KLM your fluchthelfer

A couple of years ago when we were busy with a number of campaigns against airlines who allowed forced deportations from europe on their flights i did a spoof website targeting the KLM (‘KLM – uw uitzettingsagent‘) that was part of a campaign with the same name of the now defunct autonoom centrum in Amsterdam. It is kind of ironic to see that now more than 5 year later the KLM (in an email offer to the german members of their flying blue frequent flyer programme) advertises itself as a ‘fluchthe…

Mediterranean south bank

So i have written about Europe being the mediterranean northern bank on this blog before. When i flew to South Africa last week i actually had a chance to have a look at the Mediterranean south bank for the first time: Tripoli as seen from the window of LH572 en route to Johannesburg.…

On the state of the dollar

Scene: South African Airways flight SA265 from Johannesburg to Munich somewhere over Zimbabwe: me: mam do you have any leftover meals? flight attendant: chicken or pasta? me: chicken please flight attendant: 10 dollar (US) me: i only have euros flight attendant: then i’ll take five…

Mustafa Kemal Atatürk > Grand Ayatollah Sayid Ruhullah Musawi Khomeini

At least when one is to believe the flight schedules of Turkish airlines and Iran Air. Since november 2007 both airlines have a daily service connecting Istanbul’s Atatürk International Airport with the new Imam Khomeini International Airport just south of Tehran (actually it is quite a bit south of the city but very close to the shrine of the the late Grand Ayatollah). Is it just me or isn’t it at least a tiny little bit ironic that there are direct flight’s between two airports that are named…

Chess boxing riot police...

So the Holland Herald (KLM’s in-flight magazine) runs a story about chess boxing, which is you guessed it a combination of chess and boxing. according to the article a match of chess boxing consists of alternating rounds of chess (4 minutes each) and boxing (2 minutes each). You can win by either checkmate or knockout. The game is inspired by Enki Bilal’s (who i have covered here before) 1992 comic book Froid Équateur and was apparently brought to the real world by some Dutchman (the reason why…

When i am president (Obama vs. Osama) ...

Just read a fairly impressive speech on terrorism by US presidential candidate (technically he is a candidate for nomination as a candidate) Barack Obama. The speech it is quite a contrast to what you hear from the current US administration and for large parts actually makes sense even though it contains a fair share of patriotic pathos. For all i know this speech is the first time i have come across a US presidential candidate (who actually has a realistic chance of winning) who seems to realiz…

Parallel infrastructures (2)

About a year ago i blogged about mini busses shuttling polish migrant workers from poland to holland and back. In that post i had attributed the use of mini buses over trains (and regular busses) at least in part the fact that the mini busses are much faster than other means of transport. apparently they are not fast enough anymore: The agrarisch dagblad (‘agricultural daily’) reports that P&E people, a Dutch temporary work aganecy supplying eastern and central European workers to the dutch…

Deportation class - for real?

So apparently some rather scary dudes from Austria (see picture below, but generally all males from Austria who are older than 50 give me the creeps) have come up with a really sick idea: Set up a charter airline that specializes in deportation flights from Europe to the warmer parts of this globe. If you believe the press reporting about their yet-to-be-realized plan then they are all about saving european taxpayers a couple of euros and making those forced deportations a little bit more enjoya…

Chi (from China with pride)

Seems to me that globalization is more or less complete as of today. Until today i was under the impression that half of everything comes from Shenzen and the rest of the pearl river delta (also see my post about CFLs from a while ago) and the other half of things comes from other places. Looks like this is not true anymore, as now even the red wine comes from China (seems to have something to do with the fact that KLM is having an ‘experience china food and wine festival’ on board of its flight…

TXL --> BEY (revisited)

This post does not really make sense (in the sense of being one coherent entity) but rather shares a couple of observations that have nothing to do with each other. Fortunately i can tie them together by pointing to my first ever blog post (the ones that appear to have been posted earlier have actually been inserted at a later point in time) which was also written on the plane to from Berlin to Beirut. What i wrote then also holds true for the behavior of the passengers on tonight’s flight (the…