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April 21, 2014

Andrew Silow-Carroll: Passoverkill? Suggestions to make next year's seders even more culturally sensitive

Sara Israelsen Hartley: Seeking the Divine: An ancient connection in a new context

Christine M. Flowers: Priest's execution in Syria should be call to action

Courtnie Erickson: How to help kids accept the poor decisions of others

Lizette Borreli: A Glass Of Milk A Day Keeps Knee Arthritis At Bay

Lizette Borreli: 5 Health Conditions Your Breath Knows Before You Do

The Kosher Gourmet by Betty Rosbottom Coconut Walnut Bars' golden brown morsels are a beautifully balanced delectable delight

April 18, 2014

Rabbi Yonason Goldson: Clarifying one of the greatest philosophical conundrums in theology

Caroline B. Glick: The disappearance of US will

Megan Wallgren: 10 things I've learned from my teenagers

Lizette Borreli: Green Tea Boosts Brain Power, May Help Treat Dementia

John Ericson: Trying hard to be 'positive' but never succeeding? Blame Your Brain

The Kosher Gourmet by Julie Rothman Almondy, flourless torta del re (Italian king's cake), has royal roots, is simple to make, . . . but devour it because it's simply delicious

April 14, 2014

Rabbi Dr Naftali Brawer: Passover frees us from the tyranny of time

Greg Crosby: Passing Over Religion

Eric Schulzke: First degree: How America really recovered from a murder epidemic

Georgia Lee: When love is not enough: Teaching your kids about the realities of adult relationships

Cameron Huddleston: Freebies for Your Lawn and Garden

Gordon Pape: How you can tell if your financial adviser is setting you up for potential ruin

Dana Dovey: Up to 500,000 people die each year from hepatitis C-related liver disease. New Treatment Has Over 90% Success Rate

Justin Caba: Eating Watermelon Can Help Control High Blood Pressure

The Kosher Gourmet by Joshua E. London and Lou Marmon Don't dare pass over these Pesach picks for Manischewitz!

April 11, 2014

Rabbi Hillel Goldberg: Silence is much more than golden

Caroline B. Glick: Forgetting freedom at Passover

Susan Swann: How to value a child for who he is, not just what he does

Cameron Huddleston: 7 Financial Tasks You Should Tackle Right Now

Sandra Block and Lisa Gerstner: How to Profit From Your Passion

Susan Scutti: A Simple Blood Test Might Soon Diagnose Cancer

Chris Weller: Have A Slow Metabolism? Let Science Speed It Up For You

The Kosher Gourmet by Diane Rossen Worthington Whitefish Terrine: A French take on gefilte fish

April 9, 2014

Jonathan Tobin: Why Did Kerry Lie About Israeli Blame?

Samuel G. Freedman: A resolution 70 years later for a father's unsettling legacy of ashes from Dachau

Jessica Ivins: A resolution 70 years later for a father's unsettling legacy of ashes from Dachau

Kim Giles: Asking for help is not weakness

Kathy Kristof and Barbara Hoch Marcus: 7 Great Growth Israeli Stocks

Matthew Mientka: How Beans, Peas, And Chickpeas Cleanse Bad Cholesterol and Lowers Risk of Heart Disease

Sabrina Bachai: 5 At-Home Treatments For Headaches

The Kosher Gourmet by Daniel Neman Have yourself a matzo ball: The secrets bubby never told you and recipes she could have never imagined

April 8, 2014

Lori Nawyn: At Your Wit's End and Back: Finding Peace

Susan B. Garland and Rachel L. Sheedy: Strategies Married Couples Can Use to Boost Benefits

David Muhlbaum: Smart Tax Deductions Non-Itemizers Can Claim

Jill Weisenberger, M.S., R.D.N., C.D.E : Before You Lose Your Mental Edge

Dana Dovey: Coffee Drinkers Rejoice! Your Cup Of Joe Can Prevent Death From Liver Disease

Chris Weller: Electric 'Thinking Cap' Puts Your Brain Power Into High Gear

The Kosher Gourmet by Marlene Parrish A gift of hazelnuts keeps giving --- for a variety of nutty recipes: Entree, side, soup, dessert

April 4, 2014

Rabbi David Gutterman: The Word for Nothing Means Everything

Charles Krauthammer: Kerry's folly, Chapter 3

Amy Peterson: A life of love: How to build lasting relationships with your children

John Ericson: Older Women: Save Your Heart, Prevent Stroke Don't Drink Diet

John Ericson: Why 50 million Americans will still have spring allergies after taking meds

Cameron Huddleston: Best and Worst Buys of April 2014

Stacy Rapacon: Great Mutual Funds for Young Investors

Sarah Boesveld: Teacher keeps promise to mail thousands of former students letters written by their past selves

The Kosher Gourmet by Sharon Thompson Anyone can make a salad, you say. But can they make a great salad? (SECRETS, TESTED TECHNIQUES + 4 RECIPES, INCLUDING DRESSINGS)

April 2, 2014

Paul Greenberg: Death and joy in the spring

Dan Barry: Should South Carolina Jews be forced to maintain this chimney built by Germans serving the Nazis?

