Even USA Today, the go-to news source for people flying coach and staying in modest hotels—in other words, not what you'd normally consider a daring and radical news source that would go out on a limb—is getting interested in how local police departments engage in cell phone surveillance. See today's story "Cellphone Data Spying: It's Not Just the NSA."
Also: Last month, after this story about the Seattle Police Department's new wireless mesh network (purchased with grant money from the Department of Homeland Security) came out, the SPD announced it would disable the network until there had been "an opportunity for vigorous public debate."
Presumably, that debate would include information about what the network can and cannot do (can it, for example, log the locations of cell phones in real time and log that information indefinitely without asking a judge for a warrant?) and how it should and should not be used by local or federal law enforcement.
Today, an SPD spokesperson said the department had turned off the final nodes in the network on Friday—156 could be disabled remotely, which happened weeks ago (though 19 had to be double-checked in person), but 8 had to be deactivated manually by a technician. Those are now off.
Today, I also received a copy of a letter sent from SPD Chief Jim Pugel to city councilperson Bruce Harrell about the mesh network. The full text is below the jump, but the relevant points are: (a) the department says the technology needs "more vetting with the ACLU and other stakeholders before a public hearing" and (b) Chief Pugel's assertion that the network does not have the capability to track or record a person's movements, but that SPD's draft policies about its use "will cover any non-video technology" anyway.
The department, Pugel says, should be ready for a briefing with the council member earlier next year.
The downside: It's not really uncensored or unredacted. "Don’t take the page’s name completely literally," says the debut post, "sometimes we may post documents with names or other info redacted in order to protect crime victims." Here's the SPD Tumblr manifesto:
We think Tumblr is the perfect space to tell visual stories [ed's note: like Labradors sniffing piss] that we can’t always do justice to through Tweets and blog posts. Basically, this page will act as a bit of an online museum and archive.
When we say we’re stepping up patrols in a precinct or a neighborhood, we’ll show you what that looks like, too, through pictures and video.
We can write all we want about how our investigators solved a crime after finding fingerprints at a scene. But meticulous forensic work remains much more impressive when you actually see it.
SPD says it will also use the Tumblog to answer questions from fellow Tumblr-ers, showcase the department's history, and share "photos of things from our strange office."
What's next, Pinterest? Vines from body cameras? Go forth and conquer the social medias, SPD! You shall be rewarded with hearts and minds.
King County Elections completed its hand recount of SeaTac Proposition 1 today, and reported exactly zero changes from the machine tallied results. Prop 1, which establishes a $15 an hour minimum wage for thousands of airport and hospitality workers, has been approved 3,040 to 2,963, a 1.28 percent margin.
Recounts are historically anticlimactic in King County due to our meticulous ballot review procedures. It may take a little longer to count ballots around here than in the rest of the country, but we almost always get it right the first time.
Originally posted at 11:27 am and moved up.
Bertha, the world's widest tunnel-boring machine at 58 feet in diameter, is lodged beneath downtown Seattle after encountering a mysterious obstruction, says KaDeena Yerkan at the Washington State Department of Transportation. The fact that Bertha is "stuck" was first brought to my attention on Twitter by KING 5's Linda Brill. So I followed up with the state to ask long she's been stuck, how long it will take to get her dislodged, and whether the object in her path is in fact Mayor Mike McGinn. "I'm trying to gather information now," says Yerkan. "We know that Bertha has hit some kind of obstruction—don't know if it's manmade or natural. I should have more info very soon." Stay tuned. In the meantime, a deep thought: A tunneling machine that can't tunnel through an obstruction may not be the greatest tunneling machine.
UPDATE at 12:20 PM: Bertha herself has commented to say she's fine—she's just kinda, um, not fine?
Seeing some reports that I’m stuck. I’m working fine, but have encountered an obstruction. I’ll keep you posted.
— Bertha (@BerthaDigsSR99) December 9, 2013
The tunneling machine encountered an obstruction in the ground that slowed its progress on Friday evening. Experts from Seattle Tunnel Partners and WSDOT are still gathering information to determine the nature of the obstruction. The machine is operating well, but crews have stopped mining as a precautionary measure. They will determine a path forward after more is known about the obstruction.
The machine is about 60 feet deep and is halfway between South Jackson and South Main. It recently passed the 1,000' mark. We don't yet know when the machine will be moving again—we will provide additional information as we learn more about the obstruction.
