30 July 2012

More Honeysuckle

Living Dead 1, Brain Dead 0

The shit stains of the Westboro Baptist Church were humilated last Friday when one of their protests was upstaged by a counter demonstration by zombies.

Demonstrators dressed as zombies gathered at a military base in Washington state to counter the Westboros. After members of the controversial Kansas-based church announced plans to picket Joint Base Lewis-McChord, near Seattle, 27-year-old Melissa Neace decided to organize a counter-protest, launching a Facebook group titled "Zombie'ing Westboro Baptist Church AWAY from Fort Lewis!"

"We wanted to turn something negative around, into something people could laugh at and poke fun at," Neace told the News Tribune. "It was the easiest way to divert attention from something so hateful."

About 300 counter-protesters showed up in varying degrees of zombie garb, far outnumbering the picketers from Westboro. Just eight protesters from the Westboros  showed up. "I think that their message is very hateful, and Jesus was not a hateful person. He loved everybody," one of the counter-protestersSaid.

While it is unclear why Westboro Baptist Church targeted the DuPont military base for its latest effort, the group frequently pickets military funerals. The group believes that deaths in Afghanistan and Iraq are God's punishment for the United States' tolerance of homosexuality. Last year, the group announced it would "quadruple" protest efforts after the Supreme Court ruled that such demonstrations are protected by the First Amendment.

I don't understand the Westboros. They are a vile bunch of scumbags and clearly insane

Police hunt man who ate bus seat

Or so this intriguing headline on the This Is Devon website says.

I was looking forward to an account of a man who consumed a whole bus seat (with or without relish) Sadly this the headline is a bit of exaggeration on the part of the sub editor. The man in question was caught on cctv chewing the seat although he did cause £200 in damage.

Clearly the man was looking for some extra fiber....

28 July 2012

Sweden bombs Belarus....

Well it looks lie war between Sweden and Belarus... Well maybe not but the the latter has confirmed that an airplane "invaded" its territory earlier this month to drop a payload of..... teddy bears holding signs promoting free speech. According to  Aljazeera  confirmation came on Thursday from Belarusian Dictator Lubyankashenko at a meeting on the modernisation of the country's armed forces, 

Chartered by Studio Total, which bills itself as "northern Scandinavia's most notorious ad agency", the single-engine aircraft  crossed over the Lithuanian border on July 4, dropping 876 teddy bears on the capital Minsk and the small town of Ivyanets.  

For weeks, Belarus' government denied any plane illegally entered the country's airspace that morning, claiming that videos of the airdrop released by Studio Total were faked. 

On a darker note KGB (why change names after the USSR broke up) detained Anton Suryapin, a 20-year-old journalism student, after he posted a picture of one of the teddy bears to a website he runs called Belarusian News Photos. Suryapin is being held by the KGB under Article 371, Part 3 of Belarus' Criminal Code, which concerns "organising illegal migration". Syarhei Basharimau, a real estate agent who rented apartments in Minsk to the plane's two pilots, has been charged under the same article.

Andrei Savinykh, the spokesperson for Belarus' Ministry of Foreign Affairs, said police. believe that the flight couldn't have taken place "without some previous preparation", and that they believe Studio Total "might have accomplices" who  helped plan the mission. Savinykh told Al Jazeera that the aircraft was detected, "but the air defence did nothing. They didn’t consider the aircraft as a military threat because it was a small aircraft and usually the air defence system is focusing on high-speed heavy crafts." However, Savinykh said their failure to act was a "violation of instructions" and that the responsible personnel will be punished. Savinykh also described the penetration of Belarusian airspace as a "crime". "The citizens of the Western countries, they are simply committing crimes out of their countries in, as they say, [a] fight for freedom. It looks like a Western fundamentalism".

