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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.
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. Because most of our readers read the NYT we usually do not include the paper's stories in HIGHLIGHTS.
Name of source: LAT
SOURCE: LAT (8-31-05)
Bush pegged his remarks to the 60th anniversary Friday of Japan's formal surrender to Gen. Douglas MacArthur, likening the attack on Pearl Harbor, which sparked the U.S. entry into World War II, to the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks that led to today's fight against terrorism.
Bush sought to connect Japan's postwar transition to democracy to the effort by Iraq's leaders to draft and approve a constitution — a process that has frustrated U.S. officials, who tried unsuccessfully to coax Sunni Arab leaders in Iraq to support the document and avoid what some critics now say is a recipe for civil war.
"The Japanese Constitution would guarantee the universal freedoms that are the foundation of all genuine democracies while, at the same time, reflecting the unique traditions and needs of the Japanese people," Bush said, adding that it "set Japan on the path to a free society."
SOURCE: LAT (8-28-05)
In 1976, when he first landed on these shores, cultural diplomacy between nations was a serious endeavor with high social purpose. The general proposition then was that government is a problem-solver.
But societies change. Today the establishment's answer to social problems, big and small, is private enterprise.
The difference between public purpose and private enterprise contains the seed for the critical commotion that has swirled around the Tut exhibition at LACMA -- tumult that did not accompany the first American show of the pharaoh's artifacts. Art museums used to be places of escape and refuge from the commercial world. Now they're just another roadside attraction. Tut is a marker for that shift.
He's an unlikely candidate for cultural poster boy. Tut was a minor king in an ancient period of artistic stasis. Not much happened during his nine-year reign, least of all artistically. Without the accident and timing of his tomb's discovery in 1922, the boy king would not have gotten the ambassador job at all.
The 37th U.S. president was the man behind"The Treasures of Tutankhamen" in 1976, remembered -- for better and for worse -- as ushering in the age of the blockbuster in America's art museums.
Egypt had sent a selection of Tut's tomb materials to the British Museum three years earlier, in anticipation of the 50th anniversary of their discovery by the British archeologist Howard Carter in the colonial sands of Luxor. Nixon saw an opening where none had been before. Gamal Abdel Nasser, the president who cultivated Soviet bloc allies and declared Egypt a socialist state, had come to power when Nixon was vice president. Nasser had denied U.S. requests to display the treasure.
But in the aftermath of Egypt's defeat by Israel in the Six-Day War and amid deliberations for a settlement of the Middle East conflict, Nasser died. Anwar Sadat, his close ally, succeeded him. Nixon arranged the first visit to Egypt by a U.S. president, establishing full diplomatic relations.
Partly it made for a shiny distraction from his Watergate troubles back home. The June 1974 trip was just weeks before the scandal forced him from office.
But Sadat had inherited a deteriorating relationship with the Soviets, and Nixon was genuinely happy to encourage and exploit the rift. He asked his host why Egypt had sent Tut's treasures on tour in the Soviet Union after Britain but would not send them to the United States.
"Nixon demanded one more city than Russia and more objects," Thomas Hoving, the museum director who organized"The Treasures of Tutankhamen," wrote in his memoirs."Sadat was sympathetic."
On Nov. 17, 1976, the first Tut show opened to the public after a black-tie gala at Washington's National Gallery, an art museum under the auspices of the U.S. State Department. It promptly became a sensation. Nixon was long gone, but he had wanted the boy king to be the face of an improved U.S. strategic position in the Cold War struggle in the Middle East. And he was.
SOURCE: LAT (8-29-05)
With a handful of cattle now on the property, some Texans suggest that calling the place a ranch could be considered a stretch.
"There are some guys that are all hat and no cattle. The president's not that way; he's hat and five cattle," joked Austin lawyer and former U.S. Rep. Kent R. Hance, who as a Democrat beat Bush in a 1978 congressional race by portraying him as an Ivy League interloper.
The White House declined to let a reporter look at the grounds or interview ranch hands while the president and First Lady Laura Bush finished their vacation.
Deputy Press Secretary Dana Perino confirmed that the bovine population had fallen sharply since former ranch foreman Kenneth Engelbrecht got rid of his cattle and vacated the property a few months ago. Engelbrecht, a member of the family that sold the ranch to Bush in 1999, had been leasing back pasture and tending a herd that numbered about 200.
Bush's ranch acquisition made him the latest incarnation of the cowboy-in-chief, an iconic political figure invented by Theodore Roosevelt in the late 19th century. Roosevelt, before he founded the Rough Riders or ran for president, spent two years running a cattle operation in the Badlands of North Dakota. He failed as a commercial rancher but accomplished a remarkable personal transformation in the process."Roosevelt was asthmatic. He had Coke-bottle glasses. He had a funny way that he talked," said presidential historian Douglas Brinkley, director of Tulane University's Theodore Roosevelt Center."But he learned the way that men talk in the West and refashioned himself from an aristocratic dandy into a cowboy." The tradition was handed down to Lyndon Johnson, who bought a south Texas ranch from his Aunt Frank and Uncle Clarence and launched a 2,700-acre commercial Hereford breeding operation that continues to this day."It was a full-fledged ranch, yes sir," said Edward Meier, who worked for Johnson as a herdsman in the 1960s and later became foreman of the LBJ Ranch for the National Park Service."He was really involved. He wanted the irrigation pumps running. He wanted the tractors running. He wanted lots of action going." The legacy was carried on by Ronald Reagan, who spent a fair amount of his presidency at his 688-acre Rancho del Cielo in California's Santa Ynez Valley. Reagan did not raise cattle, but he rode horses, cleared brush and chopped wood for the fireplace that provided the adobe ranch house's only heat. Brinkley said Bush had successfully adopted the populist cowboy persona, which he described as the"ultimate American male archetype of our time" and a reassuring symbol to a society that likes to divide history's figures into good guys and bad guys."As much as people may complain that Bush is in Crawford, a lot of Americans like seeing him in blue jeans with a big belt buckle, walking down a dirt road or clearing brush," Brinkley said."It's become a stage set for him."
