View from Munich

Have fun browsing my Web essays, novels, short stories, and plays. And feel free to use the Contact form below to send me your comments and suggestions for worthy subjects and new projects. I would be glad to hear from you. To start, let me suggest my latest . . .

Antisemitism, American Style, a web essay

An effective way to curry favor with an irascible benefactor is to scold its critics at a public event those critics don’t attend. Uncontested accusations tend to stick and the speaker gains a point with the benefactor. Joe Biden did this in his “antisemitic” speech delivered at the U.S. Holocaust Memorial Museum’s Days of Remembrance on May 7. The charge: antisemitism. The accused: the students holding pro-Palestinian demonstrations on college campuses across the country protesting Israel’s assault on Gaza since Hamas’s attack on Israel October 7, 2023. The question: who’s the benefactor?

A Child’s Greatest Good Fortune, a web essay

Having a child is arguably the single most momentous event a woman can experience — whether good or bad. It triggers a transformation that consumes everything she has to offer physically, mentally, emotionally, often financially. And, as we all know, the event does not end, but only begins with the birth of the child. Some women are not ready for that.

Forked Diplomacy, a web essay

We little guys of democracy, the billion wiggling arms and legs, hands and feet, fingers and toes of today’s behemoth governments, must expose their treacherous double-talk as the deliberate attempt to deceive us that it is. If we do not, they will exploit our confusion to encroach further on our rights, fracture our societal bonds, and expropriate our collective wealth until the power, discretion, and orientation we once had to stop them has been stripped from us as well. Two examples suffice . . .

Putin Grieves Navalny, a web essay

Nothing testifies so tragically to the limits of Vladimir Putin’s transcontinental power than the death of his favored ward of the state, Aleksei Navalny. It does lift one’s heart, though, to know Putin tried to save him. How he tried! We know he tried, because he told us.

Nearly Normal Me, a web essay

“Normal doesn’t exist.”
I glanced at my girlfriend, who was staring defiantly at me, as if aware that she had just shattered my fondest illusion. She was well into her sixties, as was I, and a professional. I assumed she would have learned about “normal” earlier in life.

Netanyahu’s Euphemism, a web essay

In his assault on Gaza, Netanyahu employed an ingenious tactic. He called it war. Had he called it slaughter, the world might have intervened. But he tricked us. He called it war, and we’ve been discussing it ever since.

Putin’s Torment, a web essay

Aleksei Navalny’s choice to return to Russia had been sheer stupidity. He had climbed back into Putin’s ring. To have the man once again in his power so intensely delighted the Russian potentate that he did not trust himself to be near him, to pronounce his name, even to know who he was. Wisely, Vladimir Putin outsourced his cherished prisoner.

Steam in the Sauna, a web essay

Maybe it was because the sauna had opened late that day. The sauna attendant could have been a little tense, irritable, not himself. Or perhaps it just took too long to explain the rules of the sauna, especially to someone so blithe about violating them. 

Third Son of Thor, a satire

When Modi and his family move into his elderly father’s home to take care of him, they partake of his generosity with a ferocious abandon that soon threatens Thor’s financial stability.

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