Thursday, May 29, 2008

Jihadis Find The Enemy And It Is Them

The insurgents were trying to make a video of their brilliant attack on the American infidels in Baghdad which may have even worked if they weren't so crazy stupid. Attacking the Yankee infidel soldiers should be easy: Just point your weapon at the infidel and shoot. Alas, one insurgent found that too hard to do when he tried to shoot his RPG (Rocket Propelled Grenade) down an alley at a US military Humvee. He hit the wall to the right instead, killing some of his pals. Fortunately for our side, he survived to shoot again, hopefully with bigger and more powerful weapons in a new terror cell heretofore unscathed.
This is the kind of incompetence which makes me wonder if letting the Muslims have atom bombs would really be so bad. It looks like we could just let them get busy with the bombs, maybe even feed them some uranium, and let nature take its course.
The survivors of this particular insurgent cell did not fare well. This embarassing video eventually fell into the hands of an Iraqi interpreter for the Marines, which you can watch here. My Arabic is kind of shaky but my translation of the remarks after the detonation are, "HOLY SHIT!" Note that even the insurgents laugh at how stupid their shooter was. The ones who lived, I mean.
These jihadi blooper reels keep rolling in, faster and faster, wilder and woolier. One can't help but notice that the insurgents really aren't very good at their jobs. In fact, they suck. They're far more dangerous to themselves and their fellow jihadis than they are to us.
From that foundation of fact, it follows that the insurgents who can't fight without shooting themselves in the foot can't form a functional government that works, which is harder and more complex work. The best they can do is form crews from their neighborhood to make a half-assed mafia. A mafia works well against an unarmed, undefended, and terrorized civilian populace but it is no match for a well-armed army determined to smash it. In fact, an insurgent mafia is no match for its own jackasses toting RPGs.


Wednesday, May 28, 2008

Stupid Taliban Tricks

Breaking news:

"KHAR, Pakistan, May 28 (Reuters) - Six pro-Taliban militants were killed on Wednesday when their vehicle packed with explosives blew up in a northwestern Pakistani region on the Afghan border, a militant and officials said.The explosion was caused by a hand grenade that went off accidently when their comrades were travelling through the Bajaur region, where Taliban and al Qaeda-linked militants operate, a militant said."The hand grenade blast blew up the ammunition and explosives in the vehicle killing six militants and wounding two," said a Taliban member who declined to be identified."

Maybe the best way to beat the Taliban is to send them more weapons so they can off themselves like the knuckleheads they are.


Václav Klaus

Václav Klaus, former president of the Czech Republic and proponent of the free market, presented the English translation of his book, “Blue Planet in Green Shackles”, yesterday at the National Press Club, here in Washington D.C. Klaus argues that environmentalism threatens human freedom:
"My today’s thinking is substantially influenced by the fact that I spent most of my life under the communist regime which ignored and brutally violated human freedom and wanted to command not only the people but also the nature. To command “wind and rain” is one of the famous slogans I remember since my childhood. This experience taught me that freedom and rational dealing with the environment are indivisible. It formed my relatively very sharp views on the fragility and vulnerability of free society and gave me a special sensitivity to all kinds of factors which may endanger it.

"I do not, however, live in the past and do not see the future threats to free society coming from the old and old-fashioned communist ideology. The name of the new danger will undoubtedly be different, but its substance will be very similar. There will be the same attractive, to a great extent pathetic and at first sight quasi-noble idea that transcends the individual in the name of something above him, (of something greater than his poor self), supplemented by enormous self-confidence on the side of those who stand behind it. Like their predecessors, they will be certain that they have the right to sacrifice man and his freedom to make their idea reality. In the past it was in the name of the masses (or of the Proletariat), this time in the name of the Planet. Structurally, it is very similar.

"I see the current danger in environmentalism and especially in its strongest version, climate alarmism. Feeling very strongly about it and trying to oppose it was the main reason for putting my book together, originally in Czech language, in the spring of 2007. It has also been the driving force behind my active involvement in the current Climate Change Debate and behind my being the only head of state who in September 2007 at the UN Climate Change Conference in New York City openly and explicitly challenged the undergoing global warming hysteria. My central concern is – in a condensed form – captured in the subtitle of this book. I ask: “What is Endangered: Climate or Freedom?” My answer is: “it is our freedom.” I may also add “and our prosperity”.

