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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: UPI
SOURCE: UPI (3-19-07)
The paintings are part of a Society of Antiquaries exhibition at the British Antique Dealers' Association Fine Antiques and Fine Art Fair, The Independent said Monday. It is the first time the paintings are being display in London since they were presented to the society two centuries ago...
Mary Queen of Scots, executed by her cousin, Elizabeth I, probably gave the ring to away in an attempt to win support for her controversial marriage to her cousin, Lord Darnley, experts say. The ring may have been lost in a fire at Scone Palace in the 1940s when much of the collection was evacuated.
SOURCE: UPI (3-18-07)
Robert the Bruce's servants or gillies supposedly hid behind Gillies Hill during the battle. When they emerged, the English thought they were reinforcements and retreated.
Now, the Cambusbarron Local Council warns that stone quarrying could take most of the hill down. Its profile has been altered by the removal of rock in the past century.
Bruce defeated English King Edward II at Bannockburn in 1314, making himself king of Scotland...Fiona MacDonald, a lecturer in history at the University of Stirling, said the gillies' emergence appears to have been the turning point of the battle.
"It was the final straw for the English and chaos ensued," she said. "Whatever was left of the English army fled. This was the moment when Edward II was persuaded to leave the field."
Name of source: BBC News
SOURCE: BBC News (3-20-07)
The veteran vehicle with its curvy design and its open platform has been called "the last bus to be a proper bus".
Many Londoners remember fondly how they used to hop on and off them and pull the string to ring the bell.
But a Disability Rights Commission spokesman says it is "a bashed-up old relic from a bygone age" and the fact that it is still running on two central London heritage routes is "a disappointment".
A programme of repurchase and refurbishment -- begun after the election of Mayor Ken Livingstone in 2000 -- stopped in 2003-4, and the last full-scale route -- the 159 -- withdrew its Routemasters in December 2005.
What remained was the heritage routes - though only in the hours from 0930 to 1800 and only on the central part of two routes, the 9 (Albert Hall to Aldwych) and 15 (Tower of London to Trafalgar Square).
Name of source: Telegraph
SOURCE: Telegraph (3-20-07)
A new appraisal of 16th century maps offers evidence that a small Portuguese fleet charted much of Australia's coast as early as 1522.
It has long been known that Cook was preceded by Dutch navigators, whose ships were wrecked on the coast of western Australia as they made for their colony of Batavia -- present day Jakarta - in the 1600s.
The Portuguese thesis was put forward Monday by historian and journalist, Peter Trickett, in his book Beyond Capricorn. It describes how Portuguese adventurers secretly discovered and mapped Australia and New Zealand 250 years before Captain Cook.
Name of source: New York Times
SOURCE: New York Times (3-20-07)
The cache contains decades of party history including founding documents, secret code words, stacks of personal letters, smuggled directives from Moscow, Lenin buttons, photographs and stern commands about how good party members should behave (no charity work, for instance, to distract them from their revolutionary duties).
By offering such an inside view, the archives have the potential to revise assumptions on both the left and the right about one of the most contentious subjects in American history, in addition to filling out the story of progressive politics, the labor movement and the civil rights struggles.
SOURCE: New York Times (3-18-07)
History can be omnipresent or repressed in northeast Asia, but nearly everyone agrees it is festering and unresolved. Historic resentments and nationalist anger are volatile and easily inflamed...
[Christopher R. Hill, the assistant secretary of state for East Asian and Pacific affairs and chief American envoy] has often cast the disarmament talks as part of a larger, holistic effort to address the full range of conflicts in the region.
“We are dealing not only with denuclearization, but we are dealing with some of the problems in the region, some of the problems in the region caused by the region’s difficult history,” Mr. Hill said at one news conference during last month’s negotiations in Beijing. “This type of ambitious undertaking hasn’t been tried before.”
“Difficult history” is a gracious description. On some days, World War II seems ongoing...
Name of source: AP
SOURCE: AP (3-19-07)
Wealthy foodies can mark their calendars for Dec. 12, 2008, when top chefs from around the world will be flown to Egypt to cook a dinner in front of the ancient Pyramids of Giza, organizer Deepak Ohri said Monday...
