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This page features brief excerpts of news stories published by the mainstream media and, less frequently, blogs, alternative media, and even obviously biased sources. The excerpts are taken directly from the websites cited in each source note. Quotation marks are not used.
Yet until last year, Masuda, who calls herself "pretty ordinary," rarely went out of her way to disagree. Few teachers do.
But when a Tokyo city councilman in an official meeting said "Japan never invaded Korea," her history class sent an apology to Korean President Roh Moo-hyan - an action that sparked her removal from her classroom.
The war history dispute in Asia is now so front-and-center that appears it was cited by South Korea as a reason to avoid an upcoming December visit to Japan by Mr. Roh. Alongside the diplomatic row, the Masuda case shows how nationalist policies are creeping into the minutiae of daily life in Japan's capital city.
Masuda, who says her two sons have Korean friends, got censured after her class did a study group on Japan's occupation of Korea. Her social studies class wrote a letter of apology to Roh, and sent it to the Korean Embassy in Toyko. In a cover letter, Masuda said that councilman Koga Toshiaki's remarks were "a disgrace" by objective historical standards, but "regrettably [they] can be presented proudly as a triumph in the assembly of Tokyo, the capital of this country."
The class never heard from the Korean consul. But Masuda did hear from the Tokyo Board of Education. Her letter was discovered by a Yasukuni shrine support group and they complained to city officials. Masuda was told that while Mr. Koga did speak in public, it was "inappropriate" for Masuda to repeat his name in a letter that was not private, and a violation of city employee codes.
Masuda is now ordered to spend her days in a small room studying public servant regulations, a serious humiliation she says. She in turn is trying to fight in court.
Masuda's experience shows the growing power of Japanese nationalists, and their grass-roots influence in Tokyo, analysts say.
When thousands of antiquities were looted from Baghdad's Iraq museum, US marine Matthew Bogdanos pledged to get them back. After two years of sleuthing, he has become a national hero.
By a peculiar turn of fate, she had stumbled on the one person in the whole of modern Mesopotamia who both cared deeply about the cultural calamity at Baghdad's Iraq museum and possessed the expertise, determination and clout to do something about it. His name was Matthew Bogdanos - a Greek-American classics scholar and a New York prosecutor, whose toughness and tenacity had earned him the nickname "pit bull" even before he went off to fight the "war on terror".
Colonel Bogdanos cannot remember the name of the reporter who vented her frustration at him, but she appears to have set off an extraordinary train of events. Five days after the encounter, he had overcome the objections of his superior officers and was at the gates of the Baghdad museum, heading a mixed bag of volunteer soldiers and investigators, ready to hunt down Iraq's lost legacy.
What followed over the next two years was an epic feat of wartime sleuthing which took Bogdanos along a trail from pitch-black underground chambers and submerged bank vaults in Baghdad to the sleek antiquity dealerships of Madison Avenue, in pursuit of lost treasures with Harry Potterish names, such as the Sacred Vase of Warka. Along the way, more than 5,000 artworks, including unique pieces from the first fluttering of civilisation, were recovered. Bogdanos left active duty in the marines last month, but he is still on the hunt for the thousands of objects still unaccounted for. When he returns to the Manhattan district attorney's office, where he worked before the September 11 attacks, he has permission, he says, to set up a new arts and antiquities unit.
From a balcony on the central tower of the fortresslike Villa Grande, he stares out over the treetops toward a cargo ship heading slowly out to sea. "And I'm sure Quisling came here to think, too," he adds.
Vidkun Quisling was the head of Norway's collaborationist government during the 1940-45 Nazi occupation, and the imposing Villa Grande was his home and headquarters.
Now the history professor and his team have moved in, and in the rooms where Quisling entertained his Nazi masters, they exhibit and study the Holocaust and other 20th-century genocides
And Fure wants to take the study of the Holocaust a step further.
He wants to explore the links between the breakdown of society in the Holocaust and the fracturing of relations between Muslims and Christian Europeans today.
By next year, 10 researchers from across the world and a resident academic will work at the HL Senter in Villa Grande. The H stands for Holocaust and the L for livssynsminoriteter , the Norwegian word for religious or ethnic minority.
"We will work on constructing models on how Muslim societies can live peacefully within predominantly Christian societies by looking back at the Holocaust," he said.
"Christmas Truce" of World War I.
Born June 25, 1896, he was an 18-year-old soldier in the Black Watch regiment when British and German troops cautiously emerged from the trenches that Christmas Day in 1914. The enemies swapped cigarettes and tunic buttons, sang carols and even played soccer amid the mud, barbed wire and shell holes of no man's land.
The informal truce spread along much of the 500-mile Western Front, in some cases lasting for days - alarming army commanders who feared fraternization would sap the troops' will to fight. The next year vast battles of attrition began, which claimed 10 million lives, and the Christmas truce was never repeated.
More than 80 years after the war, Mr. Anderson recalled the "eerie sound of silence" as shooting stopped and soldiers clambered from trenches to greet one another Dec. 25, 1914.
Today, twenty years after those seminal events, the National Security Archive is posting a series of newly declassified Soviet and U.S. documents which allow one to appreciate the depth and the speed of change occurring both inside the Soviet Union and in U.S.-Soviet relations in the pivotal year of 1985. Most of the documents are being published for the first time.