I'm siding with the San Francisco Displacement and Neighborhood Impact Agency in this debate. I don't think Google should be allowed to use city bus stops for free, and I think that corporations should take responsibility for their roles in creating gentrification. But getting a local union organizer to play the role of an outraged Google employee is a shitty move. The Unite Here Local 2850 organizer we see in the below video, Max Bell Alper, released this statement when he was questioned about his involvement:
This is political theater to demonstrate what is happening to the city. It's about more than just the bus. These are enormous corporations that are investing in this community. These companies, like Google, should be proud of where they're from and invest in their communities,
Here's the video of Alper pretending to be a Google employee:
This is a bad protest technique. Sure, it got a few hours of attention on social media, but all that outrage just blew back in the protesters' faces when it was discovered that Alper was putting everyone on. I'm not saying that satire doesn't play a role in protests. It absolutely does. But misleading people this way is not the way to make friends. You have to be better than the forces you're fighting against—you can't lie the way they do. When you get caught in a lie, you're going to be marginalized and ignored, and everyone who fights alongside you is going to be labeled a liar and a cheat, too.
To celebrate the launch of issue 6 of literary journal Birkensnake, Seattle writers Maged Zaher, Charles Mudede, Ezra Mark, Matt Briggs, and Robert Mittenthal will read from the work of pseudonymous stranger Kinton Ford.
Reading hosted by Diana George at Vermillion gallery and bar, December 10, 7 pm.
Birkensnake 6 was edited in seven versions by seven pairs of strangers. Twenty letter-press editions of the Diana George/Hedy Zimra version will be given away at this reading.
Our government has sold all its shares of General Motors:
Treasury Secretary Jacob Lew announced Tuesday that the government sold its remaining shares in the Detroit automaker.
The government received 912 million GM shares, or a 60.8 percent stake, in exchange for a $49.5 billion bailout during the financial crisis in 2008 and 2009. It recovered $39 billion of the money, meaning taxpayers came up more than $10 billion short.
But Lew says the rescue was necessary to save 1 million jobs and stop the American auto industry from collapsing.
I think that's a good deal, but I expect a whole lot of whining about the loss from conservatives who are unable to remember how bad things were at the time of the recession.
Against snark, he pits smarm, that horrible scolding attitude that inevitably prefers to distract attention away from substance in the name of tone. Smarmers hate rudeness more than they hate the fact that some people are freezing and dying while others are complaining about having the wrong brand of cereal. Smarmers can't be bothered to think past their single-celled program that meanness is the woooooorst. OMG, not MEANNESS. SO MEAN. Meanwhile, acts of actual cruelty, vast ignorance, and widespread hypocrisy and shallowness persist, and discussions among those with differences of opinions are dismissed as inhumane, regardless of the value and quality of the thinking behind those opinions.
Smarm is the wet dream of PR.
When you hear a voice say "Everyone's a critic," listen for the echo: "Everyone's a publicist."
Scocca also exposes David Denby's supremely smarmy (and white-guy paranoid) response to Spike Lee's Do the Right Thing.
Yeah, it's long, but here, see what you think.
Facebook is developing a 'sympathise' button as an alternative to the 'like' button.
If a user tags their status with a negative emotion, then his or her friends will be able to 'sympathise' with the post rather than press the 'like' button.
Of course, Facebook will never have a "dislike" button because Facebook is an advertising platform, and everything on Facebook has to be happy and like-able all the time. That's the problem with Facebook.
Bigoted hatemonger and conservative political operative Archbishop J. Peter Sartain, head of the Seattle Catholic Archdiocese, deserves some credit where it's due: Sartain and the other three anti-gay bigot bishops in Washington have endorsed Initiative 594, which would require criminal background checks on most gun sales in Washington State, thereby closing the gun-show loophole. Good for him, bigoted piece of shit that he is.
I'm a 23-year-old female college student whose life consists of going to class and going to the gym. I got hurt in my last relationship, so I've been staying away from dating for a while. I'm attractive and I notice guys checking me out—making the gym a second home does have benefits!—but I'm afraid I come off as unapproachable.