Some 500 tickets will be sold for the dinner to be cooked by 30 3-star Michelin chefs...
A kitchen half a mile long will be set up against the backdrop of the pyramids with equipment and the best ingredients jetted in from around the world...
Just how close diners will be to the pyramids depends upon the Egyptian government and the U.N.'s cultural body UNESCO, since the pyramids are a World Heritage site.
Talks are under way with authorities, Ohri said, noting that organizers are "considering" giving profits from the dinner to an organization or charity that deals with conserving the Seven Wonders of the World. The pyramids are the only surviving structure from the traditional list of architectural marvels.
SOURCE: AP (3-19-07)
''We still have about 2 feet further down to dig,'' said archaeologist Thane Harpole, who is leading the project along with fellow archaeologist David Brown.
Fairfield Plantation was the Gloucester County home of Rebecca Burwell, who was 16 when she met College of William and Mary student Thomas Jefferson. The house was built in 1694 for Lewis Burwell II, patriarch of one of colonial Virginia's largest and most politically influential families.
Harpole and Brown say excavation of the hidden chamber in the home's cellar has turned up several artifacts, but nothing related to the romance between Rebecca and the man who would become the author of the Declaration of Independence and the nation's third president.
The archaeologists have no idea why the hidden chamber was built, but early indications are that it was used in more recent times as a giant junk drawer.
The organization recognizes 12 places each year for their dedication to historic preservation and recommends them as vacation destinations.
While New Orleans was not on the list of 12, the National Trust also commended the city for"exemplary achievement in heritage tourism."
[The dozen are Charlottesville, Va.; Chatham, Mass.; Chestertown, Md.; Durango, Colo.; Ellensburg, Wash.; Hillsborough, N.C.; Little Rock, Ark.; Mineral Point, Wis.; Morgantown, W.Va.; Providence, R.I.; West Hollywood, Calif.; and Woodstock, Ill.]
Dozen Distinctive Destinations, 2007 (NTHP)
Japan's Cabinet said in a formal statement Friday that it could not find any proof that the military or government agencies coerced so-called "comfort women" into sexual slavery during the war, repeating a similar claim by Prime Minister Shinzo Abe.
The formal declaration was seen as a slap in the face of Asian nations already outraged over Abe's remarks.
South Korea denounced Japan's declaration as "an attempt to downplay its past wrongdoing and gloss over historical truth."
"We think it is very regrettable," the Foreign Ministry said in a statement. "We hope Japan will face up to history and accept sincere advice from the international community."
The government pledged $500,000 to reconstruct the home where the author drew inspiration for his trademark magical realism literary style.
According to his 2003 autobiography, Living to Tell the Tale, it was on the patio of his thatch-roofed childhood home that the young Garcia Marquez eavesdropped on his grandmother and aunts, whose stories of ghosts visiting in the night and opera-singing parrots would later pepper much of his literature, including his award-winning One Hundred Years of Solitude.
Norman DeNeal of Butte wants a Civil War cannon that spent nearly 60 years in the Columbia Gardens returned to [Butte], but an artillery museum at Fort Sill, Okla., won't release the artifact...
In 1903, the cannon was given to Lincoln Post No. 2, a Civil War veterans group, at the behest of copper king and former U.S. Sen. William A. Clark...Clark owned the Columbia Gardens until his death in 1925 when ownership of the park went to the Anaconda Co., DeNeal said. The Anaconda Co. donated the cannon to the museum at Fort Sill on March 7, 1960, when Butte's Civil War veterans were deceased.
DeNeal believes the cannon didn't belong to the company..."There's nothing that says the government can take this back," he said.
The U.S. Army sees it differently. Kelley said military artifacts such as cannons will always belong to the government...
The cannon was built for coastline defense and was used on Angel Island near San Francisco. During the Civil War, the Union Army put the cannon on a barge that patrolled the Mississippi River, DeNeal said.
The street in Liverpool, hometown of the Fab Four, is named after James Penny, a slave trader and investor in 11 voyages that took 500 to 600 captives at a time to the New World.
Penny was among the many who enriched themselves and their city on human trafficking until the slave trade was abolished 200 years ago. Their ships carried millions of human beings from west Africa to the plantations of the Americas in a triangular trade that also brought profitable cargoes of sugar, tobacco and rum to England.