Name of source: Independent (UK)
SOURCE: Independent (UK) (8-31-05)
When the Japanese monster movie Godzilla was sold to an American distributor 50 years ago, it was re-edited to excise every mention of the strong anti-nuclear message that had made it such a hit in Hiroshima and Tokyo.
Without the politics, the re-cut dubbed story of the dinosaur-like creature with radioactive breath, was an anodyne monster-on-the-loose picture which none the less added the name 'Godzilla' to the lexicon of popular culture.
Such has been the success of the spin-offs, including more than 20 sequels from the Japanese studio that invented him, a major computer-generated Hollywood movie version seven years ago and assorted cartoons, that even fans may not know there was ever a serious point to the plot.
But now British audiences are to get their first opportunity to see the complete Japanese version of the film deemed politically unacceptable for ordinary Americans " and hence the rest of the world " half a century ago.
Next month, in the wake of the 60th anniversary commemorations of the first atomic bomb being dropped on Hiroshima, the British Film Institute (BFI) is releasing this landmark in science fiction movie-making in its original form.
Margaret Deriaz, the BFI's head of film distribution, said the film had proved an important cinematic phenomenon. 'Along with King Kong, Godzilla is one of the most celebrated movie monsters of all time, yet hardly anyone in this country has seen the original that sparked the phenomenon,' she said.
Name of source: NYT
SOURCE: NYT (8-31-05)
Mr. Wanniski coined the phrase "supply-side economics" to describe his idea that a reduction in personal tax rates would stimulate productive investment, the production side of the economy and spur economic growth. He immodestly called this idea, which he formulated in the early 1970's, "a general theory of the world political economy."
Others viewed it as traditional Republican "trickle down" economics, meaning that the benefits accruing to wealthier taxpayers would filter throughout the economy. But, indisputably, the idea that tax cuts are almost always a good idea became a tenet of Republican, and many Democratic, campaigns.
Since 1978, Mr. Wanniski had been president of Polyconomics, where he and his analysts advised corporations, investment banks and others. He has also been involved in political campaigns like that of Steve Forbes in 1996 for the Republican presidential nomination, which highlighted another novel economic idea: a single tax rate for everyone.
How far Mr. Wanniski may have wandered from the traditional bounds of the Republican Party was suggested by his endorsement of Senator John F. Kerry in the 2004 presidential race. He called President Bush "an imperialist."
SOURCE: NYT (8-31-05)
Almost certainly, it will be organized thematically, beginning with a depiction of life at the towers before and between the attacks of Feb. 26, 1993, and Sept. 11, 2001. Exhibits following that would depict the events of 9/11, rendered graphically and unflinchingly (visitors may bypass this exhibit); and the rescue efforts and relief work, the outpouring of support and the broader aftermath.
SOURCE: NYT (8-30-05)
As long as people could control floods, they could do business. But, as people learned too late, the landscape of South Louisiana depends on floods: it is made of loose Mississippi River silt, and the ground subsides as this silt consolidates. Only regular floods of muddy water can replenish the sediment and keep the landscape above water. But flood control projects channel the river's nourishing sediment to the end of the birdfoot delta and out into the deep water of the Gulf of Mexico.
Although early travelers realized the irrationality of building a port on shifting mud in an area regularly ravaged by storms and disease, the opportunities to make money overrode all objections.
When most transport was by water, people would of course settle along the Mississippi River, and of course they would build a port city near its mouth. In the 20th century, when oil and gas fields were developed in the gulf, of course people added petrochemical refineries and factories to the river mix, convenient to both drillers and shippers. To protect it all, they built an elaborate system of levees, dams, spillways and other installations.
As one 19th-century traveler put it, according to Ari Kelman, an environmental historian at the University of California, Davis, "New Orleans is surprising evidence of what men will endure, when cheered by the hopes of an ever-flowing tide of dollars and cents."
Will Ms. Sheehan's movement spread? The historian Doris Kearns Goodwin, whose son, Lt. Joseph K. Goodwin, served with the First Armored Division in Baghdad, said that it was too soon to judge, and that much depended on what happened in Iraq over the next weeks. ''But if more mothers and more women connect to the losses over there, it could move like wildfire across the country,'' Ms. Goodwin said.
Ms. Goodwin said that as hard as it was for the White House to respond to the women, it was harder to be the commander-in-chief responsible for the losses, something she learned from conversations with Lyndon Johnson after Vietnam. ''He said he would wake up in the middle of the night worrying about what had happened to the bombs and who had died,'' she said. ''It's an emotional thing for these guys, as much as we think they're stalwarts.''
As for Mr. Bush, she said, ''I suspect he's asking himself, 'Why didn't I just meet with her in the beginning''' of her summer protest.
Lomax's recordings for the Library of Congress, made during his travels through the South in the 1930's and 40's, make up perhaps the greatest repository of American vernacular music ever compiled.
But he was not alone on some of those trips. Three African-American scholars from Fisk University in Nashville, a black college founded in 1865 to educate newly freed slaves, accompanied him on two pivotal trips to Coahoma County in Mississippi in 1941 and 1942. And they continued to work on the project after Lomax left the Library of Congress. But Lomax, in his critically praised 1993 memoir, "The Land Where the Blues Began" (Pantheon Books), gives the three only a few cursory mentions, one in the acknowledgments. In the memoir, Lomax, who died in 2002, also conflates the two Coahoma County trips into a single trip.