I've noticed this fine guy at the gym. From the way he looks at me, I can tell he's interested, but I have no idea why he hasn't approached me. We make a lot of eye contact while we work out, and some days he'll walk by my treadmill and awkwardly smile, but we've talked only once. Is he shy? Should I try to talk to him again? How can I come off as more approachable? I'm finding myself obsessing over him (like I said, he is fine), but the more I do, the more pathetic I feel.
Pathetic Shy Girl With A Crush
My response after the jump...
Find out, right over here. Also, brrrrrrrrr, Seattle! If it ain't gonna snow, we might as well go back to gloom and rain, right?
Ted Cruz and Newt Gingrich both dared to say nice things about Nelson Mandela on social media this weekend. Then they learned how out-of-touch their conservative followers really are. Gingrich's realization happened on television:
CNN "State of the Union" host Candy Crowley read some of the Facebook responses criticizing Gingrich's statement.
"Such an amazing rewrite of history since 1962 and 1990. Newt, I thought you, of all people, a historian, would be true to who this guy really was," one said. And another wrote: "This clenched-fist, murdering guerilla warrior does not deserve respect from informed Americans."
Gingrich said he was "very surprised" by reactions. And in response to the uproar, he wrote his Friday newsletter asking his followers what they would have done about Mandela's views and apartheid in South Africa.
And now Crooks & Liars notes that Gingrich is in the iffy position of defending Ronald Reagan's South Africa stance:
On Monday, the former House Speaker told CNN's Chris Cuomo that he had "analyzed" why conservatives were angry about his praise of Mandela and determined that some of those people had "confused" Mandela with other members of his party — the African National Congress (ANC) — who committed violence while he was in jail for 27 years.
But Gingrich also came to the conclusion that some people had become angry at liberals who recalled Reagan's record on apartheid after Mandela's death.
"Some elements of the left, particularly on one news channel, went overboard in trying to use this as an excuse to attack Ronald Reagan," Gingrich opined. "And I think people who are Reagan loyalists, who know that Reagan had condemned apartheid, Reagan had called for Mandela to be released, Reagan actually appointed the first black ambassador to South Africa whose job was to pressure the Afrikaans government."
Today's prize in the Macklemore & Ryan Lewis vs. Pearl Jam vs. Slog Holiday Charity Challenge is a pair of memberships to Seattle Art Museum. Thanks, SAM, for helping us help homeless youth by supporting YouthCare and the Orion Center!
Would you like to be able to go look at art as much as you want, until your eyeballs fall right out? You'll get unlimited free admissions, exclusive access to special exhibitions, discounts in the SAM SHOPs (good for holiday gifts for the smart people with good taste that you know!), and more, while also casting a vote for who the best band/blog in the history of time is. Do it!!!
Donate to the Orion Center right now—any amount counts!—then forward us your receipt with a note about what you love about museums. Donate/forward by 4:30 pm to enter! The most ardent museum-lover wins!
And Seattlish fans can go here to give and make a note that it's on behalf of Seattlish/anti-Dan-Savage!
The fans that raise the most for the Orion Center by December 24th WIN the title of the Best Fans of the Best Band or Best Blog in the Universe Forever!
Want a shiny commenter tag on Slog that says SLOG FAN, MACKLEMORE & RYAN LEWIS FAN, or PEARL JAM FAN? Just give at least $25 to the Orion Center, then forward us your receipt and your commenter handle!
Alex Pareene explains that the traditional political understanding of presidential politics doesn't apply to Elizabeth Warren. It's not about a clash of personalities, and it's not a recasting of 2008's Clinton vs. Obama fight. It's about the party:
The point of arguing for more “economic populism” isn’t necessarily to take down Hillary Clinton in 2016, though I’d certainly rather have a President Warren than another President Clinton. (Though — and I say this as a Warren admirer — she’s kind of a blank slate on non-finance issues, right?) Clinton isn’t quite inevitable, but aiming immediately for the presidency is in many respects reaching for a symbolic victory before achieving anything substantial. The point of “economic populism” is to fix the Democratic Party at every level.
The trick, of course, is to fix the Democratic Party without descending into a leftward version of the Republican Party's current teabaggy hell for the next decade. I think it's absolutely possible to promote economic populism in such a way that doesn't turn off independents and moderates. It's not easy, but it's possible.
Seattle's mayor-elect, Ed Murray, will announce his senior staff positions and department heads this week, according to Murray spokesman Jeff Reading. Reading says Murray may hold a press conference on Wednesday.
