Kerry’s advice south on whether Russia might accept Boston bomber’s body
By MICHAEL SNEED email@example.com May 7, 2013 6:40PM
John Wayne in "Rio Bravo" (1959)
Updated: June 9, 2013 6:37AM
The Boston Strangler. . .
Finding somewhere to bury the body of alleged Boston Marathon bomber Tamerlan Tsarnaev has taken an unusual turn.
◆ Translation: Sneed hears rumbles that Secretary of State John Kerry’s office is being asked to assist and/or give advice on the possibility of Russia accepting the body of Tsarnaev, who was killed in a shootout with the Boston police.
◆ Claim ’em: No cemetery has yet come forward to accept the body for burial, and his American wife refused to claim it, leaving the task to an uncle.
A goofball abroad. . .
A tale of two Rods: Is basketball bad boy Dennis Rodman becoming the new Rod Blagojevich in a goofball effort to save an American hostage?
Capitalizing on his friendship with North Korean strongman Kim Jong Un, Rodman is trying to free American citizen Kenneth Bae, now imprisoned in the country.
◆ Quoth Rodman: “I’m calling on the Supreme Leader of North Korea or as I call him ‘Kim,’ to do me a solid and cut Kenneth Bae loose,” he tweeted Tuesday.
◆ Backshot: Back in 1999, then-Rep. Rod Blagojevich joined the Rev. Jesse Jackson on a successful mission to free three captured American soldiers in Belgrade, Serbia.
The GOP grid. . .
Pssst! Sneed hears a stealth candidate is emerging for leadership of the Illinois Republican Party: Former Illinois Commerce Commission chief Phil O’Connor, who ran successful campaigns for Governors Jim Thompson and Jim Edgar.
◆ To wit: O’Connor, described as the GOP’s renaissance man, spent a stint in Afghanistan as an energy consultant rebuilding the country’s grid system. “It’s hoped he’ll be the guy to rebuild the energy of the Republican Party,” a top top GOP source said. At last peek, however, Cook County Board Commissioner Tim Schneider appeared to be the front-runner.
Wayne’s world. . .
Former Chicagoan Brian Downes, who now heads movie legend John Wayne’s museum in the star’s birthplace of Winterset, Iowa, tells Sneed that Wayne’s 106th birthday this year will be a blowout with Chicago connections.
◆ Translation: Not only will legendary Irish actress Maureen O’Hara — Wayne’s romantic partner in “The Quiet Man” and “McLintock!” — be on hand the weekend of May 24 for the celebration, but Chicago’s favorite Irish singer, Catherine O’Connell, and our bagpipe buddies the Shannon Rovers will be participating in the extravaganza.
Burke’s law. . .
Watch for Ald. Ed Burke, a Roman Catholic, to work at the behest of the Greek Orthodox church as they struggle to get the state Senate to pass a resolution showing solidarity with the church’s ability to choose the head of their faith.
◆ Translation: The Greek Orthodox church, whose Ecumenical Patriarchate (akin to the Vatican) is based in Turkey, is forced to bend to the choices made by the Turkish government. The passage of the resolution — sponsored by state Sen. Bill Brady — would add Illinois to a list of 42 states asking for religious freedom for the Greek Orthodox faithful.
◆ Further translation: Burke plans to introduce a motion at Wednesday’s City Council meeting urging the state Senate to pass the resolution as soon as possible.
A Martin memo. . .
Femme power: A $250,000 donation to a University of Illinois fund, established by former Congresswoman Lynn Martin to honor distinguished women teachers, has been made by the AT&T board of directors.
◆ Backshot: Martin, who was Labor secretary under President George H.W. Bush, is a former high school teacher. She graduated from U. of I. and is a former member of the AT&T board.
◆ Puckshot: It’s not surprising that Martin majored in English. As a member of Martin’s gab group of “High Hens,” I’ve been subject to the cluck puck she dispenses when English is used incorrectly.
Sneedlings . . .
Wednesday’s birthdays: Enrique Iglesias, 38; David Attenborough, 87, and Lovie Smith, 55.