Monday, November 26, 2012

Frasier Statue One Step Closer

Tonight, Mayor Nutter held a fundraiser to raise money to build a statute in memory of boxing champ Joe Frazier in Philadelphia. The event, organised by Saul Ewing lawyer Richard Hayden and Nutter staffer Erica Haywood. was held in the ornate Conversation Room in City Hall. Xfinity Live and West Coast promoter Jerry Perenchio have each donated $25,000 to the building fund. Fans of Smokin Joe have contributed $5000 through  It is time that we have a statue of the real Philly boxing legend. 

Mayor Nutter and the Frazier Family

As a treat to the fans coming, Frazier's daughter, Weatta Collins, created a shrine for her father at one of the room with memorabilia she brought from home.

Frazier's son in law with the keepsakes.

Frazier's daughter unpacking one of her cherished trophies. 

Mayor Nutter with Frazier Estate spokesman Richard Hayden
In a fun touch, all of the food, drink and decorations had a fight night  theme.  

Tuesday, November 20, 2012

IDF Spokesman: Israel Had To Bomb Gaza Media Center

The New York Times and other media outlets reported this about the Israeli strike where many broadcast companies have their offices. 

On Sunday, Israeli forces attacked two buildings housing local broadcasters and production companies used by foreign outlets. Israeli officials denied targeting journalists, and said that a second attack on one of the buildings, known as Al Sharouk, had targeted an office of the Islamic Jihad, killing four militants. The attack also hit a computer shop, sparking a blaze that sent plumes of dark smoke creeping up the sides of the building. Video footage showed clouds of smoke billowing.
IDF Spokesman Captain Eytan Buchman, who is head of the North American Bureau in the IDF Spokesperson's office, asserts in a late night email exchange that this account and others from the international media omitted crucial details. 
We targeted a building that includes intl' media a few days ago because it had Hamas communication gear," said Buchman. "This gear is used for military communications between themselves. That places it very clearly as a military target. We hit it because we needed to..but used the most precise weapons available"
Israel bombed the building again on Monday. Buchman insists that only person killed in that attack was what AP even admitted was an Islamic Jihad terrorist inside the building,"
This AP tweet corroborates Buchman's account. 

BREAKING: Gaza group Islamic Jihad says Israeli strike on media center killed one of its top militant leaders.

CNN's Anderson Cooper also confirmed that rockets were being launched in the vicinity of the building. 

4 rockets just fired from near media center in  City. The same media center bldg hit by three IDF missiles earlier today

As further proof, Captain Buchman offers this compelling video of the IDF hit. 

A frustrated Buchman does not understand why the media refuses to criticize Hamas for deliberately planting terrorists in civilian locations. He argues, "Zero condemnation from the intl' media that terrorists are practically embedded in media buildings. The press even forgot that Hamas rockets hit Reuters cameraman earlier this week."
Ma'an, an independent Palestinian News agency, was one of the few, if only media outlets that reported on Hamas rockets hitting the car of the Retuers news crew.

Thursday, November 15, 2012

IDF Spokesman: 3 Million Israelis In Line of Fire

IDF (Israeli Defense Forces) spokesman Captain Eytan Buchman is one of the people live tweeting the Gaza incursion. Yesterday, the official twitter account of the IDF, @IDFspokesperson, tweeted - 

Buchman, a Chicago native, explained in a phone call the reasoning behind the IDF’s increased social media activity. “We learned from Operation Cast Lead in 2008 and 2009 that there were potential new audiences that we could target rather than the traditional media,” he said. “There is so much misinformation coming out of Gaza. Videos show a man be carried into an ambulance, but don’t show the same man walking out of the ambulance a few minutes later. Hamas falsely claimed to have hit an Israeli naval vessel. Social media allows everyone to see for themselves what is happening and make their own decisions.”

As for the controversial decision to show the video of the assassination of senior Hamas leader Ahmed Jabari, Buchman defends it.“The video shows that we hit him when he was in the middle of the intersection to minimize collateral damage," he said. 

He asserts Israel tries to avoid civilian casualties but that the Palestinian leaders make that hard to do. "They put the rockets in the middle of urban areas. When the leaders know they are a target, they use Palestinians as a human shield."

