Secretary of State John "Human Ambien" Kerry's facility with French is well-known, even if he keeps his cunning linguistics hidden when he's on American soil.
But did you know he spoke German?
Kerry: [in German] Very good, thank you. All is well. Your shoes are fantastic, yes? [...] No, no, I can only speak a little German. But I would say, it is wonderful to be back herein Berlin. Thank you. And now I will speak in English because it's easier. [end of German]
Kerry thanked Prime Minister Mario Monti in Italian for his "spirit of friendship."
[Kerry] won praise from his Norwegian counterpart Espen Barth Eide, who said after talks at the State Department that Kerry "can even speak quite impressively Norwegian phrases."
Eide added, "Secretary Kerry made a very good poi– Zzzzzzzzzzzz…"
Photo by Alex Wong/Getty Images News/Getty Images
Tags: France, Germany, Italy, John Kerry, Norway, Secretary of State
* In the name of equal opportunity, guys, we saw your junk.
* Great American houses built out of great American spite.
* The White House Press Secretary defends the secret kill list.
* A cool short film that puts a new spin on military war games.
* Meanwhile, in Finland, there is a choir that consists of men shouting loudly.
* Note to any Finnish men reading this: the human voice is discussed on The New Yorker's Out Loud podcast.
* The Jeff Rubin Show talks to Cole Stryker about Anonymous.
* Frank Zappa wrote a song about just one Surgeon General, and that Surgeon General was Dr. C. Everett Koop.
Tags: Anonymous, C. Everett Koop, Daily Links, Drones, Frank Zappa, Germany, Hacker, Men & Women, Military, Science & Technology, Seth MacFarlane, The New Yorker, White House, Women's Rights
July 4, 1776
A group of wealthy, land-owning, tax-hating residents of a collective of British colonies declare their independence from the throne by signing a document that states "that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness," thus setting the stage for the greatest Broadway musical ever written about haggling over the particulars of a non-binding document.
Tags: 4th of July, Baseball, Declaration of Independence, Founding Fathers, Germany, Herman Cain, Movies, Music, Poetry, Sports
While honoring Medal of Freedom recipient Jan Karski last night, President Obama caused some controversy after briefly touching upon one of the darkest moments in human civilization. When thousands upon thousands of Polish Jews, Polish Roma and Polish homosexuals rounded themselves up and incarcerated themselves in concentration camps strewn across the Polish countryside…
"Fluent in four languages, possessed of a photographic memory, Jan served as a courier for the Polish resistance during the darkest days of World War II," Obama said. "Before one trip across enemy lines, resistance fighters told him that Jews were being murdered on a massive scale, and smuggled him into the Warsaw Ghetto and a Polish death camp to see for himself."
Wait a minute. That doesn't sound quite right…
National Security Council spokesman Tommy Vietor said in a statement later that Obama "misspoke" when he referred to a "Polish death camp," and what he was referring to were "Nazi death camps" inside Poland.
But the slip of the tongue had already caused some consternation in Poland, where foreign minister Radek Sikorski Tweeted: "The White House will apologize for this outrageous error," according to BuzzFeed, which first reported the error. Polish Prime Minister Donald Tusk was to make a statement Wednesday morning, Sikorski said. "It's a pity that this important ceremony was upstaged by ignorance and incompetence."
Well, this is definitely embarrassing, but there's got to be a way for the President to wiggle his way out from under the blame. If I were counseling Obama, I'd tell him to claim that he was acting under orders from his teleprompter.
Photo by Olivier Douliery-Pool/Getty Images News/Getty Images
Tags: Barack Obama, Germany, Nazis, Poland
Unable to make much progress on a plan for saving the Eurozone economies from a spiraling debt crisis, Barack Obama and the other leaders of the G-8 gathered at Camp David turned to another activity in which any exciting action is strictly forbidden — soccer.
Despite the fact that we're presently amid a three-year long celebration of There's No World Cup This Year, apparently there's still international soccer being played. Pool reports offered a behind the scenes look at Obama's soccer party with "German Chancellor Angela Merkel, British Prime Minister David Cameron and other world leaders" including "some playful trash talking… in many languages."
Unfortunately, few details have emerged as to the nature of the trash talk, but good sense and a respect for national stereotypes allows us to fill in the blanks…
FRANCOIS HOLLANDE: Haha, Angela! Bayern's getting screwed harder than an underage prostitute at Villa Gernetto.
ANGELA MERKEL: (Scowls)
Tags: G-8, Germany, Soccer, Sports, United Kingdom