"The book was written by an economist who happens to be in a high political position. I don’t deny my basic paradigm, which is the “economic way of thinking”, because I consider it an advantage, not a disadvantage. By stressing that, I want to say that the Climate Change Debate in a wider and the only relevant sense should be neither about several tenths of a degree of Fahrenheit or Celsius, about the up or down movements of sea level, about the depths of ice at North and Southern Pole, nor about the variations of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere. The real debate should be about costs and benefits of alternative human actions, about how to rationally deal with the unknown future, about what kind and size of solidarity with much wealthier future generations is justified, about the size of externalities and their eventual appropriate “internalization”, about how much to trust the impersonal functioning of the markets in solving any human problem, including global warming and how much to distrust the very visible hand of very human politicians and their bureaucrats. Some of these questions are touched upon in my book.

"My deep frustration has been exponentially growing in recent years by witnessing the fact that almost everything has already been said, that all rational arguments have been used and that global warming alarmism is still marching on. It could be even true that “We are now at the stage where mere facts, reason, and truth are powerless in the face of the global warming propaganda” (R. McKittrick, private correspondence). We are regretfully behind it. The whole process is already in the hands of those who are not interested in rational ideas and arguments. It is in the hands of climatologists and other related scientists who are highly motivated to look in one direction only because a large number of academic careers has evolved around the idea of man-made global warming. It is, further, in the hands of politicians who maximize the number of votes they seek to get from the electorate.

"It is also – as a consequence of political decisions – in the hands of bureaucrats of national and more often of international institutions who try to maximize their budgets and years of careers as well regardless the costs, truth and rationality. It is in the hands of rent-seeking businesspeople who are – given the existing policies – interested in the amount of subsidies they are receiving and look for all possible ways to escape the for them often merciless, but for the rest of us very positive, general welfare enhancing functioning of free markets. An entire industry has developed around the funds the firms are getting from the government.

"The basic questions of the current climate change debate are sufficiently known and well-structured: 1) Do we live in an era of a statistically significant, non-accidental and noncyclical climate change?2) If so, is it dominantly man-made?3) If so, should such a moderate temperature increase bother us more than many other pressing problems we face and should it receive our extraordinary attention?4) If we want to change the climate, can it be done? Are current attempts to do so the best allocation of our scarce resources?

"My answer to all these questions is NO, but with a difference in emphasis. I don’t aspire to measure the global temperature, nor to estimate the importance of factors which make it. This is not the area of my comparative advantages. But to argue, as it’s done by many contemporary environmentalists, that these questions have already been answered with a consensual “yes” and that there is an unchallenged scientific consensus about this is unjustified. It is also
morally and intellectually deceptive."

Klaus has offered to debate Al Gore about global warming, but environmental demagogues like Gore want no part of any rational debate. Gore wants a monologue, not a dialogue, and certainly not a debate where his claims can be debunked and he can be shown up as a fool.

Thanks to Power Line

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Monday, May 26, 2008

The Value Of An Ivy League Degree

Diplomad, an underground conservative serving in the super-liberal State Department, writes about hiring college interns for that politicized institution:

A few years ago, more than I care to mention, I headed a large office at the State Department. I got tasked with hiring a couple of Presidential Management Interns (PMIs). These PMIs come from the elite of the elite student body at the elite of the elite universities. They get hired on a temporary basis and then, usually, get offered prestigious jobs in the government. I was told, in no uncertain terms, that whatever else I did, I had to hire women.

So I began to pore over the resumes. My heart sank. I felt inadequate and so, so inferior to these kids. Their resumes, impeccably printed and organized, using dozens of words ending in "-ization," and listing prowess with a dazzling array of complex software programs, described accomplishments beyond my wildest dreams -- especially for when I was the applicants' age!I thought I should resign and give
up my job to one of the "brilliant" child wonders.

Ah, naive me. I obviously had spent too much time overseas. I saw resumes as truthful documents actually written by the applicants, applicants, in this case, full of accomplishments and possessed of massive brains throbbing with energy and ideas. As I, however, kept reading, even slow-witted me began to notice oddities. They all began to look the same: the font, the format, the wording, the list of classes and even -- horrors! -- the "accomplishments."