One one level it was an amusing stunt but not for those who have ended up in the hands of the KGB and probably will end up in jail.Then agai Belarus is the last bastion of the old Soviet Union and acts accordingly. There's little chance we will see the back of Lukashenko any time soon sadly

Acanthus detail

Aidan Burley MP puts Jackboot in Mouth

While most people had a laugh (as I did) over Jeremy Hunt's campanological malfunction another Tory MP probably wishes his name was just mud.

Idiot Aidan Burley, MP for Cannock Chase tweeted the following a few hours ago:

The most leftie opening ceremony I have ever seen - more than Beijing, the capital of a communist state! Welfare tribute next? 

And then 

Thank God the athletes have arrived! Now we can move on from leftie multi-cultural crap. Bring back red arrows, Shakespeare and the Stones!  

Within minutes he faced a hail of indignation resulting in him trending on Twitter. A few minutes he tweeted this

Seems my tweet has been misunderstood. I was talking about the way it was handled in the show, not multiculturalism itsel

Not much of a back pedal from the arrogant fuckwit

Earlier this year he was sacked from a parliamentary private secretary post (an unpaid job acting as  dogsbody for a minister) after it was revealed that he attended a stag night in France where other atendees dressed in Nazi uniforms and praised national socialism. He even fucked up his "make amends"  trip to Auschwitz.

What a total ringpiece. Hopefully his tenure as MP for Cannock Chase will be short. 

27 July 2012

And on the subject of Sadims - Mitt Romney

Mitt Romney made an ass of himself yesterday, questioning London's preparations for the Olympic games. As we know some things have not gone to plan especially trusting G4S to handle the security arrangements. If that was not enough he called Ed Miliband "Mr Leader" and disclosed a meeting with the head of MI6.

Perhaps Romney who seems to have been born with a silver foot in his mouth perhaps should have kept quiet. Anyway it gave out far less than esteemed leader a chance for a good comeback:

 "We are holding an Olympic Games in one of the busiest, most active, bustling cities in the world. Of course it's easier if you hold an Olympic Games in the middle of nowhere"

Meanwhile Carl Lewis, most definitely one of the greatest olympians, seems to have had the final word:

"Seriously, some Americans just shouldn't leave the country,"

Meanwhile Jeremy Hunt Loses his Bell-End

Culture Secretary Jeremy Hunt is a bit of a Sadim. A Sadim is like Midas except whet he touches turns to shite.

Earlier today at a pre-olympic bell ringing ceremony Hunt started ringing a hand bell on the deck of the museum ship HMS Belfast. Luckily nobody was hurt and Hunt made an ass of himself yet again

Ted on watch

Someone sees the funny side of the Korean flag incident

Specsavers is a chain of opticians here in the UK (aps0 Ireland, parts of Europe and Aus and NZ). Their ad campaigns have the slogan "Should Have Gone to Specsvers"

Well the silly mistake over the North Korean flag has given them a nice opportunity for a quick topical advert. Well it amused me but it won't make me use their services as my contct lenses are done by specialist opticians and are free!

26 July 2012

and in other news....

The  double dip recession continues with gusto

No Olympic Atmosphere in "Quite (sic) and Beautiful" Romford

Romford is about 11 miles from the Olympic stadium and it is host to one major olympic team - in the form of chinese journalists who are camped out in a hotel just outside the centre of the town.

It seems that these journalists are rather disappointed at the lack of obvious joy that the games are being held in London.

Only four days towards the start of the London Games, says China Daily the atmosphere here is so different from that of Beijing 2008 that people who had experienced both Games might wonder if it is the same event that is held by different cities every four years.

It is not easy to find many traces of the Olympic Games around the corners of the city of London, except some banners and flags which are more as decorations than as demonstrations.
Four years ago in Beijing, the Olympics became a hot topic for both local media and citizens months prior to the event as Olympics-related stuff filled up every building and street in the Chinese capital.
And tons of thousands of local communities voluntarily gave their help to visitors and Olympians when almost every Chinese city showed its own way to support the host city.
While in London here, the lives of ordinary people are seldom obsessed by the biggest sports gala in the world.

