31 May 2006

NATFHE boycott and blacklist of Israelis

I have strenuously avoided commenting on the NATFHE boycott and blacklist of Israelis, partly in the hope that it wouldn'’t pass and because so many other blogs do a much better job of commenting and analysing the arguments.

Still, NATFHE passed the motion and I am left wondering what it actually achieves?

Does it help the Palestinians one iota? No. Will it change Israeli government policy? No

So who will benefit from this motion? 1) I suspect some ex-student radicals with more inclination to posture than think. 2) The extreme right will be overjoyed at the "“lecturers taking a stand against the Zionist entity"”, etc

All very predictable and troublesome, but is there a ray of hope?

Probably, it seems that some academics will make a conscience effort to strengthen links with Israeli academics and hopefully with their Palestinian counterparts, examples such as the Olive Tree project should be expanded upon not curtailed.

20 May 2006

Iranian Hansard

The dispute from the over the alleged attempt in Iran to make non-Muslims wear badges, etc rolls on.

I was interested in why it was so hard to verify if a law in Iran had or had not been passed?

Does the Iranian parliament not have an equivalent of Hansard or a list of recently passed legislation?

Surely, in the 21st century that is not too much to ask for ?

By simply referring to such a list, as with the Congressional Record, it would be simple enought to confirm or deny the substance of the story?

Maybe they have more important things to spend their money on

15 May 2006

Nuremberg and Genocide

The recent passing of VE day some 61 years ago, made me reflect in the Nuremberg trials.

The Nuremberg trials of 1945 brought home to a wider audience the vile crimes of the Nazi regime.

The trials are documented at Avalon, Nizkor Project and Web Genocide Documentation Centre Home Page

Some of the legal issues are discussed here and this provides an overall summary.

The glossary provides links to crimes of Nazi Germany.

13 May 2006

Where's the Software?

Finding new and beta software across the web can be time consuming, so two sites that speed up the process are:

Beta News

Version Tracker

and if you need to roll back to a previous version, see Old Version

07 May 2006


After the recent local elections Nick Cohen highlights the dual danger of communalism in politics:

"The story of how the anti-war movement led to a merger of Trotskyists and Islamists is the British liberal-left's dirty secret and Respect rarely has to endure the level of scrutiny directed at the white far right. The BNP, however, has been generous in its praise, correctly recognising that a part of the left was now playing its game. It 'welcomed' George Galloway's victory in Bethnal Green in 2005 because it 'demonstrates very clearly to the [white] British voters that the Muslim community, when it forms an ethnic bloc in an area, chooses to vote only for those political parties that explicitly promote the interests of the Muslim community itself'.

While the BNP targets the whites, Respect targets the Muslims. Both parties have believers in Jewish conspiracy theory - the BNP engages in Holocaust denial and Respect's candidate for the mayorship of Newham declares: 'Israel has been formulating and directing UK and US foreign policy."

03 May 2006

MEMRI videos and FireFox

MEMRI is a very useful resource, and Engage highlighted the latest trip of Neturei Karta rabbis Dovid Weiss and Aharon Cohen to Iran, that I wanted to watch.

However, my favourite browser, Firefox, does not like the CastUP video page at MEMRI, but some solutions are at hand.

Cheap and nasty solution: Right click, Copy Link Location from the [Play button], start up M$ Media Player and paste into [File] Open URL space. It will now play, without IE.

Simple solution: Right click and Save Link As, later on open with your pet media player, such MPC

Better solution: download the extension, MediaPlayerConnectivity.

After re-starting Firefox it will go thru a Setup Wizard (best take the defaults), go to the required MEMRI video and click on Play.

MediaPlayerConnectivity will bring up a left panel, either select the individual video or click on Play as playlist, which should bring up the associated media player. It works with both Media Player Classic and M$ Media Player.

It is not perfect but given M$’s attitude and software, they will do for now and Firefox 1.0.7 seems fairly happy.

02 May 2006

Follow that Beta

Keeping track of the web's most wonderful and newest beta applications is almost a full time job, so to the rescue comes: MoMB!

The Museum of Modern Betas is "a site dedicated to listing webbased applications on a beta trip."

The top 100 beta applications list is very handy.