This weekend we learn about one of the world’s biggest airlines being dismantled, poster vending machines at airports and bullfighting possibly returning to Spanish TV.

Major airline being disassembled
A major airline is rapidly being dismantled and almost no one knows. Millions of pieces of equipment are being taken on tens-of-thousands of trucks.

For years, in US air terminals across Iraq, on flat-screen monitors or white boards, generals and soldiers, journalists and contractors watched for flight information to BIAP (Baghdad International Airport), Tikrit, Mosul or other destinations.

Between combat, medical evacuations and ferry service, the US intra-Iraq airline flew scores of times every day.

Joint Base Balad, with two 11,000-foot runways, had 27,500 takeoffs and landings a month in 2006, second only to London’s Heathrow, US officials said.

Vending machine offers new airport greetings
Just introduced at Schiphol Airport in Amsterdam, new vending machines allow waiting passengers to print out banners and signs that proclaim, “Welcome Home Mom!” or “Glad you landed, will you marry me?”

You can pick your message, whether that is “Missed you Mummy,” “I love you,” “Will you marry me?,” or anything else that makes you stand out from the crowd, choose the font and background design, pay between four and 15 euros ($19.98)depending on the length of the banner, and hit the button.

“We came up with the idea because when we were at the airport we’d see all these people welcoming their friends and family with their own banners made of bed sheets and we thought what a hassle using sheets, wouldn’t it just be easier to make the banner at the airport,” BannerXpress’s co-founder Thibaud Bruna told Reuters Thursday.

Bullfighting to return to Spanish TV
After being banned from television by the Socialist government of Spain as being too violent for children, the corrida may be making a return to the small screen. According to a report (in Spanish) bullfighting may be coming back with the election of a conservative government.

Translation: With the electoral victory of the conservatives, bullfighting buffs are in luck. A party spokesman in the Senate confirmed to Applause magazine (Spain’s leading bullfighting magazine) during the last week of campaign that TVE would broadcast bullfighting again and offer special coverage.

Escudero claimed that “we have always supported the protection, promotion and dissemination of bullfighting and that it has a special place in the media, especially in TVE, both in news programs and in specific programs such as a return to broadcasting bullfighting.”

Photo: usaid.gov