Voula Papachristou isn”€™t all Greek to me.

What I mean is, the triple-jumper’s blonde locks look downright Swedish. My experience with Hellenic femininity begins and ends with Toronto’s Danforth Avenue, where the wide-bodied waitresses toiling beneath Greektown’s blue-and-white café canopies display hair that’s considerably darker (and more, shall we say, widely distributed).

I loathe the Olympics, so I”€™m only familiar with Papachristou because the Greek athlete was expelled from the Games just before they began for Tweeting this “€œracist”€ joke:

With so many Africans in Greece… At least the mosquitoes of West Nile .. will eat home made food!

I”€™m impressed. Along with being decidedly hirsute, those Doric damsels up on “€œthe Danforth”€ aren”€™t renowned for their Delphic outbursts. Voula’s comment therefore comes as a pleasant surprise, cleverly comparing the unloved migrants swarming her homeland to literal bloodsuckers.

It’s pretty rich watching Eurotrash athletic officialdom condemning a lowly member of their EU cohort for racism. After all, this same species of international sports overseers regularly shrugs off such edifying spectacles as “€œmonkey chants,”€ banana-throwing, and anthem-jeering.

And that’s just some soccer stuff from this year alone.

Papachristou’s supporters countered without success that the poor girl’s joke was directed at a “€œnationality,”€ not a “€œrace”€ at all. Other pedantic appeals cited the very “€œOlympic Creed“€ Papachristou had supposedly violated, which says a grand total of nothing about an athlete’s political views.

“€œNever mind that the Olympics pit nation against nation.”€

And make no mistake: It was Voula Papachristou’s voting habits (revealed in earlier Tweets) that ultimately cost her the opportunity to live out her lifelong dream. Almost every news story about her ouster mentioned her alleged support for Greece’s “€œanti-immigrant”€ Golden Dawn Party.

Golden Dawn’s hostility toward newcomers supposedly violates the spirit of the Games. Never mind that the Olympics pit nation against nation, and so a patriotic Greek should be forgiven for daring to wonder when Greece will stop being Greece, given the steady influx of those officially referred to as “€œforeigners.”€

Toronto’s Danforth embodied the emigration wave from Greece to Canada that peaked in 1967. Today, Greece is on the receiving end of immigration that includes thousands of African migrant workers. Hence Papachristou’s Tweet.

Wikipedia helpfully provides this list of distinguished “€œBlack African immigrants to Greece”€:

“€¢ Daniel Batista Lima – Soccer player
“€¢ Yvette Jarvis – Former basketball player
“€¢ Nestoras Kommatos – professional basketball player
“€¢ Sofoklis Schortsanitis – professional basketball player
“€¢ Isaias Matiaba – Singer
“€¢ Nery Mantey Niangkouara – former swimmer
“€¢ MC Yinka – Rapper

In other words, so far these immigrants make the same “€œcontributions”€ to their new homes that make Black History Month the world over seem three weeks too long.

Has Mitt Romney given Israel a blank check for war?

So it seemed from the declaration in Jerusalem by his adviser Dan Senor, who all but flashed Israel a green light for war, signaling the Israelis that, if you go, Mitt’s got your back:

“If Israel has to take action on its own in order to stop Iran from developing that capability, the governor would respect that decision.”

“No option would be excluded. Gov. Romney recognizes Israel’s right to defend itself and that it is right for America to stand with it.”

What does “stand with” Israel, if she launches a surprise attack on Iran, mean? Does it mean the United States will guide Israeli planes to their targets and provide bases on their return? Does it mean U.S. air cover while Israeli planes strike Iran?

This would make America complicit in a pre-emptive strike and a co-belligerent in the war to follow.

What Senor said comes close to being a U.S. war guarantee for Israel, while leaving the decision as to when the war begins to them.

This country has never done that before.

And what does Senor mean by Israel’s need to act “to stop Iran from developing (the) capability” to acquire nuclear weapons?

“What does “stand with” Israel, if she launches a surprise attack on Iran, mean?”

