ZITISTE, Serbia -- In this sleepy farming village, residents talk of a new spirit of exaltation ever since a towering bronze and concrete statue of Rocky Balboa was erected in the village square, his boxing gloves raised in a heroic gesture of triumph.
But Rocky will soon have company in the region: Tarzan, Bruce Lee and a former Playboy model.
In a phenomenon that is either delighting or alarming cultural critics, monuments to icons of Hollywood and popular culture are sprouting across the Balkans, after almost a decade of bloodshed and vengeance that killed as many as 125,000 people in Croatia, Bosnia and Kosovo.
The noted Serbian visual artist Milica Tomic, for one, is concerned. She calls the statues “a dangerous joke in which history is being erased and replaced by Mickey Mouse.”
-- DAN BILEFSKY
I'm sure there are "some" liberals who are on board the Ron Paul train, but there isn't some big liberals-for-Ron-Paul movement.
I find the Ron Paul candidacy interesting, but that has nothing to do with support. It's interesting because I don't quite understand it. It's interesting because he highlights the unacknowledged-by-the-Villagers fact that anti-war sentiment has long since spread from dirty fucking hippies like me into other parts of the population. It's interesting because despite having significant fundraising and some early poll (
) showing, his candidacy is largely ignored by the Village. It's interesting because Ron Paul is crazy but Norman Podhoretz and Rudy Giuliani are very serious (that is, there are certain types of crazy that the Village loves and certain kinds of crazy they marginalize). New Hampshire
We have to leave the military option on the table to have diplomacy taken seriously by our enemies, and make no mistake, the Iranian mullahcracy is an enemy of the
. That being said, we can’t simply expect to have even the most surgical of strikes go unanswered, and a shooting war with US will have grave implications for Iran , especially in the Shi’ite south. We need to solidify our gains in Iraq before looking for another adventure — and we need to act in the best interests of our nation while ensuring that we don’t make the Middle East exponentially more explosive than it already is. Iraq
-- ED MORRISSEY
Kosher convertible?No, it's not a tasteless ethnic joke, Malaysian auto manufacturer Proton really plans to team up with companies in
and Iran to build a Muslim Special, complete with Koran compartment and a compass that always points to Turkey . Mecca-- CAPT. FOGG
A man has been severely injured after attempting to loosen a stiff wheel-nut on his car by blasting it with a shotgun. The 66-year-old American shot the wheel from arm's length with a 12-gauge shotgun and was peppered with ricocheting buckshot and debris. According to a sheriff's office report, he was taken to
with severe but not life threatening injuries. His legs, feet and abdomen were worst affected, but some injuries went as high as his chin. Tacoma General Hospital
The man had been repairing a Lincoln Continental for about two weeks at his home near Southworth in
Washingtonstate, about ten miles from . He had successfully removed all but one wheel-nut on the right rear wheel and resorted to firepower out of sheer frustration on Saturday afternoon. Seattle
-- GARY CLELAND
Photo by Filip Horvat for The New York Times