27 Feb 2014

Travels in the land of the infidels: The island of Britannia

In the name of God, the most merciful and compassionate.

With His aid and benevolence, your lowly servant has completed a decade of travels in the land of the infidels. Upon the request of several of trusted friends I was convinced to write down about my adventures and experiences hoping that it would enlighten our people as to the ways and manners of the infidels that inhabit the island of Britannia. I trust this scientific account shall prove valuable for students of life and its diverse mysteries.

On the year of 1423 AH we set sail to the harbour of Portsmouth in the island of Britannia for we could not find reasonably priced airplane tickets at such a late notice. The arduous journey deserves in itself an account that with His aid shall one day be written. But suffice it to say that after long days of travel and mediocre food and less than satisfactory offerings of the entertainment we finally arrived at our destination.

23 Feb 2014

On Storming President’s House, Protesters Shocked to Discover it’s Utterly Lacking in Opulence

While the eyes of the world were on Ukraine this week, protesters in the central Asian republic of Basitstan stormed the presidential residence after weeks of agitation. The president, Aslan Kalilov, left in a hurry to an unknown destination as the revolutionaries gained ground. But the protesters that made it inside the official residence were shocked when they realised that it is utterly lacking in opulence.

Our research revealed that the residence was designed by a young Swedish architectural practice known simply as ?, (pronounced ‘question mark’), which gained fame for its minimalistic designs. The three-bedroom house is predominantly white in colour, except for the wood floors that were finished with a type of timber known in the trade as ‘self-effacing wood’.

21 Feb 2014

Explore the amazing Lebanese Google Maps

Click on image to zoom and play

Explore the amazing Lebanese Google Maps, including the new street view.

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20 Feb 2014

Exclusive: Leaked Powerpoint of Saudi Pitch to Obama for Regime Change in Syria

Recently there were unconfirmed reports in the press that Saudi Arabia is planning to pitch regime change in Syria to President Obama. There were doubts about this until the Powerpoint presentation used by the Saudis was leaked. We have obtained this exclusively, you can see it below. Special thanks to  for his efforts in obtaining this.

Click on image to zoom and play the presentation. 

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17 Feb 2014

Nicholas Kristof: Why Professors Suck!

Nicholas with one black person.
SOME of the smartest thinkers on problems at home and around the world are university professors, but most of them just don’t matter in today’s great debates.

The most stinging dismissal of a point is to say: “That’s academic.” In other words, to be a scholar is, often, to be irrelevant.

That’s the totality of my argument, but let me write a few hundred more words just to fill this column.

For example, take academics’ infuriating tendency for writing paragraphs.

In today’s fast-moving world, paragraphs have become redundant.

They are also a challenge for the average reader’s attention span.

14 Feb 2014

The silly guide to forming a cabinet in Lebanon

With the news that a new Lebanese cabinet (of the minister-ish not the woody variety) has been nearly formed, we thought we would provide a simple guide to this elaborate and highly complex procedure involving complicated balancing acts and political acrobatics that make a Mensa test look like a children’s puzzle. So here goes:

First, the cabinet must be split evenly between Christians and Muslims, which is why cabinets rarely have an odd number of ministers. An odd number makes splitting a cabinet evenly very difficult but not impossible because normal mathematical laws don’t apply in Lebanon. For the purpose of this exercise Jews are either ignored or counted as Christians. Although theologically suspect, this is justified on the basis that they have Christian names.

12 Feb 2014

الله يستجوب انتحاري

الله: أدخل، أدخل 
الانتحاري الميت: السلام عليك يا خالق...
الله: توقف! أنا أعرف من أنا، بدون تملق. موضة الانتحاريين هذه تفشت بشكل مريع لذلك قررت أن استجوب أحدكم شخصيا، أنا لا أفعل ذلك عادة.  لماذا تفعلون ذلك، لماذا هذه العمليات الانتحارية؟ 
الانتحاري الميت: اه.. ظننا أنك أنت من يريد ذلك. 
الله: ما...ماذا؟ أنا؟ أمجنون أنت؟ لماذا أريدك أن تقتل نفسك؟ بتعرف واحد مثلك قديش بدوا شغل ليخلص؟ وليك حالتك هلق. لم ذراعك إن الأرض، ما تتركها هناك. وبعدين عم تقتل غير ناس معك كمان! حطيناها بكل الديانات "لا تقتل"، يعني كيف ما فهمتها؟
الانتحاري الميت: بس والله فكرنا أنه عم نفجر نفسنا مشانك

Would you like a Viagra with that, Sir? A short sketch on privacy in Lebanon

Customer: Hello.

Pharmacist: Hello, hello, how are we doing today?

Customer: Ehhh. Can I have some Panadol please?

Pharmacist: Your children giving you a headache?

Customer: No, I don’t have children.

Pharmacist: Would you like the small one with 12 tablets or this special package with 500?

Customer: The small one please.

10 Feb 2014

A short, pre-emptive history of the Arab Spring

As anyone who has ever read one knows, history books can be very tedious. They are also full of speculation and guesswork because they’re normally written many years after the fact. Having lived through the ‘Arab Spring’, or the Arab Spring as it is sometimes known, I decided to spare future generations the ordeal of figuring out what precisely happened between 2011 and 2017, which is when the Arab Spring, or the ‘Arab Spring’ officially ended. To that end, I wrote this short, pre-emptive history that will render all future speculation about the subject entirely useless and leave future generations with more time on their hands to figure out what the point of Stonehenge was.

The Arab Spring was so called because it started in December. But it’s a little-known fact that in Arabic it’s not called the Arab Spring, but ‘the so-called Arab Spring’. It is generally agreed that the Arab Spring started in Tunisia in December 2010, although some imaginative people date its beginning back to the ‘Beirut Spring’ of 2005, or the removal of Saddam Hussein by the Americans in 2003, or the invention of political metaphors by Thomas Friedman in 1983.

3 Feb 2014

Egypt Escalates Its War on Language, Radically Trims down The Alphabet

In a radical move aimed at stopping the misuse of language to tarnish the country’s image abroad, Egyptian authorities today announced a radical new initiative to cut down the number of letters in the alphabet. The National Linguistic Transition Programme is the first initiative of its kind anywhere in the world, and will see the alphabet gradually reduced to the letters S and I only. The government expects the programme to create the conditions for a harmonious society free from the frictions generated by the liberal use of words to cause discord.

A government spokesperson announced the details of the bold programme in a press conference attended only by official media representatives as all other journalists were tied up. The spokesperson discussed at length the historic precedents for introducing the programme, arguing that ‘Egypt was always a country of hieroglyphs’ and ‘the alphabet was a foreign import that goes against our heritage and traditions’.