Major highlights include insights into Gorbachev's early thinking and his skillful use of his power of appointment to build a reform coalition and to achieve a breakthrough in foreign policy. The challenging road to Geneva is illustrated by the leaders' correspondence, which touched upon all the most difficult issues in U.S.-Soviet relations -- the arms control negotiations (especially the Strategic Defense Initiative), regional conflicts and humanitarian issues. The Geneva Summit itself became a tremendous learning and trust-building experience for both leaders, but also represented a missed opportunity in terms of their inability to move faster toward deep reductions of nuclear weapons, which were the highest priority for both Reagan and Gorbachev.
His brother, Ed Sidey, reported the death to the Associated Press. He was told that Mr. Sidey had a heart attack, the wire service said.
Mr. Sidey covered the nation's chief executives from Dwight D. Eisenhower through Bill Clinton, traveled with them, saw them in times of triumph and in moments of disappointment and was witness to and chronicler of the history they made.
Sidey, who was a contributing editor at the time of his death, "proved you can write about people in power and still be the gentleman journalist," James Carney, Time's Washington bureau chief, told the Associated Press. "He's in some ways the model we all aspire to."
An Iowa-born heir to a family of journalistic tradition, Mr. Sidey wrote three books on individual presidents: John F. Kennedy, Lyndon B. Johnson and Gerald R. Ford.
The ornery ape with a thing for shrieking blondes hasn't looked this good since stop-motion master Willis O'Brien's groundbreaking creature first roared into theaters 72 years ago.
"This is unequivocally the most important film yet to be released on DVD," says George Feltenstein, the Warner Bros. senior VP and film historian who has overseen the disc transfers of such titles as Citizen Kane, Casablanca and Singin' in the Rain. "It's the No. 1 movie we are asked about."
Divided into two sections depicting New Amsterdam and New York before 1776, and then to slavery's abolishment in 1827, it is a multi-media presentation: you first view a five segment movie telling the story of slavery both before and during it's existence in New York, and then you enter a room of wire sculptures of slaves at various occupations.
As you travel through time, you learn facts that were never taught in class. Only Charleston, SC had more slaves before the Revolution than New York City; they represented 20% of the population (by comparison, Philadelphia had 6%, and Boston had 2%). No less than 40% of NYC's households owned slaves. Four maps detail the city in 1664 (when the British took over); 1741 (the "Great Negro Plot"); 1783 (American victory); and 1827 (end of NYS slavery). Each map shows, in detail, the continued growth of the city and the slaves' contribution to the story. The Society has on display many historical documents, including slave ships' freight records, an inquest into the slave revolt of 1712, ads seeking runaway slaves, and the Gradual Emancipation Law of 1799. There are portraits and decorative arts objects (furniture, silverware) showing the work of the slaves, and their masters' use of them to better their own lives, and around the corner, what the slaves had: not much of anything except tools for work. Special sections show how blacks were depicted in drawings, paintings and newspaper articles, and you can sit in a church and listen to black gospel music, work on an interactive computer project to help free slaves, or pick up a phone receiver to learn about the lives of slaves. How much were slaves worth?? In 1675, a slaver could buy a person for $350 in Africa, and sell him/her in NYC for $3,800; by 1775, slaves cost $2300 and sold for $6000. Big business, big profits, very little morality. By 1706 this profit was so greatly noticed that NYC passed a law stating that any child born of a slave woman was also a slave. Laws against slave movement, ownership of property, or social gatherings were just as restrictive at those we studied in the antebellum South. It is overwhelming!!
Just one thing bothered this observer -- the lack of the instruments used to keep the slaves in check; no handcuffs, chains, ropes, are seen; just a representation of a whip. Southern museums show these "tools" and we should also. It is not likely that most slaves were treated better north of the Mason-Dixon Line: brutality knows no borders. The exhibition closes March 5, 2006; on the second floor is a wonderful Hudson River School presentation until January 22. After seeing "Slavery" you need the quiet galleries for reflection.
The regimental colours seized in 1779 and 1780 by Lt Col Banastre Tarleton, who remains one of the conflict's most controversial figures, have already aroused huge interest among American military historians. They are expected to fetch between pounds 2.3 million and pounds 5.8 million at Sotheby's in New York next year.
Until recently the flags had hung in the Hampshire home of Capt Christopher Tarleton Fagan, the great-great-great-great nephew of the lieutenant colonel.
Capt Tarleton Fagan, a former Grenadier Guards officer, said: "I am very sad to sell them. They are an important part of our family history and we have had them for 225 years. However, there comes a time when their value is such that one can no longer afford to insure them.''
Only about 30 American revolutionary battle flags have survived, all of which, apart from the ones to be sold at Sotheby's, are in museums and in most cases only fragments remain. The ones captured by Tarleton are in excellent condition and their history is well documented. One is the flag of the 2nd Regiment of Continental Light Dragoons, raised in Connecticut by Col Elisha Sheldon, who were defeated by Tarleton in Westchester County, New York in July 1779. The other three flags were seized the following year in a still controversial battle in the southern United States. Tarleton crushed a Virginian regiment under Col Abraham Buford at Waxsaws near the border of North and South Carolina. Accounts of what happened next differ. According to the Americans, Tarleton ordered his men to slaughter more than 100 revolutionary soldiers who had already surrendered. But the British officer maintained that his horse was shot after a truce was declared and pinned him to the ground.
