Rise And Kill First! Israel Strikes Iranian Military and Militia Targets in Syria

If a man comes to kill you, rise early and kill him first.

Babylonian Talmud, Tractate Berakoth

Rise and kill first is adapted from a saying in The Babylonian Talmud, quoted above, that provides the self defense justification if someone breaks into one’s home to kill them. It is also considered to be an unofficial motto, at least, of Israel’s security services, specifically its assassination teams. Which is also the focus and title of Ronen Bergman’s excellent history of Israel’s targeted assassination program. So it should be no surprise that Bibi quotes it in his tweet from earlier today announcing Israeli strikes against Iran’s Quds Force, other Iranian military and militia elements, and, based on some reports, Hezbullah militia elements. It is Bibi’s way of trying to ground what he is doing in Judaic law, which lends an element of religious warfare to today’s strikes, as well as within Israel’s history of striking before it can be struck. And I have no doubt that the Iranians received both of the messages Bibi was transmitting with the final sentence in that tweet.

The closeness of today’s strike to Israel’s upcoming election has not gone unnoticed by Bibi’s unauthorized biographer Anshel Pfeffer.

I’ve seen references on social media that Israeli drones have been brought down over Beirut by Hezbullah, but it isn’t a trusted source so take it as RUMINT for the time being. Noga Tarnopolsky has reported that the Israeli Air Force is flying extended/extra combat air patrols and that the Iron Dome missile defense system has been activated in the north of Israel, including the Golan Heights.

As was the case the last several times that Netanyahu ordered strikes, remember he is both the Prime Minister and the Defense Minister, the question will be whether for the time being these are one and done strikes or they begin a pattern of either Iranian-Israeli tit for tat and escalation or if cooler heads prevail. Given that Bibi is fighting not just for his political life, but to be able to leverage his control of the Israeli government to make the investigations into him and the charges against him go away, I would expect to see more strikes. Especially because the Iranians know this. And they know they can provoke him into attacking to prove he’s the best choice in the upcoming Israeli elections to keep Israel safe. The Quds Force commander, Major General Qassem Suleimani, is the best strategist indigenous to the region. I think he’s trying to goad Bibi into overreacting. Into doing something so over the top, so strategically risky that it backfires and blows back not just on Bibi, but also on Israel and Bibi’s US patron: the President. If this is, indeed, Suleimani’s strategy, then it is a risky one. But also one for the potential for great reward.

This could, and likely will, get much worse before it gets better.

Open thread.






116 replies
  1. 1
    A Ghost To Most says:

    All this bullshit and violence to defend moldy goatherder manuals dedicated to the same imaginary sky fairy.

  2. 2
    Mike in NC says:

    Do we know where Bolton and Pompeo are tonight: DC or France?

  3. 3
    debbie says:

    Let’s stage a Hysteria-Off between Trump and Bibi. Who would win?

  4. 4
  5. 5
    Adam L Silverman says:

    @Mike in NC: As far as I know neither traveled with the President to France.

  6. 6
    Adam L Silverman says:

    @Jay: It is election season in Israel. And I saw that earlier in the week when it happened.

  7. 7
    Patricia Kayden says:

    Yippee! WW III is about to start. How nice for our warmongers and defense industry.

  8. 8
    Yarrow says:

    This could, and likely will, get much worse before it gets better.

    Isn’t that the tag line for, like, everything right now?

  9. 9
    Adam L Silverman says:

    @Patricia Kayden: World War III has already started. It is called the 2020 US elections. It will be predominantly waged in the cyber domain using political and information warfare and psychological operations to influence for effect. On one side you have the Russians, the Israelis, the Saudis, and the North Koreans. On the other side you have the Chinese. It remains to be seen whether most of our NATO allies will engage or Japan and South Korea. If they do, they’ll be unofficially allied with the Chinese.

  10. 10
    Jay says:

    @Adam L Silverman:

    I thought they already had one, and it was “try to put together a minority coelition government season”,

    Are they back to voting?

  11. 11
    Adam L Silverman says:

    @Yarrow: I’m hoping the fruit juice popsicles I plan on having in a little bit will stay good all the way through provided I eat them fast enough.

  12. 12
    Adam L Silverman says:

    @Jay: He was unable to actually form a government as he could get enough coalition partners to give him a majority. So new elections – essentially a redo of the ones from the Spring – are scheduled for September.

  13. 13
    Jay says:

    @Adam L Silverman:

    You forgot the Petty Gulf Kingdoms, ( less Quatar), and of course, Falun Gong and the domestic terrorists like Addelson.

  14. 14
    Adam L Silverman says:

    @Jay: The UAE seems to have broken with the Saudis recently based on the reporting I’ve seen. The Kuwaitis tend to keep a very low profile. As for the others, I was going with state actors. As world wars are predominantly between states.