In the new book, "Lost Delta Found" (Vanderbilt University Press), the editors, Robert Gordon and Bruce Nemerov try to set the record straight by publishing the long-forgotten manuscripts of the Fisk scholars: John W. Work III, a composer and musicologist; Lewis Wade Jones, a sociologist; and Samuel C. Adams Jr., a graduate student. Mr. Gordon and Mr. Nemerov say these manuscripts provide a more balanced picture of the Coahoma County research as well as a more nuanced analysis of the Jim Crow South than is to be found in Lomax's memoir.
Name of source: AFP
SOURCE: AFP (8-31-05)
But a test on the pulp of molars extracted from skeletons in the tomb at Roskilde Cathedral, on the island of Sjaelland, shows that the two sets of remains are unrelated, the British weekly New Scientist reports in next Saturday's issue.
Jorgen Dissing, at the Institute of Forensic Medicine in Copenhagen, tested the samples for mitochondrial DNA, a component of cells that is exclusively handed down through the maternal line.
But the samples from the male skeleton did not match those from the female one, thus proving that the buried "Estrid" was not Sven Estridsen's mum.
Name of source: Forbes
SOURCE: Forbes (8-29-05)
Forget annoying earthquakes like the 1906 temblor that destroyed San Francisco, or events such as the 1980 eruption of Mount St. Helens in Washington state, and even the 1994 Los Angeles shaker that brought down sections of major freeways. In terms of total destruction, these natural disasters are pikers by world standards and serve only to remind us that extremes are the norm.
The National Hurricane Center pegs Hurricane Andrew, a category five storm in 1992, as the most destructive to hit the United States. It caused damage estimated at $26.5 billion.
To date, 2004 was the most destructive hurricane season with four named storms slamming ashore: Charley, causing $15 billion in damage; Ivan, $14.2 billion; Frances, $8.9 billion and Jeanne, $6.9 billion. Total: $45 billion.
Hurricane Hugo is ranked as fifth most destructive storm, causing $7 billion in damage in 1989.
Hurricane Allison caused an estimated $5 billion in damage in 2001; Floyd, $4.5 billion in 1999; Isabel, $3.4 billion in 2003; and Fran, $3.2 billion in 1996.
New Orleans last took a direct hit from a hurricane in 1965 when Betsy's 8-to-10-foot storm surge flooded the city. The storm was blamed for 74 deaths in Louisiana, Mississippi and Florida.
Name of source: Houston Chronicle
SOURCE: Houston Chronicle (8-31-05)
Some cried as they pulled away the sheets draping their individual statues and saw themselves as they were in 1957.
Elizabeth Eckford looked at the statue of herself leading the way into the school and smiled and joked about the more slender chin on the statue.
The location, too, is heavy with meaning. The nine statues stand outside the governor's office, where in 1957 Gov. Orval Faubus called out the National Guard to prevent black schoolchildren from attending previously all-white Central High following a 1954 Supreme Court ruling. When the nine entered, they were under the armed guard of federalized troops.
Name of source: Wa Po
SOURCE: Wa Po (8-31-05)
Tierney, of the Institute of World Politics, identified five groups: ANSWER, Not in Our Name, Code Pink, United for Peace and Justice, and MoveOn.org. He said these groups "come from the Workers World Party" and are an "umbrella" for smaller groups, such as the "Communist Party of Kansas City" and the "Socialist Revolutionary Movement of the Upper Mississippi." Of the last two, he said, "I'm just making these up."
Mara Verheyden-Hilliard, an official with ANSWER, said: "Sounds like he's channeling Joe McCarthy, basically. That's a pretty heavy-duty résumé of redbaiting."
One questioner at the event tripped up Tierney when he asked if there was an analogy between this sort of guilt by association and efforts by Ronald Reagan's opponents to tie Reagan to the John Birch Society. "There could be," Tierney allowed.
SOURCE: Wa Po (8-31-05)
SOURCE: Wa Po (8-30-05)
In the book, he defends his criticized comparisons of abortion and the Holocaust.
"I reject that criticism because this is indeed another kind of holocaust, by another name," he wrote. "At last count, more than 40 million unborn children have been deliberately, intentionally destroyed. What word adequately defines the scope of such slaughter?"
Helms devotes an entire chapter to his views on race relations, defending his record as a 1960s television commentator and senator who challenged most of the nation's civil rights legislation.
"I felt that the citizens of my community, my state and my region of the country were being battered by this new form of bigotry," he wrote."I simply could not stay silent in the face of this assault -- and I didn't."
Helms rejected the notion that racist tendencies drove him to oppose the creation of a national Martin Luther King Jr. holiday in 1983, or to run a 1990 campaign ad tying his black opponent to affirmative action.
He wrote that he opposed the King holiday in part because the Senate rejected a Helms amendment that would have unsealed the FBI files of the civil rights leader. Helms contends that King's advisers included communist sympathizers.
SOURCE: Wa Po (8-30-05)
Roberts and Caroline Kuhl, who were special assistants to Smith, said the aim of enacting new laws on these two topics was "to guarantee that our policies cannot be easily undone." They also advised strengthening the practice of mediation -- in lieu of litigation -- as a way to "abate the influence of the courts," noting that in addition to the American Bar Association, "certain Christian fundamentalist groups have formed negotiation programs."
The memo was among several written by Roberts, and released yesterday by the National Archives and Records Administration, that pointed up the nominee's partisanship in his early jobs at the Justice Department and the White House. The records were released in response to Freedom of Information Act requests by The Washington Post and other organizations.
Name of source: Chicago Trib
SOURCE: Chicago Trib (8-31-05)
Williams called on the Illinois Historic Preservation Agency to establish a more equitable distribution of jobs that, by his count, show only seven people of color out of 107 people employed by the library and museum. The current results are "unacceptable," he said in a letter.
Richard Norton Smith, who heads the Lincoln complex, said in a recent interview that he is proud of the diverse crowds at the Lincoln complex but is "most frustrated about the relative lack of diversity in our workforce."