The collective decision of 16 U.S. intelligence agencies in 2007—that Iran is not pursuing a nuclear weapon—reportedly reaffirmed in 2011—has never been rescinded. Nor has the White House produced any hard evidence Iran is building a bomb.

Moreover, Iran’s known nuclear facilities are under inspection by the International Atomic Energy Agency.

Does the government know something the American people are not being told?

Undeniably, Iran, by enriching uranium to 3.5 percent, then up to 20 percent, has a greater “capability” than five years ago of building a nuclear weapon. But Japan, South Korea and Brazil also have that capability—and none has decided to build a nuclear weapon.

Gov. Romney did not go as far as Senor, but he, too, seems to be saying that not only is Iran’s possession of a nuclear weapon a casus belli for the United States, even an Iran that is capable of building such a weapon is intolerable.

“The regime in Iran is five years closer to developing nuclear weapons capability,” said Romney. “Preventing that outcome must be our highest national security priority.”

Preventing what outcome is “our highest national security priority”?

Stopping Iran from building a bomb? Or stopping Iran from being able to build a bomb years from now?

Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel, he of the tiny fingers and ballet costumes, has lately taken to speaking about “€œvalues.”€ Chicagoans are killing one another at a clip 40% higher than this time last year, and for the first six months of 2012, its per-capita homicide rate was nearly 400% higher than New York City’s.

Earlier this month Emanuel accused the city’s gangbangers of having the “€œwrong values,”€ at least when it came to killing innocent tots caught in their crossfire. “€œGet away from that kid,”€ he admonished the city’s thugs, sternly wagging one of his notoriously diminutive digits at them. “€œTake your stuff away to the alley,”€ he counseled, as if to imply it’s OK to shoot one another so long as their victims aren”€™t prepubescent. “€œAnd I don’t buy this case where people say they don’t have values. They do have values. They have the wrong values.”€

Last Wednesday, after being informed that Nation of Islam leader Louis Farrakhan took to the streets with hundreds of crisply dressed henchmen to help patrol some of Chicago’s most violent ghettos, Emanuel gave an undersized thumbs-up to Farrakhan’s gesture, adding that “€œPeople of faith have a role to play”€ in helping curb the murder rate.

On the same day, Emanuel gave a thumbs-down to the Chick-fil-A restaurant chain, which is entangled in a national imbroglio due to its CEO’s relatively benign statements in favor of “€œtraditional marriage“€ based on his Christian beliefs.

“€œChick-fil-A’s values are not Chicago values,”€ Emanuel scoffed. “€œThey”€™re not respectful of our residents, our neighbors and our family members. And if you”€™re gonna be part of the Chicago community, you should reflect Chicago values.”€ Decrying Chick-fil-A CEO Dan Cathy’s “€œignorance,”€ Chicago Alderman Proco Joe Moreno promised to deny the fast-food chain a permit to operate in the city’s First Ward.

“€œThe Nation of Islam’s main beef with Jews isn”€™t necessarily that they”€™re Jewish, it’s that they see them as white.”€

Ironically, Chicago officials had no problem permitting the Nation of Islam to reopen their Salaam Restaurant on the city’s south side earlier this year. It’s ironic because both Farrakhan and the Koran have said things about homosexuals that make the utterances of Chick-fil-A’s CEO, um, pale by comparison.

Before he fell under Elijah Muhammad’s spell and was bequeathed his “€œoriginal”€ surname of Farrakhan, the man born Louis Eugene Walcott was a calypso singer and waxed a tune that would by modern standards be deemed “€œtransphobic.”€ In a 1996 speech, Farrakhan alleged that “€œGod don”€™t like men coming to men with lust in their hearts like you should go to a female.”€ At a Boston convention in 2004, he asked, “€œHow can you be a Jew and promote homosexual marriage?”€ In 2009 he called homosexuality “€œa learned behavior”€ that was helping turn America into “€œSodom and Gomorrah.”€ And just this May, he slammed Obama’s endorsement of gay marriage, dubbing him “€œthe first president that sanctioned what the scriptures forbid.”€

Regardless, a Google News search from yesterday morning yielded 6,570 results for “€œchick-fil-a”€ alongside “€œhomophobic”€ but a mere five hits for “€œnation of islam”€ paired with “€œhomophobic.”€

Though some news outlets noted the hypocrisy in condemning Chick-fil-A while giving a free pass to the Nation of Islam when it comes to gay marriage, they were much more befuddled at the idea that Emanuel, Chicago’s first Jewish mayor and whose middle name is “€œIsrael,”€ opened his arms and held out his itty-bitty hands to embrace a virulent anti-Semite such as Farrakhan.