Liverpool’s rise, says local historian Ray Costello, is summed up in the carving on a bank facade: two black children supporting Liverpool as Neptune.
"What it really means is that this bank was founded on the slave trade," Costello said.
Italian researchers hope thousands of nearly forgotten works will find new life as they assemble a library of music composed or played in those dark places between 1933 and 1945.
"We are trying to right a great wrong: These musicians were hoping for a musical life for themselves, and they would have had it if their destiny had been different," said Italian musician Francesco Lotoro.
He has been collecting originals, copies and recordings of everything from operas composed in the depth of the Nazi death machine to jazz pieces written in Japanese POW camps in Asian jungles.
The library, set to open in September at Rome's Third University, will offer scholars a repertoire of 4,000 papers and 13,000 microfiches including music sheets, letters, drawings and photos.
Sixteen buffalo from the National Bison Range in northwestern Montana were released in an enclosed 1,400-acre section of a wildlife refuge that formerly was the Rocky Mountain Arsenal, where nerve gas and other chemical weapons were manufactured...
The 17,000-acre arsenal is being cleaned up and transformed from a chemical weapons and pesticide manufacturing center into the Rocky Mountain Arsenal National Wildlife Refuge.
The collection, which includes a piece from a foundation stone that was "touched by Alexander the Great" and several items thousands of years old, was assembled in Switzerland by Afghans who wanted to save their cultural heritage after decades of war.
The oldest artifact dates back 3,500 years, and the collection spans "countless" empires to which Afghanistan once belonged, said Paul Bucherer, director of the Afghanistan Museum in the northwestern Swiss town of Bubendorf. The Swiss museum, which received about 50,000 visitors since opening in 2000, is now closed.
"The Proper Way to Hang a Confederate Flag" by black artist John Sims is "offensive, objectionable and tasteless," Robert Hurst, commander of the local camp of the Sons of Confederate Veterans, said Friday.
But the Mary Brogan Museum of Art and Science said it stands by Sims' work, part of a larger exhibit called "AfroProvocations," because it wants to inspire dialogue.
Name of source: ABC News
SOURCE: ABC News (3-18-07)
But this is not the Grand Canyon tourists have come to know and love. This is Grand Canyon West, 90 miles downstream from Grand Canyon National Park, on land owned by the Hualapai Indian Tribe.
Now, the Hualapai are about to do something no one has ever dreamed of before.
Later this month they will open Skywalk — a $40 million glass and steel platform that allows visitors to walk out 70 feet from the canyon's edge and look straight down into the canyon and river below.
"It's an engineering marvel of the world," said Robert Bravo, a Hualapai Indian who is the operations manager of Grand Canyon West....
Not everyone approves of this audacious feat of engineering. Environmentalists and some tribal elders condemn it as a desecration of a sacred American landscape.
"The Grand Canyon deserves much better," said Robert Arnberger, former superintendent of Grand Canyon National Park. "Skywalk is nothing more than a thrill ride, or thrill walk, hanging over the edge."
Name of source: BBC
SOURCE: BBC (3-19-07)
They have been working on an 18th Century portrait to uncover a black servant who some experts believed was deliberately painted out.
The portrait of tobacco merchant John Glassford and his family was painted in the 1760s by Archibald McLauchlan.
The wealthy Glaswegian's black servant was included in the picture as an indicator of his wealth and status....
For many years, it was thought the family had painted the figure out, embarassed by their connections with the slave trade.
But a senior conservator, Polly Smith, believed the figure simply faded with time and her team eventually hope to uncover the man's identity.
SOURCE: BBC (3-16-07)
Guinness sales rise dramatically every year on 17 March as people across the world mark the event.
But its true meaning has been forgotten - or never learnt - by many, according to the Manchester Irish Festival.
Organisers quizzed 2,000 people taking part in its festival parade but only 40% knew of the Christian missionary, who is the patron saint of Ireland....
Folklore tells how the priest, who was eventually elevated to the post of bishop, drove snakes out of Ireland.
The story is thought to symbolise his role in the conversion of the population to Christianity.
St Patrick is traditionally associated with the Shamrock plant, which he used to explain the concept of the Holy Trinity.