Mayra Bitsko: Save me! An alien took over my child's personality

Frank Clayton: Get happy: 20 scientifically proven happiness activities

Susan Scutti: It's Genetic! Obesity and the 'Carb Breakdown' Gene

Lecia Bushak: Why Hand Sanitizer May Actually Harm Your Health

Stacy Rapacon: Great Funds You Can Own for $500 or Less

Cameron Huddleston: 7 Ways to Save on Home Decor

The Kosher Gourmet by Steve Petusevsky Exploring ingredients as edible-stuffed containers (TWO RECIPES + TIPS & TECHINQUES)

Jewish World Review May 19, 2005 / 10 Iyar, 5765

Just What Was the Point of That Newsweek Story, Anyway?

By James Lileks


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http://www.JewishWorldReview.com | Did no one at Newsweek consider the difficulty of flushing a book down the toilet? Perhaps the editors assumed American technical ingenuity had developed a commode capable of consuming a Tom Clancy paperback in six seconds. Heck, when they fire that thing up, the suction makes cots in detention cells screech along the floor toward the bars. Was this the toilet for which that famous $700 seat was invented?

Newsweek has retracted its story about the flushed holy book, for all the good it will do.

It's another hit for the Big Old Media, but this time it wasn't bloggers who brought them down. Web sites did not spring into action with technical drawings proving the aperture of pipes at Gitmo was too narrow to accommodate bound volumes. No blogger demolished the source's resume, because he's anonymous. No one even suggested that the Quran in question was mocked up in Microsoft Word. No, this was self-inflicted: an example of people trying to win a race by shooting themselves in the foot.

The alternative media will profit — not because of their skepticism, necessarily, but because of the questions they asked about Newsweek's judgment and motivation. Put simply: What was served by running the story in the first place?

That's not the point, some would say; news is news, and we cannot censor ourselves if we worry about the reaction. (Unless we're worried about Red America going on a lynching spree, in which case we have to stop showing pictures of people jumping out of the World Trade Center.) Truth is truth and must be told; if there's a Marine out there somewhere holding the Quran with the wrong hand, we have to find him and run the picture. Look, religious sensitivities must be respected. (Unless you're talking about appointments to the federal appellate courts.)

It's not right to ask whose side the media are on. They're on the side of America, of course. But it's a rather perfect version they love — at least more than the real messy manifestation.

They want the United States to be respected and true to its ideals, and that's why it's important to run a little blurb informing the world that .0000000001 percent of its armed forces put a holy book in the loo to get some information from a detainee. (One wonders, if the detainee had 'fessed up to a plan to bring down the Newsweek headquarters, would the editors have felt relief or regret?)

They want America to be good, which is why the actions of some yahoos on one wacky night in Abu Ghraib must overshadow and define the entirety of the reconstruction effort.

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They want the soldiers to win, of course — of course! But if a Marine shoots an enemy who's already down but may have a suicide belt, this must lead the news. Future enemies will know we play clean, and do the same. "Play clean" for them means using a fresh scimitar for beheading, but it's a start.

Everything makes sense from an office high in Manhattan. It's all quite clear.

Newsweek's Jonathan Alter summed up the Big Media position on Don Imus' show: "I think the larger question that people have to ask is, do they want news organizations out there trying to dig or do they want to take all their information from the government? And we are still, you know, pretty determined, very determined, to be out there digging."

True. Absolutely true. But to what end?

In any case, the story has been retracted. Some corners of the Muslim world might consider whether desecration allegations on the other side of the planet are worth deadly riots. (Cue the "Final Jeopardy" theme.) After all, if destroying the Quran is a problem, one wonders if there would have been riots had FBI investigators found remnants of the hijackers' copies in the wreckage of the World Trade Center, the Pentagon, Flight 93 and other atrocities carried out in the book's name.

To which the rioters might ask:

Why would Mossad agents be carrying the Quran?

Every weekday JewishWorldReview.com publishes what many in in the media and Washington consider "must-reading". Sign up for the daily JWR update. It's free. Just click here.

JWR contributor James Lileks is a columnist for the Minneapolis Star Tribune. Comment by clicking here.

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© 2005, James Lileks

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