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Thursday, November 23, 2017

235 results for 'Anastasia '

Obama the Sandman

By Anastasia , published on Dec 6, 2012

I don’t suppose too many people here read the Moscow Times, Russia’s only English language newspaper. Well, then, let me tell you that it reported recently that there are people in Russia indulging in a spot of schadenfreude, taking pleasure from the misfortune of others. The recent secession petitions following Obama’s re-election in November have led predictions that the USA is about to collapse in just the same way that the USSR collapsed.

There is really nothing new in this wishful thinking; for that is exactly what it is. A few years ago Igor Panarin, a former KGB analyst, published... (more)

Tags: barack obama, economics, finance, taxation, fiscal cliff, american economy, public debt

Ana’s Expectations

By Anastasia , published on Dec 4, 2012

A Dickens of a year draws to a close. We’ve had a lengthy party, celebrating the bicentenary of the birth of one of our most cherished writers. It’s been marked in all manner of ways: in commemoration, in lectures, in biography (a very good one by Claire Tomalin) and in fresh adaptations of some of his books for television and cinema.

In fact the year has been bookended by visual adaptations of Great Expectations, a novel that might be said to have put the mellow in drama, the first a three part BBC series screened last December, and now a new cinema version directed by Mike Newell,... (more)

Tags: english literature, novels, charles dickens, film reviews

The Last Three Weeks

By Anastasia , published on Dec 2, 2012

I read recently that a global poll conducted earlier this year by Ipsos Mori, one of England’s leading market research companies, found that as many as ten per cent of the world’s population believe that the end is nigh. That’s right: get your affairs in order, for everything comes to a full stop in three weeks time. Three weeks, that’s all we’ve got; three weeks that’s not a lot!

What’s the source of this fear? I think that one would have to be an ancient Mayan not to know – it’s the Mayan Long Count Calendar, which reaches the end of its cycle on 21 December. If you don’t know... (more)

Tags: mexico, 2012, apocalypse, guatemala, mayan civilization

Amsterdam's Windows of Desire

By Anastasia , published on Nov 29, 2012

If Paris is beige Amsterdam is red, brick red to be exact. It’s a compact city, really quite charming in many ways, a city of museums and canals, the city of Van Gogh and Rembrandt.

I was there a couple of years ago, walking everywhere because it’s possible to walk everywhere, all the attractions being within a reasonably close distance of one another. It was pleasant to give way to the city’s easy charm, at least by day, because it is charming by day. The night is different; the night is darker; the night is a deeper shade of red.

We stayed in the Grand, once a medieval convent... (more)

Tags: trafficking, crime, prostitution, amsterdam, the netherlands, brothels

Waiting for a Hero

By Anastasia , published on Nov 27, 2012

Let me begin with a personal anecdote. Father has travelled extensively across the world on business, usually flying first class. On one trip to Hong Kong he saw Leon Brittan, then Deputy European Commissioner, in the departure lounge for the flight back to London.

I should add that Brittan, who formerly had served in Margaret Thatcher’s government, is a politician for whom he does not have a great deal of time. "Never mind", he thought, "he's on his own. I'll ignore him." But no sooner had he boarded the flight than he discovered that he was the only 'independent' in the first class... (more)

Tags: taxation, european union, bureaucracy, david cameron, public finance

Meat Eaters are Sex Criminals

By Anastasia , published on Nov 25, 2012

Do you eat meat? Then you are obviously a liar, a thief and a sex offender. I’m a carnivore myself so I’m also a liar, a thief and a sex offender, or at least I an according to a new textbook issued to eleven-year olds in India.

This little text of moral homilies was apparently intended to offer guidance on a variety of issues, from health and hygiene to sex education and exercise. The page on non-vegetarians is especially revealing. These are people who “easily cheat, tell lies, they forget promises, they are dishonest and tell bad words, steal, fight and turn to violence and commit... (more)

Tags: education, india, meat, school text books, moral instruction

Eyeless in Gaza

By Anastasia , published on Nov 23, 2012

An Indian user on Blog Catalogue raised the question of sides in the recent Gaza conflict. Apparently there was some concern in his country over the ‘disproportionate’ Israeli reaction to attacks by Hamas. This is my response.

You conclude your well-argued, balanced and reasonable perspective with a clear statement of principle: "Let's support the innocent people in both Palestine and Israel who wish to live a normal life like all others." How could I possibly fail to agree with those sentiments; how could anyone fail to agree? The latest news is that a ceasefire has been concluded,... (more)

Tags: terrorism, israel, middle east, gaza, hamas, palestine

A Country in Romance

By Anastasia , published on Nov 20, 2012

Some of my school chums went to Durham University in the north of England, girls I used to visit for long weekends when I was an undergraduate. It was a super opportunity to explore a part of the country I did not know that well - Northern England and the Scottish borders. There is still a wonderful romance that clings to so many places here, an echo of old, unhappy, far off times and battles long ago.

One of the places we went to was Flodden Edge, the site of the camp of an invading Scottish army in 1513 led by King James IV in person. The battle of the same name wasn’t actually fought... (more)

Tags: poetry, england, scotland, anglo-scottish borders, castles, sir walter scott

Jews are the World’s Puppet Masters

By Anastasia , published on Nov 18, 2012

I don’t suppose too many people who read Broowaha have ever come across a copy of Der Stürmer – literally The Stormer -, the notorious Nazi paper edited by Julius Streicher, later hanged at Nuremberg for crimes against humanity. I have. I looked at copies in London’s Wiener Library when I was an undergraduate, part of a study into anti-Semitism and modern German history.

It’s difficult for me to describe just how repellent it is, how obsessive, how relentless in its hatred and monomania. Each edition carries a vicious anti-Semitic cartoon on the front page, the usual awful Jewish... (more)

Tags: israel, liberalism, anti-semitism, the guardian

If at first you don’t Succeed, Secede!

By Anastasia , published on Nov 16, 2012

I was amused to discover on Blog Catalogue earlier this week that secession petitions are flooding into the White House in the wake of Barack Obama’s re-election to the presidency. What, are we really back in 1860, is American on the threshold of a new Civil War? No and yes, is my answer, a point to be clarified a bit later.

There they are, pleas coming from some of the same offenders: from Texas, from Alabama, from Georgia, from Louisiana, from South Carolina, from North Carolina, from Tennessee, from Arkansas and from Florida, all former members of the old Confederacy. There are... (more)

Tags: barack obama, american politics, the white house, the presidency, dissent, secession

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