Will it actually happen? Last Friday Murray announced a press conference for this morning with Bernard Melekian, his advisor on law-enforcement issues, but Murray canceled that event Friday night without explanation. Which is too bad: After running a campaign long on gauzy promises of togetherness and short on specific plans, I'm guessing lots of reporters wanted to see how Murray talks about policy now that he's won. Can he pick a side—sometimes a side that will turn off dissenters—and still be a paragon of unity?
Murray's staff roll-out puts him a couple weeks behind Mayor Mke McGinn who named his staff—two real estate men and a political strategist—in late November of 2009. However, McGinn didn't have a formal transition team, whereas Murray has focused on hosting a massive transitional loya jirga.
But In 2006, I wrote a full profile of Francine Seders that I think is worth revisiting, because Seders turned out to be even more interesting, more wonderful, and more ineffable than I suspected when I set out to write the piece in the first place. From the story:
Today, at 40, the Francine Seders Gallery is the oldest gallery in the city still run day-to-day by its founder, and probably the city's most unlikely art success. Even Seders herself is surprised by it. "I never cater to people with money, which would help," she says, wearing a dress and folding her hands in her lap, looking like a cross between Cezanne's proper, upright wife, and Bonnard's languorous Marthe. "What can I talk to them about? They don't want to talk about the books that I read. Maybe I should play golf and have a martini."
Rather, the 80-year-old is learning Chinese from books and gardening. She'll still work from home, where she'll still be the dealer who never deals.
Christmas Eve is the gallery's last day open. The final show is works by Norman Lundin, Dale Lindmann, Dina Barzel, Michael Howard, and Diann Knezovich. She's always got something around by Jacob Lawrence and Gwen Knight, so if you don't see anything, you might ask. Don't forget to look at the art in the staircase that leads to the basement. (Gallery.)
Nothing like a graph to demonstrate how fucked we all are. I know Congress was designed for spirited debate between opposing viewpoints, but any elementary school student could look at this graph and determine that the next step in this pattern is that the red blob and the blue blob go off in their own directions and form red blob and blue blob families of their own:
It is sad the way Seattle voters have grown increasingly out-of-touch with the Seattle Times editorial board:
BACKERS of a $15 minimum wage who are celebrating victory in SeaTac now aim to seize the day in Seattle. They do have the political momentum. What they don’t have is a sense of responsibility or of any information on the actual effects of the law they favor.
Shorter Seattle Times: Back off until you lose all the political momentum.
Earlier in his career, Washington state Treasurer Jim McIntire, Democrat, was the principal investigator for a University of Washington study of the impacts of increases in the minimum wage in 1989 and 1990. The study, funded by the Legislature, found that for every 10 workers who got a raise, one worker lost a job — though many of the laid-off workers were replaced by other ones, typically of higher skill.
So what you're saying is that a 23-year-old study found that when wages were hiked, one out of ten jobs were lost, though most of those lost jobs were replaced by higher paying ones? So, um, 95-or-so percent of low-wage workers did better? And your problem is?
The passage of SeaTac Proposition 1 gives that city a minimum wage for some workers 61 percent higher than the $9.32 minimum around it. “That is a pretty dramatic change and could have some significant impacts,” McIntire said recently. “I would counsel the folks in Seattle to see how it goes in SeaTac.”
Because SeaTac is the perfect proxy for Seattle, right? Um, no:
It is sound advice. The Seattle City Council has approved $100,000 for a study of the issue. The study should find real information on jobs gained and lost, consumer spending and business investment in SeaTac before it reaches a conclusion. Let’s find out what happens in that small city before making a decision for a population 23 times larger.
Remember also that SeaTac’s measure won’t cover all jobs. Many are inside the airport, protected from competition, which won’t be true of jobs in Seattle. A Seattle proposal that would cover a broader group of workers could have wider negative consequences.
In other words, we should wait years to push a $15 minimum wage in Seattle (because that's how long it would take to adequately study its impact in SeaTac), even though there's not much to learn from the experience in SeaTac because, unlike in Seattle, SeaTac Prop 1 mostly raises wages for airport workers at captive businesses with captive customers. So really, all the editors are arguing for (again!) is to delay the $15 minimum wage fight until its momentum ebbs. Because they think their readers are stoopid.