"If we were just kind of wringing our hands about it, fine. Condemn us," Smith said. "I don't know about anyone else. I've actually given more thought to this than anything since I got here."
Name of source: CNN
SOURCE: CNN (8-31-05)
Under the agreement passed Tuesday by the Los Angeles Unified School District board, a group of historic preservationists will drop lawsuits seeking to prevent the district from razing the hotel, in exchange for the district giving $4.9 million to a nonprofit group that works to conserve school buildings.
"This is a landmark settlement to preserve historic schools for generations to come," said Marlene Canter, school board president.
The school district bought the Ambassador Hotel out of U.S. Bankruptcy Court in 2001 and planned to tear it down to build three schools at the 23-acre site.
Preservationists consider the hotel a historic gem and sued to prevent the demolition.
The long-closed hotel was once a celebrity hotspot whose guests included F. Scott Fitzgerald, Rudolph Valentino and Albert Einstein.
SOURCE: CNN (8-30-05)
Representatives of 30 governments, human rights activists and historians are gathering in Poland this week to commemorate the 1980 strike led by Walesa, then an electrician, in the Gdansk shipyard, the cradle of Solidarity.
The two-week strike by shipyard workers ended on August 31, after the communist authorities allowed the creation of an independent union, the first breach in the monopoly of power held by the communist rulers of an East European state.
"The role of Solidarity in the downfall of communism was enormous because it showed the world that workers do not like communism," said Richard Pipes, a U.S. historian and adviser to late U.S. President Ronald Reagan.
Nearly a decade later Solidarity took power, sparking the collapse of communism across the Soviet bloc. Walesa was Polish president from 1990 to 1995, a period of turbulence and change.
The legacy of Solidarity and Walesa has been under attack in recent years, mainly by populist parties tapping into discontent after 15 years of painful economic reforms.
SOURCE: CNN (8-27-05)
A crewman who had survived the sinking off the North Carolina coast more than 140 years ago maintained that he stuffed the feline into one of the 11-inch-wide, 17,000-pound barrels.
And did he stuff his new wool coat and boots into the carriage of the other cannon, as he said? The answer is leaning toward "No" on both counts.
Name of source: MosNews
SOURCE: MosNews (8-31-05)
Scholars have discovered sensational documents at the Foreign Ministry’s archives of the Russian Empire, Sheremet’s colleague, historian-orientalist Mikhail Yakushev added. Those papers shed light on the conflict between Pope Pius IX and Napoleon III, on the one hand, and the Orthodox clerics of the Jerusalem Church and Emperor Nicholas I, on the other.
“It was that inter-clerical strife concerning the Holy places in Jerusalem and Bethlehem, that flared up in the year 1850 had triggered the Crimean war,” Yakushev said.
Archive data show that the Greek hierarch, being aware of the Sultan Abdul Mejid plan to sacrifice the interests of his subjects — Orthodox believers in favour of foreigners (Catholics) — urged Russia to protect the Orthodox Church.
Those data give us a chance to look at the Crimean War from a different angle, the scholars say. “That was not a war for the ’selfish ends of the Tsar’, but a ’holy war’ for Christian sanctuary, for the keys to the Temple of the Holy Sepulcher and the Temple of Bethlehem, the war against discrimination of Orthodox communities in Jerusalem and the Orient,” Alexander Melnik, head of the Center of the National Glory of Russia, said.
The Ottoman Empire declared war on Russia in 1853 upon enlisting support from England and France.
Name of source: AP
SOURCE: AP (8-31-05)
In his decision, the judge said Firishchak lied during a three-day civil trial when he denied being a member of the Ukrainian Auxiliary Police, which helped the Nazis arrest Jews in large numbers and send them to forced labor and death camps.
Firishchak, who came to the United States in 1949, testified this month that he was not a member of the police organization but was a homeless vagrant during the years when investigators say he helped the Nazis. He also contended his name, which appears on auxiliary police documents starting in 1941, was a common one in Ukraine.
The Justice Department's Office of Special Investigations - the federal government's Nazi hunters - proved Firishchak "was a participant in an organization that perpetrated some of the most horrific acts against human decency ever known in history," the judge said.
Firishchak also obtained citizenship illegally by lying to immigration authorities when he said under oath that he had not been a member of any organization affiliated with the Nazis, the judge said.
SOURCE: AP (8-29-05)
The Association of Christian Schools International, which represents more than 800 schools, filed a federal lawsuit last week claiming UC admissions officials have refused to certify high school science courses that use textbooks challenging Darwin's theory of evolution. Other rejected courses include Christianity's Influence in American History.
According to the suit, the Calvary Chapel Christian School in Murrieta was told its courses were rejected because they use textbooks printed by two Christian publishers, Bob Jones University Press and A Beka Books.
Wendell Bird, a lawyer for the association, said the policy violates the rights of students and religious schools. ''A threat to one religion is a threat to all,'' he said.
UC spokeswoman Ravi Poorsina said she could not comment because the university had not been served with the suit. Still, she said the university has a right to set course requirements.
"These requirements were established after careful study by faculty and staff to ensure that students who come here are fully prepared with broad knowledge and the critical thinking skills necessary to succeed," Poorsina said.
Name of source: White House Website
SOURCE: White House Website (8-30-05)
Here's the NYT account.
Name of source: Yahoo News
SOURCE: Yahoo News (8-30-05)
Roberts' confirmation hearing will begin next Tuesday.
The National Archives has said some of the documents could be "duplicative" of those already released, said Sen. John Cornyn (news, bio, voting record), R-Texas.
"Tens of thousands of documents have already been released — more than any Supreme Court nominee in history," Cornyn said. "And with each new release of information, it's growing increasingly difficult for the president's opponents to complain with a straight face about the need for more information."
Democrats noted that at least one file of Roberts documents on affirmative action has gone missing, and the White House is refusing to let them see Roberts' documents from his time in the solicitor general's office during the George H.W. Bush administration.