  15. 15
    Chyron HR says:

    “I’ll allow it.” – The King of Israel

  16. 16
    TS (the original) says:

    @Adam L Silverman:

    As far as I know neither traveled with the President to France.

    Well it’s a conference related to international affairs – why on earth would trump need his National security advisor or secretary of state to be present.

  17. 17
    Chetan Murthy says:

    @Adam L Silverman:

    World War III has already started. It is called the 2020 US elections. It will be predominantly waged in the cyber domain using political and information warfare and psychological operations to influence for effect.

    Adam, y’know, your “The Maskirovka Slips” series ought to be collected together, if not in a book, at least in a convenient place, with a series of links on a single page. I’m sure I’m not alone in thinking that it was a real step-by-step education, from which many others could benefit.

    If for nothing else, than the benefit of new readers of this blog.

  18. 18
    Adam L Silverman says:

    @Chetan Murthy: I tagged them all appropriately. But if you don’t see me do it in a couple of days, remind me to do a post where I link them all in order.

  19. 19
    Mary G says:

    Norms, schnorms. Twitler will issue a series of incoherent, pugnacious, and uninformed tweets any minute now. He will probably claim credit, since he is the King of Israel now. Lordt help us, and I was having such a nice calm, relaxing Saturday mostly offline.

  20. 20
    Adam L Silverman says:

    @Mary G: And to think I was going to do a post tonight about the Linzer Torte I made yesterday.

  21. 21
    Gin & Tonic says:

    @Adam L Silverman: Nothing stopping you.

  22. 22
    Another Scott says:

    Relatedly, al jazeera:

    US officials have confirmed that Israel was responsible for the bombing of an alleged Iranian weapons depot in Iraq last month, The Associated Press news agency reports.

    The attack marks a significant escalation in Israel’s years-long campaign against what it sees as Iranian military assets in the region.

    The confirmation comes as Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu strongly hinted that his country was behind recent air raids that have hit bases and munition depots belonging to Iran-backed paramilitary forces operating in Iraq.

    The mystery attacks have not been claimed by any side and have left Iraqi officials scrambling for a response amid strong speculation that Israel may have been behind them.

    Earlier this week, the deputy head of the Iraqi Shia militias, known collectively as the Popular Mobilization Forces, openly accused Israeli drones of carrying out the attacks, but ultimately blamed Washington and threatened strong retaliation for any future attack.

    Such attacks are potentially destabilising for Iraq and its fragile government, which has struggled to remain neutral amid growing tensions between the United States and Iran.

    Al Jazeera’s Natasha Ghoneim, reporting from Baghdad during the latest round of air raids, said Iranian-backed armed groups have been operating in Iraq with the full support of the government since 2014 when they joined the fight against the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL or ISIS) group.

    “A new law that came into effect on July 31 requires all paramilitary groups to report to the Iraqi security forces, or put down their weapons,” Ghoneim reported.

    There have been at least three explosions at Iraqi Shia militia bases in the past month. US officials now confirm Israel was responsible for at least one of them.

    Two US officials said Israel carried out an air raid on an Iranian weapons depot in July that killed two Iranian military commanders. The US officials spoke on condition of anonymity because they were not authorised to discuss the matter with the media.

    The July 19 attack struck a militia base in Amirli, in Iraq’s northern Salaheddin province, causing a huge explosion and fire.

    A senior official with the Shia militias at the time told AP that the base hit housed advisers from Iran and Lebanon.

    He said the attack targeted the headquarters of the advisers and a weapons depot.

    On August 12, a large explosion at the al-Saqr military base near Baghdad shook the capital, killing one civilian and wounding 28 others.

    The base housed a weapons depot for the Iraqi federal police and the PMF. The most recent of the explosions came on Tuesday night, at a munitions depot north of Baghdad.

    There have been weeks of speculation in Israel that the army is attacking targets in Iraq.

    […]

    Hmm…

    Seriously, we all know that Bibi has wanted to get his war on with Iran for a long time. Does he want to go to war with Iraq too??

    Cheers,
    Scott.

  23. 23
    Adam L Silverman says:

    @Gin & Tonic: I’ll do it tomorrow night.

  24. 24
    Baud says:

    @Chetan Murthy:

    than the benefit of new readers of this blog.

    We’re welcoming new people now?

  25. 25
    Adam L Silverman says:

    @Another Scott: Bibi will fight his enemies to the last American.