On November 21, 1995, the world witnessed an event that for years many believed impossible: on a secluded, wind-swept U.S. Air Force Base in Dayton, Ohio, the leaders of Bosnia, Serbia, and Croatia agreed to end a war. The signing of the Dayton Peace Accords concluded one of the most challenging diplomatic undertakings the United States had pursued since the end of the Cold War -- eighteen weeks of whirlwind shuttle diplomacy, followed by twenty-one intensive days of negotiations in Dayton. The agreement brought peace to a troubled corner of Europe, and established an ambitious blueprint to build a new Bosnia -- an effort that the international community remains deeply engaged in today.
The study is the result of a unique historical effort led by Deputy Assistant Secretary for Public Affairs Bennett Freeman in 1996 to capture the record of this achievement. In his capacity overseeing the State Department's Office of the Historian as well as serving as Chief Speechwriter for Secretary of State Warren Christopher, Freeman worked with that office and the Bureau of European Affairs to assemble a team to begin collecting documents and conduct interviews with all the key American participants in the Dayton process. After the initial research effort was underway and an archive of these materials had been created, Freeman then asked Derek Chollet to draft the study based on this research, which he completed in the spring of 1997.
Seven months after deciding to switch its annual convention from San Francisco to San Jose so its members wouldn't have to cross a picket line, the Organization of American Historians says it has struck a secret deal with the two hotels which lost money as a result of the change in venues.
San Francisco's Hilton Hotel had claimed it was owed $390,000 for booked rooms and meeting halls. The San Jose Doubletree said it was owed $42,000 for rooms that were booked but not rented.
The terms of the agreement are secret. In an email on 11-21-05 Mr. Formwalt clarified that"What will appear in the next treasurer's report is the total cost for Meetings and Conferences in FY 2005 .... We cannot and therefore will not disclose the terms of our settlement with Hilton as it is covered by a confidentiality agreement."
It should be possible, however, for members to determine from the numbers provided approximately what the settlement cost. This is because the OAH has already revealed that the switch to San Jose cost the organization over $100,000. (Members have contributed more $23,000 to a special fund to offset the costs of the move.)
The OAH contract with the Hilton did not include a provision allowing a cancellation in the event of a boycott. The organization says all future agreements will.
One of the presentations at the three-day session revived doubts about the famous "single bullet theory" that the House Select Committee on Assassinations thought it had resolved in the late 1970s. Another demolished persistent claims that the Zapruder film -- the "clock" of the Kennedy assassination -- had somehow been altered or contradicted by other photographic evidence. Still another speaker demonstrated how the sounds on Dallas police tapes showed that four and perhaps five shots had been fired -- meaning that at least one other person besides alleged assassin Lee Harvey Oswald had squeezed a trigger.
None of that solved the whodunit, although the conferees could still count themselves and like-minded historians and researchers winners in a way. Three out of every four Americans think President John F. Kennedy's assassination on Nov. 22, 1963, was the result of a conspiracy. Almost as many think there was a coverup.
But the proposition that drew about 135 people to a Bethesda hotel this past weekend -- that it is not too late "to solve the greatest mystery of the 20th century" -- has less traction with the public. According to the most recent poll, conducted in 2003 for the 40th anniversary of the JFK assassination, 75 percent of the public does not want another government investigation.
Washington lawyer Jim Lesar, president of the nonprofit Assassination Archives and Research Center, the main sponsor of the conference, was undeterred. "The lone assassin theory" -- the Warren Commission's conclusion in 1964 that Oswald was solely responsible for the killing -- "is more discredited than it has previously been," he said in opening remarks.
A key reason, he said, is that the CIA not only withheld crucial information from the commission about its assassination plots against Cuban President Fidel Castro and other foreign leaders, but it also held back other vital information from the House assassinations committee, which concluded in 1979 that Kennedy was "probably assassinated as a result of a conspiracy."
On the night of Aug. 22, 1991, several construction cranes and a crowd of about 50,000 determined people gathered in central Moscow to seal that promise of something better than Soviet misery. In front of the sinister K.G.B. building, workers rocked, cracked and then toppled the formidable statue of Feliks Dzerzhinsky, the father of the secret police, the founder of the gulag, the man whose people tortured and killed millions to create Lenin's dream state. It was not broken into pieces by protesters but relegated instead to an undistinguished patch of land behind the New Tretyakov Gallery.
Earlier this month, with little fanfare but plenty of dreary symbolism, Mr. Dzerzhinsky was returned to a position of honor in central Moscow. It is not the same statue, and it is not on the same plinth, in the center of a major traffic circle near the place where the K.G.B. tortured its many victims.
Instead, Iron Feliks is a few blocks away at the Interior Ministry, his bronze bust back on a pedestal in the new Russian society. This is the man who in 1917 founded the Cheka, the Extraordinary Commission, which terrorized the nation with the arrests and brutal executions that became known as the Red Terror. This invention was the precursor of the secret police and spy network, the K.G.B., that stood as a symbol of barbarism in the 20th century.
Mr Irving had hit the international headlines five years earlier, when he sued American historian Deborah Lipstadt for libel in Britain.
He lost and the court branded him "an active Holocaust denier".
Lyn Smith, a professor of politics in London, is bewildered by people like Mr Irving, who deny there were gas chambers at Auschwitz or that Hitler knew his underlings were systematically murdering six million Jews, plus millions more Slavs, Gypsies, Jehovah's Witnesses, homosexuals and political prisoners.
"That's something I just cannot understand - that people like Irving continue to deny, when there is so much evidence."
Mrs Smith is more familiar with the evidence than most.