"The Judiciary Committee has been hard at work preparing for expedited hearings on this important nomination, and there is no doubt that this last-minute revelation is a hindrance to that preparation," said Sen. Patrick Leahy (news, bio, voting record), D-Vt., the senior Democrat on the committee.
Name of source: Reuters
SOURCE: Reuters (8-30-05)
European Commission President Jose Manuel Barroso said the spirit of solidarity which was the driving force of the 1980s non-violent revolt that led to the overthrow of communism was still much needed in today's European Union.
Name of source: Expatica
SOURCE: Expatica (8-30-05)
Name of source: Guardian
SOURCE: Guardian (8-31-05)
Italy's state-owned broadcaster, Rai, has been enlisted for the onslaught featuring the destruction of some of the country's most famous art treasures and cultural sites under the slogan: "Without your help, Italy could lose something."
SOURCE: Guardian (8-30-05)
As cultural politics, this is naive stuff. Why is it, asks the journalist and historian Martin Meredith in his book The State of Africa: A History of 50 Years of Independence, that having been, in the 1950s, a beacon of hope and optimism, Africa today instills foreboding and pessimism - "a scar on the conscience of the world", as Tony Blair would have it? Meredith's explanation is the opposite of the one propounded by Africa 05. The organisers of the image-changing festival believe that bleak views of Africa are ultimately racist. Meredith, though, thinks the alarm the continent inspires entirely justified: his book chronicles the coups, kleptocracies, wars and economic follies that have not only retarded but actually reversed growth.
"In such a survey as Meredith's it would be good to read more about the positives in Africa," objects a reviewer in BBC History magazine. I suppose you could make the same objection to South African Guy Tillim's exhibition at the Photographers' Gallery. It speaks well of Africa 05 that it supports this show because Tillim's pictures, taken in the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC), could easily be titled Africa - The Bad News. These are representations of mobs and refugees, decay and suffering, in a place that appears utterly cast adrift from reason, whose history - ominously visible in Tillim's photographs - is mad, chaotic and evil.
Can there be a bleaker, more desolate prognosis for the future of humanity than the sight of children in uniform and camouflage, training as soldiers? Yet that is what you see in Tillim's pictures.
SOURCE: Guardian (8-28-05)
She argues that the plays and poems are a network of crossword puzzle-like clues to his strong Catholic beliefs and his fears for England's future. Aside from being the first to spot this daring Shakespearean code, Asquith also claims to be the first to have cracked it.
'It has not been picked up on before because people have not had the complete context,' she explained this weekend. 'I am braced for flak, but we now know we have had the history from that period wrong for a long time because we have seen it through the eyes of the Protestant, Whig ascendancy who, after all, have written the history.'
It is now widely accepted that the era was not a period of political consensus, says Asquith. Instead, it was a time in which opposition voices were banished and censorship meant the burning of illegal pamphlets and printed works.
As a result the Catholic resistance, which had been going for 70 years by the time Shakespeare was writing, had already developed its own secret code words; a subversive communication system which the playwright developed further in his work.
'They inevitably had a hidden language, and Shakespeare used it rather like the composer Shostakovich used political codes in the 20th century,' she said.
Asquith, the wife of a British diplomat who was posted to Moscow and Kiev during the Cold War, says that while she was living in the Soviet Union she began to understand how 'dissident meanings' worked in live theatre.
Shakespeare, she claims, adopted some of the more general Catholic code terms that were current, such as the use of the words 'tempest' or 'storm' to signify England's troubles, but he also used new cyphers. Asquith argues, for example, that his obsession with the theme of romantic love was much more than a crowd pleaser.
Constancy in love was Shakespeare's way of alluding to the importance of a true faith in the 'old religion', she says.
SOURCE: Guardian (8-29-05)
Analysts have now used three tiny samples, retrieved from the second toe of the left foot of David when the figure was damaged in act of vandalism in 1991, to track down the marble's origin. Not only were they able to determine the exact spot of excavation - the Fantiscritti quarries in Miseglia, the central of three small valleys in Carrara - they also found that Michelangelo's marble is of mediocre quality, filled with microscopic holes, and likely to degrade faster than many other marbles.
Name of source: Daily Telegraph (London)
SOURCE: Daily Telegraph (London) (8-30-05)
Fenton arrived in Japan in 1868, the year Japanese modernisers overthrew the medieval shogunate and replaced it with a constitutional monarchy.
His regiment, later renamed the Royal Lincolnshire Regt, had come to protect the small foreign community in Yokohama from samurai diehards bitterly opposed to the foreigners' presence on their soil.
During his three-year stay Fenton established Japan's first military brass band, ordering the instruments from London and composing what was intended as its first national anthem.
Historians record that 30 cadets from Satsuma, in Japan's far west, were staying a short walk from the park where Fenton's band rehearsed and performed. Fenton also became the instructor for the Japanese group, whose average age was 19.
Nationalists force the song into Japanese public life, demanding that Kimi Ga Yo (His Majesty's Reign) be played at every school ceremony. Tokyo's local government insists that teachers stand and sing what is essentially a hymn to the emperor or face fines and suspension.
But a large minority associate the tune with the militarism and deification of the emperor that drove Japan to the catastrophe of the Second World War.
Even Emperor Akihito stepped into the debate last year, saying that it was "not desirable" that respect for the anthem be imposed on reluctant Japanese.
Name of source: Boston Globe
SOURCE: Boston Globe (8-30-05)
The early Mormons faced violence and persecution for their religious beliefs and practice of polygamy, which the church has long since outlawed and now vigorously condemns. Today, expressions of anti-Mormonism manifest themselves on websites, in books and documentaries, and through invective sometimes hurled by Christian fundamentalists at temple-goers in Salt Lake City.