Farrakhan says it’s inaccurate to label him a peddler of anti-Semitism, claiming that the Anti-Defamation League “€œuses the term…to stifle all legitimate criticism of the errant behavior of some Jewish people toward the non-Jewish population of the Earth.”€

Still, he provides them with plenty of easily decontextualized sound bites. He once referred to Hitler as a “€œvery great man”€ and has said that “€œthe controlled media…is owned by Zionist forces.”€ He says Jews control the global banking system and “€œyou can”€™t go nowhere in their world without paying obeisance to them.”€ Farrakhan says Barack Obama is a Zionist lapdog and has labeled him America’s “€œfirst Jewish president.”€

Perhaps most troubling to those with an emotional and/or financial investment in maintaining the political narrative that blacks and Jews share a history of oppression and are thus brothers in arms against white hegemony, the Nation of Islam (NOI) has published three books detailing Jewish involvement in the black transatlantic slave trade. The first, 1991’s The Secret Relationship Between Blacks and Jews, ingeniously relied almost solely on Jewish primary sources. In 2010 the NOI published a second volume of The Secret Relationship alongside a new book called Jews Selling Blacks, which features 140 pages of newspaper ads from America’s slavery era where Jewish slave owners advertise the sale of black slaves as well as announce rewards for the capture of runaway Negroes.

Nicholas Soames is Winston Churchill’s grandson, a Conservative member of Parliament since the early 80s, a very large man whose food and drink intake is legendary, and an old friend of mine with whom I used to get into terrible trouble. Soames has been married twice, his first wife having indiscreetly answered a hack’s question about his lovemaking as “€œlike having a wardrobe fall on top of you with the key sticking out of it.”€ An amicable divorce soon followed.

Soames holds no grudge against his ex, but if he did he might soon be able to have her jailed for committing a hate crime. This is a proposed addition to English hate-crime legislation that could make outlaws of countless schoolchildren who use the word “€œfat”€ or “€œfatty”€ against another student. It adds a criminal taint to teasing and rebrands it as a hate crime on a par with racism and homophobia.

No, it’s not a joke. Members of Parliament in the UK are calling for the law to be changed so that such teasing will make criminals out of everyone on this crowded and rainy island. God help us if it becomes a crime to call someone a fatty. Next we”€™ll have people with ginger hair being protected, short folk ditto, and on down the line.

“€œGod help us if it becomes a crime to call someone a fatty.”€

The ex-captain of England’s national soccer team, a terrible hood by the name of John Terry, has just been declared innocent after a very expensive public trial at the Old Bailey for having allegedly called an opponent a black c—- (down-market word for vagina). The legal judgment was not about the crude word for female anatomy but whether Terry had racially abused his opponent. During the trial it emerged that his black counterpart had not even heard Terry’s cussing but was encouraged to sue by politically correct do-gooders who somehow monitored the cussing from the stands.

However Orwellian it sounds, this is modern Europe. Terry got off because it was never proved beyond a reasonable doubt that he had called Anton Ferdinand a black expletive”€”too much screaming by everyone involved”€”and that it was not established that what he said was intended as an insult. (I know British footballers, and they make American NBA and NFL players sound like Professor Higgins.)

What is preposterous is the assumption that sneering bureaucrats know what is good for us and that calling someone a fat jerk can soon land one in the pokey. The thinking behind the latest Orwellian law is that too many children are worried about their body image”€”whatever that means”€”and lest they fall ill as a result, measures must be taken to protect them. Oy vey! What happens if this so-called law crosses the ocean and African American schoolchildren get ahold of it?