  26. 26
    Gin & Tonic says:

    Today was Independence Day in Ukraine, so here’s a photo of the current and four of the five former Presidents toasting the occasion with what looks like sparkling wine. To my knowledge this is the only one of the nations which gained independence from the collapse of the Soviet Union which has actually had (numerous) free elections and peaceful transfers of power. A similar picture from any of the others, including “mother” Russia wouldn’t require a wide-format shot.

    The missing President is, of course, Viktor Yanukovych, who probably has pretty good reasons not to enter the country these days.

  27. 27
    Gin & Tonic says:

    @Baud: No. And if you see one, make sure to chase them off.

  28. 28
    J R in WV says:

    @Adam L Silverman:

    I’ve been making peach kuchen at least once or twice a week for a while now. Fresh Peaches on a crumb crust, covered with sour cream with egg yolks and some cinnamon. I add Chinese Five Spice, which my Grandma never heard of. I’ve posted the recipe before, won’t do it again without a request.

    I’m pretty sure she got the recipe from sisters-in-law up in Pa, grandpa was a pennsylvania-dutch farm boy blacksmith who moved to the coal fields for the work. One of 15 siblings. His sisters sent Grandma recipes to help her make him feel at home. Grandma was from Louisa Kentucky, a little riverboat town on the Big Sandy river. So she didn’t know any German cooking.

    Can only do it with fresh peaches, I have 14 or 15 setting on the kitchen table in the light, when they get a little more ripe, one more time into the oven. Nothing better in the summer time. I’ve got vanilla ice-cream this time!

    I also like Black Forest cake a whole lot… sour cherries, kirschwasser and dark chocolate cake, and whipped cream, all in a wonderful tower of great. But Peach Kuchen is only in the summertime…

  29. 29
    HumboldtBlue says:

    To bring some levity to the overwhelming morass of sadness that is the normal news cycle, what have the Romans ever done for us?

    Parliamentary style.

  30. 30
    Jay says:

    @Adam L Silverman:

    it’s tough keeping Duck Season and Wabbit Season straight,

  31. 31
    Citizen Alan says:

    @Adam L Silverman:

    I’ve actually argued for some time that WW3 was fought in the summer and fall of 2016, that it was fought entirely in cyberspace, and that the victory of the New Russian Empire was so complete that Great Britain volunteered to commit economic suicide while the US happily accepted the rise of Czar Putin’s handpicked viceroy as President,

  32. 32
    Matt McIrvin says:

    @Yarrow: I’m skeptical about the “gets better” part.

  33. 33
    Chetan Murthy says:

    @HumboldtBlue: The indy100 page, when I click to play the clip, also plays a clip of Shitlord and some interview about the bible. Insane-making. But thankfully lower-down there’s a tweet I can click on, and see the vid there on Twitter, WITHOUT Shitlord.

    Very funny, btw.

  34. 34
    Adam L Silverman says:

    @J R in WV: A well made peach kuchen is excellent. I’m also a big fan of Black Forest cake.

  35. 35
    Bonnie says:

    Off-topic: Why is there no football thread? There is a really, really good Miami-Florida game going on!

  36. 36
    HumboldtBlue says:

    @Chetan Murthy:

    So sorry, I hesitated to link to the Independent, but I failed to find another source.

  37. 37
    guachi says:

    Is there any indication what PMF brigades were struck in Iraq?

    All I see is that they are linked to Iran.

  38. 38
    Amir Khalid says:

    @Bonnie:

    Why is there no football thread?

    I miss Randinho too.

  39. 39
    Adam L Silverman says:

    @Bonnie: I’m a UF alum and I hate American football. How’s that?

  40. 40
  41. 41
    Jay says:

    @Bonnie:

    Are you an antifascist soccer fan?Follow @A_United_Front for more on the campaign to kick fascism out of the sport. 🖤❤️⚽️ https://t.co/vh05iXNz6O— AntiFash Gordon (@AntiFashGordon) August 23, 2019

  42. 42
    Adam L Silverman says:

    @guachi: That was an Israeli attack earlier in the week. My understanding is they hit a facility/depot used by Iranian back Iraqi militia.

  43. 43
    Chetan Murthy says:

    @HumboldtBlue:

    So sorry

    S’ok. There was a tweet further down the page, so all is well.

  44. 44
    Mary G says:

    @Citizen Alan: As someone who went to quite a bit of trouble to participate in the Women’s March the day after the inauguration, there was no happy acceptance of Putin’s puppet in my corner of the US.

  45. 45
    HumboldtBlue says:

    @Amir Khalid:

    Says Amir as Nicholas Pepe scuffles on the break …

    I miss Randinho too.

  46. 46
    Jay says:

    @Adam L Silverman:

    Not football, real football, known in the US as “soccer”,

    Neither is no lacross.