A Chinese website opened on Monday its Olympic headquarter at Romford, dozens of miles northeast of London (err not quite!) , a beautiful countryside where Olympic flavor could hardly be tasted. There is no banner, no paper stories and even a journalist with a credential around his neck could drive some curious glaring of the locals.

"We feel no Olympic atmosphere here in Romford. It's a quite and beautiful place, but no Olympics," said a journalist of the tencent.com, who arrived Romford on Friday.

Around 1,000 Chinese reporters are expected to cover the 2012 Olympics, including the 500-plus squad from the Chinese Central Television (CCTV).  Most of them arrived in London one week before the start of the Games or even earlier.

British media put some Olympic news on the headlines, but their fancy about the Olympics is in a quite reasonable way, compared to the frenzy of Beijing in 2008. The London Olympic organizers had never expected to surpass any previous versions of the Games. All they want is to make a good and sound competition.

And so on. Well London is not Beijing and I doubt we Londoners would care to be corralled into spontaneous events in support of the games. Then again perhaps the Chinese journos didn't notice that 150,000 people turned out to see the Olympic torch procession through Havering (compared with a population of around 230,000 that's not bad a turnout).. I could go on but one thing I did see in this article that I never thought I would ever hear about Romford - the words Quiet and Beautiful. Now that IS a truiumph greater than any by Michael Phelps!

London - Worst Olympics Ever ...........

Well that's it, the 2012 Games are an abject failure so everyone should go home right away... well if you pay the slightest attention to the sort of person who leaves comments on newspaper websites.

The subject of such coments? Some events start before the Opening ceremony, the first being the Women's football where the first round of games were played yesterday. All went well for the first games: a victory for GB over New Zealand; the USA coming from two goals don to beat France 4-2 and so on... But then the North Korea/Colombia game took place.... or nearly didn't

The people operating the scoreboard at Hampden Park in Glasgo made a mistake over the national flag of North Korea showing the South Korean flag on the scoreboard instead. This incensed the North Koreans, a prickly bunch of arseholes at the best of times, who walked off the pitch and didn't return for an hour.

They eventually bet the Colombians 2-0 but the Organisers were left with some egg on their faces.

This was a silly mistake which should not have happened but to read the press, certainly the comments, you would imagine that Lord Coe had gone to Pyonyang and taken a shit in the mouth of Kin il--Sung's corpse.

Then again a lot of the people who comment on papers are the ones who want the games to fail. Me? I want them to be a sucess, No I don;t believe that they will be the worst games ever despite the title!

25 July 2012

And the Olympics start

Although the opening ceremony is two days away the 2012 games got underway at 4 pm with GB vNZ in the women's football... albeit in Cardiff  (Although London is the host city some events simply cannot be held there, so sailing is in Weymouth and football matches are spread across the country a few other events like rowing and canoeing and Mountain biking take place jurst outside London).  Men's games kick off tomorrow,

For those wo like the games there's 19 day's of some great sport. For those who don't like the games there's 19 days of boredom. 

Bollywood comes to Ireland

It’s hard to imagine Dublin as the location for the latest Bollywood blockbuster, the Irish Times reports, Even harder still to picture members of An Garda Síochána strutting about in those elaborate dance sequences.

However, the first Bollywood film ever to be shot in Ireland hits the big screen next month.
Ek the Tiger tells the story of a man sent to Dublin on a top secret mission but who unwittingly falls for a woman studying at a fictional dance academy at Trinity College.
Starring , Salman Khan and Katrina Kaif, the film, which means "once there was a tiger", was shot at various locations in the capital last Autumn.

In advance of the release, the film’s producers are circulating a preview video )above), showing Trinity College, Temple Bar and Grafton Street.
Tourism Ireland said the film will significantly boost awareness of the island of Ireland among India’s growing middle classes who have the potential to come here on holidays. Chief executive Niall Gibbons said: “We are confident that the footage shot in Dublin will help whet appetites and create a curiosity among Indians to come and visit the places where the colourful ‘Ek Tha Tiger’ was shot."