Name of source: AFP
SOURCE: AFP (3-18-07)
"The paradox is that, yes, an entire area is being wiped off the map but thanks to the rescue project, Sudanese archaeology is being put on the map," said Sudan's antiquities chief Salah Ahmed.
The Merowe dam is a controversial hydro-electric project -- one of the largest in Africa -- being erected on the Nile's fourth cataract and due to start flooding the valley over more than 100 miles (160 kilometres) within months.
Archaeologists admit that an incalculable amount of information will be forever lost.
SOURCE: AFP (3-15-07)
"We need a government that takes responsibility for protecting the monuments of all Iraqis," antiquities director Abbas Ali al-Hussainy told AFP in an interview during a recent visit to Cairo.
"Right now we need to take measures to figure out where the sites are and know the extent of the damage and looting at each one," said the slight, bespectacled man.
The pillaging of the Iraqi National Museum in the immediate aftermath of Baghdad's fall in April 2003 shocked the world.
But while many of those antiquities have since been recovered, looting has taken off in the archaeological sites scattered around the perilous countryside.
Name of source: Newsday
SOURCE: Newsday (3-19-07)
"I haven't received any documents or even a note indicating that they're searching the records," said Jeff Gerth, a former New York Times reporter who requested a wide range of the first lady's files for an unauthorized Clinton biography he's working on.
With the 2008 election looming, researchers are eager to unearth undisclosed details from eight years marked by controversy, scandal and high-wire politics.
The Clintons' longtime personal lawyer, Bruce Lindsey, who helped defend the couple in the 1990s, has veto power over the release of the most sensitive documents. Attempts to contact Lindsey weren't successful.
Among the documents requested: almost all of Hillary Clinton's files as first lady, eight years' worth of her daily White House schedules, office diaries, day planners and telephone logs, according to a list of Freedom of Information Act requests obtained by Newsday.
Name of source: Secrecy News, written by Steven Aftergood, is published by the Federation of American Scientists
"I really cannot say anything positive about this proposed GRS," wrote another analyst, in internal comments. "It is flawed, troubling, and misleading." It is "unimplementable" and "will lead to the destruction of permanent records."
"This proposal is ill-considered, ill-conceived, and should be terminated with extreme prejudice," said a third.
But another Archives official said the "extremely aggressive tone to the argument" shows that those critics' judgment has been "clouded" because they were not consulted in advance.
As a general matter, no one doubts that the overwhelming majority of government records lack permanent historical value and are properly destroyed. What is at issue in this dispute is whether the proposed schedule for destruction of financial records properly recognizes the enduring value of some CFO records.
The functions of agency Chief Financial Officers "are not routine, administrative, housekeeping operations traditionally covered by a [General Records Schedule]," one internal NARA critic insisted. "Prima facie, it is doubtful that there should be a GRS for the office of Chief Financial Officer."
But the proposal is nevertheless moving forward.
In a February 22 Federal Register notice, NARA announced the availability for public comment of a disposition schedule for CFO records. A copy is here:
As a result of the debate of the past several months, the revised proposal adds several new caveats. It acknowledges that some CFO records are permanent, not temporary, and that they must be preserved; it specifies that the proposed schedule would apply to certain types of CFO components and not to others; and it notes that some CFO records are already subject to existing schedules that take precedence over the new proposal.
Under the circumstances, then, the remaining question is whether the proposed schedule will provide increased clarity and flexibility, as intended, or whether it will generate new confusion and inadvertent loss of historically valuable records.
A cross-section of internal NARA comments on the proposed schedule as of September 2006, only some of which were resolved by the latest draft, is posted here:
Some basic financial records of the United States Government have already been lost to history.
"We are unable to locate a document containing, or a series of documents from which we may deduce, the aggregate U.S. intelligence budget figure for Fiscal Year 1947 [or Fiscal Year 1948]," wrote the CIA's Kathryn I. Dyer in 2003 in response to a Federation of American Scientists lawsuit.
Name of source: International Herald Tribune
SOURCE: International Herald Tribune (3-18-07)
This was Invasion Beach, where 62 years ago 61,000 American marines poured onto this remote volcanic island in the Pacific Ocean, in one of the bloodiest and final campaigns of World War II. It was Shindo's grandfather, Lieutenant General Tadamichi Kuribayashi, who commanded the badly outnumbered Japanese defenders, most of whom fought to the death.