I noted this in passing to a cynical old friend (now, alas, departed) who worked in "human resources" (what a great phrase that). He laughed, "You dope! They get classes on how to write resumes! They have professors and computer programs that put these things together for them." (Remember, folks, computers were new things back then.) He said, "Just randomly pick a couple of women students, they're all the same, hire'em, and move on."

I could not do that. I stole a friend's idea and devised "The World War II Test." I invited the applicants for interviews. These PMI wannabes came off as slick and somewhat rude. I noted something among my subjects, a sense of entitlement, they all, to varying degrees, emitted a message along the lines of "Why are you bothering me with this silly interview? I am obviously brilliant. I have a degree from Columbia. I am not going to spend my whole life as you have in this stupid bureaucracy. I just need this to add to my resume. I am in a hurry."

I hit them with the test, which consisted of about dozen questions about WWII and its aftermath. I recall a few,Can you tell me how US troops got into Europe in the first place? When was WWII? (I would accept a variety of answers as long as the applicant could defend the dates as the true start and end of WWII.) What nations comprised the principal Allied and Axis powers? Who was Neville Chamberlain? What he did he do at Munich and with whom? Who was Mussolini? What did he do to Ethiopia? Who was Stalin? Who was Hirohito? What was D-Day? What President ordered the dropping of the atomic bombs and why? Can you name a result of the Conference at Yalta? What was the Berlin Airlift?

Of the 14 or 15 applicants I interviewed, only one got them all right -- the only male in the crowd, by the way. None, zero, zip of the rest got even ONE right. Not a single one. A very irritated applicant asked me, "Do we really need to know this old stuff?" I noted that we worked with NATO and Europe, hence, it was important to know the background that led to the creation of NATO and the then just-concluded Cold War. She stared at me and said, "What does World War II have to do with NATO, the Cold War and Europe?"

I promptly offered the job to the male -- oh, the cries from "Human Resources" -- who turned it down for a more lucrative one in the private sector. In the best Foreign Service tradition, I stalled hiring anybody else, let my two-year assignment run out, and left my poor successor to get stuck with one of the clueless ones.

It reminds me of a line from the movie, "Barry Lyndon," where young Barry, the rich commoner, wishes to climb the social ladder into the aristocracy, perhaps even purchase a title of royalty. The old noble he hires to help him explains that he will introduce him to the best people. By best, he doesn't mean the cleverest or wittiest or most able or richest, but simply The Best People.

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Friday, May 23, 2008

Why They're Losing

It was another bad day in the jihad for the Unknown Insurgent, who was out skulking in the middle of the night, planting an IED to kill the infidel Americans or anybody else he didn't like or who just happenned to pass by. Kill them all and let Allah sort them out later in paradise, he probably thought.

Unfortunately for him, the Yankee infidels live in the sky and can see in the night and have giant guns with lots of ammo. You can watch his Dead Tango Dance here. Dance, jihadi, dance! You went out to be a killer and came back killed. The good news is that death works for you, you think you go straight to paradise, and collect your 72 virgins. Of course, to enjoy them, you'll need your johnson which I'm pretty sure got shot off. Good luck finding that. Say hello to Allah for us and to all those thousands of other dead tangoes. Make room for more.

Sunday, May 18, 2008

McCain Does Streisand

Enough of the boring debates. What we need is more presidential candidates singing. Here's John McCain covering some of Streisand's most popular tunes. If you thought he was heroic at the Hanoi Hilton, wait until you see him heroically struggling through "Feelings." Watch it here. Then watch McCain's advocacy of senescence here. Finally, McCain cautions the Democrats against haste in picking a presidential candidate here.

You can't survive commie torture without a sense of humor, like McCain. By contrast, you can't get along with commies if you have one, which may explain why Obama is so humorless. When your pastor is damning America and your dinner companions tell you they haven't maimed enough people with bombs, it's hard to respond to that with a good joke. You have to buy in or excuse yourself and leave. And Obama didn't leave. He stayed for coffee and dessert.