Fast-food franchise Chick-fil-A, known for its juicy chicken sandwich, has come under attack. Franchise head Dan Cathy made public statements in support of traditional marriage and has philanthropic connections to such alleged hate groups as Focus on the Family and the Fellowship of Christian Athletes.

Although Cathy and his staff have affirmed their determination “€œto treat every person with honor, dignity and respect”€”regardless of their belief, race, creed, sexual orientation or gender,”€ this statement, which reads like something from the Department of Education, is apparently a ruse. According to gay-advocacy organizations The Huffington Post and The New York Times, as well as leading Democratic pols such as Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel and Boston Mayor Thomas Menino, Cathy is trying to stamp out (you guessed it!) “€œtolerance.”€ Every time someone bites into one of his sandwiches, the customer promotes hate. Presumably if one bites twice, one gets cholesterol poisoning and causes a recurrence of Auschwitz.

“€œThings aren”€™t looking up for the warriors against Christian bigotry because most of the opposition has now melted into putty.”€

I feel sorry for the multicultural left, which has triumphed so completely in the Western world that it doesn”€™t have any real enemies to fight anymore. Can one really take organizations such as Focus on the Family, which advocates heterosexual marriage, as a grave neo-fascist threat? Things aren”€™t looking up for the warriors against Christian bigotry because most of the opposition has now melted into putty. The only thing progressives can do these days is portray quasi-wimps such as Cathy as would-be Grand Inquisitors, even though he runs around oozing affection for the left’s protected classes.

Even more depressing from the standpoint of left-wing activists, the authorized “€œconservative”€ opposition concedes most of the left’s case before registering its tepid objection. The emphatically Republican editorial in our paper warned against new outbreaks of “€œreligious intolerance”€ coming from gay activists. One might think that Rahm Emanuel was behaving like some crazed Christian fanatic during the Age of Religious Wars.

On Fox, GOP fixtures Bill O”€™Reilly and Laura Ingraham expressed concern that the liberal media was going after Chick-fil-A unfairly and that Chicago and Boston’s mayors were pulling out all stops to keep the franchise from crossing into their antiseptically leftist municipalities. According to Bill and Laura, this grim offensive was entirely uncalled for, because there was nothing to suggest that Chick-fil-A’s staff treated gay customers badly. In fact, Cathy was now going out of his way to hire gay workers as part of his outreach. Bill noted that Cathy, had he been asked, would have catered Barney Frank’s gay wedding.

A senior Syrian government spokesman has confirmed that his nation possesses chemical weapons and might employ them against a “€œforeign aggressor.”€

Bashar al-Assad’s embattled regime just managed to shoot itself in both feet, provide ammunition to Syria’s enemies, and give them yet another excuse to intervene in its raging civil war.

Western governments and media that have become cheerleaders for Syria’s rebels went into full trumpet mode, issuing dire warnings of Syria’s “€œthreat of weapons of mass destruction.”€ Israeli and US officials warned they might have to seize Syria’s chemical arsenal lest it fall into the hands of Lebanon’s Hezbollah. Shades of Iraq and Saddam Hussein’s WMDs.

The bumbling Damascus regime was too inept to explain that Syria had acquired a limited arsenal of chemical weapons over the past twenty years to counter Israel’s tactical nuclear weapons. Western media barely mentioned this important point.

“€œUS neoconservatives and many bellicose Republicans chant that the road to Tehran runs through Damascus.”€

During the 1973 Arab-Israeli War, Moscow informed Damascus that Israel was readying tactical nuclear-armed missiles, land mines, and bombs to halt what looked like a Syrian armored breakthrough on the Golan Heights. Damascus was also targeted by Israeli nuclear weapons. Syria determined to obtain a limited deterrent to forestall any future such nuclear threats.

Syria’s arsenal of mustard, cyanide, and nerve gas is loaded into air-delivered bombs, short-range Scud or SS-21 missiles, or short-range artillery shells. Chemical weapons are mislabeled as weapons of mass destruction. They have limited killing power and are subject to weather conditions.