Starting in the 1970s, she worked as an oral historian for London's Imperial War Museum, interviewing survivors of the Holocaust for the museum's sound archive.
She has recently assembled testimonies from the archive into an extraordinary book, Forgotten Voices Of The Holocaust.
'Near as you can get'
The book weaves together excerpts of recordings from survivors and witnesses, tracing the Holocaust chronologically, from the persecution that accompanied the rise of Hitler, through the ghettos, concentration camps and death camps, death marches, liberation and the aftermath.
"It is as near as you can possibly get to first-hand views of the Holocaust," Mrs Smith says.
Published in the fourth of a series of papers that shook the foundations of physics in 1905, E=mc² is now linked with the power of the atom bomb.
No equation is anywhere near as recognisable as E=mc².
During his 15 years sitting in Newark as a member of a federal appeals court, Judge Alito has sided almost uniformly with those who have complained vigorously in recent years that zealousness in enforcing the Constitution's separation of church and state has unfairly inhibited religious practices.
Due to poor quality drinking water back in the 12th century, Londoners were forced to drink ale - as much as a gallon a day.
Artefacts from the time, which are due to go on display at the museum, including a selection of portly Toby jugs depict chubby individuals who look like they enjoyed a pint or two.
And historians claimed that 700 years ago, London had more than 1300 alehouses - one for every 50 people living in the city.
"Beethoven had hoped that some day it would be revealed why he acted the way he did," said Paul Kaufmann, the owner of the skull fragments, who loaned them to the Ira F. Brilliant Center for Beethoven Studies at San Jose State University.
"He was seen as angry and uncooperative at times. This finding helps shed some light on that," he said. "Now we know that this was the reason for his suffering."
Lead poisoning can lead to headaches, fatigue, concentration problems and other health issues.
Analysis in the late 1990s from a lock of Beethoven's hair indicated that he had lead poisoning at the time of his death, but the latest skull analysis revealed that the condition existed over a long period of time.
"You can't draw any conclusions from the hair sample. This is a more significant finding," Beethoven scholar and biographer Maynard Solomon, who was not involved in the skull testing, said in a telephone interview.
In a viral sense, the sky has fallen three times in the last century - in 1918, 1957 and 1968 - when "super-flu" strains killed millions more people than annual flu epidemics.
Back then, there weren't surveillance systems or modern genetic tools to detect and document viruses as they evolved into killer strains. Because scientists don't know how that evolution happened or how long it took, they can't tell us whether what we are seeing with bird flu now is the beginnings of a pandemic or a near miss.
"My crystal ball doesn't allow me to answer that," said Dr. Frederick Hayden, a flu expert at the University of Virginia.
Leading scientists discount the notion that flu pandemics happen in regular intervals, and that the world is overdue for a new one.
They don't even agree on how bad it is that bird flu has spread to more types of birds. Instead of an appetite for people, the germ is showing a growing fondness for birds, some say.
They do agree on the need to make vaccine, stockpile drugs and be prepared.
"We have to run scared" and be glad if precautions prove unneeded, said Dr. Edwin Kilbourne, a microbiologist and flu-virus expert at Cornell University.
Storm winds hammered his 75,000-square-foot warehouse complex on the west bank of the Mississippi River, where his artists build most of the carnival floats each year. Some of Kern's favorite giant figures were damaged. "Dracula lost his clothes. The Mummy lost his robes," he says. In his east bank studio, Kern, 79, says he found "6 feet of water and a dead man. We still don't know who he was."
But Kern, whose family has lived in the Algiers neighborhood for generations, says he quickly began to focus on the importance of the 2006 Mardi Gras -- the 150th anniversary of the pre-Lent bacchanal -- going forward, at least in some form.
"We've got to have this party," Kern says, even as he points to the National Guard troops still handing out food and water from his parking lot. "We've got to show the world that we're down but not out."
Local officials from Mayor Ray Nagin on down agree. Plans are moving forward for a shortened Mardi Gras season that would include six days of parades rather than 11, culminating on Fat Tuesday, Feb. 28.
Nagin will meet with his carnival advisory committee today to decide on the Mardi Gras schedule. The last carnival to be canceled was during the Korean War in the early 1950s.
'This is about business'
The major reason for pushing ahead with Mardi Gras despite the devastation Katrina brought to New Orleans is that it normally is a $1 billion-a-year enterprise -- and right now, this battered city has little besides tourism to look to for revenue. "This isn't about fun. This is about business," Lt. Gov. Mitch Landrieu says. "We're in the business of producing cultural events, and that business produces tremendous economic impact and provides jobs."
City studies have found Mardi Gras produces $900 million in annual spending and nearly $50 million in direct tax benefits. The emotional lift of a successful Mardi Gras could be just as important for the demoralized city.
Two local consultants, paid $50,000 by the Allegheny Conference on Community Development, are recommending that regional officials get several things done by 2008 to boost the profile of Pittsburgh and change its image nationally.
They include completion of the Great Allegheny Passage, a trail connecting Washington, D.C., to Pittsburgh; restoration and renovation of Point State Park; development of a Greater Oakland Technology Center on the site of the old LTV Hazelwood coke works; completion of the renovation of the Hot Metal Bridge; the commissioning of an "iconic" piece of Pittsburgh-themed art; and construction of a monument noting the achievements of prominent Pittsburghers, termed a "Promenade of Stars."
The celebration would culminate with two weekends of events in November 2008, capped by a gala on Nov. 15.