Thursday, May 08, 2008


Fitna means "strife" in Arabic. It's an Islamic theological term chosen by Dutch politician Geert Wilders for his fifteen minute polemic against Islamic terrorism, a product which has drawn the wrath of the thoroughly intolerant Muslim world. It's an odd reaction in a way because Wilders video is largely recycling the propaganda videos Muslims themselves have made to spread their venomous views. Perhaps the most provocative parts show Muslims wailing that they will conquer the world, citing the Koran to justify terror, and urging their brethren to wage the jihad to make it happen. Wilders links those sentiments directly to terrorist attacks in New York and Madrid.

The truth is too painful for the Muslims who responded with death threats, of course. Death fatwas have been made against Wilders, as he expected, as we can all expect. YouTube was too cowardly to carry the video, which was delivered instead on LiveLeak. Death threats against LiveLeak prompted them to withdraw it. After beefing up security for their staff against Muslim thugs, they put it online again.

This violent reaction proves the point of Wilders video, which is that Islam is inherently a violent religion that can not abide Western civilization and seeks to topple it. Wilders concludes:

"For it is not up to me, but Muslims themselves to tear out the hateful verses from the Quran. Muslims want you to make way for Islam but Islam does not make way for you. The government insists you respect Islam but Islam does not respect you. Islam wants to rule, submit, and seeks to destroy our western civilization. In 1945, Nazism was defeated in Europe. In 1989, communism was defeated in Europe. Now, the Islamic ideology has to be defeated. Stop Islamisation. Defend our freedom."
Well said. You can read the Cliff's Notes version of "Fitna" on Wikipedia here. It's worth fifteen minutes of your time to watch Wilders' movie here.


Wednesday, May 07, 2008

Ask Dr. Zawahiri

When Dr. Ayman al-Zawahiri of Al Qaeda announced that he would answer questions submitted to him over the web, Andy Borowitz spoofed it in this New Yorker article, "Ask The Jihadist":

Dear Ayman al-Zawahiri:
I am a journalist for the U.S. publication Tiger Beat. When I heard you would be taking Web questions, I was like OMG, I totes have to write to him!!! Here are three questions we’re asking celebrities this month:
1. If you could be any character on “Gossip Girl,” who would you be?
2. Who would be a better friend, Lauren on “The Hills” or Ashley Tisdale in “High School Musical”?
3. Who is hotter, Zac Efron or Joe Jonas? (LOL)
—Stacy in Manhattan

Ayman al-Zawahiri writes:
May you and everyone at your magazine burn in Hell.

Greetings and compliments to you, my good sir:
I am the widow of the late Nigerian head of state, General Sani Abacha. Please wire $15,000 in U.S. funds to the bank information provided below and in two weeks’ time you will receive $150,000 for your kindly services, my goodly gentleman.
—Mrs. Maryam Abacha

Ayman al-Zawahiri writes:
What kind of simpleton do you take me for? I sent you $15,000 last month and I never heard back.

Dear Ayman al-Zawahiri:
I am a big fan of Osama bin Laden and would like to get his autograph. I have an eight-by-ten glossy of him but don’t know where to send it. Could you please give me his exact mailing address?
—Borge W. Gush
Washington, D.C.

Ayman al-Zawahiri writes:
Please contact him directly. He’s on Facebook.

Nice try, Borge. It was just crazy enough to work.


Tuesday, May 06, 2008

Feeding The Alligator Instead Of Killing It

Sam Harris comments on the predictably outraged Muslim response to Geert Wilders, Dutch politician and author of the fifteen minute movie critique of Islam called "Fitna":

"Wilders, like Westergaard and the other Danish cartoonists, has been widely vilified for "seeking to inflame" the Muslim community. Even if this had been his intention, this criticism represents an almost supernatural coincidence of moral blindness and political imprudence. The point is not (and will never be) that some free person spoke, or wrote, or illustrated in such a manner as to inflame the Muslim community. The point is that only the Muslim community is combustible in this way. The controversy over Fitna, like all such controversies, renders one fact about our world especially salient: Muslims appear to be far more concerned about perceived slights to their religion than about the atrocities committed daily in its name. Our accommodation of this psychopathic skewing of priorities has, more and more, taken the form of craven and blinkered acquiescence.

"There is an uncanny irony here that many have noticed. The position of the Muslim community in the face of all provocations seems to be: Islam is a religion of peace, and if you say that it isn't, we will kill you. ...

