12 Things to Tell Your CIA Captors

December 28, 2007

interrogation.pngThe news that David Hicks is out of prison (released from Adelaide (Australia) prison this morning) has barely rated a mention here. “David who?”, you may well ask. Otherwise known as Detainee 002. Or perhaps more infamously, the only person to have been convicted by the US as part of the the post September 11 laws introduced to round up anyone who supported the Taliban or anyone else who points an AK47 at the US. Read more

The Most Powerful Tribe in Iraq

December 27, 2007

us-soldier-plays-oud290x200.jpgHaving spent a few weeks in Baghdad this year means I am a bit like a reformed smoker – paying close attention to as many related issues as I can and probably driving people crazy with my newfound interest in the place. But it does mean that occasionally you find articles which provide interesting and useful insight into the situation. When I was there Baghdad bombs were still rattling our windows Read more

Shantaram – Buying Your Own Christmas Present Can be a Gift

December 25, 2007

shantaram290x.jpgI must have been asleep to have missed this one. A novel published in 2003 that is 350,000 words off the pen of first time novelist Gregory David Roberts. I found it while shopping for Christmas gifts for others. I often buy books at random, if only to expand my reading horizons. Read more

It is Best Not To Mix too Much

December 23, 2007

“If you want a good neighbor, you have to have a place for everybody. It’s best not to mix too much.” Nadav Garmi, Rakafet

amman-skyline.jpgOne of the lesser known but interesting facts about the composition of Israel’s armies during their so called wars of liberation and independence (and defence) was the Arab component which made up about 60% of the soldiery. Read more

Faith in Politics

December 22, 2007

rudd290x200.jpgAustralia has a new Prime Minister who appears to have the convictions of a practising Christian. What difference does that make you might wonder? Hard to say at this point. Previously we have had Prime Ministers and ministers who have been ambiguous about their faith – you can never pin them down as to what they believe – Christian or otherwise. Read more

Best City in the World

December 20, 2007

sydney290x200.jpgWe all want to claim that title for our home towns but on a day like today, when Sydney is at its humid, sunny, sparkling best, it is hard to not want to say that we live in a pretty neat part of the scrub. Read more

Scarlett on Digital Canvas

December 19, 2007

Scarlett JohannsonPainting in oils is something I don’t do enough of but it is one of those activities which is brilliantly eccentric (especially if you land up in a collective of wanna-be’s in an evening class (a “brush of artists”?)) and something that eats up the hours in a flash. Therapeutic in a word. Read more

Russia Sexes it Up

December 16, 2007

Delta IVWhen I first started really paying attention to the Russian navy (I think it was a P3C Orion flight that did it) the Russians had been poking around in this part of the world for years. Sending their subs out into the Pacific and holidaying in Vietnam at Cam Ranh Bay with their warships for more years than anyone except the cash strapped Vietnamese cared for. Read more

“We are Better Behaved These Days” – CIA

December 15, 2007

John KiriakouLet me just strap you to this board. Better hand me your coffee before you lie down. Now, if you don’t mind just hold still while I wrap your face in clingwrap so you can’t breath. Comfortable? Read more

Emanuel Schmidt Trio

December 14, 2007

Emanuel SchmidtI am a fan of Emanuel Schmidt. Not his biggest fan. I think that medal goes to his wife who is a pretty vocal supporter when she attends any of his gigs. And I am in line behind a whole bunch of others. But his passion for good music is infectious. Read more

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