Friday, December 29, 2006

The UN Finds the Courage?

UN sanctions against Iran... but keep it quiet.
"UNITED NATIONS, Dec. 23 -- The U.N. Security Council voted unanimously Saturday to restrict Iran's trade in sensitive nuclear materials and to freeze the assets of 22 Iranian officials and institutions linked to the country's most controversial nuclear programs.

The council's action culminated more than three years of diplomatic efforts by the United States to have Iran sanctioned for expanding its enrichment of uranium." -more

OK! So here's the question. Has the UN ended the year by showing that it understands the Iranian threat? Are we finishing 2006 on an up note? Or will 2007 prove UN's latest "stance" to have been a meaningless gesture?

What's your prediction for the UN in 2007?

Is it going to be a happy new year?


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Thursday, December 28, 2006

Seeing Out the Old Year (1981)

1981 Dry Bones cartoon - trying to make it through the final hours of the year in one piece.
I got a laugh out of this cartoon oldie from 1981. I don't usually laugh at my own cartoons, but there's an explanation.

I just broke my foot, and so have not managed to make it through this year in one piece.

I did it by falling out of my swivel chair while reaching for a package of treats for my pussy cat (Miss Kitty).

Now the funny thing about my misfortune was that just a few hours earlier I'd been listening to an American radio station (on the Internet) and heard the news that Arnold Schwarzenegger had just broken his leg skiing. It brought back memories of a scene, many many years ago in New York City. We were all sitting around enjoying a lovely Shabbes in a frum (observant) friend's apartment. A late arrival was an Israeli who lived in NY and who had gone off to learn to ski. What he actually did was to break his foot. And so he came lumbering in to the cozy Shabbat scene on crutches, expecting sympathy (and respect for his bravery) from his New York friends.

That was when our hostess, known for her incredible Jewish warmth and understanding, said the words that came ringing back to me when I heard of Schwarzenegger's misfortune.

What she said was "Goyim nachas!" which can best be translated as "the pleasures of gentiles".

It was just a few hours later that I broke my foot reaching for a bag of Friskies Tender Treats With Turkey.

I'd like to tell you that I did it skiing. But I can't.

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Wednesday, December 27, 2006

Never Say Never !

Olmert and Assad. Syrian guns and tanks back on the Golan Heights? It's like the old Jewish Folk Tale:

A Polish Duke decides to expel all Jews from his lands. The Rabbi and a delegation of Jews go to plead for mercy, but to no avail.

As they turn to leave the Duke's castle, the rabbi points to the nobleman's beautiful hunting dog.

"A really impressive animal," says the rabbi. "Can he speak?" "Of course not" says the Polish Nobleman, "Dogs can't speak."

"In one year," says the rabbi "using my secret Jewish magic, I can teach your dog to speak perfect Polish. In return, all that I ask is peace for the Jews of our little village" .

"Done," says the nobleman. "If the dog talks in a year, you Jews can stay. But if you fail I will have you killed and your people driven from their homes."

On the way back home, the frightened Jews shout at the rabbi, "What have you done?! You promised to teach the dog to talk!!? Are you CRAZY?! One year from now the Duke will kill you and drive us from our homes!! "

"Look" explained the Rabbi "He gave me a whole year,"A lot can happen in a whole year. The dog could die. The Duke could die. I could die... and who knows?!! Maybe the dog will learn to speak."

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Tuesday, December 26, 2006

The Time Traveler (1998)

1998 Dry Bones cartoon - the 1900's seem old-sounding already, the 21st century lies dead ahead.
I was 11 years old when the year changed from 1949 to 1950. Wow! That was a biggie. Of course every day, in school, I had to carefully print the date at the top of my paper. I was never again as impressed by a date change... Until we started looking ahead to the new century. In this cartoon from December 1998 I was already feeling awe at the idea that we'd soon be living in the 21st century!!

Back when I was an 11 year-old school kid I calculated that if I lived to see the 21st century, I'd be a really old guy. I was right.