The Western media’s cries of alarm ignored this fact, as they ignored the point that the lightly armed Hezbollah would likely be unable to obtain or employ such weapons even if it had them and decided to risk suicide.

In the kind of urban warfare now going on in Syria, chemical weapons would have little use. Far more effective and deadly would be the thermobaric fuel-air explosives employed by Russia, US, and Israel that rip apart the lungs of soldiers fighting from cover in ruined buildings or bunkers.

Israel has the Mideast’s largest arsenal of chemical and biological weapons. Its military establishment and right-wing parties have made no secret of their yearning for revenge against Hezbollah, which inflicted a short, sharp defeat on Israel’s army in southern Lebanon in 2006. Nor have Israel’s expansionist rightists given up the ambition of former leader Ariel Sharon (who remains alive but in a deep coma) of turning Lebanon into an Israeli protectorate ruled by Maronite Christian rightists.

Last year I wrote about the anti-circumcision campaign here in California, and now another chapter in the Foreskin Chronicles has opened up in Germany. Whereas the California campaign fizzled, the District Court in Cologne on June 26 banned the circumcision of boys for religious reasons. The court reasoned that the practice causes bodily harm and that the child should be able to choose his own religion when he is older.

Cologne’s judges have succeeded where the United Nations has failed since 1948″€”they”€™ve brought Jews and Muslims together. The national leadership of both faiths roundly condemned the ruling. Although Berlin’s Jewish Hospital suspended circumcisions, Angela Merkel vowed to overturn the ban, and the country’s lower house of Parliament followed suit. Despite this, the agitation crossed borders into Switzerland and Austria. Several Swiss hospitals have at least temporarily suspended the practice in response to the German court, while the governor of Vorarlberg in Austria advised his state’s hospitals to do the same.

“€œCologne’s judges have succeeded where the United Nations has failed since 1948″€”they”€™ve brought Jews and Muslims together.”€

Pinchas Goldschmidt, president of the European Conference of Rabbis, called the ban “€œthe worst attack on Jews since the Holocaust.”€ This is ironic given that European officialdom often demands that Christian symbols and practices be removed from public life to accommodate Jewish and Islamic sensibilities.

One could argue that the court’s desire to safeguard infants”€™ religious freedom is a disingenuous attempt to insert the government into sectors of the children’s upbringing heretofore reserved to parents. Why limit it to circumcision? Perhaps education should no longer be made compulsory, but left to the children to decide whether or not they want to ruin their playtime with school. If the law still stands despite the European establishment’s fear of Jewish clout and Islamic muscle, we are entering a very different political era.

Prince Charles was apparently circumcised by Rabbi Jacob Snowman, MD, according to Haaretz. The same source claims that the tradition was brought to England by George I when he usurped the throne from James III. Others maintain that the royal clipping only goes back to Queen Victoria‘s reign, where it was used either as a health measure or, according to the British Israelites, because she thought she was descended from King David. The tradition came to a halt when Charles and Diana refused to submit Princes William and Harry to the mohel’s knife. A picture taken of Prince William relieving himself while on an African trip, widely available on the Internet, corroborates this.

GSTAAD—Purity in a sport does not mix with popularity, and defending the former is anathema to the hucksters, crooks, and profiteers who encourage the latter. In this I do not include the sportswriters of serious newspapers, with whom I sympathize. They see what’s going on, but they have to report on sports and there are libel laws to protect the guilty.

In the birthplace of sports—where else but Greece?—football is as rotten as anywhere on Earth, except in places such as Thailand, where betting comes first and sports second. When my father “owned” a premier division team during the early 1970s the club’s various agents and advisers skimmed millions off him by bringing in South American “Greeks” to be sold to the club. The law back then allowed only two foreigners per team, so the rest had to find Greek roots, an easy enough task for the crooked agents peddling them to dear old innocent dad. Some had Greek-sounding names, such as the Mexican Fanis. Others had to invent Greek grandmothers, such as the Argentine Nestor Martin Errea. Most of them were incapable of kicking a soccer ball, and some even had trouble running in a straight line. But the experts deemed them on a par with Pelé, and father paid.

