An al-Qaida breakaway group that seized large swaths of Iraq in recent weeks declared Sunday (June 29) the creation of a new religious state in Iraq and Syria, as it continued to repel government forces in Tikrit, the hometown of former dictator Saddam Hussein.The militant group called the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant announced it will now be known as The Islamic State.
Saying that the treasure trove of Jewish artifacts found by American troops in Baghdad in 2003 “were stolen” from the Iraqi Jewish community, Sen. Charles Schumer (D-N.Y.) has called on the State Department not to return them to Iraq.
Under an agreement with the Bush administration at the time, the more than 2,700 artifacts – including partial Torah parchments and ancient prayer books –were to be returned to Iraq by June of next year after being restored and preserved by the National Archives in Washington. The National Archives plans to exhibit some of them in the near future.
Ronald Lauder has a good idea. In a gesture of peace and understanding, he wants to save the Iranians the humiliation of being defeated by Israeli athletes at the 2012 Olympics in London and protect the losers from any retribution they may incur for returning home with the stigma of having been bested by a Zionist by having them sit out next year's games.