Romney, who oversaw the Boston area's Mormon congregations for nine years, is not the first church member to seriously consider a run for president. Others include his own father, George Romney, the popular governor of Michigan who dropped out shortly before the 1968 primaries; former representative Morris K. Udall of Arizona, who lost his bid for the Democratic nomination in 1976; and Utah Senator Orrin Hatch, who dropped out of the 2000 Republican primary race after a poor showing in the Iowa caucuses.
Even Joseph Smith Jr., the self-proclaimed prophet who founded the church in 1830, made a bid for the Oval Office. His campaign in 1844, the year James K. Polk beat Henry Clay, ended with his murder in June at the hands of an anti-Mormon mob.
The Mormon church boasts a range of high-level political figures; its 17 members of Congress are mostly Republican, but also include Senate Democratic leader Harry Reid, Democrat of Nevada. The church is known for a strong network that Romney can draw on for fund-raising and support.
SOURCE: Boston Globe (8-28-05)
The professors' disengagement is a departure from a once-proud tradition, argue coauthors Robert Orrill (a longtime official at the College Board who is now a senior adviser to the Woodrow Wilson National Fellowship Foundation) and Linn Shapiro (a historian and director of development for the Latin American Youth Center in Washington, D.C.).
In the last years of the 19th century and into the 20th, they say, the greatest historians in the land played a hands-on role in shaping the modern high-school curriculum, making a study of the past central to it.
But faced with difficult questions about what specific knowledge students should acquire, the historical profession ''equivocated, then walked away...." Today the abdication is complete. ''There is a lot of talk" in the history field about fostering links between college- and high-school teachers, says Orrill in an interview. ''But I haven't a whole lot of evidence of it."
Others wonder where Orrill has been the past few years. ''It's astounding to me that he feels that there hasn't been any significant change," says Gary B. Nash, an emeritus professor of history at the University of California at Los Angeles and director of the National Center for History in the Schools. Nash was also co-director of the controversial National Standards for History Project in the early to mid-'90s, a project he contends was part of a renaissance in professorial commitment to the schools. Today, he says, ''You can't go to a history department anywhere in this country without finding history professors who are involved with K-12 teachers."
It's true that great fresh streams of money have been aimed at remedying historical illiteracy recently. The five-year-old Teaching American History program, a pet project of Democratic senator Robert Byrd of West Virginia, will alone spend $119 million this year--roughly the budget of the entire National Endowment for the Arts--on seminars that bring together professors and teachers. And Senator Lamar Alexander, Republican of Tennessee, with Ted Kennedy and other co-sponsors, has won approval to create summer academies for high school history teachers. Yet Orrill notes that these were politician-driven, not historian-driven ventures.
NOTE (posted 8-30-05)
The American Historical Review will host an on-line discussion of the June 2005 Forum Essay,"From Bold Beginnings to an Uncertain Future: The Discipline of History and History Education" by Robert Orrill and Linn Shapiro. This article, which charts the changing involvement of academic historians in elementary and secondary schools over the last 100 years, asserts that the history profession today has largely failed to live up to its historic role as shapers of public education.
Please note that this discussion has been rescheduled. It was originally scheduled for September 1 to 15, but the dates have been changed so that both authors can be available throughout. It will now take place from September 26 to October 9. Please join us then. For more information, please CLICK HERE.)
Name of source: Balt Sun
SOURCE: Balt Sun (8-30-05)
"Everyone is old or gone," said Helen Rogan Heil. "Lots of others are sick or physically unable to make trips. This is like a family breaking up. The reunion is our last hurrah."
Of the 250,000 soldiers and aviators who served in what survivors call "CBI," about 600 veterans and their spouses, many from Maryland, are expected, organizers said.
Name of source: Chronicle of Higher Education
SOURCE: Chronicle of Higher Education (8-30-05)
Name of source: Scholars for Peace in the Middle East
SOURCE: Scholars for Peace in the Middle East (8-30-05)
To: Governor of Califormia, University of California and California State University Officials
Jewish students feel increasingly intimidated on University of California and California State University campuses for openly expressing support for Israel and Zionism. Virulent anti-Israel and anti-Zionist rhetoric in the classroom, and in the curricula, and in campus events fuels a hostile and potentially anti-Semitic environment throughout the University of California and California State University systems. The one-sided and often inaccurate presentation of the Israel/Arab conflict by faculty and guest speakers is inconsistent with a university's mission of pursuit of the truth through critical inquiry and diversity of ideas.
As the preamble to the Faculty Code of Conduct at the University of California (Academic Personnel Manual APM-015) states: The University seeks to provide and sustain an environment conducive to sharing, extending, and critically examining knowledge and values, and to furthering the search for wisdom." One-sided anti-Israel propaganda violates those goals.
The problem of Jewish students being intimidated in the classroom and on the campuses of the University of California and California State University was recognized by Governor Grey Davis in a letter in June 2002 to President Atkinson of the University of California and to Chancellor Reed of the California State University system. In this letter, Governor Davis stated his concern about anti-Semitism on California campuses and asked for a system-wide, comprehensive plan.
He also specifically asked for a review of course descriptions to insure that they are "forums for intellectual inquiry and not vehicles for discrimination, intimidation and hate." Unfortunately, despite Governor Grey's directive, the problem continues to date.
We therefore, respectfully urge the administration at the University of California and the State University of California:
1) To review in 2005-2006 course descriptions and course materials in the Humanities, Social Sciences and other curriculums in which issues are raised about Israel and Zionism, whether central or peripheral to the course description, to ensure that by 2006-07, "courses are forums for intellectual inquiry" and that the full range of scholarly views about Israel and Zionism is presented, e.g. including issues of freedom of religion, and rights of women, gays, Muslims/Arab citizens. When academic units sponsor or co-sponsor outside speakers, the academic units also should ensure that the full range of scholarly views are presented.
2) To develop in 2005-06 and implement in 2006-07 academic studies that engage in critical inquiry and educate students about post-Holocaust contemporary anti-Semitism.