I repeat—$15 minimum wage opponents and their surrogates at the Seattle Times have already lost the debate. Mayor-elect Ed Murray promised to make a $15 minimum wage a priority, and a majority of city council members are publicly on board in the wake of Kshama Sawant's $15-proxy election. If we don't get an ordinance passed and signed by July, an initiative is going to the ballot in November.
So my sincere advice to Seattle's business community is that they come to the table in an honest effort to shape the ordinance instead of wasting their time on this futile effort to kill it.
I. Can't. Wait.
I am most looking forward to when the mustachioed Watson sees Sherlock for the first time after his long absence... I think there's a good chance Watson will punch him.
Twitter was atwitter yesterday, about a big story expected in today's The New York Times. It has five parts; I've only read one so far, and it's well worth your time.
It's a story about Dasani. She's a talented 11-year-old whose parents can't afford rent in New York, the most economically unequal city in the country with the second-highest child poverty rate in the developed world (only Romania neglects more kids than we do).
Dasani and her family dream of moving up in the world into the projects. In part one of reporter Andrea Elliott's story, Dasani starts school at LaGuardia Arts. Almost all the students there are on free or reduced lunch, but they mostly live in the projects. It isn't long before Dasani is exposed to her fellow students as stuck living in a shelter. Six of the middle school's 157 students live in shelters.
At the bottom of part one, you can watch short videos of Dasani dancing and being interviewed by her mother. You can also read the source notes behind Elliott's story, which have been separated in order to keep the main narrative moving—it's not gummed up by "according to"s and statistics, but the notes reveal tremendous amounts of research behind Elliott's descriptions of the conditions and the stories she shares.
To follow talk about the story on Twitter, it's under #InvisibleChild. Interesting questions are arising already.
This is a New York Times story, but it's not a New York-only story.
I would really love it if in honor of all the kids in need of some help, you'd join me in making a donation to Slog's Charity Challenge this year, which we've tried to make fun by including Pearl Jam and Macklemore and whatnot, but which really is a way to keep kids like Dasani hooked up with the most basic needs through YouthCare's Orion Center at Denny and Stewart.
You know who can't wait to get high? Adorable Christmas caroling ladies! As part of the Great Figgy Pudding Caroling Competition, the Beaconettes regaled downtown Seattle passersby this past weekend with everything that's great about legal pot. To the tune of "Mr Sandman," natch:
Let's put this present under the tree: With legalization support this year leaping to 58 percent of Americans, the Obama administration taking a hand-off approach, and songs about taking a "big hit" joining the Christian holiday canon, the war on pot is toast. Lyrics after the jump:
The Macklemore & Ryan Lewis vs. Pearl Jam vs. Slog Holiday Charity Challenge continues! If you're just tuning in, we're pitting the fans of the hometown heroes of music against the fans of America's Hometown Blog™ to raise money to support YouthCare's Orion Center. (And another excellent blog has gotten in on it too, running a pro-Orion-Center, anti-Dan-Savage fundraising campaign! Whatever works, people!)
It's twenty-five degrees out in Seattle right now. Tomorrow, it's supposed to snow. YouthCare and the Orion Center help our city's homeless young people by providing daily hot meals, a clothing bank, a safe indoor place to sleep, GED classes, job training programs, and assistance with finding permanent housing. It's especially important right now, but our goal is to show Seattle cares and raise enough to keep the Orion Center operational for the next calendar year. And look, everybody—we're making it happen!
TOTAL $$$ RAISED SO FAR FOR THE ORION CENTER:
• Macklemore & Ryan Lewis fans have donated: $13,788.14
• Pearl Jam fans: $19,993.27
• Slog fans: $5,550.00
And Seattlish fans are still donating: $800 so far!
TOTAL $$$: $40,131.41
Are Pearl Jam fans the best fans? Will Macklemore & Ryan Lewis fans rally? How about the news that "Same Love" is up for a Grammy for Song of the Year? Forty percent—that's almost half—of the kids that YouthCare and the Orion Center sees left home or were kicked out because of their sexuality. Things are changing (yes!!!), but right now, they need our help. Donate to the Orion Center right now!
And Seattlish fans can go here to give and make a note that it's on behalf of Seattlish/anti-Dan-Savage!