The blasted concrete bunkers and splintered, rusting machine guns that still litter the island testify to the ferocity of the battle of Iwo Jima, recreated in two recent movies by director Clint Eastwood. Now it is a Japanese airbase that is usually off-limits to civilians, though once a year a joint American- Japanese ceremony is held to mark the battle. Shindo said that he came to pay respects to his grandfather, whose remains have never been found.
SOURCE: International Herald Tribune (3-17-07)
Meng is one of 18 residents of this isolated village in northeastern China, all older than 80, who, according to Chinese linguists and historians, are the last native speakers of Manchu.
Descendants of seminomadic tribesmen who conquered China in the 17th century, they are the last living link to a language that for more than two and a half centuries was the official voice of the Qing Dynasty, the final imperial house to rule from Beijing and one of the richest and most powerful empires the world has known.
With the passing of these villagers, Manchu will also die, experts say. All that will be left will be millions of documents and files in Chinese and foreign archives, along with inscriptions on monuments and important buildings in China, unintelligible to all but a handful of specialists.
Name of source: Times (of London)
SOURCE: Times (of London) (3-19-07)
The treasures will be housed in the 14th-century Castello Estense, the “jewel” at the heart of Ferrara. A palazzo and park will also be restored to provide a residential study centre for Italian and Russian art experts.
“The Hermitage has three million items and even the Russians don’t know exactly what they’ve got,” said Gaetano Sateriale, the Mayor of Ferrara. “When I went to St Petersburg recently I was stunned to see whole rooms of Etruscan antiquities, far more than Italy itself has. They need our cataloguing skills.”
The move to set up Hermitage Italy confirms a trend, with some of the world’s great museums opening profitable branches abroad.
SOURCE: Times (of London) (3-19-07)
Throughout Cambodia the border town of Pailin is known —- apart from its gemstones —- as the last bastion of the Khmer Rouge, from where its remnants fought the Government until 1998.
The reputation is enough to send most travellers rushing through to the capital, Phnom Penh, eight hours drive away. Locals say that about 70 per cent of the area’s older men were fighters and that nearly all families have links to the regime blamed for the deaths of 1.7 million of their compatriots between 1975 and 1979.
Among them are men guilty of the worst crimes of the 20th century. Yet in the past four years many who are now law-abiding farmers and traders have renounced their former leader Pol Pot as a servant of Satan; travellers today are likely to suffer nothing worse than a fervent attempt to bring them to the Lord.
Name of source: Los Angeles Times
SOURCE: Los Angeles Times (3-19-07)
The movement began in the former Confederate capital, Richmond, Va., with state legislators last month unanimously passing a resolution expressing "profound regret" over Virginia's role in slavery and the Jim Crow era.
Now, lawmakers in Georgia, Maryland, Delaware, New York, Missouri, Massachusetts and Vermont are considering similar measures that would express regret, apologize or create commemorative days.
The wave of contrition has spread to cities too...
There is wide agreement that such apologies would be largely symbolic political gestures, but there appears to be little consensus on what exactly they would mean.
Some believe official legislative remorse could be cathartic to the nation, showing that it is mature enough to confront its past. But others accuse lawmakers of picking an easy battle: Apologizing for blatant historical wrongs such as slavery, they say, only detracts from addressing present-day injustices.
Name of source: Reuters
SOURCE: Reuters (3-18-07)
A cradle of ancient civilizations and crossroads of Greek, Buddhist, Hindu and Muslim cultures, Pakistan has a treasure-trove of ruins but many are being built over, pilfered by art thieves and villagers or succumbing to the elements.
The federal government's archaeology department has control over most of the country's main sites but provincial officials argue they should be in charge of looking after their ruins.
SOURCE: Reuters (3-17-07)
"The review committee discussed in exhaustive detail many points and resolved all remaining disagreements, although some fine tuning remains to be done," they said in a statement at the end of 10 days of talks.
Disagreements which had held up the start of the tribunal, set up last year by Cambodia and the United Nations, ranged from admissibility of evidence and witness protection to the height of the judges' chairs.