The poll in El Mundo newspaper - on the 30th anniversary of the re-establishment of the monarchy after the dictator Francisco Franco died - suggested almost a quarter of Spaniards considered themselves republicans. A 50% increase in declared republicans over five years was the result of a surge in the number of 18 to 29-year-olds who preferred to scrap the monarchy, the poll showed. Declining support among young people could spell future trouble for what has previously been considered a model, modern European monarchy.
Nearly four out of 10 young voters defined themselves as republicans - slightly more than those who said they were monarchists. It was the first time in 30 years that polls had produced such a result. The result was not so worrying for King Juan Carlos - who maintains the respect of even diehard republicans after helping usher in democracy following Franco's death - as it was for his heirs.
One historian suggested the 67-year-old king should choose a suitable moment to abdicate in favour of Crown Prince Felipe to maintain his own reputation and set his son off to a good start. "Spain has experimented with republics twice in the past century and a half. There is no guarantee that such a thing might not happen again," Felipe Fernandez-Armesto wrote in El Mundo.
Now 87 and preparing to leave Washington after more than 60 years to be closer to relatives in California, Mr. Elsey has at last put down in his own words some of the stories he has been quietly telling historians and documentary filmmakers for years. His newly published memoir, "An Unplanned Life" (University of Missouri Press), is full of revealing glimpses of a vanished Washington - and implicit lessons for some of today's less self-effacing officials.
"I've had lots of interesting experiences and so on," Mr. Elsey said the other day, his face crinkling into a squint as the last rays of November sunlight filtered into his half-packed living room a few blocks from the Potomac River. "But it never occurred to me that this was a book."
Mr. Elsey finally began writing at the urging of a friend, the Truman scholar Robert H. Ferrell, who told him it was past time to let others keep telling his tales in books and films.
Last summer, authorities from the Guatemalan human rights ombudsman's office, searching a munitions depot here, discovered what appear to be all the files of the National Police, an agency so inextricably linked to human rights abuses during this country's 36-year civil conflict that it was disbanded as part of the peace accords signed in 1996.
At that time, President Álvaro Arzú's government, struggling to usher this country through an uncertain transition from war to peace, denied to a truth commission that police files existed. It now seems clear, human rights investigators say, that Mr. Arzú's government, as well as those that followed, knew about the files all along.
In the months since the files were discovered, archivists kept them closed to the public and much of the news media because of concerns that, given the depot's many open, unfinished windows and doorways, the files could be pilfered or destroyed. In addition, the archivists said they needed time simply to do a preliminary examination to get a sense of what was in the files.
The publisher, Fatih Tas, the owner of Aram Publishing, could face three years in jail for issuing the book, "Spoils of War: The Human Cost of America's Arms Trade" by John Tirman, which focuses on military sales to Turkey. It was published in the United States in 1997.
Prosecutors contend that the book humiliates Turkish institutions by including the testimony of people who said they were subjected to human rights violations by the security forces during fighting with Kurdish rebels in the 1990's. Prosecutors also took offense at the book for saying the founder of modern Turkey adopted a nationalism that was "a version of fascism."
The case against Mr. Tas came as a surprise, though he has been sued many times in the past. Turkey recently changed its penal code to favor further freedom of expression in order to qualify for membership in the European Union. But the law still makes it a crime to insult the Turkish identity, the government or Ataturk. Suits still crop up that touch on issues like Kurdish rights or unity of the state, topics that remain sensitive in the eyes of the judiciary.
They also point to Japan's longstanding unease with the rest of Asia and its own sense of identity, which is akin to Britain's apartness from the Continent. Much of Japan's history in the last century and a half has been guided by the goal of becoming more like the West and less like Asia. Today, China and South Korea's rise to challenge Japan's position as Asia's economic, diplomatic and cultural leader is inspiring renewed xenophobia against them here.
One book centers on a Japanese teenager, Kaname, who attains a "correct" understanding of Korea. It begins with a chapter on how South Korea's soccer team supposedly cheated to advance in the 2002 Word Cup; later chapters show how Kaname realizes that South Korea owes its current success to Japanese colonialism.
"It is Japan who made it possible for Koreans to join the ranks of major nations, not themselves," Mr. Nishio said of colonial Korea.
But the comic book, perhaps inadvertently, also betrays Japan's conflicted identity, its longstanding feelings of superiority toward Asia and of inferiority toward the West. The Japanese characters in the book are drawn with big eyes, blond hair and Caucasian features; the Koreans are drawn with black hair, narrow eyes and very Asian features.
That peculiar aesthetic, so entrenched in pop culture that most Japanese are unaware of it, has its roots in the Meiji Restoration of the late 19th century, when Japanese leaders decided that the best way to stop Western imperialists from reaching here was to emulate them.
In 1885, Fukuzawa - who is revered to this day as the intellectual father of modern Japan and adorns the 10,000 yen bill (the rough equivalent of a $100 bill) - wrote "Leaving Asia," the essay that many scholars believe provided the intellectual underpinning of Japan's subsequent invasion and colonization of Asian nations.
Fukuzawa bemoaned the fact that Japan's neighbors were hopelessly backward.
Writing that "those with bad companions cannot avoid bad reputations," Fukuzawa said Japan should depart from Asia and "cast our lot with the civilized countries of the West." He wrote of Japan's Asian neighbors, "We should deal with them exactly as the Westerners do."
