DEYAN RANKO BRASHICH was born in Belgrade, former Yugoslavia, and is an Op-Ed columnist for Connecticut's Litchfield County Times.  He writes the monthly Letter From America column for Romania’s Scrisul Romanesc, a literary magazine and is a Contributing Editor for  The Country and Abroad, another literary/art magazine where he authors the Dispatch from Abroad column. He is a frequent contributor to Pecat, the Belgrade, Serbia weekly news magazine and Britić, a magazine published in the United Kingdom. He resides in New York City and Washington, Connecticut.




"There's an old saying in Tennessee — I know it's in Texas, probably in Tennessee — that says, fool me once, shame on — shame on you. Fool me — you can't get fooled again." —President George W. Bush, Nashville, Tenn., Sept. 17, 2002

When unpleasant truths emerge, when war crimes and abuses are revealed, when malfeasance is uncovered, when the existence of illegal surveillance is leaked, the United States Government embraces a policy of deception or when that is not possible, a calculated media campaign of deflection. The Obama administration’s decision to close and evacuate 19 embassies and consulates throughout the Middle East is a crass and blatant example of deception and deflection.

My caustic and jaundiced view of the administration’s latest gambit is founded on that old adage “Fool me once, shame on you; fool me twice, shame on me”.

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Edited version published as Op Ed Article: “OPINION: Baseball as Naïve American Art”, The Litchfield County Times, The Housatonic Times, The Connecticut Bulletin, Thursday, August 8, 2013    

Every country has its national sport. Many are peculiar and indigenous to a region. Some do not travel well, like fine wine, nor do they migrate beyond national borders. Some have become universal but only one is now enshrined in its own unique art form, the baseball card.

The British have that unique, quaint and incomprehensible standing around the lawn in summer whites sport called cricket which is a grown up version of croquet with the ball being thrown rather than punted along. Rule Britannia, the Empire on which the Sun never sets, made it the dominant sport in India, Pakistan, Australia, Bangladesh, Australia now enjoyed by millions.

The French have that idiotic masochistic exercise called the Tour de France where a horde of bicyclists pedal to near death up and down mountains to be revived by ice cold champagne at the finish line. Then there is Canadian curling where stones are slid down the ice helped along with the swish of brooms and of course world-wide soccer and basketball and many more.

Yet as popular as they are, not one of the world’s major sports has been elevated to an art form except for baseball, that arcane American sport of nine men, never, ever women, loitering on a field often in daylight sometimes at night waiting for something or other to happen.  It is the only professional sport that is not a business, not engaged in trade or commerce, even though it generates millions in revenue and employs thousands, or so the Supreme Court of the United States decreed in 1922. It is a sport, a national pastime, an American icon not to be disturbed and not subject to the vulgarities of the market place.

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Updated on Saturday, July 20, 2013 by Registered CommenterDeyan Brashich

The United States has CIA agents all over the world. Today a retired former agent Robert Seldon Lady, a convicted criminal, a fugitive from justice, is under detention in Panama having been arrested pursuant to an Interpol warrant issued by our NATO ally, the Republic of Italy. Today he is our man in Panama.

His story is to be considered in light of that of another man Edward Snowdon who, while not yet convicted, is also a fugitive holed up in the no-man’s land transit zone of Moscow’s Sheremetyevo Airport awaiting a country willing to grant him asylum and shield him from prosecution.

The two have much in common: both broke the law and committed criminal offenses, both thought what they were doing was the right thing to do and both ultimately will left high and dry, twisting in the wind, while the real culprits, the men and women in high places who ordered the commission of the crimes at issue will be honored and retire, their honor and freedom intact.

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I wear three hats. I sport the traditional cowboy black and the white ones when writing Op Ed pieces for The Litchfield County Times, Pecat the Belgrade, Serbia weekly news magazine, and Contrary Views. I wear an artist’s beret when writing for Scrisul Romanesc, the Romanian literary journal and for The Country and Abroad,  the art and museum magazine.

Posting Scrisul Romanesc articles would be an exercise in futility since most can’t read Romanian and neither can I.  That is not the case with articles published in The Country and Abroad which are in English and are enhanced by superb illustrations and graphics.

What follows is the cover art from recent The Country and Abroad issues together with the articles’ lead page. “Click” on the images to view and read the full article, as published.




Updated on Wednesday, July 10, 2013 by Registered CommenterDeyan Brashich

I am hyper-sensitive when it comes to name calling and ethnic slurs, just look at my name. I bristle when people are derided as dumb Polacks, greedy Jews, smelly Pakis, stupid beaners, camel jockeys, frogs and gooks. There are many more but there is no reason to list them all.

When it comes to ethnic slurs, the one that I do not condemn is the universal slight of “stupid”. As Joe Biden sagely noted “Americans have the right to be stupid”. But any number of countries and people deserve that distinction. Today its Egypt turn after three, and counting, failed revolutions.

Egyptians have just earned the Olympic Gold Medal for Stupidity, all 84 million of them. They deserve whatever the future holds for them, for they have surely screwed themselves royally even though most of them do not remember or were alive when King Farouk was sacked in 1952. They have exhibited ignorance and stupidity. I don’t care what their IQ and SAT scores are, or those other indices of intelligence we use to judge others. They are just plain dumb.

Three years ago Egyptians were jubilantly dancing in the streets in Tahrir Square having forced the doddering 82 year old tyrant Hosni Mubarak from office, leaving in place all those who enabled him to hold power for so long, including the military. What a hollow victory, what a wasted effort, what a failed revolution.

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