Whether it does promote tourism or not I would lke to see more Bollywood films set in Ireland. Perhaps the next one should be based in Millstreet!

Argentine President in pointless Falklands gesture

So it looks as if Argentina is making a pointless protest over the fact that the Falklands are the Falklands and not the Malvinas: The Argentine president Cristina Fernandez de Kirchner will not  attend the opening ceremony of the Olympic Games in a diplomatic snub.

The Argentine embassy in London confirmed to The Independent today that President Fernandez would not be attending at any point during the Games. The spokesman refused to be drawn on whether the decision was a deliberate diplomatic snub to Britain.

Argentina’s president has taken an increasingly hard line on the Falkland Islands, presumably as a pathetic diversion from the fact that the Argentine economy is in a shitty way,

President Fernandez has however called on Argentina’s athletes to refrain from making any overt political gestures during their time in London, a move which was welcomed by the International Olympic Committee.

If the people of the Falklands wanted to be Argentine then I would happily see the Islands cease to be British territory in a hearybeat. Since they don't and many will remember well the last time Argentines visited the islands in numbers it is not going to happen any time soon. Fernandez would do better to look at her country's economy and plenty f other issues rather than engage in these silly postures.

22 July 2012


You wait 99 Tours for a podium place and then two turn up at once!

Well that's the 99th Tour de France over, a Tour that has seen far more interest in the UK than any of the preceding 98. And that's because Bradley Wiggins has just become the first ever British winner. If that's not enough good news, fellow Britin Chris Froome shares the podium as runner up (or should that be cyclist up?). Congratulations also to Italian Vincenzo Nibali for achieving third place. It looks as if Froome cold follow Wiggins to the Yellow jersey. I hope so

Congratulations to Mark Cavendish for winning crossing the line first on le Champs Elysees for a record fourth time.
Congratulations to Slovak Peter Sagan for winning the Green Jersey on his first Tour. I daresay we will be seeing rather more of him over the coming years (if you follow cycling that is).

Congratulations to Thomas Voeckler from France for winning the polka dot jersey as King of the Mountains

Congratulations to American Tejay van Garderen for winning the white jersey for young riders. He is another rider with a bright future ahead of him.

Congratulations to Chris Anker Sorensen for being the most combative rider

Congratulations especially to Jimmy Engoulvent for winning the prized Lanterne Rouge for the rider who complete the tour in last place.

Congratulations to each and every rider who finished the tour.

Wiggins won well aided to a massive extent by a superb Sky team. Froome Cavendish and the whole team can bask in the glory knowing that it was their hard work that assured victory.  People have moaned how dull this race has been. Perhaps those moaners prefer their riders to be doped up to the gills like Alberto Contador or Floyd Landis et al. Screw them.

The Olympic Flame comes to Romford

So the Olympic flame came to Havering today. In Romford anyway there was a big turnout to see it pass by.
One of the warm-up persons with her hula hoop. 

Flying the flag

Ah that's good, your flag has the right logo 

The torch bearer passes by 

They also serve...

21 July 2012

A Bit of Hawkwind

Lord of LightIt takes a bit of time to get going but...

Blody Hell (in relation to sports again - this tme cycling))

The first tour de France took place in 1904 but it wasn't until 1958, when Brian Robinson won a stage, that a Briton made even the slightest impression in the event. It wasn't until 1962 that a Briton this time Tommy Simpson, held the yellow jersey for any period. It took until 1984 for a Briton, Robert Millar,  to be croned King of the Mountains. It wasn't until last year that a Briton, Mark Cavendish took the prestigious green jersey.

But now Bradley Wiggins will lead off the final with a comfortable lead... over another briton Chris Froome....

Given that the final stage is usually a processional rather than a competitive stage, Wiggins will, barring injury or disaster, be crowned as the winner of the 99th Tour tomorrow. Despite the scandals that have rocked the Tour in recent years to win this, one of the toughest sporting competitions in any event, is a triumph.