"A point of comparison: The controversy of over Fitna was immediately followed by ubiquitous media coverage of a scandal involving the Fundamentalist Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints (FLDS). In Texas, police raided an FLDS compound and took hundreds of women and underage girls into custody to spare them the continued, sacramental predations of their menfolk. While mainstream Mormonism is now granted the deference accorded to all major religions in the United States, its fundamentalist branch, with its commitment to polygamy, spousal abuse, forced marriage, child brides (and, therefore, child rape) is often portrayed in the press as a depraved cult. But one could easily argue that Islam, considered both in the aggregate and in terms of its most negative instances, is far more despicable than fundamentalist Mormonism. The Muslim world can match the FLDS sin for sin--Muslims commonly practice polygamy, forced-marriage (often between underage girls and older men), and wife-beating--but add to these indiscretions the surpassing evils of honor killing, female "circumcision," widespread support for terrorism, a pornographic fascination with videos showing the butchery of infidels and apostates, a vibrant form of anti-semitism that is explicitly genocidal in its aspirations, and an aptitude for producing children's books and television programs which exalt suicide-bombing and depict Jews as "apes and pigs."

"Any honest comparison between these two faiths reveals a bizarre double standard in our treatment of religion. We can openly celebrate the marginalization of FLDS men and the rescue of their women and children. But, leaving aside the practical and political impossibility of doing so, could we even allow ourselves to contemplate liberating the women and children of traditional Islam? ...

"The connection between the doctrine of Islam and Islamist violence is simply not open to dispute. It's not that critics of religion like myself speculate that such a connection might exist: the point is that Islamists themselves acknowledge and demonstrate this connection at every opportunity and to deny it is to retreat within a fantasy world of political correctness and religious apology. Many western scholars, like the much admired Karen Armstrong, appear to live in just such a place. All of their talk about how benign Islam "really" is, and about how the problem of fundamentalism exists in all religions, only obfuscates what may be the most pressing issue of our time: Islam, as it is currently understood and practiced by vast numbers of the world's Muslims, is antithetical to civil society. A recent poll showed that thirty-six percent of British Muslims (ages 16-24) believe that a person should be killed for leaving the faith. Sixty-eight percent of British Muslims feel that their neighbors who insult Islam should be arrested and prosecuted, and seventy-eight percent think that the Danish cartoonists should have been brought to justice. And these are British Muslims. ...

"It is time we recognized that those who claim the "right not to be offended" have also announced their hatred of civil society."

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Sunday, May 04, 2008

Finally, Advice College Grads Can Use

Conservative pundit and humorist P.J. O'Rourke writes the send-off newly made college graduates should receive at their commencement ceremonies this May but won't in his piece, "Fairness, idealism and other atrocities: Commencement advice you're unlikely to hear elsewhere":

"Well, here you are at your college graduation. And I know what you're thinking: "Gimme the sheepskin and get me outta here!" But not so fast. First you have to listen to a commencement speech.

"Don't moan. I'm not going to "pass the wisdom of one generation down to the next." I'm a member of the 1960s generation. We didn't have any wisdom.

"We were the moron generation. We were the generation that believed we could stop the Vietnam War by growing our hair long and dressing like circus clowns. We believed drugs would change everything -- which they did, for John Belushi. We believed in free love. Yes, the love was free, but we paid a high price for the sex.

"My generation spoiled everything for you. It has always been the special prerogative of young people to look and act weird and shock grown-ups. But my generation exhausted the Earth's resources of the weird. Weird clothes -- we wore them. Weird beards -- we grew them. Weird words and phrases -- we said them. So, when it came your turn to be original and look and act weird, all you had left was to tattoo your faces and pierce your tongues. Ouch. That must have hurt. I apologize."
And it just gets better from there.

My first introduction to Peej came way back in high school when he wrote for National Lampoon magazine. He was the editor about every third month in its golden era, 1973 to 1975, and hilarious. I kept reading Lampoon until all the jokes fell out of it in the 1980s. Still, Peej helped write one of the Lampoon's most profound critiques of American culture in the best seller, "National Lampoon's 1964 High School Yearbook, 39th Reunion," which is ranked next to "Moby Dick" in American literature, or should be. His colleagues at the National Lampoon had come from the Harvard Lampoon. One of them wrote a book where they expressed dismay and betrayal to discover that the Peej who had appeared to them to be a fellow lefty was in fact a conservative heretic and blasphemer. Heh.