At first I wrote the date as 2000. It just didn't feel right using '00. By now, '06 feels natural. As will '07.

So how 'bout you guys out there? Did you have a major decade change that was particularly impressive?

Do you sometimes feel like you're traveling through time?

Or is it only me?


Monday, December 25, 2006

Bahais in Egypt

The Bahai religion, now under attack in Egypt? The moderate country in the region?The Middle East is home to many different ethnic groups, cultures, and religions. Under Arab/Moslem domination, the non-Arab indigenous peoples of the region and the non-Moslem religious faiths are under attack. We have been delegitimized and are depicted as foreign to our own homeland.

The Egyptian court has now declared the Bahai religion illegal, defining its followers as apostates of Islam. The ruling means that Egypt's Bahais are unable to receive national identification cards... Without which they cannot register births, receive essential government services such as health and education, cannot apply for jobs, buy property, open bank accounts, or register their children in school.

Read about it here.

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Friday, December 22, 2006

Sad Santa

The Christian Exodus from BethlehemYears ago, when I lived in Jerusalem, I was only a 20 minute drive away from Bethlehem. I'd visit the Christian town 2 or 3 times a week. I made local friends and enjoyed the local food and atmosphere.

After a year or so of hanging out, I introduced a buddy to a Jewish acquaintance as a Palestinian.

Afterwards, my Bethlehemite friend, bristling with anger, demanded "Why did you say I was a Palestinian?!" I said that when we'd first met, he'd identified himself as a Palestinian. His response was "When we first met you were just another Israeli Jew, what did you expect me to say?! Now you are my friend. Now you know Bethlehem. How can you call me a Palestinian?! I am a Christian!!"

Sadly, after the Palestinian takeover of Bethlehem there was no room for a Jewish visitor. Apparently there's not much room left for the Christians either. The Christian population has dropped from 85 - 90% to a shocking 15-20%!!

My friend and his family and probably most of my other Bethlehemite friends have emigrated. Santa won't find their stockings and Christmas trees in the little Christian town of their birth. And I won't be visiting either.

For me, it is a sad and personal story.

The Palestinian Authority blames the flight of Christians on Israel. It's the story that will probably play on your TV screens next week. So check out the following from World News Daily:

"'All this talk about Israel driving Christians out and causing pain is nonsense,' a Bethlehem Christian community leader told WND. 'You want to know what is at play here, just come throughout the year and see the intimidation from the Muslims. They have burned down our stores, built mosques in front of our churches, stole our real estate and took away our rights. Women have been raped and abducted. So don't tell me about Israel. It's the Muslims.' -more"

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Thursday, December 21, 2006

An American Holiday (1995)

1995 Dry Bones cartoon -Chanukkah and Christmas.
Tomorrow night is the last night of the 8-day Hanukkah holiday. Two nights later is Christmas eve. In the US, Christmas has become an American holiday. A national celebration of peace, goodwill, love, and gift-giving.
This Americanized, secular version of the Christian holy day presents a real problem to Jewish parents, whose kids feel deprived by not having Christmas Trees, not hanging up stockings, and not anticipating visits from jolly old Santa Claus.

Curiously, here in Israel, New Year's Eve is seen as a religious Christian holiday!?!

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Wednesday, December 20, 2006

Iraqi Lost Cause?

Saddam's trial was supposed to be part of the birth of a new Iraqi democracy, now his execution will feel like just another Iraqi killing.
Did we drop the ball in Iraq? Is it hopeless?
Or have we been misled by Western media?

Should US forces withdraw from Baghdad to Iraq's borders to cut off the terrorists flowing into the country from Iran and Syria ?!

Does America have the will to fight a war? To confront its enemies on a battlefield? Or is it in fact all over for America and Western civilization?

Is Iraq a "Lost Cause"?

Your thoughts?

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Tuesday, December 19, 2006

Hanukka (1996)

1996 Dry Bones cartoon -Chanukka.
Chanukka, Chanukkah, Hanukka, Hanuka,...

It's time that the Jewish people came together to settle once and for all how to spell the holiday name in English!