3) To ask that beginning in 2006-07, the respective Deans of Humanities, Social Sciences and other academic divisions, submit an annual written report on the implementation of the above two recommendations.
This petition has been initiated by Professors Leila Beckwith of UCLA and Ilan and Tammi Benjamin of the University of California-Santa Cruz who head the Scholars for Peace in the Middle East Chapter at UCSC. The petition has been endorsed by the Scholars for Peace in the Middle East Board of Directors. For more information on Scholars for Peace in the Middle East, go to www.spme.net
Name of source: Solomonia (Blog)
SOURCE: Solomonia (Blog) (8-30-05)
Pallywood is "a play on the expression Bollywood, the designation of India's film industry, based in Bombay. It identifies a practice among Palestinian journalists to turn staged drama into news. This fictional news industry then feeds Western news reporting, who don't seem to suspect they're being duped. The expression acknowledges that the active, if still young, film industry of Palestinian culture, especially since the advent of cultural autonomy with the Oslo Accords in 1993, has already made a distinctive contribution to global culture."
[From an interview posted on the blog Solomonia:]
S: Isn't the expression disrespectful...mocking?
L: On one level, not at all. Most national film industries would love to have the success in the larger world media that Pallywood has achieved. Pallywood is a distinctive and powerful national product. But on the other hand, because it identifies Pallywood as part of a campaign of disinformation and propaganda, why should we respect that, rather than criticize it? As for mocking, at a basic level Pallywood is a joke played by the Palestinians on the West, and one can see it in the smiles on the faces of by-standers as they walk away from these staged scenes.
S: So you'll be posting raw footage for visitors to view for themselves? Visitors to the site can see the "rushes" from which their news was prepared?
L: Yes. We'll post the raw footage from Palestinian cameramen working for major Western news agencies at Netzarim Junction on Sept. 30, 2000 and possibly the next day. The visitor can view these videos for themselves and start to form their own impressions, then they can hop in and start reading our analysis and participating in the ongoing discussion. They'll have the chance to form their own impressions first.
It'll be like having a look behind the curtain in the Wizard of Oz.
S: When is the site going up?
L: Early September. Starting at the end of September, we'd like to follow the Intifada in real time five years later. Ideally, we'd present the raw material, then show you how that was reported in the media's product -- in the headlines. For example, the footage from September 30th was supposedly taken on a day when the Gaza strip exploded in violence over Sharon's visit to the Haram al Sharif (Temple Mount) and the casualties on the West Bank from the previous day. Nothing of the sort is visible in the crowds milling around right in front of the Israelis, smoking, talking on cell phones, laughing, while others put "wounded victims of Israeli gunfire" into ambulances. We'll also try to include material from various web logs and online diaries that were being kept at the time. So once you understand Pallywood, once you understand how the media was systematically duped by a propaganda machine...
S: Were they duped, or did they play along with it? Were they willing participants?
L: We want the web site to raise these questions and let people make their own judgments. Now, we think we have some answers, but we're post-modern enough to think there isn't only one answer. So for instance, in answer to your question, if we were to take a pie and slice it up, there would be a slice of journalists just out to make their living by providing their bosses in the West with action footage, another slice of people harboring some sort of bad faith or resentment -- some kind of strong anti-Jewish feelings -- then you've got another chunk of it who are people who really believe they are helping the Palestinians by recycling their propaganda. There's this great line by Bob Simon [of 60 Minutes], 'In the Middle East, one image can be worth 1000 weapons.' I think that there's a prevalent view in the press that since the Israelis have most of the weapons, the media can "level the playing field" by giving the Palestinians the media victory.
In fact what they're doing is they're prolonging everyone's misery. They're prolonging the conflict. It's not pro-Palestinian to run this propaganda, it's pro-Palestinian leadership which is systematically exploiting its own people's suffering to pursue a vendetta and the media is essentially backing the nastiest people in the conflict and telling themselves that they're somehow siding with 'the Palestinians.' It's as if the press in the US were willingly to run material about WMDs in Iraq in the thought that by supporting an American government bent on war they were somehow helping the American people. Now no one on the Left would support that -- that's the point of Michael Moore's movie -- but when it comes to perceived victims not only is this kind of misinformation okay, but let me help. Our "liberal" and "progressives" seem to have a curiously hard time identifying the Arab and Palestinian leadership -- secular and religious -- as victimizers of their people. Strange -- it's a standard Marxist perspective that elites exploit their masses, but somehow our "radicals" have dropped the ball here.
Now, again on your question as to whether it's on purpose, or are they really duped -- to some extent the web site will act as a litmus test. If you're being duped and you come to the web site and you walk away and say, 'I don't want to hear it,' then I'd say at some level you've shown that you're just not equipped to confront your own darker side. But if you come to the web site and you say, 'Oh my God, I had no idea, I really have to re-think this,' then you're one of the people who's been honestly duped.
Name of source: Robert A. Schneider Editor, American Historical Review
SOURCE: Robert A. Schneider Editor, American Historical Review (8-30-05)
Please note that this discussion has been rescheduled. It was originally scheduled for September 1 to 15, but the dates have been changed so that both authors can be available throughout. It will now take place from September 26 to October 9. Please join us then. For more information, please CLICK HERE.
Name of source: BBC
SOURCE: BBC (8-30-05)
Guglielmo Marconi, Alexander Graham Bell and John Logie Baird are familiar to most for the household indispensables they invented. But the attraction to spiritualism they all shared is definitely not part of the GCSE science syllabus.
All three men, and many other Victorian scientific pioneers, became involved with the religion, which depended on strange forces being demonstrated through bizarre phenomena.
The deevelopment of the telegraph made the possibility of communicating with the dead seem in the realm of the possible. "If people could communicate over the telegraph, why couldn't this world and the next world communicate?"
