People’s Princess” after reading Simone’s intimate biography.
Frankly, I wasn’t a Di “fan”. I was a Simone Simmons fan, so I read her book and BECAME a fan of the incredible human being that was Princess Diana.
<i>Michael F. Blackburn, Sr.</i>
https://read.amazon.com/kp/card?asin=B00699P5NI&preview=inline&linkCode=kpe&ref_=cm_sw_r_kb_dp_cP-jybS62HBCK
During the last five years of her life, Princess Diana had one friend and confidante who was special to her. She was not part of Diana’s social circle; she was not a family friend. That woman was Simone Simmons, a healer, who devoted herself to the troubled Princess.

Simone formed a unique bond with Diana. They met almost everyday and spent hours on the telephone. Diana opened her heart and mind to Simone, who always told the Princess the unvarnished truth. No subject was taboo, and the two women discussed everything and anything, sharing laughter and tears over cups of chamomile tea. Since Diana appreciated and trusted her friend’s candor, Simone got to know the Princess in a way no one else has ever done. With Simone, Diana felt confident enough to express her true self.

In 1997, Diana told her friend she wanted her to write a book which revealed the truth about her, to “tell it like it is.” This is that book. It is truly the last word.

With her extraordinary insight into Diana’s life, Simone captures the soul of the Princess and creates an intimate and rich portrait of one of the great icons of the 20th Century. In these pages, Simone describes how it really was: who among the royals was good to Diana and who was hateful; her need to be in love and to have an affair; her only fling–with John F. Kennedy, Jr.–at the Carlisle hotel; her real relationship with Paul Burrell; why she inflicted self-harm; how she wanted to move to New York or Los Angeles; how Mother Teresa hurt her; why her relationship with Dodi never would have ended in marriage; and her enduring love for Prince Charles.

Though Diana was extremely insecure, with Simone’s help and work she became strong and learned that she could heal others around her. DIANA–THE LAST WORD is the fascinating story of how she reached that point. It finally settles the unanswered questions of Diana’s life and addresses the many revelations that have materialized since her death.

During the last five years of her life, Princess Diana had one friend and confidante who was special to her. She was not part of Diana’s social circle; she was not a family friend. That woman was Simone Simmons, a healer, who devoted herself to the troubled Princess.

Simone formed a unique bond with Diana. They met almost everyday and spent hours on the telephone. Diana opened her heart and mind to Simone, who always told the Princess the unvarnished truth. No subject was taboo, and the two women discussed everything and anything, sharing laughter and tears over cups of chamomile tea. Since Diana appreciated and trusted her friend’s candor, Simone got to know the Princess in a way no one else has ever done. With Simone, Diana felt confident enough to express her true self.

In 1997, Diana told her friend she wanted her to write a book which revealed the truth about her, to “tell it like it is.” This is that book. It is truly the last word.

With her extraordinary insight into Diana’s life, Simone captures the soul of the Princess and creates an intimate and rich portrait of one of the great icons of the 20th Century. In these pages, Simone describes how it really was: who among the royals was good to Diana and who was hateful; her need to be in love and to have an affair; her only fling–with John F. Kennedy, Jr.–at the Carlisle hotel; her real relationship with Paul Burrell; why she inflicted self-harm; how she wanted to move to New York or Los Angeles; how Mother Teresa hurt her; why her relationship with Dodi never would have ended in marriage; and her enduring love for Prince Charles.

Though Diana was extremely insecure, with Simone’s help and work she became strong and learned that she could heal others around her. DIANA–THE LAST WORD is the fascinating story of how she reached that point. It finally settles the unanswered questions of Diana’s life and addresses the many revelations that have materialized since her death.