  47. 47
    Bill Arnold says:

    Since this is an open thread,
    Quick and easy and reasonably convincing read; might be good to share with friends.
    We know how to build an all-renewable electric grid – The question is when, not how. (David Timmons, 08.24.19)

    And The Onion on David Koch
    Aides Struggle To Stop Dozens Of Kerosene-Soaked Republicans From Lighting Selves Ablaze Atop David Koch’s Body (The Onion, 23 August 2019)
    David Koch Pumps Billions Of Dollars Into Campaign To Secure Antonin Scalia A Seat In The Holy Trinity (The Onion, 23 August 2019)

    “It’s been far too long since a true conservative like Antonin Scalia ascended to the highest ranks of Heaven and held the title of Divine Person,” said Koch, who, after arriving in the afterlife, reportedly began lobbying prominent Holy Angels and poured cash into conservative Heaven-wide advertising initiatives in order to secure a spot for the former Supreme Court justice to replace the Holy Spirit.

  48. 48
    Alternative Fax, a hip hop artist from Idaho says:

    @Amir Khalid:

    I miss Randinho too.

    Likewise.

  49. 49
    Raven says:

    @Bonnie: There are no more football threads here. It’s not worth bringing because these fuckers have a goddamn stroke if you do,

  50. 50
    Chetan Murthy says:

    @Alternative Fax, a hip hop artist from Idaho: Uh, who is “Randinho”? I remember “Ronaldinho” …..

  51. 51
    Bonnie says:

    I guess I’m not wanted here. I have been watching American Football since 1954; I am not about to give it up now. However, I have a general comment on the topic. I do think Netanyahu is a thug.

  52. 52
    Adam L Silverman says:

    @Raven: Are we talking soccer? I’m happy to do a thread now and then if people let me know ahead of time about a certain game. If we’re talking American gridiron football, then I have no interest in doing so.

  53. 53
    Raven says:

    @Adam L Silverman: I don’t give a rats ass what you do. I gave up on discussing it here and only responded to her because she asked.

  54. 54
    Jeffro says:

    @Adam L Silverman: (re: WW III having already begun in terms of the 2020 US elections)

    On one side you have the Russians, the Israelis, the Saudis, and the North Koreans. On the other side you have the Chinese.

    …all vying for control of the same up-for-sale asset, meaning the current POTUS.

    Lovely. Now if we could just pry a majority of the country away from whatever is playing on Netflix, or from gabbing about Andrew Luck…

  55. 55
    Adam L Silverman says:

    @Bonnie: You are more than welcome here. It is an open thread. I’m just not a fan of the NFL or American gridiron football. So I don’t do posts about it.

  56. 56
    Another Scott says:

    @Bonnie: Just about every thread here is an “open thread”. Feel free to post about anything you want. If people feel like discussing it, they will. :-)

    “It’s better to ask forgiveness than to ask permission.”

    Cheers,
    Scott.

  57. 57
    HumboldtBlue says:

    And just remember folks, when the storm gets really bad there’s always the golden smile of Smiling Mo Salah.

    Bobby Firmino provides the lark.

  58. 58
    Jeffro says:

    Also since OT: more like this plz national snooze media

    Some PA Democrats regret not voting in 2016. They’re sure as heck gonna vote in 2020

    …In Pennsylvania, exit polls showed, the percentage of the vote cast by African Americans, who overwhelmingly sided with Clinton, dropped from 13 percent in 2012 to 10 percent in 2016. White voters, who went dramatically for Trump, rose from 78 percent to 81 percent of the electorate.

    Interviews with black and white voters in the state show that a different dynamic may already by in play — on both sides.

    Arresting the slide in black turnout and cutting into Republican advantages among white and rural voters is seen by Democrats as key to flipping Pennsylvania back into their electoral column. The same is true in Wisconsin and Michigan, two other historically Democratic states that went for Trump in 2016.

    “I think people in Philadelphia understand that we can determine the presidential election in many ways because we can determine how Pennsylvania goes,” Waller said in an interview with The Washington Post. Trump’s margin of victory in the state was narrow: Just 44,000 of the 6.2 million voters turned the state from blue to red.

    “We are trying to impress upon our community how important both the vote and the census is in this new year,” Waller said.

    yesYesYES more like this please, reporters…more on how Dem turnout is absolutely essential in 2020!

  59. 59
    HumboldtBlue says:

    @Bonnie:

    You may not be wanted but you’ll get plenty of feedback about coillege football if introduced.

    You will also find a keen interest and discussion about soccer, particularly international and European football.

    It’s all welcome

  60. 60
    Amir Khalid says:

    @Chetan Murthy:
    A beloved and sadly missed ex-frontpager (real life got in the way of his posting) whose main focus was the beautiful game.

