Tuesday, February 28, 2006
Sixty years ago this month, 70,000 British women took part in one of the greatest seaborne migrations in history.
Over the ensuing five months, some 70,000 young British war brides and their babies were transported to the United States as an armada of 20 converted warships and cruise liners criss-crossed the Atlantic to rejoin them with the American military husbands they had met and married during the Second World War.
The War Brides Operation, as the mission was officially known, was launched at the start of 1946 after the US Congress passed emergency one-off legislation to override immigration quotas and allow the British women to move en masse to America. "Those randy Americans were always asking for dates," Mrs Long, 79, says. "You have to remember how it was then. A new wave of men was always off to the war. There was no point planning for the future, the atmosphere was to live for the here and now." READ ON
Good-bye,Piccadilly British War Brides in America by Jenel Virden
Monday, February 27, 2006
Million Revelers Line Streets of
Cologne for Carnival
Everything is allowed: a papier mache doll of German Chancellor Angela Merkel as dominatrix. The World Cup was the theme, but revelers also poked fun at the bird flu crisis as one million people took to the streets of Cologne on Monday for the biggest carnival of the season in Germany. The nearby cities of Düsseldorf and Mainz also held carnival parades on Monday, attended by hundreds of thousands. READ ON
DaimlerChrysler mulls US chances for Smart
German-U.S. carmaker DaimlerChrysler AG (DCX) is considering possibilities for launching its troubled mini-car Smart on the U.S. market. "Right now it's more probable that we'll make a decision in favor of the U.S.A. rather than against it," said DaimlerChrysler head Dieter Zetsche, according to the report. A final decision about a U.S. market entry of the two-seater Smart is likely to be reached in the first half of this year, the report adds. And here's the dirty little secret about the silly little car. It loses a HUGE amount of money. Like hundreds of millions of dollars per annum. READ ON
Good news!.... if you are cheating on your taxes
The Belgian Inland Revenue is going to focus this year on collecting taxes, not on inspection. This is said by Jean-Marc Delporte, top civil servant of the Belgian tax authorities. Earlier it was made public that Inland Revenue made mistakes in 3,000 files. Furthermore, some 4,000 self employed people got wrong tax receipts because Inland Revenue did not take advance payments into account. READ ON
George opened the letter and it appeared to have a single line of code.
George was baffled and gave it to Condi, who gave it to the FBI and CIA. They finally sent it to Britian's MI-6 for help. Within a minute MI-6 cabled the White House with this report.
Tell George he's holding the letter upside down.
I think you're supposed to go down the luge right side up. The nutty Brazilian team, in a sled dubbed "the Frozen Banana", delivered one of the most bizarre and inept performances of the Games, crashing twice in spectacular style.
The most embarrassing incident occurred on their fourth and final run, when the sled overturned and slid upside-down and out of control along much of the course. READ ON
Protesters back illegals
Around 7,000 people took to the streets of Brussels Saturday afternoon calling for the legalisation of illegal immigrants in Belgium.
"People residing here illegally have no access to healthcare, housing, education or work," they said.
Pardon me...but isn't that why they call them ILLEGAL? READ ON
A Whiskey that contains 92% alcohol!
A distillery on a west coast island is preparing to produce the "world's most alcoholic single malt whisky". Managers at Bruichladdich on Islay will use an ancient recipe to distil the whisky four times and produce an alcohol content of at least 92%. READ ON
Saturday, February 25, 2006
STUDS dad picks up his son from school to take him to a dental appointment. Knowing the parts for the schoolplay were supposed to be posted that day, he asked his son if he got one. STUDS son enthusiastically announced that he had. "I play a man who's been married for ten years." "That's great, son. Keep up the good work and before you know it they'll be giving you a speaking part."
