You are browsing the archive for 2014 October 26.

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A Nazi Soldier’s Snapshot of an Execution Haunted Me, and Taught Me to Distrust My Memory

October 26, 2014 in Blogs

By Glenn Patterson, The Guardian

“The expression on the victim’s face was not one of terror, but rather of disgust.”


I have been working off and on for a couple of years with an architect friend, Declan Hill, on an attempt to map the wall or rampart that in the 17th century surrounded the town of Belfast – or, at least, may have surrounded it. There is some debate about whether maps of the time show an existing structure or sketches for work never carried out. Declan and I meet occasionally to look at places where we think the old town plan intersects with, and occasionally contradicts, the modern city grid. One day a column in Argos on Corn Market, the next, a staircase in the Linen Hall Library.

Our thesis is that, even when all physical trace is gone, walls persist. Not altogether original, you might say, but in Belfast, where peace walls remain an all too visible fact, it is pertinent to Declan’s mind and mine. Our hope is that we can collaborate with an architectural institute in Berlin. Not altogether surprising, you might also say, but Berlin is a city to which we both feel bound by something more than bricks and mortar.

On my own first trip to Berlin, in the spring of 1990, I paid a visit to the Reichstag, whose rear wall was just feet from the other wall – the Berliner Mauer – and whose sole purpose seemed to be the housing of a “permanent” exhibition, Fragen an die Deutsche Geschichte (Questions on German History). The sixth of its seven rooms covered the period of the Third Reich, and there I encountered a photograph that showed a man kneeling, a soldier behind him with a pistol, and a crowd of onlookers. It was clear what was about to happen, yet the expression on the victim’s face was not one of terror, but rather of disgust that this thing was being done to him, that these people were capable not just of doing it, but of watching it being done.

I say I encountered this photograph. Actually, I was stricken before it.

Long after …read more

Source: ALTERNET

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Porn Star Lisa Ann on Her Relationship with Notre Dame Wide Receiver Justin Brent: “You Only Live Once"

October 26, 2014 in Blogs

By Jenny Kutner, Salon.com

“I am very entertained by the incredible amount of commentary about my date,” the 42-year-old adult actress tweeted.


It would seem, to put it plainly, that adult actress Lisa Ann does not give a damn what anyone thinks about her dating Notre Dame wide receiver Justin Brent, who happens to be 23 years her junior. Photos of the two together at the New York Knicks game on Wednesday sparked speculation among sports commentators, while TMZ confirmed the pair was, indeed, on a date. Later, Deadspin posted a photo of the couple in bed together, so if any questions remained… well, they didn’t need to.

Responses to news of the relationship were mixed, but few so bizarre as that of ESPN’s Darren Rovell. On Friday, the reporter tweeted a photo of a section of Notre Dame’s student code of conduct, along with the preface, “Notre Dame FB player Justin Brent went on date w/porn star. Here’s ND’s sex section in code of conduct.” The sexual activity guidelines state that “students who engage in sexual union outside of marriage may be subject to referral to the University Conduct Process,” which might not be great news for Brent.

Ann’s response to news of the relationship breaking, however, is of a different tone. The star of 2008′s “Who’s Nailin’ Paylin” took to Twitter to share her joy about dating a younger man:

I am very entertained today by the incredible amount of commentary about my date to the @nyknicks Game Last Night..

— Lisa Ann (@thereallisaann) October 24, 2014

 

I am a women NOT held back by my age, lucky for me, because the writers seem to make me out to be a dinosaur. 42 is NOT old, It is amazing! — Lisa Ann (@thereallisaann) October 24, 2014

The irony here is successful, older men have had beautiful young women on their arms in the past… Now it is MY turn to mix it up! — Lisa Ann (@thereallisaann) October 24, 2014

#MilfRevolution — Lisa Ann (@thereallisaann) October 24, 2014

This is YET another one of those times where i can say with a smile.. YOLO — Lisa Ann (@thereallisaann) October 24, 2014

 

Again …read more

Source: ALTERNET

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Ukraine's Parliamentary Elections Could Endanger Crisis Resolution

October 26, 2014 in Economics

By Emma Ashford

Emma Ashford

Ukrainian voters go to the polls on Sunday to elect members of the Verkhovna Rada — the first such parliamentary elections to be held since this spring’s Euromaidan protests. Although the last elections took place only in 2012, a new vote is urgently needed to bring the composition of the Rada more in line with the political environment that has taken hold since the ejection of President Viktor Yanukovych in February. While the vote will provide a fresh start for a parliament plagued with accusations of corruption, the outcome is uncertain, and there are several ways the vote could negatively affect the tentative peace plan between the central government and pro-Russian insurgents in the eastern provinces.

Through elections, President Petro Poroshenko, who can best be described as a pro-Western but pragmatic politician, is seeking a mandate for his handling of the conflict with Russia and for the removal of Yanukovych’s cronies from parliament. On Oct. 14, parliament passed several anti-corruption bills, including one that can strip civil servants suspected of corruption of their positions. It is hoped that the elections will reinforce these bills, electing a nominally clean parliament. Though Ukraine has a long history of corruption, such actions are important and may be instrumental in helping Ukraine obtain additional foreign funds to continue its fight in the Donbass.

It’s hailed as a clean-slate moment, but unpredictable coalition building may create obstacles to peace prospects.”

However, the primary consequence of the elections may be to shed light on new political actors in Ukraine. Insight into the makeup of the Euromaidan coalition may mean that U.S. and European leaders can no longer ignore some of its less than savory members. At present, the parties associated with Poroshenko are expected to be the clear winners of the elections, taking 30 to 35 percent of the vote (PDF), while other pro-European parties such as former Prime Minister Yulia Timoshenko’s Fatherland are expected to take about 7 percent of the vote (PDF). But it isunlikely that any party will hold an absolute majority, and ongoing disagreements between Poroshenko and Timoshenko may prevent their factions from forming a government, forcing Poroshenko to look elsewhere for coalition partners.

Other than the expected victory of the Poroshenko bloc, there is a high level of uncertainty about the likely makeup of the Rada, especially since polls were conducted nationally. This is …read more

Source: OP-EDS