People, especially on the comment sections of l'equipe, have knocked the tour for being boring and are convinced that had top riders like Contador or Andy Schleck competed it would have been a different story. Well Schelck was injured and Contador is currently banned for drug use so Wiggins could only compete against those who could and did compete. People have moaned about the robotic riding of Wiggins's team, Sky, but domestiques are there to support the lead rider. Don't forget that Wiggins  had already won several top races this year so he was o top form.

Over the last 15 years cycling has come fro the margins of British sport towards centre stage, particularly track cycling. Here's hoping that it stays there.

Looking back towards a landfill

© Shaun P Downey 2012

20 July 2012

What On Earth Is That?

Oldest living Olympians

Given that the last person to serve in WWI only died earlier this year (Florence Green who died in February) it is perhaps no great surprise that there are still a number of competitors from pre-WWII games still alive.

There don't seem to be any survivors from the Paris games of 1924 but there is one known medallist from the 1928 Amsterdam games:

Clara Marangoni, born 13 November 1915 was just 12 years old when she won a silver medal as part of the Italian women's gymnastic team.

There two known surviving champions from the Los Angeles games  of 1932

Evelyn Furtsch (photo found on the Foothill Community Association website)

Athlete Evelyn Furtsch  won gold as part of the the US 4x100m relay team. Both the US and the Cnadian team finished the race in 47 seconds, a new world record time.The US team presumaby won on a photo finish (the 1932 games were the first time this technology were used)

Heken John (photo found on GoLocalProv  a website concerning Rhode Island

Swimmer Helen Johns was part of the victorious US 4X100m Freestyle Relay team. Helen and her team smashed the previous world and olympic record by nearly nine seconds.

There are a number of surviving competitors from the 1936 Berlin Games and four known surviving medalists

Sandor Tarics (above), at 98, is the oldest surviving Olympic champion. He won his gold medal as part of Hungary's victorious water polo tea. Now living in the USA he intends to attend the London Games... but not as a competitor!

American Adolph Kiefer who won gold at the 100m Backstroke. Kiefer broke the word and olympic records to win.

Fellow Hungarian  Olga Torocs won bronze as part of Hungary;s women's gymnastics team

Hans Schnitger won bronze as part of the Dutch Hockey team

In addition there is one surviving medalist from the 1936 Winter games at Garmisch-Partenkirchen

Emile Allais photo found here

Downhill skier Emile Allais won bronze in the men's combined event. The following year he swept the boards at the world championship in Chamonix winning the Downhill, Slalom and Combined events.

The oldest known Olympic competitor is Walter Walsh who is now 105 years old. He competed in the Men's Free Pistol 50m event at the 1948 London games, finishing in twelfth place. He is also the oldest surviving FBI agent, having been born a year before the bureau was founded.

Source of information for this post Here The information seems to be up to date but some of the above may have since died. My apologies in advance for any errors.

An Olympic sotry with no sponsorship and maybe no medal prospects but who cares

Two days ago the Telegraph carried a  story yesterday about how the Rwandan Olympic team was taken to the heart of the people of Bury St Edmunds

The five strong team (actually six as one member, a mountain biker,  has yet to arrive) has spent the lst two weeks in the Suffolk town preparing for the London Games. It looks as if they have ben welcomed with open arms.When the team venture out on to the streets of Bury on a training run, they find people lining the streets. Some of them, clad in running gear, join in. Runners from the local athletics club act as pacemakers.

Schoolchildren turn up at their base, the Abbeycroft Leisure Centre, to watch them train.
Judo competitor Yannick Fred Sekamana recalls: “We arrived on a Friday. On Saturday, in the morning, we went for a run, and we could see all these people. All these people were interested in us. They’ve come to see us. I didn’t expect that.”