Lakensestraat 28, 1000 Brussels
24 - 26 February READ ON
Sweet revelation — Turin is a major producer of chocolate Chocolate is on the must-do list of every tourist here. The Piedmont region is as well known for its chocolate as it is for its wine, the Mole Antonelliana, the Holy Shroud of Turin and the Holy Grail. "Nobody (outside Turin) knows Turin is famous for chocolate," "They know Belgium and France for chocolate. READ ON
Brussels Presses US to Remove Visas for EU Newcomers
The European Commission has been mounting pressure on the US to remove the visa entry regime towards the EU's newcomers.Apart from newcomer Slovenia and Greece, as part of EU-15, the countries that joined the bloc in May 2004 have still not been accepted to the US visa-free regime for tourists staying in the country for up to 90 days. READ ON
Friday, February 24, 2006
More conditions from our
mascot's marriage contract
During my time: You WILL NOT:
1) Argue about anything with me or to me.
2) Compain about anything to me me, or about me.
3) Cry, sob, whine, or pout.
4) Sigh, moan, sulk, or other wise show displeasure or unhappiness.
5) Raise your voice at or to me.
6) Be condescending to, or about me.
7) As for anything from me or for me.
8) Be distracted from me, by other things.
During My-Time you WILL:
1) Be subservient, submissive, and totally obedient.
2) To do what you are asked, when you are asked, exactly how your are asked.
3) Be cheerful and adoring towards me.
4) Be close at all times, unless otherwise told to.
5) Perform any and all sexual acts...
He notes that if the couple is not alone during "My Time," she is allowed to wear her clothes, and may speak openly, but all other restrictions still apply. I wonder if Number 5 still applies. A lawyer would really have to look over this document for problems.
For special events that we are to dress up for, when we are going to someone else's house... your clothes must meet my approval.
General rules are:
Panties are optional and need not be worn [a little liberty!]Only thigh-highs and garter-- no pantyhoseIf you are not wearing thigh-highs & garter, then no panties[this is great...]All skirts no lower than two inches below the knee (unless its for Church)
Unless it's for Church. Well! At least he's a man of propriety.
He also defines "Good Behavior Days." GDB's are days upon which his wife/prisoner acts according to the rules, and she can redeem them for days upon which she can be more lax in observing the rules.
And Photos. "You are to to pose for 20 photos per quarter on demand, unless your quota is filled. Outfits and poses will always be chosen by me. You must be freshly shave on the the day that photos are taken regardless of your shaving schedule."
It's all good. One matrimonial innovation after another.
My only problem is that this "contract" seeks to specify in legal-esque language what should be, for any woman, just common sense behavior anyway.
I mean, does any woman really need "My Time" spelled out for you? Or Good Behavior Days? Or specified naked hours?
TheSmokingGun.com has obtained a copy of the actual contract document that Travis Frey allegedly tried to force his wife to sign . . . and it's even worse than originally described! It also describes the areas of her body she is supposed to shave, the type of underwear and she's she is supposed to buy and wear, as well as what she is and isn't supposed to do while her loving husband is present. Each section even includes a space for her to initial. On her birthday, the lucky Mrs. Frey gets to select a sex toy for herself that will be considered his present to her. Read it for yourself here.
Red Card for World Cup Hookers
The initiators of "Red Card for Forced Prostitution," seeking to fight against an influx of prostitutes during the World Cup in Germany this summer, launched their campaign in Berlin on Wednesday. Some 175,000 women are already involved in prostitution in the county, according to the German Protestant Church, which is also part of the awareness campaign.
Another 40,000 prostitutes, mainly from Eastern Europe, could come to Germany during the soccer World Cup, several associations fighting prostitution estimate. READ ON
It's about time they caught these arses, my spam will be cut in half
Police have arrested 12 Nigerians in Amsterdam and Zaandam suspected of internet fraud in an operation that also involved the US Postal Service. Many of the fraudsters victims came from the US.
