- The Washington Times - Monday, June 8, 2009

Google’s limits

While President Obama joined European leaders to commemorate the 65th anniversary of D-Day over the weekend, Google posted an icon to its popular search page to memorialize something else: Tetris, the video game where players configure various-sized blocks for points.

“Celebrating 25 years of the Tetris Effect - courtesy Holding LLC,” it said.

“I have to say, though, that this is no departure for Google, a firm that finds it nearly impossible to post images celebrating any American holidays or important milestones in American history,” wrote Warner Todd Huston of Newsbusters.org. “So what we have here is just one more example of Google’s essentially anti-American policies.”

Mr. Huston isn’t the only one to have complained Google’s icons have given American soldiers the short end of the stick. World Net Daily’s Drew Zahn charged in a column that Google has repeatedly “snubbed” Veterans Day and Memorial Day.

Google has brushed off previous complaints by saying its “special logos tend to be lighthearted and often scientific in nature.”

Spokesman Sunny Gettinger said in a statement, “We do not believe we can convey the appropriate somber tone through this medium to mark holidays like Memorial Day.”

Mr. Zahn has noted, however, that on Remembrance Day in 2006, a holiday to honor fallen heroes in Australia, Canada, Britain and Ireland, Google’s logo incorporated three poppies - a nod to the Canadian poem “In Flanders Fields.” In the poem, poppies are cemetery flowers for war heroes.

Colbert commando

Comedy Central’s Stephen Colbert wants credit for taking his show on the road with the USO to Iraq this week.

“The USO counts this as military service, right? I might want to run for office some day,” Mr. Colbert joked in a statement previewing the trip.

“Operation Iraqi Stephen: Going Commando,” performed and taped in front of the troops, will air this week and is the first program to produce a week’s worth of shows in a combat zone.

The program, which usually pokes fun at celebrities and politicians, will host a bevy of military guests. Some of those scheduled to appear on the show include Iraqi Deputy Prime Minister Barham Salih; Gen. Ray Odierno, commanding general of the Multi-National Force - Iraq; Lt. Gen. Charles H. Jacoby Jr., commanding general of the Multi-National Corps - Iraq; Command Sgt. Maj. Frank Grippe, command sergeant major of MNC - Iraq; Sgt. Robin Balcom, squad leader with the 463rd Military Police Company; and Spc. Tareq Salha, Arabic linguist with the 111th Military Intelligence Brigade (attached to 3rd Battalion, 7th Field Artillery Regiment).

Palin watch

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