Peej just got better over the years, writing Holidays in Hell (1989) and many other satirical conservative articles, dispensing memorable quotes like, "Giving money and power to government is like giving whiskey and car keys to teenage boys." If it's been a while since you read Peej, it's time to revisit him. If you have never read him, it's time.

Thanks to Hot Air


"Kill The Pigs"

John Murtagh, an attorney and professor in New York, has watched Obama excuse away his close association with lefty terrorist Bill Ayers with particular interest and weighs in with his own unique perspective in a column called "Fire in the Night: The Weathermen tried to kill my family" in the excellent City Journal:

"During the April 16 debate between Hillary Clinton and Barack Obama, moderator George Stephanopoulos brought up “a gentleman named William Ayers,” who “was part of the Weather Underground in the 1970s. They bombed the Pentagon, the Capitol, and other buildings. He’s never apologized for that.” Stephanopoulos then asked Obama to explain his relationship with Ayers. Obama’s answer: “The notion that somehow as a consequence of me knowing somebody who engaged in detestable acts 40 years ago, when I was eight years old, somehow reflects on me and my values, doesn’t make much sense, George.” Obama was indeed only eight in early 1970. I was only nine then, the year Ayers’s Weathermen tried to murder me. ...

"In February 1970, my father, a New York State Supreme Court justice, was presiding over the trial of the so-called “Panther 21,” members of the Black Panther Party indicted in a plot to bomb New York landmarks and department stores. Early on the morning of February 21, as my family slept, three gasoline-filled firebombs exploded at our home on the northern tip of Manhattan, two at the front door and the third tucked neatly under the gas tank of the family car. ... Sunlight, the next morning, revealed three sentences of blood-red graffiti on our sidewalk: FREE THE PANTHER 21; THE VIET CONG HAVE WON; KILL THE PIGS. ...

"Though no one was ever caught or tried for the attempt on my family’s life, there was never any doubt who was behind it. Only a few weeks after the attack, the New York contingent of the Weathermen blew themselves up making more bombs in a Greenwich Village townhouse. The same cell had bombed my house, writes Ron Jacobs in The Way the Wind Blew: A History of the Weather Underground. And in late November that year, a letter to the Associated Press signed by Bernardine Dohrn, Ayers’s wife, promised more bombings.

"As the association between Obama and Ayers came to light, it would have helped the senator a little if his friend had at least shown some remorse. But listen to Ayers interviewed in the New York Times on September 11, 2001, of all days: “I don’t regret setting bombs. I feel we didn’t do enough.” Translation: “We meant to kill that judge and his family, not just damage the porch.” When asked by the Times if he would do it all again, Ayers responded: “I don’t want to discount the possibility.”"

Ayers once described the Weathermen as "an American Red Army" whose mission was, "Kill all the rich people. Break up their cars and apartments. Bring the revolution home, Kill your parents." In his book, "Fugitive Days," Ayers boasts that he "participated in the bombings of New York City Police Headquarters in 1970, of the Capitol building in 1971, and the Pentagon in 1972." Bombing the Pentagon was particularly dreamy for Ayers, "Everything was absolutely ideal. ... The sky was blue. The birds were singing. And the bastards were finally going to get what was coming to them." Osama Bin Laden could not have said it better on September 11.

In fact, Professor Ayers is positively euphoric about bombing people:
"There's something about a good bomb … Night after night, day after day, each majestic scene I witnessed was so terrible and so unexpected that no city would ever again stand innocently fixed in my mind. Big buildings and wide streets, cement and steel were no longer permanent. They, too, were fragile and estructible. A torch, a bomb, a strong enough wind, and they, too, would come undone or get knocked down."
Ayers is unrepentant about bombing the Capitol, the Pentagon, the NYPD, and John Murtagh's family. Obama is unrepentant about his friendship with Bill Ayers and his equally loathesome wife, Bernardine Dohrn. America should be unrepentant about rejecting Obama and his treasonous crew. America should be fighting the terrorists, not doing dinner with them.

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