Of course given the fact that 60 years after the German slaughter of the Jews and their wiping us off the map of Europe, we face another genocide which the European nations seem ready to ignore and the Moslem nations seem ready to support, agreeing on a standard English language spelling of our 8-day holiday of freedom does not appear to be a high priority item.

So I guess I'll have to continue struggling with the spelling problem in silence.
Happy Holiday!

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Monday, December 18, 2006


This year the eight-day holiday (Chanukka, Chanukah, Hanukkah...) began on Friday evening (Dec. 15).

What is Chanukah to me?
I explained it last year.

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Friday, December 15, 2006

Occupied Territories (1977)

Click on the cartoon below to open a larger, more readable version of this full page Dry Bones Special:1977 Dry Bones cartoon -Jimmy Carter demands a Withdrawal from Occupied Territories - and Israeli Prime Minister Menahem Begin gives Jimmy a History Lesson

As promised on Thursday, here is the famous cartoon that, close to 30 years ago, back in 1977, gave Jimmy Carter an accurate history lesson in Occupied Territories.

The teacher in the 'toon was Menahem Begin, then Israel's feisty Prime Minister.

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Thursday, December 14, 2006

An Answer for Carter (1977)

1977 Dry Bones cartoon -President Carter puts on the pressure for an Israeli withdrawal.
Some of the architects of America's 20th century mistakes in the Middle East are now staggering back from oblivion to try to re-sell us their same old ideas. Former President Carter's new book is just a re-peddling of his standard anti-Israeli snake oil.

This cartoon from a Thursday back in 1977 promised the next-day publication of a response to Carter's demands for an Israeli surrender of land.

The special cartoon we ran that Friday became the most popular Dry Bones ever published.
Stop back tomorrow
We'll be running it again.

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Wednesday, December 13, 2006

Baker Explains

The Iraq Study Group Dumps On Israel
How does Baker's "Iraq Study Group" report sound to reformers in the region?

MEMRI (the Middle East Media Research Institute) has provided a translation of "The Poisonous Report", an editorial that was posted on the Arabic reformist website on December 8, 2006.

"the transition to what the Group referred to as 'The Political and Diplomatic Combat,' which aims at involving Iran and Iraq in the determination of Iraq's destiny, would require a price which the U.S. will have to pay.
Here lies the essence of this whole report. The price is to completely abandon the spreading of democracy in the Middle East, and to begin a dialogue with the dictatorial regimes of Damascus and Tehran."

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Tuesday, December 12, 2006

Bush and Baker (1992)

1992 Dry Bones cartoon -James Baker and George Bush... it's easier to deal with dictators.
This cartoon is from February 2, 1992.
Frankly I'm getting tired of pointing out how these "golden oldies" are as appropriate today as they were back then!!

James Baker is one of the architects of today's Middle East mess. Now, close to 15 years later, Baker is back. As is Jimmy Carter. Trying to sell us their same old tired, failed ideas about appeasing Arab dictators and pressuring the area's only democracy.

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Monday, December 11, 2006

And Mel Makes Two.

The Iraq Study Group Dumps On Israel
Pretty scary stuff for Israelis:
"Jerusalem ( - In its recommendations regarding the Israeli-Arab conflict, the Iraq Study Group's report does not take into consideration the reality on the ground in the Middle East, analysts here said Thursday." -more

...And pro-Democracy Iraqis:

"Nowhere was the Iraq Study Group report met with a stronger rebuke than in the northern Kurdish region of the country where the U.S. has developed its strongest alliance. According to U.S. intelligence sources, Kurdish leaders today reacted to what they fear is another U.S. betrayal of their people by advising all their personnel in Baghdad to develop evacuation plans" -more

The ISG report was, of course, welcomed by many others in the region:

"Many American readers felt I was an Arab extremist. Now, their own officials and senators, from both the Democratic and Republican parties, are in agreement." -more

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Friday, December 08, 2006

The Smoking Gun

Human Shields
Why did Israel lose the war in Lebanon?
Why is America foundering in Iraq?!

