Published January 25, 2017
Now some fresh pickings from the Political Grapevine:
Journalists in the gay and lesbian press are upset with Barack Obama for what one paper calls his disrespect of the local gay media.
Obama failed to grant an interview to the Philadelphia Gay News — the paper made its point this way — by publishing its interview with Hillary Clinton on the right side of its front page and leaving the space for Obama’s interview blank.
And it carried the note with his name misspelled, "It's been 1,533 days since Senator Barack Obama has spoken with local gay press."
Obama has granted interviews to a national gay news magazine, The Advocate. He told the magazine this week that, "The gay press may feel like I'm not giving them enough love. But basically, all press feels that way at times."
Obama refused to criticize former President Jimmy Carter on Friday for plans to meet with exiled Hamas leader Khaled Mashal next week in Syria. But Obama did say he would not meet with the militant group.
As we told you Wednesday — the meeting between Carter and Mashal would take despite the fact that the U.S. considers Hamas one of the most dangerous terrorist organizations in the world. Thursday, State Department officials said Mr. Carter has been advised against meeting with Mashal — although as a private citizen he can talk to whomever he wishes.
Today an Israeli official told Cybercast News, "Israel is outraged about this thing. We think that it's a bad idea."
Carter doesn't have too many fans in Israel after the publication of his most recent book that many Israeli officials feel was biased against the Jewish state.
Olympic athletes who feel compelled to make a point about Chinese treatment of Tibet could end up losing their medals. The London Times reports the ban against political demonstration could even extend to the hanging of the Tibetan national flag in an athlete's living quarters.
But the International Olympic Committee has so far failed to precisely define what will constitute propaganda — which is prohibited — and opinion — which is not. Athletes remain confused as to exactly what they may and may not say regarding controversial subjects.
I.O.C. President Jacques Rogge says, "Freedom of expression is absolutely a human right but there are small limitations. We are a movement of 205 nations, many of whom are in conflict, and the games are not the place to take political or religious stances."
Not Easy Being Green
While many people upset over the Tibet issue have protested at the Olympic torch relay this week — some environmentalists are not happy with the revelation that the relay will produce about 11 million pounds of carbon emissions by the time it concludes.
ABC reports the torch is carried on its 23 nation tour in an Air China A330 custom painted jet. The plane burns 5.4 gallons of fuel per mile — which produces 5.5 tons of carbon gas.
Even though China has tried to make the Olympics a green event — a spokesman says she has not heard about any plans to clean up the torch relay this year. There are plans to make it carbon neutral for the London games in 2012.
— FOX News Channel's Martin Hill contributed to this report.