  61. 61
    Bonnie says:

    @HumboldtBlue: I am a very old woman; and, what most people on this blog do not know is that soccer was not introduced to American TV until I was almost 30. By then, I was spending so much of my life watching all other sports that I decided in order to have a semblance of a life, I would not take on a new sport. I know nothing about soccer; and, thus, have no real opinion on it. But, most conversations about soccer just go over my head. I do, however, have a cat; and, she has been known to like soccer on the computer screen.

  62. 62
    Gin & Tonic says:

    @Bonnie: Once college football season is going in earnest, Betty puts up front-page posts about it pretty regularly. Nobody really posts about NFL games much, as I recall. Cole used to, if the Stillers were involved, but he doesn’t post about much of anything except his gardening anymore. The issue Raven mentions is that there’s a fair number of holier-than-thou people who will choose the occasion of a gridiron post to comment about injuries and such.

    But feel free to write about whatever interests you. Maybe somebody will chime in, maybe they won’t. I put up a fair number of posts that are met with confusion or silence or both, but I don’t give a shit.

  63. 63
    Brachiator says:

    The Quds Force commander, Major General Qassem Suleimani, is the best strategist indigenous to the region. I think he’s trying to goad Bibi into overreacting. Into doing something so over the top, so strategically risky that it backfires and blows back not just on Bibi, but also on Israel and Bibi’s US patron: the President.

    This will not work to Iran’s advantage in the current political environment.

  64. 64
    Ladyraxterinok says:

    @J R in WV: Requesting recipe or link to previous posting please.

  65. 65
    Cacti says:

    @Gin & Tonic:

    The issue Raven mentions is that there’s a fair number of holier-than-thou people who will choose the occasion of a gridiron post to comment about injuries and such.

    Mostly soccer dorks.

  66. 66
    Chetan Murthy says:

    @Brachiator:

    The Quds Force commander, Major General Qassem Suleimani

    The victor of the Iraq War. When GWB visited Iraq, it was a highly-classified secret: he was in-and-out before anybody knew. When Suleimani visits, it is to a hero’s welcome, and everybody comes out to greet him.

    Iran won the Iraq war, and anybody with a brain knew that was inevitable even before we launched the first missile.

  67. 67
    Amir Khalid says:

    @Cacti:
    Actually, no; it’s people who disapprove of the gridiron sport’s part in causing the cerebral trauma that blights the lives of current and retired players. People who like association football better just mention their sport a lot.

  68. 68
    Alternative Fax, a hip hop artist from Idaho says:

    @Gin & Tonic: I can’t read Cyrillic, so I can only respond to your comments posted in English 😊 Which are always interesting, but I’m often reading them when the thread is in riogor mortis.

    I hope to have more time to interact if there’s a new and fully functional blog someday.

  69. 69
    Cacti says:

    @Amir Khalid:

    Here’s one now.

    How’s FC Liverchester United doing this season old bean? Which of this year’s 87 “championships” have they won?

  70. 70
    HumboldtBlue says:

    @Cacti:

    Well, yeah.

  71. 71
    Amir Khalid says:

    @Cacti:
    You’re obviously thinking of Melchester Rovers, the legendary comic-book team and its equally legendary player/captain/manager/owner Roy Race.

  72. 72
    Yarrow says:

    @Bonnie: Well, I’m a rugby fan so I’m happy to talk about that. Not that that helps you with a football thread.

  73. 73
    Amir Khalid says:

    @Cacti:
    But if you’re asking about the team I support, Liverpool FC, they’re at the top of the English Premier League table on nine points out of a possible nine, after three matches. YNWA.

  74. 74
    Yarrow says:

    @Alternative Fax, a hip hop artist from Idaho:

    if there’s a new and fully functional blog someday.

    It would be nice to have an update.

  75. 75
    hotshoe says:

    God I hate these fucking people, all of the warmongers and authoritarians and empire-builders and BAMF-wannabes. Damn their eyes.

    I’m old, and if this works up into a hot WWIII, I will hardly care if I turn out to be collateral damage. But damn, I care about the other innocent humans, the young ones who deserve a chance to fix the mess our politicians are currently making. If only we can live through the next couple of years …

  76. 76
    Amir Khalid says:

    @Alternative Fax, a hip hop artist from Idaho:

    I hope to have more time to interact if there’s a new and fully functional blog someday.

    Have faith. At the end of the storm is a golden sky, and the sweet silver song of the lark.

  77. 77
    Cacti says:

    @Amir Khalid:

    Yeah, that’s them. Arsencheliverchestertonpool City. They’re my favorites.

  78. 78
    Alternative Fax, a hip hop artist from Idaho says:

    @Amir Khalid: You always have interesting comments and song allusions.