The New York Times has reported on Israel's longstanding condemnation of Hizbullah for deliberately using Lebanese civilian areas to launch missiles at Israel during this past summer's Second Lebanon War. The report quotes extensively from a recently declassified analysis by the Intelligence and Terrorism Information Center at the Center for Special Studies, compiled by Dr. Reuven Erlich, a retired lieutenant-colonel in IDF Intelligence.

The just-declassified analysis is based on evidence seized by Israel in Lebanon and on secret video footage, showing that Hizbullah had, over the past 10 years, carefully planned its strategy of forcing civilian casualties in a projected war against the State of Israel.

A strategy for defeating Western Democracies.

The American Jewish Congress had worked closely with the compilers of the classified analysis and then released it to the NY Times.

To see some of the up-till-now secret videos of captured Hezbollah terrorists - Click below:
Video 1
Video 2
Video 3

The highly detailed analysis clearly outlines the trap that Western Democracies (which naturally follow the rules of war and the Geneva convention) face when we are attacked by non-governmental puppet terrorist organizations like Hamas, Hizbullah, Al Queda, etc. To read the full analysis which was reported on by the NY Times (PDF format), click here.

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Thursday, December 07, 2006

Wishing for Peace (1993)

1993 Dry Bones cartoon -the Peace Process and Israeli Optimism about the Other Side's Desire for Peace.
I did this cartoon at the end of December in 1993 and snail-mailed it out to subscribing newspapers. Thirteen years ago this month. I dated the signature as 1994 because that's when it would be printed.

This is another one of those cartoons that I could run today without any changes.


Wednesday, December 06, 2006

Opportunity Knocks

Will Arabs and Jews really only stop fighting when they face a common enemy? ...Like Iran?!
Is it true? Will Arabs and Jews really only stop fighting when we face a common enemy?
Is Ahmadinejad's threat of a Persian/Shiite takeover of the Middle East enough to bring us all to our senses?
Or not?

Your thoughts please?


Tuesday, December 05, 2006

The French (1996)

1996 Dry Bones cartoon -Optimism Pessimism about French anti Israeli positions.

I picked this Dry Bones "Golden Oldie" from 1996 to run today.
I chose it because we've just been treated to a visit by Ségolène Royal, the French socialist presidential candidate. She came to us after visiting Beirut, where Lebanese MP Ali Ammar denounced US “insanity” and compared Israel to the Nazis.

In a 20-minute tirade Mr Ammar attacked “unlimited American insanity” for sending troops into Afghanistan and Iraq. He then said that Israeli “Nazism” was no better than Hitler’s Third Reich.
Ms Royal, who is on her first overseas trip since winning the Socialist Party primary, replied: “Thank you for being so frank. I agree with a lot of the things you have said, notably your analysis of the US.”

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Monday, December 04, 2006

An Iranian Lebanon

Iranian Nukes in Lebanon? On Israel's border?
For a non-Israeli assessment of the threat to Lebanon I turned to some Arab bloggers:

A Lebanese view:

"Yesterday, fellow blogger abu kais and i sat down for a discussion. He said something profound: either hizballah goes or Lebanon goes - simple. I agree. In fact, I feel Lebanon is on the brink of 'going.'" -more
An Egyptian view:
"I don’t want to see this..
I can't believe this stupid shit is happening all over again!
Hezbollah supporters, I hope you like what you are turning your country into; it will no longer be there once you are done!"

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Friday, December 01, 2006

Ignoring the New Hitler

Ahmadinejad as the new Hitler, and the West as the old appeasers

"It's 1938, Ahmadinejad is Hitler, and he's trying to get nuclear weapons." is from a speech by Bibi Netanyahu. I mentioned the quote in a phone conversation with a friend. He responded with "Wow. Could you imagine anything scarier?!"
I immediately recognized that we had the first two panels of a four panel Dry Bones cartoon. The punchline was easy... Because the willingness of the "civilized" world to ignore the threat is the really scary horror story of the day.

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