The so-called ‘419 fraud’, named after an article in Nigerian law, begins with an email in which huge amounts of money are promised to the target victim. Asked to pay an amount for administrative costs, some victims have been duped out of hundreds of thousands of euros. READ ON
Germany's Next Top Model
Heidi Klum has a TV show in Germany on Prosieben, but Irina was sent home, because she was just too damn fat. Irina's misfortune was her height-weight ratio -- she weighed 52 kilograms (114.5 pounds) and was 1.76 meters (5 feet 9 inches) tall. With that kind of body, Irina, 19, was used to being adoringly ogled, but on supermodel Heidi Klum's television show "Germany's Next Top-Model" her body became her downfall. "Too fat," was the verdict handed down by the show's jury. The svelte Irina was sent home. READ ON
Thursday, February 23, 2006
The first ever coffee king of Belgium was crowned on Monday. Peter Deprez from the West Flemish city of Kortrijk was judged to make the best cup of coffee in Belgium at the Barista Championships, which were held in Antwerp.
34 year old Deprez is the proprietor of the Kortijks Koffiehuis (Kortrijk Coffee House) in West Flanders.
He will represent Belgium at the Barista World Championships in May.
Deprez said that he never uses coffee supplied by one of the big Italian brands.
He says that coffee is only as good as the person making it and that the big brands often install espresso machines in cafes and bars, without training staff how to use them.
"If you don't know how to use the machine, you'll never make a good cup of coffee". Deprez only uses coffee from his family's roasting house Viva Sara.
He says that selecting the perfect blend of coffee beans is as complex as selecting the best grapes to make fine wine.
The quality of the beans and the taste they produce can vary greatly from year to year.
Spice biscuit syrup
Deprez's winning coffee was a combination of a normal cup of his best espresso and a dash of syrup made form Belgium's favourite coffee time biscuit the speculaas (spice biscuit).
He says that the taste of speculaas gives the coffee that extra punch.
Unmanned speed cameras will be brought into use along some of Greater Brussels' busiest main roads from 1 March. The cameras have already been in place for some time, but have not yet been used to trap speeding motorists. READ ON
MPA decapitates major European file-sharing server
Swiss police arrested the site's operator at home while Belgian police seized the site's servers located at an Internet hosting center in Zaventem, Brussels. The MPA authorities have closed down all of the major eDonkey servers in the United States and, with this action, Europe. READ ON
EU pushes plans for institute to halt 'brain drain'
Governments are increasingly concerned that slippage in research and academic standards is holding back innovation needed for the European economy to compete with those of the United States and emerging powers such as China and India.The need for academic improvement is underscored by an EU report that said the 25 current EU nations won 19 percent of Nobel Prizes from 1995 to 2004 compared with 73 percent from 1901 to 1950. READ ON
Wednesday, February 22, 2006
Career information media pioneer Vault Inc. has launched a European operation. The European arm of the company, based in London, features the "insider" company information and expert careers and workplace content that Vault is famous for, but with a European edge. Vault launched Vault Europe to provide a more targeted site for jobseekers interested in information on careers at Europe-based companies or with European operations of multinational firms. READ ON
If we can't chew our "Snus", we'll bring you down!
Thanks to a quirk of early 20th-century history, Aland's 26,000 people are essentially sovereign co-rulers of their home nation of Finland. As such, they can veto any international treaty that Finland wants to enter, including EU treaties. Now Aland, a unique, autonomous region of Finland, is about to teach Brussels a lesson in democracy it may never forget.
The islanders' revolt has been brewing for some time. First, this community of Swedish-speaking Finns lost the right to fish at sea with traditional nets.
Then Alanders saw their beloved spring duck hunting virtually abolished. To the Alanders' final outrage, local laws on consuming "snus" or Swedish chewing tobacco, are about to be quashed by the European Court of Justice.