The bilateral talks, which took place on the sidelines of the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation summit meeting, took place just a month after Mr. Koizumi's latest trip to the Yasukuni Shrine, a memorial that commemorates Japan's war dead, including high-ranking war criminals from World War II. The visit aggravated Japan's already strained relations with its Asian neighbors.
Mr. Koizumi defended his visits to the shrine, saying that he prayed for peace there. But Japan has found itself continually confronted at the summit meeting here over its handling of its wartime conduct, and has been diplomatically shunned by its neighbors in a region where China's influence is growing rapidly.
Because of Mr. Koizumi's latest visit to the shrine, China's president, Hu Jintao, rejected Mr. Koizumi's request for a meeting here. Mr. Roh agreed to one, but Seoul pointedly downgraded Friday's talks as a "courtesy meeting" with the South Korean host of the summit meeting. Also, Mr. Roh refused to say Friday whether he would go through with a scheduled visit to Japan next month.
Parks, who died Oct. 24 at age 92, refused to give up her seat to a white man on a Montgomery, Ala., bus in 1955 -- an act of civil disobedience that helped spark the civil rights movement.
Both the House and the Senate approved by voice vote a bill placing the statue in the Capitol and sent the legislation to President Bush for his signature.
The nine-member jury found that the colonel, Nicolás Carranza, had "command responsibility" for the torture of a Salvadoran who was forced to confess falsely to killing an American military adviser, Lt. Cmdr. Albert Schaufelberger, in 1983.
Colonel Carranza was the vice minister of defense, El Salvador's second-highest military commander, from 1979 to 1981, and in 1983 he was head of the Treasury Police, the most notoriously violent of the country's security forces.
Mr. Carranza, who moved to Memphis in 1985 and is now an American citizen, testified that he was a paid informant for the Central Intelligence Agency for two decades, including the years that were the focus of the trial. His tie to the agency was corroborated at the trial by the American ambassador to El Salvador at the time, Robert White.
The verdict was a victory for human rights groups that have been seeking to prosecute foreign military commanders linked to rights violations, especially from the wars in Central America, who have settled in the United States.
He said the challenge aimed "to put the politicians back in their kennels".
The National Parking Adjudication Service reserved judgment on the case but is expected to notify the parties of an outcome later this month.
The Bill of Rights dates from the reign of William and Mary, after James II was deposed in the Glorious Revolution.
In part, it reads: "All grants and promises of fines and forfeitures of particular persons before conviction are illegal and void."
The museum, which is in the midst of a 100 (M) million dollar fundraising campaign, plans to acquire and raze a building on a prime corner of Independence Mall. That’s half a block from the museum’s current downtown site.
With a more prominent location within a block of the Liberty Bell and Independence Hall, the new facility could attract 250 thousand people in its first year. The museum currently hosts 50 thousand to 65 thousand visitors a year.
Swiss mercenaries once served in a number of European countries, most notably as the guard of the French kings, but the papal guard is the only one to have survived.
So this year the veterans of the guard throughout the valleys and mountains of Switzerland are preparing to celebrate its 500th anniversary. Pins and baseball caps with the distinctive guard helmet, T-shirts, watches, ties and Swiss Army knives are on sale.
This is the self-proclaimed Gateway to the South where Ali was born Cassius Clay 63 years ago, where he grew up in a modest bungalow on the all-black west side, where a color line determined where he could shop, eat and see movies.
But it was also here that a white police officer named Joe Martin took the 12-year-old Clay, furious that his bicycle had been stolen, and taught him the sweet science of boxing. And it was here that a group of genteel white businessmen invested in the raw, loud-mouthed talent and financed his way to his first heavyweight title.
2. A Great Improvisation : Franklin, France, and the Birth of America by Stacy Schiff
3. At Day's Close: Night in Times Past by A. Roger Ekirch
4. History on Trial : My Day in Court with David Irving by Deborah E. Lipstadt
5. The Command of the Ocean: A Naval History of Britain, 1649-1815 by N. A. M. Rodger
6. 1776 by David McCullough
7. A History Of The World In Six Glasses by Tom Standage
8. Europeana: A Brief History Of The Twentieth Century (Eastern European Literature) by Patrik Ourednik, Gerald Turner (Translator)
9. Postwar: A History of Europe Since 1945 by Tony Judt
10. Wedding of the Waters: The Erie Canal and the Making of a Great Nation by Peter L. Bernstein
The Green Books of the United States Army in World War II constitute the official history of the U.S. Army. The series was published by the Government Printing Office, and individual volumes are still available from that agency. While the other services do not have anything directly comparable to the Green Books, each has produced or sponsored a service history which covers World War II.
The Navy's semiofficial history of the war was written under an arrangement with Samuel Eliot Morison, at the time professor of history at Harvard University. His History of Naval Operations in World War II, published by Boston's Little, Brown and Company in fifteen volumes, is based primarily on official records. The activities of the Air Force are covered in The Army Air Forces in World War II, edited by Wesley Frank Craven and James Lea Cate. The multi-volume series was originally published by the University of Chicago Press and is now available through the Government Printing Office. A five-volume History of U.S. Marine Corps Operations in World War II has also been published by the Government Printing Office.
Another record was set for the price of a single pearl, when the drop-shaped "La Regente" sold for 3.27 million francs ($2.5 million; euro2.1 million), three times the low-end estimate.
That pearl, which weighs over 300 grams (over 10.5 ounces), was given by Napoleon Bonaparte to his second wife Marie-Louise in 1811, Christie's said.