I’ve considered Simone Simmons to be a very special friend for close to twenty years.
More importantly, of course, is her friendship with Princess Di. Paul Burell, the man who Princess Diana called called ‘my rock’ and ‘the only man I can trust’ said that not only was Simone Simmons Di’s spiritual advisor, “she was her closest friend in the world.”
She has appeared on all of the cable talk shows, and on a recent trip to America, (she resides in London) she graciously answered questions informing the media’s still deep interest in the Late Princess.
Simone is also an indefatigable defender of the Middle Easts only Democracy, Israel.
She has been a hero of mine for a long time.
I said to her once, “Simone, it is such an honor to know you.”
She replied, “Michael, it’s an honor to know YOU.”
And I believed that she meant it.
That’s the kind of person she is, she treated me, a humble man, the same way she treated Sir Lawrence Olivier, the same way she treated Diana.
The book is fascinating, you feel like you know the “People’s Princess” after reading Simone’s intimate biography.
Frankly, I wasn’t a Di “fan”. I was a Simone Simmons fan, so I read her book and BECAME a fan of the incredible human being that was Princess Diana.
<i>Michael F. Blackburn, Sr.</i>
https://read.amazon.com/kp/card?asin=B00699P5NI&preview=inline&linkCode=kpe&ref_=cm_sw_r_kb_dp_cP-jybS62HBCK
During the last five years of her life, Princess Diana had one friend and confidante who was special to her. She was not part of Diana’s social circle; she was not a family friend. That woman was Simone Simmons, a healer, who devoted herself to the troubled Princess.

Simone formed a unique bond with Diana. They met almost everyday and spent hours on the telephone. Diana opened her heart and mind to Simone, who always told the Princess the unvarnished truth. No subject was taboo, and the two women discussed everything and anything, sharing laughter and tears over cups of chamomile tea. Since Diana appreciated and trusted her friend’s candor, Simone got to know the Princess in a way no one else has ever done. With Simone, Diana felt confident enough to express her true self.

In 1997, Diana told her friend she wanted her to write a book which revealed the truth about her, to “tell it like it is.” This is that book. It is truly the last word.

With her extraordinary insight into Diana’s life, Simone captures the soul of the Princess and creates an intimate and rich portrait of one of the great icons of the 20th Century. In these pages, Simone describes how it really was: who among the royals was good to Diana and who was hateful; her need to be in love and to have an affair; her only fling–with John F. Kennedy, Jr.–at the Carlisle hotel; her real relationship with Paul Burrell; why she inflicted self-harm; how she wanted to move to New York or Los Angeles; how Mother Teresa hurt her; why her relationship with Dodi never would have ended in marriage; and her enduring love for Prince Charles.

Though Diana was extremely insecure, with Simone’s help and work she became strong and learned that she could heal others around her. DIANA–THE LAST WORD is the fascinating story of how she reached that point. It finally settles the unanswered questions of Diana’s life and addresses the many revelations that have materialized since her death.

During the last five years of her life, Princess Diana had one friend and confidante who was special to her. She was not part of Diana’s social circle; she was not a family friend. That woman was Simone Simmons, a healer, who devoted herself to the troubled Princess.

Simone formed a unique bond with Diana. They met almost everyday and spent hours on the telephone. Diana opened her heart and mind to Simone, who always told the Princess the unvarnished truth. No subject was taboo, and the two women discussed everything and anything, sharing laughter and tears over cups of chamomile tea. Since Diana appreciated and trusted her friend’s candor, Simone got to know the Princess in a way no one else has ever done. With Simone, Diana felt confident enough to express her true self.

In 1997, Diana told her friend she wanted her to write a book which revealed the truth about her, to “tell it like it is.” This is that book. It is truly the last word.

With her extraordinary insight into Diana’s life, Simone captures the soul of the Princess and creates an intimate and rich portrait of one of the great icons of the 20th Century. In these pages, Simone describes how it really was: who among the royals was good to Diana and who was hateful; her need to be in love and to have an affair; her only fling–with John F. Kennedy, Jr.–at the Carlisle hotel; her real relationship with Paul Burrell; why she inflicted self-harm; how she wanted to move to New York or Los Angeles; how Mother Teresa hurt her; why her relationship with Dodi never would have ended in marriage; and her enduring love for Prince Charles.

