- Donald Trump doesn’t understand the role of the media, asking them to please be nice because it will make things so much easier for him. It reminded me of the film Spotlight in which the Catholic Church asks the Boston Globe the same.
- Trump’s statement that “the President can’t have a conflict of interest” on the other hand reminded me of Richard Nixon’s “if the President does it, it’s not illegal”, if not of the defense used in the Nürnberg Trials.
- Jürgen Klinsmann is the first victim of Trumpism.
- Interestingly, if Donald Trump were to implement a huge infrastructure program, it would probably lead to more immigration from Mexico again.
- From an article about the death penalty in the US: “Stephen Bright, founder of the Southern Center for Human Rights in Atlanta, argued that death sentences were generally imposed ‘not for the worst crimes, but the worst lawyers.'”
- For the few fellow lawyers who are interested in legal history, the BBC has a podcast about Justinian’s Legal Code.
- It was 100 years ago that Jack London died and many of the obituaries omit his greatest novel, Martin Eden. I am always sad when I see Jack London being reduced to his adventure novels, while Martin Eden is a beautiful book, in which I could really identify with the main protagonist, misunderstood by everyone else. One of the few novels I have read several times. Highly recommended in particular for anyone who is writing or wants to write.
- It’s interesting that Martin Eden is much more widely known in other languages, in particular in Russian and in Turkish than it is in the English word. Once I was in a bookstore in Tirana in Albania when a young couple in front of me bought Martin Iden, how he is called in Albanian. I congratulated them on their purchase and later saw them sitting on the steps outside of the theater, reading the book together.
- I left the store with a pile of books by Ismail Kadare. The File on H was the best one.
- Albania is one of the countries that are totally underrated touristically and culturally. I would love to spend a few months there.
- After dinner, I also sat on the stairs in front of the theater, reading a newspaper and smoking a cigar, when the road and the square were blocked off. But because I looked somehow official in my khaki pants and blue shirt, the police didn’t ask me to leave. Then, several black bullet-proof cars with a US flag sped by. But it was only Victoria Nuland, Assistant Secretary of State, not President Obama.
- I did see Barack Obama twice, though, once in Berlin and once in Prague.
- The latter should be an encounter with far-reaching consequences for my arrest by the Iranian Intelligence Service a few months later.
- Ok, I am jumping from one story to the next. Let’s stop this. If I want to tell a story, I should sit down and write a book. When Jack London was as old as me, he was already dead.
- But did you know that my blog is still censored in Iran? If you try to access it, the Islamic Republic helpfully shows a page indicating more useful and interesting sites. Censorship with a smile.
- Book reviews on YouTube are mostly boring.
- The rescue of manuscripts from Timbuktu to Bamako is an old story, but I was just reminded of it by the conviction of Ahmad Al-Mahdi at the ICC.
- Finally, a photo of Peleş Castle. Maybe it will help you understand why I long for the Romanian winter, even when I am spending the summer in the southern hemisphere.
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- One Hundred Years Ago, a Royal Funeral was the Last Gasp of Times Past – April 1921: Augusta Victoria
- There is always a Fossibility
- One Hundred Years Ago, an Armenian Student took the Law into his own Hands – March 1921: Operation Nemesis
- Quite some Drama
- A Postcard from Yerevan
- Lost in Translation
- Two Bakeries, two Countries, two Cultures
- One Hundred Years Ago, a German Baron from the Baltics established a Kingdom in Mongolia – March 1921: Roman von Ungern-Sternberg
- International Women’s Day
- A Postcard from Málaga