Students from a local school created a mural which was unveiled last week. Cultural and educational links have been forged, with a teacher exchange programme in place and a display of Rwandan dancing in the town centre last weekend.

Swimmer Alphonsine Agahozo, celebrated her 16th birthday, and was thrown a surprise party at the town’s guild hall.

The Rwandans have instead been overwhelmed by the generosity of their hosts. “I didn’t expect it to be as good as this,” Sekamana smiles. “We knew people had prepared things for us, but we didn’t know it would be as much as this.

“The British people have a good character,” says 10,000m runner Rbort Kajuga. “They have good hearts. They treat people with kindness. All the people here have made me happy. When they see us, on their face, they have happiness.”
But for all the cultural outreach, it is the competition they are here for. Although all five are outsiders in their events (Rwanda's best medal hope, mountain biker Adrien Niyonshuti), simply participating in the Games is a source of immense national pride. “First of all, I have to make sure I give a good image of judo and Rwanda,” says 18 year-old Sekamana, who was born in France and only started competing for his nation after hearing about an event in Burundi and taking second place. “After that it depends on the draw.” 
 The Rwandans left Suffolk on Wednesday morning, but Sekamana has vowed to return with his best friend. “I’ll make sure I see everybody,” he says. 
  Amid the deluge of negative stories that this Olympic Games has produced, here is a happier yarn. A simple tale of friendship, generosity and understanding. And only the Olympics could have made it possible.

The Rwanda will compete in the following events:

Robert Kajuga - Men's 10,000m
Jean--Pierre Mvuyekure - Men's Marathon
Claudette Musakakindi - Women's Marathon
Adrien Niyonshuti - Men's Mountain Bike
Fred Yannick Uwase - Men's Judo 73kg category
Alphonsine Agahozo - Women's 50m Freestyle

Not much of a story you may say - and a bit schmaltzy but  it is heartening to see the level of welcome they received in Bury St Edmunds. I hope they do their very best even if they return to Rwanda with no medals.

19 July 2012


© Shaun P Downey 2012

Down By the River

© Shaun P Downey 2012

Death By Chocolate!

I missed this story  in the Telegraph a couple of days ago but thanks as ever to the Fortean Times for picking it up. Apparently there was a Nazi plot to kill Sir Winston Churchill with a bar of exploding chocolate during the Second World War.

German bomb makers coated explosive devices with a thin layer of rich dark chocolate, then packaged it in expensive-looking black and gold paper. The Germans apparently planned to use secret agents working in Britain to discreetly place the bars - branded as Peters Chocolate - among other luxury items taken into the dining room used by the War Cabinet during the conflict.
The lethal slabs of confection were packed with enough explosives to kill anyone within several metres.
But the plot was foiled by British spies who discovered the chocolate was being made and tipped off one of MI5’s most senior intelligence chiefs, Lord Victor Rothschild, before the wartime prime minister’s life could be endangered. Rothschild typed a letter to a talented illustrator seconded to his unit, asking him to draw poster-size images of the chocolate to warn the public to be on the look-out.

The letter to the artist, Laurence Fish, was unearthed by Mr Fish's wife, journalist Jean Bray, as she sorted through his possessions after the artist's death at the age of 89 in 2009. The letter, marked "secret", reads: “Dear Fish, I wonder if you could do a drawing for me of an explosive slab of chocolate...We have received information that the enemy are using pound slabs of chocolate which are made of steel with a very thin covering of real chocolate...Inside there is high explosive and some form of delay mechanism…When you break off a piece of chocolate at one end in the normal way, instead of it falling away, a piece of canvas is revealed stuck into the middle of the piece which has been broken off and a ticking into the middle of the remainder of the slab.”

