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Israel and Hamas agreed to a one-week ceasefire in Gaza, where Gazan officials estimated that 1,300 Palestinians had died.Hamas Agrees to One-Week Cease-Fire in Gaza Conflict“My grandmother was ill in bed when the Nazis came to her home town of Staszow,” said Sir Gerald Kaufman, a British MP who was raised as an Orthodox Jew. “A German soldier shot her dead in her bed. My grandmother did not die to provide cover for Israeli soldiers murdering Palestinian grandmothers.”UK Jewish lawmaker: Israeli forces acting like NazisA Berlin court ruled to allow the display of Hamas flags and paraphernalia at anti-Israel protests, while at a pro-Hamas rally in the city of Duisburg, German police stormed an apartment to tear down an Israeli flag hanging from its balcony.Germany OK’s Hamas Flags at Rallies… Rips Down Israeli Flags South Korea put its military on alert after North Korea announced it had “weaponized” enough plutonium for four to five nuclear weapons and threatened “an all-out confrontational posture.” SKorea army on alert after North’s military threatTom Cruise, visiting Seoul, said “I’ve always wanted to kill Hitler.”North Korea says plutonium “weaponized” and off-limitsTom Cruise ‘Always Wanted to Kill Hitler’ At the Lincoln Memorial in Washington, D.C., President-elect Barack Obama greeted joyful crowds gathered in anticipation of his inauguration. Beyonce, Bruce Springsteen, Bono, Jon Bon Jovi, Mary J. Blige, and Garth Brooks performed. “Anything,” said Obama, “is possible.”‘Anything possible,’ Obama tells joyous crowdThe Obama family prayed at the Nineteenth Street Baptist Church. “Martin Luther King walked so that Barack Obama could run,” said one boy. “Barack Obama ran,” said another, “so that all children could fly.”19th St. Baptist’s Glory: The ObamasA Mississippi man was arrested for posting his plans to kill the President-elect on a UFO-spotting website. “It’s not because I’m racist that I will kill Barack,” wrote the man, “it’s because I can no longer allow the Jewish parasites to bully their way into making the American people submit to their evil ways.”Man charged with threatening Obama on websiteVice-president-elect Joe Biden announced that he was “the most experienced vice president since anybody.” He continued: “The proof of the pudding is in the eating. The Bush-Cheney relationship hasnâ??t tasted very good. Not a single person you can name for me… can tell you that the pudding has tasted good.”Biden Outlines Plans to Do More With Less PowerMore Americans were joining the military,More Americans Joining Military as Jobs Dwindle and more Missourians were eating raccoon.The other dark meat: Raccoon is making it to the table
In New York City, a plane collided with a flock of “big, dark-brown” birds and crashed into the Hudson River. All 155 people on board were successfully rescued. One passenger cried with relief as he imagined reuniting with his daughter. “When I get home, I am going to take my nose and put it by her ear, her little warm body and give her a nice kiss from Daddy. I’m alive.”All 155 safe after pilot ditches jet in NYC riverBird strike confirmed in US crash U.S. Airways crash: survivor accounts in their own wordsAt a monster-truck rally in Tacoma, Washington, a metal part flew loose from a truck doing doughnuts, killing a six-year-old boy. “You go out for a night of fun,” said Jessie Hizey, the boy’s father, “and you lose your son.”Parts of Monster Truck Examined After Boy’s Death Little Debbie snacks containing peanut-butter paste were recalled after they were linked to an outbreak of salmonella,F.D.A. Cautions on Peanut Butter and a study warned that Vicks VapoRub may cause bronchial inflammation and suffocation if used on children younger than two.Vicks VapoRub may put infants at risk, study findsAllergan, the drug company that developed Botox, announced the release of Latisse, a new prescription medication for growing longer, thicker eyelashes.Love the Long Eyelashes. Whoâ??s Your Doctor? A judge in New York refused to jail Bernard Madoff, who is under house arrest until he can be tried for securities fraud, saying that the financier was neither a flight risk nor a danger to the community. Prosecutors had argued that Madoff broke the terms of his bail by mailing more than $1 million worth of diamond-studded jewelry to family and friends. Madoff’s lawyer, Ira Lee Sorkin, defended his client by telling the judge that many of the items mailed were relatively inexpensive, such as a pair of $200 mittens.U.S. loses another bid to jail Madoff$173 Million in Madoff Checks Reportedly Found
Environmental researchers announced that performing two Google searches generates the same amount of carbon dioxide as boiling a kettle.Revealed: the environmental impact of Google searchesAndrew Wyeth died,Andrew Wyeth, Painter, Dies at 91 and the former rock star Boy George was sentenced to 15 months in prison for imprisoning a Norwegian escort, handcuffing him to a bed, and beating him with a chain.Boy George: A hero destroyed by drug ‘degradation’Sri Lanka’s army killed eighteen civilians in attacks on Tamil Tigers bases,Civilians ‘killed’ in Sri LankaPeru’s highest court ruled that workers cannot be fired for being drunk on the job,You can’t fire me, I’m drunk!and New York Times columnist Nicholas Kristof announced his third “Win A Trip” contest, offering college students the chance to accompany the reporter around the world. “If you want to save the world, you first must understand it,” wrote Kristof. “For my first win-a-trip journey I chose a Mississippi student, Casey Parks, who had never been out of the country. In rural Cameroon, we came across Prudence Lemokouno, a mother of three who was dying in childbirth. We gave money and donated blood in hopes of saving Prudence. We failed, and we watched Prudenceâ??s life ebb away.”Win a Trip You Wonâ??t Forget Astrophysicists said that the aural jitters picked up by a German gravitational-wave detector may indicate that we all live in a giant and blurry cosmic hologram.Our world may be a giant hologram
More from Gemma Sieff:
On a Friday evening in January, a thousand people at the annual California Native Plant Society conference in San Jose settled down to a banquet and a keynote speech delivered by an environmental historian named Jared Farmer. His chosen topic was the eucalyptus tree and its role in Californiaâs ecology and history. The address did not go well. Eucalyptus is not a native plant but a Victorian import from Australia. In the eyes of those gathered at the San Jose DoubleTree, it qualified as âinvasive,â âexotic,â âalienâ â all dirty words to this crowd, who were therefore convinced that the tree was dangerously combustible, unfriendly to birds, and excessively greedy in competing for water with honest native species.
In his speech, Farmer dutifully highlighted these ugly attributes, but also quoted a few more positive remarks made by others over the years. This was a reckless move. A reference to the tree as âindigenously Californianâ elicited an abusive roar, as did an observation that without the aromatic import, the state would be like a âhome without its mother.â Thereafter, the mild-mannered speaker was continually interrupted by boos, groans, and exasperated gasps. Only when he mentioned the longhorn beetle, a species imported (illegally) from Australia during the 1990s with the specific aim of killing the eucalyptus, did he earn a resounding cheer.
Percentage of Britons who cannot name the city that provides the setting for the musical Chicago:
An Australian entrepreneur was selling oysters raised in tanks laced with Viagra.
A tourism company in Australia announced a service that will allow users to take the âworldâs biggest selfies,â and a Texas man accidentally killed himself while trying to pose for a selfie with a handgun.
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âShelby is waiting for something. He himself does not know what it is. When it comes he will either go back into the world from which he came, or sink out of sight in the morass of alcoholism or despair that has engulfed other vagrants.â