    @The Tweet of God

    Fine, I’ll coach Chelsea.

    I laughed and thought of the football fans here when I saw that a few years ago.

  79. 79
    Yarrow says:

    I don’t watch Fox News, but this sounds like it might have been funny.

    Total chaos breaks out on Fox News as Jeanine Pirro tries to bring in Dan Bongino to discuss recession talk but he's apparenly not there, so she tries to bring in Charlie Kirk on The New York Times but doesn't have him, and finally sets up a panel on tariffs. pic.twitter.com/tb0IlkTfFr— Matthew Gertz (@MattGertz) August 25, 2019

  80. 80
    Amir Khalid says:

    @Yarrow:
    It’s certainly surprising. A broadast newsroom should be better organised than that.

  81. 81
    Yarrow says:

    @Amir Khalid: Judge Jeanine appears to be drunk on her show half the time. Who knows about her staff. Also, “broadcast newsroom?” Is that sort of thing really involved in Judge Jeanine’s show?

  82. 82
    Steeplejack says:

    @Ladyraxterinok:

    Here’s the peach kuchen recipe. Dunno why he’s got to be such a diva about it.

  83. 83
    Yarrow says:

    @Steeplejack: How are things? Have you made it to Vegas yet?

  84. 84
    Argiope says:

    @J R in WV: late to the thread, but my great-grandmother was born and raised in Louisa. We may well be distant kin. That place is small even now.

  85. 85
    jl says:

    @Gin & Tonic: Who’s this Baud? Never heard of it. Chase it off.

    And, thanks to Adam for an informative post. Hope Netanyahu gets bounced in the September election, but I haven’t had time to follow it so I have no idea about the chances of that.

  86. 86
    Alternative Fax, a hip hop artist from Idaho says:

    @Steeplejack: Dude, not all of us have your thread killing, I mean thread linking sakillz. I can kill a thread with the best of them, but I can’t link easily. So if it were me, it would be an example of me being lazy rather than a diva.

    @Yarrow: Should you hear one, please share.

    Have a good night, Juice Jackals. I’m headed to bed. 💤

  87. 87
    Steeplejack says:

    @Yarrow:

    No, I fly out there Monday. Tomorrow is the stress day, because I have to get all of the housecat’s stuff—and the housecat—gathered up and delivered to the friend who is keeping her while I’m gone. Plus other last-minute details.

    But I scheduled it that way, and an afternoon flight Monday, so that I can have a leisurely, hopefully low-stress morning before embarking upon the ordeal that is post-09/11 air travel.

  88. 88
    Steeplejack says:

    @Alternative Fax, a hip hop artist from Idaho:

    He could have just left out the sentence: “I’ve posted the recipe before, won’t do it again without a request.” That was the diva part.

  89. 89
    James E Powell says:

    @J R in WV:

    I’ve posted the recipe before, won’t do it again without a request.

    Please consider this my request.

  90. 90
  91. 91
    Yarrow says:

    @Steeplejack: Hope everything goes well getting the cat to your friend. That sounds like the most stressful part.

  92. 92
    James E Powell says:

    @Steeplejack:

    Dankeschön

  93. 93
    SRW1 says:

    @Gin & Tonic:

    To my knowledge this is the only one of the nations which gained independence from the collapse of the Soviet Union which has actually had (numerous) free elections and peaceful transfers of power.

    The three Baltic countries would like to wave hello.

  94. 94
    Steeplejack (phone) says:

    @Yarrow:

    Thanks! She—the housecat, not my friend—has had some minor health problems lately, which makes me a little more nervous. She’s 19, so theoretically anything could happen. But she had some big fur mats taken off by a groomer on Friday, and she seems to be feeling better after that. And I definitely will feel better with her being with someone rather than just getting visits from the cat wrangler every day.

  95. 95
    SRW1 says:

    @Bonnie:

    But, most conversations about soccer just go over my head. I do, however, have a cat; and, she has been known to like soccer on the computer screen.

    Understandable, your cat probably finds those humans chasing the round mouse all over the garden hilariously funny.

  96. 96
    Sab says:

    Anybody know anything about trimming large geriatric cat’s toenails? They are really long, and we don’t let him outside anymore. Only pet’s toenails I have ever trimmed was a German shepherd, and she used to howl like a banshee when I did it.

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    @jl: I thought you were the Baud!2020! finance chairman, out behind the 7-11 helping collect empties.

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    Steeplejack (phone) says:

    @Sab:

    Take the cat to your vet or a groomer. Much less stress for everybody. They know what they’re doing, they have a lot of experience, and it’s amazing the shit they can get away with on a metal table that you can’t at home.