Lincoln-Sudbury High School history teacher Bill Schechter said in the original draft of the curriculum guide, composed in the mid-1990s,
was the Turkish point of view regarding the deportation of Armenians from Turkey and the killing of approximately 1.5 million Armenians during World War I. Schechter alleges that state Sen. Steven Tolman, D-Boston, deleted the guidelines from the curriculum.
"Frankly the law requires the Department of Education to develop a genocide curriculum," Tolman said. "It didn't say create doubt,it did not say to allow neo-Nazis to deny the Holocaust, and it certainly does not allow the Turkish Government to deny what happened."
"We're claiming that the political intervention that led to the removal of material constituted a violation of free speech and academic freedom," Schechter said. "It's on those grounds that this case will be litigated, the conviction is that this is not how history should be certified. When historical questions remain unsettled amongst
credible historians the state should not legislate historical truth by removing different points of view."
Heidi Perlman, spokeswoman for the Department of Education, said the department was simply implementing the law.
"Our role is to follow the letter of the law and to produce this document," Perlman said. "It's not a mandatory curriculum, and it needs to include information on how to teach genocide. We didn't think it was appropriate to have language that the genocide didn't take place. It is the responsibility of the legislature to change the law."
When asked about Tolman's influence on the deletion of the Turkish perspective from the guide, Perlman reinforced her statement the
department was following the law.
History records Blackbeard's flagship, the 40-gun Queen Anne's Revenge, ran aground near Beaufort Inlet in 1718. Archaeologists believe a treasure of information about the notorious pirate lies in a jumble of cannon and timber on the ocean floor there.
But the sea still holds the secret of whether the wreckage was really the Queen Anne's Revenge and the site might be destroyed before the truth is known.
"We've only done 5 percent of the wreck, which means the rest is sitting out there in potentially great hazard from storms," said Phil Masters, the underwater salvage expert who found the wreckage nine years ago.
The ship sank in about 24 feet of water and was buried under 15 feet of sand for almost 300 years, archaeologists said. But through the years, the ship also sank in the sand and now sits on bedrock, and storm after storm has gradually stripped away the protective sands.
Only 3 feet of sand now cover the wreckage, and the next violent storm to hit Bogue Banks could destroy the site, archaeologists said.
"We're seeing material we haven't seen before because now it's uncovered," said David Moore, of the North Carolina Maritime Museum. "But we also must ask, ‘What are we missing? What has the storm taken away that we didn't even know was there?'"
Hundreds of artifacts recovered so far point to Blackbeard, such as a 2,500-pound cannon that was recovered in May. Archaeologists at East Carolina University found valuable clues through X-rays.
A Canadian filmmaker has launched a crusade to stop U.S. treasure hunters from scavenging the wreck of HMS Fantome, which many believe was returning to Halifax with loot from the White House and Capitol Building when she sank in a storm on Nov. 24, 1814.
"It is not beyond imagination to see silverware stolen from the White House end up for sale on Ebay," said John Wesley Chisholm, who hopes to make a documentary film about the site.
"The province should revoke or suspend the licence for this site. On a larger scale, the entire (Treasure Trove Act) should be abolished."
Curtis Sprouse, founder of Sovereign Exploration Associates International, scoffed at Chisholm's criticism, saying it is companies like his that help uncover history and bring it to the public.
"We believe that preservation of history and presentation of history is of utmost importance," he said. "We are very proud of the approach we are taking."
[Editor's Note: See Roundup's "Talking About History" for a longer excerpt from this piece.]
Gullah is an oral language, so the translation was painstaking, beginning in 1979 with a team of Gullah speakers who worked with Pat and Claude Sharpe, translation consultants with Wycliffe Bible Translators.
Many efforts have been made over the years to preserve Gullah, which mixed West African languages with English, and experts believe the translated Bible will be a major contribution toward that goal.
“I think this makes the language universal,” said Ervena Faulkner, co-manager of history and culture at the Penn Center, which is dedicated to preserving the threatened sea island culture.
“People have done Gullah cookbooks, they have done African-American sayings, they have done proverbs,” Faulkner said. “But for the Bible to go out with the Gullah sends a message. It means we can speak the Word.”
Nestled amid spreading oaks dripping Spanish moss on this island just east of Beaufort, the center is located on the site of the Penn School, which was founded in 1862 to educate slaves newly freed by advancing Union troops. The culture — called Gullah in the Carolinas and Geechee in Florida and Georgia — remained intact with descendants of slaves because of the isolation of the region's sea islands. Now, about 250,000 Gullahs live in the four-state coastal area and about 10,000 of them speak Gullah as their main language.
The newest film to tackle Germany's Nazi past is Dennis Gansel's "Before the Fall" (Napola), which Picture This Entertainment opens Friday in Los Angeles, also engages the verboten with an evocative coming-of-age story told against the backdrop of an elite yet barbaric Nazi academy.
Gansel says he chose the subject matter in an attempt to come to terms with his family history. His grandfather was a student and later a teacher at a Nazi war academy similar to the one depicted in "Before the Fall."
"All his life until his death 10 years ago, he wanted us -- the grandchildren -- to understand how the system worked, what made him so excited about fascism," Gansel says. "My father never understood it because he was very left wing, and there was no real communication between my grandfather and my father. It took another generation, which is my sister and me, to understand it."
