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    Remembering why East is west and West is East

    Right off the bat in my Middle East studies class in the United Kingdom (Aberystwyth, Wales, to be precise), we talked about the origin of “Near East” and “Far East.” I don’t recall the same discussion in similar classes in the U.S. For an informative discussion on the subject, check out the latest post at Strangemaps: If you’re American, geographically inclined and a bit of a stickler, this cartographic incongruity is a bit of an annoyance. From the US, the shortest route to what’s conventionally called ‘the East’ is in fact via the west. Going in that direction, you’ll hit the ‘Far East’ before you’re in the ‘Middle East’. And…

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    Armistice Day, known in America since 1954 as Veterans Day

    The above is from one my favorite blogs: The Daily Mirror: Larry Harnisch Reflects on Los Angeles History (yes, Los Angeles has history). Besides remembering the end of the Great War, the War to End All Wars, take a moment to remember America’s veterans who served in defense our country so that we and others may live in peace. However horrible the incidents of war may be, the soldier who is called upon to offer and to give his life for his country is the noblest development of mankind. –General Douglas MacArthur – 14 July 1935

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    Vote!

    Two hundred and thirty years ago, insurgents and propagandists rebelled against the local forces of a distant political and economic master. A war was waged among the people through engravings and pamphlets, often distorting the truth to stoke insurgent flames. They took the fight – kinetic, ideological, and economic – to the shores of the enemy and actively sought support from other countries, notably the enemy of our enemy. Victory was slow and expensive but born out of it was a federal republic where people voted for their own leaders and set their own destiny. A century later, These United States became The United States as suffrage was expanded. The…

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    Off Topic: Congratulations, Jimmy, on your sub-24hr 100miler

    I have this friend. He’s a really good guy who, like me, thought it was fun to run marathons. Back when we were both marathon coaches for a fund raising organization, and before we were really friends, he heard I was a trail runner and wanted to join me and my dog. So, we set out on a trail. Target distance: about 12 miles across varied terrain with some moderately severe climbing and descending. Jimmy’s jack-rabbit start raises the question of whether he’s really run trail as he claimed. The truth is he’s never run technical terrain with the elevation and ground condition changes (skull size rocks to pebbles to…

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    Off Topic: Victory over Darkness premiere

    In what seems like another lifetime (but was only four years ago), I was a guide for, briefly coached, sponsored, and had a room available for indefinite periods – for training and racing – for some special triathletes. These aren’t your normal triathletes (not that triathletes in general are normal). These guys and girls are legally blind. Some are completely blind and have been since birth, and others are legally blind. Some were victims of tragedy (add’l details) and others have degenerative conditions. Finally, tomorrow night, Tuesday September 16th, a movie about these amazing athletes will premier in Los Angeles. There’s no trailer as of yet to link to, but…

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    USC 35 : OSU 3

    ‘nuff said. Not exactly, one more thing to say: UCLA 0 : BYU 59. Ouch. If you want, read about USC-OSU and BYU against a no show.

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    Posting will resume… next week

    This week has been an inadvertent break from blogging. Posting will resume next week. In the meantime, make sure you read these recent posts: Book Review: Losing Arab Hearts and Minds by Steve Tatham Open Source Counter-Propaganda Richard Barrett’s Al-Qaida’s Strengths and Vulnerabilities A new voice in the Smith-Mundt discussion A book for the aspiring architect of USIA 2.0 New Media and Persuasion, Mobilization, and Facilitation Stop saying “Hearts and Minds”, you don’t mean it

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    Off topic: Olympic swimming is over, finally

    4 x 100 free relay and IM, 4 x 200 free, 50m free… finally it’s all done. Mike Phelps has his “Phelpsian” moment with 8 medals capped off with an awesome Medley Relay. Unlike Spitz, Phelps can hang out and enjoy his time in the Olympic village and at the other events (the terrorist attack on Munich happened right after Mike Spitz earned his medals… he never had time to “bask in the glory”). Now, among the many sports, it’s time to watch men’s water polo. We took down the Croats. Next, it’s the Germans.