Though Diana was extremely insecure, with Simone’s help and work she became strong and learned that she could heal others around her. DIANA–THE LAST WORD is the fascinating story of how she reached that point. It finally settles the unanswered questions of Diana’s life and addresses the many revelations that have materialized since her death.

During the last five years of her life, Princess Diana had one friend and confidante who was special to her. She was not part of Diana’s social circle; she was not a family friend. That woman was Simone Simmons, a healer, who devoted herself to the troubled Princess.

Simone formed a unique bond with Diana. They met almost everyday and spent hours on the telephone. Diana opened her heart and mind to Simone, who always told the Princess the unvarnished truth. No subject was taboo, and the two women discussed everything and anything, sharing laughter and tears over cups of chamomile tea. Since Diana appreciated and trusted her friend’s candor, Simone got to know the Princess in a way no one else has ever done. With Simone, Diana felt confident enough to express her true self.

In 1997, Diana told her friend she wanted her to write a book which revealed the truth about her, to “tell it like it is.” This is that book. It is truly the last word.

With her extraordinary insight into Diana’s life, Simone captures the soul of the Princess and creates an intimate and rich portrait of one of the great icons of the 20th Century. In these pages, Simone describes how it really was: who among the royals was good to Diana and who was hateful; her need to be in love and to have an affair; her only fling–with John F. Kennedy, Jr.–at the Carlisle hotel; her real relationship with Paul Burrell; why she inflicted self-harm; how she wanted to move to New York or Los Angeles; how Mother Teresa hurt her; why her relationship with Dodi never would have ended in marriage; and her enduring love for Prince Charles.

Though Diana was extremely insecure, with Simone’s help and work she became strong and learned that she could heal others around her. DIANA–THE LAST WORD is the fascinating story of how she reached that point. It finally settles the unanswered questions of Diana’s life and addresses the many revelations that have materialized since her death.

During the last five years of her life, Princess Diana had one friend and confidante who was special to her. She was not part of Diana’s social circle; she was not a family friend. That woman was Simone Simmons, a healer, who devoted herself to the troubled Princess.

Simone formed a unique bond with Diana. They met almost everyday and spent hours on the telephone. Diana opened her heart and mind to Simone, who always told the Princess the unvarnished truth. No subject was taboo, and the two women discussed everything and anything, sharing laughter and tears over cups of chamomile tea. Since Diana appreciated and trusted her friend’s candor, Simone got to know the Princess in a way no one else has ever done. With Simone, Diana felt confident enough to express her true self.

In 1997, Diana told her friend she wanted her to write a book which revealed the truth about her, to “tell it like it is.” This is that book. It is truly the last word.

With her extraordinary insight into Diana’s life, Simone captures the soul of the Princess and creates an intimate and rich portrait of one of the great icons of the 20th Century. In these pages, Simone describes how it really was: who among the royals was good to Diana and who was hateful; her need to be in love and to have an affair; her only fling–with John F. Kennedy, Jr.–at the Carlisle hotel; her real relationship with Paul Burrell; why she inflicted self-harm; how she wanted to move to New York or Los Angeles; how Mother Teresa hurt her; why her relationship with Dodi never would have ended in marriage; and her enduring love for Prince Charles.

Though Diana was extremely insecure, with Simone’s help and work she became strong and learned that she could heal others around her. DIANA–THE LAST WORD is the fascinating story of how she reached that point. It finally settles the unanswered questions of Diana’s life and addresses the many revelations that have materialized since her death.

Posted in Israel | Leave a Comment »

Why Does The Left Hate Israel?

Posted by Zamir Ben Etzioni on September 18, 2016

Respectable opinion knows which side wears the black hats in this conflict.

What is it about Israel that arouses so much anger? Is it because it’s a theocratic state, committed to destroying its neighbour, which uses civilians as human shields, tortures and kills its political opponents, persecutes homosexuals, and holds freedom of speech and the rule of law in contempt?

No, hang on, that’s Hamas. No matter how appallingly they treat their own people and how many innocents they blow up, shoot or kidnap, nothing can damage their image in the left’s eye.