The letter explained how the mechanism would be activated when the piece of chocolate was pulled sharply, which would also pull the canvas, and Lord Rothschild said he was enclosing a “very poor sketch” done by someone who had seen one of the bars.He asked the artist to indicate in the text on his drawing that a bomb would go off seven seconds after the piece of chocolate and attached canvas was pulled ouy

Well there you have it. There was one small problem with this plan - apart from being utterly hare-brained - there were no German agents operating effectively in Britian during WWII. They were either turned hanged, or in one case, shot

18 July 2012

Derelict IV

© Shaun P Downey 2012

From Olympics to Formula 1?

The Guardian reports that the bids for using the Olympic stadium after the games are in. Initially it seemed to be certain the West Ham would gain a leasehold of the stadium but legal challenges put the kibosh on that.

Now there are four bids for using the stadiu. West Ham have a bid in as do Leyton Orient (although that seems to be on the basis of a groundshare with West Ham - something West Ham seem rather frosty about).

Another bid has come from  UCFB a College of Football Busines - I shudder to thin what that bid is about.

Essex County Cricket Club had been expected to bid but they withdrew. That leaves the final and, to me anyway, what must be the strangest bid.

Intelligent Transport Solutions Ltd, who are based at Wanstead in east London, have already held preliminary talks with the Formula One supremo Bernie Ecclestone with regard to using the stadium as a Formula One circuit. The intention is that the race would form a second British round of the world championship to run alongside the British Grand Prix at Silverstone.

Ecclestone has tentatively given his blessing, stating a month ago ITS Ltd are a firm "bidding for use of the stadium, not to own it....They came up with a scheme whereby Formula One would race around the stadium, inside it, outside it. They wanted to make sure I would be interested."

It is understood, however, Ecclestone will not throw his full weight behind the plan unless ITS Ltd win the bidding process.
The Olympic stadium as a Formula One circuit? If does seem a little small! Actually it looks as if it would form part of a circuit around the streets of London. Even so it seems to me a rather stupid idea, Better to have it on exisiting courses I would have thought. Then again I can't stand Formula One.It is even more venal than top flight Football, if that's possible. So the idea of a big race not too far from where I live does not exactly fill me with joy,

It's the Sun Wot Done It: War Criminal Found in Budapest

I missed this story a couple of days ago but The Sun tracked down a Nazi war criminal to his home in Budapest.  Ladislaus Csizsik-Csatary, 97, was a police commander in charge of a Jewish ghetto in Kassa, Hungary, during World War Two. He is alleged to have sent 15,700 Jews to Auschwitz.

He fled Kassa — now renamed Kosice in Slovakia — after the Allied victory and was sentenced to death for war crimes in his absence in Czechoslovakia in 1948 creating a new identify and life for himself as an art dealer in Canada.

When his past was discovered  i 1997 his Canadiancitizenship was revoked and the government began to build a case against him. He fled before deportation papers could be served.
For 15 years his whereabouts have been a mystery.

Sun reporters thracked him down to an apartment in Budapest using information provided by the Simon Wiesenthal Centre. They confronted him at the flat where he had been living quietly. When asked if he could justify his past, he looked shocked and stammered “No, no. Go away.” Questioned about his deportation case in Canada he answered angrily in English: “No, no. I don’t want to discuss it.” Our reporter asked: “Do you deny doing it? A lot of people died as a result of your actions.”

He replied: “No I didn’t do it, go away from here,” before slamming the door.
The atrocities that made him the most hunted Nazi war criminal still alive were detailed by the Canadian government when it stripped him of citizenship. The Justice Department’s war crimes unit said he was a “commander” in the Royal Hungarian Police in Kassa in charge of officers who guarded the ghetto.He supervised the drawing-up of lists of its inhabitants, conducted personal searches of Jews and confiscated valuables.The police transferred the Jews from the ghetto to a brickyard at the end of April 1944 and loaded them on to freight trains to Auschwitz and other camps.

In a summary of its case against Csizsik-Csatary the Canadian Government stated: “For at least two transports, he was present for the embarkation, checking the Jews’ names on a list.” Of the approximately 12,000 Jews gathered in the brickyard and deported, just 450 survived.
During the case, Csizsik-Csatary admitted to some involvement in the “ghettoisation” of Jews and said he had played a “limited role” in the movement of Jews to the brickyard.