    My vet will trim the housecat’s claws for free, as long as I’m flexible on the time so they can fit it into their schedule. Your vet might do the same. The appointment at the groomer’s on Friday to have big fur mats taken off and other trimming done was only $25. Probably would need to have the cat’s claws done only 2-4 times a year.

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    Steeplejack (phone) says:

    💤🌛 for me.

  100. 100
    Amir Khalid says:

    @Sab:
    I suppose you just have to go ahead and do it. Maybe you could do a few nails at a time, and hope your old guy doesn’t get too upset.

  101. 101
    Sab says:

    @Steeplejack (phone): Thanks. I’ll try that.

  102. 102
    Sab says:

    @Amir Khalid: Two nails at a time until it’s done? He’s pretty laid back, but he has become a bit testy since he went blind.

    Getting old isn’t for the faint of heart.

  103. 103
    Ruckus says:

    Having a decent night. Watched something on Netflix that should give one hope that the world is not coming to an end. My Next Guest with David Letterman, episode one, President Barrack Obama. John Lewis was included. Tells me there is good in the world, even as shitty as it looks on a daily basis, what with a racist moron fucking everything up and getting worse and stupider by the minute.
    I’ve wondered if we needed to see how bad it can get to make us take the plunge and change what we can and in a massive way. IOW maybe this is a wakeup call, this ignorant fuck of a human living in our house and destroying everything.

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    Ruckus says:

    @Sab:

    Getting old isn’t for the faint of heart.

    QFT. And it’s the same for every thing that lives.

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    Sab says:

    Reassuring to know that google street view isn’t everywhere all the time. It apparently hasn’t been on my street for at least seven years. My how things have changed ( for the better.) Goats, new siding, new neighbors. I bitch about issues, but looking at then cf now, we are on an uptick here.

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  107. 107
    J R in WV says:

    @Ladyraxterinok:

    I have now saved this into a text file for future reference. I guess I could have googled for the last time I posted it. You need fresh peaches, and I let them set out in the kitchen table to be room temp and to ripen a little more if needed.

    I always think of my Grandma Grace when I make this, and especially when we eat it. She was born in a little town in Kentucky on the Big Sandy River in the closing days of the 19th century into a farming family of 9 siblings, but got a lot of education for a young woman in those times. After graduating from a business college (probably in Huntington, WV) where she learned bookkeeping, typing, and shorthand, as well as typical business practices, she got a job with a pretty well managed coal company in the headwaters of Marsh Fork of Coal River.

    This is where she met her husband, my grandfather whom I have no recollection of, as he died of lung disease when I was 10 months old. He was a Pennsilvania Dutch farmboy blacksmith with 14 siblings. I believe this recipe was one Grace got from his sisters to help his feel at home with her, as she was a good cook, but back then Kentucky farm food was different from Pennsy Dutch farm food.

    At first they lived in the coal camp where grandpa was a mechanic and hoist engineer, working to keep the boilers and steam engine and hoist equipment in operation, and to run hundreds of men down into the mine and raise the coal to light. They eventually saved enough to buy bottom land a mile or so from the mine plant, built a very nice home and farm, with a grape arbor, an apple orchard, a big truck garden. They had pasture fields to keep a cow and a full cut stone basement to keep the canned produce over winter.

    I spent a lot of time with grandma, most weekends with my brother and cousins, especially in the summertime when school was out. When I brought friends out, she told them to “Just call me Grandma” and treated them like her own grand kids for the most part. She played the piano all her life, and as a young girl played for the silent movies to make money to go to business college later on. My folks took her on a Mississippi River Boat cruise, I think the Delta Queen, and she won the talent contest by playing Sweet Georgia Brown on the calliope.

    She lived to be 93 or 94 and saw the world change from river boats and steam engines to jet planes and rocket ships going to the moon. I make a lot of food just like she did, or the same dishes with some foodstuffs she couldn’t get in the 1950s and ’60s.

    Like Chinese five spice!

    PEACH kUCHEN

    BY Grandma Grace
    with adaptations by J R

    1/2 cup butter
    2 cups sifted flour
    1/2 tsp baking powder
    1/2 salt
    1 cup sugar
    from 9 large to 12 small peach halves to fill the baking pan
    At least 1 tsp cinnamon
    dash Asian five spice (optional)
    2 or 3 egg yolks
    1 cup sour cream

    Peel and slice all your peaches in half, sprinkle a little sugar on them to keep them fresh while you deal with the crust.

    Cut cold butter into sifted flour combined with baking powder, salt and 2 tblsp of sgar with a dash of cinnamon, using a pastry blade. Press even layer into (8 or 9″) baking pan on bottom and up sides with a big spoon or your hands, whatever. I use a clear pyrex glass or a parchment paper lined aluminium pan.