SOURCE: BBC (8-30-05)
In the spring of 2002 what started as a routine excavation was undertaken in advance of the building of a new school at Amesbury in Wiltshire. By the end of the excavation the richest Bronze Age burial yet found in Britain had been discovered. The Bronze Age man discovered there had been buried not far from the great temple of Stonehenge. He was a man who owned and could work the new and magical metals of gold and copper. And he had come from what is now central Europe, perhaps around the Alps. Was he a king of Stonehenge?
Name of source: WP
SOURCE: WP (8-28-05)
The Star-Spangled Banner Trail would begin in Southern Maryland near St. Leonard Creek and loop up to such sites as Alexandria, Washington, Bladensburg and Baltimore. It was in Baltimore that Key witnessed British ships firing on Fort McHenry, where the U.S. flag survived the "rockets' red glare" and "bombs bursting in air."
SOURCE: WP (8-30-05)
The folks at Mount Vernon are hoping the new George will help Americans see him as he was before he was famous, before Gilbert Stuart painted him, back when he was an "adventurous, athletic, risk-taking, courageous kind of action hero," says Jim Rees, the estate's executive director. Washington was extremely tall for his time (just over 6 feet 2), had a regal bearing and "larger than average hands and feet."
"Abigail Adams just goes on and on and on about the presence of Washington, about what it was like to be around him, which I'm sure drove her husband just crazy," Rees says.
Washington will be re-created at ages 19, 45 and 57 through the work of Jeffrey Schwartz, a physical anthropologist at the University of Pittsburgh who has been studying bones for 35 years. Schwartz is used to forensic cases. Typically he reconstructs the faces of the dead from their bones. With Washington, he has done the opposite, reconstructing the famous man's bones based on what he looked like, and then working back to figure out what the flesh on those bones looked like when Washington was 19 and "good-looking."
Name of source: Sacramental Bee
SOURCE: Sacramental Bee (8-28-05)
"History not yet written will determine how Bush will be viewed a half-century from now," said Charles Franklin, a political science professor at the University of Wisconsin. "But in the short run of politics that matters day to day, Iraq is clearly a big negative weight dragging him down and potentially threatening to drag down the Republican Party in midterm elections next year."
During the days following the Sept. 11, 2001, terrorist attacks, Bush's approval rating hit 90 percent, the highest recorded since Gallup began taking that opinion measure in 1939.
Yet, Bush's approval ratings in January 2001 and January this year - both in the mid-50s - were the lowest such marks of any newly elected president since the start of World War II.
Compared with the nine presidents who preceded him, Bush's average approval rating of around 50 percent puts him in the lower middle of the pack, with only Republicans Richard Nixon and Gerald Ford and Democrat Jimmy Carter behind him.
Franklin, the University of Wisconsin political scientist, said Bush's current low approval numbers should be especially troubling to him because they come so soon after he enjoyed major legislative triumphs.
Before adjourning for the summer, Congress passed a massive energy bill and approved the Central American Free Trade Agreement, two key measures Bush had pushed since first taking office.
Name of source: Atlanta Journal-Constitution
SOURCE: Atlanta Journal-Constitution (8-28-05)
The limited access and isolated location apparently seemed a perfect combination for the invasion planners, who hoped the force of about 1,400 Cuban exiles, armed with several tanks, mortars and heavy trucks topped by .50-caliber machine guns, could establish a beachhead that would inspire Castro foes across the island to join them in rebellion.
But the April 17-19, 1961, invasion was a dismal failure and a terrible embarrassment for President John F. Kennedy. It helped spawn the Cuban missile crisis the following year and cemented the growing hostility between the United States and Cuba that has now hardened into a four decade-old standoff.
The road leading to the beach where the invaders landed is lined with cement monuments engraved with the names of Cubans who died in the battle. Near the beach is a museum packed with captured weapons and displays in which yellowed newspaper clippings and photographs outline the events.
Historians have blamed the outcome on Kennedy's failure to send in U.S. air power to support the ground force.
But Cubans insist it was their superior fighting skill and spirit that won the day.
Name of source: Washington Report on Middle East Affairs
SOURCE: Washington Report on Middle East Affairs (8-27-05)
Name of source: Pittsburgh Post-Gazette
SOURCE: Pittsburgh Post-Gazette (8-28-05)
No one ever painted or sculpted a likeness of Washington when he was an unknown frontier surveyor; in fact, no portrait of him before age 40 exists. But Schwartz said the new images are as close as he could come to a forensic reconstruction of Washington, without the bones. "They look real to me," he said.
The 3-D full-body reconstructions are as yet expressionless, hairless and naked, but will serve as the basis for three full-size, lifelike models to go on display in a new museum opening in October 2006 at Washington's Mount Vernon estate in Virginia.
The 19-year-old version will be used later to sculpt a statue of the 21-year-old Washington now planned for a renovated Point State Park.
Even in their current state, "I think all the drawings show a strength and determination, if you will, that the Gilbert Stuart portrait [on the dollar bill] is lacking," said Jim Rees, executive director of the Virginia estate.
As Rees had hoped at the project's outset, Washington "comes off as stronger, more physical" than he appears in formal portraits.
Name of source: Romanesko
SOURCE: Romanesko (8-29-05)
Name of source: Newsday
SOURCE: Newsday (8-27-05)
A police van was seen by witnesses to have stopped Zergany's car at the time of his disappearance, and police vehicles and sometimes men in police uniforms have been involved in others of the hundreds - perhaps as many as 1,000 - assassinations in Basra in the past 18 months.
It is not just Sunnis who are being targeted in this majority Shia city, the professor said, but other Shia as well. All professors - particularly those interested in politics, like himself - are in danger. And not just professors, but judges, and doctors and journalists. And politicians who are seen as secular alternatives to the clergy now in power. And those, especially women, who work for foreigners. And Christians.