He also admitted handing over at least two Jews to the Germans and to attending the last mass deportation of Jews out of Kassa.But his lawyers claimed he “did not know where the Jews were to be deported”.

And so on...

There is little chance that  Csizsik-Csatary will face trial given his age and the reliability of witnesses after all this time - let's not even dwell on the response of a government that seems hell-bent on rehabilitating Hungarian-style fascism after all this time. That he was identified and doorstepped by journalists should send a message to him - "We know where you live and we will find you if you run again". That may not seem like much justice for his crimes but it's probably the best his victims are
 going to get, sadly.

Also credit whee credit is due to the Sun. This is not its usual type of story (to say the least!)

16 July 2012

John Lord RIP

Jon Lord, perhaps best known as the keyboard player for Deep Purple has died at the age of 71. He had been receiving treatment for pancreatic cancer since last August

The above video shows him at his best with some keyboard madness from Space Truckin'. And here's him talking about Highway Star.

Back in my Immigration Service days I encountered Jon. He struck me as a very pleasant and sef-effacing man


© Shaun P Downey 2012


© Shaun P Downey 2012


© Shaun P Downey 2012

15 July 2012


© Shaun P Downey2012

The Diver: Regeneartion Revisited

I've changed my mind about John Kaufman's riverine sculpture. On first sight I didn't care for it much but now I do really like it.

Kaufman, who died in 2002 was inspired by his grandfather who worked as a diver in the London dockyards. It is meant as a tribute to those who worked in difficult and dangerous circumstances. The more I see it the more I feel it is a fine work

Down by the river

© Shaun P Downey 2012

14 July 2012

A Sea Organ in Zadar

The Sea Organ in Zadar Croatia. It sounds rather ore pleasant than its counterpart in Blackpool

A Singing Ringing Tree in Burnley

One offour panopticons located in East Lancashire this is the Singing, Ringing Tree in or rather, near Burnley..

12 July 2012

Bloody Boris

Boris has been in while we got rid of the fleas his picked up (we regularly use Frontline but this seems to have failed), He was clear of fleas yesterday so we let him out and that's the last we saw of him until a few minutes ago - and then he made a song and dance of coming in out of the rain.

Needless to say we were going mad with worry

I think he will be kept in tomorrow.

11 July 2012

Genitals Day: A better name than Brisfest?

When the people running the Britsol Festival were looking for a snappier name I'm sure they could have come up with a better name than Brisfest... I know what that name conjures up in my mind!

Genitals Day: Why Finland are the Testicles of Sweden

Geniitals Day: The case of the nut ripping Pacu

The Daily Mail  reports that terror has struck  Illinois is in panic and terror after a Pacu was discovered in Lake Lou Yeager.

The Pacu a laeger relative of the Piranha has gained notoriety after a perhaps apocryphal story about the fish ripping off the testicles and killing two fishermen in New Guinea (The fish is a native of South America but had been introdued into New Guinea as a food source folowing overfishing of the nation's rivers). The fish is an omnivore and has thick sturdy teeth adapted to crushing nuts (of the kernel kind).

Families The pacu was caught by a fisherman on June 7 and that another one had been spotted two weeks later. The pacu were most likely dumped there illegally.

Local authorities were keen to dispel any fears. "It is a little scary seeing a fish with teeth,' said lake superintendent Jim Cadwell. "They are not native to this lake or this area. They are in the same family as piranhas, they are related, but piranhas have very jagged teeth, but pacus have teeth very similar to humans.
<'Their main diet is nuts, leaves, aquatic vegetation, snails. If their food supply is limited they will eat other fish."

Perhaps because the Mail is not available in the USA most visitors to Lake Lou Yaeger seemed not to be too worried.

So there you have it. It is a fearsome looking bugger but I would imagine that the knackers of Illinois are perfectly safe!