Israel can’t even protect its own people without drawing criticism. Israel is like the older brother who is expected to know better. His younger siblings can run riot, because they’re held to different standards, but big bro should sit there quietly, no matter how many times he takes a kicking.

Not that the media does much reporting on the kicking Israel receives. It would much rather lament the significantly higher Palestinian losses, as if they automatically put Israel in the wrong and let Hamas off the hook for striking the first blow. Israel, it seems, should show restraint that no one would realistically expect of Hamas if it possessed the same military might. The relativists who see no moral difference between a liberal democracy and a terrorist regime have no problem expecting the two sides to behave differently.

One thing’s for sure, if it was just another flyblown Islamic hellhole, Israel would get a much easier ride on the world stage. More blood is typically shed each year in Somalia, Pakistan and Nigeria than in Gaza, but outrage at those horrors pales beside the indignation Israel’s actions provoke. Heads are buried, standards doubled and blind eyes turned to provide an excuse for bashing the country everybody loves to hate.

So is this just about anti-Semitism? It is certainly rife in the Arab world, and long-standing critics of Israel probably pick up a little Jew-hatred along the way. But I don’t think it’s at the heart of Western, liberal antipathy. If anti-Semitism were to blame, it would be directed at Israel wherever it was in the world. Yet it’s hard to imagine it having as much trouble with its neighbours, or attracting as much hatred, if it were a European state. The chances are it would be another Switzerland, and would arouse the same amount of ill-feeling.

The fact is that when it comes to Israel, nobody seems to be interested in the truth. No one cares that it gave up the lands it seized during the Yom Kippur War, in the hope of securing peace. Nor that it gifted the Palestinians 3,000 greenhouses, opened border crossings and encouraged trade. Nor that the Gazans responded by destroying the greenhouses and electing a government committed to eradicating the Jews, which has fired thousands of rockets into Israel, and digs tunnels under Israeli territory from which to launch surprise attacks.

No one cares that Israel gives Gazans advance warning of raids, while Hamas deliberately targets Israeli civilians. Nor that Hamas places its weapons in schools, mosques, hospitals and private homes, to maximise the chance of civilian casualties. Nor that Israel arrested those guilty of murdering a Palestinian youth, and offered reparations to the victim’s family, while Hamas did nothing to capture or punish the killers of three Israeli teenagers. Nor that no Israeli soldiers are actually based in Gaza, despite talk of an ‘occupying force’ by Hamas apologists

No one takes these facts into account because they are unhelpful to the narrative propagated by the pro-Palestinian Left – namely, that this is a battle between a strong, macho oppressor and a weak, downtrodden underdog, which leftists can feel virtuous about supporting.

Israel is a distillation of everything leftists hate about Western nations: capitalist, conservative and fiercely patriotic. It is a projection of their own prejudices about the supposed injustices of societies that cherish the ‘wrong’ values and the ‘wrong’ people. They don’t share the Palestinians’ spiritual beliefs, but they share a common enemy. Indeed, if Israel was removed from the equation, its critics would have little good to say about Gaza or Hamas. Theirs is a marriage of convenience.

The Left’s use of the Israeli-Arab situation as a platform for moral preening, and as a metaphor for its own hang-ups, blinds it to the evils of Hamas and the rest of the Muslim Brotherhood. It seems oblivious to the ideological conflict between Islamic fundamentalists and Western progressives, because it persists in regarding the former as pet victims of the latter. It may discover the hard way that it is giving comfort to an enemy that makes no distinction between liberal hand-wringers and any other infidels.

By Russell Taylor

The Left Hate Israel Because It Is Everything They Despise: Capitalist, Conservative and Patriotic

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The Surge Of Trump-Fueled Anti-Semitism Is Hitting Jewish Reporters Who Cover Him

Posted by Zamir Ben Etzioni on September 9, 2016

Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump speaks during a campaign stop in Indianapolis. CREDIT: AP PHOTO/DARRON CUMMINGS

Donald Trump has an anti-Semitism problem.