The fans that raise the most for the Orion Center by December 24th WIN the title of the Best Fans of the Best Band or Best Blog in the Universe Forever!
And, of course, if you give at least $25 to the Orion Center, then forward us your receipt and your commenter handle, we'll give you a commenter tag on Slog that says SLOG FAN, MACKLEMORE & RYAN LEWIS FAN, or PEARL JAM FAN! Your choice!
Snowden: A hero in America, and now in Azeroth, Edward Snowden has disclosed a new trove of documents showing the NSA has been spying on players using World of Warcraft and Second Life. "Fearing that terrorist or criminal networks could use the games to communicate secretly, move money or plot attacks, the documents show, intelligence operatives have entered terrain populated by digital avatars that include elves, gnomes and supermodels," reports ProPublica.
Snow Den? "A search is on in the mountains of rural northwestern Nevada for a couple and four children who went to play in the snow Sunday and haven't returned."
Snow Then? Maybe around Seattle this evening.
When Not Complicit, Outraged: AOL, Apple, Facebook, Google, LinkedIn, Microsoft, Twitter, and Yahoo tells federal government to cut back on snooping.
Is This Literally Buying an Election? A hand recount, requested by the losing side, of course, will begin today on SeaTac's $15 minimum wage measure that voters passed by a 73-vote margin. Here's background on King County Elections' recount process, which explains the cost is $0.25 for each of the 6,003 ballot cast.
Blow Hard, Says the Seattle City Council: They're considering bill that would protect whistle-blowers in city government, in part by handing the cases over to the city's ethics commission.
To Be an Undercover Agent: Officers consider a busting a "snuggle-parlor":
MADISON, Wis. (AP) - Wisconsin's ultra-liberal capital city is a place where just about anything goes, from street parties to naked bike rides. But city officials say a business is pushing even Madison's boundaries by offering, of all things, hugs.
For $60, customers at the Snuggle House can spend an hour hugging, cuddling and spooning with professional snugglers.
Snugglers contend touching helps relieve stress. But Madison officials suspect the business is a front for prostitution and, if it's not, fear snuggling could lead to sexual assault. Not buying the message that the business is all warm and fuzzy, police have talked openly about conducting a sting operation at the business, and city attorneys are drafting a new ordinance to regulate snuggling.
A new ordinance to regulate snuggling!
Netanyahu is not going to attend Mandela's funeral because the trip is too expensive. Peres is not going because he is sick. But surely the expense and the illness would be cleared in an instant if the shadow of the long and ugly history between Israel and South Africa was obliterated by the sun of forgetfulness...
One of Nelson Mandela’s richest legacies to the world is his treasure trove of quotes that inspire and encourage. Just look at these from the Daily Beast or these on Brainy Quote – or take a little traipse on Twitter or Facebook and you’ll feel convinced we can all do the impossible, that democracy will overcome tyranny, that the bitterest of enemies can make peace.
Assessing his legacy in this part of the world is a little more complicated. When Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s office announced on Monday that the premier would not attend the Mandela’s funeral, citing the soaring costs of a last-minute trip, it underscored the less-than-chummy relations between Israel and South Africa. President Shimon Peres is also staying home, because he has the flu.
But tight budgets and sick notes do little to mask the lingering discomfort between the two nations. Jerusalem maintained close military and economic ties with Johannesburg even in the final days of the apartheid regime, when most of the world was backing away, and the then-leader of the African National Congress never forgot it.
To be fair to Israel:
Israel's decision in September of 1987 to join the rest of the world in imposing sanctions on South Africa left the apartheid regime totally dumbstruck, so much so that its leader at the time, president P.W. Botha (long known as the "Great Crocodile"), sent a secret letter to prime minister Yitzhak Shamir accusing him of stabbing him in the back. "How could you do this to us, after so many years of friendship and alliance?" Botha railed. Botha, who died Tuesday night aged 90, was a staunch friend of Israel and the architect of the Pretoria-Jerusalem alliance during the dark years of apartheid. He felt so personally hurt by the Israeli sanctions that he wrote directly to the prime minister. Being a stickler for formalities, like many an Afrikaner gentleman, and also such a loyal friend of the Israelis, Botha didn't make his pain public, and would not release the "top secret" memo to the media.Few alliances in the 20th century are as historically strange (even twisted) as the one that formed between Pretoria and Jerusalem.