He stresses that Israel tries to minimize the collateral damage. "If you ever read Sun Tzu's Art of War, you would know that surprise is important.Yet, Israel drops leaflets before an attack warning the Palestinians to leave the area. No other army in the world does that."  

Buchman is shedding no tears over the death of Jabari, He said, "Jabari has been in Hamas since 1995." He has blood on his hands and not just the sheen of blood. Gilad Shalit is just the highest profile case that he has been involved with. He is behind the stockpile of weapons in Gaza.”

The captain emphasizes 3 million Israelis now are in the line of fire from Hamas rockets. Many of them ran to bomb shelters this morning when the sirens sounded.  My cousin, Hila Tal-Lazarus, wrote this on her Facebook page: “Terrible, I can’t explain the feeling of running for shelter with a 6 months old and a three year old. This is the time that I wish I wasn’t a mommy… But otherwise we are well. Thanks!”

Captain Buchman credits the Iron Dome, which was supplied by the United States Government under President Obama, for preventing the situation from not being much worse.  “Since it was first utilized in April 2011, it has prevented 100 rockets. In the last four days, it has prevented 105 rockets.”

The IDF has 30 seconds, the length of time of a Super Bowl commercial, to make the decision to fire a missile in response to a Hamas rocket. They do not fire at every Hamas rocket, only the ones that will land in urban areas, due to the $40,000 cost of each missile.  

Three Israelis died today after being hit by Hamas rocket fire. Israel does not have enough Iron Dome batteries to cover the entire Southern region.

Buchman argues, “Those that accuse Israel of being the aggressor have not been paying attention. They should be asking why it took us so long to respond. Since 2001, 12,800 rockets and mortars, an average of 3 a day, have landed in Israel. 274 rockets have landed in Israel since Operation Pillars of Defense.”

By the way, Buchman is the one that coined the Operation Pillar of Defense name. In Hebrew, the name of the operation is Pillar of Cloud, which references the cloud that traveled with the Jews as they left Egypt and made their way to Israel. While Israelis know the Bible well, he was not sure that Americans would understand the biblical reference. 

Monday, November 12, 2012

Sixers Owner Marc Leder Fathers Love Child

Sixers Owner Marc Leder can't seem to stay out of the headlines. The host of the fundraiser where Romney made his infamous 47% remark acknowledged today the existence of a 10 month old daughter by a paramour that he had a tempestuous relationship with. (You can not make this stuff up.)

The spokesman for Leder, the multi-millionaire founder of Sun Capital, sent over this statement. 

“I became the proud parent of a beautiful little girl last January with my former girlfriend of a year. We maintain a close relationship, and are committed to raising our daughter jointly.”

Sources close to Leder say that he deliberately hid the existence of his love child while he was actively campaigning for the family values party. Even after the 47% debacle, he introduced then Republican Vice Presidential nominee Paul Ryan at a swanky fundraiser at the St. Andrews country club in Boca Raton before the last presidential debate. 

Leder resisted giving much of his fortune to his baby mama. The New York Post has reported that he is providing them an apartment on W. 57th Street. 

I am much to polite to suggest that if Leder supported the party that advocated for insurance coverage for birth control that he would not be in this mess. 

Wednesday, November 7, 2012

Preview of Philadelphia Museum of Art Craft Show

The 36th annual Philadelphia Museum of Art Craft Show opened tonight. The show, which is the museum's only fundraiser raised over $500,000 last year, is one of the best in the country. The preview party offered great music, food and art. Patrons, who were looking to buy unique for loved ones, were in a buying mood. Many were carrying multiple bags.

Suzanne Cohn has one of the most famous craft and glass collections in the country. It is worth paying  attention to what she buys. She liked this wood purse, which costs around $200, because wood is "so tactile."

Interior Designer Barbara Eberlein bought these earrings

With England and Ireland selected as the guest countries this year, it is no surprise that  fascinators, ranging from $30 to $350, were available at the show. 

Lisa Woolbert, chairman of the 2012 Craft show, is second from the left. 

Connie Williams modeling the scarlet gloves she purchased. 
Selma Karaca, who dresses former Sex in the City star Sarah Jessica  Parker, is an exhibitor.

Lyn Ross, posing with the artist, modeling the bracelet she purchased 

Committee member Jamie
This striking white and black coat was on sale.
A patron trying on earrings. 

A patron modeling a necklace with the artist.