Granted, the Republican nominee for president has long insisted that his is not himself anti-Semitic, and regularly points out that his daughter is a Jewish convert. Yet Trump has done little to quell a rising tide of anti-Semitism among his supporters since launching his campaign last year: Trump initially refused to disavow anti-Semitic Ku Klux Klan leader David Duke, a Trump surrogate implied at a rally that Democratic presidential candidate Bernie Sanders should convert from Judaismand “meet Jesus,” prominent anti-Semites went on radio shows to encourage their supporters to “get out and vote” for Trump, and a man was filmed leaving a Trump rallyshouting in Cleveland shouting “Go to fucking Auschwitz.”

To make matters worse, anti-Semitic white supremacists recently announcedthat they view Trump’s relative silence on the issue “as an endorsement.”

This surge of anti-Semitism has been unsettling to many, but is hitting one group especially hard: Jewish political reporters who cover Trump, many of whom who say they are regularly subject to anti-Semitic harassment by his supporters online.

When Jewish journalist Julia Ioffe published a lengthy profile of Donald Trump’s wife Melania in April, for instance, her computer was reportedly flooded with an avalanche of angry, anti-Semitic tweets in response. Ioffe began retweeting the attacks to highlight their unsettling intensity, such as photoshopping a Jewish star used by the Nazi regime onto her clothing or digitally inserting her face into an image of a person detained the Auschwitz concentration camp. She also received death threats by phone and email, prompting Ioffe to solicit the help of the Anti-Defamation League and file a police report alleging that the hateful messages included a “threat to kidnap or injure a person.”

When DuJour magazine asked Melania Trump about the incident weeks later, she condemned the tweets but turned the blame back on Ioffe, implying the attacks were her fault because she “provoked” the hateful commenters.

“I don’t control my fans,” she said, “but I don’t agree with what they’re doing. I understand what you mean, but there are people out there who maybe went too far. She provoked them.”

Donald Trump was also asked by CNN’s Wolf Blitzer to comment about the situation but demurred, saying he didn’t know much about it before adding, “You’ll have to talk to them about it.”

Ioffe declined to be interviewed for this story, telling ThinkProgress via email that she thinks her work and the Trumps’ response “speak for themselves.”

A similar fate befell New York Times editor Jonathan Weisman earlier this month, who reportedly received a rash of anti-Semitic tweets simply forposting an opinion piece critical of Trump entitled “This is how fascism comes to America.” Weisman was promptly “outed” as Jewish by Twitter user “CyberTrump,” and others soon began tweeting anti-Jewish slurs and threatening retribution.

The online hate doesn’t appear beholden to any political ideology, targeting seemingly any prominent writer that blasts Trump — both liberal and conservative. In late April, conservative commentator Ben Shapiro recountedthe anti-Semitic backlash he received for criticizing Trump, saying, “I have never received the amount of anti-Semitic hate I currently do each day for the crime of criticizing The Great Trump.” Two weeks later, Jeffrey Goldberg of the Atlantic received an email from someone saying that he will be “sent to a camp” if Trump wins the presidency.

As the number of incidents grew, so too did calls for the Republican Jewish Coalition (RJC) — which includes Trump backer Sheldon Adelson — to speak out. They finally released a statement on Tuesday condemning any and all attacks on Jewish reporters, but declined to hold Trump supporters uniquely accountable.

“We abhor any abuse of journalists, commentators and writers whether it be from Sanders, Clinton or Trump supporters,” the statement read. “There is no room for any of this in any campaign. Journalists, regardless of their race, religion or ethnicity should be free to do their jobs without suffering abuses, anti-Semitic or otherwise.”

As the Washington Post pointed out, the statement’s attempt to lump Sanders and Clinton supporters in with the wave of anti-Semitism rang hollow to many Jewish reporters, who argue the vitriol is emanating primarily from Trump fans. The Southern Poverty Law Center, which studies and tracks hate groups, acknowledged that anti-Semitism is especially common among Trump’s digital devotees.

ThinkProgress’ own reporting staff has also been impacted by the phenomenon. Kira Lerner and Alice Ollstein — both political reporters and both Jewish — say they have encountered anti-Semitic remarks online while covering Trump.