The statement gave few details of what the agreement entailed, but it appeared to have ended what diplomats said was the threat of the U.N. side to walk away from trials expected to take three years and cost $53 million.
Name of source: Washington Post
SOURCE: Washington Post (3-19-07)
Smithsonian Secretary Lawrence M. Small's spending has been the subject of intense public scrutiny after The Washington Post published details last month from a confidential inspector general's report delving into his $2 million in housing and office expenses over the past six years....
SOURCE: Washington Post (3-19-07)
In the fog of modern counterinsurgency warfare, statistics have replaced conquered territory as measures of success. Then-Defense Secretary Donald H. Rumsfeld once dismissed questions about the level of combat-ready Iraqi troops by saying that numbers are only numbers and "misleading" as to the truth, but the Bush administration has supplied a steady stream of them...
SOURCE: Washington Post (3-17-07)
After two hours of mock-trial arguments at the Kennedy Center -- presided over by no less a jurist than Supreme Court Justice Anthony M. Kennedy -- a jury of Washingtonians deliberated over whether Hamlet was in his right mind when he stabbed Polonius to death. In elegant tribute to Shakespeare's enigmatic masterpiece, the jurors deadlocked, 6 to 6.
Sitting on the Eisenhower Theater stage under a towering portrait of Shakespeare, Kennedy told Joshua Drew, the young actor playing the sullen defendant, that the verdict "leaves us no choice but to remand you to the pages of our literary heritage."
With that, the exercise -- applying modern legal and psychological standards to a character who must qualify as the most tirelessly scrutinized in Western literature -- was complete. "The Trial of Hamlet," the brainchild of Justice Kennedy and the Shakespeare Theatre Company, proved to be a diverting showcase for some incisive analytical thinkers.
SOURCE: Washington Post (3-17-07)
The Maryland resolution, which appears likely to win approval in the House as well, says slavery "fostered a climate of oppression" not just for slaves and their descendants but for other people of color who moved to Maryland after slavery was abolished and has "afflicted the citizens of this state down to the present."
Sen. Nathaniel Exum (D-Prince George's), whose great-grandfather was a slave, sponsored the Maryland legislation, hoping to empower African Americans. Exum has tried unsuccessfully for years to get legislation passed.
Name of source: Guardian
SOURCE: Guardian (3-19-07)
Ida Dalser and her son by Mussolini both died in mental institutions after she tried unsuccessfully to force the dictator to recognise their marriage and his son, also named Benito. "Not Even Nero or Caligula would have done what you have done," she once wrote to him.
The story has considerable current relevance because of efforts by the Italian right to rehabilitate the dictator and portray him as a good family man and an essentially harmless, if occasionally misguided, authoritarian...
Although it was known Mussolini had had a relationship with Ida Dalser before the first world war, the evidence for a marriage and the existence of their son was only brought to light in 2001 by a local historian in northern Italy...
In 1926, she was arrested and committed to a mental hospital. The rest of her life was a nightmare of escapes, re-arrests and attempts to trace her son, who had been adopted by the former Fascist police chief of Sopramonte. Ida Dalser died of a "brain haemorrhage" in 1937 at a Venetian institution. Her son died five years later, also in an institution, near Milan.
Name of source: Xinhua/ChinaView
SOURCE: Xinhua/ChinaView (3-17-07)
The National Museum, standing to the east of the Tian'anmen Square in central Beijing, used to be one of the ten celebrated constructions after the People's Republic of China was founded in 1949...
According to the project plan, south, north and west wings of the existing buildings will be repaired and reinforced. New buildings will be constructed eastwards...
The National Museum with new buildings will be completed in 2009 and it will cover a land space of 70,000 square meters [750,000 square feet] and 40.3 meters [132 feet] high.
Name of source: Discovery News
SOURCE: Discovery News (3-16-07)
If the charred 2,460 grape seeds and 300 empty grape skins were used to make wine, as the researchers suspect, the remains might have belonged to the second oldest known grape wine in the world, edged out only by a residue-covered Iranian wine jug dating to the sixth millennium B.C.
Name of source: http://www.news-record.com
SOURCE: http://www.news-record.com (3-12-07)
Still, the angry are the exception.
