maas con~fusion

A community blog from the students of the Masters in Arab Studies (MAAS) in the Edmund Walsh School of Foreign Service at Georgetown University

Saturday, October 25, 2003

A great article about the leak from Slate. Those guys at Slate are so snazzy. Too bad their owned by microsoft, limits their street cred when you have that butterful in the corner.
posted by Saud  # 9:57 PM
Check outRumsfeld's leaked memo. I love the part where he says "does the CIA need to 'find' something in order to make the situation better".

Yes, they should find another helping of yellow cake. Now is it Banana or butterscotch? I really wanna deal with his memo, it nearly sounds forged cuz they can't really be that stupid. Are they? Like these are general questions he is posing, they should've done something about them, oh, I dunno sometime last year.

For those of you who are, mubarak 'alaikum al shahar. So far official Saudi astrologers (or is astronomers? like what level of technical skills are we talking about here?) say that it doesn't look like its going to happen tomorrow. So Monday it is. The merry month of nicotine withdrawal. I get the shakes just thinking about it.
posted by Saud  # 9:45 PM

Tuesday, October 21, 2003

Where technology and idiocy meet, please enjoy 1-800-FATWA.

(note: Do not dial the number before reading the article, or actually receive a fatwa. I tried it and you can actually reach a real-life idiot. I had to explain I was dialing 1 800 Teen Escort or something).

I think it is VERY haram for lay-people to issue fatwas, especially if they are issued in such a routine manner. Will provide passages and hadith on request, right now got to figure out how to get an e-Fatwa.
posted by Saud  # 3:58 PM

Thursday, October 16, 2003

Wow. good post sam, I could not believe Kurtz pitted Edward Said vs. Bernard Lewis so non-chalantly. There is a lot of history there. We should remember how these figures kind of got thrust into their roles as puppets, though I think the late Said bought into it more than the aging Lewis. Scholars make the greatest political puppets, they come in talking varieties too, just pull the string and you'll get the same babble over and over again. I think what is truly sad is that their scholarship was both equally boring, one from a clear lack of innovation, the other from far too much innovation. You shouldn't bore the world half to death, nor should you try to pedantically re-invent it a hundred times over. Said gets the ethical brownie points, and Lewis actually comes out looking more level-headed. Too bad Lewis was marauded into that neo-con sinking ship, and Said, well, never had a ship to begin with. They both end up drenched in this political scess-pool that scholars should never be in to begin with. What the hell are your elected officials for?

Thanks for joining into the conversation, sam. Nick and I were beginning to worry that this was slowly evolving into our private paging system. On that note, does anyone want to see Kill Bill this weekend?
posted by Saud  # 7:47 PM
All you FLAS kids might find this article on Title VI interesting. It puts the current reform debate in the context of leftist Said-followers' domination of the discipline.
posted by Sam  # 10:40 AM

Thursday, October 09, 2003

Wow! Israel in Alaska! That would've been surreal, wonder if the canadians or the eskimos would've gone militant. I dunno, Igloo-bunkers doesn't seem very intimidating.

He does bring up many good points: ethnicity based states are really a throwback of an earlier era, who on earth wants to live in a country where there is only one ethnicity? Imagine, a country where you can only get authentic thai food. I like pad thai as much as the next guy, but come on, you really do need access to good bagels, burritos, sushi, curry, kimchi, falafel, etc. Man cannot live on barbequed ribs alone.

I love how he brings up the point about the U.S. as the ideal jewish "promised land". It reminds me of a press conference they had with Benjamin Netanyahu in New York. This reporter went on a little metaphysical tirade, and asked this garbled up question which roughly asked "do you think they will ever win back the promised land?" To which Netanyahu replied "Oh, no, New York will always be ours."
posted by Saud  # 11:11 PM

Wednesday, October 08, 2003

This is fcuked up:

Sorry isn't good enough.

While Israeli's recent bombardment of a small Syrian village near Damascus was barely covered in the American press, and always with caveats and justifications alluding to the War on Terror, this story dropped completely below our media's radar. An accident? I think not!

This is the story of a Canadian citizen who just got back from a year in some awful Syrian prisons. His crime?--Landing at JFK International Airport. The U.S. arrested him at the airport during his connecting flight and deported him to Syria, telling Syria's government that he was a terrorist linked to al-quaeda. The Syrians, a bit shocked, thought: 1) he must have done something wrong if they called him a terrorist and went through the trouble to send him to us, and 2) we don't want to get on the U.S.'s bad side by letting him go. So they kept him and tortured him for a year until releasing him this week. U.S. officials claim that they were acting on intelligence from Canadian officials, so as to displace the responsibility for this horrendous deportation. The Canadians deny any knowledge of this, and have spent a year trying to get him back. The most confusing part of the whole thing is why the U.S. would deport him to Syria if he were really a terrorist. The usually send those folks to Guantanamo Bay for torture, or to our buddies in Jordan and Egypt who have even more expertise. Also, Syria is not exactly close to obtaining our most favored nation status.

Check out the link, and maybe you can all shed some light on this mysterious abduction.
posted by literatus  # 11:13 AM

Monday, October 06, 2003


Allah is in the house.

(Note: this site is very insensitive if you are a muslim and take yourself too seriously).

I laughed, I cried, I felt both guilty and very very amused.

I wonder if its alright to make fun of fundamentalist Islamic rhetoric (which is what he is doing, rather than making fun of a deity, read his warning on top of his links) using allah as the chief point of mockery...I am honestly neutral, especially since it does seem passe in american culture to make fun of god. I think of that saturday night live skit with the generic christian god wearing white, long white beard, making oopsies and what not. Whatever. But an angry Allah? Now thats comedy.

He posts a challenge to make a funny website that makes fun of christianity, but that seems boring, I suggest a Zionists-Isreali-Jewish mock blog: Yahweh or the highway.

Also of interest, note how Allah is a Redsox fan...I guess they are now forgiven and the curse of the bambino has been lifted. The green satans, hilarious. Can't wait to hear what he has to say about the Yankee's.

posted by Saud  # 10:34 PM

Wednesday, October 01, 2003

One more thing....I love MAAS confusion, but there are also lots of other plays on words that we could try. Critical MAAS, MAAS Hysteria, MAAS Mail, MAASterpiece, or anything else you can think of. Personally, Confusion works for me.
posted by literatus  # 11:10 AM
Glad to hear that this thing is up and running. Starting slow is a good idea, lets get people into this thing before we really get the funk on. When the mood strikes you Saoud, give us the cue and we'll splash the pages of this here blog with more content than you can shake a stick at.
posted by literatus  # 11:06 AM
Hey guys, and welcome to ze blog. First things first, I wanted to ask you if you guys were ok with the name MAAS confusion, if not, please come up with something that is at least as witty.

As far as look and feel is concerned, I think we should start simple and emphasize content. This is a content driven blog, I guess, whatever that means. Maybe one day we perhaps can make it look like the Arab Studies Journal, because it just looks, oh, so sexy.

I know some of you have mad connections in blogging circles (hint hint, sam parker) so once we get some stuff on here, maybe a brother can get a link?
posted by Saud  # 9:36 AM


10/01/2003 - 11/01/2003  

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