“I immediately blocked them,” Ollstein said. She pointed out that the attacks were unique to this election season, noting, “I’ve been reporting in Washington, DC for six years, and this is the only time it’s ever happened to me — either in person or online.”

The same is true for Bryce Covert, ThinkProgress’ economics editor. Covert says she received a deluge of anti-Semitic tweets in May after she published an op-ed in the New York Times decrying Trump’s policy agenda as disproportionately benefiting white men. The tweets personally attacked her for being Jewish and referenced her family — even though she never mentioned her Jewish heritage (she’s half-Jewish) in the story.

“The Trump supporters had to really dig deep to figure out that I’m Jewish,” Covert said. “They unearthed this tweet of mine from months ago referencing my Jewish grandma.”

“I haven’t gotten any anti-semitism in my mentions for writing about any other candidate,” she added.

One of the anti-Semitic tweets Covert received in response to her op-ed. CREDIT: Screenshot
One of the anti-Semitic tweets Covert received in response to her op-ed. CREDIT: Screenshot

Indeed, this ThinkProgress reporter — who is Presbyterian — also received anti-Semitic tweets simply for putting out a call for help with this story. One commenter appeared to deny the Holocaust and mock the Hebrew language, and another awarded the author with a “gold star” — meaning the yellow Star of David used by the Nazis to identify Jews.

The connection between Trump and internet-based anti-Semitism has gotten so bad that The Donald’s name and image are now brandished as an excuse to unleash insults whether or not he is being discussed. In mid-May, a Twitter account sporting an image of Trump attacked a Jewish reporter at the Charleston Post and Courier for commenting on shifting opinions regarding the Confederate flag, tweeting, “I guess daddy didn’t love her enough to get her a nosejob for her Bar Mitzvah.” The account’s bio notes that liberals should be sent “straight to the ovens.”

The growing culture of hate shows few signs of slowing down, and reporters are increasingly concerned the vitriol won’t stop so long as Trump refuses to condemn the attacks — and stop attacking reporters himself.

“I’m not surprised that Trump supporters feel comfortable assaulting journalists on Twitter,” Lerner said. “Trump is leading by example.”

 T

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Trump:What did these geniuses expect when they put men and women together?

Posted by Zamir Ben Etzioni on September 8, 2016

for-men-not-to-rape

Donald Trump apparently still believes that if you put women and men together in the military of course it’s going to lead to a lot of rapes. ‘What did these geniuses expect when they put men &amp; women together?’  Trump was confronted by Matt Lauer Wednesday night in the Commander-in- Chief forum with a three-year-old tweet of his.

Trump defended his 2013 tweet suggesting that high rate of unreported rape allegations could have been predicted when men and women were allowed to serve in the military.”It is a correct tweet. There are many people that think that is absolutely correct,” Trump said to Lauer.

Later Lauer asked trump if he still thought he knew more about ISIS than our Generals and he said”They have been reduced to rubble, our Generals.”

Later he said part of his “Secret Plan ” to defeat ISIS would be to give the Generals 30 days to come up with a plan.

The Generals he knows more than, the ones who have been reduced to rubble.

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​Mental Disorders and Islam

Posted by Zamir Ben Etzioni on August 12, 2016

Most people in the civilized world must have noticed that individuals who convert to Islam, and the ‘Muslims by birth’ who suddenly turn religious, develop new tendencies, such as:

* They turn against culture and life beauties, such as music, paintings, cinema and other arts.

* They adopt a serious life style, with less humor, jokes, laughs and other manifestation of happiness.

* They avoid life pleasures such as dining out in good restaurants (because they serve wine).

* They change their appearance to the worse; men develop what others see as scary looks that would fit criminal ( unusual clothes, bushy beards..etc)

* Women turn against their feminine instincts and do everything possible to conceal their beauty.

* Women voluntarily cover up completely, even in the hottest weather (and claim they feel perfectly fine despite all that smelly sweat). They also claim it was their choice (but we know it was the fear from Allah that forced them to do so)

* Women voluntarily seek to be oppressed, some may even arrange for their husbands to marry more wives.