But "Before the Fall" is no Nazi valentine. In fact, through its honest depiction of how a young German is seduced by the system, the film becomes a more effective indictment of the Nazis' brutal regime than the more traditional one-dimensional representations.
The state prosecutor's office in Vienna yesterday confirmed that Mr Irving, 67, who lost a libel case against Penguin Books and an American historian five years ago and was financially ruined as a result, was in investigative custody pending inquiries as to whether he would be tried on charges dating from 1989. Holocaust denial is a criminal offence in Austria.
Mr Irving, deported from Austria in 1984 and barred from the country, was arrested last Friday while driving from the southern province of Styria to Vienna, apparently to give a lecture to a student fraternity. Under Austrian legislation outlawing Holocaust denial and the "reactivation law" that criminalises active support for Nazism, he was charged in his absence in November 1989 after delivering two speeches to similar student fraternities in Austria allegedly denying the existence of the gas chambers. The charge carries a prison sentence of up to 20 years.
The author of more than 20 revisionist books of history, notably Hitler's War, infamous for his campaigns to belittle the crimes of the Holocaust and to play down Hitler's knowledge of and participation in the Final Solution, Mr Irving suffered disgrace five years ago when a high court judge ruled that he was an anti-semite, a racist, a liar and a falsifier of the history of the second world war.
The team spent the summer excavating ruins of the ancient city of Cancuen in central Guatemala and dug up at least 45 skeletons belonging to members of the Mayan royal court who appear to have been ritually slaughtered by an as-yet unknown horde of assailants.
Among the bones were those of the Mayan king Kan Maax and his wife, identified by their jewellery, headdresses and other precious artefacts. At least a dozen others showed signs of having been ritually dismembered and thrown into sacred spring waters - presumably as a way of wiping out both the leadership of Cancuen and the city itself.
Many of them appear to have died as a result of sharp spear jabs to the throat, suggesting summary execution on a grand scale. The attackers also chipped the faces of statues and religious monuments.
The ruins of Cancuen were discovered more than a century ago, but their significance as a possible centre of the Maya civilisation only became apparent five years ago, when a vast palace complex was found.
Scholars have long debated how, and how quickly, the Maya civilisation came to an end. The evidence unearthed by the archaeological team, led by a scholar from Vanderbilt University in Tennessee and funded by the National Geographic Society and the National Endowment for the Humanities, makes the strongest case yet the collapse was the result of a vicious war.
And it was an emotionally charged moment for Wang, president of Generation of the Shoah, a group in Argentina. “It has been nice to celebrate the New Year as my real self,” she said.
The government announced it would make the revision for Wang; that would set a precedent for others who say they too had to lie about their religion to gain entry to Argentina. The government also will waive the $75 cost of such a change.
Since President Nestor Kirchner took office just over two years ago, his administration has revised a half-century of Argentine policies turning a blind eye to the entry of Nazi war criminals following World War II, when the country had barred entry to Jews trying to escape the Holocaust. Some of the government’s major actions include:
• Opening long-closed Immigration Service records to promote the search for Nazi war criminals. The government of Carlos Menem had promised such a step in the 1990s, but strict control and bureaucratic snags over the dissemination of files and documents made the promise a farce.
• Ordering the removal of a plaque in the Foreign Ministry honoring Argentine diplomats who supposedly saved Jewish lives during the war. Historians argued that some the diplomats had consistently refused to give Jews visas, essentially dooming them to death.
• Finding and annulling a 1938 Foreign Ministry order, sent to diplomats around the world, to bar entry to Jews.
• Disbanding CEANA, the Foreign Ministry commission set up during the Menem years to clear up the skeletons of the country’s Nazi past. The commission seemed to hide more than it revealed, and was riven by internal strife. The Kirchner government says it’s looking at revamping the commission so that it can do a major historical documentation.
Ms. Tojo clearly idolizes her grandfather, who was executed as Japan’s top war criminal in 1948: she often comes to interviews with foreign journalists carrying a box of mementos that include nail clippings, a lock of hair, and the butt of the last cigarette the general smoked while awaiting the hangman’s noose in Sugamo Prison.
Contrary to those who put Tojo in the small club of World War 2 monsters along with Hitler and Mussolini, she says the man who ordered the Pearl Harbor attack led a “war of freedom” in Asia. “Essentially he was a kind man who loved peace,” she says. “He was defending his country against foreign aggressors. His greatest crime was that he loved his country.”
The British test is very different. It is based on a government-issued 125-page booklet called "Life in the U.K," and it costs the applicant $60 to take the test. There are 24 multiple-choice questions and the applicant must get three quarters of them correct. If he fails, the test can be taken over as many times as necessary. And only those who speak English can take the test. Those who don't have to take a "skills for life" course at a local college and prove to their tutor they have learned some English and understand the British way of life.
What are some of the questions on the British exam? Well, they have a lot more to do with knowing how to behave in contemporary British society than they have to do with the great traditions of "this sceptered isle."
For example there is one that asks (and I am not kidding): "What should you do if you spill someone's pint in the pub?" The wrong answers are:
"Dry their wet shirt with your own." Or "Prepare for a fight in the car park" or "Run away from the pub." The right answer: "Offer to buy the person another pint." And, no, the test was not written by Monty Python. (By the way, my newly American husband got that right. There are some things you obviously never forget).
Here's another question that's sort of sweet but definitely strange:
"Where does Father Christmas come from?" It isn't "Lapland," one of the choices, but that's close. And no, "I don't believe in Father Christmas anymore" is not a possible answer.