Vimto zots Santa


Worth A Thousand Words

palestinian-salute.jpgPalestinian students salute at the Arab American University near the West Bank town of Jenin (AP photo)

Meanwhile in Iran, “free thinkers” debate whether or not the Holocaust occurred.


Do you think these student saluters might have an opinion on the matter?

see also:

Doug’s helpful hints for understanding AP terminology

update:  the nazi salute would have come in handy for Lynne Stewart and friends at their Gloat PartyUrban Infidel has the scoop on their visit to the shindig.

Three Young Children of Hamas Opponent Killed


Palestinian gunmen killed the three young children of a leading enemy of the ruling Islamic Hamas movement today, firing dozens of rounds into their car as it passed through a street crowded with youngsters.

It is believed the assassination target was the children’€™s father, Baha Balousha, a senior Palestinian intelligence officer. He was not in the car. There has been no immediate claim of responsibility and Hamas has denounced the drive-by

The car was riddled with some 60 bullets by gunmen driving in two vehicles, Palestinian security officials said. Its seats, school bags and a small plastic bag with a sandwich in it were splattered with blood.

Three of Mr Balousha’€™s children, ranging in age from six to nine, were killed in addition to an adult, hospital officials said. Four more people were wounded in the attack in Palestine Street, lined with nine schools.


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Hamas hasn’t claimed responsibility, and the Times reporter was quick to point out that the children were not the target of the shooters. That is small consolation for the family.

h/t SwampWoman

update: BBC says motive “remains unclear” ,

(filed under — “motive? we don’t need no steenkin’ motive”)

update: AP says revenge for firing on Hamas motorcade is possible motive. During the funeral procession, mourners shouted “God is great” amid the sound of gunfire. (filed under — “let’s give them a state”)

Holocaust? What Holocaust?


TEHRAN, (Reuters) – Iran opened a conference on Monday to examine the Holocaust and question whether Nazi Germany used gas chambers to kill Jews, drawing condemnation in the West and criticism from Iran’s Jewish community.

Jewish rabbis were present at the government-sponsored event “Review of the Holocaust: Global Vision” alongside academics from Europe, where some countries have made it a crime to deny the Nazi killing of 6 million Jews from 1933 to 1945. “The aim of this conference is not to deny or confirm the Holocaust,” Foreign Minister Manouchehr Mottaki said in a welcome address. “Its main aim is to create an opportunity for thinkers who cannot express their views freely in Europe about the Holocaust.”

The event, which Iran has said will question whether gas chambers were actually used against the Jews, has drawn widespread criticism from Holocaust survivors, Jewish organisations, human rights groups and Western governments.

Sessions at the two-day conference, held at the Foreign Ministry’s Institute for Political and International Studies, were to include “Holocaust: Aftermath and Exploitation” and “Demography: Denial or Confirmation?”

The conference was inspired by President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, who since coming to power in August 2005 has sparked international condemnation with comments referring to the Holocaust as a “myth” and calling Israel a “tumour”.

Among the participants was U.S. academic David Duke, a former Louisiana Republican Representative. He praised Iran for hosting the event. “There must be freedom of speech, it is scandalous that the Holocaust cannot be discussed freely,” Duke, a former Ku Klux Klan leader told Reuters. “It makes people turn a blind eye to Israel’s crimes against the Palestinian people.”

French writer Georges Thiel, who has been convicted in France for spreading revisionist theories about the mass extermination of Jews, said the Holocaust was “an enormous lie.”


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There are two exports from the United States which may provide an opportunity for Europe to stop its downward spiral toward a muslim-dominated Eurabia. The first would be to embrace and promote free speech. Making a crime of any type of speech, no matter how outrageous, provides outlets for demogogues like Amadinejad to encourage this type of hate-speech under the guise of offering refuge to “free thinkers.” The second, of course, would be to allow private ownership of firearms.

Engineered Yeast Speeds Ethanol Production, Work Could Boost Supply Of Biofuel


MIT scientists have engineered yeast that can improve the speed and efficiency of ethanol production, a key component to making biofuels a significant part of the U.S. energy supply.

mit.jpgMIT professor of chemical engineering Gregory Stephanopoulos (left), postdoctoral associate Hal Alper and professor of biology Gerald Fink in the lab. The researchers have engineered a new strain of yeast that can produce ethanol more rapidly and efficiently. (Photo Credit: Donna Coveney)

Currently used as a fuel additive to improve gasoline combustibility, ethanol is often touted as a potential solution to the growing oil-driven energy crisis. But there are significant obstacles to producing ethanol: One is that high ethanol levels are toxic to the yeast that ferments corn and other plant material into ethanol.

By manipulating the yeast genome, the researchers have engineered a new strain of yeast that can tolerate elevated levels of both ethanol and glucose, while producing ethanol faster than un-engineered yeast.

The work will be reported in the Dec. 8 issue of Science.

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