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Wednesday, November 20, 2013

Media-Whore D'Oeuvres


"One way to measure just how tense U.S.-Israeli relations have become: Look at how prominent proxies for both sides are duking it out in public. By that standard, the friendship is cratering, with supporters and opponents of a White House-backed nuclear deal with Iran rhetorically at one another’s throats. A well-regarded Obama foreign policy surrogate with close White House ties, Colin Kahl, and the best-known media voice for pro-Israel forces in Washington, Josh Block, got into a nasty Twitter tangle over the weekend that laid bare how caustic the Iran debate has become between the two staunch allies. 'As usual, U don’t know what UR talking about & R advocating max alt[ernative] that’ll lead 2 war,' wrote Kahl, a top Pentagon official during Obama’s first term and the co-chairman of the president’s foreign policy board during his 2012 reelection campaign. 'There you go again - typical vile smear,' replied Block, a former spokesman for the influential American Israel Public Affairs Committee. 'Hateful notion fm WH that supporters of talks 4 better terms R ‘warmongers’ & urge media,allies 2 smear critics as not acting 4 US interests.' 'Thanks Mr. Pot. Sincerely, Mr. Kettle,' Kahl countered later. The bitter showdown occurred just outside the veil of officialdom, where diplomatic conventions and the desire to keep intact the broad bipartisan coalition supportive of Israel dictate that formal spokespeople for the White House, the Israeli government and the largest pro-Israel groups carefully measure their on-the-record comments. The cause for the current fight: the Obama administration’s drive to strike an interim deal intended to halt and/or roll back Iran’s nuclear program in exchange for a limited easing of sanctions on Tehran. Despite intense Israeli objections, such a pact was almost agreed to at international talks with the Iranians a couple of weeks ago — negotiations that are set to resume on Wednesday in Geneva. The new conflict comes in the wake of a series of pointed disagreements between President Barack Obama and Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu in recent years over issues like the Israeli-Palestinian peace process and the U.S. response to the Arab Spring movement. 'It’s the worst I’ve ever seen,' said Leslie Gelb, president emeritus of the Council on Foreign Relations." (Politico)


"News Corp patriarch Rupert Murdoch plans to finalize the terms of his 'amicable' divorce negotiations with estranged wife Wendi Deng at a court hearing this morning, closing the curtain on a fourteen-year marriage. The 82-year-old Murdoch, who is reportedly dating his (also much younger) massage therapist already, 'surprised' Deng with divorce papers over the summer, citing a relationship that 'has broken down irretrievably.' But because he's worth over $13 billion, the hard part is splitting up the stuff. Deng and the couple's two young daughters, Grace, 12, and Chloe, 10, are expected to keep the family's Fifth Avenue penthouse, which was purchased for $44 million in 2005, a Manhattan record at the time. The triplex was previously owned by Laurance S. Rockefeller. She'll also get the Beijing house. According to Reuters, the settlement will not affect Murdoch’s now-split companies, because Deng 'does not hold a stake in family trust that controls News Corp and Fox. Grace and Chloe have stakes in the trust but they do not hold voting rights.' But leisure time is taking a hit: The New York Times says, 'The boat has been put up for sale.' Previous reports said Murdoch was looking to get rid of his 184-foot yacht, Rosehearty, for an asking price of $29.7 million. Let another man's mid-to-late-life crisis begin." (NYMag)



"Sheldon Adelson. Bigtime Vegas casino hotshot, Venetian Hotel CEO, billionaire, heavy supporter of Israel who vowed he’d spend $100 mil to elect Mitt. With hubby tucked away now, Ann Romney’s doing her thing. Made the Best Seller List with her new cookbook. Besides fingerlickin’ cherry pies, it’s summertime life on their New Hampshire Lake Winnipesaukee homestead (which I’ve seen from friends’ nearby property) and family stories ... To celebrate 'The Romney Family Table' book, to honor the Romneys, to have a party, Sheldon’s doing a Class-A dinner for Ann and Mitt at his Vegas home." (Cindy Adams)



"Jauretsi: Now that eBay will be adding the 'follow' button on collections, what types of things would you be interested in following on the site? Lucy Sykes: I am actually interested to follow most of the curators. My main interest is lifestyle, and I feel like there is a great wealth of knowledge from the very best experts [on eBay Today]. Tech is always new so that is a great interest which I am constantly learning about. I love the 1940s era, so I’ve have been inspired by furniture and art experts who are curating wonderful and rare things. I love anything to do with art and fashion books. I am also now following the Coffee Expert as I need my own espresso machine and I now know the 'Man.' J: In terms of your own personal work, what projects are you working on now or what can we expect to see soon? LS: I have my own consultancy, The Fashion Office. I consult for big brands and connect them to up-and-coming designers, from fashion to accessories. I have been working with the American Folk Art Museum on their upcoming show 'Folk Couture' with too many incredible designers to mention. I am consulting at RTR, where I had previously served as their Fashion Director for two years. My fav was a collaboration with Moschino photographed by Josh Jordan, which has newly been published on their website. I have a book in the works, which Alexandra Machinest (of Janklow Nesbit) is working with me on. Lastly, yes, I am working on a fashion pilot for the E! Network. But the biggest role is looking after all my three boys — two children, one husband." (Inside Source)



"Also last night under a heated tent at the Naumburg Bandshell in Central Park, JH attended the Central Park Conservancy's second annual Autumn in Central Park. Nearly 500 guests celebrated the beauty of fall in the park with a delectable fall menu, elegant décor, and dancing under the stars. The event will raise vital funds that benefit the Conservancy's mission to restore and maintain the Park. The evening was sponsored by Van Cleef & Arpels and Valentino with models wearing both. Event Chairmen included Kitty and Tom Kempner, Gillian and Sylvester Miniter, Deborah Roberts and Al Roker, and Fiona and Eric Rudin. Angelo, Gordon & Co. was the Corporate Chair. Sarah Arison, Elizabeth Kurpis, Julia Loomis, and Julianna Simmons served as the Young Associate Chairmen." (NYSocialDiary)


"'It’s finally l’happening!' L’Wren Scott told us on Tuesday, shortly before co-hosting an event with Vanity Fair’s Senior West Coast Editor Krista Smith at the Chateau Marmont ...  Toasting Scott’s creative endeavors on the sixth-floor balcony of the Chateau was the designer’s partner of ten years, Mick Jagger. The legendary Rolling Stones frontman politely left the spotlight to Scott, and chatted with guests high above the Sunset Strip. Also present were Rashida Jones, Mad Men cast members Christina Hendricks and Jessica Paré, Kelly Lynch, Mitch Glazer, Michael B. Jordan, Judy Greer, and Ke$ha, who had just flown back to from Japan to help celebrate. 'He’s a god to me,' Ke$ha said of Jagger, 'and I am obsessed with L’Wren because she is so statuesque and stunning.' Remembering the first time she met the duo, the pop star said, 'I was [shooting] the cover of Self and heard that Mick was in the building. I ran out in my underwear and was like, ‘Hey!’' With a denim jacket slung over her shoulder and cotton candy-colored hair, Ke$ha waved off our compliment of her elaborate gold manicure, which featured a different metallic texture on each of her digits. 'In Japan, this is just normal. They pay so much attention to tiny detail and nail art. Every time I go there I have to spend at least five hours in the nail salon. You should see my toes.'" (VanityFair)

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