    Arrange peach halves in shell cut sides up. Sprinkle the remaining sugar (1 cup less 2 tablespoons) mixed with the cinnamon and optional asian five spice or plain ground anise seed. Bake in 400 degree ovof if you have a big family.en for 15 minutes

    While the Kuchen bakes the first time, mix 1 cup sour cream with 2 or 3 egg yolks with a whip or a fork to get a smooth mixture. Remove the Kuchen from the oven spoon the sour cream mixture over the peaches and into the crevices between the peaches. Bake again for at least 30 minutes at 350. I often need to use convection and a little more time to get the slightly browned top I think is ideal.

    Sometimes I spoon a little orange liquor over the peaces after I cover then with sugar, I always use the bowl I put the sliced peeled peaches in to mix the sour cream and egg yolks, so I capture the juice left by the peaches while I make the crust.

    If you want, it’s pretty much as easy to cut a few extra peaches and make two of these wonderful confections, so you can share one with friends and neighbors. They will love you for it. Don’t bother trying to use canned or frozen peaches, It isn’t the same

  108. 108
    J R in WV says:

    A Diva…!

    REally, Steeps?

    It takes a while to type this baby out, I finally saved it into Office for future reference, but so far each time I post it, I get the little recipe box sized card Grandma typed her recipe out on for me when I got married. We spent our honeymoon at her house — she filled the fridge with all our favorite foods and decamped to mom and dad’s house about 7 miles away. It was swell.

    Then we drove to my duty station sometimes staying in tiny motels and sometimes camping in a little pup tent. We didn’t have much money, obviously, I was getting something like $110/month from the navy.

    Diva? Really !

    I just hope fresh peaches hold out for folks to make it at least one mroe time this summer. I’ve got a bunch on the kitchen table rippening up a little bit, will probably make two tomorrow evening after it starts to cool down.

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    Mary G says:

    @J R in WV: Love the grandma stories and the recipe sounds delicious.

  110. 110
    Gemina13 says:

    @Citizen Alan: Happily? What corner of the U.S. are you speaking of? In my corner, a majority of citizens hate the bastard and can’t wait for him to be arrested, stroke out, or both. And the same is true on the opposite corner. Maybe you ought to read a little more about how that election actually happened before you start slinging such a charge around.

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    Robert Sneddon says:

    @Adam L Silverman: Any chance of a Rugby World Cup post/thread? It’s taking place in Japan later this year and the USA qualified in one of the two Americas group team places.

  112. 112
    Barb 2 says:

    Are we supposed to take his “word” for this? Perhaps more like a war toy he wanted to play with?

    All this macho or toxic testosterone on display to hide his illegal behavior at home.

  113. 113
    debbie says:

    @Bonnie:

    I am a very old woman…

    If it turns out you’re in your 40s, I’m going to be pretty ticked…

    I don’t like football myself, but I really hated hearing that the NFL quarterback (Luck?) who announced his retirement after 7 years was booed last night (his last game). Fuck them, and fuck any “fans” who think players should risk their lives for fans’ amusement.

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    Bonnie says:

    @Yarrow: Rugby is more of mystery to me than soccer; but, have watched some on a few occasions.

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    Bonnie says:

    @debbie: I am 73, soon to be 74. My older brother controlled the TV when I was a kid and when Dad was not around to control it. He watched football. I was 9. I started to ask questions; and, being the nice guy that he was, he explained it to me. Thus, it is all his fault. Those were the days when there were guys named Johnny Unitas, Bart Starr, Roman Gabriel, Vince Lombardi, Y.A. Tittle, etc. He watched college football and told me about Bear Bryant, some guy who coached Oklahoma (I forget most anything I hear about Oklahoma), and Texas. We watched the Army/Navy game every year and saw Joe Bellino win the Heisman Trophy for Navy a long time ago. I have seen every Super Bowl. I attended the University of Washington; and, I am a die-hard Husky fan, which isn’t always easy. Now, I do a Snoopy dance when football season arrives. When football season is over, I just mark time until it starts again. I agree with you about the people who booed Luck regarding his retirement announcement. That was a surprise to me. I think that has something to do with our idiot president* who has brought out the unkind in many Americans. However, I am a movie buff, cat lover, and have a lot of good friends, who seem to be very understanding about my passion for football. So, it is a good life; just a bit harder when 70+.

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    debbie says:

    @Bonnie:

    My childhood is similar; growing up in the shadow of THE Ohio State University and a grandfather who was their team manager. I stopped following football when it became too painful to watch. Brothers still live for tailgating, etc.

    The booing precedes Trump; OSU players were harassed by “fans” after protesting Trayvon, Tamir, etc.

    Hope your season goes well.

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