EU to probe sport and sex trade links EU justice ministers have agreed to look into taking action against the trafficking of women for forced prostitution during major sports events. READ ON
Isle of Mann to go tax free for firms The Isle of Man is to abolish company tax and cap personal income tax at £100,000 from April 5 in a bid to attract the super-rich and budding entrepreneurs. Tax experts said the 33-mile long Crown dependency would become "one of the most favourable tax regimes in the world". READ ON
New Europe keener to learn German than French EU enlargement is pushing German ahead of French on the European language ladder, with non-indigenous languages such as Russian and Turkish also on the rise, a new European Commission study has shown. READ ON
Europe Goes High Definition HDTV has been creeping into Europe for a while and some countries are already enjoying the delights of 720p and 1080i programming.Germany is probably the furthest on in the development of HDTV and helped along no doubt by the approaching World Cup which, as you are no doubt well aware, they are hosting. Lucky viewers get a choice of HD Broadcasts on the Astra satellite including the subscription Premiere, on which all 64 World Cup matches are being shown, as well as the free-to-air Prosieben/Sat.1. Belgium’s Euro1080 channel is probably one of the longest running HD providers in Europe . It is available to most of northern Europe on the Astra satellite but you will need to buy Conditional Access Card to view it. Unfortunately it isn’t showing the World Cup but there are going to be Winter Olympics from Torino shown in March. READ ON
Tuesday, February 21, 2006
A dream for trivia lovers Calling all fellow policy wonks... My attention has been drawn to an addictive website, www.urbanaudit.org, crammed with obscure and gripping data about 258 cities across the European Union, and equipped with a search engine that allows you to construct league tables and rankings, with a couple of mouse clicks.
Want to know Europe's rainiest city? It's Cork. The car addict's capital of Europe? That would be Wrexham, in North Wales, where 93 per cent of commuters make their journeys to work by car.
Binge drinking trend hits European youth Binge drinking - drinking for the sake of getting drunk - is reaching alarming levels among European teenagers, a major new study has revealed.
Monday, February 20, 2006
Rolling Stones' beach party for 1 million The Rolling Stones played one of the most memorable concerts of their long career when they performed in front of more than one million fans on Rio's Copacabana Beach at the weekend.
Sleeping with the enemy HE IS a senior conservative politician, she a young Socialist MP, but it is not only a political clash of allegiances that has turned the love affair between Hendrik Daems and Sophie Pécriaux into such a big scandal in Belgium. Daems, a former telecommunications minister, need not have worried about offending Belgian mores by impregnating a woman other than his wife: nobody in Belgium seems to care much about children being born out of wedlock.
Saturday, February 18, 2006
Gothic beauty Eva Green, who starred with - or ahem, underneath - Orlando Bloom in Kingdom Of Heaven, has apparently signed on the dotted line for Casino Royale. ... Makers of the upcoming James Bond movie Casino Royale have cast little-known French actress Eva Green as the next femme fatale to pair up with British agent 007, distributor Columbia Pictures has said. Green, 25, who made her 2003 film debut in The Dreamers, about a French brother and sister who befriend an American during the Paris student riots of 1968, will play the enticing Vesper Lynd opposite English actor Daniel Craig in his first performance as Bond. Danish actor Mads Mikkelsen had signed on to play Bond’s villainous nemesis Le Chiffre.
Anderlecht fires two players for alleged match-fixing role, Belgian soccer scandal widens A match-fixing scandal in the Belgian soccer league spread to top first division club Anderlecht on Friday when the team fired two players believed to have been involved in the scheme.
Library Speed-Dating Concept Catches On in Belgium Two Belgian librarians are hoping to draw more young people into public libraries by promoting what they call “bib-dating,” or meeting other book lovers in a small group in order to find similarly inclined singles.
Friday, February 17, 2006
Adidas makes international screw up!
Belgian biathlon fans were celebrating a bronze medal at the winter Olympics this week despite the fact that they have no competitors in the competition and the recipient of the medal, Martina Glagow, was actually German. Instead of horizontal stripes they got vertical stripes, and presto you've swapped the land of Bratwurst for the land of Frites.In fact, Belgium stands to win a whole clutch of medals in Turin, specifically in the biathlon and Nordic skiing disciplines, because of a mix up in kit which places around 30 German athletes in the wrong camp.
Due to mistakes made in German sportswear giant Adidas Far East factories, German skiers have to wear caps in Belgian national colors during the first week of the games.
