Why Are You Laughing?

Two ways of looking at “Je suis Charlie.”

Killing the Buddha

Boston, between Columbine and 9/11

President Obama declared that the “hateful agenda” of the Boston bombers will not succeed. But he also warns us not to jump to conclusions. Thus we may ask, what if there was no agenda? What if the Tsarnaev brothers are not ideologically motivated Islamic terrorists but deluded young men, just like the killers of Columbine,…

Killing the Buddha

NYC Event: The World 9/11 Created

Voice of Witness, the non-profit arm of McSweeney’s Books, has put together their latest collection of oral histories in time to be included in our reflections on 9/11 and the world that day created. On Tuesday, September 13, Buddha-killer Scott Korb welcomes Alia Malek, editor of VoW’s Patriot Acts: Narratives of Post-9/11 Injustice, to the Jerry…

Killing the Buddha

I Wanna Be Like Osama b.

A clever little artifact of our depressing times: It comes from Jihad! The Musical, written by Benjamin Scheuer, who introduced himself at the Tin Anniversary Spectacular the other night.

"GOP Bigotry" by Bob Bobster, via Flickr.

The Anti-Muslim Machine

Park51 is only the latest, and it won’t be the last.

Photo of Ofelia Rivas by Jason Jacks for The Sierra Club.

Today Needs Another Name

This Columbus Day, the spirit of 1492 is alive and well.

Dynamite Cross

That’s Irish Evangelism

1972: Secret IRA priest is protected from prosecution in car bomb attack— Martin Scorsese! cue up “Gimme Shelter” http://www.reuters.com/article/idUSTRE67N23820100824

Killing the Buddha

Ground Zero for American Islam

A few weeks ago, we were all talking about race. An event—the accidental firing of Shirley Sherrod, a USDA employee—set off one of those “national conversations”:  a spurious debate driven by a cable chatter, rising incessantly until the next blip arrives. The conversations are then capped off by one, maybe two, Times columnists. Now we’ve…

Killing the Buddha

Independence Day, almost

This one day during basic training when we did a night live fire exercise crawling under exploding things made me kind of done with fireworks. I was low-crawling through the sand with tracer bullets flying overhead (“Don’t stand up, or you might get killed,” they told us, though I figured the bullets were probably higher…

Mumbai Terrorist

Explosions in Mumbai

A year ago today ten men in jeans and black t-shirts took ten minutes to hijack Mumbai, a cosmopolitan city that everyone here in India compares to New York. With guns and grenades and bombs in backpacks, they killed 164 people and left the city in flames. Most of the attackers were killed in the…

Killing the Buddha

30 Seconds of Book Criticism: Inside the Kingdom

Publishers send me books to consider for review, but I rarely end up writing about even those that interest me. So, after culling the trash and the irrelevant and the brilliant-but-not-compelling-to-me volumes and dispatching them to the Monroe County Public Library, Honeoye Falls branch, I stack up the rest. The stack grows, until it teeters;…

Killing the Buddha

This Progamming Brought to You by the F.B.I.

There’s little question that the four men arrested for plotting a series of terror attacks north of New York City are creeps. One’s a purse snatcher who collects urine. Another boasts of being willing to murder to save $700. One dealt drugs behind a school. Not much is available on the fourth man, besides the…

A mosque in Lahore.

The Moderate

A tale of Westernization, lubricated by beer.

"The Angel of the Revelation," William Blake

Hermaphrodite Terrorist Angel

How many holy rollers does it take to pray the devil out of a hermaphrodite terrorist angel?

Bagdhad, before the war.

Living with the Enemy

An American woman residing at a hotel in Baghdad sends word to friends back home of the horror and beauty she bears witness to.

A day in the life of the Promised Land. Palestine travel poster, detail, 1898. From The Orientalist Poster, by Abderrahman Slaoui.

Letter from Israel

Of words and wounds in the Promised Land.

"He could no longer be certain whether he was a man dreaming he was a butterfly, or a butterfly dreaming he was a man."

Persistence of Memory

Can we mourn for those who aren’t dead?

"War birds of the Irish, come to remind us they are hungry for eyes."

A Mantra for the Mujahedeen

How do you pray for an enemy?