Most New Orleans residents tolerate the presence of two UNCG professors and 12 graduate students in history and interior architecture.
They're devoting their spring break to helping rescue historic buildings damaged by Hurricane Katrina or years of neglect.
Name of source: NYT
As the provenance of antiquities and artworks is questioned, so is the provenance of dealers themselves.
The new wariness of collectors, both public and private, to buy or exhibit works that do not have the most rigorously documented history jeopardizes the business of even the most established dealers.
Who knows where a murderous rampage in Greenwich Village or a fire that killed 10 people, 9 of them children, from two Malian families might stand in the dark annals of a city’s history?
“One of a great city’s functions is to serve as a repository of memory,” said Francis Morrone, a historian and lecturer on the culture of the city. “We need to be a place that preserves not just happy times and grand buildings, but those memories that affect us on the deepest level.”
Mr. DeLay, who defeated Mr. Gingrich’s choice for party whip, calls Mr. Gingrich an “ineffective speaker of the House.” “He knew nothing about running meetings and nothing about driving an agenda,” he writes. “Newt wanted to turn the ship of state on a dime. Nearly every other day he had a new agenda, a new direction he wanted us to take. It was impossible to follow him.”
The comments have drawn the attention of Mr. Gingrich, who is considering a presidential bid. In an interview, Mr. Gingrich listed a series of accomplishments during his reign in the House, including the first tax cuts in 16 years, welfare changes, institutional improvements, a balanced budget, increased intelligence spending and the holding of a majority after the ousting of the entrenched Democrats.
“What I would say is take that list of accomplishments, and you can then ask Mr. DeLay what the comparable accomplishments were after I left,” Mr. Gingrich said.
Senator John McCain was shot down 3,500 feet above Hanoi on a bombing run one month into his tour. He spent five and a half years as a prisoner of war; he was held in solitary confinement, tortured, beaten until he could not stand. An admiral’s son and a Navy pilot, he came to believe, like many pilots, that the war had been winnable, if only it had been fought right.
Memories of Vietnam haunt the public debate on the war in Iraq. They also lurk in the private thoughts of a generation in Congress — men like Senators Hagel and McCain, who lived through the earlier war, vote on the current one and, despite their shared past, now disagree profoundly on what the United States should do next.
Name of source: Pittsburgh Post-Gazette
SOURCE: Pittsburgh Post-Gazette (3-18-07)
[Sen. John Heinz Pittsburgh Regional History Center President Andrew] led the discussion that looked at how and when events from the Civil War era should be remembered.
The 100th commemoration of the War Between the States gave short shrift to such topics as slavery and the role of women, he said. The Pennsylvania Historical and Museum Commission is making sure those subjects get the coverage this time, he said.
A weekend storm kept Linda Shopes, the commission's director for "Telling Pennsylvania's Civil War Stories," in Harrisburg. She sent a statement, however, outlining the four key themes of the state's "New Narratives" project. They are "Slavery and Freedom," "The War's Impact on Local Communities," "Women and the Home Front" and "Commemoration and Memory."
Topics discussed yesterday included when commemorative activities should begin. While the first shots of the Civil War were fired at Fort Sumter, S.C., on April 12, 1861, its roots and causes went back many years.
Sam Black, curator of the Heinz Center's African-American collection, argued for an event as early as 2008, which marks the 200th anniversary of U.S. abolition of the Atlantic slave trade. [Britain is marking that anniversary in 2007.]
Others proposed 2009, which will mark the 150th anniversary of John Brown's Raid at Harper's Ferry. Mr. Brown and a small group of abolitionists attacked a U.S. arsenal in what is now West Virginia, seeking to spark and arm a slave rebellion. Mr. Brown was captured by federal troops led by Robert E. Lee, convicted of treason and hanged.
Name of source: David Piper, Fox News
SOURCE: David Piper, Fox News (3-18-07)
Afghan and Italian experts have painstakingly put back together hundreds of priceless statues, carvings and other artifacts that had been damaged or even smashed to pieces by thieves and the Taliban...
I learned later that many of the statues had been found in pieces in the storeroom of the museum, which had been ransacked many times but still gave up such priceless artifacts when the experts managed to work their way through the debris.
Others had been left in pieces in the grounds of the museum...