Many Belgian supporters were seen cheering for bronze-medal winning German biathlete Martina Glagow, apparently confused by her uniform. New caps with the correct color scheme will be ready for the German athletes next week.
GICM leaders sentenced to 7 years
A Brussels court has sentenced 2 leading figures in the GICM trial to 7 years each. The prosecution had called for 10. Others received sentences of 5 to 6 years. 13 stood trial for membership of a terrorist organisation.
Thirteen men stood trial accused of membership of the militant group linked to bombings in Madrid and Casablanca. The Court in Brussels ruled that the men offered logistical support to Islamic terrorist cells, including the Moroccan Islamic Combatant Group (GICM).
Lierse fires two players and a coach.
The Belgian Football Betting Scandal. Lierse SK on Thursday fired two players and an assistant coach linked to match-fixing allegations.
French wine industry plunging into state of crisis
Thousands of French winegrowers took to the streets in towns across southern France on Wednesday to raise the alarm over the crisis gripping their sector and demand more help from the state.
Thursday, February 16, 2006
Eleven people were arrested during the raids, with eight of them being detained.
The Indian gang was specialised in bringing illegals to Great Britain.
Wednesday, February 15, 2006
Brussels' Shiny new Atomium re-opens The Atomium has officially reopened on Tuesday after an almost two year renovation project. On Saturday, Belgium's most recognisable landmark will be open to the public.
Economic value of English speakers dwindles The economic advantage historically enjoyed by native English speakers is set to ebb away as the language becomes a near-universal global basic skill
Brussels warns of unsustainable pensions The European Commission has unveiled gloomy figures about the EU's economic prospects due to ageing population problems, warning that several member states might face unsustainable health and pension costs.
Call to legalise cannabis passion for youths The Socialist PS party has thrown the nation's drugs policy back on the agenda by urging the decriminalisation of cannabis possession for youths.
Tuesday, February 14, 2006
GIVE AN ANTI-VALENTINE CARD see them all!
Yes, it's that special time of year when chocolate manufacturers and greetings card companies encourage you to demonstrate the extent of your fondness in cold, hard, cash (or the satin-covered equivalent) on February 14th.
LIGHT JUPILER? The Belgium-based brewing giant will release Leffe 9 degrees and Light Jupiler in an attempt to stem the declining consumption in the Belgian market
LOST IN TRANSLATION This article from Le Soir kind of gets lost in translation.
Last Nine Balls with Nine
The monument emblematic of Belgium reopens its balls. Its image is from now on stainless. A carried out project of hand of Master and who arouses a planetary interest.
Atomium reopens its balls, this Tuesday evening. One second birth which will be followed by 500 journalists come from the whole world.
Girls poison their teacher in Charleroi After being punished by the teacher for misbehaving, the girls are alleged to have offered the teacher a cup of coffee. However, a large dose of the powerful painkiller drug Contramal had been dissolved in the drink.
Monday, February 13, 2006
A couple walks out of the City Hall after their marriage registrations are done, in Brussels, Feb.11, 2006. Since the City Hall opens every Friday and Saturday for couples to get registered, couples come for their marriage registrations at the last Saturday just before Valentine's Day.
Rue Belliard reduced to Two lanes Rue Belliard will be reduced from five lanes to two, up to 15 hours a day for the next two months as they prepare it to better handle peak traffic.
First European positive bird flu test in Bulgaria a dead swan has tested positive for the H5 bird flu virus, Nihat Kabil Minister of Agriculture and Forestry told a news conference.
German Grand Prix in trouble too. The 2006 calendar could drop to just seventeen Grand Prix this week, with Hockenheim now believed to be financially unable to run a German GP.
Saturday, February 11, 2006
Cartoon Protest tempered by a little rain.
About a 100 protesters showed up from the expected 2000 in front of the Palace of Justice yesterday for the cartoon protest. The ratio of media to protesters was about one to one. Add in the assembled Belgian Police with their water cannons and the protesters were severely outnumbered.