“Football now is as corrupt as gambling, and maybe soon we’ll see the latter becoming an Olympic sport.”

Football now is as corrupt as gambling, and maybe soon we’ll see the latter becoming an Olympic sport. Greek referees in my time were easily and often bribed. Refs and players are still being bribed in most parts of the world, even in Europe, although here only in lower divisions. For a determined gambler, poor referees and players are easy prey. The Internet and global information networks make it easy as pie, as they say in Kansas.

At the 1964 Summer Games in Tokyo, judo was introduced as an Olympic sport. Judo and its siblings kendo and karate had been banned by Allied administrators for a few years following World War II, but all was forgiven in time for the ’64 Games—which was incidentally the first year I strapped on a white belt and went at it like gangbusters. Kendo was featured as a demonstration sport, but karate did not make the cut (too violent back then). It was a traumatic year for the Japanese, as the great Dutch giant Anton Geesink won the heavyweight title, although the other Nipponese fighters had swept the boards. I have never heard of anyone, honest or crooked, ever betting on a judo contest. The sport, as it’s now called, is as pure as synchronized swimming, although I’d much rather wrestle with the swimmers than the beasts I have to embrace at times.

Liberals are not idiots. They”€™re just like you were when you first moved out of your parents”€™ house. It’s like their research is cryogenically frozen right before Google was invented. However, unlike extremist Muslims and Hasidic Jews, some of the things they believe are actually correct.

For example:

Have you ever ordered a burrito at Chipotle? It’s a football. Two-thirds in, and you feel like De Niro trying to fatten himself up for the final scene in Raging Bull. I moved to this country 13 years ago and have never been able to finish 100% of an appetizer and a main course. Libertarians say it’s up to us how much we eat, but it’s not good for morale to throw platefuls of food into the garbage again and again. The obesity epidemic also costs all of us a lot of money. I spoke to a surgeon who said fat-related diseases are about to take over Medicare and it would actually be cost-effective for the government to pay for gastric bypasses. I hate Bloomberg’s nanny state and I don”€™t want anyone to be told how much sugar they can ingest, but I don”€™t have a solution for the imminent Lard Apocalypse. Do you?

The Freakonomics guys should do some research on what the worker/CEO pay gap does to the economy. It’s not as simple as saying auto workers on $60K a year should get more of the $9 million that the head of GM makes. It’s about the “€œfuck this”€ mentality such disparities give the entire working class. You”€™re more inclined to steal, cheat, and lie when your boss makes 150 times as much as you. I don”€™t know how we prevent these people from making so much money and I certainly don”€™t want the government getting involved, but I do know things made a lot more sense in 1980 when CEOs only made 42 times as much as their workers.

“€œLiberals are not idiots. They”€™re just like you were when you first moved out of your parents”€™ house.”€

As I wrote a couple of weeks ago, the healthcare bill is a well-written piece of legislation that makes perfect sense. We already pay for illegals in emergency rooms, so why not get it on the books? Every civilized country in the Western world has state-sponsored healthcare, so it’s not insane to assume it would work for us. It wouldn”€™t work for us, but it’s not insane to think it would.

Liberals are right to question the more than $700 billion we spend annually on our military. Why do we have 50,000 soldiers in Germany? Let’s get out of Italy, Japan, South Korea, and the entire Middle East. It may pain many neocons to admit it, but Israel doesn”€™t need our dollars. If a full-scale war breaks out, we can jump in the same way we would if someone invaded Greenland. We shouldn”€™t pay taxes for elected officials to issue a fatwa on someone else’s teenage son.

Let’s give them this one. If some guy jumps out of an alley and rapes a woman at knifepoint and ejaculates in her and she’s unable to include the morning-after pill in her rape kit and she then gets pregnant from it, she should not be forced to carry that baby to term.
Speaking of something that never happens, how about we let a gay lover visit his dying spouse in the hospital? Dan Savage seems to think this is an epidemic, so let’s cut this situation out of their talking points.