This past weekend 1,400 artifacts protected from looters and the Taliban in far-off Switzerland have been returned to the Kabul museum.
News reports say one of the first items to be placed in the museum was a small Buddah statue from Bamiyan, where the Taliban had blown up the giant statues.
Name of source: San Francisco Chronicle
SOURCE: San Francisco Chronicle (3-18-07)
Shortly after Hirsch got that letter, his parents were forced onto a train headed for death. When they arrived at Auschwitz, "they were marched directly to the gas chambers and killed," he said.
Hirsch, 75, is one of more than 100 Americans who have joined a groundbreaking legal action here against the French railway Société Nationale des Chemins de Fer (SNCF), which transported thousands of Jews during World War II to transit hubs on their way to their deaths. It's the same state-owned train system that now carries commuters to their jobs. Some 76,000 Jews in France were transported to Nazi death camps; only 2,500 of them survived.
In a first-of-its-kind ruling last summer, 62 years after the war ended, an administrative tribunal in Toulouse, France, fined the SNCF and the French republic $80,000 for their role in transporting a Jewish family. The railway is appealing. [The Toulouse finding is the first such ruling against the French republic or one of its agencies.]
The case could be one of the last significant legal actions on behalf of Holocaust survivors, many of whom have already died of old age...
Name of source: Independent
SOURCE: Independent (3-17-07)
Granville Sharp, who campaigned tirelessly to see slavery abolished, is to have his tomb protected after David Lammy, the Culture minister, ruled that it was of "special historical interest."
The decision comes on the eve of the bicentenary of the 1807 Abolition of the Slave Trade Act, which will be marked by a service at Westminster Abbey and events throughout the UK.
Sharp -- whose efforts to emancipate slaves will, along with William Wilbeforce, be commemorated in a stamp -- wrote more than 60 books about the mistreatment of slaves.
The civil servant and lawyer travelled around the country collecting evidence of the abuse of slaves, including their mistreatment on slave ships...
"Wilberforce played a big part in Parliament but the importance of Granville Sharp in the abolitionist movement is often underplayed. He was one of the earliest, most dedicated and most radical opponents of slavery," said Dr John Gilmore, associate professor at Warwick University.
SOURCE: Independent (3-16-07)
Behind the doors of a Polish nursing home sits a woman who might be described as the female Oskar Schindler. She didn't have his industrial machinery or his financial might, but the one-time health worker rescued twice as many Jews from the horrors of the Holocaust. Nearly 2,500 children were saved from Warsaw's Ghetto and an almost certain death in the concentration camps -- all thanks to Irena Sendlerowa.
Ms Sendlerowa, now 97, smuggled Jewish babies and children out in sacks, through sewer pipes and even hidden under stretchers in ambulances. They were then farmed out to non-Jewish foster families where they were given false identities and taught to speak Polish and rattle off Christian prayers so they could fool prying Gestapo officers...
Name of source: ABC
SOURCE: ABC (3-17-07)
With its ancient castles and folklore, many in Ireland had long claimed royal descent. Never from an English king, of course. That would be cultural sacrilege. But rather, many traced their line back to a 5th-century Irish ruler named, dauntingly, Niall of the Nine Hostages.
"You get that feeling just being here," said Brendan Rohan, a resident of Donegal, Ireland, the historical home of King Niall. "Something in the land, something in the air and something in the bones of the people has a connection."
Name of source: Sydney Morning Herald
SOURCE: Sydney Morning Herald (3-17-07)
Bobby Kennedy's affair with the screen idol Marilyn Monroe has been documented, but a secret FBI file suggests the late US attorney-general was aware of -- and perhaps even a participant in -- a plan"to induce" her suicide.
The detailed three-page report implicates the Hollywood actor Peter Lawford, Monroe's psychiatrist, staff and her publicist in the plot...
The document, hidden among thousands of pages released under freedom-of-information laws last October, was received by the FBI on October 19, 1964 -- two years after her death -- and titled simply"ROBERT F KENNEDY"
. It was compiled by an unnamed former special agent working for the then Democrat governor of California, Pat Brown, and forwarded to Washington by Curtis Lynum, then head of the San Francisco FBI...
FBI file 'Marilyn Monroe Cross References, 66 pages'