* They become unsocial, especially with non-Muslims (for example on Christmas).

* Turn to violence.

* They preach hate and incite to murder.

* Become difficult to live with at home and in the society.

* Become difficult to work with.

* Turn against their societies with vengeance.

* Start to glorify crime and immoral practices by giving it religious labels, such as jihad and jihad marriages (aka prostitution).

* Believe in myths and act accordingly; they buy and drink urine and zamzam water for healing in preference to conventional medicine, until it is too late .

* They become less productive in the society as they spend more time practicing their demanding religion.

* They practice their rituals even if that involves subjecting others to inconvenience or risk, like when they block the streets to perform their prayers, or piloting a plane when fasting. They lie, sometimes without realizing, and insist that fasting doesn’t cause them any harm (as if their bodies have unique physiology).

* They denounce the law, all laws, in favor of the Islamic law, which puts them on a collision course against the land law wherever they exist.

* They become liars for the sake of spreading the big lie of Islam; just consider the thousands of youtube videos with plane lies in both title and contents.

* Join other like-minded Muslims to practice murder (labelled jihad).

* Develop sick and evil minds that get satisfaction through subjecting their victims to outrageous and monstrous methods of torture to the death, which they record on video to produce humanly unbearable scenes as a means of torturing the society.

* Once in control of their societies, they force them to adopt their psychopathic behavior, by forcing civilians to participate in their evil practices.

* Practice child abuse. They deprive children from the happiness of childhood by denying them ordinary toys and games. They force children to learn parts of the Quran by heart even though they don’t speak Arabic. They order children to pray and beat them if they don’t. They force young girls to cover up. They approve of child marriage and may force young girls to it.

The above is not meant to be a complete inventory; the list can still go on and on.

The above list is both frightening and alarming because it is real. There are no exaggerations here. Any objective observer can see it all with crystal clear clarity. Any of the above symptoms, on its own, can be an indication of a mental health disorder that calls for psychiatric evaluation and intervention. Western societies would do anything to eradicate any disease that causes only a few of the above symptoms. Similarly, they would ban any foods or drinks if found to give rise to them. Yet the same societies protect Islam and nurture it, allowing the above symptoms to persist and spread. I know it is a horrible thing to say, but this painful fact highlights how low the civilized world have reached. This is a reality that has been denied for so long because with denial nothing needs to be done, and Muslims won’t be offended.

Islam works like a deadly virus that affects the nervous system and controls the brain cells. Like other viruses, it may remain dormant for years, lurking around in the body waiting for the right conditions to launch its attack. The unlucky people develop the full blown disease early, while others may live long lives without ever progressing beyond the carrier stage. All those who believe in Mohammed and Islam are carriers, and potential victims, of the Islamic ‘virus’. It is important for the civilized world to understand how lethal Islam can be. It is easy to deal with the problem once there is a will to do it, and few changes to the law may be all that is required. However, if left for a longer time, even civil wars may not sort it out. You only need to look at the Middle East to see the future of Europe.

The fact that most Muslims do not actually develop the full Islamic disease is not an assurance to the rest of the society, because those people already harbor the ‘virus’ in their minds and things can get nasty any time. There is no shortage of cases where the perpetrators of terrorism were described to have been “perfectly nice people” in the past.

Muslims use terrorism to kill non muslims and will produce more and more children. ”Opposing it effectively means providing a competing vision of life and society that is also appealing, and that will lead to more happiness, freedom and prosperity than Islam can possibly provide. That’s the real “peace process”- Islamic followers kill and intimidate the persons wwho have genuine queries abou islam. The real peace in those countries where Islamic followers are absent or are less. See how muslims are flooding europe, America, India etc in the garb of refugees. If there is peace in muslim countries then they will go to muslim countries. Isn,t that obvious. I think if you have iota of rational thinking then you will see through the arguments

put above and realise that islam is an evil ideology which fools people.

  • BY MUMIN SALIH ·

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