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Israeli Prime Minister Ehud Olmert insisted that the war with Lebanon would continue, and the Lebanese government rejected an internationally-brokered peace plan, claiming it favored Israel.Washington PostHezbollah leader Sheik Hassan Nasrallah boasted that his forces were inflicting “maximum casualties” and warned Israel that if it “bombed our capital Beirut, we will bomb the capital of your usurping entity”; he also called on his fellow Arab leaders to “be men for just one day.”NY TimesCNNLebanon’sstock exchange reopened,NY TimesNY TimesBBCand the mayor of Beirut said war with Israel was bad for the environment.Globe and MailEnglish Prime Minister Tony Blair said there was an “arc of extremism” stretching across the Middle East that could be defeated, he proposed, by “an alliance of moderation.”BBCIn Cairo, Muslims took to the street carrying posters of Hassan Nasrallah, chanting “O Sunni! O Shiite! Let’s fight the Jews.”NY TimesIn Iraq, President Jalal Talabani vowed to “terminate terrorism” by 2007;BBCin Baghdad, 100,000 Shiites attended a “million-man” march in support of Hezbollah. The AustralianU.S. General John Abizaid told the Senate Armed Services Committee that “Iraq could move toward civil war.”NY TimesA lawyer who represents one of four American paratroopers accused of murdering three Iraqi detainees told a military court in Tikrit that the dead men “got exactly what they deserved,”BBC and BBCand Staff Sergeant Frank D. Wuterich sued CongressmanJack Murtha for defamation of character.Washington PostCorporal Phillip E. Baucus, 28, nephew of U.S. SenatorMax Baucus, was killed in action in Iraq,Bloomberg via Google Newsand Lance Corporal Mark Beyers, an Iraq war veteran and double amputee, was attacked and robbed outside a restaurant in Bethesda, Maryland.Local6.com
The Senate Permanent Investigations subcommittee reported that law enforcement agencies were powerless to prevent the super-rich from cheating on their taxes, NY Timesand the Food and Drug Administration almost approved over-the-counter sales of the oral contraceptive Plan B.NY TimesPresident Bush encouraged the people of Cuba to seek regime change,Reutersand SenatorHillary Clinton called on Donald Rumsfeld to resign.allheadlinenews.com via Google NewsIn California, Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger said Tony Blair should be named United Nations secretary-general when he steps down as prime minister. “It’s a big job that he has right now,” Schwarzenegger said, “and I think whatever job he wants he will get, because he has such a great success rate at home and he has done such a remarkable job, I think.”CNNThe London School of Economics determined that good-looking couples are 36 percent more likely than their ugly counterparts to have femaleoffspring,Washington Postand a Chicago woman was suing Borders Books after she was “permanently disfigured” in a toilet seat accident.CBS2 ChicagoA study conducted at Texas A&M University found that cigarette smoking reduced the impact of alcohol on inebriated rats. “I hope people won’t interpret that as a good thing,” said lead researcher Wei-Jung Chen.Seed MagazineScientists at the Centers for Disease Control failed in their attempts to create a more virulent strain of bird flu,Washington Postand threatening letters sent to federal officials by Donald Ray Bilby, 30, who is currently serving time for auto theft in Trenton, New Jersey, included his full name, signature, and inmate number.Mail and GuardianNaveed Afzal Haq, the man accused of an anti-Semitic shooting attack in Seattle, was described as a “hothead” with a “chip on his shoulder,” by his former boss, Thomas de Winter: “He didn’t take instruction well.”UPI via Google News
In Japan, on the Day of the Dog, Princess Kiko prayed for the safe delivery of her third child.BBCIn China 50,000 dogs died in Yunnan province when government-authorized “killing teams” crept into villages at night and beat the dogs to death.Local6.comBasketball player Yao Ming announced he would no longer eat shark finsoup because “endangered species are our friends.”NY TimesIn New Delhi, the commuter rail authority was using a black-faced langur monkey to frighten other monkeys,BBCand in New York a man bit the head off a rooster that he accused of harming his pigeon.AOL NewsEngland’s Alton Towers theme park canceled “National Muslim Fun Day,”Reutersand hotel owners in Italy made plans to open women-only Muslim beaches.Breitbart.comWild bison took over a small Canadian town. “Try and get an insurance claim done after your car was kicked by a buffalo,” said one local resident. “The adjustor will just laugh at you.”Mail and GuardianA 14-foot blue marlin stabbed angler Ian Card in the chest during a fishing rodeo off Bermuda.Daily MailRacer Cristiano da Matta’s Champ Car collided with a deer in Elkhart Lake, Wisconsin,cnnsi.comand a laser-equipped research aircraft owned by NASA was being used to locate woodpeckers in the Mississippi Delta.CNNAn English paleobiologist announced that the crests of giant prehistoric flying reptiles signified sexual maturity, much like a “giant cockerel’s comb.”BBCAt least 25,000 chickens died in Indiana from the heat,CNNand geologists in Ohio were baffled by the earthquakes in suburban Cleveland.CNNNacreous clouds, which occur only in temperatures lower than minus 176 degrees Fahrenheit, were observed above Antarctica,Yahoo Newsand a fireball streaked through the night sky over Lakeway, Texas.Local6.comBungs, drugs, and wholesale cheating were declared to be the norm in all major sports.Observer UK
More from Theodore Ross:
Number of free condoms handed out by the Brazilian government in advance of Carnival this year:
The best way to measure happiness is simply to ask people how happy they are.
Following three weeks of clashes between protesters and government forces that killed at least 17 people, Venezuelan president Nicolás Maduro announced a two-day extension of Carnival. “Happiness will conquer the embittered,” he said during an appearance at a recreation center.
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“American politics has often been an arena for angry minds.”