John McCain pens a eulogy for a Communist

Delmer Berg, who died recently age 100, was the last known living veteran of the Abraham Lincoln Brigade. They were Americans who joined the Spanish Communists to fight the Fascists in Spain prior to World War II. Berg himself was a Communist; he joined the US party in 1943 and remained a Communist until his death.

Mr. Berg went to Spain when he was a very young man. He fought in some of the biggest and most consequential battles of the war. He sustained wounds. He watched friends die. He knew he had ransomed his life to a lost cause, for a people who were strangers to him, but to whom he felt an obligation, and he did not quit on them. Then he came home, started a cement and stonemasonry business and fought for the things he believed in for the rest of his long life.

I don’t believe in most of the things that Mr. Berg did, except this. I believe, as Donne wrote, “no man is an island, entire of itself.” He is “part of the main.” And I believe “any man’s death diminishes me, because I am involved in mankind.”

So was Mr. Berg. He didn’t need to know for whom the bell tolls. He knew it tolled for him. And I salute him. Rest in peace.

[John McCain: Salute to a Communist / The New York Times]

Good news and bad news about that town in Spain with a name that translates to “Jew Killers.”

The good news is they’re thinking of changing the name.

The bad news is the name they’re considering: Washington Redskins.

Actually, the history is pretty interesting: The town was founded in the 11th Century by Jewish refugees. 400 years later, the town converted to Catholicism during the Inquisition and changed its name to divert attention from its Jewish past.

A Hard Sell to Tame a Name in Spain – NYTimes.com.