The BBC’s coverage will offer unprecedented access through BBC2, interactive TV and its sport website. Digital viewers will be able to access 500 hours of live coverage, while broadband users will be able to access five channels, running simultaneously and broadcasting different events. Host country Italy’s coverage will increase by 88 per cent on the Salt Lake Games, with RAI broadcasting 244 hours, approximately 15 hours of coverage per day. Pan-European broadcaster Eurosport will continue to offer coverage of the Games 24 hours a day.
Holiday Fair at the Heizel
The annual Holiday Show at Brussels' Heizel Exhibition Centre opened its doors to the public on Thursday morning.
The show will be open every day until Monday 13th February, from 10am to 6pm. Some 700 exhibitors, representing 52 countries are taking part.
Belgian Hospitalisation insurance more expensive
The cost of hospitalisation insurance in Belgium is set to rise. The increase is the result of higher healthcare costs.
Friday, February 10, 2006
The Belgian Federal Police have informed the U.S. Embassy about two upcoming protests in Brussels by the Muslim community:
On Friday, February 10, approximately 2000 people will protest in connection with the recent controversy concerning religious cartoons. The protest is to be held at Poelaert Square (at the Palace of Justice) from 2:00 p.m. to 5:00 p.m.
On Saturday, February 11, an estimated 1000 to 2000 people will participate in a weekly Muslim protest at Place du Brouckere in Brussels from 4:30 p.m. to 6:00 p.m.
As always, we remind American citizens that even demonstrations intended to be peaceful can turn confrontational and possibly escalate into violence. American citizens are therefore urged to avoid the areas of demonstrations if possible and to exercise caution if within the vicinity of any demonstrations.
A Dutch company is selling nazi helmets to Dutch football fans to wear during the World Cup Finals in Germany.Free Time Products, from Schijndel, has already sold 15,000 plastic orange helmets in just two weeks reports Het Laatste Nieuws. The plastic helmets are adorned with slogans such as "Attack", "There he goes" and "Go Holland go". Geerts said the company had received only a few complaints and expected to sell another 100,000 helmets before the finals this summer.
The 2006 Belgian F1 Grand Prix has been cancelled, to allow the Spa-Francorchamps track to be improved.
Massive artwork theft in popular Brussels castle Believe it or not, I got married here! I have to apologise for some of my relatives.
One more Leffe for the road
Belgium's favourite abbey beers is to extend its range with a new brother.
Electronic tax return system 'a flop'
Google Desktop Search
The Feds Own Your Data
Thursday, February 09, 2006
Website teaches England fans to chant in German
A website teaching English football fans phrases such as "I puked my guts up" and "sack the manager" in German has been set up for the World Cup.It also includes translations for "sick as a parrot", "the ref doesn't know what he's doing" and "the goal scorer looked suspiciously offside".The British Embassy in Berlin, which is behind the move, has also appointed a special full-time "football attache".Andy Battson will answer queries during the World Cup tournament next year in Germany and give tips to travelling supporters.He said: "We share a love of good beer as well as football and the friendly historic rivalry between our two teams will add extra interest."Some 100,000 England fans are expected to travel to Germany this summer, a crowd second only to the locals.
This guy is a Warrior.He is an EOD Marine who was disarming a bomb when it blew up. "...Leading the fight is Gunnery Sgt Michael Burghardt, known as "Iron Mike" or just "Gunny". He is on his third tour in Iraq. He had become a legend in the bomb disposal world after winning the Bronze Star for disabling 64 IEDs and destroying 1,548 pieces of ordnance during his second tour. Then, on September 19, he got blown up...""...As a stretcher was brought over, adrenaline and anger kicked in. "I decided to walk to the helicopter. I wasn't going to let my team-mates see me being carried away on a stretcher." He stood and gave the insurgents who had blown him up a one-fingered salute. "I flipped them one. It was like, 'OK, I lost that round but I'll be back next week'..."Read the whole story: